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Feb. 21, 2008


  1. Screening of 'The Sugar Babies' set at SBU
  2. SBU Kenney International Scholars spend spring semster in Ireland
  3. Honor a friend, mentor, student or co-worker
  4. Introducing a new postal meter ad
  5. Career Center
  6. Friday Forum
  7. Newsmakers


Screening of 'The Sugar Babies' set at SBU

St. Bonaventure University alumna Claudia Chiesi, Ph.D., will return to her alma mater in March to show her film “The Sugar Babies” and discuss the plight of the children of agricultural workers in the sugar industry of the Dominican Republic.

“The Sugar Babies” examines the moral price of sugar — present and past — from the perspective of the conditions surrounding the children of sugar cane cutters of Haitian ancestry in the Dominican Republic, and the continuing denial of their basic human rights.

The film screening will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 9, in Dresser Auditorium of the John J. Murphy Professional Building on the University campus.

Chiesi, a 1969 graduate, served as executive producer of the film, which focuses on the history of slavery in the sugar industry, as well as the current conditions surrounding human trafficking and child labor in Hispaniola. Chiesi will also have the opportunity to discuss the film and its human rights issues during various classroom visits on campus the following day.

Prior to joining Siren Studios in 2005 as a producer, Chiesi spent most of her career in higher education, most recently as the president of Harford (Md.) Community College.

“The field of human rights is as significant to me now as when I first visited the Franciscan missions in Jamaica when I was a 16, and later, in 1988 and 1989. While I was working at a college in south Florida, I visited the local sugar plantations and saw the impoverished living conditions of its workers,” Chiesi said.

Chiesi credits her 16 years of Franciscan education as being the foundation for her new career. Chiesi graduated from St. Francis of Assisi Elementary School and Archbishop Carroll High School in Buffalo. Following her undergraduate work at St. Bonaventure, Chiesi earned her master’s and doctorate at the University at Buffalo.

Haitian author Edwidge Danticat narrates “The Sugar Babies,” which was shot in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. The film includes interviews with the Haitian ambassador to the U.S., the U.S. State Department’s Office of Human Trafficking, Human Rights Watch, an organization dedicated to protecting the human rights of people around the world, and anthropologist Dr. Sidney Mintz. The film also features human rights activists, missionary priests and the child workers and their families.

The film screening is free and open to the public. Viewer is discretion advised: Some footage may be too graphic for young viewers.

To view clips from the film or learn more about the trafficking of Haitians into the Dominican Republic, go to www.sugarbabiesfilm.com. Chiesi’s visit to campus is sponsored by the Franciscan Center for Social Concern, NAMASTE, and the Center for Nonviolence.

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SBU Kenney International Scholars spend spring semester in Ireland

Three St. Bonaventure University students, recipients of the F. Donald Kenney International Scholars Awards, are spending the spring semester in Ireland at the National University of Ireland at Galway.

The recipients are Kelly Cobb of Syracuse, a sophomore marketing and accounting major; Katharine Holly of Orchard Park, a sophomore accounting and international business major; and Tim Keating of Williamsville, a sophomore history major. Each received $1,000 scholarships to study abroad.

Each recipient is utilizing his or her time in Ireland differently.

Cobb plans to focus on business courses to fulfill her major curriculum. She hopes that these courses will allow her to grasp a better understanding of global markets. At St. Bonaventure, Cobb has been involved with Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) since her freshman year, becoming the first freshman to run her own project when she ran a computer literacy program in Olean and on SIFE’s annual trip to Grand Bahama Island.

Holly also plans to round out her business curriculum. She hopes her classes will broaden her knowledge on more than international business. At St. Bonaventure, Holly has maintained a 3.7 grade-point average while being involved with several business-oriented clubs and community service projects, such as the Warming House, a University-run soup kitchen located in Olean. She hopes to do similar work in Ireland.

Keating, a member of the ROTC program, will focus on history and University-required courses while overseas. He is most interested in learning about Ireland’s history during the 19th century when many Irish immigrated to America, including some of his ancestors.

