Compiled by Adam Overland
President’s Emerging Leaders
The President’s Emerging Leaders (PEL) program recently graduated its latest cohort of University leaders. On June 20, the 25 members of the outgoing 2011–12 PEL cohort were honored during a ceremony at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
During the past year, those PEL participants were divided into five teams, each charged with devising a plan to address an important issue facing the University.
Each team spent the year working on the issue to which it was assigned while also attending large-group leadership sessions and being mentored individually by a University leader.
At the graduation ceremony, the PEL teams presented, in poster form, the proposed recommendations. Each team must also prepare a detailed report presenting their solutions. Posters are available to view on the PEL website. PEL reports will be available to view later this year.
Art of Hosting and Harvesting Integration
Sponsor: Center for Integrative Leadership
Team members: Brenda Carriere, Ellen Freeman, Mary Jetter, Chris Nelson, Terry Straub
Enhanced Marketing Plan for The Aurora Center
Sponsor: Jerie Smith, Volunteer Coordinator, The Aurora Center
Team members: David Anderson, Matt Aro, Sara Foster, Heather Nelson, Anne Mason
Sponsors: Andrew Furco, Office for Public Engagement; Kris Lockhart, Office for Equity and Diversity; Meredith McQuaid, Global Programs & Strategy Alliance
Team members: Vikki Auzenne, Jayne Blodgett, Alison Blomster, Maureen Long, Michael McDaniel
Master Gardener Program Re-organization
Sponsors: Julie Weisenhorn and David Moen, Master Gardening Program, U of M Extension
Team members: Andrew Allen, Cory Goracke-Postle, Daniel Jones-White, Michelle Overtoom, Amber Schultz
Cultivating Innovation for Equity and Diversity
Sponsors: Kris Lockhart, Office for Equity and Diversity; Eric Schnell, Office for Equity and Diversity
Team members: Jennifer Bentrim, Rod DeVriendt, Susan Geller, Jean McElvain, Rebecca Noran
members of the 2011–12 PEL cohort:
Andrew Allen, Office of the Vice President for Research; David J. Anderson, Office of Information Technology; Matt Aro, UMD Natural Resources Research Institute; Vikki Auzenne, Academic Support Resources; Jennifer Bentrim, Office of Human Resources; Jayne Blodgett, Briggs Library, U of M Morris; Alison Blomster, U Card Office; Brenda Carriere, Center for Human Resources and Labor Studies; Rod DeVriendt, College of Veterinary Medicine; Sara Foster, College of Education and Human Development; Ellen Freeman, College of Education and Human Development; Susan Geller, School of Social Work; Cory Goracke-Postle, Office of the Vice President for Research; Mary Jetter, Office of Human Resources; Daniel Jones-White, Office of Institutional Research; Maureen Long, Technological Leadership Institute; Anne Mason, Humphrey School of Public Affairs; Michael McDaniel, Clinical Neuroscience Center; Jean McElvain, Goldstein Museum of Design; Chris Nelson, Technological Leadership Institute; Heather Nelson; Medicine/Rheumatology and Nephrology; Rebecca Noran, Academic Health Center; Michelle Overtoom, One Stop Student Services; Amber Schultz, University of Minnesota Crookston; Terry Straub, U of M Extension.
Institute for Advanced Study Residential Fellows
The Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) announced residential fellows for 2012–13, including eleven Faculty Fellows, two Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellows, and two Quadrant Fellows. Fellows will join a community of scholars in residence at the IAS and will share their work across disciplines through weekly lunches, workshops, discussions, and other activities.
Faculty Fellows 2012–13: Each year, the IAS invites University of Minnesota faculty from all departments and campuses to apply for semester-long fellowships at the IAS. Faculty fellows are released from teaching obligations and are in residence at the IAS for fall or spring semester.
David Chang, Department of History, College of Liberal Arts (CLA), University of Minnesota-Twin Cities (UMTC).
Project title: "A World of Power: Native Hawaiians and the Politics of Global Geography in the Nineteenth Century" (fall semester).
Nancy Cook, Law School, UMTC.
Project title: "The Witness Project" (fall semester).
William McGeveran, Law School, UMTC.
Project title: "Self and Selves: Public and Private Regulation of Online Identification" (fall semester).
