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The next issue of Currents will be emailed out and posted on Tues., Apr. 5, 2016 (Deadline: Wed., Mar. 30, 2016). Send updates and announcements to:

Click here for a complete list of issue deadlines for 2015–16.

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Please note that Currents no longer includes events. Events, which are open to the public, need to be listed on the UMD Events Calendar.

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Campus News

Academic News

The Office of the President of the U of M is seeking nominations for the President's Award for Outstanding Service. This award is presented each year in the spring and honors up to 12 active or retired faculty or staff who have gone well beyond their regular duties and have demonstrated an unusual commitment to the University community. A complete description of the award and nomination requirements are available online. Nominations are due Fri., Mar. 11. For more information, contact Vickie Courtney or call 612-625-4805.

The Commission for Women is accepting nominations for the 2016 Linda Larson Women of the Year Award. All women on the UMD campus are eligible to be nominated. An award is given in three categories: student, staff, and faculty. Nominate someone via the online form. Deadline is Fri., Mar. 11. For more information, contact Jessica Gile Eaton, UMD Commission for Women chair, 218-726-6309.

The program committee for the 2016 MN eLearning Summit is seeking oral, panel, and poster presentations for submission. The Summit will be held July 27–28 at the Minneapolis Community and Technical College. View a PDF of the call for proposals. Proposals are due by Fri., Mar. 11. Submit a proposal online. For more information including submission requirements and topics, visit the MN eLearning Summit website.

A small stipend will be available to presenters to defray travel costs (between $150-200). The U of MN will pay 80% of the early registration fee for all U of MN presenters. For more information about stipends, contact Kim Riordan in UMD's Office of Academic Affairs or call 218-726-7251.


The UMD Sustainability Committee is seeking nominations for the 2016 Sustainability Inspiration Awards. There are three categories: Student, Staff, and Faculty. Visit the Sustainability Inspiration Award website for information on how to nominate an individual. The nomination deadline is Fri., Mar. 18. The awardees will be recognized at the all-campus Student Award Ceremony, Sun., Apr. 19 in the Kirby Ballroom. For more information, contact Mindy Granley, 218-726-8198, or Stacey Stark, 218-726-7438, UMD Leadership and Modeling Sustainability Subcommittee co-chairs.


Nominations are being accepted for Outstanding Service Awards. These were developed to recognize the outstanding contributions of employees in the following job classifications: Civil Service (non-bargaining), AFSCME, TEAMSTER, Academic Professional/ Administrative (P&A) appointment that do not hold faculty rank.

There are two categories:
1. The Continuous Service Award is designed to recognize employees who have consistently performed their ongoing responsibilities in a superior to outstanding manner and have significantly enhanced departmental, collegiate, or campus goals and objectives.

2. The Project Award is designed to recognize individual employees or work teams who have implemented a special project during the year in supporting the mission of the campus/unit and have significantly enhanced departmental, collegiate, or campus goals and objectives. Project must have been completed between December 2014 and March 2016.

Individuals who plan on submitting a nomination, should notify Deb Herstad as soon as possible so she can verify if UMD HR&EO has a copy of the nominee's performance appraisal and job description on file. She will follow-up with the nominee's supervisor if those documents are needed. Procedures, instructions and nomination forms are available online.  The nomination deadline is 4 pm on Fri., Mar. 18. For more information, contact Deb Herstad at 218-726-7202.

The P&A Senate is seeking nominations of units to help recognize the work and accomplishments done by UMD P&A staff. Any unit in which a P&A staff holds an appointment is eligible to be nominated or to apply. Nominations are due by Wed., March 23. Complete information and guidelines are available online. For more information contact Peter Angelos or Sherri Boone.

