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UK Doctor Competing in Triathlon to Benefit His Cancer Patients

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 14:36

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 28, 2014) – The Louisville Ironman – a triathlon consisting of a 2.4-mile swim in the Ohio River, a 112-mile bike ride, and a 26.2-mile run – is a competition that would test even the toughest of wills.   

But for University of Kentucky radiation oncologist Dr. Jonathan Feddock, the competition is about more than achieving a personal goal – Feddock, an accomplished triathlete, is using his athletic talents to help provide better care for the cancer patients he treats. When he competes in the Aug. 24 Ironman, he'll be doing so to raise money to pay for renovations and updates to the brachytherapy program at the UK Markey Cancer Center.

Brachytherapy is a specific form of radiation treatment where radiation sources are placed inside or close to the area requiring treatment.

”The main benefit to using brachytherapy for the treatment of cancer is that this is the only method of radiation treatment where we can make radiation appear exactly where we want to," said Feddock. "If your goal is to treat a tumor with curative doses of radiation and not treat the normal parts of the body immediately next to it, then brachytherapy is the best option.”

The total estimated cost for the brachytherapy project is approximately $1.2 million dollars, and Feddock has a specific goal to reach – he is trying to raise $200,000, with the remaining $1 million to be matched through the University, independent philanthropists, and department funds. The proposed changes would consolidate all areas involving brachytherapy, including moving the implant procedure room and the radiation treatment room into a combined space, and upgrading the current brachytherapy equipment.

Brachytherapy treatment is commonly used to treat most gynecologic cancers, as well as malignancies of the breast, prostate, and skin. Under Feddock’s leadership, the radiation medicine department has developed a niche practice that uses brachytherapy for recurrent tumors in patients who have previously received radiation. As a result, UK sees patients from all over the country.

Unfortunately, Kentucky holds the distinction of having some of the highest cancer rates in the country – including being No. 8 in the U.S. for cervical cancer incidence. The availability of brachytherapy in the state is limited, and as a result, Markey provides brachytherapy services for essentially all patients coming from central, eastern and southern Kentucky.

Currently, Markey patients receive their brachytherapy implants in the Ben F. Roach Building, but have to be transported down a long hallway to the radiation treatment room in the UK Albert B. Chandler Hospital. Because the radiation therapy treatment and recovery rooms require a shielded vault, consolidation is not an easy process.

However, Feddock points out, the renovations will improve staff efficiency and the overall patient experience, in addition to allowing his team to see even more patients per day.

"Currently, the setup and logistics of brachytherapy treatment limit me to no more than two cases a day," Feddock said. "As our patient population grows, there's a real need to streamline the process so we can see more patients. I believe the proposed changes would allow me to treat three to four patients a day."

Feddock is determined to reach his goal, and he's even implemented a clever strategy to bring in donations. After speaking with members of the World Triathlon Corporation, he has been given special permission to begin the Ironman in Louisville this year in last place – and he's encouraging donors to "bet against him" by pledging a small amount for every single person he passes in the race. With close to 3,000 competitors ahead of him, that's a lot of potential donations.

The plan becomes more impressive when you look at his track record: in 2011, Feddock finished 30th in the Ironman; in 2013, he finished 17th.

”While I'm approaching some corporate sponsors and individual philanthropists about making larger donations, I think crowdfunding is the key here," Feddock said. "Every single dollar helps, and if a lot of different people contribute just a small amount, it will add up. By pledging even a small donation, you'll be making a huge impact on cancer care for women and men across Kentucky."

Dr. Marcus Randall, chair of the Department of Radiation Medicine, says his team fully supports Feddock's undertaking.

“Dr. Feddock’s commitment to his patients and to UK HealthCare is inspirational to us all," Randall said. "The department is strongly supporting Dr. Feddock, which shows that we truly have 'skin in the game' when it comes to giving our patients the best treatment possible.”

To support Feddock's mission and improve patient care at the UK Markey Cancer Center, visit his personal fundraising page, Ironcology.net for details on how to donate. All donations are processed through the Markey Cancer Foundation

MEDIA CONTACT: Allison Perry, (859) 323-2399 or allison.perry@uky.edu

Supafunkrock, Jazz, Latin, Celtic and Classical Music on Tap at Singletary

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 10:56

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 28, 2014) — The University of Kentucky Singletary Center for the Arts kicks off its 2014-15 Singletary Signature Series with the man behind the Supafunkrock sound, Trombone Shorty, in a season that also includes performances from popular jazz, Latin and classical artists as well as a holiday program with Celtic flair. All tickets to Trombone Shorty, Branford Marsalis, Diego Garcia, Tomaseen Foley's "A Celtic Christmas" and Joshua Bell are on sale now.

Trombone Shorty performing "Fire & Brimstone." A transcript of this song video can be found here.

The 2014-15 season will open in September with Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue. Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews is a rare artist who can draw both the unqualified respect of jazz legends and deliver a high-energy show capable of mesmerizing audiences worldwide. With an unprecedented mix of rock, funk, jazz, hip-hop and soul, he had to create his own name to describe his signature sound: Supafunkrock. Andrews is the kind of player who comes along maybe once in a generation. Lexington audiences can hear Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue beginning 7:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 12.

Returning to Singletary Center this fall is a legendary jazz musician from the celebrated Marsalis family, Branford Marsalis. A Grammy award-winning and Tony award-nominated saxophonist and composer, Marsalis is joined by the renowned Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, for 20 performances only, on his national "Well-Tempered" tour, featuring Baroque masterpieces by Tomaso Albinoni, Johann Sebastian Bach, George Handel, Antonio Vivaldi and more. Leader of one of the finest jazz quartets today, and a frequent soloist with classical ensembles, Marsalis is one of the most revered instrumentalists of his time. Branford Marsalis and the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia will take the stage 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 26.

Diego Garcia video of "Sunnier Days." A transcript of this song video can be found here.

Warm up your chilly November nights with the Latin sounds of Diego Garcia. Prior to his successful solo career, Garcia made his mark on the indie music scene as front man for the popular New York indie rock act Elefant. Drawing from his Argentine roots, he explores his Latin heritage with a sound that conjures the spirit of 1970s troubadours like Sandro and Jobim, as well as singer-songwriters like Leonard Cohen and Harry Nilsson. A breakout star with the release of his solo album "Laura," NPR named Garcia’s debut “one of the top 25 albums of the year.” His poignant first single “You Were Never There,” features lush string arrangements, delicate Spanish guitars and distinctly Latin flavor. Diego Garcia brings his sound to the Singletary stage 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15.

