12:00 AM

Ohio State unveils new majors, programs and facilities this fall

COLUMBUS – A host of new academic and co-curricular programs, events and facilities will accompany the start of Ohio State University's 2006 academic year, which begins Wednesday (9/20). Ohio State will also welcome its best and brightest freshman class for the 12th consecutive year this fall, 80 percent of which graduated in the top 25% of their high school class.

Beginning this year, undergraduates may also minor in Public Health, or Media Production and Analysis. Students can become a docent at the Wexner Center, take advantage of the new wireless internet network in all residence halls, and enjoy a ride on the campus bus system powered by a new soy-based fuel.

New initiatives

• Campus bus fleet is Scarlet, Gray and Green.
The entire Campus Area Bus Service (CABS) fleet will be powered by Soy Biodiesel (B20) fuel, made up of 80% diesel fuel and 20% soybean oil. The decision follows promising results of a pilot program started in 2003. Soy Biodiesel is a cleaner-burning alternative to traditional petroleum diesel. It is made from a renewable source, such as soybean oil and animal fats, thus reducing the dependence on oil and carbon dioxide emissions by 15%.

• Students to guide tours at Wexner Center. Beginning this fall, undergraduate and graduate students from any academic department at Ohio State can apply to become Student Docents in the Wexner Center galleries. In this innovative program, which includes training and mentorship sessions, students will receive credit through Ohio State's Department of Art Education for their participation in the training program, as well as a stipend from the Wexner Center for each tour they lead. The program is focused especially on Ohio State students but is open to college students from other colleges and universities in the area as well. CONTACT:edweb@wexarts.org

• Serving the newest generation of students: Gen Next. Colleges are adjusting to a new generation of students who are tech-savvy, used to having their own rooms (and bathrooms), and accustomed to having service available 24 hours a day. Teaching, working with, and serving those students is the newest challenge for educators and student affairs professionals, since Gen Next students affect each service provider in different ways. In the College of Education and Human Ecology, the issue is studied by students in the Student Personnel Assistantship Program, part of the School of Educational Policy and Leadership. CONTACT: Michele Welkener, Educational Policy and Leadership, (614) 688-3095.

• Wexner Center opens "Pages" for high school writing skills. Area high school students, including those in the new Metro School, will participate in "Pages," a new yearlong program that fosters writing skills through the exploration of contemporary visual arts, performing arts, and film at the Wexner Center. Guided by the Wexner Center education staff and local writers, students will write about contemporary visual arts, performing arts, and film at the Wexner Center in a rigorous program complete with in-school sessions before and after every visit to the center. CONTACT: Karen Simonian, (614) 292-9923 or ksimonian@wexarts.org

• College Football on Film. For the first time, the Wexner Center has organized a film series that tackles the subject of college football. Featuring five films over four nights (September 26–29), College Football on Film includes movies from the '20s, '30s and '40s that reflect Hollywood's interest in the sport at the time and suggests that many of the problems facing college athletics today existed decades ago. CONTACT: Karen Simonian, (614) 292-9923 or ksimonian@wexarts.org

• Department of English begins "Project Narrative." Project Narrative's main mission is to promote state-of-the art research and teaching in the field of narrative studies. The Project will focus on narrative in all of its guises, from everyday storytelling in face-to-face interaction, to oral history and autobiography, to films and everything in between. The Project will develop three curricular initiatives in narrative studies: a freshman cluster, an undergraduate interdisciplinary minor, and a graduate certificate program. With four professors who have together published more than 20 books and 250 articles on issues of narrative, the department has unique strengths in the area of narrative theory. CONTACT: James Phelan, English, 292-6669 or phelan.1@osu.edu.


• New Museum of Classical Archeology.
Students can learn more about the ancient civilizations of Greece and Rome at the new Museum of Classical Archeology, now open in 028 Dulles Hall. The museum displays objects that date from ca. 5000 BC to the present, with emphasis on examples of how people lived in ancient Greece and Rome. Plans are also underway to set up a live video link from the Museum to the OSU Excavations site at Isthmia, in Greece http://isthmia.osu.edu/, so that students and visitors can observe an archeological excavation in process. The Museum is open to the public, but its main function is educational. The expectation is that the Museum will offer research opportunities to Ohio State graduate students and faculty, since the artifacts in the collection have never been studied or published. CONTACT: Ken Andrien, History, (614) 292-0157, or andrien.1@osu.edu

• Residence halls are wired—and wireless. Each residence hall student has had his or her own direct wired high speed connection to the Internet for several years, and last year, wireless connections were installed in many lobbies, study rooms and other shared space. This fall, wireless connections will be available throughout all residence hall buildings, giving students the choice of wired or wireless in their rooms. Wireless access is also available in numerous classrooms, labs, libraries, the recreation center and student union.

