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UMaine Places Highest Percent of Student-Athletes on America East Fall Academic Honor Roll

The University of Maine had the highest percentage of its fall student-athletes named to the America East Fall Academic Honor Roll, released Feb. 26.

The Black Bears had 59 student-athletes, or 77.6 percent, honored for their academic standing. UMaine led all America East field hockey schools, with 85 percent of the team honored for achieving a 3.0 grade point average or higher.

The America East Conference released its 2014 fall academic honor roll with nearly two-thirds of all student-athletes receiving recognition. There were 694 student-athletes named to the America East Academic Honor Roll for achieving a 3.0 GPA or higher, with more than 400 student-athletes named to the America East Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll for achieving a 3.5 GPA or better.

The full news release with a complete list of honorees is online.

Learn the Egg Business with UMaine Extension 4-H

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a one-year poultry egg business project to 4-H members ages 9–18 and their families.

The statewide project is intended to generate income for participants and provide learning experiences in business, entrepreneurship, keeping records, documentation, problem-solving, food safety and animal husbandry.

Participants will learn and follow state and local regulations for producing and selling poultry eggs. Regular support, including calculating the number of pullets (young hens) to order, will be provided via online webinars. Twelve-week-old Golden Comet chicks will be ordered from a local producer March 15; pullets will begin laying eggs this summer.

Before pullets arrive, participants will draft a business plan and do a survey to determine the approximate number of eggs and hens needed to meet market demand. Participants also will build or secure a facility and equipment for the birds and track expenses, including the purchase of equipment, shavings and feed. Each flock requires at least 14 hours of light per day.

Extension 4-H staff and agricultural specialists will provide training via webinar. Several in-person workshops — the first is Saturday, May 2 — will be centrally located. Limited financial assistance is available.

More information and registration is online. For more information, contact Jessica Brainerd, 581.3877, 800.287.0274 or To participate, youth must be 4-H members in the county in which they live; interested people may contact their local Extension office for information about joining 4-H.

UMaine Extension Provides Tractor Safety Classes in Six Counties

Farm tractor safety courses taught by University of Maine Cooperative Extension educators and area experts are scheduled in Cumberland, Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln, Somerset and Waldo counties. The multi-session courses are designed for new tractor drivers and are appropriate for adults and youth at least 13 years of age.

In Somerset County, University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Kennebec County Farm Bureau and Hammond Tractor are sponsoring a five-session 4-H Tractor Safety Course beginning 6–8 p.m. Tuesday, March 31, at Hammond Tractor, 216 Center Road, Fairfield. Classes will be held consecutive Tuesdays; the final session April 28 will include a written exam and tractor-driving course. Instructors are Jeff Bragg, co-owner of Rainbow Valley Farm in Sidney; Neal Caverly, owner of Flood Brothers Farm in Clinton; Cliff Kramer, owner of Kramer’s Inc. in Sidney; and Karen Hatch Gagne, UMaine Extension 4-H educator.

Participants will be instructed how to safely handle tractors and equipment, to identify hazards and to minimize chances of accidents. It is open to interested adults and youth; priority will be given to youth 14–16. The course is required for 14- and 15-year-olds operating farm equipment for hire on farms other than their own. A federal Certificate of Training will be issued upon successful completion.

Preregistration is required. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation or registration form, contact Gagne or Diana Hartley at 207.622.7546, 800.287.1481 (in Maine), or

Schedules and registration information for Cumberland, Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln and Waldo counties are online. For more information or to request a disability accommodation, call 207.781.6099, 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine).

UMaine, Maine Development Foundation Release Report on Energy in State

On Feb. 20, the Maine Development Foundation (MDF) and the University of Maine’s School of Economics released the fifth quarterly report analyzing critical economic indicators in Maine.

The latest report, “Energy in Maine,” addresses the issues of cost, consumption and production of energy in the state. Improvements in efficiency and further diversification can give Maine people and businesses more options and greater flexibility to adjust to changing energy markets, according to the MDF news release.

Mario Teisl, director of the UMaine School of Economics and professor of resource economics and policy, is overseeing the series of reports that further explore the economic indicators in “Measures of Growth in Focus,” an annual report issued by the Maine Economic Growth Council.

The full “Energy in Maine” report is online.

UMaine Extension Provides ‘Cooking for Crowds’ Training

University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer Cooking for Crowds, a food safety training workshop for volunteer cooks, 1–4:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 1, at UMaine Regional Learning Center, 75 Clearwater Drive, Suite 104, Falmouth.

The workshop offers up-to-date information on how to safely handle, transport, store and prepare food for large groups, including at soup kitchens, church suppers, food pantries and community fundraisers. The class meets the Good Shepherd Food-Bank food safety training requirements.

