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In between getting settled into her new job at Fort Lewis College and into life in Durango, FLC’s Director of Admission Jess Savage answered a few questions in order to offer some insight into why she decided to come to FLC and what she sees for the College’s future.
“My path to teaching at FLC has been non-traditional. My degree is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, not a PhD. I was (and still am) a practitioner, a veterinarian, who had always dreamed of teaching as that other thing I might love to do.”
“Dealing with finances in the Office of Financial Aid is not always an easy task,” she says. “My most memorable/rewarding moments are when we get that card, email or visit from someone letting us know what they are doing now and that we have helped them. Getting invited to see their senior presentations, recitals or attend their graduation is exciting and rewarding and makes me feel that we have helped make it all possible.”
“In my five years at Fort Lewis College, I have met a lot of faculty members who are exceptional teachers and mentors. I recognize that my nomination stemmed from my departmental peers and I am really appreciative of the support I have received from them and also colleagues outside the Exercise Science Department. I feel really fortunate and honored to win the New Faculty Teaching Award because, to me, it means that my colleagues and students respect and appreciate the work that I do.”
“The in-class moments that are the best are when I watch a student finally grasp a difficult concept that they have been struggling with,” he says. “Getting to watch those ‘a-ha’ moments may be the most rewarding part of this job.”
Ray Kenny, professor of Geology, published a new article on the Kaibab Formation in Geochemical Transactions, his tenth peer-reviewed research article about Grand Canyon National Park. Kenny has logged more than 2,300 miles in the park for research and pleasure.
Heidi Steltzer, associate professor of Biology, is part of a multimillion dollar research project funded by the U.S. Department of Energy studying short- and long-term water availability in the arid West.
Brett Deming, a veteran officer of the FLC Police & Parking Services Department, has been named chief of the agency after the retirement of Arnold Trujillo.
Curator Jeanne Brako discusses the new exhibition on national parks titled, "Parks, People, & Preservation" at the Center of Southwest Studies. [VIDEO]
Rachel Landis, coordinator of the FLC Environmental Center, was named in Durango's Top Ten Localists, a collection of individuals who live and thrive in La Plata County, walking the talk of supporting the local economy and inspiring others to do the same.
Janine Fitzgerald and Keri Brandt, professors of Sociology, gave a plenary talk at the Quivira Coalition's 20th Annual Conference in Albuquerque in November, titled "Zombie Agriculture: Debt, Death, and the Radical Center." Additionally, senior Sociology major Crisslandria Mike, was awarded a scholarship from Quivira to attend in support of her goal of building a career in food crop agriculture on the Navajo Reservation.
The FLC Board of Trustees approved a new Master's in "Education: Culturally & Linguistically Diverse" to start in Fall 2018. The program still requires approval from the Colorado Department of Higher Education to become official.
Leadership Center staff Patrick Fredricks and Elizabeth Calagias presented twice at November's National Orientation Directors Association (NODA) Annual Conference in Louisville, Kentucky, to much acclaim. Their presentations were titled: “Grow Past the ‘One Person Office’ into a Collaborative Future” and “Off to the Races! Keeping Up with Online Orientation Trends.”
Andrea Martens, lecturer and gallery director for the Art & Design Department, is having a solo exhibition of her new work at Telluride Arts HQ from December 2017 to January 2018.
Shere Byrd, professor of Biology, was voted to the Durango 9-R School Board in the November 7 election.
Common Ground, FLC's anti-bias program that promotes cultural awareness and combats discrimination, hosted a 3-day intensive facilitator training with student, faculty, and staff participants. The new facilitators are now equipped with the tools to create conversations that move people toward understanding and healing.
Eric Smith (Mathematics, '16) co-authored an original research paper with Veronika Furst, associate professor of Mathematics, that was published in the current issue of Involve: A Journal of Mathematics.
Former art professor Gerald Wells was featured in the Vail Daily for his innovation in computer-based art.
Thirty four FLC students, along with two faculty members, attended the SACNAS (Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science) National Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah on October 19-21, 2017.
Dr. Les Sommerville, Professor, Chemistry, was awarded $18,000 from the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) for “Science Scholars: The Native American Path (SSNAP)” to fund travel expenses for 30 Native American STEM students from FLC to attend the 2016 SACNAS National Conference.
Dr. Ryan Smith, Associate Professor, Physics / Engineering, received $29,900 from the Animas La Plata Project to produce a full bathymetric model of Lake Nighthorse in Durango, Colorado.
Dr. Megan Paciaroni, Associate Professor, Physics/Engineering, received $639,294 over two years from the National Science Foundation Major Research Instrumentation program for “Acquisition of an Amplified Ultrashort Pulse Laser for Imaging and Spectroscopy.”
Dr. Ross McCauley, Associate Professor, Biology, received $58,674 over 4 years from the National Science Foundation for “Digitization TCN: Collaborative Research: Using Herbarium Data To Document Plant Niches In The High Peaks And High Plains Of The Southern Rockies: Past, Present, And Future” as a research subaward with the University of Colorado, Boulder.
Dr. Kristine Greer, Associate Dean, Professor, Teacher Education, received $221,840 over four years from the U.S. Department of Education Office of Postsecondary Education for “Childcare Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) 2017” to provide wrap-around, before and after school services and cover gaps in tuition funding for low-income, Pell grant qualitied student-parents with children ages 1-5 at the Center.
Dr. Kristine Greer, Associate Dean, Professor, Teacher Education, received $19,000 from the Colorado Department of Education for the “Race To The Top Early Learning Challenge Fund Scholarships” to fund scholarships for students with declared majors in early childhood education.