Edith Sigler

Edith Sigler is a champion fiddler as well as a student medical school.

Musician is also student in med school

From Pittsburg State University

Picture a champion fiddler. She’s playing a hoe-down, dressed in jeans and a western shirt.

Now picture a future doctor. She’s in med school, dreaming of the day she’ll earn her white coat.

In the case of Edith Sigler, you’re picturing the same person.

And in both scenarios, she said, Pittsburg State University played a role in helping her get there.

Sigler, a Joplin, Missouri, native and a graduate of Carl Junction High School, graduated from Pitt State in May with a degree in music. This fall, she’s a first-year med student at the Wichita campus of the University of Kansas Medical School.

And, as of a few weeks ago, she is now the Kansas State Fiddle Champion after a fierce competition in Lawrence, Kansas.

Does she consider it odd to be a musician in med school?

“Believe it or not, med schools like music students; we often have a broad life view, discipline and dedication, and lots of coursework in the humanities,” she said.

Sigler grew up in the world of music, taking lessons and performing at festivals in a string band comprised of her brother Glenn, their parents, and their grandparents.

By age 6, she had won the pee wee division of a fiddle competition in Oklahoma.

Subsequent years saw her adding other instruments to her play list, including the piano and the clarinet.

In her teen years, she and Glenn took turns winning the junior division of the Kansas State Fiddle Competition multiple times. Like Edith, he also played multiple instruments. Like Edith, he also took lessons from Associate Professor Raul Munguia and performed in a myriad of music ensembles on campus, from marching band to orchestra.

“The advantage to coming to a slightly smaller school like Pitt State is getting to do so many things that you have an interest in,” she said.

Both siblings also felt called to the world of medicine: Glenn dreamed of a career in dentistry, and after graduating from PSU with a degree in biology in 2019, he’s in the Missouri School of Dentistry in Kirksville.

In addition to her music degree, Edith completed all of the pre-requisites for medical school while at Pitt State, earning minors in both chemistry and in physical science.

“The flat rate tuition meant that we could take as many classes as we wanted to,” she said.

Like Glenn, she did well, graduating with a 4.0 and a college resumé that included membership in Chemistry Club, Wildlife & Fisheries Society, Sigman Alpha Iota, and Honors College. She applied to multiple med schools and was hoping for acceptance by the University of Kansas. In May, she got her wish.

These days, she’s pouring over textbooks for courses like biochemistry, genetics, and medical pathways.

“I’m in 8-week blocks, now focusing on molecular and cellular medicine, and then after that, infectious diseases,” she said. “I’m happy I got into med school. I’m surviving, but I do miss performing!”

As for being named a champion fiddler, that was icing on the cake: the competition is open to everyone regardless of age and residency, so she was up against professionals and older, more seasoned musicians. And then there’s sibling rivalry: Glenn won the championship in 2018.

“It was my turn!” she laughed.

Spire shares energy saving tips as cooler weather approaches

From Spire

Fall is here, and with cooler weather on the horizon, Spire is providing energy saving tips to help families stay warm while saving energy and money.

Overall, choosing natural gas appliances and making adjustments to a home or business, can help customers save hundreds of dollars, improve energy efficiency and support the environment. According to the American Gas Association, the direct use of natural gas achieves more than 90% efficiency and cuts carbon emissions nearly in half.

“Natural gas is already the most affordable form of energy, but with simple adjustments, customers can save even more,” said Shaylyn Dean, manager of energy efficiency at Spire. “We want to make sure customers are making the most of their money and their energy.”

Spire recommends the following tips to keep homes comfortable, manage energy usage, and save money:

• During the day, open curtains on south-facing windows to let sunlight heat the home. Close them at night to reduce potential incoming cold from any drafty windows

• If windows feel drafty, install insulating drapes or shades to prevent cold air from seeping in around the seals

• Set thermostats back 10 to 15 degrees for eight hours a day. On average that saves $10 for every $100 spent on energy usage

• Seal areas around the home where air could come in. These leaky areas often can be found around pipes that connect to the outside, chimneys, unfinished spaces behind cupboards, recessed lights in insulated ceilings, and closets. It’s also recommended to use caulk or weather stripping around leaky doors and windows to seal air leaks

• Replace furnace filters once a month or as needed. Also, have a furnace serviced annually to help keep systems operating efficiently

• Keep clutter away from heaters, registers, and radiators

• Place fabric seals at the bottom of doorways and windows. In a pinch, roll up a towel and place that under your doorway.

Customers can even manage their home’s energy use when they’re away with a programmable thermostat.

Spire offers up to 50% in rebates for this energy-saving device.

For more information on Spire rebates for energy efficient items such as furnaces, water heaters and thermostats, visit www.spireenergy.com/rebates.

NextGen Diagnostic Services offers real-time COVID-19 antibody testing using revolutionary ADEXUSDx COVID-19 antibody test in Joplin, Branson, Kansas City, and St. Louis

From NextGen Diagnostic Services

NextGen Diagnostic Services, will now be offering NOWDiagnostics’ ADEXUSDx® COVID-19 antibody test, a rapid-results self-contained finger stick test at its NextGen Diagnostic Services testing sites in Joplin, Kansas City, Branson, and St. Louis. To schedule an antibody test, please call 417-362-NEXT.

The ADEXUSDx® test offers a fast and easy way to check for COVID-19 antibodies. The ADEXUSDx® COVID-19 antibody test detects antibodies to a portion of the spike protein S1 of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

These antibodies are the most protective and are induced by vaccination, offering both vaccinated individuals an accurate way to test for antibodies even if they have not had a previous COVID-19 infection.

