Volume XXVI  No. 10 • March 8, 2002

Submit items to Campus Currents - Top

The Campus Currents is distributed every Friday. To submit an item send it to Campus Currents, Unit 9512 or by e-mail to Campus Currents. Deadline is Thursday at 8 a.m.

Positions open - Top

The following Career Service positions are open

  • press operator, University Printing Service

  • secretary with keyboarding, College of Business and Technology

Additional information is available here or contact the personnel office. 

Hills commemorated by state Legislature - Top

The South Dakota Legislature recently recognized Dr. Tom Hills, professor of political science at Black Hills State University, for 25 years as campus coordinator for the South Dakota Legislative Internship Program.

Both Legislative houses read a commemorative proclamation recognizing the BH political science professor for his work with the internship program. Hills was at the Capitol to hear the commemoration read and to receive the applause from both Legislative bodies.

He became campus coordinator of the internship program in 1977 and has recruited and served as a mentor to more than 100 BHSU students. He has also helped place interns with the State Federation of Labor and the governor’s office.

Hills has been a member of the university faculty since 1969. He served as chairman of the junior college division, chairman of social science division and dean of the college of business and public affairs in addition to teaching. He is a 1962 graduate of BHSU and earned a master’s degree (1968) and doctorate (1969) from the University of Oregon.

BHSU receives Chiesman Foundation student leadership grant - Top

A $5,500 student leadership grant from the Chiesman Foundation was awarded to Black Hills State University as a result of the efforts of school representatives and community members.

Civic leadership training will offered to 30 students from northern hills high schools beginning this spring. Students and a faculty member from each school district will constitute a team. The team will include one freshman, two sophomores, and two juniors selected from teacher and administrator recommendations. Jeanmarie Heriba, director of the South Dakota Issues Forum, will provide the training.

The program is designed encourage and recognize youth leadership and educate students in the processes of democracy. Students will 

be encouraged to engage issues, think critically, make choices, set goals, and learn facilitation skills through peer-to-peer interaction.

Student participants will be encouraged to attend the South Dakota Youth Congress in July, organize an issues forum in the fall and spring, and conduct mini forums in various schools and communities.

The leadership forum proposal was submitted to the Chiesman Foundation by Priscilla Romkema, BHSU assistant professor, Alayna Siemonsma, Spearfish enrichment coordinator, Lizabeth Manning, parent with the curriculum enrichment program, and Kathleen Hood, Spearfish curriculum director.

BHSU hosts summer math and science program for outstanding high school juniors - Top

Black Hills State’s Center for the Advancement of Mathematics and Science Education (CAMSE) is sponsoring a four-day summer enrichment program for high school juniors July 7–11.

The enrichment program titled “Rising Scholars in Math and Science” is designed for South Dakota students between their junior and senior year in high school. This is the second annual summer enrichment program for area high school juniors.

Each participant will receive a $100 stipend plus a modest travel allowance based on distance from their hometown to Spearfish.

Students who “are intellectually curious and have a strong interest in math and science are encouraged to apply,” said Dr. Ben Sayler, CAMSE director. “Public, private, and home-schooled students are all welcome to apply. Approximately 20 exceptional students will be selected.”

Participants will interact closely with BHSU faculty, exceptional high school teachers and a select cohort of fellow participants.  

“The goal is to enrich the academic preparation of the most promising high school mathematicians and scientists,” said Sayler. “Students will expand their minds and make new friends with peers who have similar motivation, talents, and interests.”

Student participants will spend four days together on the BHSU campus, dine with program faculty and staff, and immerse themselves in fun mind-expanding math and science challenges.

Applications for the enrichment program are due April 1. Students are required to submit an essay, a list of extra-curricular activities, a transcript and a recommendation. For complete application information contact Dorothy Keller at <dorothykeller@bhsu.edu>, or phone (605) 642-6873 or check the web site at <http://camse.spearfish.k12.sd.us/sdrs>. Applications and information should also be available by contacting area high-school guidance counselors.

Meek co-authors paper - Top

Gary E. Meek, dean of the College of Business & Technology, and Dr. Ceyhun Ozgur of Valparaiso University co-authored a paper titled “A Review and Extension of Control Limit Methods for Non-Normal Distributions.” Their paper has been accepted for publication by the International Journal of Operations and Quantitative Management in Volume 7, No.2, pp. 1-15. 

