January 9, 2019

Vol. XLIX No. 1

Editor: Adam Overland (brief@umn.edu)


Inside This Issue

  • External research funding reaches record level.
  • Features: Fighting iron deficiency; More to bubbles than you think.
  • People: Recipients of the Grand Challenges Research Interdisciplinary Team Awards; and more.

Top News

External research funding reaches record level

Research at the University of Minnesota continues to flourish, drawing a record level of externally sponsored research funding, as detailed in the 2018 Annual Report on Research and Technology Commercialization. The report highlights research metrics for the 2018 fiscal year, along with trends in research productivity, scholarship, and technology commercialization.

Fighting iron deficiencydendrites

Iron deficiency affects an estimated 2 billion people worldwide, including 10-20 percent of young women in the United States. In a pregnant woman, it can also cause lasting damage to the embryonic nervous system. U of M researchers have discovered how iron deficiency starves the brain's growing neurons.

More to bubbles than you thinkMrubank Bhatt

When bubbles occur in flowing water, they may display a behavior known as cavitation, which holds the power to damage machinery or, perhaps someday, to treat medical conditions noninvasively. It’s a phenomenon that fascinates aerospace engineering graduate student Mrubank Bhatt. Finding a way to predict precisely when and how cavitation will occur is the aim of a project Bhatt’s been working on for the past year.


Grand Challenges Research Interdisciplinary Team Awards have been allocated to six interdisciplinary projects; the University of Minnesota has honored faculty, staff, and students across the system for their commitment to issues of equity, diversity, and social justice; several faculty and staff have been named recipients of recent grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

Public hearings on proposed changes to Civil Service Employment Rules

The Civil Service Consultative Committee and Employment Rules Subcommittee have proposed revisions to Civil Service Employment Rules. Two one-hour public hearings will be held via WebEx in order to hear constituent feedback on the proposal. Hearings will be held Jan. 9, 8 a.m., and Jan. 15, 2 p.m. View the proposed revisions and learn more.

Mileage rate change

The IRS announced changes in the standard business mileage rates for calendar year 2019: the standard business mileage reimbursement rate for personal vehicle use on approved University business increased from 54.5 cents per mile to 58 cents per mile. Business mileage incurred in 2018 but reimbursed in 2019 should be reimbursed using the 2018 mileage rates. The Employee Expense Worksheet (UM1612) is being updated to reflect the change in the mileage rate. Chrome River, the new tool for travel card reconciliation and out-of-pocket reimbursements, has been updated with the new rate.

Technology Advisory Council assistance

Do you have a business need and think that a new or different technology might help? The Technology Advisory Council, made up of knowledgeable technology experts from across the University system, is available to help University of Minnesota faculty and staff navigate the process of choosing a technology solution. Complete a request form to get started.

Call for proposals: John E. Sawyer Seminar

The University of Minnesota has been invited by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to submit an application for a John E. Sawyer Seminar in spring 2019. Applications for the seminar are by invitation only. The Institute for Advanced Study, working with the Office of the Vice President for Research, will coordinate the University’s internal review and selection process to determine the University's nomination. Proposals for this internal review are due by noon, Feb. 20. More information and application instructions.

Research Brief: Youths' adverse childhood experiences and their weight status

Since the 1970s, the percentage of children and adolescents who are overweight has more than tripled, with more than one in six youth obese. Youth who are overweight and obese are at higher risk for a number of related health problems, including depression, high blood pressure, metabolic disorders, sleep apnea, diabetes, and fatty liver disease. A new study from a team of University of Minnesota researchers led by Laurel Davis examines the association between adversity in childhood and being overweight or obese.

U of M start-up CoreBiome acquired by OraSure Technologies, Inc.

U of M start-up CoreBiome Inc. has been acquired by OraSure Technologies, Inc., a leader in the development, manufacturing, and distribution of point-of-care diagnostic and collection devices to detect or diagnose critical medical conditions. The technology behind CoreBiome is based on discoveries by U of M researchers Dan Knights, Kenneth Beckman, and Daryl Gohl.


Student profile: Karlie BrekkenKarlie Brekken

It is hard to believe it now, but University of Minnesota Crookston first-year student Karlie Brekken struggled with her college decision. One week on campus this fall eliminated any doubt.

Grant-In-Aid funding examines support needs of agricultural teachers

How best to support new teachers in agriculture is the focus of research by University of Minnesota Crookston assistant professor Richard Johnson. Johnson recently received funding through the U of M’s Grant-in-Aid of Research, Artistry, and Scholarship program.


Research awardsumd campus

Seven faculty members received fall 2018 Grant-in-Aid of Research, Artistry, and Scholarship program awards, including Ben Dymond, Julie Ernst, Brock Hedegaard, Steve Matthews, Tedy Ozersky, Andrea Schokker, and Nigel Wattrus. The awards promote the research, scholarly, and artistic activities of faculty and support academic excellence throughout the University of Minnesota system.

‘My love for my culture runs deep’awel lam

Senior Awel Lam recently competed for the title of Miss South Sudan. For the talent portion, she drew upon her public health major and performed a monologue about a woman who suffers an injury during childbirth and the difficulties that follow. Lam was crowned Miss South Sudan. She hopes to one day improve access to health care in underdeveloped countries like her home country.

