Nursing Lab photo

Recent Gifts to KSC

Nursing Lab photo
The new Nursing Lab in Rhodes Hall (Will Wrobel photo)

Generous donors and foundations are continuing their support for the College. Here’s a list of recent gifts that are supporting a number of initiatives across the campus:

$40,000 from the Putnam Foundation in support of the Marlborough School Partnership in the Education Department.

$17,122 from David Staples ’55 in support of the Staples Teacher Ed Scholarship, the Staples Nursing Award, and the nursing lab project.

$10,000 from the Kingsbury Fund, in honor of Dr. Anne Huot’s presidency, to be used to support the nursing program lab project.

$4000 from the Agnes Lindsay Trust for current use financial aid to students who come from small New England communities.

$5500 from two individual donors for program support at the Cohen Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies.

Thank you, everyone, for supporting our students, programs, and community!

Andrew Solomon

Keene is Reading Brings Andrew Solomon to Campus


Andrew Solomon
Andrew Solomon

This spring, the Keene is Reading program is discussing Andrew Solomon’s Far From the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity (2012), which tells the stories of families coping with deafness, dwarfism, Down syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, multiple severe disabilities, with children who are prodigies, who are conceived in rape, who become criminals, who are transgender. Not only do the parents learn to deal with their exceptional children, they also find profound meaning in doing so. The author proposes that diversity is what unites us.

Far from the Tree has won several awards, including the National Book Critics Circle award for nonfiction, the J. Anthony Lukas award, the Anisfield-Wolf Award, and the Books for a Better Life Award. A New York Times bestseller, it was chosen as one of the New York Times Ten Best Books of 2012, a New York Times daily (Dwight Garner) Best Book of 2012, a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2012, a Boston Globe Best Book of 2012, a San Francisco Chronicle Best Book of 2012, a / Laura Miller Best Book of 2012, a Kirkus Best Nonfiction Book of 2012, a Time magazine Best Book of 2012, an Best Nonfiction Book of 2012, a New York Times Book Review Notable Book of 2012, a BuzzFeed Book of the Year, an Economist Book of the Year, and a Cleveland Plain-Dealer Book of the Year.

Mr. Solomon will be on campus to give the keynote address for this year’s KIR program at 7 p.m., March 5, in the Mabel Brown Room. The event is free and open to the public and larger KSC community, but seating is limited.

Teaching alum

Ninety-five Percent of 2008 Survey Respondents Are Employed

Teaching alumWe’ve all heard national media reports of the dire situation college grads are facing: no jobs, no place to live, no hope. Well, a recent survey shows that the news isn’t so negative, at least not for recent KSC grads. In September and October 2013, our Office of Institutional Research surveyed alumni who received bachelor’s degrees in 2008. Out of a class of 999, KSC had valid email addresses for, and permission to contact, 373 of these (37% of the class). We received responses from 156, or 42% of these recent alums, a very high response rate for this type of survey. KSC was pleased—and proud—to learn that five years after graduation, 98% of the respondents are either employed or engaged in further education. Here are the highlights from the survey:

  • Ninety-five percent of the respondents reported that they are employed; 2.5% indicated that they are not employed by choice (for example, to care for family members or enroll in graduate study), and the remaining 2.5% reported that they are unemployed and seeking work.
  • Among those who are employed, 76% report that their current position is closely related or somewhat related to their studies at KSC, and 75% of these indicated that KSC had prepared them well or very well for this employment.
  • The median annual salary range for those who are currently employed is $40,000–$44,999.
  • Forty-four percent of the respondents reported that they had enrolled in one or more programs of further education at some point after graduating from Keene State College, most pursuing master’s degrees.
  • Among those who have engaged in further education, 82% reported that their programs were closely related or somewhat related to their studies at KSC, and 74% of those judged that KSC had prepared them well or very well for this next step in their education.
  • When asked what else they are doing, besides work and further education, that is meaningful to them five years after graduation, respondents most often mentioned marriage/family/home ownership, community service, professional accomplishments, and travel.
  • Eighty-one percent of respondents reported that their KSC education had prepared them well or very well for the transitions in their lives in the five years since graduation.

