Dixie Forum to Look at DSU’s Outreach Efforts in Tanzania

Monday, February 9th, 2015

In an effort to extend Dixie State University’s educational reach beyond St. George, the university is working with the Colom Foundation to teach people in the African country of Tanzania about business development, healthcare, and fine arts and culture. A small group of DSU faculty will share about DSU’s efforts in Tanzania at the next lecture in the “Dixie Forum: A Window on the World” series.

Eric Pedersen, Sandy Wilson, Kathy Rasmussen, Matt Morin and Glenn Webb, who met with entrepreneurs, music educators and health care providers in Tanzania, will present from noon to 12:50 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 10, at the Dunford Auditorium in the Browning Resource Center on the DSU campus. Admission is free for all community members and DSU students, faculty and staff.

Pedersen, dean of DSU’s School of Science & Technology, is exploring faculty exchange opportunities as well as entrepreneurial activities in Tanzania. He earned a doctorate in management information systems from Utah State University and also holds degrees in business, economics and Spanish. In addition to his academic career, Pedersen directed a research team that developed and launched the first Utah website in 1993. He also co-founded InfoWest, the first regional Internet service provider in Southern Utah, and several other tech companies and businesses.

Wilson’s portion of the presentation will focus on the current conditions and future prospects of dental health in Tanzania. An assistant professor in DSU’s Dental Hygiene Department, Wilson earned a master’s degree in curriculum and design from Colorado Christian University, a bachelor’s in communications from Brigham Young University and an associate degree in Dental Hygiene from Colorado Northwestern Community College.

Rasmussen and the DSU nursing department created a program that will offer Tanzanian nurses specialized training in public health, especially women’s and children’s needs. Nearly 70 nurses from throughout Tanzania applied, and 10 have been selected to participate in the six-week training course this summer. Rasmussen, an instructor and clinical supervisor in DSU’s nursing program, earned a master’s degree in nursing from the University of Phoenix and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Weber State University.

Morin, an assistant professor in DSU’s Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Department, is involved in supporting the Chamwino Arts Center in Tanzania’s capital of Dodoma, procuring donated musical instruments to contribute to the University of Dodoma, and developing a database to document, record and archive traditional music and dance. Additionally, Morin is arranging a residency program for a Wagogo performer to come to DSU next semester and work with DSU students. Morin holds a Ph.D. in musicology from Florida State University and a master’s degree in ethnomusicology from Tufts University.

Webb, chairman of DSU’s music department, directs the university’s Jazz Band and Percussion Ensemble at Dixie State University. He earned a doctorate in percussion performance from UNLV, a master’s in percussion performance from the University of Utah and a bachelor’s degree in music education from Weber State University.

Dixie Forum is a lecture series designed to introduce the St. George community and DSU students, faculty and staff to diverse ideas and personalities while widening their worldviews via a 50-minute presentation. The weekly series will be on recess next week and will resume Tuesday, Feb. 24, when L’Dean Trueblood will present on sculpture as an art form at noon in the Dunford Auditorium.

For more information on Dixie State University’s Dixie Forum series, please contact DSU Forum coordinator John Burns at 435-879-4712 or burns@dixie.edu or visit www.dixie.edu/humanities/dixie_forum.php.