University of Maine News
The Bangor Daily News spoke with several University of Maine faculty members for the article “UMaine faculty avoid layoffs, saddened by budget cuts.” UMaine’s Vice President for Administration and Finance Janet Waldron recently announced that UMaine will cut about $10 million from its annual budget without laying off faculty or cutting academic programs. Michael Socolow, associate professor of communication and journalism, said many of the facts presented during Waldron’s presentation, such as increasing enrollment, retention and out-of-state students, show UMaine is in a different situation than other campuses in the system, which is a relief to many faculty. The Sun Journal also carried the BDN report.
The Bangor Daily News published an opinion piece by University of Maine graduate student and small-business owner Charles E. Scott II, who received his bachelor of social work from UMaine and is currently in the master of social work program. Scott’s article is titled “From a small-business owner: Why Maine shouldn’t let corporations hide profits offshore.”
Bangor Metro reported two new potato varieties — the Easton and the Sebec — that were developed by the University of Maine and the Maine Potato Board over the past several growing seasons will make their debut this year. The varieties are targeted at the french fry and potato chip industries. Kris Burton, director of technology commercialization in the UMaine Department of Industrial Cooperation, said several other varieties are currently being evaluated for release over the next few years through the university’s partnership with the Maine Potato Board. “Working closely with the board allows us to commercialize the best varieties to support the Maine potato industry and further research in the field,” Burton said.
This month, three finalists for the position of dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences will be on campus — Bryan DePoy of Youngstown State University, Emily Haddad of the University of South Dakota and Pamela Kalbfleisch of Concordia University Chicago. Complete vitaes are posted on the Academic Affairs website.
WABI (Channel 5), WLBZ (Channel 2), Portland Press Herald, Morning Sentinel and Kennebec Journal reported the University of Maine Cooperative Extension has taken over state tick identification from the Maine Medical Center Research Institute, which had operated the program for 25 years. UMaine Extension’s Insect and Plant Disease Diagnostic Lab, which identifies 3,000 plant, pest and insect species each year, will expand its services with the Tick ID Lab. The lab is expected to receive up to 1,300 additional tick specimens this year. Jim Dill, pest management specialist with UMaine Extension, said the lab is excited for the opportunity and is ready for the increased workload.
WABI (Channel 5) and WVII (Channel 7) reported on the free public conference, “Living with Acquired Brain Injury,” that was held at the University of Maine in partnership with the Acquired Brain Injury Advisory Council of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services. The conference focused on the latest information on research, innovation and services related to brain injuries. UMaine psychology professor Marie Hayes said she hopes the event helps people make new contacts and learn new ways to treat Maine patients using cutting-edge technology.
The Associated Press, Portland Press Herald, Maine Public Broadcasting Network, WABI (Channel 5), WLBZ (Channel 2) and WVII (Channel 7) were among several news organizations to cover the University of Maine’s FY 2015 community budget presentation. UMaine’s Vice President for Administration and Finance Janet Waldron presented budget information to the campus community at two public forums. Waldron announced UMaine will cut about $10 million from its annual budget without laying off faculty or cutting academic programs. Jeff Hecker, UMaine’s executive vice president for academic affairs and provost, said the university has been making strategic decisions for years. “We’re not happy that we are taking a very large cut, but we feel good about the way we’ve managed it,” Hecker said during the first session. SFGate carried the AP report.
The Bangor Daily News spoke with Robert Dana, UMaine’s vice president for student life and dean of students; Dick Young, UMaine auxiliary operations director; and members of the University Volunteer Ambulance Corps (UVAC) for a report about a recent increase in the number of alcohol-related ambulance transport requests for UMaine students. Young said when responding to alcohol-related calls, UVAC volunteers evaluate the student to make sure they are safe. Most of the calls for help come from friends and residence hall staff, he added. Dana said the Medical Amnesty and Good Samaritan reporting program, which started in 2010 to encourage students to report extremely intoxicated classmates, may be playing a role in the increased numbers. “It makes a safer community — a closer community,” he said of the program.
The Morning Sentinel reported the University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer a six-class workshop on building, planting, maintaining and harvesting square-foot gardens in raised beds and containers. The first class is scheduled for May 1 at the UMaine Extension office in Skowhegan.
