May 3, 2007 (Vol. 6, No. 6)
This Month's Top Stories . . .
Elie Wiesel Visits UVM, Awarded Honorary Degree (up^)
Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel, the Holocaust survivor who recounted his experiences in the award-winning memoir Night, was awarded the honorary degree of doctor of humane letters at the University of Vermont on Wednesday, April 25. Wiesel spoke to a hushed audience of some 3,600 of his experiences during and after the Holocaust, his struggle to understand the horrors that he and so many other European Jews had endured, and his dedication to the cause of human rights around the world in response. "You have carried the torch of memory for those silenced by the Holocaust, weaving from that terrible history memorable art and a life of purpose and influence," President Daniel Mark Fogel said in conferring the degree. Full story at http://www.uvm.edu/theview/article.php?id=2357.
Film Producer Jon Kilik '78 Returns to Campus (up^)
An appreciative capacity crowd greeted independent film producer Jon Kilik '78 in the Campus Center Theater on Monday evening, April 23. Kilik was on campus to talk about his experiences in the film industry and his latest production, Babel, nominated this year for an Oscar in seven categories, including Best Picture. "I do it the old-fashioned way," Kilik said of his movie-making style, a hands-on, do-it-all, collaborative way of working that harkens back to days as a student filmmaker at UVM. Full story at http://www.uvm.edu/theview/article.php?id=2350.
College of Medicine Ranked Seventh in Nation for Primary Care (up^)
The UVM College of Medicine ranks seventh for primary care among the nation's 125 medical schools according to the U.S. News & World Report 2008 America's Best Graduate Schools. The college, which moved up from 14th last year, has consistently ranked in the top 15 percent of all medical schools in primary care. "We're proud to be recognized as providing top-quality medical education and training for primary care physicians," says interim Dean John Fogarty. "Our curriculum provides wonderful opportunities for medical students to understand the critical role of the primary care physician as well as gain experience in a range of clinical settings."
Scholars Win Fulbright, Truman, Goldwater, Madison Awards (up^)
Four UVM scholars — two undergraduates, a medical student and a local teacher beginning graduate work —have been selected for prestigious national and international awards. The four recipients will wear the mantles of Fulbright, Truman, Madison, and Goldwater scholars beginning with the new academic year this fall. Abu Rizvi, associate dean of the Honors College, believes the breadth, and possibly the number, of awards in one year are unprecedented. More at http://www.uvm.edu/~uvmpr/?Page=News&storyID=10605.
Students End Hunger Strike for Livable Wage (up^)
A student group whose advocacy for higher wages for UVM's lowest-paid employees has been a subject of discussion on campus for the past two years reached a turning point at the end of April as the Student Labor Action Project (SLAP) announced that twelve of its members would engage in a hunger strike until the group's demands were met. Five days later, the issue was successfully resolved when the Vermont legislature's Joint Fiscal Office, which calculates a "livable wage" for Vermonters every two years, produced a chart demonstrating that UVM's minimum compensation is in fact equivalent to the livable wage when benefits are factored in. "I respect and value the dedication and focus provided by the Student Labor Action Project and their allies on these important issues, and I am very pleased that our students have chosen to end the hunger strike," wrote President Daniel Mark Fogel in a message to the UVM community." Fogel emphasized UVM's commitment to compensating employees competitively and equitably and "the institutional interest in assisting employees, especially lower-paid employees, in meeting basic needs." He also said a recently formed University Benefits Advisory Council with faculty, staff, and student members will advise the administration on UVM's benefits plan to make sure it remains competitive. Read the president's letter to the UVM community at http://www.uvm.edu/president/?Page=letters/DMF_compensationissues.html.
Online Archive Makes History Accessible (up^)
The University of Vermont Libraries launched the Center for Digital Initiatives (CDI) on Monday, April 16, the first day of National Libraries Week. The CDI is a new online resource that allows any user with Internet access to view and search documents and photographs from the university's Special Collections. CDI's initial collection — more will follow — is a rich, searchable archive of more than 1,000 pages of materials generated by eight Vermont Congressmen, including such well known figures as George Aiken and Robert Stafford, documenting topics ranging from the abolition of slavery to social life in Washington, D.C. The first document dates from 1818, the most recent from 2004. The collection also includes photographs. The CDI website is located at http://cdi.uvm.edu. Full story at http://www.uvm.edu/theview/article.php?id=2338.
Athletic Programs Receive NCAA Certification (up^)
The NCAA Division I Committee on Athletics Certification has announced that the University of Vermont has been certified without qualification as part of the association's second cycle of athletics certification. The purpose of athletics certification is to ensure integrity in the institution's athletics program and to assist institutions in improving their athletics departments. More at http://www.uvm.edu/theview/article.php?id=2332.