A preview of Tomaseen Foley's "A Celtic Christmas." A transcript of this song video can be found here.

Kentucky families looking for a different way to celebrate the holidays can take in Tomaseen Foley's "A Celtic Christmas." Now in its 17th season, "A Celtic Christmas" recreates the joy and innocence of a night before Christmas in a remote farmhouse in the parish of Teampall an Ghleanntáin in the west of Ireland. The show remembers when neighboring families gathered around the fire to grace the wintry night with haunting melodies of traditional Irish Christmas carols, to raise the rafters with the joy of their music, to knock sparks off the flagstone floor with traditional dances, and to fill the night with the laughter of their stories. Tomaseen Foley's "A Celtic Christmas" will warm your heart beginning 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 21.

Joshua Bell performs "The Four Season" Summer III. Presto by Antonio Vivaldi.

Classical aficionados will not want to miss violinist Joshua Bell as he makes his debut at the Singletary Center next April. Often referred to as the "poet of the violin," Bell is one of the world's most celebrated violinists. He continues to enchant audiences with his breathtaking virtuosity, tone of sheer beauty, and charismatic stage presence. His restless curiosity, passion, universal appeal and multi-faceted musical interests have earned him the rare title of "classical music superstar." Bell will join Conductor John Nardolillo and the acclaimed UK Symphony Orchestra to perform a program that includes Max Bruch’s Violin Concerto #1 in G Minor Op. 26 and Camille Saint-Saëns' Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Op. 28. Joshua Bell and UK Symphony Orchestra grace the stage 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 3.

Ticket prices vary for the 2014-15 Singletary Signature Series performances and can be purchased by calling the Singletary Center ticket office at 859-257-4929, visiting online at www.scfatickets.com, or in person at the venue. Processing fees will be added to purchase upon transaction.

A part of the UK College of Fine Arts, the Singletary Center for the Arts presents and hosts around 400 artistic, cultural and educational events annually for the university community, Lexington community and the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, 859-257-8716; whitney.hale@uky.edu

Costich to Represent Kentucky at National Press Club Forum

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 10:10

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 28, 2014) --  University of Kentucky College of Public Health Professor Julia Costich will represent the University and the Commonwealth at a forum at the National Press Club in August.  The presentation, which is a collaborative effort of the Rockefeller Institute of Government of SUNY, the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania, and the Brookings Institution, will feature new reports on the ways Southern states have implemented and responded to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). 

Costich, who teaches in the Department of Health Management and Policy, will speak for the Kentucky team of analysts, which includes UK College of Public Health faculty member Glen Mays, at the Aug. 25 event.

Attendees of the program will learn of the 35-state implementation of the ACA and will, specifically, hear an overview of the implementation efforts of southern states.  Following the presentation, a panel of field researchers, including Costich, will provide reports on the individual implementation efforts of each participating state.  These reports will then be discussed further by a second panel who will consider the issues each has raised.  This second panel will feature representative from the Rockefeller Institute, the Brookings Institution, the Heritage Foundation, and Vox.com.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mallory Powell, mallory.powell@uky.edu

Yasuma Receives Fight for Sight Postdoctoral Research Award

Fri, 07/25/2014 - 09:45

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 28, 2014) – Tetsuhiro Yasuma, postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine, has been selected to receive the 2014 Fight for Sight Postdoctoral Award from Fight for Sight,  a non-profit organization that promotes eye research by providing pilot funding to promising new researchers.

Yasuma received training in biomedical research as an undergraduate student in Japan and general ophthalmology and surgery in graduate school. Yasuma joined the Ambati lab at UK in 2012. His research focuses on finding treatment for dry Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD), the form of AMD that affects the majority of AMD patients and for which there are no current therapies.

"Recently, we discovered that one class of molecule called Alu RNA contributes to dry AMD and that blocking downstream signals of Alu RNA may be an effective treatment," Yasuma said. "Ideally, we would like to discover how to block upstream signaling of Alu RNA – to halt retinal degeneration at its early stages."

Media Contact: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or ann.lblackford@uky.edu 

UKAg Economics Professor Named NACDEP President

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 22:32

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 25, 2014) — The National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals recently installed Alison Davis as their new president. Davis, professor of agricultural economics in the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, took over the position at the national conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Davis is also the executive director of the college’s Community and Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky.

The association, which just celebrated its 10th anniversary, provides networking and is a source of information about training opportunities for extension professionals who concentrate at least some of their work on community development. Kentucky Cooperative Extension sent eight agents to present at this year’s conference, which focused on the art of reinvention. The agents represent 4-H, family and consumer sciences, agriculture and fine arts.

“We had more non-community development extension professionals than we’ve ever had before. That’s where we think our area of growth is,” Davis said. “We think agents can have the largest impact by incorporating community development principles in the delivery of their programs. Basically, we want agents to feel like they have a home around community development, even though their appointment might be in another program area. My goal is to try to increase membership and to provide other opportunities beyond an annual conference and some trainings to really make NACDEP beneficial to its membership.”

Another of Davis’s goals is to implement a state-level initiative program that would allow states to individualize their programs. She also sees it providing benefits to agents and other county and state professionals to be used for awards, scholarships or in-service trainings.

As part of her responsibilities as president, Davis will sit on the board of the Joint Council of Extension Professionals for the second of three years. Last year she joined the board as NACDEP’s president-elect; the association’s president, president-elect and past president all hold council board positions.

Davis’s term in office will end June 2015. She is the second UKAg extension faculty member to hold the position. Rick Maurer, extension professor of community and leadership development, was the association’s second president.

NASA Awards Major Grant to Kentucky Engineers and Scientists for Space Research

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 16:25

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 28, 2014) — NASA has awarded a major grant to the University of Kentucky for a research project that will take place, in part, aboard the International Space Station (ISS), but which could yield knowledge with imminently useful applications here on Earth.

The project, a collaboration with scientists and engineers from the University of Louisville and Western Kentucky University, will conduct fundamental physics experiments on colloids, mixtures in which microscopic particles of one substance are suspended within another substance and remain evenly distributed throughout. Examples of colloids include fog (microdroplets of water suspended in air), blood (blood cells suspended in plasma), and milk (microglobules of butterfat suspended in whey, a water-based solution).

The International Space Station is what makes this research possible, says Suzanne Smith, the project's managing principal investigator. Researchers will take advantage of the space station's micro-gravity environment to perform experiments that cannot be performed accurately on the planet's surface because of the influence of gravity.

