News and Updates
February 22, 2011
Lucy Kragness, Assistant to the Chancellor, 218-726-6176, firstname.lastname@example.org
Cheryl Reitan, Director, Marketing and Communication 218-726-8996, email@example.com
TEDxUMD Presents a Marathon Day of Ideas
The University of Minnesota Duluth will host an 11-hour marathon
of ideas for the academic community and the public on Tuesday,
March 1, as the first event of Inauguration Week for Chancellor
Lendley C. Black.
The free event, called TEDxUMD, is expected to have about 25
speakers, mostly from the UMD community, who will talk about
ideas as varied as mothers' hopes for their children and exploiting
chaos in the solar system. Presenters will include UMD faculty,
students, staff and alumni. The final speakers of the day, state
Senator Roger Reinert, St. Louis County Commissioner Steve O'Neil,
Duluth Mayor Don Ness and Chancellor Black, will talk about UMD
as a citizen of the state, region, city and world.
TEDxUMD is an independently organized event of video and live
speakers that is licensed by TED Talks, an international nonprofit
devoted to spreading ideas. Each 15-minute talk at UMD will be
presented to an audience and also recorded and uploaded to www.TED.com for
The TEDxUMD event will be held in three sessions, from 10 a.m.
to 1 p.m., 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Kirby
Student Center lounge on campus. TEDxUMD talks will include these
- Molly Minkkinen, associate professor of
education, will share the story of her interviews with about
50 mothers throughout the world and their hopes for their children.
She found that all mothers want the best for their children,
but those in poverty were generally more concerned about survival
or growing up without danger, while high-income mothers’ wishes
were broader, such as hoping their children will be citizens
of the world or strong and compassionate. She plans to show
her photographs of the mothers and children during her talk.
- Marshall Hampton, assistant professor of
mathematics/statistics, will talk about ways the chaos of the
solar system can be exploited through celestial mathematics.
For example, a spacecraft that is nearly out of fuel and drifting
aimlessly in space can be coaxed into usefulness with very
little time or money by finding points of chaos where the craft
drifts. The chaos can be exploited through tiny mathematical
adjustments that will put it on a purposeful path. The same
principles of controlling instability in chaotic regions can
be used to encrypt messages.
- Olaf Kuhlke, associate professor of geography,
studies religious pilgrimages and will use them as a metaphor
for returning to a society of urban walkers. In the United
States, people walk for sport or exercise. In his native Germany,
walking is a way of life. He will show slides of street scenes
in cultures that encourage walking and those that don’t.
Clear sidewalks, appropriate lighting and benches can encourage
walking as a way of getting around as well as creating a sense
of community – one of the purposes of a pilgrimage.
- Rajiv Vaidyanathan, professor of marketing,
will speak about transformative consumer research that studies
psychological, social and cultural behavior of consumption.
At one time marketing academics studied buying behavior, such
as how consumers decide between Pepsi and Coke, for the benefit
of business. Academic research in the past five to 10 years
has begun to study consumption with the idea of helping buyers
make better choices. This direction in research can also help
guide efforts in literacy, poverty, smoking, obesity and other
public policy issues.
- Nandini Bhowmick, a doctoral student in
the Department of Education, will give a presentation on Social
Justice through Math Education. She demonstrates a way to teach
elementary students basic math skills and, at the same time,
heighten their cultural awareness. In one lesson plan, students
start by counting, subtracting, dividing and making fractions
using canned food. After seeing a video about world hunger,
they calculate economic status percentages and use other math
problems, paying close attention to cultural values.
- Susan Meyers, a graphic artist at UMD who
earned a master’s of liberal studies degree on campus,
will speak about her new nonprofit, North Central Windows Program,
an enrichment program that uses art as a healing tool for women
who are victims of domestic violence. Art gives them an opportunity
to forget about their problems and offers them hope for change.
Her organization offers this art experience for abused and
battered women in the community who wouldn’t otherwise
have such an opportunity.
Members of the public are encouraged to attend TEDxUMD presentations
throughout the day and evening.
