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Angelo State University is planning a fireworks show at the conclusion of the Rams’ baseball game on Friday, March 19, at Foster Field at 1st Community Credit Union Stadium, 1600 University Ave.

The game between the Rams and Texas A&M-International will begin at 6:30 p.m. and end at approximately 9 p.m. Residents in the surrounding area may hear loud popping and blasts as the fireworks commence. For concerns during the event, the public is advised to contact the ASU Police Department at 325-942-2071.

More details about the baseball game are available at angelosports.com.

For more information about the fireworks, contact Sam Spooner, director of risk and emergency management, at 325-942-2180.

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Angelo State University has announced plans to conduct in-person commencement ceremonies for its spring graduates on Friday and Saturday, May 14-15, in the Junell Center/Stephens Arena, 2235 S. Jackson Street.

Dr. Don Topliff Dr. Don TopliffNearly 1,000 graduates are scheduled to walk the stage during the five commencement ceremonies. All seating will be reserved, and each graduate will have access to four tickets for family and friends to attend their respective ceremony. Only those ticket holders will be allowed to attend.

“We are very happy to return to hosting in-person ceremonies,” said Dr. Don Topliff, provost and vice president for academic affairs. “We’re not completely back to normal, but our graduates will once again be able to walk the stage and celebrate their milestone achievement with their families and friends.”

The first ceremony will be on May 14 at 5 p.m. for graduates of the:

  • College of Education
  • College of Graduate Studies and Research in education fields

The second ceremony will be on May 14 at 7 p.m. for graduates of the:

  • Archer College of Health and Human Services
  • College of Graduate Studies and Research in health and human services fields

The third ceremony will be on May 15 at 10 a.m. for graduates of the:

  • Norris-Vincent College of Business
  • College of Graduate Studies and Research in business fields

The fourth ceremony will be on May 15 at 1 p.m. for graduates of the:

  • College of Science and Engineering
  • College of Graduate Studies and Research in science and engineering fields

The final ceremony will be on May 15 at 4 p.m. for graduates of the:

  • College of Arts and Humanities
  • College of Graduate Studies and Research in arts and humanities fields

The doors to the Junell Center/Stephens Arena will open 30 minutes prior to the start of each ceremony. Prospective graduates can get their tickets through the Dean’s Office of their particular college starting April 20.

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Michelle Miller, special assistant to the president and Title IX coordinator at Angelo State University, has been appointed to the Safety Planning Working Group for the Texas Governor’s Sexual Assault Survivors’ Task Force (SASTF).

The SASTF was formed in 2019 and is housed in the Office of the Governor’s Public Safety Office. Its mission is to establish a collaborative and coordinated response to sexual violence experienced by adults and children in Texas.

Sexual Assault Survivors' Task Force infographic The SASTF Safety Planning Working Group is made up of experts in the areas of sexual assault, interpersonal violence and child abuse. Its members include attorneys, law enforcement and advocates from organizations such as Safe Austin, Respond Against Violence, Voice of Hope, the Women’s Center of Tarrant County, Bay Area Turning Point, the Alliance for Children and the Children’s Advocacy Center of Texas.

Miller and the other members of the group are charged with:

  • Creating and/or adapting working guidelines for effective trauma-informed, survivor-centered safety planning processes for children, adolescents and adult survivors of sexual violence
  • Making recommendations to enhance information related to effective safety planning in training, procedures and protocols utilized by law enforcement, advocates, SANEs, medical professionals, and others who respond to survivors’ needs after a sexual assault

“The safety planning process plays a vital role in ensuring that survivors receive the services they need,” Miller said. “If a person’s basic safety needs cannot be addressed early in the reporting process, it is likely they will cease to seek help or proceed in that process. While safety planning is an individualized process, the wide range of knowledge and experience this group brings to the table allows us to consider all the variables that go into the process, such as age, location, access to services, socio-economic status, various barriers, etc. Our goal is to develop a set of principles that can be applied in that individualized process.”

“The safety planning process on a college campus is certainly unique,” she added. “So I hope to not only provide insight as to the issues college students face, but engage in conversations about how we apply this process on a college campus.”

As ASU’s Title IX coordinator, Miller heads the Title IX Office and has the primary responsibility for coordinating the university’s compliance with state and federal laws that address sexual misconduct and gender equity. As such, she receives and investigates reports of violations of ASU’s Title IX and Sexual Misconduct Policy, including gender discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, interpersonal violence, stalking and all forms of sexual violence.

Additionally, Miller teaches courses in the legal and ethical environment of business in the Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance and is a member of the ASU Staff Senate. She is also active in the community as a board member for the San Angelo Performing Arts Center, San Angelo Family Shelter, Legal Aid of Northwest Texas and Tom Green County Young Lawyers Association.

