Monthly Archives: March 2018

The American Council on Education (ACE) has selected Stephen Hegedus, dean of the School of Education at Southern Connecticut State University, as one of 45 emerging college and university leaders for the 2018-19 class of the ACE Fellows Program, the longest-running leadership development program in the United States.

Established in 1965, the ACE Fellows Program is designed to strengthen institutions and leadership in American higher education by identifying and preparing faculty and staff for senior administration positions through an intensive nominator-driven, cohort-based mentorship model.

Stephen Hegedus

“Southern was proud to nominate Dean Hegedus for this prestigious fellowship,” said SCSU President Joe Bertolino. “During nearly four years leading our School of Education, Stephen has demonstrated leadership and vision and a true commitment to providing expanded educational opportunities to historically disadvantaged populations.”

Among recent initiatives, Hegedus has led a scholarship-based collaborative effort with the region’s school districts to increase the number of minority teachers in elementary and secondary education. He has also been one of the prime movers in the construction of the new Strong Communications Magnet and K-4 Lab School on Southern’s campus – a signature academic partnership with the city of New Haven and its school system.

More than 2,000 higher education leaders have participated in the ACE Fellows Program over the past five decades, with more than 80 percent of Fellows having gone on to serve as senior leaders of colleges and universities.

“For more than a half-century, the ACE Fellows Program has been a powerful engine fueling the expansion of a talented and diverse higher education leadership pipeline,” said ACE President Ted Mitchell. “We are excited to welcome this new class of Fellows and look forward to each enjoying a transformative experience that will help advance individual leadership readiness while also enriching the capacity of institutions to innovate and thrive.”

Celebrating its centennial in 2018, ACE is the major coordinating body for all the nation’s higher education institutions, representing nearly 1,800 college and university presidents and related associations. It provides leadership on key higher education issues and influences public policy through advocacy.

Hegedus’ ACE fellowship will begin in August and he will be on leave from Southern during the fall semester, returning mid-January. During the placement, he will observe and work with the president and other senior officers at his host institution, attend decision-making meetings, and focus on issues of interest.

“When he returns, Dean Hegedus will bring back valuable experiences in innovative programming and institutional advancement that will help further our mission both in the School of Education and campus-wide,” President Bertolino said.

Before joining Southern, Hegedus was a professor of mathematics and mathematics education at the University of Massachusetts (UMass), Dartmouth, where he was the founding director of the Kaput Center for Research and Innovation in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education. Named the UMass Dartmouth Scholar of the Year in 2009, he previously held appointments as a research fellow, educational consultant, and lecturer at the University of Oxford in England.

Southern has been training teachers since its origins in 1893, and it consistently produces the largest numbers of teachers, principals, and school administrators in Connecticut through its School of Education.

Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden

Former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will deliver this year’s Mary and Louis Fusco Distinguished Lecture on March 23 at Southern Connecticut State University.

The event is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at the John Lyman Center for the Performing Arts.

Biden, a former six-term U. S. senator who went on to serve two terms as vice president under President Barack Obama from 2009 to 2017, is expected to speak on some of the most pressing issues facing the nation in a moderated conversation. These include domestic and foreign policy, as well as his commitment to cancer research though the Biden Cancer Initiative, which he co-founded with his wife, Dr. Jill Biden.

He is the author of the book, Promise Me Dad: A Year of Hope, Hardship and Purpose, released by Flatiron Books last year. The book examines how the loss of his son, Beau, affected his life.

The talk marks the 20th installment in the Distinguished Lecture Series, which began in 1999. Among the past speakers are: Gen. Colin Powell; the late Walter Cronkite, iconic CBS anchorman; former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani; former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright; New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick, and NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

Tickets for this year’s event are sold out. Parking will be available in the Wintergreen Parking Garage.

graphic for Mary and Max film

ReelAbilities is the largest disability film festival in North America dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of the lives, stories and artistic expressions of people with different abilities. This spring, Southern is joining venues in New York, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Boston, Chicago, Portland, and San Francisco, among others, to feature films selected from over 1000 competitive submissions from an international community and reviewed by the screening committee in New York City, where the festival premieres each year in March.

Southern’s contribution to the 2018 festival — the first time the festival has been in Connecticut — is a screening of Mary and Max, a tale of friendship between two unlikely penpals: Mary, a lonely eight-year-old girl living in the suburbs of Melbourne, Australia, and Max, an obese, middle-aged Jewish man with Asperger’s, living in New York. “This film will be the first time ReelAbilities has been in Connecticut,” says Fran Prezant, of the Department of Communication Disorders, “and it will be here at SCSU.”

The film, to be screened in the Adanti Student Center Theater on March 19 from 5-7:30 p.m., has some adult content and is not appropriate for young children. A panelist talkback will follow the screening of the film, and light refreshments will be served. Admission is free. The theater is physically accessible and the film is captioned.

Initiated in New York in 2007, the ReelAbilities Film Festival presents award-winning films by and about people with disabilities in multiple locations throughout each hosting city. Post-screening discussions and other engaging programs bring together the community to explore, discuss, embrace, and celebrate the diversity of our shared human experience.

“At a time when discussions about differences and inclusion are so important in this country,” Prezant says, “recognizing the strength in diversity and challenging stereotypic notions is important.” The festival offers a great opportunity, she says, “to discuss differences rather than ‘deficits,’ bust stereotypes, and challenge long-held and often erroneous assumptions.”

ReelAbilities events have been held in over a dozen cities in North America and have expanded from the United States to Canada and soon, Latin America. Since its start, ReelAbilities has been consistently receiving an increasing number of outstanding film submissions from across the globe.

The campus screening is sponsored by Judaic Studies with contributions from Deans’ Offices: Arts & Sciences, Health and Human Services, and Education; and the Department of Communication Disorders.

With support of the SCSU National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association and the Autism Awareness and Advocacy Club

Learn more about this screening.