By Adam Overland
School of Nursing alumna General Clara Adams-Ender spoke at the school’s commencement on May 15.
School of Nursing alumna General Clara Adams-Ender spoke at the school’s commencement on May 15 and received an honorary doctor of humane letters from the U. The U alumna crossed gender and color lines in a stellar career that broke barriers. For more information, read commencement.
Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Tony Kushner will receive an honorary doctorate from the U's College of Liberal Arts in recognition of "pioneering interventions into dramatic arts." The University of Minnesota’s College of Liberal Arts will award an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to playwright Tony Kushner on May 21.
Kushner, the subject of the Guthrie Theater's spring "Kushner Celebration" (the playwright's newest work also debuted last Friday at the Guthrie) will be given the highest honor conferred by the University of Minnesota, awarded to individuals who have achieved acknowledged eminence in cultural affairs, public service or in a field of knowledge and scholarship. To date, only 47 other individuals have been awarded honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees from the U of M, and their ranks include Frank Gehry, Dominick Argento, Yanni, Merce Cunningham, Thomas Friedman, Gwendolyn and Jacob Lawrence, James Rosenquist, Charles Schulz, Robert Penn Warren and August Wilson.
Kushner was nominated for this award by faculty members from the U of M's English and American studies departments and Center for Jewish Studies in recognition of his influential and “pioneering interventions into American dramatics arts.” Considered one of the great living American playwrights, Kushner has created a body of work that continually circles back to his interests in history, politics, religion, sexuality and power. For more information, see the news release.
Margaret Sughrue Carlson (Ph.D. '83), chief executive officer of the 60,000-member University of Minnesota Alumni Association since 1985, announced today that she plans to retire in early 2010. Carlson, 65, is the longest-serving alumni director in the Big Ten and only the sixth CEO in the 105-year history of the organization.
Under Carlson’s leadership the association has grown the award-winning Minnesota Magazine, built links from alumni to students through a comprehensive mentor program, implemented a sophisticated legislative network and launched a popular statewide speaker’s tour.
She helped change the face of the institution by coordinating strong alumni support for the construction of some $60 million in projects, including the McNamara Alumni Center and Gateway Plaza, the Alumni Wall of Honor, Scholars Walk and the Wall of Discovery.
Archie Givens, president-elect of the Alumni Association’s national board, saluted Carlson and the association for its efforts to help bring Gopher football back to campus. Carlson helped lobby the state legislature for stadium funding, and the association sponsored a 40-community statewide tour to bring the stadium message to Greater Minnesota. Givens, a former Gopher football player, said he is looking forward with Carlson to the opening of TCF Bank Stadium on September 12 and to “The Ultimate Homecoming” in October.
A Kansas native, Carlson has been a staff member, volunteer, or graduate student at the U for the past 43 years. She joined the U of M Extension Service in 1966 and earned her Ph.D. in education administration and public policy in 1983.
Mooty and Maureen Reed, former chair of the University’s Board of Regents and current first vice president of the Alumni Association, will lead a nationwide search for Carlson’s successor.
H. Ted Davis, a University of Minnesota Regents professor of chemical engineering and materials science and former dean of the university’s Institute of Technology, died suddenly on May 17. He was 71. For more than 45 years, Davis served the University of Minnesota and its students in various roles, most recently as director of the BioTechnology Institute. For more information, see the news release.
Fourteen University of Minnesota students (10 undergraduate and four graduate) have received Fulbright grants for 2009-10 to pursue graduate study in a foreign country during the next two years.
The Fulbrights won by University of Minnesota students this year represent an increase from last year's total of 13 and the University's average of approximately eight Fulbright Scholars in recent years.
Ryan Chelese Alaniz, a doctoral student in sociology, received a Fulbright Full Grant to Honduras. His dissertation research will compare the different trajectories of two initially similar Honduran communities built by two non-governmental organizations (NGOs) after Hurricane Mitch. Alaniz received a master of arts in Latin American studies from the University of California-Santa Barbara in 2004 and a bachelor's in history from Cal Poly State University, San Luis Obispo in 2000.
