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News Briefs – Spring 2023


April 27, 2023

  • Students Enjoy New Campus Dining Options

    This spring semester, students returned to find four new restaurants 
to choose from at the University Center (UC).  

    When choosing new restaurants for the UC, the university says they took into consideration student desires, type of cuisine offered and proximity of different dining options to campus.    

    The new options include: Bowlful, which offers a variety of healthy choices including vegetarian, vegan and gluten-friendly options; Empire State Pizza, a local New York-style pizza company; Crisol Latin Kitchen, a high-quality, authentic taste of Latin cuisine chosen because of an overwhelming student vote; and Burger & Co., a perfect place to enjoy a great burger and watch sports.  

    The university renovated the west side windows in the UC as part of the construction for the new restaurants. An outdoor patio will be completed later this spring.  

  • ¡Adelante! Helps Local Students Find Path to College

    The decision to attend college can be difficult, and for some, not knowing how to apply can stop them from even trying. To help make the application process easier, UNC developed ¡Adelante!. This new initiative that presents information to students and parents in both English and Spanish about the college search process, the application and admissions processes and ways to pay for college.  

    Although ¡Adelante! was designed to support Hispanic and/or Latinx-identifying students, a very important part of UNC’s local community in Greeley, everyone is welcome.   

    “We genuinely believe that our communities can benefit if more Hispanic/or Latinx-identifying individuals could gain a college education. And we are positive that (the) ¡Adelante! event will facilitate their access to college,” said Pablo Valentín, associate director of Events and Orientation for Admissions at UNC.    

  • Governor Appoints New UNC Trustee 

    Gregory J. Anton ’87, certified public accountant, business leader and UNC alumnus is the newest member of UNC’s Board of Trustees. Colorado Governor Jared Polis announced his appointment on Dec. 16. Polis also reappointed current trustee and alumnus Steve Jordan, Ph.D., who has held the presidential office and other senior leadership positions at several higher education institutions. 

    “I very much enjoyed my experience at UNC, not only on campus as a student, but also in various volunteer capacities, including president of the Alumni Association and as a member of the Foundation board,” Anton said. “I’m very grateful for this new opportunity to serve on the Board of Trustees and continue supporting the university at the highest level.”   

    Anton, who earned a bachelor’s degree in Accounting, has more than three decades of experience providing accounting, auditing and consulting services to clients in many industries at state, national and global levels. He is a founding partner of the CPA firm ACM LLP, which joined BDO USA LLP in 2020, where he is a partner and market leader for Colorado. Anton also serves on several professional boards, including the Governing Council of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and the board of directors of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).  

    He is also on the Governing Council of the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA), and on the board of directors of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC). Anton previously served as chairman for the AICPA, receiving the institute’s Gold Medal Award for Distinguished Service in 2015 — AICPA’s highest award that recognizes CPAs who have made major contributions to the profession.  

  • UNC’s Roadmap to a Hispanic Serving Institution Designation Gains Momentum in Phase 3

    As UNC progresses toward becoming a Hispanic Serving Institution (HSI), it’s taking a moment to celebrate a key enrollment milestone. Fall 2022 enrollment reports indicate that 25.5% of UNC’s undergraduate students identify as Hispanic or Latinx; just over the 25% threshold required to apply for the federal HSI designation.    

    For UNC, however, achieving HSI status has never been just about enrollment numbers. According to Tobias Guzmán, vice president of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), the university’s five-year HSI initiative leans heavily on the essential work necessary to successfully plan for and build the infrastructure to serve Hispanic and Latinx-identifying students.  

    “We don’t want to just simply enroll students. We want to make sure that we have infrastructure, policies and practices — and equally important our people — ready and situated to be a true Hispanic serving institution. That means also having the systems in place to retain and graduate students so those numbers stay stable,” Guzmán said.   

    The roadmap Guzmán refers to is the university’s HSI 2025 plan, launched in fall 2020. Efforts since then have been focused on identifying resource needs, facilitating conversations and providing education about HSIs to internal and external stakeholders, researching exemplary HSI institutions and programs and identifying preliminary strategy metrics and budget needs.   

    According to Guzmán, the third Pre-Implementation phase, which is expected to last through June 2024, will produce more visible actionable efforts as the university moves closer to submitting an application for official HSI designation. Guzmán has already put several things in motion, including the appointment of two fellow positions to provide leadership and serve as a liaison to and resource for faculty and staff throughout the HSI initiative. Cristóbal (Chris) Garcia, associate director in the Office of Alumni Relations, has been appointed staff fellow for HSI initiatives and Jonathan Alcantar, associate professor and chair of UNC’s Chicana/o and Latinx Studies program, has been appointed as faculty fellow for HSI initiatives.   

    Becoming an HSI

  • Celebrating 60 Years of Nursing Education Excellence 

    Nursing 60th Celebration

    The School of Nursing has evolved throughout the years since it was founded in 1962: The first class was enrolled in 1963 and the following year, the first capping ceremony was held with five nursing students. In the fall of 2022, 477 students were enrolled in its 10 programs currently offered. And in total, more than 6,000 students have graduated from the School of Nursing prepared to assume leadership roles in practice, education and research, since its inception.   

