OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

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Auditions for OSU’s production of ‘Dolly West’ to be held Feb. 22-24

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Auditions for Oregon State University Theatre’s spring production of “Dolly West’s Kitchen” by Frank McGuinness will be held at 6:30 p.m. each night Feb. 22-24 in the Withycombe Hall Main Stage Theatre, 2901 S.W. Campus Way, Corvallis.

The play, set in a small Irish town during World War II, tells the story of a family that faces personal conflicts when allied troops cross the border and enter their home.

Those auditioning are asked to prepare a two- to three-minute monologue. Auditions will also consist of cold readings from the script. There are roles available for three women and five men; the role of Rima has already been cast.

Scripts are available for check-out to read from the Theatre Arts office in Withycombe Hall 141. Auditions are open to all OSU students, faculty and staff and to the community. Performances will run May 7-9 and May 15-17.

For more information contact the director, Jade McCutcheon, at jrmcreative@gmail.com.

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OSU President Ray to chair national AAC&U board

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University President Edward J. Ray has been elected chair of the Association of American Colleges and Universities board of directors. The organization is the leading national association dealing with the quality and public understanding of undergraduate liberal education.

Founded in 1915, the association has more than 1,300 member institutions, including accredited public and private colleges, research universities, community colleges and other institutions. Among its goals are to advance liberal education as a global necessity, increase the value of college degrees in the United States, improve student success and promote innovation, and develop social responsibility.

Ray has been president of OSU since July 31, 2003. Under his leadership, Oregon State developed its first comprehensive strategic plan, launched a campaign that successfully raised more than $1.1 billion, put a plan in place to transform the OSU-Cascades campus in Bend into a four-year branch campus, and experienced a remarkable growth in enrollment, research funding, and private support.

The university recently announced plans to launch a Marine Studies Initiative that would significantly broaden OSU’s research, education and outreach opportunities and impact for ocean-related issues and their impacts on ocean health and coastal communities. Plans call for providing education opportunities for some 500 students at Oregon State’s Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport by 2025.

Ray serves on the board of directors of the American Council on Education and the Association of Public and Land Grant Universities. Before coming to Oregon State, he was a faculty member and administrator at The Ohio State University for more than 30 years, serving as executive vice president and provost from 1998 to 2003.

The OSU president succeeds Ken Ruscio, president of Washington and Lee University, chaired the  AAC&U board in 2014.

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Steve Clark, 541-737-3808; steve.clark@oregonstate.edu

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OSU President Ed Ray

OSU names Karplus, Lewis as 2015 Distinguished Professors

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University has named Andrew Karplus and Jon Lewis as its 2015 Distinguished Professor recipients – the highest honor the university can give to faculty members.

They will carry the title as long as they are actively engaged as faculty members  at Oregon State.

“Andy Karplus and Jon Lewis exemplify excellence, collaboration and leadership,” said Sabah Randhawa, OSU provost and executive vice president. “In addition to making significant contributions in their respective fields, they are constantly engaging and challenging students and providing them with experiential learning opportunities. They also are caring mentors – to newer faculty as well as students.”

Karplus is a professor in the College of Science, where he has earned a reputation as one of the best structural biologists in the world – a description cited in his selection as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2014. His research, which focuses on enzyme catalysis, protein evolution and structure, and crystallography, has been cited more than 15,000 times by other scientists.

He is known for his high standards in teaching, yet consistently gets top ratings from student evaluators. Karplus teaches a range of courses, from core offerings in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, to a course on protein evolution – his department’s most influential advanced elective.

Karplus also has been praised for his work as an academic adviser, research mentor and collaborator.

An OSU faculty member since 1999, Karplus has received numerous awards include a National Research Service Award from the National Institutes of Health, three Alexander von Humboldt fellowships, and a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Lewis is a professor in the College of Liberal Arts who has written a dozen books on film studies, including two new books coming out this summer. He also is the editor of a ground-breaking 10-volume series of academic books on the history of the U.S. film craft that was underwritten by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

He has been editor and advisory board member for the field’s leading peer-reviewed academic journal – the Cinema Journal – and has served as a juror for the American Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences in the student film category. Lewis excels at taking students behind the scenes of the film industry and was executive producer for a video production series on major figures in the U.S. industry.

