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Vol. XLI No. 8; March 2, 2011
Editor: Adam Overland,

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Inside This Issue
--2011 State of the University Address.
--Economic impact study released.
--State Relations update.
--Federal Relations update.
--Features: Donna Whitney, Distinguished McKnight University Professor; Speaking of stuttering; U of M Moment.
--People: Professor Jasjit Ahluwalia has been appointed to serve on the National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities; and more.

University News and Events
Top News | University-wide | Crookston | Duluth | Morris | Rochester | Twin Cities


2011 STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY ADDRESS: President Bruininks will deliver the State of the U address Mar. 3, 3 p.m., Coffman Union Theater. A brief question-and-answer period will follow the address. UFacultyStaff Twitter will be live-tweeting the speech. For online participation, see State of the U online. The address will also be broadcast via ITV to all campuses: UMC, 220 Dowell Hall; UMD, 173 Kirby Plaza; UMM, Science Auditorium; UMR, 419 University Square. Disability accommodations will be provided upon request by calling 612-624-6868. For more information, see 2011 State of the U.

U ECONOMIC IMPACT STUDY. An economic impact study released Feb. 28 outlined the major role the University plays in Minnesota’s economy. Among the findings: every dollar invested in the U by the state generates $13.20 in the statewide economy; the U's overall economic impact in Minnesota totals $8.6 billion annually; the U supports 79,497 jobs in Minnesota. The study was conducted by Tripp Umbach, a national leader in providing economic impact analyses. Additional findings from the report will be discussed during a work session at the Board of Regents meeting, Mar. 11. For more information, see economic impact study and the news release.

STATE RELATIONS UPDATE: President Bruininks testified before the House Higher Education Committee on Feb. 22 to address the U's budget and the consequences of state funding cuts as deep as 15 to 20 percent. Part of Bruininks's testimony and a rally by hundreds of student supporters, faculty, and staff, have been captured in a video. Earlier this session, the House leadership sent a letter to all state agencies, including the University, requesting financial data as well as an explanation of how such a reduction in funds would be absorbed. For more information, see state relations.

FEDERAL RELATIONS REPORT: The House Appropriations Committee has introduced a bill containing the largest spending cuts in history. The House began debate on the bill, which would fund the remainder of current fiscal year, FY 2011—Mar. 5 to Sept. 30. The House bill would result in a cut of $845 to the maximum Pell Grant, which is the most direct assistance that the federal government provides to low- and moderate-income undergraduates. The bill also includes cuts to health, science, and agricultural agencies. President Obama has signaled he will veto the bill if it comes to him in its current form. For more information, see federal relations.


FEATURE: Donna Whitney has been traveling to Turkey for about 20 years now, but she is no tourist. She drives and hikes with small groups of geologists wielding sledge hammers, chisels, self-sealing plastic bags, and in recent years, global positioning devices. She comes home with suitcases full of rocks. If Whitney sees the earth through a different lens than most of us, she’s also a visionary among her colleagues. Her international renown and leadership led the U to name her a Distinguished McKnight Professor in 2010. For more information, read Donna Whitney.

FEATURE: Graduate student Joel Korte will never forget walking up to a New York City construction worker to ask his opinions for a survey on stuttering. Now a student in the U's Department of Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, Korte is training to become a speech-language pathologist for others who stutter. He is learning the ropes with clinical specialist Linda Hinderscheit, who says that while stuttering affects three million Americans—75 to 80 percent of them males—the cause isn't known. For more information, read "Speaking of stuttering."

U OF M MOMENT: A customer's perception of negative stereotyping, particularly in the areas of financial services and automobile sales and service, can cause consumers to fear being duped and forgo their purchases, according to new research by professor Kathleen Vohs. Vohs says many consumers would simply opt not to buy in situations where they felt they were being stereotyped. For more information, listen to the U of M Moment.

Awards and appointments

PEOPLE: Professor Jasjit Ahluwalia has been appointed to serve on the National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities by U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius; the Minnesota Veterinary Medical Association presented awards to professor emeritus Dale Sorensen, professor Robert Hardy, and associate professor Sheila Torres; U in the News features U faculty cited in the media. Read about these topics and more in People.



