ByLion--June 14


June 15 deadline to graduate

Who Killed the Kingfish? airs

Young Writers Camp June 21-25

Scientists follow oil spill

Sociologist Burley publishes book

LSBDC receives state award

Maritime Museum free admission

Psychologist's book features religion

SBDC June 28 brown bag seminar

Dolliver receives teaching award

Kirylo co-edits book

Physics students perform research

Professional activities

June 15 final day for students to apply for Summer 2010 graduation   
June 15 is the final day that Southeastern students can apply to graduate in Summer 2010. The graduation application and payment deadlines will be strictly enforced, university officials said.
     Candidates for associate, bachelor, and master’s degrees can apply for graduation by logging into their Leonet campus accounts and choosing the ‘Apply for Graduation’ option. Instructions are available on the “Current Students” link at then click on “Graduation Information – Apply for Graduation” or by calling Southeastern’s Office of Records and Registration at 549-2066/62.
     The $35 application fee should be paid directly to the Controller’s Office, located on North Campus in the Financial Aid Building.

Southeastern Channel airs ‘Who Killed the Kingfish?’Huey Long episode on the Florida Parish Chronicles   
Never-before released research and information regarding the assassination of Louisiana Governor Huey P. Long was revealed in the latest episode of the Southeastern Channel’s Florida Parish Chronicles, which debuted Saturday, June 12.
     “Though Huey Long served as governor of a comparatively small state, his assassination carried profound implications for the entire nation,” said Samuel C. Hyde, Southeastern director of the Center for Southeast Louisiana Studies. Hyde, the Ford Chair for Regional Studies, wrote, narrated and hosts the episode.
     He said most Americans are simply fascinated by political assassinations.
     “And, as with most prominent murders, though scores of conspiracies surround his death, most are simply dismissed by those in authority,” he said.
     Who Killed the Kingfish? will continue airing several nights per week over the next month on the Southeastern Channel, the university’s educational cable access channel. A live webcast can be viewed at The episode is underwritten by First Guaranty Bank.
     Long was killed in 1935 in the halls of the Louisiana State Capitol. As tour guides point out the bullet holes in the marble walls, they recount the accepted theory that medical doctor Carl Weiss shot Long – then a U.S. senator – as he exited a meeting. Weiss supposedly was angry that Long was trying to remove his father-in-law, Judge Benjamin Pavy, from office as St. Landry Parish’s 13th Judicial District Judge due to his opposition to Long.
     In the episode, evidence is presented in an interview with Pavy’s grandson, physician Donald Pavy, that attempts to debunk some commonly-held beliefs associated with the assassination. Pavy, who spent his lifetime researching the famous killing with eyewitness interviews, material evidence and medical diagrams, has written a new book, Accident and Deception: The Shooting of Huey Long.
     Utilizing rare film footage and archival photographs, the episode details Long’s rise to power as a hero of the poor and a nemesis of the elite. It also describes his penchant for making enemies and his fear of being assassinated.
Read more

Southeastern Ford Chair of Regional Studies Samuel Hyde, right, reviews materials with Dr. Donald Pavy prior to their interview in the Louisiana State Capitol on the assassination of Governor Huey P. Long. Looking on is videographer/editor Josh Kapusinski of the Southeastern Channel.

Southeastern sponsors camp for young writers June 21-25   
Children ages 8-14 can write to their hearts’ content this summer at Southeastern’s Young Writers Camp, sponsored by the Southeastern Louisiana Writing Project (SLWP).
     The camp is scheduled June 21-25, 9:30 a.m.-3 p.m., on Southeastern’s campus in D Vickers Hall, third floor. The cost is $195.
     SLWP faculty will guide participants in daily activities such as writing; connecting the writing process with art and print-making; story quilts; poetry scramble; and many other creative activities incorporating reading, writing and art.
     Campers will polish their work through peer editing, and work will be published in an anthology. On the final day of camp, the young writers will present their best work to parents and friends at a “Coffee House Reading.”
     For more information and a registration form, contact Camp Coordinator Beth Calloway at or Richard Louth at 985-549-2102.
     Registration forms and checks for the Young Writers Camp can be mailed to the Southeastern Louisiana Writing Project, c/o Dr. Richard Louth, SLU 10327, Hammond, LA 70402. Checks should be made payable to the Southeastern Louisiana Writing Project.

