UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

Archives for January 2017

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company at UNCG Friday

As part of UNCG’s War and Peace Imagined series, the College of Visual and Performing Arts will host “Analogy/Dora: Tramontane,” a performance by the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company, choreographed by MacArthur Genius Bill T. Jones.

The performance is Feb. 3 at 8 p.m. in UNCG Auditorium.

The much acclaimed “Analogy/Dora: Tramontane,” comes from the oral history of Dora Amelan, a French Jewish nurse and social worker who survived World War II. The twenty-five episodes within the piece tell the story, through choreography and song, of the author’s early family life in Belgium, her mother’s death as the German soldiers invaded her country, and her work with the Oeuvre de Secours aux Enfants, a French humanitarian organization that rescued many Jewish refugees from certain death within concentration camps.

The piece is part of a trilogy developed by Jones and Janet Wong. Composer Nick Hallett has created original music informed by the text, as well as by German Romantic Leider songs from both world wars and pop music from the 1950s through 90s.

Throughout 33 years, the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company has made an impact worldwide, changing the dance-theater world through innovative performances with a focus on dynamic subject matter.  They also bring their collaborative methods to a variety of educator-training programs and workshops for professional and pre-professional dancers.

Orchestra/Mezzanine tickets are $30, or $5 for students and $25 for seniors. Purchase them here.

UNCG will construct wetlands on campus

UNCG has received a $46,112 grant from the Duke Energy Water Resources Fund to construct two wetlands on campus. The wetlands will improve water quality and biotic diversity, provide educational and research opportunities, spur community outreach and enhance the natural beauty of campus.

UNCG is one of 12 organizations in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia selected by Duke Energy to share nearly $780,000 in new grants to support environmental and wildlife programs. UNCG’s Dr. Malcolm Schug, Dr. Lynn Sametz and Dr. Parke A. Rublee are principal investigators on the grant. Rublee, who serves as chair of the UNCG Wetlands Committee, accepted the award on Dec. 13 at a grant recipient event in Belmont.

“We’re excited about this transformative investment from Duke Energy and the opportunity to build wetlands on UNCG’s campus,” Rublee said. “In addition to providing critical environmental services, such as improving water quality, the wetlands will offer a variety of opportunities for student learning, research and community outreach.”

The wetlands will be constructed on campus near North Buffalo Creek in March. Their maintenance will be integrated into UNCG’s STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) curriculum.

Historically, North Carolina was replete with wetlands; however, as land was developed for farming during the 1800s and early 20th century, most were drained. Wetlands play a critical role in ecosystems, providing water purification, flood abatement and natural habitats for diverse plant and animal species.

The wetlands project dates back to the fall of 2014 when UNCG’s Research and Instruction in STEM Education (RISE) Network began exploring the idea of campus wetlands. Earlier this year, wetlands restoration expert Tom Biebighauser visited campus, identified potential wetlands sites and drafted construction plans. The project is an interdisciplinary collaboration between numerous academic departments and the Greensboro Science Center.

In addition to the Duke Energy grant, the project has received $8,000 from the UNCG Green Fund.

To learn more about the UNCG wetlands development project, visit rise.uncg.edu/projects/wetlands-project.

By Alyssa Bedrosian
Visual: Dr. Parke A. Rublee (center) accepts the grant award from Duke Energy officials David Fountain (left) and Rick Jiran (right). (Photo provided by Duke Energy)

Million dollar NSF award for UNCG Science, Technology, Math prep scholarships

The National Science Foundation has awarded one million dollars to support Science, Technology and Math Preparation Scholarships (STAMPS) at UNCG.  The National Science Foundation will support a collaborative effort proposed by faculty and staff within UNCG’s College of Arts and Science, School of Education and University Teaching and Learning Commons.

STAMPS will enroll at least 47 academically talented and financially challenged minority, female and first-generation college students, to complete their college degrees in the STEM disciplines in four years. This diverse group of first-year STEM students will participate in a yearlong integrated science course, designed to create a cohort which will be supported by faculty mentors, student support services and peer mentors.
The STAMPS students will have outstanding opportunities, including access to undergraduate research, STEM speakers, travel experiences and facilitated shadowing at the Joint School for Nanoscience and Nanoengineering. The goal is to matriculate and then graduate all STAMPS scholars into STEM careers or graduate school programs; identify and support a diverse community of STEM learners; create and sustain a supportive environment for STAMPS scholars that becomes self-sustaining and discover what works, and why, and share this knowledge with a broad audience.

The STAMPS project personnel are associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and biology professor Stanley Faeth, Ayesha Boyce of Educational Research Methodology in the School of Education,  Jeffrey Patton of the Geography department, Lee Phillips, director of the Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creativity Office and Lynn Sametz, who leads Research and Instruction in STEM Education at UNCG.