Campus Kudos (up^)
Penny A. Bishop and Robert J. Nash, faculty members in the College of Education and Social Services, were recent invitees to a national think-tank/leadership conference, "Beyond the Culture Wars: A Leadership Conference on the Future of Religion in the Public Schools," at the First Amendment Center at Vanderbilt University, March 5-6. Bishop and Nash have published a series of articles on the theme of religious pluralism in public schools, and their new book, Teaching Adolescents Religious Literacy in a Post 9/11 World, is currently out for review at leading publishers.
Joshua Bongard, assistant professor of computer science, has received a $200,000 Microsoft Research New Faculty Fellowship for his research on robots. Only five such awards are given nationwide. Bongard's areas of expertise are evolutionary robotics, evolutionary computation, and physical simulation including "self-healing" robots. The new funding will be used in his efforts to create robots that can perform simple tasks in the home such as cleaning and moving.
Greg Bottoms, assistant professor of English, is the author of The Colorful Apocalypse: Journeys in Outsider Art, (University of Chicago Press) chosen as a Booksense pick for April.
Dr. Ralph Budd, professor of medicine and director of immunobiology, has been appointed chair of the National Institutes of Health's Immunity and Host Defense Study Section, Center for Scientific Review, for the term beginning June 1, 2007 and ending June 30, 2009.
Makdyanet "Maggie" Cedeno, a junior, has been accepted to participate in APSA's prestigious Ralph Bunche Institute for young scholars this summer. Named in honor of the 1950 Nobel Peace Prize winner, the institute is a five-week, academically intensive summer program designed to simulate the graduate school experience. The institute, now in its 21st year, will be held at Duke University and host 20 students representing diverse institutions from across the country.
Meghan Cope, assistant professor of geography, was invited to join the editorial board of the journal Urban Geography, one of the leading scholarly publications in urban studies nationally and internationally. She was also awarded an Ashby Prize for 2006 by the journal Environment and Planning A for her paper "Grounded visualization: integrating the analysis of qualitative and quantitative data through grounded theory and visualization." She co-authored the paper with LaDona Knigge, her former doctoral student, who is now an assistant professor at California State-Chico.
Robert Costanza, director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics, Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, was published in the February, 2007, edition of Nature with a review of the book Capitalism 3.0: A Guide to Reclaiming the Commons, by Peter Barnes.
Donald H. DeHayes, dean of the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources, received an invitation to participate in the Tallberg Forum in Sweden in the summer of 2007. This invitation-only meeting gathers world leaders in a think tank type of forum to consider the question "How in the World Can We Live Together."
Sylvie Doublie, associate professor of microbiology and molecular genetics, is lead author of an article titled "A structural rationale for stalling of a replicative DNA polymerase at the most common oxidative thymine lesion, thymine glycol," which appeared in the January 17 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Co-authors on the paper include Susan Wallace, professor and chair of microbiology and molecular genetics; Mark Rould, research assistant professor of molecular physiology and biophysics; Pierre Aller, post-doctoral associate in microbiology and molecular genetics; and Matthew Hogg, graduate assistant in microbiology and molecular genetics.
Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux, associate professor of geography, has been appointed to a five-year term on the editorial board of the journal Physical Geography.
Christopher Francklyn, professor of biochemistry and microbiology and molecular genetics, and Ethan Guth, a graduate fellow in biochemistry, published a study on "Kinetic Discrimination of tRNA Identity by the Conserved Motif 2 Loop of a Class II Aminoacyl-tRNA Synthetase" in the February 23 issue of Molecular Cell. Berta Geller, research professor of family medicine, and Dr. Donald Weaver, professor of pathology, are co-authors on a National Cancer Institute (NCI) Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium study in the February 2007 American Journal of Roentgenology titled "Factors Associated with Imaging and Procedural Events Used to Detect Breast Cancer After Screening Mammography." Geller also had a manual published by the National Cancer Institute titled "Designing Print Materials: A Communications Guide for Breast Cancer Screening."
John Gennari, associate professor of English, is the author of "Blowin' Hot and Cool: Jazz and Its Critics" (University of Chicago Press, (2006), chosen by the American Culture Association as the winner of the 2007 John G. Cawelti Award for the Outstanding Book in American Culture Studies.