“ISS orbits Earth every one and a half hours and its laboratory facilities allow scientists, including researchers right here in Kentucky, to make new discoveries and prove scientific theories,” said Smith, UK's Donald and Gertrude Lester Professor of Mechanical Engineering and director of the NASA Kentucky Space Grant Consortium and NASA EPSCoR Program.

Insights into colloidal physics and self-assembly processes are needed to develop new materials with enhanced energy, thermal, optical, chemical and mechanical properties. Potential applications include more efficient solar energy panels, stronger and lighter aerospace materials, and less expensive electronic displays, both for space-related and terrestrial usage.

The project is a significant opportunity for Kentucky, says Stuart J. Williams, the project's principal scientific investigator.

“It allows researchers from three area universities to collaborate and strengthen the overall research profile with respect to colloidal research in the state," said Williams, assistant professor of mechanical engineering at UofL. "The International Space Station provides a unique environment that will yield insight into the physics of colloidal interactions, which is important for the development of the next generation of sophisticated materials.”

The project, titled “Influence of Gravity on Electrokinetic and Electrochemical Colloidal Self-Assembly for Future Materials,” has a $750,000 award contribution from NASA’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) with $300,000 additional matching funds from Kentucky EPSCoR.

The U.S. portion of the International Space Station was designated a National Laboratory in 2005 to maximize its potential for unique space-based research conditions. Astronauts onboard ISS support ground-based research teams by helping to perform experiments in space, sometimes via the live video link of a mission control console, such as that located at UK’s Space Systems Lab in Lexington.

The team also includes co-investigators Gerold Willing, UofL assistant professor of chemical engineering, Hemali Rathnayake, WKU assistant professor of chemistry, Janet Lumpp, UK associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and NASA partner Ronald Sicker. This team will collaborate with Advanced Colloid Experiments team at NASA's Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio, which conducts experiments on the International Space Station.

“I’m very proud of this team led by junior faculty members at Louisville and Western whose opportunity for important research will serve as an example to their colleagues,” Smith said.  “I want to thank NASA for selecting this proposal and investing, along with the state of Kentucky, in the significance of this work, which will help contribute to the state’s specialty in advanced manufacturing.”

This is the fifth year in a row that a Kentucky-based research team has been selected among the recipients of NASA’s EPSCoR Research Awards.  Previous teams have included researchers from UK, UL, Morehead State University, and Kentucky State University.

“Personally, as a native of Louisville, I am proud and enthusiastic when research opportunities, such as this one, are granted to a Kentucky university,” Williams said. “I foresee this as the first phase of a sustained collaborative effort with NASA’s Advanced Colloids Experiments research group at NASA Glenn Research Center.”

The research project will also include collaborations with industrial partners in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. 

Matthew Lynch, a member of NASA’s Advanced Colloids Experiments research group, was recently recognized by NASA with an award for excellence in ISS research for 2013.  Lynch, with Procter and Gamble of Cincinnati, will collaborate with the Kentucky research team and serve as a technical advisor.

Lynch has described research of colloids as having the potential to improve product design across multiple sectors and benefit millions of people worldwide, while leading also to new and advanced technologies.

This research project was funded through the NASA Kentucky EPSCoR Program, a statewide program hosted at UK with a mission to strengthen Kentucky’s research capability in areas of importance to NASA and the state by promoting development of research infrastructure, improving research competitiveness, and developing partnerships with NASA.

MEDIA CONTACT: Keith Hautala, 859-323-2396; keith.hautala@uky.edu

UK Alumnus to Lead Panama National Symphony Orchestra

Thu, 07/24/2014 - 13:43

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 25, 2014) — University of Kentucky alumnus César Leal will conduct the first concert of the 2014-2015 season of the Panama National Symphony Orchestra at 8 p.m. Thursday, July 31, at the Teatro Nacional de Panamá, in Panama City, Panama.

The concert is an innovating and challenging program bridging European and Latin American musical traditions from the beginning of the 20th century. The program includes “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” by Paul Dukas, as seen in the Disney’s film “Fantasia”; “The Afternoon of a Faun” by Claude Debussy; and “Sensemayá” by Mexican composer Silvestre Revueltas. Additionally, Leal will conduct the famous Cello Concerto in B Minor, Op. 104 by Antonín Dvorák as performed by internationally recognized cellist Isaac Casal.

After winning a scholarship to attend UK School of Music, Leal, who admired UK’s musicology program, decided to pursue his doctoral degree in musicology. “I was captivated by the professionalism and the expertise of the professors of the musicology division. They supported my activities, research and performances throughout the entire program,” he said.

Besides holding a doctoral degree in musicology from UK, Leal holds a bachelor’s degree in music performance from Javeriana University in Bogotá, Columbia, and a master’s degree in instrumental conducting from Florida International University. Leal is currently the artistic director and conductor of the Sewanee Symphony Orchestra at Sewanee: The University of the South. Additionally, he teaches and develops courses in musicology and music history.

Leal’s activities as a musicologist and conductor often intersect. In September 2013, in collaboration with the Lexington Ballet, he directed a full-stage production devoted to Sergei Diaghilev’s "Ballet Russes." This tribute included performances of Igor Stravinsky’s "Rite of Spring," Frédéric Chopin's "Sylphides" and Claude Debussy’s "Afternoon of a Faun." In 2011 and 2012, he was the assistant director of the Congrés Mondiale d’Écologie Sonore, an event devoted to music research and performance.

For his debut with the Panama National Symphony Orchestra, Leal programed works from the fin-de-siècle (late 19th century) that bridge European and Latin American musical traditions.

Leal's research interests include fin-de-siècle cultural life in Paris, Latin American contemporary music, and the significance of soundscapes to music history. He is currently the artistic director of EnVaGe (the Ensemble of Variable Geometry). Leal has led ensembles in the U.S., Panama, Colombia, France and the Ukraine. He has also recorded works by several Latin American composers and has presented scholarly papers in the U.S., Canada, Peru, Greece and Switzerland.

The UK School of Music at the UK College of Fine Arts has garnered a national reputation for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, composition, and theory and music history.

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, 859-257-8716; whitney.hale@uky.edu

'Dead' Language Resurrected at UK

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 17:06

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 24, 2014) — When in Lexington, do as the Romans do — at least if you're attending the Conventiculum Latinum Lexintoniense, a week-long conference on the University of Kentucky campus where participants from all over the world are immersed in the Latin language.

How immersed? UK Latin Professor Terence Tunberg, who has directed the conference since its inception in 1996, says all participants must sign a contract promising to speak only Latin until the end of the conference on July 28.

