News

2/5/2018

By Amy Jones-Timoney and Kody Kiser

 

The University of Kentucky’s Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and Digital Studies (WRD) is dedicated to the study and teaching of writing practices, public rhetoric and digital media. The department serves over 5,000 UK undergraduates each year, and the writing, rhetoric, and digital studies major offers UK students three tracks:

professional writing and editing (for those who want careers in editing and publishing or writing for/within a nonprofit or business); rhetorical theory and practice (for those who want to get involved in public advocacy, government or law); or digital studies (for those who want to write and produce content for electronic spaces and understand how those spaces are designed).

The department also offers a minor in writing, rhetoric, and digital studies, as

2/2/2018

By Julie Wrinn

Fulton City High School’s 1972 yearbook shows a photograph of Mr. Milner’s Advanced Biology students dissecting a shark. One of those students was Mark Owens (Biology ’76), and he loved his biology labs: “We had sharks and cats and worked on all kinds of stuff in the laboratory. I thought it was fascinating, the things that we did.”

Thanks to Mr. Milner’s engaging labs, by the time Mark was in 11th grade he knew he wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps into optometry. He saw the comfortable living his dad made in Fulton City, a small town near the southwestern Kentucky–Tennessee border, and he greatly enjoyed his biology classes with Mr. Milner. Dr. Shelton Owens was a WWII veteran who attended Murray State University on the G.I. Bill and went to the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago. He played basketball for Brewers High School in Marshall

2/1/2018

By Whitney Hale

 

Author Mary Gaitskill reading an excerpt from her memoir, "Lost Cat," at Baruch College.

Mary Gaitskill, the fiction writer known for her edgy and audacious characters, will be the keynote speaker for the 2018 Kentucky Women Writers Conference, running Sept. 13-16. She is the author of three novels, three story collections and an essay collection. Gaitskill's keynote lecture is titled, "Why People Still Read," and it will take place 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 14, on the University of Kentucky campus, followed by a book signing. The keynote event is free and open to the public, thanks to its sponsorship by UK Libraries.

“Mary Gaitskill’s fiction is fearless in its depictions of strength and weakness,” conference

2/1/2018

By Laura Wright

Wonder Women: Rachel Maggard, Daimen Stolz and Lydia Hager, with their mentor Warren Alilain, helped confirm the presence of a breathing "ghost network" that might help restore breathing function to paraplegics. Photo by Hilary Brown, UKPR

According to a paper recently published in Cell Reports, labs from Case Western Reserve and the University of Kentucky's Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center (SCoBIRC) were able to demonstrate the existence of a parallel neural network that could potentially restore diaphragm function after spinal cord injury.

This ghost network operates entirely separate from the brain, which has long been considered the only organ capable of directing respiratory function, and appears able to instruct the diaphragm to contract when properly activated. 

While practical solutions

1/31/2018

By Gail Hairston, Amy Jones-Timoney, and Kody Kiser

 

Six University of Kentucky educators have been officially named recipients of the UK Alumni Association 2018 Great Teacher Award. They received their public recognition, award and reward last night.

The recipients are:

Gabriel Dadi, College of Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering; Dr. Rodrigo Fuentealba, College of Dentistry, Dentistry Oral Health Practice; Milena Minkova, College of Arts and Sciences, Modern and Classical Languages, Literatures and Cultures;
1/30/2018

The CESJ is excited to host a book club dealing with issues of social justice. Our first book is going to be the critically aclaimed best seller The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas. 

We will be reading the book now, with a meeting to discuss the book scheduled for early April. We hope everyone interested will join in the conversation!

Pick up a free copy of the book from one of our sponsors! Books are currently available in the MLK Center (313 Blaze Dining) and the CESJ office (location/hours) while supplies last.

 

Update:

Thank you to everyone who came out and made our discussion of this book great! 

If you're interested in learning more or continuing this conversation, check out our further reading options.

 

Further Reading:

Talking about race

1/29/2018

By Gail Hairston

The University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences’ Center for Equality and Social Justice has scheduled its spring symposium 1-4 p.m., Feb. 9, in Kincaid Auditorium at the Gatton College building, with a reception following in Woodward Hall.

Three collegiate educators are featured at the symposium, which will focus on “How Discrimination and Disparities Impact Children and Teens: Research on Ethnicity, Social Class and Sexual Orientation.”