An OSU faculty member since 1983, Lewis has received numerous awards for his books, including the New York Times New and Noteworthy Paperback for “Hollywood v. Hard Core”; the Booklist Medal for “For Whom God Wishes to Destroy” and the Choice Outstanding Academic Book Award for “Romance and Ruin.”

Both professors will give public lectures on campus this May 21 on topics related to their expertise.

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Sabah Randhawa, 541-737-2111; sabah.randhawa@oregonstate.edu

OSU Theatre to present ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University Theatre will present “The Diary of Anne Frank,” Feb. 12-14 and Feb. 20-22 in the Withycombe Hall Main Stage theater, 2901 S.W. Campus Way, Corvallis.

The theatrical adaptation of Anne Frank’s diary, by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett and newly adapted by Wendy Kesselman, chronicles the true story of Anne’s time in hiding during the Nazi occupation of Holland.

Anne was a clever, creative, and spirited 13-year-old girl when she, her family, and four other Jews were forced to go into hiding in a secret annex behind her father’s office building in the heart of Amsterdam in 1942. She turned to her diary as a source of comfort and inspiration.

The diary was first published in 1947 as “Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl.” It inspired a Pulitzer Prize-winning stage adaptation and an Academy-Award winning film.

The OSU production is directed by Theatre Arts faculty member Elizabeth Helman and features an original score composed by Oregon State University students.

“This is such an important story; it reminds us of the complexity and fragility of human life,” Helman said. “Each character in this play really lived, suffered, and died because of intolerance and racism. Genocide still happens all over the world. We can’t forget that.”

The cast features OSU students Daniel Barber as Otto; Elise Barberis as Margot; Burke DaBoer as the officer; Emily Gassaway as Miep; Brian Greer as Peter; Diana Jepsen as Edith; Annie Parham as Anne; Alex Small as Mr. VanDaan; Sarah Sutton as Mrs. VanDaan; Cory Warren as a man; and Joseph Workman as Mr. Dussel. Corvallis community member Ricky Zipp joins the cast as Mr. Kraler.

Shows begin at 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 12-14 and Feb. 20-21, with a matinee beginning at 2 p.m. Feb. 22. Tickets are $12; $10 for seniors; $8 youth/student; and $5 for OSU students. They can be purchased online at http://bit.ly/1wgmTkJ  or by calling the box office at 541-737-2784. Contact the box office for disability accommodations, faculty/staff discounts or group ticket sales.

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OSU’s Center for Healthy Aging Research seeks volunteers for research registry

CORVALLIS, Ore. – The Center for Healthy Aging Research at Oregon State University is recruiting volunteers to join a registry for possible participation in future studies related to the health and well-being of middle-aged and older adults.

People age 50 and older who live in Oregon are invited to sign up for the LIFE Registry. Those who join the registry will receive information about opportunities to participate in OSU research. Joining the registry does not obligate volunteers to be in any study.

The registry provides OSU researchers affiliated with the Center for Healthy Aging Research with contact information for people who may be interested in participating in studies or are a good match for a particular study. When a registry member is contacted, they will receive information about a study and then can decide whether or not to participate.

The registry is used by about 40 OSU faculty members affiliated with the Center for Healthy Aging Research. Studies conducted by faculty affiliated with the center might involve biological processes, exercise, balance, diet, families, psychological processes or new technologies for helping older adults to age in their own homes. Registry members have participated in several studies related to driving, for example, including research on the understandability of traffic signs and using back-up cameras.

Studies vary in length; some can be completed in less than an hour while others may last for several months or more. Depending on the type and nature of the research, studies may completed online or over the phone, or they may take place on the OSU campus, in the community or in the volunteer’s home.

The registry includes about 500 people now and organizers would like to add 500 more volunteers. The goal is to include volunteers of all backgrounds and there are no health requirements. Registry information is confidential and will be released only to Center for Healthy Aging Research faculty and their staff.

For more information about the registry, visit http://bit.ly/15v5NF9 and fill out the online volunteer form. Interested volunteers may also call 541-737-4993.

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Holly Lenz, 541-737-4993, holly.lenz@oregonstate.edu

TEDxOregonStateU conference to be held Feb. 12 in Corvallis

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University will host TEDxOregonStateU, a conference featuring a series of short talks on the theme of disruption, on Thursday, Feb. 12, on the Corvallis campus.

