News

8/9/2019

By Lindsey PIercy

United Nations Headquarters in New York City.

An alumna and strong supporter of the University of Kentucky has been nominated and confirmed as the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

Kelly Knight Craft, a longtime Republican Party activist from Glasgow, Kentucky, is currently the U.S. ambassador to Canada. In 2017, she became the first woman to hold that post.

In her new role, Craft will serve as the country's chief representative at the U.N. General Assembly, as well as on the U.N. Security Council. On Aug. 3, she was confirmed 56-34, ending a more than seven-month vacancy in the key diplomatic position.

Craft is no stranger to the U.N. In 2007, she was appointed by President George W. Bush as a U.S. alternate delegate to the United Nations

8/7/2019

By Victor Allison

Education is often described as a journey. Those who decide to pursue higher education often find themselves experts on subjects dramatically different from where they began, and, in the case of Jacob Neely, thousands of miles away.

Neely grew up in Las Vegas, Nev. “We used to call the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, the university of never leaving Vegas. So I chose to go to the University of Nevada (in Reno).” There, he studied political science and Spanish as an undergraduate and also received his master’s degree in foreign language and literature. Neely made the journey to the University of Kentucky in the fall of 2014 to begin his doctorate.

“I came here because I needed to do a Ph.D. to be successful in my field and I stayed because the professors kept my interest and guided me toward my passion,” Neely said. “Our Hispanic Studies

8/7/2019

By Madison Dyment

Our world is rich in cultural differences, but the one connecting factor between all is language. Yet, as powerful as it can be to connect cultures, it can also work to promote discrimination between them. This distinct power is the largest draw of interest for Rusty Barrett, linguistics professor in the College of Arts & Sciences. 

Barrett received his bachelor’s degree in Russian Language and Literature at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. After receiving a Master’s in Russian and East European Studies at Yale, Barret worked as a translator and technical writer for the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics. There, he developed an immense appreciation for the subject of linguistics. 

“I did work as a technical translator for NASA,” Barrett said. “I was hired to translate Russian, but I was also asked to translate other

8/6/2019

By Madison Dyment

Sometimes it’s the path we least expect that brings us the most reward. This is certainly the case for University of Kentucky Biology Professor Pete Mirabito, who was recently honored for his long-time involvement with the Summer Institutes on Scientific Teaching.

Originally, Mirabito was just a kid like many others with dreams of being a professional football player. Although talented, school was more of a necessity than a passion.

“I had math and science skills in high school, but I wasn’t really paying attention to any of them,” Mirabito said. “When I stopped growing, it ruled out my pro football plans, so I had to figure out what else I could do.”

After some advice from peers, Mirabito found himself going to college at the University of Florida with a major in food science, as a first-generation college student. Even still,

8/5/2019

By Jenny Wells-Hosley and Lindsey Piercy

University of Kentucky alumnus and successful Kentucky businessman Bruce Lunsford has pledged $1 million to establish the W. Bruce Lunsford Scholars Program in Citizenship and Public Service at UK. The program will support dynamic learning opportunities for students that emphasize citizenship, democracy, public service and government affairs.

The Lunsford Scholarships will allow students from the UK College of Arts and Sciences to take advantage of high-impact learning opportunities including internships, education abroad, undergraduate research and service-based learning in the Commonwealth and beyond. The gift will also fund an annual symposium and speaker series.

“I am grateful and delighted that Bruce Lunsford has established this innovative program to support the intellectual

7/30/2019

By Lindsey Piercy

For more than a decade, Rachel Farr has studied various aspects of family life. More specifically, she's zeroed in on a highly debated topic — adoption among same-sex couples.

As more and more gay and lesbian adults adopt children, their parenting skills are being called into question. As an assistant professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Kentucky, Farr has spent her academic career evaluating and answering these questions with research.

"LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) parenting and adoption are both topics that I care deeply about from personal and professional vantage points," she said. "I think it is vitally important that research efforts reflect

7/25/2019

By Jenny Wells

Students and faculty affiliated with the University of Kentucky’s Appalachian CenterCollege of Arts and Sciences and Graduate Appalachian Research Community (GARC) are partnering with the Appalachian Studies Association (ASA) to host its 43rd annual conference March 12-15, 2020, on the UK campus.

