UA in the News: August 18-20, 2012
August 20, 2012 - Filed under: UA in the News
Seven UA athletes to compete in Paralympics
Tuscaloosa News – Aug. 18
The University of Alabama Adapted Athletics program will have seven athletes and one coach representing their respective countries at the Paralympics in London England, starting Aug. 29. Cindy Ouellet, Katie Harnock, Maude Jaques, and Elisha Williams will represent Canada in women’s wheelchair basketball. Annika Zeyen will represent Germany in basketball. Robert Hedges will represent Canada in men’s wheelchair basketball, and Miles Thompson will serve as an assistant coach for the U.S. in wheelchair basketball. Mackenzie Soldan will represent the U.S. in wheelchair tennis. The Paralympics is the largest international sporting event for athletes with physical disabilities and is held at the same venues as the Olympic games. For more information on the Paralympics, visit www.paralympic.org. The UA Adapted Athletics website, www.uads.edu, and the Alabama Adapted Athletics Facebook page will provide updates and links to live coverage.
UA has record-breaking academic year
Tuscaloosa News – Aug. 18
As the University of Alabama gets the new academic year underway next week, the Crimson Tide athletics department is not only coming off a banner season in the athletic arena, but a record-breaking year in the classroom as well. “In a year during which we accomplished so much and reached new heights in so many areas, I am exceedingly pleased with the success our student-athletes enjoyed academically,” UA Director of Athletics Mal Moore said. “As we prepare for the start of another school year, I want to say how proud I am of the focus our student-athletes and coaches put on academics and the efforts Jon Dever and our entire academic support staff put into helping each student-athlete reach their full potential.” As a group, Alabama’s more than 525 student-athletes averaged better than a collective 3.0 grade-point average for the 2011-12 academic year, including 48 who maintained a career GPA of 4.0. Overall, five teams posted GPAs above 3.5 for the second year in a row. More than 140 student-athletes earned their degrees over the last year. Alabama currently graduates 74 percent of its student-athletes while the general student population graduates at rate of 66 percent. Alabama’s national championship football team had 21 graduates, one shy of the BCS National Championship Game record the Tide set in 2009. Football also had the second highest graduation rate among schools in the final 2011 BCS top 10 and has posted the second-highest graduation rate in the SEC each of the past three years.
Michael Connelly wins 2012 Harper Lee Prize
CBS 42 (Birmingham) – Aug. 17
For his work in The Fifth Witness, New York Times bestselling author Michael Connelly will receive the 2012 Harper Lee Prize for Legal Fiction. The Prize, co-sponsored by The University of Alabama School of Law and the ABA Journal, celebrates the role of lawyers in society and the ideals represented by Atticus Finch. The Fifth Witness was chosen by a distinguished selection committee, including New York Times bestselling novelist Linda Fairstein, former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, New York Times bestselling novelist Lisa Scottoline, NPR Legal Affairs Correspondent Nina Totenberg and FOX News Political Analyst Juan Williams. “When I was 13 and spending hot summer days in the air conditioning afforded by the Fort Lauderdale public library, a librarian made me read To Kill a Mockingbird,” says Connelly. “I discovered a story about a lawyer who was forthright and willing to do the right thing, even at great risk and cost to himself and those he loved. That is the definition of hero I have endeavored to capture in my own work. This honor tells me I’m on the right track.” Connelly will receive the award during a special ceremony September 20, at 2 p.m., at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. Following the award presentation, Ron Charles, fiction editor of The Washington Post, will lead a discussion of The Fifth Witness, in relationship to Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, including guest panelists Linda Fairstein, Lisa Scottoline, Nina Totenberg and Juan Williams.
WVUA official named broadcaster of year
Tuscaloosa News – Aug. 18
Roy Clem, director of commercial broadcast operations and general manager for Tuscaloosa’s WVUA/WUOA TV, has been named 2012 Broadcaster of the Year by the Alabama Broadcasters Association. Criteria for the honor included industry involvement that improves broadcasting service and its public image; community involvement in projects and programming that improve quality of life in the service area; and involvement in special projects that contribute to the betterment of broadcasting and the quality of life and environment in general. “To say I was shocked at the announcement is an understatement,” Clem said. “I can only say that I am very honored and deeply humbled by this recognition. I know that this award was only made possible by the great fortune I have had to work with so many wonderful people who are truly dedicated to the service of our viewers and clients, the service of our communities and state and to the service of our nation.” As Broadcaster of the Year, Clem also was named to the ABA Hall of Fame, which recognizes broadcasters for their leadership, achievement and contributions to the industry. Clem has been general manager of WVUA since 2005 and became director of commercial broadcast operations for the station in 2007. WVUA/WUOA is housed in the University of Alabama’s College of Communication and Information Sciences.
Southern Living chooses UA as one of the best tailgate parties
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – Aug. 18
Tuscaloosa could be recognized for a version of theirs – that’s right, another title might be coming to town! Southern Living magazine has nominated the University of Alabama as one of the top twenty schools with the greatest football pre-game parties. But now it’s up to voters, at SouthernLiving.com/tailgate, you can vote daily through October first for your team of choice. One grand prize of $2,500 dollars is at stake. Not to mention your school, possibly Alabama, could take home the title of best pre-game party.
Tuscaloosa County’s July jobless rate was 8.8 percent
Tuscaloosa News – Aug. 18
Tuscaloosa County’s unemployment rate in July continued to linger at just less than 9 percent for the second month in a row. The county’s July unemployment rate was 8.8 percent, the same as in June, when the rate increased more than 1.5 from May’s 7.1 percent. The July unemployment rates in Fayette, Bibb and Lamar counties were between 9 and 10 percent, while the rates in Pickens, Greene, Hale, Perry, Sumter and Marengo counties remained above 10 percent. Similar rates were seen in June. Alabama’s July unemployment rate was 8.3 percent, up from 7.8 percent in June. State officials noted that July’s rates were generally lower than they were in July 2011, when Alabama’s rate was 9.2 percent. Economist Ahmad Ijaz at the Alabama Center for Economic and Business Research at the University of Alabama said the latest figures show the state and West Alabama are suffering from the same economic problems affecting the country. “Job growth has stalled,” he said. “We saw some job growth early in the year, but by the middle of the year, it pretty much stalled,” Ijaz said. “It’s not dead, but the growth is not where it was earlier in the year.”
Riley PAC has strong year
Montgomery Advertiser – Aug. 19
A political action committee headed by former Gov. Bob Riley has amassed almost $700,000 in the past year, thanks in part to a number of big donations and a larger-than-normal percentage of out-of-state donors…Alabama 2014, which aims to help Republicans fight off challengers who might might be sponsored by liberal interests in the Republican House and Senate primaries, raised about $685,000 between August 2011 and July 31, according to campaign finance records. The PAC had $670,724 on hand as of July 31…Bill Stewart, a professor emeritus of political science at the University of Alabama, said he isn’t surprised by Riley’s success with out-of-state fundraising. “When you have someone like Bob Riley, who’s been governor of the state and traveled all over the United States and to foreign countries — when you have a PAC headed up by someone like him, he’s more likely to get money (from) out of state,” Stewart said. “I think he just has more contacts out of state than some of his fellow Republicans have.”
The University of Alabama, a student-centered research university, is experiencing significant growth in both enrollment and academic quality. This growth, which is positively impacting the campus and the state's economy, is in keeping with UA's vision to be the university of choice for the best and brightest students. UA, the state's flagship university, is an academic community united in its commitment to enhancing the quality of life for all Alabamians.