Niswander Selected as ARRL treasurer


ECU vice chancellor for administration and finance Rick Niswander was selected as treasurer of the National Association for Amateur Radio. Niswander is an ARRL life member, who was first licensed in ham radio in 1967. A certified public accounant, he also serves as executive treasurer for the ECU Foundation, the ECU Medical Foundation, the ECU Alumni Association and the Pirate Club. Niswander is also a professor of accounting at ECU. He holds a BBA in accounting from Idaho State University and a Ph.D. in accounting from Texas A & M.  Read the ARRL announcement.


Center for Sustainable Tourism to hold Open House

The East Carolina University Center for Sustainable Tourism will celebrate its fourth anniversary with an Open House on campus beginning at 12:30 p.m. Jan. 26 in Mendenhall Student Center Great Rooms 1 and 2.

University of Utah professor Dr. Kelly S. Bricker will kick off the event with the keynote presentation on ecotourism, “Working Towards a Greater Good: The Role of Sustainable Tourism in Supporting the Millennium Development Goals.”

Dr. Kelly Bricker

Bricker is associate professor of parks, recreation and tourism management at the University of Utah. She is executive director of The International Ecotourism Society, co-chair of the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference and a board member of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council.

Following Bricker’s presentation, reaction and comments will be provided by Dr. Deb Jordan, chair of ECU’s Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies; Dr. David Emmerling, executive director of the Pamlico-Tar River Foundation; and Dr. Marieke Van Willigen, chair of the Department of Sociology. Graduate student research posters will be on display at 2 p.m.

A faculty panel from the center will lead a discussion of interdisciplinary perspectives on sustainability and tourism at 2:30 p.m., with the following faculty members and their discussion topics:  Dr. Tom Rickenbach, climate change and geography; Dr. Tarek Abdel-Salam, energy renewable energy and engineering; Dr. Stephanie Jilcott, public health and sustainability; and Dr. Jon Kirschoff, green marketing and business.

Dr. Lisa Clough, chair of ECU’s Coastal Maritime Council, will present “North Carolina’s Dynamic Coasts: An update on ECU’s Coastal Maritime Council activities,” at 3:30 p.m.

For additional information on the scheduled presentations, review descriptions of the presentations scheduled for the Open House.



Pirates Prepare for 16th Annual Polar Bear Plunge

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Video from the 2011 Polar Bear Plunge from


The 16th annual Polar Bear Plunge is set for 7 p.m. Jan. 19 at the East Carolina University Student Recreation Center.

All ECU students, faculty and staff are invited to jump into the icy waters of the outdoor pool. The first 1,000 jumpers will receive a free event t-shirt. Students are also entered into a drawing for prizes including the grand prize, a 3-foot stuffed Polar Bear donated by Coca-Cola.

All jumpers are encouraged to bring their own towel and a canned food item for the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina. Food donors will receive an additional raffle ticket to double their chances of winning prizes.

The Polar Bear Plunge started as part of the grand opening of the Student Recreation Center in 1997, when 35 participants took the plunge. The event has grown each year with more than 700 plungers in 2010 and a record-setting 958 jumpers in 2011. Organizers hope to surpass the 1,100-jumper mark this year.

Food will be available following the jump and students may learn about ECU programs, activities and organizations through the Get A Clue involvement fair on the SRC basketball courts.

Registration begins at 6:30 p.m., with an ECU One Card required. The event is sponsored by Campus Recreation & Wellness, Campus Living & Dining and Student Involvement and Leadership.  For more details, contact the Student Recreation Center at (252) 328-6387.



Simpson to present Thomas Harriot lecture

Author and musician Bland Simpson will present the Thomas Harriot lecture in the Voyages of Discovery Lecture Series at 7 p.m. Feb. 2 in Wright Auditorium at East Carolina University.

Simpson is a North Carolina native and the Bowman and Gordon Gray distinguished term professor of English and creative writing at UNC – Chapel Hill.


He has authored more than seven books, including “Heart of the Country, A Novel of Southern Music” and “The Coasts of Carolina: Seaside to Sound Country.”

Simpson is a long-time member of the Tony Award-winning string band The Red Clay Ramblers. He  has collaborated on or contributed to many musicals, including, “King Mackerel and The Blues Are Running: Songs and Stories of the Carolina Coast;” “Life on the Mississippi;” “Lone Star Love, The Merry Wives of Windsor, Texas;” Tony-nominee “Pump Boys and Dinettes;” “Kudzu, A Southern Musical;” and three-time Broadway hit and Tony Award-winning production “Fool Moon.”

Simpson’s awards and recognitions include a 1999 Governor’s Award for Conservation Communicator of the Year, presented by the North Carolina Wildlife Federation; the 1999 North Carolina Folklore Society’s Brown-Hudson Award for writing and music concerning state and regional heritage; and the 2005 North Carolina Award for Fine Arts, the state’s highest civilian honor in the arts.

ECU faculty, staff and students may receive one complimentary ticket for the lecture with a valid ECU ID. For the general public, tickets are $10. Contact the ECU Central Ticket Office at 252-328-4788 or 1-800-ECU-ARTS for more details. Individuals requesting accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) should call 252-737-1016 (voice/TTY) at least 48 hours prior to the event.

