Extra Credit Opportunity: Holi

Indian Student Association cordially invites you to join us for Festival of Colors – Holi…! All Indians celebrate this festival over the world with bonfires on the eve of the festival and on the day of the festival everyone plays with water and herbal colors. Celebrate this day with us with laughter and to signify victory of good over evil.
Event:  Festival of Colors – Holi
Date:   Saturday, March 31, 2012 @ 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Place: Gorilla Lake
*Refreshment will be served and no entry fees

Extra Credit Opportunity: Sister Helen Prejean

The Pittsburg State University Performing Arts and Lecture Series concludes its 2011-12 season on Friday, March 30, with a free lecture by Sister Helen Prejean, the author of “Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty in the United States.” Sister Prejean will speak at 7 p.m. in Pittsburg’s Memorial Auditorium.

Sister Helen PrejeanSister Prejean, a Catholic nun from Louisiana, became the spiritual adviser to convicted killer Patrick Sonnier and witnessed his execution. In 1993, she wrote of that life-changing experience in a Pulitzer-Prize nominated book, “Dead Man Walking.” The book, which topped the New York Times list for 31 weeks, was adapted by director and producer Tim Robbins for an Oscar-nominated film in 1996 featuring Susan Sarandon as Sister Prejean and Sean Penn as the death-row inmate.

A Nobel Prize-nominated activist and advocate, Sister Prejean has witnessed multiple executions and describes herself as “an ordinary person who got involved in extraordinary events.” As the founder of Survive, a victim’s advocacy group in New Orleans, she continues to counsel not only inmates on death row, but the families of murder victims, as well.

In conjunction with Sister Prejean’s Pittsburg appearance, the PSU Theatre will present the stage version of “Dead Man Walking” April 26-29 in the PSU Studio Theatre.

Admission to the lecture on March 30 is free, but tickets are required. Tickets may be obtained at the PSU Ticket Office in the Overman Student Center (620-235-4796) or at the door the evening of the lecture, based on availability. All seating is general admission.

For information, please contact Campus Activities at 620-235-4795.

Eating History Essay Grades

I’m not terribly happy with the results of this essay, but it’s only one of many assignments that makes up your grades. The highest grade I gave on the essays was a B; the median and average were D and almost half of the registered population of the class didn’t hand in an essay (Yes, I take late assignments, with appropriate penalties; yes, it’s worth writing something and handing it in still, because even an F with penalties is worth a lot more than a zero). A few thoughts

The biggest grade-killers were essays that ignored instructions

  • Essays that didn’t pick a century
  • Essays that didn’t have anything to do with food history.
  • Essays that didn’t focus on immigration, politics or the media
  • Essays that focused on one, but didn’t address the “most important” question, assuming that “important” and “most important” were the same thing. (Some essays claimed to address the contrast/”more” aspect, but didn’t spend anywhere near enough time on the question to be serious.)
  • Essays that drew material from one or two chapters and missed important aspects of the issue in other parts of the book.

I’ll try to be a little more aggressive about explaining what I’m looking for on the next essay and final exam essays, but all of those errors could be avoided by reading the instructions carefully.

Extra Credit Opportunity: Wrongful Conviction

Rob Warden, Executive Director at the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwest University in Chicago, will present a lecture on wrongful convictions at 11:00 a.m., Friday, March 30th, in the Crimson and Gold Ball Room, Overman Center. 
Warden is an award winning legal affairs journalist who, as editor and publisher of Chicago Lawyer magazine during the 1980’s exposed more than a score of wrongful convictions in Illinois, including cases in which six innocent men had been sentenced to death. He has won more than fifty journalism awards.   In, 2003, he was inducted into the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame.  He has also been featured on 60 Minutes.
Please feel free to come early for the meet and greet at 10:00 a.m.  Warden’s latest book True Stories of False Confessions is on sale NOW in The Pittsburg State University Book Store and will be for sale that day and he will be available to sign books.  This is a FREE EVENT TO ALL in  conjunction with The Dead Man Walking School Theater Project.
For more information you can contact Sara Mills at smills@gus.pittstate.edu and Abby Sutton at asutton@gus.pittstate.edu.

