April 25, 2018

Vol. XLVIII No. 16

Editor: Adam Overland (brief@umn.edu)


Inside This Issue

  • Features: Her passion for cheese changed the family farm; Biomedical engineering faculty study how tumor cells move in patients; Developing the right skills for the job; Grassland plants react unexpectedly to high levels of carbon dioxide.
  • People: The Heritage Studies and Public History Graduate Program has been awarded a Mellon Foundation Grant; and more.

Top News

Her passion for cheese changed the family farmAlise Sjostrom and some of her farmstead cheeses

There’s an all-too-common story of the younger generation being unable to join the parents on the family farm because it can’t sustain two (or more) families, says U of M graduate Alise Sjostrom. So when she returned home at age 16 from a 4-H youth trip announcing that not only did she plan to stay on the family’s dairy farm, she intended to expand into cheese making, her parents were supportive yet skeptical.

Read more about Sjostrom’s story >

Biomedical engineering faculty study how tumor cells move in patientsDavid Odde and Paolo Provenzano

Two researchers in the College of Science and Engineering are developing a mathematical simulator to predict the movement of cancer through the human body based on the physical characteristics of cancer cells and their surrounding micro-environment. The work will focus on tumors of the brain and pancreas, two especially lethal kinds of cancer.

Learn more about the work >

Developing the right skills for the jobAshley Pflouff in the Northern Brewer warehouse

Ashley Plouff’s warehouse job was meant to be a tide-me-over gig, but the job quickly led to promotions. To further her skills, she enrolled in the U of M College of Continuing and Professional Studies’ Manufacturing Operations Management program. With the program’s flexibility, she was able to earn her degree through evening and online courses while continuing to work during the day. In the process, Plouff realized she’d found the work she loved.

Read more about Plouff's journey >

Grassland plants react unexpectedly to high levels of carbon dioxideclose up of bermuda grass

Plants are responding in unexpected ways to increased carbon dioxide in the air, according to a 20-year study conducted by U of M researchers. For the first 12 years, researchers found what they expected regarding how different types of grasses reacted to carbon dioxide. However, researchers’ findings took an unanticipated turn during the last eight years of the study. The findings could have significant implications.


The College of Design’s Heritage Studies and Public History Graduate Program has been awarded a Mellon Foundation Grant; U of M Libraries, backed by a $526,438 grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, will lead a multi-institutional effort to launch the Data Curation Network; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

U selects Scott, Ramsey counties for Resilient Communities Project

The U of M’s Resilient Communities Project (RCP) has selected Ramsey and Scott Counties as community partners for the 2018-19 academic year. It marks the first time in its six-year history that the program will assist two partners in a given year. Housed within the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, RCP seeks to connect students’ innovation, ingenuity, and fresh perspectives with local government agencies to learn about their needs, conduct research, and develop solutions.

Set your password reset questions today for online resets any time

Faculty and staff are asked to set up password-reset questions today in order to be able to reset a password online when necessary. It takes less than five minutes and will eliminate the need to call the service desk when you forget or need to reset your U of M password.

HFHL grant proposals due Apr. 27

The Healthy Foods, Healthy Lives Institute funds new, interdisciplinary research projects that address community-identified priorities and affect systemic change in the realm of food, agriculture, and health. Project teams systemwide are encouraged to apply.

See spring 2018 funding opportunities >

May 15 - Workforce Research Symposium

The future workforce is a major issue facing Minnesota communities and the state both now and over the next 10 to 20 years. The Extension Center for Community Vitality invites you to attend this systemwide gathering for U of M faculty, staff, outreach specialists, graduate students, and others from all disciplines that intersect with workforce issues. 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Mississippi Room, Coffman Union.

Register (no charge) and learn more >


Senior vice chancellor finalist interviews

Three finalists for the senior vice chancellor for academic and student affairs position will be invited to campus for interviews Apr. 23-27.

See the UMC Today page for the schedule >

Apr. 26 - Student Awards Ceremony

The annual Student Awards Ceremony recognizes student leadership and accomplishment over the academic year through the presentation of various student achievement awards. 6 p.m., Kiehle Auditorium.

Apr. 26 - Athletic Awards Luncheon

The UMC Athletic Awards Luncheon will recognize senior student-athlete accomplishments. Noon-2 p.m., Bede Ballroom.

Apr. 27 - Teambacker Fun Nite

All employees and members of the local community are cordially invited to attend the 2018 Teambacker Fun Nite at the Crookston Eagles Club. Every dollar raised by the Teambackers organization goes to support student-athlete scholarships and UMC Athletics special initiatives.


May 5 - Commencement 2018 featuring Don NessDon Ness

Alumnus Don Ness will speak at UMD’s two commencement ceremonies in AMSOIL Arena at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. Ness, mayor of Duluth from 2008-16, is now the executive director of the Ordean Foundation. In 2014, he was named the Twin Cities Business Person of the Year and the Labovitz School of Business and Economics Business Person of the Year.

UMD showing off innovative food court compostingcompost pile

UMD’s Food Court has become an almost completely waste-free entity. The plates, napkins, forks, knives, sub wrappers, and coffee/pop cups used there are all compostable. UMD’s Office of Sustainability worked with UMD Dining Services to achieve this goal and is now spreading the word so Bulldogs know to put these items into campus compost bins.

Opinions soughtrain boots in a puddle

Minnesota Sea Grant is seeking focus group participants to help in the creation of a Lake Superior Green Guide. Individuals will review and give feedback on the initial draft of the guide, designed to help private landowners incorporate green infrastructure into their properties in order to mitigate stormwater runoff. Focus groups will be held in May in Duluth, Two Harbors, and Grand Marais.

