You are here

Mountain Lines March 2011

Young Harris College Friends of the Arts Members Enjoy Evening of Fine Arts

Approximately 90 members of Young Harris College’s Friends of the Arts (FOTA) enjoyed a special appreciation dinner on March 3 in Grace Rollins Campus Restaurant on the Young Harris College campus. FOTA members also enjoyed a full lineup of fine arts events throughout the evening.

“The College is proud to have presented such a wonderful evening of diverse cultural events and is so pleased with the tremendous community support of our artistic offerings,” Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of Music Keith DeFoor, Ph.D., said.   

Young Harris College hosted the DeKalb Symphony Orchestra as part of the annual “Fay Harmon Clegg Hoag Concert Series” in Glenn Auditorium of the Clegg Fine Arts Building. Prior to the performance, Professor of Music and Dean of the Division of Fine Arts Benny Ferguson, Ph.D., presented a concert preview in Wilson Lecture Hall sponsored by the Institute for Continuing Learning at Young Harris College.

Young Harris College’s Campus Gate Art Gallery hosted an opening reception for “Foundation to Fruition,” a kinetic artwork exhibit by artist Tom Haney. Consisting of pieces that span the career of the Georgia artist, the exhibition includes some of his early work that was heavily influenced by Southern folk art as well as recent works that reflect his current style, highlighting his experimentation with new material and methods. The exhibition will be on display through April 1.

“One of the best parts about being a FOTA member is having the opportunity to spend evenings like this at the College where the fine arts truly shine,” Retention Officer and Associate Professor of Physical Education and Recreation John Kniess, Ph.D., said. “I thoroughly enjoyed conversing with fellow FOTA members throughout the evening and connecting to others through a mutual appreciation for the arts.”

Friends of the Arts supports Young Harris College’s mission of enabling students to grow and learn in an environment of uncompromised artistic and academic freedom and integrity. Gifts made by FOTA members help promote awareness of arts programming.

A percentage of all 2010-2011 gifts to YHC’s Friends of the Arts fund will benefit the YHC Choir European Tour May 2011. In addition, FOTA patrons have the opportunity to sponsor a student to attend the trip, in keeping with FOTA’s goal to promote the exploration of new endeavors and learning experiences.

For more information about Friends of the Arts, contact the Office of Advancement at (706) 379-5318.

Click here to view more photos of the DeKalb Symphony Orchestra concert preview presented by Dr. Benny Ferguson.


Click here to view more photos of the opening reception for “Foundation to Fruition” at the Campus Gate Art Gallery.

Click here to view more photos of Young Harris College’s Friends of the Arts special appreciation dinner.

Click here to view more photos of the DeKalb Symphony Orchestra performance at Young Harris College.

Young Harris College to Host History Conference Regarding Remembrance of Wars
Includes annual Ragsdale Lecture on Friday, March 18

Young Harris College will host "Remembrances: Constructing Narratives of Wars of the 19th and 20th Centuries," Friday-Saturday, March 18-19, sponsored by the Department of History. This conference on war-time narratives and remembrance will feature lectures, presentations and panel discussions by YHC faculty, guest speakers and students. The event is free and open to the public.

The conference will feature 12 sessions, including “Deviant Widows, Warriors and/or Breadwinners: The Variety of Women’s War Experience,” “Memory, Imperialism and Sites of Tragedy,” “In the Aftermath of Wars and Crises: Nationalist Revival, Battlefield Tourism and The New Concepts of Citizenship,” “Remembering The American Civil War,” “Writing War as Mythmaking,” “‘Enemies’ and ‘Others’ in Remembering (and Forgetting) War Experiences,” “The Contested Memories of the Cold War,” “The Construction of the Memory of Great War,” “The Memories of the Second World War and the Holocaust,” “War is Peace? (Re)Framing War and the Consequences for both Memory and Action,” “Militarism, Gender, and Empire in Narrating Wars” and “Making Peace after Wars: Rebuilding State, Redefining Identities.”

According to History Department Chair and Assistant Professor of History Thomas Stearns, Ph.D., the conference evolved from a senior-level course, titled “Remembrances of the Great War (WWI),” taught by Assistant Professor of History Natalia Starostina, Ph.D., this semester.

“The enthusiasm of Dr. Starostina’s students, as well as her vision, are responsible for this innovative, unusual approach to a conference on war,” Dr. Stearns said.

Scholars from across the globe will present during the conference, including professors from Niagara University and Ryerson University in Canada, Istanbul University in Turkey, Technion Israel Institute of Technology in Israel, Omsk State Pedagogical University in Russia, Indiana University, The California State University, University of Richmond and The University of Tennessee.

