Week of July 2, 2001



CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., June 29, 2001 – As part of their summer school activities, seventh and eighth grade students in the Bootheel Partnership GEAR UP Program at North Pemiscot R-1 School took part in a community service-learning project in June when they delivered gift baskets to the elderly and shut-ins.

GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness of Undergraduate Programs) is a Southeast Missouri State University Program designed to accelerate the academic achievement of middle and secondary school students so that increasing numbers will graduate from high school, enroll in, and succeed in college.

The students were responsible for collectively deciding on one community service project in which they could all participate. After much discussion, they chose to prepare the gift baskets for the elderly and shut-ins. The students spent several days deciding on the contents of their baskets, collecting the names to whom they would deliver their baskets, designing cards and wrapping the baskets.

The students used teamwork in putting the baskets together, which included a card, Jell-O, raisins, flowers, mints and a Beanie Baby.

As students reflected on their experiences, student Andrew Cross said, “The most important thing I learned is giving is better than receiving. I also learned that there are more shut-ins and elderly people than what I thought. I learned that just a little thing to me might make their day, or even their year.”

The gift baskets were well received and appreciated by everyone, and the GEAR UP students learned many valuable lessons. Due to their efforts, the GEAR UP students are urging other people to go out and help the elderly and shut-ins who are unable to do for themselves.

“To enhance our role in the community, we need to become contributing citizens,” the GEAR UP students said.

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., June 29, 2001 – Southeast Missouri State University will be testing its outdoor warning siren/alert system on Wednesday, July 4th, despite the fact it is a holiday.

Those on or near campus can expect to hear soundings of the system at noon. The sirens will sound after a verbal alert, “this is a test.” In the event of severe weather, the testing will be postponed.

The system has been fully operational since April 16. The sirens are tested regularly at noon on the first Wednesday of each month, although in June, the test was canceled due to a threat of severe weather.

When the system is operational, a three-minute, steady, audible siren will sound when a tornado is imminent. If the sirens have been sounded, a tornado has been sighted on radar by the National Weather Service or spotted by a weather spotter. Immediate action should be taken.

Seven sirens, which also feature a speaker alert system, were erected on campus to provide 100 percent coverage to the campus. The sirens are located near the Abe Stuber Track and Field Complex, in the pig lot near the Student Recreation Center, in the Group Housing Complex, at the northwest corner of the Scully Building, on the north side of Crisp Hall, north of Houck Stadium between Kent Library and Houck, and near the new Transit Facility off Washington Street.

The sirens at Southeast are designed to provide a warning for severe weather conditions and are designed to provide outdoor notice. They are not intended for audible warnings inside buildings.

The outdoor warning system, in addition to sounding sirens, can provide three types of prerecorded voice message alerts – for severe thunderstorm warning for Cape Girardeau County, dangerous lightening and siren testing. When activated, these messages will be preceded by a short pulse alert tone, after which the message will be broadcast. Additional information about tuning to local weather broadcasts will follow the weather alerts.

The outdoor warning system also can be used for public address messages for broadcasting information about some situations on campus. These messages will be preceded by a short pulse alert tone and will be followed by an announcement pertinent to the situation.

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., June 29, 2001 – Michele Elder of Cape Girardeau has been named manager of web design and support in University Relations at Southeast Missouri State University.

University Relations is responsible for projects that broaden the image of the University, with particular emphasis placed on community and regional outreach, publicity and advertising, and coordination of special events. As the manager of web design and support, Elder’s responsibilities include assisting Southeast’s academic departments, administrative offices and higher education centers to meet the University’s web design guidelines.

Over the past five years, Elder has been a web developer for marketing, publishing and educational institutions. Last August, Elder joined the University as an instructor in the Department of Computer Science. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public relations from Berry College in Rome, Ga., and a master of arts degree in communication from Florida State University. Elder is a native of Brandon, Fla.

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