During the late afternoon of Oct. 23, 2014, a partial solar eclipse will be visible from much of North America before sundown. However, it is never safe to look at the sun with the naked eye. (Image Credit: NASA/Sinclair)

The Department of Physics and Astronomy at SSU is hosting a viewing event for the partial solar eclipse on Thursday, Oct. 23. The eclipse will begin (first apparent contact between moon and sun) at 1:51 p.m, will reach its maximum coverage of the sun (approximately 40%) at 3:15 p.m., and will end at approximately 4:32 p.m.

Dr. Tom Targett and Professor Scott Severson will be based at the SSU observatory during these times, and will have a varity of equipment for safe eclipse viewing. All are welcome to attend.

The eclipse in question will be a partial eclipse, where the moon will pass in front of the sun, but not cover its entire surface as with a total solar eclipse. "We'll have to wait until 2017 for that," says Targett.


Seed Swap in Sebastopol is part of a pop-up art show from the Lexicon of Sustainaibility project.

On Tuesday, Oct. 21, Sonoma State University's Sustainability Day brings exhibits, art, short films, panel discussions, tours and classes on global sustainability to the campus. Keynote speakers include Petaluma filmmaker and creator of the Lexicon of Sustainability project Douglas Gayeton and environmental scientist and SSU professor Rocky Rohwedder at 5:30 p.m. in Weill Hall.

"The day aims to be fun, informative and festive," says Paul Draper, SSU's Director of Sustainability. "The focus is on science and what individuals and organizations can do to change their behavior and alter the course of climate change."

Gayeton and Rohwedder's presentation is titled "Lessons, Lexicons and Local Heroes," highlighting the Lexicon of Sustainability project's pop-up art and short films, which will also be on display throughout the day in Weill Hall in the Green Music Center.

All events are free and open to the public. Several university classes will also be open on campus, on a space-available basis. Other events will take place elsewhere on campus October 20-23.

Find details a

lynn.jpgKim Jenderseck (Anderson Valley HS), Patty Halpin (Ukiah HS), and Laura Herman (Willits HS) look on as Prof. Lynn Cominsky explains the data analysis software.

It was time for Mendocino County teachers to learn about science and they were thrilled to begin.

SSU's i3 Project Director Susan Wandling and STEM Director Lynn Cominsky met with teachers recently from six Mendocino County high schools for a one-day Learning by Making teacher institute hosted by Willits High School.

Subsequent sessions will be held throughout the year at other partner schools. The session allowed teachers to complete data analysis of experiments they designed at the one-week Institute in June at Mendocino County Office of Education in Ukiah.

nprhome.pngAn NPR radio segment with Dean can be found at

jamesjosephdean.jpegJames Joseph Dean's new book Straights: Heterosexuality in Post-Closeted Culture is an in-depth look at the changing nature of sexual expression in America.

Dean, an Associate Professor of Sociology at Sonoma State University, argues that "heterosexuals can neither assume the invisibility of gays and lesbians, nor count on the assumption that their own heterosexuality will go unchallenged. The presumption that we are all heterosexual, or that there is such a thing as 'compulsory heterosexuality,' he claims, has vanished.

health.jpgLow cost physical examinations and health appraisals for well adults and children are available through the SSU Nursing Department's Family Nurse Practitioner Program on Tuesdays from Oct. 21 - Dec. 9.

The exams are supervised by nursing faculty and performed by family nurse practitioner students who are registered nurses enrolled in the Master's nursing program.

copelandcreek.jpgInnovative ideas and approaches to engaging students in local watershed management challenges are being funded for a third year by the WATERS Collaborative at SSU, reports Claudia Luke, WATERS Coordinator and SSU Preserve Director. Funds come from a unique partnership with the Sonoma County Water Agency.

Faculty from environmental studies and planning, geography, chemistry, and biology are funded to work with their students on five regional watershed management projects.

Two additional fall projects, undertaken by faculty in philosophy and mathematics & statistics, are made possible through the "Sustainability in the Classroom" Grant Program awarded by WATERS in collaboration with the Sustainable SSU and GMC Academic Integration last spring.

safetyalert.pngPolice Services is hosting a Campus Safety Week from Oct. 13-16 on the SSU campus. Each day features a different theme, with events scheduled to highlight the importance of a daily message. Campus and community groups will be tabling each day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 13 is the kickoff day with a lecture by SSU Police Chief Nate Johnson at 2 p.m. in the Alexander Meeting Room in the Student Center on how to detect warning signs of an attack and how to mentally prepare for an active-shooter situation. Representatives from the Rohnert Park Department of Public Safety, Sonoma County Sheriff's Department, Rancho Adobe Fire and AMR ambulance company are scheduled to attend.

See the guidelines for handling an active-shooter scenario at

lobofest.jpgThe office of Campus Life is continuing to connect Sonoma State through spirit, tradition and community by hosting four new on-campus events throughout the 2014-2015 school year. The first event, Big Night, took over an entire parking lot with a carnival atmosphere, and the next one is going to be just as big. LoboFest runs from Oct. 8-15 with a variety of events for students, staff and faculty.

Some of LoboFest's events include:

"Big Boo" at SSU - Monday, Oct. 13, 7 p.m. Grand Ballroom, Student Center
Lea DeLaria, also known as "Big Boo" from the hit TV series "Orange Is the New Black," is coming to Sonoma State with a comedic talk her experiences being a "professional lesbian."

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