University of Maine News
The Bangor Daily News reported the University of Maine’s IMRC Center is one of a handful of facilities in the state to own an Oculus Rift. The Rift is a virtual reality headset made by Oculus VR that is poised to revolutionize everything from video games to military, aerospace and industrial training simulations, according to the article. Two UMaine new media majors — Ian Lusk and Lucas Richards — are creating a demo program for the Rift that combines virtual reality with interactive motion sensor technology.
Andrew Pershing, an associate professor in the University of Maine School of Marine Sciences and researcher at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, was interviewed for a Morning Sentinel article about a research proposal from the institute and the Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences that was chosen to compete for NASA funding. The project aims to use Earth-system data to predict the movements of key species in the Gulf of Maine and provide seasonal forecasts for the lobster industry. Pershing, who is the project’s senior scientist, said providing predictions about the timing and volume of lobster landings could help the industry avoid a repeat of the early glut of soft-shell lobsters in 2012 that drove lobster prices down.
The University of Maine School of Performing Arts celebrates the musical vision of composer, jazz trumpeter and Maine educator Don Stratton during a two-part concert at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 11, at Minsky Recital Hall.
The concert, titled “Pythagoreanism and the Music of Don Stratton,” will feature Stratton’s multifaceted music. A jam session and refreshments will follow.
The first piece is “Ktaadn, The Highest Land,” directed by Dan Barrett. Rich Tozier of the Maine Public Broadcasting Network will narrate passages from Henry David Thoreau’s “The Maine Woods.” Tozier will be accompanied by a brass ensemble, woodwind trio and singers. The second set will showcase some of Stratton’s jazz compositions.
Tickets are $9, or free with a student MaineCard. For tickets or disability accommodations, call the Collins Center for the Arts, 207.581.1755.
The University of Maine Foster Center for Student Innovation will offer a workshop Friday, April 11, for businesses and community members to learn a systematic approach to innovation. The workshop will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the UMaine Hutchinson Center in Belfast.
Participants will learn about the Innovation Engineering (IE) system, which includes tools and methods for creating, communicating and commercializing meaningfully unique ideas. IE addresses the biggest threats to innovations at the beginning of the process, thereby speeding up innovation while decreasing risk.
This is a Blackstone Accelerates Growth-sponsored event. Blackstone Accelerates Growth (BxG) is developing innovation hubs in various regions of the state. Entrepreneurs leading startup and existing companies become part of a network to learn from each other and to cost-effectively access entrepreneurial support resources. The workshop costs $149 for business and community members. Lunch is included. Full scholarships are available for growth-oriented, for-profit companies. To learn more and to register, visit the Foster Center’s website.
The works of Vincent Hartgen, founder of the University of Maine Museum of Art and longtime UMaine professor of art, will be on display at Boyd Place Gallery, 21 Boyd St., Bangor. The show, “Maine Masters,” features works of Hartgen and Arthur Thompson. The exhibit is open daily, 9 a.m.–7 p.m., through May 31. A reception is slated for 3–5 p.m. Sunday, April 27.
The University of Maine’s 2014 annual Student Art Exhibition opens with a reception 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, April 4 in Lord Hall Art Gallery. Titled “Be, Do, Make,” the exhibition features 116 pieces from 62 artists.
The exhibition features work in a variety of media, including painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, graphic design and mixed media. More than 400 pieces by 125 student artists were considered for entry.
An award ceremony will begin at 6:15 p.m. in the Lecture Room, 100 Lord Hall. Andres Verzosa, director of Portland’s Aucocisco Galleries and a UMaine alumnus, juried the exhibition. Awards will include Best in Show, three Juror’s Awards and three Honorable Mentions. In addition, the Department of Art will present more than 50 awards recognizing excellence in studio art, art education studies and art history, according to UMaine art professor James Linehan. The majority of awards will include scholarships totaling nearly $25,000, Linehan says.
Most of the featured artists are students in the Department of Art, with majors in either studio art or art history. However, entries from all majors are accepted and featured in the exhibition.
The Student Art Exhibition has been an annual spring event for more than 50 years. Admission is free and open to the public. The exhibition runs until May 2.