For small sample sizes the use of standard control limits for a process average assumes that the distribution of the process output is no more than moderately non-normal.  When this assumption is true the Central Limit Theorem (CLT) states that the distribution of the averages, even for small samples, can be closely approximated with a 

normal distribution.  If the original distribution is quite skewed in either direction, the normal distribution indicated by the CLT may not be appropriate.  In that case standard control limits for averages become inappropriate and often can lead to false out-of-control signals and, in turn, to unnecessary costs due to downtime and time spent searching for non-existent causes.  Burrows (1962) indicates that this problem may exist even for slightly skewed distributions.  Examples of such characteristics are purity of chemical compounds and flatness, parallelism or perpendicularity of parts.  This paper provides a thorough review of literature dealing with control limits when the underlying process distribution is non-normal, and proposes using the Camp-Meidell inequality to develop control limits for the process mean in such situations if it is reasonable to believe that the distribution is unimodal.

Spirit of Excellence at Work Award - Top

The Spirit of Excellence at Work Award is presented to Priscilla Romkema, assistant professor of business and director of the Center for Business and Entrepreneurship, for all her efforts to be a visible presence in the business community, to be a highly professional liaison between BHSU and the community, her successful grantsmanship, and her unflagging service and dedication to students. 

This award is chosen by a group which meets regularly to discuss ways to improve the campus working environment. This group feels that when they “catch” someone doing their job well, that performance should be recognized and encourages everyone to keep up the good work so they can “catch” you at it.

Changes announced for benefit enrollment for the next fiscal year - Top

Employees may re-enroll for the South Dakota employees benefit plan April 29 through May 6.  The benefit plans includes health insurance, dental, vision, major injury, hospital indemnity, short-term disability, life insurance, child- care reimbursement, medical reimbursement, etc.  Changes made during this enrollment period will become effective July 1, 2002.

Employees should take note of the following changes of the enrollment process.

1.  Enrollment packets will not be mailed

Enrollment packets will not be automatically mailed to employees this year as all information is available online.  Employees who would like to receive a printed FY 2003 annual enrollment packet need to make the request at 1-800-343-1319 by April 10. Callers will need to use the following access code - SDBOP (73267) and social security number when they call. All re-enrollments will be conducted on-line or via telephone.

2.  Enrollment meetings

There will be 11 benefit enrollment meetings via the DDN Network.  BHSU employees may view the sessions at the BHSU Library, room L 020.  Rapid City based employees may view the sessions at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology in the new Classroom Building - Room 109. The meetings are scheduled for only one-half hour this year.  This is your chance to have your benefit questions answered by the plan staff.


Time (Mountain Time)

Monday, April 15         

10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Wednesday, April 17

10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Thursday, April 18

10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Wednesday, April 24

10 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Thursday, April 25

1 p.m.

Friday, April 26

10 am and 10:30 am

3.  Plan changes for FY 2003 include:

            1.  Premium increases

  • Dependent Health up 5 percent

  • COBRA and Retiree Dependent Health up 5 percent

  • COBRA and Retiree Health up 10 percent

  • Dental and Vision Care up 5 percent

            2.  Wellness Incentive - An increased incentive of $50 into a medical spending account when an employee attends a health screening and completes a health risk assessment. This is your reward for monitoring your health.  For FY 2002, the incentive was $25.

3.      Co-payment Increases


Prior to 7/1/2002

7/1/2002 on


PCP Office Visit

$ 20

$ 20


Inpatient Hospitalization




Outpatient Hospitalization




Global Maternity/PCP




Global Maternity/OB-GYN




Participating Chiropractic Office



$ 15

$ 20


Non-Participating Chiropractic


Office Visit

$ 20    

$ 25


Physical Therapy

$ 0

$ 15


Prescription Drug   Co-payments          


Second Tier Name Brand    

Third Tier Name Brand (newer more expensive)

30 day supply or less




31 - 90 day supply




  4.  Pharmacy Plan

                        Change from PAID Prescriptions to Advance PCS (Prescription Card Service)

      • More pharmacies from which to choose
      • Mail order will still be available - employees will need to re-apply
      • Better service to state employees
      • Everyone will received a new ID card on or about July 1st

Diabetic Supplies will be processed through Advance PCS - not through the health plan. Co-payments are still to be determined.