In addition, graduate students from Emory University, the University of Georgia, Georgia State University, New York University and other institutions will make presentations during the conference. 

“The presenters’ works transcend traditional military history to embrace everything from relevant studies in the arts, social and cultural national memory, to mythmaking properties of warfare,” Dr. Stearns said. “The participating individuals represent a great diversity of academic accomplishment and scholastic approaches to war, from young history majors to seasoned scholars.”

On Friday, March 18, Fraser Harbutt, Ph.D., professor of history at Emory University, will deliver the annual Ragsdale Lecture at 4 p.m. in Wilson Lecture Hall of Goolsby Center. Dr. Harbutt’s lecture, titled “The Cold War in Historical Retrospect: Myths, Manipulations and Realities,” will address the origins of war.

Dr. Harbutt earned his B.A. and LL.B. from the University of Otago in New Zealand, his LL.M. from the University of Auckland in New Zealand and his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley. His research and scholarly interests include international history, United States diplomatic and political history and U.S.-Soviet relations. Dr. Harbutt has written three books on the history of the Cold War, including The Iron Curtain: Churchill, America and the Origins of the Cold War, The Cold War Era and Yalta 1945: Europe and America at the Crossroads. He received the Stuart L. Bernath Memorial Book Prize in 1986 from the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations.

The Ragsdale Lecture Series brings national speakers to Young Harris College to discuss relevant governmental and political issues. It was established in 1983 by Mr. and Mrs. H.D. Paris to honor Mrs. Paris’ cousin, Warner B. Ragsdale. Ragsdale was a 1917 graduate of Young Harris College who achieved a long and distinguished career in journalism.

Students, academic professionals and community members are encouraged to attend the conference.

Young Harris College Student Receives Rotary Scholarship

Young Harris College senior communication studies and theatre major Stephanie Sexton, of Cumming, is one of three Georgia students recently selected by the Norwegian Rotary Advisory Board to participate in a prestigious program at the International Summer School (ISS) at the University of Oslo in Norway, June 25-Aug. 5.

The ISS welcomes more than 550 students from nearly 100 countries to choose from a selection of six-week graduate and undergraduate courses each summer. The ISS is a learning community of diverse students who come together to learn, network and increase understanding and good will between nations.

A committee comprised of six faculty and staff members was formed to select a candidate from Young Harris College for this program. This committee included YHC Campus Minister and Assistant Professor of Religious Studies Rev. Dr. Tim Moore, Business and Public Policy Department Chair and Associate Professor of Business and Public Policy John Van Vliet, Ph.D., Foreign Language Department Chair and Associate Professor of Spanish Diana Santiago, Ph.D., Vice President for Enrollment Management Clint Hobbs, Adjunct Instructor of Political Science Mark Dehler, J.D., and Academic Advising Director Debbie Roach.

This committee forwarded two candidates to the local Rotary club for endorsement. After filling out an extensive application including letters of recommendation, Sexton was chosen by a statewide selection committee to complete a formal interview with four Rotarians in Gainesville.  

“I felt like I was the underdog going into the interview, but I walked away saying, ‘I did my best and I was myself, and that is what counts.’ The next thing I knew, I was being told I was the one that was chosen,” Sexton said. “I could not even speak when I found out. Words cannot explain how thrilled I am. I am absolutely honored to be chosen.”

Along with excelling in her academic pursuits, Sexton is highly involved on the YHC campus. She is a resident advisor, serves as the historian for YHC’s Student Government Association, participates in Theatre Young Harris and performs in the 12-voice women’s a cappella group, Southern Harmony.

The Rotary scholarship calls for applicants that possess a “seriousness of purpose” and “personal qualities likely to make a good representative of our country abroad.” According to Rev. Dr. Moore, Sexton fulfills both of these expectations. 

“Stephanie is the very embodiment of a well-rounded student. In addition to her many extracurricular activities, she is a strong student and has a commendable academic record,” Rev. Dr. Moore said. “She is also a great person and embodies the Rotary’s motto of ‘service above self’ in her everyday life. We could not ask for a better representative of YHC to receive this scholarship.”

Sexton will attend classes five days a week at the ISS at the University of Oslo, studying various subjects including Norwegian art, language and literature. The University of Oslo will issue a Certificate of Achievement to all students who satisfactorily complete the summer courses.

