April 23, 2014

UMW Sophomore Receives Barry Goldwater Honorable Mention

University of Mary Washington sophomore Juliana Laszakovits is the recipient of an honorable mention from the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation.

Juliana Laszakovits

Juliana Laszakovits
Photo by Leigh Williams ’14

Her work focuses on understanding how dead plant life, known as dissolved organic matter, and pharmaceuticals and personal care products, known as PPCP’s, degrade. An accurate estimation of how quickly PPCP naturally degrade will provide a better estimate of the actual concentrations of pharmaceuticals entering the environment. During her research process, Laszakovits, a chemistry major, collaborated with research groups from Ohio State University and the University of Connecticut. Charles Sharpless, UMW associate professor of chemistry, will present their research findings at the Gordon Research Conference this summer.

The Barry Goldwater Scholarship Program, established by Congress in 1986 to honor longtime Senator Barry Goldwater, is designed to foster and encourage outstanding students to pursue careers in the fields of mathematics, the natural sciences and engineering. The Goldwater Scholarship is the premier undergraduate award of its type in these fields. It aims to foster and encourage excellence in the STEM disciples and to education and train new generations of U.S. leaders.

This year, the Goldwater Foundation awarded 283 scholarships from more than 1,100 STEM students across the country. In addition to the scholarships, the foundation also recognized several students from each state with the honorable mention distinction.

Laszakovits, a member of the UMW Honor’s Program, has been named to the Dean’s List. In August, she will attend the Biennial Conference on Chemical Education to present findings on the effectiveness of Peer Assisted Study Sessions at UMW.

UMW Students Win Art Awards

The University of Mary Washington Department of Art and Art History announced its student awards at the opening reception of the Annual Student Juried Art Exhibition at the duPont Gallery on Wednesday, April 9.

Senior Sidney Mullis received the Melchers Gray Purchase Award for her piece “Straight.”

Senior Sidney Mullis received the Melchers Gray Purchase Award for her piece “Straight.”

Senior Sidney Mullis of Spotsylvania received the Melchers Gray Purchase Award for her piece “Straight.” The work will become part of the university’s permanent collection.

Senior Christine Valvo of Stafford received the Emil Schnellock Award in Painting for her piece “VI.” The Department of Art and Art History presents this award each year to recognize excellence in painting.

Senior Elizabeth Castillo of Alexandria was presented the Anne Elizabeth Collins Award for her piece, “Andy Warhol.”

Senior Christine Valvo received the Emil Schnellock Award in Painting for her piece “VI.”

Senior Christine Valvo received the Emil Schnellock Award in Painting for her piece “VI.”

The following students also received awards at the exhibition’s opening ceremony:

  • Tim Stark of Fredericksburg received an award of excellence,
  • Michelle Howell of Spotsylvania received an award of excellence,
  • Ellen Dreher of Roanoke  received an award of excellence,
  • Kristine Woeckener of Fredericksburg received the Art History Award for Outstanding Research,
  • Isabel Smith of Silver Spring, Md., received the Melchers Award for Excellence in Art History.

Artist Desiree Holman selected works for the exhibition from more than 100 submissions, and chose the recipients of the awards of excellence, the Melchers Gray Purchase Award, the Emil Schnellock Award in Painting and the Anne Elizabeth Collins Award.

Senior Elizabeth Castillo was presented the Anne Elizabeth Collins Award for her piece, “Andy Warhol.”

Senior Elizabeth Castillo was presented the Anne Elizabeth Collins Award for her piece, “Andy Warhol.”

The Student Juried Art Exhibition will run through Sunday, April 21 in the duPont Gallery, located on College Avenue at Thornton Street. The exhibition is open to the public without charge and selected works are for sale.

The duPont Gallery is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Free parking is designated for gallery visitors in a lot across College Avenue at Thornton Street.

UMW Theatre Closes 2013-14 Season with Production of “Lysistrata”

The University of Mary Washington Department of Theatre & Dance will debut “Lysistrata” as its final show of the 2013-2014 season. Performances will be April 10-12 and April 16-19 at 8 p.m., and April 13 and 19 at 2 p.m. in duPont Hall’s Klein Theatre.

UMW's production of "Lysistrata" opens Thursday, April 10. Photo by Geoff Greene.

UMW’s production of “Lysistrata” opens Thursday, April 10. Photo by Geoff Greene.

“Lysistrata,” written by Aristophanes and translated by Dudley Fitts, is a comedy set in ancient Greece, where there seems to be no end to the Peloponnesian War. The main character, Lysistrata, convinces the women of Sparta and Athens to withhold sexual privileges from their husbands until they negotiate peace. Comedy and ancient ideals come to a head as Aristophanes explores the effects of war and the lengths many will go to end it.

