Lori White

University completes property swap with Chi Omega

SMU Chi Omega House at 3014 Daniel Avenue

The Chi Omega house at 3014 Daniel Avenue will become the property of SMU’s Division of Student Affairs in a swap for University property at 3034 Daniel. The sorority will build its new house at the northeast corner of Daniel and Durham Street. Photo from the SMU Chi Omega website.

SMU has made a property trade with one of its sorority chapters to take effect Monday, April 1, 2013. The Iota Alpha chapter of Chi Omega at SMU will build its new house at 3034 Daniel Avenue, while the current Chi Omega house at 3014 Daniel Avenue will become the property of the Division of Student Affairs.

Chi Omega will begin construction on a new house this year, and its membership wanted to locate the facility closer to the hub of SMU’s sorority activity. In 2012, sorority members began discussions about the exchange with SMU vice presidents Brad Cheves, Development and External Affairs; Chris Regis, Business and Finance, and Lori White, Student Affairs. Cheves helped negotiate the swap.

Later this spring, the sorority will begin abatement and demolition of the SMU Faculty Club building currently located at 3034 Daniel, on the northeast corner of Daniel Avenue and Durham Street. The new Chi Omega house is scheduled to open at its new address in Fall 2014.

The University plans to relocate the Faculty Club to a new visitors’ center, currently in the planning stages. Plans for the facility at 3014 Daniel will be announced at a later date.

The move may have a minimal short-term impact on Faculty Club events such as the Distinguished Luncheons, which are frequently held in larger venues due to high levels of interest. In addition, Faculty Club members will continue to gather in the Faculty/Staff Dining Room in RFoC @ Lee.

In recent years, the Faculty Club has provided office space for Alumni Relations and Engagement and the Faculty Senate. Both offices have moved to the University’s East Campus on North Central Expressway – Alumni Relations to the 6200 Building and the Faculty Senate to the 12th floor of Expressway Tower at 6116 North Central.

The month of March has been devoted to removing and storing all Faculty Club property from the 3034 Daniel house, as well as reusable fixtures ranging from faucets to door handles, says Alison Tweedy, senior director of campus services. “Facility Services will take out anything that can be reused or repurposed,” she says.

The SMU Faculty Club, which is open to both faculty and staff members, was founded in 1921 as a social club for male faculty members. A women’s club was founded in 1928, and the two merged in 1963. Both clubs held their meetings in Atkins Hall (now Clements Hall) until the male club moved to the second floor of McFarlin Auditorium in the 1940s.

As Faculty Senate president in 1972-73, Ruth P. Morgan, who would later become University provost, made it a priority to establish a new home for the Faculty Club. Provost H. Neil McFarland provided the property at 3034 Daniel Avenue, then a sorority house, in 1973. The club was officially chartered in that location on August 6, 1973.

Students and holiday stress: Coping and helping

Students in Dallas Hall RotundaAs SMU enters both the holiday and exam seasons, the Office of Student Affairs is asking that all University community members be aware of signs of stress in themselves and those around them.

“The holiday season brings with it a combination of special events and sources of stress – exams, final papers and other projects. At this time in particular, I want to remind you of SMU resources to help you with everything from tutoring and test preparation to coping with anxiety and caring for your health and safety,” wrote Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White in an e-mail message to students dated Nov. 28, 2012.

The message included helpful tips and University resources for staying healthy and safe. In addition, White urged students to visit SMU’s Live Responsibly homepage for additional information.

Advice and resources for a safer and more stress-free season follow under the jump.

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$5 million gift will help renovate SMU’s Memorial Health Center

SMU Memorial Health CenterSMU’s 52-year-old Memorial Health Center is set to receive a major upgrade, and it will be renamed in honor of the distinguished Dallas pediatrician and University alumnus whose foundation is making it possible.

The Dr. Bob and Jean Smith Foundation has given $5 million toward the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center. Planning for the Center’s renovation will begin this year.

The Memorial Health Center opened in 1960 as a 30-bed infirmary. At the time, the University’s enrollment was around 8,000. Today the Health Center serves as an outpatient facility for approximately 11,000 students, about 2,400 of whom live on campus.

