September 22, 2005
Students start first day of class in a fog
Vet Tech student interns in Rwanda with one of world's most endangered populations - Mountain Gorillas
Barb DeLorme, with "Fearless," an orphaned Eastern Lowland Gorilla at MGVP, who DeLorme described as "like a two-year-old on steroids. He loved to bite and I have the bruises to prove it!"Barb DeLorme spends her days working in IT as a business specialist at Nationwide, her nights studying veterinary technology at Columbus State . . . and her "vacations" working with the native people and gorillas of Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
She recently returned from one of those vacations, where she was able to combine three weeks working with her Columbus Zoo-based Partners In Conservation group, with two additional weeks as an intern at the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project. The internship satisfied a portion of the required curriculum in her studies at Columbus State in the Veterinary Tech program. You see, Barb is planning ahead for her retirement.
Although she has worked for Nationwide for 28 years, she has also been involved with Partners In Conservation (PIC) for 15 years. She co-founded the group in 1991 with two other docents and a keeper from the Columbus Zoo. DeLorme plans to "retire" into a whole new career working in animal psychology, cognitive research and behavioral studies of non-human primates.
Earning a degree in Veterinary Technology satisfies the technical and veterinary aspects of her retirement plan; she hopes to complete an independent studies degree in animal psychology at Ohio State in the future.
The Vet Tech program at Columbus State has a rigorous internship requirement, and DeLorme was able to fulfill one portion of that requirement by returning to the country she has visited several times before. She worked with Dr. Chris Whittier of the Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project doing everything from helping with an orphaned infant lowland gorilla named Fearless, to learning how to dart an animal with tranquilizers, to cataloging bones.
"They had really gotten behind on cataloging the bones," laughed DeLorme. "I was also able to help them do a complete drug inventory at the project, and did a lot of laboratory blood work on samples they brought back from the field."
The Mountain Gorilla Veterinary Project provides field veterinary care for the remaining 380 mountain gorillas in the Virunga Mountains of Rwanda and Congo. DeLorme's group, Partners in Conservation, helps provide health care screenings and preventive medical programs for 158 native trackers and park guards who work in this region. By helping the human populations working in the regions of these highly endangered gorilla populations, PIC helps protect the gorillas from contracting human diseases.
Partners in Conservation also helps fund salaries, field equipment, vehicles and construction for employees of the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International in Rwanda. The late Dian Fossey founded the organization in 1967 to study and protect the endangered mountain gorillas.
DeLorme had an encouraging report on the status of the rarest of gorilla subspecies. "They are really doing very well right now," she said. "They are not being poached, and the country is much more politically stable than in the past. Much of their habitat is protected, and the genetic makeup of the population is fairly diverse. I believe there are actually more than the 380 individuals known. I think there are more wild ones that cross the borders between three countries," she said.
While in Rwanda during her last trip she was able to go up in the mountains on an official tracking expedition with her husband, a friend, and a Rwandan tracker, guide and military escort. Such expeditions are still quite dangerous, hence the military escort.
Now that Barb DeLorme is home from Africa, she's looking excitedly to her next internship, at Ohio State with famed animal behaviorist Dr. Sally Boysen. There, she hopes to gain experience working with the chimpanzees that Boysen has studied for many years to great acclaim.
"I'm actually a little worried," says DeLorme. "I only speak gorilla. I need to be very careful because there is a totally different language with the chimps. I'd hate to say the wrong thing!"
Autumn Quarter Book Club to read Blink
If you make a snap judgment to attend the next Val's Book Club, to read and discuss the new book Blink, by Malcolm Gladwell, you will have made a good decision based purely on gut reaction, or your mind's ability to determine things in the "blink of an eye!"
In this new book by the best-selling author of The Tipping Point (2000), Gladwell breaks down the concept of rapid cognition and why it is often better than years of scientific data.
Barbara Mackoff, of Amazon.com, says "Blink is about the first two seconds of looking--the decisive glance that knows in an instant. Gladwell campaigns for snap judgments and mind reading with a gift for translating research into splendid storytelling. Building his case with scenes from a marriage, heart attack triage, speed dating, choking on the golf course, selling cars, and military maneuvers, he persuades readers to think small and focus on the meaning of "thin slices" of behavior. The key is to rely on our 'adaptive unconscious'--a 24/7 mental valet--that provides us with instant and sophisticated information to warn of danger, read a stranger, or react to a new idea."
Donna Seamon, reviewer for the American Library Association, says "Drawing on cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology, Gladwell shows how the difference between good decision-making and bad has nothing to do with how much information we can process quickly, but on the few particular details on which we focus. Gladwell reveals how we can become better decision makers--in our homes, our offices and in everyday life. Never will you think about thinking the same way."
