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Modern medicine woman to speak at UT as part of Native American Heritage Month

Deborah “Eagle Cloud” Ayres will give the keynote address for The University of Toledo’s Native American Heritage Month celebration.

Her talk is titled “Indigenous Healing for Modern Times” and will take place Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 5 p.m. in Thompson Student Union Room 3018.


Ayres is an expert in Native American spirituality and runs a healing practice in Sylvania, Ohio. She also is the president of the Avalon Foundation, which offers emotional support for children with rare diseases and their families.

“We are thrilled to host Deborah ‘Eagle Cloud’ Ayres, who will share her experience as a medicine woman,” said Dr. Michele Soliz, associate vice president for student success and inclusion in the UT Division of Student Affairs.

Ayres said it is important to have a designated time to remember and celebrate Native Americans and it is an honor to give the keynote address.

“During the November moon, many of us tend to deepen our gratitude and take note of our blessings — it’s incredibly powerful medicine. It’s a beautiful time of year to renew ourselves in these Native American traditions, which hold such reverence for the simplicity and sacredness of life,” she said.

During her address, she will talk about the value of indigenous healing practices and their benefits for individuals as well as society as a whole.

“My hope is that individuals will deepen their appreciation and reverence for our Native American healing traditions while raising their own spiritual awareness,” Ayres said. “My mission is to build bridges of understanding toward mindfulness and peace in today’s world by practicing and teaching the ways of living sacred.”

For more information on her free, public talk, contact the UT Office of Multicultural Student Success at 419.530.2261 or omss@utoledo.edu.

UT among schools named Best for Vets

The University of Toledo has again been recognized as a top school for supporting student veterans.

UT is among 208 schools receiving the Best for Vets 2019 designation, according to the Military Times.

“We are happy to help our service men and women who enroll at The University of Toledo, and this Best for Vets designation recognizes our commitment,” Dr. Barbara Kopp Miller, dean of University College, said. “It is an honor to help our veterans succeed.”

“Military Times’ Best for Vets designation is trusted throughout the veteran community as the mark of excellence for schools and other organizations that work with veterans, service members and military families. It can’t be bought with advertising dollars — unlike some other supposedly veteran-friendly rankings — only earned through a record of steadfast service and dedication to those who have served,” said George Altman, Military Times editor in charge of the rankings.

“Fewer than half of the roughly 500 colleges and universities that competed for the recognition earned the right to call themselves Best for Vets in 2019,” he added. “Their efforts should be commended.”

The rankings are based on the results of Military Times’ annual survey — a comprehensive school-by-school assessment of veteran and military student services and rates of academic achievement — as well as a detailed review of public data collected by federal agencies.

Military Times’ annual survey asks colleges and universities to disclose academic outcome and input data; describe many aspects of veteran culture on campus; and document a wide array of services, special policies, accommodations and financial incentives offered to students with military ties. Military Times also factors in data from the Veterans Affairs and Defense departments, as well as three Education Department sources: the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data Center, College Scorecard data and the Cohort Default Rate Database.

See the 2019 Best for Vets list on Military Times’ website.

UT to host statewide National Student Speech Language Hearing Association Conference

The University of Toledo will host the 13th annual Ohio National Student Speech Language Hearing Association Conference Saturday, Nov. 10.

It is UT’s first time hosting the event independently. In addition to UT’s own students, more than 130 undergraduate audiology and speech-language pathology students from across the state are registered to attend.

Dr. Jenn Glassman, UT assistant professor of speech-language pathology, said the event will provide educational and networking opportunities for students, as well as allow the University to showcase its Speech-Language Pathology Program and Clinic.

“For us, it’s a great way to make a good impression on students thinking about graduate school,” Glassman said. “It’s also a great opportunity for attendees to meet students from other universities as well as engage with community organizations and representatives from our state and national organization.”

The theme of this year’s conference is based on the core values of the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association Chapter — integrity, education, service, diversity, leadership and collaboration. A number of vendors will be on hand to provide information about their services and products.