For information about other Inaugural Week events March 1-5,
including the March 4 inaugural ceremony visit Inauguration
UMD is a comprehensive university - part of the University of
Minnesota system - that offers 13 bachelor degrees in 74 majors.
UMD has a two-year medical school and a College of Pharmacy among
its graduate programs in 24 fields. Fall 2010 enrollment in all
UMD programs was nearly 11,800 students.
UMD ranks among the top universities the country for its commitment
Undergraduate Research Opportunity Programs. The University is
also leader in American Indian education, with nearly 20 related
campus programs, including strong programs in medicine. The Center
for Freshwater Research and Policy and the Large Lakes Observatory
contribute to the university's international reputation for comprehensive
research in freshwater.
UMD consistently ranks among the top Midwestern, regional universities
in U.S. News and World Report's "America's Best Colleges" issue.
TEDxUMD Talks Schedule, Kirby Student Center Lounge March 1,
- 10:00 am Mindy Granley - Maybe We Should Sweat Some Small
- 10:20 am Ryan Jordan - Music and Social Change
- 10:40 am Randel Hanson - UMD as Anchor for Regional Food
- 11:00 am Olaf Kuhlke - Why We Walk: Pilgrimage, Movement
and the Human Quest for Meaning
- 11:20 am Lisa Fitzpatrick - The Secret Life of an Interpreter
- 11:40 am Nandini Bhowmick - Social Justice through Math
Education: A Lesson Plan
- 12:00 pm Susan Meyers - Healing through Art
- 12:20 pm Clayton Kuehl - The Environment in Heart (and Mind)
- 12:40 pm Mark Zmudy - Connecting Adventure to Research and
- 1:00 pm Elias Mokole - Stop, Look and Listen Before You Cross
- 1:20 pm Aydin Durgunoglu - A Virtual Classroom in Sweden,
Uganda and Duluth
- 1:40 pm Claire Drawe - The True Meaning of a Gift
- 2:00 pm Cheryl Reitan - The Estonian Singing Revolution
- 2:20 pm Rob Wittig - Is Life Like a Book or a Smartphone?
Why the Form of Fiction Matters
- 2:40 pm Molly Minkkinen - Mothers' Dreams for their Children
Around the World
- 3:00 pm Marshall Hampton - Exploiting Chaos in the Solar
- 3:20 pm Nathan Charbonneau - Bulldog Buddies
- 4:00 pm Rajiv Vaidyanathan - Eat This, Not That: The New
- 4:20 pm Danielle Rhodes - Dancing Goats: A Brief History
- 4:40 pm Alicia Lebens - Internet Killed the Newspaper Star
(But Created a New Media Maven)
- 5:00 pm Sebastian Wernicke - Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics
- 5:10 pm Jor-El - A Last Ditch Appeal to Save the Planet
- 5:20 pm Jonathan Harris - The Web's Secret Stories
- 5:40 pm J.J. Abrams - The Mystery Box
- 6:00 pm Julian Assange - Why the World Needs WikiLeaks (graphic
- 6:20 pm Madeleine Albright - On Being a Woman and a Diplomat
- 6:40 pm Imogen Heap - "Wait It Out"
- 6:50 pm Jake Shimabakuro - "Bohemian Rhapsody"
- 7:00 pm Matt Andrews - How a Sleeping Gopher Could Save
- 7:20 pm Students of DN3401 & Rebecca Katz Harwood -
Why Grownups Need Playtime, Too
- 7:40 pm Brian McInnes and Gordon Jourdain - The People:
The Ojibwe Anishiaabe Creation Story
- 8:00 pm ElEd Block 2 Students, Nedra Hazareesingh, Christine
Ridgewell & Tom Mitchell, Nettleton Family Night: - Celebrating
Children and Families through Community Service Learning
- 8:20 pm Sen. Roger Reinert - UMD as a Citizen of Minnesota
- 8:40 pm Commissioner Steve O'Neil - UMD as a Citizen of
- 9:00 pm Mayor Don Ness - UMD as a Citizen of Duluth
- 9:20 pm Chancellor Lendley Black - UMD as a Citizen of the