SOU’s daylong Arbor Day 2017 celebration

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(Ashland, Ore.) — Southern Oregon University’s Landscape Services Department will continue its commitment to sustainability by hosting its annual Arbor Day event on Friday, April 14, featuring a new, guided botanical tour.

The virtual guided tour will include more than 100 different and unique trees – each with a physical identification plaque and a QR code for additional information. The day’s events will begin at 9 a.m. and continue until after 4 p.m.

Keynote speakers will address various Arbor Day topics, a ceremony will be held to acknowledge SOU’s designation as a Tree Campus USA, the first 200 volunteers will be offered free lunch at the Hawk, and more than 6,000 plants will be planted by volunteers.

Community members are welcome to attend the family-friendly event and get their hands dirty with SOU’s landscape team, volunteer staff, faculty and students.

An Arbor Day Disc Golf Tournament will conclude the day’s festivities at 4 p.m.

Major sponsors of SOU’s Arbor Day Event include Plant Oregon and SOU dining.

For more information, visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/802513893234129/. Those with questions may contact Landscape Services supervisor Mike Oxendine at oxendinem@sou.edu

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

SOU unveils unique MBA in Arts Administration program

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(Ashland, Ore.) — Southern Oregon University continues to set itself apart in arts education, currently with the introduction of a one-of-a-kind MBA degree in Arts Administration that opens numerous career paths for students in the performing and visual arts. The program is currently accepting students.

Undergraduate students can earn the new MBA in Arts Administration in as few as five years – four to complete a bachelor’s degree with a business minor in one of SOU’s arts programs, and a fifth year to complete the master’s in business administration degree. Arts students can alternatively complete their bachelor’s degrees without the business minor, then move on to a two-year MBA program.

“This MBA program builds on SOU’s excellence in the arts, expanding it into the business side,” said Greg Jones, director of the university’s Division of Business, Communication and the Environment. “It provides new opportunities for students to capitalize on their arts education.”

The MBA in Arts Administration is the result of collaboration between SOU’s School of Business and the university’s Oregon Center for the Arts. The new degree is intended for those who are interested in leading arts organizations, galleries or museums, or directing, producing, marketing or managing in the arts.

“This program is unique in the nation in that most arts administration programs are arts programs and not MBA programs,” said David Humphrey, director of SOU’s Oregon Center for the Arts. “An MBA degree is highly marketable, especially if students want to work in the arts.

“I am excited about this program in that it provides a career path for those arts students who do not wish to perform or exhibit,” he said.

The MBA in Arts Administration program equips students for local, regional or national arts management, combining business strategy and community insights to create connections with artists and the arts. It is intended for those pursuing bachelor’s degrees in any of the five Oregon Center for the Arts programs: Art, Emerging Media and Digital Arts, Creative Writing, Music and Theatre Arts.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

SOU Earth Week: a call to action

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(Ashland, Ore.) — A broad range of activities that fit within the theme “A Call to Action” will be highlighted during Southern Oregon University’s second annual and student-driven Earth Week celebration from April 15 through 23.

Events will include film screenings, an educational fair, an anti-pipeline rally and a presentation on pipelines and resistance. The celebration is being organized by Sustainability at SOU, a university-sponsored program of sustainability initiatives that focus on student involvement.

“Student leaders across multiple programs and sectors of SOU have spent months preparing for an educational, engaging and inspiring week,” said Sydney Lund, student director of SOU’s Ecology and Sustainability (ECOS) Resource Center. “Each event will offer students and community members a clear take-home message about how to become involved with climate action within their personal lives and the Rogue Valley.”

Earth Week at SOU will feature public events both on and off the university campus.

Earth Week highlights
“Ruin and Rose” film screening, 6 to 8 p.m. on Monday, April 17, Rogue River Room of the Stevenson Union. The film explores the future of water resources on earth and incorporates ski and snowboard footage into an unforgettable movie experience.

“Earth Day Extravaganza,” 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, Stevenson Union Courtyard. The education tabling event will offer information about how to become involved with climate action in the Rogue Valley; SOU Dining will provide free food and the first 125 students will receive free “Sustainability at SOU” cups.

“Siskiyou Film Festival Roadshow,” 6 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18, Rogue River Room of the Stevenson Union. KS Wild (The Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center) comes to campus with its Siskiyou Film Festival, featuring four of the organization’s most popular films. Two filmmakers will be on hand for a discussion following the films.

“No Pipelines Rally,” noon to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, April 19, Stevenson Union Courtyard. Students and the public may take action against the proposed Jordan Cove Pipeline, which would move liquefied natural gas through 400 Oregonian watersheds. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission denied permits for the project a year ago and refused to rehear the case a few months ago, then agreed in February to allow developers to refile their applications.