The University of Minnesota Office for Equity and Diversity (OED) is seeking nominations for the Equity and Diversity Transformation Awards. These awards fund creative yet pragmatic proposals for projects that support equity and diversity initiatives. They also provide a platform for cooperative efforts that will not only advance the institution's transformation, but also help ensure that all resources devoted to equity and diversity are used to ensure maximum impact. The focus for the 2016 awards is building capacity for institutional change through the use of strategic partnerships. Partnerships must go beyond financial assistance/sponsorship and efforts must exemplify working in collaboration in one or more of the following ways:

: partnership of two or more units/offices within a larger department or college OR partnership of two or more units/offices across various departments or colleges.
External: partnership of one or more units/departments with one or more external stakeholders (community organizations, corporations, etc.).

Applications are due Monday, May 9. Visit the OED website for a full description of the application guidelines and procedures.For more information, contact Barbara Chapin, 612-626-7386.

Each year, in furtherance of Goal 2 of the UMD Strategic Plan, funds are available for Civil Service bargaining and non-bargaining employees.  This year $3,000 is available for diversity initiatives with a focus on diversity, discrimination, social justice, sexual harassment prevention, equal opportunity and affirmative action, and inclusivity.  Applications are being accepted for the current academic year until funds are exhausted. Small funding is up to $300 and major funding is $301 and above. Visit the website for Grant Guidelines and an Application. For more information contact Cathy Rackliffe in UMD's Department of Human Resources and Equal Opportunity or call 218-726-6827.


Faculty and staff are encouraged to submit information about events via the easy-to-use Bulldog Update form. The Bulldog Update is a weekly digest of campus activities and news that is sent to all students in the form of an email with links to more detailed information on the Bulldog Update website.

Administration News


Archived ITSS News articles are available online. For more information, contact the ITSS Help Desk, 218-726-8847.

Celebrating Women's History Month
KUMD celebrates Women's History Month by honoring women who lead, inspire, and make empowering strides not only within our community but also statewide. Hear their stories of inspiration all month long, weekdays at 7am & 11am. Segments will be archived at

KUMD's Lisa Johnson Receives Award from Citizens in Action
At the 2016 annual Citizens in Action workshop, KUMD Northland Morning host Lisa Johnson was recognized and honored for her years of work raising awareness on a range of community, state, and national issues through her interviews and reporting. More at


The 20th annual UMD Grad Fair will be held Thurs., Mar. 3 from 10 am–5 pm in Kirby Ballroom. The Grad Fair provides campus departments, organizations, and local businesses with a venue to promote their products and services to students for use before, during, and after graduation. This one-day event gives graduating students an opportunity to receive 20% off their caps, gowns, hoods, tassels, diploma frames, and announcements.

Shop UMD Stores. Get rewards. Every dollar spent at UMD Stores equals one point. Reach 1,000 points and earn a $10 UMD Stores Gift Card. Sign-up for UMD Stores Rewards and receive a sign-up bonus of 100 points.

Jefferson Lines offers daily bus service, year round, from the UMD Campus to the Twin Cities. Purchase tickets at the UMD Stores street level store.

Go Green with UMD Stores: Don’t take a plastic bag and receive a wooden nickel to drop in the charity bin. Local charities benefit from this effort to go green. Don't forget to bring a bag or purchase a reusable bag at UMD Stores.

For store hours, events, and merchandise visit the UMD Stores website. UMD Stores is also on facebook and Twitter.

Faculty and Staff News

Academic News

Abram Anders, assistant professor, Department of Finance and Management Information Sciences, had his article, “Team Communication Platforms and Emergent Social Collaboration Practices,” published in the spring issue of the International Journal of Business Communication.

Beth Bartlett, professor, Department of Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies, has been named UMD's Community Engaged Scholar Award Campus Recipient. The UMD scholar award committee selected her from a pool of UMD candidates. She now moves on to the system-wide competition where collegiate/campus award recipients become eligible for the University-wide award, which includes a one-time $15,000 prize. The university-wide President's Community-Engaged Scholar will be announced at an award ceremony on April 29.

