Tag Archives: award

Ethan Seaman and Bill Preskenis with their third-place entry at BuildingEnergy 14

Architecture Students Win in NESEA Student Design Competition

2st place winners
Four sophomore students, (l–r) Laken Thomas, Moire Lawson, Ally Bedard, and Kim Pyszka (with Prof. Temple, far left) won first place in the very challenging Residential Retrofit category.

Last month, Associate Professor of Architecture Peter Temple traveled with four of his student design teams to the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association’s (NESEA) annual conference, BuildingEnergy 14, at Boston’s Seaport World Trade Center. BuildingEnergy is a cross-disciplinary renewable energy and high-performance building conference.

Ethan Seaman and Bill Preskenis with their third-place entry at BuildingEnergy 14
Ethan Seaman and Bill Preskenis with their third-place entry (against tough competition) at BuildingEnergy 14

The four teams of KSC students entered the Student Design Competition, in four separate divisions that included residential and commercial and new construction and retrofit. One of those teams placed first and another came in third, and the two other teams received merit awards. The winners got $1000 and free hotel rooms, and all the students got free conference registration and a harbor cruise and dinner at the NESEA Night Celebration. This is especially impressive considering that the students were competing against quite a few other institutions, including graduate students from Yale and Harvard.

“The Student Design Competition was very challenging,” explained Prof. Temple, “because all buildings had to be zero-net energy, which means they had to provide as much energy in a year as they consumed. Some of the buildings, such as the large industrial sites, could use hydro power from the existing canals that historically powered Holyoke’s mills, but those in the residential category had to function completely from solar power. The design teams had to do the calculations to prove that their designs met the zero-net requirement.”

MVP’s “Yes Means Yes: A Guide to Good Sex” Wins Best Program Award

Mentors in Violence Prevention and KSC Champions peer educators at the BACCHUS Conference. Front row, l–r: Casey Robinson, Heather Leahy, Abby Darin, Kristin Szymkowicz, Virginia Mariolo, Olivia Chiacchia Back row, l–r: Tiffany Mathews, Jennifer Wiemers, Ryan O'Hora, Jacob Richard, Matt McDougal, Emma Bass, Forrest Seymour, Justin Smith, Nick Garrity
Mentors in Violence Prevention and KSC Champions peer educators at the BACCHUS Conference. (Front row, l–r) Casey Robinson, Heather Leahy, Abby Darin, Kristin Szymkowicz, Virginia Mariolo, Olivia Chiacchia, Nick Garrity (Back row, l–r) Tiffany Mathews, Jennifer Wiemers, Ryan O’Hora, Jacob Richard, Matt McDougal, Emma Bass, Forrest Seymour, Justin Smith

At the beginning of the past two school years, KSC’s Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) peer education group has presented its “Yes Means Yes: A Guide to Good Sex” program during New Student Orientation. “This optional program has been very popular with first-year students,” explained Staff Counselor and MVP co-advisor Forrest Seymour, “attracting 300–400 each time it’s been offered, and promoting positive sexuality messages of respect, mutual consent, and safe sex.”

On March 29, the “Yes Means Yes: A Guide to Good Sex” program received the “Best Program” award at the northern New England BACCHUS Network Conference, held at Endicott College in Beverly, MA. BACCHUS, which gave the award, is the national college peer education organization. Seymour accompanied several MVP students to Endicott to attend the regional conference, as did Coordinator of Wellness Education Tiffany Mathews and four KSC Champions peer educators.

The award-winning Mentors in Violence Prevention program is celebrating its 10th anniversary at Keene State College, and April is national Sexual Assault Awareness Month at KSC. As part of SAAM, MVP along with other student groups and community partners is sponsoring various events, including the Shout Out Against Sexual Assault, the Clothesline Project, Take Back the Night, and the month’s capstone event, Walk a Mile in Her Shoes: the Men’s March to End Rape, Gender Violence, and Sexual Assault on April 19th.