And they do. Sitting in a quiet corner of the Blazer Hall cafeteria around lunch time this week feels like a field trip to the Roman Forum. Even while eating their lunch, conventiculum attendees strictly adhere to the Latin-only rule.

Steve King, a 41-year-old IT manager from Lexington, says it's the best way to learn.

"I started down this road because I wanted to be able to learn to read Latin fluently like any English book. I figured the best way to do that would be to learn it the way we learn languages as kids. So that's why I came," said King.

That's just what Tunberg had in mind when he created the conventiculum. Though there are now a few programs at other universities (including one run by Tunberg at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pa.), his perennial conference at UK was the first in the United States.

"What we’re advertising is that, if you know some basic Latin, if you have a reading knowledge of it, if you've done the grammar, we will add an active dimension to your knowledge," he said.

The first conventiculum had just 12 participants, but now the event boasts an enrollment of 85 Latin enthusiasts from all over the world. Tunberg has enlisted the help of fellow UK Latin professor Milena Minkova, a leader in the spoken Latin movement in Europe who taught at the Vatican for several years, to keep the conference going smoothly.

In addition to socializing, participants hone their skills through small-group activities such as games, riddle contests and paraphrasing Latin passages in their own words.

Erin McKenna, a 27-year-old doctoral student from Fordham University in New York City, said the trick to speaking Latin fluently is simple: "The most important thing is to have no fear. Everyone will make mistakes, and you just have to go with it. If you don't try, you'll never improve."

Most attendees are, like McKenna, either graduate students or professors from all over the country who came here to take advantage of the rare chance to converse with other Latin speakers.

"I don't have a lot of opportunity to [speak] Latin at Fordham," said McKenna. "I would love to create a space for students to be able to speak in Latin if they choose to, so I need to improve in order to help them."

Baylor University Professor David White, 52, said there are other classroom benefits to speaking Latin. "Learning to try to express things in Latin ourselves helps us understand why the writers express things in the way that they did and gives us a completely different understanding from the production end of the language."

Speaking an ancient language in a modern world does have its difficulties, of course.

"Obviously things relating to modern life can be a challenge," said White. "Sometimes you have to describe what you want, and very often people who speak Latin will take a word from Italian or Spanish and Latinize it, and that works."

But sometimes new words must be created. Aeronavis for airplane (literally air ship), for example. As a member of the Academy for the Promotion of Latin, Tunberg and other elected fellows from all over the world discuss and help maintain an unofficial Latin lexicon.

His membership with the academy could also bring Lexington some new visitors. The academy's last quadrennial conference was in 2012 in Vienna, Austria, but 2017's conference is slated to take place in Lexington, Kentucky.

Tunberg said the conference will take place concurrently with the Conventiculum Latinum, so attendees will have the added pleasure of meeting Latin luminaries from all over the world.

But for most conventiculum participants, it's the lifelong friends they meet that make the trip worthwhile. That, and a good teacher.

"Terence Tunberg brings us back every year," said McKenna. "He's just absolutely a wonderful leader."

MEDIA CONTACT: Gail Hairston, 859-257-3302, gail.hairston@uky.edu

Registration Now Open for Outstanding Staff Awards

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 10:11
LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 23, 2014) — The University of Kentucky's fifth annual Outstanding Staff Awards (OSA) ceremony will be held in October at Spindletop Hall. The OSA program recognizes university staff that have been designated officially by their units as outstanding staff of the year and who highlight the mission of their units. 

This special event is sponsored by the Office of the President and the Staff Senate.

At this time, registration is now open for units who wish to participate, and award sponsors may use the online Outstanding Staff Awards Honoree Registration form to register an honoree. 

Official invitations will be extended in the fall to honorees and other special guests. For questions regarding the OSA program, please contact Holly Jones Clark, chair, at hclark@uky.edu or 859-257-9242.

The registration deadline is Aug. 29.

Regeneration Bonus: Ashley Seifert

Wed, 07/23/2014 - 07:13

Video by UK Research Media

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 23, 2014) — University of Kentucky Biology Professor Ashley Seifert, whose research is focused on skin regeneration, is studying the African spiny mouse, a tiny mammal with some amazing regenerative abilities.     

"What’s phenomenal is that they’re able to regenerate complex tissue structures," Seifert said. "They can regenerate all of the components of their skin including hair follicles, sebaceous glands and the underlying dermis, the structural component which gives the skin strength. And then, in the ears, amazingly, they can regenerate cartilage. Any orthopedic surgeon will tell you what a huge advance it would be if we could figure out how to regenerate cartilage in a mammal." 

Seifert's research is taking him and postdoctoral scholar Tom Gawriluk to Kenya for the summer. They will divide their time between trapping spiny mice in the wild and working with colleagues at the University of Nairobi and the University of Georgia to examine how immune tradeoffs can affect regenerative ability. 

Learn more about UK's "regeneration cluster" at http://reveal.uky.edu/regeneration

Expanding Cancer Treatment Options across Eastern Kentucky

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 15:47

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 24, 2014) – Eastern Kentucky faces some of the highest rates of cancer incidence and mortality in the nation, but two hospitals in the Appalachian Regional Healthcare (ARH) system are stepping up the fight against cancer. Williamson ARH Hospital in South Williamson, Ky. and Harlan ARH Hospital have announced a new affiliation with the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center, the state's first and only National Cancer Institute-designated cancer center.

"ARH is consistently working to build a new level of health care for the people we serve in eastern Kentucky and southern West Virginia by providing our communities local access to some of the most advanced health care services," said ARH President and CEO Joe Grossman. "This affiliation with the UK Markey Cancer Center will further enhance the services provided in Williamson and Harlan and will help us ensure our residents receive only the best oncology care right here at home in conjunction with a team of nationally recognized medical professionals."

"We are so pleased to announce our affiliation with the Markey Cancer Center, and we believe this new relationship will allow us to provide better care for our patients," said Dr. Walid Baz, medical director of hematology and oncology services for Williamson ARH Hospital. "Most cancer patients require multimodal therapy including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and psychosocial therapy. Working together will enable the medical staff to leverage their collective experience, and that experience combined with Markey's specialized treatment, technology and clinical trial opportunities will help us take cancer care to the next level. This is great news for cancer patients and their families in our community."

The UK Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network was created to provide high-quality cancer care closer to home for patients across the region, and to minimize the effects of cancer through prevention and education programs, exceptional clinical care, and access to research.

