Live streaming video of college events had been a wish of many Union parents, alumni and employees for a long time. However, due to the expense of the necessary Internet bandwidth, it wasn't until last spring that Tom Becker, director of Information Systems, was able to find a solution.
Working with the local Time Warner Cable office in Lincoln, Becker was able to negotiate a new contract that quadrupled the connection speed on campus. The results of their collaboration can be seen at uclive.ucollege.edu, which provides streaming video of select athletic, social, and artistic events.
“It got started because a lot of parents and grandparents of students like to see what their children and friends are doing,” said Becker. “But we had limited bandwidth to our campus, not enough to stream video.”
Becker asked the local Time Warner Cable office for some additional bandwidth for a few days during the Mid-America Union Basketball Tournament last spring so that he could try broadcasting the games on the Internet.
Union College was awarded the Grower Designation of the Governor's Excellence in Wellness Award on Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at the WorkWell annual awards banquet held at the Rococo Theatre.
Union College was one of 28 award recipients out of the 130 WorkWell member companies. The criteria for the award was a company that offers a health
and wellness program for their employees with varied programs to encourage annual health assessments, annual cholesterol screening, exercise and
healthy food choices and the program is deemed a successful wellness program by having more than 50 percent active participation numbers and is supported by
"More and more companies are creating Wellness programs because they improve productivity and job satisfaction," said Nancy Petta, professor of human performance and chair of Union's Wellness Committee. "At Union, it's even more important because we really care about each other not only as colleagues, but as friends."
While the award is based on last year's performance, the Wellness Committee is continuing to provide opportunities for personal improvement this year based on the NEWSTART program. Each month, a different element of NEWSTART is emphasized:
N= Nutrition (September)
E= Exercise (October)
W= Water (November)
S= Sunshine (December)
T= Temperance (January)
A= Air (February)
R= Rest (March)
T= Trust in Divine Power (April)
Doodling, often viewed as a grade school pastime, has graduated to a college campus. Not usually viewed as art, doodles are ways to pass time and help concentrate. Perhaps they are on napkins or on the back of a handout; they are carefree, fluid creations that can contain as much personality and emotion as any canvas in a museum.
In celebration of National Library Week 2009, the Union College Library is pleased to announce that Tanya Cochran is this year's Library Teacher of the Year. Cochran was chosen for her outstanding record of collaboration with library staff in teaching research skills and the promotion of library resources. During the 2009-2010 school year, Cochran will receive $500 "spendi
As Union Scholars focus their attention on finding solutions to global issues, they have the distinct advantage of having international travel and study built right into the honors curriculum.
The three week course in May 2010 began with a couple days of instruction at Union College then moved on to Sabah, Malaysia where students conducted "windshield" surveys of the village researching their needs. The trip concluded with visits to Hong Kong and China.
Students, faculty, and staff can now login to EBSCOhost databases from off campus by entering the five-character barcode located on the reverse side of their Union College ID cards. In order for this feature to work, searchers must access EBSCOhost through the following link: http://sear
It's rare to hear college students chat excitedly about weeding, cleaning, painting and sorting, but as groups trickled back to the Union College campus from serving more than 50 sites around Lincoln, Neb., those were the topics on everyone's mind. "We washed windows, scraped gum off tables, dusted book covers ... none of it was anything I'd think to do on my own," said Ashley Herbel, a freshman pre-med student from Wichita, Kansas after spending the morning at South Library. "But going with a group of friends can make anything fun."
With more than 800 participants, there were a lot of friends, new and old, to transform the chores into constructive play. This year's turnout included over 80 percent of the student body along with college employees and volunteers from other local Seventh-day Adventist organizations. While attendance isn't taken for the volunteer event, Rich Carlson, vice president for spiritual life, said Union's Campus Ministries distributed more t-shirts to campus volunteers than in previous years. "I think this is the largest group we've ever had," Carlson said.
Begun in 1981 as Project Brush, the original goal of the day was to paint 100 houses in 10 years. After completing the 113th house, the event was renamed and the projects diversified. Now volunteers focus on serving the agencies that serve others, providing helping hands to do tasks over-stretched social service organizations have a hard time keeping up with.
"It amazes me you can take 10 or 12 people and get done in a few hours what would take me days to do on my own," said Huda McClelland, Union's director of admissions who has witnessed most of the event's 27-year history.
"What we've heard so far from the agencies is overwhelmingly positive," Carlson said. "They're always amazed by the quantity and quality of work our students do and the attitude with which it is done."
Listening to students talk under the campus' clock tower as they shared 220 pizzas, the conversations always returned to the same refrain: the work wasn't only fast, it was fun. Erin Webb, a senior business administration major from Greenville, Tenn., told about finding a creative outlet while painting barrels at Goodwill. Beau Snyder, a senior from Culver, Ore., described cleaning at the Lincoln Children's Museum as, "playing with a pressure hose." Even when Jennifer Dovich, a junior pre-med student from Turner, Ore., mentioned getting paint in her eye while painting a ceiling at Mahoney Elementary School, she added, "It was worth it, it was awesome and so much fun."