Southeastern scientists following oil spillRobert Moreau   
Although the BP oil spill has yet to reach lakes Pontchartrain and Maurepas and their related marshes, Southeastern scientists and faculty have mobilized to record the impacts of the disaster as they apply to the region. 
     Robert Moreau, director of the university’s Turtle Cove Environmental Research Station in Pass Manchac, told members of the Hammond Chamber of Commerce Tuesday morning the oil at this point is not likely to enter the lakes.
     “However we are just starting hurricane season, and it’s projected to be a busy one,” he said. “If we do have a storm of any significance, it could bring the oil into our area.”
     And the oil and the dispersants being use to break it up could have negative impacts on the area’s wildlife.
     “The western Lake Pontchartrain Basin area, including the Manchac and Lake Maurepas Wildlife Management areas and surrounding waters, represents a huge recreational and commercial fishing industry, and we all will feel those impacts if anything comes into our estuary,” Moreau said, citing increases in seafood prices, limitations on boating and water activities and effects on wildlife, particularly birds.
     Lake Maurepas is a shrimp estuary, he explained, so it is off limits for commercial shrimping. “But this is where the small shrimp grow and thrive,” he said. “It’s an important area for our state’s overall seafood production.”
     Moreau said Southeastern’s response to the oil spill thus far is to begin monitoring hydrocarbon levels in lakes Borne, Pontchartrain and Maurepas.
     “We will start next week with simple tests in the Rigolets, Chef’s Pass and other areas to collect water samples so we can get some baseline data before any oil gets into the area,” he explained. He expects that collected information will provide baseline information, which may lead to grants that will allow Southeastern scientists to perform more intensive research.
     The negative effects of the spill will not be contained to environmental impacts, he stated. Economic and cultural changes have already begun to take their toll.
     Moreau told the group of his recent trip to Grand Isle to shoot video for an upcoming episode of “Backyard Wonders,” which he hosts for the Southeastern Channel.
     “It’s a devastating site, virtually deserted,” he said. “The roads are empty, no one is in the water, restaurants are making less than 10 percent of what they normally take in. It’s a very discouraging situation, especially economically. As bad as the spill is, I think we’ll recover more quickly environmentally than we will economically.”
     Moreau said there are several points we can hope for that would lessen the long-term impact of the oil spill.
     “First, the leak must be stopped; that’s foremost,” he emphasized. “And perhaps the hurricane season won’t be nearly as bad as is currently predicted.”
     Nature has a way of healing itself, he added. “The saying, ‘the best solution to pollution is dilution,’ is definitely true.” In addition, he explained, the warm gulf waters and the fact that the oil is supposedly a light crude should allow it to decompose and disperse more than if it were a heavier weight.
     “Finally, it’s a lesson; hopefully we will learn from this experience so it never happens again,” he said.
     He said other Southeastern researchers are evaluating possible impacts on amphibian and snake populations in the Manchac region, performing a health assessment of the ecosystem area in the Manchac and Maurepas swamps, and the implications of the spill on the economy and culture of the region.

Burley publishes book on land loss in coastal Louisiana   
To most longtime residents of south Louisiana – many with roots that go back generations – the land here is special, according to a Southeastern sociologist.
     And losing that land, through ongoing coastal erosion and subsidence, has lifelong impacts on their lives, says David Burley, assistant professor of sociology, who has published a new book about land loss in Louisiana.
     Losing Ground: Identity and Land Loss in Coastal Louisiana explores how coastal Louisianans communicate the significance of place and environment. Through interviews taken before the 2005 hurricanes, Burley, a New Orleans native, helps illustrate the residents’ sense of urgency and fear about losing their property, familiar surroundings and their identity.
     “It’s about what it is like to lose the place you live. But, more than that, to lose the place you live slowly while feeling powerless to do anything about it,” Burley said. “The book is based on interviews with coastal Louisiana residents. As they speak about land loss, they discuss the oil and gas industry at length, and I give a brief history of the impact of the business on the region.
     “In light of the BP oil spill, their comments take on an even stronger meaning,” he added. “The oil spill disaster adds to the daily loss of land that the residents of the coast have been experiencing for two generations now, much of it caused by other activities of the oil and gas industry.”
     Burley said the idea for the book came out of his deep interest in environmental sociology and the work he was doing as a graduate student at UNO on a project studying coastal communities for the Center for Hazards, Assessment, Response, and Technology (CHART).
     “I also think the book is about hope, a hope that we can do things differently in ways that empower communities and promote healthy environments,” Burley added. “I hope people see the urgency of coastal land loss and, most importantly, the need to deeply involve local residents in the restoration of their home.”
     The book is available from the publisher, the University Press of Mississippi, or from and other popular online sellers, as well as Barnes and Noble in Mandeville.

