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Summer 2011, Vol. 14, No. 3
Around the Quad

QUOTE from Larry Rigdon, a 1970 Truman alumnus and successful entrepreneur, from the Commencement address he presented to Truman’s graduating class during the ceremonies at Stokes Stadium on May 7, 2011.

“The natural corollary to the need for lifetime learning is the need to deal effectively with change.  While change is inevitable, people deal with it in different ways and with varying degrees of success. Every change creates challenges and every change creates opportunity. The key is to look for the opportunity that change is creating and to move to capture that opportunity.  Focusing on the challenges that change brings only cause worry and inaction.”

Larry Rigdon

Pershing Renovation and Expansion

  New Wing Added to Pershing
  PHOTO ABOVE: The new wing added to the Pershing Building houses the Communication Disorders and Nursing Departments as well as Health and Exercise Science labs and training facilities. A sky bridge and a tunnel connect the new building with the original part of the Pershing Building.

Major improvements recently made to the Pershing Building include renovations to the south end of the existing building and new construction of an approximately 34,000-square-foot addition on the east side. The original plan called for renovation of the entire Pershing Building, but due to cuts in state funding, the project was reduced to the remodeling of the south half of the building and the new Health Sciences addition with plans to renovate the north section of the Pershing Building at a future date.


New Weight Room   Natatorium    
PHOTO ABOVE: A new fitness and athletic weight training area is located between the natatorium and Pershing Arena in the space formerly occupied by the racquet-ball courts.   PHOTO ABOVE: A wall of windows and new lighting were added to the Natatorium in addition to a new air-conditioning and ventilation system.    

Four for Four

Luerding Siblings
L-R: Lauren, Victor, Hannah and Nickolas

The Luerding siblings from Kansas City, Mo., have plenty of family ties on the Truman campus as all four are currently attending the University. Nickolas picked Truman first and started in the fall of 2008 with plans to graduate next year. He was followed by Hannah who came to Truman in 2009 and Lauren who transferred to Truman that same year. Victor, the youngest, joined his brother and sisters when he entered the University in the fall of 2010.

Since Nickolas has been on campus the longest, he mentors his siblings by assisting with their class selections and letting them know which professors he has enjoyed the most. “It’s fun going to school with my siblings because I’m a very competitive intramural participant, and my favorite sport is soccer,” says Nickolas. “Our whole family grew up playing soccer so having them at my school makes it easy to come up with a good intramural team.”

Nickolas, Lauren and Victor all play on the same coed IM team, and Hannah plays on the Truman women’s soccer team.

Children's Literature Festival

Children's Literature FestivalThis past April, nearly 1,400 students from 16 northeast Missouri schools attended the Children’s Literature Festival, an event held on the Truman campus designed to stimulate an interest in reading and literature among young students. This annual festival provides an opportunity for children from the northeast Missouri region in grades 4-6 to meet and interact with authors and illustrators from around the country.

“We get a lot of positive feedback about the festival from the teachers and students attending as well as the authors presenting,” says Sharon Hackney, media/curriculum librarian at Pickler Memorial Library, who serves as a co-chair for the event. “The festival has been around long enough now that some of the area parents attended the festival as children and recall that it was a positive experience for them.”

A committee, which includes two school librarians from area schools, stays current on the authors and genres of literature that young people are reading to help determine which authors are invited to participate in the event. In addition, Truman students, primarily from the children’s literature classes, assist with the festival. Prior to the event, the Truman students visit area schools to talk about books and authors that will be featured at the festival. On the day of the festival, the students introduce the authors at each presentation and assist throughout the day.

During this year’s event, the fourth-, fifth and sixth-grade students had an opportunity to meet with 11 visiting authors and illustrators and ask them about how their work was created and came to be published. The festival highlighted the work of Francisco Alarcón, Darleen Bailey Beard, Carmen Bernier-Grand, Janet Lee Carey, Dianne Gray, Ard Hoyt, Lynne Jonell, A. LaFaye, Laurie Lawlor, Anna Myers and N. A. Nelson.