Domenico Grasso, dean of the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, participated in a day-long forum in Washington for the World Justice Project, an initiative of the American Bar Association. Headed by honorary co-chair and former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, the project seeks to promote justice though worldwide initiatives to promote the rule of law. In June, Grasso will receive the 2007 Robert H. Goddard Award for Outstanding Professional Achievement from the Alumni Association of Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Dean Grasso also co-authored an essay that appeared in the March 16 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education titled "Holistic Engineering." In the essay, Grasso and his co-author, David Martinelli, chairman of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at West Virginia University, advocate for a broadening of the engineering curriculum beyond traditional engineering courses.
Huck Gutman, professor of English, is on leave from the university to serve as senior policy advisor to U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders. He will be responsible for education (including higher education), family issues, foreign policy and the arts.
David Harrison, associate professor of business administration and Nicole Maria Stata Chair won the William N. Kinnard Young Scholar Award for 2007. The award, presented annually by the American Real Estate Society, recognizes "important research contributions to the real estate discipline achieved under the age of 40."
Charles Irvin, professor of medicine and director of the Vermont Lung Center, co-authored an editorial in the March 29 New England Journal of Medicine titled "Airway Smooth Muscle as a Target for Asthma Therapy."
David Jenemann, assistant professor of English, is the author of Adorno in America (University of Minnesota Press).
Lokangaka Losambe, professor of English, had an article, "Death, Power and Cultural Translation in Wole Soyinka's Death and the King's Horseman," published in the Journal of Commonwealth Literature, Volume 42, Number 1, 2007.
Anthony Magistrale, professor of English, completed work on an Edgar Allan Poe volume for the MLA's "Approaches to Teaching Series." The book is due out in late 2007.
Wolfgang Mieder, chairperson of the Department of German and Russian, has published The Pied Piper: A Handbook. The book investigates the origin, history, dissemination, and meaning of the internationally known German folktale "The Pied Piper of Hamelin."
Dr. Mark Plante, associate professor of surgery and director of urologic research, is lead author of a paper titled "Phase I/II examination of transurethral ethanol ablation of the prostate for the treatment of symptomatic benign prostatic hyperplasia" in the March 2007 Journal of Urology. Plante also was featured in a Reuters Health article on the study in March.
Betty A. Rambur, dean of the College of Nursing and Health Sciences, has been named an ACE Fellow for academic year 2007-08 by the American Council on Education. The ACE Fellows Program is designed to strengthen institutions and leadership in American higher education by identifying and preparing promising senior faculty and administrators for responsible positions in university administration. Thirty-nine fellows, nominated by senior leadership of their institutions, were selected this year in a national competition. Rambur will spend the next academic year working on an issue of strategic importance to the University of Vermont with a university president and other senior officers at a host institution.
Helen Scott, associate professor of English, has a new book, Caribbean Women Writers and Globalization: Fictions of Independence (Ashgate Publishing Limited). Her article "Reading the Text in its Worldly Situation: Marxism, Imperialism, and Contemporary Caribbean Women's Literature," was published in Postcolonial Text.
Emily Stebbins, a graduate student in Community Development and Applied Economics, was selected as one of only 20 2007 Eno Leadership Development Fellows, which include representatives from 17 campuses located in 14 states who are pursuing careers in transportation.
Cory Teuscher, professor of medicine, co-authored an article in the February 20 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences titled "Antipsychotic drug-induced weight gain mediated by histamine H1 receptor-linked activation of hypothalamic AMP-kinase." These research findings were featured in a February 13 Wall Street Journal article titled "Antipsychotic Drugs' Link to Weight Gain Found."
Albert van der Vliet, associate professor of pathology, and Umadevi Wesley, research assistant professor of microbiology and molecular genetics, are coauthors of a paper titled "Airway Epithelial Cell Migration and Wound Repair by ATP-mediated Activation of Dual Oxidase 1" in the February 2 edition of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.
Burton Wilcke, professor and chair of medical laboratory and radiation sciences, was nominated and served on the Institute of Medicine group that released the report of its congressionally-mandated charge of evaluating the status of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) on March 30. PEPFAR is the largest U.S. foreign aid program targeting a single disease in history. He served on the treatment subcommittee with Dr. Charles Carpenter, who came to UVM as a Marsh Visiting Professor.
Matthew A. Wilson, research assistant professor, School of Business Administration and the Gund Institute, and his co-authors were awarded the 2nd Prize of the Zayed International Prize for the Environment for their Millennium Ecosystem Assessment for Scientific and Technological Achievements in Environment, which assessed the consequences of ecosystem change for human wellbeing.
Dateline UVM Would Like to Hear from You: (up^)
Send comments, questions, and address changes to Dateline UVM Editor, Jay Goyette (firstname.lastname@example.org).