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 News Releases


March 31, 2014
SRU's Papa earns 'Coach of Year' title; SRU freshman honored

LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - Slippery Rock University captured two major Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference awards for the 2013-14 indoor track and field season when John Papa, head coach, was named the women's Coach of the Year, and freshman pole vaulter Jordan Pacheco, an undeclared major from Rockaway, N.J., was name the men's Freshman of the Year.

The win was Papa's 19th career PSAC Coach of the Year honor and the third of his career for women's indoor track and field. He has previously been named the PSAC Coach of the Year in women's outdoor track and field nine times, women's cross country twice, men's outdoor track and field three times and once each in men's indoor track and field and men's cross country.

March 28, 2014
SRU 125th celebration includes reminiscences, proclamations

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - March 26, 1889, 125 years ago, marked the first day of classes at the then-Slippery Rock State Normal School. March 26, 2014, marked the accomplishments and outstanding growth of that institution into Slippery Rock University and included reminiscences, proclamations, celebrations, balloons and greetings from U.S. President Barack Obama.

SRU President Cheryl Norton, the University's 16th president, opened the formal part of the day with remarks in the Russell Wright Alumni House and Conference Center and collected 20 resolutions, proclamations, commendations and greetings marking the momentous occasion.

March 28, 2014
SRU names new IT associate provost

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - John Ziegler, a veteran in technology development and implementation, has been named Slippery Rock University's new associate provost for information technology.

Ziegler, who most recently served as executive director of computer and technology services at Duquesne University, assumes his new role Monday.

March 28, 2014
McIntire earns 2014 service award

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Nicholas McIntire, constituent services and database assurance manager in Advancement Services, is this year's recipient of Slippery Rock University's President's Award for Outstanding Service. The award will be presented at the University's annual Academic Honors Convocation April 5.

The 1:30 p.m., ceremony in Morrow Field House, honors academic achievement, including those earning presidential scholarships, dean's list honors, academic honorary societies, scholar athletes, service learning scholars and scholarship recipients.

March 28, 2014
SRU honors employee service

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Cheryl Norton, Slippery Rock University president, honored 108 University employees for their dedication and service Tuesday as part of the University's annual Employee Service Recognition Awards Program. Norton also presented an update on a variety of topics, including the 2014-15 and the 2015-16 budgets, recent accolades and other new academic and campus initiatives.

LaLanda Stromp, assistant professor of parks and recreation, was honored for her 40 years of service. She was presented an SRU-insigniaed clock.

March 28, 2014
SRU faculty member, alumnus explore iPad's classroom potential

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Be honest: When you first saw an iPad, did you immediately think, "Oh, a textbook delivery system?" Probably not, but a Slippery Rock University assistant professor of secondary education/foundations of education and a 2009 SRU education graduate are using the electronic devices in just that way.

Jason Hilton, who joined SRU in 2012, and Joseph Canciello, a high school literature teacher at New Castle's Union High School, are combining their skills and their research to help students be better prepared for digital learning by using the popular electronic devices as textbooks and learning tools.

March 28, 2014
Health center joins esteemed company

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's student health center is among the standout higher education health centers in the country, having earned a three-year renewal of its accreditation from Accreditation Association for Ambulatory Health Care.

Only 196-student health centers in the country that are members of the association earned the accreditation, said Kris Benkeser, SRU health center director.

March 28, 2014
SRU ranks among Safest Colleges in U.S.

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University has been keeping some good company - and some safe company. The University has been cited as one of the Top 60 Safest Colleges in America.

The report, compiled by University Primetime, lists SRU at 34th for 2014.

March 28, 2014
Old Stone House hosts 'Civil War' camp

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's Old Stone House will open its doors to American history April 12-13, when it hosts the 63rd Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry reenactment group for Civil War Weekend 2014.

The free public program will highlight historic events through a weekend of drills, re-enactments and educational programs for Civil War buffs of all ages.

March 28, 2014
UPB brings 'Breaking Bad' co-star to SRU

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - RJ Mitte, co-star of the Emmy-winning AMC drama "Breaking Bad," will speak at Slippery Rock University April 15 about his life on TV and his life with cerebral palsy.

The free 7 p.m. Smith Student Center event is sponsored by SRU's University Program Board.

March 28, 2014
UPB plans first-ever 'Color The Rock' 5K

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The University Program Board at Slippery Rock University in conjunction with the Association of Residence hall Students will host its first-ever "Color the Rock" 5K run on campus, in which participants will be "showered" in color April 13 as part of its 125th Anniversary Celebration.