Speakers include a producer of the television show “Xploration Outerspace;” a winner of the fashion design competition “Project Runway;” a former war correspondent; an information technology executive; and an Oregon State student involved in cancer research.

TEDx events feature talks, demonstrations or performances that foster learning, inspiration and wonder. They are independently organized events in the style of the TED conference. This is the second TEDx event to be held at OSU. This year’s event is being organized by OSU students Aaron LaVigne and Dustin Fernandes and recent alumnus Vinay Bikkina.

The speakers, who will all touch on aspects of the theme, disruption, are:

  • Emily Calandrelli: A co-producer and host of FOX’s new show, “Xploration Outer Space,” she works to promote scientific literacy and women in science, technology, engineering and math, and she is passionate about technology policy, entrepreneurship, open innovation, space exploration. A former NASA employee, Calandrelli holds a master’s degree in aerospace engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
  • David Edelstein: He is senior vice president of global programs at Grameen Foundation and director of the Grameen Foundation Technology Center. Edelstein previously worked at Microsoft, where he designed a flexible financing model to enable people in developing countries to afford their first computers and led efforts to implement this new business model in several countries.
  • Hanson Hosein: He is the director of the communication leadership graduate program at the University of Washington and president of HRH Media Group. A former NBC News war correspondent, backpack journalist and investigative producer, Hosein is the recipient of several prestigious awards in the media industry.
  • Michelle Lesniak: She is the season 11 winner of “Project Runway,” and is known for her strong design sense and quick wit. She is dedicated to local manufacturing and ethical business practices and is playing a key role in shaping and growing the Portland fashion industry.
  • Matthew Kaiser: Kaiser is an undergraduate student at OSU, working toward an honors degree in microbiology and minors in Spanish, chemistry and toxicology. He is a fellow in the Linus Pauling Institute’s Cancer Chemoprevention Program and is preparing a manuscript on vitamin C and cancer.

The event will run from 6 to 9 p.m. in the LaSells Stewart Center, 875 S.W. 26th St. Tickets are $20, or $15 for students. Tickets and additional information are available online at www.oregonstate.edu/TEDxOregonStateU. Follow the event on Twitter: @TEDxOregonState; Instagram: TEDxOregonStateU; or on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/TEDxOregonStateU.

 


 

About TEDx, x=independently organized event: In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TED Talks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.)

About TED: TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to ideas worth spreading. Started as a four-day conference in California 30 years ago, TED has grown to support its mission with multiple initiatives. The two annual TED Conferences invite the world's leading thinkers and doers to speak for 18 minutes or less. Many of these talks are then made available, free, at TED.com. TED speakers have included Bill Gates, Jane Goodall, Elizabeth Gilbert, Sir Richard Branson, Nandan Nilekani, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Sal Khan and Daniel Kahneman. Follow TED on Twitter at http://twitter.com/TEDTalks or on Facebook, http://www.facebook.com/TED.

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Jenn Casey, 541-737-0695, jenn.casey@oregonstate.edu

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Michelle Lesniak

Michelle Lesniak
Hanson Hosein
Hanson Hosein
Matthew Kaiser
Matthew Kaiser

Renowned Jesus scholar Marcus Borg dies at 72

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Marcus Borg, a renowned New Testament scholar known for his groundbreaking books on the life of Jesus, died Wednesday, Jan. 21, following a battle with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

Borg, a professor emeritus of religion and philosophy at Oregon State University, was 72.

The Hundere Distinguished Professor of Religion and Culture at OSU, Borg joined the Oregon State faculty in 1979 and became known as one of the nation’s foremost biblical and historical Jesus scholars until his retirement in 2007. He wrote 21 books, including the bestsellers “Jesus: A New Vision,” and “Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time.”

After his retirement, Borg was appointed Canon Theologian of Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in Portland, where he lived.

In 1993, Borg was named the first Hundere Chair for Religion and Culture, a position created by a gift from OSU engineering alumnus Al Hundere, who gave a $1.5 million gift to the university after being inspired by Borg’s studies of the historical Jesus. In 1995, Borg produced a series of lectures celebrating the 2,000th birthday of Jesus, in a two-day conference featuring a number of prominent religious scholars. The conference was televised and viewed around the country. Papers from the conference were eventually published in book form as “Jesus at 2000.”

