2012 Commencement Ceremony coverage

June 16, 2012 | Community Stadium, EOU
Watch footage from Commencement on Livestream!


Class of 2012 photo album

June 16, 2012 | Community Stadium, EOU
Photography by Laura Hancock | University Advancement | ua@eou.edu

Scholarship raffle sponsored by local business gaining momentum, recent EOU winners announced

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585 | lhancock@eou.edu

June 15, 2012

Maggie Byrd with Marc Lee at Dutch Bros. Coffee.

LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) - Maggie Byrd, of Summerville, is the latest winner in a recurring scholarship raffle for EOU students sponsored by Dutch Bros. Coffee.

Byrd is a junior at EOU majoring in writing and history and said the $300 scholarship will help pay for books for her summer classes.

This isn’t the first time a member of the Byrd family has gotten lucky in the Dutch Bros. raffle. Maggie’s sister Emily collected a scholarship when Bob Davies, EOU president, drew her name from the jar two years ago.

The scholarship for winter term went to Jeff Rysdam, of Elgin. A regular patron at Dutch Bros., he said the $400 award covered the cost of books with a little leftover to put toward other school expenses. Rysdam is a senior sociology student at EOU pursuing a career in juvenile probations.

Jeff Rysdam

Marc Lee, owner of the La Grande Dutch Bros. franchise, is excited for the coming fall when he will sponsor two scholarships at a minimum of $300 each.

“It’s going to be big!” Lee said.

No purchase is required to enter the drawing and all current EOU students are eligible to win. Simply stop by Dutch Bros. Coffee on Island Ave. and fill out an entry form.



EOU launches new computer-based GED testing services

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585 | lhancock@eou.edu
Source contact: Travis Paulson | EOU Testing Center
541-962-3788 | tpaulson@eou.edu

Photo by Laura Hancock / With a little help from his mother Shannon, Tyler Faulkner, of Elgin, registers to take the new computerized GED tests during a tutorial at EOU Monday.

June 14, 2012
– Union County residents seeking completion of general education development tests will soon have access to a computer-based version of the GED that is revolutionizing how high school credentials are obtained.

Eastern Oregon University has partnered with GED Testing Service to offer the tests on computer beginning Wednesday, June 20. It is the first location in the Northwest to launch the new system.

A limited number of applicants will be accepted to take the GED at the EOU testing center on Wednesday. Participants are invited to celebrate the launch at an evening reception from 5-7 in the Badgley Hall foyer.

Cathy Trochlell, continuing education coordinator at EOU, will provide a tutorial of the computer-based test from 12-3 p.m. Monday, June 18 in Inlow Hall, Room 108. Online registration also opens Monday and assistance will be available during the tutorial.

The cost is $31 per test subject and there are a total of five subjects. Students may take each test up to three times until they pass successfully. The EOU Foundation will provide scholarships covering the cost for applicants taking tests on the day of the launch.

After June 20, access to GED tests on computer will be available for 35 hours each week, Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the testing center located in Badgley Hall, Room 105.

The computerized tests are comprised of the same content currently offered on paper, but the accompanying systems will provide an array of new benefits for both GED test-takers and EOU’s testing center.

“We want to provide a more expedient testing system to help our community members overcome their GED hurdles using the most comfortable testing environment that we can provide,” said Travis Paulson, testing coordinator at EOU.

Some of the initial benefits of the computer-based system include around the clock, one-stop online registration and scheduling, flexible testing appointments, instant test scores on all but the writing exam, an introduction to basic keyboarding and computer skills and enhanced test security.

These new features will improve the GED testing program, which is a gateway for adults to find jobs, qualify for better paying positions, enter the workforce or college training programs, and better support themselves and their families.

“Adult learners are often juggling jobs, families, study time and transportation issues,” said Randy Trask, GED Testing Service’s president and CEO.

“GED testing on computer will be a significant step to make the scheduling and testing experience easier, more flexible and faster for adult learners across the state and eventually the country. We are so pleased that Eastern Oregon University is our partner in this important endeavor,” Trask said.

The area Training and Employment Consortium is working with students already in the process of taking the GED on paper to complete their tests, but is phasing out the paper version and referring new applicants to EOU.

Paper-based tests will still be available through the testing center at Blue Mountain Community College in Pendleton.

While testing and scheduling on computer is a significant new benefit, GED Testing Service warns consumers there are those who will attempt to bilk unsuspecting students out of precious dollars by creating confusion online.

