March 11, 2020

Vol. L No. 10

Editor: Adam Overland (


Inside This Issue

  • March 12-13 - Board of Regents meeting.
  • Features: A new liaison with tribal nations; Human hearts capture her heart.
  • People: University of Minnesota Outstanding Community Service Award recipients; and more.

Top News

March 12-13 - Board of Regents meeting

University of Minnesota Duluth will host the Board of Regents for two days of discussions that will celebrate UMD’s achievements and explore opportunities and challenges facing the campus. Regents will hear from three of U of M Duluth’s most unique research organizations: the Large Lakes Observatory, the Natural Resources Research Institute, and Minnesota Sea Grant. The Board is also expected to hear the report of student representatives and act on the proposed sale of public radio station KUMD. See the news release for more details.

A new liaison with tribal nationsTadd Johnson

Tadd Johnson was recently named the first-ever senior director of American Indian Tribal Nations Relations for the University of Minnesota System. In this new role, Johnson will be the liaison between the University and regional tribal nations, creating pathways for better communication and understanding, and much stronger collaborations.

Human hearts capture her heartDannyelle Donahue

When she was just 14, Dannyelle Donahue decided to pursue a career as a medical device inventor. The roots took hold earlier for Donahue, who’s always enjoyed building things, when her mother suggested she try an engineering camp at the University of Minnesota. Now a member of the student group Engineering World Health, Donahue has opportunities to compete nationally at designing low-cost alternative medical devices.


University of Minnesota Outstanding Community Service Award recipients; Marc Jenkins is the 2020 recipient of the American Association of Immunologists' Lifetime Achievement Award; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

Updates on COVID-19

The University continues to closely monitor and prepare for any future COVID-19 impacts on University of Minnesota campuses. To date, there are no confirmed cases reported across the University System. For the latest information, visit the University's Safe Campus website.

Retirement Transition Early Choice Window closes March 17

If you are currently saving through the Faculty Retirement Plan, Optional Retirement Plan, or 457 Deferred Compensation Plan, important deadlines are coming up. The Early Choice Window will close March 17 and the blackout period will begin on March 20. The blackout will impact access to account balances until the week of Apr. 12.

'Where Discovery Creates Hope' series

The Star Tribune and the Medical School have partnered on a new 13-part series that shares an in-depth picture of some of the Medical School's groundbreaking research and physician-scientists who are advancing medicine. Called "Where Discovery Creates Hope," the first story features Melissa Geller and her patient, Tori.

Battling the opioid epidemic with novel vaccines

More than 130 people in the U.S. die every day after overdosing on opioids. Marco Pravetoni, a member of the U of M’s Medical Discovery Team on Addiction, is working to develop vaccines and other novel antibody-based strategies to treat opioid use disorders and prevent fatal overdose.

March 17 - Promoting Your Research to Industry Audiences

This lunchtime workshop (register) is for faculty and researchers interested in learning from U of M experts about how to promote their research to industry audiences. A box lunch will be provided. 11:45 a.m.-1 p.m., McNamara Alumni Center and live-streamed via Zoom.

IDEA now accepting spring Faculty Driven funding proposals

The Institute for Diversity, Equity, and Advocacy (IDEA) is now accepting spring funding proposals for the Faculty Driven initiative. The program provides funding for faculty to develop programs that strengthen the University’s diverse community of scholars. The fall application deadline is March 30.

IonE opens spring Mini Grant RFP, call for affiliates

U of M faculty whose work revolves around sustainability are invited to apply for a $3,000 Institute on the Environment (IonE) Mini Grant (due Apr. 12) or to join the institute as an affiliate (deadline March 31 for fellows and associates, Apr. 17 for educators). Questions may be directed to

Apr. 6 - BioFab conference and SCI-ENG joint symposium

The 2020 Manufacturing Needs for Biofabrication of Engineered Tissues and Organs conference and the Stem Cell Institute-Engineering Joint Symposium (SCI-ENG) will take place at TCF Bank Stadium. Registration for the conference and abstract submissions for the SCI-ENG poster session are now open.

Research Brief: Energy researchers invent error-free catalysts

A team of researchers from the University of Minnesota and several other universities has invented a groundbreaking technology that can be incorporated into hundreds of industrial chemical technologies to reduce waste by thousands of tons each year while improving the performance and cost-efficiency of materials production. Additional recent Research Briefs include “Atomic-scale imaging reveals secret to thin film strength” and “Intuitive eating during teenage years linked to better mental health and eating behaviors in adulthood.”


Schroeder receives McKnight Land-Grant AwardTony Schroeder

Tony Schroeder is one of ten recipients of the University of Minnesota’s McKnight Land-Grant Award. The award is given annually to a small handful of exceptional faculty members across the entire University of Minnesota System. Schroeder is an assistant professor in the Math, Science and Technology department.