John Nichols, Department of American Indian Studies, Program in Linguistics, Department of American Studies, CLA, UMTC.
Project title: "Algonquian Digital Text Editions" (fall semester).
Frances Vavrus, Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development, College of Education and Human Development, UMTC.
Project title: "Poverty Lessons: Education and Economic Development in Africa in a Neoliberal Age" (fall semester).
Shannon Walsh, Department of Political Science, CLA, University of Minnesota – Duluth.
Project Title: "Engendering State Institutions: State Response to Violence Against Women in Latin America" (fall semester).
Michael Gaudio, Department of Art History, CLA, UMTC.
Project Title: “‘Prosper Thou Our Handyworks:’ Prints and Protestant Devotion at Little Gidding, 1625-1642" (spring semester).
David Pellow, Department of Sociology, CLA, UMTC.
Project Title: "Social Movements and the Quest for Total Liberation" (spring semester).
Kathy Quick, Public and Nonprofit Management and Leadership, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, UMTC.
Project Title: "Intersections of Bioecological and Institutional Paradigms for Practicing Resilience: An Investigation of Collaborative Environmental and Community Stewardship" (spring semester).
Ray Schultz, Department of Theatre, Humanities Division, University of Minnesota-Morris.
Project Title: “Solo Performance Project: ‘It Could Be Worse: The Mayo, Mutant Genes, Cancer, and Me’" (spring semester).
Shaden Tageldin, Department of Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature, CLA, UMTC.
Project Title: "Toward a Transcontinental Theory of Modern Comparative Literature" (spring semester).
Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellows 2012–13: The Graduate School awards a limited number of Interdisciplinary Doctoral Fellowships each year to outstanding graduate students with interdisciplinary dissertation topics who would benefit from interaction with faculty at an interdisciplinary research center or institute.
Murat Altun, Department of Anthropology, CLA, UMTC.
Project Title: "Kalandar Winter Festival: Xenophobia and the Politics of Memory in Northeastern Turkey." Mentor: Giancarlo Casale (History, CLA).
Emily Tubman, Department of Biomedical Engineering, College of Science & Engineering, UMTC.
Project Title: "Modeling Error Correction in Mitosis using Body-Storming." Mentor: Carl Flink (Theatre Arts and Dance, CLA).
McMaster reappointed to NRC Board
Robert B. McMaster, professor of Geography and vice provost and dean of undergraduate education, has been reappointed to a three-year term on the National Research Council's Board on Earth Sciences and Resources. The Board on Earth Sciences and Resources coordinates the National Research Council's activities on solid-earth science issues and organizes and oversees studies of important national issues in the earth sciences.
Assistant dean for International Student and Scholar Services
Barbara Kappler has accepted the position of assistant dean for International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). Kappler has more than 17 years of experience in intercultural communication, program management, teaching, and research.
Currently the interim director of ISSS, Kappler is an experienced and sought-after facilitator of intercultural communication sessions and has managed a wide range of campus programs for promoting U.S. and international student interaction. She is committed to the intersections of theory, research, and practice and has taught more than 50 undergraduate and graduate courses on intercultural communication. She is a member of the graduate faculty of the College of Education and Human Development and serves on M.A. and Ph.D. committees. She holds bachelor’s degrees in economics and communication from the University of St. Thomas, Minnesota, and a master’s and Ph.D. in speech communication from the University of Minnesota.
U in the News: A selection of U faculty in the news
Diverse suburbs are the fastest-growing slice of metropolitan America
The traditional image of suburbia as America's hub of white affluence is fading fast: Most suburbanites live in racially diverse areas. ..."The country is really changing," says Myron Orfield, director of the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity at the University of Minnesota Law School, who co-wrote the report with Thomas Luce. New York Times.
Industry, veterinarian say sow 'abuse' in video is common practice
The animal advocacy group that went undercover at Sparboe egg farms is now taking aim at a Minnesota pork production plant, but the pork producer's association and an industry veterinarian say the treatment seen in the undercover video is common practice. ...Dr. John Deen, professor of pig veterinary science at the University of Minnesota told FOX 9 News that much of what Mercy for Animals found is not uncommon, and it's not illegal in Minnesota. Star Tribune.
