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News in Brief

AROUND CAMPUS

DISCOVERIES

TRANSITIONS

 

AROUND CAMPUS

University to hold public forum on relocation of Hancher/Voxman/Clapp complex

The University of Iowa will host a public forum on relocating the Hancher Auditorium/Voxman Music Building/Clapp Recital Hall complex, as well as the original Art Building complex, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Thursday, July 9, in Macbride Hall on the UI campus.

This public forum will provide an update on progress related to the relocation of the aforementioned facilities. Joe Hibbard of Sasaki and Associates will facilitate the forum and present information on various site options.

All concerned citizens; UI faculty, staff, and students; media; and other interested parties are invited to attend the forum. Ongoing site investigations will be reviewed and public comment will be welcomed.

Following evaluation by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, in April endorsed the plan to replace the 2008 flood-damaged Hancher/Voxman/Clapp complex, as well as the original Art Building complex on the UI arts campus.

 

New episode of Iowa Insights podcast available

  Iowa Insights logo
   

The University of Iowa Office of University Relations has released the June episode of Iowa Insights, a monthly podcast featuring interviews with some of the world's leading thinkers, researchers, and teachers.

The July 2009 edition features interviews with UI director of sustainability Liz Christiansen discussing what sustainability means to her and what the University is doing in this field; English professor Robin Hemley, director of the UI Nonfiction Writing Program, talking about reliving experiences he botched as a kid for his book Do-Over!; and engineering dean P. Barry Butler talking about the College of Engineering’s leadership role in the Iowa Alliance for Wind Innovation and Novel Development, or IAWIND.

The podcast may be heard online, downloaded to an mp3 player, or subscribed to via iTunes and RSS (Real Simple Syndication) readers. To listen, or for more information, visit http://news.uiowa.edu/iowa-insights.

 

UI Libraries digitizes collection of historic scores

A collection of musical scores by French composer and music publisher Ignaz Pleyel (1757–1831) is now available online in the Iowa Digital Library.

The Rita Benton Music Library at The University of Iowa has released the Ignaz Pleyel Early Editions Digital Collection, which is located at http://digital.lib.uiowa.edu/pleyel.

This collection of nearly 250 early printed and manuscript scores represents in entirety the music library’s holdings of Pleyel’s work. It consists primarily of keyboard and chamber music, including arrangements of large orchestral works. Also included in the collection are songs with keyboard accompaniment and method books providing instruction in certain instruments.

This collection is one of many in the Iowa Digital Library at http://digital.lib.uiowa.edu/, which contains more than 250,000 digital photographs, maps, sound recordings, and documents from libraries and archives at the University and their partnering institutions.

 

UI earns "Best Buy" designation in new Fiske Guide

The Fiske Guide to Colleges 2010 has named The University of Iowa one of its 44 “Best Buy” universities.

The University of Iowa is one of 20 public colleges from across the country selected as “Best Buys” and is the only Big Ten university to have the title. Two other Iowa institutions, Iowa State University and Cornell College in Mount Vernon, are also included in the “Best Buy” list.

The Fiske Guide does not rank universities numerically, but assesses the strengths and weaknesses of more than 330 colleges and universities in the United States, Canada, and Great Britain. The 44 “Best Buy” selections were based on the quality of academic offerings in relation to the cost of attendance. To determine the list, Fiske researchers combined the cost data with academic and other lifestyle information about each college and university to determine what institutions offer really remarkable educational opportunities at a relatively modest cost.

The University of Iowa has been named a Best Buy in the past five Fiske Guides, in addition to several nods in past years.

For more information on the Fiske Guide, visit http://www.sourcebookscollege.com and http://fiskeguide.com.

 

UI Children’s Hospital program is ranked by U.S. News & World Report

University of Iowa Children’s Hospital has been ranked 25th in the nation for the specialty area of kidney disorders by U.S. News & World Report’s 2009 edition of America’s Best Children’s Hospitals.

Full ranking information will be published online at www.usnews.com/childrenshospitals and featured in the August issue of U.S. News & World Report, available on newsstands starting July 21.

The 2009 America’s Best Children’s Hospitals is the most extensive listing of its kind and rates the nation’s top 30 hospitals in general pediatrics and six pediatric specialties.

The specialty rankings in America’s Best Children’s Hospitals are based on a methodology that weighs a combination of reputation, outcome, and care-related measures such as nursing care, advanced technology, credentialing, and other factors. A detailed description of the methodology can be found at www.usnews.com/childrenshospitals.

