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Rodriguez Named Student Laureate, Honored at State Ceremony

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NLU Early Childhood undergrad Hortencia Rodriguez, wearing medallion with red ribbon, was given the honor of Student Laureate by Illinois’ Lincoln Academy, a non-profit. A ceremony took place Nov. 1 in Springfield. Also pictured are Hortencia’s daughter at left, NLU’s Ayn Keneman, Ed.D., right, and Hortencia’s mother.

Hortencia Rodriguez, an NLU early childhood undergraduate, was recognized as a Student Laureate by the Lincoln Academy of Illinois during al ceremony Nov. 1st at the Old State Capitol State Historic Site in Springfield. Hortencia was one of 52 students in Illinois to receive this honor. This is the 40th year Lincoln Academy, a non-profit organization, celebrated students’ excellence in Illinois.

The Lincoln Academy’s Student Laureate Awards are presented for excellence in curricular and extracurricular activities to seniors from each of the four-year, degree-granting colleges and universities in Illinois. At the Student Laureate Convocation, Hortencia received a Student Laureate Medallion, along with a certificate of achievement and an educational grant of $1,000.

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National Association Awards Fellowship, Honors NLU’s Work Serving Students of Color

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When people work and put forth effort, they want to know that it actually accomplished something. The discipline of evaluation has arisen to measure whether almost any endeavor—a class, a non-profit organization, a university degree program, a policy, a product, business, etc.—is being effective and getting the hoped-for results.

The American Evaluation Association guides the best practices in evaluation methodology. Recently, it honored NLU Assistant Professor Tiffeny Jimenez, Ph.D., chair of the Community Psychology program, with a Minority Serving Institution fellowship.

“This prestigious fellowship recognizes the efforts NLU makes serving students of color,” said Judah Viola, Ph.D., chair of NLU’s College of Professional Studies and Advancement.

“I will bring all my lessons learned into my courses, which is especially interesting because evaluation spans several areas of our field of community psychology,” Jimenez said.

The fellowship will bring her the expertise and mentorship of evaluation experts as she takes on some evaluation projects at NLU. One is an evaluation of the Ph.D. program; faculty are considering what data to look at and how to evaluate the program’s  goals. One goal to measure might be how many graduates are working in positions they studied for and desired.

Another area to evaluate will be the NLU Veterans Program, especially using evaluation methodology to understand the effectiveness of NLU in supporting student veterans.

Jimenez also aims to focus evaluation methods on whether, and how, NLU’s Community Psychology program is culturally responsive in meeting students’ needs.

“Community psychology emphasizes positive change for underserved communities,” she said. “By the very fact of bringing in students from those communities, we’re making progress toward our goal.”

Students from those communities already know the norms and customs better than an outsider would.  Many are working with non-profits or government agencies to improve conditions in the communities.  Jimenez explained an evaluation could consider how effectively their doctoral program is establishing the conditions that will enable students to enact positive community change. It could also measure how well the students themselves are faring, possibly by evaluating whether graduates are getting jobs in this field, such as in consulting or with non-profit organizations or other employers.

Viola noted that earlier this year, a Community Psychology Ph.D. student was awarded a Graduate Education Diversity Initiative fellowship.

“So to have both students and faculty being recognized and offered additional resources to advance the mission of diversifying higher education and improving outcomes for minority students is just outstanding,” he said.

“Furthermore, receiving these fellowships increases students’ chances for successfully competing for grants and fellowships in the future.”

 

 

NLU Alumna Enters The Peace Corps After Early Retirement

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NLU Alum Sandra Mattison retired early from teaching fifth grade and will volunteer with the Peace Corps in Uganda for about two years. She will support primary education.

After 22 years of teaching in an elementary school, Sandra Mattison, 54, of Wheaton, Ill., retired early and embarked on another adventure. She left recently for Uganda, where she will serve as a Peace Corps volunteer for about two years.

Mattison, B.A. in Elementary Education ’92 and M.Ed in Interdisciplinary Studies in Curriculum and Instruction ’04, will use her professional experience and National Louis University education to support primary education in Uganda.

