Student & Alumni Activities & Achievements

Religious Studies Graduate Student receives national honor

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Religious Studies graduate student Adam Park (G.A., REL) has won the 2008 Albert Clark Award, a national honor. This prize is awarded by Theta Alpha Kappa (TAK), the national honor society for religious studies and theology.
Park won in the category of best graduate student paper. Written for Professor James Moyer’s “Basic Issues in Biblical Interpretation” course (REL 630), Park’s paper used the philosophy of Jean Paul Sartre to exegete a passage from the Gospel of Mark. His paper used existentialism to highlight what he called the “ambivalences of faith.”
Park’s submission will be published in the biannual Journal of Theta Alpha Kappa. He will also receive $500 from the honor society and an additional $100 will be given to the local Missouri State University chapter of Theta Alpha Kappa. In 2007 TAK had well over 200 chapters across the United States. The society was founded in 1976.

CHPA student one of two undergraduates awarded national scholarship

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Two Missouri State University undergraduate students were recently awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship in the amount of $5,000. The scholarship is awarded by the U.S. Department of State, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the Institute of International Education.
The scholarship is awarded to undergraduate students pursing a degree at a two-year or a four-year institution. Students use the award to fund study abroad programs worldwide. For the spring 2008 application cycle, 400 students were chosen from a field of 1,369 applicants.

Rona Babb (Global Studies) received one of these two national awards, and she will be using her Gillman Scholarship to study in South Korea during the spring 2008 semester. Babb is a sophomore from Green Forest, Ark. and a 2006 graduate of Green Forest High School. Babb is one of the first global studies majors in the CHPA at Missouri State; her emphasis is in language and culture, with a minor in Asian studies.
She serves as secretary of Amnesty International and is a member of the Asian American and Pacific Islander Organization, Gamma Alpha Lambda Christian Sorority, the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, the Korean Student Association and the Christian Campus House. Babb is a recipient of the Multicultural Leadership Scholarship and the United States Department of State Critical Language Scholarship.

Public Administration Professor co-authors recent publication with two MPA Graduate Students

PatrickDr. Patrick Scott (PLS) recently co-authored a paper with two of his graduate students in the Masters of Public Administration Program, Ellen Hammock and Garrett Tyson. The paper is titled, “Nonprofit Board Composition and Organizational Effectiveness,” and It has been accepted for publication in the Proceedings of the North American Management Society. Dr. Scott will be presenting this paper in April in Chicago at the annual meeting of the North American Management Society.
In this publication, the co-authors study an important topic in research on nonprofit organizations which involves understanding the various influences that contribute or detract from the overall effectiveness of nonprofit organizations. One particular set of factors, the roles and characteristics of boards of directors, serves as the focus of this study.
The co-authors highlight some of the more recent empirical studies that examine nonprofit effectiveness. They then report findings from Phase One of a two-part study that examined the relationship between executive directors of nonprofit organizations and their respective boards.
The aim of this study was to examine how dynamics in the relationship between executive directors and nonprofit boards, as well as various characteristics of boards (e.g., composition of members, level of involvement), contribute to perceived effectiveness of nonprofit organizations.

Two Criminology Professors win CHPA Incentive Grant to send six MSU criminology majors to Annual Criminal Justice Conference in Cincinnati

Student_ConfSix criminology majors (Brittany Davenport, Stacie Hammer, Sarah Handlang, Oliver Hoedel, Tylene VanGelder, and Kristen Zegar) took a trip to the Annual Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS) conference in Cincinnati, OH for four days in March. These students were funded through a CHPA Dean’s Incentive Initiative grant written by two faculty members of the department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology: Ms. Ivy Yarckow-Brown (CRIM) and Dr. Aida Hass (CRIM), who are both the co-advisors of the Sigma Mu Sigma, the Missouri State University Chapter of Alpha Phi Sigma, which is the National Criminal Justice Honor Society.
Five of the students were chosen to attend the conference after being appointed as officers for Sigma Mu Sigma for the 2008 – 2009 academic year, which will include obligations of sponsoring a criminology student conference and fund raising events. The sixth student, Tylene VanGelder, was sponsored to attend the conference as she had been selected by the ACJS committee to present a paper she authored about racial issues in pre-trials.
While in attendance at the conference, each of the students had opportunities to attend many paper presentations, roundtable panels, and similar events. They were also participating in National Alpha Phi Sigma events and developing networks at graduate school and presidential receptions. A few of the students took advantage of outstanding opportunities to complete ride-along tours with the Cincinnati Police Department. The Hampton County Sheriff’s Department offered a tour of their jail facility to several students.
In addition, three of the students from the Missouri State University group, participated in a National Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) competition. These students were Sarah Handlang (senior, double major in criminology and chemistry), Brittany Davenport (junior, criminology major) and Oliver Hoedel (junior, criminology major). They were joined by Missouri State University graduate student, Matthew Brown (community and agency counseling) to form a team for this event. Approximately fifteen to twenty teams competed in the competition and the Missouri State University team received third place honors.
Overall, this has proven to be an excellent educational opportunity and networking experience for each of the six students who were funded through the grant monies and supported by their faculty co-advisors. Through the entirety of the trip, each student presented themselves as a professional that Missouri State University’s College of Humanities and Public Affairs should be proud of.

History Professor sponsors participation of Eighteen Missouri State Students at the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute held in Chicago

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Dr. Jamaine Abidogun (HST), as member of the Provost Diversity Outreach Committee, participated as a faculty sponsor at the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute held in Chicago this March. Eighteen Missouri State University students participated at the conference in various panels and symposia in order to develop leadership skills.
This year's Midwest Hispanic Student Leadership Conference (MHSLC) attracted leaders from 60 student organizations representing at least 40 colleges and universities from states including Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin and more.
The MHSLC provides opportunities for advanced leadership skills development, and promotes unity among Hispanic student leaders attending colleges and universities in the Midwest.
The USHLI has developed into one of the most powerful, nationally and internationally recognized Latino organizations in the country by organizing and conducting nonpartisan voter registration and leadership development program in 40 states. This organization has been able to maintain a stable presence in hundreds of communities over the years by promoting empowerment and civic responsibility. The mission of the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute (USHLI) is to fulfill the promises and principles of democracy by empowering minorities and similarly disenfranchised groups and by maximizing civic awareness and participation in the electoral process.
The MSU students who participated in this conference will utilize these skills on our campus to work across student organizations to increase diversity awareness and improve our campus climate.