Education & Schools
WIU-QC Riverfront Phase II Groundbreaking Ceremony PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Tami Seitz   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 12:09
Western Illinois University-Quad Cities  will host a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday, Aug. 29 at  3 pm directly west of Building One, 3300 River Dr. in Moline.Gov. Quinn has been invited to attend the celebration, and federal and state government representatives, area legislators, community leaders and University officials will take part in the ceremony.

Patilyn Lowery of Bettendorf Participates in University of Evansville Freshman Service Project PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Kristen Lund   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 12:08

EVANSVILLE, IN (08/23/2012)(readMedia)-- The University of Evansville is proud to announce that Patilyn Lowery of Bettendorf, IA, participated in the Freshman Service Project on Monday, August 20.

The project sent new UE students to 20 locations throughout Evansville, Indiana - including parks, community centers, and other nonprofit organizations - to perform tasks ranging from painting to cleaning to landscaping.

The Freshman Service Project is part of Welcome Week, a program designed to help incoming students transition into college life before classes begin.

"The goal of the Freshman Service Project is to help new students such as Patilyn Lowery get acquainted with the community they'll call home during their college years," said Geoff Edwards, director of UE's Center for Student Engagement and coordinator of the Freshman Service Project. "Last year, UE students contributed more than 19,000 hours of community service, and we hope the Freshman Service Project inspires many students to continue serving the Evansville community."

Your Money Your Future Online PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Brenda Schmitt   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 12:04
Achieving financial goals is not just a matter of money. “It’s about an internal desire to improve one’s finances,” says Brenda Schmitt, ISU Extension Family Finance Specialist. People who think positively generally experience greater success and education is the first step. There is a connection between what you do today and what will happen in the future.

Your Money Your Future is an on-line class that begins Sept. 10, 2012 and meets Mondays over a three-week period. Each session is recorded for review. Participants need high speed internet and speakers or headphone to hear the instructor. A microphone or chat box is used to participate. There is a $15 registration fee. Certificates of Completion are available upon request.

Your Money Your Future will cover:
• Develop Spending plans and SMART goals
• Access your credit history without having to pay a fee
• Select the financial institution that best meets your needs
• Understand how credit cards work and how to avoid the credit card trap

After you register, you will receive via e-mail a web address with class materials to be printed along with instructions on how to log in. For more information or registration details contact Brenda Schmitt at 641-512-0650 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or Joyce Lash at 641-464-5003 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .


PACT (Parenting All Children Together) PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Amanda Heitz   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 12:03

Davenport, Iowa -- On September 7, Iowa State University Extension of Scott County will sponsor the parenting support and education program PACT (Parenting All Children Together) for an eight week series. The program is financially supported by Scott County Kids Early Childhood Iowa. The program is designed to educate and offer support to parents and caregivers of children age birth through five years old and reside in Scott County.

“Parenting is the most important job we will ever have. It is also the toughest! What we provide our children from birth through age five stays with them for the rest of their life. With this huge responsibility, we need to work together. This series will bring together parents and caregivers who want the very best for the children in their life,” said Jennifer Best, Extension Educator and PACT instructor.

The upcoming PACT series is in its second year of programing in the Scott County community. “Over the past year it has been very rewarding to watch each parent/caregiver open themselves up to the learning process,” said Marisa Bloom, Families Program Assistant. “Participants were connected with formal supports offered in our community, and enjoyed forming bonds and creating informal support systems with their peers. PACT is a needed resource for these very reasons.”

For participating in the PACT program member will receive a free meal at every session, free childcare while adults are learning, a free gift at each session, transportation to get to the sessions if needed, $40 worth of items chosen by the participant if they attend at least 6 of the 8 sessions, fun and friendship with other families, and great information to help parents and caregivers help their children be all they can be.

For more information about PACT or to register, contact Marisa at the Iowa State University Extension office at 563-359-7577 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

5 Reasons Why Dogs Make Great Reading Partners For Children PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Education & Schools
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Tuesday, 28 August 2012 11:40
Studies Track Improvements in Grade School
Language Studies

It turns out dogs are not only good for our health; finding missing people; and helping disabled people live independent lives – they’re good for kids’ report cards, too!

Canines have been found to improve the immune system and reduce blood pressure, among other health benefits. They help rescuers and law officers, blind people and those with limited use of their hands and arms. Now we have another reason to celebrate man’s best friend.

“Dogs not only help children learn to read, they help children learn to love reading,” says Michael Amiri, coauthor with his wife, Linda, of the children’s book, Shellie, the Magical dog ( “And that’s true of for children with and without learning disabilities.”

A Minnesota pilot project called PAWSitive Readers finds that trained therapy dogs helped 10 of 14 grade-school participants improve their reading skills by one grade level. Additionally, a University of California study showed that children who read to the family dog improved their ability by an average of 12 percent.

Amiri discusses five reasons why dogs help kids learn to love reading:

• No embarrassment: “Most of us have memories of reading out loud in class,” he says. “Though we may have been proficient readers, the fear of stumbling on a word in front of everyone was a constant source of anxiety.” Dogs are excellent for unconditional, nonjudgmental love; they won’t laugh if and when mistakes happen.

• Confidence boosters: “I never had a dog while growing up, which is too bad because I think I would have had an easier time gaining self-confidence,” says Amiri. As an adult, he discovered the many benefits of dogs through he and his wife’s very special Maltese, Shellie. She’s often the center of attention in their community at pet-friendly restaurants, where she laps her water out of a martini glass. And she has a full-time job as the greeter at Linda’s hair and nail salon. “If a little dog can give me, a grown man, more confidence, imagine what it can do for kids,” he says.

• Polite listeners: Like humans, dogs are social creatures and most enjoy the sound of a calm voice speaking to them. Many – except perhaps the most energetic breeds – seem to enjoy curling up on a rug and listening to a story being read aloud. They don’t interrupt (except for the occasional ear scratch or to sniff a body part) and they often show appreciation for the attention.

• A fun approach to schoolwork: Too often, when children think of studying, they think of time spent hunched over a desk struggling alone to work out problems and memorize lists. Interacting with a lovable, fuzzy friend for an hour of homework is an appealing alternative.

• Win-win: A canine-student reading program is a great way to help service dogs-in-training learn patience and discipline. Dogs are trained to help veterans suffering post-traumatic stress disorder, the blind, and people who use wheelchairs, among others. These dogs in training help children, while children improve a dog’s service abilities.

About Michael and Linda Amiri

Michael Amiri grew up in New York City and became an actor in local theater productions and television commercials. Linda Amiri is an entrepreneur, the owner of a successful hair and nail salon. Their personality-plus Maltese, Shellie, is a popular community character, who puts in a full day of work every day as a greeter at her “mom’s” salon. She’s the inspiration for the first in a series of children’s books that will address topics and issues of concern to children.

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