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“On this day 88 years ago, a man died and a legend was born. #BearDown”

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 15:35
Short Summary: “On this day 88 years ago, a man died and a legend was born. #BearDown” UANow Image: Social Network: InstagramSocial Author: @arizonaalumniSocial Link:

Ebola Not Just a Matter for Medicine

Mon, 10/20/2014 - 11:28

As Ebola continues to pose national and international risks, a role is envisioned for engineers, who are being called on to design devices and processes to help protect against the virus. 

Last Thursday, the National Science Foundation issued an invitation to the scientific community for research proposals related to Ebola and other infectious diseases, noting important contributions engineers could make to aid rapid diagnostics, vaccinations and decontamination. On the same day, President Barack Obama signed an order allowing for National Guard and Reserve members to travel to West Africa to help build Ebola treatment centers. A number of national media outlets have reported that engineers and logistical specialists likely will be on the team.

At the University of Arizona, engineers and researchers such as Linda Powers, the Thomas R. Brown Distinguished Chair in Bioengineering, are contributing to preventative methods while also training the next generation of engineers to be prepared for biomedical issues of global concern.

Powers, who holds appointments in biomedical engineering and electrical and computer engineering and is a BIO5 Institute member, has been working with a UA team developing fast, disposable blood tests for detecting the pathogens that cause diseases such as HIV, hepatitis, malaria and other viruses.

"In cases such as Ebola, or any kind of crisis, epidemic or pandemic, it is important for engineers to understand what we need to do to help," Powers said, speaking Monday to dozens of UA engineering students and high school students. "Engineers can help mitigate risks to help prevent others from getting infected."

Powers presented her talk during in Engineering 102, a course that just started a month long project where students evaluate issues related to ways that engineers can improve health care, provide access to clean water and improve the urban infrastructure, among other things.

The College of Engineering restructured the introductory course several years ago to include a month long project around the National Academy of Engineering's "Grand Challenges for Engineering" to help students explore these and other grand challenges within the discipline.

"Throughout my career, there have been a number of events that have led to questions about how engineers can produce better structures and sensors," said Kathleen Melde, a professor in the UA Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering who teaches one of the course sections. As examples, Melde pointed to California earthquakes, the devastation of Hurricane Katrina and the current Ebola situation.

"In the College of Engineering, one of the things that is very important for us is that we emphasize that engineers engage in lifelong learning and ways that engineers can think out of the box," Melde said.

"But when people think about electrical engineers, they think of someone sitting in a cubicle developing circuits. But that couldn't be further from the truth. A lot of people choose engineering because they want to help people and, as those like Linda (Powers) show, we are really at the forefront of helping people."

Melde and Powers said engineers can make significant contributions to reduce the spread of infectious diseases. For example, engineers have developed and advanced the electron microscope to analyze nanopaticles as well as microbe sensor technology, among other instruments used for disease detection. Engineers also have developed lab safety protocol, built protective emergency materials, and developed lightweight devices used in medical research and treatment. 

Powers' company, MicroBioSystems of Arizona, was awarded two U.S. Department of Defense contracts for the technologies that she and her team are working to develop.

Since receiving the contracts, Powers and her team members have developed a self-contained device and an instrument for testing for the presence of pathogens, which may one day be used by military personnel in the field and even by people living in remote areas.

The technology is meant to greatly improve the detection of blood-borne diseases, especially for individuals who have no access to medical facilities and who do not have medical training. Another boon: The self-contained device can be disposed of in the same way as medical waste, to keep infectious diseases from spreading, Powers said.

"This country has been fortunate that it has not had to deal with many situations like this," Powers said, referring to the Ebola cases. "But there are many more of these situations on the horizon, so there will be plenty of work for engineers who want to help tackle issues like this."

Editor: dougcarrollWriter: La Monica Everett-HaynesByline: La Monica Everett-HaynesByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Outbreak in Africa reveals a need for the contributions of engineers to global health, UA researchers say. Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

The Man Behind the UA's Presence in Mexico

Fri, 10/17/2014 - 18:10

Since it was founded, the University of Arizona has had deep ties with Mexico. Through its Mexico City office, the UA is developing even deeper partnerships designed to answer important questions that extend beyond physical borders.

The UA is located just 63 miles north of the U.S.-Mexico border, making it easy to focus on research and partnerships in the Sonoran region in northern Mexico. But having an office in Mexico's capital city helps the University extend its international reach even more, according to José Lever, director of the UA's Mexico City office.

"In order to have the University's connections grow and to do proper follow-up, the UA needed to have a permanent presence in the heart of Mexico, which is Mexico City," Lever said.

The UA established an office in Mexico City in 2007. It was created to help encourage collaboration between the UA and businesses in Mexico as part of the Office of Western Hemispheric Programs, which also was established in 2007 and is dedicated to identifying collaborative opportunities between the University and agencies in Canada, Mexico and Latin America.

Collaborative research was a focus from the beginning. For example, the office established a binational consortium to research arid lands issues facing both the Southwest and Mexico. The consortium is a partnership between the UA and the National University of Mexico. It is funded by Mexico's National Council for Science and Technology, also known as CONACyT, which is the country's equivalent of the National Science Foundation.

In recent years, the office also has increasingly focused on facilitating technology transfer initiatives.

"The interest in tech transfer and innovation has grown dramatically in Mexico," Lever said. "Now there are programs that are fostering this topic, but the groundwork was done by the UA. We really did make an impact."

The University's Never Settle strategic academic and business plan calls for the UA to build partnerships that enhance the University's positive impact not only in the local community, but in the global community as well. The plan also calls for the UA to develop innovative solutions that address the world's grand challenges by expanding research initiatives and external partnerships.

Before joining the UA to help establish the Mexico City office, Lever worked for a decade with CONACyT. He travels to the UA's main campus in Tucson about twice a month, although he makes more frequent trips depending on the projects requiring his attention.

Most recently, Lever attended an Oct. 16 meeting of the Intelligent Manufacturing Initiative for the U.S.-Mexico Border, convened by the U.S. Mexico Foundation for Science as part of the Mexico-U.S. Entrepreneurship and Innovation Council.

The council was formed last year by President Barack Obama and Mexican President Peña Nieto to promote and strengthen cross-border entrepreneurship and innovation. Representatives from multiple U.S. and Mexican higher education institutions, businesses and other organizations attended the meeting, which was co-hosted by the UA's Office of Global Initiatives and the College of Engineering.

The purpose of the meeting was to gather information to identify joint opportunities for intelligent manufacturing in the border region.

"This was a very important meeting," Lever said. "The focus is on what kinds of things we should be doing together in order to foster competiveness of the region. Intelligent manufacturing is part of that."

