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Phi Kappa Phi Offers Fellowships, Scholarships

Mon, 02/09/2015 - 10:40

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 10, 2015) — The University of Kentucky chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi will celebrate its sixth birthday in April. Since receiving its official charter, the chapter has seen eight individuals from UK earn scholarship and fellowship awards from the national office, which each year distributes more than $500,000 to outstanding students, Phi Kappa Phi members and chapters.

" The UK Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi (PKP) is pleased to again announce a series of grants available through the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society," said Kenneth Roberts, Slone Professor of Community Pharmacy Leadership and dean emeritus of the UK College of Pharmacy, who is president of the UK chapter.

The following opportunities are available for students and faculty at UK who are active members of Phi Kappa Phi. Interested individuals should visit the PKP website at www.PhiKappaPhi.org and click on Grants & Awards.

Fellowship Program

Each year, the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi awards 51 fellowships of $5,000 each and three at $15,000 each to members entering the first year of graduate or professional study. Each Phi Kappa Phi chapter may select one candidate from among its local applicants to compete for the society-wide awards. Applications are due no later than April 1, 2015 to the UK Chapter, 224 Funkhouser Bldg. Each chapter may send only one nominee forward.

Literacy Grant

This program was initiated to mobilize members and resources of Phi Kappa Phi and the higher education community to champion literacy initiatives. Grants of up to $2,500 are available to Phi Kappa Phi chapters and individual members to fund ongoing literacy projects or to create new initiatives. The society's commitment to the cause of literacy grows out of and is consistent with its mission, which was expanded to include "…and to engage the community of scholars in service to others." Deadline to apply is April 1, 2015.

Love of Learning Award

These awards help fund post-baccalaureate studies and career development opportunities including graduate and professional studies, doctoral dissertations, continuing education, and travel related to teaching or studies. Students may apply directly to Phi Kappa Phi for these awards. Each year, 140 awards of $500 each are awarded. Deadline to apply is April 1, 2015.

Applicants for the Fellowship ProgramLiteracy Grant, and Love of Learning Award must be active Phi Kappa Phi members (with dues paid) or those who have accepted membership by June 30, 2015.

For additional information, please contact:

C. Lynn Hiler, Program Coordinator

Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence

224 Funkhouser Building

University of Kentucky

Lexington, KY 40506-0054

859-257-6894

clynnhiler@uky.edu

Founded in 1897 at the University of Maine, Phi Kappa Phi is the nation's oldest, largest, and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines. Its chapters are on more than 300 campuses in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines. Each year, approximately 30,000 members are initiated.

Since its founding, Phi Kappa Phi has initiated more than 1 million members into its ranks; all of these members have received emblems and certificates of membership. However, Phi Kappa Phi is much more than an emblem and a line on a résumé. It is a global network comprising the best and brightest from all academic disciplines — a community of scholars and professionals building an enduring legacy for future generations.

The UK Chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi is supported by the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence within the Division of Undergraduate Education at UK.

MEDIA CONTACT: Mariah Rhodes, 859-257-8716; Carl Nathe, (859) 257-3200.

Help Your Artistic Talent Spring Forth With UK Fine Arts Institute Offerings

Sat, 02/07/2015 - 19:15

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) — The University of Kentucky's Fine Arts Institute returns with a variety of classes this spring that explore different aspects of art and creativity. The classes are all offered as noncredit art courses and are perfect for adults with busy work schedules. Courses range anywhere from metalworking to digital photography and are offered from the beginners' level to the more advanced.

Three times a year, UK Fine Arts Institute offers weekly classes as well as some weekend workshop options to suit various types of schedules. The classes meet once a week during the evening. This spring there are a total of eight courses being offered, five weekly classes and three one-time workshops as well as open drawing sessions every Saturday.

The spring classes and workshops will be held in the Fine Arts Building, the Reynolds Building and the Metal Arts Building. This will likely be the last session of Fine Arts Institute classes and workshops to be held in Reynolds Building No. 1, as the UK School of Art and Visual Studies is scheduled to move into the Bolivar Arts Center later this year.

Most of the weekly classes start this week and run through April with no classes during UK's Spring Break, the week of March 15.

The classes being offered include:

  • "Ceramics" with Jill Stofer from 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays;
  • "Beginning to Paint" with Christine Kuhn from 6-9 p.m. Thursdays;
  • "Continuing to Paint" with Kuhn from 6-9 p.m. Tuesdays;
  • "Living a Layered Life: Felting on the FeltLOOM" with Laverne Zabielski from 5-7 p.m. Tuesdays; and
  • "Metal Working" with Jeremy Colbert from 6-9 p.m. Thursdays.

This semester's one-day workshops are:

  • "Digital Photography One-Day Workshops" presented by Lennon Michalski on March 7, March 28 or April 4;
  • "Advanced Digital Photography and Studio Portrait Lighting Workshops" presented by Michalski and Shelly Petty of Rochambeau Photography on Feb. 22, March 8, March 29 or April 12; and
  • "Advanced Digital Photography and Outdoor Portrait Workshop" presented by Michalski and Petty on March 28.

For more information on any of these classes or workshops or their instructors, including cost and specific class times, visit the institute online at http://finearts.uky.edu/art/FAI/classes.

The Fine Arts Institute, an outreach program at the School of Art and Visual Studies at the UK College of Fine Arts, offers all the resources and classrooms that the department has to offer through these noncredit art classes. All courses and workshops are open to the public.

Registration for UK Fine Arts Institute courses is available by visiting http://finearts.uky.edu/art/FAI/registration, by calling the institute at 859-257-8151, or by emailing Jane Andrus at jane.andrus@uky.edu.