Stacey S. Horn, professor of educational psychology at the University of Illinois at Chicago, will discuss “Developmental and Contextual Factors Related to Sexual Prejudice Across Adolescence.” Horn’s research focuses on issues of sexual prejudice and bias motivated harassment

1/26/2018

By Jenny Wells

For the second semester, University of Kentucky’s #IAmAWomanInSTEM project has awarded scholarships to 11 UK students for project proposals that promote STEM education and careers for women.

Females are less likely than their male counterparts to pursue an education in the STEM disciplines, which include science, technology, engineering, math and health care. The #IAmAWomanInSTEM initiative, which launched at UK in 2016, seeks to change that by recruiting hundreds of female student ambassadors who are encouraging the study of STEM and health care (STEM+H) among women at UK, and empowering them to persist in those fields.

"We are very grateful for the support from the UK Women & Philanthropy as our STEM+H students are growing in their creative roles and expanding their service

1/25/2018

By Gail Hairston

Dozens of high school students from all over Kentucky will converge on the University of Kentucky campus today (Thursday), Jan. 25, to test their logic and linguistic skills in the 2018 North American Computational Olympiad (NACLO), hosted by the UK Department of Linguistics.

No prior knowledge of linguistics or secondary languages is necessary as the students are tested on their ability to solve linguistics puzzles. Professionals in linguistics, computational linguistics and language technologies used dozens of languages to create the engaging problems that represent cutting-edge issues in their fields.

This week’s competition reflects open round contests with an invitational round scheduled March 8. This summer, NACLO will select teams for the

1/25/2018
Open Round: January 25, 2018 at 10:00am in William T. Young Library

The Open Round of the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO) will be hosted locally from 10:00am until 1:00pm on Thursday, January 25th in the Alumni Gallery of William T. Young Library on the main campus of the University of Kentucky.  Please register at the main NACLO web site if you are interested in participating!  The NACLO site also has many practice problems and sample problems from previous years to hone your skills on.  Driving (and parking) directions for visitors are available.  For visitors from within Lexington, campus is on

1/23/2018
The CESJ's Spring Symposium is a little over two weeks away. We have a few important updates and new details about this exciting event.   Please note: the location has been changed to Kincaid Auditorium (Gatton). 
  HOW DISCRIMINATION AND DISPARITIES IMPACT CHILDREN AND TEENS: RESEARCH ON ETHNICITY, SOCIAL CLASS, AND SEXUAL ORIENTATION Friday, February 9  1:00pm-4:00pm in Kincaid Auditorium  Reception to follow in Woodward Hall    Speakers: Stacey S. Horn, Ph.D., University of Illinois-Chicago,  "Developmental and Contextual Factors Related to Sexual Prejudice Across Adolescence”   Rashmita S. Mistry, Ph.D., UCLA,  "Exploring Social Class Identity in Childhood and Adolescence: What, How, and Why?"   Tiffany Yip, Ph.D., Fordham University,  "The Opportunities and
1/23/2018

By Jenny Wells

Three University of Kentucky professors and a postdoctoral researcher in the UK College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Physics and Astronomy were featured in the American Physical Society's (APS) "Physics Highlights of the Year" for 2017.

The research of UK faculty members Keh-Fei Liu and Terry Draper, together with UK postdoc Yi-Bo Yang and their collaborators, was featured for their recent breakthrough in understanding the origin of the proton's "spin."  Through theoretical calculations performed on supercomputing clusters, their work revealed for the first time that 50 percent of the proton's spin arises from gluons, the force carriers of the "strong interaction" that bind quarks together to form the proton

1/11/2018

By Gail Hairston

Rachel Pagano studied snake fungal disease in Kentucky's ecosystem.

Without the added pressure of daily classes, summer research can be especially rewarding for University of Kentucky underclassmen.

The UK Office of Undergraduate Research has created a Summer Research Information Session to answer any questions that current freshmen, sophomores and juniors might have regarding undergraduate research programs, especially questions regarding financial support. There will be two identical presentations 4:30-5:30 p.m., Jan. 17. in Room 233 of Gatton College of Business and Economics, and 1:30-2:30 p.m., Jan. 24, at William T. Young Library UK Athletics

1/9/2018

By Amaya DeVicente

While on a University of Kentucky Education Abroad and Exchanges (UK EA) program, UK student, Natalie St.Clair, immersed herself in her new community in Mexico, and giving back any way that she could.

St.Clair, a senior from Louisville, Kentucky, is a foreign language and international economics major and political science minor who studied abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico.