The conference, titled “Appalachian Understories: Growing Hope and Resilience from Commonwealth to Global Commons,” will engage in conversations about Appalachian forests, black Appalachians, women, gender and sexuality, health and healing, and hope spots. Oral history, film-making, literature, music,

7/23/2019

From the Association for Women in Mathematics.

The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) has over 100 student chapters at colleges and universities across the country and around the world. AWM Student Chapters develop their yearly programming to meet the needs and interests of their chapter. The AWM Student Chapter Awards highlight and celebrate the unique and meaningful programs that Chapters design. AWM’s Student Chapter Awards are for (1) scientific excellence, (2) professional development, (3) fundraising and sustainability, and (4) community outreach. The University of Kentucky AWM Student Chapter is the 2019 recipient of the Association of Women in Mathematics’ Community Outreach Award.

The AWM Student Chapter at the University of Kentucky is receiving this award in recognition of its outstanding work in developing the Appalachian Initiative for

7/23/2019

By Jenny Wells

The University of Kentucky Lewis Honors College presented two new college awards — the Diachun Scholar Award and the Evans Scholar Award — to two graduating seniors at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.

Meghana Kudrimoti, who graduated with degrees in biology and political science in the UK College of Arts and Sciences, was the recipient of the Diachun Scholar Award. This award is given to a graduating senior in a science or related field who has the highest academic achievement among their peers.

While at UK, Kudrimoti was a Gaines FellowChellgren Fellow and director of UK's Big Blue

7/22/2019

By Alyssa Perez

Recent University of Kentucky graduate Christian Soares has been awarded a fellowship worth $8,500 by The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi — the nation's oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Soares is one of 58 recipients nationwide to receive a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship.

Soares received a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of Kentucky. As a Phi Kappa Phi Fellow, Soares will pursue a dual Doctor of Medicine and Master of Public Health at Duke University.

Since its creation in 1932, the fellowship program has become one of the society's most visible and financially well-supported endeavors, allocating $615,000 annually to outstanding students for first-year graduate or professional study. This year’s program awarded 50 fellowships

7/22/2019

By Beth Goins

 

STEM – science, technology, engineering, and mathematics – is not silent. It certainly isn’t still or stoic.

That much becomes clear within a few minutes of visiting See Blue STEM Camp, Robotics Camp, and Chem Camp at the University of Kentucky in June. The hallowed halls of higher education, normally fairly quiet in the lull between semesters, ring with excitement as hundreds of elementary, middle, and high school students become budding engineers, mathematicians, chemists, scientists and computer programmers.

Exclamations such as “Wow!” “Oh no!” or “Yay!” echo from room to room, punctuating evolving stories of problem-solving, teamwork and perseverance through trial and error. In many rooms, students are at work with heads leaning in together to get a closer look at a tablet, circuit component, crayfish, microscope or storyboard.

7/19/2019

By Jenny Wells

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 19, 2019) — Saturday, July 20, 2019, will mark 50 years since human beings first landed and walked on the surface of the moon. Nearly 650 million people around the world watched as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin stepped down from the lunar module and left their footprints on the lunar surface. It was described by "CBS Evening News" anchor Walter Cronkite as "the greatest adventure" in man’s history, and remains one of humankind’s greatest symbols of achievement.

As the United States and the world reflect on this historic moment, the University of Kentucky is remembering its own people who played important roles in making it happen. From working on the Saturn V rocket, to designing the parachutes that deployed when the astronauts returned, to analyzing the

7/16/2019

By  Lindsey Piercy

Life is a balancing act, and no one understands that more than Eric Rannenberg. As a man with many titles — devoted husband, dedicated father and former Marine turned working professional — time is a valuable resource.

"Time management is critical," he said.

At just 18 years old, the Bowling Green, Kentucky, native hit the ground running. He signed on the dotted line and, with great pride, enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve after completing high school.

In 1999, Rannenberg earned his bachelor’s degree in business management from Eastern Kentucky University. Following graduation, he served for 10 years on active duty as a pilot in the Marines and deployed twice overseas.

