Southwest Technology Showcase Brings Best & Brightest from the Region

The Southwest Technology Showcase (STS) brought together the best and brightest in the realm of instructional technology in the region. Over 150 individuals from 22 schools and organizations in four states attended the two-day showcase, including 24 students from 3 Nevada higher education institutions. The Nevada State College campus community celebrates the accomplishments of the
The Showcase featured presentations by 23 faculty, staff and administrators from 11 schools in Arizona, California, Nevada and Utah. These demonstrations showcased innovative uses of technology for instruction, professional development, and student services.
The following awards were given to 6 of the 20 presentations.
Best of Show Award:
A special congratulations goes to Nevada State College’s very own Roxanne Stansbury and Marilyn Berry for their award-winning presentation: Overcoming the Hurdles and Stress of Group Projects with Wimba.
Best of Track Awards:
John Louviere, Utah State University
Assessment Interactive and Game Strategies: Full Immersion American Sign Language Training in an Online Environment
Roxanne Stansbury and Marilyn Berry, Nevada State College
Content New Media Strategies: Overcoming the Hurdles and Stress of Group Projects with Wimba
Chunyan Song, PhD, California State University, Chico
Delivery Online and Mobility Strategies: Promoting Student Service Learning with Web Guest Speakers
George Joeckel, Utah State University
Design Usability and Accessibility Strategies: PDF-Based Online Assignments: Free Software, Accessibility Tools, and More!
People’s Choice Awards:
Justin White, Clark County School District
Student’s Choice: Wiki-Teacher. Com
Donna Eyestone, City College of San Francisco
Faculty & Staff’s Choice: Podcasting for Teachers

Writer’s Workshop Offered Day of Learning and Fun

By Jess Marvin
The School of Education at NSC is shaking up the way teachers teach, and students learn about how to write. Through the annual Writer’s Workshop Extravaganza, NSC’s pre-service teachers and local elementary students are brought together to learn from each other.
The School of Education course, Teaching Writing Across the Curriculum (EDRL 427), plays host the Writer’s Workshop Extravaganza each year, providing an excellent opportunity for education majors to get an authentic taste of classroom teaching. The course’s focus is to elevate the student’s abilities to create lesson plans in which their students can practice writing, regardless of the subject they are studying. [This class] helps our students learn skills practical to the classroom environment, said Clairin De Martini, School of Education Lecturer and workshop coordinator. Throughout the course, education majors are provided with a solid foundation for teaching writing across all topics throughout a K-12 setting. Each student is responsible for preparing a lesson plan for the Writer’s Workshop, tailored to a specific age range. Participation in the workshop results in a win-win situation, as it allows education majors to apply their knowledge in a real-world setting while also encouraging younger students to write creatively.
For the Writer’s Extravaganza Workshop, pre-service elementary and secondary education teachers from the School of Education prepare mini lesson plans and carry them out with the participating children. Additionally, the workshop provides an excellent opportunity for education majors to face and overcome real classroom challenges. “Some kids are afraid of writing, said Samantha Orr, elementary education major. Orr, a senior who will soon begin her student teaching, believes the expertise she gained during the workshop will prepare her more effectively for the classroom. The skills I learned today will enable me to implement fun learning strategies into my classroom. I’m excited to put what I learned today into practice, said Orr.
As School of Education Lecturer Clairin De Martini explains, the event serves the NSC population in addition to the local community. This event is really three-fold, as we’re helping local school children, preparing our pre-service teachers for the classroom, and welcoming back many of our alumni who come back to participate in this event, said De Martini.
Paul Mayorquin, a sophomore pre-service teacher participating in the event, got a little more than he bargained for. Mayorquin, a secondary education major with a concentration in biology, was tasked with leading a group of kindergarteners in the lesson plans for the day. “Going into this, I didn’t know what to expect since I’m majoring in secondary education. I didn’t know if I would have anything to offer kindergarteners, explained Mayorquin. Paul’s uncertainties soon passed as he realized there were many applicable lessons to be learned in working with the young children. What I learned today is that patience is necessary, regardless of the age group you’re working with. I’ll ultimately be teaching a different age group after graduating, but the same principles will still apply.”
Over the past few years, the workshop has grown to include more elementary schools. This year, the workshop was honored to have Dooley and Taylor elementary schools participate. Elementary students new to the workshop found it inspiring. “By writing our own short stories today, we learned about writing in first-person, second-person, and third-person, said Kristina Henley, a new workshop participant from one of the local elementary schools. All of the people were really helpful, and I thought it was cool that they were students learning how to be teachers, said Henley. Some children at the event already had a great love for writing and soaked up the opportunity to expand their skills. One such participant, Angelina Herrera shared, “I liked that we can write about any subject we like, and it was fun I’m going to be a writer! Angelina, who has already won two writing contests, shared that it was Dr. Seuss who inspired her to write, and the workshop gave her a chance to do more of what she loves.
For Mayorquin, he hopes to one day inspire children such as Angelina Herrera. Many people are inspired to become teachers, because they had a great teacher along the way. I didn’t always have that experience though, so in becoming a teacher, I’m looking forward to teaching my students that school can be a fun place. I’m hoping I can be a source of inspiration for students, said Mayorquin,
Fulfilling the needs of the educational community is one of Nevada State College’s fundamental goals. The School of Education is achieving those goals through its mission of graduating responsible and competent teachers serving in schools throughout Nevada.

