HIGHER EDUCATION NOTES: Climate talk today ... Energy challenge Tuesday ... Honors research Wednesday ... moreThe fourth and final presentation in UND’s Spring 2011 Space Studies Colloquium Series today will focus on space-based views of climate change gathered from an ongoing NASA satellite mission.
Space-based climate talk today
The fourth and final presentation in UND’s Spring 2011 Space Studies Colloquium Series will focus on space-based views of climate change gathered from an ongoing NASA satellite mission.
Douglas McLennan, project manager of NASA’s ICESAT-2 Mission, will be featured speaker at the 4 p.m. presentation today in Ryan Hall Room 111. He’s been at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for 25 years and has been involved in the development and management of the Earth Science, Earth Observatory and Planetary missions.
The ICESAT-2 mission is tracking changes in ice sheet thicknesses and gathering data on vegetation and topography worldwide. Changes in ice sheet thicknesses, sea level and sea ice have been identified as national and international priorities in policy documents on climate change.
Research results to be presented
The UND Honors Program will present its 13th-annual Undergraduate Research Conference n Wednesday.
The event will be held from 9:20 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Memorial Union, and is free and open to the public.
At this year’s conference, 28 seniors will present results of multi-semester independent research projects
b>Energy Challenge results coming
The University of Minnesota-Crookston will soon announce the results of its Campus Energy Challenge to reduce electric energy consumption.
The program, which is a collaborative project between UMC and Otter Tail Power Co., asked students, faculty and staff to work to reduce campus energy consumption by as much as 15 percent in the first year — an amount equal to about 1 million kilowatt-hours.
The challenge combined encouraging changes in behavior, like assessing personal energy use and turning off lights, with installing more energy-efficient lighting and ventilation.
Results of the Campus Energy Challenge will be released at a Tuesday event beginning at 11:45 a.m. in Sargeant Student Center. After the noon announcement and speakers, a ceremonial tree planting will be held, weather permitting, near the Early Childhood Development Center. The first 300 attendees will receive a free sapling tree.
The Campus Energy Challenge is a pilot project that’s part of Otter Tail Power’s Minnesota Conservation Improvement Program.
Med school joins safety initiative
The UND School of Medicine and Health Sciences recently announced its participation in Best Practices for Better Care, a new initiative of the nation’s medical schools and teaching hospitals that aims to improve the quality and safety of health care.
As a participant, the school has committed to implement the campaign’s five initial components, including: teaching future doctors about the importance of quality and patient safety; ensuring safer surgery through use of surgical checklists; reducing infections from central lines; reducing hospital readmissions for high-risk patients; and researching and evaluating new and improved practices.
The initiative is sponsored by the not-for-profit Association of American Medical Colleges. The group expects to release the campaign’s first progress report by February 2012.
Dakota College receives funding
Dakota College at Bottineau’s Entrepreneurial Center for Horticulture has received its first round of funding through the North Dakota Centers of Excellence program.
The ECH is scheduled to receive $400,000; the initial disbursement is only a portion of these funds to assist the center in its mission of helping vegetable producers over the next several years.
The center hopes to use its efforts to commercialize the state’s sustainable and organic vegetable production industry. In addition to the Centers of Excellence funding, the ECH will work with Minot-based Wholesale Supply Inc. to market North Dakota-grown produce through the company’s wholesale clients.
Producers seeking more information about the program may contact ECH Director Holly Mawby at HollyRose.Mawby@DakotaCollege.edu or (701) 228-4032.
Students receive top scholarships
Two UND students recently were awarded prestigious, nationally competitive scholarships.
Jessica Greer, of Grand Forks, was selected as a winner of the Goldwater Scholarship competition, which chose recipients from the more than 1,000 nominees based on academic merit.
Greer, a junior majoring in biology, had previously been selected for an AURA award and twice won a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates award. After completing her undergraduate degree, she plans to pursue a doctorate in agricultural biotechnology to prepare for a research career of improving agricultural production using sustainable methods.
Langdon, N.D., native Erin Barta was selected as a 2011 Truman Scholar based on a record in and passion for public service, as well as academic excellence.
Barta has worked on political campaigns and appeared on UND’s theater stage, wrote for the student newspaper, sang in the UND Women’s Choir and been involved in student organization Emerging Leaders.
Now a junior pursuing majors in political science and honors and a minor in English, Barta plans to obtain a master’s degree in international human rights after graduating from UND. Her career interests include work in international human rights, specifically in the area of violence against women as a war strategy.
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