Greensboro neighborhoods’ history will be topic of ‘Housing Hangout’ Friday

The UNCG Center for Housing and Community Studies will host a Housing Hangout focused on the history of Greensboro’s neighborhoods on Feb. 3 at noon in MHRA, Room 2603. The guest speakers are Elaine Ostrowski, from the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro; Andy Scott, from the City of Greensboro; Beth McKee-Huger, from the Greensboro Housing Coalition and members of the Cottage Grove community. The event is free and refreshments will be provided.

The “Housing Hangout” is an informal space in which community housing advocates, city officials, university researchers, students, and members of the public gather to discuss housing and community development issues. These informal talks disseminate information about on-going programs, the findings of housing-related studies, community events. They also focus on the development of strategic plans and partnerships for providing decent and affordable housing in the community.

Chancellor Gilliam will speak, take questions at today’s Faculty Senate meeting

There is a Faculty Senate meeting today (Wednesday, Feb. 1) in the Virginia Dare Room of the Alumni House at 3 p.m.

Anne Wallace, Faculty Senate chair, will make opening remarks.

Chancellor Gilliam is scheduled to speak at 3:10 p.m. and will invite questions and discussion from the floor.

At 4:10 p.m., Teresa Little, committee chair and Susan Collins, senate liaison, will present the ad hoc NTT Issues Committee Report. That will be followed by the Faculty Assembly Delegation Report during which Anna Marshall-Baker, lead delegate, will present the resolutions “On Faculty Compensation” and “On SACSCOC Compliance,” which were submitted by the UNCG Faculty Assembly Delegation.

At 4:45 p.m., Sam Miller will deliver a report on the December Board of Trustees meeting.

The next Faculty Forum, “Academic Freedom and Shared Governance,” will be on Wednesday, Feb. 15, at 3 p.m. in the Alumni House.

The next Faculty Senate meeting will be Wednesday, March 1, at 3 p.m. in the Alumni House.

Staff Excellence Award nominations deadline Feb. 3

Staff members may nominate a colleague for a Staff Excellence Award. All nominations are due by February 3, 2017.

The Staff Excellence Award recognizes staff members who have demonstrated excellence in their contributions to the University this year. An award of $1,000 will be presented to up to two deserving permanent SHRA or EHRA non-faculty employees who are in good standing and have been employed at UNCG for at least two years as of the nomination deadline. Staff, faculty, supervisors, administrators and/or students may make nominations for this award.

To see past years’ recipients and videos, visit: http://web.uncg.edu/hrs/Employee_Recognition/Excellence_Awards

Please consider nominating a colleague for this important award.  You can complete the nomination form online by clicking here.

Dr. Sat Gupta’s landmark work in survey sampling

A fall 2016 Research Magazine article

Fifteen years ago, Professor Sat Gupta brought up his favorite subject, RRT survey sampling, in his introductory statistics class. RRT, or Randomized Response Technique, is a practical approach to a common dilemma in survey sampling — the possibility that a respondent might lie.

“A face-to-face survey may lead to serious social desirability response bias,” explained Gupta. “It’s the tendency in respondents to give socially acceptable responses rather than true responses.”

RRT reduces that tendency in survey participants by allowing them to scramble their responses and maintain their privacy. This is particularly helpful, Gupta told the class, with embarrassing survey questions, like “Have you ever had an abortion?”

Suddenly, a student stood up and asked, “What makes you think that a woman would be ashamed of having an abortion?” Gupta was taken aback — and then inspired.

He realized that researchers had been limiting themselves with RRT by making assumptions about what participants would and would not find sensitive. What researchers needed was an optional RRT model.

A new model

In a commonly used RRT model, a researcher might have a participant draw a card from a deck. Some of the cards display the number 0, some display 1, some -1, and so on. The participant is instructed to add the number on the card to their answer to a question — for example, “How many sexual partners have you had?” The participant is able to respond without fear of judgment because the researcher doesn’t know what is on the card they have drawn and has no way to unscramble their individual answer.

However, the researcher does know what cards are in the deck — both the type of cards and how many. So he knows the probability that a participant is adding 1 to their answer, or -1, etc. Using that probability information, the aggregate answers provided by the survey participants, and sophisticated statistical modeling, the researcher can estimate the surveyed group’s average answer to the question of interest.

In Gupta’s Optional RRT model, the participant has an additional choice if they don’t find the research question embarrassing. They can draw the card, ignore its contents, and provide a straightforward answer to the researcher’s question. The researcher will not know that particular participant provided an unscrambled response. However, the pool of survey answers now contains unscrambled responses as well as scrambled responses, which, with the correct modeling, allows the researcher to estimate the average response to the research question with greater accuracy.

Seminal work

Gupta’s 2002 publication on Optional RRT became a landmark paper in the field.

