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University of Maine News
News from the University of Maine
Updated: 1 hour 45 min ago
The New Haven Register reported University of Maine student Laura Bollert recently returned home to Milford, Connecticut to fill in a mural she painted in high school. In 2012, Bollert sketched and painted an 8-by-20-foot mural of a tidal marsh on a wall of the Milford Point Coastal Center, according to the article. She returned over winter break to fill it in after a broken television was removed from the middle of the mural, the article states. “I’m really happy with it,” said Bollert, who plans to be a wildlife researcher.
The University of Maine will hold the 11th annual International Dance Festival (IDF) on Feb. 21 at the Collins Center for the Arts. The performances, which are free and open to the public, will take place at 2 and 7 p.m.
The event will feature performances by dancers from more than a dozen regions around the world including Vietnam, Brazil, India and the Caribbean.
The IDF was a student-led initiative that began in 2005. The festival is organized by the Office of International Programs and the International Student Association. For more information or to request a disability accommodation, visit the Office of International Programs website or call 581.3437.
Vivian Wu, a professor of microbiology and food safety in the School of Food and Agriculture, was interviewed by Food Safety Magazine about her latest research on food-borne pathogens. Wu’s project recently received a $150,000 research grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture to develop a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) method to better understand food-borne pathogens. Wu said the research team’s goal is not only to better understand the process by which harmful bacteria move into the edible parts of fresh produce, but to come up with ways to prevent pathogen internalization in food.
Janet Fairman, an associate research professor of education at the University of Maine, and Craig Mason, a professor with Maine Education Policy Research Institute and the Center for Research and Evaluation at UMaine, wrote an opinion piece for the Bangor Daily News titled “Maine schools can do more to engage parents effectively to help students learn.” The op-ed focused on research investigating the role of parent engagement in supporting students’ academic learning. Katie Thompson and Theresa Gillis, doctoral students in the educational leadership program at UMaine, contributed to the research. A full version of the report is online.
Dick Young, auxiliary operations director at the University of Maine’s Cutler Health Center, spoke with WABI (Channel 5) for a report about preparing for the possibility of measles on campus. Young said UMaine officials are closely monitoring the measles outbreak in California and would follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines if there was a confirmed case on campus. The last confirmed case of measles in Maine was in 1997, according to the report.
The Bangor Daily News reported University of Maine women’s basketball player Liz Wood and track and field athlete Wilson Adams received the school’s 2015 “M” Club Dean Smith Award during an academic ceremony Monday night. The award is presented annually to the top male and female student-athletes with outstanding academic and athletic achievement along with citizenship and community service. More about the award and winners is online.
The Maine Edge published a University of Maine news release about the university hosting its first full and half marathon this summer as part of the Black Bear Race series. The inaugural Black Bear Marathon and Half Marathon will take place June 21. Campus Recreation also is offering marathon training for runners who are interested in participating, but would either prefer some coaching or training with others. Starting in February, participants will run weekly as a group with an experienced trainer and will be given a detailed training plan, handouts on various race topics and $10 off race registration.
The Bangor Daily News reported that Abigail Bennett, a first-year economics major at the University of Maine, is running for vice chairwoman of the Maine Republican Party. Bennett is the daughter of Chairman Rick Bennett. The Republican State Committee will choose officers Saturday, Feb. 14 in Augusta, the article states.
The University of Maine has named women’s basketball player Liz Wood and track and field athlete Wilson Adams the recipients of the 2015 “M” Club Dean Smith Award. The award is presented annually to the top male and female student-athletes with outstanding academic and athletic achievement along with citizenship and community service.
Adams of Barrington, Rhode Island is a bioengineering major with a minor in physics who plans to pursue graduate studies. His research has included working in the development of specialized equipment for automated handling of larval zebrafish and on a project to design and produce biodegradable lobster shell golf balls.
Adams, captain of the track and field team, has set multiple school records while at UMaine. He is a four-time America East champion in the weight throw and hammer, winning both events in 2012 and 2014. He has been named the UMaine and America East student-athlete of the week multiple times and has been selected to the America East All-Conference and IC4A All-Eastern teams.