Earlier this year, UI Children’s Hospital was ranked 20th in the nation by Parents magazine. For more information about that ranking, see http://www.news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/January/010509childrens_hosp_rankings.html.

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/061809hospitalranked.html.

 

Faculty members receive Collegiate Teaching Awards

Eighteen University of Iowa faculty members have received Collegiate Teaching Awards for the 2008–09 academic year.

The awards represent the highest honor a college bestows on its faculty for excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching.

The recipients of the 2008–09 Collegiate Teaching Awards are:

  • Ty Leverty, Henry B. Tippie College of Business
  • Teresa Marshall, College of Dentistry
  • Saba Rasheed Ali, College of Education
  • Gary Christensen, College of Engineering
  • Michelle Falkoff and Larry Ward, College of Law
  • Margaret Beck, Frauke Bleher, Michael Dailey, Priya Kumar, and Mary Trachsel, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
  • Lisa Antes, Steven Craig, Adrian Elcock, and Jill Endres, Carver College of Medicine
  • Howard Butcher, College of Nursing
  • John Swegle, College of Pharmacy
  • Kelly Donham, College of Public Health

To read brief biographical sketches of each Collegiate Teaching Award recipient, go to  http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/061809collegiateteachingawards.html.

 

College of Public Health honors Chaloner for community engagement

Kathryn Chaloner, professor and head of the Department of Biostatistics in the University of Iowa College of Public Health, has received the college’s award for faculty achievement in community engagement.

The award, conferred annually by the College of Public Health Board of Advisors, recognizes a faculty member for application of theory, research, and practice to address public health challenges at the community level. 

Chaloner is chair of the College of Public Health Diversity Committee, an advisory body to the collegiate administration. Chaloner played a key role in founding the Biostatistics Summer Initiative, a seven-week program that provides biostatistical training and applied research opportunities for underrepresented minority students. The program is offered by the UI Department of Biostatistics in conjunction with the National Alliance for Doctoral Studies in the Mathematical Sciences. 

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/062909chaloner.html.

 

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle selected for “One Community, One Book” project

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year in Food Life by Barbara Kingsolver, with Steven L. Hopp and Camille Kingsolver, is the 2009 selection for “One Community, One Book.”

The project promotes insights on human rights in the United States and across the globe and is coordinated by the University of Iowa Center for Human Rights (UICHR) in conjunction with other sponsoring organizations from Johnson County and the University.

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle tells the story of how Kingsolver and her family for one year deliberately ate food produced in the place where they live. Kingsolver wrote the central narrative, and her husband, Steven Hopp, wrote in-depth sidebars about various aspects of food-production science and industry. Kingsolver’s 19-year-old daughter, Camille, wrote brief essays on the local-food project, plus nutritional information, meal plans, and recipes.

The “One Community, One Book” project will run from mid-September through mid-November. Teachers, students, librarians, book groups, and others are encouraged to participate. By announcing the selection now, the project sponsors hope to allow time for groups to read the book and participate in fall community discussion forums, and for teachers to plan classroom discussions around the book.

 

Writers’ Workshop alum Albert Goldbarth to read July 10

Prolific Kansas poet Albert Goldbarth, a graduate of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, will read from To Be Read in 500 Years at 7 p.m., Friday, July 10, in Prairie Lights Books, 15 South Dubuque Street in downtown Iowa City.

The free event will be streamed live and then archived on the Writing University Web site: http://writinguniversity.uiowa.edu.

Goldbarth, who has been described as “one of America’s most original and entertaining poets,” is the author of more than 25 books of poetry, including The Kitchen Sink, a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; and Budget Travel Through Space and Time.

 

Elevenses Hour opens the Iowa Summer Writing Festival to the public

The Elevenses Literary Hour opens the Iowa Summer Writing Festival to the public, with free presentations of interest to writers by festival faculty at 11 a.m. every weekday that the festival is in session, in Room 101 of the University of Iowa Biology Building East.

Weeklong sessions of the Iowa Summer Writing Festival began June 7, with weekly sessions every week through July 20–24, with the exception of Independence Day week.

Elevenses presentations might include aspects of craft, of process, of the writing life or of publishing. There will be a different presenter each day. Fridays in the Elevenses series are reserved for a faculty reading.

For more information call 319-335-4160 or e-mail iswfestival@uiowa.edu.

 

We'll drink to that: UI water quality report sparkles

University of Iowa Facilities Management has announced that the 2008 Water Quality Report indicates that the University's drinking water is of good quality and meets all regulatory requirements at this time.