“We proved that optional models are more efficient than their non-optional counterparts,” explains Gupta. “This idea has become very popular and a lot of papers have been written based on this idea.” In fact, the paper has been cited more than 100 times.

With more than 25 papers on this topic, Gupta has continued to refine the Optional RRT model. His recent work centers on unifying Optional RRT with the use of auxiliary variables. In the latest model, researchers collect sensitive information from participants using Optional RRT, but they also gather secondary, non-sensitive information. The trick? The secondary information — for example, responses to “How many relationships have you had?” — is statistically correlated with the primary, sensitive question.

Each evolution of the model brings researchers greater accuracy. Gupta’s impact is felt not just in his field but in every field using survey sampling as a tool.

“Survey Says,” by Anna Warner and Sangeetha Shivaji, originally appeared in the fall 2016 Research Magazine

Student Entrepreneurship Award deadline Feb. 25

The Office of Research and Economic Development will be accepting nominations for the Jerry McGuire Student Entrepreneur Award until Feb. 25. The award is an annual $1,000 award for UNCG’s most entrepreneurial student or student team. Students may self-nominate or be nominated by others, and nominees may be any full-time undergraduate or graduate students enrolled at UNCG. Eligible award winners could include students who have started businesses, social entrepreneurship ventures, on-campus programming, new clubs and organizations, as well as community service efforts. Individual students or teams of students may be nominated.

Jerry McGuire established UNCG’s Office of Technology Transfer in April, 2002 and served as its first director. Under his leadership, this department increased commercialization activities, as well as on-going research and innovation at UNCG. He was promoted to Associate Vice Chancellor for Economic Development in 2009. This fund was established in honor of Jerry’s retirement in 2014.

See more details here.

A guide to what follows: Success in Psychology

In November, three psychology professors, Dr. Paul Silvia, Dr. Peter Delaney and Dr. Stuart Marcovitch saw the publication of “What Psychology Majors Could (and Should) Be Doing, Second Edition: A Guide to Research Experience, Professional Skills, and Your Options After College,” which is a revised and expanded version of their 2009 book, published by the American Psychological Association.

It’s a book that, while focused specifically on work in psychology, displays a campus-wide intention: UNCG professors aim to train students for success, not only in the classroom, but for after the classes end.

The first edition of the book was written with UNCG students in mind, taking students from their freshman year to graduation, guiding them toward getting involved in professional activities, including attending conferences and presenting research. The new book can also suit the needs of students at other universities, and some chapters are more focused on helping students advance into the job market or enter graduate school. The new edition also reflects the collective growth and experience of the three authors, and how they have responded to the changes in the professional world.

Delaney explained some of the alterations in the book by saying, “The first edition was written during a time of what we saw as unwarranted optimism among students.  We thought some of them needed to be shaken out of complacency and do more to build their careers.” With the tougher job market, however, he says the tone of the book has changed slightly, to inspire students to prepare and to persist.

Silvia added, “The need for ‘outside the classroom’ professional skills has never been greater, especially as competition for jobs and grad school slots heats up.”

At UNCG, all psychology majors take the Careers in Psychology Course, which was conceptualized by Silvia. Marcovitch describes this class as the lecture component to the book, or vice-versa. He said, “Students who go on to work in UNCG laboratories, attend conferences, find related employment and continue to graduate school in psychology often cite the course or the book as what prompted them to engage in the research world.”

Although the book is for psychology majors, Delaney believes that the chapter on succeeding in classes would benefit any beginning college student, especially those already looking toward finding an ideal job or continuing their studies in a graduate program.

Delaney explained, “Many of us relied on chance to make faculty connections. If we want to democratize the process of getting ahead, we need to help students realize the need for good mentorship and to plan for a career, not just for a semester of classes.”

“The sooner students can explore their options at the end of the college, the more prepared they will be,” agreed Silvia.

By Susan Kirby-Smith

Gender, Race and Money

On Tuesday, February 14, 2017, 7 p.m., in the EUC Auditorium, hear the talk “Gender, Race and Money.”

The gap between rich and poor in the United has been widening and this is particularly pronounced in communities of color and for women. During this engaging and interactive lecture, Kimberly Dark teaches participants about trends in the distribution of wealth in America and how those trends affect all Americans.   Kimberly Dark teaches sociology, writes, performs and travels across North America and Europe.

The talk is hosted by UNCG Office of Intercultural Engagement.


Entrepreneurial Journeys

The UNCG North Carolina Entrepreneurial Center will hold the second of its 2017 monthly speaker series, Entrepreneurial Journeys, Feb. 14 at 5 p.m. with a presentation by Chris Padgett, the founder and CEO of Fusion3 Designs, a 3D printer company. Padgett is a product development engineer who developed his own customized designs for Fusion3 Designs. He is active in the local and regional entrepreneur communities and is a founding member of the Greensboro Forge, a community makerspace.