During the meeting, attendees discussed how human capital, technology and innovation can be developed to increase productivity in the advanced manufacturing sector in the Arizona-Sonora region and throughout the U.S.-Mexico border region.

"This meeting has brought a great deal of momentum to this discussion at a critical time for the region, especially if the manufacturing and innovation ecosystem in Arizona and Sonora wish to capitalize on the nearshoring trend and attract industry that is relocating from Asia to North America," said Justin Dutram, coordinator for academic outreach programs in the Office of Global Initiatives.

"Collaboration between higher education, government and in this case, the manufacturing sector, will make our region more competitive for business growth and attraction," Dutram said. "As the economies of both the U.S. and Mexico and increasingly interdependent, it is important for the UA to contribute to the preparation of the next generation of leaders in both nations, and to support industry with new knowledge from our research and innovation enterprise."

"Manufacturing is a key area in the region's future economy," said College of Engineering dean Jeff Goldberg, who participated in the meeting. "The UA can play a major role in the education and training of a strong workforce. It is not the UA alone. U.S. and Mexican high schools, career and technical education, technical schools and community colleges are also part of the solution, but we should be leading players, as it is a part of our land-grant mission and it is a good opportunity for students."

Lever said that the UA is poised to fuse international partnerships that can benefit the region, the state and the U.S. as a whole.

"The connections with Mexico are just natural," Lever said. "It's our location, it's our heritage. ... We have a significant number of faculty and students that are from Mexico. We have a significant number from faculty working on issues that have to do with Mexico. That's what positions the UA to better understand issues where we can make a very significant contribution partnering with our colleagues in Mexico for the benefit of the greater region."

Editor: dougcarrollByline: Amanda BallardByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: The University's Mexico City office, which encourages collaboration between the U.S. and Mexico, is overseen by José Lever. Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

UA Breaks Ground on Downtown Phoenix Project

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 16:14

With shovels full of dirt, construction has been launched on the 10-story Biosciences Partnership Building, the latest University of Arizona project in downtown Phoenix.

UA President Ann Weaver Hart and Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton ceremoniously tilled the soil, marking the beginning of the two-year design and construction for the 245,000-square-foot research building on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus.

“This building will foster collaborations with scientists that will lead to more cures, better treatments and bring more federal and private dollars to the state,” Hart said. “We will pursue expanded partnerships with industry that we hope will lead to groundbreaking discoveries in the areas of neuroscience, cardiovascular and thoracic science. This building will allow us to further these efforts and, ultimately, improve lives."

The research building will sit just north of the Health Sciences Education Building on the downtown campus.

“This building will serve the medical school and beyond with important research and faculty to teach the next generation of health professionals,” Stanton said. “Of course, this just adds to the economic vibrancy of downtown. The research facility initially will bring construction jobs and then high-paying, research-related jobs, including specialized technicians and other support staff for faculty and scientists.”

Construction on the $136 million building is expected to translate into nearly 500 jobs initially and an additional 360 permanent jobs at build-out.

"The Biosciences Partnership Building represents yet another milestone as the city and the University develop a major academic medical center in downtown Phoenix," said Dr. Stuart D. Flynn, dean of the UA College of Medicine – Phoenix. "Research in this building, in collaboration with our partners, will advance health care for all and expand our role as an economic driver for the city, Valley and state."

In 2012, the Health Sciences Education Building opened, housing health education for both the UA and Northern Arizona University. Construction continues on the UA Cancer Center at Dignity Health St. Joseph’s. The cancer center, a 220,000-square-foot outpatient and research facility, is scheduled to be completed in 2015.

The Phoenix Biomedical Campus also is home to the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health as well as the colleges of nursing and pharmacy. Also on campus are NAU programs for physician assistants, physical therapists and occupational therapists as part of the university’s College of Health and Human Services. Arizona State University’s School of Nutrition and Health Innovation is housed in the Arizona Biomedical Collaborative 1 building southwest of the education building and immediately south of the Translational Genomic Research Institute.

The funding for the Biosciences Partnership Building comes from economic and educational development bonds approved by the Arizona Legislature in 2008 that paid for construction of the Health Sciences Education Building and related campus improvements. Research focus areas include neurosciences, health care outcomes, cancer and precision medicine. 

Editor: dougcarrollByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: The Biosciences Partnership Building, due for completion in two years, will add to the UA's presence and serve the next generation of health professionals.Include in UANow: 0Include in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: no

Why Companies and Schools Must Partner for STEM Education

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 15:37

My passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the STEM fields, began in my youth in Lima, Peru.

I had strong backing from loving parents, who served as my role models. Both were scientists, and this meant that math and science classes were certainly more interesting to me. I took pleasure in challenging my math skills by mastering competitive university admission exams. Still, I observed that young girls' career aspirations were not often geared toward math and science careers. In addition, these young ladies did not have a strong support system, nor did they have many role models, to encourage and influence them to study the areas of science and technology.

When I became an engineer at Raytheon Missile Systems, I joined a defense company that, aside from developing the latest technology products, is an amazing employer of choice for women. A leader in diversity and inclusion, Raytheon is also devoted to reaching out to the local communities in support of STEM career awareness.

At Raytheon, one of my duties is supporting emerging engineering solutions, which encompass a wide variety of technologies in support of new capabilities. In addition, my position requires building strong collaborations with internal customers, academia, national labs and research institutions. In collaboration with the University of Arizona, my alma mater, we are developing new intellectual property in departments such as Electrical and Computer Engineering and Management of Information Systems.

Also, with the huge support of my Raytheon mentors and role models who invigorated my interest in continuing my education, I recently enrolled in the electrical and computer engineering doctoral program. 

I also supporting outreach efforts, and one of my proudest moments came with an opportunity to be involved with extraordinary individuals and technical colleagues from Raytheon and the UA serving as a cyber-instructor for GenCyber 2014 Summer Camp, a residential camp held at the UA's Biosphere 2 during the summer.

The experience was especially beneficial, given the industry demands for STEM graduates in technology-dependent companies such as Raytheon. These companies have been experiencing a severe shortage of talented and well-educated students in the STEM curricula. The UA camp provided not only the opportunity to interact with high school students, but a chance to engage young men and women in a manner that might interest them in pursuing science and technology.

And the opportunity to support and collaborate with UA faculty members Bill Neuman of the MIS department and Salim Hariri of electrical and computer engineering was very rewarding. And, during the camp, George Ball, an IT Fellow at Raytheon, shared with the participants the concepts of cyber threats, exploitations of systems, high-performance computing and cloud technologies. By popular demand, the Raytheon team returned for a second week of the camp, during which Anthony Jones, the director of Advanced IT, instructed the cyber participants on the topics of network security, secure infrastructures, ethical hacking and random number generators.