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

UK's Yeager Part of Team That Finds Missing Deepwater Horizon Oil

Fri, 02/06/2015 - 18:08

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) — Since the Deepwater Horizon disaster, also referred to as the BP oil spill, occurred in 2010, scientists have been searching for millions of gallons of unaccounted oil — 11 to 30 percent of the oil estimated to have been spilled — in the Gulf of Mexico. Kevin Yeager, University of Kentucky professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, began his search that same year. After two major oceanographic cruises, and years of data collection and collaboration, Yeager and his research colleagues may have solved the mystery.

In a peer-reviewed manuscript co-authored by Yeager and others from the University of South Florida, Florida State University, University of Georgia and University of Southern Mississippi, led by oceanographer Jeffrey Chanton, the team estimates that 3 to 5 percent of the 4.1 to 4.6 million barrels of oil spilled sank to the seafloor. Their findings have been featured in national media such as CBS, NBC, Salon, USA Today, Washington Post and Time Magazine, and abroad in the Daily Mail and United Press International.

Using what is described as the “inverse” isotopic approach, the team was able to identify the presence of oil based on the absence of radiocarbon (14C).

Radiocarbon (14C) is constantly delivered to the Earth’s surface by the interaction of cosmic rays and atmospheric nitrogen. This form of carbon is then incorporated into living plants and animals. Once these plants or animals die, exchange with Earth’s atmosphere ends, and radiocarbon will decay with a half-life of 5,730 years, making it useful to date organic materials up to 50,000 years of age.

Since the Deepwater Horizon oil contains fossil carbon, millions of years old, it contains no radiocarbon. Yeager says that natural abundance radiocarbon measurements of surface sediment organic matter from the seafloor surrounding the oil spill site allowed them to identify how much carbon was derived from Deepwater Horizon oil settling to the seafloor, as opposed to carbon arriving there due to modern processes.   

Serving as the chief scientist of two major oceanographic cruises in 2010 and 2011, Yeager began to sample the seafloor for evidence of the arrival and impact of Deepwater Horizon oil in the Gulf of Mexico. After these cruises, Yeager and his team shared samples and data with Chanton and his research group.

Following data collection, they began to collaborate on the paper published in the January edition of Environmental Science & Technology, "Using Natural Abundance Radiocarbon To Trace the Flux of Petrocarbon to the Seafloor Following the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill."

Yeager says understanding how much of the Deepwater Horizon oil ended up on the seafloor, and where, is critically important for a number of reasons.

"Since this was not the first, and will not be the last, major oil spill in the world’s oceans, we need to understand how the oil behaves, and where it goes once it is introduced in large quantities to the marine environment" Yeager said.

Once the oil arrives at the seafloor, the rate at which it can be naturally broken-down is slowed significantly, and in some cases, halted nearly entirely.

"This oil can continue to impact biota living on the seafloor (as well as creatures living in the water column that feed on biota living on the seafloor) for a very long time," said Yeager. "We understand very little about how this works, or for how long we can expect it to be a problem.'"

Relatively oil-rich sediments can be buried given enough time. However, this buried oil can be excavated and re-introduced to the water column (the area from the surface of water to the seafloor), or to surface sediments on the seafloor by a variety of processes, such as biological or physical mixing, the action of bottom currents, and the movement of sediment down slopes.

"As such, this oil can have long, and perhaps intermittent impacts on the environment," said Yeager.

Yeager, a sedimentary geologist and environmental radiochemist, directs the Sedimentary, Environmental and Radiochemical Research Laboratory (SER2L) at UK, which maintains state-of-the-art analytical instrumentation and comprehensive environmental field sampling equipment. SER2L graduate students joined Yeager on his second research cruise, and the lab has been involved with processing samples and producing data for the Deepwater Horizon work.

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

Early Childhood Lab Opens in New Location With Renewed Promise, Expanded Reach

Fri, 02/06/2015 - 17:00

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 the "thought bubble" icon in the same area.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) — From the basement of Erikson Hall to a 10,000 square foot, newly renovated facility, the University of Kentucky College of Education's Early Childhood Lab (ECL) has "come full circle," as ECL Staff Director Charlotte Manno says. The ECL moved into its new home, located on the former Lexington Theological Seminary campus, in January, and the relocation has afforded more than just a building upgrade.

The new ECL is more than double the size of the former location, and was enhanced with a $2.5 million renovation to create a high-quality early education environment, including new walls, workstations, classrooms, kitchenettes and bright furnishings. The new facility and location also offer more convenience and accessibility, including an elevator — an important feature for a program serving children with disabilities — and a playground directly next to the building.

"We've been trying for 15 years to make this happen, and it really is a dream come true for us to be in such a nice facility," said Jennifer Grisham-Brown, professor in the College of Education and faculty director at the ECL. "And I'm very appreciative to UK superiors and central administration, the Board of Trustees, our college dean…for their support in all of this."

Established in 1928 and operated by the Department of Early Childhood, Special Education and Rehabilitation Counseling in the College of Education, the ECL has a three-part mission. It provides high-quality early care and education to the Lexington community and UK faculty and staff; serves as a training site for pre-service teachers, and others who work with young children; and is used as a research site for child development and early childhood education.

“For decades, UK has provided care for Central Kentucky children at its Early Childhood Lab,” said Mary John O’Hair, dean of the UK College of Education. “The lab has the highest quality ratings of any early care and education program in Kentucky and the nation. UK College of Education faculty, staff and students are delighted to have a new and innovative space for the children we serve that will match the quality of this vital program.”

The ECL is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) and maintains a 4 STARS rating through the state of Kentucky. The curriculum framework co-created by and used at the ECL meets the needs of diverse groups of children by collecting developmental assessment information on each child, creating group and individual goals based on assessment information, and designing, implementing, and evaluating group and individual activities and interventions.