The ARH hospital system is the largest provider of health care in southeastern Kentucky. By joining the UK Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network, Williamson ARH Hospital and Harlan ARH Hospital will be able to offer their patients access to additional specialty and subspecialty physicians and care, including clinical trials and advanced technology, while allowing them to stay in southeastern Kentucky for most treatments. The Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network supports UK HealthCare's overall mission of ensuring no Kentuckian will have to leave the state to get access to top-of-the-line health care.

"UK HealthCare doesn't just serve Lexington and Central Kentucky – our mission is to provide all Kentuckians with the best possible care right here in the state," said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president for health affairs. "The Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network allows us to collaborate with community hospitals to provide top-notch cancer care much closer to home -- saving both travel expenses and time for the patients, in addition to keeping them close to their personal support system."

Markey is one of only 68 medical centers in the country to earn an NCI cancer center designation. Because of the designation, Markey patients have access to new drugs, treatment options and clinical trials offered only at NCI centers.

Moving forward, the Markey Cancer Center is working toward the next tier of designation – an NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. Currently, 41 of the 68 NCI-designated cancer centers in the country hold a comprehensive cancer center status. The Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network will play a large role in bringing that next level of cancer funding to Kentucky. Maintaining and increasing focus on cancer prevention, care, and research in Appalachian Kentucky will remain a top priority for the cancer center.

"The burden of cancer in Kentucky is huge, particularly in Eastern Kentucky," said Dr. Mark Evers, director of the UK Markey Cancer Center. "That's why I am thrilled to have Williamson and Harlan join the Markey Affiliate Network. By working together, we have the potential to make a serious impact on cancer care in the part of the state that needs it the most."

The UK Markey Cancer Center Affiliate Network began in 2006 and includes 11 hospitals across the state of Kentucky:

  • ARH Cancer Center-Hazard
  • Frankfort Regional Medical Center
  • Georgetown Community Hospital
  • Hardin Memorial Hospital, Elizabethtown
  • Harlan ARH Hospital
  • Harrison Memorial Hospital, Cynthiana
  • Norton Cancer Institute, Louisville (Norton Healthcare-UK HealthCare partnership)
  • Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital, Ashland
  • Rockcastle Regional Hospital, Mount Vernon
  • St. Claire Regional Medical Center, Morehead
  • Williamson ARH Hospital

Evaluations are under way for four other hospitals, including two more outside the state of Kentucky, extending Markey's reach and establishing it as the destination cancer center for the region. 

MEDIA CONTACT: Allison Perry, (859) 323-2399 or allison.perry@uky.edu

Big Blue Family VIDEO: Western Kentucky Natives Relish Working Together at UK

Tue, 07/22/2014 - 09:34

Video Produced by UK Public Relations & Marketing. To view captions for this video, push play and click on the CC icon in the bottom right hand corner of the screen. If using a mobile device, click on the "speech balloon" in the same area.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 24, 2014) — Even though they grew up around 250 miles west of Lexington, Jill Holloway Smith and her younger sister Jamie Holloway Risen always loved and supported the University of Kentucky. 

When their cousin, Susan Lax, made the move across the state for a position in UK Athletics’   Media Relations department, the sisters began to picture themselves on campus, too.

The rest, as they say, is history, since all three now work in various roles within the university. 

Watch the “Big Blue Family” video above to discover what it’s like for these family members to work on the same campus and why their devotion to UK is so strong. 

This video feature is part of a special new series produced by UKNow focusing on families who help make up the University of Kentucky community. There are many couples, brothers and sisters, mothers and sons and fathers and daughters who serve at UK in various fields. The idea is to show how UK is part of so many families’ lives and how so many families are focused on helping the university succeed each and everyday. 

Since the "Big Blue Family" series is now a monthly feature on UKNow, we invite you to submit future ideas.  If you know of a family who you think should be featured, please email us.  Who knows?  We might just choose your suggestion for our next feature!  Click on the video box below to watch the other videos in this series. 

VIDEO CONTACTS:  Amy Jones-Timoney, 859-257-2940, amy.jones2@uky.edu or Kody Kiser, 859-257-5282, kody.kiser@uky.edu

UK College of Education's Impact on Kentucky Education

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 17:47

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2014) — Students, faculty, administrators and staff in the University of Kentucky College of Education have been hard at work this summer, making progress on a number of programs and initiatives that are innovating P-12 learning, leadership and assessment in Kentucky schools.

"The College of Education’s faculty, staff, students and collaborators feel as committed and responsible for the success of P-12 students as we do our own students," said Mary John O'Hair, dean of the college. "We take to heart the concept of  'a seamless P-20 education system,' and these programs represent this strong commitment to the students in the Commonwealth."  

Next Generation Leadership Academies

The college continues to progress in its Next Generation Leadership program, derived from the college’s Kentucky P20 Innovation Lab. This program was designed in response to a nationwide need to redesign school systems to meet the needs of today’s learners. The effort has opened new doors for university collaboration with Kentucky's schools by connecting college research faculty with pre-school through graduate-level education practitioners across Kentucky and beyond.

Most recently, the college completed its first cohort of the Next Generation Teacher Leader academy, with nearly 100 teachers from 17 school districts in eastern Kentucky. The program supplements the already-established Next Generation Leadership Academy, which supports hundreds of principals and district level staff. The addition was made possible after the U.S. Department of Education awarded $30 million to the Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative (KVEC) earlier this year to implement a plan involving a strong collaboration with the college and school districts. The grant, which is part of "Race to the Top District" funding, supports participation in the college's leadership academies each year over the course of the next four years.

"Our goal in partnering with school and district leaders is to assist them in designing new systems to support higher levels of learning," said Next Generation Leadership Academy Director Linda France. "We're seeing many promising practices emerge that are resulting in students being more engaged in their learning and improvement in overall achievement." 

The academies are yearlong professional learning endeavors focused on the critical attributes of Next Generation Learning, developed by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). The attributes guide the work of the academies as a set of design principles for systematic change.

"We have outstanding district and school leaders in Kentucky who join UK's Next Generation Leadership Academy because they understand the need for change but they support in taking intentional steps in creating personalized teaching and learning environments," said Carmen Coleman, associate professor in the Educational Leadership Department and former superintendent of Danville Independent Schools. "We are working toward common goals of preparing students to reach unprecedented goals and the work is inspiring and sometimes scary but the rewards far outweigh the struggles."

Buddy Berry, superintendent of Eminence Independent Schools in Henry County, Ky., shares how the Next Generation Leadership Academy, housed in the UK College of Education's Kentucky P-20 Innovation Lab, has impacted his district.  Video by UK Public Relations and Marketing. To view captions for this video, push play and click on the CC icon in the bottom right hand corner of the screen.  If using a mobile device, click on the "thought bubble" in the same area.