Mapping out historycanal park historical image

Students in Assistant Professor Jennifer Moore’s Visual Journalism course collaborated with UMD’s Kathryn A. Martin Library, Archives and Special Collections, and the Geospatial Analysis Center to research and then create digital story maps about Duluth’s Canal Park. Students created 25 stories than encompass years from 1871 to 1994.


Herrmann named vice chancellor for finance and facilitiesBryan Herrmann

Bryan Herrmann has been appointed vice chancellor for finance and facilities at the U of M Morris. Herrmann, an alumnus of Morris (’01) with an MBA from U of M Duluth, has served in the interim role since 2015. He has extensive experience in strategic planning and financial-aid leveraging as well as results-oriented leadership.


Students to attend Innovative Minds Partnering to Advance Curative Therapies (IMPACT) conference

UMR has five teams registered for IMPACT: Innovative Minds Partnering to Advance Curative Therapies. The program gives undergraduate students the opportunity to engage in novel hypothesis generation to address real-world health questions alongside Mayo Clinic and Mayo Clinic Health System scientists and physicians. This is the third year UMR students have participated in the conference.

UMR inaugural class alumna receives Ph.D.Kanza khan

Kanza Khan, UMR Class of ’13, recently graduated from the University of Southern Mississippi with a Ph.D. in psychology with an emphasis in brain and behavior. She currently holds a postdoctoral associate position in the Department of Pharmacology at the University of Iowa.

Twin Cities

Register for Cooking for Wellness courses

Register for cooking classes to enhance and improve your health in 2019 through the Healthy Foods, Healthy Lives Institute's Cooking for Wellness program. In The Basics, culinary educators teach foundational techniques and help participants use whole seasonal ingredients. In Getting Creative, participants develop an intuitive sense for creating delicious recipes. Everyone will prepare and enjoy a meal together each week. University faculty and staff are eligible to receive 150 Wellbeing points and a partial reimbursement through the Wellbeing Program.

Teaching with Canvas

Get prepared for teaching with Canvas, the U of M’s learning management system, by visiting a walk-in clinic on Jan. 17, participating in an upcoming webinar, or attending a workshop. Learn about training opportunities at Canvas Training and Events.

Jan. 17 - Graduate Student Boot Camp: Managing Data and Research Materials

Registration is now open for Graduate Student Boot Camp: Managing Data and Research Materials. The camp is designed for graduate students and new researchers who will be managing a research project for the first time. Staff from the University Libraries, LATIS, IT, and other U of M experts will share tools and best practices for organizing all aspects of a research project. 9 a.m-5 p.m., 412 Bruininks Hall. No charge. Register and learn more.

Jan. 19-20 - Space Fest: Cleared for Launchlunar eclipse

Join the Bell Museum in its launch of a yearlong celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing, beginning with Space Fest: Cleared for Launch (and Jan. 20), featuring a weekend of planetarium shows, guest speakers, science demonstrations, and hands-on astronomical activities.

Jan. 23 - Promotion and Tenure Dossier Review for Community-Engaged Scholars

Faculty who conduct community-engaged research and/or teaching and who are approaching the promotion and tenure process in the coming months are invited to attend an information session about the University's newly formed Review Committee on Community-Engaged Scholarship. The committee is composed of tenured professors from diverse disciplines and professional fields who have agreed to review the dossiers of community-engaged scholars and submit to promotion and tenure committees a written evaluation that speaks to the quality and impact of the scholarship. 9-10 a.m., 237 Morrill Hall. Register and learn more.

New managers: Gain the confidence to lead

Build leadership skills, increase self-awareness, and help your team grow with the Leadership Essentials course, offered by Leadership and Talent Development and the College of Continuing and Professional Studies. The course will help new managers achieve results with self-assessments, lectures, discussions, simulations, and hands-on practice based on research. The four-day course takes place March 18 and 25, and Apr. 1 and 8. The course will not be offered again, so register soon.

March 28 - Wellbeing Series: The Way of the Healthy Deviant featuring Pilar GerasimoPilar Guesimo

In the context of a predominantly unhealthy culture, being a sustainably healthy person requires a variety of noncompliant (i.e., “deviant”) acts and attitudes. In this talk, Pilar Gerasimo will offer an eye-opening look at the true nature of our current health challenges, an exploration of the concept of healthy deviance, and some practical suggestions for escaping unhealthy aspects of our culture. 4-5:30 p.m., McNamara Alumni Center. Register and learn more.

Apr. 19 - U of M Destination Discovery! St. Paul Campus

Explore the treasures of the University of Minnesota's St. Paul Campus during a family-friendly day of fun, tours, and educational activities related to University initiatives celebrating Native people, agriculture, plant and animal conservation, healthy foods, and creative design. RSVP and learn more.

2018-19 faculty and staff tickets for Gopher sports

Twin Cities faculty and staff members can receive 20 percent off season tickets for all Gopher sports and single-game discounts to select events. Learn more or contact the Gopher Ticket Sales and Service Office.

UMTC Featured Eventscannon on stage

Jan. 9 - Teaching Enrichment Series - Day 1
Jan. 10 - Teaching Enrichment Series - Day 2
Jan. 13 - Mindfulness Meditation Retreat
Jan. 16 - Other Side of Poverty in Schools workshop
Jan. 19 - Physics Force Public Show
Jan. 20 - The 38th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert

Events Calendar >