In 2009, Rannenberg separated from active service, joined the Maryland Air National Guard and decided to further his education. In the midst of working and

7/12/2019

By Jenny Wells

Faculty from the University of Kentucky Department of Psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences and the Department of Behavioral Science in the College of Medicine have received two, five-year Research Project Grants (R01) from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to study neurobehavioral processes involved in drug use disorders.

The first project, which addresses cocaine use disorder, totals over $3 million. The second project addresses opioid use disorder and totals over $3.1 million.

The multiple principal investigators (PI) include Joshua Beckmann, associate professor of psychology; Joshua Lile, professor of behavioral science; and Michael Wesley, assistant professor

7/12/2019

By Lindsey Piercy

 

Two faculty members at the University of Kentucky have been appointed to the Kentucky Advisory Committee of the United States Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR).

Cristina Alcalde and Jennifer Hunt, both in the Department of Gender and Women's Studies (GWS) in the College of Arts and Sciences, were selected as representatives and will each serve a four-year term.

The USCCR is an independent, bipartisan agency charged with advising the president and Congress on civil rights matters. Their mission is to inform the development of national policy and enhance enforcement

7/10/2019

By  Madelyn Chambers and Jenny Wells-Hosley

Tomorrow evening, the MacAdam Student Observatory at the University of Kentucky will celebrate the 50 year anniversary of America visiting the moon.

Tim Knauer, director of the observatory, will give a presentation as part of the Kentucky SkyTalks program at 8 p.m. Thursday, July 11, in Room 121 Jacobs Science Building. Afterward, attendees will have an opportunity to observe the moon through a powerful 20-inch telescope at the observatory across the street atop the Rose Street parking garage. The event is free and open to the public. Please note, the upper deck of the garage is under repair. Access instructions will be posted on Thursday afternoon at https://pa.as.uky.edu/skytalk.

7/9/2019

By Jenny Wells

Jeremy Van Cleve, an assistant professor of biology in the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences, is the recipient of the National Science Foundation's (NSF) prestigious Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) award. The program will provide Van Cleve with $780,000 over five years to conduct research in evolutionary biology and develop a teaching program to promote scientific research to students of all ages. The two projects will be integrated to support the core goals of the grant. 

With the CAREER award, Van Cleve will develop new mathematical and computational tools to study the history and function of genes that affect social behavior and group living in organisms.

Animals, plants and microbes that live

7/8/2019

By Kara Richardson

Scholars based at the University of Kentucky College of Public Health recently launched a new, open-access, online publication — the Journal of Appalachian Health (JAH) — to highlight research focused on the health of people living in Appalachia. In collaboration with UK Libraries and the University Press of Kentucky, and with the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and partner institutions across Appalachia, the founding editors took the first issue live in the spring of 2019. 

“I am delighted to have worked with colleagues to create a source for disseminating

6/27/2019

By Madison Dyment and Jenny Wells

The University of Kentucky boasts an impressive host of faculty and can now add a third Fellow of the American Statistical Association (ASA) and an Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS) Fellow to its ranks.

UK statistics Professor Xiangrong Yin will join his department colleagues, Arnold Stromberg and Richard Kryscio, as Fellows of the ASA — the world’s largest community of statisticians and the second-oldest, continuously operating professional association in the country. 

Yin has contributed to UK since 2014 by teaching mainly graduate level courses in mathematical statistics, research in statistics and data science using elements of computer science. Previously, he worked at the University of Georgia after his graduation in 2000.

“In 2014, UK was recruiting senior faculty members, and I was lucky and got the

6/24/2019

The Lester and Helen Milich Professorship for Children at Risk in the Department of Psychology at the University of Kentucky was established in 2019 by Professor Emeritus Richard Milich in memory of his parents. The Milich Professorship supports the enhancement of clinical child psychology education through the examination of existing research, as well as with the generation of new ideas, concepts and research findings.

Christia Spears Brown, professor and associate chair in the Department of Psychology, has been named the first Milich Professor. As well as an author, researcher and professor of Developmental Psychology, Spears Brown is also the Director of the Center for Equality and Social Justice in the UK College of Arts & Sciences.

The professorship is awarded to a faculty member who:

Holds the rank of associate or full professor; Has research

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