Vol. 20 No. 15 - Dec. 7, 2015


  • Tech Industry Alumnus Returns for Commencement

    Truman alumnus and current Google Product Manager Cody Sumter will be the featured speaker during commencement ceremonies Dec. 12.

    Sumter (’10) is the co-founder of Behavio, a mobile sensing company acquired by Google in 2013. He received his master’s degree from the MIT Media Lab and MIT’s Technology Policy Program, where he worked on using cellphones as a sensor platform to study social dynamics and human behavior — in addition to a project for using Minecraft as a tool to allow easy access to 3D Printing.
    With a computer science degree from Truman, Sumter spent time prior to MIT working with large-scale data visualizations, analytics and web development for projects from bot detection in social networks to hospital sensor analytics.
    While at Truman, Sumter was involved in the astronomy research program, working on and leading several projects at the Truman Observatory and Lowell Observatory studying both Near-Earth asteroids and Delta Scuti stars in eclipsing binary systems. He also served for three years as the student representative on the University’s Board of Governors and now serves on the Truman State University Foundation Board.

    The commencement ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. Dec. 12 in Pershing Arena. Doors open at 9:30 a.m. for seating on a first-come, first-seated basis. A reception will follow the ceremony in the Student Union Building.

    Cody Sumter
  • Truman Organizations Support Food Bank

    Throughout the fall semester, several student organizations have been keeping their philanthropic efforts local by helping to collect food and funds for The Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri.

    Truman has contributed $7,270 in donations that will provide more than 209,050 pounds of food for Adair County. Recently named the Community Partner of the Year, The Food Bank would like to formally thank Truman students for their efforts during the fall semester. A special thank you to the student groups who planned fundraising events benefiting the cause.

    Sponsoring organizations include: Alpha Kappa Lambda, the Center for Student Involvement, Greek Life, the SERVE Center, Lambda Chi Alpha, Nancy Moore’s nutrition class and the Student Athletes Advisory Council (SAAC).

    Two fraternities’ efforts made a big contribution. Alpha Kappa Lambda hosted their annual Halloween Haunted House Oct. 29-Nov. 1 raising $2,326. In addition, Lambda Chi Alpha collected $1,758 from their annual Watermelon Fest.

    The SERVE Center’s hosted its Big Week of Giving Oct. 26-Nov. 1, which consisted of six events taking place both on campus and in the community. Collectively, the Big Week of Giving acquired $1,600 and 1,392 pounds of food.

    Nancy Moore’s nutrition class organized a “Change for Change” campaign that encompassed a series of five events, resulting in $1,000 and 198 pounds of food.

    Sponsored by the Student Athletes Advisory Council (SAAC), a food/fund drive took place Oct. 3, which raised $358 and 153 pounds of food.

    The Center for Student Involvement, Greek Life and the SERVE Center initiated a shaving cream pie fight Oct. 2 and generated $327 and 153 pounds of food.

    Truman’s long-standing partnership with The Food Bank plays an important role in the community each year. The Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri is dedicated to disaster and hunger relief distributing millions of pounds of food annually.

    Ian Rothbarth, AKL president (far right), and Stephen Powers, AKL treasurer (center), present the funds raised from their Haunted House event to Susan Dublin of The Food Bank.

    Students Holly Plackemier (left) and Elizabeth Roe (right) present a check representing the proceeds of the SERVE Center’s Big Week of Giving to Susan Dublin.
  • Fulbright U.K. Summer Institute Program Applications Open

    The U.S.-U.K. Fulbright Commission has opened their applications for the U.K. Summer Institute Award Programs for U.S. undergraduates. 

    The Fulbright U.K. Summer Institute Programs offer students a fantastic opportunity to be immersed in the study of British academics and culture. Students will take part in research, collaboration, presentation and cultural events at an esteemed British university. They will enhance their leadership skills, develop knowledge and understanding of new subjects, and become ambassadors for the United Kingdom and the United States.  

