Several College of Arts and Letters faculty will be traveling to South America next week in an interdepartmental effort to increase the college’s “global perspectives” and “cultural competency,” said communication department head Dr. Shawn Wahl.
Five professors representing four departments will depart for Colombia Oct. 25 to visit universities in Bogota and Cartagena, each with educational objectives to benefit both Missouri State and the Colombian institutions. They return Oct. 31.
Wahl said several opportunities are made available by organizing these kinds of trips, including recruitment of international students, building relationships with institutions that Missouri State students can study abroad to, and bringing a broader cultural perspective to COAL’s programs and facilities.
Faculty going to Colombia
Dr. Shawn Wahl, Department Head of Communication/Co-director School of Communication Studies
Dr. Mary Jane Pardue, Department Head of Media, Journalism and Film/Co-director School of Communication Studies
Drs. Morris, Pardue and Wahl will present on research panels the Universidad de La Sabana Communication Week. Morris will present on debate formats during the 2012 presidential election, Pardue will present on journalism from a U.S. perspective and Wahl will present on Business and Professional Communication in a Global Context (the focus of his 2015 Short Term Study Away course he will teach at Universidad de La Sabana).
Dr. Hausback will be perform an international recital at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana and teach master classes in trombone at several universities in Bogota.
Dr. Jolley will be networking with department head and faculty at all of the Colombian universities to explore study away program and language training programs.
Three blog entries by Briana Simmons chronicle her Study Away experience in Chile (June – July 2014)
Get up! Right now, get up and leave.
Get out of your comfort zone. Escape the places you’ve become all too familiar with. Get out and learn about the world and all it encompasses and be open to all the things you will learn about yourself.
Study Away is much more than going away for a few weeks to discover new places. These discoveries you’ll encounter away from home will be life-changing. Put yourself in an unfamiliar place, with all these strange delicacies, a hard-to-understand language and see what you can accomplish.
Challenge yourself to make it through the day in this strange place. I can guarantee you’ll sleep with a prideful grin.
I spent two months in Santiago, Chile. Two months seems like a short time, but in complete solace you’ll discover rewarding realities about yourself. What seems like just a few weeks turns into an eternity.
Surely the time only begins to progress when you’ve begun to adjust to your new home. Then, you realize it must all come to an end at some point.
Within my first few weeks in Chile, I easily become a “yes woman.” I tried every traditional dish, went to every hot hangout spot and never turned down the opportunity to try something new.
Some things I enjoyed, others I’d rather keep as a one-time thing, but the ultimate lesson in that is that I did it. I have that experience to keep with me forever.
Study Away is a great personal investment.
# # #
While I was in Chile, I was not only able to gain personally and socially from my experiences, but every day I went to work as an associate editor of an online newspaper and digital magazine.
I had the opportunity to edit the stories of journalists from all around the world before their work was published to the website. I also couldn’t resist the urge to write a few stories myself.
My work experiences were different from anything I’d done before at home.
I had to familiarize myself with Chile and learn about the stories that needed to be told in this place. This was the most challenging to do in such a short amount of time.
You’re bound to face challenges in a foreign country, but if you preserve you’ll overcome them as well.
I had to adjust to my new day-to-day lifestyle. I had to learn new currency so I wouldn’t overspend. I consistently used public transportation for the first time in my life.
I ate food I was unfamiliar with every day, and as a picky eater my taste buds didn’t always agree. I was forced to overcome language barriers with local Chileans who use a different dialect in Spanish and speak very fast.
I was out of place, frustrated and homesick at times, but it was worth every uncomfortable and embarrassing moment.
In our global world, Study Away will help you to accept the lifestyle of others and appreciate your own.
# # #
Have you ever caught the glare of a complete stranger and wondered what their thoughts were as they stared at your clothes, skin or hair?
Perhaps they were judging you for being so different in their space. Have you ever considered maybe just maybe they were simply interested in you and your story?
Think about it. When you walk past a person in a wheelchair, a homeless person on the street or a person with the very opposite features than you, you can’t help but look and wonder. I wonder what their story is and what life is like for them.
One thing I learned from my time in Chile is people all around the world care about the same things. We express love, pain and joy in similar ways. I believe we’re all interested in one other whether we’ll openly admit it or not.
Embrace the differences you have with your neighbor. Invite them to get to know you and openly listen to what’ve they endured to make for such great stories.
I was told that traveling abroad would create moments of cultural shock. They were right.
Of course there are selfish reason we do the things we do, but always remember your choices will also affect someone else.
I’ve gained friends from all around the world. I’ve connected with new people from New Zealand, Germany, South Africa, Bermuda, Chile, Argentina, Brazil, France and other parts of the United States.
Undoubtedly, we’ve all impacted the lives of one other.
