Monthly Archives: June 2013

June 2013

A group of Richland College anthropology students studied campus trash, compiled data and made suggestions to help improve Richland’s carbon footprint. From left: Misael Sandoval, Elliot Stapleton, Professor Lesley Daspit, Iris Gomez and Gigi Lofland. (photo by Anitra Cotton)


Richland College students turn rubbish into recycling research

This spring, a team of Richland College anthropology students found more than just banana peels, empty coffee cups and plastic bottles in the trash on campus – they found a treasure trove of data.

Professor Lesley Daspit’s anthropology students uncovered interesting patterns in recycling behaviors on campus that give Richland College leaders valuable insight into how to improve current sustainability practices.

The group of students – known as “garbologists” – also noticed after digging through almost 600 pounds of trash that recycling rates at Richland College would improve if recycling receptacles were placed in the outlying areas of campus, such as the soccer fields and parking lots.

“It was a dirty job,” Dr. Daspit said with a smile. “I am very proud of my students; they have worked hard on this research project.”

Before they riffled through the refuse, Dr. Daspit taught her Introduction to Archeology students the proper anthropological techniques for how to study artifacts and gain insight into the people to whom they belonged.

“Garbology is the study of modern refuse and trash,” Dr. Daspit said. “Archeology used to just deal with people in the past, but garbology has taken us into new venues such as landfills and college campuses.”

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It’s Easy Being Green

A green-living tip


Visit our Pinterest green tips board here. Have a global warming action to suggest? E-mail them to

Upcoming Events

Independence Day, campus closed
July 4

Summer Session II begins
July 9

If you have any other events you’d like to have publicized in the ThunderBridge, esigns, marquees and/or Web Calendar click here.

Richland College instructor competes in Cliburn

Photo by Ralph Lauer with The CliburnAlex McDonald, Richland College adjunct instructor, competed in the prestigious 14th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition.

Dr. McDonald was the first Dallas-area native to participate in the competition. He took a break from teaching piano at Richland College to prepare for the Cliburn. Dr. McDonald, who also teaches part-time at Texas Woman’s University, received doctoral and master’s degrees from the Juilliard School and earned a bachelor’s degree from the New England Conservatory of Music.

The Cliburn, held every four years in Fort Worth since 1962, ran from May 24-June 9 at Fort Worth’s Bass Performance Hall.

From 133 pianists, 30 Cliburn competitors were chosen. During the preliminary round, all competitors performed two 45-minute solo recitals. On May 30, the field was narrowed to 12 semifinalists. Despite masterful performances in the preliminary round, Dr. McDonald was not selected for the semifinals.

Six competitors were chosen on June 4 for the final round which culminated on June 9. Vadym Kholodenko from Ukraine won the gold medal. Winners and runners-up in the Cliburn receive substantial cash prizes and international fame. First prize was $50,000 and three years of career management.

For more information including videos of all the performances, visit

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Faculty member’s art featured in McKinney gallery

Longtime Richland College Art Professor Jim Stover is the featured artist at The Garret Art Gallery in McKinney, June 8 through July 10. The gallery will host an opening reception from 7-10 p.m. on June 8. Mr. Stover has taught at Richland College for 47 years. He has worked for 30 years with designers in Dallas. Some of his drawings are in the Smithsonian Institution. He earned a master’s degree from Columbia University in New York. The Garret Art Gallery’s hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday. The gallery is located at 111 E. Virginia St. in McKinney.

New Employees

Richard “Greg” Elkins
Title: College Staff Development Specialist
Department: TOLI


Anthony Leand’s (Facilities) sister passed away. Services were held in Singapore.