Standards-Based Grading Initiative

The college also hosted a special summer institute for educators last month called "Getting Standards-Based Grading Right: Honest and Accurate Grades for ALL Students." This initiative featured some of the college's leading experts, including Thomas Guskey, professor of educational psychology, Gerry Swan, assistant dean and associate professor of curriculum and instruction, and Lee Ann Jung, associate professor of special education.

Participants learned how to develop new standards-based grading and reporting policies linked to the Common Core through a variety of presentations, case studies, discussions and reflection activities.  Participants also discovered a variety of new ways to report student learning in standards-based learning environments, how to make appropriate adaptations for exceptional learners and English language-learning students, and strategies for involving students and parents in the reporting process.

See Blue STEM Camp
The College of Education's Department of STEM Education also held its popular See Blue STEM Camp last month, which gave rising 5th-8th graders in Kentucky the opportunity participate in a week-long camp of hands-on projects in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.  In partnership with the College of Engineering, the camp offered 144 students a peek into the world of STEM, offering real-world applications that demonstrated what careers in the STEM fields might entail. Led by Margaret Mohr-Schroeder, associate professor of STEM Education, and College of Engineering professor Bruce Walcott, the camp also gave many UK students volunteers valuable teaching experience, mentorship from faculty, and the opportunity to witness the powerful impact of the camp's unique teaching approach.

The camp was originally supposed to take place over the course of two weeks: the first week for fifth and sixth graders, and the second week for seventh and eighth graders. But due to snow days impacting school districts' schedules, all of the students had to attend the same week. Mohr-Schroeder, who blogged about the camp throughout the week, said this change impacted everyone for the better. 

"Since we were going to one week with 144 students, we knew we needed to have more help," she said. "It was an obvious choice to offer the opportunity to the preservice (future teachers) middle and secondary mathematics and science students in our college. Through this unique experience, they got to work with the students in a smaller, low-stakes setting that allowed them to really practice their classroom management skills, their questioning techniques, and work on developing appropriate relationships with students. They were mentored through this process by the high quality inservice teachers as well as the college faculty we had involved. Although they were exhausted by the end of the week, they all stated this was one of the best learning experience they have had thus far and really enjoyed the opportunity to grow as future educators and felt they gained a lot of STEM content knowledge alongside the students as well."

Video featuring the 2012 See Blue STEM camp, courtesy of InnovateKY. 

GEAR UP Kentucky Summer Academy@UK
The College of Education also played a significant part in UK's first GEAR UP Kentucky Summer Academy@UK, which took place June 22 through July 11.  In partnership with the Council on Postsecondary Education and the UK Division of Undergraduate Education, this college and career readiness initiative brought nearly 85 high school sophomores to the UK campus to live and learn. By showcasing the skills and attitudes needed to succeed at the state's premier research university, the GEAR UP program aimed to develop a college transition path to UK for the students.

The students attending program were recommended and supported by their principals, teachers and guidance counselors for having strong potential to succeed in college with the necessary preparation. Laurie Henry, associate professor of literacy and director of the College Readiness P20 Innovation Lab, managed the high school students' daily schedules that reflected a typical UK student's schedule.  Many College of Education students also served as teaching assistants for the high school students and worked extensively with the management of the three-week program. 

Read more about the GEAR UP Kentucky Summer Academy@UK

MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, 859-257-5343; jenny.wells@uky.edu

Two UK Students Receive KyCPA Scholarships

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 13:10

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 23, 2014) — Two recent University of Kentucky graduates, Aleksey Graboviy and Jake Persky, were selected by the Educational Foundation of the Kentucky Society of Certified Public Accountants (KyCPA) to receive the CPA Deloitte 2014 Scholarship.

According to the Educational Foundation of the Kentucky Society of CPAs, the KyCPA Scholarship is dedicated to enhancing the numbers of college degrees in Kentucky, expanding the pipeline of financial professionals in the business marketplace, improving the financial literacy of Kentucky’s youth and revealing to students the boundless career opportunities open to those who pursue an accounting degree. The foundation has provided scholarships in amounts ranging from $1,000 to $2,500 recognizing scholastic achievement and leadership qualities in students planning to become CPAs.

Aleksey Graboviy, from Prospect, Kentucky, graduated in May 2014 from the Gatton College of Business and Economics with a bachelor's degree in accounting and a minor in international business. This Global Scholar is fluent in Spanish, Ukrainian and Russian. Some of Graboviy’s accomplishments include receiving UK’s Outstanding Student Organization Award, a Women Business Leadership Scholarship, a Kentucky Senate Recognition Certificate, and being recognized as a Coca-Cola Scholar.

Graboviy stays busy currently working with Deloitte LLP, Liberty Homes LLC, Parkside Family Dental and the World Change Coalition.

Jake Persky, from LaGrange, Kentucky, is currently pursuing a master’s degree in accounting at UK. Persky also graduated in May 2014 from Gatton College with a bachelor's degree in accounting. During his undergraduate career he served as the vice president of marketing for the accounting fraternity, Beta Alpha Psi, and as the treasurer for fraternity, Kappa Alpha Order. Persky has tutored introductory accounting classes in Gatton College and served on the student advisory council for the interim director of the Von Allmen School of Accountancy.

This summer Persky is working a tax internship at EY.

“Receiving a KyCPA Scholarship means a lot to me as the KyCPA is one of the most well respected accounting organizations in the state of Kentucky, and I am honored to be recognized as a top accounting student,” said Persky.

Graboviy and Persky both plan to begin their professional careers as a member of the KyCPA, and will both regularly attend meetings in order to build networks and expand their technical accounting knowledge.

MEDIA CONTACT:  Carl Nathe, 859-257-3200

Drink to Your Health: Smoothie Demos Promote Good Nutrition for Cancer Patients

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 10:40

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 23, 2014) — Good nutrition is critical during cancer treatment, but side effects of chemotherapy and radiation can often cause patients to lose their appetites at a time when they need sustenance the most.

As a registered dietitian at the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center, Rachel Miller does all she can to help patients get the nutrition and calories they need.

"A lot of patients have trouble with weight loss and decreased appetite while they're going through various treatments," Miller said. "One of the things that's hardest to do when you don't feel like eating is getting that nutrition you need."

Much of Miller's time at Markey involves one-on-one counseling. She sees patients throughout the process of their treatment, provides them with nutrition education, and in some cases, assists patients with setting up their tube feeding.

