News

6/2/2011

by Guy Spriggs

Cassie Hardin was sure that she wanted to explore her passion for studying languages after arriving at the University of Kentucky in the fall of 2008, but she also knew that she getting tired of more traditional romance languages. She wanted something new; she wanted a new horizon.

So how did Hardin arrive at her decision to pursue courses in UK’s Chinese Studies program? She left it up to chance.

“I wanted a new challenge, so I flipped a coin: did I want to do Japanese or did I want to do Chinese. It landed on Chinese, so I went with Chinese and I’m so glad.”

In the spring of 2010, Hardin was presented with a unique opportunity to travel to China for the Conversational Chinese in Shanghai Program through Education Abroad at UK. The program, directed by UK professor Liang Luo, was the inaugural exchange program for the new Confucius

6/2/2011

by Matthew Patton

There’s more than 4,300 miles separating Morehead, KY and Berlin, Germany. For Ben Williams, it was a gap that would be bridged thanks, in part, to his experiences at the University of Kentucky.

Hailing from Morehead, Williams graduated from Rowan County Senior High. From there, he went to the University of Kentucky, followed by a graduate degree from the Elliott School of International Affairs at The George Washington University. His parents still live in Morehead, where his mother works in the Fuzzy Duck Coffee Shop and his father as a professor at Morehead State. His two sisters live in Lexington.

Inspiration

When studying at UK, he was

6/2/2011

by A&S staff
photos by Dana Rogers

A basic connection between the texts of theater and their staging as performance is undeniable. Yet, in most universities today, these disciplines tend to be rigidly divided into separate colleges and departments – literature and languages; the performing arts. In an effort to join together what should have never been separated, Arts & Sciences French professor Suzanne Pucci from the 

6/1/2011
Shannon Elizabeth Bell

The Rural Sociological Society has recognized Shannon Bell and Richard York for Best Article. The article, “Community Economic Identity: The Coal Industry and Ideology Construction in West Virginia,” was published in March 2010 in Rural Sociology, the Society’s journal. Shannon Bell is an assistant professor of sociology at UK; Richard York, who co-authored the article, is a professor at the University of Oregon. 

In their article, Bell and York address the relationship between capitalist modes of production and ecological destruction. Using the Appalachian coal industry as a case study, they demonstrate the ways in which declines in coal industry jobs and the

5/26/2011
Cover of Engineering Earth, edited by Stan Brunn

Stan Brunn, geography professor, author, and editor of various publications has edited the three-volume set “Engineering Earth: The Impacts of Megaengineering Projects.” Springer Publishing released it this year; the whole set contains 126 chapters over 2250 pages. Dick Gilbreath produced many of the figures in the work.
 
There is an introductory chapter by Stan Brunn and Andy Wood; and there is another chapter authored by Brunn. In addition to many well known scholars from across the world, the names of many UK alums appear in the table of contents, including Mark Graham, John Bowen, Ben Smith, Darren Purcell and Jerry Webster. UK students

5/26/2011
tea ceremony

by Whitney Hale, Erin Holaday, & Jessica Hancock

The University of Kentucky Asia Center will host a Chado (Japanese tea ceremony) demonstration at 2 p.m. on May 29 and June 12 at the Art Museum at UK.

The tea ceremony is designed to take a few moments to close out the world and find a moment of peace and tranquility. Chado, meaning "the way of tea," is a way to self-discipline, inner strength and peace. The ceremony is designed to contain different elements of the Japanese arts, including pottery, calligraphy, lacquer work and more.

"In my own hands I hold a bowl of tea; I see all of nature represented in its green color. Closing my eyes I find green mountains and pure water within my own heart. Silently sitting alone and drinking tea, I feel these become a part of me," was the way that Sen

5/25/2011
Monica Harris (Kern)

by Brad Duncan and Jenny Wells

Celebrating its 13th year, the University of Kentucky College of Education’s Teachers Who Made a Difference program honored its newest group of educators at the 2011 ceremony held Saturday, April 30. More than 140 educators from nine states were recognized for the significant influence they have had in the lives of their students.

"The University of Kentucky College of Education prides itself on preparing great teachers," said Mary Ann Vimont, the college's director of Public Relations and Student, Alumni and Community Affairs. "As part of our mission, we also think it is important to honor those teachers who are making a difference in the lives of their students, here in Kentucky and across the country."