“The GED test, whether on paper or computer, must be taken in-person at an official testing center,” Trask said. “Potential test-takers should not respond to individuals or so-called ‘institutions’ offering an online GED test.”

A new GED assessment is scheduled to be released in January 2014. Test-takers who have not completed or passed all five subject areas will need to finish their testing before their scores expire when the new assessment begins.

Applicants are required to bring government issued photo ID to the testing center. Anyone ages 16-17 must also procure paperwork demonstrating their exemption from compulsory attendance with their local school district.

To register beginning June 18, visit www.eou.edu/testing or go to www.GEDtestingservice.com. For more information contact Paulson at 541-962-3788, e-mail testing@eou.edu, or call Trochlell at 541-962-3076.

Gearing up for 2012 Commencement & related activities

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585  lhancock@eou.edu

EOU photos by Andrew Murray / A formal Commencement Ceremony begins at 10 a.m. June 16 at Community Stadium.

June 12, 2012
LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – The conclusion of the academic year will be marked with celebration later this week when roughly 400 students fill the field at Community Stadium for Eastern Oregon University’s 2012 Commencement Ceremony.

The outdoor event begins at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 16 at the stadium located at 6th St. and “G” Ave. on the EOU campus. Student check-in is at 8 a.m. in Quinn Coliseum. Lineup for faculty is at 8:45 a.m., also in Quinn near the entrance to the Fitness Center.

Students walking at Commencement represent 58 percent of the total number of graduates anticipated this year. EOU will confer an estimated 593 bachelor’s degrees, 95 master’s degrees, one certificate and seven associate’s degrees, pending completion of final grades for spring and summer terms.

Senior Nathan Smutz has been selected as the EOU president’s scholar and will deliver the keynote address to the graduating class. Smutz, a Union County native, is completing his bachelor’s degree in computer science with minors in business and mathematics.

Other scheduled EOU speakers include Bob Davies, president, and Brianna Coulombe, student member of the State Board of Higher Education. John Turner, president of Blue Mountain Community College, will also give greetings, and student Jonathan Davidson will perform the National Anthem and Alma Mater.

Seating at Community Stadium is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Guests should arrive early and bring sunscreen, water and a hat or umbrella. Free parking is available in all campus lots, excluding reserved spaces.

A reception for graduates and families will be held on the northwest lawn of the stadium following the presentation of degrees.

Loveland Funeral Chapel and the Union County Victims’ Impact Panel will provide a designated driver offering free rides within La Grande and Island City from 10 p.m. Saturday to 2:30 a.m. Sunday. Goss Motor Company, Legacy Ford and Frontier Motors are donating vehicles. Call 541-786-4331 to reach a designated driver for this event only.

Related activities leading up to Commencement include the Oregon Health and Science University Convocation and Awards Ceremony at 10 a.m. Friday in McKenzie Theatre in Loso Hall.

Also on Friday will be the annual Student Awards Assembly beginning at 1:30 p.m. in McKenzie Theatre.

For more information visit www.eou.edu/commencement. Questions regarding faculty lineup should be directed to Kristen Kruse in the President’s Office at 541-962-3512 or at kkruse@eou.edu.


EOU rodeo competitors heading to national finals in Casper

News contact: Laura Hancock | University Advancement
541-962-3585 | lhancock@eou.edu
Source contact: JoLyn Scott | EOU Rodeo Club Adviser
541-962-3810 | jscott2@eou.edu

June 5, 2012
LA GRANDE, Ore. (EOU) – Countless hours of practice and travel are paying off for Justin Jarvis and Seth Shelton as they make final preparations for their appearance at the Super Bowl of college rodeo.

Image courtesy TOMVON Photography / Justin Jarvis will compete in tie-down calf roping.

Jarvis and Shelton will represent the Eastern Oregon University Rodeo Club at the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association (NIRA) Finals in Casper, Wyo., June 10-16.

Annie MacKenzie, NIRA Northwest regional student director and fellow EOU student from Warden, Wash., will join them and also compete in breakaway roping.

This is the first year since 2006 that EOU has had a competing NIRA team. With two of its members qualifying for nationals, everyone’s spirits are riding high.

“It’s crunch time,” said Shelton, a senior from Kennewick whose specialty is bareback riding. “I’ve always wanted to compete in the college national finals rodeo and it’s awesome to achieve that goal.

