Audio Feature

Add comment December 6th, 2013

Queer Cultural Series

Add comment November 22nd, 2013

UW-Whitewater in final stage of approving doctoral degree

The College of Business and Economics is in the process of creating UW-Whitewater’s first doctoral degree program. The doctorate of business administration is in the final stage of getting approval from the Higher Learning Commission and could start as early as Fall 2014.

The program prepares students for both high-level managerial and academic positions. It is open to anybody with a master’s degree in a business-related field, who has at least six years of professional experience.

The program would be not just the first doctorate offered on campus but according to the DBA website it also would become only the sixth program in the United States to be accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

Having this type of accreditation means the department has to abide to high standards and guarantees overall better quality of the program. The AACSB website states “accredited schools produce graduates that are highly skilled and more desirable to employers than other non-accredited schools.”

Even though the DBA is not approved yet, over 150 people already showed interest in applying, said K. Praveen Parboteeah, director of the DBA program.

“The demand of faculty members who need doctorates is very high,” Parboteeah said.  “In Wisconsin you can really only get the PhD at Madison or Milwaukee and its extremely selective. It’s also full-time and you’d have to give up your job so we wanted to do something that’s different, more applied.”

Nima Salami, owner of a music business and current MBA student at Whitewater, is one of the prospective students. He said he wants to learn more about business to advance his career.

“I see myself as a person that has a vantage point of seeing the big picture instead of focusing on one subject like in a PhD program,” Salami said. “The DBA is the best I could choose for a final degree in business because it will enable me at the same time to be a high level manager in the professional world or a teacher at a university.”

The application process is selective and consists of several steps including an information session, an online application form, a research workshop plus written proposal, and an interview with the admission committee.

A cohort of 20 students will be admitted each fall. Classes are held one weekend a month for two years to give students the opportunity to keep working full-time. After those two years, students will be working on their dissertation for about another year before they are granted the DBA.

Parboteeah worked at Kinnesaw University when it started an accredited DBA program and brought that experience to Whitewater. With a committee of five faculty members he started pulling together resources and planning a curriculum that would meet the standards of the AACSB.

He said the college of business and economics has a strong reputation and sufficient resources that a doctorate seemed like the “natural next step.” There are enough faculty members qualified to teach the courses offered in the new program so that no new professors are needed right now.

Paul Ambrose is a professor in COBE and will be teaching contemporary issues in business to DBA students. He said he is willing to take on the additional class without cutting down on his other commitments because he wants “to give back more than what the students paid for.”

“This is an exciting time for the college,” Ambrose said. “We were pioneers with our online MBA program and now we’re working on the DBA. It really shows how innovative we are and that we work for the next generation.”

Add comment November 5th, 2013

Mayor involved in car accident, arrested for drunk driving

Mayor Gustavus G. Petykiewicz, 54, was involved in a car accident while driving under the influence Saturday in the Town of Frontenac. He was placed under arrest at the Schuylkill County Jail and later bailed out by his wife for $500.

The accident occurred around 1 p.m. at the intersection of state Highway 117 and Fonebone Road.

Deputy Gordon J. Slivovitz was the first responder at the scene and found Petykiewicz, 1845 Elm Drive, in his car with a half-empty bottle of vodka next to him. The mayor was not wearing a seat belt but the airbags deployed and he did not receive any injuries.

When asked if he had been drinking, Petykiewicz said, “You’d be drinking too if you were me. Do you think we could just keep this quiet?”

He failed a field sobriety test and a breath test revealed that his blood alcohol content was nearly twice the legal limit of .08.

The other driver was identified as Robert H. Doane, 40, 1332 Main St.

Alice Q. Magarian, 31, was driving behind Doane’s Buick and witnessed the accident. She said Doane was driving northbound on the highway at about 55 mph, when Petykiewicz failed to fully halt at a stop sign on Fonebone Road and pulled into the intersection, striking the Buick’s driver side.

Both cars ended up in a field next to the highway. They sustained severe damage and had to be towed from the scene.