The program got its start

5/25/2011
Two archaeologists in a lab.

by Erin Holaday Ziegler and Jessica Hancock

A 2009 film exploring the history that lies beneath Kentuckians' feet is one of 18 films to be featured in this year's Archaeology Channel International Film and Video Festival in Eugene, Ore.

"Historic Archaeology: Beneath Kentucky's Fields and Streets," produced by the Kentucky Archaeological Survey (KAS), the Kentucky Heritage Council (KHC) and Voyageur Media Group, Inc., will make its west coast debut on Saturday, May 28.

The festival began May 24 and includes five days of juried films and videos on archaeological and indigenous topics as well as a conference on Cultural Heritage Films.

"This is a great honor for KAS and Kentucky archaeology in general," said KAS

5/25/2011

 

There is a wonderful program at Appalshop in Whitesburg, KY called the Appalachian Media Institute that I am excited to have the opportunity to work for this summer.  Appalshop was founded in 1969 as a non-profit multi-media arts and cultural organization dedicated to preserving Appalachian culture as well as addressing the issues that the Appalachian region is confronted with.  They have a community radio station that broadcasts throughout the area as well as internationally streaming on the web.  They have also produced numerous films, some of which were played at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City last fall. 

Check out all that Appalshop has to offer here: 

5/24/2011
United Nations Logo

Christie Shrestha, a graduate student in the Department of Anthropology, was contacted by the United Nations' High Committee on Refugees to publish an abridged version of her MA thesis, which was published in 2010. Her thesis, "Power and politics in resettlement: a case study of Bhutanese refugees in the USA," is based on research conducted in 2009 in Lexington, Kentucky. 

The article, as it appears in the UNHCR series, "New Issues in Refugee Research," can be found here.

5/24/2011
Excavations at Eastern State Hospital

by Erin Holaday Ziegler

A former chemistry student digs with small tools, the size of those a dentist might use, next to an aspiring business titan from another life, who lightly brushes away dirt clods with almost maternal care.

"Sometimes I'll be working, and three or four hours will fly by," the former business student says. "It's absorbing."

Both are part of a team working to record and analyze the remains of over 125 patients buried on the historic grounds of Eastern State Hospital, the second-oldest psychiatric hospital in the United States. 

David Pollack, director of the Kentucky Archaeological Survey (KAS) and adjunct  professor of anthropology at the University of Kentucky, has brought together professional archaeologists and anthropology graduate and undergraduate students for the project.  

Pollack and his team of 10 braved cold

5/23/2011
From Left to Right—Marion, Houck, Watkins, Jahnz, Koslofsky in Ouachita Forest

by Stephanie Lang

With the semester over, several members of the College of Arts & Sciences Geography Department hit the road on a research trip to Ouachita National Forest near Mena, Arkansas. The team includes geography professor and PI for the project, Jonathan Phillips, adjunct professor and research hydrologist with the United States Forest Service (USFS) Dan Marion, graduate students Stephanie Houck and James Jahnz, and undergraduates Megan Watkins and Eli Koslofsky. The team will work with two other USFS scientists, Ouachita National Forest hydrologist Alan Clingenpeel and soil scientist Jeff Olsen.

The main purpose of this study for the USFS is to examine the effects of off-highway vehicle (OHV) trails on streams. OHV trail crossings of streams are known to have adverse impacts on stream erosion, sedimentation, water quality, and aquatic habitat in

5/18/2011
Lindsey Shipp looks through a microscope.

by Ann Blackford

Since she was 9 years old, University of Kentucky sophomore Lindsey Shipp has known what she wanted to do when she grew up. She made that decision in a hospital room not long after she was diagnosed with Type-1 diabetes. Inspired by a caring team of doctors and a prayer, she knew she wanted to become an endocrinologist and teach other people how to live with diabetes.
 
Shipp, an anthropology major from Dry Ridge, is in many ways a typical college student. She loves her French class and studying different cultures, has a part-time job at the Johnson Center and squeezes in a game of golf when she can. What's not typical about Shipp is the tiny box the size of a pager that sits at her waist and feeds her body insulin through a tiny tube inserted in her abdomen.
 