St.Clair’s two-month program in Oaxaca during summer 2016 was not enough. "I decided to return to Oaxaca to strengthen my relationships with friends and the community, and become more deeply involved," St.Clair said. She studied abroad again in fall 2017 on a UK EA partner program: Study Abroad and Spanish Immersion in Mexico – Intensive Language with Sol Education Abroad.

"The program and academic staff were a great

1/4/2018

By Carol Lea Spence

Amelia Baylon, NRES student, helps middle-school students measure a tree during 2017 Expanding Your Horizons STEM workshop. Photo by Carol Lea Spence.

Organizers of Expanding Your Horizons invite University of Kentucky undergraduate and graduate students to apply to be workshop leaders at this year’s conference. Expanding Your Horizons is a one-day conference on April 21 for middle school girls from across Kentucky. The purpose is to expose them to and create excitement for the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics by taking part in hands-on science workshops.

Women make up only 24 percent of the STEM workforce, and women hold a disproportionately low share of STEM undergraduate degrees.

“Many times, girls lack role models in those fields, so they don’t see women in a

12/21/2017

By Dominique Page

Six University of Kentucky students took honors at the Kentucky Academy of Science (KAS) Annual Meeting held Nov. 3-4, at Murray State University. With more than 500 scientists and students in attendance, hundreds of undergraduate and graduate students from Kentucky and regional colleges and universities participated in the research competitions.

The UK students who won awards in the KAS student competitions are as follows:

Eashwar Somasundaram, a chemistry senior and Lewis Honors College student from Williamson, Kentucky, took second place in undergraduate poster presentation in the Physiology & Biochemistry category; Harrison Inocencio, computer science junior and Lewis Honors College student from Lexington, took second place in undergraduate oral presentation in the Computer & Information Sciences category
12/20/2017

By Gail Hairston

Artist's rendering of Mill House at Glendower, the setting for new UK creative writing residency program.

Built more than 225 years ago, the Mill House at Glendower is a secluded, pastoral location to escape the bustle of daily life, a place to reflect, to create.

At least that’s what the University of Kentucky Department of English professors realized when they were surprised by an unexpected gift from UK alumni Joan and Greg Swanberg — a summertime four-week stay at the couple’s cottage at the Virginia retreat.

The generous gift allowed the department to create two new residency programs for aspiring authors — one two-week residency open to internal submissions from current UK students pursuing a master’s degree in fine arts in creative writing and a second two-week residency for external

12/14/2017

By Jenny Wells

Martha Tillson (left) and Sarah Gossett will deliver speeches at the December 2017 Commencement Ceremonies Friday, Dec. 15.

In what has become a University of Kentucky Commencement tradition, two students have been selected to serve as speakers for the UK December Commencement ceremonies this Friday, Dec. 15. Because doctoral, master's and baccalaureate degree recipients are now recognized together based on their colleges, the selection committee accepted applications from students with all degree types, not just undergraduate students as in past years.

Martha Tillson will speak at the 10 a.m. ceremony and Sarah Gossett will speak at the 2 p.m. ceremony. Tillson and Gossett were selected among several candidates by UK President Eli Capilouto to represent the

12/14/2017

By Tatyanna Pruitt

Frank Ettensohn, professor in the University of Kentucky Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, has received the Grover E. Murray Memorial Distinguished Educator Award for 2018 from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), an international association of petroleum geologists. The award is given in recognition of distinguished and outstanding contributions to geological education.

“This award has been given to some very prestigious educator/geoscientists. It is a veritable who’s who of geoscientists in the field of sedimentary geology,” said Dave Moecher, chair of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences in the College of Arts and Sciences. “Dr. Ettensohn has contributed significantly to the field and is definitely deserving of this recognition.”

Ettensohn

12/14/2017

By Julie Wrinn

“Kentucky Is a Pretty Special Place”
The Transformation of Andrew Grotto from High School Underachiever to Cybersecurity Wonk

As a freshman entering UK’s Honors Program in 1994, Andrew Grotto (B.A. Philosophy ’99) was on academic probation from day one. Though he would go on to a glittering career on Capitol Hill, at the White House, and now at Stanford, with graduate degrees from Berkeley and Harvard, Grotto didn’t apply himself to academics until his last year of high school. “I figured out in my senior year that maybe I should go to class,” he joked. Grotto is not really sure why he didn’t take school seriously, other than “teenagers’ brains aren’t wired to think about risk and long-term consequences.”

Despite a mediocre cumulative GPA coming out of high school in the Chicago area, Grotto had unusually

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