U of M Brief - January 21, 2015
Feb. 3 – U of M Legislative Action Kickoff
Register now for the 2015 Legislative Action Kickoff. Attendees will learn more about issues that will affect the U of M during the 2015 legislative session and discover ways to help. No previous political or legislative knowledge required. 4:30-6:30 p.m., McNamara Alumni Center. Complimentary light refreshments will be served.
New UMTC Homepage
The University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus has launched a new homepage. The site is hosted on the U's enterprise Drupal platform. With a focus on external audiences (prospective students, parents, alumni, donors, etc.), the site redesign allows visitors to quickly find the information they need to complete their task(s). Simplified navigation coupled with a responsive design makes the site easy to use with any device. Student, staff, and faculty visitors will notice that the One Stop button is no longer available; the site is still available at onestop.umn.edu. Read the FAQ on the Our Brand website for more information about why the One Stop button was removed. Additionally, U of M email can be found through MyU or at mail.umn.edu. Site visitors are encouraged to explore the new site and provide feedback.
Applications requested: Minnesota Futures Grant Program
Applications are now being accepted for the Minnesota Futures Grant Program, administered by the Office of the Vice President for Research. The program promotes new research and scholarship that address societal challenges by fostering opportunities for researchers to advance new ideas and cross disciplinary boundaries. Letters of Intent are due Feb. 23; full proposals are due March 23.
Proposals invited for educational innovation conference
The Academy of Distinguished Teachers, in partnership with the Center for Educational Innovation and the Academic Health Center, will host a University-wide conference on teaching and learning on April 8, McNamara Alumni Center. This year’s theme is “Making Sense of Educational Innovation: Finding What Works for Today’s Students.” All instructors at the University are invited to submit proposals (due Feb. 15) for presentations and posters. For more information, email Jane O’Brien or call 612-625-3885.
PeopleSoft Upgrade: high-touch help from Advance Teams
Each unit and campus has advance teams comprising volunteer representatives to be voice-on-the-ground support in preparation for the upgrade of the U of M’s financial, human resources, and student-services systems. Advance team members can also help identify and escalate issues in real time. In addition, existing help lines will be equipped with extra resources during The Upgrade.
IonE Featured Fellows
The Institute on the Environment has launched a new interview series featuring IonE’s nearly 70 resident fellows—faculty with appointments throughout the U of M who are among the shining stars of IonE’s signature approach to addressing global grand challenges. Over the course of the next year, this series will introduce these diverse resident fellows in their own words.
Speedie named 2014 Weaver Medal Recipient
Marilyn Speedie, dean of the University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy, has been selected as the recipient of the 2014 Weaver Medal. The Weaver Medal recognizes service to education, the profession, research, and the community. A reception honoring Speedie will take place Feb. 17, 4-6 p.m., The Commons Hotel.
Dean Fisher Announces Leadership Change
Dean Thomas Fisher has announced that he will step down as Dean of the College of Design. After leaving the deanship this summer, Fisher will assume the positions of Dayton Hudson Land Grant Chair in Urban Design and director of the University's Metropolitan Design Center, where he will continue research and teaching in conjunction with metro-area partners and grant makers. Provost Karen Hanson will be appointing an interim dean.
UMN in the News
Tai Mendenhall is featured in MinnPost as “an 'adrenalin junkie’” who has found his niche in family social science; Homeland Security has taken an interest in a U of M software program whose uses could include protecting the nation’s food supply, says Amy Kircher in the Star Tribune; President Eric Kaler is quoted in the MN Daily on the U’s campus climate efforts; Katrice Albert is quoted in MSR News on where Dr. King’s call for ‘community’ is at today; the U of M is tackling diversity shortages reports the MN Daily with commentary by the U’s Eric Kaler, Shakeer Abdullah, and Lamar Hylton.
Jan. 21 - FFA contests
The Agriculture & Natural Resources Department will host regional FFA contests Jan. 21. Contest categories are dairy foods, wildlife, floriculture, nursery landscape, equine, and novice parliamentary.
Jan. 23 - Office of Community Engagement Service Learning
Faculty and staff are invited to learn more about the Office of Community Engagement's service learning. Jan. 23, noon-1 p.m., Bede Ballroom. The topic will be "Reflection.”
Jan. 28 - Winter Job and Internship Fair
The 13th annual Winter Job and Internship Fair will be held Jan. 28, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Bede Ballroom. Approximately 40 employers are expected to attend, as are representatives from eight graduate schools.
Top 10 Most Affordable Public Schools
AffordableColleges.com has listed UMC among the top 10 of the 50 Most Affordable Public Schools for Out-of-State Students. The web resource provides prospective college students with the most accurate and relevant information on making higher education more cost- effective.
UMD Alumnus Named Commissioner of IRRRB
Gov. Mark Dayton recently appointed UMD alumnus Mark Phillips ’73 commissioner of the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation Board (IRRRB). Phillips was the founding chair of the UMD Center for Economic Development Advisory Board and has been a member of the LSBE Dean's Business Advisory Council since its creation in 1998. He served as the IRRRB’s director of economic development from 1983 to 1988.