In fact, with the relocation and expanded space, the ECL will be delivering high-quality instruction to more children than ever before. The ECL is now licensed for 104 children, compared to 54 previously, which will also allow twice as many UK students to train and observe in the new ECL.

Approximately 1,100 students train or observe at the lab each semester. Many of those are students in the Interdisciplinary Early Childhood Education Program or Special Education Program, who are required to complete a thesis for their master's degree and frequently conduct their research at the ECL.

"It really mirrors the mission of the university. It's a teaching facility first and foremost, and so we allow for students all across campus in many disciplines to come here and observe," said Grisham-Brown.

Rachel Schilling, for example, is earning her master's degree in interdisciplinary early childhood education and has worked in the ECL for three years. She is researching the use of video modeling to teach social skills to preschool children. Specifically, Schilling is studying the effects of using video clips to increase a child's social interactions with peers, including conversation and play skills.

"It's a great opportunity to come to the lab and apply the practices and apply the teaching strategies…and see it all play out in real-life situations," Schilling said.

Grisham-Brown agreed, saying that UK students "get to see an example of the highest quality early care and education program that you can see in the state of Kentucky."

In addition to expanding in size, enrollment and student staffing, the ECL is also extending its services through a partnership with Visually Impaired Preschool Services (VIPS), a nonprofit agency that offers educational and therapeutic services to visually impaired children. VIPS will be housed in the new building, allowing the agency to continue conducting its home visiting program in Lexington, but also to serve ECL children with visual impairments, and vice versa as the ECL will keep enrollment slots open for VIPS each year.

While the College of Education is currently developing an educator preparation program in visual impairments, Grisham-Brown expects ECL's partnership with VIPS to be especially valuable in training UK students who will someday work with children in home-based settings or with visual impairments.

With the new ECL and all it has to offer, UK's commitment to Kentucky's youngest citizens, as Grisham-Brown stated, continues growing stronger and reaching further.

To find out more information about the Early Childhood Lab, call 859-257-7732. Beginning in March, tours of the new facility will be scheduled by appointment. 

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

May 2015 Graduates Invited to Grad Salute

Fri, 02/06/2015 - 12:57

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2014) — The University of Kentucky Alumni Association invites all UK May 2015 graduates to take part in Grad Salute, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily March 3-6, at the King Alumni House on the corner of Rose Street and Euclid Avenue.

Grad Salute is the perfect opportunity for graduates to finalize all their Commencement needs in one stop. Representatives will be on hand to assist students in making final graduation selections. During Grad Salute, graduates will be able to:

  • Purchase an official custom cap, gown and tassel;
  • Verify there are no stops or holds on graduation records;
  • Obtain career information and employment resources;
  • Register to participate in the Commencement ceremony;
  • Order an official University of Kentucky class ring;
  • Purchase a University of Kentucky diploma frame;
  • Order official personalized graduation announcements;
  • Support a Big Blue tradition with a gift to the University of Kentucky;
  • Be part of a new UK tradition and order a Wildcat Alumni Plaza paver; and
  • Become a member of the UK Alumni Association at a special rate of $25 per year for new grads. Three lucky members who select the three-year pre-paid membership option will be eligible to win a $100 Visa gift card!

For more information about Grad Salute, visit www.ukalumni.net/gradsalute or contact Emory Jones at emory.jones@uky.edu or 859-257-3569.

The UK Alumni Association is a membership supported organization committed to fostering lifelong engagement among alumni, friends, the association and the university. For more information about the UK Alumni Association or to become a member, visit www.ukalumni.net or call 1-800-269-2586.

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

UK Family Center Offers Free 'Relationship Checkups'

Fri, 02/06/2015 - 12:57

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) — Visiting a doctor regularly is regarded as a necessity for keeping the body healthy, just like routine maintenance performed on a car is vital for its continued functionality and reliability. However, one of the most important aspects of many individuals' lives is often overlooked — relationships.

In conjunction with Valentine's Day from Feb. 9-17 (excluding Feb.15), the University of Kentucky Family Center is offering free 'Relationship Checkups' to the Lexington community. These checkups are available for married couples, couples who are dating, engaged and/or living together, as well as gay and lesbian couples.

A Relationship Checkup can be scheduled by calling the UK Family Center at 859-257-7755 or by visiting the website at familycenter.uky.edu. The Family Center is located on the second floor of Scovell Hall on UK's campus.

The Relationship Checkups "seek to strengthen the relationship by finding out what you are doing right and helping the couple become even stronger by building on that," said UK Family Center Director Tracey Werner-Wilson. "They also help to get a conversation started about areas that may not be as satisfying in the relationship." 

"Just like everyone needs a six-month checkup at the dentist to help keep their teeth healthy, so, too, everyone in a romantic relationship benefits from a relationship checkup," said Werner-Wilson.

Appointments generally last one hour. Couples fill out a questionnaire, which is reviewed by an intern therapist. The answers, in conjunction with conversation with the couple, allow the intern to coach the couple on what they are doing well and help them figure out areas of disagreement.

It's not just couples who are struggling in their relationships who can attend. The UK Family Center suggests everyone in a relationship take advantage of these services.

Intern therapists are master's students, working to become licensed marriage and family therapists through UK's fully accredited Couple and Family Therapy program. Within 16 months, these interns must log 500 hours in client sessions. Interns are supervised and instructed three to four hours a week by a licensed marriage and family therapist.

To meet this demand for clients, the Family Center offers low-cost services to UK, Lexington, and surrounding communities. Utilizing a sliding scale fee, the Family Center works with clients to make therapy affordable for those who need it.