Also, I was able to present on my areas of expertise by introducing the topics of applied cryptography and cloud computing. The Raytheon team closed the day by having students compete in the Raytheon Cyber Challenge, in which they had to present to the audience their answers and findings on various cyber-related questions.

We look forward to continuing to encourage these students, and students in all of our local schools, to pursue STEM careers — and perhaps become future Raytheon employees. Together we can inspire the next generation through STEM education.

Carla Sayan is a senior information systems engineer with Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson. A first-year doctoral student in the UA's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering focusing on cybersecurity, Sayan recently received the Promising Engineer Award, a national award granted by the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers. "I truly believe that my education at the UA was key in my being able to receive this prestigious technical award," Sayan said. The award recognizes outstanding technical contributions in the areas of engineering, science and technology.

Categories: Science and TechnologyTeaching and StudentsThis is a Wildcat Corner feature: Images: Tags: EducationOutreachByline: Carla Sayan, Raytheon Missile Systems |UANow Image: Editor: dougcarrollInclude in UANow: yesDate of Publication: Thursday, October 16, 2014Medium Summary: Carla Sayan, a UA doctoral student and engineer at Raytheon, says the public-private partnership between the UA and companies such as Raytheon is beneficial to STEM education. Feature on Front: NoShort Summary: Carla Sayan, a UA doctoral student and engineer at Raytheon, explains the importance of STEM education. Send to Never Settle Site: 0

UA's Eller College Announces $6M in Gifts

Thu, 10/16/2014 - 12:47

The University of Arizona Eller College of Management has announced three new gift commitments totaling $6 million from Shamrock Foods, Karl and Stevie Eller of Phoenix, and the Diamond family of Tucson.

The announcement came at a recent celebration of the Arizona NOW fundraising campaign, hosted by the Eller College and the UA Foundation National Leadership Council at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix.

The Shamrock Foods gift of $3.5 million establishes the McClelland Family Endowment for Faculty Excellence, which will help the Eller College attract and retain outstanding teachers and researchers in the business disciplines.

The Eller gift of $1.5 million will name the Professional Development Center, a two-story addition to the business school that will house undergraduate career coaches, recruiter meeting space and student collaboration space.

The Diamond gift of $1 million will support the Eller College’s overall campaign priorities.

“The Eller, McClelland and Diamond families have long histories with the UA,” said James H. Moore Jr., president and CEO of the UA Foundation. “These new commitments contribute to their respective legacies, which will benefit business students at the university for generations to come.”

Norman P. McClelland, chairman of Shamrock Foods, and his late sister Frances graduated from the UA.

“Norm has been a force for growth and change at the University of Arizona for decades,” said Len Jessup, dean of the Eller College. “Over 20 years ago, the visionary leadership he and Frances brought made a new building possible for the Eller College. We are grateful for the family’s unwavering support, particularly of faculty, who are the cornerstone of every leading business school.”

Faculty reputation is a key factor considered by peer schools that vote in the annual U.S. News & World Report rankings. In September, the Eller College was named No. 21 overall and No. 11 among public undergraduate business programs in the 2015 America’s Best Colleges issue.

Karl and Stevie Eller are UA alumni and among the most influential figures in Arizona’s history. Their generosity has benefited higher education, business, athletics and the arts.

“Karl is truly a visionary, not just as a leader in outdoor advertising and in his other entrepreneurial ventures,” Jessup said. “In the early 1980s, he came to the UA with the concept of establishing a place where students could learn how to be entrepreneurs. In 1984, our entrepreneurship program became one of the first named centers in the country.”

The center, now known as the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship, is consistently ranked among the country’s best. Its flagship, yearlong program was named No. 6 in the country and No. 2 among public programs by U.S. News & World Report.

“We are honored that the Eller College bears his name,” Jessup said. “Entrepreneurship and innovation continue to be a hallmark of what we call the Eller experience, thanks in part to the extraordinary example he sets for our students.”

Donald and Joan Diamond also are UA alumni. Donald is the chairman of Diamond Ventures, a leading real estate and private equity company in the region. The Diamond family’s giving includes Diamond Children’s Medical Center, part of the UA Health Network.

“Don is a leader and entrepreneur whose insight has benefited the Eller College National Board of Advisors for many years,” Jessup said. “The Diamond Family Foundation and its leader, Helaine Levy, also supports faculty in finance at the Eller College, which helps us retain the very best teachers for our students.”

In addition to the McClelland, Eller and Diamond gift announcements, the Eller College also recognized 11 individuals who have made previously announced gifts in excess of $1 million each toward the college’s campaign goal of $65 million.

The overall goal of Arizona NOW is $1.5 billion.

Editor: dougcarrollByline Affiliation: Eller College of ManagementHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: A commitment of $3.5 million from Shamrock Foods and its chairman, UA alumnus Norm McClelland, will be used to help attract and retain outstanding teachers and researchers.Include in UANow: 0Include in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: no

Kuiper belt missions could reveal the solar system's origins

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 18:25
Date of Publication: Tuesday, October 14, 2014 Organization : Scientific AmericanCategory(s): Science and TechnologyOther Story Image: Short Summary: The very existence of the Kuiper belt — a vast swarm of billions of objects beyond Neptune — appears inconsistent with how theorists believe it must have formed.Include in Olympic coverage: noFeature on olympic page: noMedium Summary: The very existence of the Kuiper belt — a vast swarm of billions of objects beyond Neptune — appears inconsistent with how theorists believe it must have formed.

Close Encounter 'One in a Million'

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 14:54

University of Arizona scientists have their eyes on Mars for the fly-by of comet Siding Spring, which will pass the red planet on Oct. 19, closer than any comet has ever zoomed past the Earth in recorded history.

"We expect Mars to be bathed in the comet's coma, the gas and dust clouds that make for their famous tails," said Roger Yelle, a professor of planetary science in the UA's Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, who is on the science team of NASA's MAVEN spacecraft, which went into orbit at Mars on Sept. 21.

"The probability of an encounter like this is one in a million."

MAVEN — short for NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission — is the latest addition to an armada of seven spacecraft currently studying Mars, either observing from high above or roving and digging on the surface.

During the comet fly-by, NASA has programmed its orbiters to take measurements and images, then "duck and cover" behind the planet, just in case.

"It only takes a half-a-millimeter-size particle traveling at 56 kilometers per second to injure one of these spacecraft," said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA's Near Earth Object Program Office.

