Faculty and Staff News

High Points In Spite of High Elevation for SSU Swimmer

For the fourth year in row, Aurore Simonnet, scientific illustrator for Sonoma State’s NASA Education and Public Outreach group, has won gold in the Masters Synchronized Swimming Nationals in the solo category. She also participated in the duet, team and combo categories, placing first in every event, bringing her total gold medal count to four, the maximum any swimmer can win at the Nationals event.

Simonnet’s team, the Redwood Empire Synchro Masters also won the overall “High Points” trophy. This is awarded for scoring the highest cumulative points for all team swimmers participating in all the various age groups.

Simonnet had partnered with Frank Nides, from the Facilities Department in the duets category in the last two Nationals competitions, winning gold each time. However this year, Nides was unable to attend.

This year’s event was held in in Albuquerque, New Mexico, which proved particularly challenging for the participants due to the location’s high elevation. Simonnet credits her plant-based diet and diligent practice schedule of swimming seven days a week for her consistent wins. In a sport where fractions of a point can make a huge difference, Simonnet scored over a 10-point lead against her competitors.

Next up for Simonnet is the FINA World Masters Competition in Montreal, Canada towards the end of July in 2014.

Rose Bruce Publishes Layperson’s Guide to Understanding Research and Data Analysis

Lynda Rose Bruce, retired Associate Vice President for Institutional Research at SSU, has written a Layperson’s Guide to Understanding Research and Data Analysis. It is unusual in that it focuses on concepts, rather than calculations, and guides the reader from formulating a research idea to completing a professional-level project, says Bruce.

Bruce's book has been endorsed by Eduardo M. Ochoa, former SSU provost and currently president of CSU Monterey Bay, and Professor Noel Byrne in the SSU Sociology Department.

For more information contact Bruce at lyndarosebruce@earthlink.net or review the book at Xlibris.

Kevin Davis Highlighted in Trade Newsletter on His Innovate Showerhead Designs

SSU's lead plumber Kevin Davis has been profiled in an upcoming Moen Commercial’s eNewsletter featuring a case study highlighting his innovative design with campus shower heads using Moen products.

Sonoma State’s 65,985 square-foot Physical Education Building’s original plumbing hardware in the locker and shower rooms needed replacement and SSU Facilities Management Plumbing Shop was looking for a cost effective yet high quality retrofit. Kevin Davis, SSU Lead Plumber proposed researching and developing a time and materials cost savings plan for the showers.

Davis was able to design a 14-gal. stainless-steel hexagonal enclosure that would retrofit the existing column showers and equip them with six Posi-Temp® valves per column. Davis turned to Moen to discuss the proposed retrofit and ultimately chose Moen vandal-resistant showerheads.

The campus added 32 Moen Commercial single-handle pressure-balancing shower valves along with 18 Commercial M-Dura® chrome showerheads in the center’s men’s and women’s locker rooms. In addition, on an as-needed basis, the university is swapping out worn, leaking plastic shower-valve cartridges with more than 1,000 heavy-duty brass Moen 1222 HD Single-Handle Posi-Temp® replacement cartridges across all of the student housing complexes on campus.

Before switching to the Moen showerheads and valves, the campus was experiencing significant water loss due to leaks from the 40-year-old column showers with their inefficient shower heads and worn-out valves. The retrofit Davis proposed provided an immediate water savings solution and improved performance.

The vandal-resistant showerheads boast a highly reflective chrome finish and feature a design that uses less water without sacrificing performance. Water flows through an engineered-polymer channel for instant, consistent flow, and the spray pattern is designed to maximize force while saving water. The Moen valves were fitted with lever handles that match the brushed stainless-steel enclosure perfectly. In addition, Posi-temp® pressure-balancing control cartridges bring the performance of these showers into the 21st century.

Replacement Cartridges Handle Rugged Water Supply In addition to the shower retrofits, Moen’s heavy-duty brass Posi-Temp® cartridges are being added as-needed throughout the campus to replace leaking plastic cartridges. The leaks mainly are a consequence of well-water that contains high levels of calcium, magnesium and silica. Over time, this ‘hard’ water wears down the plastic. The Moen brass cartridges, on the other hand, have proven that they can handle the stress.

“While the quality of potable water delivered to the campus is excellent, it does contain measurable amounts of calcium and silica, which in combination pose challenges to the wetted surfaces of all plumbing fixtures,” explains Davis.

“We are very pleased with the performance of Moen’s new cartridge with its robust, and ‘bullet-proof’ design. It is a perfect fit for an institution like Sonoma State University, where there are hundreds of shower valves that must perform effectively and efficiently year-round across the campus.”

- Carol Ingerman

Pamela Van Halsema Earns Masters in Library Science

Pamela Van Halsema, Dean’s Coordinator and Strategist in the School of Education completed her Master of Information Library Science Degree with a concentration in Emerging Technologies through San Jose State University in August.

This program is one of the only fully online stateside graduate degree programs in the CSU. Van Halsema enjoyed the online learning environment, which is designed to offer working professionals the flexibility of working on coursework late at night or on the weekend.

She says her coursework related not only to work in libraries, but was relevant to information organization, preservation and retrieval in any electronic environment.

“I was able to relate the coursework directly to my work here in the School of Education and my work in the community. The balance of studying theory and practical application was both appealing and very useful for me.”

Recently she participated in the Library 2.013 Worldwide Virtual Conference with a presentation entitled, Data Visualization, Graphic Design and Meaning: Equipping Students with Critical Literacy Skills to Create and Consume Infographics.

Van Halsema will be an instructor in the spring Social Media Professional Certificate Program offered through Extended Education.

Lauren Morimoto Reframing Diversity

Kinesiology Professor Lauren Morimoto has been named Director of Diversity and Inclusive Excellence at SSU. She hopes to reframe conversations about diversity from "rather than something SSU has to do" to "something SSU wants to do." Diversity promotes academic excellence and positive learning experiences for students in- and out- of underrepresented groups, she says.

Her statement of interest can be found at: www.sonoma.edu/newscenter/

Myrna Goodman Understanding the Evoluation of Genocide

Myrna Goodman, emeritus professor of sociology and director of the Center for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide, presented a lecture at the community wide commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht on November 10. The event was held at Congregation Shomrei Torah in Santa Rosa. Professor Goodman's talk was titled: "Understanding the Evolution of Genocide."

The Press Democrat reported:

"The steps that led up to the Holocaust take on a pattern that is echoed in mass killings from the Ottoman Empire's slaying of more than one million Armenians around World War I to the mass killing of 800,000 Tutsis in Rwanda in 1994," said Myrna Goodman, director of the Center for the Study of the Holocaust and Genocide at Sonoma State University.

The group in power moves from propaganda campaigns that classify a group as separate to active stages including creating lists, IDs and ghettos to extermination and fostering denial.

“Genocide is still with us,” Goodman said, noting conflicts in Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Goodman will be hosting another event on December 5 called "Stumbling Stones." Read here for more details.

Sue Riley Named Development Officer

Sue Riley has been named Development Officer at SSU after serving with the development team since 2007. She brings nine years of experience working as a grants and human resources administrator at the educational nonprofit Developmental Studies Center based in Oakland, CA. In her new development officer role, Riley will engage with alumni and friends to advance the mission of the University, its schools, and programs. She resides in Petaluma with her husband Mike and their chocolate Lab, Towcester.