Following the success of the event, Borg helped organize the “God at 2000” symposium at OSU in early 2000. This nationally televised symposium featured Archbishop Desmond Tutu among many other scholars and authors.  

During his time at OSU, Borg received every one of OSU’s major awards for teaching and he was the first faculty member in the College of Liberal Arts to be designated a “Distinguished Professor.” Borg explored what it meant to be a Christian in modern times, and his work often provoked controversy over his frank discussions surrounding literal versus modern interpretations of the Bible.

Current Hundere Chair Courtney Campbell, who was a longtime colleague of Borg’s, said that although Borg sometimes received angry correspondence from people who disagreed with his work, he always focused on civil discourse.

“I never once heard him be critical of the character of those whose disagreements carried over to polemical ad hominems against him,” Campbell said.

Campbell was hired by Borg, and when the religious studies department was absorbed into the philosophy department, he said Borg fought to keep Campbell on the faculty, and continued to be an inspiration to Campbell and other colleagues.

“Marc's legacy is one of selfless sharing of the resources of the Hundere endowment to promote the professional development of his colleagues,” Campbell said. “He was a true teacher, demanding but transformational for his students. He displayed a collegial style of gracious humility coupled with intellectual astuteness.”

Professor Emeritus Peter List, who formerly chaired the OSU philosophy department, said Borg's role as a cheerful, thoughtful teacher and leader made him a credit to the department, and his scholarship brought international prestige to OSU.

"His thoughtful ideas brought considerable excitement and meaning to his many students, regardless of their religious affiliations or beliefs," List said. "He was very approachable as a person in his interactions with others and was able to present controversial and sometimes difficult ideas with self-assurance, clarity, and humor."

Former colleague and Distinguished Professor Emeritus Kathleen Dean Moore said she was still in shock from news of Borg’s death.

“When I heard that Marc had passed away, my first impulse was to protest: oh no, the world still needs him,” Moore said. “And then I thought of the magnitude, the magnificence of what he has already given the world, and my second impulse was one of gratitude and love.”

Moore said Borg was a prolific writer, a wonderful teacher and speaker, and the only person who was able to clearly explain to her what it means to say that God is love.

“Marc’s work was to make sense of religious belief,” Moore said. “He wanted to show that a person could be a rational thinker and still believe in a God fully present in the world. His heart and mind were open to wondering love, rooted in gratitude for life.  This put him in opposition to fierce, defensive dogmatism and the cruelty of unquestioned obedience to textual authority.”

Borg once said he saw philosophy as being primarily concerned with the role of ideas in our lives.

“Ideas matter,” he said, “more than we commonly think they do – especially our world-views and values, namely our ideas about what is real and how we are to live. We receive such ideas from our culture as we grow up, and unless we examine them, we will not be free persons, but will to a large extent live out the agenda of our socialization.”

Mark Tauber, senior vice president and publisher of HarperOne, was an admirer of Borg’s frank approach to his work.

“His life and his work have been a challenge, a comfort and an inspiration to literally millions of readers and students over the years,” Tauber said. “In these times when writing and speaking (and illustrating) messages and stories that seek truth are dangerous, Marcus Borg was a hero and a beacon.”

Borg, who earned a Ph.D. in philosophy from Oxford University, was previously national chair of the Historical Jesus Section of the Society of Biblical Literature and co-chair of its International New Testament Program Committee. He also was president of the Anglican Association of Biblical Scholars, and a Fellow of The Jesus Seminar.

Borg is survived by his wife Marianne, son Dane, son‐in‐law Benjamin, daughter Julie, grandson Carter, and terriers Henry and Abbey. A public memorial of celebration and remembrance will be held at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Portland, Ore. at a date and time that will be announced later.

 

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 Courtney Campbell, 541-737-6196, courtney.campbell@oregonstate.edu

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Marcus Borg

Writer Elizabeth Kolbert of The New Yorker to speak at OSU Feb. 2

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Elizabeth Kolbert, an award-winning staff writer for The New Yorker magazine, will discuss her latest book, “The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History,” on Monday, Feb. 2, at Oregon State University in Corvallis.

