June 15, 2016

Vol. XLVI No. 21

Editor: Adam Overland (brief@umn.edu)


Inside This Issue

Summer publication: Brief will publish June 29, July 20, and Aug. 3, 17, and 31. Weekly publication resumes Sept. 7. 

  • Board of Regents meeting highlights.
  • Driven to Discover: Sarah Butler.
  • Feature: U of M launches 100th startup; A big sister's 'thank-you.'
  • People: Samuel Mukasa has been named dean of the College of Science and Engineering; and more

Top News

Board of Regents June meeting highlights

About 20,000 resident undergraduates in the University of Minnesota system will see no tuition increase in the coming year under a $3.8 billion budget approved by the U's Board of Regents. Approximately 4,000 low- and middle-income students will see a tuition decrease. Further details on the FY17 operating budget are available in the news release. Regents also approved investments to create 6.5 full-time-equivalent employees for increased student mental health services on the Twin Cities campus. Additionally, Regents voted to award Prince with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree and approved revisions to the Student Conduct Code. The Board will meet again on July 6.

Driven to Discover: Sarah ButlerSarah Butler

University of Minnesota Extension's Center for Family Development has a reputation for helping families and communities in all corners of the state and from all walks of life. Now a new program has Extension educator Sarah Butler sharing her expertise with inmates at the Dakota County Jail. The Community Mentorship for Financial Capability is a long-term partnership between the center and the Minnesota Council on Economic Education.

Learn more >

A big sister's 'thank-you'Rylee Routledge and her brother Jack and sister

For most kids, birthdays are a time for parties, cake, and presents. But when Rylee Routledge turned 7, she had a different kind of gift in mind. Rylee's little brother, Jake, had surgery at the U of M Masonic Children's Hospital for craniosynostosis—when the bones in a baby's head fuse together too early, before the brain is fully formed. Rylee's mother, Shannon Routledge, was amazed when Rylee announced that she wanted to send her birthday money to "Jake's hospital" to help other kids.

Learn more >

U of M launches 100th startup

The U of M has launched 100 startup companies over the last 10 years based on technology developed through University research. The 100 startups, which have been launched since the Venture Center was formed in 2006 as part of the Office for Technology Commercialization, mark a milestone in the U's efforts to assist faculty and staff in forming new companies to commercialize their inventions.

Learn more >


Samuel Mukasa has been named dean of the College of Science and Engineering; the Pew Charitable Trust has named Wendy Gordon a 2016 Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences; the NIH has awarded the first-ever grant dedicated to laying the policy groundwork needed to translate genomic medicine into clinical application; the Office of the Vice President for Research has announced the recipients of the 2016 Research Infrastructure awards; 23 projects received funding to promote resilient communities and pursue sustainability goals in the latest round of IonE Mini Grants; the Medical School has hired J. Neil Henderson as the first Medical Discovery Team leader; Hari Osofsky has received the Distinguished Service Award from The Association for Law, Property, and Society; Robert Stein has been honored with a 2016 Award for Global Engagement; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

Administrative policy updates

The administrative policy For-Cause Investigations Related to Research Compliance Concerns provides the structure and policy around the timely review and resolution of complaints or concerns about violations of research regulations, policies, procedures, or standards. A revision of the policy Using and Leasing University Outdoor Space (Twin Cities) includes changes to permit requirements related to the number of people assembling, use of an amplification device, and the addition of a new appendix. The Campus-Specific Credit Requirements for Undergraduate Degrees policy has been expanded to cover majors, minors, and certificates.

The policies are available for review and comment >

June 15 - Cloudy With a Chance of DevOps

DevOps (development and operations) is a practice that emphasizes collaboration and communication between enterprise-level software developers and other IT professionals while automating the process of software delivery and infrastructure changes throughout the software lifecycle. This presentation by Bridget Kromhout is open to all members of the University community. Registration is requested. The event will also be available live online via WebEx. 3-4 p.m., 50B Humphrey School.

U Libraries to develop Data Curation Network

University Libraries will lead efforts to develop a network for sharing data curation resources and staff across six major academic libraries. The one-year project, led by Lisa Johnston, Research Data Management/Curation Lead, is funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Biomass and solar energy job boom

Over 2,000 new renewable energy jobs could be created in Northeast Minnesota and Northwest Wisconsin if a range of biomass and solar projects come to fruition, according to a new U of M report.


June 23 - Golf tournament

Registration for the Mark Olsonawski Scholarship Golf Tournament, which benefits student-athletes, will begin at 9 a.m., with a 10 a.m. tee-off and 4 p.m. social and awards program. Reserve your spot by June 16.

Learn more >

June 25 - NWSA Alumni Reunion

Top Aggies will be awarded during a luncheon at noon with class meetings to follow during the Northwest School of Agriculture (NWSA) Alumni Reunion. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m., Northern Lights Lounge, Sargeant Student Center.

Learn more >


Where geology and biology collideChanlan Chun

With funding from MnDRIVE, Assistant Professor Chanlan Chun is leading a new geomicrobiology program at UMD's Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI). Her research focuses on microbiological and DNA sequencing methods to learn more about microbes that naturally convert sulfate to sulfide. Sulfide can then be converted to solid elemental sulfur, which has economic value as a soil amendment for crops.

Read more >

On the Hill

Associate Professor Rebecca de Souza was the guest of U.S. Rep. Rick Nolan during a joint session of Congress at which Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi addressed members. de Souza and Associate Professor Adam Pine teach a study abroad course, "Grassroots Activism in South India."