The intention behind Entrepreneurial Journeys is to introduce students to entrepreneurs they can relate to, and to inspire them to feel capable. The upcoming speakers are all under 30 years old. The Entrepreneurial Journey events listed below will be at HQ Greensboro at 111 West Lewis St. Registration is available here.

Events later in the semester include:

March 22 at 5 p.m. – Jack Hoskins

April 19 at 5 p.m. – Kenan Smith

Westervelt event launches Friends of the Library semester

Monday, Feb. 13, Dr. Saundra Westervelt, professor of sociology at UNCG, will lead a discussion of Bryan Stevenson’s “Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption” as the first Friends of the Library event of the semester. It will be at 7 p.m. in Hodges Reading Room in Jackson Library. This event is free and open to the public.

“Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption” is an account of a young lawyer’s coming of age, as well as a look at the lives of those he has defended. Westervelt’s work has focused on the wrongful conviction of the innocent. She and her colleague Kim Cook (UNCW) work with innocent people who have been convicted of capital crimes, incarcerated on death row, and later released because of their factual innocence. Westervelt and Cook focus particularly on life after exoneration, the aftermath of a wrongful capital conviction on those who must reintegrate into their families and communities after release. Together, they have written extensively about the challenges these individuals face, including in “Life after Death Row: Exonerees’ Search for Identity and Community” (Rutgers University Press). Westervelt currently serves a vice-chair of the board of Witness to Innocence, the nation’s only organization comprised of death row exonerees and their families.

On Tuesday, March 21, UNCG history professor Chuck Bolton will lead a book discussion of “All the Light We Cannot See” by Anthony Doerr. This discussion is at 4 p.m. in the Hodges Reading Room.  It is free and open to the public.

Also, the Friends’ Annual dinner will be on on March 29. Ray Suarez will be the guest speaker this year’s event. He is the author of three critically-acclaimed books including “Latino Americans: The 500-Year Legacy that Shaped a Nation,” “The Holy Vote: The Politics of Faith in America” and “The Old Neighborhood: What We Lost in the Great Suburban Migration.” Tickets, which include dinner, are $60 for members and $70 for nonmembers. Tickets for the program, only, are $20. Table sponsorships are available for $650 and include eight tickets, preferential seating and recognition at the event. The event will be held in the Elliott University Center’s Cone Ballroom at 6 p.m. Reservations are required and tickets will be available soon. For more information about sponsoring a table, contact Hollie Stevenson-Parrish at 336-256-0184 or hdsteven@uncg.edu.
Copy courtesy of Friends of the Library

Human Rights Film Series at UNCG

This spring, the College of Arts & Sciences is partnering again with the Human Rights Research Network to host the Human Rights Film Series at UNCG for Spring 2017.

The film series is part of the year-long War & Peace Imagined event series at UNCG. Films in the series include: “No Man’s Land” (February 9) “Osama” (March 30), “Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom” (April 20).
All films will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the School of Education Building, Room 120. A post-film discussion facilitated by different members of the UNCG community will follow all screenings.

“No Man’s Land,” the next film in the series, will be shown on February 9. It is a parable of the Bosnian War that won both the 2001 Golden Globe Foreign Language Film award and the 2001 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.

The series is free and open to the public. For more information on the film series or upcoming film showings, visit http://humanrightsresearchnetwork.weebly.com/

UNCG Graduate Research & Creativity Expo deadline Feb. 6

Registration is open for this spring’s Graduate Research & Creativity Expo, “Scholarship That Matters.” It will be held the afternoon of Wednesday, April 5, in the EUC, and participants must register by 8 a.m. on Feb. 6.

The event is designed to showcase graduate research and creative work to a variety of non-specialized audiences including middle college students, undergraduates, journalists, community members, area business owners, representatives from boards and foundations and state legislators. Students should plan to present their work in a way that is accessible to diverse audiences and explain in understandable language why their work matters and is relevant. Participants should not plan to re-use materials or posters from discipline-specific conferences.

There will be a $1,000 prize awarded in each of the following areas: creative arts; health sciences; humanities; natural, physical and mathematical sciences, professional programs and social sciences.
Criteria for evaluation will include: clarity of communication to a non-specialized audience, effective presentation skills, content knowledge and creativity, organization, originality and ability to explain why the research or work matters economically or societally. There will be two rounds of judging and the final round will take place at 3 p.m. Participants should check the website for project formats and more information. Most registrants should select “poster,” and those presentations will be viewed by the judges.

Register here, and learn more about the expo and competition here.

The expo is sponsored by the Graduate School, the Graduate Student Association and the Office of Research & Economic Development.