Upon arrival of the deputy Doane was conscious but bleeding from his head and complaining about abdominal pain. The driver’s door of his vehicle was inoperable and Doane had to be extricated via the passenger-side door.

He was flown to Northeast Pennsylvania Hospital and Trauma Center in Wilkes-Barre. The nursing supervisor said Doane suffered several broken ribs, a broken jaw, and various contusions to his whole body.

Robert J. Morgenthau, Schuylkill County district attorney, said Petykiewicz is facing a felony charge of up to 10 years in prison for causing great bodily harm while driving under the influence. He will appear before the Schuylkill County District Court Tuesday at 9 a.m. for a preliminary hearing.

Neither the mayor nor his wife were available for a statement.

Add comment November 2nd, 2013

“Stay hungry, stay foolish,” Jobs tells graduates at Stanford

Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer Inc. and Pixar Animation Studios, shared the lessons he learned in life with 4,712 Stanford University graduates on Sunday, June 12, at their commencement ceremony.

Jobs, 50, encouraged students to keep moving forward even if they encounter setbacks in life. He told his own story to set an example of perseverance and following one’s dream.

When he was 18 years old Jobs dropped out of Reed College in Oregon after only six months because, as he said, he did not want to spend his parents’ funds to go to classes he was not interested in. Instead, he stayed for another 18 months dropping in on courses that were interesting to him, including a calligraphy class.

While he faced many financial challenges during that time, Jobs said in hindsight he was able to see the benefits of his decision. The computer visionary later on incorporated what he had learned into the typography of his personal computers.

“You can’t connect the dots looking forwards, you can only connect them looking backwards,” he said. “So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Another advice Jobs gave the students was to follow their passion in life, which he related to the beginnings of Apple.

At the age of 20, Jobs and his friend Steve Wozniak, “Woz”, started Apple in his parents’ garage. Within 10 years the company grew into a $2 billion company with over 4,000 employees. But then Jobs experienced the next big setback in his life when he got fired from his own company in 1985.

In his speech Jobs said he felt like he let other people down but also realized that a fresh start gave him room for more creativity. After being fired, Jobs went on to found Pixar, which is now the most successful animation studio in the world.

He also started another computer company, NeXT Inc., which was bought by Apple in 1997. The company brought back Jobs and reinstated him as CEO. He told the graduates that in hindsight his job loss was “the best thing that could have ever happened to me.”

“Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick,” he said. “Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love.”

The final theme Jobs addressed in his speech was death and how it can be a motivator to do great things. About a year ago he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The doctors only gave him a few months to live until a biopsy showed it was a rare type of cancer that could be cured by surgery.

Being so close to facing death has given him a different outlook on life, which Jobs shared with the graduates.

“Your time is limited so don’t waste it living someone else’s life,” he said. “Don’t be trapped by dogma, which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”

In his parting words, Job encouraged the class of 2005 to take chances and think big.

“Stay hungry, stay foolish,” he said. “I have always wished that for myself and now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.”

Add comment October 21st, 2013

UW-Whitewater celebrates Coming Out Day

Lisa Helms giving her speech. Credit: James Sheets

  Lisa Helms giving her speech. Credit: James Sheets

25 years ago more than half a million people marched on Washington D.C. to show their support of LGBT rights and equality.

To commemorate this historic event the LGBT community founded National Coming Out, which is observed annually on Oct. 11. Communities celebrate it with parades, rallies, and other events to raise awareness of the ongoing civil rights movement.

* UW-Whitewater also celebrated Coming Out Day Tuesday, Oct. 8, from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. on the North Mall of the University Center. The event was organized by IMPACT, the LGBTQA* student organization on campus, and featured about 20 speakers sharing their coming out stories or showing their support of the LGBTQ community.

Lisa Helms was one of the students telling her story. She said she identifies as pansexual, which means she is attracted to people of all gender identities.

In her speech she described how coming out has been an ongoing process for her. It started with coming out to herself and realizing what it means to be pansexual before telling her friends and family.

“Sexual orientation is not outside of us, it’s inside of us,” Helms said. “I feel like I walk around with an identity that isn’t validated by our society because people don’t know about it and talk about it.”

