Vukotich Helps Lead Bystander Intervention Training

Assistant Professor George Vukotich

This past summer, George Vukotich, Assistant Professor in the Graduate Program in Training and Development, was selected by the United States Air Force Air National Guard to help in the distribution of Sexual Assault Bystander Intervention Training. Vukotich had over 700 people in his sessions, which focused on training, prevention, and assistance. Eventually, the Airforce-wide training will reach more than 300,000 individuals. Carl Buchanon, one of the program managers, stated that the training goals were to “recognize situations that may lead to sexual assault, offer an array of available intervention strategies and an opportunity to practice them, and offer bystander intervention techniques.” Vukotich added that sexual assaults in the military are highest in units under high stress levels and that often alcohol plays a role in increasing the likelihood of sexual assaults in a unit. Additionally, Vukotich shared that “the highest increase in sexual assaults is male-on-male assaults, and often one perpetrator will have a number of victims.” However, the hope is that through this type of training, all sexual assaults in the military will decrease. Vukotich plans to write about his experiences in a future article.

Paralegal Studies Graduate Publishes Second Novel

Marilyn Jax, courtesy of her website.

Marilyn Jax, a graduate of of Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota, and a 1979 Honors graduate of the Roosevelt University Paralegal Studies program, recently published her second murder mystery novel, entitled Road to Omalos. After graduating from the Paralegal Studies program with a specialization in litigation, Jax worked as a paralegal at a law firm in St. Paul. She then secured a job as a government enforcement investigator–a career that lasted for close to twenty years during which she also became a Certified Fraud Examiner. She is now retired and pursuing her dream of writing, while splitting her time between Minnesota, Florida, Montana, and the Caribbean. Jax’s first book was The Find, published in 2007, and earned six national book awards, including “Best New Fiction” and “Best Mystery/Suspense/Thriller.” For more information about her books or upcoming author events, visit her website.

Jax's new book, Road to Omalos, now available.

Brown and Orr Co-Author Journal Article about Women in Organization Development

Carol B. Brown, Assistant Professor of Hospitality Management, and Debra Orr, Assistant Professor of Organizational Leadership, recently co-authored  an article entitled “Influential DNA: A Study of Prominent Women and their Impact on the Field of Organization Development,” which was published in the Fall 2010 issue of Organization Development Journal. ODJ is produced by the Organization Development Institute. Brown and Orr’s article discusses how women have affected the field of organization development and shares seven themes about the historical progress and influence of female scholars and practitioners in that field. Dr. Donald W. Cole, a charter member of the Organization Development Network, shares that “A recent study found that The Organization Development Journal is now the most frequently cited O.D. publication in the world.”

Online Teaching Forum Proceedings Available

Assistant Professor Deb Orr actively took notes during the college’s first Online Teaching Forum and then generated these Session Proceedings, which briefly capture each presentation within the three sessions, as well as individual Q & A afterwards. Some presenters also shared helpful info via examples, a Powerpoint presentation, or their websites (below).

Session 1: Enhancing Teaching via New Applications

Vince Cyboran: Using ‘Screenr’ to Create Video Podcasts and Using Blackboard to Display the ‘Casts

Amanda Putnam: Enhancing Online Teaching with Jing

Session 2: Best Practices: Student Engagement and Communication

Kathy Iverson: Learning Contract, Learning Activity Report , sample Learning Activity Report, and Learning Activity Report rubric

Jennifer Sarno: examples of her “Words of Encouragement”

Tammy Oberg De La Garza: Building Community with Learners, and her FAQ for using YouTube within her classroom (students recording and uploading)

Session 3: Confronting ‘You Can’t Do That Online’

Carl Zimring, Mike Bryson, Maris Cooke: Field Trip Experiences in Online Courses

Mike Bryson: Chicago_River_Ecology

Vince Cyboran: Using Guest Speakers in a Fully Online, Asynchronous Course

Tana McCoy: Rapping with Offenders: The Use of Chat to Facilitate a Synchronous Interaction between Students and a Former Skinhead

New Online Teaching Certificate Offered

The Graduate Program in Training and Development is offering a new Graduate Certificate in Online Teaching. The first class is being offered this fall fully online: Online Teaching Theory and Application (TRDV 501), taught by Associate Professor Vince Cyboran. Contact Tara Hawkins, Coordinator for Training and Development, for more information or to learn which courses will be offered in the spring and summer.

Buckley Tours Theodore Roosevelt National Park


Associate Professor Gregory Buckley at Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

Associate Professor Gregory Buckley spent part of August in and around Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota.  The purpose of the visit was to assess and document some of the resource management issues faced by the National Park Service in this particular  park, in preparation for Buckley’s teaching a special topics course in Sustainability Studies (SUST 390, Sustainability of the National Parks)  in Schaumburg next May. The course plans to have a field component, with students traveling to a national park.

“America’s National Park System as a whole has always been presented with a unique challenge–to find a balance between the conservation of these national treasures and the use and enjoyment of them by the public.  Theodore Roosevelt National Park faces a number of critical challenges in the immediate and not too distant future, including wildlife management, industrial and agricultural pollution of the air and water, and threats from invasive vegetation,” says Buckley.

Oil and gas wells surround Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Theodore Roosevelt National Park will be adopting the practice of reducing the size of the elk population this fall using small teams of volunteer hunters, a first for this particular park.  Buckley continues, “While hunting is strictly forbidden within most of the National Parks, some remedy for an explosive population growth of elk, bison and other grazers, in the absence of natural predators, must be imposed.  For a number of very logical reasons, this was determined to be the most reasonable approach for controlling an elk herd that has expanded from 47 animals in 1985 to over 1000 today.  The sustainability of this particular ecosystem depends on this type of management.”

If you are interested in participating in the Sustainability Studies special topics course on national parks, contact Professor Buckley for more information.

First Online Teaching Forum a Success

Associate Professor Mike Bryson explains field trips that his online courses have taken.

RU’s first Online Teaching Forum was held by the College of Professional Studies last Thursday and was a great success. About 25 faculty members, both part-time and full-time, along with many staff members also involved in online teaching, attended the event. There were three different sessions which had a myriad of topics: new technology, positive professor-student communication ideas, and innovative teaching ideas (such as incorporating field trips and guest speakers within the online experience). Specifics of each session will be posted soon via an online proceedings so that those unable to attend can also benefit.

Assistant Professor Tana McCoy explains how she incorporated a chat between her online Criminal Justice students and a former gang member.

Part-time faculty member Jennifer Sarno shared the benefits of offering weekly "words of encouragement" to her online students.