Crimean War Images

What excellent timing: after our discussion of the Crimean War yesterday, this morning BibliOdyssey has pictures and maps. It’s worth noting that the Crimean War was a little too early for photography to be used extensively (though they were used, which was new), which is why lithographs were necessary. PK also has links to this short history of the war. Also, I forgot to mention, this was the war in which the Charge Of the Light Brigade took place, inspiring one of the most famous poems of the 19th century.

Extra Credit Opportunity: PRIZM Ensemble

The PRIZM Ensemble is a group of classically-trained Memphis musicians. They are committed to developing and highlighting local talent. They have attended the world’s great music schools and they perform high-level, interactive chamber music concerts that focus on giving audiences the necessary tools to be engaged and active listeners. Typically at PRIZM concerts, there is child care available, and with an interest in early exposure to music, children from the nursery are invited into the hall to enjoy selected movements from the performance. The PRIZM Ensemble also teaches and performs at the PRIZM Chamber Music Festival which is the only festival of its kind in the state of Tennessee that brings together amateur, professional and student musicians. It combines chamber music playing/training, orchestral playing/training through performance in an un-conducted orchestra, and educational programs such as workshops and master classes. This format cultivates a love for classical music, specifically chamber music. By proactively promoting classical music, specifically chamber music, the festival is making an outstanding contribution to Memphis’ diverse cultural heritage and acts as a window, displaying the talents of the city’s young and amateur musicians.

March 30, 2012

All performances will be at 7:30 p.m. in McCray Recital Hall on the PSU campus.
Tickets are available at no charge to full-time PSU students with valid student ID.

Test 2 results

Each question was worth up to 4 points, for a possible total of 32. The highest score in the class before extra credit, in both sections, was 27.5, and the median was again a solid C; the grade scale works out like this:

Grade starts at distribution
A+ 27.5
A 26  10%
A- 25
B+ 23
B 20  20%
B- 18
C+ 16
C 13  45%
C- 11
D+ 9
D 6  20%
D- 4
F under 4  5%

If you answered 8 questions, but failed to answer two from each chapter, I took a 2 point penalty off your grade. (If you didn’t answer all 8 questions, I did not)

If you want to discuss your performance, and how you can improve it next time, feel free to come by my office hours. If you want to dispute your grade, feel free to do so in writing.


My Campus, Our Future

The PSU administration is calling on students to invest – through a new student activities fee – in a substantial upgrade of campus facilities including the Student Center. Student participation in funding these projects would not only improve campus life, but would demonstrate the sense of community and long-term vision that attracts alumni and outside donors. Check out details at My Campus, Our Future

Students enrolled for the Spring 2012 semester  will have the opportunity to vote on an advisory referendum on the phased implementation of a new student fee to support the renovation and expansion of the Overman Student Center, the construction of a new Fine and Performing Arts Center, and the construction of a new Indoor Event Center.
Voting will be available from noon on Wednesday, March 7 through noon on Wednesday, March 14 and will be conducted on-line.
Please note: Students will be required to log into GUS before starting the ballot.

Extra Credit Opportunity: International Culture Fair

Where can you eat your way around the world in one evening? The International Food and Culture Fair! PSU International students will offer tastes from their native cuisines as well as performances of music and dance. Students, faculty/staff and the community are invited! The Food & Culture Fair is an event hosted by the International Student Association and International Programs and Services Office every spring.
Event: Food & Culture Fair
Date: Saturday, March 10th
Time: 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.
Place: Memorial Auditorium, 503 N. Pine, Pittsburg, KS
Cost: Entrance Fee is $1, Children under 12 free. Tickets for food purchased separately (each food sample $1 – $1.50). Tickets available at the door.