The anti-war play, first staged in 411 B.C. during the Festival of Dionysus, has been produced all over the world. This production is a sophisticated and timeless play that explores ageless ideas with suggestive language and sexual imagery.

“Lysistrata” is directed by Helen Housley, associate professor of theatre. Scenic and lighting designs are by student designers Sidney Mullis and Christopher Stull, respectively. Costume design is by Associate Professor Kevin McCluskey, and sound design is by guest artist, Anthony Angelini.

Tickets are $18 for standard admission and $16 for students, senior citizens, alumni and military. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Klein Theatre Box Office at (540) 654-1111 or visit http://umw.tix.com/.

New Director Brings Expertise to UMW’s Nursing Completion Program

Pamela McCullough has a nearly 35-year nursing career, a focus on patient-centered care, and a passion for the liberal arts.

Now, she is taking the helm of the University of Mary Washington’s new bachelor of science in nursing completion program, which is slated to begin this fall. The program is designed for registered nurses who have graduated with an accredited associate’s degree or diploma nursing program.

Pamela McCullough

Pamela McCullough

“Continuing your education to the bachelor level makes you able to see a more global picture of healthcare,” she said. “You are looking at populations instead of individuals. You are learning how to think using different models. It’s exposure to different ways of thinking.”

McCullough pointed to recent studies that show patient outcomes are improved when at least 80 percent of nurses hold bachelor’s degrees.

“Not only does the employer want it, but there is an advantage for the individual,” she said. “[The curriculum] focuses on how to think outside the box.”

As an undergraduate, she started out as a theater major, then started her nursing coursework. Those connections between the liberal arts and healthcare drew her to UMW’s program.

McCullough, herself a registered nurse and certified nurse practitioner, wants the degree program to be a good fit for working nurses.

“I want to make it flexible and individualized,” she said. “Some nurses will want to go fast and some will go slow. I want to adapt our program to meet their needs.”

The coursework will include classes that allow nurses to make connections between their everyday situations and liberal arts disciplines, including advanced writing techniques, sociology courses on global health and medicine, and medical ethics.

McCullough has lived in the Fredericksburg area since 1998. Most recently, she spent more than two years as nursing program director at Stratford University in Woodbridge. She also spent a decade as a certified nurse practitioner at Pratt Pediatrics in Fredericksburg.

She received a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and post-master’s certificate from the Catholic University of America and a doctor of nursing practice from Old Dominion University. She completed her doctoral capstone project at UMW’s Student Health Center from 2009 to 2011.

For more information about the program, please contact McCullough at pmccullo@umw.edu.

“Spring Awakening” Opens Tonight at Klein Theatre

The University of Mary Washington’s Department of Theatre & Dance will continue its 2013-2014 season with a production of the rock musical “Spring Awakening.” Performances will be Nov. 7-9, Nov. 13-16 and Nov. 21-23 at 8 p.m. and Nov. 10, 16, 17, 23 and 24 at 2 p.m. in duPont Hall’s Klein Theatre. Tickets are $24 for general admission and $20 for students, senior citizens and military.

Courtesy of Geoff Greene.

Courtesy of Geoff Greene.

“Spring Awakening,” with book and lyrics by Steven Sater and music by Duncan Sheik, revolves around the lives of school children in 19th-century Germany who are struggling to comprehend the changes in their bodies and the consequences of searching for the answers on their own.

“The truth of ‘Spring Awakening’ is as relevant today as it was over a century ago,” said Gregg Stull, professor and chair of the Department of Theatre & Dance and Department of Music. “I know our production will touch our audience and leave them pondering the musical’s questions about what it means to grow up in our complex and uncertain world.”

The play, by Frank Wedekind, first opened on Broadway at the Eugene O’Neill Theatre on December 10, 2006.  The original Broadway cast starred Lea Michele, Jonathan Groff and John Gallagher, Jr. in the lead roles. The musical won eight Tony Awards, including for best musical, direction, book, score, and featured actor in a musical. The collaboration between Steven Sater and American singer-songwriter, Duncan Sheik, also brought the show a Grammy for its cast album.

Courtesy of Geoff Greene.

Courtesy of Geoff Greene.

Stull is the director of the show, with musical direction by Christopher Wingert and choreography by Samantha Reynolds. Scenic design is by Associate Professor Julie Hodge and costume design is by Associate Professor Kevin McCluskey. Lighting and sound design are by guest artists Jason Arnold and Christopher Husted.

