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Annual Art Faculty Exhibition

FacultyArt

Department of Art & Design Faculty Exhibition 2017

The Art Center Gallery at Anna Maria College

announces the Annual Art Faculty Exhibition from

Wednesday, September 13 – Wednesday, October 21. 

Gallery Hours are Monday thru Friday, 9:00am-3:30pm.

The work spans categories of painting, photography,

calligraphy, and sculpture, representing recent work

by the department’s faculty of fine artists;

Joseph DiGregorio, Dyan Gulovsen, Alice

Lambert, Timmary Leary, Darrell Matsumoto,

Joseph Ray, Sumiyo Toribe, Jason Travers,

David Wackell, and Michael Yefko. 

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An Interview with Lisa Summer

LisaSummer

Tension on the Korean peninsula is a major topic in the news and the summer was unusually tumultuous. In May, the South Korean Supreme Court upheld parliament’s impeachment of South Korean President Park Geun-hye, the country’s first female president, on corruption charges. The decision was met with violent protests. Then, North Korea escalated tensions by conducting several missile tests and detonated a nuclear device as part of a weapons test.

Anna Maria College Professor Lisa Summer, Director of Music Therapy, spent several weeks in South Korea teaching at Ewha Womans University in Seoul. Ewha is the foremost women’s university in South Korea.

We had an opportunity to talk to Dr. Summer about her experience.

What was the political atmosphere like in South Korea during your time there, especially among your students?

When South Korean President Park Geun-hye was forced out of office due to cronyism and corruption, Ewha – the university where I was teaching – felt direct repercussions of the cronyism charges, as Ewha’s own president, a friend of Park Geun-hye, was removed from office herself.

Dozens were injured in ensuing protests over the president’s impeachment. Some even died, something very rare in a society where violent protests are uncommon. Soon after, North Korea escalated tensions with more missile test. Despite all of this, students – and the public in general – continued to carry on with their normal activities. For the most part, the students and teachers with whom I interacted on a daily basis did not discuss the events that were contemporaneous with my visit.

How would you categorize the South Korean perception of President Trump as it pertains to the tensions with North Korea? And the public perception of the United States? Is it changing?

The average South Korean, in my opinion, regardless of political leaning, is more focused on the behavior of the leaders of North and South Korea. A few people expressed concern about President Trump’s comprehension of the North South situation, but no one I spoke with questioned the state of the American alliance.

How is the Korean public responding to the current threats? How do the threats play out in the local news?

Air raid sirens rang out once for a scheduled public drill while I was there. I was informed prior to the drill, and we carried on as if it were not happening. However, outside on the streets air raid procedures were practiced. Because our students didn’t participate in the drill, I can’t compare it to the Cold War drills from the 1960s. My experiences in the 60’s involved taking action as a class, proceeding to the basement of our elementary school and covering up against a wall. The planned drill in South Korea didn’t worry or even inconvenience me.

Did you witness or are you aware of any student activism taking place in Korea related to the nuclear tensions?

I witnessed no activism personally and was more aware of the cronyism and dismissal of the president because that had direct bearing on my presence at Ewha, where their president was removed as a consequence of the removal of the national president. The student activism I experienced was focused on Ewha’s student body wanting a say in the selection of the university’s next president.

As an American, why do you think Koreans didn’t engage with you on the nuclear situation?

While the North Korean situation may be a conversation topic for the locals, they may have considered as rude to bring up with me. I guess it may be like when one invites non-family members to a family dinner. Those of us hosting would probably not want to discuss Uncle Charlie’s recent conviction, nor would we bring up Cousin Bob’s personal issues. It’s not that we would be “hiding” things from our guests per se but more like we wouldn’t want to trouble them with our internecine struggles. And similarly, Charlie’s violent proclivities and Bob’s drunkenness are probably never going to impact our guests’ lives, so why bring it up with them? North Korea’s government’s animus for South Korea and the US is highly unlikely to have any real impact on me during my visit, so it’s not an issue that my hosts would necessarily want to focus on.

Did you ever feel a desire to talk about North Korea while you were there? Did you feel as though it wasn’t a welcome topic of conversation?

Honestly no. When you’re in another country for an extended period of time you inevitably ingrain yourself in the culture and customs. No one else was really talking about it, so I never had the desire to offer my two-cents. It didn’t appear to be something that was a taboo either, it just wasn’t on their radar at the time.

How did you feel as an American abroad? As an American in a danger zone?

I am at ease when I travel abroad, whether in Korea, or China, or other countries. The political tensions I see on the news – in my experience – are about governments, not people; about ideologies as preached by individuals in the news, not about my intercourse with people in the street. My husband and I travel in countries some identify as “enemies”, such as the People’s Republic of China, or identified as potential threats, such as Indonesia. But, on the streets, we encountered friendly faces; people happy to have American visitors. Often, we are the only Westerners in a location we are visiting. Then the hospitality and friendliness increases to the point of embarrassment.

How did you use music or how does music play a role in this tense climate?