Yelle and his colleagues anxiously await the arrival of the city-block-size chunk of ice, rock and dust on its first-ever journey toward the sun. Unlike so-called short period comets whose journey around the sun takes them into the inner parts of the solar system every few years or decades, Siding Spring is a long period comet, visiting the solar system for the first time from the far reaches of space.

The comet originated in the Oort Cloud, a vast region of space surrounding the solar system speckled with billions of far-and-few-between comets, some of which embark on journeys that bring them back into our system of planets from which they originated billions of years ago during the early evolution of the solar system.

"Those comets are especially interesting because they are pristine," Yelle explained. "Comets are leftovers from the birth of the solar system, but unlike short-period comets, which have been altered by the sun's heat and solar wind, Siding Spring has been in deep freeze, in deep space, for billions of years."

Alfred McEwen, a professor in the UA Department of Planetary Sciences, leads the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment, known as HiRISE, on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, or MRO.

"This is the first time the nucleus of a long-period comet can actually be resolved by a telescope, either in space or on the ground," McEwen said. "Planning a spacecraft mission to these types of comets is nearly impossible because there is typically only about a year's notice between discovery and passage into the inner solar system."

Because comets such as Siding Spring are difficult to study, scientists know very little about them.

"We want to know the shape of its nucleus, rotation period, its brightness, and hopefully observe the inner coma for jets and outbursts," McEwen said.

All previously resolved comet nuclei are nearly black on their surfaces, despite being rich in ices. A key unanswered question is whether comets are formed black, become black from exposure to galactic cosmic rays, or are blackened over frequent visits to the inner solar system.

In hopes of lifting some of Siding Spring's secrets, the UA-led HiRISE camera team will interrupt its daily routine of photographing the Martian surface.

"We will roll the spacecraft and point HiRISE at the approaching comet," McEwen said. "The tricky part is to predict where the camera has to look, because the comet will be close and traveling fast. Photographing the comet's nucleus at its closest approach is like trying to photograph a speeding bullet while riding a roller coaster."

"Over the past month the comet has been observed to fade in brightness compared to standard comet models, but we should still get a good look at the nucleus even if the coma is not very active."

Comet Siding Spring first appeared on images taken by the UA's Catalina Sky Survey but was not identified as an Oort Cloud comet until independent discovery observations were made approximately four weeks later, by Robert McNaught at the Siding Spring Survey. The survey was one of three telescopes operated by CSS — and the only full-time asteroid survey in the Southern Hemisphere.

On Oct. 19, Siding Spring will race past Mars within 88,000 miles, less than a third of the Earth-moon distance, closer than any comet has ever passed the Earth in recorded history. Traveling at 35 miles per second, the comet — less than half a mile in diameter — would shoot over Los Angeles and out into the Pacific Ocean only one minute after it appeared over Manhattan.

Siding Spring will never get close to the Earth, Yelle said.

"After its pass by the orbit of Mars, it will go back to the Oort Cloud and not come back for many millions of years, if ever," he said.

Scientists are not sure of what to expect when Siding Spring zooms by Mars. What is certain, though, is that there is no chance of an impact.

"Earlier on, there was some concern the dust trail could endanger the spacecraft, but that no longer seem to be a possibility," Yelle said. "Nevertheless, we are taking mitigation strategies to be cautious. When the comet is coming, we'll be hiding on the other side of Mars, and when it goes by, we'll turn the MAVEN spacecraft so that the least sensitive surfaces are pointing to the comet and can't damage instruments.

"After about an hour, we'll come out of hiding. MAVEN will be observing the comet for about three days before and two days after the fly-by."

In contrast, MRO will observe the comet during its closest pass to Mars, although the orbiter will be hiding behind Mars when the dust trail will pass, if it extends that far. 

Over eons, Mars has been losing its atmosphere to space, and MAVEN is a mission designed to study the physical and chemical aspects of that process.

"The atmosphere escape process happens from the upper parts of the atmosphere, close to the region that will be perturbed by the coma of the comet, mostly by water molecules," Yelle said. "They will hit the Martian atmosphere about 250 kilometers above the surface and heat it through their impact momentum, which will in turn tell us about the escape process. We will also study the comet itself — for example, ions that stream from its coma."

Editor: dougcarrollWriter: Daniel StolteByline: Daniel StolteByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Faster than a speeding bullet comes the comet Siding Spring, which will have the attention of UA scientists as it passes Mars on Oct. 19. Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

In Training With Women's Basketball

Wed, 10/15/2014 - 12:03

The UA women's basketball team will host its second annual 5K walk/run at 8 a.m. on Oct. 26 on the UA Mall.

Fans will have an opportunity to meet and greet head coach Niya Butts and the 2014-15 team while taking part in some exercise.

All of those who attend will receive a T-shirt, and the top three male and female finishers will be awarded prizes.

Registration is free and available online. Season-ticket holders also are invited to attend an exclusive team brunch immediately after the run, to be held at about 10 a.m. For more information, contact Drew Gaschler at or 520-621-7072.

Video Thumbnail: Category(s): SportsYouTube Video:  Boot Camp V2 Video of Boot Camp V2 Feature Sticky: OffFeature on Front: NoMedium Summary: The price is right (free) at Sunday's 5K to meet the Wildcats, get some exercise and take home a T-shirt. UANow Image: Date of Publication: Monday, October 20, 2014Send to Never Settle Site: 0

Kerrs Pledge $1 Million to UA Athletics

Tue, 10/14/2014 - 16:24

University of Arizona alumni Steve and Margot Kerr have committed $1 million to the University of Arizona to assist with the McKale Center renovation and future academic facility enhancements.

The gift by the couple joins the $6 million lead gift from Cole and Jeannie Davis, a $1 million gift from George Kalil and a number of additional Arizona Athletics donations in support of McKale's Phase I renovation.
"My experience as a student-athlete at the U of A shaped my life and my entire career," said Steve Kerr, now head coach of the NBA's Golden State Warriors. "I am incredibly thankful for the opportunity I was given to be a part of such a special University. This gift reflects my thanks and also my support for all the future student-athletes who will come to Arizona to compete, study and shape their own lives moving forward."
McKale's renovation will impact all 20 of the UA's sports programs and specifically the basketball, volleyball and gymnastics teams, which use McKale as their competition site. Volleyball was the first program to compete in the new-look McKale Center on Sept. 5, and renovations are expected to be complete by the start of the men's basketball regular season, which opens on Nov. 16.
"We are really excited that Steve and Margot have decided to show this kind of support for Arizona Athletics," said Greg Byrne, UA director of athletics.