Some former students who have experienced the spirit of the community service event returned to share in the labor and the camaraderie again. Thang Nguyen, an alumnus now working in Web development at Nebraska Books, told his boss about the event and she encouraged him to take the day off to participate. "I didn't want to miss the fun," Nguyen said.
Since its inception, Project Impact has been student-led. This year Ann Bryant, a senior business administration major from Woodbury, Tenn., organized the event for the third time and trained a new coordinator, Emily Carlson, a junior elementary education major from Mohrsville, Pa. Both students, with the assistance of Ashley Groeneweg, a biology education major from Omaha, Neb., spent the summer organizing site lists, coordinating with sponsors and ensuring transportation and tools were available. "Hearing the enthusiasm from the organizations makes the months of planning worth it," Bryant said.
Bryant added, "The worst thing that happened today was I didn't have anywhere to send the people who finished and wanted to do more." While the chores for the day may be completed, she hopes the contacts made will serve as a springboard for future service. Past Project Impacts have developed into long-term commitments for both individuals and student organizations, such as the volleyball team, the women's basketball team and the Union Scholars honors program. "One day of raking or painting makes the community slightly nicer," Bryant said. "But creating an environment where service is fun and exciting can have a big impact on the world."
Special thanks goes to Suzie Grey and InsideOut A capella for permission to use their songs. You can find out more about these talented artists on their Web sites: Suzie Grey InsideOut A capella
Students always want more of three resources: time, money and sleep. So when Union College students are given a day free of classes and other on-campus commitments, it may seem counter-intuitive that 85 percent choose to show up at 8:15 a.m. to spend the day working--for free. But students make up for what they lack with an excess of enthusiasm and altruism. On Thursday, Sept. 4, Union students will once again commit their time and energy to serving the Lincoln community.
"I think everybody wants to help others," said Sara Baptist, sophomore communication major from Canon City, Colo. "When something presents itself like Project Impact, we jump on it. If Union held it more often, people would still go."
Began in 1981, Project Impact has given students the opportunity to change their corner of the world wile establishing lasting connections within the community. An estimated 15,100 volunteers have impacted Lincoln with more than 99,000 hours of voluntary labor since its inception. According to available research, it's the longest running collegiate service day with the highest percentage of participation in the nation.
There's no brownie points, no extra credit--nothing to motivate the mass of students to join the cause other than satisfaction and a free t-shirt. Whether it's raking leaves, painting shelters, serving up soup or helping build a house, Union College students and faculty turn out to do whatever sweaty, grimy work needs to be accomplished for those in need.
Building on the students' energy and 27 years of success, Ann Bryant, senior business administration major and Project Impact coordinator, sees the event as a way for students to connect with agencies they can serve all year. This will be the fourth year Union's women's basketball team will spend the day helping at the Lincoln Children's Museum, a relationship that has grown as the players return throughout the year to help with events.
"I like volunteering. I feel it's important," Baptist said. "It's not easy for kids to just say 'I'm going to volunteer this weekend.'" Students like Baptist can find ways to do more by talking to Union's student volunteer coordinator, Kaylea Blackburn, sophomore international rescue and relief major from Summersville, Mo., or read about a different volunteer opportunity highlighted each week in the Clocktower, Union's student newspaper.
Bryant, now in her third year of planning Project Impact, sees this year's event as a learning experience for her peers. "Of all the pressures you would think could keep students from volunteering--homework, class, extracurricular activities, the price of gas, whatever--the biggest barrier is awareness," Bryant said. "I've learned that the more people I involve in the planning process of this event, the more people understand the purpose of Project Impact and then are able to take on that passion themselves."
On Feb. 6, 2008, Union College's Going Global Career Fair brought recruiters and presenters from 20 organizations to the Don Love Building. From big names such the Peace Corps to the less well-known Active Community Team Services (ACTS), the information available to the attending students was invaluable.
"I think this career fair is a great idea and helps a lot of people," said Jeremy Jones, sophomore international rescue and relief major.
Although only 100-120 actually registered for the event, Doug Tallman, IRR associate director, noted that more likely 150-160 students, as well as some faculty, came to browse and meet recruiters.
"I made more meaningful and intelligent contacts in two hours than I've seen in two days," commented Fred Ramsey from Re-Creation Unlimited who said he has done similar fairs at other campuses. "I was impressed. Union's event was the most successful compared to the other Seventh-day Adventist campus I have visited."
Since the IRR program is relatively new, many students have a difficult time figuring out how best to utilize the skills they're learning. Tallman explained how this career fair targeted these students.
"I think IRR majors benefit the most from the fair as far as putting them on a career path that goes with their major." Jones stated, "But, I think everyone can find something that's applicable to them."
Plans are already being made to repeat the success of the Going Global Career Fair next year. Meghan Weese, a graduate assistant for the Outdoor Education Center at Southern Adventist University, encouraged students to attend the event. "The biggest mistake would be not coming," she said.