• Residence hall (re)opens. Archer House, 2130 Neil Ave., will re-open as a residence hall for 104 students. Opened in 1966 as one of nine low-rise residence halls on North Campus, the building housed four students to a suite for several years before being gradually converted to office space beginning in 1968. Until last summer, it housed the university's human resources office. The newly remodeled rooms accommodate one or two students each, and an enlarged lobby area provides space for large group programs and activities. Returning Archer House to residential space is one step in an ongoing program to reduce residence hall density by replacing 3- and 4-student rooms with singles and doubles.

• Facility improvements. In another step to respond to student desire for greater privacy, "gang" bathrooms in Paterson Hall on South Campus were converted over the summer to several individual bathrooms per floor which students can use one at a time. Over the next years, the plan is to make similar renovations in other South Campus halls, which now all have communal facilities.

• Ribbon cutting will open new laboratory. A new 240,000 square-foot high-tech, state of the art complex in the heart of campus will be the new home for the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Scott Laboratory, 201 W. 19th Ave., will open officially with an October 20 ribbon cutting.

• New building at OSU Mansfield. The new John O. Riedl Hall will open with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Oct. 6. The new gateway building at 1760 University Drive is named in honor of Riedl, who served as dean and director of the campus for 16 years until his 2003 retirement.

New academic departments, majors, minors and courses

• New minor in Media Production and Analysis.
The School of Communication in collaboration with the College of the Arts offers a new interdisciplinary minor, Media Production and Analysis, which provides students with an understanding of the societal impact of contemporary media practices and an opportunity to develop specific media production skills. CONTACT: Liz Alcalde, Social and Behavioral Sciences, (614) 247-4462.

• Ohio State responds to demand for public health experts. The demand for public health workers is expected to grow exponentially in the next several years. Ohio State's School of Public Health responds with three new offerings: a new undergraduate minor to help introduce the field of public health to possible future professionals, and two new specializations as part of the Master of Public Health (MPH) degree, (the standard professional degree in public health practice). With the College of Veterinary Medicine, the school will offer a specialization in veterinary public health, which is important for maintaining the health of human populations. It also will offer a specialization in clinical investigations for students who want expertise in the principles and practices needed for clinical and translational research. CONTACT: Christine O'Malley, School of Public Health, (614) 293-9406.

• Business undergrads will be first to learn Six Sigma. This fall, the Fisher College of Business will become the first business school in the nation to offer Six Sigma classes to undergraduate students to help them earn Green Belt certification. Credited as a formula for success by many leading multinational corporations, Six Sigma is a lean management and process improvement program. Six Sigma training and certification is traditionally taught in MBA and executive education programs at business schools and through corporate training programs. CONTACT: Patty Allen, Fisher College of Business, (614) 292-8937.

• Mergers: The Colleges of Education and Human Ecology have merged and are now the College of Education and Human Ecology; the School of Public Policy and Management and the John Glenn Institute for Public Service and Public Policy have merged and become the John Glenn School of Public Affairs

• New Departments: There's a new School of Earth Sciences within the College of Mathematical and Physical Sciences, the Biomedical Engineering Center has become the Department of Biomedical Engineering in the College of Engineering, and the School of Natural Resources has become the School of Environment and Natural Resources.

New People

• HOPES director:
Allard E. Dembe is the new director of the Center for Health Outcomes Policy and Evaluation Studies (HOPES) and the new chair of the School's Division of Health Services Management and Policy. Dembe plans to focus HOPES on providing policy and evaluation studies for health organizations on campus and for external organizations around the state.

• African American and African Studies Community Extension Center director: Judson L. Jeffries joins the Ohio State Department of African American and African Studies as professor and as director of the Department's Community Extension Center. Jeffries, who earned his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Southern California, will continue the Center's mission to provide community outreach and education programs designed to enhance the educational opportunities of students and improve the quality of life for people who live and work in Columbus's urban areas. CONTACT: Melissa Soave, College of Humanities, (614) 292-1882, or soave.2@osu.edu.

• Department of Women's Studies has new chair: Jill Bystydzienski joins the Department of Women's Studies as chair and professor. She has a B.A. and M.A. in sociology from McGill University and a Ph.D. from SUNY Albany, and comes from Iowa State University, where she served as director of the Women's Studies Program since 1998. Research interests include women, gender and politics in international and global perspective. CONTACT: Melissa Soave, College of Humanities, (614) 292-1882, or soave.2@osu.edu.