"Steve is one of the icons of our athletics department and he has been such a great ambassador for this program throughout his professional career," Byrne said. "We know McKale is a special place to him and his family and we’re thrilled that they could be involved in this renovation. It’s even more exciting that an athletics alum has provided this level of commitment and we believe it will lead to even more former student-athletes getting involved."
The first aspect of the renovation project was completed in early 2014 with the installation of a state-of-the-art, high-definition scoreboard. The new version features four, 19x11 video screens totaling 836 square feet, which is more than two-and-a-half times larger than the previous board, a static ring on top for promotional opportunities and two LED rings.
"Just as Steve Kerr wowed University of Arizona fans with his leadership on the basketball court, his generosity will inspire others," UA President Ann Weaver Hart said. "This generous gift from Steve and Margot reflects their passion for sport and will benefit aspiring basketball players and other student-athletes, as well as our loyal UA fans who cheer them."
Phase I of the renovation began in May and includes upgraded seating, hand rails, enhanced lighting and a new playing floor. In addition, the renovation addresses amenities and upgrades that include men's and women's locker rooms, concessions and restrooms.
"I would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Steve and Margot for their incredible generosity and continued support of our program," said Sean Miller, head coach for men’s basketball. "Steve’s basketball career is extraordinary on so many levels. However, his qualities as a person and the qualities of his family are equally exemplary. Today’s gift epitomizes the reasons that we take so much pride in referring to Arizona basketball as 'A Player’s Program.'"
Upgrades and renovations to McKale and other campus facilities are an integral part of Arizona NOW, the UA's $1.5 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign launched in April.

McKale's positive impact on UA's student-athletes, and its ability as a premier Tucson venue to unite the community in support of the Wildcats, positions it as a campaign priority. Arizona NOW already has surpassed the $1 billion mark in the first year of its public launch.
"We are incredibly grateful to the Kerrs for their gift to McKale," said James H. Moore Jr., president and CEO of the UA Foundation. "Arizona NOW is thriving with thanks to the generosity and loyalty of donors like Steve and Margot."
The Kerrs join 42 percent of men's basketball letterwinners and nearly 30 percent of all alumni letterwinners who have given back to Arizona Athletics at some point in their lives.
While at Arizona, Kerr left an indelible mark on Arizona basketball in the mid-to-late 1980s, which culminated with the Wildcats' first-ever Final Four in 1988. That group went 35-3 overall (17-1 in what was then the Pacific-10 Conference) in the fifth season for Lute Olson as head coach.
With Kerr on the roster, the UA won two regular-season Pac-10 titles and a conference tournament championship, reaching the NCAA Tournament in each of his last three seasons on the court.

Kerr also earned two first-team All-Pac-10 honors and a pair of Pac-10 All-Academic accolades. He remains Arizona's career leader in three-point field goal percentage with a mark of .573, accomplished during the 1987-88 campaign to set an NCAA single-season record that still stands. Kerr’s jersey is one of only four to have been retired by the Arizona men’s basketball program.
Kerr went on to play for six teams over a 15-year NBA career, including stints in Chicago and San Antonio that led to five NBA championships. Kerr shot better than 45 percent from three-point range over 910 regular-season games and retired as the NBA leader in three-point field goal percentage for a career (.454).

After his retirement as a player, Kerr served as general manager of the Phoenix Suns from 2007-10 and also was a television commentator on NBA and college basketball broadcasts for TNT cable. He was named as coach of the Golden State Warriors in May.

Editor: dougcarrollByline Affiliation: Arizona AthleticsExtra Info: 

Learn more about the campaign for the University of Arizona online.


Arizona Athletics receives no state appropriations or student fees, but does receive 315 tuition waivers annually, authorized by the Arizona Board of Regents. Tuition waivers also are granted to Arizona State University and Nofrthern Arizona University. The athletics department is responsible for the cost of room, board and books to supplement the tuition waivers and is responsible for generating revenues to cover the department’s annual operating costs and budgetary obligations. Additionally, all funds required for new facilities and renovations are provided through the continued support and generosity of athletics department ticket buyers and donors.

Header image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Thanks to donors such as Steve and Margot Kerr, Arizona NOW has surpassed the $1 billion mark in the first year of its public launch.Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

Cooperative Extension Turns 100

Tue, 10/14/2014 - 14:17

The Smith-Lever Act of 1914, signed into law by President Woodrow Wilson, established the Cooperative Extension Services affiliated with the land-grant universities.  The Cooperative Extension of the University of Arizona links the research and expertise of the University with the 15 counties in Arizona.  Research faculty staff each extension center and provide resources to communities across the state.

Video Thumbnail: Category(s): Campus NewsScience and TechnologyTeaching and StudentsYouTube Video:  Cooperative Extension Centennial Video of Cooperative Extension Centennial Feature Sticky: OffFeature on Front: NoMedium Summary: Last weekend's centennial celebration on the UA campus included a "blender bike," and exercise never tasted so good. UANow Image: Date of Publication: Tuesday, October 14, 2014Send to Never Settle Site: 0

Arizona Diamondbacks hire Chip Hale as next manager

Mon, 10/13/2014 - 15:17
Date of Publication: Monday, October 13, 2014 Organization : The Arizona RepublicCategory(s): SportsOther Story Image: Short Summary: Hale, a UA product who still resides in Tucson, spent the first 10 years of his coaching career in the Diamondbacks organization. Include in Olympic coverage: noFeature on olympic page: noMedium Summary: Hale, a UA product who still resides in Tucson, spent the first 10 years of his coaching career in the Diamondbacks organization.

The U.S. is prepared for Ebola, but for only 10 patients at a time

Mon, 10/13/2014 - 14:53
Date of Publication: Monday, October 13, 2014 Organization : Christian PostCategory(s): HealthOther Story Image: Short Summary: Dr. Jane M. Orient, a clinical lecturer in medicine at the UA College of Medicine, explains in this op-ed how prepared the U.S. Is for additional Ebola cases. Include in Olympic coverage: noFeature on olympic page: noMedium Summary: Dr. Jane M. Orient, a clinical lecturer in medicine at the UA College of Medicine, explains in this op-ed how prepared the U.S. Is for additional Ebola cases.

Old Main's Open House

Mon, 10/13/2014 - 14:15

An official ribbon-cutting, led by UA President Ann Weaver Hart, kicked off a public tour of Old Main on Oct. 8. The praiseworthy restoration maintains the legacy of Old Main yet brings the building into the 21st century with updated lighting, stately woodwork and an awe-inspiring cruciform gallery space.  

