September 5, 2018

Vol. XLVIII No. 26

Editor: Adam Overland (


Inside This Issue

  • Features: Researchers 3D print prototype for ‘bionic eye’; Turtle power; No simple decisions.
  • People: U of M researchers have received $8 million to study the fundamental science of waves; and more.

Top News

Researchers 3D print prototype for ‘bionic eye’bionic eye

A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota have, for the first time, fully 3D printed an array of light receptors on a hemispherical surface. The discovery marks a significant step toward creating a “bionic eye” that could someday help blind people see or sighted people see better.

Turtle powerwood turtle

They’re well adapted to the rigors of forest life, but wood turtles face threats. In northern Minnesota, the biggest is the badgers, skunks, and raccoons that eat their eggs. Now, researchers at UMD’s Natural Resources Research Institute and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, along with turtle expert and UMTC graduate Donald Brown of West Virginia University, are giving the slow but hardy reptiles a better chance at thriving far into the future. Learn more and watch a video.

No simple decisionsdonut in one hand, apple in other

In a step toward treating addiction, University of Minnesota researchers have discovered how seemingly simple--albeit difficult--decisions involve separate neural processes. The research on the dual nature of decision-making could lead to more targeted therapies.


U of M researchers have received $8 million to study the fundamental science of waves; U in the News features highlights of U faculty and staff cited in the media.

People >

U-Wide News

Administrative policy updates

The Credit and Grade Point Requirements for an Undergraduate (Baccalaureate) Degree policy has been revised, changing the limit for S/N credits permitted within the degree (UMTC only). The Grading & Transcripts policy has been revised to improve readability and to shorten the timeline for students to resolve incompletes. Eligible employees may begin a parental leave as late as 13 weeks after childbirth or adoption in the latest draft of the Parental Leave policy. The Senior Leader Compensation and Separation policy has two additional items that may not be considered when determining initial salary, periodic increases, and retention offers. Policies are available for review and comment.

All new hires must have the correct I-9 documents to start working

If you’re hiring this fall, be aware that employers are required by law to verify the identity and work eligibility of all employees by filing Form I-9. All new hires (including student workers) will need to present their I-9 documents on or before their first day of work for pay. They will not be allowed to start work until the I-9 form is completed.

New center will streamline clinical research supportclinical research center

Researchers preparing to launch a clinical trial at the University of Minnesota now have access to a more collaborative, streamlined system to support the process. The newly established Clinical Research Support Center (CRSC), located on the third floor of Diehl Hall, opened on Sept. 4. The CRSC will give U of M investigators and study teams an easier way to navigate the complex clinical research environment and advance research projects through the process more quickly.

Nominations open for McKnight Professorship Awards

The McKnight Land-Grant Professorship program seeks to advance the careers of the most promising junior faculty members who are at the beginning stages of their professional careers. The Distinguished McKnight University Professorship program seeks to honor and reward our most distinguished and highest-achieving mid-career faculty who have recently attained full professor status. See award nomination instructions to apply, or for more information, email Chris Bremer or call 612-625-6176. 

Nominations open for University-wide Distinguished Teaching Awards

Nomination materials for the two university-wide Distinguished Teaching Awards, the Horace T. Morse-University of Minnesota Alumni Undergraduate Education Award and the Award for Outstanding Contributions to Graduate and Professional Education, are now available. These awards recognize and reward outstanding contributions to teaching at the University of Minnesota. Awardees become members of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers. For more information, email Chris Bremer or call 612-625-6176.

New U of M system sustainability report

The University of Minnesota Office of Sustainability highlights U of M system sustainability successes from the past year in Sustainability Times. Read more about new and growing sustainability initiatives.

Sept. 25 - Webinar: Tips for New Managers

Learn tips, strategies, and tools for managing multiple concerns and issues while also dong your job well at this webinar presented by the U of M Alumni Association. Employment law and technology expert Kate Bischoff, B.A. '98, will offer her take on how organizations can better equip managers for success. Noon-1 p.m. Register to attend.

2019-20 IAS faculty fellowships

The Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) has opened the application for its 2019-20 faculty fellowships. Applications are open through Oct. 22 to any tenure-track faculty on any system campus.


Apply for the UMC Leadership Academy

Faculty and staff interested in participating in this year's UMC Leadership Academy are encouraged to apply. This dynamic leadership development program is open to all staff and faculty. Applications are due to Diane Christianson via email by Sept. 9, 11:59 p.m. Learn more at Academic Affairs (Professional Development drop-down bar).