You can read the complete survey here.

Several of the respondents explained why they valued their KSC experience. Here are three:

“The best professional experiences I had at KSC that translated into future career opportunities and connections were my two internships during my senior year. Having actual work experiences, in addition to classroom experience, in related fields while still in college helped boost my experiences for my resume and led to great professional references.

“The ability to effectively and efficiently communicate is a skill that was taught and practiced at KSC. It’s a skill I took with me both personally and professionally and has been most advantageous in my post-college career. All forms of different communication and expression were emphasized throughout my time at KSC and are lifelong skills every individual needs during and after their college years.” —Abby Feather Nelson

“The BFA program and the senior-project piece of the program proved to be immensely valuable in helping me build my career. It taught me not only how to continue learning, but also how I learn best.  In the senior project program, I was responsible for defining what my project was about and my success criteria for the project, and then I had to plan how I would reach my goals and deliver a final project that I was proud of. All of these skills proved to be essential in my career thus far in the creative webworld.”  —Heather Bowman

“I learned how to adapt to changing situations in my life and my career. Also my close relationship with my professors has helped me along the way. The Safety program is unique in the sense that the professors know you by first name and will work one-on-one with you. They are also still there as a resource even after you leave KSC.” —John Harvey

Molly Jae Chase ’10

Molly Jae Chase ’10, Swing Dresser on Broadway

Molly Jae Chase ’10
Molly Jae Chase ’10, swing dresser for The Book of Mormon

What’s a swing dresser? It’s a stagehand who maintains the quality of the costumes worn in a theatrical performance, each time it’s performed. Dressers are responsible for assisting cast members with backstage costume changes, when necessary, and they often assist with quick costume changes. As a swing dresser with The Book of Mormon on Broadway, Molly Jae Chase ’10 had to learn six of the dressing tracks for the show so she can handle one of them at any time. “At The Book of Mormon they are all extremely fast paced and heavy loads with around 30 quick changes each,” Molly explained. “It is extremely hard work, but the most fun I’ve ever had at work.”

Though she originally wanted to be onstage, Molly fell in love with dressing when she filled an empty dresser’s slot for the production of Fat Men in Skirts during her junior year. “From that moment I spent more and more time in the costume shop during my time at Keene State, and with the guidance of the incredible professors in the KSC TAD program I have been dressing fairly steadily ever since,” Molly said.

It seems that Molly acquired more than just technical skills as a Theatre and Dance major at KSC. “I learned how to be confident in both myself and my craft,” she said. “I learned about the importance of professionalism, and community. I learned how to think outside the box and not be afraid to take risks. I learned about hard work and versatility and drive, just to name a few.”

“Our program has something every school should be jealous of, and that is teachers who inspire,” Molly remembered. “The professors make sure that they reach out to every student in every class and somehow make the students crave learning about their craft. We have an extremely driven department that makes sure we not only have the skills we need to do the things we want, but also the skills in crafts that affect what we want to do. As someone who focused on costumes, I also had to take carpentry, acting, and scene painting, etc. Some students took a directing or a stage-managing class. And students studying to be actors or dancers had to have one credit that had them participate as part of the backstage crew, and vice versa. We were constantly inspired by our mentors, and they taught us that hard work is the only way to really get where you want to go, and that you can do it without being cutthroat.”


Open House at KSC’s New Nursing Simulation Lab

This high-tech mannequin, a remarkably realistic simulated patient (shown here in the intensive care simulation room), blinks, talks, coughs, groans, secretes bodily fluids, has a pulse in all its limbs, and can be programmed for up to 100 different health care scenarios. (Mark Reynolds photo).

When they return to class later this month, Keene State nursing students will have access to a state-of-the-art training facility. According to Mary Ellen Fleeger, director of the nursing program, KSC’s Nursing Simulation Lab is the newest and best organized cutting-edge facility in New Hampshire. Once it’s integrated with other programs at the College, the high-technology at the facility will enhance the interdisciplinary approach to teaching that makes KSC’s unique among other nursing programs. There will be an open house and tour of the Lab on Monday, February 3, from 2:30–4 p.m.