Video Thumbnail: Category(s): Campus NewsYouTube Video:  Old Main Open House Video of Old Main Open House Feature Sticky: OffFeature on Front: YesMedium Summary: It's 123 years old, but you'd never know that. Hear what those attending an Oct. 8 celebration had to say about the UA icon's timeless beauty. UANow Image: Date of Publication: Monday, October 13, 2014Send to Never Settle Site: 0

UA assistant professor selected as one of 12 national scholars

Mon, 10/13/2014 - 13:35
Date of Publication: Friday, October 10, 2014 Organization : KOLD-TVCategory(s): HealthOther Story Image: Short Summary: Sheila Gephart, an assistant professor in the UA College of Nursing, is one of 12 educators to be named a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar. Include in Olympic coverage: noFeature on olympic page: noMedium Summary: Sheila Gephart, an assistant professor in the UA College of Nursing, is one of 12 educators to be named a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Nurse Faculty Scholar.

4-H Students Have a Blastoff With UA-Designed Experiment

Mon, 10/13/2014 - 12:51

It's not every day that NASA scientists ask kids to design and launch rockets that could deliver food to inhabitants on a storm-ravaged, isolated Pacific island.

On Oct. 8, thousands of young students across the country took up that challenge as part of 4-H's 2014 National Youth Science Day. The event is held annually to encourage student involvement in STEM-related fields. Each year, 4-H'ers nationwide participate in the same science experiment.

"4-H is more than cows and cooking," said Kirk Astroth, director of Arizona 4-H Youth Development. "Everything we do is about science. We try to keep up with the changing needs and interests of kids – we teach app development, photography, GPS and rocketry."

This year's experiment, called "Rockets to the Rescue," was designed by UA Cooperative Extension and Arizona 4-H Youth Development, in collaboration with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences' Department of Nutritional Sciences, the College of Engineering, the College of Education, the UA STEM Learning Center, Flandrau Science Center & Planetarium, Northern Arizona University's Center for Science Teaching and Learning, Raytheon Inc. and the Arizona Center for Afterschool Excellence.

More than 900 Rockets to the Rescue events were registered, including several in Italy and the United Kingdom.

Nearly 100 4-H'ers participated in National Youth Science Day at the UA's Campus Agricultural Center. At the event, they were challenged by NASA scientists to design rockets that could safely deliver high-energy food to a starving population stranded on a fictional, typhoon-ravaged Pacific island.

"Rockets to the Rescue teaches kids about aerospace engineering, nutritional sciences and consumer economics," Astroth said. "This is much bigger than any of our previous experiments – it really grabs kids' imaginations."

The fictional scenario took a very real turn when typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines last November, a month after Rockets to the Rescue was conceived. Aid workers struggled to get adequate nutrition to survivors on isolated islands. The death toll exceeded 6,000.

"When people think about starving populations, they think about food shortages, but it's more of a food-delivery issue than it is a quantity issue," Astroth said. "We wanted the kids to think about how they could safely deliver food to people while it's still fresh."

At the start of the event, teams of two were formed and given about 20 minutes to design their rockets using simple materials such as PVC pipe, paper, tape, string, cotton balls and plastic bags. Aside from a few basic instructions, 4-H'ers were free to create their rockets in any fashion.

The young engineers had to consider variables such as the rocket's launch angle and weight, as well as the nutrient density and cost efficiency of the payload.  The rockets were then launched at a target 30 feet away.

"In this experiment, there's no right answer," explained Eric Larsen, a Pima County 4-H Youth Development agent who aided in the experiment's design. "There are millions of possibilities. We're not prescribing kids the right way to do it, we're asking them, 'What do you think is the right way?' Then we let them find the answer themselves."

Before launching, each team had the opportunity to present its rocket design to the rest of the group and explain how it intended to reach the target. The exercise reflected how real scientists and engineers have to communicate their designs and experiments to others.

Then came the big launch. Dozens of multicolored rockets of all shapes and sizes soared across the Agricultural Center's livestock arena. After each launch, 4-H'ers recovered their rockets and returned to the drawing board, altering their designs to make them more effective. After a few rounds of experimentation, nearly every team was hitting the target.

"This truly is inquiry-based learning," Astroth said. "Letting the kids have the experience before you tell them what to do is how you stimulate creativity."

This year's event also collaborated with NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center in California as part of an agency-wide Summer of Innovation program. The goal of the program is to engage and train the next generation of STEM leaders. Armstrong's director of education, Karla Shy, worked with Astroth and colleagues to develop the experiment and attended the Oct. 8 event at the UA.

"It's amazing to see the kids thinking through the problem and discovering what they can do," Shy said. "They change one variable at a time, and they keep getting better and better."

Astroth and Shy emphasized that the most effective way to bring STEM education to as many students as possible is to train other educators. Astroth, who has trained 150 4-H leaders in Arizona alone, recently traveled to New York to train YMCA directors to host events at more than 200 different sites. He even made a trip to Nepal to perform the Rockets to the Rescue experiment with local youth and their leaders.

The 4-H experience offers youth access to world-class UA faculty and facilities, Astroth said. He said he hopes eventually to offer college credit through 4-H activities for those interested in attending the UA.

"4-H is your first class from the University of Arizona," he said.

The organizers' enthusiasm was matched by that of the participants.

"Experiments like this keep you on your feet and keep you thinking," said Elizabeth Young, 17, who hopes to attend the UA next year. "4-H is a great program. There's something for everyone."

"I've always had a thing for rockets, they're really cool," said Rory Maciulla, 10, who also has participated in photography projects and raising livestock. "4-H is a really good thing. There's so many things I like to do. I'm definitely going to keep coming back."

Editor: dougcarrollWriter: Raymond SanchezByline: Raymond Sanchez, NASA Space Grant internByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Thousands all over the United States and in Europe participated in a rocket experiment for 4-H National Youth Science Day.Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

A New Map to Medical School

Fri, 10/10/2014 - 20:09

Lacy Manuelito grew up in Fort Defiance, Arizona, on the Navajo Nation, knowing that she wanted to be a doctor. The first in her family to graduate from college, she holds a bachelor’s degree in family relations and human development from the University of New Mexico.

Now married with a 3-year-old daughter, she is gearing up for the medical school admissions test that will determine whether her dream will come true. Manuelito is one of 10 students enrolled in a new program at the University of Arizona College of Medicine — Tucson to help some of the brightest and most deserving students reach their goal of becoming doctors.

Called P-MAP,  for Pre-Medical Admissions Pathway, the one-year program is open to students who have not had the educational and economic advantages that help students get accepted to medical school and cope with its rigorous curriculum. Yet their character, commitment and academic record make them outstanding candidates. P-MAP was launched in May by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the UA College of Medicine — Tucson.

