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A Nov. 9, 1956, homecoming bonfire rally takes place northwest of the University of Omaha Field House.

This Week in Campus History

On Nov. 1, 1950, The Gateway reminded the University of Omaha community that the World Affairs Institute would continue the following evening with a talk in the auditorium by political scientist Eric Kollman, titled "Germany in the Perspective of History." Dr. Kollman was a graduate of the University of Vienna and had recently taught at the University of Michigan and the University of Chicago.

Date: Nov. 1, 1950
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

October Employee of the Month: Joan Bell

the name

Working at UNO is much more than a job for Joan Bell, manager of technology in the College of Arts and Sciences - she sees it as a duty.

"I thank God every day for a job that is more than an income, for a job that exists in support of one of the most important missions of humankind - opening up minds to free and creative thought based on an understanding of the world, past and present," Bell said. "The icing on the cake is that I get to work with the other folks in Arts and Sciences who are also passionate about that mission."

A UNO alumna, Bell joined the campus community workforce in 1984 as a coordinator for the UNO Department of English. Before that, she held several part-time instructional positions.

In her current capacity, Bell said her responsibilities often vary from day to day and don't follow a set routine, one of the reasons she enjoys her job so much. "Common tasks change as often as the world of technology changes," she said. "My primary charge is to keep our computer labs, computer classrooms and faculty computers functional."

Bell provides desktop support for more than 100 faculty and staff members in Arts and Sciences Hall. She also helps compose the College of Arts and Sciences' newsletter and assists with a variety of Web sites.

Co-workers say they appreciate Bell's consistency and dependability. "Joan shows expertise, resourcefulness, efficiency and collegiality," one nominator wrote. "She works to find solutions to problems and doesn't get bogged down in unimportant details of a computing situation. Given how dependent we all are on computers, the Internet and technology in general, I don't think the college could run without her."

Though she finds her work very fulfilling, Bell said it can become a bit overpowering at times due to the scope of the field. "The pace at which technology changes and our dependence on it grows can be overwhelming," she said. "The folks who nominated me for the Employee of the Month Award have reminded me with the kindness of their words to keep my focus on the larger mission and to trust in them to understand the daily difficulties."

Another colleague said they value Bell's level of professionalism and abilities.

"Joan is an exceptional employee," a co-worker wrote. "She is service-oriented, punctual with her commitments and holds herself to the highest standards of excellence."

As for deciding on a favorite momentous campus occasion during her years at UNO, Bell said that is a difficult and, maybe, an impossible task. "I've been here a long time," she said. "I think it would take me too long to sort through them all."

Being a single mother keeps her busy outside the workday, but Bell said she is interested in taking classes to fuel her quest for a better understanding of a variety of subjects, including political science. "I have the darnedest time understanding politics and would like to face up to that responsibility," she said. "I guess you could say that my ‘profession' is also academic groupie."

As Employee of the Month, Bell 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 from left to right: UNO Employee of the Month Joan Bell and UNO Interim Chancellor John Christensen.

Printmaker-in-Residence Jay Bolotin to Lecture Nov. 2

Printmaker, songwriter and filmmaker Jay Bolotin will give a free lecture about his work Thursday, Nov. 2, at UNO. The event, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 1 p.m. in the Eppley Administration Building Auditorium.

A renowned visual artist, Bolotin has woodcuts and woodcut prints in the permanent art collections of Cincinnati Art Museum, the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MOMA), Chase Manhattan Bank and the Australian National Gallery in Canberra, Australia. During his residency at UNO, Bolotin will create a new, color woodcut in the UNO printmaking studios.

As a songwriter, Bolotin has worked with legendary recording artists Merle Haggard, Kris Kristofferson and Dan Fogelberg. His "It's Hard to Go Down Easy," recorded by Fogelberg, reached No. 6 on the Billboard singles chart. Kristofferson identified Bolotin in an interview as "one of the three best songwriters in the country."

Joslyn Art Museum will screen Bolotin's woodcut motion picture, "The Jackleg Testament: Part One - Jack & Eve," on Sundays at 2 p.m. through Dec. 24. The film is a work Bolotin created exclusively from his original woodcuts and music.

By integrating his love of the literary arts with his visual and musical creations, Bolotin produces some of the most original, innovative and intriguing art of his time. He will be in residency at the UNO Print Workshop through Nov. 4.

For more information, contact Lisa Nielsen at 554.2420.

UNO Child Care Center Costume Parade Today

The UNO Child Care Center will host its annual costume parade today, Oct. 31, beginning at 9 a.m.

Approximately 90 children will start the parade at the Child Care Center. They will proceed along the north side of campus (facing Dodge Street) and arrive at Kayser Hall at approximately 9:20 a.m., then return to the Child Care Center via the Henningson Memorial Mall at the center of campus.

All UNO faculty, staff and students are invited to greet the children as they process through the center of campus. The UNO Child Care Center requests that no peanut products, suckers or hard candy be handed out, as they are a choking hazard to the younger children participating in the festivities.

In the case of inclement weather, the Child Care Center asks that the candy be delivered to the center, where the children will have a party.

For more information, call 554.3398.