The report can be viewed at www.facilities.uiowa.edu/uem/reports/CCR08.pdf, or a copy may be obtained by calling the Water Plant at 319-335-5168.

 

State Fair booth needs volunteers

University Relations is inviting faculty and staff members to volunteer for the University's exhibit at the Iowa State Fair Aug. 13–23 in Des Moines.

Volunteers are needed for a variety of tasks: answering general questions, distributing posters and other items, and applying temporary Hawkeye tattoos to visitors. The UI booth is located in the air-conditioned Varied Industries Building at the fairgrounds.

Shifts are four hours each: 9 a.m.–1 p.m., 1–5 p.m., and 5–9 p.m. Fair admission, parking passes, and a “Be Remarkable” T-shirt will be provided.

For more information or to sign up for a shift, see the UI State Fair web site at www.uiowa.edu/statefair/volunteers or contact George McCrory at 319-384-0012 or george-mccrory@uiowa.edu.

 

Holden Cancer Center monthly cancer tip: Understanding sunscreen SPF ratings

UVB and UVA rays can damage skin and cause cancer. UVB rays cause redness or sunburn, while UVA rays cause wrinkles and other aging of the skin.

Most sunscreens provide protection from UVB rays, but not all protect against UVA rays. The SPF, or Sun Protection Factor, rating indicates how well a product protects skin from UVB rays. Dermatologists recommend daily use of a sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher.

The SPF system, however, does not indicate how much a sunscreen protects against UVA rays. Check the ingredient list for zinc oxide and titanium dioxide—two blockers that are stable and protect well against UVA rays. Two other UVA blockers commonly used in sunscreen, avobenzone and Mexoryl SX, can be unstable and break down easily in the sun.

To learn more, visit http://tiny.cc/holdensunscreen or contact Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center/Cancer Information Service at the University at 800-237-1225 or visit http://uihealthcare.com/cancer.

 

See what Learning and Development courses are right for you

UI Learning and Development, a unit of Organizational Effectiveness, provides professional development services to faculty and staff. There are many learning opportunities that will support your professional development and growth. Look for classroom instruction on leadership issues for managers, frontline supervisors, human resource professionals, and office professionals.

Check out the following links:

  • To see the latest online newsletter, with listings of current courses and seminars, visit www.uiowa.edu/learn/current.pdf.
  • For registration information, log in at the UI Human Resources Self Service site at https://hris.uiowa.edu/portal/index.php and click the “My Training” link to register for any available session. This tool will let you see the status and location of a class, get e-mail confirmations, withdraw from a class, check your course registration history, and even do online evaluations. Courses with a fee (Special Events, 7 Habits, Reframing Your Work) will use the printable registration form.
  • To visit Learning and Development's home page, go to www.uiowa.edu/~fusstfdv.

 

DISCOVERIES

UI anthropologist: Fossil may be from mystery ape rather than early human

In an essay that appears in the opinion section of the June 18 issue of the journal Nature, Russell L. Ciochon, professor and chair of anthropology in the University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, writes that a 1.9-million-year-old fossilized jaw fragment from Longgupo in Sichuan province, China, described by Ciochon and colleagues as early human in a Nature paper 14 years ago, may actually be from an unknown species of ape.

The 1995 paper suggested that a distinctly African species of early human arrived to Southeast Asia, and then evolved locally to become Homo erectus. Now, Ciochon believes that Homo erectus arrived from the west (likely Africa), and that the more primitive fossil in China represents a chimpanzee-sized local ape.

Ciochon changed his mind for three reasons. First, new dates make some southeast Asian Homo erectus fossils nearly as old as the more primitive Longgupo jaw. Second, he and Southeast Asian colleagues are finding more Longgupo-like fossils that are definitively ape. Third, after a decade of work on Homo erectus fossils from Java by Ciochon, it became clear that the Longgupo jaw fragment did not fit the early human dental pattern.

But if the fossil is from an unknown ape, it raises a new question: Is there only one mystery ape or possibly more?

Ciochon writes that the next step is to consider the fossil together with other, similar mystery ape fossils to see how they fit into the evolutionary history of the range of Southeast Asian apes.

 

Survey reveals health effects of 2008 floods on UI students

The historic floods of 2008 hit the University of Iowa campus hard, closing buildings, halting classes, and displacing numerous programs and departments. Because natural disasters can have significant health effects on affected populations, researchers from the UI Injury Prevention Research Center distributed a University-wide survey to better understand students’ flood experiences and the impact on health.