Despite Colo. Tragedy, Minn. Moviegoers Still Seeing ‘Dark Knight Rises’
“The Dark Knight Rises” had all the expectations of a summer blockbuster: strong reviews, midnight showings and fans who dressed up as heroes and villains for the occasion. But no one expected a deadly shooting at a Colorado theater that would cast a cloud over screenings across the country. For some moviegoers, it was enough to make them rethink an opening day screening. “It’s just so startling scary that a person has, in my opinion, great difficulty in backing away from it,” said Dr. Charles Schulz, a psychiatrist at the University of Minnesota. CBS.
Google street view of Antarctica is vital for science - and our understanding of the climate
Antarctica is the definition of remote. The southern-most continent on the planet is also the coldest and most forbidding; the only way to get there is via countless plane flights, and just about the only people who travel there are scientists. But as far away as it is to most of us, Antarctica is incredibly important to the planet—and the changes going on deep down under will have effects that we’ll all feel. “It is a harbinger for what is going to happen in the rest of the world,” says Brad Herried, a research fellow at the Geospatial Center at the University of Minnesota. TIME.
On campus beat: U profs take a page from e-book
Given the topic—digital innovation in academia—it makes sense that a new project from the University of Minnesota was published as an e-book. ...In creating Cultivating Change in the Academy: 50+ Stories From the Digital Frontlines at the University of Minnesota in 2012, editors wanted to reflect the ever-changing, often collaborative nature of the work captured in its pages. Star Tribune.
Flush times draw newcomers to farming
Mark Vogel grew up on a farm, went to school for farm management and ended up in the tire business. Farming just wouldn't pay the bills when he graduated 13 years ago, but this summer Vogel is out in the fields. "I think we are seeing a paradox: There's more interest in getting into farming, but boy is it a hard thing to get started," said Dale Nordquist, associate director of the University of Minnesota's Center for Farm Financial Management, who's followed Minnesota agriculture for 30 years. Star Tribune.
Will Affordable Care Act gain popularity as it ages?
Melissa Block speaks with political scientist Lawrence Jacobs of the University of Minnesota about the history of public opinion toward the extension of government social programs including Social Security and Medicare. NPR.
Florida leads nation with 10% of adults not allowed to vote
Nearly one-fourth of black Florida adults, and one-tenth of the state's total voting-age population, aren't allowed to vote because of the state's prohibition on voting by former felons, the nation's highest rate of disenfranchisement, according to a study by an advocacy group. ...The report was done by sociologists Christopher Uggen and Sarah Shannon of the University of Minnesota and Jeff Manza of New York University. Tampa Tribune.
U regents tighten pay rules, end special leaves
It's now tougher for a University of Minnesota administrator to nab a big pay package on the way out. The Board of Regents on Wednesday tightened its oversight of executive compensation and ended special leaves for outgoing administrators, responding to an uproar over a series of severance packages. Star Tribune.
University of Minnesota: Kaler declines raise so money can fund scholarships
University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler declined a salary raise, opting instead to put the money toward scholarships. Pioneer Press.
Dr. Jon Hallberg: Minn. health system scores high
Minnesota was recently ranked first in the country for its health system by the Federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. MPR's medical analyst Dr. Jon Hallberg discussed the rankings with Tom Crann of All Things Considered on Tuesday. Hallberg is a physician in family medicine at the University of Minnesota and medical director of the Mill City Clinic. MPR.
VP Furco receives civic engagement award
Associate VP Andrew FurcoUniversity of Minnesota Associate Vice President for Public Engagement Andrew Furco has received the 2012 Thomas Ehrlich Civic Engagement Faculty Award, one of the highest awards given to faculty for research and teaching focused on serving the public good. Presented by Campus Compact, a national higher education association dedicated to campus-based civic engagement, the award is given annually to a university or college tenured professor in recognition of leadership in engaged scholarship, contributions to the public good and advancing students’ civic and academic learning. The award recognizes Furco’s contributions and long-term commitment to advancing the scholarship and practice of service-learning and community engagement in K-12 and higher education.
Furco, who’s also an associate professor of organizational leadership, policy and development in the university’s College of Education and Human Development, was chosen for his work in promoting community engagement practices throughout the university, as well as for his national and international work on the subject.
