Art as Communication

Who doesn’t love a good field trip? Students of Principles of Speech class in Raleigh, North Carolina were treated to a field trip to the North Carolina Museum of Art that cleverly reinforced their in-class lessons covering verbal and nonverbal communication. Instructor Gloria Hicks said, “I love to use field trips and guest speakers to enhance our learning experience. An art docent and former art teacher put together a presentation specifically for our class, entitled Communication on Canvas.”

The trip amplified the learning experience as the sculptors and painters used nonverbal communication to send all types of messages through their work. “Art is a form of communication,” explained Gloria. “Many of my students had never visited a museum before and were mesmerized by what they saw and didn’t want to leave.”

Front row from left to right: Angela Marshall, Sandra Kucmierz, Anna Tarleton, Chris Smith, Jasmine Terry and Anthony Sala. Back row from left to right: Renee Gordon, Claude Brice, Amber Anthony, Bradley Spray, John Whitesides, Crystal Ray, Ms. Gloria Hicks, Instructor, Tyrone Tarvin, Joseph Macon and Monte Willis.

Red Cross Mass Casualty Certificates Awarded to ECPI Students and Faculty

Several ECPI University students in Virginia Beach completed the Red Cross Mass Casualty Certification Training on August 19. Disaster response training courses are open to the public but are designed primarily for those individuals wishing to begin or continue training for the local Disaster Action Team (DAT) or the National Disaster Services Human Resources (DSHR) System. The purpose is to provide information about ways participants can help their community prevent, prepare for and respond to emergencies and disasters. The Mass Casualty Disaster course is designed to prepare employees and volunteers to plan for and respond to mass casualty disasters.

Nine students from Homeland Security, three students studying criminal justice and two faculty members received the certification.

Today’s FBI: An Inside Look for Criminal Justice Students

A group of 40 students, graduates and staff from ECPI University’s Virginia Beach, Online, Newport News, Richmond Moorefield and Richmond Innsbrook campuses attentively absorbed the FBI’s Community Relations Executive Seminar Training (CREST) at the Virginia Beach campus on June 3. The event was organized with the assistance of the FBI Norfolk Division’s Community Outreach Specialist and Associate Dean of Criminal Justice, Ife Alexander-Caines. The CREST covered topics such as: recruitment, cyber-crime, terrorism, foreign counterintelligence, white collar crime, the FBI’s community outreach programs and the changing face of the FBI.

Vanessa Torres, the Community Outreach/Media Specialist for Norfolk’s FBI, spoke to the group about the Norfolk Division’s Community Outreach Program and some of the FBI’s initiatives. The CREST Program helps adults learn about the mission, goals, history and internal workings of the FBI. Community outreach for the FBI shifted after 9/11 to be more targeted to adults and businesses to raise terrorism awareness. “It is an effort to build trust and collaboration in the community,” said Torres. “The public became the eyes and ears of the FBI.”

Special Agent in Charge, Alex Turner has been with the FBI for 26 years and has experienced the evolving role the agency plays. Today the FBI employs 33,000 people with a presence in every continent around the world. “The FBI is physically in 70 countries covering 200 countries,” explained Turner. “This expansion happened after 9/11.”

The FBI investigates:

•     Counterterrorism
•     Foreign Counterintelligence
•     Cyber Crime
•     Public Corruption
•     Major Thefts/Violent Crimes
•     White Collar Crime
•     Civil Rights

Turner addressed television programs like CSI and Bones and how they do not properly represent the FBI. Jokingly he stated “I’d be taller with more hair” as the room erupted in laughter. The FBI today is threat-based and intelligence driven sharing information across all agencies.

From left to right: Vanessa Torres, Community Outreach/ Media Specialist; Ife Alexander-Caines , Associate Dean of Criminal Justice; Alex Turner, Special Agent in Charge; Melanie Hayes, Administrative Specialist and Willie Session, Assistant Special Agent in Charge.

ECPI University faculty member, Ife Alexander-Caines worked with the FBI to put this program together. “I believe this event makes a positive statement about our university and the community element that exists within the School of Criminal Justice,” said Ife regarding the attendance and support.