Clelia Anna Mannino, a doctoral candidate in psychology, is one of 20 students nationally to receive a Fulbright Full Grant to Italy. Her dissertation will investigate how Italy’s changing cultural climate is shaping and redefining conceptions of community, and how this complex process links to identity and nationalism. Mannino received a bachelor's in psychology and Italian from Mount Holyoke College in 2004.
Heather Michelle Taterka, a recent graduate with a master's in food science, is the recipient of the U of M Graduate School’s Fulbright Grant Exchange Program with the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway. She will study atmospheric freeze-drying systems in professor Trygve Eikevik’s lab. Taterka received a bachelor's in chemistry and biology from the University of Minnesota-Duluth in 2007.
Drew Anthony Thompson, a doctoral student in history, received a Fulbright Full Grant to Mozambique. His dissertation will document how photographers used photographic production and exhibition to participate in anti-colonial activities and processes of national building in late-colonial and early independent Mozambique. Thompson received a bachelor's in history and art history from Williams College in 2005.
Alia El Bakri, who completed her bachelor's in political science in 2008 from the U of M, received a Fulbright Full Grant to Jordan. El Bakri will take courses in Arabic literature and culture and political science at the University of Jordan in Amman, and will engage in research on Arab feminist literature. She will also write short stories highlighting everyday life in Jordan with the goal of stimulating cross-cultural dialogue.
Daniel Groth, a 2009 summa cum laude candidate for a bachelor's in English, has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Grant to South Korea. Groth will assist in an English language classroom in a secondary school. Groth’s long-term plans include medical school, and he intends to learn about South Korea’s health care system. A guitarist, he will also take lessons on the 12-string kayagum, a traditional Korean musical instrument.
Evan Hall, a 2008 U of M graduate with a bachelor's in architecture, will spend the coming academic year in South Korea with the support of a Fulbright Full Grant. Hall will study Korean language, city planning and urban architecture at the Korea National University, and will conduct research on how modern professionals are remolding the urban environment in Seoul. A competitive rower during college, Hall would also like to establish a rowing club at his host university.
Vivian Mui, a 2008 cum laude graduate with a bachelor's in graphic design, will be a Fulbright English teaching assistant in Hong Kong. Mui will help to teach English classes at the Hong Kong Institute of Education, a public university dedicated to the preparation and professional development of teachers. She intends to use and expand her knowledge of international cross-cultural design in the classroom and act as a volunteer for several art and design organizations in Hong Kong.
Carmen Price, a 2008 summa cum laude graduate in English and German studies, has been awarded a Fulbright Full Grant to Germany. At the Free University of Berlin, Price will take graduate-level courses on intercultural education and will conduct research on German educational initiatives aimed at increasing immigrant and minority representation in higher education, as well as anti-racist initiatives in education. She will also volunteer as a tutor in the community.
Zachary Saathoff, a 2009 candidate for a bachelor's in violin performance, is the recipient of a Fulbright Full Grant to Austria. Saathoff will study violin with faculty at the Künstuniversität Graz. He intends to play in a chamber music ensemble, learn about Austria’s rich musical history and explore connections between music and art.
Jenna Rose Smith, who graduated in 2007 from the U of M with a bachelor's in English and studies in cinema and media culture, has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Grant to South Korea. Smith will assist in an English language classroom in a secondary school, and will pursue her interest in Korean language and film. Smith also plans to volunteer with a community organization serving people with disabilities in Korea.
Jillian Stein, a 2009 summa cum laude candidate for a bachelor's in Spanish studies and bachelor's in Speech-Language-Hearing Sciences, received a Fulbright Teaching Assistant Grant to Spain. Stein will serve as a teaching assistant in English classes at a secondary school. She also intends to volunteer at a speech therapy clinic or women’s organization in the community.
Antoni Tang, a 2009 candidate for bachelor's degrees in marketing and African American/African Studies, received one of only three available Fulbright Teaching Assistant Grants to Venezuela. Tang will help to teach English to pre-teen and teenage students. He plans to volunteer with an Afro-Venezuelan organization in the community and plans to learn about Afro-Venezuelan movements for social justice.