The program also includes a field tour to Bergen, Norway, that is administered by the University of Oslo, along with a one-week visit with a Norwegian Rotary host family.

“I am looking forward to getting to experience a whole new culture. I am interested in seeing how different cultures communicate, and this gives me the perfect opportunity to do that,” Sexton said. “I also am excited about getting to see the historical side of Norway, and I am really looking forward to the beauty of the country. I have seen pictures, and now I am just excited to be able to experience it.”

Young Harris College Participates in Recyclemania 2011

Young Harris College joins more than 600 colleges and universities across the United States in promoting recycling efforts by participating in RecycleMania 2011. YHC students, faculty and staff are encouraged to take part in this eight-week friendly competition that kicked off on Feb. 6 and continues through April 2. The event is co-sponsored by the Young Harris College Student Government Association, Sustainability Committee and Bonner Leaders Program.

“Being good stewards of our environment requires a global effort. By participating in this nationwide event and competing against other colleges and universities, we can not only encourage each other to enhance our recycling efforts on our respective campuses, but also work together to make a larger collective impact in the world,” said Jennifer Schroeder, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology and sustainability committee co-chair.

The RecycleMania competition serves as a benchmarking tool for college and university recycling programs to promote waste reduction activities within campus communities. Participating schools report recycling and trash data, assess how results fluctuate against other schools and use this information to rally campus communities to reduce and recycle more.

“RecycleMania is important because it makes people more aware of recycling on campus and it gives people incentive to actually do it. Recycling helps us reduce our carbon footprint on the environment and helps our earth in so many other ways,” said Marissa Knoblich, a freshman biology major from Acworth. “Students, faculty and staff need to get involved in this as much as possible. Everyone needs to start recycling as much as they can, and keep on recycling.”

“In addition to making visible personal efforts to reduce waste and take recyclable items to their respective drop-off locations, faculty and staff have the responsibility to encourage our students and colleagues to do the same,” Dr. Schroeder added. “This can include providing additional recycling collection stations in our offices to just giving gentle reminders that cans, bottles and paper do not belong in garbage cans. By working together with students, we can reflect what is so special about being part of the Young Harris family.”

The YHC SGA continues to lead an effort to assist with campus-wide recycling by collecting plastics, aluminum and corrugated cardboard in return for a stipend for their organizations.

The official drop-off location for paper is the Duckworth Library 24-hour study room. Drop-off locations for cardboard, plastics and aluminum include:

  • Goolsby Center lobby
  • Maxwell Center lobby
  • Winship Hall (first floor balcony)
  • Manget Hall (porch next to the entrance to the common room and YHC Police Department)
  • Enotah Hall (back of the wing closest to the YHC Recreation Center)
  • Rollins Hall (first floor across from the common room)
  • Appleby Center (first-floor porch next to Appleby West)

Young Harris College Receives Marketing Awards

Young Harris College recently received a bronze award in the Direct Mail Advertising category and a merit award in the Outdoor Transit/Billboard category in the Higher Education Marketing Report’s 26th Annual Educational Advertising Awards.
The bronze award was received for the College’s direct-mail campaign targeting high school guidance counselors throughout the Southeast with a YHC-branded backpack and aluminum water bottle packaged with admissions-related materials to provide information about YHC to the counselors.

The merit award was received for the College’s “Your Next Four Years” student-recruitment campaign billboards that appear on Interstate 75 in the north Atlanta/Marietta area.

The Educational Advertising Awards is the largest educational advertising awards competition in the country. This year, more than 2,500 entries were received from more than 1,000 colleges, universities and secondary schools from all 50 states and several foreign countries.
Judges for the Educational Advertising Awards consisted of national panel of higher education marketers, advertising creative directors, marketing and advertising professionals and the editorial board of Higher Education Marketing Report.

Young Harris College Students Form Gospel Choir

Young Harris College welcomed to campus this semester Generation X, a student-led gospel choir formed by sophomore music major Cedric Epps of Talbotton. The group’s debut performance recently took place during the College’s weekly chapel service in Susan B. Harris Chapel on Feb. 23.

“The idea for the group came about during the second semester of my freshman year. It was formed because I wanted to express a different type of worship that is more comfortable to my background,” Epps said. “All of the members are good friends. One thing led to another, and before we knew it, we had ourselves a gospel group.”

Generation X is currently comprised of 15 students and new members are welcome. The vocal group meets each Wednesday at 8:30 p.m. after the College’s weekly chapel service.

“This group’s only goal is to please God in our own way. Every song we sing is customized and tailored to fit our style of worship,” Epps said.

