myU OneStop

What's Inside

Related Links

Home > Brief > Brief (8-22-2012)  Print

Vol. XLII No. 25; August 22, 2012
Editor: Adam Overland,

Inside This Issue
--State Fair highlights.
--Features: Key to graduate school; Great news for a Great Lake; Fish-tailing robots; Baby Animals.
--People: Vice provost for Student Affairs and dean of students Jerry Rinehart will retire in April; and more.

University News and Events

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


STATE FAIR HIGHLIGHTS: The U of M will once again be one of the largest attractions at this year’s State Fair. Visitors can watch robots climb stairs, tumble, and fly; play an interactive online game designed to help teens understand the critical importance of concentration while driving; and meet student-athletes. Visitors can also learn more about the U’s impact in their community, pick up a free voter education guide, and pledge their support for the University at the "Support the U" booth. For more highlights, read "See U at the fair."


FEATURE: Across the nation, a startling number of students who begin Ph.D. programs don't finish. According to recent studies, close to half of doctoral students fail to complete their degrees. Students cite advising as key to success or failure. The U has begun to focus on developing and rewarding outstanding graduate student advising. Here, four students and their faculty advisers talk about their work together. For more information, read "Key to graduate school."

FEATURE: Keeping better tabs on a lake that is undoubtedly one of Minnesota’s (as well as the nation’s) most precious resources is of increasing concern. And the University is now better equipped to do just that at Lake Superior, thanks to the arrival of two “autonomous moored profilers” (profilers, for short) that will be used by the Large Lakes Observatory (LLO) at UMD. For more information, read "Great news for a Great Lake."

FEATURE: Common carp can comprise the majority of the weight of fish in many lakes. Currently, they are Minnesota’s most damaging invasive fish. U researchers, including associate professor of computer science Volkan Isler, are developing a new technology to track invasive fish. For more information, read "Fish-tailing robots."

FEATURE: The world would be a far less interesting place without animals. And Minnesota wouldn’t be nearly as nice without the howl of its wolves, the "whoo ooh" of its owls, or the wet noses of its puppies. For 120 years, the University of Minnesota has been providing veterinary care to the region’s animals. Read more and view a slideshow of just some of those patients at "Baby Animals."

Awards, appointments, and other announcements

PEOPLE: Vice provost for Student Affairs and dean of students Jerry Rinehart will retire in April; the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs has announced the recipients of this year's Metropolitan Research Grant Program awards; Maria Hanratty is the joint recipient of a Hennepin-University Collaborative Grant; U in the News features U faculty and staff cited in the media. Read about these topics and more in People.



Administrative information

THE U OF M CLINICAL AND TRANSLATIONAL SCIENCE INSTITUTE is partnering with ResearchMatch, a national research registry that will connect U researchers with volunteers who have expressed interest in participating in research studies (not just clinical trials). Researchers can attend a training session to learn how to use ResearchMatch to recruit participants and to assess feasibility for research studies on Sept. 5 and 6, noon–1 p.m., room 105, 717 Delaware St. SE. A live webinar will also be available via UMConnect. Register online. For more information, see the news release.

APPLICATIONS ARE BEING ACCEPTED for the Internationalizing Teaching and Learning Cohort Program to be held January 9–11, 2013. The program provides opportunities for faculty to internationalize the curriculum by identifying global learning outcomes for their courses; expanding their teaching strategies; and developing course materials, activities, and assessments. The program is sponsored by the Global Programs and Strategy Alliance, Center for Teaching and Learning, Office of Information Technology, and Instructional Development Service (UMD). For an application and more information, see teaching program.

Awards and funding opportunities

THE OFFICE OF EQUAL OPPORTUNITY AND AFFIRMATIVE ACTION (EOAA) invites nominees for the Lillian H. Williams Award. Nominees can be individuals or units that have shown commitment by educating the community on issues and topics related to equity, diversity, and the struggle against discrimination and harassment; or individuals and units that show deep involvement in an initiative that supports EOAA’s goal of promoting a positive University culture. To nominate an individual or unit, email a one-paragraph nomination to Felecia Franklin by Sept. 14. The recipient will be announced Oct. 9 at the EOAA Fall Liaison Conference.

A FUNDING OPPORTUNITY available through the Office of Discovery and Translation will support and facilitate high-quality, early-stage translational research. The funding is restricted to junior investigators (assistant professor in rank) conducting early-stage translational research that is focused on transitioning a basic science discovery to the clinical setting. One-year awards are available for up to $50,000. Applications are due Sept. 17. For more information, see research funding or download the application details (PDF).

Lectures, exhibits, and other events

A BOARD OF REGENTS RECEPTION honoring Ann Cieslak, recently retired executive director and corporate secretary of the board, will take place Sept. 14, 11:30 a.m.–1 p.m., with a program at 12:15 p.m., Heritage Gallery, McNamara Alumni Center.

THE 2012 CLEAN WATER SUMMIT will be held at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, with an emphasis on the multiple benefits of soil. The summit will bring together water resource managers, planners, designers, engineers, soil scientists, and the public to learn how building and preserving healthy, "living" soil is critical for reducing stormwater runoff and removing pollutants that enter Minnesota lake and river systems. Sept. 13, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. For registration ($60) and more information, see Clean Water Summit.

SAVE THE DATE: THE FOURTH ANNUAL FOOD AND HEALTH RESEARCH SYMPOSIUM, co-hosted by the U’s Healthy Foods, Healthy Lives (HFHL) Institute and the U's Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, will be an opportunity to learn about award-winning research led by renowned University food and health experts. Oct. 1, 8:30 a.m.–4:15 p.m., TCF Bank Stadium; and Oct. 2, 8:30 a.m.–4 p.m., Landscape Arboretum. For more information, see symposium or view the full agenda (PDF).