“The students get a lot of hands-on experience with things they wouldn’t necessarily have in the typical undergraduate curriculum,” Glassman said.

The University of Toledo is one of 14 universities in the state with National Student Speech Language Hearing Association chapters. In total, the organization has more than 13,000 members.

The conference will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Thompson Student Union.

UT College of Law to hold panel discussion on sexual assault Nov. 13

The University of Toledo College of Law is hosting a panel of experts for a conversation about the legal, practical and emotional consequences of sexual assault Tuesday, Nov. 13, at noon in the Law Center McQuade Auditorium.

Using a question-and-answer format, the panel will address common questions and attempt to debunk many of the myths surrounding sexual assault.

The three panelists are local experts in sexual assault investigation, as well as victim support. Shahrazad Hamdah is the sexual assault and domestic violence advocate at the Center for Student Advocacy and Wellness at The University of Toledo. Hamdah provides support and resources to campus victims of sexual and domestic assault. Jennifer Reed, a 2012 UT law alumna, is an assistant prosecutor in the Ohio Attorney General’s Office with numerous years of experience prosecuting sexual assault and other violent felonies. And Elizabeth Seney, a 2011 UT law graduate, is the assistant director and deputy Title IX coordinator at the University of Michigan, responsible for university investigation of sexual assault cases.

Nicole Buonocore Porter, professor of law and associate dean for faculty research and development at the UT College of Law, will moderate the panel. Porter is the faculty advisor for the Women’s Law Student Association at the UT College of Law and teaches relevant courses such as criminal law, feminist legal theory, and employment discrimination.

“Sexual assault has obviously been in the news quite a bit because of both the #MeToo movement and the Kavanaugh confirmation,” Porter said. “The purpose of this panel is to provide a safe place for students and other audience members to have a conversation with our panelists about sexual assault. Although these conversations are difficult, they are vitally important. In addition to discussing perspectives and experiences of those who have been sexual assault victims, we hope to dispel common myths about sexual assault.”

The free, public event is sponsored by the UT College of Law.

UT recognizes 100 years since end of World War I

Not only did World War I reshape how modern wars would be fought, the conflict had an enormous effect on society as a whole across the globe.

“World War I was seen at the time as the ‘war to end all wars.’ It was the first global war and the first that was fought with weapons of mass destruction. It was historically important in its own right,” said Dr. Mysoon Rizk, professor of art history and director of the Roger Ray Institute for the Humanities at The University of Toledo. “But the lead up to the World War I, the absurdities on the battlefield and the war’s aftermath all brought major changes in arts, politics and culture as the world tried to make sense of the bloodshed.”

Rizk is co-organizing a UT symposium titled “Memories of World War I,” which will be held Friday, Nov. 9, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Carlson Library Room 1005.

The symposium, one of several upcoming events at UT commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Nov. 11 armistice that effectively ended the war, will bring together a diverse collection of University and community scholars to discuss the effects of the war and its cultural representations in the United States and elsewhere.

Topics to be examined include the war’s effects and consequences on northwest Ohio and U.S. politics; the cultural memory of the war in the U.S. and abroad; how the war shaped national identities; and the innovations in art, music, literature and theater that were triggered by World War I.

Of particular note is the focus on the experiences of women during World War I.

Dr. Friederike Emonds, associate professor of German and a symposium co-organizer, said much of our contemporary understanding of the war comes from the well-known male writers of the so-called Lost Generation, while women’s war literature of the time has been overlooked.

“As women were not allowed to join the military and fight at the front, women’s war experiences offer a different perspective on the war, allowing us new insights and perceptions that significantly contribute to our efforts to gain a more comprehensive understanding of World War I today,” Emonds said.