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NLU Student Veteran Invited To Pre-Game Coin Toss

 

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(Image courtesy of Mike Purgatori)
NLU Student veteran Carida “Pilar” Arteaga, right. stands with her brother Jesus Arteaga.

Carida “Pilar” Arteaga, National Louis University student and veteran of the U.S. Navy, was invited to participate in the pre-game coin toss for the Northern Illinois University (NIU) vs. University of Toledo football game on Veterans Day, Nov. 11.

Arteaga, a Chicago native, entered the Navy in 1994 and after six deployments she retired as Petty Officer 1st Class in July 2014. Arteaga is  pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Management.

Joining Arteaga is her brother Jesus Arteaga, a student at NIU. Mr. Arteaga served  a total of eight years in the Navy as a Hospital Corpsman.

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(Image courtesy of Mike Purgatori)
Players from NIU and Toledo huddle around the coin toss during the pre-game ceremony.

 

NLU Student, Alum Tell WBEZ Military Led Them To Teaching

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For Andrew Cline, joining the military to “do something bigger than yourself” is the same reason he chose to go into teaching. He’s an NLU student veteran.

For Anthony Clark, an NLU graduate who’s teaching special education at Oak Park and River Forest High School, the responsibility and leadership he learned in the military made for a “natural transition” into teaching.

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Naperville Magazine Profiles Alum Who Helps Homeless Get Back On Feet

 

Michael CobbMichael Cobb sees his job as providing much  more than a bed for the homeless–although his position as executive director of Hesed House in Aurora, the largest shelter in Illinois outside Chicago, encompasses that.

Cobb, who is president of National Louis University’s Alumni Board, also oversees a full range of services to help people take back their lives, according to a profile of him this month in Naperville Magazine.

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NLU Connects With Alumni At North Shore Schools

National Louis is going on the road to meet alumni, let them know they are a valued part of the NLU community and encourage them to participate in alumni events. What’s more, you can arrange for the alumni team to visit YOUR office, school or workplace.

Kimberly Michaelson, NLU’s Director of Alumni Relations, recently visited with NLU alumna Alexandra Nicholson, Ed.D., superintendent of West Northfield School District 31, where almost 100 NLU alumni are employed.  Michaelson went to two District 31 schools to thank them for their support of the University. Nicholson is a member of  NLU’s National College of Education Advisory Council.

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NLU and College of DuPage Partner To Offer 4-Year B.A.

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Nivine Megahed, Ph.D., president of National Louis University, and Robert Breuder, Ph.D., president of College of DuPage, both seated, signed a partnership agreement between the schools Oct. 30. Joining them were, from left, Ruth Davis, Ed.D., Director of Institutional Outreach Strategy at NLU; Alison Hilsabeck, Ph.D.,  provost at NLU; Marty Mickey, VP Finance at NLU;  Emmanuel Awuah, Ph.D., COD AVP for Academic Affairs;  Andrea Polites, M.S.W., COD Human Services instructor; Jean Kartje, Ph.D., COD VP Academic Affairs; Jason Florin, M.H.S., COD Assistant Professor and Coordinator of the Human Services program, and Julie Trytek, M.A., COD Human Services instructor.

 

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NLU and COD officials announced Oct. 30, 2014, that the schools are partnering in a 3+1 program to offer a B.A. in Human Services.

National Louis University and College of DuPage announced Oct. 30 they are partnering in a 3+1 program that enables students to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Human Services from NLU with all courses completed at COD’s Glen Ellyn, Ill. campus.

The new degree is designed for students who are working toward either an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) Human Services Generalist or A.A.S. Addictions Counseling degree at College of DuPage.

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LinkedIn Rates NLU At Top Of University Rankings

Screen Shot 2014-10-29 at 12.13.56 PMJust three weeks ago, LinkedIn, the popular business-oriented social media site, launched its University Rankings and University Finder for people seeking a college whose graduates get jobs in their chosen fields.

This is a rubber-meets-the-road test unlike any other rankings system, and National Louis University performed extremely well.  To gauge the results, LinkedIn taps into its own database of 300 million members and identifies the universities they attended and the desirable employers they work for. It then determines which universities produce the highest number of alumni who work for desirable employers in the fields in which they pursued their degrees.