Contact: Elyse Kahl, 207.581.3747
WABI (Channel 5) reported members of the University of Maine’s Chem-E-Car team will take their shoebox-sized car to the University of Connecticut this weekend to participate in the Northeast Regional competition. The Chem-E-Car Competition is a program of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). College students design and build cars powered by a chemical energy source. The goal is to carry a specified load over a determined distance and stop as close as possible to the finish line. UMaine student Barbara Bemis said during practice that the team still has to make tweak the car’s fuel cell.
WVII (Channel 7) reported on a presentation about an art service learning project given by three University of Maine students in an advanced art education course. Charlotte Gaylord, Julie Roach and Lowansa Sprague Tompkins spoke about the art-making and fundraising project they created to aid the purchase of musical instruments for the Shaw House, a Bangor organization that works with youth who are homeless or are at risk of becoming homeless. The students helped the youth make ceramic pins to be sold at shops in downtown Bangor. A total of 380 pins and 20 small sculptures were made for the project. The students said they project sales of $1,900 if all the items are sold.
A 2012 University of Maine study was cited in a Morning Sentinel article about the Skowhegan Recycling Center agreeing to take Cornville’s recycled cardboard and paper, saving the town from having to truck its items to Dexter. The study suggested Maine was falling short of its goal of recycling at least 50 percent of the trash going to state landfills. A survey of 17 communities found that as much as 60 percent of what’s thrown away could have been recycled or composted.
The University of Maine School of Performing Arts presents its Chamber Music concert at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, in Minsky Recital Hall.
Noreen Silver, music professor and cellist in Silver Duo, has put together a program of chamber works performed by student ensembles. Faculty members Phillip Silver, Eric Thomas and Liz Downing have provided coaching for the two- to eight-member groups.
The concert opens with W.A. Mozart’s “Trio in E flat K. 498,” performed by Benjamin McNaboe (clarinet), Olivia Bean (viola) and Abigail Gower (piano). Later, cellist Noreen Silver joins students Perla Fernandez, Gabrielle Price and Norah Bird for Antonin Dvořák’s “String Quartet Op. 96,” also known as the “American” Quartet. A sensuous arrangement of Maurice Ravel’s “Pavane for a Dead Princess” will be presented, as will the seldom-heard “Romance” by Sergei Rachmaninov. The University of Maine flute ensemble will complete the program with “Prelude and Rondo,” by Anne McGinty.
Admission is $9, or free with a student MaineCard. For tickets, call 207.581.4721. For disability accommodations, call 207.581.1755.
The University of Maine’s Foster Center for Student Innovation is hosting the Big Gig finale from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 8. Finalists from the last three Big Gig pitch-off events will compete for a $1,000 grand prize sponsored by University Credit Union.
The winner will be chosen by audience vote. Admission is free, but online registration is requested. Food and a cash bar will be available.
Finalists are John and Christine Carney of Thick & Thin Designs; Bruce and Kathy Chamberlain of Stone Fox Farm Creamery; and Jessica Jewell of Northern Maine Distilling Co.
The Big Gig is a series of business pitch events for entrepreneurs in Greater Bangor designed to bring together Bangor-Orono area innovators and entrepreneurs and offer networking opportunities. It was started by a partnership between UMaine, Old Town, Orono and Husson University and is supported by Blackstone Accelerates Growth. More information about Big Gig is online.
More than 300 students, teachers and chaperones from about 20 Maine middle and high schools are expected to gather at the University of Maine from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, April 12 to participate in the Maine National History Day competition.
A new partnership between UMaine and the Margaret Chase Smith Library, with support from the Maine Humanities Council and the Maine Historical Society, brings the event for students in grades 6–12 to the UMaine campus for the first time since the national program began in 1980.
National History Day (NHD) is an academic program that promotes critical thinking, research and presentation skills through project-based learning for students of all abilities. More than a half million students, working with thousand of teachers, participate in the national contest annually.
Student exhibits, websites, documentaries and performances will be judged from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at several locations on campus including Wells Conference Center, IMRC Center, Fogler Library and Memorial Union.
Travel prizes donated by Joe and Suzanne Cyr of John T. Cyr & Sons, Inc./Cyr Bus Line in Old Town will be awarded to state winners who are eligible to compete in the national contest in Washington, D.C. in June. Awards will be presented during the 2:30 p.m. ceremony in Wells Conference Center.
