UNCG Campus Weekly

Campus Weekly is published each Wednesday when classes are in session. In the summer, it is published biweekly.

‘Dream big, have courage’ Margot Lee Shetterly tells graduates

More than 2,600 Spartans joined the ranks of UNCG alumni at the 2017 May Commencement ceremony at the Greensboro Coliseum.

The celebration was full of smiles, selfies and inspiring speeches, including the highly-anticipated address from Margot Lee Shetterly, author of the book “Hidden Figures,” which was made into a major motion picture.

Her message to the Class of 2017? Dream big. Have courage. And don’t forget to use your talents to support others.

Shetterly shared the story of Mary Jackson, NASA’s first black female engineer, to inspire the graduates to fight for their dreams.

“The world may often be blind, indifferent or even hostile to your talents, your ambitions, your feelings and your dreams,” she said. “If you want something – if you are audacious enough to dream something – there’s a good chance that somewhere along the line, you’re going to have to fight for it. Nobody knew this better than Mary Jackson.”

Not only did Shetterly share the inspiring story of Jackson, but she reminded the graduates of their special connection to NASA’s female mathematicians – known as “human computers” – whose stories are told in “Hidden Figures.” UNCG alumna Virginia Tucker ’30 was one of five women to join the first human computer pool at Langley Memorial Aeronautical Laboratory (now Langley Research Center) in 1935. By the early 1940s, Tucker was the head computer, tasked with managing hundreds of women in computing sections across the laboratory.

“Many women from UNCG followed in Virginia Tucker’s footsteps,” said Shetterly, noting that UNCG and Hampton University (known then as Hampton Institute) had the largest number of alumni in the human computer program during the early days of NASA. “So graduates, you are connected to the rich legacy of individuals who made lasting contributions to aeronautical research and the American space program.”

As the more than 2,600 Spartans prepare to leave UNCG and embark on a new adventure, Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam, Jr. encouraged them to savor the moment of their accomplishment.

“Know this,” he told the graduates. “You are ready.”

Gilliam praised the quality of UNCG’s faculty and programs, and reflected on the shared goal of taking giant steps forward.

“Today’s the day that marks the start of your giant steps. Think big, think bold.”

By Alyssa Bedrosian


Chiller Plant approved for construction by Trustees

The UNCG Board of Trustees last week approved the exterior design plans and authorized construction for the new chiller plant on the southern part of campus.

The new South Chiller Plant is scheduled to be constructed Spring 2018 – Spring 2019, to complement the one already on the north side of campus (part of the McIver Deck.)

The new chiller plant will be located at the corner of Forest Street and Oakland Avenue.

The south Chiller Plant will provide capacity for the Nursing and Instructional Building and enhance reliability of the entire campus’ chilled water system. The new plant will help feed chilled water to mechanical units on campus through underground lines, increasing capacity as the amount of campus space that need to be cooled has increased in recent years.

This chiller plant will need to be in place before the new Nursing and Instructional Building opens. See an update on the current McIver Building and future Nursing and Instructional Building in the next Campus Weekly.  

By Mike Harris

Rendering of South Chiller Plant courtesy UNCG Facilities

2017 honorary degrees to Dr. Mansukh C. Wani and Bill Mangum

UNCG conferred honorary degrees to Dr. Mansukh C. Wani and William (Bill) Mangum, Jr.

Presented during the spring commencement ceremony to the university’s 2017 graduating class on Friday, May 12, the awards recognize pioneers in their respective fields of study and represent the breadth of scholarship at UNCG – from breakthrough scientific research to innovation and entrepreneurship through the visual arts.

Recognized internationally for his groundbreaking work in both synthetic and natural products chemistries, Wani is perhaps best known as a pioneer in the field of cancer research. Among his seminal contributions to the field, he is most recognized for the co-discovery of taxol and camptothecin, compounds that inhibit cancer cell growth via novel mechanisms of action. Prior to their discovery, neither were known to be effective ways to circumvent the uncontrolled growth of cancer cells. Today, at least one-third of the global market of anti-cancer agents could be ascribed to the discoveries of taxol and camptothecin. His work has saved millions of lives.

According to UNCG Chemistry Professor Nicholas H. Oberlies, Ph.D., who nominated Wani for the honorary degree, Wani “is nothing short of a hero.” Oberlies has worked with Wani since 1998, and describes him as a spectacular scientist and consummate gentleman.

“He is a mentor to me and a role model for the next generation of scientists – discovering not one, but two, life-saving pharmaceuticals. A truly historic achievement. Perhaps just as important, he is a shining example of how hard work and passion always pay off.”

Mangum is an artist, entrepreneur, author, a philanthropist and two-time UNCG graduate. He earned his bachelor of fine arts in art education and master of fine arts in studio arts from UNCG. A North Carolina native, over 50,000 of Mangum’s works have been purchased for private and corporate collections. In 2005, Mangum was selected as the official artist for the U.S. Open Golf Tournament. As a philanthropist, Mangum has raised millions of dollars for non-profit agencies throughout the United States. One hundred percent of the proceeds from his annual holiday honor card – $4.5 million to date – go directly to help people across North Carolina who are experiencing homelessness.

“We are proud to have Bill as an alumnus, as a dedicated supporter of UNCG and as a friend,” said Vice Chancellor for University Advancement Jan Zink, who nominated Mangum for the honorary degree. “Bill has chosen to use his profession as a gateway to affecting positive change in the community; and his philanthropic efforts have directly aided countless social causes throughout the Triad and the state of North Carolina. Service is a cornerstone of UNCG’s mission. We could not be more thrilled to honor him for all he has accomplished.”

By Eden Bloss
Visual: l-r, Bill Mangum, Chancellor Gilliam, Dr. Mansukh C. Wani

Jennifer Koenig chair of Friends of the UNCG Libraries

The Friends of the UNCG Libraries elected new officers for the 2017-18 year.