    To celebrate its 60th anniversary, the School hosted a special ceremony on Dec. 2 in Campus Commons where faculty and alumni were honored for advancing the health of the public.    

    The anniversary celebration included an open house in Gunter Hall and a reception that featured live music, a silent auction and dinner. While people gathered to look back on the impressive accomplishments of UNC’s School of Nursing, they expressed excitement about what the future holds. 

  • New Combined Department Expands Resources for Students Interested in Wellness 

    Last fall, the School of Sport and Exercise Science and the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics combined to form the Department of Kinesiology, Nutrition and Dietetics (KiND) within the College of Natural and Health Sciences. The merger facilitates more collaboration and opportunities for students, says Professor and KiND Chair David Hydock, Ph.D. 

    “Many students in Sport and Exercise Science have an interest in nutrition and many students in Nutrition and Dietetics have an interest in sport and exercise science,” 
Hydock said.

    KiND will offer Exercise Science, Human Performance, Physical Education, Sport Administration, Athletic Training, Nutrition and Dietetics majors, all of which connect with the overarching concept of wellness.    

    It’s not uncommon for athletic trainers or strength and conditioning coaches to have their clients ask about diets and the latest nutrition fads, Hydock explains. Likewise, nutritionists may be asked what types of physical activity they would recommend, so educating students in all subjects with knowledge in all subjects will support a well-rounded, more holistic education.   

    Discussion is underway about creating new programs under KiND, adds Hydock. However, for now the focus is to encourage collaboration and look at wellness in a broader sense to best support student success. 

  • Celebrating First Generation Students 

    When UNC observed the sixth annual national First-Generation College Celebration in November, they had much to celebrate. UNC saw its highest fall-to-fall retention rates for first-generation students in more than a decade last year and was ranked number one in social mobility in Colorado in CollegeNet’s Social Mobility Index in 2021.   

    “Our social mobility ranking demonstrates our ability to provide access to deserving students from limited-income backgrounds while graduating them and preparing them for better-paying jobs than previously afforded to their families,” said Cedric Howard, UNC’s vice president of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services.  

    With more than 40% of UNC’s undergraduate population are first-generation students, the university is intentional in its efforts to create programs and resources to help support them.   

    “These kinds of resources benefit everyone, not just first-generation students. Making things like this available is one of the many ways we demonstrate our commitment to students,” Assistant Vice President for Student Academic Success Stephanie Torrez adds. 

  • UNC Selects New Vice President for Finance and Administration 

    Dale Pratt ’88 was appointed as the vice president for Finance and Administration and chief financial officer effective Nov.1, 2022. Pratt served as interim vice president for Finance and Administration since June.  

    Previously, Pratt served as the assistant vice president for Finance, with responsibility for leading the General Accounting Office and the Office of Budget and Financial Planning. He joined UNC in April 2020 as university aide to the chief financial officer.  

    “I am confident that Dale’s expertise and partnership will help guide the work underway on our Rowing, Not Drifting 2030 strategic plan,” said UNC President Andy Feinstein.  

    Pratt received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from UNC. As vice president for Finance and Administration, Pratt will manage the university’s budget and financial reporting functions, as well as oversee human resources, campus police, facilities, information and technology and risk management.  

    “My experience as a UNC student helped prepare me for success in my life and career, and I am committed to ensuring that today’s students realize the same benefits of a UNC degree,” Pratt said. 

  • Cubs Temporarily Roaming, Learning Among Bears on Campus 

    K-8 students

    Elementary school students from the Fred Tjardes School of Innovation in Greeley enjoy some outdoor activities on campus. The students were temporarily relocated to the UNC campus while construction of their new building was underway. 

    Along with the thousands of students learning on UNC’s campus this school year, there are about 125 of them who will look a little different: They’re about half the age of a typical UNC student and their peals of laughter are an entertaining and welcome reminder of just how much fun school can be.   

    K-8 students attending the Fred Tjardes School of Innovation in Greeley temporarily relocated their classrooms to the second floor of UNC’s Tobey-Kendel Hall. The relocation was the result of conversations that began in November 2021 when District 6 approached UNC to inquire whether there was space available on campus to house the school while they awaited the completion of their new building, and the university happily stepped up.   

    “UNC was founded to address teacher preparation needs within our community and Colorado, and we continue to seek opportunities to expand upon the mission that launched our earliest work,” said UNC President Andy Feinstein. “I am pleased that we were in a position to offer assistance to District 6, one of our important local partners. Now more than ever, we need strong collaborations to support our state’s learners and educators.”   

    This District 6-UNC collaboration means that 6-, 9- and 13-year-olds have been packing up their backpacks every morning and walking into their classrooms on a college campus.   

    “It’s cool. It kind of makes me feel older to have all of these college kids around me,” 10-year-old Aniylah Velasquez-Buxman said.

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