A final lecture in the 2011-12 Voyages series, the Jarvis Lecture on Christianity and Culture, will be held March 13, featuring Dr. J. Kameron Carter, associate professor of theology and Black church studies at Duke University.

The Voyages of Discovery Lecture series is made possible through contributions from Harriot College’s Dean’s Advancement Council, various university organizations, and many friends and supporters. To make a contribution, or for additional information, contact director of the series Dr. John A. Tucker at 252-328-1028 or Visit the series’ web site at



Gray Gallery to host metal design exhibit

The Wellington B. Gray Gallery at East Carolina University will host “The Art of Influence,” an international exhibition of metal design Jan. 13 through Feb. 2012, kicked off by 5 p.m. reception on Jan. 13.

The event is being held in conjunction with the symposium, Material Topics: Merging Methods, set for Jan. 14 in the Jenkins Fine Arts Center.

Co-curators for the exhibit Joshua Craig and Tina Lazzarine are graduate students in metal design. They worked with Tom Braswell, interim director of the Gray Gallery.

For additional information, call 328-6336 or visit


Business faculty members publish articles

East Carolina University professor John Drake, management information systems in the College of Business, published “A Critical Analysis of Active Learning and an Alternative Pedagogical Framework for Introductory Information Systems Courses,” in the Journal of Information Technology Education.

Shanan Gibson in Management and Jaclyn Beierlein in Finance published “Intellectual Human Capital Dependence, Family Friendly Firms, and the Advancement of Women,” in the Journal of Business Diversity.

Denise E. Dickins of Accounting published “Mandatory Audit Partner Rotation: Implications for Practice,” in the Tennessee CPA Journal.


College of Nursing welcomes new students with Lamp of Learning ceremony

ECU faculty member Mark Hand, left, pins new nursing student Allyson Ennett at the Jan. 12 Lamp of Learning pinning ceremony held at the East Carolina Heart Institute. The College of Nursing held the ceremony to welcome first semester nursing students to clinical practice. Each received a Nightingale lamp pin to commemorate the beginning of their nursing practice. Also at the event, Dean Sylvia Brown made her biannual gift in the name of each new student to the Student Emergency Needs Fund. The fund provides emergency funding to students who experience sudden financial hardship that would adversely impact completion of their education. (Contributed photo)


Poet Featured at Greenville Gallery

North Carolina poet James Applewhite, Greenville’s City Art Gallery, and the North Carolina Literary Review (NCLR) will collaborate on the second annual exhibit of original art inspired by the poet’s work.

The show will feature the work of artists who have used paint, photography, sculpture, and ceramics to interpret selected poems.

City Art Gallery owner Torrey Stroud will host the opening from 6 to 8 p.m. on Jan. 20; Applewhite will read his poems at 7 p.m. The exhibit will run through Feb. 11.

The idea was suggested by artist Louis St. Lewis, a fan of poetry and short stories, whose work has been selected for inclusion in past issues of NCLR. “This was an invitational for a group of artists we represent,” Stroud said of last year’s event. “We consulted with Diane Rodman (NCLR’s Art Editor) to decide on the poet.”

NCLR Editor Margaret Bauer will introduce the poet and welcome him “home” to eastern North Carolina. Applewhite was born in Stantonsburg and is retired from Duke University after almost 40 years on the faculty. He is a four-time winner of the Roanoke Chowan Poetry Award, given by the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. He has received the North Carolina Award for Literature and is a 2008 inductee into the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame.

His next book, due out in 2013 from LSU Press, will be his 12th volume of poetry. His work has been featured in several issues of NCLR.

City Art Gallery is located at 511 Red Banks Road in Greenville. More information about the exhibit, artists, and hours of operation can be found at

The North Carolina Literary Review is published annually by ECU and the North Carolina Literary and Historical Association. The first edition of NCLR Online, which will include art from last year’s Applewhite invitational exhibit, is due out in February. The print issue will be out in the summer. For more information, visit NCLR’s website at


Reading, Language Arts Conference set for February

The 30th annual Mary Lois Staton Reading/Language Arts Conference will be held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 22 at The City Hotel & Bistro in Greenville.

Keynoting the event is Dr. Julie Coiro of the University of Rhode Island, who will speak on “Understanding the new literacies of online reading comprehension.”

Concurrent sessions will focus on a variety of topics related to literacy.

Organizers expect more than 300 participants including K-12 teachers, reading specialists, ECU education students and university faculty.

The event is sponsored by the Department of Curriculum and Instruction in the College of Education at East Carolina University.

Dr. Mary Lois Staton, professor emeritus and outstanding professor of education at ECU for 27 years, is credited with initial conference development and endowment. Staton earned her undergraduate degree from Flora McDonald and her master’s degrees from East Carolina Teacher’s College and Teacher’s College, Columbia University. She completed her doctoral degree at UNC-Chapel Hill.

For registration information, contact the ECU Office of Continuing Studies at 252-328-9198. Additional details are available at