July 18, 2018

Vol. XLVIII No. 22

Editor: Adam Overland (brief@umn.edu)


Inside This Issue

Summer publication: Brief will publish on Aug. 8 and 22. Weekly publication will resume Aug. 29.

  • Board of Regents July meeting highlights.
  • Features: The tick warrior; Bell Museum’s new planetarium brings the universe home; Care for the caregiver; Keeping ecosystems complex; University research a common thread at new Bell Museum.
  • People: President Kaler has announced his decision to step down as president on July 1, 2019; and more.

Top News

Board of Regents July meeting highlights

During its July meeting, the Board of Regents received an update on Twin Cities campus alumni engagement efforts and discussed UMAA’s strategic plan, which will guide the direction of alumni engagement through 2023. The board also received the Annual Report on Intercollegiate Athletics for the Twin Cities campus, focusing on the academic and athletic achievements of Gopher student-athletes. The Board of Regents will meet next Sept. 13-14. See the news release for more information.

The tick warriora deer tick

Associate professor Benjamin Clarke wants to know where deer ticks are thickest in northeastern Minnesota and how likely they are to be carrying Lyme disease. To find them, he’s dispatching students to the wilderness to collect the tiny nuisances.

Bell Museum’s new planetarium brings the universe homeBell planetarium interior

Virtual journeys through the stars or along any other path traced by science are reality at the new Bell Museum’s Whitney and Elizabeth MacMillan Planetarium.

Care for the caregiverolder and younger person holding hands

An estimated 44 million Americans are caring for a family member 50 years of age or older, and a recent study found family caregivers spend an average of 24 hours a week for more than four years helping with everything from getting their loved one in and out of bed to assisting with bathing. Many also hold down jobs and run households. The U of M’s Joseph Gaugler is at the forefront of growing concern about the psychological, economic, and physical toll all that takes on caregivers.

Keeping ecosystems complextributaries

Up to now, the prevailing wisdom has held that the stability of a species’ population dynamics rests mostly on the size of the ecosystem in which it lives. But a new study by University of Minnesota and Japanese researchers shows mathematically that having more branches--i.e., tributary streams--in a river system works to stabilize the overall populations of fish species, while the size of the watershed has only a “vague” effect.

University research a common thread at new Bell MuseumBell museum duck diorama

When it came time for the University to weave together the exhibits, galleries, and events that make up the new Bell Museum, research became a common thread. More than 60 University researchers have contributed to the new Bell’s content and programming. And it’s not just researchers’ work that runs through the museum--researchers themselves will get involved to help lead Bell Museum events.


Eric Kaler has announced his decision to step down as University president on July 1, 2019; three U of M faculty members have been given the distinction of Regents Professor; the U of M has received a $12 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy; Alan Benson has received two early career awards; Casey Hooke has been named a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing; Stephen Shuman has been named a fellow by the Gerontological Society of America; School of Dentistry awards and appointments; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

Some MyU services unavailable July 21-22

Due to a planned software update the weekend of July 21-22, some MyU features will be unavailable from noon Saturday through noon Sunday. During that time, users will not be able to access the My Time, My Pay, My Info, My Benefits, and Manager Info tabs.

July 26 - Canvas Basics workshop

An online Canvas Basics workshop for faculty and staff will include a review of the Canvas interface, tools and features, course design options, and an introduction to moving content from Moodle to Canvas.

RSVP to attend >

Oct. 3 - Convene Conference: The intersection of medical industry and data science

Hosted by the Medical Industry Leadership Institute, the Convene Conference aims to navigate the tension that emerges when artificial intelligence meets human intelligence. Bringing together University research and the thriving medical industry community, the conference will explore the unique trends that are shaping this multifaceted industry.

See keynote, register, and learn more >


Logan Milligan: Dedicated to AgricultureLogan Milligan and student with cow

When it comes to tradition at the University of Minnesota Crookston, Ag Arama is one of the most longstanding. For more than 40 years, students have had an opportunity to showcase their knowledge and skills in contests related to agriculture and natural resources. Overseeing this multifaceted event in 2018 was Logan Milligan, the Ag Arama president.

NWSA annual reunion

Alumni from the Northwest School of Agriculture (NWSA) gathered for their annual reunion on June 30 at the University of Minnesota Crookston. This year’s all-school reunion included some 225 alumni and guests celebrating their return to campus.

Golf tournament raises scholarship funds

Golfers teed off in support of scholarships at the University of Minnesota Crookston Teambackers Mark Olsonawski Scholarship Golf Tournament on June 14. It proved to be a great day for the 19th annual tournament, with 23 teams and more than $4,500 raised in support of scholarships for student athletes.

July 18 - Crops and Soils Day

The Northwest Research and Outreach Center’s annual Crops and Soils Day is scheduled for July 18 at the North Farm, one mile north of the UMC campus on Highway 75 north.


Hamlin honoredJohn Hamlin

Professor John Hamlin, Department of Anthropology, Sociology, and Criminology, is the recipient of the U of M President’s Award for Outstanding Service. In his 37 years at UMD, Hamlin has held numerous positions, including associate dean for the College of Liberal Arts from 1996 to 2002. He has served on the UMD Faculty Council and was the UEA Faculty Union president for two six-year terms.

Marsh authors bookKaren Marsh

Karen Marsh, assistant professor in the College of Education and Human Service Professions’ Department of Psychology, has published Career Counseling: Helping Clients Chart a Course Through Work and Life. Part textbook, part memoir, Marsh geared the book toward individuals who are just starting their careers as counselors.