Wanted: Alumni Awards Nominations

KSC Alumni logox300There are a few weeks left for you to submit nominations for the KSC Alumni Association Awards.  The Alumni Association Awards committee is seeking nominations to recognize individuals and organizations that have shown outstanding achievement and/or service to the College and Alumni Association. The awards will be presented at Reunion this coming June.

Please think about alumni you know or have heard about and submit a nomination.
Forms are available online in pdf format,  or you can phone us at 603-358-2369. Please don’t hesitate to re-nominate a person or group and add any new information.
Deadline for nominations is April 20, 2014.

Alumni Achievement Award
Given to an alumnus/na for outstanding achievement in his or her chosen career field, which brings credit to the individual and Keene State College.

Sprague Drenan Award
Given to an alumnus/na for his or her support of KSC Alumni Association activities and programs.

Alumni Inspiration Award
Given to recognize exceptional accomplishments of a KSC alumnus/na who has graduated in the last 15 years. Areas of recognition may include professional accomplishment, personal or civic involvement, or support of Keene State.

Outstanding Service Award
Given to an individual or group for outstanding service to Keene State College. The recipient need not be an alumnus/na.

Ernie Hebert

Ernie Hebert ’69 Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Ernie Hebert
Ernest Hebert ’69 receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award from the New Hampshire Writers’ Project (photo by Jane Eklund)

Novelist and Dartmouth Professor of English Ernest Hebert ’69 received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the New Hampshire Writers’ Project on Saturday, March 22, at the group’s Writers’ Day Conference.

“I was very proud to receive the lifetime achievement award for the obvious reason that, like most people, it feels good to be acknowledged for work you’ve done over many years,” Hebert said. “In this case, there was an added bonus to receiving the award from a group that I have great respect for, the New Hampshire Writers Project. It’s kind of a gathering place and support group for New Hampshire-based writers, editors, agents, and publishers. They don’t discriminate between so-called literary authors and commercial writers. The result is, as a participating member, you get to schmooze and network with all kinds of different people working in the literary arts. I think that’s healthy for literature and the people.”

And we couldn’t help asking if KSC had played a role in getting Hebert where he is today. “I’ll always be grateful to Keene State for starting me off in a career,” he explained. “Without KSC, I never would have discovered the writer in myself.”

Stuart Kaufman

Stuart Kaufman Honored for Outstanding Service as Sports Information Director

Stuart Kaufman
Stuart Kaufman receiving his award for outstanding service as a sports information director

Stuart Kaufman never saw it coming. He was sitting courtside at the Spaulding Gym with his wife, Carol, at the break between the women’s and men’s basketball games against Plymouth State on February 28th when KSC Director of Athletics John Ratliff dropped the big surprise by calling him from the bleachers to center court. Kaufman, Keene State’s award-winning Sports Information Director for over 20 years—and very definitely the voice of Owls sports—was moving on to a position as a writer/editor in the College’s Marketing & Communications Office, and Ratliff wanted to give him a big “thank you” for his many years of unwavering dedication.

In fact, Kaufman didn’t even plan on being at the gym that night. “Ironically, I thought I’d take some time off from the games,” he explained. “I’ve been going to them for over 20 years, so I thought I’d step back and stay home and not have to worry about the games and the usual deadlines and all those things. But my wife Carol made it clear she wanted us to go that night, so I did.”

It’s a good thing that Carol Kaufman is so persuasive—and so good at keeping a secret—because Ratliff handed her husband a handsome wooden plaque commemorating him for his “outstanding service as Sports Information Director.” The crowd roared it’s applause, but none were on their feet sooner than the KSC men’s basketball team, because you’d be hard pressed to find an Owl athlete who isn’t aware of how much Kaufman has done to promote Keene’s athletic program and individual athletes. “I think the student athletes’ reaction when we gave him that award said a lot,” Ratliff said. “They were the first ones to jump to their feet to recognize what he had done for them.” And, though Kaufman didn’t realize it at the time, the row he and his wife were sitting in had been named in his honor.

