Tuesday, January 26, 2016

UIS Education Honor Society inducts eight new members

The Kappa Delta Pi, International Honor Society in Education, chapter at the University of Illinois Springfield inducted eight new members during a ceremony on December 7, 2015.

Steven Elza, the Illinois State Board of Education’s 2015 Teacher of the Year, was the guest speaker at the event. He’s an automotive technology teacher at William Fremd High School in Palatine.

The Society inducts individuals who have exhibited the ideals of scholarship, integrity in service, and commitment to excellence in teaching and its allied professions. Selection as a member of Kappa Delta Pi is based on high academic achievement, a commitment to education as a career, and a professional attitude that assures steady growth in the profession.

Students inducted at this year’s ceremony include: Kendra Baber, Carrie Chelbian, Amanda Collins, Holly Earhart (Secretary), Christina Foster, Amie Herrara, Kyle Kent (Vice President) and Makinzie Yoho (President).

Kappa Delta Pi was established in 1911 to recognize and promote excellence in education. Through its programs, services, and strategic partnerships, the honor society supports the professional growth and teaching practices of educators throughout all phases and levels of their careers. The organization currently has more than 600 chapters and an active membership of nearly 40,000 worldwide.

For more information, contact Ronda Mitchell, chapter advisor and UIS assistant professor of Teacher Education, at 217/206-7008 or rmitche@uis.edu.

Friday, January 15, 2016

UIS Professor publishes first-of-its-kind textbook on LGBT politics for the college classroom

Jason Pierceson, associate professor of political science at the University of Illinois Springfield, recently published the book, Sexual Minorities and Politics: An Introduction, with Rowman & Littlefield publishers.

The book provides an overview of the history of the movement for LGBT rights and examines contemporary political and legal issues, such as LGBT candidates for elective office, public policies supportive of the LGBT community, opposition to LGBT rights, and litigation aimed at expanding LGBT rights. This is the first such comprehensive and up-to-date textbook in the field of political science on LGBT politics.

Primarily for use in the college classroom, the book is also an excellent and accessible introduction to the issue for the general reader.

According to a reviewer, the book is “well written, comprehensive, and compelling. It is no exaggeration to say this is the best sexuality and politics textbook on the market.” Another noted that the book combines “history, theory, and empirical evidence from the latest research.”

Pierceson is also the author or co-author of five additional books on LGBT politics, in addition to numerous articles and book chapters on the subject.

For more information on the book, contact Jason Pierceson at 217/206-7842 or jpier2@uis.edu. Visit the publisher’s website for more information about the book.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Leadership lived: Cheerleading captain helps boost school spirit


Katie Selway has been a cheerleader nearly all of her life. Now, she’s helping to spread school spirit at the University of Illinois Springfield.

The social work major is captain of the Prairie Stars cheerleading team and president of the Blue Crew, a fan section made up of students who attend home athletic events. She’s also a student orientation leader, a member of the Social Work Club and the Capital Scholars Honors Program.

Selway cheered throughout high school in Jacksonville, but didn’t try out for the UIS team until her sophomore year. As captain, she’s helped to build the team into what it has become today.

“Our team has transformed so much this year,” she said. “Our team is completely different this year and it’s amazing being able to be the captain of this team.”

Being captain involves a lot of behind the scenes work, including fundraising and coordinating the team schedule. However, she knows being on the sidelines makes a difference in how student-athletes perform.

“I know I’d love to have students behind me whenever I perform,” she said. “Having that support system behind you makes you a better athlete in general.”

She’s learned many life lessons at UIS, both in the classroom and on the court.

“UIS has taught me that one thing leads to another,” said Selway. “My job led to connections I’m making around campus with faculty, which is leading me into a career I might want to do.”

Following graduation, Selway plans to start graduate school and earn her master’s degree in social work.