The event is limited to 300 SRU student participants.

March 28, 2014
Wale and Juicy J headline UPB concert

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Hip-hop artists Wale and Juicy J will co-headline the University Program Board April 27 concert at Slippery Rock University. Student tickets are on sale now; non-student tickets go on sale at 8 a.m., April 7.

The spring, standing-only, concert will be in the Aebersold Student Recreation Center. Showtime is 7 p.m.; doors open at 6 p.m.

March 28, 2014
SRU graduate qualifies for 2016 U.S. Olympic team trials

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Jeff Weiss, a 2009 Slippery Rock University health and physical education graduate and former distance running standout at SRU, punched his ticket to the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials with an impressive performance at the 2014 Anthem Half Marathon in Virginia Beach.

Weiss was the first American finisher in the elite field and the third overall finisher, covering the 13.1-mile distance in 1:04:47, an average of 4:57 per mile.

March 28, 2014
Trustees seek permission to begin special education doctorate

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – Slippery Rock University’s council of trustees agreed today to ask the Pennsylvania System of Higher Education’s board of governors to allow the University to begin offering a doctor of education degree in special education.

SRU, a longtime leader in special education for K-12 teachers and those involved in related-services, has proposed a 60-credit program leading to a doctor of education degree. If approved by the board, it would become the first such doctoral program in the system. The program could being spring semester 2015.

March 27, 2014
SRU leads nation with six NFHCA Scholars of Distinction

CHANDLER, Ariz. - The Slippery Rock University field hockey team has topped the nation in earning academic honors for its outstanding performance in the classroom by landing a Division II best six student-athletes on the National Field Hockey Coaches Association Scholars of Distinction List.

In order to be named a Scholar of Distinction, a student-athlete must maintain above a 3.90 cumulative grade point average through the fall semester.

March 26, 2014
SRU's Lubich sets record; earns All-America honors

Hans Lubich, a Slippery Rock University health and physical education major from Jefferson and member of the SRU men's indoor track team, has earned All-America honors and broke an SRU record with an eighth place finish in the heptathlon at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field National Championships at the JDL Fast Track.

Lubich, in his first appearance at the national meet, was seventh after the first four events in the championships, then moved down one place in the second day after the final three events to finish eighth with a score of 5,021 points.

March 25, 2014
SRU honors 107 for years of service

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. – Slippery Rock University employees cited for their years of service at the March 25 All-Employee Service Recognition Event were:

March 25, 2014
SRU graduate picked among "20 to Watch"

Brad Wilson, a 2006 Slippery Rock University secondary education graduate now teaching social studies at Fort Couch Middle School in the Upper St. Clair School District, is incorporating his computer interests and teachings skills with the popular iPad, a move that helped earn him a "20 to Watch" rank by the National School Boards Association's Technology Leadership Network.

More than 100 teachers from across the U.S. were nominated for the honor.

March 24, 2014
SRU field hockey teams carries best GPA in U.S.

CHANDLER, Ariz. - The Slippery Rock University field hockey team has posted the highest cumulative grade point average of all NCAA Division II field hockey teams to earn the Academic Team Award from the National Field Hockey Coaches Association and Gladiator by SGI.

The Rock has ranked in the top-five in cumulative grade point average in each of the last five years and has now posted the best team GPA in the country three times in the last five years.

March 14, 2014
SRU student PASSHE Business Plan Competition semi-finalist

Dale Chappell, a Slippery Rock University environmental geo-science major from New Castle, is one of 20 semi-finalist in the third annual Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education Student Business Plan Competition, which offers up to $10,000 in business start-up capital.

His submission, titled "DC Electric-Solar Sustainable," has been forwarded to an external panel for final judging.

March 14, 2014
Bartrop to headline Holocaust program

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Paul Bartrop, recognized as one of the world's leading scholars of the Holocaust and genocide and a professor of history and director of the Center for Judaic, Holocaust and Genocide Studies at Florida Gulf Coast University, will be the speaker March 25 when Slippery Rock University presents is 20th annual Holocaust Remembrance Program.

Bartrop's address will be at 4 p.m. in the Smith Student Center. The event is free.

March 14, 2014
SRU researchers look to tame ferritin

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Sometimes research work is tedious; sometimes it deals with minutiae; and sometimes it is both. Such is the case for Donald Zapien, Slippery Rock University chemistry professor, and his student researcher, Samantha McCormick, a chemistry major from Bradford, as they look for ways to induce a special protein to function.

