Spectrum Volume 21 Issue 06 - October 1, 1998
Foreign languages to host conference
The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at Virginia Tech will host the 48th Annual Mountain Interstate Foreign Language Conference (MIFLC) October 8-10 at the Donaldson Brown Hotel and Conference Center.
More than 200 presentations from scholars, teachers, writers, editors, translators, and administrative officials from throughout the United States and abroad have been scheduled for the three-day convention. Papers will highlight the contributions of women writers, current trends in literary criticism, the impact of new pedagogical theories on the teaching of foreign languages, and the creation and implementation of web-based courses in French, German, and Spanish.
Among the several dozen sessions and panel discussions at the October meeting are five sessions that examine the impact of women writers on French, German, Latin American, and Spanish novels; two sessions on French and Spanish films; and several others that deal with such varied topics as psychological awareness in the autobiographical novel, the thrills and pitfalls of literary translation, and literary reactions to the Spanish-American War.
Three workshops are scheduled for Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. The first deals with chat rooms and on-line materials. The second one presents ways to use distance-learning technologies to supervise student teachers; and the last one discusses national standards for K-12 and higher education. The complete program is available on-line at http://www.fll.vt.edu/miflc98/program.html.
The Friday banquet will close with a keynote address by well-known literary critic Enrico Mario Santí of Georgetown University. The address is on the topic "The Wilde Dreyfus Disaster: The Sense of a Cultural Ending." Robert Bates, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, will welcome participants and introduce Santí. Music will be provided by the Polovetsi String Quartet.
For more information, call 1-5361.
Reporter will discuss Nash
On Thursday, Oct. 8, Sylvia Nasar, a business and financial reporter with the New York Times, will present A Beautiful Mind: The Life of John F. Nash, Jr., at 7 p.m. in Norris 136.
Nasar is the author of the critically acclaimed book of the same title, published by Simon and Schuster in June 1998. Nash, a native of Bluefield, W. Va., was a brilliant mathematician and game theorist whose 1950 doctoral dissertation at Princeton became a cornerstone of modern economic theory and won him the Nobel Prize in 1994. After a promising early career, he was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in 1960 and disappeared from public view for nearly three decades. He spent many of those years living with family in Roanoke, where his sister still resides. In the late 80s he began to recover his sanity and his ability to do creative work; now nearly 70 years old, Nash has resumed his scholarly career and is living and working in Princeton, New Jersey.
Nasar's lecture will be accessible to a general audience, and will deal with the significance of Nash's life and work, and will touch on issues related to mathematics, economics, mental health and mental illness, and the conduct of science during the Cold War era. She will also describe how she, as a reporter, became interested in Nash's story and how she carried out the research and writing for this remarkable biography.
English Language Institute offers class
The English Language Institute, a unit of the Division of Continuing Education, will offer a full schedule of English language classes beginning Tuesday, Oct. 20, for international students, scholars, and members of the community. Classes will include pronunciation, conversation and culture, composition and grammar, vocabulary, English for business and management, and preparation for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Classes cover all levels of proficiency.
Placement and registration will be held Monday, Oct. 19, beginning at 9 a.m. at 620 North Main St., room 205 in Blacksburg. New full-time students should bring their passport, I-20 form, and health-insurance card.
Most classes meet weekdays through December 18, with a holiday November 21 to 29. Each class has a tuition fee. Classes with low enrollment will be canceled. Late registrations are accepted with the student paying weekly tuition plus a service charge.
For more information, contact Judith Snoke, director of the Virginia Tech Language Institute, at 1-6963 or e-mail her at email@example.com. Application forms for F-1 student visas can be obtained by contacting Snoke or by visiting the institute's homepage at http://www.vt.edu:10021/E/eslsnoke/homepage.html.
Speaker will discuss China
The Virginia Tech Urban Affairs and Planning Speaker Series and the Center for Housing Research are sponsoring a presentation on "The Dynamics of Urban Growth in China" by Weiping Wu on Monday, Oct. 12, 4:30-6 p.m. in 114 Architecture Annex. Wu, formerly with the World Bank, is assistant professor of urban affairs and planning at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Red Cross needs blood
The Red Cross is again asking for help. A blood drive will be held through today, October 1, from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. in Squires Commonwealth Ballroom. The web address for making appointments is http://ate.cc.vt.edu/mmarc.
At this time the Red Cross is experiencing an emergency need for Type O and all negatives. There is an urgent need for all other types. For more information, call 1-2207.
Seminars focus on digital libraries
A new weekly seminar series on digital libraries is being held each week throughout the semester from 3:30-4:45 p.m. in the Newman Library 6th floor boardroom
Topics arranged thus far are: October 6--"A Dialogue on Defining the Digital Library" by Nancy Seamans, assistant professor, University Libraries; October 13--"Metadata and MARIAN, or `How do you find three words in thirty million when you've got two of them wrong?'" by Robert France, programmer/analyst, Virginia Tech Computing Center; October 20--"Scholarly Communications" by Gail McMillan, associate professor, University Libraries.
For more information, see http://ei.cs.vt.edu/~cs5944/.
The seminars are sponsored by the Department of Computer Science, Information Systems, University Libraries, Digital Library Research Laboratory, and the Internet Innovation Technology Center.
Concert to unveil unheard music
The University Chamber Music Series (UCM) continues its Feel Winds, See Keys, Touch Strings, Hear Voices series with "Chamber Music Breathes." Performances are Saturday, Oct. 10, at 8 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 11, at 3 p.m. in the Squires Recital Salon.
