Seattle Pacific University - Parents and Families In the Loop
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February 2011 | Volume 5, Issue 2

How to Inspire Students? Collaborate

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By Jennifer Perrow, Contributing Writer

"When students get excited," says Les Steele, vice president for academic affairs, "they get motivated, they work hard, and they learn deeply."

Such excitement often comes about as a result of academic partnerships at Seattle Pacific University. "Innovation means more than just doing something new," says Steele. "It means collaboration -- between academic departments, between curricular and co-curricular programs, and between students and faculty."

Examples abound. One such collaboration combines SPU's stellar teacher-education programs and cutting-edge science programs in order to prepare better science teachers.

"We know there is a huge need in the world for scientists, engineers, and mathematicians," says SPU President Philip Eaton. "We want to help meet that need, and the strength of our education and science programs makes this new program a perfect fit for us."

Read on and discover other collaborations that are equipping -- and exciting -- students to meet real needs in the world.

Professors 101

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Each year new faculty members join our learning community. From respected scholars to emerging experts in their chosen academic fields, they bring rich ideas and experiences from around the world. But who are these educators who daily challenge and inspire SPU students?

In the latest installment of our series on new faculty, you'll meet Paul Youngbin Kim, assistant professor of psychology, who was born in Korea and raised in the Philippines. He believes his background has prepared him well for a career focused on the intersection of culture and psychology.

You can also read about Assistant Professor of Chemistry Daniel Schofield, originally from New Zealand, who applies molecular modeling to problems in energy storage; and learn about Zhiguo Ye, assistant professor of history, who grew up in China and offers students an expert's perspective on Chinese urbanization.

So why have such stellar scholars come to SPU? Schofield sums it up. "To do [research and teaching] in an environment where I'm actively encouraged to incorporate my Christian faith in the classroom is an opportunity too good to pass up."

Learn more about these and other faculty members.

In the Loop Recommends

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Elementary school teachers in the 21st century need knowledge and skills in multiple academic disciplines, including reading, writing, mathematics, natural sciences, social sciences, the arts, health, and fitness. The Integrated Studies program, a collaboration between SPU's School of Education and SPU's College of Arts and Sciences, better equips teachers to respond to this growing need -- especially for math and science education. Learn more with this video, and watch for updates on other innovative collaborations at SPU.

Read more at In the Loop online.

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How Alert Is SPU?
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In the event of a campus-wide emergency, the SPU Alert system sends email, text, and voice messages about the situation to the University community. But this works only if people are signed up to receive them. During Autumn Quarter 2010, the number of new freshman signed up for alerts dropped to 45 percent (down from 61 percent in 2009). Can you help? Just remind your student to sign up in the Banner Info System, which is available 24/7. Learn more with SPU's Emergency Plan.

Check This Out

Impending Financial Aid Cuts
Washington state student financial aid cuts are in the current budget discussion. Washington state aid includes state need grants, state work-study, the Washington Scholars program, and other state aid. Let your voice be heard if you think these aid programs are important in assisting your student to attend SPU.

Studying Careers?
If your student isn't sure what major to study, encourage him or her to register for GS2001: Major and Career Exploration, a 2-credit course held Spring Quarter. It's designed to help students explore majors, identify natural strengths and interests, and meet people working in a range of careers to learn what options exist for different majors.

Commencement 2011
Do you have a graduating student? Commencement is Sunday, June 12, 2011, 2-5 p.m. at Seattle's Safeco Field. Make sure to check our Commencement 2011 website for all of the details you'll need for this celebration of scholarship, service, and Christian growth.


Upcoming Events

Senior Survival
February 24

Does your graduating senior wonder about the next steps after graduation? Then recommend he or she attends Senior Survival which that answers questions about jobs, finances, and the general transition from college into the "real world." Have your student register at or learn more at the Center for Career and Calling.
Student One-acts
March 1-5

Join SPU's Theatre Department for two "Shakespearean" one-act comedies written by playwright B.T. Ryback and directed by SPU students. In A Roz by Any Other Name, Rosalind and Juliet are pitted against each other for Romeo's love. And in Weird, the three weird sisters from Macbeth are on the lam in Denmark -- to comic effect. Purchase your tickets today.
SPU Dad's Day
April 30

Save the date for this popular springtime gathering for SPU dads and their students. Start with a "Dad's Day Rally" in the morning, explore SPU and downtown Seattle in the afternoon, and end the day with either a Seattle Sounders FC soccer game (vs. Toronto) or SPU's production of the classic play Our Town. Details and registration will be available mid-March at the Parent Council website.


Engaging the Culture, Changing the World

Seattle Pacific UniversityPublished by: Seattle Pacific University, 3307 3rd Ave. W., Seattle, WA 98119-1950, U.S.A.
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