A former K-12 music teacher and school administrator, Furco earned his master’s degree in special education from University of California, Los Angeles and his doctorate in educational administration from University of California, Berkeley. At Berkeley, Furco helped establish the country’s first university-based research center for the study of service-learning, a center he managed for 14 years. He’s credited with developing a number of research instruments including the Service-Learning Institutionalization Rubric, often referred to as the Furco Rubric and launched the first international research conference on service learning.
Furco teaches and publishes on topics that explore the civic purposes of higher education and the role of youth community engagement from on an international level. He has led more than 30 studies on the integration of community-based experiences into academic curricula.
For more information, see the news release.
Brian Steeves to be appointed executive director of Regents
Pending action by the Board of Regents at its July 11 meeting, Brian Steeves will be appointed executive director of the Board of Regents and corporate secretary of the University of Minnesota.
The dual role of executive director and corporate secretary is a unique leadership position of significant importance to the Board. Since the position was created in 1972, it has evolved to become a key adviser to each Board member, as well as to Board leadership, and also an advocate for good governance practices. The position serves as a liaison between the Board and senior leaders of the University, coordinates Board planning and communications with Regents, oversees Board of Regents policy review, and manages meeting logistics and day-to-day Board operations.
Steeves has served as deputy director in the Office of the Board of Regents for two years and, for the past six months, has been acting executive director and corporate secretary. Prior to joining the University, Steeves spent seven years as an executive budget officer/team leader at Minnesota Management and Budget where he managed a team of analysts and confidentially advised senior state government leaders on budget policy related to K-12 education, taxes, and state government operations. Before that position, he served as a project coordinator for the City of Minneapolis where he negotiated real estate redevelopment and financing arrangements and guided projects through regulatory approvals. Steeves also completed a rural policy fellowship at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC before earning a master's degree from the University's Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs. He was awarded the prestigious Truman Scholarship and graduated summa cum laude from Minnesota State University Moorhead with a bachelor's degree in political science."
Steeves succeeds Ann Cieslak, who retired in June after 13 years in the position.
OIT Faculty Fellowship 2012–13 cohort
The OIT Faculty Fellowship Program (OIT FFP) has announced its 2012–13 cohort. This cohort—the largest to date—comprises 16 instructors representing 10 colleges/units and three University of Minnesota campuses. The OIT FFP is an 18-month program that fosters a multidisciplinary learning community that explores possibilities and good practices in teaching and learning in technology-rich learning environments, produces scholarship in this area, and advances faculty leadership around these issues.
2012–13 OIT Faculty Fellows:
For more information, see OIT Faculty Fellows.
IAS Announces Collaboratives for 2012–13
The University of Minnesota’s Institute for Advanced Study has selected 12 research and creative collaboratives to receive funding for projects in the 2012–13 academic year.
Each year since 2005, the Institute has provided funding, space, and staff support for groups of colleagues engaging in interdisciplinary activities that extend the boundaries of their normal work, ranging from reading and discussion groups to public lectures, exhibits, and performances. The support is designed to facilitate conversations within and across collaboratives, and with the larger public that might not otherwise occur.
Several collaboratives will continue scholarly work that incorporates movement, dance, storytelling, and mapping to develop new perspectives on scientific and humanistic questions. For example, “Choreographing the Moving Cell,” a collaborative of scientists and artists, now in its third year of IAS funding, will continue to develop and test “bodystorming,” a practice of human movement that provides rapid prototyping of scientific hypotheses. Their work has garnered national and international attention, including a TED presentation in spring 2012. A collaborative in its first year of IAS funding, “Mapping Spectral Traces: A Dakota Place” will focus on listening, discussing, and mapping experiences related to difficult pasts in Minnesota’s 150-year history that structure present-day social relations.
Other collaboratives will engage in community-based action research to address issues of environmental and economic sustainability. Among these collaboratives is “Crisis Economics: Inciting Economics and Economy as Sites of Change.” Motivated by the current dis-ease with mainstream economic thinking in light of ongoing economic crises, a diverse group of faculty and community members will explore non-traditional models of economic teaching and learning. Another collaborative with strong community involvement, “Black Environmental Thought: Translocal and Transnational Dialogues on Sustainability and Community Engagement,” focuses on promoting a more sane, environmentally and culturally sound approach to food through a network model of urban agricultural development.
