Friday, July 2, 2010

Ferris Non-Tenured Faculty Vote To Form Union

Here is the latest information about today's counting of votes for Ferris State University's non-tenured faculty to form a union.

The vote was counted on Friday, July 2, in the Founders Room of the Rankin Student Center on the Big Rapids campus.

Here is an excerpt of a story that can be found on the Ferris News Services Web site:

BIG RAPIDS – Ferris State University non-tenured faculty eligible to vote in a union certification election have voted in favor of representation by the American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO.

A representative from the Michigan Employment Relations Commission was on campus Friday, July 2, to count the votes with the final vote tally being 47 to 7.

Seventy-two non-tenure track faculty who were identified as meeting the bargaining unit inclusions and who were on the University payroll as of April 1, 2010 were given the opportunity to vote.

Included in the new bargaining unit will be all non-tenure track faculty employed by Ferris who provided direct classroom instruction at the Big Rapids campus for three (3) or more credit hours per semester in any two (2) semesters within the previous four (4) consecutive semesters or who are employed to provide direct classroom instruction for three (3) or more credit hours in the fall and spring semester in the current academic year. The fall and spring semesters are defined as qualifying “semesters” under the bargaining unit, but not the summer semester.

For the complete story, visit the News Services Web site, here.

2010 UPAA Symposium Hosted By Ferris State University

Here is a video feature that recaps the 2010 UPAA Symposium hosted by Ferris State University.

This is from the page where the video was posted: Many thanks to our host Bill Bitzinger, and to our many presenters including David Tejada, Seth Gitner, Tim Webb, Justin Ide, Matt Yeoman and Scott Galvin.

The video was shot with a Canon 5D Mark II by Jaren Wilkey/BYU.

Here is the official Web site of this year's university photographers' symposium:

Detroit Free Press Reports On Ferris Graduate Working In Film Industry Down In Detroit Area

The film industry is growing in the state of Michigan, and down in Detroit. Right in the middle of it, however, a Ferris State University graduate is doing some positive things. The article below, published by the Detroit Free Press, illustrates work being done by Ferris graduate Cedric N. Lee, 29, of Rochester Hills.

Here is an excerpt from the story:

Although it was the seventh day of shooting for “The Double,” the action on the Paradise Valley set revolved around the opening scene for the movie, a political thriller that stars Gere as a retired CIA operative who joins an FBI agent (Topher Grace) to investigate a senator’s assassination. Scheduled to wrap filming in August, “The Double” isn’t set in Detroit, but the entire picture will be shot here.

Off camera, Cedric N. Lee, 29, of Rochester Hills, who graduated from Ferris State University with a business degree, was wired to a headset as he looked over the transformed corner of Grand River Avenue and Centre Street. The scene flashes back to 1988 Paris, with the Coaches Corner bar made over to resemble a Paris café.

As part of the film’s location team working under Hollywood veteran Ernest Belding, Lee had scouted metro Detroit landmarks for weeks before filming began, communicating with producers to secure and get clearances for the locations that fit the story and the film’s budget.

“This is pretty much my dream,” Lee said of his two-year-and-growing career that began with Clint Eastwood’s Michigan-made film “Gran Torino.” On “Torino,” which was released in December 2008, Lee first worked as an intern but utilized his Hmong heritage and was promoted to a consultant for the film, which was set in a Hmong community. He also made a behind-the-scenes documentary that was included in the film’s Blu-ray release. Lee has since worked on a handful of movies here, including doing stunt work in “Red Dawn.” He says his goal is to become a producer and make films in Michigan for the rest of his life.
For the full story, visit the Detroit Free Press Web site by clicking, here.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Ferris Alum Jim Bourdlais Strikes Gold In Event For Disabled Athletes,Thunder In The Valley Games

Check out this cool story posted on the Ferris State University Athletics Web site featuring former Bulldog football player and FSU alum Jim Bourdlais.

Here is an excerpt of the story below about Bourdlais, a man who made headlines when he walked across the stage in May of 2008 to receive his diploma after being paralyzed in a 2006 auto accident. It was a story that was widely publicized throughout the area and the region by such media outlets as the Grand Rapids Press and TV9and10 News and statewide outlets like the Detroit Free Press.
Former Ferris State University football player and Bulldog alum Jim Bourdlais brought home gold medals in several categories during the third annual "Thunder In The Valley Games" held recently for disabled athletes.

