Monday, January 26, 2009

Book coverSustainability Committee to host book discussion Members of Columbus State’s Sustainability Committee will host a series of book discussions on Thomas Friedman’s latest book “Hot, Flat, and Crowded” in March. Friedman wrote “The Lexus and the Olive Tree,” and the follow-up analysis “The World is Flat,” and is a three-time Pulitzer Prize winning author.

Having read and discussed Friedman’s latest book as a Committee late last year, the members found it resonated profoundly with them on many levels. One committee member admitted she dreaded the thought of reading the book, and then couldn’t put it down. Another stopped going home for lunch to reduce energy consumption. Yet another has a “reserve” list for his copy of the book, having piqued the interest of colleagues with his own rave reviews. 

If you care about the environment, the economy, or both, you’ll find this book paints a path for addressing these related issues. Copies of the book will be available for those who wish to join and participate. The following dates are open and space is limited to the first 15 for each session. Each discussion will be hosted by members of the Sustainability Committee in Rhodes Hall, Room 232.

Tuesday, March 3, 12 - 1 p.m. Bring a brown bag lunch!
Wednesday, March 4, 8 – 9 a.m.
Thursday, March 5, 4 – 5 p.m.
Contact Beth Bates to reserve your copy and join in the discussion.

Nominate a woman student leader today!Women's history artDo you know a woman student at Columbus State who is a role model in the classroom and in her life? One who has overcome challenges? One who others turn to for advice or who serves as an officer in a student organization? 

Nominate her today for the annual Women Student Leader Awards, held in conjunction with National Women’s History Month in March. The nominations must be received by February 18, and the awards ceremony will be held March 4 in the Workforce Development Conference Center Ballroom. 

The Nomination Form is available online, and may be submitted by students, staff, faculty, or administrators. Students nominated for the award must be currently enrolled at Columbus State, hold at least a 2.9 GPA, and be registered to attend Columbus State Spring Quarter.

Reminder to register for PERFORMs “Planning for Success” courseAll full-time, non-bargaining unit staff members are required to attend the employee Planning for Success three-hour course. Supervisors and administrators are not required to attend these sessions. 

To register please go to the CSCC Training System on the intranet or follow this link: (Intranet pages cannot be accessed outside of campus)

Once there, select “Courses” then on the next screen, “HR.” Sessions are listed under division as PERFORMs-Division Name. It is very important to register for the dates under your division since space in each session is limited. Registration is taken on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Registration for all courses will close Friday, January 30.

If you have any questions about this course, or registration, contact Mary Francis McLaughlin at ext. 5220, or Susan Thompson at ext. 2406

Two college-wide training events offered via Web and audio conferenceThe offices of Student Life, Enrollment Services and the Center for Teaching and Learning Innovation will offer the following seminars on two very timely topics. The seminars are open to all faculty, staff and administrators.

Soldier saluting“The Psychological Needs of Returning Veterans” Webinar
Thursday, February 5, 1p.m., CT Room 107
Register URL:
More than 46,000 veterans have returned from the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and are eligible for GI educational benefits. Many of them will start or return to college. Returning veterans have different psychological needs than other non-traditional students, and campus support services need to be aware of these needs so they can effectively respond to and retain these students.
The Web conference will detail what campus professionals need to know about the emotional needs of veterans in order to help them complete their education. Topics will include:

  • Understanding psychological disorders relevant for returning veterans.
  • Ways to effectively intervene before veterans leave campus.
  • Techniques for addressing the needs of students who are spouses of returning veterans.
  • Practices for coordinating efforts with the local VA office.

“FERPA Update: FERPA Fundamentals 2009” Audio Conference
Wednesday, February 11, 2p.m., CT Room 107
Register URL:
Gather your campus community for a valuable and educational conference as our expert panelist, Steven McDonald, walks you through the fundamentals of FERPA (The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act). You and your colleagues will glean vital information related to FERPA such as:

  • A practical overview of the structure and purpose of the statute.
  • The new FERPA regulations - what you need to know and to do.
  • How to apply the health and safety emergency, parental, and other important disclosure exceptions.
  • Understand how email and other electronic information is regulated under FERPA.
  • Learn about the almost-forgotten "inspect and review" and "seek amendment" rights.

Are you SAD this winter?Wellness logoSeasonal Affective Disorder affects many
By Jacqueline Walli, RN, Wellness Advisory Committee

Sad graphicSeasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), also known as winter depression or winter blues, is a type of depression that is triggered by the seasons.  The most common type of SAD is called winter-onset depression. 

How Does SAD Develop?
The specific cause of SAD remains unknown. It’s likely that genetics, age, and perhaps most importantly, your body’s natural chemical makeup all play a role in developing SAD. It is thought this mood disorder is often linked to a biochemical imbalance in the brain brought on by the shortening of daylight hours and a lack of sunlight in the colder months. The most difficult months for SAD sufferers are January and February.

How Common Is SAD?
As many as half a million people in the United States may be affected with winter-onset depression. Another 10% to 20% may experience a milder form of SAD. Younger persons and women are thought to be at higher risk.  The risk of SAD decreases for adults as they get older. There is also some evidence suggesting that the farther someone lives from the equator, the more likely they are to develop SAD.

What Are The Symptoms Of SAD?
Although your symptoms are clues to the diagnosis, not everyone who has SAD experiences the same symptoms. Common symptoms of SAD can include but not be limited to:

  • A change in appetite, especially a craving for sweet or starchy foods
  • Weight gain
  • A drop in energy level
  • Fatigue
  • A tendency to oversleep
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability and anxiety
  • Increased sensitivity to social rejection
  • Avoidance of social situations and loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy

How Is SAD diagnosed?
Even with a thorough evaluation, it can sometimes be difficult for your doctor or mental health provider to diagnose SAD. Generally the diagnosis depends on whether:

  • You’ve experienced depression and other symptoms for at least two consecutive years during the same season.
  • The periods of depression have been followed by periods without depression.
  • There are no other explanations for the changes in your mood or behavior.

Are Treatments for SAD Available?
Yes, it’s possible to successfully manage SAD. There are many different treatments for SAD that will be suggested by your doctor or mental health provider. Included could be the use of light therapy, medications, ionized-air administration, cognitive-behavioral therapy and carefully timed supplements of the hormone melatonin.

You, too, can take action to help cope with SAD. Some tips to manage the condition include:

  • First and foremost, stick to the treatment plan suggested by your doctor or mental health provider.
  • Let there be light. Make you home and work environment sunnier and brighter.
  • Get out. Go outdoors on sunny days. Take a walk or sit on a bench.
  • Exercise regularly. Physical exercise helps relieve stress and anxiety.
  • Do not turn to alcohol or unprescribed drugs for relief.
  • Practice stress management. Learn to better manage stress, depression, overeating, and other unhealthy thoughts and behaviors.
  • Socialize. Stay connected with people you enjoy being around.
  • Take a trip. If possible, take a winter vacation to a sunny, warm location.

If you feel you are suffering from SAD, consult your doctor or mental health provider about treatment options so that you too can enjoy the pleasures of the season.