Upon its completion in 2014, the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center will serve an estimated 3,650 students living on campus, including those who will live in the new Residential Commons complex to begin construction this spring. The complex, accommodating 1,250 students, in addition to SMU’s current residential halls, will enable the University to implement a two-year residency requirement for all first-year and sophomore students.

“Bob and Jean Smith have a long history of generous support for SMU priorities and have always kept the welfare of students uppermost in their minds,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “This new gift will dramatically improve campus health care resources and provide support services that enable students to do their best academic work and fully enjoy the campus experience. We are deeply grateful for this gift, which will transform an important but outmoded facility into an up-to-date campus resource.”

SMU’s Health Center currently provides medical services for diagnosis and treatment of illness and injury, along with counseling and psychiatric services. The Center is staffed by full-time physicians, mental health counselors, registered nurses, pharmacists and laboratory and X-ray technologists. It also houses SMU’s Center for Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention.

“It is an honor to align the Dr. Bob and Jean Smith Foundation with SMU in combining superior academic facilities with excellent student life resources,” said Sally Smith Mashburn, Foundation president and treasurer and daughter of Dr. Bob and Jean Smith. “After all, one of SMU’s greatest responsibilities is to nurture the well-being of students.”

Improvements for the Dr. Bob Smith Health Center include updated floor plans that will increase the number of patient procedure rooms, counseling offices and private waiting rooms and will better serve the needs of students with disabilities. The renovation also includes upgrades to medical equipment and technology and enhancement of pharmacy and laboratory spaces. The expansion will provide group meeting spaces to promote collaboration among health care staff members.

“The renovations and upgraded equipment will greatly augment our ability to serve the SMU student community, complementing the high-quality staff members and specialists already in place,” said Patrick Hite, SMU Health Center executive director.

“This will be a lasting tribute to a physician and leader whose main concern was the health and welfare of others,” said Lori White, vice president for student affairs. “Now our students will be the beneficiaries not only of his generosity but also his foresight in understanding their needs and fostering a caring community.”

The Smith Foundation’s new $5 million gift counts toward the $750 million goal of SMU Unbridled: The Second Century Campaign, which as of December 2011 has raised more than $574 million to support student quality, faculty and academic excellence and the campus experience.

> Read more from SMU News
> Visit the SMU Memorial Health Center online

SMU VP Lori White appointed to national sustainability board

Lori White, vice president for student affairs at Southern Methodist University-SMU.Lori White, SMU’s vice president for student affairs, has been appointed to the board of directors of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) – a national organization that provides sustainability resources for campus engagement, education and research, as well as campus operations. She will serve for a term to run through December 2014.

AASHE was founded in 2005 to help coordinate and strengthen campus sustainability efforts at regional and national levels, and to serve as the first North American professional association for those interested in advancing campus sustainability. The organization’s STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System) program, for example, is a self-reporting framework that allows colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

AASHE sponsors North America’s largest college sustainability conference every fall, and SMU’s Sustainability Committee traditionally funds attendance for student representatives. AASHE also produces professional development workshops and seminars for faculty and staff.

“What attracts me to AASHE is that they define sustainability in a much broader way than most people do,” White said. “They’re about leaving the world a better place for people tomorrow. Their approach to social justice is about opportunities for the next generation, and I’m committed to the education component of the AASHE program.”

White often has lunch in the dining hall at Umphrey Lee Center, she said, and recently sat with a group of students who identified themselves as environmental representatives (E-Reps) for the campus residence halls.

“They told me about how they had gone to the AASHE national conference in October, and they were excited about what they had seen and learned there,” White said. “Here at SMU we want to work with our students to help them become leaders in their community, in their country and in the world. Getting involved in sustainability will give them an avenue to develop those tools.”

Written by Kimberly Cobb

> Read more from SMU News

Tune In: Keeping the dream alive at Unity Walk 2012

SMU President R. Gerald Turner and Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White joined student leaders, faculty, staff and administrators for SMU’s 2012 Unity Walk on Wednesday, Jan. 18. The walk is an integral event in the University’s annual Dream Week, celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Click the YouTube screen to see highlights – or click here to open a new window for the 2012 Unity Walk video, featuring excerpts from Dr. King’s 1966 speech at SMUvideo

Extra: SMU honors outstanding achievement in 2010-11 awards ceremonies

2011 laurelsSMU faculty, staff, administrators and students were recognized with teaching awards, service honors and the University’s highest commendation, the “M” Award, at the 2011 Awards Extravaganza April 11.

