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Students Applauded, Honorary Degree and Granite State Award Presented at Keene State College Convocation

KEENE, N.H., 8/26/10 - More than 1500 entering KSC students were officially welcomed to Keene State on August 26, 2010, as the campus community lined Appian Way to clap them along their march to the New Student Convocation ceremony in Spaulding Gym.

James Rousmaniere Jr. received the Granite State Award, presented annually by Keene State College and the University System of New Hampshire to honor outstanding achievements by community members. Dr. Muriel A. Howard received an honorary Doctor of Humanities degree for her outstanding efforts to transform liberal education and equip students for success in a rapidly changing world. Keene State mathematics professor Dr. Beverly Ferrucci was presented with the Alumni Association 2010 Distinguished Teacher of the Year award, which recognizes excellence in teaching, encouragement of independent thinking, rapport with students, and effective student advising.

James A. Rousmaniere Jr., editor and president of the Keene Sentinel, was honored for his professional accomplishments, global compassion, and service to the city of Keene and the state of New Hampshire. After graduating from Harvard College, he served with the Peace Corps in India and worked in the Washington, D.C., bureau of the Baltimore Sun before joining the Sentinel in 1981. He has received numerous awards and honors, including prizes from the New England Newspaper Association, the New England Press Association, and the New Hampshire Press Association.

A defining motif of Mr. Rousmaniere’s career has been his commitment to global citizenship and conviction in the connectedness of the human experience. For nearly 20 years he has conducted news media management training workshops in countries throughout Asia, Africa, and Europe. In 2002, he received a Knight International Press Fellowship to work as a media trainer and management consultant for the African Eye News Service in South Africa. Through the James D. Ewing World Affairs Lecture Endowment created at Keene State by the estate of the former Keene Sentinel owner and publisher, Mr. Rousmaniere has brought world-renowned speakers to the College to address topics such as the civil war in Sudan and health care in Haiti.

Mr. Rousmaniere has also been a champion for the Monadnock Region, closely covering its issues, chronicling its successes, and enriching its culture. Under his leadership, the Keene Sentinel has facilitated important community discussions and actively supported area and regional non-profit organizations, including partnering with the Humanities Council and Keene State College to support the local Chautauqua production. Mr. Rousmaniere has devoted himself to deepening the newspaper’s coverage in specialty fields such as the arts, the environment, and business, improving its quality and expanding its global coverage. Under his leadership, the Sentinel became the first daily in northern New England to launch an Internet edition, and its staff has received a number of awards for excellence from New England journalism organizations.

Dr. Muriel A. Howard was honored for her outstanding contributions to higher education and her commitment to the ideals of public higher education. A graduate of the City University of New York’s Richmond College, Dr. Howard holds a master’s degree in education and a doctor of philosophy in educational organization, administration, and policy from the University at Buffalo. She earned a certificate from the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University and has received many awards for her contributions to public higher education, for service to the community, and for her commitment to diversity.

Dr. Howard was named president of the Association of State Colleges and Universities in April 2009. She is the first woman president of AASCU and the first African American to lead one of the six presidentially based higher education associations in Washington, DC. As AASCU president, she is an advocate for public higher education at the national level, working to influence federal policy and regulations on behalf of member colleges and universities and serving as a resource to presidents and chancellors as they address state policy and emerging campus issues.

From 1996 to 2009, Dr. Howard was the president of Buffalo State College, the largest comprehensive four-year college in the State University of New York system. Under her leadership, the college increased and enhanced its academic programs and services, expanded its reputation for teacher preparation, and became known for its leadership in arts and culture. Prior to joining Buffalo State, she was the vice president for public service and urban affairs at the University at Buffalo, where she served in various leadership capacities over a 23-year period.

Dr. Beverly Ferrucci has been a driving force for excellence in training mathematics teachers at Keene State for over 20 years. She is internationally renowned in the field of mathematics education and presented and lectured in many countries. She was the first female editor of the New England Journal of Mathematics and the first American, and the first woman, to be invited to speak at the Southeast Asian Conference on Mathematics Education. In 2003, she received the Keene State College Award for Faculty Distinction in Research and Scholarship and the Outstanding Women of New Hampshire Award.

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