“We know these students are very bright,” says Dr. Francisco Moreno, deputy dean for diversity and inclusion. “We know they are going to serve their communities well. We know they are going to be awesome role models. They just may not have had the opportunities or the different kinds of experiences that our admissions committee wants to see.”

P-MAP is open to students who are Arizona residents, with preference given to those who are socioeconomically disadvantaged, first-generation college students, from rural or border communities, or enrolled in Indian tribes. Preference also is given to students who speak Spanish or Navajo, the most commonly spoken Native American language in Arizona. Most P-MAP students meet more than one of these criteria.

Students who complete the P-MAP coursework and score highly on the medical college admissions test are guaranteed admission to the UA College of Medicine — Tucson in August 2015.

P-MAP illustrates the college’s strong emphasis on increasing the diversity of its students. Two of the first 10 students are immigrants from Africa, three are Hispanic, three are Native American, and two are Native American and Hispanic.

Of all the under-represented minority groups, Native Americans face the most severe shortage of physicians, says Dr. Carlos Gonzales, professor of family and community medicine and assistant dean for medical student education, who is of Mexican and Pascua Yaqui descent. The first in his family to go to college, Gonzales is the mentor for P-MAP students.

“There is tremendous need for Native American physicians who understand the culture and are sensitive to the needs of the population,” he says. “In my view, this is one of the best things this college has ever done.”

Says Manuelito: “I definitely want to go back to the (Navajo) reservation. The turnover rate of doctors on the reservation is very frustrating. There is very little continuity of care, and that’s been my motivation for wanting to be a doctor there.”

Sylvestor Moses, a member of the San Carlos Apache tribe, is a single parent with a 10-year-old son, joint doctorates from the UA in biochemistry and molecular and cellular biology, and experience in cancer research. He now wants to be a doctor.

“I believe that in becoming a physician, I not only can provide health care to my San Carlos Apache community, but I can serve as a role model for our Apache youth,” he says.

Moses was accepted for P-MAP because he has been out of school for several years and, despite his research background, he has had no opportunity to volunteer in a clinical setting — experience that medical school applicants are expected to have. He also will mentor the P-MAP students who are studying for a health-related master’s degree — an important asset for students wanting to enter medical school.

Marisela Mariscal is a member of New Mexico’s Pueblo Laguna tribe and also of Hispanic descent. Raised in Tucson, she is the first in her family to get a college education, holding a bachelor’s degree in physiology from the UA. She has known since high school that she wanted to be a doctor.

“I am interested in working on Native reservations, but I’m passionate about working with underserved populations in general,” Mariscal says. “Too many people can’t afford to get treated or get regular checkups. I experienced that growing up.”

P-MAP is funded in part through a U.S. Health Resources Services Administration grant that pays for a counselor and other needed staff and makes some scholarships possible. Donors will be critically important to P-MAP.

“All 10 of our students are very desirable applicants for medical school,” Moreno says, “but we don’t have enough money to provide scholarships for all our students.”

The Tucson-based Stoklos Family Foundation has provided scholarships for the college’s Native American students for more than 12 years — and has provided scholarships for some of P-MAP’s first 10 students.

“I think this is a great investment in our future,” Michael Stoklos says.

Additional support will be needed when the P-MAP students enroll in the UA College of Medicine — Tucson. For some of the Native American students, financial aid will come from their tribes or the U.S. Indian Health Service. But all 10 P-MAP students will be pressed to cover the cost of their medical education — which will amount to $150,000 or more by the time they graduate in 2019. Student loans are an option, but they impose a huge debt on new doctors.

Larry Testasecca of Louisville, Ky., loves Arizona and is a passionate supporter of Native American students who attend the UA and want to enter medicine and other health-related professions. He also is a P-MAP supporter.

“I believe this is not a handout but a hand up for these young students,” he says. “I am honored to be a donor to this program.”

For more information about P-MAP, visit the To learn how you can help support P-MAP, contact the UA College of Medicine Office of Development, 520-626-2827, or email

Editor: dougcarrollWriter: Jane EriksonByline: Jane EriksonByline Affiliation: UA College of Medicine – TucsonHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: P-MAP program of UA's College of Medicine addresses student diversity and a physician shortage among minorities, particularly Native Americans.Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

Alison Deming Celebrates 'the Long Story of Human Life'

Fri, 10/10/2014 - 19:04

Alison Hawthorne Deming turns back into a student when she reads writers such as Rachel Carson, James Baldwin and Joan Didion. Environmentally inclined or otherwise, they have influenced the University of Arizona creative writing professor.

She wonders: How do they create the self as a character in the work? How do they frame the personal journey within a cultural context? How do they combine science smarts with a sensual engagement with experience? 

Those are some of the details that Deming seeks to absorb from the masters, but readers would do well to visit her own work and see such questions answered with grace and skill.

Deming's "Zoologies: On Animals and the Human Spirit," an essay compilation, was released on Oct. 1 by Milkweed Editions. Since her first book, the Walt Whitman Award-winning "Science and Other Poems" in 1994, she repeatedly has returned to the complicated bond between people and their planet.

“I have a Ripley’s Believe-It-or-Not relationship with science,” Deming says. “Reading (science) or hanging out with people who do science keeps me going. And in this time of so many diminishments to nature and culture, science is necessary to understand our situation and work toward a more just and sustainable future.

“As a writer, my intentions are not didactic. That's for the classroom. But my writing is fed by the excitement I find in research—intellectual adventuring—and I want that energy of discovery to be apparent in the work and to become contagious in my readers.”

"Zoologies" expounds on wildlife in all its dizzying diversity: crane broods and ant colonies, felines foreign (cheetahs) and familiar (house cats), species that make up the tragicomedy of our imperiled environmental heritage.

The compilation "continues my fascination with the long story of human life and its relationship with our fellow creatures on the planet,” Deming says. “It asks: What is the place of animals in the human imagination? How have art and science, mythology and religion, all contributed to our understanding of animals? In terms of craft, the book explores the short essay as a form, bringing some of poetry's compression to bear upon prose.”

The book, her 10th, already has garnered favorable reviews. Novelist Scott Russell Sanders referred to the text as “artful essays” penned by “a brilliant guide in a dark time.” Publishers Weekly wrote: “Deming’s writing is both precise and intricate, allowing her to gracefully transition from natural history to memoir. This articulate compilation is highly recommended for lovers of words and nature.”

Deming’s earlier work received a Pushcart Prize and two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts. She recently completed a book of poetry, "Stairway to Heaven," and is working on what she calls “a cultural memoir” of her grandmother and great-grandmother, who worked as dressmakers in New York in the Gilded Age (late 19th century).