The University of Toledo has a number of other upcoming events tied to the centennial of the end of World War I:

• The University of Toledo Department of Theatre and Film is presenting an adaptation of Erich Maria Remarque’s novel “All Quiet on the Western Front.” Written and directed by Dr. Matt Foss, UT assistant professor of theatre, the play will be performed Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 9-11, in the Center for Performing Arts Center Theatre. Tickets are $10 for students; $12 for UT faculty, staff and alumni, and military members and seniors; and $18 for the general public. Call 419.530.ARTS (2787) or order online at UToledo Ticket Sales. Tickets also will be available at the door.

• A free screening of an English film adaptation of “All Quiet on the Western Front” will be held Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 4 p.m. in Carlson Library Room 1005.

• Through Friday, Dec. 14, Carlson Library also is displaying World War I artifacts and photographs from the collections of Richard Oliver and the Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections. The free exhibit is located in the library’s main lobby.

For more information on UT’s Word War I centennial events, to register for the symposium or to purchase tickets for the theater adaptation of “All Quiet on the Western Front,” visit the Roger Ray Institute for the Humanities website.

University to pay tribute to veterans at annual event Nov. 12

The 14th Annual Veterans Appreciation Breakfast and Resource Fair will be held Monday, Nov. 12, at 8 a.m. in Savage Arena at The University of Toledo.

Through the collaborative efforts of UT, the American Red Cross, and the Lucas County Veterans Service Commission, this breakfast and resource fair gives the community an opportunity to honor area veterans and active service members for the sacrifices they have made for the United States.

“The men and women who have served our country or who are actively serving our country are honored, respected and welcomed at The University of Toledo,” UT President Sharon L. Gaber said. “These dedicated individuals are valued members of our community, and this event is one way we show our support.”

“Freedom is not free; it requires service and sacrifice,” said Lee Armstrong, executive director of the Lucas County Veterans Service Commission. “Today is about celebrating those brave men and woman who answered that call.”

Along with a free breakfast, the event offers all local veterans, members of the military and their families access to more than 30 military-focused community resources and a drive-through car care clinic offered by Tireman Auto Service Centers.

There will be historical military vehicles and women’s military uniforms on display from the Neff Military Museum in Findlay, Ohio, recognizing more than 100 years of service by females in the armed forces.

Retired Cmdr. Meghan Michael, former commanding officer of the Navy Operational Support Center, will give the keynote address at the event.

Michael served as mission commander and tactical coordinator in the P-3C Orion, deploying to the Middle East and Asia. The pinnacle of her career was flying missions in support of ground troops in Afghanistan shortly after 9/11.

She currently serves as the co-chair of the Northwest Ohio Military Affairs Committee and is the owner of HR Navigator, a company whose mission is educating small businesses on attracting, hiring and retaining veteran employees.

The program also will include some younger community members who will pay tribute to the veterans with entertainment and support. Members of the Rossford High School S.O.S. (Serving Our Soldiers) Club will greet participants and assist veterans through the breakfast line. Musical entertainment will be provided by fourth-grade students from Waterville Primary School and the UT Jazz Ensemble.

“This event is all about honoring our local heroes. We are grateful for the involvement of students from area schools to help us in this effort,” said Rachel Hepner-Zawodny, executive director of the American Red Cross Northwest Ohio Chapter.

Free parking will be available in lots 3, 5 and 6 near Savage Arena.

For more information on the event, contact the UT Office of Special Events at 419.530.2200 or specialevents@utoledo.edu.

Department of Pediatrics literacy program celebrates 20 years with goal of collecting 20,000 children’s books

It’s difficult to mask the clinical nature of exam rooms, even in the cheeriest of pediatrician’s offices. But a doctor’s simple gesture of handing out a storybook at every visit can make a big difference in keeping a child comfortable while providing a window into that child’s development.

During the last two decades, Reach Out and Read of Northwest Ohio — a grant-funded program of The University of Toledo Department of Pediatrics — has provided more than 258,000 books to children across the region from birth to age 5.

Dr. DeAnna McGarity, first-year resident in UT Pediatrics, left, Dr. Rami Abdel Aziz, first-year resident in UT Pediatrics, and Lori LeGendre, Reach Out and Read program director, looked at some of the books collected during the drive. Books and donations will be accepted through Thursday, Nov. 15.