UMC Teambackers membership drive

The annual UMC Teambackers membership drive is under way, and all are encouraged to join. A new array of benefits will be available to members this year. Refer to the online version of the brochure to learn more.

New Center for Collaborative Research

The new Center for Collaborative Research (CCR) opened Aug. 14 in 107 Sahlstrom Conference Center to an enthusiastic crowd of faculty and staff. The CCR is the first self-contained laboratory facility on the Crookston campus allowing work in analytical chemistry, microbiology, and molecular/cellular biology to be carried out from start to finish and supporting much-needed space vital to faculty research.


NSF fundingOlaf Kuhlke

The National Science Foundation has funded College of Liberal Arts associate dean Olaf Kuhlke for Arctic cultural entrepreneurship research. This collaborative project will take researchers to Noorvik, Alaska, and Arviat, Nunavut, Canada, to work with local populations on implementing strategies and programs to boost entrepreneurship in remote communities. Kuhlke helped launch CLA’s Cultural Entrepreneurship program, the nation’s only undergraduate program in cultural entrepreneurship.

Fresh from the gardenGlensheen in the gardeen poster

Every Wednesday night in September, Glensheen will host "Chef in the Garden" from 6 to 7 p.m. An expert chef from Duluth’s Black Woods restaurant will showcase different recipes each week, using vegetables from Glensheen's garden. Guests will enjoy small samples. No charge and open to the public.

Military Appreciation Daymilitary members holding flag on field

UMD football will host its fifth annual Military Appreciation Day game Sept. 8, 6 p.m., Malosky Stadium. There is no charge for all current and former members of the military (with an ID). Proceeds go to Operation One Voice, which helps support the needs of children and families of wounded and fallen Special Operations Forces.


Hands-on indigenous education coursestudents being interviewed on tv camera

This summer, Becca Gercken, associate professor of English and Native American and Indigenous Studies, and Kevin Whalen '08, assistant professor of History and Native American and Indigenous Studies, co-taught a new course on indigenous education, past and present, in the United States and Canada.

Top 40 ‘Cool School’umm building

U of M Morris is one of Sierra magazine's top 40 "Cool Schools" for 2018. Morris is ranked first in the state and 33rd in the nation. This is the campus's eighth consecutive appearance on the list. The campus has ranked in the top 40 since 2013.

2018-19 Performing Arts SeriesNobuntu performing on stage

A cappella vocal ensemble Nobuntu will open the University of Minnesota Morris Performing Arts Series on Oct. 6, 7:30 p.m., Edson Auditorium, Student Center. Audiences can look forward to seeing The Griffin Theatre's Letters Home, Tami Lee Hughes' The Legacy Show, and Polynesian Paradise Dancers later in the season.


UMR strives to position underrepresented populations for successUMR students pose for a pic

This fall, the University of Minnesota Rochester is proud to welcome another class with a large cohort of underrepresented students. At UMR, students who are in traditionally underrepresented populations in higher education (students of color, first-generation students, Pell Grant-eligible students) are not only being retained but are also graduating in four years at rates above national numbers. Thanks to UMR’s innovative culture, these young scholars are strongly positioned to achieve academic success.

Survey research conducted at Minnesota State Fairandrew petzold and two students at fair

Andrew Petzold, a professor at UMR’s Center for Learning Innovation, conducted research at the Driven to Discover Research Facility during the Minnesota State Fair to study how participants understand health-related wording and the complexity of health-related statements. The Driven to Discover building allows researchers from the U of M to collect data from fair attendees, with an average of 60,000 participants in all studies over the 12 days of the fair.

Twin Cities

Resources to help welcome international students

More than 1,600 new international students have arrived and settled in for the academic year. Join in welcoming them as an important part of the community. International Student and Scholar Services and others on campus have resources to help you work effectively with international students inside and outside the classroom.

Bias Response and Referral Network update

The Bias Response and Referral Network (BRRN) website was recently updated. Members of the Twin Cities campus community and visitors to campus can report bias incidents to the BRRN by submitting an anonymous report using BRRN UReport or by emailing BRRN promotional postcards are available at no cost for departments or units. The minimum order is 50 and supplies are limited.

