“I teach because I care. I want future engineers to be conceptually creative, qualitatively strong, and eloquent in their designs. I want them to be able to research, differentiate between fact and fiction, and make real change. I also want them to be masters of communication—written, verbal, and non-verbal—instead of hiding behind statements like, ‘I can’t write. I’m an engineer, not an English major.’”
“My passion for my field of environmental engineering, specifically water engineering, is driven by statistics like the ones cited by the United Nations Environment Programme: That one child under the age of five dies every twenty seconds from water-related disease. It’s driven by growing up in India, where polluted skies and garbage piled up on the sides of streets are common sights. I’m inspired by the recent Swacch Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission) campaigns and the calls to action at various levels for people become stewards of their lands and work together to prevent meaningless deaths by keeping our environment clean.”
“Through my scholarship, I want to learn how to engineer water infrastructure to make our communities more resilient against flooding and drought and to ensure universal access to clean water and sanitation. I seek to engineer green designs, integrating nature, and using minimal resources. My scholarship also delves into questions on pedagogical strategies, such as service learning, to provide our students the best engineering education possible.”
I teach because I love the subject of architecture, and I love seeing students discover the world through architecture. Studying architecture gives a person a refined lens for looking at the world, and it is great to see students learning to look at the world through that lens. Norwich is a place where students transform themselves into skilled professionals able to contribute as citizens to making the world a better place to live in. I love seeing that transformation take place.
At its core, architecture is about beauty and complexity of thought. In any city on the planet you can look for buildings that are proof of human aspiration. That search for beauty is what drives me. To paraphrase Buckminster Fuller, if a solution to a practical problem is not beautiful, then it really did not solve the problem.
My scholarship is focused on drawing people’s attention to ways of practicing architecture that are non-traditional. I am interested in DIY as an ethic and a practice. A question I ask is, how can a person learn how to make buildings while making buildings, without necessarily knowing how to make buildings before they start? I also perennially ask the question, if there is a punk rock equivalent in architecture, what is it?”
Norwich University Office of Communications
May 18, 2017
Corrections scholar Stephanie Maass, PhD, teaches in the School of Justice Studies and Sociology at Norwich, where she says she strives to “foster discussions, the sharing of ideas” in the classroom and broaden students’ conceptual frameworks. Her courses range from intro surveys and senior seminars to examinations of juvenile justice and corrections. During her master’s and doctoral studies at George Mason University, Maass honed a research focus on community corrections, substance use and co-occurring disorders, and organizational change. The scholar has trained corrections officers across the country on the use of evidence-based supervision practices. We recently asked Maass about her teaching and scholarship.
1. Why do you teach?
I teach to help students become critical and responsible consumers of information. I strive to challenge their preconceived notions with information they may not be aware of and guide them while they think through the realistic challenges facing our world today.
2. What drives your passion for the field?
The criminal justice system is often bleakly portrayed as a broken system plagued with corruption and high recidivism rates. I look at the system and I see potential, particularly in the corrections field. Community correction, in particular, offers a significant amount of time to work with justice-involved individuals to rehabilitate them, reintegrate them into society, and increase public safety. We only need to pay attention to what approaches work best and how to successfully implement those strategies.
3. What questions do you explore through your scholarship?
Currently in the field of corrections the adoption rate of best practices is about 33%. We know quite a bit about what works to reduce recidivism but quite a bit less about how to implement those effective strategies on a large scale. My research seeks to understand the adoption—or lack of adoption—of best supervision practices among individuals in organizations. What makes one individual or agency more likely to use best practices than another? And which practices are they likely to use over others?
Norwich University Office of Communications
May 15, 2017
Norwich University celebrated its 380 graduating seniors at Commencement and Commissioning ceremonies this past weekend, honoring the many accomplishments of the Class of 2017 from the nation’s oldest private military college.
On Saturday, 232 Corps of Cadets and 142 civilian students walked across the stage in Shapiro Field House before an adoring and proud assembly of family, friends, faculty, military leaders, and staff. The graduates received diplomas in 1 master’s degree and 32 undergraduate programs.
Civilian student Timothy Bain '17, who earned a master's in architecture, was the first new alumnus to receive his diploma. Corps of Cadets member Kurtis Leonard '17, a sports medicine and health science major, was the last. But the magna cum laude graduate certainly wasn’t the least.
At Sunday’s Commissioning ceremony, 105 seniors formally began their careers as military officers in the United States Army, Air Force, Navy and Marines.
Throughout the weekend, the Norwich community, its distinguished guests, and especially the Class of 2017 honored and reflected on the hard work of its newest graduates, the challenges they face, and the hope they embody.
Norwich President Richard W. Schneider began Saturday’s commencement ceremony by wishing everyone a happy Mother’s Day. He invited all the mothers present to stand for a round of applause. (Seizing a marketing opportunity, he also invited all future mothers to send a child to Norwich, a well-worn pitch met with laughter.)
Addressing the Class of 2017, President Schneider, an avid reader of U.S. presidential biographies, quoted John Quincy Adams: “If your actions inspire others to dream more, do more, become more, you are a leader.”
“That’s what the entire faculty and staff want for you,” Schneider told the seniors seated before him, dressed in traditional black caps and gowns or elegant navy and white formal cadet uniforms.
Speaking of the ideal character embodied by Norwich graduates, Schneider said, “We may fail, but we never quit.” He then offered a second Adams quote: Try and fail. But do not fail to try. “So that’s my gift to you, the senior class.”
Don Wallace, a professor of mechanical engineering, retired after a 55-year teaching career at Norwich. He was among those to receive an honorary Norwich doctorate on Saturday. In brief acceptance remarks, he shared lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein from the 1945 Broadway musical Carousel with the senior class.