Jennifer Koenig was elected as Chair of the Friends for the upcoming year. She is an attorney with Shell Bray Attorneys and Counselors at Law in the trusts and estates practice group. She has extensive experience representing charitable organizations and corporate fiduciaries. In addition to representing public charities, Koenig assists clients in creating private foundations and other charitable entities. In her free time, Koenig enjoys spending time with her husband, Dan, and their daughter, Nel. She is on the Business Ethics Award Committee and serves on many volunteer boards in the Greensboro community, including the Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro’s Board of Directors, Future Fund Steering Committee and Professional Advisors’ Committee. She received her J.D. and A.B. from The University of North Carolina.

The new Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect is Elizabeth Hudson. She is Editor in Chief at Our State magazine and holds a B.A. degree in English from UNCG.

Newly elected to the Board for three-year terms were Betty J. Brown, Bob Hansen and Glenda Schillinger.

Re-elected for another term were Kate R. Barrett, Carolyn Carter Burgman, Jud Franklin, Bob Gatten, Janet Harper Gordon, Carolyn T. Green, Miriam Herin, Clint Jackson, Terri Blackwood Jackson, Catherine Magid, Leigh Seager, Karl A. Schleunes, Mary Ellen Shiflett, Pat Austin Sevier, Joyce Traver, Hermann J. Trojanowski and Laurie “Lollie” Lake White.

By Hollie Stevenson-Parrish

2017 Heart Walk at UNCG this Saturday

The Guilford County Heart Walk will be held this Saturday, May 20, on our campus. There’ll be thousands of walkers. Some people run, some stroll., some people bring dogs, strollers, etc. It’s low pressure – and lots of fun for an excellence cause.

You can join the UNCG team and walk to build healthier lives, free of heart disease and stroke.

If you are interested in joining the UNCG team (or creating additional UNCG teams), now is the time. A
team can be of any size and can have non-UNCG members (so family and friends are welcome).

The UNCG team captain is HealthyUNCG Director Stephanie Milroy (healthy_uncg@uncg.edu).

Join  at http://www2.heart.org/goto/UNCGFacultyAndStaff.

Learn more here.

SOAR starts June 1 at UNCG

SOAR, UNCG’s student orientation for incoming freshman and transfer & adult students, kicks off on June 1, 2017.

SOAR runs the entire month of June. Students and families will be on campus to be welcomed to the university, learn about campus resources, meet with an advisor, register for classes, experience the UNCG environment and more.

Students and families will learn tips to aid in the college transition process. Faculty members, administrators, advisors and current students will present a wide spectrum of information including academics, class selection, resources, meal plan options and co-curricular opportunities.

Many faculty and staff volunteer each year to help welcome our newest Spartans.

See details here.

Spartans shine brightly at Annual Student Honors Convocation

Spartan academic excellence held the spotlight last week at UNCG’s 55th annual Student Honors Convocation in Elliott University Center Auditorium, where 50 received Student Excellence Awards, 35 received International Honors, 53 received Disciplinary Honors and 23 received Full University Honors. Graduate and undergraduate students were also honored for special accomplishments in research and teaching.

Senior Vice Provost Alan Boyette gave welcoming remarks and Dean of Lloyd International Honors College Omar Ali introduced the convocation speaker, Eloise Hassell, lecturer in the Bryan School of Business and Economics.

Assistant Vice Provost for Graduate Education Scott Hudgins presented the Graduate Student Scholarly and Teaching Awards:

  • Hannah G. Dudley Showell, PhD, History, Outstanding Dissertation
  • Andrea Kulish, MA, Psychology, Outstanding Thesis
  • Chanel Lojacono, MS, Kinesiology, Innovative Use of Technology in a Thesis or Dissertation
  • Aftynne E. Cheek, PhD, Specialized Education Services, Innovative Use of Technology in a Thesis or Dissertation
  • Denise Rhew, PhD, Gerontology, George and Beatrice Goldman Fisher Gerontology Dissertation Prize
  • Rudolph Bedeley, Crystal Gray, Carol Johnston, Olivia Meeks, Justina Licata and Carl Schlachte, Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Awards

Research and Creativity Awards were presented to six students who had shared their research at the UNCG Graduate Research and Creativity Expo: Marya Fancey, Ho Young Lee, Luciana Lilley, Taylor Mabe, Justin Larson and Tiffany Merritt.

Following the graduate awards, Director of the Undergraduate Research, Scholarship and Creativity Office Lee Phillips presented 11 undergraduates with Undergraduate Research and Creativity Awards or honorable mentions for work they had presented at the Carolyn and Norwood Thomas Undergraduate Research and Creativity Expo. Those students include Alexis Cole, Anna Sizemore, Sarah Pittman, Natalia Husby, Amanda Baeten, Nadjali Chung, Cory Henderson, JD Manzo, Ashley Sanchez, Aaron Wagoner and Eni Minerali.

Ryan A. Ridpath received the University Libraries Undergraduate Research Award, presented by Assistant Dean of University Libraries Mike Crumpton and Manuscript Archivist Jennifer Motszko.

“Our students shone brightly at the convocation as they came across the stage to accept a range of awards for their inspiring work with faculty in the humanities, sciences and performing arts,” Ali said. “There was a palpable sense of collective pride in the auditorium as each set of accomplishments was read about the work of undergraduate and graduate students coming from all backgrounds.”

By Susan Kirby-Smith
Photograph by Katie Loyd

Charlie Chaplin drew huge crowd to UNCG

One of the biggest events this campus has seen was the WWI liberty bonds rally starring Charlie Chaplin. No other UNC system school can say Chaplin paid them a visit.

