Supporting Upcoming Events on Campus and Looking Forward to Commencement
I first want to remind everyone that a draft of the CLAS Strategic Plan is now posted on a secure page on the CLAS website (log-in from the campus network or VPN plus university ID and password are required to view the page). This draft version will remain posted for comment until March 31. Comments will then be discussed and incorporated, and the final Strategic Plan will be posted in mid-April for a vote. This very important work has involved many of you already, and I hope to have more input from all of you.
As the regulations and restrictions for gatherings on-campus are loosening, I hope all of you are getting a chance to reconnect with each other. I am spending more and more time on campus, meeting with people who aren’t speaking via a box on zoom, and I’m very much enjoying the renewed human connections. One of the best ways to get back into the swing of campus life is by attending some of the many events that are transitioning back to in-person formats, so I want to highlight just a couple of upcoming options here.
The CLAS Council for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion’s Interdisciplinary Exchange will be returning to an in-person format for the first time in two years on Tuesday, April 12th, in Student Commons 1401, from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm (back in the timeslot it had been enjoying for almost a decade). The topic “Immigrants in the West” will feature Political Science Assistant Professor C/T Jim Walsh, History student Kira Boatright, and History Associate Professor Peter Kopp. Lunch will be served to everyone in attendance to enjoy together (if permitted next month) or to take away.
I also want to encourage everyone to attend a specially-designated CLAS Conversation with Chancellor Marks on Thursday, April 14th, from 9:30 am - 10:30 am, in Student Commons Room 1500. The presentation will focus on university priorities and the progress made on the university’s 2030 Strategic Plan, but the event will also include time for you to ask questions directly to the Chancellor and to let her hear your thoughts and ideas. Chancellor Marks is eager to connect more with faculty and staff in each college in a way that can only happen when we come together in-person (no zoom alternative will be provided).
Finally, at the end of the semester all members of our CU Denver community are invited to celebrate our graduating students at both an in-person Grad Bash (Friday, May 13th) and Commencement (Saturday, May 14th). Grad Bash will take place from 11: 00 am - 2:00 pm in the Lola & Rob Salazar Student Wellness Center Courtyard. Faculty and staff are invited to join graduates, families, and guests to kick off commencement weekend and celebrate the end of the semester together. If you're not able to attend commencement, this is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our graduates with activities, live music, and lunch. Commencement will start at 9:00 am Saturday morning, tickets are not required, and seating will be first-come-first-served. Everyone can visit the Commencement website for other details on activities, registration, academic regalia, and more.
Who could have imagined two years ago that we would have to wait until 2022 to fill the quad again with the kind of excitement and celebration that only commencement can provide? I can’t tell you how ready I am to celebrate the amazing achievements of our Class of 2022. I also want to assure everyone that we will continue to monitor COVID conditions and public health guidelines, and we will share any necessary updates to our event plans and campus COVID protocols should the situation require. In the meantime, let’s cross our fingers and enjoy our wonderful campus and community.
Update from the Inclusive Teaching Practices Journal Club
This study looks at the impact first-year STEM grades have on the persistence of first- and continuing-generation college students. First-year introductory STEM courses are often cited as the reason for leaving STEM. Thompson found that grades in these courses differentially impact first- and continuing-generation college students even when prior preparation and STEM interest is taken into account. Knowing that these grades can have a large impact on who persists in STEM it is important to seriously evaluate their impact.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s Colorado Outdoor Equity Grant Board has elected Yesica Chavez as Chair. Chavez is a first-generation graduate who earned a B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Ethnic Studies. She coordinated various projects in the environmental justice, sustainability, and equity/inclusion sectors while earning her bachelor’s degree.
Communication Professor Stephen Hartnett knows that education can transform lives. In this op-ed he highlights the partnership between CU Denver and the Colorado Department of Corrections (DOC) which brings college classes to prisons and changed the life of Ben Boyce. He wrote, “The former addict and prisoner became Dr. Boyce, a beloved and respected communications professor at CU Denver. Dr. Boyce’s story offers a blueprint for how we can break the cycle of recidivism and position prisoners for success after they serve their time.”
After a semester without implementing them, Communication Associate Professor Amy A. Hasinoff has decided that penalties for late work mainly create intense anxiety for students and may not provide that much payoff for instructors. She wrote, “As the pandemic wears on, conversations about pedagogy in higher ed have been turning to kindness, compassion and care. One specific way we can be compassionate with students is to stop using late penalties.”
Colorado House Bill 22-1287 includes a slew of protections for mobile home owners and amounts to a new bill of rights for those residents. “Bills like this could strengthen, could support and grow affordable housing stock for decades,” said Esther Sullivan, Assistant Professor of Sociology, who has conducted extensive research on mobile home residents and parks in the United States and wrote the book Manufactured Insecurity: Mobile Home Parks and Americans’ Tenuous Right to Place.
The call for applications for the Chancellor's Faculty Fellow has been expanded to include individuals in all faculty positions. As of March 17, 2022, leadership made this opportunity available for all CU Denver faculty – lecturers, instructors, clinical teaching track, tenure-track and tenured faculty – and has extended the application deadline to Monday, April 4 at noon.
The Chancellor’s Faculty Fellowship was announced in July 2020 as a result of Chancellor Michelle Marks’ Equity Listening Sessions. Nominated annually to one-year terms, the Faculty Fellow will focus each year on a different topic of strategic priority to CU Denver. The primary responsibilities of the faculty fellow are to advise the chancellor and CU Denver leadership team related to the topic as well as to work on projects that support the designated topic. As an advisor to the Chancellor and leaders across the university, leadership will look to the
The CLAS Staff Council invites your nominations for Outstanding Staff in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciencesto be recognized for excellence in service and engagement on behalf of the College in the categories listed below. Please read the details of the eligibility criteria for each award and the nominations review process posted on the CLAS Staff Council website. You can find the nomination form here, and questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The award categories are:
CLAS Outstanding Staff Award
You may nominate an individual staff member for more than one award category as long as they meet the eligibility criteria. However, an employee may not be selected as the winner for more than one award category. Nominations will be accepted until March 31st, and the winners will be notified by Staff Council by April 25th.