The $1.2 million facility, located in the former computer lab in Rhodes Hall, is organized into two areas: The Nursing Fundamentals Lab features five patient areas and a nurses station that are set up just as they would be in the most current hospital environment. And the Simulation Lab includes two intensive care rooms that are monitored from a common control room. High-tech mannequins, including a birthing mother and baby, can be programmed for up to 100 different health care scenarios. Students using the facility will have extensive opportunities for realistic, hands-on learning that greatly strengthens traditional teaching models.

Chris Bell ’11

Photos of Chris Bell ’11’s Holiday Display

Chris Bell ’11
Chris Bell ’11 in front of the Bergdorf Goodman holiday window he created.

Remember how last month we told you about Christopher Bell ’11, the Design and Technical Theater major who was creating the holiday window display for Bergdorf Goodman, the luxury-goods department store on Manhattan’s Fifth Ave.?

Because Bergdorf Goodman wanted to keep the display top secret until it was ready for public view, we couldn’t show you photos at the time, though several of you wanted to see them. But now the embargo’s been lifted, and Chris sent us some shots of his remarkable work, which you can see in the special gallery we created.

Mark My Words

Mark My Words—a Graphic Design/Writing Student Collaboration

Mark My WordsLast fall, Melissa DiPalma, a lecturer who teaches a course in book and magazine design in the Graphic Design program, approached English Department Chair Kirsti Sandy and asked if Dr. Sandy’s writing students would be willing to submit pieces of short fiction or nonfiction for a journal the graphic design students were creating. Dr. Sandy enlisted the help of Associate Professors of English Kate Tirabassi and Brinda Charry, and they offered students in their upper-level fiction and nonfiction classes the opportunity to submit work. Out of many submissions, 13 were selected to appear in the journal. “Each author was paired with a graphic designer, and they worked as a team to explore the themes and content within each piece,” DiPalma explained.

“What made the collaboration particularly exciting was that most of the writers and graphic designers had a chance to meet and discuss the work and the process. In one instance, the graphic design student used the writing student’s photographs as part of the finished piece. Another used one of the graphic design student’s original watercolor paintings,” Dr. Sandy said.

The finished product, Mark My Words, is now online and open for enjoyment.

John Ratliff

John Ratliff Named to Fisher Cats Foundation Board

John Ratliff
Keene State College Athletic Director John Ratliff

Keene State College Athletic Director John Ratliff has been added to the board of directors of the Fisher Cats Foundation, the charitable arm of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats. He joins a Foundation that has surpassed $3 million in giving and recently saw its marquee event soar past $1 million raised for charity.

“We are excited to have John join us on the Fisher Cats Foundation Board of Directors,” said Fisher Cats owner and Foundation Board Chairman Art Solomon. “He shares a belief in the core principles that make up our Foundation, and he brings a vast knowledge of the people and places in Keene and the entire Monadnock region. His ideas and enthusiasm will help us continue to make an impact on the people and towns in his community.”

“The Fisher Cats Foundation has done so much outstanding work across our state, and I am excited to join in the mission,” Ratliff said. “The Foundation places a huge emphasis on education, something that has driven me throughout my administrative career. I look forward to working with my fellow board members to continue the great programs in place while adding new ideas to expand our impact in New Hampshire and Massachusetts.”

Ratliff joins a Foundation that wrapped up a banner year in 2013. In June, the Foundation held its first charitable golf tournament, and it recently celebrated the sold-out 2013 Granite State Baseball Dinner on Nov. 23. That event raised more than $163,000 for the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth-Hitchcock, the Ted Williams Museum, and the Fisher Cats Foundation, and surpassed $1 million in giving since 2007. The proceeds will support the Foundation’s overall work, but specifically its scholarship program, which awards $30,000 to 12 graduating high school seniors each spring.