“It was just a nice feeling to be appreciated for all the work I’d done over the years as the College’s sports information director,” Kaufman said. “People don’t realize what it takes to do that job. It’s not a 9–5 gig; you go into it knowing that you basically have to give up your life. The games aren’t built around your schedule, they’re built around the College’s schedule, which means you have to be there nights and weekends. So getting that award really meant a lot to me, because sometimes you think it’s a thankless job as you’re doing all this work and coming in to the office on the weekends and no one else is here.”

Probably no one at Keene State cranked out more stories than Stuart Kaufman. He calls himself an “equal-opportunity sports information guy” who covered the games, but also searched out the personal stories in each athlete, whether they were all-stars or reserves. “He really valued the contact with the student athletes, getting to know each one,” Ratliff said. “Even if he wasn’t doing a story, he still enjoyed getting to know them. There was a real personal contact, whether they were a star athlete, or whether they played two minutes a game—he held them all in high respect.”

It was that personal touch that set Kaufman’s stories apart. For example, he recently received a national award from the College Sport Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) for his profile on track-and-field athlete Brett Mastrangelo, who returned to Keene after trying his hand in Hollywood. His cover story on basketball-player Orlando Echevarria in the Winter 2012 issue of Keene State Today is an excellent example of the deep respect and personal interest Kaufman brings to a story. “I tell people, he’s as good a writer as I’ve ever seen,” Ratliff explained. “I just love reading his stories, because they really tell a story. He really does a nice job—that’s going to be missed.”

“I pride myself in doing stories about the athletes, not just about them winning, but about the athletes who overcome adversity,” Kaufman said. “The athletes at Keene State, playing in Division III, aren’t on scholarship—they’re playing for the love of their sport. If my stories can convey that to the audience, then I thought I was doing my job.”

Kaufman was also willing to go the extra mile and dig for the nuggets that bring a story to life. “After a game, if I’m doing a game story, I talk to the coaches,” he said. “But I’ll also talk to the players. I want to hear what they have to say, and it helps them learn how to interact with the media, so it’s a learning opportunity for them. The personal part is very important to me. I think I have a good nose for the story. This year, the men’s basketball team isn’t doing that well, so I have to find other ways to promote the program and the athletes. I try to find those human-interest stories about the athletes and use those to get the good news out about KSC sports. I’ll talk to a player’s high school coach and other players; I talk to a lot of people to get a story. You never know who’s going to provide that tidbit that’s going to make that story shine.”

That personal touch and little bit extra that Kaufman put in his stories made a big difference. Getting all those sports stories out there did affect enrollment, as they put Keene State on prospective students’ radar. “The home-town feature stories that he would do and send to the weekly papers in a kid’s home town were great,” Ratliff said. “The publicity that he garnered dwarfs any other efforts in the last 30 years. He was out beating the bushes, and he had a working relationship with the editors and sports editors at a lot of these papers. He could call someone at the Globe and say, ‘I’ve got a great story for you.’ His ability to champion a story to various media outlets—print and broadcast—and have them take it and run with it is one of his biggest attributes.”

Yes, Stuart Kaufman has certainly made his mark on Keene State athletics, and he’ll continue to get the good word out through his new role in the Marketing & Communications office. “It’s a chance for me to expand my writing,” he said. “All the years that I was doing sports information, I knew that there were so many great non-sports stories out there of students who are accomplishing remarkable things, so now I have the opportunity to delve into those stories and get them out there.”

Nelson Megna

Nelson Megna ’59 Receives AARP’s Most Prestigious Award

Nelson Megna
Nelson Megna ’59, winner of AARP’s 2013 Andrus Award

Nelson Megna ’59 recently won AARP’s 2013 Andrus Award, named in honor of the organization’s founder Dr. Ethel Percy Andrus. The Andrus Award celebrates and honors people who make a difference in the lives of others, and is the most prestigious and visible award AARP can present to an individual. The organization claimed that Mr. Megna’s “extraordinary public service actively embodies Dr. Andrus’ motto ‘To Serve, Not To be Served.’”