On the same day, the University honored its best students at the 14th annual Honors Day Convocation. The address was delivered by Peter Raad, founding director of the Linda and Mitch Hart eCenter at SMU and executive director of The Guildhall at SMU.

> Find a list of University, school and departmental awards from Honors Convocation 2011

Find the the Awards Extravaganza 2011 winners list after the jump.

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SMU students stand up for Texas Tuition Equalization Grants

Save TEG table in Hughes-Trigg Student CenterSMU students who receive Texas state tuition assistance are speaking up against proposed budget cuts that could jeopardize the grant program that provides the funds.

The Tuition Equalization Grant (TEG) program provides financial aid to students attending 42 private Texas colleges and universities. It awards grants averaging $3,400 to about 28,000 Texans with financial need each year, nearly half of whom are minorities.

The TEG program faces cuts of more than 40 percent; the proposed budget cuts would eliminate about 10,000 students from the grant program. More than 1,500 SMU students received the grant for the 2010-11 academic year.

Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White encouraged the University’s TEG recipients “to contact your Texas legislators and express your opinion about this issue” in an e-mail sent earlier this week.

A group of students met with state legislators at the Texas Capitol on Wednesday, March 2, 2011 to express their support for the TEG program. They included senior and student body president Jake Torres; seniors Laura Baez, Daniela Balderas and Brian Quarles; junior Bethany Mackingtee; sophomore Erin Hoya; and first-year Ryan Swick. Fernando Salazar, coordinator of Latina/o Student Services in Student Activities & Multicultural Student Affairs, joined them on the trip.

“This was an opportunity to make our voices heard,” Torres said. “We were able to emphasize the importance of these grants to the SMU community and to Texas.”

Students are gathering in support of the TEG program in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons through 4 p.m. Wednesday, March 9. The students will have postcards and addresses to allow fellow TEG recipients to write to their representatives in the Texas Legislature.

(Above, SMU students and staff members at the Save TEG table in Hughes-Trigg Student Center include Gordon Brannon, Financial Aid; Fernando Salazar, SAMSA; senior Jake Torres, student body president; and junior Bethany Mackingtee. Photo by Isaac Cotherman.)

> Learn more from SMU News
> Read the students’ letter to the editor of The Dallas Morning News
> Read the students’ op-ed in The Austin American-Statesman
> Find coverage of the students’ Austin trip in the DMN’s Politics section
> More about SMU and TEG from the DMN Trailblazers blog
> Read and listen to coverage from KERA Public Radio audio

SMU joins partnership for West Dallas redevelopment

Community engagementSMU has announced that it will work in partnership with community organizations in helping to rebuild the urban area of West Dallas. Under plans currently being developed, SMU will partner with Dallas Faith Communities Coalition and the West Dallas Education Task Force to explore the area’s needs and goals for access to high-quality K-12 schools.

“This effort is part of SMU’s commitment to apply the University’s resources of intellect and involvement to make a positive impact on our city, in cooperation with community groups,” said Paul Ludden, SMU provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Discussions with community leaders have involved several SMU deans and other top officials, as well as faculty with expertise in issues related to urban redevelopment.

University-wide involvement will be possible through SMU’s seven schools: Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences; Cox School of Business; Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering; Meadows School of the Arts; Perkins School of Theology, Dedman School of Law; and the Annette Caldwell Simmons School of Education and Human Development.

The Simmons School is particularly well suited to draw upon its expertise, research and training programs in areas ranging from reading to mathematics. “Our multidisciplinary approach at the University will allow us to study and deliberate on how to make the best contribution to the community,” said David Chard, the school’s Leon Simmons Dean. “We have great tools at hand, such as assessment and research, strong academic programs and a dedication to student placements and internships.”

SMU, at the recommendation of its Community Engagement Council, will undertake further deliberations, studies and dialogue to determine how best to make an impact. Possibilities include involvement of faculty, staff and students in community and school activities; collecting and offering best practices for urban redevelopment; providing learning opportunities in a number of disciplines, both for students and for teacher training; mentoring and tutoring.

“These activities will also provide outstanding learning experiences for our students,” said Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White, who chairs SMU’s Community Engagement Council with Provost Ludden.