Learn more >

Bee SpeakerMichael Purtel

Senior Michael Purtel, an education major and the vice president of the UMD Student Association, became a voice for bees following a tour of the U of M Bee Lab. After learning about neonicotinoids--insecticides that weaken bee immune systems resulting in colony collapse--Purtel worked to get a resolution passed by the Duluth City Council that bans the use of neonicotinoids and the sale of plants treated with the insecticide.

Learn more >


UMM faculty members receive Grant-in-Aid awards

UMM faculty members Keith Brugger, Kerry Michael, and Jennifer Rothchild have received awards in the spring round of the U of M Grant-in-Aid of Research, Artistry and Scholarship Program. Administered through the Office of the Vice President for Research, Grant-in-Aid funds are awarded in the belief that the quality of faculty research and artistic endeavors is a major determinant of the overall vitality of the U.

Learn more >

Paron coordinates K–12 environmental educationJasmine Paron

New graduate Jasmine Paron '16, Shakopee, demonstrated a deep commitment to her education and career goals while at UMM. To practically apply lessons learned from her majors--communication, media, and rhetoric, as well as environmental studies--Paron collaborated with K–12 teachers and environmental educators, which allowed her to develop curricula and workshops promoting students' interest in environmental stewardship.

Learn more >

UMM noted by White House as leader in clean energyUMM wind tower

According to the White House blog, UMM is one of 12 institutions "leading the clean-energy transformation." The campus is an inaugural participant in Campus Cleantech Pilots, a new effort by the Climate Leadership Network, Clean Energy Trust, and Second Nature to accelerate clean-energy technology commercialization by opening universities to first-of-a-kind testing and demonstration platforms for startups.

Learn more >


Chancellor Lehmkuhle on inaugural 'R-Town' episode

UMR Chancellor Stephen Lehmkuhle was on the inaugural episode of the new KSMQ (PBS affiliate) program titled "R-Town." The chancellor talked about leading a university dedicated to health sciences and the passionate students UMR seeks.

Watch the segment >

UMR CONNECTS heads outside for summerUMR peace plaza

It's officially summer when UMR CONNECTS, a professional speaker series at the University of Minnesota Rochester, moves outdoors to the Peace Plaza stage. This month is all about performance with "Perfectly Frank Show," a nostalgic trip through the eyes of Frank Sinatra, and The Art of Social Dance presented by Dahl School of Dance.

Twin Cities

Food/Resource Drive

In honor of the victims of the Orlando tragedy, the U will be collecting resource and food items for local LGBTQIA organizations starting June 16 and continuing until 5 p.m. June 24--the weekend of the Twin Cities Pride Festival and Parade. Please donate non-perishable food (including gluten-free, nut-free, and vegan options). Popular items include protein, snacks, and items that make a whole meal. Please also donate resource items such as toiletries (full size, not travel size) like body wash, toothpaste, toothbrushes, as well as socks and underwear.

More information and donation locations >

Summer Technology Commercialization Workshops

Technology Commercialization Workshops will be offered this summer, designed for U of M researchers (faculty, grad students, post-docs, and research associates) interested in learning more about commercializing their inventions. Technology Commercialization Boot Camp (June 16, 10 a.m-4 p.m.) is a one-day immersion seminar that introduces core concepts and resources for commercialization of research-driven innovations. Value Proposition Design Workshops (June 23, July 7, July 21, and Aug. 4) are a series of four hands-on workshops building on concepts learned in the Boot Camp. Research teams of up to three people are encouraged to attend as a group.

June 20-21 - Educational Equity in Action

The first-ever U of M convening of Minnesota's education leaders, researchers, policy makers, and nonprofit organizations committed to improving educational equity will take place on the U's West Bank. The event will feature nationally known speakers Pedro Noguera and Jeff Duncan-Andrade and will include group discussions on practical actions.

Register and learn more >

Campus Club yoga

The Campus Club is offering early-morning yoga classes (PDF) in the West Wing dining room. Classes include basic yoga taught in a simple flow style, incorporating elements of Qigong, meditation, and breath work. Classes run June 22 to Aug. 24, 7:45-8:45 a.m. No charge for Campus Club members; $5 for guests.

Minnesota Centennial Showboat farewell

When a dark secret shatters Laura's dream of marrying, she runs from home to discover her true identity while battling for her life against sinister forces. Under the Gaslight, the final performance aboard the Minnesota Centennial Showboat in its farewell season, will run July 7-Aug. 27.

Tickets and more >

July 7 - Second in Command: Choosing the Next Vice President

The Republican and Democratic nominees for president will face a momentous decision: their choice of a running mate. The prominence of today's vice presidents is the direct result of Walter Mondale's transformation of the office, which had previously been relegated to "stand-by" status in case of the president's demise. VP Mondale will be joined by Joel K. Goldstein, the country's leading scholar of vice presidents, to weigh each party's choice and its importance. Noon-1:15 p.m., Humphrey Forum, Humphrey School.

Register and learn more >

July 7 - Exhibit opening: Fellowship: Images of American Efforts to Modernize Korea

The exhibit opening celebration for Fellowship: Images of American Efforts to Modernize Korea takes place from 4 to 6 p.m., Hennepin County Library, Minneapolis Central Library. The event is sponsored by the University Libraries and the Korea Foundation in collaboration with Hennepin County Library.

Reservations and more >

UMTC Featured EventsSiberian raccoon

June 15 - Music on the Plaza: Cafe Accordion Orchestra

June 18 - East of Siberia: Wildlife and Wild Places of the Russian Far East

June 21 - OED Certificate Workshop 4: Communicating on Issues of Equity and Diversity

June 22 - Music on the Plaza: Sawyer's Dream

June 24 - Universe in the Park

June 25 - YOGA @ WAM

June 25 - Saturday with a Scientist: Asteroids!

Events Calendar >