Read all about it in AARP’s announcement.

Mr. Megna and his wife, Dorothy Reed Megna ’58, recently established the Megna Family Endowed Scholarship here at KSC.

Bill Pardus Awarded Director’s Prize

Music Department Professor Emeritus Bill Pardus
Music Department Professor Emeritus Bill Pardus

Music Department Professor Emeritus and award-winning composer William D. Pardus has been awarded the Director’s Prize in the International Composers’ Competition, sponsored by the Longfellow Chorus of Portland, Maine, for his composition, Five Songs of the Sea, (for soprano voice and piano) which was part of a project of setting 10 Longfellow poems to music, with varied types of accompaniments.

Patrick Dolenc named KSC’s 2013 Distinguished Teacher

Dr. Patrick Dolenc
Dr. Patrick Dolenc

Dr. Patrick Dolenc, professor of economics, has been named KSC’s 2013 Distinguished Teacher. The Keene State College Alumni Association presents the award each year to recognize excellence in teaching, encouragement of independent thinking, rapport with students, and effective student advising. Dr. Dolenc becomes the 43rd recipient of this distinctive honor.


Watch Dr. Dolenc’s Convocation address to the Class of 2017.

Shawn Curtis

Alumni Association Announces the 2013 Alumni Awards

On Saturday, June 8, the KSC Alumni Association presented its annual Alumni Awards at the luncheon and ceremony it holds each year during Reunion.This year, the awards went to the following deserving recipients:

Alumni Inspiration Award

Shawn CurtisShawn Curtis ’99 Senior Manager, LEGO-Merlin Entertainments Affairs, LEGO, is this year’s recipient of the Alumni Inspiration Award. Shawn currently manages the global partnership between the LEGO Group and Merlin Entertainments, which owns and operates the LEGOLAND Parks and LEGOLAND Discovery Centers. A management/marketing major at Keene State and a National Case Study award winner, Shawn has held positions managing national and international marketing efforts for two advertising agencies and has worked in management at Stanley Tools. Shawn was named one of the Hartford Business Journal’s “40 Under Forty” business leaders for 2005. He joined the LEGO Group in 2005 as Customer Marketing Manager for North America. Two years later, he became Senior Marketing Manager for LEGO Direct to Consumer, where he led a cross-functional team that managed multi-channel marketing for shop.LEGO.com; search, affiliate, and email marketing; and offline marketing including the LEGO Catalog. An active member of his local community, Shawn serves as a volunteer firefighter; he also volunteered with Habitat for Humanity from 1997 to 2005.

The Alumni Inspiration Award was established in 2002 to recognize the exceptional accomplishments of an alumnus/alumna who graduated from Keene State College nor more than 15 years prior to the year of the award. In addition to recognized accomplishments, the recipient must show promise for continued success.

Sprague W. Drenan Award

Sue FortierSusan Fortier ’86 has received the Sprague W. Drenan Award. Throughout her 27 years as an alumna, Sue has worked passionately on the front line and behind the scenes to grow alumni engagement and awareness and strengthen connections between alumni and students. She has been a key leader in the transformation of the Alumni Association programs in the past five years. She has been a driving force behind many initiatives, including her own class’ 25th reunion, the Volunteer Support Program, the Career Support Committee, the Homecoming Task Force, the Alumni Bylaws Committee, and Alumni Association strategic planning, among many others. Sue was instrumental in the leadership of the Alumni Association Board of Directors, serving as President in the 2009–2010 and 2010–2011 academic years. During the past 10 years, she has been an active annual participant in reunions, homecomings, Winterfest, and many other events. Known for her “can-do” attitude and spirit, Sue has encouraged alumni programs that are visible, meaningful, and impactful. She is married to Steve Fortier ’86, a member of the Executive Committee of the KSC Parents Association. Their children Sean and Larissa are current Keene State students; both were recently named to the Dean’s List.

The Sprague W. Drenan Award is given to one whose participation in and support of alumni activities and events is worthy of recognition.

Alumni Achievement Award

Dr. Walter AsonevichDr. Walter Asonevich ’77 President, Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, received the Alumni Achievement Award. A native of Springfield, Vermont, Walter majored in English at Keene State, earning an MA from the University of Vermont and a PhD from the University of Delaware, both also in English. In 1986, he accepted a position as Assistant Professor of English at Potomac State College. In 1990, he became head of Potomac’s English Department and four years later added the duties of coordinating Institutional Research for the college. In 2002, he moved to Corning (NY) Community College, where he served as Vice President and Dean of Academic Affairs. In August 2007, he was named President of Pennsylvania Highlands Community College. There, he has streamlined internal processes, created a new governance system, and strengthened relationships with external constituents. His current focus includes building on the regional mission of the college, adding new programs such as culinary arts, welding, radiology tech, and computer security, and adding additional academic sites in Pennsylvania.

The Alumni Achievement Award is given to one whose professional achievement in his/her chosen field brings honor to him or herself and Keene State College. Recipients must be bona fide alumni of Keene State College.

Outstanding Service Award

Dr. Jay KahnDr. Jay Kahn, Interim President, Keene State College, has received the Outstanding Service Award. Jay had served as Keene State’s Vice President for Finance and Planning since 1988, prior to accepting the one-year post as Interim President. For 25 years, he has been instrumental in the dynamic evolution of the physical aspects of the campus as a leader in the master planning and strategic planning of the institution. Before joining Keene State, he served as Associate Vice President for Administration and Planning at Governors State University in Illinois, a position he held from 1978 to 1988. His earlier posts included serving as Assistant Director for Academic Affairs with the Illinois Board of Higher Education. Jay holds a BA from Northern Illinois University and a PhD in political science/policy studies from the University of Illinois, Chicago. Nationally, he serves as an at-large director on the board of the Society for College and University Planning. At the state level, he serves on the Workforce Initiatives board. Locally, he chairs the Cheshire Medical Center Board of Trustees and has previously served as board chair for the Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce and the Monadnock Economic Development Corporation. Jay has been honored with many awards over the years, most recently being recognized as an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects.

The Outstanding Service Award is given to an individual or organization that has provided outstanding service to Keene State College through leadership, commitment, and influence in programs and activities of the College. Recipients may be alumni, staff, faculty, friends, or associates of Keene State College.

EPSCoR logo

Three EPSCoR/Campus Compact Grants

EPSCoR logoNH EPSCoR and Campus Compact for NH have established a seed-grant program for faculty at undergraduate higher ed institutions to broaden participation and build research capacity in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) disciplines.Campus Compact logo Funding may go towards exploring a concept or integrating research experiences into an undergraduate STEM curriculum. Priority is given to environmental sciences.

These mini-grants are aligned with the Enhancing Inclusive Excellence for NH Communities Initiative, designed to expand outreach efforts and broaden community participation. Funded activities should enhance New Hampshire’s capacity to develop a talented, robust, and diverse STEM-oriented work force capable of performing, adapting, and thriving in a dynamic knowledge-driven economy.
Continue reading Three EPSCoR/Campus Compact Grants

Kristen Porter-Utley

Kristen Porter-Utley 2013 Scholar of the Year

Kristen Porter-UtleyDr. Kristen Porter-Utley, associate professor of Biology, received the 2013 Faculty Distinction in Research and Scholarship Award at the Faculty Appreciation Dinner in Centennial Hall on Friday, May 3. The award is intended to honor faculty members who have, over a significant part of their tenure at Keene State College, engaged in research and scholarship that is recognized by their professional peers and that represents an effort above and beyond that required for promotion and tenure. The award has been given since 2000, and Dr. Porter-Utley is the 11th recipient.
Continue reading Kristen Porter-Utley 2013 Scholar of the Year