Kolbert’s talk begins at 7 p.m. in Austin Auditorium at LaSells Stewart Center, 875 S.W. 26th St. The event is sponsored by OSU’s Spring Creek Project for Ideas, Nature, and the Written Word, and is free and open to the public.

In “The Sixth Extinction,” Kolbert describes how humans are causing the earth’s next great extinction by altering life on the planet in a way no species has previously.

In a review, The New York Times said: “… the real power of her book resides in the hard science and historical context she delivers here, documenting the mounting losses that human beings are leaving in their wake.”

Kolbert is also author of “Field Notes from a Catastrophe: Man, Nature and Climate Change.” She is a two-time National Magazine Award winner and a recipient of a Heinz Award and Guggenheim Fellowship.

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Charles Goodrich, 541-737-6198, Charles.goodrich@oregonstate.edu

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Elizabeth Kolbert

Elizabeth Kolbert

Authors Tracy Daugherty and Wayne Harrison to read at OSU Jan. 30

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Authors Tracy Daugherty and Wayne Harrison will read from their works on Friday, Jan. 30, beginning at 7:30 p.m. at Oregon State University in Corvallis.

The reading will be held in the Valley Library rotunda, 201 S.W. Waldo Place, Corvallis. A question-and-answer session and book signing will follow. The event is free and open to the public.

Daugherty is the author of four novels, four short story collections, a book of personal essays and two literary biographies. His work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, McSweeney's, The Georgia Review and other magazines. “Hiding Man,” his biography of Donald Barthelme, was a New York Times and New Yorker notable Book of the Year. His newest book, “Just One Catch,” a biography of Joseph Heller was excerpted in Vanity Fair. Daugherty helped found the Master’s of Fine Arts program in creative writing at OSU.

Harrison received a master in fine arts degree from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and is an instructor in the School of Writing Literature and Film at OSU. His debut novel, “The Spark and The Drive,” was published in 2014. Harrison’s fiction has appeared in “Best American Short Stories 2010,” The Atlantic, Narrative Magazine, McSweeney’s and other magazines. His work also has been featured on NPR’s “All Things Considered.” His short story collection, “Wrench,” was a finalist for the Serena McDonald Kennedy Award, the Spokane Prize and the Iowa Short Fiction Award. 

The reading is part of the 2014-15 Literary Northwest Series, sponsored by the MFA Program in Creative Writing in the School of Writing, Literature, and Film. The series brings Pacific Northwest writers to OSU and is made possible by support from the OSU Libraries and Press, the OSU School of Writing, Literature, and Film, the College of Liberal Arts, Kathy Brisker and Tim Steele and Grass Roots Books and Music.

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OSU to host Willamette Valley Bird Symposium on Jan. 24

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University and the American Ornithologists’ Union will host the Willamette Valley Bird Symposium, a one-day event focusing on research and careers in avian biology, on Saturday, Jan. 24, at the Linus Pauling Science Center on the OSU campus.

The symposium is aimed at high school students, teachers and undergraduates. It is also supported by The Audubon Society of Corvallis and the U.S. Geological Survey Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center. More information is available at: http://www.audubon.corvallis.or.us/wbs.shtml

Eric Forsman, a bird expert from the U.S. Forest Service in Corvallis, will give the keynote talk: “A Thirty-Year Study of Spotted Owls in the Old-Growth Forests of Western Oregon.”

The symposium will feature more than 20 short talks on bird research. Among the topics:

  • Mercury in Willamette Valley riparian songbirds;
  • Snowy plover survival, population and management in Oregon;
  • Effectiveness of backyard wildlife habitats;
  • The Oregon 2020 project of citizen scientists contributing to Oregon bird surveys;
  • New research on Adelie penguins.

Other talks will cover a variety of bird species, including swallows, Aphelocoma jays, Pfrimer’s parakeet, songbirds, seabirds, Caspian terns, bald eagles and common murres. Monitoring technology will be covered in talks on solar-powered cameras, use of drones in ornithology, archival GPS tags on diving seabirds, and other topics.

The symposium runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It also will feature a live bird exhibition from Chintimini Wildlife Center, demonstrations of ornithological research techniques, and a panel discussion on careers in ornithology.

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Sue Haig, 541-750-0981; willamettebirds15@gmail.com