Looking Ahead: Feb. 1, 2017

Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company
Friday, Feb. 3, 8 p.m., UNCG Auditorium

Women’s Rugby vs. Guilford College (club sport)
Saturday, Feb. 4, 4 p.m.,  Campus Recreation Field

Collage Chamber Series
Sunday, Feb. 5, 4 p.m., Recital Hall

Music, faculty and guest artists: Stusek, Fancher and Zandmane
Monday, Feb. 6, 7:30 p.m., Organ Hall

Film: “No Man’s Land”
Thursday, Feb. 9, 6:30 p.m., SOEB 120

Staff Senate meeting
Thursday, Feb. 9, 10 a.m., Alumni House, Virginia Dare Room

Arie Dubnov on Isaiah Berlin

The UNCG Jewish Studies program, Department of Religious Studies and History department will host Dr. Arie Dubnov on Monday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m. in the EUC’s Claxton Room. The Henry Samuel Levinson Emerging Scholar in Jewish Intellectual History will present “The (un)making of a liberal sage: reassessing Isaiah Berlin’s legacy.” The lecture will explore the work of Sir Isaiah Berlin (1909-97), a Russian-Jewish-British philosopher, historian of ideas, political thinker and prominent transatlantic Cold War public intellectual. The presentation is the first in a three-year collaboration between UNCG’s Jewish Studies program and the Triangle Intellectual History Seminar.

“Monastic Desires” lecture Feb. 7

On Tuesday, Feb. 7, at 12:30 p.m., Women and Gender Studies will host a lecture called “Monastic Desires: Love and Longing for God in Byzantium,” which is a work-in-progress by Derek Krueger. Krueger’s lecture will focus on the work of Symeon the New Theologian (949-1022), showing how some medieval Orthodox Christian monks drew on the language and tropes of ancient and medieval Greek romance literature to describe the structure of their relationship with God. The talk will be held in Curry 342.

Dr. Rachel Briley

Photo of Dr. Rachel Briley. Dr. Rachel Briley (Theatre, North Carolina Theatre for Youth) has been invited by the Theatre Communications Group (TCG) to be a Latin American Delegate at the The Santiago a Mil Festival in Santiago, Chile in mid-January 2017. This is one of the largest international theater festivals in the world—with focus on the presentation of Latin American work (specifically the Southern Cone countries). She is one of only 20 individuals chosen nation-wide to join the delegation. TCG is a founding member of the Global Theater Initiative which sponsors this festival with the intention of creating cross-cultural partnerships.

Counseling Center events for students

The Counseling Center will hold two special events this spring for students. The first event, “Not Just for Lovers,” will be on Feb. 14  from 12 to 3 p.m.  in the EUC pre-function area. The focus will be on the celebration of  love in relationships with family, friends and self. Students will have the opportunity to make Valentine’s Day cards, bracelets and cookies and to enjoy uplifting music within a supportive environment. Information about healthy relationships will also be available.

The second event, the De-Stress Fest will take place April 19 at the fountain or, in the event of rain, in the Cone ballroom. This event  is also hosted by Rec Well and will be an outreach event for students with the goal of supporting strategies for life-long stress management. It will also begin at 12 p.m.

Dr. John Willse

Photo of Dr. John Willse. Dr. John Willse (Educational Research Methodology) received new funding from the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) for the project “OAERS contract with American Board of Pediatrics (GRA support for 2016-2017).”

Dr. Elaine Gustafson

Photo of Dr. Elaine Gustafson. Dr. Elaine Gustafson (Weatherspoon Art Museum) received new funding from the North Carolina Arts Council for the presentation “Lucinda Devlin: Sightlines,” which will be in the main exhibition gallery of the Weatherspoon Art Museum (WAM) through April 23, 2017. This survey of more than 85 color photographs will be the first museum retrospective of this under-acknowledged American photographer and will include examples from all eight of her major series of works. WAM also received new funding from the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation toward toward the publication of a catalogue that will accompany the exhibition. It will be the first major publication of Devlin’s complete work in this country.

Dr. Nadja Cech

Photo of Dr. Nadja Cech. Dr. Nadja Cech (Chemistry and Biochemistry) received continued funding from the National Institutes of Health  (NIH) for the project “Strategies to Investigate Synergy in Botanical Medicines.” The project will apply an innovative two-pronged approach to the study of  synergy in goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis.) Goldenseal is among the top 20 best selling herbal supplements in the United States, and shows promise of effectiveness against multidrug resistant Staphyolcoccus aureus (MRSA), which now kills more U.S. citizens each year than does AIDS.

