Maryland Moments, October, 2003
(Rankings, New Programs)
UM ranks No. 36 among the best values in public higher education, according to Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine The university is No. 15 for best value when rated on out-of-state tuition fees.
UM is one of just four colleges nationwide to be officially �StormReady,� a designation given by the National Weather Service that certifies the university has taken steps to protect its community from the dangers of severe weather. Some of the ways the university met NOAA standards:
The state-of-the-art UM Research Greenhouse Complex, the most sophisticated institutional research greenhouse in North America, was dedicated. Faculty and students use the 70,000-square-foot facility to study a variety of environmental, agricultural, molecular and greenhouse management issues. The fully-automated greenhouses allow scientists to adjust the environment to simulate specific growing conditions.
Twenty venture capitalists, intellectual property lawyers, marketing experts and entrepreneurs put more than 310 students and faculty through a Technology Startup Boot Camp hosted by the Clark School of Engineering. Nariman Farvardin, dean of the Clark School of Engineering: "We're putting an enormous amount of effort to instill a culture of entrepreneurship into our students and faculty. We're trying to become a force in the region of promoting technology and entrepreneurs and hopefully the entire region will benefit from this."
UM launched an intellectual-property-support fund to promote the transfer of technology from state universities to the private sector, with the state granting $500,000 to the program. The goals is to increase the number of patent applications and invention disclosures stemming from university research-and-development efforts. The Maryland Technology Development Corp. (TEDCO) will provide 50 percent of the cost of the initial patent applications, up to a match of 50 percent, the state said.
Society & Culture
Anwar Sadat Professor Shibley Telhami was one of 13 members of the Advisory Group on Public Diplomacy for the Arab and Muslim World created by Congress. The Advisory Group�s report, titled �Changing Minds, Winning Peace,� recommended substantial changes in America�s international communication apparatus to impact the way the nation informs, influences and engages international audiences, especially in Arab and Muslim nations.
In light of the gap between facts and perceptions about the war in Iraq (Weapons of mass destruction found; Saddam Hussein and al-Qaida were war partners; most foreign nations backed the war), the Program on International Policy Attitudes in the School of Public Affairs asked a sampling of Americans about their primary sources for news and how they got their misperceived facts. The results said viewers of the Fox News Channel are nearly four times as likely to hold untrue positions about the war in Iraq as media consumers who rely on National Public Radio or the Public Broadcasting System. The study was funded by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Ford Foundation.
Charles Christian, professor of geography and originator of the annual Black Saga competition in the state, led a group of 10 writers/researchers in developing a Maryland black history curriculum for public schools. The curriculum is a collaboration of the Maryland Department of Education and the Reginald Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture.
UM researchers and the National Park Service explored what was suspected to be the largest �slave village� found in the state, situated south of Frederick on state route 355, the main wagon road to Georgetown 200 years ago. Archeologists from the Center for Heritage Resource Studies in the department of anthropology disocovered hundreds of objects, including buttons, iron nails, hinges, broken tobacco pipes, animal bones, fragments of broken brick, ceramic pottery and tableware. The findings point to a densely populated domestic settlement on about two-thirds of an acre dating from the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
Gary Gottfredson of the department of couneling and personnel services was awarded $2 million to conduct a four-year federal study of the 'Second Step' behavior program that is used in 15,000 elementary and middle schools nationwide. Gottfredson in the Baltimore Sun: "Grades that pupils receive for citizenship or conduct when they are young are 'big, fat predictors of their achievement later on.' "
According to U.S. News & World Report, the road to young adults settling down is marked by new options. Featured among the experts in an article on changing roles is Jeffrey Arnett, visiting associate professor of human development, who authored a new book, Emerging Adulthood: The Winding Road from late Teens Through the Twenties. Arnett: �There's a lot of tolerance and even encouragement in American society for using that 18-to-29 period for exploration. We would worry about someone at the age of 20 who says, �Mom, I've decided to get married and work for IBM.� �
David Fogle, professor emeritus of architecture, received the James Marston Fitch Lifetime Achievement Award for preservation education at a National Trust for Historic Preservation conference in Denver. Fogle was one of the founders of the University of Maryland's program in historic preservation and the program's director until 1999. He also established and directed the University of Maryland Study Centre in England.
Science & Technology
Ken Paynter, director of marine estuarine environmental sciences in the department of biology, received permission from the state to seed three Chesapeake Bay tributaries with 6,000 sterile oysters, half of them non-native. The experiment is meant to see if non-native oysters may spark a rebirth in the Maryland oyster industry.
Sun Microsystems launched a new product based on a software invention by Ben Shneiderman, professor of computer science. The key innovation behind "Honeycomb" is a technique called treemapping. Originally developed in 1991 by Shneiderman,treemaps are a space-filling visualization method of representing large collections of quantitative data.
Maryland Researchers from the Thorne Laboratory discovered a missing link in the evolution of termites. "Turf wars between termites have helped reveal the selective forces that created �eusocial' insects, with their heavily armed soldier castes. In particular, reproductive soldiers, a caste unique to primitive termites, seem to be a missing link in the evolution of the sterile soldiers common to modern termite societies." The researchers were Barbara Thorne, professor of entomology, Nancy Breisch, faculty research assistant in entomology, and student researcher Mario Muscedere.
Alumnus Raymond Davis Jr., who won the Nobel Prize in physics in 2002, was one of three scientists awarded the Enrico Fermi Award bestowed by the Department of Energy. The honor recognizes scientists of international stature for their lifetimes of exceptional achievement in the development, use or production of energy. Dr. Davis received a honorarium of $93,750.
Allison Druin, a computer scientist affiliated with the College of Education and the College of Computer, Mathematical and Physical Sciences, was nominated by President Bush to be a member of the National Commission of Library and Information Science (NCLIS). The commission advises the White House on far-reaching information policy issues which are of national and international importance.
More Maryland Moments in October
The cover story in an issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education featured how a UM marketing effort gave the public a new kook at the university through innovative and imaginative techniques. The newspaper pinpointed President C.D. Mote Jr. and executive director for university marketing and communication Terry Flannery for creating a a "branding" process symbolized by a newly created trademark: a globe awash in the colors of the Maryland flag. The cover story was labeled, "Romancing the Brand."
James Gates, Toll Professor of Physics, appeared on PBS's "The Elegant Universe" to explain what string theory is. Gates: "There have been lots of other attempts to reconcile relativistic gravity and quantum theory, but they've all failed... The only survivor is string theory. A lot of us think it is right and that we may have finally answered the great question."
The University Libraries acquired one of the earliest known letters detailing plans for the Maryland Agricultural College. The college was chartered in 1856 and would ultimately become the University of Maryland, College Park in 1920. Charles Benedict Calvert sent the hand-written letter on September 29, 1858 to J.C. Nicholson, a Baltimore businessman. Calvert was a central figure in the founding of the college and a member of the Board of Trustees, as well as a well-known philanthropist, planter and congressman. He served as acting president of the college from 1859-1860.
On the same day alumna Carly Fiorina traveled to UM to give the keynote address at the Smith School of Business�s CIO Forum and InForum 2003, the CEO and chairman of the board at Hewlett-Packard was appointed to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's transition team of advisors. Fiorina, who earned her MBA at UM, was named the most powerful woman in business the past six years by Forbes Magazine.
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