The festival is sponsored by Pickler Memorial Library with financial support from the Travis W. and Lu Freeman Foundation. The festival was an annual event for 21 years until 2004 when it was discontinued due to severe budget cuts. In 2007, a Children’s Literature Festival Fund was created through the Truman State University Foundation in an effort to bring the festival back, and two years later, the event began taking place on the Truman campus once again. In 2011, the Freeman Foundation made another gift of $60,000 to provide funding for the festival for the next three years. For the past two years, the event has also received grants from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the Missouri State Library, a Division of the Office of the Secretary of State.

The next Children’s Literature Festival will be held Friday, April 20, 2012. For more information on the Festival, visit http://library.

TSUP Celebrates 25 Years of Publishing

TSUP Celebrates 25 YearsTruman State University Press will host several recently published authors and T. S. Eliot Prize poets during 2011-12 for special campus events to celebrate 25 years of publishing.

Clifton Truman Daniel, the oldest grandson of former U.S. President Harry S. Truman will speak about his famous, but very ordinary, grandparents on Sept. 16, 2011, in Baldwin Hall. His new book, Dear Harry, Love Bess, published by Truman State University Press, will be available to purchase and sign.

Jason Haxton, director at A.T. Still University Museum and author of his new book, The Dibbuk Box, will speak Nov. 8, 2011, about how he came to own the mysterious cabinet that is said to be possessed by a spirit. As he carefully investigated and recorded everything he could about this unusual item, he discovered far more than he bargained for.

Three T. S. Eliot Prize winners, Rhina Espaillat, Dean Rader and Mona Lisa Saloy, will be on campus to visit literature classes, participate in a panel discussion about the craft of poetry, read from their prizewinning books and sign books on March 29, 2012.

The Press was established in 1986 with support from the University and now publishes 15 books annually in American studies, early modern studies and poetry. The Press employs four staff, three scholarship students and offers six publishing internships each year.

The Truman State University Press anniversary events are open to the public. For more details, visit

Iris Flower Walter Ryle and President Troy Paino
  Walt Ryle IV (on left), shown with President Troy D. Paino, near some of the irises that Ryle hybridized as a young boy.

Purple Landscape

Some of the flowers found around the Truman campus were cultivated by Walter Ryle IV (’54, ’56), who retired as Truman’s director of athletics in 1999. As a young boy, his father, the late Walter H. Ryle III, who served as University president from 1937-1967, taught him how to hybridize and grow irises. During the ’50s and ’60s, President Ryle transplanted many of the irises around the Truman campus, including one named Napoleon that was cultivated by his son.

Truman Institute Introduces Online Graduate Certificate Programs

Beginning in June 2011, the Truman Institute began offering the first of its fully-online graduate certificate programs aimed at supporting alumni with their careers and offering new extended education opportunities for professionals in Missouri and beyond. The program started off with the Managerial Foundations Certificate, which is designed to enable students who did not earn undergraduate degrees in business or accountancy to develop experience in management and finance necessary to move up in leadership in their current professions.

In August the Institute will introduce a certificate program in Sustainability and Environmental Studies, offering students an opportunity to better position themselves for jobs and new leadership positions in the green economy. In 2012, the final two certificate programs will be unveiled – one in Computer Security and another in Ada Programming Language. These latter two programs will be aimed at helping professionals meet increasing demand for improved security and skilled programming in industries such as banking and aerospace, among others.

All four programs are designed to be completed in about one year. They are fully online, accelerated and affordable when compared to similar programs offered elsewhere in the marketplace. Some employers may consider these programs for tuition reimbursement or remission. Boeing employees are already eligible to receive employer financial support for these programs.

