Valades and Thompson to
present at national conference - top
Black Hills State University staff members Dr. Joe Valades, director
of retention, and Ven Thompson, director of institutional research, will
present a paper at a national retention conference next week.
The two will present, “Establishing a First-Time, Full-Time Retention
Center” at the Consortium for the Student Retention Data Exchange
Symposium in Dallas, Texas. The paper is among seven papers that were
chosen for the consortium’s best practices track. During the conference
one of the seven will be recognized with a $1,000 prize for best overall
paper. In addition to the presentation, Thompson and Valades will appear
on a television program produced by the consortium.
According to Valades, the 10-page paper gives an overview of the BHSU
retention program and an outline of components utilized to establish the
successful retention effort at BHSU.
“We’ve been selected for the best practices track and will be sharing
our experiences establishing a retention program,” Valades says. “The
paper illustrates step-by-step what we did to get the retention program
established at BHSU. It looks at all components and what needs to be
done. The paper outlines how to start a retention program as well as how
people here are communicating and cooperating to make it work.”
“We started this program from ground zero,” Thompson says. “This
paper outlines how we did that and how the retention program works.”
The BHSU retention program at BHSU was established in 2002 at the
direction of Dr. Thomas Flickema, BHSU president, following the creation
of a statewide task force on retention. Since then the retention rate at
BHSU has increased steadily and is currently at the highest rate in 10
“I attribute the rate of retention increase to a university-wide
effort,” Valades says.
According to Valades, the mission of the retention center at BHSU is
to offer a student-centered, service-oriented office focused on ensuring
student success. The center provides assistance and information to
students, faculty and staff in an effort to maintain student enrollment,
enhance student satisfaction with their university experience and
facilitate academic success.
The BHSU retention program focuses on first-time, full-time freshmen
and includes a customized computer program, known as PASS, for early
alerts of potential problems which leads to early intervention via
The PASS system, an acronym for Program for Academic Student Success,
was created and developed by Thompson. The software integrates current
data and creates a system for faculty to easily and quickly notify the
retention office of potential problems. Through PASS, faculty have
access to class rosters and are asked to make referrals when they notice
extended absences from class or other potential problems. The faculty
referrals are sent directly to the retention office where staff members
evaluate the concern and determine the best way to respond. Last year,
the PASS system received more than 900 referrals.
Early intervention has shown to be very effective in helping students
get back on track with their coursework, Valades says. He says that
students generally respond favorably to the personal contacts.
The early alert provides an opportunity for staff members to meet
with these students and offer options for improvement. Valades mentioned
that two really big saves are the notices of mid-term grades and
notification of student who have not pre-registered.
Although the BHSU retention rate is still below the national average,
the rate is currently the highest it’s been in the last decade.
“We have room to grow and improve. We are shooting for the national
benchmark,” Valades says.
Chrysler will publish paper
in international journal - top
A publication co-authored by Dr. Earl Chrysler, professor in the
College of Business and Technology at Black Hills State University, and
Stuart Van Auken, Florida Gulf Coast University, was recently accepted
for publication in the refereed International Journal of Information
and Communications Technology Education.
In their paper, “Using Indices of Student Satisfaction to Assess an
MIS Program,” Chrysler and Van Auken present the results of an analysis
of Management Information Systems (MIS) alumni evaluations showing the
perceived relative value of required courses during their first year on
the job, then again in their current position. Alumni also indicated
their evaluation of the entire MIS program using a series of bipolar
Chrysler and Van Auken developed multiple regression equations that
indicated the impact of different types of courses on the satisfaction
students perceived with the entire MIS program during. It was found that
while both sets of courses contributed equally to student satisfaction
during the first year on the job, the set of courses that had a distinct
managerial emphasis made a stronger contribution to student satisfaction
in their current positions.
Chrysler, who has been a member of the BHSU faculty since 2002, has a
bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in business administration from
San Diego State University. He received his doctorate in business
administration from the University of Southern California.
BHSU students find ways to
"Make a Difference" - top
Spearfish residents should expect the unexpected as
students at Black Hills State University reach out to the community with
“random acts of kindness” in anticipation of national Make a Difference
Day which is Saturday, Oct. 22.