    Students from all areas of study are encouraged to apply. Each summer institute will cover a different theme such as acting at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, the history of the slave trade in England, or the political, social and economic relationships of Northern Ireland. These institutes include:

    AIFS Summer Institute at Shakespeare’s Globe

    Durham University Summer Institute

    King’s College London Summer Institute

    University of Bristol Summer Institute

    University of Exeter Summer Institute

    Queen’s University Belfast

    Scotland Summer Institute

    Wales Summer Institute

    To meet the minimum eligibility, applicants must:
    •    be a U.S. citizen and possess a U.S. passport;
    •    be at least 18 years old;
    •    have a high level of academic achievement with a minimum GPA of 3.7 (confirmed by academic marks, awards and references);
    •    have at least two years of university study upon their return (i.e. applicants should currently be a freshman or sophomore in college/university)
    •    be mature, responsible, independent and open-minded

    The awards will cover the majority of all costs incurred, including flights to and from the U.K., university fees and room and board at the host university.

    There have been two changes made to this year’s application process. Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.7 and all references must be submitted online. Applicants should direct their references to the webpage of their selected institute where they can find the online reference letter form.

    Deadlines for 2016 are Feb. 23 or Feb. 26, depending on the institute. Each program also varies in duration, from three to six weeks. Be sure to check the specific institute page for the particular deadline. 
  • Acorn Art Displayed Around Campus

    As part of a public art project during the fall semester, students in Danielle Yakle’s Introductory to Visual Arts class planned and created the unique acorn pieces featured around campus.
    Their idea was to develop a series of acorn sculptures, each with a different theme and color scheme. The concept stemmed from several projects that have appeared in major cities such as the Cakeway to the West, which was recently installed to celebrate the 250th anniversary of St. Louis.
    Students chose the form of an acorn both as a sign of the fall season and to celebrate the student fascination with the campus squirrel population. Intended to be lighthearted, the class chose to spread the sculptures throughout the campus, encouraging viewers to explore the area beyond their usual commutes and enjoy finding the pieces unexpectedly as they go about their day.
    Each acorn sculpture is approximately two feet tall and attached to a small base. They were constructed with a steel frame covered in concrete and embellished with glass mosaic and paint. The materials were chosen for their ability to withstand outdoor weather and their local availability. While the acorns’ hollow interior helps reduce the weight of each piece, the sculptures weigh between 150 and 200 pounds.



  • Holiday Open House

  • December Graduates Pizza Party

    11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
    Dec. 9
    Student Union Building Georgian Rooms

    December graduates are invited to attend the annual Graduation Pizza Party in their honor. Free pizza, soda and dessert will be available, and all graduates will receive a free gift.

    Those who cannot make the event should stop by the Advancement Office in McClain Hall 205, to pick up their free Truman alumni T-shirt.

    Contact Denise Smith, director of alumni relations, at 785.4174 or dlsmith@truman.edu for more information.

  • Retirement Reception Honoring Alanna Preussner

  • Writing Center Open House

    11 a.m.-1 p.m.

    Dec. 7 and Dec. 8

    McClain Hall 303


    There will be food and games.

    No RSVP necessary

  • Holiday Door Decorating Contest Winner

    The winners of Staff Council’s annual Holiday Door Decorating Contest are the Interfaith Center in first place, the Health and Exercise Sciences Department in second place and Title IX—ICO in third. There were a total of 16 entries this year. A big thank to all the participants and judges. To view the gallery of all submitted doors and participants, click here. To view all the results, click here.
  • Final Exam Week and Interim Hours at the Rec

    Specific areas may be closed for periods of time without advance notice for cleaning and contractor projects.

    Dec. 7-9
    9 a.m.-11 p.m.

    Dec. 10-11
    9 a.m.-7 p.m.

    Dec. 12-13

    Dec. 14-18
    11 a.m.-2 p.m.

    Dec. 19-20


    Dec. 21-22
    11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

    Dec. 23- January 3

  • Bookstore Sale

    Truman’s bookstore is hosting a two-day sale that runs from Dec. 9 through Dec. 10.

  • ROTC Open House

  • KTRM Broadcasts Christmas Music Starting Dec. 14

    To celebrate the holiday season, KTRM-FM will broadcast Christmas music 24/7 beginning Dec. 14 through Dec. 28. Contemporary and traditional holiday favorites can be heard on-air at 88.7 FM and on the Truman Media Network website at tmn.truman.edu. To listen online, click the playback button below “Now Playing.” KTRM student employees spent the fall semester preparing Christmas music files and other recorded material for playback this month. In addition, a special tribute to “Christmas 1945,” produced by faculty adviser, Mark Smith, will be broadcast at 2 p.m. Dec. 23 with encore presentations at 8 p.m. Dec. 24 and at 9 a.m. Christmas Day.
  • Farewell Reception for Mark Gambaiana

  • Teaching Assistantship Program in Austria

    Since 1962, the U.S. Teaching Assistantship Program in Austria has provided U.S. college and university graduates with opportunities to work at secondary schools throughout Austria as teaching assistants.