Wood of Catlett, Virginia is a junior in the Honors College majoring in biology with a pre-med concentration and a minor in chemistry. She was named the 2013 America East Women’s Basketball Student-Athlete of the Year and is a two-time selection to the America East Commissioner’s Honor Roll. She received the Second Year Academic Book Award in the school of Biology and Ecology in 2013 and is a two-time finalist for the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All-State Good Works Team for her significant impact in the community, in the classroom and on the court. This past summer, she also participated in an internship at Colorado State University working in a laboratory on a NASA-funded project in cancer biology.
Wood, who is co-captain of the women’s basketball team, recently became the 18th women’s basketball student-athlete in school history to record 1,000 points. She was named the America East preseason Player of the Year and earned a spot on the preseason All-Conference list.
In addition, the University of Maine Athletic Department named its seventh annual “Team Maine” representing the top sophomore, junior or senior achieving the highest grade point average in 2014.
More information, including a full list of Team Maine student-athletes, is online.
George Markowsky, a mathematician and computer science professor at the University of Maine, was quoted in a Scientific American article about how astronomers have discovered variable stars that periodically dim and brighten at frequencies close to the golden ratio. The golden ration is the irrational number 0.61803398875, known as the Greek letter phi, according to the article. The connection between the golden ratio and the stars could be meaningful or it could be a fluke, the article states. “Many claims about natural phenomena and the golden ratio are exaggerated,” Markowsky said. “I refuse to accept anything off by 2 percent or more as evidence of the golden ratio. After all, around any real number there are infinitely many other real numbers. People don’t seem to write papers about the mystic properties of .6 (which is very close to .618….).”
Double Blue Sports Analytics, a University of Maine Target Technology Incubator company, was featured in The Boston Globe article, “Technology gives goalies edge in advancements.” The startup’s hockey goaltending analytics app was mentioned in the article as being used with GoPro cameras and iPads to help goalies at Tufts. Dan Kerluke, a former associate head coach for the UMaine hockey team, co-founded the startup. “If [the goalie has] given up eight high-glove goals, you can click on the shot chart and see all the videos attached to those eight goals,” Kerluke said. “Instantly for a goalie coach, you can go through those high-glove goals and find out what the deficiency is, then work on something in practice to make that improvement. As a goalie coach, to aggregate 10 games’ worth of goals against can be 30 or 40 hours of work. This technology extracts that simply and gives it meaning.”
Robert Dana, the University of Maine’s vice president for student life and dean of students, and Barbara Smith, who runs UMaine’s commuter and nontraditional student program, spoke with the Portland Press Herald about beneficial student services for an article about increased tuition on college campuses. Smith said although services such as the commuter lounge, costs the university money, it pays off in student satisfaction and retention. “I think students of whatever age need to really connect to an institution or they’re not going to stay,” she said. Dana also spoke about the veterans services program, which helps answer questions and provides a staffed veterans lounge on campus. He said there are about 7,000 commuter or nontraditional students, and about 400 veterans and dependents on campus. “It’s money well spent,” Dana said of the programs. “You can’t just not attend to that part of the population.” Connor Scott, a UMaine junior studying business administration and international security, was featured in a related Press Herald article about how three Maine students are dealing with debt.
Boothbay Register published a University of Maine news release about University of Maine researcher Ivona Cetinić being one of four Maine scientists featured in The Oceanography Society’s “Women in Oceanography: The Next Decade,” a supplement to the December issue of “Oceanography” magazine. The report reviews progress in career advancement for female oceanographers over the last 10 years and where additional attention is needed. Cetinić, a research associate in the School of Marine Sciences at UMaine’s Darling Marine Center in Walpole, co-wrote an article about the continuing challenges women face in the field. “While there have been positive improvements over the past 10 years, such as increasing numbers of female professors, there are still signs of barriers to women advancing in their careers,” Cetinić said.
WVII (Channel 7) reported the University of Maine Museum of Art in downtown Bangor offered a free craft activity over the weekend. Families were invited to make Valentine’s Day cards while visiting the museum, according to the report. Organizers told WVII that hosting family activities allows people to see what the museum has to offer.
