October 21, 2015

Vol. XLV No. 34

Editor: Adam Overland (brief@umn.edu)


Inside This Issue

  • Driven to Discover feature: Cawo Abdi.
  • Features: For the Zachs and the Karens; Finding their center.
  • People: Xiang Cheng is among 18 of the nation's most innovative early-career scientists and engineers as a recipient of the 2015 Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering; and more.

Top News

Driven to Discover: Cawo Abdirefugee children

Cawo Abdi is dedicated to educating a wider audience about refugee and immigrant populations and the challenges they face. Locally, her work includes supporting the Somali community in Minneapolis, and exploring how charter schools affect education for groups such as the Hmong.

Learn more >

For the Zachs and the KarensZach Sobiech playing guitar

A new mouse model developed at the Masonic Cancer Center has revealed the genes and pathways that, when altered, can cause osteosarcoma, an often deadly form of bone cancer. The information could be used to improve treatments for future patients.

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Finding their centerA kid doing yoga

Many of the kids in the U's Masonic Children's Hospital's Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Intensive Treatment Center are grappling with anxiety, depression, psychosis, substance abuse, and other emotional and behavioral disorders. When caregivers started offering regular yoga sessions for its behavioral health patients, it didn't take long to notice a huge difference.

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Xiang Cheng is among 18 of the nation's most innovative early-career scientists and engineers as a recipient of the 2015 Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering; Extension dean Bev Durgan recently honored Extension faculty and staff as distinguished service award winners; the U of M has been named a finalist in the "Innovation" category of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities' 2015 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Awards; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

New Administrative Policy

The new Administrative Policy: Entering into Contracts, assists units in determining what contract forms to use, identifying what legal and other approvals are necessary, and evaluating the risk of the proposed contract with the external entity. The policy draft is available for comments until Nov. 13.

Learn more and comment >

Call for technical briefs: Design of Medical Devices Conference

The world's largest medical devices conference will be held Apr. 11-14 at The Commons Hotel and McNamara Alumni Center. Presented by the U of M Medical Devices Center, the College of Science and Engineering, and the Department of Mechanical Engineering, the conference brings together medical device designers, manufacturers, researchers, and representatives from academia and the public sector. Two-page technical briefs are due Nov. 2. Registration opens Jan. 1. Email dmdconf@umn.edu for more information.

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State Fair D2D Building request for applications

The U of M's Driven to Discover research facility on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds is accepting applications for faculty and student researchers who wish to recruit research subjects from among the fair's 1.8 million yearly visitors. The application deadline is Jan. 8.

Learn more and apply >

U Retirees Association launches Journal of Opinions, Ideas and Essays

The University Retirees Association, in partnership with University Libraries, has created an online publishing venue open to retired and employed faculty, P&A, and civil service colleagues systemwide. The Journal of Opinions, Ideas and Essays (JOIE) provides a digital venue for a wide variety of articles intended for general and more specialized audiences. Email John Howe with any questions.

Learn more >

Digital Backpack video content for education

Access to a suite of video clips, audio clips, and graphics is now available to students, faculty, and staff through a two-month trial of VideoBlocks for Education. Students who incorporate the content into an original piece are eligible to win $5,000 through the College Film Contest.

MnDRIVE Fellowships in Neuromodulation

MnDRIVE 2016-17 Fellowships in Neuromodulation are open for application to outstanding graduate (doctoral) students, postdoctoral trainees, and residents/clinical fellows pursuing research in neuromodulation. The application deadline is Feb. 1.

Learn more and apply >

New website design tool, 'Drupal Lite'

UMN IT is developing a new website design tool. The goal of "Drupal Lite" is to enable users to quickly and easily create websites using professionally designed themes and page templates. It was created especially for users who do not have access to web-developer resources and is an ideal solution for those who want to create small- to medium-sized sites for research projects, events, and student groups.

Learn more >


Oct. 23 - Professional Development Day

Faculty, staff, and students are invited to attend the fall Professional Development Day titled "Implementing New Strategies for Inclusion, Diversity, and Engagement." 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Bede Ballroom, Sargeant Student Center.

Oct. 27 - Soup and Substance

Enjoy soup and conversation about social issues affecting our campus, community, country, and world during Soup and Substance, noon-1 p.m., Bede Ballroom.

Oct. 28 - Torch and Shield recognition

The annual Torch and Shield recognition event will honor Torch and Shield award recipients as well as a special donor recognition. Mary Jo Eastes, Dick Hebert, and the Sugarbeet Research and Education Board will be honored with this year's award. 5 p.m., Bede Ballroom.


UMD shows significant economic impactUMD campus seen from the air

A study by the Labovitz School's Bureau of Business and Economic Research shows that direct expenses at UMD have a ripple effect throughout the regional economy. In 2014, UMD contributed more than $521 million in local production. The study area was comprised of the seven counties of the Arrowhead region and Douglas County, WI.

Learn more >

NRRI awarded $2.4 million to continue wetlands monitoringNRRI researchers conducting water experiment

UMD's Natural Resources Research Institute has been awarded $2.4 million in funding from the EPA's Great Lakes National Program Office to continue its research at the western end of Lake Superior. The goal of the project is to evaluate wetland conditions, identify wetlands that need protection, and gauge restoration efforts.