A scavenger hunt with activities from a half dozen museums and history organizations, including a Civil War re-enactment group, will be offered to students. Maine NHD participants can also use UMaine’s New Balance Student Recreation Center at a discounted rate of $3.
State NHD contestants are invited to display their work at the Bangor Public Library and the Maine Discovery Museum in downtown Bangor for five weeks after the contest. Performance category winners also are invited to perform at the Bangor Public Library on May 17 during Bangor Public Humanities Day organized by the UMaine Humanities Initiative. More information about the Bangor event is online.
For questions or to request a disability accommodation, contact John Taylor, NHD state coordinator with the Margaret Chase Smith Library, 317.626.8438, email@example.com; or Liam Riordan, UMaine history professor, 207.581.1913, firstname.lastname@example.org. More information on Maine NHD is online.
Women in Academia Report published an article about two of the three finalists for the position of dean of the University of Maine College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The article focused on the female finalists — Emily Haddad of the University of South Dakota and Pamela Kalbfleisch of Concordia University Chicago. Bryan DePoy of Youngstown State University is also a candidate. The three finalists will visit campus in April for interviews and presentations.
The Huffington Post reported on maple syrup research being conducted by Jenny Shrum, a Ph.D. candidate in the ecology and environmental sciences graduate program in the University of Maine School of Biology and Ecology. Shrum is researching the biophysical relationships between weather and sap flow. Her goal is to better understand what drives flow and how expected trends in climate may affect the processes and harvesters in the future. Shrum said she’s also trying to understand the links between people’s relationship with their land, where they get their information from, how they perceive climate change, and their motivation for harvesting. “I’m trying to piece together how those four things are related. I think that also plays into whether people will want to collect maple syrup in the future, and which people,” she said.
WVII (Channel 7) reported on the first concert of the University of Maine Symphonic Band’s annual spring tour. The 45-member instrumental ensemble, which includes music majors and students pursuing a variety of academic disciplines, kicked off a four-day, nine-performance state tour at Bucksport High School. Christopher White, who conducts the group, said unique parts of the tour include hearing other local bands play and giving the students an opportunity to visit communities they may end up working in someday. Katie DeRoche, a senior who plays clarinet in the band, said what she enjoys most about the tour is interacting with children and community members. “It’s nice to see that people appreciate music and all the work we put into it,” she said.
The Sun Journal reported the University of Maine 4-H Camp & Learning Center at Bryant Pond is working on a service project with a sixth-grade class at Paris Elementary School in Paris, Maine. Students in the class are seeking to educate tourists and locals about the history of one-room schoolhouses and other local historic sites through a geocaching game they are developing as part of the project.
University of Maine Student Life LGBT Liaison Services announces that a stand-up comedian, concert and documentary will be part of Pride Week, scheduled for April 7-12 on campus.
Pride Week begins at noon Monday, April 7, with a flag raising on the Mall. It concludes at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 12 in North Pod with a drag show featuring Ivy Winters, a contestant on RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 5.
Alison Grillo, “New York City’s Woman Trapped Inside A Woman’s Body,” will perform a stand-up comedy routine at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, in DP Corbett Room 100; Magdalen & Greane will be in concert at 8 p.m. Wednesday, April 9, in North Pod; a NOH8 Photo Shoot to promote marriage equality will be held 12-4 p.m. Thursday, April 10, in the Rainbow Resource Center in Memorial Union; and “God Loves Uganda,” which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, will be screened at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 10, in DP Corbett Room 100.
A complete schedule is online. To request disability accommodations, call Chelsea Barker, 207.581.1439.
The Maine Masque will perform Beth Henley’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Crimes of the Heart,” at 7:30 p.m. April 9-12 and at 2 p.m. April 13, in Hauck Auditorium at the University of Maine.
Third-year theatre and history major Nellie Kelly will direct the tragic comedy set in 1974 in a small Mississippi town. “Crimes of the Heart” shares the stories of three Magrath sisters: the oldest is 30 and unmarried; the middle sibling has a failed career; and the youngest shot her husband.
The Maine Masque is an independent group under the jurisdiction of UMaine Student Government. It works with the School of Performing Arts to support theater activities.
Admission is $10, or free with a student MaineCard. Tickets may be purchased at the door or online. To request disability accommodations, call 207.581.1781.