5.  Administrative Changes         

Enrollment process, PCP changes, family status changes, life beneficiary changes, life amount changes can be made on-line at the BOP web page.

Minutes of the University Assessment Committee - Top

Minutes of University Assessment Committee meeting Tuesday, March 5 at 3:30 p.m. in Woodburn Conference Room 1.

Present: Earley, L. Turner, Calhoon, Myers, Pearce, Olson, Altmyer, Schamber, Valades . Absent: Cook, Haislett, Siewert, J. Miller.

The committee reviewed the reports for middle school, special education, early education/special education, special education. The committee voted to reject all reports and return them for revision and resubmission.  The committee recommended that the reports be consolidated into one report with student-learning outcomes identified and interpreted.  Drs. Schamber, Calhoon, and Pearce agree to work with the College of Education to revise these reports.

The committee reviewed the report on the MSBSM and voted to reject it and return it for revision and resubmission.  The committee felt that the report

needed to identify goals.  Altmyer and Turner will work with the College of Business and Technology.

Dr. Schamber reported that the general education had developed a plan of assessment which had been distributed to the assessment committee.  One aspect of this assessment was survey of students which would be given at the time of the rising junior and the exit exams.

The chair reported that next year the board of regents will revisit the philosophy of general education and also begin to look at courses.  Since the last revision, BH has added several math options, French, German, and Lakota, and women in literature.

It is unclear at this time what the board's goal is.

The next meeting will be March 26 and areas to be discussed include accounting, music, art, psychology, and any new reports coming to the chair.

Instructional improvement grants available - Top

The Instructional Improvement Committee (IIC) encourages, through monetary grants, the application of existing knowledge to specific teaching situations to improve the quality of instruction at BHSU.

Any full-time faculty member, full-time adjunct faculty, or other full-time staff member engaged in student instruction may apply for grant funds administered by the committee. Grant funding will normally be available up to a maximum of $1,000 per project. Priority will be given to projects that will have a broad-based, visible, continuing impact of instruction across faculty members and/or disciplines. Funds are available for development of materials and methods to improve teaching and learning, equipment to enhance teaching and learning, travel to conferences or workshops which enhance teaching and learning, and bringing consulting lecturers and teaching specialists to campus to offer presentations 

to and/or with faculty and teaching-support staff at BHSU. 

Faculty members who apply for grants to support travel to a conference or workshop are limited to receiving no more than one grant every three years.  In the other categories, priority will be given to those who have not received an IIC grant in the last academic year.  

Proposals for grant funding will be reviewed by the IIC on a monthly basis. The deadline for submission will be the last Friday of each month; a decision will be made as soon as practicable on each proposal.  Eleven copies of the proposals should be submitted to the grants and special projects office in Woodburn 218, or to the chair of the committee, Sharon Strand. Proposals will consist of the proposal and budget outlines following the specified format available at the grants and special projects web page

Faculty research funds available - Top  

The faculty-research committee has funds available for the current fiscal year. Write a short (about three-page) proposal. Proposal forms are available at the grants office or can be printed out from their webpage.

It is anticipated that successful applicants will request support for faculty release time, research equipment, travel to research sites or research support for the production of creative work. Preference is given to new applicants, particularly in the areas of education, business, social sciences

and humanities. The next application deadline is Friday, March 22 at 2 p.m. Twelve copies of the application should be submitted to the Grants & Special Projects Office, Woodburn 218, or to Dr. Farrokhi, Chair, Woodburn 314.

The applicants are encouraged to contact the committee members for advice prior to completing their proposals. The members are John Alsup, Steve Anderson, Lyle Cook, Tom Cox, Abdollah Farrokhi, chair; Jim Hess, Kathleen Parrow, Shane Sarver, and Rob Schurrer. 

Grant opportunities announced - Top  

Below are the program materials received Feb 28-March 6 in the grants office, Woodburn 218. For copies of the information, contact our office at 642-6627 or e-mail requests to grants@bhsu.edu.  Fellowship information will also be posted on the Student Union bulletin board near the information desk.

  • National Endowment for the Arts. Program: creativity. Due March 25.
  • National Endowment for the Humanities. Humanities focus grants. Due April 15.
  • Dactyl Foundation for the Arts and Humanities. Grants to writers. No deadline.

This week at Black Hills State University - Top

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Last updated on September 17, 2004