"Not only does it help our students attain the practice hours they need, but we see it as the service arm of UK's mission statement. We are helping all Kentuckians create a better life for themselves. We are improving the lives of Kentuckians, which creates an attractive place for people to live," Werner-Wilson said.

The UK Family Center first opened its doors in 1988, serving families, couples, and individuals alike. Common needs addressed by the Family Center include stress, relationship issues, parent-child conflict, behavioral issues in children, anxiety, and depression. Additionally, play therapy is offered to families with young children.

The focus of family science is to help understand and improve the lives of individuals, working with the roles that family and interpersonal relationships perform in shaping one's experiences.

"We believe lasting change happens within relationships. As humans, we do not live in a vacuum. We are constantly in a relationship with someone, not always a romantic relationship," Werner-Wilson said. Sometimes these relationships try to sabotage us when we try to change. If we include those relationships within the therapy sessions, they can become a support for change instead of fighting against change." 

This Valentine's Day, couples can do more than buy flowers and candy for their sweetheart — they can check up on their relationship and make it last for many Valentine's Days to come.

MEDIA CONTACT: Clark Bellar, clark.bellar@uky.edu; 859-257-8716.

Career Center Lot Closed to General Parking on Feb. 10

Fri, 02/06/2015 - 10:56

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) The Career Center Lot, located off Linden Walk, will be unavailable to general parking from 7 a.m. to noon Tuesday, Feb. 10, due to the Employer Showcase event being held in the Student Center. The lot has 39 spaces. Members of the university community with valid E permits who normally park their vehicles in this area may park in other E areas on campus and are encouraged to allow for additional commute time during this impact. Go to www.uky.edu/pts/parking-info_parking-maps to view a campus parking map.

Additionally, although the majority of Employer Showcase attendees will use a remote park-and-ride lot, employees and students who park in the South Limestone Garage (PS #5) should expect a slight increase in visitors parking in the facility Tuesday, Feb. 10 and Wednesday, Feb. 11, and plan accordingly by allowing extra time for their commute. If the garage is full, employees with valid E permits may park in another E lot. Go to www.uky.edu/pts/parking-info_parking-maps to view a campus parking map. Students with valid C5 or C7 permits may park in the Taylor-Dickey Lot or the Scott Street Lot (E/C7), or park in the K areas at Commonwealth Stadium and ride the Lextran Stadium-Greg Page Route.

MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Geegan, (859) 257-5365; sarah.geegan@uky.edu

WUKY's 'UK Perspectives' Welcomes Family Studies Chair Ron Werner-Wilson

Thu, 02/05/2015 - 22:58

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 6, 2015) — 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 guest is Ron Werner-Wilson, chair of the UK Department of Family Studies, who talks about an upcoming opportunity for couples to have a 'relationship checkup' — just in time for Valentine's Day. 

To listen to the podcast interview from which "UK Perspectives" is produced, visit http://wuky.org/term/uk-perspectives.

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

Apply Now for UK Woman's Club Full-tuition Scholarship

Thu, 02/05/2015 - 15:33

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 6, 2015) —The University of Kentucky Woman's Club (UKWC) is currently accepting applications for its 2015-2016 full-tuition scholarship, awarded to full- or part-time nontraditional students. The deadline to apply for the scholarship is Friday, March 13, 2015.

UKWC awards scholarships covering tuition at the resident rate to deserving female UK students each year. Applicants must be at least 25 years old and have completed at least 12-credit hours with a minimum 3.0 grade-point average. These scholarships are designed for women students with outstanding academic records who have unmet financial needs.

Scholarship applications for the 2015-2016 academic year can be found here.

Applications are due in the UK Office of Academic Scholarships in the Funkhouser Building before 4:30 p.m. Friday, March 13, 2015.  Applicants must also complete the 2015-2016 Federal Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA) by March 15.

Applicants will participate in an interview with the UKWC Scholarship Committee to be considered for a scholarship, must be enrolled in at least six credit hours per semester, and must be residents of Kentucky. Current members of the UKWC are ineligible.

Since its inception in 1973, the UKWC Aid Fund has provided 193 undergraduate scholarships totaling more than $355,000.

"In an era where the cost of higher education is at an all-time high, nontraditional students who might have families, are working second jobs, and have high financial aid need, the UKWC undergraduate scholarships often provide the lifeline needed for degree completion," said Lisa Collins, chair of the UKWC Scholarship and Fellowship Committee.

With a rich tradition of more than 100 years of service, the UKWC provides a welcoming and enriching environment for all women to be part of a group committed to supporting the campus and its students. UKWC scholarship and fellowship programs provide nearly $40,000 annually to nontraditional students pursuing undergraduate and graduate degrees. In addition, UKWC partners with other UK organizations and programs to provide needed services to the student body.

For more information about the UKWC scholarship, visit www.ukwc.org or contact the Office of Academic Scholarships at 859-257-4198.

MEDIA CONTACT: Clark Bellar, clark.bellar@uky.edu, 859-257-8716.

Off-campus Housing Fair Set Thursday

Thu, 02/05/2015 - 13:42

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2015) — Students who are — or soon will be — living off campus are invited to the third annual University of Kentucky Off-campus Housing Fair.

Nearly 20 different apartment communities and related businesses will be in one location, the Student Center Grand Ballroom, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 12.

Representatives from Lexington's largest off-campus student housing communities will be in attendance, as well as representatives of the Off-campus Student Services (OCSS) Office to answer questions. There will be free food and gifts.

“This is our third year hosting an off-campus housing fair,” said Tony Blanton, OCSS director. “We’re planning on this year’s fair being our biggest yet.”