Share your story related to being a Black, Indigenous, and/or Person of Color (BIPOC) student, staff, and faculty member at the University of Colorado Denver. A new 2-day Digital Storytelling Workshop on the Auraria campus has 12 open positions available for CU Denver community members who self-identify as BIPOC. The workshop will take place Fridays, April 22 and 29th, from 12 noon to 5:00 pm. Location details coming soon. Each participant receives a $250 stipend after completing the two-day workshop. Facilitators: Dr. Marty Otañez (Anthropology), Dr. Bryan Wee (Geography & Environmental Sciences), and Donica Snyder, Art Therapist. Funds Provided by the DEI Office and CLAS Council on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
Clinical Associate Professor of History Cameron Blevins’s book Paper Trails: The US Post and the Making of the American West has been selected as winner of the Outstanding Non-Fiction category for the 2022 Western Heritage Awards. Known as the “Oscars of the West,” the Western Heritage Awards honors individuals who have made significant contributions to Western heritage through creative works in literature, music, television, and film that share the great stories of the American West. Paper Trails will be honored at an awards ceremony on April 9th alongside other works including the critically acclaimed Netflix film Power of the Dog and the popular television series 1883.
Alicia Cowart, Director of the Geospatial Analysis & Mapping Laboratory, was recently accepted as a UCGIS TRELIS fellow. UCGIS is the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science and TRELIS (Training and Retaining Leaders in Stem) is a professional development network for women in the geospatial sciences in higher education. TRELIS builds leadership capacity and skills around the topics of career retention strategies, mentoring training, career transitions, technical professional development, and work-life balance. As part of the program, Cowart will be attending a workshop scheduled for June in Blue Mountain Lake, NY, followed by the UCGIS symposium in Syracuse.
From her home in Tübingen, Germany, International Studies Alum Felita Gosau Reed has helped organize three medical supply trips in recent weeks, transporting them to crisis areas in Ukraine to aid fleeing refugees. Felita’s organization has also teamed up with Cassiopeia eV to collect funds to continue to purchase medical supplies.
Stephanie A. Santorico, Mathematical and Statistical Sciences Professor and Interim Associate Dean of Faculty and Staff Affairs, was recently named an ACE Fellow for academic year 2022-23 by the American Council on Education (ACE). Following nomination by senior administration and a rigorous application process, 46 Fellows were selected this year. Established in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program is designed to strengthen institutions and leadership in U.S. higher education by identifying and preparing faculty and staff for senior positions in college and university administration through its distinctive and intensive nominator-driven, cohort-based mentorship model. About 2,500 higher education leaders have participated in the ACE Fellows Program over the past five decades, with more than 80 percent of Fellows having gone on to serve as senior leaders of colleges and universities.
Anna G. Warrener, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, was recently featured on the YouTube channel The Dissenter. She discusses the evolution of the human pelvis, bipedalism, and childbirth with the channel’s Ricardo Lopes.
Perdue University Press recently published Assistant Professor in the Clinical Teaching Track for Sociology Jenny R. Vermilya’s new book Identity, Gender, and Tracking: The Reality of Boundaries for Veterinary Students. Using in-depth interviews with veterinary students, Vermilya’s new work explores the experience of enrollment in an educational program that tracks students based on the species of animals that they wish to treat. The identity of a veterinarian is one characterized by care; thus, students have to construct different definitions of care, creating a system of power and inequality. Tracking produces multiple boundaries for veterinary students, which has consequences not just for the veterinarian, but also for the treatment of animals. Vermilya recently discussed the book on the podcast Knowing Animals (Episode 181), with host Siobhan O'Sullivan.
Please mark your calendars to attend CLAS Spring Faculty and Staff Forum hosted on Zoom next month by our Dean, Pam Jansma. The Zoom connection information for this Forum will be sent out a few days prior to the event.
9:30 am - 10:30 am
Student Commons Building Room 1500
Join Dean Jansma for a CLAS conversation in-person with the Chancellor to discuss university priorities and the progress being made on CU Denver’s 2030 Strategic Plan, as well as to answer questions and hear your thoughts and ideas. Chancellor Marks is eager to connect more with faculty and staff in each college. This event will be entirely in-person, no zoom will be administered.
Students, faculty, and staff are invited to join this tri-campus event focused on why and how to gain employment with the U.S. State Department. Diplomatic and non-diplomatic positions will be discussed by Stewart T. Devine, an American diplomat and U.S. Department of State career Foreign Service Officer. With a career with the U.S. Government (military and Department of State) spanning 43 years, Devine has served assignments worldwide and domestic. Assignments have included international relations, foreign policy, program management, and international political affairs. He has held diplomatic posting overseas including in Egypt, Fiji, Japan, South Korea, Afghanistan, Iraq, Germany, Thailand, the Netherlands, and United Arab Emirates. He is a former U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel.
The Annual Research and Creative Activities Symposium is back in person to celebrate CU Denver's student researchers. Each year over 200 undergraduate and graduate presenters share the research and creative projects they've worked on throughout the academic year. For this 25th annual event, we are excited to host student presentations in a hybrid format. Find all details on the website.
Faculty and staff have multiple ways to get involved:
Sign up to review presentations in-person on April 29th
Propose to run a workshop or mini-symposium
Sign your department up to table - share resources and research opportunities, as well as information about your majors, minors, and certificate programs.