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The University of Alabama

UA in the News: March 2-4, 2013

Event marks Alabama’s progress toward equality
Tuscaloosa News – March 4
Peggy Wallace Kennedy received a standing ovation from several members of the U.S. Congress at Foster Auditorium on Friday, the same place where her father once stood in the doorway to keep the University of Alabama’s first two black students from enrolling. She was 13 on what she recalled as a hot, humid June 11, 1963, at the family’s vacation house at Lake Martin. She sat on a swing and watched her mother, Lurleen Wallace, nervously smoking a cigarette and standing away from her security detail of Alabama State Troopers. “That day was the end of her hope for a simpler life,” Kennedy said. “It was the beginning of living of our lives beneath the shadow of the schoolhouse door.” Kennedy’s father, former Gov. George Wallace, drew national attention that day,  She said that her father “stood before the nation to argue for a lost cause” that was never mentioned in their home again.  Her account of that day and her call for today’s leaders to “condemn the politics of exclusion that run rampant in America” made an impression on U.S. Rep. John Lewis, the Atlanta congressman who was one of the most powerful leaders of the civil rights movement in the South. “I was wiping my eyes,” he said. “I had tears.” Kennedy and Dr. Sharon Malone were the speakers at the first stop of the 13th annual Faith & Politics Institute Civil Rights Pilgrimage, chaired by Lewis, who led the “Bloody Sunday” march across Selma’s Edmund Pettus Bridge. Three buses carrying several members of Congress and a group of around 300 arrived at Foster Auditorium around 11 a.m. Friday…Visitors entered Foster Auditorium and viewed a display of the famous doors that were removed during renovations to the building in 2011. “People are moved by it,” said Dan Wolfe, planner and designer for UA. “This event led to the Civil Rights Act and was important not just here, but nationally and internationally.” – March 1
Crimson White – March 4
NBC 13 (Birmingham) – March 1
103.7 The Q – March 1
Fox 6 (Birmingham) – March 1
NBC 13 (Birmingham) – March 1
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – March 1
CBS 42 (Birmingham) – March 1
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – March 1
WSFA-NBC (Montgomery) – March 1
WDFX-Fox (Dothan) – March 1
WAFF-NBC (Huntsville) – March 1
WXTX-Fox (Columbus, Ga.) – March 1
WLTZ-NBC (Columbus, Ga.) – March 1
WBHM-FM, Radio (Birmingham) – March 1
WGOW-FM (Chattanooga, Tenn.) – March 1

Alabama’s desegregation leaders recall struggles, eventual victories
Crimson White – March 4
“What happened on that day in those doors is a matter of great consequence in the last century of American history,” E. Culpepper Clark said in a presentation to The University of Alabama’s Blackburn Institute on Saturday, Feb. 23. Clark, author of “The Schoolhouse Door: Segregation’s Last Stand at the University of Alabama,” was referring to the two doors mounted on a platform to his far left, their white paint dulled gray and cracking with age. Fifty years have passed since they played a feature role in former Alabama Gov. George Wallace’s ceremonious “stand in the schoolhouse door” to block James Hood and Vivian Malone Jones’s integration of the University on June 11, 1963. “No one can think about the Civil Rights Movement without thinking about that dramatic moment,” Clark said … When Art Dunning arrived on campus in 1966, his aspirations were clear. “I had two goals in coming to the University,” he said. “One, I was here to study anthropology. Two, I was here to make this a state university. I was going to make this truly The University of Alabama.” Dunning, a professor and senior research fellow in the University’s Education Policy Center and co-chair of the committee heading this year’s Through the Doors integration anniversary program, served two years in Taiwan with the U.S. Air Force before matriculating to the University. Dunning said his years of military service drastically shaped his perspectives on race, education and politics. “The Jim Crowe caste system of the American South at that time, for people like me it was suffocating, absolutely suffocating. My time in Taiwan gave me a chance to feel what it was like to not have my every movement circumscribed by my racial identity,” Dunning said. “I identified myself as an American because that’s what I was called and how I was known abroad.

