Welcome to the October 2008 Issue of The Pink Flamingo!

Can you believe it’s already time for the October issue of The Pink Flamingo? The leaves are falling, the first exams of the term have come and gone, and – be honest, now – you’re ready for a break. What could be better than kicking back and relaxing with your hilarious (and yet educational) newsletter? After all, it’s free, it’s fun, it’s informative, and, unlike the Packer games, you can access it without a rabbit ears antenna. What will you find in this issue? Read on!

  • Breaking News: Most Psychology Classes to Require Experimental Psychology as a Prerequisite

  • P/HD Club News: Meet the Profs and New Graduate School Series

  • Psi Chi News: Do You Want to Be a “ROCKSTAR” PSYCH/HUM DEV Student?

  • Careers of the Month: October 2008 Edition

  • Career Tip of the Month: Begin Networking!

  • Graduate School Tip of the Month: Earning a Great Letter of Recommendation

  • Pink Flamingos in the News: A PF Legal Team Investigation

  • P/HD Club Teams up with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

  • New Student Organization Supports College Students Who Are Grieving

  • Registration Info-Fest: Save the Date(s)

  • Your Chance to Learn about I/O Psychology

  • AIC Sponsors Ally Conference

  • Pink Flamingo Mailbox

  • Want Ads:

    • Job Opportunities for New Graduates in Human Development Research Lab

    • Camp Lloyd Application Reminder

Breaking News: Most Psychology Classes to Require Experimental Psychology as a Prerequisite

Starting next fall (2009), Experimental Psychology (PSYCH 300) or Foundations for Social Research (COMM SCI 301) will be required as a prerequisite for most upper-level psychology courses.  In other words, you will need to take PSYCH 300 or COMM SCI 301 before you can take most other courses in the major.  If you have already taken one of these research methods courses – great – you don’t need to worry about anything.  If you haven’t, take one of them soon.  The Psychology department is committed to making as many sections of PSYCH 300 available as possible (there will be at least three sections available both this spring and next fall), but it’s up to you to enroll in the class.  If you have any questions or concerns, see your advisor ASAP.

Psi Chi News: Do You Want to Be a “ROCKSTAR” PSYCH/HUM DEV Student?

Come learn how to get the most out of your major on Monday, October 27th at 5:30 p.m. in MAC 206.  What are the characteristics of stand-out majors?  What will make it more likely for you to get a job or get into grad school?  The sooner you know, the sooner you can start.  This program sponsored by Psi Chi is open to ALL majors and minors and will be of particular use to first, second, and third year students.  Presenters include Dr. Ryan Martin (authority on rockstar students) and Chairs of Human Development and Psychology (Dr. Regan A. R. Gurung and Dr. Georjeanna Wilson-Doenges).

Careers of the Month: October 2008 Edition

This month we are highlighting two careers that might be unfamiliar to Human Development and Psychology students – but which could be exciting options for you!

University Extension Work: Interested in family education or supporting youth leadership activities? Learn more about the work of university extension offices and potential jobs in community outreach and educational roles at: http://www.csrees.usda.gov/qlinks/extension.html

Public Health: Want to pursue work in health education, health care administration, or advocacy? Careers in these areas (and more!) are possible with a graduate degree in public health. Follow this link for more information: http://www.whatispublichealth.org/faqs/index.html

Career Tip of the Month: Begin Networking!

Obtaining the job of your dreams does not begin with the job search just before graduation. It begins now with course selection, extracurricular activities, skill-building, and part-time employment. It also begins with networking – making connections in the community, meeting potential future employers, and practicing professional communication skills. Not sure when or how to begin with networking? Plan to attend Career Services’ “Networking Nights”! Networking Nights are regular opportunities to connect with professionals from diverse career areas. You can find out more about the program at: http://www.uwgb.edu/careers/NetworkingNights.htm. Upcoming dates (and attending organizations) are listed below. Several of them are businesses, but keep in mind that many of our Psychology and Human Development students take entry-level positions in businesses as their first jobs. Please also note that local human service agencies will be on campus one evening next semester. 