Bourdlais, who sustained a spinal cord injury and was paralyzed during a 2006 car accident, captured first-place honors for his class in four events to go with one runner-up honor in the event held in early June on the campus of Saginaw Valley State University in University Center, Mich.

The former Bulldog defensive lineman took home the gold in the shot put, discus, javelin and archery while finishing second in the weight lifting category en route to national qualification status. Athletes were classed based on their level of injury.

Bourdlais threw the javelin 16.38 meters despite never picking up a javelin prior to the competition. He also posted top marks of 6.49 meters in the shot put and 14.55 meters in the discus with a top score of 486 in archery.

Since his accident, Bourdlais has made a habit of triumphing over adversity and beating otherwise long odds, including a walk across the stage of FSU's Jim Wink Arena to receive his degree in Criminal Justice from FSU in May 2008.

Bourdlais, who originally joined the Bulldog program as a freshman tight end in 2002, played in eight games for the Bulldogs during the 2004 season and posted a pair of tackles along with a pass breakup along the FSU defensive line. He later became a student assistant coach and valuable supporter following his accident.
For the complete story, visit the Ferris Athletics Web site, here.

Photo is courtesy of

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Images From Ferris' 2010 OMSS Imagine More Student Life Bus Tour

Ferris State University's 2010 Imagine More Bus Tour, sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Student Services, visited Chicago (May 10-14) and visited with students from five schools in the Chicago Public School District.

Bus tour participants visited Kenwood Career Academy, May 10; Hyde Park Career Academy and Gage Park High School, May 11; Simeon Career Academy, May 13; and Dunbar Vocational Career Academy, May 14, in the Windy City.

The bus tour gives student leaders at Ferris an opportunity to connect with the high-school students they will engage at the various stops during the trip.

The tour is unique in that it is the students who describe Ferris' academic programs, student life, student organizations and student services.

Here are some images from the trip:

From The President's Desk: State Budget Issues

Here is a note from President Dave Eisler to Ferris State University:
This has been an interesting week in Lansing, where I continue to work with other university presidents to prevent the passage of a bill permitting community colleges to offer baccalaureate degrees. The good news here is that our efforts, centered on a pledge by all 15 public universities to work with community colleges to meet these needs, is meeting with a positive response. The bill, passage of which in the House seemed a foregone conclusion earlier this spring, now appears delayed at least through the summer.

It was while we were meeting with Senate Majority Leader Mike Bishop that we learned the United States Senate had not passed the bill extending jobless benefits and providing additional stimulus dollars for states to deal with Medicaid costs. The proposed state budget for Michigan in both our House and Senate was predicated on $514 million from this bill, which has now not been approved. It is uncertain at this time what the next steps in Washington will be: passage of a bill with similar support, a new bill with reduced support, or no bill. Given the growing concerns about the size of national deficit, less support and more reductions at the state level seem likely.

It is now a near certainty that passage of the state budget will be delayed, perhaps until September. The legislature is not scheduled to meet the first two weeks of July and then only Wednesdays for the remainder of the month.

The August primaries will then be upon us and strong action on the budget is unlikely until later.

I will continue to update you as more information is available.
Check back for more items from the desk of the president here on the Ferris State University Blog.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Outstanding Graduate: Valarie Franklin

Valarie Franklin is one of this spring's examples of the kinds of outstanding graduates Ferris State University produces and sends into the real world.

Franklin has had to overcome a lot, but has persevered to become a graduate of Ferris with a Doctor of Pharmacy degree.

Here is a small portion of a feature story that was first published in Points of Pride and later featured later on the News Services Web site:

With a plan in hand, Valarie Franklin and her service dog, Sunny, arrived at Ferris State University ready to hit the books.

The self-professed planner says it didn’t matter if her plotted course changed along the way as long as she had a goal to work toward.

Having a passion for medicine, Franklin’s plan came to fruition this spring as she was awarded a Doctor of Pharmacy degree.

Setting goals is what has helped the Davison native find success in her endeavors. Another factor in Franklin’s success has been Sunny, a 10-year-old Golden Retriever.

Franklin has Osteogenesis Imperfecta, or Brittle Bone Disease. Sunny’s presence has allowed her to enjoy college and live on her own. She says her Ferris experience with Sunny has been great.

For the complete story, visit the News Services Web site.