LSBDC at Southeastern receives state award for service and innovation   
The Louisiana Small Business Development Center at Southeastern received the 2010 SBDC Service Excellence and Innovation Center Award for the state at a reception held last week at the Governor’s Mansion.
     Presented by U.S. Small Business Administration and Louisiana Economic Development, the award recognizes Southeastern’s SBDC for its efforts to help strengthen the state’s economy and improve its economic competitiveness.
     “I am pleased to see our SBDC receive the recognition it deserves for the outstanding assistance it provides businesses and entrepreneurs in this region,” said Southeastern President John L. Crain. “Our team has focused on developing innovative programs specific for the needs of our area and providing excellent services to their clients. The results speak for themselves.”
     The center was nominated for exceeding its economic impact and performance goals. In the last several years, the center has served more than 2,000 clients, helped in the development of more than 125 new businesses and 30 expansions resulting in hundreds of new jobs being created or retained in the area. In addition, more than $130 million in capitalization has been obtained for area businesses.
     “I believe our success is due in large part to the partnerships we have cultivated over the years with organizations that are also focused on enhancing the economic strength of our region,” said William “Bill” Joubert, Southeastern LSBDC director. “In addition, our staff takes a very personal, service-oriented approach with each project to maximize every opportunity to succeed.”
     In addition to Joubert, other staff members recognized with the award were Assistant Director Sandy Summers and consultants Wayne Ricks and Jonathan Holland.
     The Southeastern SBDC serves the five-parish region of Livingstion, Tangipahoa, St. Helena, St. Tammany and Washington. Located in the Southeast Louisiana Business Center at 1514 Martens Ave. in Hammond where it maintains an extensive business library, the SBDC has seven outreach locations throughout its service area.

Maritime Museum offers admission-free summer   
The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum, Southeastern’s educational partner, has initiated a special program for the summer of 2010. With the recession making it difficult for some Louisiana families to enjoy what our wonderful state has to offer, the non-profit museum and the community that supports it have found a unique way to give back.
     From June through September, the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum has removed its general admission fees so that everyone can visit free of charge thanks to donations from Chevron and Zen-Noh Grain Corporation.
     Current exhibits give youngsters the opportunity to crawl through a Civil War submarine (designed and built by faculty and students from Southeastern), learn to tie knots, stare down an alligator, and discover the unique maritime heritage
of Louisiana! For information, call the Maritime Museum at (985) 845-9200 or visit the museum web site at

“Religion made us human,” psychologist stresses in new book   
In the grim struggles of prehistory, early religion provided humans a way to relate to each other and the world around them, offering significant survival and reproductive advantages, a Southeastern evolutionary psychologist says in a new book.
     “The roots of religion stretch as far back as half a million years, when our ancestors developed the motor controls to engage in social rituals – that is, to sing and dance together,” said Matt Rossano, professor and head of the Department of Psychology at Southeastern and author of the book Supernatural Selection: How Religion Evolved.
     He said about 70,000 years ago, a global ecological crisis drove humanity to the edge of extinction.
     “It forced the survivors to create new strategies for survival, and religious rituals were foremost among them,” he added.
     Rossano’s work is, in part, a response to the 2006 bestselling book The God Delusion by scientist Richard Dawkins, an atheist manifesto that pitted science against religion. But, according to Rossano, Dawkins missed the science that revealed how religion made man more human. Neither an apologist for religion nor a religion-basher, he pulls together the evidence from a wide range of disciplines to show the valuable purpose served by a systematic belief in the supernatural.
     According to Rossano, evidence seems to confirm that at its core religion was not about doctrines, creeds, institutions or miracles, but about relationships.
     “Religion is a fundamental way for humans to relate to each other and the world around them, and in early prehistory that was a definite advantage,” Rossano explained. “Religion emerged as our ancestors’ first health care system, and a critical part of that health care system was social support. Religious groups tended to be far more cohesive, which gave them a competitive advantage over non-religious groups and enabled them to conquer the globe.”
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SBDC hosts June networking brown bag seminar    
The Louisiana Small Business Development Center (LSBDC) at Southeastern and regional partners are hosting the fourth in a series of brown bag networking seminars on June 28.
     Held the fourth Monday of each month at the Southeast Louisiana Business Center at 1415 Martens Drive in Hammond, the series addresses topics related to business trends and the economy. Attendees bring their own lunch, and the LSBDC provides coffee, water and sodas.
     “The topic for June is ‘The Power of Email Marketing’ and will be presented by Kim Soape Walker with In Your Corner Marketing,” said Sandy Summers, assistant director of the Southeastern SBDC. “Attendees at this presentation will gain a clear understanding of how email marketing works, why it should have a place in marketing plans and what steps should be taken to implement an effective email marketing plan.”
     Summers said topics include building an email list organically and ethically, creative ways to develop content, crafting subject lines, out-of-the-box ideas for increasing open-rates and more.
     The program begins with networking opportunities from 11:30 a.m. to noon, followed by the presentation and open discussion with dismissal at 1 p.m. Cost to attend the seminar is $5.
    Since seating is guaranteed only to registered attendees, pre-registration is suggested. 
     The next seminar in the series is July 26, and the topic is business taxes.
     For more information, contact the Louisiana SBDC at Southeastern at 985-549-3831, or