October 20 – M&I Bank
November 3 – Nsight/Cellcom
November 17 – Sherwin Williams
February 9 – Schenck Business Solutions
February 23 – Area human service organizations
March 9 – Associated Bank
March 30 – LaForce
April 13 – BayLake Bank
April 27 – Virchow Krause

Graduate School Tip of the Month: Earning a Great Letter of Recommendation

“Can you write me a strong letter of recommendation?” This question is being heard frequently in the halls of MAC right now as students begin to request letters of support for their graduate school applications. What may surprise students, however, is that the answer to that question is largely dependent on them. What steps can you take to increase your chances of a earning a great letter from your professor? Read on!

Freshmen, Sophomores, and Juniors:

  • Maximize your effort and performance in your classes. Grades matter, and so do specific skills. Faculty members will be asked to rate your critical thinking skills, writing skills, oral communication skills, and so on.

  • Don’t count on grades alone. If you earn “As” across a faculty member’s classes, but he/she has never had an extended conversation with you or heard you express an opinion in class, the resulting letter may be relatively short and generic.

  • Participate in individualized instruction experiences. Professors will have more specific and detailed comments to make about your performance and potential if they have worked with you in a research or teaching assistantship, independent study, internship, or honors project.

  • Be aware of your classroom demeanor and what you communicate in your interactions with students and professors. Letter writers are often asked to fill out forms that rate such things as students’ maturity, initiative, interpersonal skills, ability to deal with stress, responsibility, time management, and emotional stability. Asking questions, being a leader in group work, submitting work on time, and attending department events communicate one set of messages. Texting during class, chronic lateness, repeated requests for extensions, and having difficulty negotiating relationships with group members communicate another.

Students Currently Applying to Graduate School:

  • Think about how you make the letter of recommendation request. Ask in person, and genuinely ask. Do not simply assume a professor will write a letter for you.

  • Give your potential recommender plenty of notice. Writing letters takes a great deal of time and effort, and you are not the only student asking for a letter. You should have all materials ready for the faculty member one month in advance, and you should think about the timing of your request. If you have an application due date of January 1st, December 1st may not be enough notice. Think about all of the things going on in December (end of classes, finals, commencement) – and how far in advance the letter would likely need to be mailed to arrive by January 1st (giving the professor far less than a month).

  • Be organized. Think about what you communicate if you do not provide the requested supporting materials to your professor, or if you have to make several return trips to the person’s office with bits and pieces of information. Then think about what you communicate by delivering a well-organized packet of information with neatly completed documents, addressed envelopes, and so on. This interaction is likely the last one you have with the faculty member before he/she writes the letter – make that most recent impression a favorable one!

  • Be careful when completing on-line applications that ask for a list of recommenders. More and more schools are using web-based letter of recommendation sites where faculty directly upload their letters, and once students enter the recommender’s name, an automated email request is sent to that individual. You do not want your faculty member receiving an email request for a letter before you have even asked if he/she would be willing to write for you.

  • Thank your letter writers, and let them know what happens. Professors want to know what happens in your graduate school search, so let them know where you are accepted and what school you decide to attend.

To learn more about letters of recommendation and the process of requesting one, refer to the Human Development website (http://www.uwgb.edu/humdev/careers/recommendation.asp).