Funding opportunities

AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY INSTITUTIONAL RESEARCH GRANT APPLICATIONS are being accepted until Apr. 18. The grant is for assistant professors with no independent national funding and who are engaged in cancer-related research. This is a one-year seed grant. Funding of up to $30,000 is available. For an application, email Nancy Morgan or call 612-625-2912.

Administrative information

THE PRESIDENT’S EMERGING LEADER'S PROGRAM (PEL) is accepting applications for its 2011–12 cohort. The program is designed to identify and further develop the leadership skills of talented P&A, Civil Service, and Bargaining Unit staff. PEL offers participants a structured but flexible development opportunity, featuring both educational and experiential components. Application deadline is Apr. 1. For more information, see application instructions or view a presentation with testimonials from past participants.

THE PROJECT AND CHANGE MANAGEMENT COLLABORATORS group will offer its first ever half-day workshop, Project Management 101: Suffering the Slings and Arrows of Outrageous Projects, Mar. 15, 9 a.m.–noon, 2-530 Moos Tower. The workshop features instructor John Skovbroten and is scheduled during spring break. Free and open to all U faculty and staff. RSVP for the program by using the enrollment key "pcmc" at Moodle. For more information, see project management.

THE STUDENT EXPERIENCE IN THE RESEARCH UNIVERSITY (SERU) PROJECT has published a survey about the student experience at the research university. SERU is a collaboration between academic scholars and institutional researchers devoted to creating new, policy-relevant data sources and analysis to help broaden the understanding of the undergraduate experience and to promote a culture of institutional self-improvement. The project includes 18 major U.S. research universities and is based at UCLA. For more information, see SERU survey results.

THE CLINICAL AND TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE INSTITUTE (CTSI) can help investigators register clinical trials to ensure regulatory compliance and to prepare for publication of results. CTSI's coordination helps maintain Food and Drug Administration compliance and International Committee of Medical Journal Editors requirements. For more information, email Kathy Mischke and visit the CTSI website.

Lectures, exhibits, and other events


SPRING SEMESTER CONVOCATION will feature speaker Terry Dullum, anchor and producer of "WDAZ News at 5." Crookston Student Association president Shawn Friedland will serve as master of ceremonies. Mar. 3, noon, Kiehle Auditorium. For more information, see spring convocation.

A PASSPORT DRIVE, sponsored by the Office of International Programs at UMC, is open to anyone from the campus or the Crookston community. The drive is a convenient opportunity for community members to get their passports, which are no longer issued locally. Mar. 8, 1–6 p.m., Northern Lights Lounge, Sargeant Student Center. For more information, see passport drive.

VOLUNTEERS ARE SOUGHT for a program to prepare communities for the Emerald Ash Borer. Training is scheduled Mar. 25, 6–8:30 p.m.; and Mar. 26, 8:45 a.m.–3:30 p.m.; 116 Kiehle. For more information, see volunteers.


CHANCELLOR LENDLEY C. BLACK WILL BE INAUGURATED AS UMD'S NINTH LEADER Mar. 4, 2 p.m., Romano Gymnasium. A reception will follow. For more information, see inauguration.

UMD SUSTAINABILITY PANELS on a variety of subjects will be presented by UMD faculty, staff, and students Mar. 3, 11:30 p.m.–1 p.m., 3 p.m., and 4:30 p.m., Library Rotunda. For more information, see inauguration activities.

THE 2011 BAEUMLER KAPLAN HOLOCAUST COMMEMORATION AT UMD PRESENTS REMNANTS Mar. 6, 3 p.m., Kirby Student Center Rafters. Written and performed by noted psychology professor and playwright Henry "Hank" Greenspan, this one-person play is based on his ongoing conversations with Holocaust survivors. The play was initially produced for radio and broadcast on National Public Radio stations across the United States in 1991. A light reception and Q&A will follow. Free and open to the public. For more information, see Remnants.

UMD BIOLOGY DEPARTMENT WILL PRESENT A HEALTH IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM: LOCAL FOODS, Mar. 8, noon, 323 Kirby Student Center. Biology department greenhouse director Deb Shubat will discuss ways to get local foods and important issues facing our food supply both locally and nationally. Free and open to the public. For more information, see health training.


ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMICS MAJOR WILL DOLEZAL has launched a composting initiative on campus to address waste stream analysis, composting operations, research, and tours and external contacts. For more information, see composting initiative.