Both of those projects are typical of her investment in the past and appreciation for a diversity of forms.

“To be a writer is to try to convey what it's like to be alive at this time in history as opposed to any other,” Deming says. “We're part of that long continuity, just as we're part of the long story of evolution. And some consolation, some freedom from the burdens of self, comes from knowing such things, from writing one's way into them.”

Deming recently was named as one of the inaugural Agnese Nelms Haury Chairs in Environment and Social Justice. The initiative, which recognizes top faculty whose work involves the environment, social justice and/or the Southwest, is part of a broader program under the Haury banner that will "foster the kinds of interdisciplinary scholarship and community engagement that can really make a difference in this time of great challenge,” Deming says.

Although Deming is not directly involved this year, several others from the UA College of Humanities are part of Humanities Week from Oct. 13-17. Faculty will deliver talks heavily focused on women and gender issues. Topics range from the femininity of Japanese Harajuku girls to images of cosmopolitan women during the German Weimar Republic. For more information on Humanities Week, click here.

Editor: dougcarrollWriter: Candice ChildressByline: Candice Childress Byline Affiliation: College of Social and Behavioral SciencesHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Her new essay compilation, "Zoologies: On Animals and the Human Spirit," is already getting positive reviews for the UA author and creative writing professor.Include in UANow: yesInclude in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: 

Barney Frank to Speak at UA College of Law

Fri, 10/10/2014 - 17:44

"Why We Need More Government and How We Can Pay for It" will be the subject of the 2014 McCormick Lecture to be given by former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 16 at the James E. Rogers College of Law on the University of Arizona campus. 

The event, hosted by the J. Byron McCormick Society for Law and Public Affairs, is free and open to the public. Space is limited, and registration is required at 

Frank served as a congressman from Massachusetts for more than three decades, starting in 1981. An outspoken and respected legislator known for his keen sense of humor, Frank played a key role in some of the most important legislation of the country's recent history, including the repeal in 2011 of "don't ask, don't tell," the official U.S. policy on service by gays and lesbians in the military instituted by the Clinton administration in 1994.

As chair of the House Financial Services Committee from 2007 to 2011, Frank helped craft the compromise bill to slow the tide of home mortgage foreclosures in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis, as well as the subsequent $550 billion rescue plan and the landmark Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act — the sweeping set of regulatory reforms named partly after Frank and signed into law in July 2010, to prevent the recurrence of the financial crisis.

Frank also led the passage of the Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights Act, a measure lauded by consumer advocates, and fought to preserve affordable rental housing, as well as to reduce military spending in favor of providing for important quality-of-life needs at home.

Frank graduated from Harvard University in 1962 and went on to pursue a Ph.D. He left before completing the degree to take a position as chief assistant to Boston Mayor Kevin White in 1968. Frank won a seat in the Massachusetts Legislature in 1972 and went on to become a national leader of the LGBT rights movement, introducing the state's first two gay-rights bills in 1973.

Priority seating in Ares Auditorium is available for members of the McCormick Society, invited guests and law students with confirmed reservations. An informal reception will follow Frank's talk, which is scheduled for one hour.

Byline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsWhat: Barney Frank lecture, "Why We Need More Government and How We Can Pay for It"Where: Ares Auditorium, James E. Rogers College of Law, 1201 E. Speedway Blvd.When: 5:30-6:30 p.m. Oct. 16Header image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Longtime Massachusetts congressman played a key role in some of the country's most important legislation of the past 10 years.Include in UANow: 0Include in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: no

What's the Future of International Higher Ed?

Fri, 10/10/2014 - 15:37

Technology and student exchanges are key to the future of international higher education, according to education, government and industry representatives who met at last week at a UA-hosted conference.

The University of Arizona Office of Global Initiatives hosted the 16th Consortium for North American Higher Education Collaboration Conference Oct. 8-10 to identify ways higher education institutions, governments and businesses can work together to address global challenges.

Also known as CONAHEC, the consortium is a nonprofit network of approximately 180 higher-education institutions from the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as a select group of institutions from around the world. Its mission is to foster academic collaboration among institutions, organizations and agencies of higher education in Canada, Mexico and the United States. CONAHEC also promotes linkages between North America and higher-education entities around the world.

"My view is the conference went really well," said Mike Proctor, UA vice president for global initiatives. "There's really an awakening of the importance of global relationships in higher education. There's much more sustenance taking place now. Governments are mostly working with higher education to facilitate interactions. This conference was a great expression of that."

The conference coincided with the CONAHEC's 20th year of operation, and the next 20 years of international higher education was a big focus of many discussions.

On Friday, a panel of representatives from organizations in the United States, Mexico and Canada discussed their thoughts on the future of higher education during the conference's closing plenary session.

"We all know we live in a rapidly globalizing world," said Maurits van Rooijen, president of the Compostela Group of Universities, a nonprofit organization based in Spain that promotes and executes collaborations between higher-education institutions around the world. "Higher education, with simple common sense, cannot be immune to globalization. ... On the contrary, we should not want to be immune to that. We should be at the cutting edge of it."

Van Rooijen emphasized that collaborations among universities across the globe will be necessary to help students succeed.

"A major theme, obviously, for the next 20 years plus is globalization," he said. "It's not a fashion, it's not something which will pass by. Higher education and globalization will have to have direct interaction if we as educators want to stay relevant to what is happening in the world. ... Together, we are stronger than as individual institutions."

John E. Fowler, assistant director of the State University of New York Center for Collaborative Online Learning, said that student exchange programs still prove to be the most common way for institutions to encourage their students to get international experience, although improving access to such programs will be key in the future.

"As we've heard throughout the couple of days here, study abroad remains the flagship activity that we go about to bring those international perspectives to our students," Fowler said. "The vast majority of our students do not get such an experience. ... We also look towards bringing international students onto our campuses to internationalize our campus environment, but we all know there's challenge inherent in getting them to interact on a deep level with our local student populations."

In addition to study-abroad programs, technology also will prove crucial to helping students secure such experiences.

"I feel quite strongly that the influences of technology on how we deliver education – how we deliver international education – is still in its infancy," he said. "We think, as we look forward to the next 20 years, that technology can really be a transformative power in the way we deliver international education to our students."

Editor: dougcarrollByline: Amanda BallardByline Affiliation: University Relations - CommunicationsHeader image: YesNo Image: Subheading: Last week, the UA Office of Global Initiatives hosted the 16th Consortium for North American Higher Education Collaboration Conference to identify ways for higher-education institutions, government and business to address global challenges.Include in UANow: 0Include in Olympic Coverage: noFeature on Olympic Page: noUANow Image: