UNC Today: Tuesday, March 18, 2014

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New Program Will Benefit Students Who ‘Pay It Forward’

The Office of Community and Civic Engagement seeks nominations by March 28 for the Phelps Family CAP Awards - a new UNC program that will reward eligible students who have demonstrated exceptional commitment to improving the lives of others through volunteerism and other acts of giving back to the community.

The program will annually award a maximum of three students who have earned at least 60 credits and meet other program and financial-need eligibility criteria up to $5,000 to be used for their educational expenses.

CAP stands for contribute, achieve and pay it forward, the program's overarching criteria.

The program is funded by a gift of more than $200,000 by a California family whose son graduated from UNC and is administered by the university's Office of Community and Civic Engagement.

Any faculty or staff member may nominate a student for a CAP award by the March 28 deadline.

For complete eligibility criteria and a nomination form, visit the CCE website.

UNC Faculty Publish Professional Development Books for Educators

University of Northern Colorado faculty have written two new books as part of a professional development series for teachers.

UNC Professor Emeritus Michael Opitz wrote the anchor and lead book in the series, which he also co-edited. Titled Engaging Minds in the Classroom: The Surprising Power of Joy, it's a a must-read for any educator who understands that developing students' love of learning is the catalyst for achievement at every level.

Associate Professor of Reading James Erekson's book, Engaging Minds in Social Studies Classrooms: The Surprising Power of Joy, explains how educators can integrate the joyful learning approach with social studies standards, including the Common Core; the National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies; and the College, Career, and Civic Life framework. In addition to exploring how to create a student-centered classroom, Erekson provides specific strategies that will enhance teaching. Read a sample chapter (PDF).

The books were published as part of a four-book series by ASCD, a global community of more than 140,000 members in education dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading.

Opitz is a specialist in classroom planning, teaching, and evaluating lessons on different aspects of literacy. He helped develop a reading series for reluctant young readers, geared especially for boys as research shows they struggle with reading more so than girls. He's the author and co-author of several books including Literacy Lessons to Help Kids Get Fit & Healthy, Don't Speed! Read! 12 Steps for Smart and Sensible Fluency Instruction and Listen Hear! 25 Ways to Enhance Listening Comprehension.

Erekson is a former elementary language arts teacher who collaborates with K-12 teachers on reading, writing and oral language. He has successfully used social studies content to help students develop into stronger readers and writers and has presented his work nationally and internationally. He recently worked with Denver Public Schools' elementary teachers on a three-year state-funded learning experience on social studies and literacy. Erekson is co-authored with Opitz on Reading Diagnosis and Improvement: Assessment and Instruction and Accessible Assessment: How 9 Sensible Techniques Can Power Data-Driven Instruction.

Research Day Registration Deadline Extended to March 26

Faculty and staff are asked to let students know that the registration deadline for Research Day has been extended until Wednesday, March 26. Spaces are still available for poster sessions and oral presentations at the April 10 event.

Individual, group and class presentations related to research or other scholarly endeavors (such as humanities paper presentations, creative stories, etc.) are accepted. Both graduate students and undergraduates are invited to present, and faculty may be part of the presentation.

Students or faculty can upload abstracts and sign up for a time slot for Research Day in Ursa by using the "Register for Research Day" link under the Student, Faculty or Staff tab. Faculty will input the names of the student presenters using BearMail addresses, and students will need to input the name of their faculty mentor using his or her UNC email address.

Please note that there will be no corrections allowed to information submitted late, so be sure that all information on the registration form is accurate. Also, late entrants will not be considered for Research Excellence Awards.

Contact Loree Crow if you have any questions or specific out-of-the-ordinary requests for Research Day.

Door Volunteers Needed for Teacher Employment Days

Career Services needs faculty and staff volunteers to check credentials at entrance doors and answer general questions during Teacher Employment Days April 3-4. Two-hour shifts are available from 7:45 a .m.-5 p.m. April 3 and from 7:45 a.m.-2 p.m. April 4.

More than 125 school districts will be recruiting for available teaching and administrative positions and about 1,000 UNC teacher candidates, alumni and non-UNC job seekers are expected to attend.

If you have a couple of hours available either one or both days of the event, please e-mail elizabeth.mahoney@unco.edu with your availability.

Proposals for Research, Dissemination, Faculty Development Grants Due March 28

The Faculty Research and Publications Board invites full-time faculty to submit proposals for the Research, Dissemination and Faculty Development Competition. The spring deadline is Friday, March 28. Proposal guidelines and forms are available on the Office of Sponsored Programs website.

For more information, contact your FRPB representative or Sherry May.

In Case You Missed It

Position Opportunity

The Office of Development and Alumni Relations has an opening for an Alumni Relations Assistant. This exempt position is responsible for the smooth functioning of the Office of Alumni Relations and the administrative aspects of the department and its staff.

Applicants must have a minimum of three years of highly responsible administrative support in an office environment; experience providing a high level of service to constituents or customers and proficiency in tracking budgets and keeping records.

To learn more about this exempt position or to apply, go to http://careers.unco.edu.

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