Pink Flamingos in the News: A PF Legal Team Investigation

In our never-ending quest to bring you all news flamingo-related, our cracker-jack lead investigative reporter recently used her world-class journalism skills to do a Google news search for “flamingos.” What did she find? A group in Ohio is dressing up plastic flamingos – just like we do here at UW-Green Bay – just like the flamingos that have provided the inspiration for our beloved newsletter! (see story and photos at http://www.wtol.com/Global/story.asp?S=9151101) Sure, they’re using the flamingos to raise money and awareness for breast cancer, a great charitable cause, and we’re using ours for…well…our own amusement. Nevertheless, although most people would read the heart-warming story and be inspired, we here at the PF began to wonder who else might have this fantastic idea. Might people try to steal our thunder or challenge our unique place in the world? Worse yet, what if they make flamingos that are cuter than ours??? The answer came to us immediately: establish flamingo-relevant humor, flamingo-related journalism, plastic flamingos, and even real flamingos as our intellectual property. We consulted with the team of attorneys we have on retainer, and they had bad news. In their so-called “legal opinion,” we have no case because the blog isn’t our property, and there isn’t anything remotely intellectual about it. Undeterred, we are considering sending cease and desist orders to all those who owe their fame and fortune to us for clearly being the first to bring attention to pink flamingos through our internationally-recognized blog. You know – Taco Flamingo, the San Diego Zoo, the Audubon Society, and even the state of Florida. We’ll let you know what the lawyers have to say about that one.

Seriously, though, can you believe someone else had the idea of dressing up plastic flamingos? Maybe you’re going to have to stop making those jokes about how strange your faculty members are.

P/HD Club Teams up with the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

Congratulations to the Psychology and Human Development Club for their impressive commitment to community service.  Not only did they raise over $1000 for NAMI by putting together a team for NAMIWalks (see the P/HD NAMIWalks team photo below), they also launched a campaign for Mental Illness Awareness Week, including having five speakers on campus to talk about their experiences with mental illness.  Great job P/HD Club and keep up the good work!

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New Student Organization Supports College Students Who Are Grieving

UW-Green Bay now has its own chapter of National Students of AMF: Support Network (NSAMF)!  This national organization is designed to provide support for college students with an ailing or deceased loved one.  Recent survey data on our campus has indicated that 47% of our student body has suffered the loss of a loved within the past 24 months.  Many of our bereaved fellow students are isolated and have to continue their studies unsupported and alone.  Our new organization not only will have student-led support groups, but a Service Learning component open to everyone who wants to help fight life-threatening illnesses and be involved in other projects serving the needs of bereaved in our community.  We are in the process of building membership and would like your help.  Contact Kirstin Thompson (thomke10@uwgb.edu), Tasha Weinfurtner (weinta18@uwgb.edu) or Illene Noppe (noppei@uwgb.edu) for additional information.

Registration Info-Fest: Save the Date(s)

Wondering what to take next semester? In addition to the ongoing opportunity to meet with your own faculty advisors (do it soon and well before registration), there will also be three general advising sessions open to all Human Development and Psychology majors and minors.  Dr. Regan A. R. Gurung, Chair of Human Development, will host three one-hour advising sessions where he will answer any and all advising and major-related questions for anyone. This is a great opportunity to get quick questions answered and hear more about spring offerings.  Attend any one, and drop in anytime during the hour:  

  • Monday, Nov. 3rd (11 a.m.-12 p.m.) in the Union Coffee Shop

  • Tuesday, Nov. 4th (12-1 p.m.) in the Gathering Room-MAC 201

  • Friday, Nov. 7th (10-11 a.m.) in the Union Coffee Shop. 

Your Chance to Learn about I/O Psychology

Have you ever contemplated a career in industrial-organizational psychology? “Graduate School and Careers in I-O Psychology” is a great place to start learning about this exciting career path! A recording of a webinar will introduce the field where business and psychology meet. It will outline graduate school options and provide a preview of graduate school life and career options.   Click here to view a recording of the webinar, along with the PowerPoint slide presentation.

AIC Sponsors Ally Conference

The American Intercultural Center is sponsoring an Ally Conference on Friday, November 7th from 3 p.m. – 8 p.m. The conference will include sessions on such topics as Hate Crimes and Bias Incidents, Confronting Ableism, White Privilege, and a Women’s Panel. The keynote address will be given by nationally-known author and speaker Tim Wise. The event is free to students (and dinner is included!). Register by October 21st and receive a free t-shirt! http://www.uwgb.edu/aic/ally/