Zapien, who joined the SRU faculty in 2004, said he was steered toward research in biological systems by his doctoral adviser "who had a gift for helping his students realize their talents. He encouraged me in the basics; then gave me projects that were challenging, but ones he knew I could complete. He saw a certain aptitude in me and pushed my curiosity."

March 14, 2014
Stuhldreher receives SRU's inaugural Outstanding Academic Advising Award

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Wendy Stuhldreher, professor of public health and social work, has been selected as the first recipient of Slippery Rock University's newly created President's Award for Outstanding Academic Advising. She will be presented the award at the University's annual Academic Honors Convocation April 5.

The 1:30 p.m. convocation in Morrow Field House honors academic achievement, including those earning presidential scholarships, dean's list honors, academic honorary societies, scholar athletes, service learning scholars and scholarship recipients.

March 14, 2014
320 SRU students studying abroad

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Some 320 Slippery Rock University students will spend their spring break, March 16-23, studying abroad in nearly a dozen countries as part of spring semester courses that include an international travel component as a way of expanding their education.

"Each year we try to expand our offerings," said Pamela Frigot, director of SRU's International Services Office. New this year is travel to Cuba and Denmark. Other countries on this year's itinerary include Ireland, England, France, Italy, Sweden, Spain, Costa Rica, the Bahamas and Greece.

March 14, 2014
SRU president, husband, create new undergraduate research scholarship

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Applications for the new Norton Undergraduate Research Scholarship, created by Slippery Rock University President Cheryl Norton and her husband, Henry, are now being accepted.

The application deadline is 4 p.m., April 1.

March 14, 2014
SRU plans two-day veterans' conference

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University will host a two-day "Skills Learned, Respect Earned: Valuing the Veterans in Higher Education" conference March 31-April 1. The event will bring together higher education professionals to collaborate and share best practices in making higher education campuses more military supportive.

"We hope the conference will allow participants to gain appreciation for the unique needs of veterans in higher education, to better target this unique population, learn to better recruit, retain and graduate student veterans at our campuses and explore best practices from well-established student veterans authorities, administrative supporters and student veterans," said Laurel Dagnon, program director for SRU's Center for Student Involvement and Leadership and program organizer.

March 14, 2014
North Country Brewery presents grants

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's Sustainable Enterprise Accelerator has teamed with the North Country Brewery in downtown Slippery Rock to offer five, $1,000 North Country Brewery Fellowships.

The $1,000 awards, which recipients will use for specific projects, were presented Tuesday by brewery owner Bob McCafferty.

March 14, 2014
Shaevitz provides students 3-D printer

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The latest gee-whiz technology addition at Slippery Rock University is a 3D printer that enables students to create three-dimensional, solid objects of virtually any shape from a design created on their laptop.

Ben Shaevitz, professor of physics and pre-engineering, said he bought the $700 Robo 3D printer to give budding engineers prototype learning opportunities.

March 14, 2014
Norton names April 'Month of Movement'

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Ok, Slippery Rock University, get ready to move, move, move.

One person who doesn't need encouragement to get shakin' is Jeff Lynn, SRU professor of exercise and rehabilitative sciences. But, even he has been pleased by the holistic embrace of fitness on campus, which President Cheryl Norton is taking to yet another level by declaring April the "Month of Movement."

March 14, 2014
SRU's President Norton supports Girl Scouts' military cookie sale

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Thin Mints, Tagalongs and Samoas are everywhere this time year - including Slippery Rock University President Cheryl Norton's Office, where Girl Scouts came calling as part of their effort to sell cookies and support U.S. military troops.

Norton bought the first three boxes of cookies that girls from Troop 26380 presented for Operation Sweet Appreciation: A Taste of Home.

March 14, 2014
SRU hosts Annual Student Art Exhibition

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University students will display original paintings, ceramics, sculptures, multimedia and other artwork during the SRU art department's March 31-April 16 "Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition" in the Martha Gault Art Gallery in Maltby Center.

Nathan Heuer, assistant professor of drawing at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, will serve as juror. The deadline for submitting work is March 26.

March 13, 2014
SRU graduate promotes 'Unplugging'

Luis Almeida, a 2002 Slippery Rock University sport management graduate now an associate professor of communications media at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, was the recent feature of a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette news story promoting "National Day of Unplugging."

The event was marked March 7-8, and Almeida used the occasion to promote awareness of the responsible use of computing. The day also encouraged students to sign the "Unplug Pledge."

March 12, 2014
Biophysics major's research earns first place award

Zoey Prokopiak, a Slippery Rock University computational biophysics major, won first place for her poster in the Cellular and Molecular Biology category of the American Association for Advancement of Science Conference.