Anh Tran, a 2009 candidate for a bachelor's degree, magna cum laude, in neuroscience and for the bachelor's in psychology, has been awarded a Fulbright Full Grant to the United Kingdom. Tran will pursue a masters degree at the Institute of Health and Society at the University of Newcastle and will engage in a research project on diabetes risk and prevention among Asian immigrant communities in the United Kingdom. Her project will include a clinical volunteer experience at the Newcastle Diabetes Centre. Fulbright Grants to the U.K. are particularly competitive, with hundreds of candidates applying for between 10 and 12 grants.
Alison Aune, associate professor of Art Education/Museum Education, Department of Art and Design, has been selected as a Fulbright Scholar to Sweden for Fall Semester 2009.
Alexis Pogorelskin, associate professor, Department of History, has been named a Fulbright Scholar. She will serve as visiting professor at the Russian State University for the Humanities in Moscow in Spring 2010.
Tom Beery, student, Department of Education, Teaching and Learning program, and instructor in the Department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, has been selected as a Fulbright Scholar for 2009-2010. His study will be completed in Sweden in conjunction with the Swedish initiative, “Outdoor Recreation in Change.”
Sarah Willis, a 2008 UMD graduate, has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Germany for 2009-2010. This semester she has been working in Berlin for a program called “Germany-meets-Turkey: A Forum for Young Leaders”. For more information, see UMD Fulbright Scholars.
U in the News: A selection of U faculty in the news
Beauty foods: What you eat as important as makeup, skin products
The best way to look healthy and attractive may not be inside a $100 jar of cream or under a surgeon's knife. In an academic review published in Nutrition Reviews last year, University of Minnesota public health professor David Jacobs concluded we derive more benefits from eating whole foods rather than isolating nutrients for supplements or fortifying foods with them. NewsDay.
Good Question: Why Do People Procrastinate?
Whether it's a student delaying her term paper, a husband putting off housework or politicians delaying balancing the state budget, all of us procrastinate to a certain degree. Students are notorious for procrastinating, and at the University of Minnesota, the director of the Counseling Center said he sees many of them who are just paralyzed by their own poor decisions. WCCO – TV.
Farmer's Market Opening Day
For many people, shopping at the local farmers market gives them an opportunity to buy local, and buy fresh. "Most of our food travels on average about 1,500 miles before we eat it, and if you get farmers market food, you know you're getting really fresh, locally grown food," said Leslie Lydle, from the University of Minnesota. KAAL – TV.
Farmers see organic benefits
In a greenhouse with light rain drumming the milky plastic, Ruth Bonow and Diane Leutgeb Munson hurried to repot green peppers and eggplants. Many traditional farmers are using things like green manure and lessening their use of chemicals with crop rotation and other methods, said Deborah Allan, a University of Minnesota soil scientist. Rochester Post Bulletin.
Fitness: Buff stuff
Who hasn't wanted a tighter butt? But be sure you're doing your activity of choice strenuously enough to get a true cardiovascular workout, cautioned Stacy Ingraham, an exercise physiologist at the University of Minnesota. Star Tribune.
The President's Award for Outstanding Service is presented each year in the spring.