“Pipelines and Resistance: An Evening with Tara Houska,” 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 20, Stevenson Union Arena. Houska, a citizen of Couchiching First Nation, will discuss environmental justice around pipelines and resistance.

A full list of SOU Earth Week events can be found at http://sustainability.sou.edu/news/.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

Well-known environmental scholar to discuss the future of water in SOU visit

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(Ashland, Ore.) — Nationally recognized environmental law scholar and author James Salzman will visit Southern Oregon University on Monday, April 10, to address a topic of relevance to everyone on Earth: “The History (and Future) of Drinking Water.”

Salzman points out that people have fought over water sources since before biblical times, and water continues to make headlines – including crises over the past few years in Charleston, West Virginia; Toledo, Ohio; and Flint, Michigan. He will discuss issues with tap water safety, concerns about future water supplies and fears about contamination by terrorists.

Salzman is the Donald Bren Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law with joint appointments at the UCLA School of Law and the Bren School of the Environment at University of California-Santa Barbara. His visit to SOU is sponsored by the university’s Environmental Science and Policy Department.

The lecture is at 7 p.m. in Room 151 of the SOU Science Building. Admission is free and the public is welcome to attend.

Salzman frequently serves as a media commentator and has offered environmental policy lectures on every continent except Antarctica. He previously served on the faculty of Duke University and as a visiting law professor at Columbia, Harvard, Stanford, Yale and at universities in Australia, Sweden, Portugal, China and Italy.

Prior to his work in academia, Salzman served in Paris in the Environment Directorate of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, and in London as the European environmental manager for Johnson Wax.

The honors graduate of Yale College and Harvard University has published eight books and more than 80 articles and book chapters on topics ranging from drinking water to policy instrument design. His most recent book, “Drinking Water: A History,” is in its third printing.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University is a medium-sized campus that provides comprehensive educational opportunities with a strong focus on student success and intellectual creativity. Located in vibrant Ashland, Oregon, SOU remains committed to diversity and inclusion for all students on its environmentally sustainable campus. Connected learning programs taught by a host of exceptional faculty provide quality, innovative experiences for students. Visit sou.edu.

Recent SOU graduate’s capstone project is documentary on opiate addiction

NEWS RELEASE (video news release available at https://youtu.be/36GBjVPPOxM)

(Ashland, Ore.) — Kyle Simpson’s journey from enrollment to graduation has been a little longer and more difficult than those of most Southern Oregon University students. He spiraled into an opioid addiction during his first two years, left school and was arrested after returning home to Southern California.

Kyle has now been sober for three years and graduated from SOU in December with a bachelor’s degree in communication. His capstone project – a culminating, multi-term academic assignment – is a short documentary titled “Junk,” which shines a light on Southern Oregon’s opiate epidemic through the lens of a recovered addict.

The documentary was produced in cooperation with SOU’s Community of Recovery in Education (CORE) program, which supports and promotes the academic success, recovery and well-being of SOU students recovering from addiction.

“Junk” will screen on Tuesday, April 11, at Meese Auditorium in the SOU Center for the Visual Arts. The event will begin with a short reception at 6:30 p.m., and the film screening at 7 p.m. A panel discussion featuring five key members of the Rogue Valley’s recovery community will follow the documentary.

An SOU video news release features clips of Kyle describing his project. Media outlets may use all or edited portions of the news release in their news products. The video news release is also available upon request in mp4 format.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

SOU archaeologist featured in new book as role model for girls

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(Ashland, Ore.) — As a child growing up in Northern California, Chelsea Rose loved exploring outside and getting her hands dirty. Rose, a research archaeologist at Southern Oregon University, now finds herself in a position to serve as a role model to young girls interested in science, and she encourages them to do what led her to archaeology.

“My advice is to be curious, be brave, ask lots of questions and never pass up an opportunity to get your hands dirty,” Rose says.

She is one of three U.S. archaeologists featured in a new book, “Archaeology: Cool Women Who Dig,” which is aimed at 9- to 12-year-old girls who enjoy looking for clues about life in the distant past. The book, by California author Anita Yasuda, is scheduled for publication April 11 and is available to order now on Amazon.com.

Twenty pages of the 106-page book are devoted to telling the stories of how Rose became an archaeologist and some of her archaeological projects. Rose says she was chosen for the book because of the recognition she gained as a cast member on the PBS series “Time Team America,” which last aired in 2014.

She serves currently as research faculty member in the SOU Laboratory of Anthropology, where her focus has been on archaeology of the American West, including the dispersal of an early Chinese migrant population in Oregon.

“I love being able to be a role model for young girls interested in archaeology,” Rose says. “I know I don’t look like your average everyday scientist, and I think it is important for young women – or anyone, really – to discover that if they have an interest or passion for a certain subject, then there is a place for them in that field.

