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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, or Kody Kiser, 859-257-5282,

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;

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

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 To learn more about NINR, go to

MEDIA CONTACT: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or 

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.


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.


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:

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:

Information about traffic impact only is available here: and

Anyone wanting regular email updates about campus construction and its impact on traffic, please visit 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

MEDIA CONTACT: Jenny Wells, 859-257-5343;

Mary Vosevich Named VP for Facilities Management at UK

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:52

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — University of Kentucky President Eli Capilouto Monday announced that Mary S. Vosevich will be UK’s new vice president for facilities management.

She will start Sept. 1. She replaces Bob Wiseman, who retired from the university in June.

Vosevich has nearly 30 years of experience in facilities management at two universities. She is currently director of the physical plant department and vice president for Lobo Energy Inc. at the University of New Mexico, a flagship institution with more than 27,000 students on its main campus and more than 21,000 employees throughout the state. At UK, Vosevich will oversee gross building assets of $2.2 billion. Currently, UK is underway — or about to begin — $1 billion in capital construction projects.

“In Mary Vosevich, we have found someone with the right blend of extensive facilities management experience and a deep understanding of public higher education,” Capilouto said. “We are in a period of tremendous renewal and revitalization at UK. Mary is precisely the right person to serve as a steward of our critically important infrastructure while helping us continue and expand upon that momentum.”

“We conducted an extensive national search to find the right person to help us continue our campus transformation,” said Eric N. Monday, executive vice president for finance and administration at UK. "While visiting UK a few weeks ago, she met with a number of university officials and staff, all of whom were impressed with her experience, knowledge and vision for facilities management — a critical part of the ongoing revitalization of our campus underway right now. I’m confident that Mary will join an already outstanding team at UK and will build upon the important work we are doing together."

In her current position, Vosevich manages all the physical facilities at the University of New Mexico as well as a department of 500 staff with an annual budget of $70 million. Among many responsibilities, Mary manages and leads UNM’s capital renewal and infrastructure projects, including Lobo Energy Inc., a $63 million business plan to upgrade campus utilities and infrastructure. She also leads UNM’s sustainability and conservation efforts, which have reduced energy consumption by 20 percent since 2008.  The University of New Mexico has been selected to receive the Award for Excellence, APPA's most prestigious institutional award, recognizing outstanding achievement in facilities management.

She also has been a leader in a variety of professional and civic organizations, including serving as president of the APPA, the international association for educational facilities management.

Throughout her career in higher education, at both UNM and the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Vosevich has worked in virtually every facet of facilities management, including environmental, grounds and transportation services. Vosevich has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia and an MBA from the University of New Mexico.

“The University of Kentucky is an institution with tremendous momentum and a deep connection to students and the Commonwealth of Kentucky. You can see it everywhere on the campus. Nearly $1 billion of capital construction is underway or about to begin and nearly all of it is self-financed,” Vosevich said. “I’m excited to join a team so committed to utilizing infrastructure as a way to maximize student success as well as the research and service missions of an institution so important to the state’s future.”

UK Dining to Hold Hiring Fair July 24

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 16:23

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) UK Dining will conduct a hiring fair to fill full-time positions in locations across campus from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. Thursday, July 24, in the University of Kentucky Student Center Food Court.

UK Dining operates 26 locations across campus and will offer opportunities for advancement as the company grows. All full-time employees are eligible for benefits including health insurance options, paid vacation, and more.

Parking will be available for a fee in the South Limestone Garage (Parking Structure #5) near Kennedy Bookstore. Parking meters are also available in the UK Student Center parking lot.

“UK Dining is growing and we’re looking for individuals who are engaging and have experience or are willing to be trained in the food service industry,” said Matthew Johnson, Human Resources representative. “Our commitment is hire people who want to help make our locations grow in population throughout the campus community.”

MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Geegan, (859) 257-5365;

Sanders-Brown Research Presentation Garners Hirano Prize

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 12:45
LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2014) — Dr. Peter T. Nelson of the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging (SBCoA) at the University of Kentucky, and David Fardo of UK's Department of Biostatistics, have been awarded the 2014 Asao Hirano Prize from the American Association of Neuropathologists (AANP) for the best paper presented on neurodegenerative diseases at its annual meeting in Portland, Oregon, last month.

