In the Spotlight: March 1, 2013

Kudos to these faculty, staff and students

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  • Candice Giffin, a junior double-majoring in environmental science and political science, was named among 199 finalists nationwide for the Harry S. Truman Scholarship. Giffin will interview along with the four other Arizona finalists during the Regional Review Panels on March 18 in Phoenix. A little more than 25 percent of finalists will be named winners, each of whom will be awarded $30,000 for graduate studies in preparation for careers in public service.
  • Ryan Belnap and Dan Boone
    Ryan Belnap and Dan Boone take a moment to pose at the 2013 Colorado Film Festival in Golden, Colo., where their documentary, A Thousand Invisible Cords was screened.

    The NAU documentary A Thousand Invisible Cords was a feature selection at the Colorado Environmental Film Festival, held Feb. 23-25 in Golden, Colo. The film was produced and directed by the NAU IDEA Lab’s Dan Boone and Ryan Belnap and showcases groundbreaking interdisciplinary research by a team of internationally recognized scientists from NAU and other universities around the world. The Colorado festival selects films that “have the power to awaken us to the world around us, educate us on important issues and inspire us to act.” Only one nominated film in 10 is selected for the festival. The NAU documentary was in good company—the Best Feature Film award went to Watershed, a film produced and narrated by Robert Redford.

  • Northern Arizona University is taking part in a delegation of 10 U.S. universities traveling to Myanmar to learn more about higher education there and explore partnership opportunities. The delegation is part of the Institute of International Education’s broader Myanmar higher education initiative. Participating from NAU are Mandy Hansen, director of International Admissions and Recruitment in the Center for International Education; Leslie Schulz, executive dean, college of Health and Human Services; and Liz Grobsmith, senior adviser to the president.
  • The Broadcast Education Association will recognize four NAU students in April at the BEA Festival of Arts, its national competition for students and faculty. Electronic media and film majors Michelle Araque, Derek Ellis, Zach Russey and Alex Thomas will receive an honorable mention in the Animation/Experimental/Mixed category for their short film, Retrograde, which they created for a class last fall. Watch it online.
  • Students and staff in Student Support Services pose for a picture on Feb. 23 as part of National TRIO Day.
    Students and staff in Student Support Services came together on Feb. 23 as part of National TRIO Day.

    Twenty-three NAU students involved in Student Support Services joined together in various community-building activities as part of National TRIO Day on Feb. 23. Their homage to TRIO programs included having volunteers help out with the Special Olympics Winter Games, writing letters to Upward Bound students in high school and considering college,

    and participating in the NAU Challenge course to strengthen ties with one other. Northern Arizona University has been home to TRIO programs since 1977.

  • The newly formed NAU Handball Team competed in the U.S. Handball Association’s National Collegiate Championships, held Feb. 20-24 at Arizona State University. Sophomore Andres Godinez emerged in the tournament’s Division III-level as the 2013 national champion. Sophomore and team vice president Cara Smith made it to the quarterfinals in her division. The team, which grew out of a PES class, is coached by education professor Guy Senese and Albert Circosta.