A University of Maine Faculty Voice Recital featuring retiring music professor Ludlow Hallman and three colleagues will be held at 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 4, in Minsky Recital Hall on campus.
Soprano Karen Pendleton, mezzo-soprano Marcia Gronewold Sly and tenor Francis John Vogt will join Hallman, a baritone, for a program of music by Beethoven, Schumann, Mozart and Verdi. Pianist Clayton Smith will accompany the ensemble for selections from opera, oratorio and chamber music, featuring various combinations of voices.
The program’s centerpiece will be Robert Schumann’s “Spanisches Liederspiel,” a lively group of 10 songs set to adaptations of Spanish poems compiled by Emanuel Geibel. In celebration of Giuseppe Verdi’s 200th year of birth, the ensemble will perform duets and quartets from “Messa da Requiem,” “Don Carlo” and “Rigoletto.”
Tickets are $9/free with student MaineCard. For tickets, call 207.581.1755. To request disability accommodations, call 207.581.1781.
UMaine’s Western Civilization and American Liberty Program, directed by Professor of Political Theory Michael Palmer, was awarded a $5,000 grant from the Koch Foundation for the upcoming academic year. The program brings outstanding, nationally reputed speakers to UMaine to deliver a guest lecture, and to interact with faculty and students.
University of Maine System Chancellor James Page will be at UMaine for a campus forum from 10:30–noon, April 1, Minsky Recital Hall. The UMaine forum is part of a series of budget-related discussions the Chancellor is holding at campuses systemwide. Chancellor Page will provide a state of the system in the context of the current budget climate and its relationship to UMaine, the state and the nation. He’ll be joined by UMaine President Paul Ferguson, UMS Board of Trustees Chair Samuel Collins and Vice Chair Admiral Gregory Johnson.
WABI (Channel 5), I-95 Classic Hits (95.7 FM) and WVII (Channel 7) reported the University of Maine New Balance Student Recreation Center was named one of “The Coolest College Recreation Centers in America” by Men’s Health magazine. The feature touts that the facility, open since August 2007, offers ski and snowshoe rentals for the surrounding 20 kilometers of groomed trails in the DeMeritt Forest, as well as a 20-person hot tub, a large pool leisure area with hot-water-jet bench seating, co-ed sauna, more than 100 cardio and weight machines and a view of “the rustic Maine countryside.”
The Portland Press Herald reported Maine lawmakers are taking up a proposal for a $73 million bond package that would target investment in the state’s biotechnology and marine sectors and help the growth of small businesses. The package, called the “small business and innovations jobs bond,” includes a proposal of $8 million to renovate and improve a University of Maine Cooperative Extension lab that assists farmers and foresters and identifies pests, as well as plant and animal diseases.
Jake Ward, the University of Maine’s vice president for innovation and economic development, spoke with the Portland Press Herald for a report about the University of Maine School of Law eliminating the Maine Patent Program, which provides free legal services to inventors and entrepreneurs. Ward was an advocate for the program’s creation 15 years ago, but told the Press Herald the University of Maine School of Law probably wasn’t the best organization to house the program, adding that in tough budget times, organizations must focus on their core constituency, which for the law school doesn’t include inventors and entrepreneurs. Ward said he’s not happy about the cut, but sees it as a potential opportunity for organizations such as the Maine Technology Institute and the Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development to pick up the program.
The Bangor Daily News published the seventh article in a yearlong series by Sandra Butler, a professor of social work at the University of Maine, and Luisa Deprez, a professor and department chair of sociology and women and gender studies at the University of Southern Maine. “How a Milo man is raising grandson after the death of wife, loss of income” is the pair’s latest column to share stories of Mainers struggling in today’s economy.
The Morning Sentinel reported on two upcoming pruning workshops offered by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. On Saturday, April 12, Franklin County Soil and Water Conservation District will host the UMaine Extension’s David Fuller who will discuss how to prune apple trees at the Extension office in Farmington. Walter Gooley, a conifer expert and retired Maine state forester, will also speak at the event. UMaine Extension will also offer a free apple tree pruning and grafting field day at Avalon Acres Orchard and Farm in Saint Albans on Saturday, April 19.
The University of Maine Chamber Jazz Ensemble will perform at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 1, at Minsky Recital Hall.
