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Higher Education

Faces

Jill Hermsen wears two hats at MU. Not only is she coordinator of International Students and Scholars Services, but she is also working on her doctorate in education leadership and policy analysis. The double workload requires serious amounts of balancing, Hermsen said.

Being a student again showed her a perspective that she finds helpful to her job. Working with 1,400 international students, Hermsen’s primary role is to help teach them the rules, regulations and customs of America and MU. She also advises internationals on their options while at school and after graduation.

Charmed by jewelry

Every week for 15 to 20 hours, Shira Wasserman sits in her office — a desk tucked in the corner of her bedroom — and makes jewelry for the company she has been nurturing since she was 16.

Now, 21 years old, the Stephens College senior has single-handedly made Shira Melody Jewelry into a notable company, selling her creations in stores in Columbia, Kansas City and Lawrence, Kan.

How do I?

If you are an MU faculty member, please visit the University Registrar office website and download a new course proposal form.

Campus Updates

Starting Monday, MU’s George Caleb Bingham Gallery will host “Farm Story: A Place of Belonging,” a thesis exhibition by master’s student Joleen Goff.

Goff’s work was influenced by her experiences on her grandparents’ farm in southeastern Kansas, according to information about her from the gallery. It includes a series of silk-screened and painted canvas squares hung on a clothesline that show day-to-day life on the farm.

Unlikely teamwork in saving ‘war’ rivalry

LAWRENCE, Kan. — Foes by tradition, some students at MU and the University of Kansas are joining forces to oppose their schools’ decision to drop the name “Border War” from a sponsored athletic rivalry.

The schools issued a joint announcement Oct. 4 saying the 2-year-old trophy contest, decided by Jayhawk-Tiger competition in common sports during an academic year, would be renamed the “Border Showdown.”

Talk is tops

It seems fitting that the MU debate team’s primary method of recruiting new members is by word-of-mouth. The debaters obviously are good speakers, as the team, only in its second year, is ranked No. 1 in the nation.

The team has made huge strides since its inception a year ago. In last year’s first competition, the team sent five members to compete. This year, MU sent 16 debaters to the same competition — and walked away with first-place honors.

Career fair gives grads chance to dream big

Tables with bright banners and towering posters circled the walls and the center of the Dulany Hall Banquet Room. More than 100 students lapped the track formed by 20 employers and graduate schools. The students came in search of careers and educations at Columbia College’s annual career and graduate fair Wednesday evening.

Cindy Collet made her way determinedly around the room. Collet, 40, is a full-time senior studying psychology and sociology. She also is the divorced mother of an 8- and a 10-year-old.

College costs rising, but at slower rate

College tuition rose at a somewhat slower rate this year, climbing 10.5 percent at public four-year colleges and 6 percent at private ones, a study found.

State budget cuts have forced public colleges to pass on more costs to students in recent years.

Pitt’s stop is strictly business

Groups that helped coordinate the screening at MU of George Butler’s “Going Upriver: The Long War of John Kerry” said actor Brad Pitt came to the event strictly to support his candidate at his old school.

Stars such as Cameron Diaz, Dermot Mulroney, Pitt and his wife, Jennifer Aniston, all attended the Palisades Pictures screening of “Going Upriver” when it kicked off its college tour and DVD release in Los Angeles.

Faces

Cynthia Frisby wears many hats. As a wife and mother, she drives her two children to school each morning, sometimes even turning the car around when her daughter, Angela, forgets her blanket for reading time.

As a researcher, she prepares a talk she will give in a few months on the struggles and demands of being a woman in a man’s academic world.

Places

Stories say Conley House, at 1602 Stanley Place, is haunted by Aunt Sally, the disagreeable sister of the builder, Sanford F. Conley.

Although Aunt Sally said she wanted to be buried in the north wall of the house when she died, rumor has it she was buried in the fireplace. Aunt Sally is known to float through the house when the attic door is left open, according to MU’s building archives Web site.

Plays vs. politics

Frustrated after trying in vain for half an hour to get the television to work, Peter Byger ran a hand through his hair and turned the box off. Looking around the circle of 16 empty chairs, he told the three women gathered in Windsor Lounge to go home.

There would no presidential debate watch party.

Columbia's clubs seek year-round activism

Political involvement at Columbia College is a lot like the summer Olympic Games — it only occurs every four years.

“Every four years, everyone gets fired up about the issues, but the party-affiliated clubs die down between elections,” said Anthony Claypool, director of student activities at Columbia College. “It is not that we are not politically active on campus; we just have a lot of trouble keeping people involved.”

Experience English

Putting together puzzles, playing Scrabble and discussing current events may seem like simple activities, but when done in an unfamiliar language, they can be much more challenging. At MU, foreign students are using these activities to practice language skills.

Students in the Intensive English Program visit Lenoir Retirement Community every other week to socialize with residents and practice English.

Faces: Janet Howard

The need for employment is the reason Janet Howard drives 100 miles from Hannibal to Columbia every day.

Howard has worked at MU for two years. She is the administrative assistant for the Black Studies program, handling all fiscal work necessary to keep the program going.

Mystery of Stephens’ missing bras solved

The case of the missing bras has been solved. Here’s what happened:

On Monday morning, Stephens College students and faculty strung up a banner adorned with 40 decorated bras at College Avenue and Broadway.

More discretion in revised honor code

In the face of allegations of academic dishonesty, MU teachers and students now have the opportunity to determine a grade sanction without involving disciplinary action by the Provost’s Office.

Jim Devine, who oversees academic integrity issues on campus, said he thinksthe value of the new MU Honor Code lies in protecting students’ futures.

Faces: Richard Hocks

Higher education and music are family affairs for Richard Hocks, professor emeritus at MU’s Honors College, and his family.

Hocks has taught English at MU since 1965 and at the Honors College since 1969. He, his wife, Elaine, and two of their four children have doctorate degrees in English and teach at the university level. They are also accomplished musicians.

Cards lead to birthday surprise

Eric Troolin’s 29th birthday was a surprise party one year in the making.

But the surprise wasn’t for him but for his guests, a couple of hundred students who went to Francis Quadrangle at MU at noon Monday.

Playhouse Liaisons

The Stephens College Playhouse Company will open a two-week run of the dramatic comedy “Les Liaisons Dangereuses,” or “Dangerous Liaisons,” at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the Macklanburg Playhouse.

Set before the French Revolution, it is a tale of seduction among French aristocrats, according to the college theater

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