Dolliver honored with national teaching awardDebra Dolliver   
Debra Dolliver, associate professor of organic chemistry, has been named the recipient of the Centennial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching presented by Iota Sigma Pi, the National Honor Society for Women in Chemistry.
     A member of the Southeastern faculty since 2001, she will receive the award at the organization’s triennial convention next summer where she will deliver an award address.
     Dolliver was nominated for the award by several Southeastern students and fellow chemistry professor Linda Munchausen, who cited her efforts to draw undergraduate students into laboratory research as part of her teaching method. Recognized as a highly effective mentor, Dolliver has encouraged her students to co-author papers and presentations and present them at regional and national meetings.
     A resident of Covington, she holds a doctorate degree in organic chemistry from the University of North Texas (UNT) in Denton, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in chemistry from Texas Woman’s University in Denton, and a bachelor of arts degree in English from UNT.

Text on comparative curricula published   
A new text comparing educational curricula across the globe has been co-edited by James Kirylo, Southeastern associate professor of education.
     Curriculum Development: Perspectives from Around the World explores international school curricula as educators attempt to examine the kind of education communities want for their children, how curricula help achieve this, and what kinds of similarities and differences exist across nations’ educational systems.
     The book was co-edited with Ann Nauman, former Southeastern professor of education who is currently at St. Joseph Seminary College. Some 49 authors and co-authors from 26 nations on all seven continents contributed to the book, which was published by the Association of Childhood Education. Two Southeastern professors, Elisabetta LeJeune and Agnieszka Gutthy, contributed to the volume.
     Kirylo said the countries represented in the book are only a snapshot of curricula from a variety of countries, but their experiences provide an opportunity to link the education community more closely.
     “Our goal in this work is to provide an informative resource for educators in general, but to be especially helpful for those with interests in comparative, multicultural and international education,” he said. “This is the kind of book that would be valuable for Peace Corps workers and other related educational agencies.
     “As we worked on this book, it became apparent that whatever the country, education and the making of curriculum are naturally rooted in a historical context, in which decisions are filtered through a blending of complex political, religious and cultural influences,” he added. “Yet, despite differences in geography, history and influences, most countries share common education and curricula challenges. Education is a natural tool that can be instrumental in building a global community where tolerance is taught, cultural differences are celebrated and shared, and commonalities are viewed as building blocks to unity.”

Physics students doing specialized summer research    
Two Southeastern science students will be performing specialized physics research this summer in Japan and at Pennsylvania State University.
     Chad Sziszak, a physics junior from Ponchatoula, will be at Tokyo Denki University where he is involved in materials research studies related to similar projects conducted in Southeastern’s Department of Chemistry and Physics. Over the last year, he worked in the lab of Southeastern scientist Sanichiro Yoshida, who has patented a process using lasers to detect structural weaknesses in materials.
     Mohan Basnet will be working with scientists at Penn State on microtechnology studies in a new, cooperative project between Southeastern and the university. Basnet is a physics freshman from Sariahi, Nepal.

Professional activities   

Dr. Richard Louth and Dr. Tasha Whitton (English) were featured speakers on the National Writing Project's live radio show, “A Festival of Curiosity and Affection: Reflections on the Writing Marathon,” which aired on Blogtalkradio on May 27. The program and a link on the National Writing Project website promote an anthology on writing marathons written by teachers of the Southeastern Louisiana Writing Project entitled, “I’m a Writer”: Essays on The Writing Marathon and Why We Write and published by this spring.
     Dr. Richard Louth (English) is published in the June “Short Story” issue of Country Roads Magazine, where his story “Francesca” won the magazine’s creative non-fiction award.
     Dr. Marc Riedel (Sociology and Criminal Justice) was a member of an American Sociological Association Task Force that has recently published a report on the relationships between sociology and criminology programs in the United States.
     Charles Elliott’s (History and Political Science) “Van Dorn's Blitzkrieg Stumbles: Comanches, Command Decisions, and Combat in the Baton Rouge Campaign of 1862” has been published in Lawrence Hewitt and Arthur Bergeron, Jr. (eds.) Confederate Generals in the Western Theater, Vol. 2 (University of Tennessee Press, 2010).

ByLion is published weekly online (bi-weekly during the summer session) for the faculty and staff of Southeastern Louisiana University. Send submissions to, SLU 10880, fax 985-549-2061, or bring to Public Information Office in East Stadium. Submission deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Thursday.

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