Jim Leslie Retirement Reception Nov. 15

UNO faculty and staff are invited to attend a retirement reception for Jim Leslie, president emeritus of the UNO Alumni Association. Leslie will retire in December after 33 years as the association's president.

The reception will be held Wednesday, Nov. 15, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the William H. and Dorothy Thompson Alumni Center. A short program recognizing Leslie will begin at 5:30 p.m. Snacks and refreshments will be provided.

Those planning to attend the reception should R.S.V.P. to Sheila at 554.4802 or

BGS Degree Now Available in Online Format

The UNO Division of Continuing Studies, in collaboration with the University of Nebraska at Kearney, is pleased to announce that the Bachelor of General Studies (BGS) degree is now available in an online format.

The focus of this degree option is organizational administration. The online BGS degree is a 125-credit-hour degree program designed for adult learners who are 21 years or older. The online BGS program offers an alternative for students who cannot attend on-campus classes but who still desire a quality education.

The online BGS is ideal for adults who have delayed or interrupted their studies. Most transfer credits are accepted from colleges and universities accredited by a postsecondary regional association. Transfer credits are determined upon review of previous student coursework.

For more information, contact the program manager, Christina Davis, at 554.4833 or Additional information about the online option is available at

Free Screening of "Les Choristes" Nov. 12

The UNO Department of Foreign Languages and the Nebraska Association of Teachers of French will present the French film "Les Choristes" Sunday, Nov. 12, at UNO.

The free screening will begin at 1:30 p.m. in the Eppley Administration Building Auditorium. It is free and open to the public.

For more information, call 554.2862.

"International Dimensions of Social Work Practice" Set for Nov. 1

The campus community is invited to hear students share their travel experiences to China and Nicaragua at a symposium planned for Wednesday, Nov. 1.

The event, titled "International Dimensions of Social Work Practice," will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Chancellor's Room. Those attending are invited to bring their lunch.

For more information, contact Peter Szto at 554.2330. The symposium is being sponsored by the UNO Student Social Work Organization.

Campus Recreation to Offer Youth Golf Lessons

This fall, Campus Recreation is offering youth golf lessons. The UNO women's golf team and head golf coach Tim Nelson will provide the instruction.

Lessons will be held Saturdays Nov. 4, 11 and 18, and Dec. 2 from 10 to 11 a.m. in the Health, Physical Education and Recreation Building Golf Lab (Room 230). Individuals may bring their own clubs or use equipment provided by UNO Campus Recreation. Space is limited to the first 12 youth - ages seven to 15 years - who sign up, so interested participants are encouraged to register as soon as possible.

The cost for lessons is $15 per child for UNO faculty, staff and student activity cardholders, and $20 per child for the public and non-activity cardholders. Each additional child from the same family will cost $8.

For more information, call Dave Daniels at 554.2539.

UNO to Celebrate Day of the Dead Nov. 2

The Office of Latino/Latin American Studies of the Great Plains (OLLAS) at UNO will host a Day of the Dead celebration Thursday, Nov. 2. The event, a pre-Columbian tradition, will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the UNO Art Gallery in the Weber Fine Arts Building. It is free and open to the public.

The Day of the Dead tradition, later mixed with Catholic rituals, is celebrated throughout the Americas, said Lourdes Gouveia, OLLAS director and associate professor of sociology at UNO. In Mexico and Central America, people build elaborate altars in honor of a particular person or group. They then fill the altars with items that the honored person or group enjoyed in life. This year's altar pays special homage to Latina/Latin American U.S. and local artists.

The Nov. 2 celebration will feature an altar in the gallery and refreshments - Day of the Dead bread and traditional Mexican hot chocolate. A brief presentation on the history and the contemporary manifestations of the tradition will begin at noon.

For more information, call 554.3835.

Donors Sought for Nov. 2 Student Government Blood Drive

Student Government will sponsor a blood drive Thursday, Nov. 2. Donors are needed for the event, which will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Nebraska Room (MBSC).

"Our goal is to have 100 people give blood, and we can't meet that quota without your help," said Steve Massara, student body president/regent for UNO.

Those wishing to donate blood can schedule an appointment by entering code 009129 at or signing up in the Student Government Office, located on the first floor of the MBSC.

COS Open Lab Session Planned for Grant Writers

The next Community of Science (COS) open lab session will be held Thursday, Nov. 2, at 3 p.m. in Room 207 of Criss Library.

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (SPR) hosts these monthly 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.

Douglas County Voters' Guide Available

The Douglas County Voters' Guide, published annually by the League of Women Voters of Greater Omaha, is an unbiased, non-partisan look at all candidates running in the Nov. 7 General Election.

Included are brief biographies of each candidate, plus their answers on issues of current concern to voters. The guide is available on campus at the locations listed below.

University Affairs
108 Eppley Administration Building

UNO School of Communication
107 Arts and Sciences Hall (ASH)

Criss Library
Circulation Desk

For more information, contact Rita Shaughnessy in 107H ASH or at 554.6057.


-Thomas Gouttierre, dean of international studies and programs, and director of the Center for Afghanistan Studies, was the featured speaker Oct. 16 at Salve Regina University in Newport, R.I. Gouttierre spoke at the university's Claiborne Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy on terrorism, thugs, tribalism and theocracies. He was appointed a Pell Scholar in conjunction with the presentation.

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