Biology Professor Lives by Example, Providing Aide to Underserved Nations

By Jess Marvin
Long known as a professor who emphasizes the importance of community-based learning in his classes, Dr. Hon-Vu Duong (better known as Dr. D to his students), is a living example of the difference one can make by serving communities in need.
This year alone, Dr. Duong has gone on three separate relief missions to Haiti and Vietnam with a team of U.S. ophthalmologists to perform eye surgeries and other essential procedures for people in need.
In April, Duong traveled to Haiti just months after the country’s devastating earthquake. Though his most recent trip was prompted by Haiti’s earthquake, his work in Haiti is not a new undertaking. He started traveling to Haiti several years ago during his residency at Howard University. While at Howard, Duong became involved with Friends of the Children of Lascahobas, a U.S. based non-profit organization. Duong fell in love with the program and was the only ophthalmologic resident at Howard to do two back-to-back missions as a second- and third-year resident. Since 2003, he has gone to Haiti every year to perform sight-restoring surgeries.
The eye surgery team Duong most recently traveled with in Haiti provided cataract surgeries to restore sight, other reconstructive surgeries, and additional forms of medical intervention to improve the overall quality of life for Haitians. Given the earthquake’s devastation upon the country, Duong and the team knew going in that there would many more unknown variables. During his mission to Haiti in April, Duong and his colleagues worked with Haitian medical teams in Port Au Prince and Lascahobas in triage treating earthquake victims, in addition to performing cataract and other eye surgeries.
The devastation was so profound. Duong said, referencing Haiti’s condition. The hospital the team worked out of in Lascahobas, which is located about 45 miles east of the country’s capital, did not suffer much damage. However, the Haitian government estimated at the time that there were between five to ten thousand Haitians living in makeshift tents in Lascahobas that had been displaced from Port Au Prince.
Days in the clinic, Duong recounts, were long and taxing. This year proved especially trying as the team’s support staffs were reduced by nearly half. Despite these setbacks, Duong and his team worked until the last patient was treated. The clinic, which opened at 8 AM and closed around 8 PM, served approximately 700 patients in a one-week period.
Duong’s relief did not end in Haiti. In June, Drs. Duong & Westfield joined up with the Hawaiian Eye Foundation as well as other ophthalmologists from across the U.S. to work in Hue, Vietnam. Duong’s medical team provided educational training to Vietnamese ophthalmologists on the most current surgery techniques. Duong lectured on basic oculoplastic surgery, assisted in the cataract wet-lab, instructed surgery residents, and offered consultations during the five-day mission. Duong returned to Ben Tre, Vietnam in November, with a team of ophthalmologists and optometrists, providing both medical and surgical eye care.
After each mission, Duong shares his experiences with his students. They are hard trips, says Duong, but well worth it. Though modest about discussing his relief work, Duong is perhaps providing the best teaching model for his students leading by example.