In addition to the individual consults, Miller also tries to provide a more tangible example of healthy eating during cancer treatment. On the fourth Wednesday of each month, she hosts a smoothie demonstration in the Whitney-Hendrickson Building. The demonstrations are open to everyone at Markey, including patients, families and medical providers.

Video Produced by UK Public Relations & Marketing. To view captions for this video, push play and click on the CC icon in the bottom right hand corner of the screen.  If using a mobile device, click on the "thought bubble" in the same area.

Smoothies are an ideal way to boost nutritional value in a small volume of food, Miller said. Adding in healthy fats (for example, coconut milk) serves to improve the taste of the drink as well as pack in much-needed extra calories.

"Sometimes it's difficult to eat a full meal," Miller said. "So trying to fortify what you're eating, although it's a small amount,  is one of the things I think is helpful to teach patients to do at home."

During the monthly demonstration, Miller tries to incorporate a variety of foods into the smoothies, testing out different tastes and textures. A common side effect of chemotherapy is a change in taste — many patients report a "metallic" taste in the mouth — so using strong flavors can be helpful in making the meal more appealing. As she prepares the drink, Miller talks her audience through the process, explaining the health and taste benefits of each ingredient.

Though she has regular medical staff who attend, her audience is often filled with families and friends of patients who are waiting for their loved one to complete an appointment or treatment. In addition to giving them information that will help them provide for their loved ones at home, Miller hopes the demonstrations also add a little levity to their day.

"I think the demonstrations have been very helpful," Miller said. "People have a lot of questions. It's easier to see and watch someone else do it, and then be able to implement that in your own home. I think it's also convenient, because a lot of patients have long days here so it can be a fun little break while you're waiting."

Smoothie demonstrations are offered on the fourth Wednesday of every month at 1 p.m. in the Psych-Oncology Services office, third floor, Whitney-Hendrickson Building. Miller also periodically partners with local chefs to host food demonstrations for patients and families.

For more information on good nutrition during cancer treatment, visit Miller's blog: the Markey Menu.

MEDIA CONTACT: Allison Perry, (859) 323-2399 or allison.perry@uky.edu

Hahn Appointed Ambassador for Scientific Advancement in Nursing Research

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 10:30

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2014) — Ellen Hahn, professor at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing has been appointed as one of 12 ambassadors for the Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research, an independent non-profit group advocating for nursing science on behalf of the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR).

The inaugural group of ambassadors consists of nursing and health care leaders who possess stellar research, leadership, and communication skills. These individuals will foster political, social, and professional awareness of the work of NINR and its research priorities. 

Among the group's goals are educating congressional leaders and others within their respective communities, and advocating for improved funding by highlighting the impact nursing research has on the health and well-being of all Americans.

“NINR-funded research is critically important today more than ever as we experience shifts in lifestyle and demographics in the U.S.," Hahn said. "NINR-funded scientists conduct research across the entire spectrum spanning from wellness to managing the symptoms of chronic disease to the end of life, research where individuals, families and communities live and receive care.”  

For more information about the Friends of the National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR), go to http://www.fninr.org. To learn more about NINR, go to http://www.ninr.nih.gov

MEDIA CONTACT: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or ann.blackford@uky.edu 

UK Center for Applied Energy Research Part of New Carbon Capture Project

Sun, 07/20/2014 - 17:02

HARRODSBURG, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — Gov. Steve Beshear, LG&E and KU Energy, University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto, UK's Center for Applied Energy Research, the U.S. Department of Energy National Energy Technology Laboratory and the Carbon Management Research Group are announcing an important pilot project today to reduce CO2 emissions at coal-fired power plants.

The first-of-its-kind mega-watt carbon capture project announcement takes place at Kentucky Utilities Company's E.W. Brown Generating Station near Harrodsburg at 10 a.m. today. 

Check back here for the full story after 11 a.m.

UK's CAER Part of Kentucky’s First Megawatt-scale Carbon Capture Pilot System

Sun, 07/20/2014 - 15:47

HARRODSBURG, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — The Commonwealth’s first megawatt-scale carbon capture pilot unit at an operating power plant will soon be located at Kentucky Utilities Company’s E.W. Brown Generating Station, near Harrodsburg.

The announcement was made during a news conference and ribbon cutting on the grounds of the facility this morning with Gov. Steve Beshear, Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary Len Peters, LG&E and KU Energy Chairman, CEO and President Victor Staffieri, University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto, and other dignitaries and industrial partners in attendance.

The $19.5 million project with the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research is made possible through a $14.5 million competitive financial assistance award from the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory and cost-share funding from UK, the Kentucky Department of Energy Development and Independence, the Carbon Management Research Group (CMRG) utility members, and project team members including the Electric Power Research Institute and Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems America.

The CMRG, comprised of government agencies, electric utilities and research organizations, seeks cost-effective technologies to reduce and manage carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants. Current utility members include LG&E and KU Energy, Duke Energy and Kentucky Power.

The focus of this “catch and release” style pilot system will serve to demonstrate improvements in the integration of carbon capture technology at an existing power plant, produce key discoveries with the goal of developing a safer, more efficient process, and test the feasibility of ideas and technologies for the integration of commercial-scale carbon capture systems.

Construction of the two megawatt thermal post-combustion carbon dioxide capture pilot system is expected to be complete this fall, shortly followed by the testing period. Key discoveries will be determined after testing is finished in mid-2016.

“This project is the next phase in a partnership between LG&E and KU and the University of Kentucky that began back in 2006, when our company committed $1.5 million to CAER for research into the reduction of greenhouse gases,” said Staffieri. “In 2006, there were no regulations on carbon emissions, but we recognized the importance of this research for our company and our Commonwealth. That’s why we continue to invest in these types of projects, which explore ways to make a difference for both our industry and future generations.”

Beshear applauded the ingenuity and purpose behind the project. “Generation of energy, affordable energy and the jobs energy provides all play a key role in the health of Kentucky’s economy,” he said. “The project we’re celebrating today and the partnership that made it possible show our state and its utilities are working together to maintain our livelihood and find solutions to the challenges posed by ever-increasing carbon constraints.”

“Coal has been the lifeblood of Kentucky and the most affordable fuel for energy generation for some time, but economic and regulatory pressure is changing the role coal has played in the energy landscape of Kentucky,” said Eli Capilouto, University of Kentucky President. “As we look toward the future of energy generation, the research results from the carbon capture projects like this provide our electric utilities with valuable information to determine whether these technologies are feasible for commercial-scale operations and can allow coal to be a viable energy source moving forward.”