The team made appearances at 10 regional rodeos with the final qualifying event held in Hermiston in May. Once there, Shelton found himself among fewer than a dozen other bareback riders who had made it that far. Jarvis, a senior from Mountain Home, competes in tie-down calf roping. He faced more than 30 contenders in the timed event.

“There is a lot of mental preparation involved,” Jarvis said. “Repetition is key to finishing the fastest.”

JoLyn Scott, the club’s adviser, and coaches Travis and Shonda Hampton and Jim Weiser, traveled with the team to almost every rodeo this season.

Image courtesy TOMVON Photography / Seth Shelton will compete in bareback riding.

“We were on pins and needles!” Scott said, recalling that pivotal day in Hermiston where only the top three competitors from each event advanced to nationals.

“Our team really laid it all out there and this is a huge accomplishment,” Hampton said. “The national finals are like the Super Bowl for college rodeo.”

Hampton was a member of the EOU Rodeo Team when she was a student and now supports her husband Travis with his duties as coach.

“Without Shonda and JoLyn, we wouldn’t be nearly as organized as we are,” Shelton said.

EOU is currently the only four-year university in Oregon with a recognized NIRA team. There are 16 members this year and interest has been gaining momentum, with scholarships and other incentives available to participants.

Next fall, the club will host a hometown rodeo in La Grande and is seeking businesses to help sponsor the event. Funds will also assist with the cost of travel and practice stock and facilities.

For more information contact Scott at 541-962-3810.


Haynie wins decathlon and high jump national titles

News contact: Barrett Henderson | Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations
541-962-3946 | behenderson@eou.edu

Photo by Maddison Stapleton / EOU senior Robbie Haynie set records at the NAIA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

May 25, 2012
MARION, Ind. – Eastern Oregon University student-athlete, Robbie Haynie, won the men’s decathlon and the high jump at the 2012 NAIA Outdoor Track and Field National Championships last Friday.

The senior amassed a school-record 7,598 points in the 10-event competition. That’s a new school record total, and just two points shy of the U.S. Olympic Trial provisional mark.

Haynie began the second day with a first place finish in the 110-meter hurdles. He set a personal record with a 14.95 finish, which is sixth on the EOU all-time list. Haynie followed that finish with a sixth place finish in the discus at 121 feet, 10 inches.

Haynie hit a personal record in pole vault at 17 feet, 10 inches. He gained 1,051 points with the first place vault. That mark is currently the 13th best mark from any collegian this season. He had a toss of 175 feet, 4 inches in the javelin and then placed 12th in the 1,500 meters with a time of 5:06.76 to close the day.

Haynie finished Day 1 with a total of 3,924 points. He opened the day placing second in the 100 meters with a time of 11.61. Haynie then won the long jump with a personal best mark of 23 feet, 6.75 inches. His mark is second on the EOU all-time list. A ninth place finish in the shot put would follow. Haynie’s top toss was 40 feet, 4.75 inches.

Haynie then won the high jump with a top leap at 6 feet, 11 inches. He grabbed 906 points with the event win. The Nampa, Idaho, native finished the day placing second in the 400 meters with a time of 50.19, a new personal best.

In Friday’s high jump, the senior cleared 6 feet, 11.5 inches for the title. He entered the event as the top seed. It is his seventh national title in his two years at Eastern, and he enters Saturday’s pole vault as defending champion and top seed.

Kimmy Moore had an All-American, fourth place finish in the women’s heptathlon. The senior finished with a personal record point total of 4,705. She is now second on the EOU all-time list behind Talia Hackney’s 4,934 point total in 1989.

Moore opened the second day with a ninth place finish in the long jump at 5.21 meters. She then finished fifth in the javelin with a toss of 117 feet, 4 inches, and then second in the 800 meters with a 2:16.51, a new outdoor personal best.

Moore began the heptathlon with a seventh place finish in the 100-meter hurdles with a time of 16.37. She would follow that finish with an eighth place finish in the high jump with a top leap of 4 feet, 11.75 inches. In the third event, the shot put, Moore placed 12th at 31 feet, 11.5 inches. The Noxen, Mont., native ended the day with a sixth place finish in the 200 meters at 25.92.

Alma Garcilazo qualified for Saturday’s women’s 800-meter final with a semifinal time of 2:15.11. Brian Bragg qualified for the men’s 5,000-meter final with a time of 15:19.74 . He placed ninth in the race. The EOU women 4×400-meter relay team crossed the line with a time of 3:52.82 placing 13th.

The Mountaineers ended their season in Marion with seven All-Americans. Read more…