President Obama to welcome UA football team to White House
WXCW-CW (Ft. Myers, Fla.) – March 1
Wednesday, President Obama will honor BCS national champions, University of Alabama Crimson Tide, for their 15th national college championship. This will be the Crimson Tide’s second White House visit in two years after winning the BCS championship in 2012 and 2013. 
WCBI-CBS (Columbus, Miss.) – March 1
WSEE-CBS (Erie, La.) – March 1
MSNBC-Morning Joe – March 1
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – March 1
KRDO-TV (Colorado Springs, Colo.) – March 1
WTTG-Fox (Washington, D.C.) – March 1
Fox 6 (Birmingham) – March 2
WEMT-Fox (Tri-Cities, TN-VA) – March 2
WDKY-Fox (Lexington, Ken.) – March 3
KPTV-Fox (Portland, Ore.) – March 3
WHNS-Fox (Greenville, SC) – March 3
WLUK-Fox (Green Bay, Wisc.) – March 3
WTTG-Fox (Washington, DC) – March 3
KRQE-CBS (Albuquerque, NM) – March 3
KRIV-Fox (Houston, Texas) – March 3
To view broadcast media coverage, go to

Professor wins award for psychopathy research
Crimson White – March 4
A professor from the UA psychology department was recently awarded the 2013 Saleem Shah Award for Early Career Development for his research of psychopaths and the psychopathic personality. Martin Sellbom, an assistant professor of psychology and law, received the award from the American Psychology-Law Society for his research on psychopathy. Sellbom has been working at The University of Alabama since 2009. “Part of my work that probably led to this award is my contribution to the study of the psychopathic personality,” Sellbom said. “I also study personality disorders more broadly, especially how well psychologists assess personality disorders.” The award was given by the AP-LS in conjunction with the American Academy of Forensic Psychology and recognizes early career excellence and contributions to the field of psychology and law. Sellbom will be giving the Saleem Shah Address at the AP-LS Annual Conference in Portland, Ore., on March 9.

UA professor links accents to Civil War
Crimson White – March 4
Cody Hall, a UA student majoring in history, speaks with an accent that may be vanishing from the American vernacular. Southern dialects are disappearing as areas of Alabama become more urban, especially in the college community. To lose the accent is to lose part of Southern culture, but it could also draw an end to the stereotype of unsophisticated Southerners. Hall said he feels pressured to keep his accent in check, with more and more students coming to Alabama from across the United States…He said the stereotype of Southern stupidity prompts him to act differently in certain social groups. The stereotype for Southerners is an effect of the American Civil War, said Professor David Durham, curator of archival collections in The University of Alabama’s department of history. After the Civil War entrenched the South in poverty, Northerners began to look upon Southerners as stupid and ignorant. Before the war, the South was vibrant and productive. It had money, which supplied a better education and the opportunity to experience different cultures through travel, thus influencing a more sophisticated way of speaking, Durham said. “If you say you’re from the South, or you say you’re from Alabama, the assumption is that you’re less educated and less sophisticated, because you are immediately identified by your speech,” he said.

Thursday art event at Kentuck sure to challenge the viewers’ senses
Tuscaloosa News – March 4
The notion that observation leads to belief may be tested Thursday at Kentuck, with the opening of artist Gary Chapman’s series of paintings of occluded visions, “The HELMET Project.” Thursday’s Art Night will also challenge the senses with ancient, pop and futuristic aesthetics, in a demonstration of 3-D printing techniques from University of Alabama engineering and art students, a metal-casting workshop and the opening of works by emerging artist Barry Wysinger…Art instructor Jamey Grimes will show a variety of small objects made by some of UA’s 3-D printers, some of which build up using malleable materials, and some of which cut away from solid objects. “It’s exciting technology with a lot of implications,” he said. A 3-D design class through the engineering department has freshmen create odd, usually abstract objects out of wood, foam or plastic. For Art Night, they’re going to bring some of the faster portable printers to show the process in action, as well as the products of some of the more powerful printers, objects that might have taken 40 hours or more to create.

Children’s jazz musical to premiere at University of Alabama on Wednesday
Gadsden Times – March 1
Cats and rats and lots of fun. That’s what audience members can expect in the world premiere of “Hermitage Cats Save the Day!” The production, directed by Paul K. Looney, artistic director emeritus of Theatre Tuscaloosa, makes its debut on the Moody Music Building Concert Hall stage at 6 p.m. Wednesday. This musical for children features the cats of the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, and crosses cultures in an entertaining and learning experience, Looney said.

University of Alabama School of Music presents concert on Monday
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – March 1
The University of Alabama College of Arts & Sciences School of Music will hold a concert featuring the Symphonic Band and Concert Band on Monday.  It will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the concert Hall of the Moody Music Building.  The Alabama Symphonic Band is one of three wind ensembles at the school. It performs four concerts each year. The Campus Band features nearly 80 musicians, mostly university students and community members. Tickets will be $10 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for students. You can purchase tickets at or call (205) 348-7111.