The CW article below ran five years ago. I first noticed his visit to campus in Bowles’ “A Good Beginning.” (She cited her source, which was a great help. Thank you, Ms. Bowles.) UNCG Archives and the Greensboro Historical Museum were very helpful, as were the resources of the Greensboro and Winston-Salem public libraries; unfortunately, no visuals of the rally have surfaced. UNCG archivists and I looked through a lot of scrapbooks, in hopes of finding one.

This spring marks the 99th anniversary of his April 13, 1918, visit. Next spring will be the 100 year mark. Let’s take a look back.

From the May 29, 2012, Campus Weekly and June 12, 2012, UNCG Campus Weekly:

The campus of UNCG – known then as State Normal & Industrial College – saw lots of service and sacrifice during World War I on the part of its students. It also saw one of the biggest events ever on the central part of the campus: a war bond rally featuring Charlie Chaplin.

American armed forces had entered the war in April 1917. At the one year mark in 1918, a new issue of Liberty Loan Bonds was being released to finance the war. Chaplin, perhaps the biggest celebrity in the world, was doing his part to drum up sales and support.

That year, he would create a short propaganda film on the Liberty bonds – as well as a great silent comedy about the life of American soldiers in the trenches, “Shoulder Arms,” according to David Robinson’s “Chaplin: His Life and Art.”

His publicity tour for the Liberty Loan bonds began in Washington, DC (see visual).

According to Robinson, the tour began just after he finished his classic film “A Dog’s Life.” Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford and Chaplin began the tour together, in Washington, DC, and then New York City. (See related Lens blog post at New York Times.) After that appearance, Chaplin broke away to begin his Southern tour in Petersburg, Va., said Robinson.

By April 12, he was speaking in Rocky Mount and Wilson, then on to Raleigh, where he made two addresses, one in the afternoon and one in the evening, according to the April 13 Greensboro Daily News. The latter event was in downtown Raleigh’s Municipal Auditorium.

Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation” and a Tom Mix western were among the several “movies” playing in Greensboro that Saturday, April 13. The cold, wet weather of the day before – which had caused our campus’ Field Day to be moved indoors – had passed, allowing for the big Carolina vs. Virginia baseball game at Cone Park to go on as planned. But first, there’d be a very large parade.

The entire city of Greensboro was “dressed in the national colors,” according to the April 13 Greensboro Daily Record, with large crowds lining the route. It adds that Chaplin was “apparently as tickled as a school boy at the demonstration, and especially at the pretty college girls in the parade.” The Daily News noted that 500-600 State Normal (UNCG) students were in the parade, as well as Greensboro College for Women students.

A diary in the Greensboro Historical Museum, written by Mary Smith, describes the occasion: a “magnificent outpouring of the people, full of patriotic enthusiasm.” She notes the Red Cross nurses in the parade, as well as its long line of automobiles. “Main St. was ablaze with flags,” she says. Describing the scene at the State Normal (UNCG), she speaks of the “waving flags” and of “Charlie Chaplin being the chief attraction among the speakers.”

More than 5,000 people gathered at the college to hear Chaplin speak, said the Greensboro Daily Record.

On the grounds of UNCG (State Normal College), a small stand was waiting. A member of the State Normal faculty, Wade Brown, would direct a choir from the campus and the Greensboro College campus in leading all assembled in patriotic songs, according to the April 13 Daily News.

The Daily News says the stand was erected in “Curry court” – the playing fields, also known as the hockey field, where Petty Building stands today. (See additional post.) The Daily News notes the parade entered the campus at College Avenue and then “north to Curry court across the college campus.”

A May 1918 State Normal Magazine says the “Normal Regiment,” which marched four abreast, joined the parade which marched to the “Normal Hockey Field.” This leads to the conclusion that the crowd gathered generally where Petty Building is now located. (Elisabeth Ann Bowles, in her book “A Good Beginning,” cited the State Normal Magazine and indicated the location was the hockey field, “now the site of the Petty Science Building.” Photographs in UNCG University Archives & Special Collections show the steep, grassy inclines near Petty – they are still there today – used as spectator seating during events on the playing field.)

The magazine says that Charles Lapworth, former editor of the London Daily News, gave a patriotic speech. He then introduced “‘little man Charlie’, who in spite of his inborn humor and fun, tried hard to be serious and to ‘get down to brass tacks’ in impressing all present of the needs for a big response to this call.”

The Daily Record says Chaplin “begged his hearers to buy liberty bonds, and then to buy more bonds.” He asked who would buy these bonds. “The hands went up from one end of the vast concourse of people to the other, and among those so expressing themselves were women as well as men.”

The reaction from the crowd, according to the magazine? “Everybody present was thrilled over his American patriotism.”

By Mike Harris

Visuals: 1) Publicity shot from Charlie Chaplin’s 1921 movie “The Kid.” Public domain. 2) Photograph in National Archives: Charlie Chaplin speaking on Liberty Loan bonds in Washington, D.C. on April 6, 1918 – one week before he spoke at UNCG.

Next issue, a concluding story: how he responded to crowd’s request to see “The Tramp’s” funny walk.

Lynda Kellam

Lynda Kellam (University Libraries / IGS) has been elected as an American Library Association representative to the International Federation of Library Association’s (IFLA) Standing Committee for Social Science Libraries. IFLA is the leading international body representing library and information services. The Standing Committees provide programming and resources as well as represent the interests of their constituents during the annual IFLA World Library and Information Congress. She will serve from 2017-2021 starting at the end of the annual meeting in Wroclaw, Poland.

Kellam serves in UNCG Libraries as Librarian for Data, Government Information, History, Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies. She is Assistant Director of International and Global Studies (IGS).