Prokopiak's accomplishment followed 18 months of research with Carolyn Steglich, SRU professor of biology.

March 11, 2014
SRU graduate earns prestigious dance teaching post

Jessica Madden, a 2012 Slippery Rock University dance and elementary education graduate, has been hired by Hubbard Street Dance Chicago to teach jazz dance to students' ages 7-11. She will begin teaching musical theatre this spring.

Madden attributed her success to the training she received at SRU.

March 10, 2014
10 SRU athletes earn All-Regional track and field honors

NEW ORLEANS – Now matter how you add it up, it’s good news for the Slippery Rock University indoor track and field teams. Six members of the women’s team and four member of the men’s team were recently named to All-Region honors in the Atlantic Region by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.

In order to be named to the All-Region team, athletes must rank in the top five in their respective event among all athletes in the region. The Atlantic Region consists of all institutions in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference, the Mountain East Conference and the Central Intercollegiate Athletics Association.

March 07, 2014
SRU plans 125th celebration March 26

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The founders of what has grown to be Slippery Rock University certainly celebrated the opening of the school March 26, 1889. SRU students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of the University will follow their lead with two Founders' Day celebrations March 26 marking the University's 125 anniversary.

SRU's Green and White Society is spearheading a "Birthday-Bash" complete with cake and party games in the Smith Student Center, while President Cheryl Norton will host a formal celebration marking the occasion in the Russell Wright Alumni House and Conference Center.

March 07, 2014
SRU researchers examine property rights, democracy

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Bethany Ratkovich, a Slippery Rock University political science major from Aliquippa, knew she was going on to earn her doctorate in that field once she completed her undergraduate studies, so she set her sites on being involved in a major research project.

"I really crave a challenge," she said, "and since I hope to hope to specialize in political economy at the graduate level, I knew Dr. [David] Kershaw was a research methods expert in the political science department. He agreed to work with me on a project that is part of his 'Research Methods' class."

March 07, 2014
Orvis earns SRU's teaching award

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Bruce Orvis, associate professor in Slippery Rock University's School of Business, known for his commitment to teaching, his engaging class style and for developing innovative classroom practices will be awarded the President's Award for Excellence in Teaching for the 2013-14 academic year.

Cheryl Norton, SRU president, will present the award at the University's annual Academic Honors Convocation at 1:30 p.m., April 5, in Morrow Field House.

March 07, 2014
SRU plans 'An Evening of the Arts'

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - It will be theatre, music, dance performances and art when Slippery Rock University hosts "An Evening of the Arts" March 28 to celebrate its yearlong 125th anniversary.

The University, founded as Slippery Rock State Normal School, opened its door to the first class March 26, 1889. Since then the institution of higher education has grown to offer more than 60 majors in four colleges. Its enrollment has grown from 168 students that first semester to more than 8,300 students today, including nearly 75 international students.

March 07, 2014
Students organize addiction series

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Panel discussions with recovering addicts, brain studies, an art display and lantern ceremony are among the ways Slippery Rock University will raise awareness of addiction causes and treatment through its March 10-13 "Peace, Love and Brains!" program.

Seventeen psychology students organized the educational series as SRU's method for marking the worldwide Brain Awareness Campaign. The global initiative, launched by The Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives, brings attention to brain research and advocates for science funding.

March 07, 2014
Professor's plays hit international stage

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - It's a Slippery Rock University theatre professor and playwright's dream come true: Theatre insiders in Europe and Australia notice your plays and then ask permission to perform them at a university and an arts festival.

The story played out in quadruplicate recently for David Skeele, SRU professor of theatre. The University of Basel in Basel, Switzerland, will perform three of Skeele's horror plays: "Starla," "The Margins" and "Hungry Jane," April 18-May 3.

March 07, 2014
Computer science teams win $6,000

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Two, three-member teams from the Slippery Rock University computer science department walked off with first-place honors and $6,000 in prize money in the first Scholastic Challenge Programming Contest sponsored and organized by FuturePOS in Butler.

The mobile team, Rock Hard App, included Nicholas Botzer and William Botzer, both from Bethel Park and Zachary Petrusch from Pittsburgh. All three are computer science majors.

March 07, 2014
SRU offers cash for entrepreneurial ideas

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Got an app in mind worth millions? An idea to manufacture a widget? Improve an existing gadget? A new food franchise? Clothing line? Robotic car washer and backscratcher? If so, the Slippery Rock University "Rock the Boat" competition could help move your idea to reality.