In honor of the initiative’s 20th anniversary, the group is in the midst of a book drive with a goal of collecting 20,000 children’s books.

“We rely on grants and donations for our entire program budget. One of our main expenses is buying books,” Lori LeGendre, program director, said. “Reach Out and Read is an important program and having community support ensures we can continue providing books that help make the experience of a doctor’s visit more child friendly, while at the same time educating parents on the importance of literacy and helping medical providers monitor development.”

Reach Out and Read is an evidence-based medical model using literacy guidance as a stepping-stone to school readiness and to enhance parent-child relationships. It also serves as a literacy program, modeling the importance of reading to parents, and as a tool for pediatricians.

“Reach Out and Read is a great way for us to gauge a child’s development,” said Dr. Valarie Stricklen, a pediatrician with The University of Toledo Medical Center’s Rocket Pediatrics. “Can they point, can they name colors, can they turn pages, can they sound out words? There are many developmental milestones that we can glean from just handing them the book.”

Currently, the program is at 25 sites across the region, including the Rocket Pediatrics locations in Waterville and at the Ruppert Health Center on UT’s Health Science Campus.

Reach Out and Read of Northwest Ohio serves about 14,000 children, handing out about 28,000 books a year. In some cases, the books families receive through Reach Out and Read are the only books in the home, LeGendre said.

Nationally, more than 32,000 doctors and nurses across all 50 states participate in the program, reaching 4.7 million children annually.

“Books are more than just reading the story and looking at the pictures. Reading is the cornerstone for language development,” Stricklen said. “That is why we give the books at 6 months of age before they can even talk. It teaches them the rhythm of language and speech patterns. It’s also a great way to start a bedtime routine and a way for the parent and child to connect and make reading a routine that can be fun and exciting.”

Monetary donations to the Reach Out and Read of Northwest Ohio book drive can be made by visiting Books by the Bushel. The program also is accepting donations of new and gently used books. The book drive runs through Thursday, Nov. 15.

For more information, contact LeGendre at 419.291.0038 or lori.legendre@utoledo.edu.

New associate vice president for finance to start this week

A new associate vice president for finance and treasurer will bring his experience in higher education and private corporate finance to The University of Toledo.

Michael Dennis will join UT Wednesday, Nov. 7. He most recently served as chief financial officer for Plastic Technologies Inc. in Holland, Ohio.


Dennis has previous experience in higher education as the University of Michigan’s director of business and finance for university housing, a division of student affairs. His industry experience also includes serving as chief financial officer of Nextronex Inc. in Holland, Ohio; vice president of finance for Pro-Face America LLC, a subsidiary of Schneider Electric in Saline, Mich.; and controller for Dura Convertible Systems in Adrian, Mich.

“I am excited to return to higher education and to join a university that is experiencing such positive momentum that strives for excellence, has a true sense of purpose, and whose employees enjoy what they do every day,” Dennis said.

“Mike’s background, including his education, his understanding of the full accounting cycle as CFO for private corporations, and his work in debt management and cash planning for higher education, has prepared him for this new role,” said Larry Kelley, executive vice president for finance and administration, and chief financial officer. “Mike was well-received by all who participated in the interviews and shared their opinions. We look forward to welcoming Mike to the team.”

Dennis received an MBA from Eastern Michigan University and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Siena Heights University.

Rockets, Huskies to battle in DeKalb in showdown Nov. 7

It’s November, and in the world of college football, that means MACtion, and with MACtion comes the annual showdown between Toledo and Northern Illinois. The Rockets and Huskies will meet in DeKalb Wednesday, Nov. 7, in a game that has serious consequences in determining the West Division representative to the MAC Championship Game Nov. 30.

In fact, in every single season since 2010, Toledo and NIU have met in November with the Mid-American Conference West title still at stake for one or both schools. And like most of those games, this one is critical for both the Rockets and Huskies. Toledo (5-4, 3-2 MAC) is two games behind and cannot afford another loss. For all intents and purposes, the Rockets need to win the rest of their games and have NIU (6-3, 5-0 MAC) lose at least one more time. NIU has some breathing room, but could officially knock Toledo out of the race with a win.