According to Megan Wyett, a senior education major
from Casper, Wyo., the student leader who is the driving force behind
the special day of volunteering at BHSU, students decided to participate
in the national “Make a Difference Day” because they want to be more
involved in and contribute to the community.
There will be a community informational meeting
Thursday, Oct. 6 at 6 p.m. in the market place of the David B. Miller
Yellow Jacket Student Union to discuss volunteer ideas and suggestions.
The volunteer activities are being coordinated by Michael Smith and
Donna Trainum with AmeriCorps VISTA at BHSU. Students from several
student organizations will do a variety of projects throughout the day.
“This will be a chance to get the campus out into the
Spearfish community and a way for BHSU students to give back to the
community,” Wyett said. She noted that sometimes BHSU students live in
the area for just a few years while others choose to make Spearfish home
after graduation. Either way, Wyett wants students to show their
appreciation for the Spearfish community and get others involved.
“This is only one day, but it’s a chance to represent
how students are out there making a difference throughout the year. Our
students have been making a difference in the community for a long
time,” Dr. Judith Haislett, vice president of student life at BHSU,
said. “This day, designated as a specific volunteer day, is an
opportunity to recognize and thank the students who participate in
community service activities. We’re hoping it will encourage other
students to volunteer as well.”
Make a Difference Day at BHSU is part of a national
effort sponsored by USA Weekend and the Points of Light Foundation. Now
in its 14th year, Make a Difference Day is the nation’s largest single
day of volunteering and is known as the nation’s day of doing good. USA
Weekend will select several participating organizations to receive
grants which are then donated to local charities.
To find out more about Make A Difference Day or to
volunteer call 642-6471.
Swarm Day parade winners
announced - top
Woodburn Hall received recognition as
the best BHSU office float and for the best use of theme in the 2005
Swarm Day parade. This year’s theme was “Hollywood Homecoming.”
Black Hills State University and the Spearfish
community displayed their homecoming spirit during the annual Swarm Day
parade last week. This year’s theme was “Hollywood Homecoming.”
The 2005 winning floats were: BHSU Alumni Association,
best community organization; First Premier Bankcard, best community
business; Heide Hall, best overall; Pangburn Hall, best residence hall;
Psychology Club, best student organization; Woodburn Hall, best BHSU
office; and Woodburn Hall, best use of theme.
Winners of the marching band competition were:
Sundance High School, best band overall and best Division A band;
Spearfish High School, best Division AA band; Kadoka High School, best
Division B band; and Spearfish Middle School, best middle school band.
See all the winning floats.
Committee minutes - top
The University Assessment Committee met Monday, Sept.
26 at 12 noon in Meier Hall room 207.
Present were Earley, S. Hupp, Sickler, C.
Cremean, J. Alsup, D. Wessel, Hagerty, Siewert, Romkema, and Sarkar.
Chair presented 05-06 membership list and introduced
student representative, Ms. Brandi Sickler.
Chair reported that the academic computer representative should
be dropped. Other editorial changes were made. A motion was made and
seconded to approve. The motion passed.
Annual assessment reports
Chair handed out the list of majors which have
submitted annual reports in the past. Discussion was held about how to
frame annual reports with new general education requirements. There was
some discussion about how to indicate improvement in remedial courses
and retention and how to separate Ellsworth academic achievement out of
total data. The committee agreed chair should ask if it was okay to
dedicate this academic year and ask for plans for assessing new Board of
Regents (BOR) goals of global issues, intensive writing, and
undergraduate research/creative activity. The committee also agreed
faculty should collect data for 04-05 and 05-06 to be incorporated in an
assessment report next year. The plans for evaluating the new BOR goals
would be due Feb. 6 if the proposal is approved.
Total Quality Enhancement (TQE)
Alsup reported that the College of Education was
involved in a TQE grant to evaluate student achievement in education
degree programs as BHSU. It would be more detailed and specific than the
annual reports done for the University Assessment Committee but was
designed to provide assessment of student academic achievement. He and
Simpson in the College of Education were the co-chairs and would be
contacting faculty to see if they could participate.
The committee agreed to meet Monday, Oct. 17 at 12
noon in the Meier Hall conference room and bring any relevant materials
they might have.