The project aims to provide a comprehensive list of the array of compounds that are responsible for the antimicrobial activity of goldenseal, including details about their mechanism of action.  The long term goal is to support clinical trials of goldenseal and to enable effective quality control of commercially available goldenseal preparations.  The study will also demonstrate new methods by which the multiple constituents responsible for the activity of botanical dietary supplements can be identified.  These methods are expected to prove useful to other investigators who must account for the synergistic interactions that play a role in the activity of many complementary and alternative medicines.

Kim Cuny

Photo of Kim Cuny. Kim Cuny (Communication Studies, Multiliteracy Centers, Theatre) has been named Managing Editor of Communication Center Journal, a national, peer-reviewed journal that features research and perspectives relevant to communication centers in higher education.

Dr. Amanda Tanner

Photo of Dr. Amanda Tanner. Dr. Amanda Tanner (Public Health Education) received new funding from Wake Forest University Health Sciences for the project “HIV Prevention among Latina transgender women who have sex with men: Evaluation of a locally developed intervention.”

Dr. Jerry Walsh

Photo of Dr. Jerry Walsh. Dr. Jerry Walsh (Chemistry and Biochemistry) was named among the Southern Conference All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff team. Faculty members who receive this designation are recognized for their service to the institution, contributions to campus life and the local community, and for demonstrating high achievement in research projects. Walsh, who is a professor and associate head, has been at UNCG for more than 30 years. His career has spanned the areas of inorganic chemistry and science education. Projects funded by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Education have allowed him to contribute to recruitment and professional development of teachers and to inspire students to pursue careers in science. He is regularly involved in outreach activities like Science Olympiad and STEMX summer camps.

See/hear: Feb. 1, 2017

Vote for a great Nano video, made by a UNCG student about a UNCG student and his impactful research at JSNN.

It’s part of the National Nanotechnology Initiative film contest.

Today, visit www.nano.gov/NanoFilmPublicVoting to view this and other videos from the Nano Film  contest and vote for your favorite. This UNCG film is the third film on the list. Today (Feb. 1) is the voting deadline.

“Shrinking chemical instrumentation can show the same improvements that have revolutionized the computer industry. Faster, cheaper, and portable are some of these benefits. With the worlds analytical instrumentation market in the billions of dollars and only 0.1% using small biosensors there is a vast market growth potential and need, as the shortcomings with large instruments can be solved. Imagine the benefits to mankind from the ability to do an analysis anywhere in the world at any time! The possibilities are endless. Our research focuses on fabricating such a device for an array of diseases. Simply changing the capture molecule on the sensor surface dictates which disease is being tested for. Fabricated at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, these sensors fit in the palm of the hand. The biosensors work on the nanoscale by detecting biological molecules in very small amounts.”

Interviewee: Taylor Mabe, UNCG, Nanoscience Dept.,

Film’s director: Jenna Shad, UNCG, Biology Dept. & Film Dept.


Space dates: Make plans to see stars and planets this year

The winter and spring dates for the Three College Observatory (TCO) Public Nights and UNCG Planetarium show are now listed online.

The TCO, which is at a dark-sky location near Snow Camp, will have Public Nights on Friday, Feb. 24 at 7 p.m., Friday, March 24 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, April 29, at 8:30 p.m. This facility, operated jointly by UNCG, NC A&T and Guilford College, opened in 1981 and contains a 0.81-meter reflecting telescope, one of the largest in the southeastern United States. Typical public observing sessions include a look at star clusters, nebulae, galaxies, double stars, planets and the moon, if available. More information about the TCO and Public Nights is available here.

The UNCG Planetarium show will run Friday, Feb. 10, Friday March 10, and Friday, April 7 in the Petty Science Building, Room 310. All shows are at 7:30 p.m. For those shows, UNCG’s Spitz projector will project the stars, planets, sun and moon onto the interior of a 20-ft dome, showing patterns of motion.

Both shows are open to the community and appropriate for adults and older children. Although admission is free, seats are limited for both. The shows are popular; slots fill quickly.

Reservations can be made through the UNCG Department of Physics and Astronomy website: https://physics.uncg.edu/.

Chinese New Year celebration Friday, Feb. 3, at UNCG

The Chinese New Year celebration is not new at UNCG, but this year’s on-campus celebration on Friday, Feb. 3, will bring in more local community members than ever before. The Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures has worked with the Greensboro Chinese Association, New Mind Education, the UNCG School of Education and the UNCG Chinese Student Association to expand the celebration on campus.

“It is our hope to create an opportunity for students to come together to celebrate and share their rich cultural heritages with everyone on the UNCG campus,” said Dr. Meiqing Sun, lecturer in Chinese Studies and director of Chinese Studies (2016-17).