UK Awarded Freeman Foundation Grant for Study of Arts, Culture of Inner Mongolia

Thu, 02/05/2015 - 11:23

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 6, 2015) – The University of Kentucky's Office of China Initiatives and College of Fine Arts were recently awarded a Freeman Foundation grant, which will provide three faculty and 10 UK students with an opportunity to study the arts and culture of Inner Mongolia at Inner Mongolia University (IMU) during the fall semester of 2015. 

Dean Michael Tick at UK College of Fine Arts said he is excited to help offer this opportunity to UK students and faculty. "As our world’s cultures are brought together even faster and more forcefully, a global experience has proved an indispensable part of a student’s full college experience. This is the motivation behind our global learning partnership with Inner Mongolia University. We are thrilled to have the support of the Freeman Foundation for our visit to the campus of IMU this fall, where our students and faculty will work collaboratively on a number of projects with IMU’s renowned faculty and highly trained student body."

IMU is one of only three colleges that specialize in preserving the arts of minorities in China.

According to Huajing Maske, executive director of UK's Office of China Initiatives and director of the Confucius Institute, Inner Mongolia is one of the 56 minority groups in China, which is why it is so important to sustain Inner Mongolia’s artistic expression. 

Program directors will encourage students to gain appreciation and awareness of the ethnic group. Exact program dates have yet to be scheduled.

This program stems from the success of the “Living Landscapes” partnership among UK's Confucius Institute and College of Fine Arts and the Art College of IMU. The partnership began with a visit by a College of Fine Arts delegation to Inner Mongolia led by the Confucius Institute in 2012. "Living Landscapes" included 51 different fine art programs over a one week period in September 2013, which engaged thousands of participants from UK's campus and the community.

The Freeman Foundation helps make international connections in a world where China is playing an increasing economic and geopolitical role. 

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

Meet the Man Who Built 'House of Cards'

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 21:35

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 6, 2015) — The Student Activities Board's Pop Culture Committee announces that Beau Willimon, creator, writer and showrunner of the popular Netflix series "House of Cards," will be the star of the third annual "Behind the Lens" event at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 23, at the Singletary Center for the Arts.

Tickets are free and are now available from the Singletary Center Ticket Office.

The campus community will hear from Willimon himself about his work and successes in the film industry and also have the opportunity to ask him questions. Willimon will also be giving attendees the inside scoop on what the upcoming season will hold.

“We are excited to announce that Beau Willimon, a talented creator and writer, will be our speaker for our 'Behind the Lens' event,” Brenton Smith, director of the Pop Culture Committee, said. “I believe he will provide great insight on his nontraditional, but highly popular Netflix series. We hope this will inspire the campus to pursue their dreams and never be afraid to think outside the box.”

House of Cards was the first streaming format show to be nominated for the Primetime Emmy Awards. The series serves as the perfect example of how the television industry has started to evolve from traditional broadcast to streaming formats.

"Behind the Lens" was created to bring actors, directors and writers to campus to discuss their experiences in the film and television industry. These experiences include how they got started, their creative processes and an idea of what goes on behind the lens.

SAB brings more than 100 entertaining, educational and enriching programs that are reflective of contemporary issues and trends to the University of Kentucky annually. These programs are designed to enhance the college experience for students, faculty, staff and the greater Lexington community.

Connect with SAB at www.uksab.org, follow them on Twitter at twitter.com/UKSAB or Instagram at instagram.com/uksab or like them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/UKSAB. For more information about SAB and events, email contact@uksab.org or text a question beginning with SABQ, followed by your question or comment, to 411-247.

SAB Contact: Olivia Senter, publicrelations@uksab.org, 859-257-8868

MEDIA CONTACT: Katy Bennett, katy.bennett@uky.edu, 859-257-1909

UK College of Law to Host Regionals of National Trial Competition

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 16:50

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) — Law students from 13 different law schools and four states will make the trip to Lexington to compete for a chance to participate in the National Trial Competition, the most prestigious trial competition in the nation. The University of Kentucky College of Law will host the regional competition at the Fayette District and Circuit Courthouses Feb. 6-8.

The National Trial Competition, sponsored by the American College of Trial Lawyers and Texas Young Lawyers Association, was created in 1975 as a way for students to strengthen their skills as well as interact with established members of the bench and bar. The program gives students a way to learn more about the nature of trial practice and increase their overall education in law.

The five round competition involves 26 teams of two to three students. Each trial will be judged and scored by a panel of at least three attorneys. The students are evaluated on their opening and closing arguments, as well as their direct and cross-examinations. The mock trials also include 180 volunteer witnesses with statements to learn, who then meet with their advocate beforehand.  In all, more than 150 lawyers and judges will score the students. 

“Students who know how to represent a real client with excellence, in a real trial setting, helps us fulfill our role as an outstanding law school that graduates practice ready lawyers," said Professor Allison Connelly, who has coached UK’s team for 18 years. "Our trial teams have achieved an incredible level of success, but the real success story is what these advocates do with their talent and skill when they graduate; they change lives, one case at a time.”   

The National Trial Competition hosts more than 150 law schools and 1,000 law students from 14 regions. Kentucky is part of the 11th region which includes, Tennessee, Missouri and Arkansas. Regional competitions are held to see which two teams from the nation's 26 regions will go on to compete for the national championship. Kentucky was second in the nation in 2009 and UK College of Law graduate Chris Schaefer was named the best advocate in the country. The National Trial Competition will be held in Houston, Texas, March 11-15, 2015.

