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Applaud MSU Denver faculty, staff, students and alumni sharing their talents and energy.

By Lindsey Coulter

January 15, 2019

Students throwing balloons in the airIn addition to Faculty Citings, the Early Bird shines a spotlight each month on the accomplishments of Metropolitan State University of Denver faculty and staff. This month, we’re also recognizing MSU Denver alumni making our community safer and healthier. If you know colleagues or graduates who deserve a round of applause, email

Kudos to faculty and staff

Congratulations to jazz professor and composer Ron Miles for a banner musical year. Miles — along with collaborators Joshua Redman, Scott Colley and Brian Blade — was recognized by Jazzwise for his work on “Still Dreaming.” The album made the publication’s Top 20 Jazz Albums of the Year for its “melodic zest” and “rhythmic bounce.” The album was also nominated for a 2019 Grammy Award for Best Jazz Instrumental Album.

Scott Sherwood, director of MSU Denver’s Center for Professional Selling, and April Schofield, associate director, were unanimously selected as full members of the University Sales Center Alliance, a consortium of sales centers connecting university faculty members with many backgrounds and areas of expertise. Sherwood and Schofield will join fellow member-educators in advocating for the continuing advancement of the sales profession through teaching, research and outreach. Thanks to the efforts of Sherwood and Schofield, the entire University is now recognized as a USCA member organization as well.

Rebecca Canges, Ph.D., chair of Special Education, Early Childhood and Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Education in the School of Education, co-authored an article, "Review of single subject research examining the effectiveness of interventions for at?risk English learners," that was selected for the prestigious Kirk Award. The award is named for Samuel A. Kirk, one of the United States’ foremost leaders in special education and learning disabilities. The award is given occasionally and recognizes excellence in professional journal articles that have been published in the journal Learning Disabilities Research & Practice.

Image take from Balloonsat of atmosphereCelebrating students who soar

Sometimes great news trickles in slowly, but we’re always thrilled to share tidbits like this!

On Nov. 4, 30 Department of Aviation and Aerospace Science students flew seven experiments to an altitude of 109,000 feet (20.6 miles) and above 99.6 percent of Earth’s atmosphere.

The experiments were built by student teams and flown on a Balloonsat launched by Edge of Space Sciences to investigate the near-space environment as part of the Introduction to Space class taught by lecturers Jose Lopez and Randy Owen.

The experiments included sensors to sample and measure atmospheric gas composition, detect cosmic rays, investigate altitude’s effect on the speed of sound and measure AM radio propagation above the troposphere. The experiments also included cameras that documented the experiments and the view from (nearly) space.

Applause for alumni

Need some new reading material? MSU Denver alumna Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s (’09) Colorado-centric short-story collection was recently named to Barnes and Noble’s list of six short-story collections to look forward to in 2019. The collection has also earned praise from authors Sandra Cisneros and Julia Alvarez, among others, and was featured by numerous publications including the Idaho Review and online literature, arts and culture magazine the Millions.

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