“I love the new gospel choir! They brought a lot of energy and passion to the chapel service which I really enjoyed,” said Hannah Bridges, a sophomore liberal arts major from Jefferson. “I hope the choir will perform at more functions around campus because I would be happy to hear them sing again.”

Generation X.

The student-led gospel choir was formed by sophomore music major Cedric Epps of Talbotton (left).

Young Harris College Introduces Institutional Review Board

Young Harris College introduced this spring an Institutional Review Board (IRB) that will review and approve all research involving human participants, including faculty, staff and student projects. The main function of the IRB is to protect human subjects and to ensure that all research with human participants is conducted in accordance with certain ethical principles.

The IRB ensures that the benefits of the research outweigh the risks to the participants in that research, that participants are in no way deceived during the research process and that participants indicate informed consent to such research by signing a suitable consent form.

The IRB is comprised of four core members representing each of the College’s four academic divisions—Fine Arts, Humanities, Mathematics and Science, and Social and Behavioral Science. Core positions are held by individuals who are “actively involved” in human subjects research.

The IRB consists of a minimum of eight board members, including one member from a discipline not typically involved in human subjects research and a member of the local community in a public position. The chair and four core members are selected by the Provost, while the other members are selected by the IRB chair.

Members of the Young Harris College IRB include Executive Vice President and Provost Ron Ingle, Ph.D., Communication Studies Department Chair and Associate Professor of Communication Studies Joy Goldsmith, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Sociology Jen Pemberton, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Physics Arunava Roy, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Theatre Rachel Chaves, Ph.D., Religious Studies Department Chair and Assistant Professor of Philosophy Jamie Watson, Ph.D., Director of Student Health Services Linda Kniess, R.N., and Director of Counseling and Psychological Services Lynne Grady. A community member will be appointed at a later date.

Faculty can access information and documents regarding the IRB by clicking on the tab under General Resources located on YHC Connect.

Young Harris College Participates in National Clothing Drive

Young Harris College recently collected 175 pounds of clothing as part of “oneSHIRT,” a national collegiate clothing drive organized by SustainU, a leading producer of university-related apparel that uses fabrics made from 100 percent recycled materials manufactured in the United States. This initiative at Young Harris College was organized by the Student Government Association’s Sustainability Committee.

Along with thousands of volunteers from more than 100 universities and colleges across the United States, YHC students encouraged students, faculty, staff and community members to donate used, unwanted clothing.

Many donations were presented to Support in Abusive Family Emergencies, Inc. (S.A.F.E.) and the Mountain Shelter Humane Society, while other garments were recycled and used in a variety of industrial applications.

“I was very pleased with the clothing drive and the willingness of students, faculty and staff to make donations,” said Student Government Association Sustainability Chair Jill Tuttle, a senior English major from McCaysville. “I think it was a great event for SGA's Sustainability Committee to participate in because it helped reduce clothing waste and also gave people an opportunity to give back to the community.”

(From left to right) Young Harris College students Jill Tuttle, a senior English major from McCaysville, Jason Dalton, a senior biology major from Augusta, and Emma Witherington, a junior biology major from Winder, take part in the weigh-in for the “oneSHIRT” clothing drive.

Appalachian Jam Session Held on Young Harris College Campus

Nearly 50 Young Harris College students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members participated in the second Young Harris College Appalachian Jam Session, Feb. 24. The event featured traditional bluegrass and “old-time” Appalachian music played on various instruments, including guitar, banjo, mandolin, fiddle, bass and other acoustic stringed instruments. 

The event was organized by Art Department Chair and Associate Professor of Art Ted Whisenhunt and senior music major Grady Garner of Blairsville.

“Grady approached me last fall about starting a bluegrass and old-time music jam session on campus. We decided to move forward with the idea this spring and our first gathering was held in January,” Whisenhunt said. “During our most recent session, more students showed up with instruments and we had a much larger group as a whole. We hope this will become an official monthly jam in the future.” 

During the session, the group played several bluegrass standards including “Will the Circle be Unbroken,”  “I’ll Fly Away” and “Salty Dog,” as well as many traditional fiddle tunes including “Old Joe Clark,” “Soldier’s Joy” and “Waterbound.” 

“Our aim is to generate an interest in traditional music of Appalachia on campus and to do so in an inclusive environment where musicians of all skill levels are encouraged to participate,” Whisenhunt said. “This region has a rich cultural heritage and this is just one of the many ways we can celebrate these traditions on our campus.”