The team's research, titled "Hippocampal Sclerosis of Aging (HS-A): Connecting Genomics and Other Risk Factor Data," compared 363 persons with autopsy-proven HS-A to a control group of 2,303 other individuals in an attempt to identify genetic predisposition to HS-A in what's called a genome-wide association study (GWAS).

GWA studies are a relatively new way to explore the linkage between any disease and the genetic factors that may contribute to them. Using the DNA of similar people with the target disease and without, millions of genetic variants are read and analyzed in an attempt to mark a region of the human genome that influences the risk of the target disease. In contrast to methods that specifically test one or a few genetic regions, the GWA studies investigate the entire genome.

Nelson and Fardo found that small changes in the ABCC9 gene — also known as Sulfonylurea Receptor 2 — strongly paralleled the incidence of HS-A.  Further statistical analysis indicated a link between the use of sulfonylurea, a medication commonly used to treat diabetes, and an increased risk for HS-A.  

"GWA studies require a lot of statistical firepower to tease out subtle relationships between gene mutations and disease, and Dave's expertise was essential to the project," Nelson said.

"While certainly there's a lot more work to be done to confirm the drug-disease interaction, this study nonetheless describes a novel dementia risk factor."

Hippocampal Sclerosis of Aging (HS-A) is a condition that affects up to 15 percent of individuals over age 85.  Its symptoms are so similar to those of Alzheimer's disease that patients are often misdiagnosed with the latter.  Currently, the only way to confirm a diagnosis of HS-A is by autopsy.

The Hirano Prize is a fitting acknowledgement of Sanders-Brown's research expertise in all areas of neurodegenerative disease, according to Dr. Linda Van Eldik, SBCoA director.

"When people think of Sanders-Brown, they think of Alzheimer's disease," Van Eldik said. "But we have people like Pete whose research is making a tangible impact on many other neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's, HS-A, stroke and other dementias. We're delighted that Pete and Dave have been recognized for what is some statistically powerful work."

The Hirano prize is named for famed neuropathologist Asao Hirano, who first described the tell-tale structures in nerve cells that indicate the presence of certain neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease. 

Nelson wasn't the only one from UK participating at the meeting. Dr. Craig Horbinski delivered a talk and chaired a session on brain cancer and also gave input at the association's journal editorial board. Dr. Vanessa Smith, a pathology resident and future neuropathology fellow, gave a presentation about a patient at the University of Kentucky with a rare neurodegenerative disease. 

"These teams and individuals exemplify the world-beating standard that can be achieved in our clinical and research endeavors at SBCoA," Dr. Nelson said.  

The American Association of Neuropathologists (AANP) is a professional and educational organization representing more than 800 American neuropathologists. The AANP's purpose is to advance the science, teaching and training of the diseases of the nervous system and the practice of neuropathology.

The University of Kentucky’s Sanders-Brown Center on Aging was established in 1979 and is one of the original 10 National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded Alzheimer’s disease research centers. The SBCoA is internationally acclaimed for its progress in the fight against illnesses facing the aging population. 

UK Opera Theatre Presents a 'Tale' of a Season

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 12:14

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — For 2014-15, University of Kentucky Opera Theatre continues its streak of presenting blockbuster musical theatre in addition to its classical opera programming.

UK Opera Theatre presents Stephen Sondheim’s maniacal masterpiece "Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber of Fleet Street." Directing "Sweeney Todd" will be one of the country’s most in-demand young directors, Richard Gammon. Gammon is a graduate of the New England Conservatory and currently is the stage director for Ash Lawn Opera’s Young Artist Program. He previously worked in Kentucky when he directed the 2010 production of "Much Ado About Nothing" for the Kentucky Shakespeare Festival, in Louisville. Attend "Sweeney Todd” Oct. 4-12, at the Lexington Opera House.