Learn more >

Skills gap research revealedReifi image poster

Student economic researchers will present their findings at the fourth annual Regional Economic Indicators Forum (REIF) breakfast, Oct. 27, DECC Harbor Side Ballroom. The students are led by a team of economic researchers from UMD, the College of St. Scholastica, and the University of Wisconsin–Superior. The forum topic is the skills gap.

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Bulldog honored

Glenn "Chico" Resch's No. 1 jersey will be officially retired Oct 30, during an intermission of the men's hockey game at AMSOIL Arena. This makes him the fourth male Bulldog in any sport to be so honored. In 1991, Resch was among the first alumni inducted into UMD's Athletic Hall of Fame.

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Sports management students pursue internshipsUMM sports management students

Last month UMM sports management majors pursued internship opportunities in the Twin Cities. They met with representatives from various institutions, who shared entry-level information to college students. Through opportunities like this and others, UMM is preparing students for life beyond graduation.

Learn more >

Oct. 27 - Cafe Scientifique: Why You Should Get a Flu Shotillustration of bandage over flu bugs

The next Café Scientifique will feature assistant professor of biology Rachel Johnson in the presentation, Why You Should Get a Flu Shot: The Science Behind Vaccines. She will address misconceptions about vaccines, explain how vaccines work, and discuss why vaccines are an important, annual necessity. 6 p.m., Common Cup Coffeehouse.

Learn more >


UMR announces Health Care Scholars DayU of Rochester sign

To financially support students looking to attend UMR, the university will be changing the way it awards scholarships by holding a Health Care Scholars Day this February.

Learn more >

Twin Cities

An accessible pioneerSue Kroeger

When Sue Kroeger took the helm of what is now the Disability Resource Center in the mid-1980s, disabilities were often seen as things to be overcome, and the needs of people who had one were often overlooked. That didn't sit well with Kroeger, a dynamo not given to accepting the status quo. On Oct. 12, in recognition of Kroeger's ceaseless efforts on behalf of those with disabilities, including her 14 years at the University, she received the first Sue A. Kroeger Lifetime Achievement Award.

Learn more >

Subscribe to Campus Climate updates

Those interested in campus climate and the work underway to create a welcoming, respectful, and inclusive campus for all may subscribe to weekly updates that include news, events, profiles, and progress.

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UMTC begins transition to new voicemail system

UMN IT will begin the process of introducing a new voicemail system to the UMTC campus starting Oct. 26. Voicemail users will receive a voicemail with instructions for the transition, which can be done anytime before Dec. 1. The new system offers the same features, including a voicemail-to-email tool.

Oct. 23 - Academic Technology formal Community of Practice meeting

The Academic Technology Formal Community of Practice kickoff meeting invites faculty and staff, the University IT community, and the broader teaching and learning community to help identify and prioritize University academic technology needs. 9-10:30 a.m., A.I. Johnson Room, McNamara Alumni Center.

Learn more >

Oct 24 - Northrop presents the Sean Curran Company

The contemporary dance group and traditional Kyrgyz Republic musical ensemble Ustatshakirt Plus will bring their recently-debuted piece, Dream'd in a Dream, to the Carlson Family Stage at Northrop. $20 U of M faculty/staff rush tickets will be available starting at 10 a.m. the morning of the show online, over the phone, or in person. For an inside look at the stunning collaborative dance piece, watch this video.

Learn more and find tickets >

Oct. 26 - Children's Cancer Research Fund lecture

Professor Gay Crooks of UCLA's Departments of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine and Pediatrics will present "Making an Immune System: From Bone Marrow to Thymus" in the annual Children's Cancer Research Fund Norma K.C. Ramsay, M.D. Distinguished Visiting Professor Lectureship. 1:15-2:15 p.m., 450 Masonic Cancer Research Building.

Nov. 11 - Equity & the Indians

Anton Treuer, professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University and author of 14 books, will present Equity & the Indians, a thought-provoking challenge to our prevailing assumptions about education and equity work. The session is designed to provide an opportunity for participants to expand their cultural awareness and competence in dealing with a unique population of often marginalized students. 8 a.m., TIES Event Center, St. Paul.

Learn more >

Nov. 12 - Graywolf Press: A World of Voices

Graywolf Press: A World of Voices is an exhibit featuring the Graywolf Press archives, spanning 40 years of history. The opening event will feature Graywolf Press director Fiona McCrae in conversation with Graywolf founder Scott Walker, moderated by Cecily Marcus, curator of the Upper Midwest Literary Archives. 6:30 p.m., 175 Willey Hall.

Register and learn more >

Nov. 23 - Using StrengthsFinder and Appreciative Advising as Complementary Frameworks

This session will feature a brief overview of six phases of Appreciative Advising and the StrengthsQuest talent themes, as well as an overview of the ways that the Appreciative Advising framework is being used to get the most from the StrengthsQuest Inventory. The event is especially geared towards people who serve others.

Register and learn more >

UMTC Featured Eventseye glass poster for cultural critique event

Oct. 22 - Bridging Cultural Differences—ISSS Intercultural Workshop Series
Oct. 22 - Climate Change and Biofuels
Oct. 23 - Immigrant America: New Immigration Histories from 1965 to 2015
Oct. 23-24 - Cultural Critique
Oct. 27 - Eighth Annual Hunger Relief Benefit Reading
Oct. 28 - Tips For Creating Superstar Scientific Presentations, by Todd Reubold
Oct. 28 - Sexual Harassment: Awareness, Prevention & Response

Events Calendar >