Dr. Stephen Sills

Dr. Stephen Sills (Center for Housing and Community Studies) has received new funding from the Sandhills Center Local Management Entity for the project “Providing Technical Assistance to Partnership for Success Sites Identification of Behavioral Health Disparities.” This project is supported by funds from North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS).The abstract states: Healthy People 2020 defines a health disparity as a “particular type of health difference that is closely linked with social, economic, and/or environmental disadvantage. Health disparities adversely affect groups of people who have systematically experienced greater obstacles to health based on their racial or ethnic group; religion; socioeconomic status; gender; age; mental health; cognitive, sensory, or physical disability; sexual orientation or gender identity; geographic location; or other characteristics historically linked to discrimination or exclusion.”  Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, illness, disability and premature death can have varying impacts on different populations, recognizing that eliminating disparities can significantly reduce direct and indirect medical costs. There is also a recognition that addressing disparities involves achieving health equity which is defined as “the  attainment of the highest level of health possible for all groups.” According to SAMHSA, to “achieve health equity, communities must work to address avoidable inequalities, historical and contemporary injustices, and existing health and health care disparities”. Therefore, disparities exist within a context of the overall functioning of the community or larger society and are related to factors such as bias and poverty. This type of work can be challenging because it does address often long held beliefs and practices that can compel individuals to recognize these beliefs and possible implicit bias.

UNCG will provide support to North Carolina Partnership for Success sites to address behavioral health disparities by helping them to: 1. Define behavioral health disparities; 2. Describe factors that contribute to behavioral health disparities; 3. Describe the local, state, and national data on behavioral health disparities and what is know on prescription drug misuse; 4. Define methods for locally determining behavioral health disparities in prescription drug misuse; and to 5. Define methods for dissemination of information on local behavioral health disparities related to prescription drug misuse.

Matthew Barr

On April 20, 2017, the Pro Humanitate Institute of Wake Forest University screened “Union Time: Fighting for Workers’ Rights”, a feature-length documentary directed by Matthew Barr, professor in UNCG’s Department of Media Studies. “Union Time” tells the story of the successful 16-year fight to organize a union at the world’s largest pork slaughterhouse, operated by Smithfield Foods in Tar Heel, NC. Following the screening Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry, Executive Director of the Pro Humanitate Institute, moderated a discussion of the film that included Barr as well as several workers who had been a part of the struggle.

Newly added sessions, for PMP Supervisory Training & Information

Michelle Lamb Moone, associate vice chancellor for human resources, announces additional workshop sessions available regarding the new PMP program:

There are several significant changes to the FY18 plans.  To inform you of these changes, we are pleased to roll out the new Performance Management Program with a series of training and information sessions. All supervisors and managers are required to attend one (1) of the PMP information sessions to gain insight and understanding of the University’s new performance management policy, forms and guidelines.

At your request, we have added two additional sessions on May 22 and May 24 as follows:

Schedule of remaining PMP Training & Information Sessions

Supervisor and Manager Training – Tue., May 16 – 10 am – 12 noon – Spartan Village, 923 A W. Gate City, Bringing Out the Best conference room

Supervisor and Manager Training – Tue., May 16 – 2 – 4 pm – Spartan Village, 923 A W. Gate City, Bringing Out the Best conference room

Supervisor and Manager Training – Mon., May 22 – 2—4 pm – 113 Bryan, HR Training Room

Supervisor and Manager Training – Wed., May 24 –  2—4 pm – 113 Bryan, HR Training Room

Departmental Sessions
If you are interested in holding a departmental supervisory session for groups of 25 or more, please reach out to Gwen Evans via email at gdevans2@uncg.edu or by telephone at (336) 334-4512.

44th “Art on Paper” Exhibition at Weatherspoon

Tamale paper dresses, paper bag portraits, collages and much more.

This Saturday UNCG’s Weatherspoon Art Museum presents the 44th “Art on Paper” exhibition and opening events. This year’s installation holds work by 25 artists from across the nation, and each work is made on or with paper. It is curated by Curator of Exhibitions Emily Stamey.

On Saturday, there will be a First View Members’ Preview at 5:30 p.m., with refreshments. That will be followed by a public reception at 6:30 p.m. All works except for those already purchased by the museum will be for sale.

The pieces in “Art on Paper” are eclectic, and they aren’t only about using paper—many explore bold topics. A dress made of tamale paper, “C Student,” by Annie Lopez of Arizona, has words from an elementary school report card printed on it. The portraits and interviews sketched on paper bags, by Steven Cozart of Greensboro, concern race and experiences related to skin tone. Maria Berrio’s large, colorful collages made of small pieces of Japanese paper relate to her childhood in Colombia and center around her experience of motherhood.
UNCG faculty who have work in the show include Mariam Aziza Stephan, Jennifer Meanley, Barbara Campbell Thomas and Christopher Thomas.

In addition to the opening receptions, WAM and Stamey will host an event series, Creatives on Call, over the summer. The events will be June 15, July 13 and August 10 at 6 p.m. when “Art on Paper” artists will hold public conversations with museum visitors.

“Art on Paper” goes up at UNCG every other year and has been a fixture of Greensboro and UNCG since 1965. It is currently supported in part by a grant from the F.M. Kirby Foundation and museum purchases for the Dillard Collection of “Art on Paper” by the Dillard Fund.

“It’s both thrilling and daunting to take on an exhibition with so much history behind it,” Stamey said about curating the exhibition. She described the selections as intensely varied, with many different themes and techniques used to create the work. “The one common thread that each work is made of or on paper.”

“Art on Paper” will be open through Sept. 3.

By Susan Kirby-Smith

Photo by Susan Kirby-Smith, of curator Emily Stamey at exhibition.

Check campus weather anytime, via UNCG’s new WeatherSTEM

There’s a new resource at UNCG, and Director of Emergency Management Zach Smith can explain how it benefits the entire campus and campus community.

“I wanted to have a tool to put weather information at people’s fingertips,” he says.