He hopes that his classes will give him a better understanding of the past and of his family history. At St. Bonaventure, Keating is active as a retreat leader with Students for the Mountain, a club promoting Mt. Irenaeus, a Franciscan mountain retreat center off campus.

The Kenney Awards were established in 1999 through the F. Donald Kenney (an Olean native) estate to promote study abroad programs in Ireland and England. The Kenney awards are given each semester for students to study at any of three approved sites in Ireland: National University of Ireland at Maynooth, University of Limerick and National University of Ireland at Galway. The program at NUI Galway complements the two other Irish programs sponsored by the University since the mid-1980s. Awards are also available for the Francis E. Kelley Oxford summer program in England.

For additional information about St. Bonaventure’s study abroad program opportunities, please contact Alice Sayegh at (716) 375-2574 or at asayegh@sbu.edu. Program overviews are available at www.sbu.edu/intstudies.


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Honor a friend, mentor, student or co-worker

Nomination forms for the 2008 Fr. Joe Doino, O.F.M., Honors & Awards are now being accepted from St. Bonaventure faculty, students and staff.

The Fr. Joe Awards are to honor those exceptional individuals in the St. Bonaventure community who have made others’ experiences here better and whose Franciscan spirit may go unrecognized.

The awards’ namesake honors Fr. Joe Doino, a much beloved friar who died in 1994 and was known for his practical jokes, his love of tennis, his dedication as the SGA adviser. A professor, scholar, musician, preacher and priest, Fr. Joe became the first faculty member to receive the Faculty Appreciation Award posthumously.

Award categories include: University Ministries Volunteer of the Year; Adviser/Moderator of the Year; Program of the Year; Community Service Award; Staff Person of the Year; Organization/Club of the Year; Student Leader of the Year; Student Life Award; Cabinet Member of the Year; and the Faculty Appreciation Award. Click here to review descriptions of the award categories.

Nomination forms can be picked up in the Student Life Office, Student Activities Office, Reilly Center Ticket Office and at University Ministries.They also are available in pdf format online. Nominations should be submitted to Ann Hurlburt in the Student Life Office by Friday, March 14.

The awards ceremony will be held at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 27, in the Robert R. Jones Board of Trustees Room, Doyle Hall.

For any additional information, please contact Ann Hurlburt at (716) 375-2513.


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Introducing a new postal meter ad

A new postal meter ad has been created as yet another way of sharing the good news of St. Bonaventure’s Sesquicentennial. Beginning now through May 2009, all letters and flats processed through the St. Bonaventure University mailroom will sport the new meter ad.



Career Center news ...

Check out the Career Center’s Event’s page to find information on the upcoming student program “Backpack to Blackberry.” Also available on the page is this month’s issue of the Career Center’s newsletter, Directions, which contains information on Teacher Recruitment Days and Alumni/Student Networking: Meet & Mingle.


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Join us for this week's FRIDAY FORUM!

All SBU faculty, staff and administrators are welcome to Friday Forums.

Date: Friday, Feb. 22, 2008
Dr. Charles Walker
Time: 12:20 to 1:30 p.m.
Place: The University Club
“The Class of 2011: The Smart, The Flourishing, & The Drunk”
Abstract: Walker has been gathering data for the Journey Project on the well-being of students since 2004. He will share the most interesting results of a recent survey done on the current freshman class. What this class looks like and how it compares with others will be the focus of the presentation.
Cost: $3


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Dr. Robert Amico, professor of philosophy, was an invited speaker at the State University of New York at Geneseo on Feb. 20, 2008. He spoke about the four-college Consortium on Curriculum and Program Transformation, which was initiated six years ago to assist participating institutions in their efforts to create a more inclusive curriculum and more inclusive programming that address issues of race, class, gender, sexual orientation and other institutionalized systems of inequality.

Fr. Michael Calabria, O.F.M., lecturer in the Department of Modern Languages, and Fr. Michael Blastic, O.F.M., Conv., associate professor at the Franciscan Institute, will be presenters during the Eighth National Franciscan Forum, to be held June 19-22 in Colorado Springs, Colo. This year’s theme of the forum is “Mirroring One Another, Reflecting the Divine: The Franciscan-Muslim Journey into God.”

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