UA in the News: September 18, 2012
September 18, 2012 - Filed under: UA in the News
College of Education welcomes new dean
Crimson White – Sept. 18
The University of Alabama College of Education will welcome Peter Hlebowitsh to succeed James McClean as the 10th dean of the College upon McClean’s retirement in January. Hlebowitsh has held the position of Department Executive Officer at the Department of Teaching and Learning at The University of Iowa since 2008 but is eager to become a part of The University of Alabama. “I’ve been looking at jobs like this one for about a year now,” Hlebowitsh said. “[The UA College of Education] is a very successful college led by a remarkable dean who has brought the college to a national position.” Hlebowitsh holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in elementary education, a Master of Arts in curriculum theory and development and a doctorate in education, all from Rutgers University…“I’m very much looking forward to rolling my sleeves up and getting to work with the faculty and students,” Hlebowitsh said. “It’s my job to figure out where the weaknesses are. I would hope to find areas we can improve and focus on research, public engagement, and teaching. I do this with humility because the college is already in really good shape.”
Birmingham antique shop opens windows on presidential campaigns past
Birmingham News – Sept. 17
A walk past the front windows of a downtown store confirms the climax of a presidential campaign season. But while Romney-Ryan and Obama-Biden are the names on display everywhere else, What’s on 2nd antique and collectibles store presents an offbeat homage to past White House races and former presidents from much of the last century, including a Franklin Roosevelt portrait, a Harry Truman bust and a Dwight Eisenhower coffee mug…The oldest and most expensive piece on display is a 19th-century needlepoint portrait of George Washington with a $750 price tag. Political memorabilia continues to remain part of American culture, even if in different forms, said Janis Edwards, a University of Alabama communication professor who specializes in political communication. “It’s more satirical and snarky. We don’t see many ordinary buttons,” she said. Rather than wearing buttons, Edwards said many people now turn to digital media and find their own particular ways to express political leanings. “A lot of pictures and slogans and ideas are circulated on the Internet,” she said. “People create little pictures and satire, which partially accounts for why we aren’t seeing as many buttons now. But if you go to eBay, you can find plenty of more satirical memorabilia like dolls and bobblehead dolls.”
Alabama’s HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in global look into the human genome
Birmingham News – Sept. 16
This month, 442 researchers from 32 institutions around the world — including the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology in Huntsville — simultaneously published 30 papers that unveil an incredibly complex glimpse of the human genome. The work begins to resolve several mysteries, including why some people are more susceptible than others to cancers, autoimmune diseases and metabolic disorders. When the full DNA sequence of the human genome was completed in 2003, researchers found far fewer genes than expected in the genome. Only about 21,000 protein-encoding sites were revealed. The researchers had expected 100,000 … Now, in a decade-long, big science effort that has cost $288 million, researchers have annotated about 80 percent of the genome where the so-called “junk DNA” actually contains nearly 4 million areas that function like gene control switches. In a given type of cell, about 200,000 of them appear to be active…”In general, people have come to recognize that genes are important, but there was the belief that ‘junk DNA’ was junk,” said fruit fly biologist Laura Reed of the University of Alabama. “Now it’s important for the public to recognize there are many more functions of the genome.”
Alabama softball holding public national championship celebration
Tuscaloosa News – Sept. 17
The University of Alabama will hold a public celebration of the Crimson Tide’s first national softball championship on Friday at 8 p.m. at Rhoads Stadium. UA released details Monday about the celebration, which will be hold at Alabama’s ballpark on Fifth Avenue across from the Student Recreation Center. Gates will open at 7:30 p.m. and admission is free. The Crimson Tide won 13 of its last 14 games of the 2012 season to finish 60-8. Alabama also won the Southeastern Conference regular season championship for the third straight year and also won the SEC tournament championship. Alabama will hand out 1,000 bracelets with the team’s “Finish It” logo and 3,000 souvenir national championship posters, which will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis. UA players and coaches will sign autographs for 30 minutes at the end of the event.
UA Master Class continues busy week at Moody Concert Hall
Al.com – Sept. 17
The Moody Music Building Concert Hall on the University of Alabama campus starts a busy week off tonight with a Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra show, followed by a Master Class performance Tuesday. But before Tuesday night’s gig, the UA School of Music Master Class and Composition Recital featuring John Stevens (tuba) will kick off in the building’s recital hall at 5:30 p.m. Music Masters Series is a group of renowned musicians who are considered “masters” in their respective fields. The musicians will work with UA students to share their knowledge, and the performers will present master classes and concerts throughout the year. The first event is a Master Class by Stevens, which is free and open to the public. The feature event is the John Stevens Composition Recital on Tuesday, which will feature the works of Stevens played by tuba and euphonium musicians at UA with commentary from Stevens at 7:30 p.m. in the Concert Hall.