"This project reinforces coal as part of the president's 'All of the Above' strategy, and underscores the viability of coal as part of America's low-carbon economy," said Julio Friedmann, deputy assistant secretary for clean coal and carbon management at the U.S. Department of Energy.

How it works

The system will operate by using a few sampling ports to redirect a portion of the flue gas just before the gas enters the stack. From the sampling port, the flue gas will move into modules where its interaction with a liquid solvent will extract CO2 from the flue gas. The resulting flue gas, now carrying less than 2 percent CO2, exits the absorber and returns to the stack. The liquid solvent carrying the removed CO2 is put through a two-stage process that boils off the carbon to produce a concentrated stream of CO2. The solvent is recycled to the absorber to process more flue gas. In commercial applications, the concentrated CO2 stream would then be compressed and piped for utilization or storage. In this “catch and release” research project, however, UK will perform detailed analyses of each process, then reintroduce the concentrated CO2 stream into the flue gas.

Specifications

The system will consist of six modules connected side by side on a 2-by-3-foot grid. Each module measures about 160 square feet across and stands between 55 to 75 feet high.

Background

In 2006, LG&E and KU Energy committed $1.5 million over three years to CAER to support carbon management research – including technologies to separate, capture and store carbon dioxide emitted by coal-fired power plants. In 2008, building on research initiated by LG&E and KU Energy’s support, CAER created a consortium with government agencies, electric utilities and their research organizations to seek cost-effective technologies to reduce and manage carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants.

The consortium, now known as the Carbon Management Research Group, splits the cost of research of large-scale carbon dioxide capture systems, which often has shown to be too expensive and high-risk for a single utility or government agency to undertake. Each of the CMRG’s previously mentioned partners contributes $200,000 a year. The Kentucky Department of Energy Development and Independence also contributes funding in the form of a one-to-one match up to $1 million annually, as approved by the Kentucky General Assembly in the biannual budget.

MEDIA CONTACTS:  LG&E and KU Media Line:  502-627-4999; UKPR, Keith Hautala, 859-323-2396

Portion of Rose Street Closing for Science Building Construction

Sun, 07/20/2014 - 13:32

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — A portion of Rose Street closes today in connection with construction of the new $112 million Academic Science Building that will transform the way students, faculty and staff learn, teach and conduct research on the University of Kentucky campus.

To move forward on this critical facility, demolition of old buildings and the ensuing construction on Rose Street will result in the need for closure of a portion of Rose Street between Huguelet Drive and Funkhouser Drive, and the section of Rose Street from Columbia Avenue to Funkhouser Drive will be restricted to local traffic only. Traffic will be detoured around the construction area using the streets of Columbia Avenue, Woodland Avenue, Hilltop Avenue, University Drive and Huguelet Drive.

Meawhile, the portion of Washington Avenue from South Limestone to Gladstone Avenue that has been closed will reopen, and the section of Washington Avenue from Rose Street to Gladstone Avenue will close.  Access to Graham and Gladstone Avenues will only be available via South Limestone. Pedestrian traffic on Washington Avenue from South Limestone to Rose Street will remain open throughout the project.

Impacts associated with this construction project will be in effect until September 2015.

A map of the affected areas denoting alternate traffic and pedestrian routes can be accessed here: http://construction.uky.edu/documents/WashingtonAve_RoseSt_ClosuresDetours_20140721-20150901.pdf.

In response to the Washington Avenue work, the CATS Summer/Break Route now travels down Huguelet Drive instead of Washington Avenue, resulting in the addition of a bus stop at Scovell Hall and the elimination of the Donovan Hall and Washington Avenue stops.

University of Kentucky Environmental Health & Safety has compiled a list of safety tips that pedestrians should keep in mind.

·         Barriers are in place for a reason. Please respect all barriers and do not trespass or attempt to "shortcut" across any construction zones.

·         Take extra precautions when walking along construction zones, particularly when approaching gates/openings in these zones.

·         When construction activities result in sidewalk closures and pedestrian detours, follow the detours. Do not walk in areas not designated for pedestrians.

·         Cross streets only at designated crosswalks.

·         While it is always safest to walk on a sidewalk or designated pedestrian area, if for some reason you must walk in a street, walk facing traffic.

·         Distracted walking caused by using a cell phone can be as dangerous as driving while distracted. Attention to your surroundings while walking and crossing streets will keep you safer.

To report any unsafe conditions to University of Kentucky Environmental Health & Safety, call 859-257-3827.

More information about road closures, detours, utility work and the construction projects of the Academic Science Building, Commonwealth Stadium, Gatton College of Business and Economics Building and University Lofts Building can be found here: http://construction.uky.edu/projects.aspx.

Information about traffic impact only is available here: http://construction.uky.edu/projects.aspx?ProjID=6 and http://construction.uky.edu/projects.aspx?ProjID=7

Anyone wanting regular email updates about campus construction and its impact on traffic, please visit http://construction.uky.edu/contact.aspx to sign up for a listserv.

UK PIMSER to Host K-12 Standards and Assessment Conference

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 17:13

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2014) — This week, the University of Kentucky's Partnership Institute for Math and Science Education Reform (PIMSER) is hosting a conference for educators and leaders across Kentucky on implementing standards in K-12 classrooms.

The fourth annual "Meeting the Challenge" Conference will take place July 22-24 at the Embassy Suites in Lexington, bringing in world-class presenters from across the U.S. and Australia. The program focuses on helping teachers and leaders implement standards in their classrooms, schools or districts, and for higher education faculty, helping them understand the needs of K-12 education and adapt curriculum and programs accordingly.

Presenters include Greg Yates, a cognitive psychologist and author; Laurie Henry of the UK College of Education; Gene Wilhoit of the National Center for Innovation in Education; and authors Page Keeley and Ted Hull. The keynote speaker presentation featuring Wilhoit will take place Wednesday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m.

Specific topics they will address include:

  • "Why don’t students like learning at school?"
  • "The importance of the classroom environment"
  • "Expertise in classroom teaching"
  • "Acquiring basic academic and complex skills"
  • "Feedback, effort and valuing"
  • "Math, science assessment, literacy and social studies"

The conference sessions are hand-selected and intentionally planned to meet the needs of teachers and leaders working to implement standards and effective assessment practices. Sessions are designed around the implementation challenges that districts are experiencing with distinctive features such as smaller, intimate sessions and time for personal interaction with presenters.

The invitation is open to any educator in the U.S., but this year all participants are from Kentucky with about 130 educators registered. For more information and ways to get involved, visit http://www.uky.edu/pimser/

MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, 859-257-5343; jenny.wells@uky.edu

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