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

'Picture a Litter-Free Campus' Photo Contest Offering Prizes to UK Community

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 16:38

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) — In efforts to promote the goal of eliminating litter on the University of Kentucky campus, a new contest is encouraging UK students, faculty and staff to not only " Pick It Up," but to picture it — picture a litter-free campus. The Picture a Litter-Free Campus Photo Contest is seeking creative, original images related to litter, a litter-free campus and the acts that lead to both. Winners of the contest, which runs until March 11, will receive iPad Minis.    

One student and one employee will be awarded "People's Choice" prizes based on the total likes and shares the photos receive on the UK Office of Sustainability's Facebook page. A third winner will be awarded "Best in Show," selected by a panel of judges. Participants must email photos to pickitup@uky.edu between Feb.1 and March 11.

The contest is part of the Pick It Up campaign, developed by a group of campus partners and funded by the Office of the Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration. The campaign was launched in September and urges participation from the entire UK community to make a difference on campus by picking up litter, and recycling it when appropriate.

UK faculty, staff and students also have the opportunity to participate in the Pick It Up campaign and win prizes by spotting Gnarly, the Pick It Up mascot, on campus. And if you catch a Wildcat "blue handed," or picking up litter, send in a photo or note with their name, time and location on campus to pickitup@uky.edu, and the individual will receive a "Get Gnarly" T-shirt. 

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

UK Chandler Hospital Hosts First National Wear Red Day Symposium

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 15:33

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) — Women spotted in red at the University of Kentucky Chandler Hospital on Feb. 6 aren't celebrating Valentine's Day early. Rather, they're signifying their support of heart health awareness as part of National Wear Red Day, celebrated on the first Friday of every February, and the inaugural National Wear Red Day Symposium.

Sponsored by the Department of Pharmacology and Nutritional Sciences, the symposium brings together UK HealthCare experts from pharmacology and nutrition, cardiology, the Gill Heart Institute, and internal medicine to discuss the impact of heart disease on women. According to the American Heart Association, heart disease or stroke account for the deaths of one in three women every year. Fortunately, 80 percent of cardiac events can be avoided with health care education and lifestyle changes.

The National Wear Red Day Symposium, held from 10 a.m. to noon in MN 563 UK Chandler Hospital, will include presentations from the following UK HealthCare experts:

•      Dr. Susan Smyth, medical director, Gill Heart Institute

•      Dr. Lisa Cassis, interim vice president for research, University of Kentucky

•      Dr. Allison Bailey, director of ambulatory and preventive cardiology and associate             professor of medicine

•      Debra K. Moser, professor and Linda C. Gill Endowed Chair, College of Nursing

•      Dr. Florin Despa, associate professor, Department of Pharmacology and Nutritional        Sciences

The symposium is free and open to the public. Experts will highlight lifestyle changes to prevent cardiac events, which include checking cholesterol, increasing exercise and working with a doctor on a cardiac health plan. Participants are encouraged to wear red. Following the symposium, attendees can participate in an open round table session with lunch provided and a photo shoot.  

This event is celebrated in conjunction with Go Red for Women Day, which was initiated in 2003 as a campaign to raise awareness of heart disease and stroke in women. For more information about heart health for women, visit www.goredforwomen.org

MEDIA CONTACT: Elizabeth Adams, elizabethadams@uky.edu 

Finalists Announced for Prize for Women Playwrights

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 15:19
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) — Three playwrights have been named finalists for the 2015 Prize for Women Playwrights presented by the Kentucky Women Writers Conference (KWWC).  

Selected from a pool of more than 300 submissions, this year's finalists and their plays are: 

· "The Silent Woman," the strange, true tale of a painter who lived with an effigy of an ex-lover and coaxes his scullery maid to play along, by Lydia Blaisdell of Austin, Texas;

· "Sisters/Sistahz," the story of identical twin African-American "sisters/sistahz" who must come to terms with their starkly differing views on black womanhood in America, by Daysha Veronica Edewi of Los Angeles; and

· "The Art of Jack the Ripper," a dark raucous performance work exploring why violence against women persists in reality and as entertainment — especially sexual violence, Stephanie Ross of Los Angeles.

Lydia Blaisdell is a current fellow at the Michener Center for Writers at University of Texas at Austin. In April 2015, she will premiere "Apocalypse Radio," an immersive retro-future radio play in the Cohen New Works Festival. She is a member playwright of Youngblood at Ensemble Studio Theater in New York City and the Brooklyn-based writers’ collective, Krïstïanïa. "Sucking & Spitting," her riff on the Bacchae, was a semifinalist for the 2014 Bay Area Playwrights Festival. In March 2014, her one-act, "Old Broads," was performed at the Off Shoot in Austin. In July 2013, she received a Jerome Travel and Study grant to travel to Vienna and Berlin to research "The Silent Woman." Her short plays have been performed in New York City, Austin, Aspen, Lake George and Paris, France. She received her bachelor's degree in English literature from Columbia University in 2009.

Daysha Veronica Edewi is a writer/director who graduated cum laude from Scripps College with bachelor's degrees in media studies and psychology. She grew up in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she was heavily involved in theatre, dance and writing from a young age. Her first and only completed play, "Sisters/Sistahz," has been the recipient of the Dr. Floyd Gaffney National Award in Playwriting from the University of San Diego, and the Grand Prize Winner for Stage Plays in the New York Screenplay Contest. Most recently, Edewi has been the recipient of an Award of Merit in African American Films from the Best Shorts International Film Competition and The Indie Fest, Scripps College’s Payton Watkins ‘09 Media Studies Award, Claremont College’s Dr. Samella Lewis Artist Award, The Audience’s Choice Award at Wanawake Weusi’s Black Arts Festival, and The National Science Foundation/University of Southern California Graduate School’s Professionalization Award for Postdoctoral Preparation. She has been featured on BuzzFeed, The Huffington Post, Women's Wear Daily and Indieporch.com.