The "Rock the Boat: Elevator Pitch Competition" is offering a $1,000 first prize to the best idea; $500 for second prize; and $250 for third.

March 07, 2014
Students spend break volunteering

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Thirty-two Slippery Rock University students are using their spring break to provide community service to three U.S. cities as part of the University's Center for Student Involvement and Leadership Care Break program.

The students, who organize and implement the service-learning programs, will travel to Savannah, Ga., Salem, Va., and Jacksonville, Fla., as part of the March 16-23 break from classes.

March 07, 2014
Students spend break volunteering

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Thirty-two Slippery Rock University students are using their spring break to provide community service to three U.S. cities as part of the University's Center for Student Involvement and Leadership Care Break program.

The students, who organize and implement the service-learning programs, will travel to Savannah, Ga., Salem, Va., and Jacksonville, Fla., as part of the March 16-23 break from classes.

March 07, 2014
SRU Choirs, Wind Ensemble perform

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - More than 60 Slippery Rock University singers and musicians in the SRU Choirs and SRU Wind Ensemble will perform this weekend.

The SRU Choirs will perform a requiem by French romantic composer Gabrielle Faure at 7 p.m., March 8, at Covenant Presbyterian Church in Butler. The SRU Wind Ensemble will perform at 7 p.m., March 9, at SRU's Swope Music Hall.

March 07, 2014
High school scientists score scholarships

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Dan Kolesar, a senior at Sharpsville Area Senior High School, and Isaac Williams, a junior at West Middlesex Area Senior High School, have earned four-year scholarships to Slippery Rock University for their outstanding science research. The awards were presented as part of the 57th Annual Region IX Meeting of the Pennsylvania Junior Academy of Science hosted at SRU.

SRU has hosted the Region IX Meeting for 16 consecutive years.

March 07, 2014
SRU plans Graduate Open House

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - College graduates, or those soon to receive diplomas, are invited to join Slippery Rock University's Graduate Open House Saturday in the Russell Wright Alumni House and Conference Center as a way of exploring education options.

Check-in begins at 9:30 a.m., with a formal program at 10.

March 07, 2014
SRU celebrates Women's History Month

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's Women's Center has joined the national celebration of Women's History Month under the theme "Celebrating Women of Character, Courage and Commitment." The event runs throughout March.

Events planned include a 4 p.m., March 9, Dwight and Jeane Baker Memorial Scholarship Fund concert titled "Women Gone Wild" featuring the Slippery Rock Piano Trio in Swope Music Hall. Admission is a minimum donation of $10 adults, $5 students, to benefit the scholarship.

March 07, 2014
SRU's CSIL hosts Red Cross blood drive

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - Slippery Rock University's Center for Student Involvement and Leadership will host a blood drive for the American Red Cross from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., March 11.

The drive will be in the Smith Student Center. SRU's goal is to secure 100 donors.

March 7, 2014
SRU student joins national St. Jude's 'Up 'til Dawn' review board

Alexandrea Nietert, a Slippery Rock University early childhood development major from Eight-Four, Pa., was one of eight students from across the U.S. who attended the recent St. Jude Children's Research Hospital National Vision Committee for Up 'til Dawn.

The session was called to help restructure the nationwide Up ‘til Dawn program.

March 06, 2014
SRU nursing professor emeritus pens technology books

Nursing students at Slippery Rock University have a new way to learn about the value of using computers, social media and informatics in health care.

Ramona Nelson, SRU professor emeritus of nursing, has co-written three books about technology and nursing.

March 5, 2014
SRU graduate earns Venues Today 2014 Box Office Stars Award

Jason Varnish, a 2003 Slippery Rock University sport management master's degree graduate, now serving as box office manager at Pittsburgh's Consol Energy Center, has received the Venues Today 2014 Box Office Stars Award.

The award was announced in the magazine's January 2014 issue.

March 4, 2014
Kara Styles wins third PSAC Champion Scholar Awards

LEWISBURG, Pa. - Kara Styles, a doctor of physical education graduate student from Windber and a distance runner on Slippery Rock University's indoor track and field team, was presented her third Champion Scholar Award at last weekend's Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships.

The award is presented at each PSAC Championship event to the athlete with the highest cumulative grade point average among the teams competing.

March 3, 2014
SRU women's track team wins PSAC title; men finish third

LEWISBURG, Pa. - The Slippery Rock University women's indoor track and field team won the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Championship and the SRU men's team took third place at the event that concluded Sunday at Bucknell University.

SRU women's team dethroned four-time defending champion Shippensburg to win the team title with 108 points. The championship is the fourth indoor title in program history.