Shipp has lived with diabetes for 10 years, and the last eight

5/17/2011
Enku Ide, NSF fellow

by Whitney Hale

Three University of Kentucky students have been selected to receive government-funded National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships. The fellowships will present the students with more than $100,000 to use toward research-based master's or doctoral degrees. Additionally, four other UK students received honorable recognition from the program.
 
The NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program helps ensure the vitality of the human resource base of science and engineering in the United States and reinforces its diversity. The program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based master's and doctoral degrees in the U.S. and abroad. NSF fellows receive a

5/16/2011
Filming "Kentucky: An American Story," actors re-enact a battle.

by Erin Holaday Ziegler

If you understand Kentucky history, you understand American history, according to former University of Kentucky history Professor Daniel Blake Smith.
"If the nation is a body, then Kentucky is the heart," Smith said, quoting Kentucky poet Jesse Stuart. "Through issues such as industrialization and land use, the country can learn a lot from Kentucky's past."


Narrated by film star Ashley Judd, directed by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Paul Wagner and written and produced by Smith, “Kentucky—An American Story” is a provocative and entertaining documentary about the revealing connections between Kentucky's and America's past. The film premieres at 8 p.m. EDT Tuesday, May 24, on Kentucky Educational Television

5/11/2011

by Erin Holaday Ziegler

Two University of Kentucky professors and acclaimed authors were awarded honorary degrees this past weekend.


Gurney Norman, UK English professor

Gurney Norman, Kentucky Poet Laureate in 2009-10 and director of UK's Creative Writing Program, was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Berea College on Sunday, May 8. The acclaimed Appalachian author addressed 240 candidates for graduation during Berea's 139th commencement.

Born in Grundy, Va., and raised in southwestern Virginia and eastern Kentucky, Norman graduated from UK in 1959 with degrees in literature and creative writing. There, he became friends with fellow

5/11/2011

by Erin Holaday Ziegler

A child’s ability to focus on a videogames is not necessarily the type of focus parents should look for when determining attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

In fact, increased focus on a screen as opposed to other activities is actually a characteristic of ADHD, according to pediatrician Perri Klass.

"Is a child’s fascination with the screen a cause or an effect of attention problems — or both? It’s a complicated question that researchers are still struggling to tease out," Klass wrote in a recent New York Times story.

Klass references University of Kentucky psychology professors Elizabeth Lorch and

5/11/2011

by Erin Holaday Ziegler

From the complexity of Proctor and Gamble's profit-maximizing strategies, to the seeming simplicity of a crepe myrtle's determination of how much root mass to grow, the world makes decisions in a spectacular array of circumstances.

Most academic disciplines at the University of Kentucky address the process of decision making in some way. According to UK biology Professor Philip Crowley, there's a rich mix of similarities and differences in approach among the disciplines that provides great opportunities for cross-fertilization when it comes to studying decision making.

"For example, there are different goals for the decision making process in different fields, such as profit maximization in economics, fitness maximization in

5/11/2011

by Whitney Hale

Seven students and recent graduates from the University of Kentucky and two 2010 alumnae were selected as recipients of Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarships. The UK recipients are among 1,500 U.S. citizens who will travel abroad for the 2011-2012 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. In addition, one of UK's nine winners, alumna Jordan Covvey, received the prestigious three-year Fulbright-Strathclyde Research Award.

"I am excited the Fulbright Program has chosen to honor nine of UK's students, our largest class of Fulbright Scholars to date," says Lisa Broome-Price, director of the UK Office of External Scholarships. "We expect

5/9/2011

 

I recently stepped in on a planning session between Professor Mark Watson and the Community and Education Coordinator of Lexington’s Explorium, Katherine Shaw.  Preparing for the Explorium’s second annual week-long Chemistry Summer Camp, Watson and Shaw talked lightheartedly about what gets young kids excited about learning about concepts such as viscosity, electrolysis and recrystalization.  They both agreed (without a doubt) that science really is fun for young kids. The challenge is keeping third and fourth graders engaged throughout their academic career. “We do not have to build an interest in science, just not squash it,” Watson said. 

As the kids competed with experiments that require slimy tadpoles and growing fish, Watson shared a few lessons he has learned as an educator and a father. According to his experiences, building a strong foundation in science

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