Cost is $15 per person; scholarships are available. Register online by March 27. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call 207.781.6099, 800.287.1471 (in Maine). Additional sessions will be offered Thursday, April 16 and Tuesday, April 28 in Falmouth. Volunteer cooks who want to request a workshop can visit the website, call 207.781.6099 or email


2015 Presidential Award Nominations due March 20

Nominations are being accepted for this year’s Presidential Outstanding Teaching, Public Service Achievement, and Research and Creative Achievement Awards. Recipients will be honored at the Faculty Recognition Luncheon held between Commencement ceremonies on May 9. Deadline for completed nomination forms and materials is March 20. Nomination forms and award criteria are online.

Learn to Protect Poultry from Disease at Free Seminar

University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer a free seminar about protecting poultry from disease 10 a.m.–noon Saturday, March 14, at the UMaine Extension Penobscot County office, 307 Maine Ave., Bangor.

Information for current and future backyard poultry keepers will include backyard biosecurity, recognizing diseases and National Poultry Improvement Plan participation.

For more information and to preregister, contact Melissa Freeman, 207.287.6564, To request a disability accommodation, call 207.942.7396, 800.287.1485 (in Maine).

Seminar sponsors are UMaine Extension, as well as the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Division of Animal and Plant Health.

CPR Demonstrations to be Held at Men’s Ice Hockey Game Feb. 21

The University of Maine Training and Safety (UMTS) organization will demonstrate hands-only CPR during the UMaine men’s ice hockey game against Northeastern on Feb. 21.

The goal of the student-run group, which operates as part of University Volunteer Ambulance Corps, is to train 1,000 people in hands-only CPR this year. The group is halfway to meeting its goal.

Hockey fans can help by visiting the UMTS table in the Alfond Arena’s main lobby during the game, where instructors will offer free 30-second sessions. Trainers also will offer instruction in the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) on a manikin.

Those who perform hands-only CPR Saturday night will be entered into a drawing for a Friends of Maine Hockey gift basket filled with UMaine hockey items and will receive $5 off a Heartsaver certification course.

Sheep Shearing Schools Slated for Spring

The Maine Sheep Breeders Association and University of Maine Cooperative Extension will offer three sheep shearing schools in March and April, designed for people with different levels of experience.

Four instructors will teach beginner sheep shearing from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 7, at Wolfe’s Neck Farm, 184 Burnett Road, Freeport, Maine. The $40 per person fee includes a shearing manual and lunch. Enrollment is limited to 16. Spectators are welcome.

Kevin Ford teaches a two-day blade shearing school 1–4 p.m. Friday, April 17 and 8 a.m.–3 p.m. Saturday, April 18, at Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village, 707 Shaker Road, New Gloucester, Maine. The $120 per person fee includes a shearing manual and lunch each day. Participants will be taught to set up, sharpen and use hand shears. Enrollment is limited to 10; previous sheep-shearing experience is recommended. Shears will be available for purchase. Spectators are welcome.

Gwen Hinman will instruct intermediate-level sheep shearing from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 26, at Meadowcroft Farm, 45 Hopkins Road, Washington, Maine. This school is designed for participants to improve their shearing skills; attendees should bring their own shears. The $85 per person fee includes a shearing manual and lunch. Enrollment is limited to six.

Beginner- and intermediate-level schools use a conventional shearing method with handheld electric shears. The blade shearing school uses nonelectric hand shears or blades. Register online. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call Andrea Herr, 207.781.6099, 800.287.1471 (in Maine).

University Singers to Perform Spring Tour Around State

The University of Maine’s University Singers will perform several free concerts around central and northern Maine in March as part of the choir’s annual spring tour.

Under the direction of Francis Vogt, a School of Performing Arts faculty member, the group of about 60 singers will perform evening shows at middle and high schools and a church before ending the tour with two performances on campus.

The tour kicks off at 7:30 p.m. March 9 at Stearns High School in Millinocket. Other free concerts are 7 p.m. March 10 at Presque Isle Middle School, 7 p.m. March 11 at Madawaska Middle-High School, 7:30 p.m. March 13 at Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School in South Paris, and 7 p.m. March 14 at South Parish Congregational Church in Augusta.

The choir ends the tour with two performances at Minsky Recital Hall on the UMaine campus in Orono at 7:30 p.m. March 21 and 2 p.m. March 22. Tickets for the Orono shows are $9, or free with a valid student MaineCard. Tickets are available at the Collins Center box office by calling 581.1755.

The University Singers is an advanced concert choir with members from a variety of disciplines across campus. Every four years, the Singers perform abroad; in 2012, the group sang in Switzerland, Italy and Austria. Auditions are held each fall.

A complete tour schedule is online. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call 581.1755 or visit the group’s Facebook page.


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