    U.S. teaching assistants not only enhance the instruction of English as native speakers, but they are also important resources for firsthand information about the United States and the “American way of life.” The Austrian Federal Ministry of Education and Women’s Affairs (BMBF) finances this program, which is administered by Fulbright Austria (Austrian-American Educational Commission). While the participants in this program contribute to the Fulbright goal of promoting mutual understanding, this is not a Fulbright grant program. For information on the Fulbright student program in Austria, please consult the Institute for International Education at us.fulbrightonline.org/ or the website of Fulbright Austria

    For more information about the program, including how to apply, visit the program website at www.usta-austria.at/. Only online applications will be accepted. The application deadline for the program year 2016-17 is Jan. 15.

    Click here to find the program description and download an informative flyer.
  • Make It a Day ON, Not a Day OFF

    Truman’s Multicultural Affairs Center will host the 8th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Collegiate Challenge Jan. 18.

    The goal this year is to help 150 student volunteers make it a day ON, not a day OFF. These students will be divided into teams and go out into the local community and help community partners with projects or “challenges” that they may or may not have the time or resources to complete. The challenges require students to use critical thinking, problem solving and other skills as they address social issues and help the greater Kirksville community. In addition to unifying diverse participants around a service project, students will have the opportunity to reflect upon, honor and celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. King.

    Register online for this event at truservice.truman.edu. For more information, contact Shelby Sims, Center for Student Involvement program advisor, by email or at 660.785.4222.

  • Apply Now for Foundation Study Abroad Scholarships

    The Truman State University Foundation is now accepting 2016 Study Abroad Scholarship applications. Applications are online and are due by midnight on Jan. 25. To apply, log in to TruView, go to the student tab, navigate to student finances and find the Foundation scholarships link.

  • Next Issue

    The next issue of the Truman Today will be available Jan. 11.


  • Notables

    Christopher Outzen, instructor of communication and director of forensics, received the American Forensic Association’s Outstanding Dissertation/Thesis Award for his thesis research. The award, given out annually by the AFA at the National Communication Association convention, recognizes the best dissertation or thesis in the theory and practice of argumentation and forensics. Outzen received the award for his thesis completed as a part of the MFA in communication studies-forensics from Minnesota State University, Mankato, entitled “It’s Not About You: Exploring the Liminal Experiences of Graduate Forensic Coaches.” The research focused on conceptualizing the graduate forensic experience as the liminal space in a rite of passage between forensic competition and forensic coaching.

    Nathan Wikle
    , a mathematics major, along with two other students, were recognized for their work during the 2015 Summer Research Experience at NIMBioS, the National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis. Wikle and his research partners developed the tool, ComFlo, an interactive website that can be used to visualize the domestic transport of most common commodities in the United States. The website is critical in examining domestic transport as invasive species often land unintentionally in new areas via cargo ships, boats, airplanes, automobiles and other modes of transportation. Each student was awarded $1,000 for travel expenses and an invitation to NatureServe EcoInformatics Workshop in Washington, D.C., in December.


Scholarship Opportunities

  • Apply for the Robert L. Gould Scholastic Award

    The Robert L. Gould Scholastic Award is an opportunity for students of all majors to submit a research paper for the chance to win up to $10,000.

    The scholastic award is based on the evaluation of student research papers related to the current year’s topic. Truman is invited to submit up to three student papers for consideration of the award.

    DST Systems, Inc., headquartered in Kansas City, Mo., is sponsoring a $10,000 award for the first place student, $5,000 award for the second place student and $2,500 award for the third place student. Group projects are welcome.

    The School of Business at Truman is also sponsoring awards for the three papers selected for submission to the DST Gould Award Office. The awards are: $500 for the first place paper, $350 for the second place paper and $200 for the third place paper.