The UMC Teambacker organization will celebrate 20 years of supporting UMC student-athletes with a program Aug. 23, 5–7 p.m., UMC Mall. Members and their guests will have an opportunity to meet Chancellor Fred Wood and Golden Eagle student-athletes during the event. For more information, see Teambackers.

NEW STUDENTS MOVE IN to residence halls Aug. 24. Faculty and staff are invited to join Chancellor Wood as he leads Orientation Convocation at 3:15 p.m. that day. Classes on the Crookston campus begin Aug. 28. For more information, see orientation.


THE MINNESOTA INDIGENOUS YOUTH FREEDOM PROJECT (MIYFP) is one of many programs at UMD that support inclusivity, diversity, and community outreach. In addition to four, one-week camps throughout the summer, MIYFP offers a fall weekend retreat and a yearlong mentored community-based project. For more information, see MIYFP at UMD.

SUMMER FIELD DAY 2012 will take place Aug. 22, 3–5 p.m., Sustainable Agriculture Project site, 3566 Riley Road. Transportation to and from the farm will be available on University Drive outside of Darland Administration Building, with a bus leaving at 2:30 p.m. Tours of the farm will begin at 3 p.m., with short introductions about the vegetable fields and a variety of gardens, including the community orchard and honeybee hives. Snacks and refreshments provided. Wear comfortable walking shoes. RSVP by email to Summer Field Day.

UMD’S LARGE LAKES OBSERVATORY recently launched new autonomous moored platforms that will collect data from beneath the water, even during winter conditions on Lake Superior. For more information, see Large Lakes Observatory.


THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY released the second video of its "Clean Energy in Our Community" series featuring the investments by UMM in clean energy that are benefiting local residents and workers. The series recognizes small communities nationwide that are investing in clean energy and playing a role in making sure the United States leads the world in the global race for the green jobs of the future. For more information, see DOE highlights UMM.

UMM WAS RATED HIGHEST among all public institutions statewide for the fourth consecutive year in the Forbes 2012 listing of "America’s Top Colleges." UMM was also the least expensive of all Minnesota colleges to make the list. For more information, see top college.

SIOBHAN BREMER, associate professor of theatre, is appearing on the Guthrie Theater’s Wurtele Thrust stage this summer in The Sunshine Boys by Neil Simon. She portrays the executive of the television studio. The production runs through Sept. 2. For more information, see Guthrie.


THE RAPTOR CENTER (TRC) will be featured at the next UMR CONNECTS, a weekly lecture series focused on public engagement and outreach. TRC will explore the different raptors found in Minnesota and their role in the environment. At least three live raptors will be present. Aug. 28, 7–8:30 p.m., 4th floor University Square. For more information, see UMR Connects.


Administrative information

REPLACE INEFFICIENT DEPARTMENT REFRIGERATORS with ENERGY STAR rated models. Energy Management will contribute up to five times the annual energy cost savings towards the replacement of an inefficient refrigerator or freezer with a brand new ENERGY STAR rated model. Register your department’s "Energy Hog" at It All Adds Up for a chance to upgrade. Energy Management will contact those who registered an appliance as part of last month’s contest in the coming weeks, providing details of how much they will contribute in replacement costs. For more information, see Energy Hog.

THE 2012 AUGUST TEACHING ENRICHMENT SERIES, sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning, will take place Aug. 28–29, with workshop sessions daily from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Faculty, teaching staff, teaching assistants, and others are invited take part in a number of workshops, including The Impact of Active Learning Classrooms; Writing Instruction in Five Minute Increments; Teaching Critical Thinking; Digital Idea Stream: Technologies for Teaching, Learning, and Research; and more. For registration and more information, see Teaching Enrichment.

Lectures, exhibits, and other events

THE 2012 CELEBRATE U! employee appreciation event takes place Wednesday, Aug. 22, 11 a.m.–2 p.m., Northrop Mall and Plaza. This year's event features an employee appreciation gift, live entertainment, information tables displaying programs from around the University, and outdoor activities. For more information, see Celebrate U!

NATIONAL COLLEGE COLORS DAY is Aug. 31. U faculty, staff, students, alumni, and other U supporters are encouraged to participate. Post a photo of your best maroon and gold look on the U of M Bookstore Facebook photo contest page for a chance to win a $50 Bookstore gift card.

SAVE THE DATE: U WOMEN OF COLOR (UWOC) FALL WELCOME will be Oct. 18, 9-11 a.m., Mississippi Room, Coffman Union. Nominations are invited for the annual UWOC Tapestry Award, which will be presented at the event. Nominations will be accepted until Sept. 21. For more information, email

DISCOUNT TICKETS for the State Fair, Renaissance Festival, Science Museum Pirates exhibit, and more are available at Student Union Information Desks. For more information, see discounts.

MORE EVENTS include University of Minnesota Farmers Market (Aug. 22); Google Scholar and Web of Science: Complementary Tools for Finding Academic Content (Aug. 23); MBSR info session (Aug. 27); Moodle: Integrating Library Resources (Aug. 29); In the Footsteps of Little Crow: Conversation with Curt Brown, Kate Parry, and Iyekiyapiwin Darlene St. Clair (Aug. 30); 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. Submission guidelines are available online.

Brief is published by email and on the web. Subscribe to Brief.