For the latest news, events and announcements about UA, please visit

The new UA News Center features news channels specifically for students, faculty and staff, media and research. The UA News Center uses video, photography and narrative to tell the UA story to our various audiences. It also serves as a hub for finding information on campus resources and calendars. will remain in place temporarily as an archive, but will no longer be updated.

The University of Alabama

UA In the News — Aug. 16

Study finds women competitors dominate NBC’s prime time
Associated Press – Aug. 16
During the first half of the Olympics, women have dominated the screen on NBC in the evening. Through Saturday night, 58.5 percent of the competition time on NBC’s prime-time telecasts involved women’s sports, with 41.5 percent devoted to men, according to research released Monday by three college professors writing a book, “Olympic Television: Inside the Biggest Show on Earth.” For all of the Summer and Winter Olympics dating back to 1994, the 2012 London Games was the only competition where women got more airtime than the men – and even that didn’t match the imbalance of Rio de Janeiro so far, said Andy Billings, a sports media professor at the University of Alabama.  . . For instance, women’s gymnastics has accounted for nearly three hours more screen time for women, Billings said. The U.S. women’s team and Simone Biles have dominated gymnastics in Rio, while American men have been less competitive. Women’s beach volleyball – where the competitors wear bikinis – has logged 2 hours, 45 minutes on NBC’s marquee telecast, the study found. The men had been on for 35 seconds. “We’d be naive if we didn’t acknowledge that the sports they are showing, a lot of them involve women in swimsuits and leotards,” Billings said.

Fruit-fly diet impacts descendants, researcher finds – Aug. 16
For a fruit fly, what its grandparents ate may affect how much it weighs. But the passing down of a body type based on diet is not a simple cause and effect, a University of Alabama researcher has found. The significance of the research is that similar relationships between generational diet and obesity may hold true for humans as well. Dr. Laura Reed, UA assistant professor of biological sciences, studies obesity by experimenting on multiple generations of fruit flies, or Drosophila melanogaster. She and her colleagues fed some fruit fly larvae on a high-fat diet and a control group on a regular diet. The paper containing the results, “Genetic and sex-specific transgenerational effects of a high fat diet in Drosophila Melanogaster,” published Aug. 12, in the journal PLOS ONE.

Zika spending stalemate in Congress spills over into campaigns
Roll Call (Washington, D.C.) – Aug. 15
Debate over how a divided Congress should respond to the Zika virus moved from Washington to the campaign trail in the first half of the summer recess, ranging from the presidential campaign to House contests. While it’s not clear yet that fear of the mosquito-borne virus will prove to be a major issue that moves votes, Zika certainly has emerged as a flash point in Florida, the ground zero for infections in the continental U.S … “My sense is it’s not going to be much of a factor in terms of the election and that’s because none of the elections are competitive,” said Richard Fording, chair of the University of Alabama’s political science department.

UA students take part in Ripple Effect
WVUA 23 (Tuscaloosa) – Aug. 15
Before heading back to class this week, hundreds of University of Alabama students were hard at work off campus doing their part to improve the surrounding community. The students were taking part in the Ripple Effect project and spent part of their day at Crestmont Elementary School in Northport.

Who Do You Call When Your Rapist Is a Cop?
Pacific Standard – Aug. 16
Last week, the Department of Justice released its most expansive investigation of a troubled police department to date. It is the first of its kind to probe an issue that some academics and advocates have been researching and talking about for over a decade with little traction: sexual predators within the ranks of police officers … Whether or not this level of oversight continues will soon be in the hands of the next administration. “Historically, conservatives have been less supportive of expansive federal oversight of local police departments than liberals,” Stephen Rushin, a professor at the University of Alabama School of Law, writes in an email. (Rushin’s forthcoming book addresses federal oversight of local law enforcement agencies.)

UA Law Professor to moderate Community Relations Forum
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – Aug. 15
Police officers in Tuscaloosa are working to try to improve relations with their community. A forum is planned for Tuesday at First African Baptist Church. It begins at 6:00. It will be moderated by a Law Professor from The University of Alabama.
EDITORIAL: Hope to see you at the public-police forum
Tuscaloosa News – Aug. 16
We have no reason to believe the relationship between local law enforcement agencies and this community, or various segments of this community, is problematic — at least not beyond the typical disagreements that can be expected because of the nature of what police do … Forum panelists will include Tuscaloosa Police Chief Steve Anderson, Tuscaloosa County Sheriff Ron Abernathy, University of Alabama Police Chief John Hooks and Northport Police Capt. Keith Carpenter. UA law professor Bryan Fair will be the moderator.

Alabama State Parks Bill a Victory for Conservation Voters
Southeast Green – Aug. 15
After more than a year since Alabama’s budget crisis first threatened state parks, the state legislature has passed a bill calling for a vote on a constitutional amendment that would protect parks’ funding from the debilitating administrative transfers that closed five of the twenty-two state parks. Conservation Alabama’s campaign to protect state parks began in April 2015, and continued through two special legislative sessions and into the 2016 legislative session … In addition to preserving diverse habitats and ecosystems across the state, Alabama’s parks are economic drivers for the communities in which they are located. A 2014 study by the University of Alabama calculated the economic impact of state parks to be $375 million annually.

Sen. Jeff Sessions backs Donald Trump on Russia policy
USA Today – Aug. 15
Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., has long supported increased military spending and tough talk about the threat Russia poses to the U.S. and its allies in Europe. Since becoming an adviser to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, however, those principles appear to have undergone some revisions … Bill Stewart, a retired professor at the University of Alabama and longtime observer of Alabama politics, said he didn’t think Sessions had changed his views on Russia, just muted them while he’s on the Trump bandwagon. “Campaign surrogates basically have to find a means of accommodation that lasts through the November election and not make them appear to be totally inconsistent with their previously expressed views,” Stewart said.
Montgomery Advertiser – Aug. 15
TC Palm – Aug. 15
Wesley Foundation holds Week of Welcome events
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – Aug. 15
The Wesley Foundation in Tuscaloosa at The University of Alabama are helping freshmen get to know one another. They are hosting a Week of Welcome through Saturday.

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.