Alyssa Reetz, another student speaker, compared her coming out experience with Harry Potter.

“I felt like a lesbian Harry Potter just living under the stairs, wondering ‘when the hell can I get out of here?’” Reetz said.

Both Reetz and Helms described their experience of coming out as frightening but also liberating.

IMPACT advisor and LGBT coordinator Cindy Konrad said they scheduled the event three days before National Coming Out Day to reach more students. The main purpose of the event was to raise awareness and encourage dialogue.

“For folks who may not have been exposed to LBTG issues before they came to campus it can be really eye-opening to hear these stories,” Konrad said.

Students were not the only ones speaking at the event. Several faculty and administrators shared their own stories or showed their support.

Among them was Tom Rios, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. He said he believes Whitewater is a campus “that strives to create an environment where people can be authentic and they get a sense of safety of knowing who they are and expressing it.”

Konrad said it was really important to her to have allies speak at the event as well because students need to know that they are not alone.

“It’s amazing to see somebody who is at the high level of the university get up and say ‘I support you and I am proud of you and you’re valuable here’,” Konrad said. “That’s a new experience for some people but it’s also really strong affirmation of their identity.”

In her speech Helms said she has received a lot of support from the campus community. She encouraged other students to be themselves and not hide their identity.

“To be out means to be proud and to be happy of who you are,” Helms said.

Add comment October 14th, 2013

Mayor Brandeis hurt in car accident

Mayor Louis Brandeis was injured in a car accident Thursday in downtown Podunk when an inattentive driver crashed into his car. The accident occurred at 3:20 p.m. in front of Henderson’s Hardware Store, which sustained significant damage.

Brandeis was rushed to the hospital and went into surgery to repair his broken knee.

Justin J. Scalia, 1554 Mockingbird Blvd., a student at Podunk State University, was driving at the 25 mph speed limit but he was distracted by sending a text message and collided with Brandeis, 2703 W. Cloverland Lane. He did not suffer any injuries.

Police Chief Maryann Magarian said the collision caused the mayor’s car to spin around and hit the front of Henderson’s Hardware Store. It shattered the display window but did not injure anybody on the sidewalk or in the store, Magarian said.

Scalia admitted to being distracted and will be facing charges.

“I have been in contact with John Jacobsen, the District Attorney, who confirms that Mr. Scalia will be charged with inattentive driving,” Magarian said. “More serious charges, such as causing bodily harm by negligent use of a motor vehicle, are possible.”

Scalia was arrested and taken to Podunk County Jail, where a relative bailed him out at 5:47 p.m. He will report to the Podunk County Courthouse Friday morning.

Nursing supervisor Anna Bechstein said Brandeis’ surgery went well. His right leg is in a cast and he will need to walk on crutches. He is expected to leave the hospital Friday morning.

“I know I speak for all of us in Podunk when I say I’m glad the mayor wasn’t more seriously hurt,” Bechstein said.

Magarian said she hopes the accidents will be a lesson for others.

“This should send a message to everyone: Don’t text and drive,” she said. “If used improperly, that little phone can be a very deadly weapon.”

Add comment October 9th, 2013

Kittatinny facing trying times

Mayor Gustavus G. Petykiewicz delivered a budget proposal for the 2013 fiscal year Monday to the City Council that would increase taxes by 7.5 percent. It also includes reducing the police force and higher fees for garbage disposal in an attempt to combat a significant decrease in property tax income.

The decommissioning of Blast Furnace Unit 1 at Susquehanna Steel Corp. earlier this year left 600 people unemployed and decreased the city’s tax base by $84.3 million, forcing the mayor to make cuts in the budget.

Petykiewicz’s proposal includes an increase of the city’s tax rate from 4 mills to 4.3 mills. This would mean a $30 tax increase on a house with an assessed value of $100,000. But that increase alone does not fill the gap left behind by the Susquehanna Steel Corp.

To cut spending, Petykiewicz suggested reducing the city’s full-time police force from 10 to eight officers, which would save about $100,000. The early shift from 4 a.m. to noon would no longer be staffed by the city. Schuylkill County sheriff’s deputies would answer emergency calls on a contract basis instead.