David Bowen, associate professor, Department of Art and Design, had his work tele-present water acquired by Zentrum fur Kunst und Medientechnologie ZKM, Karlsruhe. The work was selected by Director/Curator Peter Weibel for ZKM's permanent collection. Bowen’s work 46°41'58.365" lat. -91°59'49.0128" long. @ 30m will be featured in Once is Nothing: A Drone Art Exhibition at Inter/Access in Toronto. The exhibition runs through April 2.

Gloria DeFilipps Brush, professor, Department of Art and Design, had work included in the 2016 Juried Exhibition at the Midwest Center for Photography in Wichita, Kan., from Jan. 29–Feb. 12. Center Director Linda Robinson, who also is a professor at Wichita State University, selected her work.

Tricia Bunten, chief development officer, taught a day-long course on Major Gift Fundraising at the University of Wisconsin Superior through their Non Profit Management Certificate Program.

Dalibor Froncek, professor, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, presented a seminar talk, "Group distance magic labelings of hypercubes and Cartesian products of cycles," at DiMaS (Discrete Mathematics Seminar) at Technical University of Ostrava, Czech Republic.

Crystal S. Gibbins, assistant professor, Department of Writing Studies, was awarded the Arts Fellowship Grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council. She also received Honorable Mention for the Minnesota Emerging Writers’ Grant through the Loft Literary Center.

Lisa Johnson, host, KUMD “Northland Morning," was honored at the 2016 Citizens in Action workshop in Duluth for her work over the years raising awareness on a wide range of community, state, and national issues through her interviews and reporting. Samples of her interviews on "Northland Morning" can be found at She was recognized for her community involvement and grassroots leadership and for her service over the past 18 years in promoting Citizens in Action workshops where they have trained over 3,000 community members.


Special Recognition

The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics held it’s 16th annual Subway Big Jig Ice Fishing Contest on Island Lake on Feb. 14. Nearly 700 anglers took part. The winning fish was a 1.49-pound Northern. Proceeds from this event go to support the UMD athletic scholarship fund. This year, over $42,000 was raised.

Center for Economic Development

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Large Lakes Observatory News

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Medical School-Duluth News

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Minnesota Sea Grant News

Dale Bergeron, maritime extension educator, attended the 2016 Great Lakes Waterways Conference, in Cleveland, Ohio, in February. This Great Lakes maritime industry event involves all segments of the maritime community in important deliberations and sessions aimed specifically at the Great Lakes region. The conference engages government, industry and academia with participation from U.S. Coast Guard, the Canadian Coast Guard, Transport Canada, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Department of Transportation, NOAA, and other governmental organizations with a stake in the Great Lakes maritime.

John Bilotta, water resource management and policy extension educator, Cindy Hagley, environmental quality extension educator, and Jesse Schomberg, coastal communities and land use planning extension educator, completed publication of the new Watershed Game: Classroom Version. Of the 150 copies of the Classroom Version that were produced, approximately 100 copies have been placed in the hands of educators as of the end of February. More than 100 formal and informal educators have participated in five hands-on interactive trainings in the few months that the game has been in print. The team has partnered with the Project WET (Water Education Program) in joint trainings that include Project WET curriculum and the Watershed Game: Classroom Version. A new Watershed Game website was launched and in February, Watershed Game training sessions were held in Minneapolis and in Duluth .

Bilotta is planning the Minnesota Water Resources Conference in St. Paul to be held in October.

MNSG sponsored and all staff attended the 6th Annual St. Louis River Summit, held at UW-Superior, in February. John Downing, director, provided opening remarks and Bergeron was on the event planning committee. The "Sharing Our Visions" summit provided a venue for sharing information on the St. Louis River Freshwater Estuary among the community, state and federal agencies, students, scientists, natural resource managers, and educators with over 200 attendees.

Jennifer Gasperini, public relations specialist, attended the Earth Journal event, "Land of 10,000 Lakes: Can We Achieve Water Sustainability?" with Dr. Deborah Swackhamer in Minneapolis in February. Swackhamer recently retired from the U of M as a professor and co-director of the Water Resources Center.