Health care is more than medicine
Tuscaloosa News – March 4
The American health care system can change for the better, but it’s up to leaders to spark a conversation about real change and it’s up to people to take initiative for their own health, according to a panel of speakers Sunday at the Bama Theatre. The University of Alabama sponsored a free screening of the documentary “Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare,” which first appeared at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival.  The film examines weaknesses in the health system in the U.S. and possible ways to create a sustainable health system. Part of the problem, according to the film, is that the medical system is on a pay-per-service model and that care is too focused on prescription medicine, high-cost technology and high-cost procedures.
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – March 2

UA football players read to kids for Dr. Seuss’ birthday
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – March 4
All ages are celebrating Dr. Seuss’ birthday all across the country and even here in West Alabama. Kids in Tuscaloosa celebrated the famous doctor’s day with some Alabama football players. CJ Mosley and Vinnie Sunseri read some of Dr. Seuss’ stories to kids at the Mildred Westervelt Warner Museum.

BFW allows UA students to gain experience, showcase talent
Crimson White – March 4
Held Feb. 23 through March 2 at downtown Birmingham, Ala.’s Pepper Place, Birmingham Fashion Week combines local and national fashion designers to showcase the talents of rising stars. International designer Tibi and “Project Runway” designers McKinley, Anthony Ryan Auld and Heidi Elnora all showcased recent collections alongside local emerging designers at Birmingham Fashion Week’s eight-day fashion celebration…  Kelly Druce, a senior majoring in fashion design, explained the importance of allowing local designers the opportunity to exhibit their collections after she was announced a top-seven finalist in the emerging designers competition. “Seeing my stuff on stage was amazing,” Druce said. “I thought for sure I was going to cry because I usually do. I wasn’t really expecting to make the top, so I was really surprised.” Druce was chosen along with two other UA students, Stephanie Nunez and Claudia Gonzalez, to show their designs alongside internationally famed fashion designers.

Engineering, nursing among gender-dominated majors
Crimson White – March 4
Some majors and colleges at The University of Alabama see large gender disparity, despite trends to create more gender diversity. Beginning as early as 1989, women have held a slight majority to men in total enrollment figures on campus, according to report from the Office of Institutional Research and Assessment. Greg Singleton, director of engineering student services, said historically, engineering has been a field dominated by white men, but recent initiatives to increase the enrollment of women and minorities have shown promising results. “Industry has demanded diversity and inclusion in the workplace,” Singleton said. “UA alone has seen a dramatic increase in engineering female enrollment from 308 in 2003 to 711 in fall 2012.” Nevertheless, men still continue to dominate the University’s engineering school with 711 women to 2,849 men, roughly 20 percent to 80 percent, Singleton said…Across campus at the Capstone College of Nursing, Rebekah Welch, director of the office of nursing student services, said as of fall 2012, nursing had 1,499 undergraduates enrolled, 128 men and 1,371 women. “The percentage of undergrad males has risen each academic year since 2010,” Welch said…Another college that typically holds more women, the College of Communication and Information Sciences, continues to live up to this trend with 755 men and 1,665 women in the fall class. These figures represent an approximate 31 to 69 percent men to women ratio…In the Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration, men remain the majority to women in all departments, excluding marketing.

United Security Bancshares, Inc. and First United Security Bank Elect New Director
MorningStar – March 1
United Security Bancshares, Inc. (Nasdaq: USBI), announced today that A. J. “Lonnie” Strickland, III was elected as a Director of United Security Bancshares, Inc. and its subsidiary, First United Security Bank, by the Board of Directors at a meeting held on Thursday, February 28, 2013. Dr. Strickland was also appointed to serve on the Audit Committee of the Company and the Bank and on the Asset/Liability Committee of the Bank…Dr. Strickland is the John R. Miller Professor of Strategic Management in the Graduate School of Business at the University of Alabama, a position he has held since 1969. He is also a director of American Equity Investment Life Holding Company and Twenty Services, Inc., and a former director of Statesman.

Business events calendar
Tuscaloosa News – March 3
Friday … Alabama Insurance Society Spring ActPan: 10:30 a.m. in Alston Hall, Room 40 at University of Alabama. Presentation to actuarial science students and professionals. Panelist are Noel Carden, Kevin Borie, Adam Gray and Nick Zito. Lunch follows at 11:30 a.m. Visit or call 205-348-4611.

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.