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Ohio University Southern gives teachers Hollywood treatment

It would be easy right now to mistake the campus of Ohio University Southern for a new movie theatre.

Several of the buildings are lined with posters advertising films that include, "A Beautiful Mind" and "There's Something About Mary."

But upon closer examination, there's something about these ads: Namely they've replaced the Hollywood stars with photographs of OUS faculty.

This year's orientation has a "sneak preview" theme, which led to advertising some of the university's most popular classes as if they were Hollywood blockbusters.

The ads were the brainchild of Carol Allen, Director of Admissions and Registration for Ohio University Southern, who felt that replacing Russell Crowe with OUS math professor Dr. Terry Quinn in "A Beautiful Mind" might make new students more comfortable.

"For the students who are brand new, it's kind of setting the stage and giving them a picture," Allen said. "We're hoping that it will click, 'Oh yes, I saw that.'"

The posters are more than just a sight gag, they also include information about classes that will help new students make better choices when making up a schedule.

Joe Barta was the producer of special projects at OUS when he made the posters, he's now working with Shin-Ken Design in Cincinnati.

Barta said many of the teachers were nervous about playing Hollywood A-listers, but most came around in the end.

"They weren't sure but we told them that they would get to look at them before they went on display," Barta said. "From what I heard, they all liked them."

The posters are not only a chance for newbies to learn about the teachers at OUS, but Allen said that even older students are getting a kick out of them.

"Our current students are really finding it more fascinating than our new students, because they've had some of these people in class," Allen said.

There are nine posters on campus, and Allen said that three more will be completed by the final orientation on Aug. 11.

The sets of posters are currently hanging in the Riffe Rotunda and the Collins Center and will be on display until at least two weeks after the start of the fall semester.