From the President

May, 2008

Opportunities Abound


Sara Jayne Steen, President

By the time you read this issue of Plymouth Magazine, the winter’s record snowfall will have receded into memory, and the University will be honoring the achievements of our graduates at ceremonies across the campus.

Students’ opportunities at Plymouth State University are many and varied. In this issue you’ll learn about a class that traveled to southeastern India to visit a village known for its initiatives in environmental sustainability; an innovative program in tourism and a faculty member who makes New Hampshire’s grand hotels come alive through fiction; a graduate student who has taken her experiences with the Pakistani Educational Leadership Institute into her own school classroom with powerful effects on her and on her students; and much more. You’ll learn about research in health that is supporting active living and healthy communities, people serving others, and extraordinary student art.

You’ll also see photos of the remodeled Mary Lyon Residence Hall, which I invite you to visit. Read More

Letters to the Editor

May, 2008

To the Editor

Let me compliment you on your excellent publication. I have enjoyed reading all the articles and alumni information in the Fall 2007 issue.

I was particularly drawn to Caitlin Stevens’ article “The Day Mrs. Kennedy Came to Town.” Back then, I was dean of instruction and Dr. Hyde had asked me to introduce Rose Kennedy to the assembly. I was honored to do so. Visiting with Mrs. Kennedy before her address, we talked about Washington, D.C. (I was born there) and she graciously invited me to visit “John” in the White House.

So came the time to introduce Rose Kennedy to the audience. Everyone was in awe of her presence and eagerly awaited her remarks. She began, “It is a pleasure to be here with you in Plymouth, Vermont.” Silence fell over the audience like the quiet in old Lamson Library.
After a long pause, she went on with her comments and was respectfully received.

It was a big day for Plymouth, New Hampshire!

Richard W. Seltzer, Ed.D.
Former Dean of Instruction 1958–63

Julie N. Bernier Appointed Provost

May, 2008

After more than a year as Plymouth State University’s interim provost and vice president for academic affairs, Julie N. Bernier has been formally appointed provost and vice president for academic affairs.

“Dr. Bernier has earned the respect of her colleagues for her vision, educational values, and integrity,” President Sara Jayne Steen said. “She has been an extraordinary interim provost and worked effectively and collaboratively to ensure student success at all levels. In her, Plymouth State has a stellar academic leader.”

Bernier’s appointment is the culmination of 20 years of teaching and service to Plymouth State. Read More

Brian Beaudrie Named First Wixson Professor

May, 2008

Plymouth State University mathematics professor Brian Beaudrie has been selected as the recipient of the Ed and Marilyn Wixson Endowed Professorship of Mathematics. The Wixsons, both retired PSU mathematics faculty members, established the professorship last fall. Beaudrie, who has taught at PSU for five years, is the first Wixson professor. Read More

A Legacy of Learning and Art

May, 2008

The legacy of the late Barbara Dearborn, a professor of mathematics at PSU for more than 35 years, lives on through two scholarships that reflect her dual passions for math and art. The Barbara Dearborn Endowed Mathematics Scholarship, which was established by Dearborn and her husband Dennis in 1982, is a merit-based scholarship awarded each year to a math major who demonstrates academic excellence. More recently, Dennis Dearborn and his daughter Mitzi established the Barbara Dearborn Endowed Art Scholarship Fund. The scholarship, which will provide tuition assistance to third-year fine arts majors who show exceptional commitment, enthusiasm, and achievement in the fine arts, is a loving tribute to Dearborn, who passed away in 1996. Read More

First White Fellowship Awarded

May, 2008

Christian Doogan, a PSU graduate student studying the source of toxic aluminum in New Hampshire watersheds, has been awarded the first Joe and Gail White Fellowship.

The White Fellowship was created by two Plymouth State graduates who care deeply about protecting New Hampshire’s natural resources and fostering PSU’s ongoing efforts in educating the public about this goal. Joe ’68 and Gail White ’66 were both teachers who eventually started a successful organic farm in southern New Hampshire. The White Fellowship pays a graduate student’s tuition, a stipend, or research expenses. Read More

Master of Education Programs Go International

May, 2008

Expanding its global presence, Plymouth State University’s College of Graduate Studies is now offering master’s degree programs in School Counseling and School Psychology for international students. The new programs fill a worldwide critical need for school counselors and school psychologists who are skilled in transforming individuals and institutions.

“Plymouth State does a lot of international work, especially with international schools, and school psychology and counseling were notably absent in regard to advanced studies, so this is a prudent and professional decision for us,” said Gary Goodnough, counselor education program coordinator.

Through a blend of both intensive summer study on the PSU campus and online coursework during the remainder of each year, internationally based students can complete the requirements necessary to become professional school counselors and psychologists. Read More

New Director for Center for the Environment

May, 2008

Acclaimed ecosystem researcher and scientist Patrick Bourgeron is the new director of Plymouth State University’s Center for the Environment.

A native of France, Bourgeron comes to PSU from the University of Colorado Institute of Arctic and Alpine Research, where he has served as research fellow since 1997. He has nearly 30 years experience in environmental research, planning, land use policy, and teaching in the U.S., France, Canada, and Africa.

Bourgeron believes the CFE’s expertise can benefit many constituencies. “A regional, comprehensive university that strives for excellence can help many constituencies achieve their goals,” said Bourgeron. “We will involve the public, scientists, and environmental organizations in our work.” Read More

Perkins and PSU Chamber Singers Visit Vietnam

May, 2008

Between performances, the PSU Chamber Singers enjoyed sightseeing excursions including boating in Ha Long Bay. Charles Pendleton photo.

The 18 members of the PSU Chamber Singers joined Dan  Perkins, director of choral activities and professor of music, over Winterim for an unforgettable tour of Vietnam, where they made new friends and enjoyed a wide range of cultural experiences in their roles as international musical ambassadors.

Perkins, who was honored last fall with the University’s first professorship, the Stevens-Bristow Endowed Professorship, is principal guest conductor of the Vietnam National Opera. Fulfilling one of the requirements of the Stevens-Bristow Professorship, Perkins gave a presentation with the Chamber Singers at the Silver Center for the Arts to discuss the educational and cultural experiences they had during their visit. The Chamber Singers, who were dressed in traditional Vietnamese clothes that had been made for them while in Vietnam, opened the presentation with a Vietnamese folk song. Read More

Staff Honored for Excellence

May, 2008

Roberta Mayhew. Jon Gilbert Fox photo.

Staff responsibilities at PSU are many and varied, but all have one goal in common: providing students with the best possible experience while attending Plymouth State University. Two members of the PSU staff were recognized for their commitment to excellence in their work: Roberta Mayhew, a groundskeeper with Facilities Services, and Rodney Ekstrom, assistant director of Student Activities. Read More