“If all you see is pictures of male scientists in white lab coats (or fedoras and bull whips in the case of archaeology), it is understandable that young girls might not think they belong,” she says. “But they do!”

Other archaeologists featured in the new book are Alexandra Jones, founder of the nonprofit Archaeology in the Community; and marine archaeologist Justine Benanty, a cofounder of ArchaeoVenturers. Both are based in Washington, D.C.

Yasuda, the new book’s author, has written more than 100 books for children and adults, including “Astronomy: Cool Women in Space.” The archaeology book is part of the Nomad Press “Girls in Science Series,” which also includes titles from various authors about “cool women” in astronomy, technology, forensics, engineering, aviation, marine biology, zoology, architecture and meteorology.

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About Southern Oregon University
As a public liberal arts university, SOU focuses on student learning, accessibility and civic engagement that enriches both the community and bioregion. The university is recognized for fostering intellectual creativity, for quality and innovation in its connected learning programs, and for the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power, and it is the first university in the nation to balance 100% of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

Record number of SOU students to present literary papers

NEWS BRIEF (online at https://goo.gl/lR98M6)

(Ashland, Ore.) — A small but significant trend has developed among literature students at Southern Oregon University – a record number of whom have been accepted to present their scholarly papers at this year’s Northwest Undergraduate Conference on Literature.

In a typical year, one SOU student is accepted to present at the conference. Three SOU students were accepted last year, and five have been invited to present their papers at this year’s conference on March 25.

The conference – held each spring at Portland State University – is an opportunity for undergraduate and advanced high school students to present their academic papers or creative works in organized panels of fellow students. Participating students share their papers and discuss their knowledge, take part in the presentations of their peers and may attend keynote speeches by noted literary academics and writers.

The SOU students who will participate in this year’s conference include Dante Fumagalli, who will present “The City that Glowed Before Him: Segregation and the Effects of the City in ‘Go Tell it on the Mountain“; Jake Woods, who will present “The Stain on a Nation”; Alexis McDonald, who will present “James Baldwin and the Development of Identity: A Lacanian Approach”; and Caroline Cabral, who will present “Reclaiming Leda: Michael Field’s Interpretation.” A fifth student has not consented to be identified.

Prizes at the conference are given for best critical paper, best creative submission and best high school paper. The “Brass NUCL Award” is given to the hardest-hitting paper overall. All students who are accepted to present their work at the conference receive official records of their participation.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University is a medium-sized campus that provides comprehensive educational opportunities with a strong focus on student success and intellectual creativity. Located in vibrant Ashland, Oregon, SOU remains committed to diversity and inclusion for all students on its environmentally sustainable campus. Connected learning programs taught by a host of exceptional faculty provide quality, innovative experiences for students. Visit sou.edu.

New director hired for SOU’s small business center

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New director hired for SOU’s small business center

(Medford, Ore.) — Marshall Doak, who has served previously with Oregon Small Business Development Center offices in Tillamook and Salem, began work today as director of Southern Oregon University’s SBDC office at the Higher Education Center in Medford.

Doak served most recently as executive director of the Southeast Washington Economic Development Association and has worked in a similar role in Sunnyside, Ore. He received his bachelor’s degree from Colorado State University and his master’s of business administration degree from Pacific Lutheran University.

He replaces Jack Vitacco, who recently retired from SOU’s SBDC office. The university has had an affiliation with the SBDC for more than 20 years, and the current office in Medford collaborates with Rogue Community College’s SBDC office in Grants Pass.

All offices of the organization provide advising and training opportunities to anyone who operates or is planning to open a business. Oregon’s 19 SBDC offices are part of a national network and is associated with both the Oregon Business Development Department and the U.S. Small Business Administration.

SOU’s office of the SBDC – which employs a director, office manager, graduate assistant and two to four business consultants – works closely with the university’s business program to teach and advise students, and collaborate with faculty. The office also runs a Market Research Institute that can offer in-depth, applied market research to SBDC clients around the state who are seeking to grow their businesses and create jobs.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University is a medium-sized campus that provides comprehensive educational opportunities with a strong focus on student success and intellectual creativity. Located in vibrant Ashland, Oregon, SOU remains committed to diversity and inclusion for all students on its environmentally sustainable campus. Connected learning programs taught by a host of exceptional faculty provide quality, innovative experiences for students. Visit sou.edu.

SOU: Groundbreaking at pavilion dedicated to “outrageous innovation”

NEWS RELEASE (online at https://goo.gl/qrn3Nn)

(Ashland, Ore.) — A groundbreaking ceremony at 10 a.m. on Thursday, March 9, will mark the start of construction on “Thalden Pavilion: dedicated to outrageous innovation in sustainability and the arts” – a cutting-edge, education and performance facility at The Farm of Southern Oregon University.