Mark Berry, president and CEO of the Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park, mentioned the organization’s partnership with the University of Maine during an interview with the Portland Press Herald. Berry said the institute, which is a nonprofit that works to inspire people to explore outside, has a partnership with UMaine that was developed through the Acadia Learning program. As part of the program, students collect dragonflies for UMaine scientists who then analyze the insects to determine mercury levels in ponds around the state, according to Berry. “By doing this, students help produce a picture of the mercury contamination in the environment. The National Park Service picked it up and it’s now at 50 parks across the country,” Berry said.
WVII (Channel 7) reported high school teams from Maine and New Hampshire were set to compete at the Nor’easter Bowl — a regional ocean science competition — at the University of Maine over the weekend. Student teams were challenged with quick-answer buzzer questions and team challenge queries throughout the day. The winning team earns the right to take part with 22 other regional champions in the 18th annual National Ocean Sciences Bowl in Mississippi this April. The Nor’easter Bowl is part of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl — a program of the nonprofit Consortium for Ocean Leadership.
High school teams from Maine and New Hampshire are competing in the Nor’easter Bowl — a regional ocean science competition — Saturday, Feb. 7, in the D.P. Corbett Business Building at the University of Maine.
Science of oil in the ocean is the theme of the contest. Four- and five-member student teams will be challenged with quick-answer buzzer questions and thought-provoking team challenge queries. Competition will be held 9—10 a.m., 10:30 a.m.—noon, 1—2 p.m. and 2:30—4:30 p.m. The awards ceremony will be at 4:45 p.m.
The winning squad earns the right to take part with 22 other regional champions in the 18th Annual National Ocean Sciences Bowl at the University of Southern Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research Lab on April 23–26, in Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
The Nor’easter Bowl is part of the National Ocean Sciences Bowl — a program of the nonprofit Consortium for Ocean Leadership. The goal is to encourage the next generation of marine scientists, policymakers, teachers, explorers, researchers, technicians, environmental advocates and informed citizens, to be stewards of the ocean.
Several media outlets covered the release of a report commissioned by the 126th Maine Legislature to study the effects of coastal and ocean acidification on species commercially harvested on the Maine coast. Rep. Michael Devin, a marine biologist at the Darling Marine Center, chaired the group and UMaine oceanographer Larry Mayer was a member of the panel. The commission’s goals included monitoring and investigating ocean acidification effects, reducing emissions of carbon dioxide, strengthening pollution reduction efforts and informing stakeholders. The panel asked for a $3 million bond so scientists can obtain more information about increasing ocean acidity. This study was the first of its kind on the East Coast, according to the panel. It included fishermen, scientists, aquaculture professionals, lawmakers and state officials. Outlets covering the release included ThinkProgress and WCSH-6. The Morning Sentinel and Kennebec Journal carried the AP report. To read the report: maine.gov/legis/opla/Oceanacidificationreport.pdf.
The Bangor Daily News reported on a student digital narrative project in a University of Maine new media course taught by Associate Professor Joline Blais. The project was inspired by the BDN endeavor titled My Maine Culture. The student projects celebrated Maine’s sense of place and included memories of lobstering and becoming immersed in Maine’s art scene. Student Kevin Boucher described his childhood in Madawaska: “I grew up all the way up north where Acadian culture is everywhere and Frenglish is a language. I lived right next to the Canadian border so most of my family are Canadians and we went to Canada for a lot of things. It was like having a city that we didn’t live in but could visit anytime we wanted. I loved living in good old Madawaska because I had places I could feel like I was completely lost in the woods when only being a few steps away from being back in civilization.” To view the student entries, visit 443.nmdprojects.net/2015.
The sixth annual Natural Science Illustration Workshop will be held June 15–19, at the University of Maine Darling Marine Center in Walpole.
The workshop is for those who want to illustrate a natural history journal with sketches and watercolors and for people who want to create scientifically accurate drawings. Prior art training is not required. David Wheeler, who teaches at the Pratt Institute Center Extension Campus at Munson-Williams-Proctor Arts Institute, will be the instructor. He has made life-size dinosaur models for the American Museum of Natural History in New York and Osaka Museum of Natural History in Japan.
Cost is $370; room and board at DMC are available for an additional fee. April 15 is the registration deadline. For more information and to register, call 207.563.8220 or visit dmc.umaine.edu/education/summer-workshops.