The Autumn Quarter Val's Book Club will meet to discuss Blink on Thursday, November 3, at noon in Nestor Hall Seminar Room D. To sign up for Val's Book Club and receive a free copy of Blink, contact Vickie Hunter in Institutional Advancement at email@example.com. Participation will be limited to the first 30 to enroll.
World-renowned architect and designer William McDonough will be featured speaker at Green Building Forum
This year's keynote speech will be delivered at 4 p.m. September 29 by architect and designer, William McDonough. He is the founding principal of William McDonough + Partners, an internationally recognized design firm practicing some of the most advanced eco-intelligent architecture in the world.
Not your average environmentalist, McDonough views commerce as the "fastest engine of change." McDonough's speech will present leading-edge ideas on ecological intelligence and innovative practices that are as good for the environment as they are for profit margins.
Using the term eco-effectiveness, McDonough envisions a world where everything a company produces can be composted, reused or recycled into other uses, and a world that is powered by renewable energy sources. Through an eco-efficient business model, buildings can be designed to draw power from solar energy and use plant systems to purify effluents into clean water--and do all this while positively impacting a companies' bottom line and increasing productivity.
Sound like a dream? It is actually happening here in Ohio. McDonough is the architect of the Adam Joseph Lewis Center for Environmental Studies at Oberlin College. Through an integrated approach to natural energy flows, the center has become a net-energy exporter.
McDonough's keynote address is hosted by Columbus State. The Construction Sciences department offers a course in sustainable building strategies, and the Environmental, Safety and Health technology is currently developing a certificate program in the field.
The Green Building Expo will feature seminars covering a wide-range of green topics as well as a trade show highlighting environmentally conscious building products and sustainable design solutions. All-day registration for the two-day expo is $60; $50 for students. Tickets to the keynote speech with William McDonough are $35; $25 for students. To purchase tickets or register, visit www.cgbf.org and click on Green Expo.
Columbus State has a limited number of tickets to single sessions at the expo. To obtain one of these tickets, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In-Service Day committee makes call for presentations
If you would like to recommend or sponsor a presentation from an individual or group from outside Columbus State, please have the presenter(s) fill out the required form, "Criteria for Outside Presenters." When completed, click on the continue button and it will return you to the Call for Presentations.
IRS increases mileage rate through December 31
Columbus State's travel procedure 9-06(A) ties mileage reimbursement rates to the IRS guidelines. The Internal Revenue Service recently announced an increase to the mileage rates for the final four months of 2005 because of recent impacts on oil prices. The rate will increase from 40.5 cents to 48.5 cents a mile for all business miles driven between September 1 and December 31. The IRS is expected to adjust mileage rates again in January.
Travel forms are available on the Intranet and will be updated to reflect the new rates.
Reimbursement forms that are in-transit will have the mileage rate adjusted by the Travel Office for travel that occurred on or after Sept.1. Questions regarding the new rates should be addressed to Betty Sugar in the Travel Office at ext. 2421.
Alternative Retirement Plan forum scheduled for Monday
The Alternative Retirement Plan Forum for those employees with five years of service or less will be held Monday, September 27, in Nestor Hall Seminar Room A. Employees can select from two times, 11 a.m.-noon or 2-3 p.m.
Company to offer seminars on the web for IT/help desk employees
Employees are invited to attend a complimentary webinar series in four sessions offered by the FrontRange Company: September 23, 28, and October 7 and 13, from 11 a.m.-noon in Nestor Hall Seminar Room C. The webinars include the following:
September 23: Session 1, "What is Metadata Anyway, and Why Should I Care?" Learn about FrontRange Solutions .NET-based foundation architecture and how HEAT users can benefit today. Several easy first steps will minimize your learning curve and let you add new ITIL best practices and functionality at your pace.
September 28: Session 2, "Getting Data Got You Down?" FrontRange new product preview. Reduce TCO with real-time asset data at the Service Desk, along with diagnostic and repair tools. See how FrontRange Solutions new Inventory Management Module brings IT functionality to the Service Desk.
October 7: Session 3, "Anticipate Problems and Stop Your Ticket Troubles" Learn about proactive management with FrontRange's DiscoverNet for both ITSM and HEAT users.October 13: Session 4, "Configuration Management, Inventory, Integration: Easy Steps to Success for HEAT Users" Build on your learning from previous sessions with a roadmap to start an ITIL strategy, scope a "realistic effort" and budget to meet your needs.
For more information, contact Candy Mason at ext. 3837.