The show explores provocative ideas with explicit language, sexual situations and nudity. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Klein Theatre Box Office at (540) 654-1111 or visit http://cas.umw.edu/theatre/.

News release prepared by: Jamie Wilson

Art Historian, Alumna Visited UMW

The University of Mary Washington’s Department of Art and Art History and the Wendy Shadwell ’63 Program Endowment in Art History sponsored a two-day visit from Allison Stagg ’02, a 2012 Jane and Morgan Whitney Postdoctoral Fellow of Drawings and Prints at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, on Nov.7 and 8.

Stagg presented a public lecture, “James Akin: The First American Caricaturist,” on Thursday, Nov. 7 at 5 p.m. in Lee Hall, Room 411. Stagg’s upcoming book and the basis for her lecture, “The Art of Wit: American Political Caricature,” is the result of her extensive research on U.S. political caricature between 1780 and 1830.

Allison Stagg '02 will visit UMW on Nov. 7-8.

Allison Stagg ’02 will visit UMW on Nov. 7-8.

James Akin was an American artist who, in 1804, published a visual satirical attack against President Thomas Jefferson through a caricature. Akin was the most infamous caricaturist of his time period. Politicians, contemporary artists and newspaper editors cautioned him that his prints would have a negative impact on his career, but his work influenced many popular caricaturists of the 19th century.

On Friday, Nov. 8, Stagg held an informal group talk about her career at 9:30 a.m. in Melchers Hall, Room 107. She also had individual appointments with interested students.

Stagg has roots in museum experience through curating exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Morris-Jumel Mansion in New York and University College in London. She also organized exhibitions at the British Museum and National Portrait Gallery in London and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

A 2002 graduate of Mary Washington, Stagg has received many fellowships and grants from institutions such as the American Philosophical Society, the New York Public Library, the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Yale University.

UMW Graduate Program in Geospatial Analysis to Begin Fall 2014

The University of Mary Washington’s Master of Science in geospatial analysis has been approved by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia, paving the way for students to enter the program for the fall 2014 semester.

The M.S. in geospatial analysis will be an intensive 12-month program designed for both recent graduates and working professionals.

The M.S. in geospatial analysis will be an intensive 12-month program designed for both recent graduates and working professionals.

Geospatial analysis encompasses geographic information systems (GIS), remote sensing, and global positioning systems (GPS) to organize, analyze and display spatial information. UMW will be one of only two institutions in Virginia to offer an advanced degree focused solely on geospatial analysis.

The M.S. in geospatial analysis will be an intensive 12-month program designed for both recent graduates and working professionals. The graduate degree was approved by the Board of Visitors in February. A complete course outline is available at www.umw.edu/gis.

“UMW is an ideal place to study geospatial analysis because of its location mid-way between Washington, D.C., and Richmond and because of its commitment to the liberal arts and sciences,” said Steve Hanna, chair of the Department of Geography.

Professor Brian Rizzo (right) works with students in UMW's GIS lab.

Professor Brian Rizzo (right) works with students in UMW’s GIS lab.

He said that, in addition to needing employees with advanced technical skills, employers look for a flexible workforce, with expertise in world cultures and languages, mathematics, statistics, computer science and the natural sciences, and spatial thinking.

“Employment announcements stress the need for written and oral communication skills,” said Hanna. “All these are emphasized in the UMW curriculum.”

UMW’s program will require 30-course credits, which will be available through evening classes and can be taken by both full-time and part-time students. Applications for the program will have a recommended filing date of June 1, 2014. For more information, contact Brian Rizzo, director of GIS programs, at rizzo@umw.edu or Steve Hanna, chair of the Department of Geography, at shanna@umw.edu.

“The Miss Firecracker Contest” Kicks Off UMW Theatre Season

The University of Mary Washington Department of Theatre & Dance kicked off its 2013-14 season with “The Miss Firecracker Contest.” Performances were Sept. 19-21 and Sept. 26-28 at 8 p.m., and Sept. 22, 28 and 29 at 2 p.m. in Klein Theatre. Tickets were $12 for general admission and $10 for students, senior citizens and military.

"The Miss Firecracker Contest" runs from September 19 through September 29.

“The Miss Firecracker Contest” runs from September 19 through September 29.

“The Miss Firecracker Contest” takes place in Mississippi where Carnelle Scott, known locally as “Miss Hot Tamale,” has entered herself into a local beauty pageant in hopes of salvaging her reputation. Complications arise when her cousin, Elain, who has previously won the title, comes back into the picture. While strategizing their win, Carnelle and her friends overcome their tainted pasts and learn to live for the future.

