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Rockford, IL, United States

Rock Valley College , located in Rockford, Illinois, is one of 48 two-year, open-admission colleges of the Illinois Community College System , organized under the Illinois Public Community College Act. RVC’s district comprises Winnebago County and Boone County and parts of Stephenson County, Ogle County, McHenry County and DeKalb County. Since opening for classes in 1965, RVC has grown to an institution of 140 faculty members, 500 part-time lecturers and more than 10,000 students. Wikipedia.

Guensburg T.E.,Rock Valley College | Blake D.B.,University of Illinois at Springfield | Sprinkle J.,University of Texas at Austin | Mooi R.,California Academy of Sciences
Acta Palaeontologica Polonica | Year: 2016

At present, a debate in the paleontologic literature focuses on whether or not the immediate ancestry of the Crinoidea lies in an unidentified member of the Blastozoa, which includes eocrinoids and an assemblage known variously as the "cystoids". Those proposing to derive crinoids from within the blastozoans have recently argued for homologies in the construction of the oral region of certain derived taxa from both groups. An opposing viewpoint, outlined here, finds evidence that aside from plesiomorphies, proposed similarities are superficial and homoplastic. We suggest these superficialities represent convergent adaptive strategies. Earliest crinoids express ambulacral traits unlike any blastozoan but that are expressed in the only other pentaradial echinoderms with a known record early enough to be considered in the context of crinoid origins, edrioasteroids and edrioasteroid-like stem echinoderms. © 2016 T.E. Guensburg et al.

Blake D.B.,University of Illinois at Springfield | Guensburg T.E.,Rock Valley College
Journal of Paleontology | Year: 2015

The class Somasteroidea Spencer, 1951, is basal within the subphylum Asterozoa. Members are most readily recognized by presence of series of rod-like so-called virgal ossicles extending laterally from each ambulacral ossicle. Five somasteroid genera are recognized and assigned to two families. Four genera are Gondwanan, three of these (Chinianaster, Thoralaster, Villebrunaster) from the Lower Ordovician Tremadocian of France and one (Archegonaster) from the Middle Ordovician upper Darriwilian of the Czech Republic. The fifth genus, Ophioxenikos, is Laurentian from the Floian of Nevada. Catervaparmaster, previously assigned to the Somasteroidea, is left in open nomenclature; absence of virgal-series ossicles favors a lineage apart from the principal asterozoan clades. Asterozoan fossils are readily separated from fossils of other echinoderm groups. The subphylum therefore is thought to be monophyletic, its ancestry unknown. Skeletonized representatives of the four major asterozoan clades first occur through a relatively narrow Early Ordovician stratigraphic interval. Robust skeletons therefore are thought to have evolved after a time of unknown duration including only lineages that were no more than weakly calcified. The French occurrences are from a relatively deep distal shelf setting on soft substrates whereas the Nevada occurrence was in a shallower, active setting. Differences document early ecologic diversification. © 2015 The Paleontological Society.

Fleeman S.R.,Rock Valley College
ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Conference Proceedings | Year: 2011

It is often said that a crisis is an opportunity in disguise. When faced with declining enrollments, the Electronic Engineering Technology (EET) faculty at Rock Valley College responded by tapping into two modern trends: the burgeoning field of sustainable energy systems, and the move towards online education. By adding a sustainable energy emphasis to the EET degree, the department prepares its students for the next generation of energy technology. By modifying its courses to be delivered in a hybrid format (lectures online, labs in person), the program offers a compatible option for students who have jobs and families that require more flexible course scheduling. There is a bold new mission for EET in the area of alternative energy. Sustainable Energy Systems (SES) professionals are needed to advance our nation's move toward freedom from fossil fuels. A curriculum has been designed based on the alternative energy job task analysis orchestrated by the Electronics Technicians Association, International. The resulting curriculum provides Alternative-Energy Integrator graduates and embeds a student learning outcomes assessment of that curriculum through industry-recognized, third-party certifications. The challenge to EET educators is to push the envelope of their comfort zones to tackle new interdisciplinary imperatives. Many students today are very comfortable learning from the internet. Hybrid educational experiences permit the lectures, and additional resources such as videos, to be delivered asynchronously, but paced to ensure timely completion. Laboratory activities are still conducted to provide students with hands-on experiences and direct interaction with their professors and other students. The design of alternative-format hybrid classes leads inherently to a detailed, concise, week-by-week course construction. This paper includes five sections: (1) Alternative Energy - A Comprehensive Overview, (2) Designing a Curriculum for Assessment, (3) The Pros and Cons of a Hybrid Course Design, (4) The Critical Issues of Enrollments and Employment, and (5) Conclusions and Future Development. The SES degree program curriculum at Rock Valley College finishes its first two years of delivery in June 2011. © 2011 American Society for Engineering Education.

Guensburg T.E.,Rock Valley College
Journal of Paleontology | Year: 2010

Alphacrinus mansfieldi new genus and species from the Middle Tremadoc Series (Early Ibexian), near the base of the Ordovician, is the oldest known disparid crinoid. A new family, Alphacrinidae, receives this monospecific genus. Alphacrinus's character mosaic includes primitive traits unknown among other disparids, auguring for disparid origin from a more complexly plated, less standardized antecedent, and echoing the evolutionary progression documented for camerates and cladids. Disparids are diagnosed as those crinoids expressing an arm-like branch from the C ray. Morphologic progression indicates this distinctive trait evolved by modification of CD interray plates, not as an outgrowth from the C ray. © 2010 The Paleontological Society.

Guensburg T.E.,Rock Valley College | Sprinkle J.,University of Texas at Austin
Journal of Paleontology | Year: 2010

We provide clarification of the nature of the junction between cup and arms in Titanocrinus sumralli Guensberg and Sprinkle 2003, accompanied by an emended reconstruction. This morphological feature of so basal a species informs further phylogenetic studies. © 2010, The Paleontological Society.

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