A first in UK Opera Theatre history, Jacques Offenbach’s French fantasy "The Tales of Hoffmann" will be presented to the Central Kentucky community in March 2015. Stage Director David Lefkowich, director of Kentucky Opera’s November 2013 production of "Simon Boccanegra," comes to Lexington to bring to life the opera featuring tenors, Gregory Turay and Jonathan Parham. Lefkowich and Turay last worked together in the 2004 premiere of Julie Taymor’s "The Magic Flute" at the Metropolitan Opera. Lefkowich was Taymor’s assistant director, and Turay performed the role of Tamino. Lefkowich was also an assistant director for Angela Brown’s "Aida" debut at the Met. "The Tales of Hoffmann" plays March 5-8, at the Lexington Opera House.

Audiences will be wowed with the 23rd annual production of "It’s a Grand Night for Singing!" next summer. Six performances of the annual revue of Broadway, cinema and Billboard hits will be center stage June 12-21, 2015, at the Singletary Center for the Arts.

In addition to the main-stage season, the UK Opera Theatre Undergraduate Studio will present the holiday classic "Amahl and the Night Visitors." "Amahl," directed by Gregory Turay, will be a collaborative production with the Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras under Maestro Daniel Chetel, and the historic Lyric Theatre. "Amahl" will play for three performances Dec. 12-13, at the Lyric Theatre.

Season tickets ("Sweeney Todd," "The Tales of Hoffmann" and "Grand Night") are available now through the Lexington Center Box Office at 859-233-3535. Tier I tickets are $157 and tier II tickets are $140. Single tickets will go on sale Tuesday, Sept. 2.

UK Opera Theatre is one of a select group of U.S. opera training programs recommended by the Richard Tucker Music Foundation. The Tucker Foundation is a nonprofit cultural organization dedicated to the support and advancement of the careers of talented American opera singers by bringing opera into the community and heightening appreciation for opera by supporting music education enrichment programs.

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;

Teens Experience Symptoms of Concussion Differently, Researchers Say

Fri, 07/18/2014 - 09:36

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) — Two researchers from the University of Kentucky have demonstrated a connection between sensitivity to light or noise and increased emotional symptoms in teens who have suffered a concussion.

Lisa Koehl, a doctoral candidate in the University of Kentucky's Department of Psychology, and Dan Han, a University of Kentucky assistant professor of Neurology, presented their findings at the American Academy of Neurology's Sports Concussion Conference in Chicago earlier this month.

The study involved 37 athletes age 12 to 17 who had persisting symptoms for an average of 37 days following a concussion. Han and Koehl examined these teens for post-concussion changes in physical, emotional, and cognitive symptoms over time.

Koehl and Han determined that teens who are sensitive to light or noise after a concussion may also be more likely to have emotional symptoms, including irritability, aggression, anxiety, depression, apathy, frequent mood changes or excessive emotional reactions.

“While most people recover from a concussion within a week, a number of factors affect their recovery, and studies have shown that teenage athletes may take up to seven to 10 days longer to recover than older athletes,” Koehl said.

"Identifying factors that affect a teen's experience after concussion may help in planning for the appropriate treatment and in making decisions about when to return to play and what accommodations are needed at school.”

Of the 37 study participants, 22 teens demonstrated post-concussive emotional symptoms. Of those, 23 percent were sensitive to light while 14 percent were sensitive to noise. In comparison, of the 15 teens without emotional symptoms 13 percent were sensitive to light and no teens were sensitive to noise.

There were no differences between the two groups in factors such as what percentage experienced loss of consciousness, amnesia, nausea and/or headaches, indicating that the groups were likely comparable in the level of severity of concussion.

According to Han, having a family history of psychiatric problems did not make teens any more or less likely to have emotional symptoms after a concussion.

"Teens who had anxiety were 55 percent more likely to self-report attention difficulties than those without anxiety, while teens with irritability/aggression were 35 percent more likely to self-report problems with attention than teens without irritability," said Han.  "While these findings are preliminary and require a larger sample size to predict outcomes with more confidence, we are intrigued by the potential these data offer in terms of providing teens with a better treatment plan based on their unique cognitive, physical and emotional response to concussion." 