Hagley and Marte Kitson, aquatic invasive species extension educator, hosted a webinar for the national for the national Visualize Your Water Challenge in Duluth in January. They also hosted a workshop for the Visualize Your Water Challenge in Duluth in February.

Doug Jensen, extension educator and AIS program coordinator, participated in a DNR Regional County AIS Prevention Workshop, in Grand Rapids, Minn., in January.

Jensen provided an update on planning for the Upper Midwest Invasive Species Conference to be held in La Crosse, Wis., in October 2016 and Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funded projects.

As an ex-officio member, Jensen attended a meeting of the DNR’s Statewide Aquatic Invasive Species Stakeholder Advisory Committee, in St. Cloud, Minn., in January.

Jensen gave an invited presentation, "What Do We Know About Raising Awareness and Changing Behaviors," at the Invasive Species Council of British Columbia’s 10th Annual Invasive Species Forum and Annual General Meeting, in Vancouver, BC, Canada, in February. He also hosted a Speedy Table Session: "From Theory to Application: AIS Prevention Message Methods." Over 160 attended the event.

Jensen’s photo “Wind on Superior Waters” was awarded honorable mention in the Maritime category at Lake Superior Magazine’s 21 Annual Photo Contest.  Nearly 260 photographers from 18 states and provinces entered more than 1,225 images in five categories.

Jensen gave an invited presentation, “Threats of Aquatic Invasive Species to Minnesota Waters,” at the College of St. Benedict and St. John University Biology Department Lecture Series, in Collegeville, Minn., in February. Over 40 students and faculty attended.

Kitson was elected co-chair of the Minnesota Invasive Species Advisory Council at the winter meeting, Shoreview, Minn., in January, where she provided updates on aquatic invasive species outreach.

Kitson was interviewed on KUMD in January about the Habitattitude Fish Surrender Event and Auction and hosted a Habitattitude booth at the event in Bloomington, Minn., in January.

Kitson hosted a Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! booth at the St. Louis River Summit in Superior, Wis. In February.

Sharon Moen
, communications coordinator, presented to graduate students at the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment in February. She spoke about her career and her new biography of Athelstan Spillhaus.

Moen participated in discussions at the University of Minnesota’s Office of the Vice President for Research’s Convergence Colloquia: Water Supply at the McNamara Alumni Center in Minneapolis in February.

Moen’s article “Five Facts about Love Potion #3kPZS”, a Minnesota Sea Grant-funded research project involving sea lamprey, appeared on the National Sea Grant homepage story in early February.

Don Schreiner,
fisheries specialist, joined the Minnesota Sea Grant Program as an extension educator in February. His background includes 25 years as the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Lake Superior Area Fisheries supervisor.

Hilarie Sorensen, climate change extension educator, helped plan the 2016 Climate Adaptation Conference, which many Sea Grant staff and researchers attended. The event was held in Minneapolis in January.

MNSG hosted the River Talk Series: Hudson Bay Bound in Superior, Wis., in February.

MNSG hosted a booth at the Duluth Boat, Sports, Travel & RV Show at the DECC in February which reached nearly 1,300 visitors.

MNSG produced new episodes of "The Sea Grant Files"
· Introduction to new director Dr. John Downing and 50th anniversary of Sea Grant, February 16 (6.41)
· MN Climate Adaptation Conference Summary:  February 22

Natural Resources Research Institute News

Valerie Brady, research associate, Josh Dumke, research fellow, Kari Hansen, research assistant, Robert Hell, senior lab technician, Matt Santo, senior lab technician and Holly Wellard Kelly, senior lab technician, gave a poster presentation and "A live presentation of aquatic macroinvertebrates representative of degraded and non-degraded estuary sites: Why is 'the benthos' so important?" at the 6th Annual St. Louis River Estuary Summit: Sharing Our Vision, held at the University of Wisconsin Superior in February.