Mailer coauthors bookGideon Mailer

Associate Professor Gideon Mailer in the College of Liberal Arts’ Department of History has coauthored Decolonizing the Diet: Nutrition, Immunity, and the Warning from Early America. The book “challenges the common claim that Native American communities were decimated after 1492 because they lived in ‘Virgin Soils’ that made their working immunity distinct from those in the Old World.”

New graduate programmolecules

A Master of Science - Applied Materials Science degree has been approved by the Board of Regents. Applied materials science incorporates elements of physics, chemistry, biochemistry, and engineering. The program will be housed in the Swenson College of Science and Engineering’s Department of Chemical Engineering and will prepare students for careers in industries such as aerospace, biomedical, and energy.


Morris makes Fiske Guide to Colleges an eighth consecutive time3 UMM students

The Fiske Guide to Colleges 2019 names Morris one of "the best and most interesting" colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, and the UK. This is the eighth consecutive time the campus has made the cut. Editors note how comprehensive the campus and its offerings are.

New sculpture commissionedGoodwin working on sculpture

Thanks to the vision of generous donors, Morris has the opportunity to honor the past, present, and future of the area’s Native peoples. A new sculpture by Duane Goodwin, Anishinaabe, and made possible by Puncky Heppner '73 and Mary Soehren Heppner '76 will become a defining element of the campus, adding to its sense of place and celebrating the "strength, resilience, compassion, and heart of the indigenous peoples" here.

July 21 - Minnesota Solar Congresssolar panels

Morris will take part in the first annual Minnesota Solar Congress. Hosted by Solar United Neighbors, the all-day event will be filled with educational and social opportunities for solar enthusiasts, with a special focus on solar opportunities in rural communities for farms, businesses, and homes.

Sussenguth named volleyball head coachJoe Sussenguth

Morris has named Joe Sussenguth as head coach of the Cougar volleyball program. Sussenguth brings a record of success in Minnesota volleyball to an NCAA Division III program ready for the next level of excellence.


Mentoring for the FutureMohamed Addani

Mohamed Addani is passionate about introducing Somali youth to opportunities that provide inspiration for meaningful careers. Through UMR’s Community Collaboratory, Addani works in collaboration with Rochester’s Somali Rebuild Organization to develop after-school programs designed to open doors to higher education opportunities.

‘Exam Roulette’ aims to reduce test anxiety

To help his students feel more prepared for written exams, Andrew Petzold, assistant professor at the Center for Learning and Innovation at UMR, created “Exam Roulette.” The concept involves providing students with a list of potential questions before the exam, and on the day of the exam rolling a die to see which questions students will answer.

M Tech Store grand opening

University of Minnesota Bookstores’ M Gear Store at The Shops at University Square is opening an Apple Authorized Campus Store location to service the technology needs of the University of Minnesota students, staff, faculty, and alumni in the area as well as faculty and staff at the Mayo Clinics. The M Tech Store will also serve as an Apple Authorized Service Center for the surrounding community. A grand opening celebration and sale will take place on July 19.

Twin Cities

BRRN year-two report to the U of M Twin Cities community

The Bias Response and Referral Network (BRRN) has published its year-two report (PDF) to the community. The report includes year-two highlights, information about incidents reported to the BRRN over the last year, and recommendations for the coming year.

Music on the Plaza continues

Northrop's Music on the Plaza series continues on Wednesdays, noon-1 p.m., through Aug. 1. The program has been a campus tradition since the 1950s and features bands of all genres. Bring a lunch, find a seat, and dance along to the sounds of local musicians.

IAS 5x5 funding opportunity

The Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) is now accepting applications for its newest round of 5x5 funding. The 5x5 initiative brings together small groups of about five people from differing disciplinary backgrounds and positions within the University and off-campus communities for a low-stakes, short-term exploration (about five gatherings over several months). Applications are due by Aug. 1.

Aug. 16-17 - Introduction to Data Analysis with R and Reproducible Data

With the increasing availability of data with broad applications (and the sheer size of some of these data), it is more important than ever to be able to elucidate trends, decisions, and stories from data. This workshop will offer a hands-on introduction to data science and statistics using the publicly available software R. Assuming no background knowledge of software or statistics, the workshop will bring you up to speed on some foundational, modern, and popular data analysis techniques. 114 Bruininks Hall.

Register and learn more >

Exhibit: ‘The Best from Pen and Press’

Take a video sneak peek at the University Libraries exhibit at Elmer L. Andersen Library: "The Best from Pen and Press," which includes 3,000-year-old cuneiform tablets, a 16th-century “Remembrancer Scroll,” and much more. The materials come from the James Ford Bell Library, the Wangensteen Historical Library, and the University Libraries’ Rare Book Collections. The exhibits run through Sept. 14.

UMTC Featured Eventsflower in bloom

July 22 - Mindfulness Meditation Retreat
July 25 - GIS 101: Analyzing Data and Creating Maps using ArcGIS Desktop, ArcMap
July 25 - "action movie" with BodyCartography Project 7.25.18
Aug. 4 - Summer Chorus Concert 2018: Leonard Bernstein at 100
Aug. 7 - OED Certificate Workshop: Gender Equity
Aug. 9 - 2018 State Government Innovation Awards

Events Calendar >