Miller earned her bachelor’s degree from Eastern New Mexico University and her law degree from the Texas Tech University School of Law. She is licensed by the State of Texas Bar and is a certified mediator.

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Eighteen Angelo State University faculty members have been promoted this spring semester, with their new ranks finalized by the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents during its recent regular meeting in Lubbock.

Ten faculty members were promoted from associate professor to professor, including:

  • Dr. Jacqueline Brown – Department of Nursing
  • Edwin Cuenco – Department of Visual and Performing Arts
  • Dr. David Faught – Department of English and Modern Languages
  • Dr. Jeffrey Dailey – Department of Security Studies and Criminal Justice
  • Dr. Biqing Huang – Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance
  • Dr. Adam Parker – Department of Kinesiology
  • Dr. Marva Solomon – Department of Teacher Education
  • Dr. Thomas Starkey – Department of Social Work
  • Dr. Cheryl Stenmark – Department of Psychology and Sociology
  • Christopher Stewart – Department of Visual and Performing Arts

Eight faculty members were promoted from assistant professor to associate professor and granted tenure, including:

  • Dr. Leah Carruth – Department of Teacher Education
  • Dr. Carlos Flores Jr. – Department of Teacher Education
  • Dr. Mellisa Huffman – Department of English and Modern Languages
  • Dr. Robert Michael – Department of Nursing
  • Dr. Leslie Rodriguez – Department of Communication and Mass Media
  • Dr. Twyla Tasker – Department of Curriculum and Instruction
  • Dr. Kyle van Ittersum – Department of Psychology and Sociology
  • Dr. Sonja Varbelow – Department of Teacher Education

Dr. Don Topliff Dr. Don Topliff“These professors represent the best in their profession,” said Dr. Don Topliff, ASU provost and vice president for academic affairs. “We are fortunate and proud to have such excellent faculty to deliver our academic programs and mold current and future generations of the Ram Family.”

Promotion from associate professor to professor requires at least four years in rank and a record of continued distinguished teaching, research and service. Credentials of the candidates are reviewed by committees from their respective academic departments and colleges, as well as their department chair and dean, the provost and the president.

Promotion to associate professor and granting of tenure occur after a six-year probationary period and a record of distinguished teaching, research and service. The review process is identical to the process for promotion from associate professor to professor.

Additionally, all ASU faculty members are evaluated annually by a committee from their academic department, their department chair, the dean of their college, the provost and the president.

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Dr. William A. Taylor, an associate professor of global security studies at Angelo State University, has been awarded the 2021 Sharon Ritenour Stevens Prize from the Association for Documentary Editing (ADE).

Once university travel resumes, the prize will fund Taylor’s archival research at the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library in Kansas for his newest book, “The Advent of the All-Volunteer Force: Protecting Free Society,” which will be published in New York and London by Routledge, a global publisher of academic books and journals in the humanities and social sciences. Taylor will also present his research at the ADE national meeting to be conducted virtually this summer.

According to ADE, the Sharon Ritenour Stevens Prize is presented annually to an editor or other scholar with interests in women’s history and military history to support work on a project already in progress that is heavily dependent on documentary editing and documentary sources. Preference is given to persons studying women in uniformed military service, in various military support services, or on the home front during war time. The prize was established in 2019 in memory of Sharon Ritenour Stevens, associate editor of “The Papers of George C. Marshall.”

“The Advent of the All-Volunteer Force: Protecting Free Society” will be published by Routledge as part of its “Critical Moments in American History” series. It will be a complete narrative on the advent of the All-Volunteer Force (AVF), accompanied by relevant primary source documents, and will examine the AVF in four essential parts, including its history, impacts, challenges and implications. It will also be Taylor’s fifth book to be published since 2014.

Taylor’s first book, “Every Citizen a Soldier: The Campaign for Universal Military Training After World War II,” won a 2015 Crader Family Book Prize Honorable Mention. His second book, “Military Service and American Democracy: From World War II to the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars,” is now required reading for every first-year cadet at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, totaling about 1,200 cadets each year.

Also holder of ASU’s Lee Drain Endowed University Professorship and a previous chair of ASU’s Department of Security Studies and Criminal Justice, Taylor has now won 18 national grants, fellowships and prizes to fund research for his books, which are housed in over 1,450 libraries throughout the U.S. and more than 45 other countries. He is also the series editor for the new book series “Studies in Civil-Military Relations” through the University Press of Kansas, has contributed to 20 other books, and has published more than 85 reference articles and book reviews.

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