My teaching and supervision this past August focused on the use of music therapy with individuals with well adults and with adults with mental health issues.  In August I taught and supervised music therapists regarding a music therapy method called Supportive Music & Imagery. Supportive MI is being used by these music therapists to reduce their clients’ anxiety about political issues, and to help their clients cope with the pressure of the current tense climate and its effect upon their daily life and relationships.  

Are people using music as an outlet for an emotional response? How?

Yes, people listen to music on a daily basis to express and discharge their negative feelings and anxiety.  They are making playlists on their phones, listening at home, and especially on the commute to work. 

Do you think music therapy could be used here in the US to ease stress over the political climate?

I do! I think there are a lot of us who would benefit from it. Even those of use that live near Anna Maria can still feel some anxiety or fear about North Korea even though we are safe from them. Music therapy is different than conventional talk therapy because it allows us to be more interactive and expressive than a conversation.

Describe the levels of civic engagement you saw among South Koreans during your time

I would say there level of civic engagement is up there with ours. Given the timing of my visit, it’s likely that I was there to observe levels that were higher than normal. What is interesting to me is how focused they are on what’s going on in South Korea as opposed to the rest of the world. I know Americans are often criticized for sometimes being out of the loop on international events, but I think you could say the same for South Korea or any other country for that matter. We will always tend to focus on what’s going on in our own backyard rather than our neighbors.

Aside from the Presidential scandal, what other reasons do you think contributed to the lack of discussion about North Korea?

I don’t think it’s apathy but more a sense of normalcy. All South Koreans live with the fact  that they have an erratic, sometimes violent neighbor to the North. While the increased number of provocations may have been shocking to us, to them it could just be a fact of life. They deal with them on a daily basis so nothing North Korea does is really surprising anymore I imagine. 

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Paxton Civilian Police Academy

Paxton Civilian Police Academy
PAXTON — For the first time, Anna Maria College students will receive credit for participating in the Civilian Police Academy, which kicks off later this month. Civilian Police Academy programs are designed to acquaint individuals who are not sworn police officers with the activities of their local police department

“In its third year, our previous class participants were mostly the older generation,” Organizer and Police Sgt. Guy Bibeau said. “But this year, we incorporated an Anna Maria College credit program, where college students can earn credit after writing papers on what they learned in the academy.”

The academy also appeals to civilians who are new to law enforcement. Participants will be part of hands-on mock trials where they can arrest a “criminal,” learn about interviewing and interrogation through fingerprinting, and experience the use of force through a domestic disturbance. Those in the academy will learn about a new topic each week, ranging from criminal/constitutional law, canine tactics, role of the medical examiner, domestic violence, community policing, and social media.

The academy is free and funded by the police department. Thirteen people are currently enrolled, and there is space for 25 people, Bibeau said. However, participants must be more than 18-years-old. About seven Anna Maria students are enrolled so far. Classes are held on Tuesdays for nine weeks from 6 to 9 p.m.

Anna Maria College Criminal Justice Programs for Undergraduate and Graduate Studies Director Dr. Tonisha M. Pinckney said the civilian academy can break stereotypes.

“The Civilian Academy is an amazing opportunity to connect the police with members of the community (including Anna Maria College students),” Pinckney said. “At a time when there are misperceptions, misunderstandings, and miscommunication between law enforcement and the community, this partnership is designed to educate the community and provide the police an opportunity to positively interact with those they serve and protect.”

Community misperceptions of law enforcement can only be countered by education and communication, Pinckney continued. The AMC Criminal Justice programs have 12 specializations, including: law enforcement and corrections, criminal justice policy and reform, and mental illness crisis intervention. In order to better educate students, college courses are taught by expert practitioners, Pinckney said.

In keeping with that tradition, the Civilian Academy course includes: subject matter experts, such as: Dr. Tonisha M. Pinckney (topics: on domestic violence, community policing and media, and identity theft), Dr. Ann Marie Mires (topic: role of the medical examiner), Dt. Sgt. Mailman (Worcester Police – topic: gangs), and Sgt. Guy Bibeau (topics: Use of force/ tasers and criminal law).

Other topics include: motor vehicle law, operating under the influence (alcohol and drugs), court procedure, firearms safety course with a certification included, and sexual assaults, Bibeau added. CEMELC Canine and Webster Police Officer Aaron Suss will conduct a canine demonstration.

However, the academy can be more than just learning the jest of what goes on in police work.

“In the past, some came in with tunnel vision, or a onesided view of what we do, and they graduated with a totally different outlook,” Bibeau said. “Hopefully, all students will leave with a little more knowledge and understanding about policing than when they came in.”

Molly Bish Center and Forensic Criminology Program Director, Dr. Ann Marie Mires, teaches a lecture on medical-legal death investigation in the academy. Mires commented on the benefit of the partnership.

“Having the subject matter experts come from the college creates that bridge between the community, the college, and policing,” Mires said. “We want our students to enroll in the course so that they can really see first-hand that interconnection between the college, citizenry, and the police. Instead of just reading about it, they get hands-on experience.”