Stephanie Ross’ plays include "Medea Now!," "Life After Life & Crazy Quilt," "Coming of Age in Gomorrah," "Unveiling the Evolutionary Landscape," "Images of Supremacy" and others. Ross, who holds a bachelor's degree from California Institute of the Arts, was the recipient of a King County Arts Commission Written Works-in-Progress grant.

She is currently a member of the Dramatists Guild and PEN International. Ross spent some 25 years working in late night television for "The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson" and "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno." Ross retired as producer in 2012 and returned to playwriting with "The Art of Jack the Ripper," a play she revised with the help of Lee Wochner’s Los Angeles-based playwriting workshop. The playwright has been married to Gregory Ross for almost 45 years and collaborated with him on almost all her plays, their one son as he enters his second act, and their four works-in-progress grandchildren.

Finalists for the 2015 Prize for Women Playwrights were selected blindly by a judging panel of theater professionals including Mylissa Crutcher, Tonda Fields, Kathryn Newquist and Eric Seale. To be eligible to compete, submissions had to be one-act or full-length scripts in English with a running time between 45 and 90 minutes, which have not been published or commercially produced by a woman playwright. The plays' casts are limited to six actors, and there are no limitations on subject matter. Eligible plays also had to have more than one character.

The winner of the competition will be chosen by award-winning playwright Carson Kreitzer by Feb. 20, and will receive a $500 cash prize and a full theatrical world premiere in Lexington produced and directed by Lexington theater artist Eric Seale.

Kreitzer is probably best known for "The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer," which won the Lois and Richard Rosenthal New Play Prize, the American Theatre Critics’ Steinberg Citation, the Barrie Stavis Award, and is published in Smith and Kraus’ “New Playwrights: Best Plays of 2004” and by Dramatic Publishing. Her previous work, "SELF DEFENSE or death of some salesmen" has been produced across the country, and is published by Playscripts and in Smith and Kraus’ “Women Playwrights: Best Plays of 2002.” Other work by Kreitzer includes "Behind the Eye," "1:23," "Flesh and the Desert" and "The Slow Drag" (New York and London).

Kreitzer is a New Dramatists alumna, an associated artist with Clubbed Thumb and New Georges, a member of The Workhaus Collective and the Dramatists Guild, and is a core member and current board member of The Playwrights’ Center. She and composer Matt Gould are currently under commission from Yale Rep and New Dramatists for their new musical "LEMPICKA." She is also writing a new play for the Guthrie Theatre, and will travel to Ireland in October as the current Dowling Annaghmakerrig Fellow. Kreitzer has enjoyed support from the Jerome and McKnight foundations, the NEA, and the Toulmin Foundation, and was the first Playwrights Of New York (PoNY) Fellow at the Lark Play Development Center.

Kreitzer's most recent play, "Lasso of Truth," explores the origins of Wonder Woman and is a National New Play Network rolling world premiere, with productions at Marin Theatre Company, Synchronicity Theatre in Atlanta, and Unicorn Theatre in Kansas City.

Now in its 37th year, the Kentucky Women Writers Conference is an annual event known for bringing notable women writers to Lexington for readings, writing workshops and discussions. A program housed in the UK College of Arts and Sciences, the conference is made possible in part by continued community partnerships, including its primary venue, the Carnegie Center. For more information on the conference, visit online at www.kentuckywomenwriters.org

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

Spike in Research Efforts Places UK College of Nursing Among National Leaders

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 14:01

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) – When thinking about the University of Kentucky College of Nursing, do you think about it as one of the best nursing schools in the nation as ranked by U.S. News and World Report? Do you visualize classrooms of students preparing to go out into their communities to serve and meet the health care needs of their patients?

If so, you would be right on both counts. What may not be as commonly known about the UK College of Nursing, is the robust research program that contributes to the quality of the education that they provide their students, and on a more global level, to the field of nursing.

Nursing research provides the scientific basis for the practice of the profession. Federally sponsored research plays a critical role in the training of future generations of nurse scientists and practitioners. Research at the UK College of Nursing addresses universal health problems such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, agricultural health, health disparities, maternal-child health, chronic pain, acute injuries and mental health issues.

"The UK College of Nursing is engaged in a robust portfolio of research addressing a number of the most pressing and present health problems in the Commonwealth of Kentucky," said Thomas Kelly, associate dean of research. "The research of our investigators is patient-centered — they work with and engage the citizens of the Commonwealth in tackling critical issues impacting health and disease." 

The UK College of Nursing was ranked No. 21 nationally for National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding in 2014 with a total of $1,946,095. The College of Nursing ranks No. 14 among public universities. Examples of current research at the UK College of Nursing include:

  • The RICH Heart program:  Research and Interventions for Cardiopulmonary Health (RICH Heart) is directed by Misook Chung, associate professor; Terry Lennie professor; and Debra Moser, professor. These researchers, and their colleagues, Rebecca Dekker, assistant professor; Susan Frazier, associate professor; Gia Mudd-Martin, associate professor; and Martha Biddle, assistant professor, obtain grants, conduct research, and give presentations locally, nationally, and internationally.  Collectively, they have more than 300 publications in journals, more than 30 book chapters and three books published.
  • In 2013, Debra Moser became the first investigator in the state of Kentucky to receive a PCORI (Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute) grant.
  • Ellen Hahn, professor and director of the Kentucky Center for Smoke-free Policy, and her colleagues Carol Riker, associate professor; Amanda Fallin, assistant professor; Audrey Darville, assistant professor; and Chizimuzo Okoli, assistant professor, focus on how to prevent and treat  tobacco dependence through research, policy development, and community engagement. The Kentucky Center for Smoke-free Policy is a high impact research dissemination center with over 80 organizational partners, providing policy and data support to make it possible for communities to go smoke-free. The percent of Kentucky’s population covered by comprehensive smoke-free workplace laws jumped from 0 percent in 2004 to 32 percent in 2014. When Lexington went smoke-free, indoor air quality improved, heart attacks and emergency room visits for asthma declined, and fewer people smoked.
  • In 2013, Ellen Hahn received one of the largest NIH grants ever received in the College of Nursing.
  • Debbie Reed, professor, was recently awarded a four-year R01 grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, for her community-based, translational intervention effectiveness research study that will work with 450 adult and senior farmers and their family members and established farm community organizations in Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi to develop and test a novel intervention, didactic readers theatre, to positively change farm work culture and safety behavior.
  • Jennifer Hatcher, associate professor, focuses on improving the health of vulnerable populations. Her research has improved the breast cancer screening rates of African American women in Lexington and surrounding areas using peer educators, increased cervical cancer screening rates for rural Appalachian women by working with faith based community organizations, and enhanced the cardiovascular health of African Americans via use of text messaging and social media.  Ongoing NIH-supported studies are focused on impacting the disproportionate incidence and mortality from colorectal cancer among citizens living in rural Appalachia.
  • Francis Hardin-Fanning, assistant professor, investigates ways to improve the nutrition of people in rural Appalachian counties with limited access to healthy foods. Her projects include rural satellite farmers’ markets that provide income opportunities and increase access to fresh produce, cooking classes based on low-cost healthy recipes of locally available foods, and grocery store events to promote purchases of healthy foods.  She is developing a gardening intervention to provide incarcerated juveniles with the opportunities to participate in local team efforts and to introduce them to future career choices. 
  • Kristin Ashford, associate professor, has helped identify reliable maternal biomarkers that identify risk for preterm birth and has clarified how prenatal smoking and secondhand smoke exposure impact a women's immune response and fetal health during pregnancy.  Using a CenteringPregnancy model, she is developing a holistic approach to preterm birth prevention that identifies at-risk women early in pregnancy and provides targeted interventions focusing on modifiable risk reduction.

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

Spring Break Ride Home Express Tickets Now Available

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 12:13

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) UK Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) is now selling seats on the Ride Home Express Spring Break bus to the Chicago area. The route has a total of five stops along the way.

The PTS Ride Home Express, an express bus services traveling to hometowns and other destinations during the major academic breaks, is in its fifth year of operation this fall. The service provides an economical and efficient alternative as compared to other means of travel.

Round-trip fares for the PTS Ride Home Express range from $55-$155, with prices varying based on the final destination. One-way fares are also available, but must be purchased in the PTS office or by calling 859-257-5757.

Ride Home Express is open to both students and employees. UK students and employees are able to register and pay for their trip via the web by logging on to the Parking Account Manager with their Link Blue ID. BCTC students are also able to pay for trip registration online using their KCTCS login. Ride Home Express registration will be available as an option under the "Purchase Permits" section once logged in. Riders utilizing the online option must pay using credit or debit cards. All other riders must register and pay for their seats in person at the main PTS office, located in the Press Avenue Garage, at the corner of Press and Virginia Avenues. One-way fares may be purchased in person only. The office is open 7:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

PTS recommends registering for the trip as soon as possible. Space is limited, and seats will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information on the Ride Home Express, including a list of fares and individual route maps, visit the Ride Home Express page or the Ride Home Express Frequently Asked Questions.

MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Geegan, (859) 257-5365; sarah.geegan@uky.edu

UK Chief Information Security Officer Warns Against Tax Scam

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 10:59

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 5, 2015) — In the midst of another tax scam via telephone, University of Kentucky Chief Information Security Officer Michael Carr is urging members of the UK community to take steps to protect themselves.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced last week that complaints to the FTC about Internal Revenue Service (IRS) imposter scams have increased over the last year by almost 50,000 complaints.

According to the scam alert on the FTC website, scammers are contacting individuals pretending to be IRS officials collecting taxes, saying that if the taxes aren't paid now, individuals could face deportation, arrest or loss of driver's license.

FTC cautioned that the IRS will not contact taxpayers by phone or email, and will not require a specific type of payment, such as asking them to pay with a prepaid debit card or money transfer.

If you receive a suspicious call, follow these steps provided by the FTC:

1.    Do not give the caller your information, such as personal or financial information.

2.    Write down the phone number and name of the caller.

3.    Hang up.

4.    Contact the IRS directly.

5.    File a complaint with the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration and the FTC.

6.    Finally, tell others to watch out for any scam phone calls.  

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Harder, 859-323-2396, whitney.harder@uky.edu

'UK at the Half' Reports on University's Dance Program

Wed, 02/04/2015 - 08:17

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 4, 2015) — Susie Thiel, director of the UK Dance Program at University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance, was featured during the "UK at the Half" that aired during the UK vs. University of Missouri basketball game, broadcast on the radio Jan. 29.

With the growth of the dance minor, this summer the UK Department of Theatre changed its name to better reflect its student body to the UK Department of Theatre and Dance. There are currently 60 UK students minoring in dance and every year the numbers continue to rise. The Dance Program at UK offers classes in modern, musical theater, ballet, jazz, choreography and more. An introduction to dance course is also available under the UK Core curriculum. The program presented its fourth annual concert, "Capture Momentum," Jan. 30-Feb. 1, at Guignol Theatre.

"UK at the Half" airs during the halftime of each UK football and basketball game broadcast and is hosted by Carl Nathe of UK Public Relations and Marketing.

To hear the "UK at the Half" interview click on the play button below. To view a transcript for the Jan. 29 "UK at the Half" interview, click here.

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