CANCELED: March 20-21 - Head of the Lakes Jazz Festivalguy playing saxaphone

Twin Cities-based Atlantis Quartet will kick off the annual Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival on March 20, 7:30 p.m., Weber Music Hall. Cuban saxophonist, percussionist, and composer Yosvany Terry will join UMD Jazz I and the Head of the Lakes Jazz Festival All Stars on March 21, 5:30 p.m., Marshall Performing Arts Center.

CANCELED: March 24 - ‘Women in the Soviet Union: Utopian Dreams. Reality Check’Art in conflict poster

Carol Veldman Rudie, lead docent and coordinator of outreach education at The Museum of Russian Art in Minneapolis, will present the lecture “Women in the Soviet Union: Utopian Dreams. Reality Check.” Veldman Rudie will discuss how women are depicted in the Tweed’s current exhibit, “Art in Conflict.” 6 p.m., Tweed Museum.


Campus police add therapy dogtherapy dog Archie

The Campus Police Department is getting a new addition: a therapy dog. Known affectionately as Archie, he will help officers respond to student and community mental health needs. The program responds to the needs of Morris students in a way that is unique to the campus culture: a relationship-based, student-centric solution.

Bailey-Johnson to lead Morris Alumni AssociationErika Bailey Johnson

Erika Bailey-Johnson '99 is the next University of Minnesota Morris Alumni Association (UMMAA) Board of Directors president. The former biology major and Cougar Hall of Famer is proud to lead her alumni association in service to her alma mater. An enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Ojibwe, she succeeds Dillon McBrady '13.

Apr. 3 - Morris Jazz Festivaljazz performers on stage

Tickets for the 42nd annual University of Minnesota Morris Jazz Festival are on sale now. Join the U of M Morris jazz program as it celebrates Latin jazz with artists including Jeff Bailey (bass), Solomon Parham (trumpet), Scott Agster (trombone), Ryan Frane (piano), Pete James Johnson (drums), and the U of M Morris Alumni Jazzers Big Band.


Metzger achieves tenureKelsey Metzger

Kelsey Metzger credits her love of biology and the outdoors to her parents encouraging her to play outside as a child. At UMR, she teaches biology and upper-division genetics. A lifelong learner, Metzger appreciates UMR’s innovative approach to teaching that allows her to gain feedback on how to become a better teacher.

Public Policy and Global Health career pathwayAracely Montecino

Alumna Aracely Montecinos’s current role with LifeSource allows her to educate communities about organ, tissue, and eye donation. Her capstone experience at UMR prepared her to work with the diverse communities she serves.

Twin Cities

March 18 - Clinical Affairs & U

The Office of Academic Clinical Affairs (OACA) has announced upcoming Clinical Affairs & U events. Hosted by OACA centers and institutes, each open-house event is an opportunity for anyone around the University to stop in, have a cup of coffee with leadership, and talk about questions, ideas, or topics related to clinical affairs. Room 450, Masonic Cancer Research Building. RSVP to attend.

Rescheduled for June 6 - Grand opening celebration: Conservatory & Botanical Collection

Explore the new College of Biological Sciences Conservatory & Botanical Collection on the Twin Cities campus in St. Paul. The conservatory is home to more than 1,800 plant species with an emphasis on flora from the Southern Hemisphere, including rare plants from New Caledonia, South Africa, Somalia, and southern Chile. 9:30 a.m-4 p.m., 1534 Gortner Ave, St. Paul.

Apply for the Walleye Tank pitch competitionWalleye graphic

The University of Minnesota and Mayo Clinic are now accepting applications for the spring 2020 Walleye Tank. The twice-yearly pitch competition, set to next take place Apr. 28 at the Carlson School, is designed to invigorate Minnesota’s entrepreneurial ecosystem around the life sciences. Interested startups should apply by March 27.

March 28 - MapleFest 2020

Join the U of M Landscape Arboretum for its annual tapping of maple and black walnut trees and the MapleFest Pancake Breakfast. Space is limited and registration is required. 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.

Apr. 7 - Curiosity Drives Progress Lecture Series: Impacting Communities

The Curiosity Drives Progress Lecture Series showcases the College of Science and Engineering’s top faculty in TED-style lightning talks. The next installment will highlight the work of three distinguished professors who are quantifying the social impacts of science and technology, empowering citizens to participate in scientific discovery, and encouraging civility. No charge, but registration is required. 6:30 p.m., Coffman Theater.

Apr. 25 - U of M Day with the Minnesota Twins

Head to the ballpark with fellow alumni and friends at the annual Minnesota Twins U of M Day and cheer the Twins to victory over the Boston Red Sox. The U of M Day package includes a game ticket, limited-edition U of M/Twins cap, pregame festivities, and more.

UMTC Featured Eventsdancers on a stage

Canceled: March 14 - Yoga at WAM
March 17 - Faculty Workshop: Refining Awareness and Developing Tools to Promote Equity in Teaching
March 19 - Working-Class Institutional Politics in Response to Amazon and Gentrification in Western Queens
March 21 - Paul Taylor Dance Company

Events Calendar >