A generous donation from Ashland residents Barry and Kathryn Thalden is paying for design and construction of the new pavilion. The Thaldens, who moved to Ashland five years ago after successful careers as architects, have immersed themselves in several community projects, including downtown Ashland’s flower basket program and outdoor murals at the Ashland Emergency Food Bank and outside Sesame Asian Kitchen on the Ashland Plaza.

“Philanthropy will play an increasing role as we position Southern Oregon University over the next several years to best meet the needs of our students and our region,” SOU President Linda Schott said. “The Thaldens exemplify the kinds of people whose collaborative support will help us imagine what we can be, and then bring that vision to reality.”

Barry Thalden, whose architectural career included work on several casinos in Las Vegas and throughout the West, said he and his wife were inspired by the opportunity to create a landmark space that can be used by the entire community. Kathryn Thalden had her own landscape architecture and planning firm in the Midwest before she and her husband moved to Las Vegas and she became a Unity minister.

The Thaldens and SOU envision a facility at The Farm that can bring together the creative forces of the university, the city, the business community and local theaters.

“This place should be an inspiration,” Barry said. “That’s why we say it’s dedicated to outrageous innovation in sustainability and the arts.

“This building has to be outrageous; it has to be totally unique so that it’s recognized for what it is, and brings attention to the idea of sustainability and an experimental farm.”

Thursday’s ceremony will include remarks by President Schott, the Thaldens and others.

The Farm is a student-led agricultural and learning center at SOU. The 3 ½-acre property on Walker Street in Ashland serves as an organic farm for the production of healthy, sustainable food for the SOU community. It is also a center for sustainability and a hub for education, student and faculty research, and community outreach to the Rogue Valley.

The Thalden Pavilion has been designed by Chris Brown of the Ashland firm Arkitek: Design & Architecture.

“It is a rare occasion, indeed, to have a client from the design profession – let alone both an architect (Barry) and landscape architect (Kathryn), on one project,” Brown said. “The evolution from a simple outdoor gazebo into what it has become, has definitely been an adventurous ride.

“We worked specifically with the idea of ‘open’ space rather than a fully enclosed structure, and sought to let light in through the cracks, allow sails to billow in the wind and make explicit the movement and response of structure to wind, sun and change of seasons.”

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.

Climate action leader to discuss solutions at SOU talk

NEWS RELEASE (online at https://goo.gl/PT3tHz)

(Ashland, Ore.) — KC Golden, a longtime leader in the U.S. climate action movement, will visit Southern Oregon University on March 9 for a talk that explores the need to turn a corner on the climate crisis and focus on solutions.

His free presentation, “Climate solutions: We have met the hero, and it is us,” will be from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in Room 151 of the SOU Science Building. The talk comes as the city of Ashland works on its Climate and Energy Action Plan, and just a few weeks after SOU was one of six U.S. colleges and universities recognized with Climate Leadership Awards at the Presidential Climate Leadership Summit.

Golden will talk about the movement toward climate solutions that has begun over the past five years. The climate crisis has become real, and the cost of impacts is growing too high to ignore. He says a clean-energy revolution has been launched by the strong, citizen-driven climate movement that is challenging the status quo use of fossil fuels.

Climate change is coming to be understood as a moral watershed for our times, and Golden asks how we can drive the transition as fast and as far as is necessary.

Golden, who will speak on Jefferson Public Radio prior to his SOU presentation, is the current board chair of 350.org – a worldwide organization that seeks collaboration among activist groups to focus attention on climate change issues.  The organization’s name is derived from the goal of reducing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from the current level of more than 400 parts per million to fewer than 350 parts per million.

He also helped Seattle City Light become the country’s first major, carbon-free electric utility in the late 1990s. He was named one of the “Power 25” most influential people by Seattle Magazine, and was the magazine’s “Eco-Hero.”

Golden has served as the Seattle mayor’s special assistant for clean energy and climate protection initiatives and directed Washington’s Energy Policy Office as an assistant director in the state’s Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development. He was the executive director of the Northwest Energy Coalition – an alliance working for clean, affordable energy – from 1989 to 1994.

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About Southern Oregon University
Southern Oregon University provides outstanding student experiences, valued degrees, and successful graduates. SOU is known for excellence in faculty, intellectual creativity and rigor, quality and innovation in connected learning programs, and the educational benefits of its unique geographic location. SOU was the first university in Oregon—and one of the first in the nation—to offset 100 percent of its energy use with clean, renewable power. It is the first university in the nation to balance 100 percent of its water consumption. Visit sou.edu.