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Home > Brief > Brief (9-23-2009)  Print

Vol. XXXIX No. 29; September 23, 2009
Editor: Adam Overland,

For additional news, information, and resources about U faculty and staff, visit the Faculty and Staff Web site.

Inside This Issue
--U takes action to protect research along the Central Corridor LRT line.
--People: William Craig will be inducted into the Geographic Information Systems Hall of Fame; and more.

Campus Announcements and Events
University-wide | Crookston | Duluth | Morris | Rochester | Twin Cities

THE UNIVERSITY TOOK ACTION SEPT. 22 TO PROTECT RESEARCH ALONG THE CENTRAL CORRIDOR LRT LINE. The U filed suit against the Metropolitan Council in district court seeking protection from the adverse effects of construction and operation of the Central Corridor Light Rail Transit project on the University’s East Bank Campus. For more information, see Central Corridor project

PEOPLE: William Craig, associate director of the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, will be inducted into the Geographic Information Systems Hall of Fame; the College of Biological Sciences will confer an Honorary Degree on paleobotanist David Dilcher at the Itasca Centennial Celebration; Robert Johns has accepted a position with the United States Department of Transportation; University Libraries have appointed Nancy Sims to lead their Copyright Education Initiative; Pamela Solvie has been appointed director of UMM's Global Student Teaching program and English Language Teaching Assistant Programs; U in the News features U faculty cited in the media. Read about these topics and more in People.



PROVOST SULLIVAN RECENTLY ANNOUNCED TWO WORK GROUPS that will build on work begun last spring by the Committee on Graduate Education. The work groups will focus on unresolved issues noted in President Bruininks' June 26, 2009 report. Recommendations are due to the provost Dec. 1 and will be posted for public comment. For more information, see the work group on academic issues and processes and the work group on student administrative processes, or see the provost's Web site.

FORUMS FOR FINALISTS FOR THE POSITION OF VICE PROVOST AND DEAN OF GRADUATE EDUCATION will be presented by professors Sally Gregory Kohlstedt, history of science and technology, Sept. 23, 10:30-11:30 a.m., and Gary Balas, aerospace engineering and mechanics, Sept. 28, 10-11 a.m., 402 Walter Library. Henning Schroeder, pharmaceutics, presented Sept. 22. The forums can be viewed live at UM Connect. Archived presentations of each candidate will be posted online. For more information, including information on student forums (and religious accommodations for the Sept. 28 forum), see vice provost and dean search.


UMC WILL DEDICATE A NEW RESIDENCE HALL as part of homecoming events on Oct. 2, noon. Dubbed Evergreen Hall, the facility boasts the first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for a residence hall in the U system. The building features green building materials, including recycled glass countertops, banana peel fibers or paper, recycled vinyl and plastic in the flooring, energy-saving lighting, and more. For more information, see evergreen.

A SEPT. 17 THURSDAY COMMONS FOCUSED ON DIVERSITY in honor of Constitution Day and featured a discussion with the U's vice president for equity and diversity, Rusty Barcelo. Thomas Williams, director of diversity and multicultural services, facilitated a question-and-answer session with faculty, staff, and students.


UMD COUNCIL FOR ADVANCEMENT OF STUDENT LEARNING will host a mini-conference on student learning and assessment Sept. 23, third floor, Kirby Student Center. The conference is a kickoff for continued work on student learning outcomes and program assessment plans, and is designed for faculty and staff from all academic and student development programs. Topics include assessment philosophy, guidance for developing assessment plans, and technology to support assessment. Open to all UMD faculty and staff. For more information, see student learning PDF.

UMD THEATER DEPARTMENT HAS ANNOUNCED ITS 2009-10 SEASON. Sugar (based on the film Some Like It Hot) will open the season, Oct. 22-31; Sausage (a commedia scenario) will run Dec. 4-13; Annual Dance Concert: Action/ReAction, takes place Feb. 11-13; Factory Girls March 11-28; Is He Dead? (a play by Mark Twain) April 22-May 1. For tickets and more information, see UMD theater.