Bibeau said he will take the time to explain different aspects of the curriculum since some students need attention than others. For instance, he will teach how an arrest is more than speaking to someone and then handcuffing the suspect.

“We can’t change anyone, but I hope they leave with a better understanding and appreciation for what we do day-in and day-out,” Bibeau said. “For the citizens, it’s a way to see the insides of what goes on around here, and for the Anna Maria students, it’s a way to see if they’re interested in police work — or not.”

The Anna Maria College Criminal Justice programs consist of criminal justice, law, politics and society, and forensic criminology. She said the school creates strong leaders, as well as educated and socially conscious citizens. Pinckney said the academy is all about community policing.

“The Civilian Academy will give the opportunity for citizens to not only appreciate the perspectives of law enforcement but a deeper understanding of how they navigate their role within the communities,” Pinckney said. “So having a better-informed citizenry creates a safer community – now we have buy-in from the community. Creates a partnership with the citizens – true community policing.”

Bibeau went onto say it’s a way to bring the community closer to the police department so that it’s not so surface level on both ends.

Pinckney explained that the Paxton Police ran the Civilian Academy successfully, but this partnership has allowed the college to expand upon the topics.

“The course is an experiential learning course designed to expose students to the laws, procedures, and processes of policing from the perspective of local law enforcement, facilitate a connectedness and collaboration between the community, AMC students, and Paxton Police, and provide an opportunity for positive discussions regarding misperceptions of policing and misunderstandings about roles of police in the community,” Pinckney said.

Bibeau said that participants can also go on night ride-alongs with a signed liability form after the program.

Anna Maria College Chief Information Officer Michael Miers said students enrolled in the academy were not able to comment to protect their privacy.

The first class, which includes a station tour, will be on Sept. 12 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The program will run for approximately 13 weeks.

Applications are available at the station, 576 Pleasant St. Participants must sign a covenant not to sue and undergo a background and criminal record check. For information, email , or call 508-793-3100, ext. 3155.

 

Copyright
The Landmark
By Tara Vocino
Correspondent

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Education is About Learning from Failure

Joann

I was relaxing reading the New York Sunday Times a few weeks ago when an article, Learning to Fail by Jessica Bennett, caught my eye. The article discusses the struggle that college students have in seeing failure as part of the learning process. According to Bennett, support services have been set up across college campuses to help students learn to fail. Professors also take part in the dialogue, recalling their own failures.

As a career educator, I’m always trying to make connections between teaching and learning. How is it that we have students who see failure as a personal reflection of their character, rather than a natural struggle to learn new information? For over 35 years I have taught elementary students and worked to enhance teacher training.  I now teach students in undergraduate and graduate educator preparation, and I want to make sure they understand educating students isn’t always about test scores and proficient ratings. If we are to change attitudes it will begin with school administrators and teachers fostering the process rather than the product of learning.

Somehow we lose touch of what learning means. Even though we cheer on a baby as they stumble and fall repeatedly learning to walk, we can’t accept these “stumbles” in ourselves. In the world of sports, we understand that there will be strikes, fumbled balls, missed hits, and losses.  Why can’t we carry this thinking over into academic learning?

For my Ed Prep students, I offer the following advice as an educator of 35 years.

  • Praise your students’ efforts rather than just the grade.
  • Talk about failure and learning from mistakes as a part learning.
  • Foster intrinsic motivation which comes from wanting to do better to reach personal goals.
  • Highlight famous people who have failed many times, such as Albert Einstein, Abraham Lincoln, Michael Jordan, Walt Disney, and J.K. Rowling just to name a few.
  • Share your own failures and mistakes so students see that you also have similar experiences and struggles.
  • Celebrate the resilience and perseverance you see in your students because that is what is truly important.

Future teachers will have much to impart on their students.  Give them a gift they will use forever.  Help your students embrace failure as a natural part of learning. Capable, smart people fail every day. It is how you cope with these failures that show your determination to succeed. 

Joanne McDonnell, M.Ed., Assistant Professor/Director of Education Programs at Anna Maria College. Joanne has taught PK-12 students and teachers in Massachusetts for thirty-six years.

To read Jessica Bennett’s article, Learning to Fail: https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/24/fashion/fear-of-failure.html

Expand your learning through Ted Talks: J.K. Rowling the Fringe Benefits of Failure: https://www.ted.com/talks/jk_rowling_the_fringe_benefits_of_failure

The Unexpected Benefits of Failure, By Astro Teller: https://www.ted.com/talks/astro_teller_the_unexpected_benefit_of_celebrating_failure

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Peter Miller Receives NEASCAC Award

Peter Miller

The New England Association for College Admission Counseling Professional of the Year Award selected to Peter Miller for his contributions to the field of college admissions and counseling. These awards honor NEACAC members across the profession, including those affiliated with colleges and universities, high schools, independent counselors and community-based organizations.  Award recipients are strong and ethical advocates for students and/or their institutions and have a proven record of accomplishment throughout their careers.  They demonstrate honesty, patience, thoroughness and sensitivity in their work with students, parents and colleagues.  They are mentors, leaders and consummate professionals within the college admissions and financial aid profession.

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