Constitution Day debate focuses on immigration
Crimson White – Sept. 18
In celebration and observance of Constitution day, two teams of University of Alabama students met Monday in the Ferguson Center Theatre to debate the constitutionality of certain sections of HB 56. Students of political science professor Joseph Smith were pitted against members of the UA Mock Trial team in an argument that ultimately resulted in a split decision by members of the Student Government Association Judicial Board who oversaw and served as judges for the event. The debate focused on section 27 of the law, which prohibits Alabama courts from enforcing any contract made by someone in the country illegally.
Career center to host job fair
Crimson White – Sept. 18
This Wednesday and Thursday, The University of Alabama Career Center is hosting two different career fairs. Both events are geared towards giving UA students the opportunity to network with prospective employers while actively attempting to acquire a part-time job, full-time job or an internship position. The General Interest and Business Career Fair will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 19 at the Bryant Conference Center. The event is not specific to a particular major and features representatives from Wells Fargo Financial, AT&T, Aflac and Kohl’s, among others. On Thursday, Sept. 20, students may attend the Technical and Engineering Career Fair, which is more focused on students working towards an engineering- or science-centered degree. Similar to the fair earlier in the week, this event will occur at Bryant Conference Center from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., but the attending recruiters will have a more technical company background, such as Mercedes-Benz, Alabama Power Company, Chevron and Power South Energy Cooperative. “We have over 80 companies registered for the General Interest Fair and over 90 companies for the Technical Fair,” said Linda Johnson, the director of employer development and relations for the Career Center at the Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration. “If you are looking for an internship or graduating this year, you don’t want to miss it.”
Upcoming conference offers range of topics for history buffs
Springfield News-Leader (Mo.) – Sept. 18
Local enthusiasts will be in history heaven this week at the 34th annual Mid-America Conference on History, free and open to the public, Thursday through Sunday…in Springfield…The third featured speaker is George Rable. His talk is at 8 p.m. Friday. His topic is “God as General: Was There a Religious History of the American Civil War?” Rable is a professor of Southern history at the University of Alabama. His 2010 book “God’s Almost Chosen People: A Religious History of the American Civil War” won the Jefferson Davis Award.
Learning communities foster engagement
Crimson white – Sept. 18
Students across The University of Alabama campus are given the opportunity to grow and learn outside of the classroom through living-learning communities. “Through living-learning communities, students get a chance to work with other students in their major or interest area in a cohort model,” Christopher Holland, director of residential communities, said. Living-learning communities give students the opportunity to not only take classes together, but to also have programming centered on their studies and interests while living within close proximity of each other, Holland said…Alicia Browne, director of housing administration, said in her experience she finds students tend to find their niche on campus more quickly when involved in a living-learning community, especially those who come from out-of-state.
Chapter houses upgraded
Crimson White – Sept. 18
Two new fraternity chapter houses were completed on University Boulevard shortly before the beginning of the fall semester. The new Sigma Chi and Phi Delta Theta fraternity houses were built through alumni support and independent financing, a process that was completed in a little more than a year. For Sigma Chi, the move onto University Boulevard from Jefferson Avenue was not only a change of address, but also a homecoming of sorts. “It was really big to return the chapter to University Boulevard, a location we haven’t had the pleasure of being at since the 60s,” said Anthony Osbourne, the Sigma Chi chapter president. “It was a long process, and took a lot of work on our part with the University to get this location, but it wouldn’t have been possible without the generous donations we received from all the Sigma Chi alumni.” Sigma Chi and Phi Delta Theta received the news they had received their respective land plots in the spring of 2011, construction plans were approved by the University in July 2011 and the houses were completed and opened to their chapters midway through August of this year. Each chapter set a fundraiser goal towards the construction of the new houses. Phi Delta Theta sought $1 million worth of funds, while Sigma Chi reached out to alumni for $2 million. “This new house helps us in a great number of ways,” Matt McKee, chapter vice president of Sigma Chi, said. “The houses certainly help with recruitment, but the support it offers the chapter as a whole from the housing of brothers to centering of our activities around it can’t be discounted.”
New fraternity plans entrance to campus
Crimson White – Sept. 18
A national fraternity new to the state of Alabama has recently decided to colonize their latest chapter on the campus of The University of Alabama. Leaders of Sigma Tau Gamma said they hope to become the 27th member of the North-American Interfraternity Conference currently active at the Capstone. “Sigma Tau Gamma is excited to become part of one of the leading fraternity and sorority communities in the country,” said Michael Smoll, the expansion director for Sigma Tau Gamma. “[It] is unique because of its long and rich history of students seeking to affiliate with a greek organization, which is reflected in the impressive chapter sizes.” In the wake of another record-setting year for sorority recruitment and the naming of The University of Alabama as the largest greek community in the country by population, Sigma Tau Gamma leaders aspire to add to the already large number of students in fraternities and sororities on campus with the founding of their latest chapter. The national fraternity’s expansion team arrived in Tuscaloosa at the beginning of last week, keeping busy by seeking out and interviewing potential founding members for their organization from every student class.
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.