Theatre season announcedUMD theater building

UMD’s Department of Theatre released its lineup for the 2018-19 season. Professor Tom Isbell’s original play Dear Finder will be reimagined 20 years after its opening. The musical Sister Act will close out the season in April of 2019. Season tickets will go on sale Aug. 1.


Does the steadfastness of the higher ed model block out change?Michelle Behr

Chancellor Michelle Behr shares her hope for growth and change within higher education in a column for Education Dive's "President Speaks" series.

Lackey named 2020 visiting scholar at Georgia CollegeMichael Lackey

Distinguished McKnight University Professor Michael Lackey will be Georgia College’s Martha Daniel Newell Visiting Scholar in 2020. The program promotes Georgia College's liberal arts mission by bringing to campus eminent scholars from the arts, humanities, social sciences, and physical sciences.

UMM senior art exhibitionStudents at art show

The Studio Art Discipline proudly presents the 2018 UMM senior art exhibition, “IN/EXHIBIT 10.5,” which features work from 10 graduating studio art majors. The exhibit opened Apr. 19 and runs through May 12. See images on Flickr.


UMR student receives President’s Student Leadership AwardMohamed Addani receiving award

UMR junior Mohamed Addani received the President's Student Leadership Award at the recent summit and awards luncheon. Addani spearheaded a reciprocal partnership between Riverside Elementary School and UMR that supports college readiness and civic engagement. Riverside describes Addani as a change maker. “His positivity, joy, and commitment to uniting and lifting others up is contagious," according to the school.

UMR students present research at 2018 Undergraduate Research SymposiumUMR student at undergrad symposium discussing poster

A number of UMR students presented research at the recent 2018 Undergraduate Research Symposium. UMR sophomore Audra Gaikowski says that it was her first time presenting research and receiving feedback from other students and professionals about her research team's methods and conclusions. “As I am preparing for a career in public health research, I feel as though this was an essential experience that will help me in my applications for graduate school and further public health research,” she says.

Registration deadline approaching: Higher Education Innovation Summit

Don't miss out on this opportunity to collaborate with creative educators and researchers who are seeking to transform higher education through innovations that enhance student learning at the 2018 Higher Education Innovation Summit, June 6-8.

Register by May 1 >

Twin Cities

Research Sprints: Fueling Grand Challenges Research

Two University of Minnesota Grand Challenges research teams spent four days conducting research with a team of librarians. It's all part of the U of M Libraries' Research Sprints program, which offers faculty the opportunity to partner with a team of expert librarians on a specific project, or a component of a broader project. Sprints differ from one-time consultations in their timing and depth of interaction.

Watch a video and learn more >

Child Care listening sessions

Faculty, staff, and students are invited to two campus listening sessions to help inform the work of the Provost's Child Care Advisory Committee: Apr. 26, 3-4 p.m., 335 Borlaug Hall (St. Paul); and May 3, 11 a.m.-noon, Shepherd Room, Weisman Art Museum.

U of M Golf Club seeking new members

The University of Minnesota Golf Club season starts Apr. 28 and the club is currently looking for new golfers. The club has conducted tournaments at Les Bolstad Golf Course since 1968. Last year the club had over 200 members from the University community. The club plans 15 Saturday events each year, awarding prizes for gross and net scores based on USGA handicaps.

Apr. 30 - Electric autonomous bus demonstration

U of M Parking & Transportation Services is partnering with the Center for Transportation Studies and others to showcase the latest in self-driving transportation technology on campus. This innovative demonstration of a self-driving EZ10 All Electric Autonomous Bus will offer rides to faculty, staff, students, and the general public from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Washington Avenue Pedestrian Bridge (upper level, south side).

Upcoming Learning Life opportunities

The U of M Learning Life program offers a number of upcoming lecture and short course opportunities, including the Headliners event “Overprescribed: Moving Beyond Opioid-Centered Care” (May 3) featuring U of M researcher Erin Krebs. Krebs will discuss her recent study that showed opioids are no better than non-opioid medications for relieving back pain and hip and knee osteoarthritis. Short courses include Minnesota Gardens: New Plants and Landscapes for a Hotter World (May 8), Encore Transitions: Aging Well, Being Well (May 11), Positive Psychology: The Science of Well-Being (beginning June 5), and more.

May 2 - Alonzo King LINES Ballet

U of M faculty, staff, and students are invited to join Minnesota middle and high school students at a matinee performance of Alonzo King LINES Ballet. Special $5 tickets can be purchased online, in person, or by phone at 612-624-2345 using promo code “gopher.” 10:30-11:30 a.m., Northrop.

Leadership Development Program for individual contributors

Discover your leadership potential and build your skills through the Leading on All Levels leadership program from Leadership and Talent Development in the Office of Human Resources. Whether you manage projects or want to explore your potential to oversee others, this course equips you to better navigate your leadership journey at the U of M. The session starts June 13.

Registration and more information >

UMTC Featured Eventspurple dress

Apr. 25 - (RE) Generation - Student Design Showcase
Apr. 26-29 - University Opera Theatre presents Jacques Offenbach’s "Orpheus in the Underworld"
Apr. 29 - International Conference on One Medicine One Science
May 1 - 1st Tuesday featuring University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler
May 1 - Conflict Minerals and Corporate Responsibility
May 2 - To the Cyber-Barricades: How is the U.S. Responding to Threats to the American Election System?
May 2 - University Wind Ensemble Concert: Music of Michael Daugherty
May 2 - Toy Product Design PLAYsentations

Events Calendar >