SMU officials took part in a breakfast and discussion May 18 at Dallas City Hall sponsored by Mayor Tom Leppert, the West Dallas Education Task Force and the Dallas Faith Communities Coalition.

“We don’t yet know exactly what form our involvement will take in West Dallas,” said Associate Provost Ellen Pryor, a member of SMU’s Community Engagement Council. “But we are very excited about the possibilities that will strengthen both the campus and the West Dallas community in meaningful ways.”

SMU’s involvement in West Dallas will be in addition to its existing community engagement projects with other areas of Dallas, such as Dedman College’s Academic-Community Experience program and house in East Dallas, activities in Vickery Meadows, college readiness programs available to many DISD schools, and pro bono legal services in South Dallas and East Dallas, among other programs.

Above, participants in Dedman College’s Academic-Community Experience (ACE) Program outside its house in East Dallas.

The Dallas Morning News: Investing brainpower and energy in W. Dallas
SMU in the Community website

SAE fraternity placed on deferred suspension

After two years of investigation into the tragic death of Jacob Stiles on Dec. 2, 2006, in the SAE fraternity house, SMU has concluded that the use of illegal drugs by members of the fraternity was not isolated to the student who died. Statements made by several SAE members indicate there was drug use by additional fraternity members in the SAE house or as part of fraternity activities. In addition, following the death, some members of the fraternity did not fully cooperate or were not forthcoming with SMU officials, and such actions have hampered efforts to investigate this tragedy.

“In considering these findings, we are immediately placing the SAE fraternity on deferred suspension for the remainder of the 2009 Spring Semester and until Nov. 1, 2009, the equivalent of one semester in duration,” said Lori White, vice president for student affairs. “During this time, the fraternity may not hold any fraternity-sponsored social activities, with or without alcohol, on or off campus. This period will cause the fraternity to finish the current year and to get the following year underway in strict compliance with University guidelines. The fraternity may still participate in campus-sponsored philanthropic activities such as Relay for Life and the IFC Special Olympics.”

SMU has elected not to suspend the fraternity entirely from SMU since the majority of current members were not affiliated with SAE when the death occurred. “We also appreciate that the current membership recently has taken the initiative in volunteering to work with the Dean of Student Life and the SMU Center for Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention to develop proactive strategies for drug and alcohol abuse prevention and intervention,” White said.

Fraternity members were informed of the University’s decision at its chapter meeting April 6.

Additionally:

– The fraternity must work with the SMU Center for Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention to arrange for all SAE members to receive Training for Intervention Procedures (TIPS) by Health Communications, Inc., at the fraternity’s expense.

– The fraternity must participate in a community service project with an organization focused on substance abuse prevention and education, and approved by the Dean of Student Life. At least 90% of the fraternity members must participate.

– The fraternity is fined $5,000, which will be remitted to the University’s drug and alcohol education and prevention fund in support of campus-wide substance abuse awareness programming.

If the fraternity does not comply with the requirements outlined above, or commits violations of the Student Code of Conduct during the term of its deferred suspension, the fraternity will be subject to suspension from SMU.

White has reminded members of the fraternity that, in response to recommendations of the President’s Task Force on Substance Abuse Prevention, SMU has developed additional tools to identify students who are at risk and to enable students, faculty and staff to refer these students to campus counseling and other support services.

“In addition, we encourage students to call for help for themselves or for a fellow student, without penalty, through the Good Samaritan and Medical Amnesty programs. We urge the members of the fraternity to work closely with the Dean of Student Life Office if they identify students who may be at risk so that we can respond appropriately.”

White concluded: “SMU is committed to helping students make responsible lifestyle choices. We view the action regarding the fraternity as an opportunity for SAE to lead by example as a student organization with a long history of involvement and service at the University.”

Tune In: Student conduct, student responsibility

VP for Student Affairs Lori WhiteSMU community members who have questions regarding the recent suspension of the Beta Lambda Chapter of Kappa Alpha Order at SMU can see an interview with Vice President for Student Affairs Lori White, conducted by Anna Martinez of SMU News.

Watch the interview in two parts:
Part 1 video
Part 2 video
Visit SMU’s Live Responsibly homepage

By | 2011-11-10T13:45:40+00:00 February 19, 2009|Categories: Tune In|Tags: , , , , , , |
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