“The Miss Firecracker Contest” is a southern comedy by American playwright and screenwriter, Beth Henley. The comedy premiered in 1980 at the Victory Theater in Los Angeles and was adapted into the film “Miss Firecracker” starting Holly Hunter in 1989. Henley is currently a distinguished professor of theatre arts at Loyola Marymount University in California. She has received the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, among other awards.

MissFirecracker-37“The Miss Firecracker Contest” is directed by Cate Brewer, lecturer in the Department of Theatre & Dance. Scenic design is by David Hunt, Jr., associate professor of theatre, costume design is by Kevin McCluskey, associate professor of theatre, and lighting design is by student designer, Christopher Stull. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the Klein Theatre Box Office at (540) 654-1111.

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News release prepared by:     Jamie Wilson            

UMW Philosophy Professor Wins Service Award

Craig Vasey, professor of philosophy at the University of Mary Washington, has been recognized with the J. Christopher Bill Outstanding Faculty Service Award for his contributions to the university as well as involvement and leadership in the community.

Craig Vasey

Craig Vasey

“He has an impressive and extensive record of service,” said Douglas Sanford, professor of historic preservation, who presented the award at an open faculty session Thursday, Aug. 22.

Vasey, who joined the university in 1986, has been an integral part of the establishment of women and gender studies curriculum at UMW. He also has served as chairperson of the Department of Classics, Philosophy, and Religion since 1998.

Vasey, an expert on race theory, contemporary French philosophy and feminist philosophy, edited and translated Jean-Paul Sartre’s fourth volume of “Roads of Freedom” into a book “The Last Chance – Roads of Freedom IV.” Vasey’s book, published in 2009, is the first English translation of this unfinished Sartre work. He has spoken at conferences across the country and has led UMW’s annual commemoration of the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom.

Vasey was co-director of Mary Washington’s Race and Gender Curriculum Development Project for eight years. He also has served on numerous university committees, including the University Faculty Council, the Faculty Senate, the James Farmer Visiting Professorship Committee and the Steering Committee for the Strategic Plan.

Outside of UMW, Vasey is on the board of directors for Fredericksburg’s Sister City, Association and is a founding member of the Maury Neighborhoods Association. He also is a  member of the Virginia Humanities Conference, the Virginia Women’s Studies Association, the Society for Phenomenological and Existential Philosophy and the American Philosophical Association. He is the president of the Virginia Conference of the AAUP and was elected to a three-year term on the AAUP’s National Council.

Vasey received a bachelor’s degree from Towson State College, a doctorate from the Université de Paris-Nanterre and a Ph.D. from Brown University.

An endowment that funds the service award was established through the generosity of the former students, colleagues, friends and family of the late Christopher Bill, professor of psychology. The award recognizes Bill’s extraordinary service as a member of the UMW teaching faculty from 1972 to 2001. Bill died in December 2001.

The selection criteria for the award stipulates that the recipient must have served a minimum of seven years as a member of the Mary Washington teaching faculty and must have been heavily and consistently involved in a variety of service capacities, including departmental, university-wide and community service. Nominations may be submitted by any member of the teaching faculty, staff or student body of the university.

Developmental Psychologist Named UMW Graduate-in-Residence

Developmental psychologist and early intervention expert Brianne Friberg, has been named Graduate-in-Residence for the University of Mary Washington’s Department of Psychology.

Friberg-1Friberg, assistant professor of psychology and director of the Daniels Research Program at Liberty University, will visit the Fredericksburg campus for three days, including Thursday, September 19 for a public lecture, “A Change in Perspective: Lessons from the Field of Early Intervention.” The talk will take place in Combs Hall, Room 139 at 7:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

During her visit, Friberg will talk to five psychology classes about her research on risk and resilience in children from birth to age three and models of family-based intervention in the treatment of early childhood disabilities. Friberg also will meet with students who are interested in pursuing careers in early childhood development.

After graduating summa cum laude in psychology from UMW in 2001, Friberg received a Ph.D. in human development and family studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Friberg also completed two years of training at the Waisman Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities. Her research examines the effects of early intervention on/for children with disabilities, including the impact of early Head Start and in-home autism programs.

The Graduate-in-Residence program began in 1995 as a part of career advising within the psychology department to expose psychology majors to UMW graduates working in their field. Each year, the psychology department faculty nominate alumni who participate in interesting work in the psychology field.

The Graduate-in-Residence program is partially funded by the Campus Academic Resources Committee. For more information about the Graduate-in-Residence program, contact the Department of Psychology at (540) 654-1054.