Led by Marizen Ramirez, assistant professor of occupational and environmental health in the UI College of Public Health, the online survey was administered to 10,500 summer-enrolled UI students from July through August 2008. A total of 1,404 students participated in the survey.

The results show that a majority of UI students were affected in some way by the floods, including:

• 55 percent reported UI buildings they frequented were damaged by the flood.
• 54 percent reported their job was disrupted or lost because of the flood.
• 33 percent indicated the residences of family or friends were damaged.
• 21 percent moved temporarily or permanently due to the flood.
• 13 percent were forced to evacuate their residence.
• 6 percent reported their residence (dormitory or non-university housing) suffered damage.

The survey also asked about the health impacts of the flood. Although few students (3 percent) reported physical injury during the flood, the toll on mental health was greater. The researchers found that 7 percent of the respondents had symptoms consistent with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

The most commonly reported PTSD symptom was feeling emotionally upset, which was experienced half the time or almost always by nearly 12 percent of students. About 7 percent of students indicated increased drug and/or alcohol use after the flood.

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/061509flood-survey.html.

 

Increased household endotoxin associated with poverty, people, pets

People with asthma often pay close attention to potential allergens lurking outdoors, but University of Iowa research shows they also may want to be wary of dust indoors that can contain endotoxin, a potent inflammatory agent that is a component of many types of bacteria.

A nationwide study of household dust has identified a number of factors associated with increased residential endotoxin, including poverty, people, pets, cleanliness, and geography. The findings appear in the May 2009 issue of Environmental Health Perspectives.

As part of the National Survey of Lead and Allergens in Housing, more than 2,500 dust samples were collected from multiple locations within more than 800 housing units nationwide. Researchers at the UI Environmental Health Sciences Research Center and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences examined the samples for endotoxin, which is thought to trigger asthma and asthma-related symptoms.

Notably, the study found increased occupancy had a very strong relationship with increased endotoxin, particularly in family room floor samples. Presence of children was also a factor, increasing endotoxin in samples from bedroom floors, family room floors, and bedding. Pet ownership was also significantly associated with endotoxin.

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/062409endotoxin.html.

 

Report examines racial disparities in children’s health care in Iowa

In a recent report, the University of Iowa Public Policy Center and the Iowa Department of Public Health investigated how race and ethnicity are related to children’s health disparities in Iowa. The research team found that children with Spanish-speaking parents were most likely to report problems accessing medical and dental care.

This report is based on data from the Iowa Child and Family Household Health Survey, which was completed in 2005. Researchers conducted telephone interviews with more than 3,600 families with children in Iowa, including a special sampling of Hispanic and African-American families. The telephone interviews were conducted by the University of Northern Iowa’s Center for Social and Behavioral Research.

According to the survey, children whose parents completed the interview in Spanish had the lowest overall health and oral health status. It is believed that choosing to complete the interview in Spanish may indicate respondents who are less acculturated to Iowa and the health care system. Also, parents in this group were less likely to believe their children were in need of medical care. These children were significantly more likely to be uninsured (almost one in three) and rated their insurance lower if they did have coverage.

On the other hand, children with Spanish-speaking parents were more likely to have healthier habits such as being more physically active and spending less time watching TV or being on the computer. They were also more likely to have had counseling in preventative health care and were less likely to have behavioral problems, the report concluded.

For the complete report, see http://ppc.uiowa.edu/health/ICHHS/iowachild2005/2009DisparitiesIPHA.pdf.

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/061809reporthealthcare.html.

 

TRANSITIONS

Jacob Yarrow is named programming director for Hancher Auditorium

Jacob Yarrow, executive director of the Garth Newel Music Center in rural Bath County, Va., has been named programming director for the University of Iowa Hancher Auditorium. Yarrow will begin his duties with Hancher Aug. 17.

Yarrow succeeds Judith Hurtig, who retires as Hancher’s artistic director June 30.

Yarrow served as executive director of the Garth Newel Music Center and managed the music center’s resident ensemble, the Garth Newel Piano Quartet. He was previously education director for the Association of Performing Arts Presenters in Washington, D.C. In that position he ran professional development seminars for arts professionals throughout the United States, with topics including general non-profit management, audience development, and career development for artists.

Yarrow is a classical and jazz saxophonist who doubles on clarinet and flute. He toured with the Glenn Miller Orchestra and did community-based residency programs with the classical saxophone quartet Resounding Winds. He has also taught instrumental and general music at the junior high level. He earned a bachelor’s degree in performance from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in performance from the University of North Texas.