TOURING COMPANY NATIONAL PLAYERS will bring an innovative, "electronic twist" production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream as part of the UMM Performing Arts Series. Mar. 5, 7:30 p.m., Edson Auditorium. For more information, see performing arts.

THE SYMPHONIC WINDS will perform the world premiere of jazz musician Joseph Carucci’s Scaphoid Void. Carucci, assistant professor of music, composed the large ensemble piece with a jazz feel. The group will also present Grand Pianola Music with guest pianists Ann DuHamel, director of piano studies at Morris, and Jeanine Barrett, assistant artistic director of the Wirth Center for the Performing Arts. Mar. 6, at 3 p.m., Recital Hall. For more information, see Symphonic Winds concert.


TWO BUSINESS OWNERS who each began a start-up company will describe their experiences in creating their organizations. Speakers include Dharani Ramamoorthy of Xylo Technologies, Inc., and Dan Fox of Rushford Hypersonic. Professor Rajiv Vaidyanathan will follow their presentations with more information on the Duluth MBA program. April 4, 5:30 p.m.


Administrative information

THE UNIVERSITY HAS LAUNCHED A SAFETY CAMPAIGN to raise awareness about the importance peers have in promoting positive decision making and campus safety. The "Stand Up" campaign focuses on three primary issues: high-risk drinking (the current theme), general safety (to be rolled out in late March), and sexual violence prevention (to overlap with national Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April). For more information, see Stand up.

PROPOSAL DEADLINES TO LEAD AN EDUCATION ABROAD PROGRAM are approaching. Those interested in taking students abroad can propose a short-term program during winter break, spring break, or May session 2011–12. Priority will be given to non-European locations and/or topics that appeal to a diverse student audience. For more information, see education abroad or email Christine Anderson.

Lectures, exhibits, and other events

NORTHROP CONCERTS AND LECTURES will present the first performance outside of Northrop since its closing for revitalization. Northrop Dance presents the contemporary ballet troupe Aspen Santa Fe Ballet Mar. 8, 7:30 p.m., State Theatre. For tickets and more information, see Northrop or call 612-624-2345.

A JAPANESE TEA CEREMONY DEMONSTRATION will feature professor Fumio Watanabe of Yamagata University, Japan, as the tea master, as well as U students presently studying the tea ceremony. Come to one or more of the 6 ceremonies: thick tea ceremony, 4 p.m.; thin tea ceremony and standing bow tea ceremony, 4:30 p.m.; flower tea ceremony in a box, 5 p.m.; abbreviated tea ceremony on a tray, 5:30 p.m., and Unohana tea ceremony in a box, 5:50 p.m. Free tea and a sweet will be served. Mar. 9, 4-6:30p.m., 140 Nolte.

MAJORA CARTER, internationally renowned leader in environment-centered urban renewal, will kick off IonE's new Momentum 2011 event series, with entertainment by Ananya Dance Theatre Mar. 10, Ted Mann Concert Hall. Future presentations include international health guru Hans Rosling with comedian Cy Amundson, Apr. 26, and oceanographer Sylvia Earle with musician Mason Jennings, May 12. For tickets and more information, see Momentum 2011.

A FREE, MINI MEDICAL SCHOOL BONUS SESSION will take place Mar. 21, 5–8:30 p.m., 2-650 Moos Tower. Paul Iaizzo and Clifford Steer will talk about what bears can teach us about human heart health and treatments for heart attacks, stroke, and kidney failure. Seating is limited and registration is required.

COMEDIAN SARAH SILVERMAN will perform Mar. 23, 8 p.m., Ted Mann Concert Hall. General Admission tickets are on sale now. Seating is limited. For more information, see Silverman.

MORE EVENTS include "1 Potato, 2 Potato, 3 Potato, 4; Host Plant Resistance... We Need More" (Mar. 2); The Founders: Making the Department of Landscape Architecture (Mar. 3); Out of Bounds: Challenging the Status Quo (Mar. 4); Yoga/Meditation Retreat (Mar. 5). SEE THESE AND MORE TWIN CITIES CAMPUS EVENTS.

UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS: Golden Gophers | UMD Bulldogs | UMM Cougars | UMC Golden Eagles

Brief is the official University of Minnesota staff and faculty weekly news digest, featuring human resource, employee benefit, administrative, legislative, budgetary, event, and other pertinent information.

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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