Abe Osheyack ’06

Welcome Back, Abe Osheyack ’06

Abe Osheyack ’06
Abe Osheyack ’06

Abe Osheyack ’06, former sports information director at Smith College (Northampton, Mass.), is returning to Keene State to serve as our SID. He takes over the position from Stuart Kaufman, who spent the past 21 years in the role and was KSC’s first full-time SID. Kaufman is moving into a role as a writer/editor in the College’s Marketing and Communications Department.

“I’m unbelievably thrilled to be coming back to Keene State College. Not many people get the chance to return to their alma mater, and for me, it’s a humbling and exciting prospect,” said Osheyack, who stepped into his new position on Monday, January 27.

While at Smith, Osheyack revamped the office of sports information, bringing in such innovations as an enhanced website and social-media presence, live statistics, video interviews and highlights, and online broadcasts of home athletic events.


Alumni Assn logo

Alumni Gatherings in Florida

Alumni Assn logoIt’s cold up here in New Hampshire, so we are heading down south in February! Join us for a Keene State College Florida Gathering! Meet President Dr. Anne Huot, visit with friends, meet new ones, and share memories! If you plan on attending one of these events, please RSVP to or via phone at 603-358-2300. For more information, please visit the Alumni Events Website.

Nokomis – February 11, Noon – 3 p.m.
Saltwater Cafe, 1071 Tamiami Trail N., Nokomis, FL 34275
Menu prices apply – all will be individual checks. Please RSVP by February 5.

Tampa – February 12, Noon – 3 p.m.
Bahama Breeze Restaurant, 3045 N. Rocky Point Drive East, Tampa, FL 33607
Fixed Menu – Choice of an entree (in advance): pasta with chicken, pan seared salmon pasta, or wood-grilled Angus cheeseburger, includes salad. ($18.00 payable to Keene State College at the event)
RSVP by February 5

The Waterfront Home of Hank Maier ’75 — February 13, 6 p.m.
Keene State College President Anne E. Huot and KSC Alumnus Henry (Hank) Maier ’75 warmly invite you to join them for cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, lively conversation, and a spectacular sunset in Sarasota, Florida. The event is limited to the first 50 people to RSVP. Please RSVP to Laurie Alden by Monday, February 10. Phone: 603-358-2372.

The Villages — February 14, Noon – 3 p.m.
The Legacy Restaurant at the Nancy Lopez Country Club, 17135 Buena Vista Blvd., The Villages, FL 32162
Fixed Menu. Choice of entree day of the event: tea sandwiches, turkey & swiss, or classic burger. Includes salad, homemade chips, cole slaw, & dessert. ($18.00 payable to Keene State College at the event)
RSVP by February 10.

Burlington, Vermont, Networking Event

Thursday, January 23rd, The Keene State College Alumni Association will be hosting a Networking Event at The Windjammer Restaurant in Burlington, Vermont. The event begins at 5:30, but feel free to drop in when you can! We’ve been gathering members of the KSC community near and far this past year—join alumni in Burlington at the KSC Connections in Burlington event! KSC Connection events are a great casual way to connect with some of your fellow alumni. Hearty appetizers sponsored by the Alumni Association, and there will be a cash bar. Guests Welcome!

Email Sara Telfer or call 603-358-2425 to let us know you plan to be there.



Keene State College alumni and students enjoying Winterfest. See you January 31 and February 1 on campus!
Keene State College alumni and students enjoying Winterfest. See you January 31 and February 1 on campus!

Mark your calendars! Winterfest 2014 is just around the corner! Winterfest will take place on campus Friday, January 31, and Saturday, February 1. This year there are many different events for alumni, students, family, and friends of the college. Friday night kicks off with Fire & Ice and Saturday is full of activities such as breakfast in the dining commons, inflatables, crafts, sizzlers, and more  in the Mabel Brown Room, bingo, a Keene State College networking event downtown, and more! Be sure to check out the schedule here. See you at the end of the month!

Josh Luft ’08 with his camJAMR-protected smartphone.

Josh Luft ’10’s camJAMR Getting Media Attention

Josh Luft ’10  with his camJAMR-protected smartphone.
Josh Luft ’10 with his camJAMR-protected smartphone.