YHC Staff Member and Student Volunteer for Locks of Love

YHC Admissions Counselor and alumna Kari Webb, ’07, and sophomore athletic training major Kelsey Herbert, of Covington, volunteered to have their hair cut and donated to Locks of Love during halftime of the YHC women’s basketball game held at the YHC Arena on Feb. 12. Locks of Love is a public non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis.

Webb and Herbert stood at center court during halftime and each had 10 inches of hair cut off by Leisa Shook of Head Shots Hair Salon in Blairsville, who volunteered her time to cut and style the ladies’ hair. Leisa’s daughter and YHC student Megan Shook, a senior business and public policy major from Young Harris, assisted in the hairstyling.

“Kari, Kesley and Leisa all demonstrated such positive acts of kindness. Kari has a passion for children and felt this was a great way to help,” YHC Assistant Athletics Director, Senior Women’s Administrator and Women’s Soccer Head Coach Kathy Brown said. “Kelsey is a member of the College’s softball team. She joked that her hair was so long that it would get caught under her arm while she was pitching, so this seemed like a great opportunity to help out a child and also solve her pitching problem.”

Feb. 12 was declared “Cancer Awareness Day” by the Student Athlete Advisory Committee. During the game, members of the committee distributed slips of paper to fans that included hundreds of facts about cancer.

YHC Admissions Counselor and alumna Kari Webb, ’07, and sophomore athletic training major Kelsey Herbert, of Covington, volunteered to have their hair cut and donated to Locks of Love.

Webb and Herbert stood at center court during halftime and each had 10 inches of hair cut.

Leisa Shook of Head Shots Hair Salon in Blairsville volunteered to cut and style the ladies’ hair.

Faculty and Staff Notables

Jeff Bauman, professor of music and director of choral and vocal activities, appeared as a soloist with the Brasstown Big Band during a performance at the 9th District Georgia Music Educators Association Honors Band Festival held at Fannin County High School, Feb. 11.

Dr. Nick Bowman, assistant professor of communication studies, will serve as a judge for the annual Youth Leadership Development Scholarship Program speech competition at Towns County High School in Hiawassee, March 26.

Karen Calloway, assistant professor of music, flute, performed at the Toccoa Symphony Orchestra’s Mid-Winter Concert in Toccoa, March 6. Calloway will also perform during the Gainesville Symphony Orchestra’s Young People’s Concert at Brenau University in Gainesville, March 18.

Dr. Rachel Chaves, assistant professor of theatre, presented a workshop, titled "Director-Designer Collaboration: How to Start the Conversation” during the Southeastern Theatre Conference Annual Convention in Atlanta, March 2-6. The workshop outlined a method for theatrical collaboration and text analysis based on the phenomenology of Martin Heidegger.

Eddie Collins, theatre department chair and assistant professor of theatre, recently served as the Irene Ryan Scholarship Auditions coordinator at the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) Region IV Festival in Daytona, Fla., Feb. 1-5. Collins oversaw auditions for more than 200 undergraduate and graduate students from 10 states in the Southeast. The Irene Ryan Foundation awards 16 regional and two national scholarships annually.

Cathy Cox, YHC president, co-presented a session, titled “Why Higher Education Will Make or Break Georgia’s Future,” with Georgia College and State University President Dr. Dorothy Leland during the Women in Leadership Forum held at The Commerce Club in Atlanta, Feb. 10. Cox served as the keynote speaker for the High School Guidance Counselors Workshop held at Kennesaw State University, Feb. 15. She served on a president’s panel for the Georgia Association of Women in Higher Education Annual Meeting held at Dalton State College, Feb. 25. Cox also addressed legislative interns serving in the Georgia General Assembly at a luncheon, Feb. 11. Legislative interns are selected from Georgia colleges and universities each year to serve as aides to various committees and offices. Bryan Miller, a senior business and public policy major from Young Harris, currently serves in the office of Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives David E. Ralston, ’74, while senior business and public policy major Jared Wright of Hiawassee serves as an aide for State Representative Stephen Allison.

Brenda Paul, women’s head basketball coach, earned her 450th career win when the Young Harris College Mountain Lions defeated Reinhardt University, 59-53, Feb. 14. Coach Paul has previously held coaching positions at Tennessee Wesleyan College, Berry College, Georgia State University, Mississippi State University and Elon University.

Rosemary Royston, ’89, vice president for planning and assessment and chief of staff, will present a paper regarding the theme of nature in Appalachian poetry at the 34th Annual Appalachian Studies Conference in Richmond, Ky., March 11-13.