For more information, contact the Truman Institute at (660) 785-5384 or visit Patrick Barney, a recent Truman graduate, spent last summer at Kansas State University researching a technique for the early detection of cancer. He discovered this opportunity through David McCurdy, professor of chemistry, with whom he had done research work since his sophomore year. A Kansas State University alumnus, McCurdy recommended Barney to Christopher Culbertson of the school’s Chemistry Department. Culbertson has a history of working with Truman students, including five past graduates.

Barney worked alongside graduate students for 10 weeks in Culbertson’s lab developing the cancer-detecting technique. “Dr. Culbertson’s lab uses devices that can analyze one cell at a time, and the hope is to incorporate that technique into blood screenings in clinics that can be used to detect cancerous cells in the body,” Barney said.

Bringing back an expanded knowledge of laboratory instruments and techniques to his last year of Truman was beneficial for Barney. “I feel like I gained so much knowledge from that 10 weeks of non-stop working in the laboratory,” said Barney, who encourages other science students to discover the research opportunities they can
pursue as undergraduates.

Family DayTruman State University
Family Day: Sept. 17, 2011

Fri., Sept. 16
Clifton Truman Daniel,
the oldest grandson of former U.S. President Harry S. Truman will speak about his famous, but very ordinary, grandparents. His new book, Dear Harry, Love Bess, published by Truman State University Press, will be available for purchase, and the author will sign books at the conclusion of the talk; 7:30 p.m., Baldwin Auditorium

Sat., Sept. 17
Truman Baseball Scrimmage

10 a.m., Truman Baseball Field

Library Tours
10 a.m.-Noon, Pickler Memorial Library. Tours will begin every 10 minutes.

Truman Art Gallery Faculty Exhibits
Noon to 4:30 p.m., Ophelia Parrish

Women’s Volleyball vs. Emporia State University
1 p.m., Pershing Arena

Annual Festival Centennial
1-4 p.m., Centennial Hall Courtyard. Free food, games, contests and music.

Student Activities Board Presents: Jeff Civillico-Juggler and Comedian
4 p.m., Baldwin Auditorium. Tickets are available for students to pick up at the SAB Office in the Student Union Building several weeks before the performance as well as the day of the performance. Admission is free with a Truman ID. General admission tickets will be available the day of the event for a nominal fee.

5-6:30 p.m. Student Union Mall (Rain site: Student Union)
Seating is very limited so we encourage you to bring your chair or blanket. $8.50 per person*; Tickets must be purchased in advance and can be purchased online at *If a Truman student has a meal plan, they do NOT have to purchase a meal ticket.
*Tickets will not be mailed. PARENTS: After you send your payment, please have your son or daughter stop by the Public Relations Office in McClain Hall 202 to pick up your tickets. Confirmation of reservation will be sent by email upon receipt of payment.

Bulldog Football vs. Pittsburg State University
7 p.m., Stokes Stadium; general admission tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for senior citizens and those ages 5-17/children age five and under admitted free. Reserved seating is $8. Admission is free to students with a Truman ID and Truman alumni chapters members (bring your membership card). Tickets may be purchased online at For more information, contact the Athletics Box Office at (660) 785-4235.

Sat., Sept. 17

Red Barn Arts & Crafts Festival
9 a.m.-4 p.m., downtown Kirksville. The festival includes an antiques show in the Kirksville Arts Center, 117 S. Franklin. For more information, visit

A printed brochure will not be mailed to parents. Please use our website


 to sign up for the barbecue or purchase tickets for the football game. All updates to the schedule will also be posted on the website. For information, visit or call Truman’s Public Relations Office at (660) 785-4016.

Getting the Most for your College Buck

National publications continue to rank Truman State University among the nation’s best values when it comes to higher education. In the June 2011 issue, Consumers Digest rated Truman No. 1 on its list of “Top 50 Values for Public Colleges and Universities.” Truman was one of some 2,000 colleges and universities that offer four-year degrees examined by the publication since October 2010 for its exclusive report on the “Top 100 College Values.” Separate top 25 lists for private schools and private liberal-arts schools were combined to establish the top 100 schools. Not only was Truman the No. 1 public school overall, it was one of only two Missouri schools on the public list. The University of Missouri-Columbia came in at No. 40.