It’s called WeatherSTEM—a sophisticated meteorology tool—and it’s watching UNCG’s weather 24 hours a day, through a unit that’s perched atop the UNCG Police Station and a camera mounted on the Jackson Library tower.

WeatherSTEM allows Smith, and anyone who checks out the website, to know the weather on campus, in detail. It helps alert the campus community to weather events and the prescribed course of action. As UNCG’s Director of Emergency Management, Smith (in visual) advises organizers of a planned activities on campus about weather conditions, and he also makes preparation decisions for snow days and other weather concerns that may affect campus operations.

“Ultimately, I want to make an informed decision based on real-time data,” he explains.

The solar-powered WeatherSTEM unit provides up-to-the-minute information, reporting wind speed, humidity, rainfall, ozone, heat index, cloud coverage and many other elements. It even has a sensor in the ground to report soil moisture and ground temperature, which lets Emergency Management and Facilities know how to prepare for adverse winter conditions, like snow and ice. It reports historical records – and even moon phases and the distance of the planets.

One of the tool’s most helpful features is the Nearby Lightning reader, which could help determine whether or not an event needs to be moved indoors for safety.

One of the most popular features so far is the Cloud Camera (see visual), which updates the report page every minute. It also takes pictures throughout the day, including at sunrise and sunset, and creates time lapse videos of each day.

Before the installation of UNCG’s WeatherSTEM, the closest weather station was at the Piedmont Triad airport. But often coastal weather hits UNCG before it gets to the airport, Smith explains. From an emergency management standpoint, it wasn’t easy to predict the campus weather up to the minute.

“I like this because it’s specific information for the university,” he says.

UNCG is now one of six schools in the UNC system with a WeatherStem unit, alongside UNC Chapel Hill, NC State, Winston-Salem State, East Carolina and Appalachian State.

While WeatherStem will serve UNCG’s campus most in reporting weather conditions on campus, there are other benefits. Register users can search through the data for meteorology research, and local news stations can make use of the camera’s images and video. Originally, the WeatherSTEM was created as a resource to provide live data to enhance K-12 STEM curriculum, and there is a strong educational component to the company’s activities.

WeatherSTEM has automatically updated Twitter and Facebook pages. Anyone can become a registered user of WeatherSTEM, in order to use all its features and to receive updates on their devices about weather conditions.

Visit the WeatherSTEM site here.

By Susan Kirby Smith

Chancellor’s new web site

The web site for the UNCG Chancellor’s Office has been redesigned.

The new design reflects the university’s increased focus on creating meaningful engagement with its key audiences – and having some fun sharing the UNCG story.

It updates the look and feel of the former site, taking it from a text heavy, biography-focused landing page to a much broader, visually interesting experience.

Not only will there be timely communications directly from the chancellor and important strategic news, but it creates new channels for interaction and conversation. Visitors will get access to interesting photos, new videos, news items and social media content.

The site will feature Chancellor Gilliam’s Twitter feed (@UNCGChancellor) as well as links to other UNCG social communities.

Visit the website here.

Visit the Twitter feed here – and follow him on Twitter;

9 receive UNCG Teaching Excellence Awards for 2016-17

Nine faculty members across seven schools received UNCG Teaching Excellence Awards for the 2016-2017 year. The recipients are chosen by selection committees within the individual schools, and the awards are funded by the UNC General Administration.

Congratulations to UNCG’s Teaching Excellence Award recipients:

Dr. Trisha Kemerly, Lecturer in Consumer Apparel & Retail Studies at the Bryan School of Business and Economics

Dr. Jiyoung Hwang, Assistant Professor in Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Hospitality & Tourism in the Bryan School of Business and Economics

Dr. Larry Taube, Associate Professor in Information Systems & Supply Chain Management in the Bryan School of Business and Economics

Dr. Malcom Shug, Associate Professor in Biology in the College of Arts and Sciences

Dr. Silvia Bettez, Associate Professor in Educational Leadership & Cultural Foundations in the School of Education

Dr. Christopher Kepley, Associate Professor in Nanoscience in the Joint School of Nanoscience and Nanoengineering

Dr. Michael Perko, Professor in Public Health Education in the School of Health and Human Sciences

Lori Hubbard, Clinical Instructor in Family & Community Nursing in the School of Nursing

Dr. Robert Wells, Associate Professor in the School of Music in the College of Visual and Performing Arts

In memoriam: Robert Gutter

Robert Gutter, professor emeritus of music, died May 8 in Moldova.

Gutter was director of orchestral activities in UNCG Music and conductor of the UNCG Orchestra. He was a faculty member from 1988 to 2011. The News and Record reported that during his time as director of orchestral activities at UNCG, UNCG won first place three times from the National Opera Association’s Annual Opera Production Competition, when he was conductor. UNCG Opera Theatre is led by David Holley.

“Before coming to Greensboro, Gutter was a conductor and music director of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra (in Massachusetts)” the N&R further reports. He was given the title Conductor Emeritus in 1986. “He founded the International Institute for Conductors in Romania and had directed symphonies and opera companies in more than 40 countries.”

He was also a longtime conductor of the Philharmonia of Greensboro. And he was conductor and music director of the Fayetteville Symphony 1993-2003, the Fayetteville Observer notes.

A New York City native, he graduated from the city’s High School of Music and Art, and received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the Yale University School of Music, the Springfield Republican reports. He studied in Siena, Italy, at the Chigiana Academy with Franco Ferrara.

He served as the Principal Guest Conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra of the Ukraine in Kiev from 1996 to 2000, and later as the Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonic Orchestra “Mihail Jora” of Bacau, Romania, the Republican also notes.

For more information, see the News and Record report. And see the news report in the Springfield Republican.