Many of the collaboratives will establish or enhance scholarly communities that transcend traditional boundaries to encourage new approaches to areas of study and to attract and retain graduate student and faculty colleagues. Several ongoing collaboratives, including “Mediterranean Exchange” and “Theorizing Early Modern Studies,” have already demonstrated significant benefit by building on local research strengths to establish the University of Minnesota as a hub for interdisciplinary innovations, thereby attracting new graduate students and contributing to the retention of exceptional faculty.
For a complete list of collaboratives, conveners, and project descriptions, IAS collaboratives.
Amin elected president of IAMOT
Professor Massoud Amin was elected president of the International Association for Management of Technology (IAMOT) at its meeting on June 20, 2012. Having served the last two years as vice president of public affairs, professor Amin will serve as president of IAMOT for two years, starting July 2012. In this role, he will work with an executive council and board of directors including representatives of universities around the world. He will oversee plans for an international conference that will take place in 2014 and will address matters of interest to academic programs on the management of technology on an international scale. Prof. Amin will continue to serve as a member of the Management of Technology Accreditation Board (MOTAB). For more information, see IAMOT.
In Memoriam: Professor Albert “Bud” Markhart
Professor Albert “Bud” Markhart III passed away on June 26, 2012 after a courageous battle with cancer, but he left his influence on the next generation of farmers, researchers, activists, and the many others whose lives he touched. He received his M.S. (1976) and Ph.D. (1978) from Duke University with a focus in biochemistry and plant physiology and began his faculty career in the Department of Horticultural Science at the University of Minnesota in fall 1979. He started his faculty career working in the Laboratory for Plant Hardiness studying water movement in plants growing under adverse conditions. During the past 15 years, however, he turned his talent and passion for undergraduate education towards developing organic horticulture as an integral part of the Environmental Horticulture major. Markhart was instrumental in launching the University of Minnesota organic farm, and in developing and teaching courses that use the farm for experiential learning.
The Markhart Organics Endowment Fund is being established at the University of Minnesota to support student experiential learning in organic and sustainable food systems. If you are interested in donating, please contact Cynthia Cashman at either firstname.lastname@example.org or the CFANS Development Office, University of Minnesota, 235 Skok Hall, 2003 Upper Buford Circle, St. Paul, MN 55108.
A memorial service will be held July 20 from 6–7 p.m., with a reception to follow at the same location: White Bear Unitarian Universalist Church, 328 Maple Street, Mahtomedi, MN 55115.
For more information, see Bud Markhart.
U in the News: A selection of U faculty in the news
U prof a player in Higgs particle puzzle
A universal discovery. An international team. A Minnesota scientist. Roger Rusack, a University of Minnesota physics professor, is one of dozens of U scientists and students who have helped with a grand experiment that this week announced evidence of a new subatomic particle. Star Tribune.
Marriage debate is about to get louder
An epic fight between Minnesotans against gay marriage and those who support it mostly has flown under the public’s radar for 14 months. “The average Minnesotan is vaguely aware something is going to be on the ballot,” said professor Kathleen Hull of the University of Minnesota. But that’s changing as Nov. 6 nears, when Minnesota voters will decide the issue. Duluth News Tribune.
Farmers' safety net is now a money bag
Many crop insurance policies guarantee a profit, which, some say, feeds competition - and boosts prices -- for cropland. Who pays? Taxpayers. A Star Tribune analysis of government crop insurance data and local land values tracked by Steven Taff, an agricultural economist at the University of Minnesota, suggests that crop insurance could be playing a role in escalating prices. Star Tribune.
Trees, above-ground wires biggest culprits in power outages
Massoud Amin, a University of Minnesota professor of electrical and computer engineering, calls the nation's electric grid "a marvel of supreme engineering" that needs a national "moonshot" commitment of money, energy and innovation to avert breakdowns. "This is the lifeblood of our economy," he says. "The key is how do we make the system more resilient, smarter and stronger?" USA Today.