According to Consumers Digest editor, Rick Dzierwa, their primary purpose for researching colleges and universities and publishing their “Best Values” lists is to help parents and students make a smart choice when they evaluate their post-high school education options. Among the criteria used to evaluate the schools, Consumers Digest looked at students’ academic excellence based on standardized test scores, high-school rank and the grade-point average of entering freshmen, as well as the quality of education offered as indicated by the student-to-faculty ratio, the four- and six-year graduation rates, the student retention rate and the percentage of faculty who have a doctorate or terminal degree, to compile a Value Index score for each institution. That Value Index score and the estimated cost of attending each college for the 2008-2009 academic year were then applied to a formula to determine which schools offered the most academic value per dollar.

Truman’s ranking is even more remarkable when considering that Consumers Digest calculated its rankings using only nonresident tuition figures because the editors noted attending a public school in-state almost always provides the best value per dollar. Even using the higher out-of-state rate, Truman’s annual cost of $18,438, which includes tuition, fees and room and board, was well below the average annual cost of $26,344 for Consumer Digest’s top public colleges and universities. Also, acceptance rate and selectivity, two traditional hallmarks of the University, were not even considered as a measure of academic excellence. Truman was also named as one of the nation’s 50 “Best Value” public colleges and universities according to The Princeton Review, which teamed up with USA Today to present “The Princeton Review Best Value Colleges for 2011.” Truman is the only Missouri public university to make the list which features 100 schools in all—50 public and 50 private colleges and universities.

The Princeton Review chose the schools listed on its “Best Value Colleges for 2011” based on criteria covering academics, cost of attendance and financial aid. The methodology examined more than 30 factors using data from the company’s surveys of administrators and students at 650 colleges with strong academic programs. Most of the data analyzed came from surveys conducted from fall 2009 through fall 2010; all cost and financial aid data came from fall 2010 surveys.

“The faculty, staff and students at Truman State University have an incredibly strong sense of a common mission and that is to put our students first and make their education enriching and affordable,” said University President Troy D. Paino. “I believe that is why we have accomplished so much at Truman, and it is always nice to have an outside source
acknowledge our hard work.”

Residence Halls Make 'Splash'

Residence HallsThanks in large part to a comprehensive plan to enhance campus housing that was launched with the opening of West Campus Suites in 2006, Truman has earned a place on a new ranking that is based on student reviews. CampusSplash included Truman on its list of “14 Schools with the Best Overall Dorms,” earning the University a Dormy Award for 2010-2011.The list, released in March by USA Today College, was based on more than 7,100 reviews submitted from across the country. Truman was ranked No. 14. Blanton-Nason-Brewer and Campbell Apartments tied for the highest ratings with a score of 4.3 out of 5.

“Our staff works exceptionally hard to provide an outstanding experience for each of the residents in our halls, and we are committed to continually improving our experience for our students, and what this award shows, and our other assessment data, is that students are enjoying their experience,” said John Gardner, director of residence life. “Th fact that this award is based on student feedback is an added bonus because it reflects the actual experience residents are having, not something that is evaluated by an outside entity; we are pleased to be included on this list and hope to be No. 1 next year.”

This is the first year for the Dormy Awards, which are handed out by the newly created, a dorm review website and part of the CampusSplash network. Students rate rooms in categories including room size, cleanliness and location.