Renate Gebauer

Prof. Gebauer Receives Grant to Study in Nepal

Renate Gebauer
Renate Gebauer, professor of Environmental Studies

Renate Gebauer, professor of Environmental Studies, has received a grant from the Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation to study sustainability efforts in Nepal for three weeks this spring. “My goal is to immerse myself in and broaden my understanding of sustainable community development in the Katmandu valley and the development of ecofriendly tourism in Tansen (Central Nepal). I also plan to explore issues of forestry conservation at both locations,” Prof. Gebauer explained.

The trip will enable her to present a Global Engagement course (HNRS 301) in the Honors Program in the spring of 2014, which will include a two-week student trip to Nepal. Prof. Gebauer also expects this experience to bring a broader global perspective to her other courses, including Concepts of Sustainability (IIENST 152), Conservation of Ecological Systems (ENST 352), and Ecosystems and the Environment (ENST 452) by expanding the discussions of sustainability, social justice, and conservation issues. “Another long-term outcome for this trip is to establish and strengthen connections with Nepalese partners to conduct research projects on carbon sequestration in local community forests as trees and soils can store much carbon and therefore counterbalance CO2 released by fossil-fuel burning,” Prof. Gebauer said. “This has great potential to give Environmental Studies students the opportunity to conduct meaningful research abroad.”

Prof. Jasinski Awarded Fulbright Scholarship

Dr. Jerry Jasinski
Dr. Jerry Jasinski

Professor of Chemistry Jerry P. Jasinski has been awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture and conduct research at the University of Mysore (Mysore, India) during the 2013–2014 academic year. Dr. Jasinski’s goal through this exchange is to teach students and faculty at the University of Mysore, and affiliated institutions about the use of single crystal X-ray crystallography as a modern state-of-the-art tool in the determination of molecular structure.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.

Jordan Chase: First A&H Student to Win SURF Grant

Jordan Chase
Jordan Chase

When music student Jordan Chase was awarded one of the three available SURF (Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship) grants for summer 2013, it was the first time the fellowship has gone to a KSC student in the Arts and Humanities. He will receive $4000 to work on his project, titled “Instrumentation, Orchestration, and Large-scale Composition.”

For this eight-week project, Jordan will create a new composition for chamber orchestra, focusing on several areas of research and composition. He’ll address instrumentation and orchestration, large-scale compositional form, the compositional process itself, and marketing and promoting the piece. His study of instrumentation will require him to learn to play several of the orchestral instruments to make him better able to develop idiomatic compositional ideas. To better understand orchestration, he’ll study works by various composers to enhance his understanding of formal structure. Once Jordan has completed his piece, he’ll send the final score to at least one national competition and contact several local and national conductors in an effort to promote and market it.
Continue reading Jordan Chase: First A&H Student to Win SURF Grant

Children’s Lit Festival Gallery Gets Grant

Dr. David White with the Children's Literature Festival Gallery Collection
Dr. David White with the Children’s Literature Festival Gallery Collection

When a member of the Kayser Family visited the Children’s Literature Festival Gallery Collection in Rhodes Hall recently, she was so impressed by this delightful collection of work by the best children’s book illustrators that she directed NH Charitable Foundation to make a $2,000 grant from the Kayser Family Fund to help support it. Professor David White, director of the Children’s Literature Festival, intends to use the award to purchase an illustration from Morris the Artist, written by Lore Segal and illustrated by Boris Kulikov, who spoke at the 2012 Festival. That illustration will be used for the October 26, 2013, Festival flyer and poster.

The Festival Gallery Collection, which began in November 1990, is a permanent collection of original illustrations, working drawings, and pieces related to children’s book illustration. It currently contains hundreds of pieces by 159 artists.