Cremation now preferred over burial in Minnesota
When it comes to deciding what to do with a dead body, most Minnesotans are now thinking outside of the box. After decades of slow but steady growth, the number of cremations in the state is now exceeding the number of burials, and experts expect the growth to continue in the years to come. Rising cremation rates also might be influenced by the baby boomer obsession to do things differently from earlier generations, according to Michael LuBrant, director of the University of Minnesota mortuary science program. Pioneer Press.
Amid debate and uncertainty over health care, Mayo expands
There's a lot of jockeying for position in the health care market as medical centers prepare to implement the provisions of the federal Affordable Care Act.The debate over the law has created a lot of uncertainty in the market, and many health care providers are responding by linking with each other to manage the risk. University of Minnesota health management professor Daniel Zismer said it's becoming increasingly difficult for health centers such as Heartland to remain independent when market forces are pushing them to consolidate. MPR.
Scientists cite 'heat island effect'
It's usually hotter in the Twin Cities than the surrounding area, and a pair of University of Minnesota researchers say they're getting a good idea of just how hot. Peter Snyder and Tracy Twine are looking at the so-called urban heat island effect here and around the world. This week they say it's been making parts of the Twin Cities even more uncomfortable. Minnesota Public Radio.
What Health Reform Means to Us
University of Minnesota Public Health expert Jean Abraham from the Academic Health Center talks about what the Supreme Court ruling on Obama's health care reform means for all of us on Twin Cities Public Television's "The Almanac." And Abraham takes a deeper look a the subject on "At Issue" a political talk show on KSTP. Twin Cities Public Television.
President Kaler: A good time to renew your view of the U
President Eric Kaler of the University of Minnesota takes a look back at his first twelve months on campus and how the U is taking an important role in Minnesota's fight to close its educational achievement gap: Two anniversaries arrived with the month of July. Sunday marked a year for me as leader of the University of Minnesota. And yesterday was the 150th anniversary of the Morrill Act, which established the land-grant universities that are the backbone of America's great public higher-education systems. To catch a glimpse of the university's land grant legacy watch a short video. And for a colorful look back at President Kailer's first twelve months, see the slideshow.
Geckos evolved sticky feet many times
Geckos are superb wall-crawlers. These lizards can scuttle up sheer surfaces and cling to ceilings with effortless grace, thanks to toes that are covered in microscopic hairs. ...Tony Gamble from the University of Minnesota has traced the evolutionary relationships of almost all gecko groups, and shown that these lizards have evolved their wall-crawling acumen many times over. Discover Magazine.
'Amazing Spider-Man' algorithm created by a real scientist
In addition to adorable scenes between Peter Parker and Gwen Stacy and lots of web slinging, “The Amazing Spider-Man,” which come outs next week, revolves a lot around the Oscorp lab and, subsequently, science. One of those science plot points is a math formula called the Decay Rate Algorithm. ...University of Minnesota physics professor Jim Kakalios, served as a consultant on the film and helped come up with the realistic looking formula. Washington Post.
University of Minnesota Crookston prof not a 'Millionaire', but wins $13,500
John Loegering, a college professor in Crookston, earned $13,550 on the “Who Wants to be Millionaire” television show that aired Thursday. ...A wildlife ecologist at Minnesota-Crookston, Loegering was sworn to secrecy about how he fared since the taping in New York City on Nov. 2. Detroit Lakes Online.
Doctors asked to consider loneliness in senior health assessment
Most people struggle with feelings of loneliness from time to time, but new research shows that those emotions can have negative health consequences for older people. Loneliness is associated with declining health, decreasing mobility and death in people 60 and older, according to an Archives of Internal Medicine study published online June 18. “Loneliness is less of a medical type of concept. I just think it doesn’t enter the medical mindset,” said Dr. Pacala, associate professor and associate head of the Dept. of Family Medicine and Community Health at the University of Minnesota Medical School. American Medical News.
Myth-dispelling gardening book has become new go-to guide
I have a new go-to book for gardening help: “Decoding Gardening Advice: The Science Behind the 100 Most Common Recommendations,” by Jeff Gillman and Meleah Maynard. He teaches in the Department of Horticultural Science at the University of Minnesota, and she is a journalist, editor and master gardener. I love this book, partly, I am sure, because several times in the 224 pages they validate some heretical beliefs I have that go against accepted gardening rules. Fairbanks Daily News Miner.