The President's Award for Outstanding Service is presented each year in the spring and recognizes exceptional service to the University, its schools, colleges, departments, and service units by any active or retired faculty or staff member. Recipients of this award have gone well beyond their regular duties and have demonstrated an unusual commitment to the University community. Following are the 2009 recipients for the President's Award for Outstanding Service:
Christopher M. Clark, building and grounds worker, Facilities Management, Office of the Senior Vice President for University Services
Arthur G. Erdman, professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Institute of Technology
William E. Jacott, associate professor emeritus, Department of Family Practice and Community Health, Medical School
Carol E. Kraus, senior administrative director, Board of Regents Office
M.J. Leone, executive office and administrative specialist (retired), University of Minnesota Duluth Graduate School
Anissa Lightner, assistant director for student-athlete welfare, McNamara Academic Center for Student-Athletes, Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
Judith A. Martin, professor, Department of Geography, College of Liberal Arts
Patricia J. Neiman, student development specialist, Office of the Vice President and Vice Provost for Equity and Diversity
Gabriele M. Schmiegel, counselor, International Student and Scholar Services, Office of the Senior Vice President for System Academic Administration
Benjamin G. Sharpe, senior academic advisor, Office of Academic Advising, Institute of Technology
Marvin L. Stein, professor emeritus, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Institute of Technology
Les Westendorp, manager, Research Animal Resources, College of Veterinary Medicine
Peter Zetterberg, senior analyst, Office of Undergraduate Education, Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost
UMD Faculty Awards, 2008-09
Chancellor's Distinguished Research Award:
Vicki Hansen, professor of geological sciences
Jean G. Blehart Distinguished Teaching Award:
Curt L. Anderson, professor of economics
Albert Tezla Teacher/Scholar Award:
Eve Browning, professor of philosophy
Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award:
Janice Kmetz, associate professor of art & design, School of Fine Arts
Jennifer Mencl, assistant professor of management studies, Labovitz School of Business and Economics
Bruce Mork, instructor of sociology/anthropology, College of Liberal Arts
Steve Sternberg, associate professor of chemical engineering, Swenson College of Science and Engineering
Anne Tellett, assistant professor of social work, College of Education and Human Service Professions
Horace T. Morse Award-Minnesota Alumni Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Education:
Stephen B. Castleberry, professor of marketing
Carmen M. Latterell, associate professor of mathematics and statistics
Justin Rubin, professor of music
UMD Outstanding Service Awards
Recipients of the UMD Outstanding Service Awards for 2008-2009, Continuous Service:
Recipients of the UMD Outstanding Service Awards, Project Award:
Professor Thomas Farrell is retiring from the UMD Department of Writing Studies. He taught many advanced writing courses, and also courses on the Bible, ancient and medieval culture, and modern technological culture. Dr. Farrell’s scholarship centers on the thought of the cultural historian Walter Ong regarding the historical development of literacy. His most well-known work is his book Walter Ong’s Contributions to Cultural Studies: The Phenomenology of the Word and I-Thou Communication.
U in the News: A selection of U faculty in the news
It's a truism now that money was an engulfing, distorting force of the boom years, particularly in New York. It turns out there are people who study our brains on money. Kathleen Vohs, a consumer psychologist at the University of Minnesota's Carlson School of Management, is preeminent among them, and for the sake of better understanding both the past and the future of our city, it's useful to start by looking at what she's found. New York Magazine.
Could an old elm be the next big thing?
Over at the University of Minnesota, they're torturing baby elms in pursuit of tomorrow's shade tree -- the one you're going to want on your boulevard in a few years. Star Tribune.
Managing a Flu Threat With Seasoned Urgency
There have been few more dramatic moments at the World Health Organization than the late-night gathering on April 29 when Dr. Margaret Chan, its powerful director general, declared that the human race was in peril. "The world's response in a 10-day period was remarkable," said Dr. Michael T. Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, "and W.H.O. deserves credit for being a big part of it." New York Times.
A U.S. Hog Giant Transforms Eastern Europe
For centuries from the Hapsburg Empire through Communist dictatorship peasant farmers here have eked a living from hogs, driving horses along ancient pocked roads and whispering ritual prayers on butchering day. But Robert Wallace, a visiting professor of geography at the University of Minnesota says Smithfield's global rise is part of a broader livestock revolution that has created cities of pigs and chickens in poorer nations with weaker regulations. New York Times.
More workers seek to reinvent themselves as old jobs fade
Five years ago, Steve LaRose decided he was no longer content to sit behind a desk working as a computer programmer for somebody else. Though such mid-career shifts are hardly new, Matthew Hanson, a University of Minnesota Counseling and Consulting Services psychologist and coordinator for career services, said he's seeing more people make the move now by necessity, as their jobs get phased out in the struggling economy. Janet Pelto, a LifeWork consultant and psychologist at the College of Continuing Education at the University of Minnesota, said she has never been busier than in the months since last fall's economic crisis. Star Tribune.