ALWORTH LECTURE SERIES. Erik Peterson, Senior VP of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and director of CSIS’ Global Strategy Institute will present "The World to 2025," Sept. 23, 7 p.m., 90 Bohannon Hall. Peterson will analyze what he argues are the seven most important trends shaping our world: population; resource management and environmental stewardship; technological innovation and diffusion; the development and dissemination of information and knowledge; economic integration; the nature of conflict; and the challenge of governance. Peterson will also present a brown bag luncheon titled "Global Water Futures," Sept. 24, noon, third floor, Kirby Student Center. For more information, see Alworth.


TAKE BACK THE NIGHT will begin with a speak-out Sept. 24, 7 p.m., Black Box Theatre, Humanities Fine Arts (HFA) building. A silent, candlelit march in support of survivors of sexual violence, relationship violence, and stalking will follow the speak-out as a symbol of participants’ common decision to stand against rape and abuse. The march begins outside HFA. For more information, e-mail Bridget Joos or call 320-589-6061.


UMR IS ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER. Sign up to receive UMR news, photos, and more, and keep up with the ongoing development of the innovative bachelor of science in health sciences degree program. For more information, see Facebook and Twitter.

Twin Cities:

IT ALL ADDS UP is centered around a pledge in which students, faculty, and staff commit to energy saving measures while they are on campus. The goal is to collect 10,000 pledges by the end of the fall semester and show Minnesota and the state legislature that the U is committed to saving energy and money. The class of 2013 got in the spirit during Welcome Week, contributing more than 1,200 pledges, bringing the total to more than 4,000. For more information, read "Take the pledge".

MAXINE HONG KINGSTON WILL PRESENT THE ESTHER FREIER ENDOWED LECTURE Sept. 30, 7:30-9:30 p.m., Ted Mann Concert Hall. Hong Kingston has created some of the most widely read (and taught) literature of the late 20th century. She has won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the National Book Award, NEA Awards, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Literature, and, in 2008, The Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. She has taught and mentored thousands of writers, including veterans she has met through her writing-and-mediation workshops (and whose work she edited in the award-winning 2006 collection Veterans of War, Veterans of Peace), and she continues to write today. For more information, read "The Art of Making Peace."

WEEDING OUT MARIJUANA. Regarded as a miracle by some and a menace by others, the cannabis plant nevertheless holds exciting possibilities for a number of fields in Minnesota, from health care to agriculture and beyond. George Weiblen, Department of Plant Biology, talks about creating a distinct, non-THC hemp plant that would make enforcement easier for authorities and allow farmers to grow lucrative, environmentally friendly crops. Once a thriving industry in Minnesota, both hemp seed and fiber are now imported to the United States because all cannabis plants are considered controlled substances. For more information, watch the News Service video.

TCF BANK STADIUM ACHIEVED LEED SILVER CERTIFICATION, becoming the first collegiate or professional football facility to achieve LEED status. For more information, see the news release.

FORBES CHIEF INVESTMENT STRATEGIST and the author of Even Buffett Isn't Perfect, Vahan Janjigian, will speak at the Carlson School Sept. 23, 3-4:30 p.m. Janjigian will discuss profitable investment paths and the marketing principles underpinning his approach. Hosted by the Institute for Research in Marketing. For registration and more information, see investment or e-mail marketing.

THE U's MATH AND SCIENCE FAMILY FUN FAIR will feature entertaining, hands-on math and science experiences including hovercrafts, microscopes, miniature racecars, robots, and an Exploradome inflatable planetarium. The event, sponsored by the University's Institute of Technology, is free and fun for the whole family. Sept. 26, 11 a.m.–4 p.m., Coffman Memorial Union. For more information, see math and science.

THE GLOBAL SPOTLIGHT INITIATIVE WILL HOST A POETRY READING by award-winning Nigerian poet and human rights activist Niyi Osundare. Following the reading will be a reception for Twin Cities Africanists. Sept. 25, 3 p.m., 101 University International Center. For more information, RSVP or see Sept. 25 Global Spotlight.

"FATIGUE AND CORROSION INFLUENCE ON THE DURABILITY OF STEEL BRIDGES" is the title of this year's Warren Seminar for the Robert Dexter Memorial Scholarship. The event features John Fisher, professor at Lehigh University and a renowned steel bridge expert. Sponsored by the Center for Transportation Studies and the Department of Civil Engineering. Sept. 25, 3:30 p.m. For more information, see Warren Seminar.