    To apply for the Gould Scholastic Award, students must be a University junior, senior or honors program student. Graduate students are not eligible to participate. Group projects are eligible and students of all majors are invited to submit a paper. Students must submit a research paper with appropriate citations and a works cited list. Winning papers have varied in length from seven to 20 pages.

    In spring 2015, the Truman team of Tommy Ng, Julian Fung and Lasse Fuss was awarded the top prize of $10,000 for their paper “Transcending Traditional Service Models with Disruptive Technologies.” Examples of past winning papers are available for review in the School of Business Office in Violette Hall 2400.

    Current year’s topic:
    The concept is the future of financial product(s) and their impact on the financial services ecosystem. Consider the impact technology and innovation will have on the financial services industry over the next 10 years in products offered as well as in the service model expected of a marketplace. The paper should be a pitch and should include the perspective of the issuer of the product and the marketplace, which enabled the transaction and the investor.

    Some examples are:
    •    Private equity is also being offered, purchased and traded on technology platforms at a scale and levels not seen in modern finance through platforms such as Angel List and Reality Mogul.
    •    Banks are seeing the transition in a number of ways, one of which is loan underwriting. Marketplace lending technology platforms like Lending Club and Prosper have attached bank underwriting with technology, which offers an experience and solution to both the borrower and investor.
    Research papers are due by Dec. 14. Papers may be sent to the School of Business at sbdean@truman.edu.
  • Apply for the Morris K. Udall Foundation Scholarships

    The Morris K. Udall Foundation awards undergraduate scholarships to sophomore or junior students who have demonstrated leadership and commitment to public service in areas related to environmental issues on a local, national or global scale. The campus deadline for this nationally competitive scholarship is Jan. 29. To apply, contact Truman’s representative, Maria C. Di Stefano mdistefa@truman.edu. For further information, visit the Udall website.
  • John Lewis Fellowship Program

    The John Lewis Fellowship Program is an opportunity for students and recent graduates of all majors to explore the history of the Civil Rights movement, diversity and minority rights, national identity and the relationship between civil rights and human rights. Participants will attend discussions with renowned scholars and activists, visit historical sites around Atlanta and engage in discussions on a range of political and social issues.

    The 2016 John Lewis Fellowship Program will take place in Atlanta, Ga., from July 5-30.

    Applicants to the Humanity in Action Fellowship must be currently enrolled undergraduate students or recent graduates. For the 2016 Fellowship, recent graduates are defined as individuals from the undergraduate classes of 2014 and 2015 at accredited, four-year undergraduate colleges or universities in the United States. Applicants of minority backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

    All applications are due Jan. 7 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Click here to apply.
  • Humanity in Action Fellowship Program

    The Humanity in Action Fellowship Program is an opportunity for students and recent graduates of all majors to explore Europe’s unique history during World War II and the Holocaust. Key areas include national identity, immigration, racism and political extremism. Each program is interdisciplinary and features lectures and discussions with renowned academics, journalists, politicians and activists, as well as site visits to government agencies, non-profit and community organizations, museums and memorials. The programs seek to highlight different models of action to remedy injustice.

    The Humanity in Action Fellowship programs will take place in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Berlin, Copenhagen, Paris and Warsaw in 2016. The 2016 European program dates for participants from the United States are May 24 through June 26.

    Applicants to the Humanity in Action Fellowship must be currently enrolled undergraduate students or recent graduates. For the 2016 Fellowship, recent graduates are defined as individuals from the undergraduate classes of 2014 and 2015 at accredited, four-year undergraduate colleges or universities in the United States. Applicants of minority backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

    All applications are due Jan. 7 at 11:59 p.m. PST. Click here to apply.
  • Scholarship Opportunities

    Varsity Tutors College Scholarship Contest

    Varsity Tutors hosts a contest each month giving students the chance to win a $1,000 scholarship. For more information, click here.

    The John Foy & Associates Strong Arm Leukemia Scholarship
    This $1,000 scholarship will be awarded to one college student who has battled leukemia or whose life has been affected by it. Visit johnfoy.com/strong-arm-leukemia-scholarship for complete details. The deadline to apply is Dec. 15.