Looking ahead: May 17, 2017

First day of classes for Summer Session I
Thursday, May 18

“Art on Paper” opening reception
Saturday, May 20, 6:30 p.m., Weatherspoon Art Museum

Memorial Day: No classes, offices closed
Monday, May 29

See/hear: May 17, 2017

YouTube Preview Image UNCG Chancellor Franklin D. Gilliam,  Jr., joins Randolph Community College President Robert S. Shackleford Jr. and Winston-Salem State University Chancellor Elwood Robinson on the local show “Triad Today” in a conversation about the future of higher education in the Triad.

Representing UNCG’s finest ideals, at Faculty & Staff Excellence Awards

The Faculty & Staff Excellence Awards honorees represent UNCG’s finest ideals, Chancellor Franklin Gilliam, Jr., said at the beginning of awards ceremony. “The ideals are only ideal when they are translated into action,” he added.

Through films highlighting the recipients, attendees would see some of the research and creative activity, mentoring and teaching excellence that distinguish this year’s honorees.
“We salute the recipients for all their accomplishments,” he said.

He recognized Staff Star recipients, in a special section of the audience near the front center.

He also recognized Service Pin recipients of 30, 35 and 40 years.

Associate Vice Chancellor for Human Resources Michelle Lamb Moone served as mistress of ceremonies, welcoming attendees. She spoke of appreciation as an important human need as well as a source of continued motivation.

She acknowledged the creative work of Media Studies students in creating the faculty/staff highlight videos seen during the ceremony.

The ceremony was held May 2 in EUC Auditorium.

The honorees were:

UNCG BOG of Governors Award for Teaching Excellence – Dr. Sharon Morrison (Public Health Education)

Mary Settle Sharpe Award for Teaching Excellence – Dr. James Fisher (Theatre)
James Y. Joyner Award for Teaching Excellence – Sheryl Oring (Art)
Anna Maria Gove Award for Teaching Excellence – Wade Maki (Philosophy)

O. Max Gardner Award nominee – Dr. David Wyrick (Public Health Education)

Gladys Strawn Bullard Awards –
Anna Poteat (student, Geography)
Dr. Brett Carter (staff, Dean of Students Office)
Dr. Samuel Miller (faculty, Education)

Staff Excellence Awards –
Angela Mahoney (Human Resources)
Kara Baldwin (Student Success Center)

Holshouser Award for Excellence in Public Service nominee – Dr. Christine Murrary (Counseling and Educational Development)

Outstanding Faculty Mentor Award – Dr. Cheryl A. Buehler (Human Development and Family Studies)

Senior Research Excellence Award – Dr. Sat Gupta (Mathematics and Statistics)
Junior Research Excellence Award – Dr. Amanda Tanner (Public Health Education)

Student Learning Enhancement Awards –
Kinesiology, EdD program
Kinesiology, MS program
Thomas Undergraduate Research Mentor Award – Dr. Nadja Cech (Chemistry and Biochemistry)

By Mike Harris
Photograph by Martin W. Kane

See additional post on the Research award recipients at the UNCG Research web site.

Sharp shooters: UNCG students take work to Cannes

Most filmmakers don’t make it to the Cannes Film Festival through food fight stories, but that’s just one thing that makes UNCG student Brendan Malone unusual.

The sophomore media studies major has yet to do his first in-school filmmaking assignment, but this month he’ll screen his short, “Foodie,” at one of the world’s most noteworthy film venues.

In the fall semester he wrote and directed “Foodie” in the span of a week, as a part of the Campus MovieFest competition. It took three major awards at UNCG—the Audience Award, the Silver Tripod Award for Editing and the Jury Award given to four finalists.

But then came the big news.  It was selected to be a part of the Campus MovieFest roster for Cannes 2017, as a part of the Short Film Corner program.

Malone will travel to the festival in southern France with the film’s producer Alex Suggs, who is also a sophomore media studies major at UNCG.

A Greensboro native, Malone attended Bishop McGuinness High School When he started making films, his high school friends liked his ideas, but it was difficult to come up with a complete film crew. He had to hold a few scripts, like “Punchline,” until he got to college and found more people to work with.

At UNCG he met Suggs, who he says is a big motivating force for him, as well as a skilled videographer and a partner in creative decision-making. When Malone has an idea, Suggs starts planning the schedule.

So far, the two have made two short films together, and this summer they will work on a third, “The Red Rockets,” a sports comedy about competitive foosball teams. For their biggest project yet, they may have crew of up to 40 people, many of whom Malone has met through UNCG connections.

Greensboro locations figure prominently in Malone’s films. You can easily spot Nazareth Bread Company in “Foodie,” and several familiar locations in “Punchline”—the Bestway grocery store, the UNCG Pedestrian Underpass, a UNCG parking deck, and Guilford Courthouse National Military Park.

Before coming to UNCG, Malone was 90 percent self-taught, through directing and screenwriting books. He admires DIY-style filmmakers, such as Wes Anderson, Richard Linklater and Kevin Smith. An essential part of his training was also his involvement in Greensboro’s 48-Hour Film Festival. He was on the team of two festival projects where he learned, among other things, “how to sacrifice the idea of perfection in favor of handling the tasks and just getting the project done.”

“Foodie,” the film they will take to Cannes, is a character-based short about a man on a mission to get free food. He participates in a contest that promises a free plate of enormous food with a catch—it has to be eaten in one sitting. The protagonist collects a dedicated audience for his task, but isn’t so courteous to them when he begins to fail at his mission. (Picture food flying toward the onlookers, in the moment of defeat.)

Malone says that “Foodie” was a reflection of what his life felt like at the time—“free if you can finish it.” When his friends and family asked if they could help he said, “I think I’ve got a place for you.” Malone’s father can be seen being hit in the face with a hamburger. His mother, School of Nursing professor Dr. Laurie Kennedy-Malone, can be seen as well in the crowd of bystanders.