Short line railroad seeks public help in improving tracks
Some of Minnesota's railroad track is so old and decrepit people can actually run, even walk faster than the trains that use the track. There's been lots of criticism directed at railroads for not doing more on their own to improve the rail system. But wait a minute, says transportation economist Stephen Burks of the University of Minnesota-Morris. Minnesota Public Radio.
U Tries Bait Bike Program To Nab Thieves
The University of Minnesota Police Department is starting a new program this fall that targets bike thieves. "If people know there's going to be bikes out there with these tracking devices on them and they're thinking about stealing a bike, that will at least make them think twice about doing it," said University of Minnesota Lt. Troy Buhta. WCCO – TV.
David Kohlstedt (left) and Donald Truhlar were elected as members of the National Academy of Sciences for their excellence in original scientific research.
Two U of M professors have received the nation's top scientific honor. University of Minnesota geology and geophysics professor David Kohlstedt and chemistry professor Donald Truhlar (IT) were elected as members of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) for their excellence in original scientific research. Membership in the NAS is among the highest honors given to scientists in the United States, and more than 180 living NAS members have also won Nobel Prizes. Among the NAS's renowned members are Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Orville Wright and Alexander Graham Bell.
Kohlstedt was chosen for his internationally renowned research in rock deformation processes and his study of the physics and chemistry of minerals. Currently, his research involves uncovering dramatic effects of water and melt on the viscosity of lower crustal and upper mantle rocks. His research also emphasizes the profound influence of water on ionic diffusion in silicate minerals. Kohlstedt, an Institute of Technology Distinguished Professor, joined the U's Department of Geology and Geophysics in 1989. He has served as head of the U's Newton Horace Winchell School of Earth Sciences for the past three years.
Truhlar is considered to be among the top physical chemists in the world. He has enhanced the world's basic understanding of the mechanisms of chemical reaction and has developed new and powerful tools for using state-of-the-art supercomputers. His work includes pioneering studies using multidimensional tunneling methods to include quantum effects in the calculation of enzyme reaction rates. Truhlar has served as a faculty member at the U for nearly 40 years. In 2006, he was appointed as a University of Minnesota Regents Professor, the U's highest faculty honor.
For a feature story on both Kohlstedt and Truhlar, see "The honor of a lifetime."
Mary Koskan, director of One Stop Student Services, was awarded the APEX Award for excellence in education administration and outstanding achievement in her field. The APEX Award is given annually at the conference of the American Association for Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO). Koskan's "one stop" model has been adopted across the country and is considered the gold standard in streamlined student services in higher education. In honor of Koskan’s achievement and service, SunGard Higher Education has donated $5,000 in her name to the University’s scholarship fund.
UMM assistant vice chancellor for student life Henry Fulda is the recipient of the 2009 Morris Academic Staff Award. The Award was established to annually recognize a member of the Academic Professional and Administrative staff who has made distinguished contributions to the mission of the Morris campus.
Anh Tran, a senior psychology and neuroscience student at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, has been selected to the 2009 USA Today All-USA College Academic Team, as announced today by the national publication.
USA Today solicited nominations from universities around the country and selected the top 20 students from thousands of nominees. Winners are college juniors and seniors who excel academically and extend their reach beyond the classroom to benefit society. They receive a $2,500 award and are featured in USA Today.
Tran serves on the Dean's Scholars Program, the College of Biological Sciences Student Board and the Fairview Volunteer Advisory Committee. She was a recipient of the 2008 Howard R. Swearer Student Humanitarian Award by Campus Compact—an award for work that shows an extraordinary commitment to improving local and global communities.
Additionally, Tran founded the first-ever chapter of Biology Without Borders. The organization is akin to Doctors Without Borders, providing students the opportunity to broaden their international perspectives. Tran intends to use the USA Today award to cover some of the costs associated with nationalizing the Biology Without Borders organization.
Born in Vietnam, Tran and her family immigrated to the United States in 1991. Tran intends to pursue a dual M.D./Ph.D degree and wants to work in medicine and epidemiology in the United States and in developing countries like Tanzania and Vietnam. For more about Anh Tran, read "Ambition without borders."