Since 2006, Missouri Hall, Campbell Apartments, Blanton-Nason-Brewer Hall and Dobson Hall have all undergone renovation. Currently under renovation, Ryle Hall is scheduled to be completed for Fall 2011. Photos tours of the residence halls are available online at

Working at the UN

Sarrah ElmoumouhiSarrah Elmoumouhi, senior Middle Eastern studies major and political science minor, has been accepted for a two-month summer internship at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City, in the Department for General Assembly and Conference Management of the Office of the Under-Secretary-General. Elmoumouhi originally learned about this opportunity from an on-campus presentation in October of 2010 by Igor Shpiniov from the Department for General Assembly and Conference Management (DGACM) at the United Nations. Shpiniov encouraged her to apply for the highly selective summer language internship, which led to an interview with the DGACM.

“Primarily, as an intern, I will be assigned to the Training and Outreach Coordination Team, which is part of the Office of the Under-Secretary-General, Department for General Assembly and Conference Management, New York,” says Elmoumouhi. “My main assignments will include providing administrative support for training and outreach, translating portions of the Language Outreach Portal from English into Arabic and/or French, and attending meetings and conferences at the United Nations.”

At Truman, Sarrah also teaches Arabic in the Department of Classical and Modern Languages and works as a peer advisor and mock interviewer in the University’s Career Center.

Recipes from Around the World

Recipe BookThe 61st Annual International Dinner showcased 20 entrees and eight performances from 13 different countries including Japan, France, South Korea, Nepal, Gambia and Latin American countries. International students worked in teams to prepare the dishes served at this popular dinner held on the Truman campus each year.

Among the most popular dishes was one called Tres Leches which was voted “Best Dessert.” To fi nd the recipe for Tres Leches, along with recipes for the other dishes served at the International Dinner, download a copy of the 2011 International Dinner Cookbook at

Poetry Manuscript Awarded T. S. Eliot Prize

The Truman State University Press has awarded B. K. Fischer of Sleepy Hollow, N.Y., the 2011 T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry. Fischer’s winning poetry collection, “Mutiny Gallery,” was selected from more than 400 manuscripts in the 15th annual competition. As part of the award, Fischer receives $2,000 and publication of her book, which is scheduled for Fall 2011.

“I enjoyed the poems’ combination of cleverness, wittiness and innovative technique, for which one usually pays a price: a draining away of heart,” said Tony Barnstone, this year’s judge. “Not in this case—these poems all have heart, big heart.”

Fischer currently teaches at the Hudson Valley Writers’ Center in Sleepy Hollow. Her poetry has been published in numerous journals, and she has published an interdisciplinary study, Museum Mediations. Four finalists were also named: Karina Borowicz, Belchertown, Mass.; George Looney, Erie, Pa.; Mary Quade, Madison, Ohio; and Katy Didden, Columbia, Mo.

The prize, established in 1996 in honor of Missouri native T. S. Eliot, is awarded annually for the best unpublished book-length collection of poetry.

Campus Crime Lab Closes

After years of service to area law enforcement, the Northeast Missouri Criminalistics Laboratory, located in Barnett Hall, closed on June 30, 2011. This closure was a result of Truman State University’s need to cut costs in response to decreasing state appropriations.

Including reductions from the FY 2011 budget as well as proposed reductions in the FY 2012 state budget, Truman’s state support is down about $5.5 million, which will be below state funding levels of FY 1999. The lab had provided free forensic services to northeast Missouri law enforcement agencies since Matt Eichor, professor emeritus of chemistry and director emeritus of justice systems, established it in 1973. The primary services provided by the lab included chemical analysis of drugs, fingerprint development and comparison and firearms examination.

Visit Truman

IF YOU KNOW A STUDENT who might be interested in attending Truman State University, please invite them to bring their families and spend a day getting to know campus. They can schedule a personalized visit or attend one of the Truman Showcase events offered throughout the academic year. Individual campus visits can be scheduled by using the online Campus Visit Request Form, calling our campus visit coordinator at (660) 785-4135 or emailing For more information, visit


Truman Review magazine
Published by Office of Advancement, Truman State University,
McClain Hall 205, 100 E. Normal Ave., Kirksville, Missouri 63501;
Copyright © Truman State University 2010.