The afternoon event, in the Elliott University Center’s Cone Ballroom, will be from 3 to 6:30 p.m.  Activities will include painting Chinese fans and a New Year’s mural, lessons in Chinese cooking, such as dumpling-folding, exposure to Chinese tea culture, instruction in Chinese writing, games, multimedia presentations and opportunities to watch traditional dance performances, listen to traditional songs and sample authentic Chinese food. The individual stations will involve the efforts of a variety of UNCG students—Chinese international students, students who are learning Chinese and those interested in Chinese culture—as well as local community members.

An evening performance in the EUC auditorium, coordinated the UNCG Chinese Student Association and Greensboro Chinese Association, will feature UNCG student performers and student performers from the Greensboro Chinese School, a Sunday language and cultural heritage school housed in the School of Education building at UNCG. Those performances will begin at 6 p.m.

Both events free and open to the public, and appropriate for families, though seating for the evening event is limited. For this event, visitors can park for free in the Oakland Parking Deck. After 5 p.m., visitors can also park on surface lot #7. Click here for more information regarding parking on campus.

For more information contact Meiqing Sun, m_sun@uncg.edu, Ye He, y_he@uncg.edu, or Tiffany Merritt, tmerritt@newmind.org.

By Susan Kirby-Smith

Visual: A New Mind Education celebration from a previous year. New Mind Education is a part of this year’s celebration at UNCG.

Correction: The date is Feb. 3. The day, Friday, has been corrected in the copy. 

Alumnus Ben Mathews retiring, as landmark ‘Browsery’ set to close

Ben Mathews

The Browsery was once part of the fabric of the UNCG community. Then it became a downtown fixture as well.

Soon alumnus and bookseller Ben Mathews will be closing shop.

Matthews came to UNCG in February 1967 – two years after the first men enrolled. His academic career was disrupted when his father was killed back in his Georgia hometown, and family responsibilities pulled him back to Georgia. He attended through 1970.

He was an English master’s major, though he did not graduate. He did start a bookstore near campus on Mendenhall in April 1976, with business partner Charles Gibson. It was called The Browsery, located in the building where Firehouse Grocery now resides. Every book lover at UNCG from the mid-1970s through the final years of the millennium has memories of this College Hill bookstore.

Mathews would welcome all customers. Robert Watson would come by.  So would Fred Chappell. Eleanor Ross Taylor. Sarah Lindsay. And many other authors and poets and book lovers. The Browsery would draw them in.

UNCG had drawn him. He’d graduated from Oglethorpe University, having started his undergraduate studies at Sewanee, and knew UNCG’s reputation for its professors of English. Randall Jarrell, especially. Tragically, Jarrell died two years before he enrolled. He recalls the first day in Greensboro, arriving at a house on Tate St. across from the post office (now the printing office), near the underpass. A parking lot is there now. After getting his utilities turned on, he visited St. Mary’s House near Tate & Walker. He recalls there was one person there, aside from the priest. That person introduced herself. “Hello, my name is Mary Jarrell.” She was Randall Jarrell’s widow.  He instantly felt very welcomed to Greensboro and the UNCG community.

Years later at his bookstore counter, he would provide that same sense of welcoming.

Peter Taylor, a UNCG faculty member who received the Pulitzer for “A Summons to Memphis,” admired a photo of author Robert Penn Warren near his register. “Where did that come from?” Taylor asked. Mathews gave it to him. Taylor, who knew “Red” Warren from his visits to UNCG and earlier, explained that Warren’s expression in that photo captured him is his distinctive way of laughing.

As business grew, Mathews co-opened a second location of The Browsery at 516 South Elm. And he became co-owner of a much larger “The Browsery” space – just for books – at 504-6 S. Elm near the railroad on South Elm.

If you’ve loved books – especially if you’ve loved Greensboro authors and UNCG authors – you’ve likely known Ben Mathews. And you’ve enjoyed some of his great stories of area writers – or heard him recite some of his favorite poems.

The only store that remains is the 516 South Elm location. He’s at the counter and helping customers every day.

But that store is closing soon, he tells us. He is retiring.

Great bookstores are about connecting … with writers who lived long ago or live far away , and in this case with a UNCG alum who’s enriched the community for decades.

The sale will draw some traffic. But a chance to discuss Greensboro writers … or hear him recite the Randall Jarrell poem “Nestus Gurley” from memory … or find out who originally owned this book you’re buying – will draw more.

By Mike Harris
Photo by Katie Loyd

Nominations for Student Excellence Award

Lloyd International Honors College is now inviting nominations for the Student Excellence Award. These awards are given to seniors whose academic careers are outstanding both inside and outside the classroom.

Each academic department and interdisciplinary program may nominate up to two students for the award.

Nomination materials are located at http://honorscollege.uncg.edu/faculty/student-awards.htm

This is a wonderful opportunity for students to receive recognition for their exceptional accomplishments. The deadline for receiving nominations is Friday, February 10. Please direct questions to Lloyd International Honors College at 334-5538.

