Open Line Faculty-Staff Newsletter

for the week of May 19, 2014

Check out Commencement 2014 on Storify.

Campus News  •  Noteworthy  •  In the News

Campus News

Class of 2014 has memorable—and wet—Commencement
Sunday started off sunny and cool, a perfect Pacific Northwest day. During class speaker Haley Andres' speech, the winds came. And then the skies opened. Loggers, families, and guests were caught in a torrential downpour, complete with hail and lightning. Those on the field took refuge in Memorial Fieldhouse to wait out the worst of the storm. Eventually the front passed, and the graduates were invited back to Baker Stadium to receive their diplomas.

Photographer for The News Tribune Drew Perine captured the craziness of the day in a great video recap that shows not only the grace, patience, and aplomb demonstrated by our students and their families, but the exuberant and indomitable Logger spirit. Commencement 2014 is in the books!

Moody's affirms Puget Sound's financial health
Moody’s credit rating service has again assigned a high-quality rating to Puget Sound’s outstanding bonds and predicts a stable financial outlook for the college. The A1 long-term rating and the top VMIG-1 rating for superior short-term credit strength convey the institution's financial stability. “Our students’ success is underpinned by Puget Sound’s investments in the people and infrastructure that ensure they receive the highest-quality learning experience, with broad opportunities for personal growth,” said Sherry Mondou, vice president for finance and administration. “Judicious planning and sound fiscal management are among the key ingredients to maintaining that quality experience and graduating students who are exceedingly well prepared for the future.”

Chief Diversity Officer Michael Benitez to present at national conference on race and ethnicity
Michael Benitez, dean of diversity and inclusion and chief diversity officer, heads to Indianapolis, Ind., next week to present and participate in seven sessions at The National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in American Higher Education (NCORE). Among his sessions are the sixth annual preconference Hip-Hop Institute, which Benitez initiated in 2008, and the first-ever Hip-Hop Forum at NCORE, exploring how hip-hop has evolved from an urban subculture to the global mainstream, and now may have a role in the academy. For more information about the conference and his involvement, visit Benitez's conference bio online.

May 21 is book scholarship application deadline
Staff Senate will award book scholarships to staff members, spouses, domestic partners, and dependent children working toward a degree or completion of a program at any level, including graduate work. The applicant may be attending Puget Sound or another university, college, or vocational school either full or part time. Selections will be made based upon two written essays and extracurricular activities/community service. Scholarships will be awarded to five individuals, and award amounts will be made based on funds available. Submit your application by May 21, to Staff Senate Scholarship Committee, CMB 1072. Download the application from and find more information on the book scholarship page, or contact Laura Edgar at with questions.

Staff Recognition Luncheon celebrates Puget Sound staffers, May 23
Life is a carnival at this year's annual Staff Recognition Luncheon, Friday, May 23, beginning at 11:30 a.m., in Memorial Fieldhouse. Staff members are encouraged to wear brightly colored attire and come ready to mingle! Please also bring a nonperishable food or monetary donation to support the Emergency Food Network. Please direct questions to or x3369.

Continued renovations to student center mean changes to campus dining options
Dining Services offerings will be a little different this summer than in the past, due to ongoing renovations to Wheelock Student Center.

Summer Dining Services

  • The Diner: The Diner (servery) is now closed for the summer, and will reopen this fall. Conference guests will be served buffet style in Marshall Hall.
  • Diversions Cafe: Diversions will be open Monday–Friday, 7 a.m.–3:30 p.m., with an expanded a la carte menu, including breakfast items, fresh fruit, pastries, soups, salads, wraps, and more.
  • Marshall Hall Buffet: Campus members may enjoy buffet service each day conference guests are served at special prices: $6 (breakfast), $8 (lunch), $10 (dinner). Buffet days and hours will be posted each week at the entrance to Marshall Hall and on The Diner Web page beginning June 2.

Changes coming to library services
Collins Memorial Library will be migrating to a new system in June. There will be limited services available June 19–23, during the bulk of the migration. Databases and other electronic resources will be available, but guests will be unable to request books or articles through Summit and ILL. You may still check out Puget Sound items from the circulation desk at this time. The new search interface is expected to be up and running the week of June 23. After the completion of the migration in late June, library staffers anticipate some fine tuning and adjustments will be made to ensure that the system is operating smoothly. Staff and faculty members are encouraged to plan ahead and to use Moodle for course reserves. The library will offer drop-in sessions in late May and June for faculty and staff members to learn more about the new service. For more information check out the LibGuide online.

The library's summer hours, for May 19–Aug. 8, are:

  • Monday, Thursday: 7:30 a.m.–9 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 7:30 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Saturday: 9 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Sunday: Closed

Include your events in 2014–15 arts and lectures resources
The Office of Public Events produces an annual series of communications to promote lectures, concerts, presentations, performances, conferences, and other events taking place on campus that are open to the public. If you have an event that you would like to have included, please contact Margaret Submissions for the fall 2014 guide are due Monday, June 16. 

Annual book artists exhibition returns to Collins Memorial Library, June 5
Puget Sound Book Artists (PSBA) will open its fourth annual members’ exhibit with a public reception and Awards for Excellence celebration on Thursday, June 5, from 5 to 7 p.m. The exhibit, featuring 57 handmade books by 39 artists from the Puget Sound area and beyond, will run in Collins Memorial Library from June 5 through July 31, and will feature special events with the artists. 


Associate Professor of Politics and Government Robin Jacobson, chair of Advocates for Immigrants in Detention Northwest, will serve on the panel "Tacoma's Little Secret: Northwest Detention Center," hosted by City Club of Tacoma.

Congratulations to Logger women's crew! The women's varsity 8+ squad made its 12th straight NCAA Division III Women's Championship Regatta, to be held May 30–31 in Indianapolis. Go Loggers!

The article "Trafficking Nature and Labor Across Borders: The Transnational Return of U.S. Environmental History," by Professor of History Douglas Sackman, was published in the sprint 2014 issue of the journal International Labor and Working-Class History. 

In the News

Bruce Mann, professor of economics, was quoted in The News Tribune in a story about Pierce County homeowners with underwater mortgages.

Moody’s agency affirmed a strong credit rating and a stable financial outlook for Puget Sound, reported The News Tribune, Business Examiner, Hispanic Business online, and Tacoma Weekly

The Borneo Post wrote an online photo story about Peter Wimberger, director of Slater Museum of Natural History, who will give a public talk in Sarawak, Malaysia about “The Secret and Amazing Life of Dead Animals.”

Sign up to receive "In the News," a weekly digest of Puget Sound press coverage, by contacting our media relations office at or x2611.

Can't-miss Events

Through Friday, May 30: Exhibit: Stan! The Life and Times of Dr. Lyle Stanton "Stan" Shelmidine, Collins Memorial Library

June 5–July 31: Exhibit: Fourth Annual Book Artists' Association Members' Exhibit, Collins Memorial Library

June 2: Buffet Schedule begins in Marshall Hall

Aug. 23–31: Orientation

Aug. 27: The Conversation, Schneebeck Concert Hall, 2:30 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 1: Labor Day (no classes)

Tuesday, Sept. 2: Classes begin