Grant opportunities announced
Below are the program materials received in the Grants Office,
Woodburn 309, through Wednesday, Sept. 28. For copies of the
information, contact the office at 642-6204 or e-mail requests to
information will also be posted on the Student Union bulletin board near
the information desk.
Basic Research for Chemical Imaging (DOE)
The Division of Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences,
Office of Basic Energy Sciences (BES) of the Office of Science (SC),
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), in keeping with its mission to assist
in strengthening the Nation’s scientific research enterprise through the
support of basic science, announces its interest in receiving grant
applications for projects on basic research needed to advance chemical
imaging. They are interested in forefront advances of imaging techniques
with spatial resolution on the molecular scale relevant to the basic
science of chemical and physical transformations. Of particular interest
are applications that combine molecular-scale spatial resolution and
ultrafast temporal resolution to explore energy flow, molecular
dynamics, breakage or formation of chemical bonds, or conformational
changes in nanoscale systems. Proposed research must advance the
scientific objectives within one of the nine core research areas in the
Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences Division: Atomic,
Molecular and Optical Sciences; Chemical Physics; Photochemistry and
Radiation Research; Catalysis and Chemical Transformations; Separations
and Analysis; Heavy Element Chemistry; Chemical Energy and Chemical
Engineering; Geosciences Research; and Energy Biosciences Research.
Deadline: March 15, 2006. Detailed descriptions of core
research areas can be found at
Higher Education Challenge Grants Program (USDA)
The Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service
requests applicatons for the Higher Education Challenge Grants Program (HEC)
for fiscal year 2006 to stimulate and enable colleges and universities
to provide the quality of education necessary to produce baccalaurate or
higher degree level graduates capable of strengthening the nation's food
and agricultural scientific and professional workforce. The purpose of
HEC is to strengthen institutional capabilities to improve teaching
programs in the food and agricultural sciences or in rural economic,
community and business development, including curriculum, faculty,
scientific instrumentation, instructional delivery systems, and student
recruitment and retention, to respond to identified state, regional,
national or international educational needs.
Deadline: Feb. 2, 2006. A link to the full announcement can be
Information Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (NSF)
The National Science Foundation’s ITEST is designed to increase the
opportunities for students and teachers to learn about, experience, and
use information technologies within the context of science, technology,
engineering, and mathematics (STEM), including Information Technology
(IT) courses. It is in direct response to the concern about shortages of
information technology workers in the United States. Supported projects
are intended to provide opportunities for both school-age children and
for teachers to build the skills and knowledge needed to advance their
study, and to function and contribute in a technologically rich society.
ITEST has two components: (a) youth-based projects with strong emphases
on career and educational paths; and (b) comprehensive projects for
students and teachers. This solicitation complements and is not intended
to overlap with the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program
described in Section IX. Information Technology (IT) is within the scope
of the ATE program, so proposals for the development of IT classroom
materials for students or teachers, or for professional development of
IT teachers in support of technical careers, should be submitted to the
Deadline: The preliminary proposal is due by Nov. 2, 2005. The
full proposal is due by Feb. 24, 2006. See
Innovations at the Interface with the Sciences and Engineering (NSF)
This solicitation describes the opportunities available for support
through the National Science Foundation's Mathematical Sciences Priority
Area in the following three categories: Interactions between
Mathematical Sciences and Computer Science (MSPA-MCS); Interactions
between Mathematical Sciences and Engineering (MSPA-ENG); and
Interactions between Mathematical Sciences and Physical Sciences (MSPA-MPS).
Other opportunities supported through the Mathematical Sciences Priority
Area are described in other existing solicitations. They are listed
below for information and completeness of the existing competitions in
the Mathematical Sciences Priority Area. Investigators interested in the
competitions should consult with the specific solicitations listed
Investments in the Mathematical Sciences Priority Area will deepen
support for fundamental research in mathematics and statistics, and the
integration of mathematical and statistical research across the full
range of science and engineering disciplines. Investments in
interdisciplinary research will focus primarily on mathematical and
statistical challenges posed by large data sets, managing and modeling
uncertainty, and modeling complex nonlinear systems. Innovative
educational activities that foster closer connections between research
and education in the mathematical sciences will also be supported.
Deadline: Dec. 20, 2005. See
http://fedgrants.gov/Applicants/NSF/OIRM/HQ/05-622/Grant.html for a
link to the full announcement.