Native-American Nicknames/Mascots

June 2, 2005


Native-American Nicknames/Mascots (6 experts)

Stem-Cell Research (continued, 2 experts)


1. Environment: Vanishing Louisiana Delta is an Environmental Threat

2. Science: Predicting Hurricanes’ Paths are Difficult for Meteorologists

3. Science Education: Using Metaphors to Teach Science


Following are experts who can comment on the use of Native-American mascots and nicknames by the NCAA’s member universities. The NCAA’s highest body, the Executive Committee, will conduct the first in a series of summer meetings next month and could decide by August whether it can and should impose a ban on Native-American imagery, which critics charge is demeaning and even racist:

1. RICHARD MORRISON, associate vice president of public relations and marketing at CENTRAL MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY: “Reasonable people can disagree on this issue. Central Michigan University’s close collaboration with the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe encourages CMU to use its Chippewa nickname with dignity and respect. CMU does not use a Native American mascot, stereotypical logos or drum beats. In 2002, the university and tribe signed a proclamation pledging their support for strengthening their relationship ‘for the enhancement of each other’s goals and for the greater good of all residents of the region, state and nation.'” Morrison has a doctorate in multicultural education, and his dissertation addresses Native-American access to higher education. News Contact: Mike Silverthorn, [email protected] Phone: +1-989-774-3197 (6/2/05)

2. STEVEN DENSON, director of diversity for SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY’s Cox School of Business and member of the Chickasaw Nation, believes there are acceptable ways of using Native-American mascots and nicknames by the NCAA if it is done in an appropriate manner: “I believe it is acceptable if used in a way that fosters understanding and increased positive awareness of the Native-American culture. And it must also be done with the support of the Native-American community. There is a way to achieve a partnership that works together to achieve mutually beneficial goals.” Denson was named Native American of the Year for 2004 by the American Indian Chamber of Commerce. News Contact: Andrea Hugg, [email protected] Phone: +1-214- 768-4474 (6/2/05)

3. JOHN SANCHEZ, associate professor of communications at PENN STATE UNIVERSITY: “Sporting mascots representing American Indian cultures/people should be changed to benefit natives and non-natives. My research shows that there is an effect on native and non-native children.” News Contact: Vicki Fong, [email protected] Phone: +1-814-865-9481 (6/2/05)

4. ELLEN STAUROWSKY, professor and chair of the department of sport management at ITHACA COLLEGE, is recognized nationwide as an expert on Native- American imagery in sports. She has published articles on the Cleveland Indians and Washington Redskins mascot controversies; contributed to the Encyclopedia of Native Americans in Sport; served as a resource for the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility; and been quoted by ESPN, the New York Times, and Christian Science Monitor, among others. She is a past president of the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport and a member of the Drake Group seeking intercollegiate athletics reform. News Contact: David Maley, [email protected] Phone: +1-607-274-3480 (6/2/05)

5. ROBERT ODAWI PORTER, research scholar of indigenous nations law at SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY, is committed to indigenous citizenship, governance and political participation. He is the first director of Syracuse University’s Center for Indigenous Law, Governance and Citizenship, which has a long-term goal of educating people about important Indian law issues. A nationally recognized scholar and teacher, Porter has spent a number of years promoting multidisciplinary research, law reform, education and training regarding indigenous citizenship and self-governance. News Contact: Jaime Winne, [email protected] Phone: +1-315-443-1068 (6/2/05)

6. HARALD E.L. PRINS, University Distinguished Professor of Anthropology at KANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY, was trained in anthropology, archaeology and comparative history at various universities in The Netherlands and the United States. Professionally trained in 16-mm filmmaking, he has co-authored and consulted on several documentary films and juried documentary film festivals. A guest curator at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum for Natural History, Prins has done extensive fieldwork among indigenous peoples in South and North America. He co-produced “Our Lives in Our Hands,” an internationally screened documentary film on Mi’kmaq Indians in Maine. News Contact: Keener Tippin, [email protected] Phone: +1-785-532-6415 (6/2/05)


We’ve added the following to items posted previously at =4950

1. GREGORY PENCE, Ph.D., bioethicist at the UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA AT BIRMINGHAM, is a proponent of human cloning for the treatment of diseases: “Fears of cloning, genetic screening, egg donation and other new technologies generated by bioethicists has again allowed South Korean scientists to take the lead in stem-cell research. The real significance of the May 19 announcement [about cloning] is that, once again, the Koreans did it, not the Americans. More and more, we see the opportunity cost of the views of those who oppose embryonic research.” Pence is the author of several books, including “Brave New Bioethics” and “Cloning After Dolly: Who’s Still Afraid?” News Contact: Gail Allyn Short, [email protected] Phone: +1-205-934-8931 (6/2/05)

2. AUSIM AZIZI, M.D., professor and chair of neurology at the TEMPLE UNIVERSITY School of Medicine, and his fellow researchers have established a line of adult stem cells for use in pre-clinical research. They’ve been able to nudge these cells into behaving like brain cells and are now studying them using models of stroke, brain trauma and Parkinson’s disease. Specifically, the scientists are looking at the cells’ capacity and potential for generating different types of tissues, which will hopefully some day help in the prevention and treatment of these disorders. News Contact: Eryn Jelesiewicz, [email protected] Phone: +1-215-707-0730 (6/2/05)


1. ENVIRONMENT: VANISHING LOUISIANA DELTA IS AN ENVIRONMENTAL THREAT TO NATION. GARY FINE, manager of the GOLDEN MEADOWS PLANT MATERIALS CENTER: “We’re losing a land area the size of Manhattan every year on the Louisiana delta. When we talk about land loss in coastal Louisiana, we don’t just mean the ground you walk on. We’re losing an entire ecosystem involving marine life, mammals, birds, reptiles and plant life — and it’s the plants that support the entire ecosystem. That’s why the work we do is so crucial to the survival of the delta. On a scale from one to 10, the environmental disaster facing this delta is a 10. If erosion rates continue, the entire delta will be gone in 50 years, resulting in catastrophic consequences for the nation.” News Contact: Robert Hudson Westover, [email protected] Phone: +1-301- 504-8175 (6/2/05)

2. SCIENCE: PREDICTING HURRICANES’ PATHS ARE DIFFICULT FOR MOST METEOROLOGISTS. IK-JU KANG, Edwardsville Emeritus Physics Professor at SOUTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY EDWARDSVILLE: “The conventional wisdom among those who live along the Atlantic or Gulf coasts is that the National Weather Service does a fair job of identifying hurricanes when they develop. But the same meteorologists aren’t very good at predicting in what direction a powerful storm might travel.” Kang is currently marketing software that calculates the direction of a hurricane to meteorologists. News Contact: Gregory J. Conroy, [email protected] Phone: +1-618-650-3607 (6/2/05)

3. SCIENCE EDUCATION: USING METAPHORS TO TEACH SCIENCE. DR. DEBBIE REESE, researcher at WHEELING JESUIT UNIVERSITY’s Center for Educational Technologies: “Most can relate metaphors to poetry, but metaphors can help students learn complex concepts relating to science, physics, chemistry and mathematics. For example, when a mathematician wants to describe the curvature of a surface, he looks for a metaphor that will allow him to do so in a precise manner. It’s not easy for a writer to come up with the ‘right’ metaphor, and it takes a team of scholars and hundreds of hours to come up with the right metaphor. By investigating metaphors, we hope to harness the power of analogical reasoning, because it is well known that metaphors help people understand complex science concepts.” News Contact: Steven Infanti, [email protected] Phone: +1-304-243-2308 (6/2/05)

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PRNewswire — June 2


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