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  • Allin Montford What are you doing this summer? I am currently working with the Children's Theatre program at KPAC in Paris, TN. I am Assistant Directing, Choreographing, and Musically Directing a production of High School Musical Jr. with high school students aged 13-18. Also I am directing a production of Disney's The Jungle Book with 5-8 year olds later on in the summer. It is such a blast to work with these kids and teach them what I've learned from being in shows in high school and at Bethel. Are you from Paris, TN? Yes. Is this your first involvement with KPAC? I was in the summer plays at KPAC for several years and my senior year I had the opportunity to work with a group of kids on choreography. Following that I have co-directed a short play; directed a short play; and assistant directed, choreographed, and musically directed a full scale musical. Have you ever directed at the KPAC before? This summer is the first time I have been entrusted with directing a full scale musical. It is with a very young group of kids and, I'm sure, will prove to be a very fun and challenging process. What are you studying at Bethel? I'm pursuing a degree in Music Education, however I hope to always have a place, I can, not only develop children's musical talents but also their talent on stage. Why did you choose to major in Music Education? The reason I opted to major in Music Ed rather than Theatre is that, for the most part, a major in Theatre only opens up a few more doors where as a major in Music Ed grants me the ability to teach music, but also I can take my personal experience from my past theatrical endeavors along with those I will face in the Renaissance Theatre program. What do you get out of this experience?   I absolutely love watching kids start in the youngest plays and grow. And being able to be a part of that growth is an amazing feeling. One of my favorite moments of being a part of Children's Theatre is auditions. Kids work all year and it’s so amazing when someone comes in that used to be good and blows your socks off with how much they have learned. I hope to always have a part in local theatre wherever I end up.
  • Camp Renaissance 2011 kicked off on Sunday, June 5 on Bethel University’s McKenzie campus. This week, campers age 13 to 18 are participating in Camp Renaissance Act One.
  • Nelson and the Bear Project By Madison Irving     Does climate change affect black bear growth? A study at the University of Memphis, involving five to six hundred black bear skulls from all over the western United States and southern Canada, has set out to prove that it does. It appears that the size of bears correlate to the climate conditions in the range where the bear lived. Using skulls kept in natural historymuseums, researchers have not only been able to study familial relationships between bears but they have also found that the bears tend to be larger where the climate is colder. The additional goal of the study is to determine whether climate change and specifically global warming is causing changes in black bear growth. Global warming is an issue that has intrigued Dr. John Nelson, an environmental studies teacher at Bethel University, for a long time. Nelson received his doctorate from University of Memphis and has kept in touch with a mentor at U of M, Dr. Michael Kennedy. Kennedy, knowing Nelson’s involvement in the study of global warming, asked him to come on board for the bear project in order to create a connection between global warming and its effects on wildlife. There have been many studies done before of the same nature so they are using past data as well as data they have collected themselves. As new information comes in it is sent over to Nelson for analysis. “No evidence is in hand yet, but warmer temperatures are bound to have some effect. What is unknown now is what the ultimate effects will be on each species. I am not real familiar with the scientific literature that deals with temperature effects on wildlife, but my own dissertation research showed that high temperatures do put a stress on females that are carrying young in the womb. And those youngsters showed the stress in minute levels of asymmetrical development in skull structures”, explained Nelson.             Doing a project like this is bound to take a lot of time and effort, but Nelson seems to pack it all in. “The time that I will spend on the project will largely be determined by my course load at Bethel University. Right now the Biology Department is severely overloaded. In the current semester the 5 full-time faculty members taught the equivalent of 9 faculty positions. It will probably turn out that I spend lots of time during breaks and weekends working these kinds of projects.” This project is very important to Nelson, as he explained, “the project will give me a chance to get re-involved with wildlife research. It is also a project that will allow researchers a chance to potentially show that global warming is real, and that it is having real, and measurable effects on the wildlife in our country.” Dr. Kennedy is applying for and hopes to receive a grant from the National Science Foundation in order to create a research program that operates to create a connectiondirectly from Bethel University to the program at U of M. Unfortunately, due to the large number of projects currently underway and the limited grant funds available, it may be difficult to receive funding. A project of this nature would make it possible for students at Bethel to participate in research and analysis outside of text books and the classroom curriculum, giving them valuable hands-on experience.    
  • U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander will be Bethel University’s Commencement Speaker for the school’s spring 2011 Commencement on May 7, 2011.
  • The Bethel University Percussion Ensemble and Jazz Band will present their spring concert on Thursday, April 14at 8 p.m. The concert will feature music influenced by the sights and sounds of Central Asia to music from the American Big Band era.
  • Clark A. Cruikshank, who has starred alongside actors Jamie Farr and William Christopher in a national tour of The Odd Couple, will be a guest artist in Bethel University’s Academic Theatre production of the Arthur Miller classic, All My Sons April 8-10.
  • The Bethel University Physician Assistant Program is proud to announce that at the March meeting, the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC-PA) has granted continued accreditation to the Physician Assistant Program sponsored by Bethel University. Continued accreditation is an accreditation status granted when a currently accredited program is in compliance with the ARC-PA Standards.
  • On the evenings of April 1 and 2, Bethel University will Light Up Blue to raise awareness for autism and to commemorate World Autism Awareness Day on Saturday, April 2. Bethel University will join prominent buildings around the world – including the Empire State Building and the Sydney Opera House in Australia – by turning their lights blue for the event.
  • The Bethel University Department of English is pleased to announce a reading by acclaimed poet Bill Brown this Thursday, March 31, at 7:30 p.m. in Room 131 of the Dickey Fine Arts Building on the school’s McKenzie campus.

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