Mapping environmental stress
The Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI) is combining 34 water-related variables with 207 land-based variables in order to produce a comprehensive map illustrating ecosystem stress on Great Lakes land and water. NRRI Statistician Meijun Cai is managing the data-intensive project, which is scheduled for completion in June 2015. NRRI Center Director Lucinda Johnson is the project lead.
Stories and Science of the St. Louis River Estuary
UMD and UW-Madison faculty and staff have created the Stories and Science of the St. Louis River Estuary website, featuring topics such as recreation, fishing, wild rice, community, and restoration projects. Both Minnesota and Wisconsin Sea Grant programs and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency funded the project.
Morris Receives NSF STEM Education Funding
The National Science Foundation has awarded $893,041 for the UMM Improving Undergraduate STEM Education program. The goal of the project, under the direction of Professor of Geology Jim Cotter, is to increase the number of Native American graduates in the areas of environmental sciences and sustainability. The five-year program will serve 190 students by its conclusion in 2019.
Emo Partners with Local Reading Teacher
Wendy Emo, assistant professor of education, has partnered with alumna Lori Boettcher ’93, a teacher at Morris Area Elementary School (MAES), to create additional opportunities for UMM students to work directly with elementary learners. Using small-group and individualized literacy activities, Emo’s students are helping Boettcher provide literacy intervention services to students at MAES.
Jan. 27 - Café Scientifique Looks at Oilseeds and Bees
The next Café Scientifique will feature Matt Thom, research entomologist at the USDA-ARS Soils Lab. Thom will lead a discussion, “Oilseeds for You and Me: Crops That Provide Food for Bees.” He and his group are developing oilseed crops to be profitable for farmers and rich sources of food for bees and other important pollinators. Common Cup Coffeehouse, 6 p.m.
Jan. 27 - Responding to the Ebola Crisis
An extremely timely topic following the national worry concerning Ebola, the next UMR Connects lecture brings to Rochester one of the nation's leading experts on the public health risk of infectious disease. U of M professor Michael Osterholm will discuss how epidemics spread so quickly, as well as touch on the likelihood that an epidemic could actually “end” the world.
Earn 150 Wellness Points with free health screening
Jan. 22 - Community Dialogue on Clinical Research
The University of Minnesota Program in Health Disparities Research, Clinical and Translational Science Institute, and Center for Bioethics will host Community Dialogues on Clinical Research: A Conversation with Vanessa Northington Gamble. Northington Gamble will speak about her work and host a dialogue aimed at identifying constructive ways for communities and researchers to work together to improve health. 5 p.m., Wilder Foundation, 451 Lexington Parkway North, St. Paul. Registration is free but encouraged.
Jan. 23 - St. Paul Student Center Technology Help Grand Opening
University Technology Help will celebrate the grand opening of a new walk-in location. Meet staff, enjoy refreshments, and learn about technology services offered free to U of M students, faculty, and staff. 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Room 4, St. Paul Student Center.
"WonderWomen" exhibit, panel discussion, and reception
Several of Department of Medicine staff member Barbara Porwit's paintings of breast cancer survivors as superheroes are featured in the “WonderWomen” exhibit, Nash Gallery. Porwit will speak in an artist's panel discussion about the work on Jan. 24, 7 p.m., Nash Gallery. A reception and fashion show will be Feb. 14, 7-10 p.m.
Homebuyer Assistance Opportunity in the University District
President’s Student Leadership & Service Award nominations close Jan. 30
Nominate an outstanding student leader by Jan. 30 for a 2015 President’s Student Leadership & Service Award. The award recognizes the accomplishments and contributions of outstanding student leaders at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
Mini Medical School 2015
Registration is open for Mini Med School’s 2015 programming, "Getting to the Heart of the Matter." Register to learn about heart health topics ranging from early detection and prevention of heart disease to how stem cells are used in cardiac regeneration. Mondays, March 2-30. Cost: $60 before Feb. 7; $65 on or after Feb. 7 for U faculty, staff and students.
Feb. 10 - From Data to Decisions: Production Agriculture Symposium
The U of M will host precision agriculture thought leaders who will discuss the most up-to-date precision agriculture technologies and management strategies. Each session will explore and expand on a different aspect of how digital information plays an increasingly important role for producers, in topics ranging from grain marketing and instant weather updates to determining nutrient management plans. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Northstar Ballroom, St. Paul Student Center. Registration is free, with a lunch provided. Certified Crop Consultant Continuing Education Units available.
Feb. 12 - Spring Lecture Series on Genomics
Professor Heidi Rehm of Harvard Medical School will explore the implications of the plummeting cost of sequencing and the challenges of effectively integrating ever more readily available genetic information into medical practice in “Genomic Variant Interpretation: The Good, the Bad, and the Uncertain.” 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Best Buy Theater, Northrop. Free and open to the public, but registration is requested.
UMTC Featured Events
CSE Public Lecture: “Plastics from Plants—Sexy and Sustainable” (Jan. 22)
Exhibit opening: “Elements in Material: Lost Lake Peatland to Pin Oak Prairie” (Jan. 23)
“Space and time from causality” (Jan. 23)
Saturday with a Scientist: Spiders: Small Brains, Big Behaviors (Jan. 24)
DESIGN @ NOON: Artist Talk with Moira Bateman (Jan. 26)