As a computer science major, Josh Luft ’10 is well aware of computer security issues, including a little-known webcam problem he realized when he was Skyping with a friend: “What would it take for someone to intercept this streaming video?” Josh wondered. “Could my webcam be accessed while I’m not using Skype? After some short research, I was shocked at what I found. Not only were there ways to remotely access people’s webcams, you could even disable the indicator light that lets you know your webcam is turned on. I was shocked, and honestly I felt a little creeped out that someone could be watching and/or recording me.” Not convinced? Check out this CNET article.

So he started sticking Post-It notes over his webcam, which worked for a while, but soon fell off after he’d opened and closed his laptop a few times. And the adhesive left a residue on his camera lens.

A protected iPad Mini, with Moustache Pack
A protected iPad Mini, with Mustache Pack

After some trial-and-error product development, Josh came up with specially designed stickers that are removable, reusable, durable, and don’t leave a residue—printed with color images to make them more fun and trendy—that he calls camJAMR Webcam Covers. This simple, yet effective device has been reviewed in the Washington Post and in The Journal News (White Plains, NY).

A pack of 12 camJAMRs   (pronounced “cam jammers”) comes on a business-card-sized sheet, in 13 different styles, and fits over the camera lens on such devices as laptops, iPads, iPhones, iMacs, MacBooks, desktops, smart TVs, Xbox One (or Kinect), and cell phones.

“There are tons of news articles about webcam hacking on both our Facebook page  and our website,” Josh said. “We recently posted an article exposing how Facebook had to patch an exploit that allowed hackers to access webcams. Even the FBI addressed how serious this issue is and encourages people to cover their webcams.”

Glenn Theulen photo

In Memoriam: Coach Glenn Theulen

Glenn Theulen photo
Glenn Theulen in 1997, when he was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame

Glenn Theulen, who played a pivotal role in the growth of the Keene State College athletic program and spent 16 seasons as the charismatic and colorful coach of the men’s basketball team, died on December 30 in his hometown of Perry, Iowa. He was 88. Theulen first came to Keene State in 1968 and returned in the fall of 1997 to be inducted into the College’s Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame. Along with long-time men’s soccer coach Ron Butcher and Ted Kehr, Theulen elevated the Owl athletic program to become a major source of pride for the College.


The Keene Sentinel’s Executive Editor Paul Miller wrote a touching tribute: “A Flood of Memories; Lessons of Grace.”

Chris Swist photo

Murray Mast and Christopher Swist Perform on Premiere Recording of Inuksuit

Chris Swist photo
Christopher Swist at the Morningside Park performance of Inuksuit.

Music Lecturer Murray Mast and Resident Artist Christopher Swist were performers on Cantaloupe Music’s premier recording of Inuksuit by John Luther Adams. This recording has made NPR Classical’s 10 Favorite Albums of 2013, the New York Times’ Favorite Classical Recordings of 2013, the Boston Globe’s Best Albums of 2013The New Yorker’s Notable Classical Recordings of 2013, and the New Music Box’s 2013 Staff Picks. This piece is scored for a battery of percussion instruments (from nine to 99 musicians) dispersed throughout a large space. Each performance of the work varies depending on location and number of instruments: This version was recorded in the woods in Guilford, Vermont. KSC Percussion Ensemble staged Inuksuit on Appian Way back in 2011, and it will be performed again this year around Brickyard Pond on May 2.

Murray Mast photo
Murray Mast at the Morningside Park performance of Inuksuit.

How did these two faculty members become performers on the recording? Swist first played in the piece at its New York City premier at the Park Avenue Armory in Feb 2011. “Inspired, I had the KSC Percussion Ensemble perform the New Hampshire premier of Inuksuit on Appian Way in April of 2011,” Swist explained. In June 2011, Mast joined with a group of 99 musicians for an outdoor performance at New York City’s Morningside Park. “Eventually a smaller group (30) was formed to do the recording at Guilford Sound in Vermont in June 2012, which included both Murray and me, and that’s how we ended up on this critically acclaimed recording,” Swist said.