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College Town.

Byline: Lisa D. Welsh

COLUMN: COLLEGE TOWN

Big-league science project

Clark University has been awarded a 3-year, $354,000 grant from the National Science Foundation for its new program, "Land Change and Vulnerability Studies in New England: The Human-Environment Regional Observatory."

This grant becomes effective in May and designates Clark a national Research Experiences for Undergraduates site. REU sites are highly competitive programs designed to introduce undergraduates from around the United States to faculty-led research activities at designated institutions. The group will also attend the Association of American Geographers' 2010 annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

Asian connection

Two faculty members from Worcester Polytechnic Institute are at work in Asia as Fulbright Senior Scholars. Thomas B. Robertson, assistant professor of history, is exploring the consequences of American rural development in Nepal. Seth P. Tuler, research assistant professor of interdisciplinary and global studies, is looking at the need for improved environmental health communications in Thailand.

The Fulbright Program, the U.S. government's flagship program in international educational exchange, is sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Each year, the traditional Fulbright Scholar Program sends 800 U.S. faculty members and other professionals abroad to lecture and conduct research in a wide variety of academic and professional fields.

No debating the results

Students from Fitchburg State College's Moot Court Team once again held their own against schools from across the country in the National Moot Court Tournament, held recently at Chapman University School of Law in Orange, Calif.

The team of Sharon Lewis, of Leominster, and Sally Foster, of Manchester, N.H., finished ninth overall in the competition, out of 64 teams. The students also finished fourth in the country in the brief writing portion of the competition. This year also marked the 10th year in a row that Fitchburg State students have advanced to the second day of the national tournament.

Ms. Foster placed 13th overall as an individual orator, out of 128 students, and was offered a $5,000 scholarship to Chapman University School of Law.

"With only 64 teams in the country making it to nationals, to have three from our school is an outstanding accomplishment. I am very proud of this group," said Paul Weizer, Moot Court adviser and professor of political science.

Recession proof

With job prospects for physical therapist assistants remaining strong in Massachusetts and nationally despite the recession, Mount Wachusett Community College has announced it will begin offering an academic program in this allied health specialty at its Devens campus, at 27 Jackson Road. The application deadline is April 1 for the Devens PTA program beginning in

September.

Information sessions will be held from 2 to 3 p.m. Feb. 23 and March 16 on the Gardner campus, Wetmore Center, Room 12, and from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. March 10 at the Devens campus.

Admissions requirements for this selective enrollment program include a four-credit laboratory science within the past five years and college algebra, either through coursework or placement testing. Prospective students who do not meet these requirements may take these courses during the accelerated spring session beginning March 23, or during the summer. For more information about the physical therapist assistant program, call (978) 630-9292.

Candles and pins

Quinsigamond Community College's chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society, the international honor society of 2-year colleges, sold Valentine's Day candles to raise money to benefit The Hole in the Wall Gang. The camp, run for children with cancer, was started about 20 years ago by Paul Newman. There are 180 Quinsigamond students in the honor society.

Second-year QCC nursing student Renee Peckham, president of the Nursing II Group, has kicked off a fundraising effort of her own to raise $10,000 to pay for the group's official nursing uniforms and all costs associated with their pinning ceremony prior to graduation in May. Ms. Peckham is joined by Curry Beaudette, secretary, Brooke Marsh, treasurer, and Angela Ruivo, vice president, who have organized a comedy night featuring two local comedians - hypnotist Mike Grady and comedian James Dorsey - at 7 p.m. March 28 at Hebert Auditorium. Tickets are $15 each and may be purchased by calling Ms. Peckham at (508) 335-6678.

Contact Lisa D. Welsh via e-mail at lwelsh@telegram.com.
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Title Annotation:LOCAL NEWS
Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Feb 15, 2009
Words:715
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