Karel Lidral, pianist and director of the ensemble, will be retiring from the School of Performing Arts Division of Music at the conclusion of the academic year. In addition to teaching and directing, Lidral has performed with jazz greats Red Rodney, Jon Faddis, Clark Terry, Ronald Shannon Jackson, Dennis Wilson, Laurence Hobgood, Jeff Stitely and Chuck Israels.
When he lived in New York, Lidral performed as a regular member of pioneer jazz organ legend Jack McDuff’s quintet as well as with bands of The Temptations, The Fifth Dimension, Wayne Newton and Engelbert Humperdinck and with comedians Sammy Kaye, Red Skelton, Milton Berle and Henny Youngman. For five years, Lidral was a member of the house band on “The Nite Show, with Dan Cashman.” The Lidral Duo is taping a performance on the show this week, which will air on an upcoming Saturday segment.
UMaine students scheduled to perform April 1 are: Cathy Bruno of Hampden, piano; Joshua Hunnewell of Alexander, guitar; Benjamin Dostie of Greene, alto saxophone; Elizabeth Dunbar of Southwest Harbor, flute; Margaret Ker of Winslow, oboe; Chelsea Lord of Belfast, trumpet; Joanna Lynne of Hermon, violin; Rachel Scala of Windham, alto saxophone; and Ethan Manning of Vernon, Vermont, tenor saxophone.
Cost for the performance, which will include selections by Duke Ellington and John Coltrane, is $9, or free with a MaineCard. For tickets, call 207.581.1755. To request disability accommodations, call 207.581.1781.
The health of Maine’s moose is a top priority for researchers and students at the University of Maine’s Animal Health Laboratory. The lab’s director, Anne Lichtenwalner, was approached five years ago by a Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (IF&W) moose biologist who wanted to know what was causing occasional calf deaths.
In the past two years, Lichtenwalner, an assistant professor of animal science, and her students examined 150 sets of lungs from Maine moose. Many were infected with lungworms, winter ticks and lung cysts. Lungworms, which can cause pathology, pneumonia, and may even contribute to death, were found in about 24 percent, Lichtenwalner says.
Echinococcus granulosus (EG), the intermediate stage of a tapeworm, was found in the form of lung cysts. The form of EG found in moose is unlikely to affect humans, but it can still infect dogs, making it important to inform the general public, especially hunters and dog owners, about the parasite. The lab published information about EG online and informed state veterinarians to remind clients that tapeworm medication is advised for dogs that may eat infected moose meat or viscera.
The lab is also part of a two-year tracking study assessing the health of moose in Maine and New Hampshire. The lab conducts blood work and processes tissues from the 90 radio-collared Maine moose in the study to test for diseases and parasites.
UMaine operates the Animal Health Lab with support from Cooperative Extension as a service to the state’s veterinarians, livestock producers and animal owners. The lab is used to perform diagnostic services such as necropsy, microbiology, virology and pathology.
The University of Maine Cooperative Extension is the new home of the state’s tick identification program. Portland’s Maine Medical Center, which handled the program for 25 years, eliminated the service last December due to funding deficits.
UMaine Extension’s Insect and Plant Disease Diagnostic Lab, which identifies 3,000 plant, pest and insect species each year, will expand its services to compensate for Maine Medical Center’s cut by creating the Tick ID Lab. The lab is expected to receive up to 1,300 additional tick specimens this year.
“It’s going to give the people a much better awareness of ticks and how to avoid ticks in the first place. That’s the big thing this portion of our lab will do,” says Jim Dill, pest management specialist at Cooperative Extension.
Last year, Maine had 1,349 confirmed cases of Lyme disease — a statistic that Dill says is increasing every year. By opening the Tick ID Lab to citizens as well as the usual doctors and veterinarians, Dill believes the lab can help provide peace of mind to Maine citizens.
The Tick ID Lab can help clients determine if they need to seek help from doctors. There are 14 tick species in Maine, not all of which carry disease. Dill adds the Tick ID Lab can help determine if the submitted tick is one of the disease-free species helping “ease your mind or the mind of your doctor.”
Tick identifications cost $10 — to cover supply costs — and can be submitted in person, by mail or through photos on the lab’s new website. The site also provides information on preventative protection from ticks, tick biology, tick removal and more.
Contact: Elyse Kahl, 207.581.3747