Police Chief Roman Hruska is concerned about this proposal.

“I cannot stand idly by and watch a city this size be deprived of protection for a third of each day,” he said.

He said he is worried about increasing the response time to crime and emergency calls even though the early shift is usually the slowest shift.

Bjarne Westhoff, president of the Pennsylvania Police Association Local 34, described the elimination of the early shift as inefficient. He is concerned that the next shift will end up picking up the slack from the night before and do twice as much work as they used to.

Another important change for the citizens of Kittatinny concerns garbage disposal. Petykiewicz’s proposed to take garbage pickup of the tax levy and add the charge to the consumers’ city water bills. This step would save the city $186,988 for the 2013 fiscal year.

Other components of the budget include:

  • Parking fees will be raised by 15 cents per hour
  • A new cruiser for the police department
  • New vehicles for the city’s Parks and Streets’ departments
  • Layoff of two American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees

Martha Mittengraben, president of AFSCME Local 644, said the union contract mandates a 3 percent raise but the union would consider negotiations.

“We might be willing to open our contracts,” Mittengraben said. “However, there must be a spirit of share and sacrifice. We will not do this unilaterally.”

She challenged the mayor to keep the two unionized employees and take a 10 percent pay cut instead.

Petykiewicz said he is willing to consider the pay cut for all the non-unionized employees but also called it “just a drop in the bucket”.

Cutting the salaries of five employees would nowhere near make up for the nearly $100 million hole in the tax base, he said.

“But I think I speak for the others when I say I think we would be willing to do it as a symbolic gesture to show that we’re all in this together,” he said.

Citizens of Kittatinny are encouraged to come to public hearings and express their thoughts on the budget. The proposal was passed on to the city council, which has to approve and sign it into law by Dec. 1.

Add comment October 5th, 2013

Anything is possible

For many of us going to college was a given. You go to college to get an education and ultimately a job that pays the bills. UW-Whitewater sophomore Estefania Mora Hurtado, however, had to fight hard to go to a 4-year school.

Growing up as Latina in a predominantly white community in Oak Creek, Wis., she faced a lot of prejudices from her peers and teachers in high school, she said. She was rejected from clubs and volunteer opportunities and some teachers even told her up front that she would never make it into college.

Her parents are from Mexico and the only family she has in the U.S. Being a first-generation student, she could not expect much help from them either. “My dad is kind of very traditional and he thinks that women should stay at home,” she said. “So I didn’t really get that support from my family either.”

But college was her dream and so she started doing web searches to learn how to apply to college, she said. During her search she found inspiration in Dr. Ben Carson, who was a first-generation minority student and became the first surgeon to separate conjoined twins.

Despite her fears that she would not succeed, Hurtado applied to two schools. She decided to go to Whitewater based on the scholarship she was offered. She attended the Summer Business Institute the summer before her first semester and gained valuable skills that helped her transition from high school to college, she said. It also taught her the importance of being involved on campus.

Today, Hurtado is a double major in accounting and finance and involved in multiple organizations on campus. She loves to share her story and show others that you can do anything you set your heart on. For the future she hopes to be an accountant or a manager some day.

“It’s all because I want to show the world it’s possible,” she said. “It’s possible to get into those roles. It doesn’t matter how you look like, it’s how much effort you put into it.”

Add comment September 25th, 2013

SEAL events

UW-Whitewater is often referred to as a suitcase college because a lot of students go home on the weekends. Many think there is nothing to do in Whitewater besides going to the bars but that is a misconception. The Student Entertainment Awareness League (short SEAL) puts on multiple events every weekend to provide a fun and safe alternative to Whitewater’s bar scene. Every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights SEAL shows a movie in the Summers Auditorium. Additionally, bands, comedians, and other entertainers perform every Thursday night at 8pm. Next week, September 12, comedian Eric O’Shea will take the stage in the Down Under to perform his award-winning college show. So, if you find yourself at home that day with nothing to do head to the UC and check out the show!

1 comment September 6th, 2013


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