When the time comes for Malone to make films as part of his academic studies, he certainly won’t object to that—he’s already connected with UNCG Media Studies professors Matthew Barr and Kevin Wells, who have given him feedback on scripts and advice on shooting.

But initiating and executing his own projects alongside his college courses has given him a distinct motivation.

“There are really no limits,” he says.

Learn more about UNCG Department of Media Studies here.

Watch “Foodie” here.

By Susan Kirby-Smith
Photograph by Martin W. Kane. Brendan Malone (left) and Alex Suggs (right).

Bones and butchery in UNCG Anthropology

UNCG takes pride in its hands-on, experiential learning opportunities.

Whether it’s through innovative teaching in the classroom or undergraduate research in the lab, UNCG faculty want students to not only learn the material, but to get their hands dirty in the process.

For students Kevin Covell and Robert Sanderford, “getting their hands dirty” is an understatement.

Under the leadership of Dr. Charles Egeland, the two anthropology students participated in an undergraduate research project this spring that explored the evolution of skill acquisition through animal butchery.

The acquisition and butchery of large mammals with stone tools represents the earliest and most enduring manifestation of human interaction with technology. So how can we gauge butchery skill in a prehistoric context?

According to Egeland, the answer is in the “cutmarks,” or the incisions produced on the surface of the bones by stone tools.

“Researchers are just beginning to systematically test the relationship between experience and cutmarks,” Egeland said. “Our hypothesis was that experienced butchers would create cutmarks that are close to each other and make anatomical sense.”

Over the course of the semester, Egeland enlisted the help of Covell and Sanderford to test this relationship. Covell, an “expert” butcher who previously worked as a professional chef, and Sanderford, an “amateur” with experience hunting animals, met several times a month to butcher deer legs supplied by the North Carolina Department of Transportation. Other novice butchers participated as well.

The students used replicas of prehistoric stone tools to remove soft tissues from deer legs as if they were butchering for consumption. Egeland, Covell and Sanderford then identified the cutmarks, took high-resolution digital images of each cutmark cluster and used statistical analysis to analyze cutmark attributes.

The conclusion? Novice butchers left very different cutmark patterns on the bones relative to the more experienced butchers.

“If we can identify differences in cutmark orientation among skill levels in an experimental context, it gives us the opportunity to do so in archaeological contexts,” Egeland said. “This, in turn, may allow us to track the evolution of skill acquisition, at least as it pertains to animal butchery.”

Last month, Egeland presented the research findings at the annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology in Vancouver. Covell and Sanderford were co-authors of the paper.

For the two budding anthropologists, it was a unique opportunity to not only participate in ground-breaking research, but to develop the kinds of skills – such as digital photography, image manipulation, utilization of geographic information systems (GIS) programs and specialized analytical skills – that will be used in the field.

“I’m excited about the skills we’ve acquired with this research,” said Sanderford, who will graduate this week. “I’ve definitely learned what goes into the research process.”

Ultimately, Egeland hopes this study and further studies will allow us to learn more about human culture.

“While humans are not the only species that have culture or make and use technology, the degree to which humans rely on culture and technology as a fundamental component of our adaptation is unique,” he said. “Therefore, tracking the development of skill acquisition opens a window to the evolution of human culture.”

Check out the video below to learn more about the research project.

By Alyssa Bedrosian
Photography by Martin W. Kane

YouTube Preview Image

Chinese visiting artists part of UNCG global community

For more than a decade, UNCG has been developing significant relationships with several Chinese universities, through faculty exchanges, delegation visits and artist-in-residence stays.

Those who attend concerts at the School of Music may remember Narisu, a throat-singing specialist who came for six weeks to teach UNCG students and to perform with them in late February. Two years before Narisu’s visit, the School of Music hosted another memorable and unusual performer, Aorigele, a master of Mongolian horse-head fiddle. Both artists came from the Inner Mongolia University of the Nationalities (IMUN), one university that has formed a close connection with UNCG.

“There’s such strong interactions between our guest artists from China and our students,” said Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts Dr. Peter Alexander. “There’s a really solid impact on the state, since both Gavin Douglas and Dennis Askew have taken guests to perform at Wake Forest and NC State. There’s a high level benefit to these residencies—it’s important for students to understand musical traditions are quite varied, to understand that music has a different definition in different cultures.”

Several of the artists-in-residence or scholars from China are music professors, and those from UNCG who travel to China to teach are often from the Schools of Music and Dance. UNCG Professor of Voice Nancy Walker, who has taught at IMUN, says that may be because of the strength of the programs, but also because the disciplines themselves work well for exchanges.

“There’s so much show and tell,” she said, meaning that artists are able to communicate with their students about the artistic work they’re doing even when they don’t know the other language.

This past semester, Walker served as the faculty host for Qiaoyan Gao, a scholar from IMUN. Gao is sponsored by the Chinese government to study western pedagogy and write an analysis of UNCG’s teaching of voice compared to the style at IMUN. Gao is a voice teacher herself, as is her husband, Burgud, a specialist of long tune singing. He can be seen in the video of Narisu’s throat singing class.

While IMUN and Guangdong Ocean are two institutions with whom UNCG has a close relationship, there are Chinese visitors from other institutions as well, and in other disciplines aside from music and dance. Professor Jing Fu is visiting the UNCG School of Art from Chengdu University, where she is an associate professor of design in the Department of Environmental Art. Fu is studying art pedagogy and Associate Professor of Art Education Eun-Hee (Maria) Lim is her faculty liaison.

“Dr. Lim’s class made the biggest impression on me,” Fu said. “UNCG professors use a variety of hands-on activities that interest students.”

Upon her return to Chengdu University, Fu plans to use what she saw at UNCG in her own courses. However, it is not only the visiting scholars who benefit from the cultural exchange.