The American College of Sports Medicine Research Foundation supported the study.

MEDIA CONTACT:  Laura Dawahare, 859-257-5307

WUKY's 'UK Perspectives' Previews Singletary Center's Signature Series

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 18:59

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 18, 2014) — WUKY's "UK Perspectives" focuses on the people and programs of the University of Kentucky and is hosted by WUKY General Manager Tom Godell.  Today's show offers a preview of the 2014-15 Signature Series at the UK Singletary Center for the Arts with Director Michael Grice and Marketing Director Matt Gibson.   

To listen to the podcast interview from which "UK Perspectives" is produced, visit

"UK Perspectives" airs at 8:35 a.m. and 5:45 p.m. each Friday on WUKY 91.3, UK's NPR station.

'Water Justice' Workshop Promotes Equal Access

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 17:46

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 21, 2014) A "water justice" workshop organized by the University of Kentucky's Appalachian Center was held July 7-11 in Robinson Forest to promote equal access to water resources and inclusive decision-making concerning these resources on local, regional and global scales.

Participants included Kentucky high school students, public school educators, UK faculty and staff, biology and biosystems engineering majors, natural resources and environmental science majors, a faculty member and three undergraduates from the University of Lampung, Indonesia, visiting scholars from Denver University and Eastern Kentucky University, and representatives from the Kentucky River Watershed Watch, Kentucky Division of Water, Upper Tennessee River Roundtable, the Kentucky Riverkeeper and Green Forests Work.

The group received training in watershed mapping and monitoring, water quality testing, and macroinvertebrate and habitat analysis. Participants discussed the relationship between communities sharing a watershed, problems of pollution and privatization and different models of water distribution, including community water supply and community forestry techniques from Indonesia that could be adapted for use in Appalachia.

At a public summit on water justice, held Saturday, July 12, in Memorial Hall, attendees had the opportunity to "meet a salamander," use the Bluegrass Greensource enviroscape, and learn participatory decision-making techniques used by the Kentucky Water Resources Research Institute, based at UK. Alan Fryar facilitated a Skype conference with young people from Morocco and Turkey, to talk about water issues in their countries.

Zainal Abidin, who attended the workshop with undergraduates from the University of Lampung majoring in agricultural economics and forestry, is a participant in a long-term exchange UK has with agricultural extension and community forestry faculty in Indonesia. In the spring of 2015, these students will be in touch, through Skype, with students in Ann Kingsolver’s Global Appalachia course at UK.

The UK Appalachian Center seeks to connect conversations in Appalachia with conversations in other mountain regions of the world. The center organized a Global Mountain Regions conference in 2012 and has hosted a number of visiting scholars from mountain regions. During the coming academic year, there will be a Fulbright visiting researcher from the Himalayan region and visiting scholars from the Catalan region of Spain and from Sardinia, Italy, who are doing comparative research on mountain environments.

Those interested in free educational resources generated through the water justice workshop and summit may contact Shane Barton, UK Appalachian Center Program Coordinator, at or 859-257-4852.

Scutchfield Appointed to Editorial Board of the American Journal of Public Health

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 14:09

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 22, 2014) — University of Kentucky College of Public Health faculty member Dr. Douglas Scutchfield has been appointed to the editorial board of the American Journal of Public Health for a three-year term.

The editorial board, chosen by the journal’s executive board, is composed of members with broad knowledge of public health and represents various disciplines across the subject area.

The American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) seeks to advance public health research, policy, practice and education, and strives to be the premier source for information of that kind.  The editorial board of AJPH provides advice and direction to the journal’s editorial staff, including the editor-in-chief.  Additionally, the board defines the journal’s long-range vision, establishes policies for the publication, and ensures the journal’s quality and integrity.

Scutchfield is the Bosomworth Professor of Health Services Research and Policy in the College of Public Health. He was founding director of both the School of Public Health at UK and the UK Center for Health Services Research and Management. He has also held the administrative positions of chair of the Health Services Department and Preventive Medicine Department, and is a past associate dean of the UK College of Medicine. Additionally, Scutchfield was the founder of the Graduate School of Public Health at San Diego State University.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mallory Powell, 

UK College of Public Health Alumni Take Helm of National Association

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 14:00

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 18, 2014)  University of Kentucky College of Public Health alumna Georgia Heise began her term as president of the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) at the organization's annual meeting in July.  Another graduate of the college, Swannie Jett, will serve as president-elect for 2014-2015.