Presented by COAL alumna Susan LaBarr, composer (BM 2004; MM 2007)
Susan LaBarr is an active, published composer, with works in print through Santa Barbara Music Company and Morningstar Music. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Music in and a Master of Music in Music Theory in at Missouri State University. In 2011, Susan won the Opus Award for her compositions Two Songs of Love Lost: Forever Gone and At Dawn of Day. This award is selected by members of the Missouri Choral Directors Association. In 2012, Susan served as composer-in-residence for the Chattanooga Girls Choir (TN). More recently, Susan served as the Missouri Composer Laureate, 2012 and 2013, a position selected by the organization Verses and Voices, and chaired by Missouri First Lady, Georganne Nixon. She also works as editor of Walton Music.
Date: Oct. 16, 4 – 5 p.m.
Location: Plaster Student Union Theater
Video Game Development
Presented by COAL alumnus Matt Raithel, studio director (Electronic Arts, 2004)
Matt Raithel, studio director at Graphite Lab in St. Louis, helped produced the mobile game app, My Little Pony Party of One, which reached No. 1 ranking in 73 countries by selling over one million downloads in one week (August 3-10). The game was animated primarily by another MSU alum, Matt Stevens (BFA Animation ‘09), under Raithel’s direction. After graduating from Missouri State with a bachelor’s degree in electronic arts, Raithel joined Black Lantern Studios in Springfield, where he served as an art director, director of art and design, vice president of operations and studio president.
Immediately following the class, Raithel will be presenting in the COAL alumni panel, Preparing for that First Professional Job or How I Survived the Biggest Professional Mistake I ever Made!, Friday, Oct. 17 from 1:50 – 2:50 p.m. at Plaster Student Union Theater.
Immediately following the class, Hyche will be presenting in the COAL alumni panel, Preparing for that First Professional Job or How I Survived the Biggest Professional Mistake I ever Made!, Friday, Oct. 17 from 1:50 – 2:50 p.m. at Plaster Student Union Theater.
Date: Oct. 17, 12:20 – 1:40 p.m.
Location: Art Annex, Room #5, 1045 E Grand Street
Graphic Novels and Modern Storytelling
Presented by COAL alumnus Cole Closser, artist, author and illustrator (BFA, 2011)
In a panel titled, Preparing for that First Professional Job or How I Survived the Biggest Professional Mistake I ever Made!, alumni Matt Raithel, Darrell Hyche II and Monte Kuklenski will offer anecdotes and advice on their respective professions on Friday, Oct. 17, 1:50 – 2:50 p.m. at Plaster Student Union Theater.
Studio director, Graphite Lab (Electronic Arts, 2004)
Matt Raithel, studio director at Graphite Lab in St. Louis, helped produced the mobile game app, My Little Pony Party of One, which reached No. 1 ranking in 73 countries by selling over one million downloads in one week (Aug. 3-10). The game was animated primarily by another MSU alum, Matt Stevens (BFA Animation ‘09), under Raithel’s direction. After graduating from Missouri State with a bachelor’s degree in electronic arts, Raithel joined Black Lantern Studios in Springfield, where he served as an art director, director of art and design, vice president of operations and studio president.
Immediately preceding the panel, Raithel will be presenting a master class in the PSU Theater, from 12:20 – 1:40 p.m. on video game development.
Now a Los Angeles resident, Monte Kuklenski came up during the storied era of Missouri State theatre, sharing the stage with friends John Goodman, Jack Laufer, Tess Harper and Kathleen Turner. After earning a bachelor’s degree in theatre from Missouri State in 1975, he went on to study directing and production at Southern Methodist University, graduating with a master’s degree in 1980 and beginning his career at Fox in 1988.
Workshop topicswill include: Pre-production, production, defining the director’s team, what is expected the first day, walkie-talkie protocol and etiquette, choreographing background performers, defining positions in other departments, script breakdown, production paperwork, set safety and protocol, resume presentation, interviewing strategies, job search techniques and much more.
Chaplin served as the assistant director on Body of Lies, and has worked hand-in-hand for more than 18 years with directors of the caliber of David Mamet, Terrence Malick, Ang Lee and Ridley Scott. He has wrangled Dustin Hoffman, John Cusack, Woody Harrelson, Sean Penn and Eva Longoria and has worked on the films such as End of Days, Runaway Jur, and The Thin Red Line.
The Standard’s advisor, Jack Dimond, will accompany six members of the newspaper staff to the conference where they will join about 2,000 others involved in college media programs, taking part in more than 350 practical and professional learning sessions, from high-profile keynotes to specific, problem-solving breakouts, hands-on workshops and discussion groups. Other convention activities include an exhibit hall with vendors who sell to student media, ACP’s Best of Show contest, receptions, awards convocations, critiques and a newspaper job fair.
Since graduating from Missouri State in 1992, the New York City resident has worked in television, film and on Broadway. She has taught dance and musical theater workshops across the country and is among the musical theatre conservatory faculty at the New York Film Academy. In partnership with voice teacher Kim Stern, she created The Broadway Warm-Up, a completely synchronized vocal and dance warm-up for professional performers, and produced a soon-to-be-released accompanying video.
