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Pictured above: Omaha University students congregate south of Arts and Sciences Hall between classes in the fall of 1946.

This Week in Campus History

On Sept. 24, 1971, The Gateway reported that Irwin Schlass had been hired as a new instructor in the UNO Drama Department. Schlass had received his B.A. from the City College of New York and his M.A. from the University of Denver, where had had specialized in directing. Prior to arriving at UNO, he taught a directing seminar at the Colorado State Penitentiary. According to Schlass he had enjoyed working with the inmates: "There are a lot of creative people in prison. They have an innate sense of conflict. Conflict is the essence of drama."

Date: Sept. 24, 1971
Source: The Gateway
Compiled by University Library Archives

James Peters

Australian Finches Aid UNO Professor's Research

by Deb Derrick

When it comes to studying human behavior, Rosemary Strasser gets a little help from her feathered friends. Colorful Australian Finches are helping Dr. Strasser - an assistant professor of psychology at UNO, who holds a courtesy appointment in biology - understand why we behave the way we do. ...continue

September Employee of the Month: Chris Muessigmann


Speak for just a moment with Chris Muessigmann, a groundskeeper I with UNO Landscape Services, and you will notice the enthusiasm that motivates him and others on campus. 

"The university's best interests are his priority," one nominator wrote.  "He is self-motivated, innovative, conscientious and enthusiastic.  He inspires me and other co-workers to give our best and work hard."

Muessigmann joined the campus community in September of 2001 but left in August of 2003 to stay home with his daughter and son.  In July of 2004, he returned to UNO and enrolled his son in the UNO Child Care Center. "I applied at UNO for the great benefits and child care," he said.  "Little did I know how much I would love it here."

He said he enjoys the freedom he has to get the job done in a timely manner.  "My supervisors trust my ability to manage my time wisely, and they know they will see the results of my work at the end of each week," he said.

In Landscape Services, Muessigmann teams up with 15 other groundskeepers, a mechanic and two supervisors to help keep the campus environment in working order.  Among his tasks are repairing and troubleshooting the irrigation systems on all three university properties. 

Muessigmann said he often changes and repairs broken valves and/or main lines, replaces broken sprinkler heads and programs the digital clocks according to the amount of water the turf needs each week.  "I also usually try to find a few hours a week to work on the grounds at the Child Care Center," he said.  "It can be very hectic at times, especially in the hottest months of the summer!"

Helping to beautify the grounds of the Child Care Center has become one of Muessigmann's favorite tasks, although he was never directly instructed to do so.  "I wanted to adopt an area of campus in which I execute all aspects of landscape maintenance," he said.  "The area I chose was the UNO Child Care Center.  I had two children that attended the center until August of this year, and I wanted to give something back to them for the wonderful job they did for my kids."

Co-workers say that the campus is in good hands with Muessigmann on duty.  "Chris demonstrates the highest level of professional commitment and competency in his work," another individual wrote.  "He is always willing to help others.  He knows his job and does it well.  His work is done accurately and in a timely manner."

Muessigmann said that he values his Employee of the Month honor because it extends beyond his contributions to the university.  "I like the fact that I have the opportunity to put the spotlight not just on myself, but the whole landscape services department," he said.  "These people have done a fabulous job this season, and I enjoy working with each and every one of them.  They have been an extended family for me through some very trying times in my personal life."

Among his favorite experiences at UNO, Muessigmann said that he has enjoyed watching his children trick-or-treating on campus with the other children from the Child Care Center.  "There are so many good people that make UNO function," he said. "We all play an important role here, no matter how big or small the task may seem.  I have been proud to help create a beautiful campus, and I look forward to the future."

Off campus, Muessigmann likes to spend his time making music and being outside.  "I write and record music from start to finish," he said.  "I play the guitar, bass, drums and piano, and put it all together using software on my home PC.  I also enjoy anything involving the outdoors."

As Employee of the Month, Muessigmann will receive a plaque, portrait and monetary award.  Nominations for the Employee of the Month Award at UNO are accepted year-round.  All UNO faculty, staff and students are eligible to nominate individuals for the honor.  Nomination forms are available in Human Resources, 205 Eppley Administration Building. 

Pictured above: Former UNO Chancellor Nancy Belck and Muessigmann.

For more information, call 554.2321.

Office Product Show Today

The UNO Purchasing Department, in cooperation with Office Depot, will host its annual Office Products Show today, Sept. 27.

The show will be held from 9 to 11 a.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Dodge Room. Factory representatives will be on hand to offer free samples and productivity enhancements to those in attendance. Refreshments also will be served.

For more information, contact Office Depot at

UNO Fall Job Fair Today

UNO spirit

Editor's note: The UNO Spirit Committee has designated this activity as a UNO spirit event.

Career Exploration and Outreach will host a fall job fair today, Sept. 27, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Ballroom. The job fair will feature employers who are actively seeking candidates for open positions and internships.

Professional interview attire is expected, and students should have already pre-registered to attend the fair. To register for the job fair, students must have a profile on the UNO CareerConnect system at

For more information about the job fair, CareerConnect and other services, contact Career Exploration and Outreach at 554.3672 or stop by 211 Eppley Administration Building.

Job fair sponsors are Union Pacific, Applied Underwriters, FirstComp, Streck, Walgreens, ConAgra, First National Bank of Omaha, Gallup, National Indemnity, US Bank, UPS, Northwestern Mutual, Interpublic Group, PayPal, Alegent Health and Enterprise.

"Spotlight on Student Employment" Gears Up for Another Year

For the third year, Student Employment Services will feature student employees from a new department each month during the fall and spring semesters with its "Spotlight on Student Employment" recognition program.

