For the week of June 23, 2003

From the 6th floor

What I see out my window today is that they're getting the lawn mowed before the rains come. After a totally gorgeous Upper Michigan weekend, it looks like some much-needed rain is in our immediate future. But back to the weekend--which was officially summer for those of you keeping track. Both Saturday and Sunday were the kind of days you dream about: sunny and warm. The beaches around town were packed as folks got out and enjoyed the great outdoors. After all, this is Upper Michigan and you just never know how soon the weather is going to change. While I haven't seen the official temperature readings for the weekend, I know that it had to be in the 80s, with plenty of blue sky. Our thermometer at camp got up to as high as 97 degrees, but it sits in the sun all day so I know it's not an accurate number. But it sure was nice! You know how many places see nice weather during the week and then it's lousy for the weekend? Not the case here. We've had two really great weekends in a row. Now that we're all back to work, there's a chance of rain every day this week, but that's ok.

Busy week/weekend ahead

The campus of Northern Michigan University and the city of Marquette should be hoppin' places this week and weekend as many activities are scheduled. Among the events is "Volker Days", a celebration of the life of well-known author and NMU alumnus John D. Voelker '24. Voelker, under the pen name Robert Traver, wrote the book "Anatomy of a Murder" which became an Oscar-nominated Best Film starring James Stewart and Lee Remick. Voelker received a degree from Northern in 1924 and went on to become a Michigan Supreme Court Justice. Born in 1903 in Ishpeming, Voelker died in 1991. While he was a celebrated author, he was also a dedicated fly fisherman. In honor of that, many city businesses and groups painted wooden fish which have been hung on lamp posts around the city. The NMU Alumni Association got into the spirit of the celebration by painting our logo on a fish. Visitors to the area should plan on taking a walk through the downtown area to check out all the decorated fish. There are a number of Voelker Day events scheduled.

Events around campus this week include the Wildcat Club Golf Outing on Thursday and the NMU Alumni Association Board of Directors meeting on Friday. One of the topics on the board's agenda is a report on the Alumni Survey results. Perhaps some of you took that survey online? Look for a complete report in the next couple weeks.

Several groups are hosting reunions this weekend, including the classes of 1952, '53 and '54. Their golden anniversary will take place this weekend with a variety of events. A number of fraternities and sororities are also getting together.

NMU group helps build playgrounds in Cuba

The freedom to play is a fundamental right of children and essential to their development, according to UNICEF. But some youngsters cannot safely exercise this right. Their countries lack appropriate parks or facilities, leaving them to risk injury by playing in traffic-filled streets or other perilous surroundings. A group of Northern Michigan University students and faculty recently took steps to remedy the problem when they helped build two neighborhood playgrounds in Havana, Cuba.
The NMU volunteers joined about 50 others from several states and Canada. The week-long project was arranged by It’s Just the Kids Inc., a non-profit foundation dedicated to fulfilling the needs of Cuban children.
“Given the political situation between the United States and Cuba, it took about three years for It’s Just the Kids to get the necessary approvals and licenses,” said Susan Martin, professor of modern languages and literatures at NMU. “But this trip all came together on very short notice. We found out it was going to happen just three weeks before the departure date.”

Full story.

New payment plan

This August, Northern will begin to offer new payment options. The goal is to incorporate more flexibility in how students (or their parents) can make payments to Northern. Here are the key points of the new program:

1) We have put together an Internet application that will enable students to give permission for their parents to review their financial accounts and to pay for their university charges. It is a violation of the federal Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) to give student information to anyone other than the student. However, this application will put the decision of who sees the student information in the hands of the student and, thus, does not violate FERPA.

2) We are developing two new payment options for students (or their parents) who cannot pay the full tuition, fees and housing costs by the August deadline. One option will allow a student to make partial payment by Aug. 1 and then two additional payments on the account balance during the semester. The other will allow a student whose financial aid or loan payment has not arrived to defer the account balance until Sept. 1. There will be service charges for electing these payment options and late fees for payments not made by the arranged due dates.

Seaborg Center offers summer college for kids

The Seaborg Center at Northern Michigan University has announced its “Summer College for Kids” programs. The week-long sessions are designed for students in kindergarten through 7th grade. They begin June 23 and run through Aug. 1.
The cost is $45 per program. Morning sessions run from 9 a.m. to noon and afternoon sessions run from 1-4 p.m.
The schedule for “Summer College for Kids” is as follows:

June 23-27
Young Engineers, grades K-2, 1-4 p.m. Explore structure and design using construction activities;
Digital Photography, grades 3-5, 9 a.m.-noon. Learn about optics, cameras and photo-editing with digital cameras;
Crystal Growing, grades 5-7, 1-4 p.m. Investigate the chemistry of crystal growing;

July 7-11
Young Astronauts, grades K-1, 1-4 p.m. Prepare for space travel as an astronaut;
Turtles and Toads, grades 2-4, 1-4 p.m. Learn about reptiles and amphibians and daily field trips;
Rocketry, grades 5-7, 9 a.m.-noon. Investigate, build and launch rockets (more dates).

Homecoming 2003: "Green and Gold, Young and Old: Northern through the decades."

Homecoming 2003 will be celebrated on the campus of Northern Michigan University Friday-Saturday, September 26-27.
This year's theme will highlight some of the history of Northern: "Green and Gold, Young and Old; Northern through the decades."

Among the many activities scheduled for the weekend is the NMU Sports Hall of Fame Induction Dinner, Friday, September 26th. Six new members will be inducted into the NMU Sports Hall of Fame. Those inductees will be announced in August.

Click here for a tentative homecoming schedule.

We just keep on growing

For those of you who don't keep up with daily news here in Marquette, the following may come as a shock to you: Marquette is getting a Kohl's AND a Pier One. Remember when Shopko was the only department store in town? Most alums from the early 70s do.

Kohl's is taking over the section of the Westwood Mall that used to be KMart.
Kohl's has added on to the existing building and expects to be open by the end of summer.
Pier 1 is located on the other side of the highway further west on property adjacent to the Goodwill store. Pier 1 is scheduled to be open by the end of the year.

Also in the works, a Border Grill for Iron Mountain. Home Depot had been looking at both Marquette and Escanaba as possible sites for their home improvement stores, but had trouble securing appropriate land in both cities and have put their plans on hold.

"What's New, NMU?" is a service of the NMU Alumni Association.
Consider joining today!