TRAINING ON THE STUDENT RESPONSE SYSTEM, TURNINGPOINT, will be offered to faculty, teaching staff, and technical coordinators. TurningPoint transforms a standard PowerPoint presentation into an interactive learning system that engages students in active participation. Sept. 30, 8:30–11 a.m. (basic) and 2-3 p.m. (advanced), 210 Walter Library. Hosted by the Office of Information Technology. For more information, see TurningPoint Training.

"WATER FOR PEACE: AN IRAQI-USA PARTNERSHIP," brings together a multi-disciplinary panel of speakers to discuss the impact of clean water on education, health, and other aspects of public life, and how a bilateral community organizing effort can mobilize citizens to impact community health issues. The program is sponsored by the Iraqi and American Reconciliation Project, the Muslim Peacemaker Teams, College of Education and Human Development, and Office of International Programs. Sept. 30, 2-4:30 p.m., 64 Biological Sciences Center, St. Paul campus.

TACKLING THE HEALTH CARE CRISIS IN AMERICA discussion with the Humphrey Institute’s Larry Jacobs is the first of the College of Continuing Education's "Headliners" series of discussions for the 2009–10 academic year. Oct. 1, 7 p.m., Continuing Education and Conference Center, St. Paul campus. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased online, by phone (612-624-4000), or at the door. Season tickets ($50) for all seven events are available until Sept. 25 and include an eco-friendly Headliners water bottle. For more information, see Headliners.

LITERACY AND EDUCATION IN 21ST CENTURY AFRICA will take place Oct. 2, 1-7 p.m., Humphrey Center. United States Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson will speak at 2 p.m. Breakout sessions will run from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m., a panel discussion with African ambassadors is scheduled for 5 p.m., with a reception to follow at 6 p.m. Sponsored by the U's Global Spotlight Initiative and Books for Africa, a St. Paul organization. For registration and more information see conference. The Office of International Programs is part of System Academic Administration.

THE ULTIMATE HOMECOMING OCT. 4-11 will feature many new events on campus, including TCF Bank Stadium tours and University open house, Oct. 4; Freeman Lecture-Great Conversations, Oct. 5; Student Scholar and Public Engagement Showcase, Oct. 7; UMAA Alumni Awards Celebration, Oct. 8; Preparade Party and Homecoming Parade, Oct. 9; Ultimate Volunteer Experience, Oct. 11. For more information, see homecoming.

FREEMAN LECTURE-GREAT CONVERSATIONS SERIES hosted by the Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs and the College of Continuing Education will feature U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, Oct. 5, 7:30 p.m., Ted Mann Concert Hall. Senator Amy Klobuchar is scheduled to introduce the secretary. The conversation will cover food aid and international development, obesity and nutrition, food security, farm and foreign trade policy, and a host of other topics related to the USDA’s mission. Free, but tickets are required (limit of four). For tickets or more information, call 612-624-2345 or see Northrop.

MINI MEDICAL SCHOOL delves into health and medicine education in an easy-to-understand five-week exploration into the scientific basis of health and disease. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the program, presented twice each year by the Academic Health Center. The fall course "Back to the Basics," will teach about the body's building blocks through anatomy, genetics, biochemistry, pharmacology, and physiology. Mondays, Oct.12-Nov. 9, 6-8:30 p.m., theater, Coffman Union. Cost: $45-80. For registration and more information, see Mini Medical School or call 612-626-7072.

U EMPLOYEES RECEIVE A 50 PERCENT DISCOUNT on over 25 noncredit professional development short courses, through Carlson Executive Education. Classes enhance skills in finance, operations, marketing, leadership, and more. For more information, see the program calendar.

MORE EVENTS include Frontiers in the Environment Lecture Series (Sept. 23); "Food From Here, For Here: Rekindling the Intimacy of our Food System": A talk by Margaret Adamek (Sept. 24); Bufandas By Yolanda: An Intergenerational Knitting Group (Sept. 25); Habitrot 5k (Sept. 26); Fall Raptor Release (Sept. 26); Lucy Dunne, University of Minnesota, "Wearable Sensors" (Sept. 27). SEE THESE AND MORE TWIN CITIES CAMPUS EVENTS.

Published by Internal Communications in the Office of University Relations at the University of Minnesota. Please send comments, questions, or submissions to the editor at The deadline for submissions is noon on the Friday before publication. All Twin Cities event submissions are handled through the events calendar at

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