Diontae Johnson led the Rockets to a 27-17 win over Northern Illinois with 10 receptions
for 166 yards in the Glass Bowl last year.

The Rockets are coming off a 45-13 win over Ball State Oct. 31. Sophomore Eli Peters led the Rocket offense to 531 yards of total offense, but it was the Toledo defense that shined most. The Rockets forced five turnovers, including a forced fumble that was recovered for a touchdown, in leading UT to victory over its West Division foe. Toledo also had four sacks and limited the Cardinals to just 94 yards rushing in 35 attempts. Peters, stepping in for the injured Mitchell Guadagni, completed 25 of 34 passes for 327 yards and two touchdowns in guiding the Rockets to victory for the second time this season.

Northern Illinois is coming off a 36-26 victory at Akron Nov. 1. The Huskies feature the league’s No. 1 scoring defense (21.7) and rushing defense (103.8). Junior defensive end Sutton Smith leads the MAC with 14.0 tackles for loss. On offense, NIU is run-oriented, with sophomore Tre Harbison leading the way with 665 yards and four touchdowns.

Kickoff is set for 8 p.m. Eastern; the game will be televised on ESPN2.

Toledo leads the series with Northern Illinois, 31-14. The Rockets have won two in a row in the series, 27-17 at the Glass Bowl last year and 31-24 at Guarantee Rate Field in Chicago in 2016. Toledo’s last win in DeKalb came in 2006, a 17-13 triumph.

Toledo leads the MAC in scoring (41.2), second in rushing offense (204.3) and third in total offense (440.1).

Toledo’s defense has had 14 sacks in the last three games.

Senior placekicker Jameson Vest broke two career records vs. Ball State Oct. 31. He connected on the 69th field goal of his career, breaking the previous record held by Rusty Hanna (1989-92), and he successfully converted his 212th career extra point, topping Jason Robbins (2002-05) for most in school history.

UPDATED: Open forums scheduled for VP for enrollment management candidates

Four candidates for vice president for enrollment management have been identified by the search committee and will visit campus in November.

Faculty, staff and students are invited to hear presentations and meet the candidates at open forums. Listed by date in order of their visits to campus, the candidates are:

• Monday, Nov. 5 — Steve Robinson, assistant vice president and chief of staff for student services and enrollment management at the University of Oregon. His forum will be from 1 to 1:50 p.m. in Thompson Student Union Room 2592.

• Tuesday, Nov. 6 — Jim Anderson, associate vice president for enrollment services at Boise State University. His forum will be from 2 to 2:50 p.m. in Health and Human Service Building Room 1711.

• Wednesday, Nov. 14 — Carmen Panlilio, former vice chancellor for enrollment management and student affairs at Purdue University Northwestern. Her forum will be from 2 to 2:50 p.m.
in Thompson Student Union Room 2582.

Finalist Dawn Medley, associate vice president of enrollment management at Wayne State University, has withdrawn from the search.

The vice president for enrollment management is responsible for providing leadership for continuous, university-wide strategic enrollment planning that focuses on sustained, positive outcomes for recruiting, enrolling, retaining and graduating a talented and diverse student body.

The vice president manages the Division of Enrollment Management, which includes undergraduate admission; adult, transfer, online and military admission; international admission; financial aid; enrollment operations; new student orientation; and Rocket Solution Central.

Stephanie Sanders, who joined UT in 2016, plans to complete her tenure at the University at the end of the calendar year at the conclusion of her contract. The goal is to have a new vice president assume responsibilities in January.

UT is working with Parker Executive Search in Atlanta to assist in the recruiting efforts. The search committee is chaired by Dr. Phillip “Flapp” Cockrell, vice president for student affairs.

For additional information about the search and to view the resumés of each candidate, visit the Enrollment Management website.