General David G. Perkins, chief of recruitment and training for the entire U.S. Army, gave the Commencement keynote address. He advised graduates that a key to happiness and well-being in life is the ability to feel and show gratitude. Perkins reminded the Class of 2017 that "life is a team sport" and that each and every one of us owe the people around us our thanks.
Perkins also counseled seniors to put character ahead of the career ladder. “Spend some time thinking about who you are,” he said. “Focus on who you are first, and let the accomplishments follow.”
Many faculty, parents, and students shared reflections and advice that day. Earlier, College of Professional Schools Dean Aron Tempkin addressed the 31 graduating nurses and their friends and family in White Chapel at a morning nurses pinning ceremony. “I’m incredibly proud of you, as I’m sure everyone in this room is.”
Upholding tradition, senior nursing graduates Olivia Como '17 and Jill Howard '17 gave a humorous, heartfelt address to their fellow program classmates. “To my classmates entering the military, stay safe,” Howard advised in closing. “To my classmates entering the hospital, stay sane.”
Elsewhere, School of Architecture + Art Program Director Danny Sagan addressed graduates of the undergraduate and graduate architecture programs at Chaplin Hall in a small ceremony before Commencement.
Friends and family gathered in an open, first-floor gallery showcasing senior projects. The designs spanned a light-filled American embassy, an Antarctic research station, a resilient waterfront community, and a cutting-edge project that sculpted a New York City soundscape through architecture.
“This world of our needs a lot of good design—and they need it soon,” said Sagan, one of many faculty who spoke during the ceremony. The professor and practicing architect observed that no one attends a military college or an architecture program thinking it will be easy. Both are environments that value perseverance in the face of adversity, he said.
“It’s always great to celebrate what you have done,” he said in closing. “But really we’re celebrating what you will do.”
Other ceremonies on campus that morning celebrated the work of students at the School of Business and Management and the David Crawford School of Engineering. In Dole Auditorium, Norwich engineering graduates joined the Order of the Engineer, receiving symbolic metal rings.
As the day progressed and Commencement approached, friends and family gathered outside Shapiro Field House.
Kevin Hill from Bridgeport, Conn., intently combed a Commencement program, wearing a suit and a red and gold tie from USC, his alma mater. He wryly explained that he wanted to confirm that his son Trevor, a Studies in War and Peace major and Corps of Cadets cadre member, was indeed graduating.
Hill said Norwich taught his son rigor and discipline and honed his inherent respect for others. “It’s really turned him into a good young guy,” Hill said. “We like him a lot.”
After graduation, the younger Hill heads to California for a summer job as a wildland firefighter, work he hopes to continue in the fall while applying to the California National Guard.
John Dippolito drove from New Jersey to watch his son Peter graduate. The Norwich senior served in the Corps of Cadets, majored in Criminal Justice, and minored in Leadership. “I’m very proud,” the elder Dippolito said. “He’s just grown tremendously.”
Senior LaShawn Thomas, a Business Management major from San Antonio had a baker’s dozen of family members from Texas; Sacramento, Calif.; and Boston, Mass. there to support him.
“He’s going to be a great citizen after Norwich,” said his father Eli. “He was great when he got here, and Norwich made him even a little bit better.”
NORWICH UNIVERSITY OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS
May 31, 2017
Norwich University’s College of Graduate and Continuing Studies is honored to announce that Nazanin Afshin-Jam, an award-winning international human rights activist and Master of Arts in Diplomacy graduate, will deliver the university’s 2017 Commencement address to approximately 500 graduating students on Friday, June 23.
Born in Tehran in 1979, as an infant Afshin-Jam fled the Islamic revolution with her family after her non-political father was arrested, tortured and nearly executed. She has gone on to become an international human rights activist, singer/songwriter, actor, Miss World Canada and Miss World first runner-up in 2003 and president and co-founder of Stop Child Executions organization. Her fame has given her the platform to raise awareness and funds for the Bam Earthquake, the 2004 Tsunami, Fistula patients in Ethiopia, Variety the Children’s Charity, youth advocacy to bridge the digital divide, and a movement to stop bear bile farming in Asia.
Winner of several human rights awards, Afshin-Jam is co-founder of the Stop Child Executions to halt the practice in Iran and in the handful of other countries where it still continues. She is also the co-author of The Tale of Two Nazanins and she has released a multilingual album Someday charting hits in Canada, the U.S. and Europe. She was appointed to the board of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation to help eliminate racism and discrimination in Canada.
The June 23 commencement ceremony concludes a weeklong annual residency conference of approximately 500 students representing 11 online graduate programs and three bachelor’s degree completion programs at Norwich University’s College of Graduate and Continuing Studies. Gathering from across the country and around the globe under the theme of “Leading Today, Inspiring Tomorrow,” these Norwich students will come together for a week of capstone and culminating academic work and conferences.
About Norwich University
Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).www.norwich.edu
In fulfillment of Norwich’s mission to train and educate today’s students to be tomorrow’s global leaders and captains of industry, the Forging the Future campaign is committed to creating the best possible learning environment through state-of-the-art academics and world-class facilities. Norwich University will celebrate its bicentennial in 2019. Learn more about the campaign and how to participate in the “Year of Transformation” here: bicentennial.norwich.edu.
Norwich University’s College of Graduate and Continuing Studies (CGCS) builds upon the institution’s 198 year academic heritage with innovative online programs. CGCS offers master’s degrees in a variety of areas; bachelor’s degree completion programs; a certificate in teaching and learning and continuing education opportunities. The programs are recognized throughout the industry for their rigor, small class size, high student satisfaction and retention. online.norwich.edu