Missouri State University alumni and friends are invited to pay tribute to an exemplary group of Bears for their notable successes. Alumni and former faculty will be honored for their dedication, professional achievements and loyalty to Missouri State. The evening will include a social hour, dinner and entertainment by Missouri State musicians and performers. For further information please contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 417-836-5654.
Viewers will be given a ballot upon arrival that they will fill out at the end of the 10 films, participating in the instantaneous celebration occurring in over 300 cities around the globe during the span of a week. Votes are tallied by each cinema and sent to the festival headquarters. The winner will be announced Oct. 6.
Fall 2014 is well underway and as students begin to find their place at the College of Arts and Letters, so do several new faculty and staff. They will be introduced in more depth in the coming weeks, but to get these profiles started, here is a round up of the new faces that can be seen around campus. Let’s give them a big Bear welcome this week!
Adrienne Boulton-Funke completed a Bachelor of Education from the University of Saskatchewan, a Master of Arts in Art Education from the University of British Columbia and is finishing her PhD in Curriculum (Art Education) at UBC. She received the Killam Award for teaching excellence as a graduate teaching assistant. Her research explores contemporary art practices in research and pedagogy through arts-based educational research; she has presented her work nationally and internationally. Boulton-Funke said she wants to help future teachers reimagine curriculum and pedagogy to be able to go beyond the assessment-based learning found in classrooms today. “I hope to develop a methodology of visual inquiry that aims to disrupt our static perceptions of education and through arts-based inquiry and research processes, expand the ways in which we understand and perform curriculum and pedagogy in K-12 art education.”
Harrison Witt earned a BA in English from the University of Kentucky and an MFA in Film and Video Production from the University of Texas at Austin. In addition to being an award-winning screenwriter and director, Witt brings more than 20 years of professional production experience in cinematography and lighting to the classrooms at MSU. He is eager to build on MJF’s strong foundation in digital film production, which he admired even before signing on as an assistant professor. “I was impressed with the ambition and execution the students brought to their productions. After seeing this work, I wasn’t at all surprised to find the faculty and staff in MJF to be open, energetic, and creative.”
Cameron F. LaBarr comes to the College of Arts and Letters after serving in university choral positions in Tennessee and Texas. He was the founding artistic director and conductor of the Tennessee Chamber Chorus and has been a guest conductor and clinician for institutions and festivals across the United States, Europe, South Africa and China. He’s published articles and reviews in the Choral Journal and The Chorister and also edits a choral series with Santa Barbara Music Publishing. He was recently awarded a fellowship with the International Conductors Exchange Program to Sweden in 2015 and will be among 14 conductors from the United States to participate in the residency. Excited for the changes and additions expected this year, LaBarr encourages students to put themselves out there to see where the world takes them. “I hope to share my professional experiences with our students here on campus, and I plan to get our students out into the world, allowing for strong relationships and greater understanding among cultures.”
Prior to joining the MCL faculty, Melanie Kleeschulte was a full-time instructor of Spanish at Greenwood Laboratory School. She received her master’s in Spanish Language and Culture from the University of Salamanca in Spain, Master of Arts in Teaching from Missouri State University and Bachelor of Arts in International/ Multicultural Studies and Spanish from Evangel University. Kleeschulte also holds Missouri K-12 certification in Spanish.
Vanessa Rodríguez de la Vega received her PhD from Texas Tech University and comes to MSU from Missouri Southern State University. She will be teaching a variety of courses, including introductory Spanish, Spanish Phonetics and Phonology, Spanish Peninsular Literature and more. She said she hopes to inspire Missouri State students this year, “by making them aware about the importance and practicality of studying foreign languages.” Her research focuses on postmodern historical fiction.
Melanie Dreyer-Lude is a theatre practitioner and professor of performance, using theatre as a platform for cultural encounters that generate multiple nodes of inquiry. She specializes in international theatre collaboration. Fluent in German, Dreyer-Lude translates and directs contemporary German plays and has directed more than 60 productions throughout the United States, Germany and Turkey. Her continued love of learning and travel has taken her across the world and across disciplines. “I’m a perpetually curious person and I’m always seeking new intersections between theater practice and other disciplines. I’ve learned about neuroscience, physics, cultural anthropology, business, linguistics, all things German and many things Turkish — all because I was willing to follow my interest into another’s world.”
Katie McMahon is the costume shop manager for the theatre and dance department. She is an alumna of Missouri State University with a BFA in Theatre and an emphasis in technical theatre and costumes. She also worked as a designer and costume shop manager for Tent Theatre.
Greg Pettus served in the Marine Corps before getting a degree in engineering physics from Missouri State. During his time as a student, he was able to start working full-time and has been a distributed user support specialist for 17 years, helping to ensure the technology needed for faculty and students to succeed is in working order. He lives in Springfield with his wife, Julie, and daughters, Reagan and Kenzie.