The University of Minnesota Law School recently announced its fifth student to receive the Burton Award. Noreen Johnson ('09) was selected for her winning entry, "Blight and its Discontents: Awarding Attorney's Fees to Property Owners in Redevelopment Actions," which was published in the December 2008 edition of the Minnesota Law Review. Johnson is one of 15 students selected. The Law School is one of only five law schools to have recipients for the award for the past four years in a row and is one of eight to have recipients of the award five times or more. Johnson and other 2009 award recipients will be honored at a black-tie ceremony at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., June 15. For more information on the award or Johnson, see Burton Award.
Philip Brodeen, a student in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota, has been awarded a 2009 Morris K. Udall Native American Congressional Internship. He is one of 13 students nationwide to be chosen for this fully supported, highly competitive internship. Brodeen, a native of Tower, Minn., is an Ojibwe from the Bois Forte Band of Lake Superior Chippewa in northeastern Minnesota. He is currently a senior and will graduate in May with Bachelor of Arts degrees in sociology and American Indian studies. After graduation Brodeen plans on continuing his education at the University's Law School, where he plans to focus on Indian legal issues and hopes one day to represent tribal governments in negotiations and litigations. He is interested in upholding tribal sovereignty, developing successful tribal economies, and promoting cultural revitalization programs. The 13 Udall interns will complete an intensive, 10-week internship, working full-time in congressional offices or federal agencies and observing the federal legislative process first-hand. Brodeen will intern with U.S. Congress Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin of South Dakota.
U of M graduate Amber Damm, a 7th- and 8th- grade English and Language Arts teacher at Clara Barton Open School in Minneapolis, has been chosen 2009 Minnesota Teacher of the Year. Damm has taught at Barton since 2001. She has a Master's of Education from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor of Arts degree from North Central University in Minneapolis. Damm will be Minnesota's nominee for National Teacher of the Year for 2010.
U in the News: A selection of U faculty in the news
Needed: Design in the Public Interest
Dean Tom Fisher has published a thought-provoking piece in the Chronicle on the idea of public interest design--creating a design version of public health, in other words, design in the public interest, rather than for elite clientele. In "Needed: Design in the Public Interest," Fisher says, "The world desperately needs a design version of public health, and so do architectural schools and the profession itself. Chronicle of Higher Education.
Caves and controversy
A new book chronicles the beauty and mystery of Minnesota caves, as well as the political struggle over ownership and exploration of the geological wonders. Calvin Alexander: Professor in the department of geology and geophysics at the University of Minnesota. Minnesota Public Radio.
New bus service signals a good year for metro transit
This is an eventful year for transit in the Twin Cities. Edward Goetz, a University of Minnesota professor of urban and regional planning, is optimistic about the Twin Cities transit future. Minnesota Public Radio.
The work before us is our work, not just his
Over the first 100 days of his presidency, Barack Obama changed his message from "we" to "I." Harry Boyte, codirector of the Center for Democracy and Citizenship at the University of Minnesota's Humphrey Institute, was cochair of the civic engagement subcommittee of the Obama campaign. Star Tribune.
Wind power: Tunnel vision at U
In the long wind tunnel at the University of Minnesota's St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, miniature wind turbines stand waiting for the lab's scientists to turn on the flow of air. University of Minnesota researcher Leonardo Chamorro adjusted a wind sensor that can measure fluctuations caused by wind turbine models in the U of M wind tunnel at St. Anthony Falls Laboratory. Star Tribune.
Electric Fetus has an answer to iTunes
The Electric Fetus' customers access ThinkIndie through the store's website www.electricfetus.com. "It sounds like with a focus on the indie groups, they've really created a niche market for themselves that could open a great deal of possibilities, especially when it comes to local groups," said Scott Lipscomb, an associate professor of music at the University of Minnesota who specializes in technology. Star Tribune.
Finding Feisty Fungi in Antartica
Since there are 100,000 known fungus species, it might not seem all that remarkable that Robert Blanchette may have discovered three new ones. Blanchette, a 57-year-old plant pathologist at the University of Minnesota, is a leading specialist in the study of how fungi affect archaeological artifacts. Smithsonian Magazine.