"This program is meant to let student employees know how much they are appreciated and to have campus departments recognized for their focus on students," said Emily Muckerheide, manager of student employment at UNO.

Departments will be selected at random to be spotlighted for a month. The department chosen must submit a brief article to Student Employment Services and can use the student employment template for their article.  The spotlighted department will also have their picture and article displayed on the Student Employment Job Board on the first floor of the Eppley Administration Building.

Random drawings will take place each month to select the "Spotlight" department. A new department will be featured each month from October through April. Featured departments will have their name entered in a drawing for an end-of-the-year party.

All departments will automatically be included in the drawings unless they decline by e-mailing Student Employment Services at

"Being selected as a ‘Spotlight' office does not constitute a nomination for Student Employee of the Year," Muckerheide said.

For more information, contact Muckerheide at 554.2321 or

UCR Deadlines Announced

The University Committee on Research (UCR) is inviting applications for the 2006-07 academic year. This year, the committee will provide support for both pre-tenure and post-tenure faculty, as well as students.

The faculty submission deadlines are Monday, Nov. 6, and Monday, Jan. 29. The UCR will also consider both faculty mini-grant requests and student proposals monthly, beginning in October. New guidelines and forms are available on the Sponsored Programs and Research (SPR) Web site ( 

Sharon Sobel, current chair of the UCR, will also facilitate a brown bag on "Tips for Preparing a UCR Grant Proposal." The time, date and location will be announced at a later date.  Watch eNotes for details.

COS Open Lab Session Planned for Grant Writers

The next Community of Science (COS) open lab session will be held Wednesday, Oct. 4, at 9 a.m. in Room 207 of University Library.

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research hosts these hour-long sessions to demonstrate the various on-line resources available to faculty and graduate students through COS.  Reservations are not required.

For more information, contact Nancy Schlesiger at 554.2286.

ITS to Offer Informational Session on UNO Web Templates

Are you interested in redesigning your college or department Web site?

Stuart Wheat, Web designer in Information Technology Services (ITS), has developed a series of Web templates that are available for use by the UNO campus.

ITS will host an informational session on the UNO Web templates Thursday, Sept. 28. It will be held at 10:30 a.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Gallery Room.

Those who attend will:
- Learn more about the UNO Web templates;
- See examples of how other UNO departments have implemented the Web templates; and
- Find out how you can use the templates to redesign your Web site.

To R.S.V.P., send an e-mail to For more information, contact ITS Customer Services at 554.4357 or

Library Friends to Host "Dessert and Java with Kava" Sept. 28

To celebrate the One Book One Nebraska Project, the UNO Library Friends are sponsoring an event featuring acclaimed and bestselling Omaha author Alex Kava.

Hear Kava share her experiences in the writing of One False Move at "Dessert and Java with Kava" Thursday, Sept. 28. The evening will start with dessert and coffee at 7 p.m. at the William H. and Dorothy Thompson Alumni Center. The cost of the event is $15, and proceeds will benefit the UNO library. Books will be available to purchase and for Kava to sign.

"It promises to be a robust blend of mystery and conversation," said Kathy Tooker, president of the UNO Library Friends board.

To make a reservation or for more information, contact Diane Rockhold at 554.3205 or A reservation form is also available on the Web at

Writing Center to Offer Fall Workshops

The UNO Writing Center will offer six free workshops this semester on writing skills. All faculty, staff and students are invited to attend. Reservations are not required.

All workshops will be held at the center's 150 Arts and Sciences Hall location. For more information, call 554.2946.

Wednesday, Oct. 4
Session: Rein In Runaway Sentences: Comma Splices, Run-on Sentences and Fragments
Time: 1 to 2 p.m.
Presenter: Connie Eberhart

Wednesday, Oct. 11
Session: Getting from Point A to Point B: Creating Good Transitions
Time: 1 to 2 p.m.
Presenters: Al Kammerer and Bobbi Olson

Thursday, Oct. 19
Session: Battle Royale:  Active Voice vs. Passive Voice
Time: 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Presenter: Kate Gaskin

Tuesday, Oct. 24
Session: How Do I Document This Source Using MLA?
Time: 11 a.m. to noon
Presenter: Carol Dillon

Thursday, Oct. 26
Session: Blood, Sweat, and Tears: Writing a Timed Essay Exam
Time: 10 to 11 a.m.
Presenters: Joel Thomas and Kim Schwab

Tuesday, Oct. 31
Session: How Do I Document This Source Using APA?
Time: 11 a.m. to noon
Presenter: Carol Dillon

Pathways to Harmony, Part 2 Oct. 24

Pathways to Harmony, Part 2 will be offered Tuesday, Oct. 24, to interested faculty, staff and students.

This program is only available to those who have already attended the first Pathways seminar.

The Pathways to Harmony, Part 2 program extends to the next level of diversity professional development. It focuses on how to interrupt insensitive and inappropriate behavior effectively and helps participants create a deeper understanding and awareness of diversity and differences.

To register for Pathways, Part 2, contact Kate Clark at 554.2896 or Seating is limited.

TIAA-CREF Schedule through November Announced

TIAA-CREF announces its campus visit schedule for October and November. A TIAA-CREF representative will be on campus for individual appointments with employees on the following dates:

- October 3, 10, 17, 24 and 31
- Nov. 7, 14, 21 and 28

Appointments for one-on-one counseling sessions can be made by calling Louella Williams at the TIAA-CREF office in Omaha at 548.3610 or on the Web at