The following NRRI staff gave presentations at the 76th Midwest Fish and Wildlife Conference held in Grand Rapids, Mich., in January:
Madaline Cochrane, research assistant, "Movement Patterns of a Wood turtle Population in Minnesota" co-authored by Donald Brown (W. Virginia University), and Ron Moen, senior researcher.

Amanda McGraw, graduate research assistant, "Deer Migration and Habitat Use Within Moose Range in Northeast Minnesota" co-authored by Lou Cornicelli (MN DNR) and Moen.

Several NRRI staff shared research at the Minnesota Chapter of the Wildlife Society Annual Meeting in Mankato, Minn., in February:
Oral Presentations:
Michael Joyce, research assistant, "Biogeographic variation in rest site selection by martens and fisher: Impact of thermal stress and predation."

McGraw "Deer migration and habitat use within moose range in northeast Minnesota."

J. Trevor Vannatta, graduate research assistant, "Fascioloides magna and Taenia hydatigena from Hunter Harvested White-tailed Deer."

Poster Presentations:
Katelin Goebel
, research assistant, "Food Availability for Wood Turtles (Glyptemys insculpta) in Managed and Natural Woodlands" co-authored by Cochrane, Brown (W. Virginia University), and Moen.

Trevor Vannatta
"Snail-Trematode Habitat Associations in Northeastern Minnesota" co-authored by Moen.

Moen gave a keynote address on "Canada Lynx and Moose in Minnesota" at the 7th Annual Meeting of the Minnesota Phenology Network held in Finland, Minn., in February. 


Pharmacy Department News

Dawn Carlson, assistant professor, has been selected for the Grand Rapids cohort that will participate in the Blandin Community Leadership Program (BCLP) beginning with a retreat in mid-March, followed by three one-day workshops over a six-month period. The BCLP is nationally recognized and works with emerging and established leaders in rural communities to deepen their understanding of community dynamics and strengthen their skills for initiating and managing change.

Keri Hager, assistant professor, is a co-investigator on a $10,000 grant from the Minnesota Primary Care Transformation Collaborative for the project, "Preparing a Patient Centered Primary Care Workforce through Direct Observation and Feedback during Doctor of Nursing Practice, Medical, and Pharmacy Training at the University of Minnesota."

Kerry K. Fierke, assistant professor, A. L. Pittenger, S. Kostka, and P. J. Jardine, had their article, “Developing interprofessional facilitators and leaders: Utilization of advanced health profession students as interprofessional (IPE) facilitators,” featured in Currents in Pharmacy Teaching & Learning 2016;8(1):52-58.

Laura Palombi, assistant professor, and the Department of Pharmacy Practice and Pharmaceutical Sciences received a $7,500 award from the Office for Public Engagement to participate in an 18-month program designed to infuse community engagement more fully into the programmatic features of the department's teaching and/or research activities.

Sarah Schweiss, assistant professor, and her colleague, Kylee Funk, had their clinical reasoning activity, the Script Concordance Test (SCT) featured in a recent MinneSOTL blog post, "Developing and Assessing Clinical Reasoning Skills in Pharmacy Education," and in the diabetes module of a therapeutics course.

Axel Vazquez-Deida, Veasna Chak, Alex Craker, Nikki Neumann, and Larry Nguyen, all Duluth Pharmacy students, were part of an interprofessional team that placed second at the third annual U of M Global Health Case Competition held in January.

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Event Publicity

There are many ways to get publicity for your UMD events: the UMD Calendar of Events, Business Announce E-mail, Department Web pages, Media Releases, the UMD Home Page, advertisements, producing brochures, and advertising in the Statesman student newspaper or on KUMD. For more details, visit Getting Publicity for UMD Events and News.

Events Calendar

Scheduling events? Make sure you post them on the UMD Events Calendar. Public events must be posted on the online UMD Events Calendar before you can send out a UMD business announce message.

For more information, contact Kathleen McQuillan-Hofmann at 218-726-7111 or e-mail

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