 

Krajewski named director of new Iowa Flood Center

The University of Iowa has named Witold Krajewski, professor of civil and environmental engineering in the College of Engineering and research engineer at IIHR–Hydroscience & Engineering, as director of the new Iowa Flood Center.

The Iowa Flood Center will establish community-based programs to improve flood monitoring and prediction along Iowa’s major waterways, as well as share center resources and expertise across the state to develop a flood-savvy workforce.

Krajewski says that the goal of the center is to develop physically based numerical models that will improve flood forecasting and mitigation understanding—all with the goal of trying to prevent or at least lessen the effects of flooding.

The Iowa Flood Center will also collaborate with state and federal agencies, such as the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Geological Survey, and the National Weather Service.

 

UI Division of Student Services announces administrative changes

Tom Rocklin, University of Iowa interim vice president for student services and dean of students, has announced several administrative staffing changes within the Division of Student Services.

Monique DiCarlo, director of the UI Women’s Resource and Action Center (WRAC) and interim sexual misconduct response coordinator, has assumed the position of sexual misconduct response coordinator on a full-time basis. She will step down as WRAC director.

DiCarlo is responsible for leading the campus in fostering an environment that promotes and expedites prompt reporting of and response to sexual misconduct, stalking, and domestic violence cases involving students. She also will continue to serve as the coordinating contact point to ensure that victims receive appropriate and responsive care and that the University meets its legal responsibilities and strategic goals.

Other changes include:

Linda Kroon, WRAC operations coordinator, has been named interim director. Kroon joined the WRAC staff in 1992 after serving as departmental administrator for the UI Department of Dance for seven years. A search for a permanent director will begin after a departmental review is conducted over the next few months.

Sarah Lux Hansen, associate director for education/coordinator of Health Iowa at UI Student Health Service, has been appointed to the newly created position of director of assessment and strategic initiatives within the Division of Student Services.

Lisa James, associate director for clinical operations at UI Student Health Service, has been named interim administrative director, and Ann Laros, Student Health Service staff physician, has been named interim medical director, effective Wednesday, July 8. David Braun, director of UI Student Health Service, will leave the University this month to pursue a clinical practice opportunity in Bloomington, Ill. This new administrative arrangement will continue while a review of UI Student Health Service is conducted over the next few months.

Read the full University News Services release at http://news-releases.uiowa.edu/2009/june/062909changes.html.

 

Whiteman named interim director of Institute for Economic Research

Charles Whiteman, professor of economics and associate dean of the Tippie College of Business, has been named interim director of the University of Iowa’s Institute for Economic Research.

He replaces John Geweke, who has accepted a new research and teaching position in Australia.

The Institute for Economic Research serves as an advisory group to the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisors and issues a quarterly forecast of Iowa income, employment and state revenues developed using the latest advances in econometrics. The forecasts are used by the state’s Revenue Estimating Conference in determining the official prediction of the rate of growth of tax revenues for the coming two fiscal years.

A native of Atlantic, Iowa, Whiteman previously headed the IER from 1990 to 1997 and from 2003 to 2007.

 

McGuire to lead UI College of Public Health Board of Advisors

Andy McGuire, chief medical officer of American Enterprise Group Inc., which has operations in Des Moines and Omaha, has been named the new chair of the University of Iowa College of Public Health Board of Advisors.

The Board of Advisors—composed of leaders from academe, business, community health, government, health care, and labor—meets semi-annually to advise and assist the College of Public Health in areas such as curriculum and degree programs, research programs and priorities, outreach and service, and philanthropy.

McGuire became chief medical officer for American Enterprise Group in 2002. The organization specializes in health insurance products for individuals, families, small business owners, and affinity groups.

 

Recent deaths

  • Vivian Brown, 92, retired assistant in staff development, June 1 in Fort Dodge, Iowa. (obit)
  • Joseph Donohoe, 57, clerk III, June 7 in Iowa City. (obit)
  • Kathryn Skhal, 32, librarian II, June 16 in Iowa City. (obit)
  • Johann Ehrenhaft, 93, retired professor, June 17 in Iowa City.
  • Marcella Humphreys, 78, retired health technician, June 18 in Washington, Iowa.
  • Allene Forbes, 88, retired clerk III, June 18 in Coralville. (obit)
  • William Duffy, 77, retired associate professor, June 23 in Iowa City. (obit)
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