Heise, who received her DrPH from the UK College of Public Health, is director of Three Rivers Health District Health Department in Owenton, Kentucky.  She serves Kentuckians in the rural counties of Carroll, Gallatin, Owen and Pendleton. Heise also works closely with the Kentucky Department for Public Health's Center for Performance Management.  She is a Kentucky and National Public Health Leadership Institute Fellow, as well as an adjunct instructor for the University of Kentucky's College of Public Health. Heise is particularly interested in advancing public health in the areas of accreditation and policy development.

Jett, who received both his MSc and DrPH at the University of Kentucky, is a health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Seminole County.  In this role, he leads community initiatives to strengthen the Seminole County Health Department infrastructure by improving funding streams and workforce competencies, and creating partnerships to improve population health outcomes. Jett is a captain in the Air Force National Guard and completed the National Public Health Leadership Institute in 2011. He is most interested in addressing the issues of environmental justice, global warming, air pollution, and health equity.

NACCHO is a national organization made up of 2,700 health departments across the United States.  The vision of the organization is to achieve health, equity, and security for all people in the organization’s member communities through public health policies and services.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mallory Powell,

VIDEO: Working to Prevent Crime on UK's Campus - Who Does That?

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 11:41

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.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 18, 2014) — With thousands of students, faculty, staff and fans at the University of Kentucky on any given day, staff within the UK Police Department are constantly focused on keeping campus safe 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The UK campus has made great progress in recent years utilizing everything from technology upgrades like cameras and identification badges to UK Police Department outreach efforts to help keep everyone secure. 

There has to be someone out there who works to prevent crime and educate campus on how to stay safe.  Watch the video above to discover “who does that?”

This video feature is part of a series produced by UKNow called "Who Does That?"  Click on the playlist below to watch other “Who Does That?” videos from the past two years. 

VIDEO CONTACTS:  Amy Jones-Timoney, (859) 257-2940, OR Kody Kiser, (859) 257-5282,

Concours d'Elegance Showcases Classics to Raise Funds for Children's Hospital

Thu, 07/17/2014 - 10:00

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 18, 2014) — An array of motorized eye candy will be on display for automotive lifestyle enthusiasts this weekend during the 10th anniversary of the Keeneland Concours d'Elegance, an annual fundraiser for Kentucky Children's Hospital. 

Located at Keeneland race course, the event will showcase about 130 immortalized vintage models, flashy foreign racers, rare collector's cars and other legendary motorized vehicles, including trucks, mini cars and motorcycles. In addition to the Concours d'Elegance competition on July 19, the four-day event schedule includes a bourbon tour, a hangar bash, a silent auction and a Tour d'Elegance across the Bluegrass.

On July 19, automobiles will be judged for historical accuracy, presentation and cleanliness during the Concours d'Elegance. To celebrate its 10th year running, this year the Concours will feature the Winners' Circle Reunion, a display of winning vehicles from the past 10 years. Iconic makes like Maserati, Duesenberg, Stutz, Maxwell, Pierce-Arrow, Porsche, Lincoln, and Ferrari will be on exhibit. At a special exhibit, visitors can meet with Margaret Dunning, whose 1930 Packard 740 was the first car to win 100 points in the Classic Car Club of America. 

"We have an exquisite collection of automobiles that span from the earliest years of the motorcar to future classics," Connie Jones, co-chairman of the event, said. "And every aspect of this event raises funds to help the patients at Kentucky Children's Hospital. It's our mission — and our passion — to help improve health care for Kentucky's children." 

Since its debut in 2004, the event has raised $625,000 for Kentucky Children's Hospital. Judging begins and doors open to the public at 9 a.m. July 19. Admission for adults at the gate is $20 and free for children ages 12 and younger. For more information about the event, visit


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