Framingham State University

@Framingham State

November 2012

FSU Celebrates Renovated McAuliffe Center

State and local officials got a sneak preview of the new state-of-the-art planetarium inside Framingham State’s Christa Corrigan McAuliffe Center during a recent ceremony to celebrate the completion of renovations to the facility.

“The McAuliffe Center inspires thousands of children and instills within them an exciting thirst for knowledge,” said State Senator Karen Spilka, one of several legislators on hand who supported funding the renovation project. “This is so much more than a budget line item. It’s an investment in our children’s future, and our future.”

Framingham State’s Christa Corrigan McAuliffe Center has been supporting teachers and instilling a love of science in students since 1986. Nearly 13,000 students visit the center each year to explore the outer reaches of space in the planetarium or take a simulated voyage to mars in the full-size mockups of a space station and Houston’s Mission Control Room. These experiences often spark an interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) education.

“I can’t tell you how many students I talk to on campus who tell me their first memory of Framingham State was as a middle school student coming to visit the McAuliffe Center,” FSU President Timothy Flanagan said. “It’s critical we get more students interested and engaged in the STEM disciplines at an early age, because those are the areas of job growth in the Commonwealth. That’s a big part of what the McAuliffe Center is all about.”

Students at Framingham State University

The new planetarium projector, set to be installed in January, will offer higher resolution graphics and greatly expand upon the University’s program offerings.

In addition to exploring faraway planets and star systems, students will have the opportunity to take journeys underneath the ocean or through a human cell.

The projector will also provide an opportunity for current Framingham State students to learn how to develop programs that can run on it, according to McAuliffe Center Director Mary Liscombe.

“We’ve already begun reaching out to professors to talk about the possibilities,” Liscombe said. “This is a really exciting opportunity for FSU students to do project-based learning. They will be able to take what they learn and create a program that can run on the projector.”

Other state officials who supported the McAuliffe Center renovation project and were on hand for the ceremony include State Senator Michael Moore, State Representative Tom Sannicandro and State Representative Chris Walsh.

The McAuliffe Center was named in memory of Framingham State Alumna Christa McAuliffe, the first teacher in space. The University was honored to have Grace Corrigan, McAuliffe’s mother, attend the ceremony.

“Christa loved this campus so much,” said Corrigan, who is a stalwart advocate for the teaching of the STEM disciplines to young students. “She’d be very proud of this facility.”

Connect with FSU students during the Annual Fund Phonathon

Our students can’t wait to chat with you! We have a committed group of students making calls from campus to keep alumni up-to-date about what’s happening here at Framingham State and to ask them to consider a gift to our Annual Fund. Gifts of all sizes are appreciated and these gifts can be designated to a favorite department, program, or athletics team. We encourage all of our alumni to ask students about life on campus these days and what major they’re leaning toward. These conversations are a great way to stay connected to Framingham State and help today’s students succeed!

Students at Framingham State University

FSU Police Sgt. Robert Barrette Receives the Patriot Award for Supporting Colleague

An official from the U.S. Department of Defense presented Framingham State Campus Police Sgt. Robert Barrette with the Patriot Award for going out of his way to support fellow Officer Kristen Walls.

Walls, a member of the FSU Patrol Division, is a First Lieutenant with the Massachusetts Army National Guard, Delta Company 223 Military Intelligence Battalion. She is currently deployed in support of Operation Joint Guardian, a NATO mission in Kosovo. She nominated Sgt. Barrette for the Patriot Award, which recognizes efforts made by supervisors to support enlisted guardsman or reservists through a wide-range of measures including flexible schedules, time off prior to and after deployment, caring for families and granting leaves of absence if needed.

“I nominated Sgt. Barrette not only because he supports my military career, but he is also an excellent leader,” Walls wrote via e-mail. “He puts himself before others and does what he can to make our working environment enjoyable. He sets the example at work and many strive to be as good an officer as he is.”

Walls says she often has to take days off – sometimes at the last minute – for required drill training and other service related to her military responsibilities. She says Sgt. Barrette has never made an issue of this, despite the fact that it can make it very difficult to put together the shift schedule for the department.

“If he wasn't able to get a shift of mine filled he would step up and work it so that no one in the department would get forced to work the shift,” she wrote. “He has always gone out of his way to support my military career.”

Rick Bedell, a member of the military’s Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) organization presented Barrette with the award last Friday.

Cape Alumni Organization Awards Scholarships

Scholars of Framingham State University

On August 15, 2012 two students attending Framingham State University were awarded $1,000 scholarships by the Cape Cod Framingham College Club (CCFCC) alumni organization. Jillian Hart of Chatham is a senior at FSU majoring in elementary educations, and Tyler Ranauro of East Falmouth is a senior studying early childhood education.