Manassas Uses a Scenario Straight from the Headlines for Discovery Day

The idea for a creative Discovery Day came from headlines from across the country: bank tellers stealing customer’s information and internal employees’ granting access for thievery. There seems to be enough material for a Hollywood movie or a great way for guests of ECPI University and MCI in Manassas, Virginia, to witness the skills learned upon enrollment in one of the university’s programs.

Guests to the campus on April 16 were briefed on the back-ground of the situation in the form of a video and a newspaper article. The scenario played out like this:

Two suspects were taken into custody from a bank headquarters. After entering the building with a valid security code, the suspects allegedly proceeded to the company’s intelligence center where silent alarms were activated. The mail room supervisor at the headquarters reportedly used her access information to get into the building. The second suspect, a male, is currently being treated for a heart attack. After the suspects were detained, he began experiencing chest pain and was taken to the hospital. ADT security systems received the trespassing alert; police were notified immediately. Upon arrival, police officers found the two suspects in the intelligence center. In a panic, the female attempted to flee the building but was brought into custody within moments. The male did not resist arrest. While police are unsure of the exact motive, the two suspects appear to have stolen account and demographic information from 2,000+ bank customers. The bank’s security team and local authorities are currently assessing their security breach.
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Students Head to China for ECPI’s Study Abroad Program

ECPI University’s study abroad program is in its eleventh year and to date has covered four of the six inhabitable continents. In March, a group of 22 including three chaperons enjoyed 13 days in China.

Study abroad programs are generally imagined in the traditional college setting where students spend a semester away. According to Dr. Glenn Corillo, faculty director of ECPI University’s program, only a third of colleges follow that format while the remaining two-thirds use the same model as ECPI University with two weeks abroad.

Students from ECPI University, Medical Careers Institute and the Culinary Institute of Virginia in Hampton Roads enrolled in Communication 205, Culture and Diversity. Students were in class for two weeks learning about the places and the culture they would visit, two weeks abroad, and then back to the class room for one week.

Study abroad student, Ricki Furlong, who is studying healthcare administration at MCI, ECPI University’s School of Health Science, had high praise for the class. “Dr. Corillo does a great job of getting the principles of the course across. I also think the subject of culture and diversity helped members of the class to grow emotionally. We learned from each other.”

The trip included visits to Beijing, Xian, Shanghai and Hong Kong with items on the itinerary that included:

•     A visit to the 2008 Olympic site
•     Exercise instruction from a Tai Chi master
•     A visit and climb of the Great Wall of China
•     A pagoda visit
•     A visit to the Ming tombs where 13 of the 15 emperors re buried
•     A lecture on eastern medicine from the Chinese Medicine Research Center
•     A visit to Tiananmen Square, the largest town square in the world
•     A visit to the Forbidden Palace
•     A visit to the Terra Cotta Museum where 8,000 clay soldiers are buried underground
•     A visit to Banpo village to see how ancient Chinese lived
•     A performance of a Kung Fu show
•     A visit to a Buddha temple
•     A visit to Nanjing Road which is much like Times Square in New York
•     An acrobatic performance
•     Shopping at Stanley Market

ECPI students being treated to a foot massage at a center for Chinese medicine which centers on herbal remedies.

Students learned interesting aspects about China during the course. Due to population issues, the government instituted a policy in 1978 that would allow for only one child per family and that families would be fined for having more. Many families would abort females in order to have a male heir. As a result, by 2020 there will be 50 to 70 million unmarried males with no hope of finding a spouse.

Students noted that there was very little obesity in China which could be attributed to shopping every day for fresh food and lack of sweets. The internet is also censored in China with no search reference for Facebook, George Washington or democracy. The government also controls the heat by turning it on November 15 and off on March 15, incidentally during the time of ECPI University’s visit. The group experienced colder temperatures with no access to heat in many commercial locations. “The entire group came back with a whole new appreciation for our country,” said Dr. Corillo.