The test detects results in only 15 minutes and results will be reported via the Missouri Department of Health. NOWDiagnostics’ advanced technology allows for easy use, and the self-contained finger stick provides a safe and virtually painless way to gather a sample.

In May 2021, NOWDiagnostics announced receipt of Emergency Use Authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the ADEXUSDx® COVID-19 Test’s use in moderate complex settings and at the point of care. The Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) provided funding and technical support to NOWDiagnostics for the development of the ADEXUSDx® COVID-19 Test. Trials for over-the-counter use are ongoing.

City of Pittsburg to auction surplus equipment

From the city of Pittsburg

PITTSBURG, Kan. — The City of Pittsburg is conducting an online auction of surplus property until October 12. Items are listed on www.purplewave.com.

Auction items include the following:

• 1980 GMC Pittman Crane

• 1992 ford F700 Dump Truck

• 2006 Ford F350 Service Truck

• 1986 GMC Service Truck

• 1980 Chevrolet C60 Dump Truck

• 2004 Bobcat 430 Mini-Excavator

• 2008 Ford Crown Vic

• Bobcat Broom

• 2011 Factory Cat Mini-Mag Floor Sweeper

• Two (2) small truck toolboxes

• Truck topper

• Snowplow/mount

Instructions on how to register to bid are located on Purple Wave’s website.

Fire Prevention Week: Test smoke alarms now before cold weather brings increased threat of home fires

From American Red Cross

This Fire Prevention Week (October 3-9), the American Red Cross of Southern Missouri urges you to test your smoke alarms before the threat of home fires increases with cold weather.

Locally, the Missouri and Arkansas Red Cross region responds to 34% more home fires in November-March than in warmer months. According to the National Fire Protection Association — which is sponsoring Fire Prevention Week with the theme, “Learn the Sounds of Fire Safety” — home fires are most common in cooler months when people spend more time inside, and cooking and heating equipment are the leading causes of these crises.

“Every day, people’s lives are devastated by home fires — a threat that’s increasing as winter approaches,” said Chris Harmon, Regional Disaster Officer. “Help keep your family safe now by testing your smoke alarms and practicing your two-minute fire escape drill.”

Since October 2014, the Red Cross Home Fire Campaign with community partners has saved at least 30 lives in the Missouri and Arkansas Region, which includes some counties in Kansas along the Missouri river and Illinois along the Mississippi river. The campaign includes free smoke alarm installations and education for families about fire safety, helping them create escape plans and installing free smoke alarms in high-risk areas.

Across the Missouri and Arkansas Region, since October 2014, over 71,000 free alarms have been installed in over 32,000 households.

This breaks down to Missouri Red Cross volunteers and partners have installed over 57,000 alarms and helped make over 25,000 households safer. This includes some counties in Kansas along the Missouri river and Illinois along the Mississippi river.

Locally, during that same time frame, in the Southern Missouri area, Red Cross volunteers and partners have installed over 9,000 alarms and helped make over 4,400 households safer.

During Fire Prevention Week, test your smoke alarms and practice your two-minute home fire escape drill — the amount of time that experts say you may have to get out before it’s too late.

Teach children what a smoke alarm sounds like and talk about fire safety and what to do in an emergency. Visit redcross.org/fire for more information.

• Place smoke alarms on each level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms and sleeping areas. Test alarms monthly and change the batteries at least once a year, if your model requires it.

• Check the manufacturer’s date of your smoke alarms. If they’re 10 years or older, they likely need to be replaced because components such batteries can become less reliable. Follow your alarm’s manufacturer instructions.

• Include at least two ways to exit every room in your home in your escape plan.

• Select a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone knows to meet.

• Tailor your escape plan to everyone’s needs in your household. If you are deaf or hard of hearing, install strobe light and bed-shaker alarms to help alert you to a fire. When practicing your plan, include any devices or people that can help you to get out safely.

If you cannot afford to purchase smoke alarms or are physically unable to install one, the Red Cross may be able to help.

Contact your local Red Cross for help. Due to COVID-19 safety guidelines, smoke alarm installations are limited to where they’re safe to do so.

To learn more about the campaign and how you can get involved, visit redcross.org/Home Fires.

MDHEWD partners with Show Me Hope and Department of Mental Health, creates “HappierU”

From the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development

The Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development (MDHEWD) has partnered with the Show Me Hope Crisis Counseling Program (CCP) and the Missouri Department of Mental Health to create HappierU, a digital resource center that aims to promote mental health, primarily among college age students but would be beneficial to anyone wishing to use the resources.

HappierU features a series of videos, podcasts, and digital content, providing science-based advice, strategies, and coping mechanisms for stressful situations.

While this initiative is targeted more toward college-age students, HappierU is available to anyone looking for ways to focus on becoming their happiest, healthiest self.

The program includes video exercises that can be accessed on demand and shared on any digital platform.

“Putting Missourians on a path to learn, work, and prosper means prioritizing mental health resources and making them easily accessible,” said Zora Mulligan, Missouri commissioner of higher education.

“We are excited to launch this project knowing mental health is not only an important issue on college campuses, but across the state and nationwide.”

By accessing the HappierU content hub, Happier U (wistia.com) individuals can view all of the latest content, subscribe for updates, and more. The content is free and available to everyone.

Anyone in a crisis or who needs to speak with a counselor can text MOSAFE to 741-741 or by dialing 1.800.985.5990. You’re not alone, there is help available.

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