Each year the CCFCC scholarship serves to support the education of one or more individuals residing on Cape Cod who are full-time juniors or seniors at Framingham State. The scholarship committee bases their selection on several qualities, including achieved academic performance, future goals and potential, as well as on financial need.

The annual scholarship award is a major focus of the CCFCC alumni organization, which is open to all Framingham State graduates living on Cape Cod and the Islands. For more information about CCFCC contact Paulette Rio, 508-778-2270,

Student Spotlight

Nikki Curley Interns with the American Cancer Society

Nikki Curley, class of 2013, is president of Framingham State’s Student Union Activities Board, which organizes student events and activities on campus. This semester, Nikki is interning with the Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Team at the American Cancer Society.

In that role, she helped coordinate the more than 1,000 volunteers who took part in the organization’s fundraising walk on October 14, in Boston. While the weather wasn’t perfect, it didn’t prevent thousands of volunteers and participants from coming out to support the fight against cancer.

“This year was especially exciting because the American Cancer Society was celebrating their 20th anniversary of Making Strides Against Breast Cancer in Boston,” Nikki says. “I was stationed at the Survivor Tent where I was able to talk to survivors, hear their stories, and acknowledge their strength and fight by presenting them with survivor sashes and pins. The entire day was truly motivational and inspiring from start to finish.”

Students at Framingham State University

Now that the walk is finished, Nicki is helping out by sending out thank you letters to sponsors and donors to let them know that their support is appreciated.

Nicki is a sociology major with a concentration in Human Services and a minor is Psychology. After she graduates from Framingham State, she hopes to work with a non-profit organization that deals with childhood cancer.

The Office of Development and Alumni Relations is pleased to publish @Framingham State, our e-newsletter to keep alumni and friends of Framingham State connected to the University. Each e-newsletter features information about upcoming events on campus. The University will continue to mail the biannual alumni magazine, as well as individual e-mails about specific events throughout the year. We hope you find this e-newsletter helpful and engaging.

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Upcoming Events:

President’s Distinguished Lecture Series

Isabel Wilkerson,
Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Warmth of Other Suns, about the migration of southern blacks to northern cities between the years of 1915 and 1970
Monday, November 5
7 p.m.
Dwight Hall Performing Arts Center

Author’s Event Series

Professor Kelly Matthews and Professor Evgenija Garbolevsky
Wednesday, November 7
1:30 p.m.
Heineman Ecumenical and Cultural Center

Lifelong Learning Series

Professor Robert Martello, “Ben Franklin, Printer: Artisan Origins of an American Icon”
Thursday, November 8
7 p.m.
Framingham Public Library

Lifelong Learning Series

Professor Erika Schneider “Art Secrets of New York City”
Thursday, November 15
7 p.m.
Framingham Public Library

International Film Series

Times and Winds Thursday, November 15
7 p.m.
McCarthy Center Forum

Midday Performance

All That Jazz
Monday, November 19
1:30 p.m.
Heineman Ecumenical and
Cultural Center

Annual NYC Sightseeing and Holiday Shopping Trip

Join fellow alumni and friends for this annual tradition, the day is yours to plan
Event cost is $55 per person
Pre-registration is required
Phone 508-626-4687
Departs from the Maple Road Commuter Parking Lot
Saturday, December 1
7 a.m.

Save the Date:

Midday Performance

Art of Flamenco
Monday, December 3
1:30 p.m.
Heineman Ecumenical and Cultural Center

Framingham State University is proud to present the 2012-13 Arts & Ideas program

– a yearlong series of engaging speakers, performances, exhibitions and films on campus. The series is designed to stimulate the kind of thought-provoking conversations that represent co-curricular learning at its best. Most events are free and open to the public.

Arts and Ideas - Your guide to a yearlong series of engaging speakers, performances, exhibitions and films on campus.

Take Our Call!

Now is a great time to make your gift to Framingham State University. There are three easy ways to give:

Online: Make your gift securely online at:

By Phone: You can give with a credit card by calling 508-626-4012.

By Mail: Send your check to:
FSU Office of Development
and Alumni Relations

100 State St.
P.O. Box 9101
Framingham, MA 01701


Have you taken a new job? Been promoted? Moved? Gotten married? Welcomed a new baby or grandchild? Participated in a gathering with fellow FSU alumni? Share those and other stories through class notes in an issue of the Framingham State magazine.
Stories, news and photos may be sent to:
Framingham State University
Office of Alumni Relations
100 State Street
Framingham, MA 01701-9101

FSU Development and
Alumni Relations Team

Eric Gustafson
Executive Director

Robert Walmsley
Assistant Director of
Alumni Relations

Mark Veligor
Major Gifts Officer

Margot Early
Director of Annual Giving

Erin Ryder
Campaign Director

Amy Luoto
Advancement Services Specialist

Nina Ricci
Administrative Assistant

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FSU Communications Team

Daniel J. Magazu
External Relations Coordinator

Luis Rodriguez
Graphic Designer

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