Gopher football discounts for faculty/staff

Faculty/staff discounts are available for upcoming Gopher football games vs. Fresno State (Sept. 8, 6:30 p.m.) and Miami-Ohio (Sept. 15, 2:30 p.m.). Visit Gopher football and use promo code 2018FacultyStaff.

Sept. 11-13 - Cops and Coffee

Join the U of M Department of Public Safety for donuts and coffee, starting at 8 a.m., Sept. 11 (West Bank Plaza); Sept. 12 (Union Street Plaza, next to the Washington Avenue Ramp); and Sept. 13 (St. Paul Student Center).

New event series: 1968/69 - 2018/19: Historic Upheavals, Enduring Aftershocks

The Institute for Advanced Study (IAS), in partnership with the University Honors Program and Northrop, has announced a new event series: 1968/69 -2018/19: Historic Upheavals, Enduring Aftershocks. The yearlong series will examine the racial tensions, cultural upheavals, and technological advances that helped define the tumultuous 1968-69 era. The series kicks off Sept. 13 with Youth Culture, War, and Politics.

Sept. 19 - Learning Abroad Fair

Faculty and staff are asked to encourage students to attend the Learning Abroad Fair. Students will explore international study, internship, and volunteer opportunities available through the U of M. Faculty and staff can also learn about opportunities available to students and other initiatives organized by the Global Programs and Strategy Alliance. 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m., West Bank Plaza.

Sept. 19 - Power & Privilege Series: An Evening with Angela Davis

Through decades of activism and scholarship, Angela Davis has been deeply involved in movements for social justice around the world. Her work has always emphasized the importance of building communities of struggle for economic, racial, and gender justice. 5 p.m., Carlson Family Stage, Northrop. Tickets: No charge for faculty, staff, and students; $15 for general public.

Sept. 25 - Ira Shapiro on America vs. the World: The Senate's Role in Trade Policy and National Security

Ira Shapiro, former trade negotiator for the Clinton administration, will examine headline-making political battles on trade and national security policy dating back to the 1970s and trace what he sees as the Senate’s decline into hyperpartisanship. A veteran of American politics, Shapiro is the author of The Last Great Senate: Courage and Statesmanship in Times of Crisis, and Broken: Can the Senate Save Itself and the Country? 12:45-2 p.m., 170 Humphrey School.

Sept. 27 - Dan Buettner: The David A. Rothenberger Lecture

Explorer, National Geographic fellow, and New York Times bestselling author Dan Buettner discovered the five places in the world--dubbed Blue Zones--where people live the longest, healthiest lives. Buettner now works with municipal governments, large employers, and health insurance companies to implement well-being initiatives that apply lessons from the Blue Zones. The program has dramatically improved the health of more than 5 million Americans. 4 p.m., Carlson Family Stage, Northrop. No charge but tickets are required; book signing follows.

Focusing on Student Success conference

Mark your calendar for Focusing on Student Success, a biennial Twin Cities conference for faculty, staff, and administrators to take advantage of the opportunity to discuss and strategize about academic and student development issues relating to student success. A call for programs begins Oct. 1; registration will open Dec. 3. The conference takes place Feb. 13, 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Coffman Union.

Oct. 17 - Annual Silha Lecture: ‘The First Amendment and #MeToo’

Theodore Boutrous, Jr., a member of the Advisory Board of the International Women’s Media Foundation who recently filed a defamation lawsuit on behalf of actor Ashley Judd against film producer Harvey Weinstein, will deliver the 2018 Silha Lecture. No charge and open to the public; no reservations are required. 7:30-9 p.m., Cowles Auditorium, Humphrey School.

Nov. 2-4 - Changes & Transitions in Your 40s and 50s: Finding Clarity and Wellbeing in Times of Change

The one constant in our lives is change and yet we often find ourselves ill equipped to manage it skillfully. How well you navigate change has a direct impact on your degree of wellbeing, purpose, and the satisfaction you experience on a day-to-day basis. This workshop will explore ways to set a well-considered course for the next phase of your life. Mayo Meditation Space, Mayo Memorial Building. Register and learn more.

UMTC Featured EventsWAM building artist rendering

Sept. 7 - WAM-O-RAMA 2018
Sept. 8 - Yoga at WAM
Sept. 11 - Fortress America: Fear in Our Public Life
Sept. 11 - IT Fall Fair
Sept. 12 - On Purpose: Portrait of the Liberal Arts
Sept. 12 - Culture In-Depth: Chinese Students at the U of M--ISSS Intercultural Workshop Series

Events Calendar >