Lucinda Devlin photography retrospective at Weatherspoon

This Friday, Jan. 27, Nancy Doll and the Weatherspoon Art Museum will host a special event in celebration of the exhibition “Lucinda Devlin: Sightlines,” which will be open in the main exhibition gallery through April 23.

This survey of more than 80 color photographs will be the first museum retrospective of this internationally recognized American photographer and will include examples from all eight of her major series of works.

The exhibition is organized by Elaine D. Gustafson, curator of collections, and was made possible in part by new funding from the North Carolina Arts Council, and a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources. WAM also received new funding from the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation which went toward toward the publication of a catalogue that will accompany the exhibition. It is the first major publication of Devlin’s complete work in this country.

Now a Greensboro resident, Devlin began her career in the 1970s when color photography had just begun. Her photographs are known to feature dynamic and arresting locations – zoos and amusement parks, agricultural facilities, open fields and shorelines.

The Friday event will include a conversation with Lucinda Devlin and Lisa Hostetler, who is curator in charge in the photography department of the George Eastman Museum. It begins at 6 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

Some information drawn from Weatherspoon Art Museum’s Facebook post.

Image: Lucinda Devlin, “Wheat Field, SD” (detail), 2008, from the series Field Culture, inkjet print, 28 x 28 in. Courtesy of the artist © Lucinda Devlin.

Mindfulness Meditation at UNCG on Wednesdays

A new weekly silent meditation will be offered at UNCG for students, staff and faculty every Wednesday at  2 p.m. from January 25 through April 26 (excluding spring break), Room 015, Student Health Services Building (ground level), 107 Gray Dr.

Clinical research studies have documented various physical, cognitive and psychological benefits of meditation. Meditation practices promote health and well-being.

No experience necessary, no special postures and no special clothes. This event is free. Various UNCG faculty and community members will rotate leadership of each meditation session. You may sign up at: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0544a4a72ea7ff2-silent

Diversity and Global Engagement Expo

University Libraries will host a Diversity and Global Engagement Expo on Thursday, February 16, 2017, from 2 – 5 p.m. in the Reading Room on the first floor of Jackson Library. The expo will feature a collective sharing of music, food, culture and values. Drawings for prizes will also be included. Join UNCG faculty and staff in conversation promoting the importance of diversity and multiculturalism on campus with a panel discussion beginning at 4 p. m. with Dr. Omar Ali. The event is cosponsored by the University Libraries, the Department of International and Global Studies, the Office of Intercultural Engagement, UNCG Campus Activities and Programs and the International Programs Center.

Blood drive Feb. 1

The Elliott University Center will host its third Red Cross Blood Drive of the 2016-2017 academic year on Wednesday, Feb. 1, from 8:30am to 6:30pm in Cone Ballroom.

Schedule your donation appointment today and help the EUC reach its 250-pint goal!  For those wishing to donate double red blood cells, the Red Cross is currently accepting only blood types A negative; B negative; O positive; and O negative.

Be sure to come prepared when giving blood.  Have a light meal and plenty to drink.  Bring your Red Cross donor card (optional), driver’s license or two other forms of identification.  And bring the names of any medications you are currently taking.

For more information on giving blood, and to schedule your donation appointment, visit http://euc.uncg.edu/mission/blood-drive/ .  Appointments will be given priority.  Walk-ins are welcome.

Become a UNCG ‘neighborhood professor’

What is a Faculty-In-Residence?

Faculty-in-Residence (FIR) are faculty members from various academic disciplines who are committed to student learning beyond the traditional classroom environment and live on campus with their immediate family.  FIR interact and engage with students in the overall residential campus community.

What is the FIR Program?

The FIR Program is one of the signature experiences at UNCG, which seeks to foster a community of care and facilitate an environment where learning and living are intertwined. The program intends to attract dynamic faculty with diverse interests and afford them the opportunity to engage in the life of the undergraduate residential community. The FIR program is a collaborative partnership sponsored by the Office of Housing and Residence Life, Division of Student Affairs and the Office of the Provost.

Faculty-in-residence programs place faculty members in apartments in student residence halls; they are credited with helping first and second-year students feel comfortable approaching faculty members while also providing faculty members insight into the lives of students.


Come to one of the FIR Information Sessions sponsored by HRL to gain insight from current FIR and residence life staff.   Light refreshments will be served, feel free to drop in between the hours listed below.

Thursday, February 2, 2017 4:00pm – 5:00pm in Hinshaw Residence Hall parlor (located in the Quad)

Friday, February 10, 2017 3:00pm – 4:00pm in Spartan Village, Haywood Hall Clubhouse (located off of Gate City Blvd.)

Application materials by February 16, 2017. Visit https://hrl.uncg.edu/about-us/faculty-residence-program/how-to-apply/fir-application/ to apply.