The concert highlights wind instruments such as the flute, oboe, clarinet, trumpet, and many more.
The concert will offer musical selections which are not well known and are therefore typically left out of a performance. Composers include: Ottorino Respighi, famous for Pines of Rome; Charles Koechlin, who studied under Claude Debussy; and two French composers, Henri Tomasi and Eugene Bozza. Respighi's lesser-known composition, Suite Della Tabacchiera will be the first selection of the concert.
Other selections to be performed in the concert include "Henri Tomasiís," "Printemps pour Sextour a Vent," which has three movements translated means "Awakening of the Birds," "Love Song," and "Dance of the Birds." Eugene Bozzaís "Quatre Movements pour Septour a Vent," translated means "Four Movements for Seven Winds."
Tickets are $10 general admission and $7 students/seniors. For ticket reservations, call the UUSA Ticket Office at 1-5615. For more information, call 1-5200 or visit the website at http://www.sota.vt.edu. Tickets will also be available at the door one hour before the performance; however, seating is limited.
VT Police Department mails report
In accordance with the Student Right-to-Know and Campus Security Act, the Virginia Tech Police Department has mailed its 1998 Annual Report to the faculty, staff and students. Anyone who has not received a copy and would like one should contact the Crime Prevention Unit at 1-8123.
YMCA selling parking spots
The YMCA at Virginia Tech is selling parking spots at the Lancaster House on Washington Street during home football games. Spaces go for $20 per game, and tailgating is allowed. All proceeds will benefit student-led, community-service programs in Montgomery County.
Essay contest announced
The Student Advisory Board is hosting a campus-wide essay contest to help that board give feedback to its parent committee, the Cultural Diversity Committee of the College of Arts and Sciences. The essays will generate ideas and present concerns of students, which can in turn be presented to the Cultural Diversity Committee. The goal is to better connect the entire campus.
At least three members of the board will read every paper. Upon determination of the top nine papers, cash prizes will be distributed. A potential public reading of some of the writings may be pursued.
Submissions will be accepted in special receptacles strategically located around campus from 8 a.m., Friday, Oct. 2, until 5 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 9. Advertisements in flyers and the Collegiate Times will give a full description of what is entailed in this activity.
Women's group sets coffee hour
The Organization of Women Faculty will hold its monthly meeting Friday, Oct. 2, at the Easy Chair in University Mall. The organization is comprised of women in academic and administrative faculty positions. The monthly first-Friday coffee hour is a time to network informally and get to know each other. All women faculty members are welcome. For more information, contact Tamara Kennelly, 1-9214.
CROP walk fights poverty
On October 24, the Blacksburg CROP Walk be a 6-mile walk starting at the Memorial Chapel 9 a.m.
The CROP walk is held to raise money to support programs that alleviate poverty and hunger in the United States and around the world. Faculty members and students interested in participating should call Jane Wentworth at 552-2473.
Book signing and reading scheduled
Kate Gale will be signing and reading from her two collections of poems on Thursday, Oct. 1, at 7 p.m., in the Volume Two Bookstore.
Gale, an editor for the Valentine Publishing Group, has collections titled: Blue Air and Where Crows and Men Collide.
Museum presents mushroom walk
The Virginia Tech Museum of Natural History is sponsoring a mushroom walk on October 3. Walkers will meet at 9 a.m. in the parking lot across the street from the Virginia Tech Museum of Natural History.
Participants should bring a lunch, a basket, paper bags or wax paper, and plenty of water.
Pre-registration required; there is no admission fee. For more information, call the Virginia Tech Museum of Natural at 1-3001.
Was Wonderland a mathematical place?
On Thursday, Oct. 1, Susan Taber, an assistant professor in the Department of Elementary and Early Childhood Education at Rowan University, will present "Alice in Wonderland and the Teaching and Learning of Mathematics." The presentation is 7:30 p.m. in the Math Emporium on University City Boulevard in Blacksburg.
Leave Sharing requested for employees
Virginia Tech employees in the following areas have requested leave donations: University Extension Office, and Grounds-Physical Plant. There are also still Tech employees in the following areas who have, requested leave donations: natural history, near environments, and minority engineering. These employee(s) are eligible to receive leave through the Leave Sharing Program. Any salaried classified employee or a 12-month regular faculty member has the opportunity to participate by donating annual leave in increments of 8 hours.
There is no maximum donation limitation per year, nor is there a minimum balance that must be maintained.
Leave donations received after the employee's eligibility status changes (such as, return to work, disability retirement, retirement, etc.) will be returned to the donor in accordance with established Personnel procedures.
In order to protect recipients, the names and details of the medical condition will remain confidential. However, employees must donate leave to either a specific individual or area.
Donor forms may be obtained from department administrative offices or from Personnel Services department at 1-9331 or e-mail address FLOWERSR@vt.edu. Please return the completed form to Kathy Manning, leave administrator.
Majors fair announced
A majors fair for undergraduates will be held Tuesday, Oct. 6, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Squires Old Dominion Ballroom. The event is an opportunity for undergraduates to talk with faculty members and students in different colleges and departments to learn more about various majors offered at Virginia Tech. Individual colleges will be presenting at two informal break-out sessions. The fair is sponsored by the Biological Sciences Initiative advising office and the University Academic Advising Center. For more information, call 1-3890.