    Elie Weisel Foundation Scholarship

    Applications and information for the Elie Wiesel Foundation Prize in ethics essay contest for 2016 are now available online at ethicsprize.org. Five scholarships ranging from $500-$5,000 will be given away. This scholarship is open to registered undergraduate, full-time juniors and seniors at accredited four-year colleges or universities. Essays must be submitted by Dec. 15 at 5 p.m. Winning students are also eligible for an internship and a chance for their essay to be published in a nationally recognized publication.

    ImproveNet Scholarship
    ImproveNet is challenging students to showcase their DIY skills in new and creative ways. High school seniors accepted to a college or trade school or any student currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree program at any accredited college, university or trade school in the United States are qualified to apply by submitting a 1,000- to 2,000-word essay. Additionally, all participants must be 18 years of age or older and a legal U.S. resident. Students should email their essays to scholarships@improvenet.com. The deadline to apply is Dec. 15.

    Home Advisor Scholarship
    HomeAdvisor is challenging students to break new ground in green home improvement by offering a scholarship every year to one student. High school seniors accepted to a college or trade school, or students currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree program, are qualified to apply by submitting a 1,000- to 2,000-word essay. Students should email their essays to scholarship@homeadvisor.com by Dec. 15.

    Apprentice Ecologist Initiative

    Three scholarships totaling $850 will be awarded annually to the authors of the three best Apprentice Ecologist essays. By registering and submitting an essay, students will automatically be considered for a scholarship. Applicants should embody the spirit of the Apprentice Ecologist Initiative by demonstrating personal leadership, initiative and environmental stewardship in their project. Essays will be judged by a committee of Nicodemus Wilderness Project board members, volunteers and past Apprentice Ecologist award winners. Details for how to submit a project can be found by clicking here. The deadline to apply is Dec. 15. 

    Infoparrot Scholarship
    Infoparrot will offer scholarships of $1,250 for educational expenses. For more information, or to apply, click here.

    Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri Scholarships
    Scholarships are available through Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri, Inc., for the 2015-2016 academic year. Last year they awarded more than $14,000 in scholarships to Missouri students. Two students selected by the Federated Garden Clubs of Missouri will be submitted to Central Region as an applicant and to National Garden Clubs Inc. as a Missouri applicant, and will compete for a Central Region and National Scholarship. The scholarship application is available online at gardenclub.org/scholarships. The deadline to apply is Feb. 1.

    Greater Kansas City Community Foundation

    The Greater Kansas City Community Foundation has more than 100 scholarship funds available to students living in the Kansas City metropolitan area. The purpose of the scholarship funds housed at the Community Foundation vary widely from providing aid to students demonstrating financial need to those intending to major in a specific field of study. Students are encouraged to apply in January after fall transcripts are available. Most application deadlines occur between February and April.  For more information, go to www.growyourgiving.org/scholarships.

    Rover Scholarship

    Rover.com is a one-stop shop for loving and trustworthy dog sitters. Rover connects pet parents with loving dog sitters across the country. This would not be possible without the rapid growth of the sharing economy. Take a survey and submit a 400- to 500-word essay discussing the emergence of a sharing economy in the next five years. For more information on how to apply, click here.

    Seed Grand Project Application
    The IUCN SSC Amphibian Specialist Group (ASG) is a network of more than 500 of the world’s leading amphibian experts providing scientific guidance to enable conservation actions to be prioritized and implemented by the Amphibian Survival Alliance (ASA), a partnership of more than 100 organizations committed to amphibian conservation worldwide. Seed grants are normally provided in amounts ranging from $500-$1,000 and are designed to help kickstart projects or allow teams to try new innovative approaches to address conservation, research and education challenges. For more information, click here

    B. Davis Scholarship

    The creators of the “Student Award Search Aid” website are offering a B. Davis Scholarship for $1000 scholarship for 2016. Visit their website at www.studentawardsearch.com/scholarships.htm to read more about how to apply for this scholarship and browse through the rest of their site to learn about applying for other scholarships. The deadline to submit an application for the B. Davis Scholarship is May 23.

    Personality Type Scholarship 2015
    Typology Central, a personality type indicator community, is offering a scholarship to both graduate and undergraduate Truman students. The scholarship was created to provide educational opportunities for individuals interested in the study of personality type theory and practical application of those systems. The deadline is June 3. For more information, click here.

    Scholarships Available for Veterans
    To learn more about scholarships offered to veterans, click here.