“Hosting visiting scholars and artists-in-residence is part of UNCG’s mission as a global university,” said Lawrence Jenkins, associate dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts. “Stronger connections with individuals and institutions abroad—in this case in China—allows us to participate in the global community of scholars and to forge relationships we can build on moving into the future. Visiting scholars also expand the horizons of our students, and this is particularly true of artists-in-residence who generally have sustained contact with students in workshops and master classes.”

Dean Alexander agreed, saying, “There’s a lot of back and forth and I think it’s great. The university should be about opening up new perspectives and new territory for students, and these connections are doing a great job of that.”

To read more about UNCG’s connections with Chinese institutions, see last week’s story on UNCG faculty visits to China.

By Susan Kirby-Smith
Photography by Susan Kirby-Smith, visiting scholar Jing Fu (left) and Eun-Hee (Maria) Lim (right)

Summer schedule for UNCG Campus Weekly

After next week, UNCG’s Campus Weekly (CW) will begin its summer schedule of publishing every other week. It will resume weekly publication the latter part of July.  The publication dates for CW this summer are:

May 17

May 31

Jun 14

June 28

July 12

July 26

Aug. 2

Aug. 9

Aug. 16

Fall 2017 classes begin Tuesday, Aug. 15.

UNCG Police, student groups hosted community cookout

Approximately 350 UNCG students and employees joined with 34 UNCG police officers on April 28 to enjoy food and fun at the first annual Spring Community Cookout.

Sponsored by the UNCG Police Department, Campus Activities and Programs (CAP), Student Government Association (SGA) and the Residence Hall Association (RHA), the event provided a space for students and police to get to know each other and build community on campus.

“We enjoyed all of the food, fun and festivities, but more importantly we enjoyed the opportunity to interact with our campus community,” said UNCG Police Chief Paul Lester. “We’re looking forward to doing it again next year.”

Check out highlights from the event in the video below.

Gen Ed: May faculty development workshops

The General Education Council will offer four faculty development workshops to support campus wide Writing Intensive (WI) & Speaking Intensive (SI) efforts on May 22 and 23.

UNCG faculty can access workshop descriptions and reserve seats here.

Attending the WI & SI summer workshops does not involve any homework, Kim Cuny says. “Faculty simply need to register in advance & show up ready to learn!”

Light snacks and drinks will be provided by The University Writing and Speaking Centers. Faculty will receive a $100 stipend for participation.

UNCG Softball takes top seed

Senior Day couldn’t have gone much better for UNCG Softball Sunday. The Blue & Gold earned a 7-2 victory over the ETSU Bucs to win a share of the Southern Conference regular season championship and the No. 1 seed in the SoCon tournament.

The championship is the first for UNCG Softball since joining the SoCon in 1998 and the first conference regular season title for the Spartans since winning the Big South in 1996.

“We have been solid throughout conference play,” said Head Coach Janelle Breneman. “We set out for a SoCon championship and it takes sharpness every weekend. I felt like we did that winning every conference series but one. Coming in we obviously knew this series was going to be big but it was nice that we got to dictate our future and win the No. 1 seed in the tournament. That’s huge.”

The team now turns its attention to the SoCon Tournament later this week in Chattanooga, Tenn.

See full report at UNCG Athletics site.

Photograph of post-game celebration courtesy UNCG Athletics.

See Coach Breneman take a celebratory Gatorade bath, after Sunday’s big win.

More Than Meets the Eye workshops at Weatherspoon

Looking is just the first step to seeing.

Inspired by the book ​”​On Looking: Eleven Walks with Expert Eyes”​ by Alexandra Horowitz and WAM’s Art of Seeing program, ​curator of ​education Ann Grimaldi leads visitors on an interactive tour about building visual awareness. Guided discussions in the galleries along with a simple sketching or writing activity are included.

The sessions at the ​Weatherspoon Art Museum will be on three Wednesdays:

May 17, June 21, and July 26, 11 am -12 noon.​

​Free for adults, but reservations are ​requested.  ​Sign up for one, two, or all three programs by emailing ann_grimaldi@uncg.edu or call​ing ​336-256-1448.

Alianza – UNCG Latino Faculty and Staff End of Year Social Lunch this Friday

Alianza is UNCG’s faculty and staff organization for Latin@ and Hispanic issues. Since 2013, UNCG’s Alianza has been a gathering point for university employees who are interested in collaborating around issues that impact Hispanic/Latin@ staff, as well as initiatives that enhance activity on campus related to the Hispanic/Latin@ cultures and communities.

Alianza invites the entire campus community to join them for the End of Year Social Lunch on Friday, May 12, at 12 noon at Pedro’s Taco Shop. 948 Walker Ave (near Tate Street).

Questions? Please contact Estela Ratliff, Alianza Board chair for 2016-2017, by phone at 336-334-3230 or email at eyratlif@uncg.edu.

UNCG Libraries’ Jackson Society select rare books for collection

The University Libraries’ Third Annual Members’ Choice Event was held on April 20. At the event, members of the Jackson Society voted on their preferred selection of books to be added to the Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives. These additions, many of which are first editions, will commemorate the 125th anniversary of UNCG and help grow the collection as it strives to meet the research needs of faculty, students and the broader community. The items added to UNCG’s Special Collections and University Archives ranged from “Slavery Days in Old Kentucky” by Isaac Johnson to “Emma” by Jane Austen, from “Narrative of Sojourner Truth” by Sojourner Truth to Abraham Lincoln’s “Political Debates.” Full story and listing at the Friends of the UNCG Libraries blog.

Dr. Stuart Schleien

Dr. Stuart Schleien (Community and Therapeutic Recreation) received an award from the Mayor’s Committee for Persons with Disabilities. The Brant Taylor Barrier Free Success Award recognizes and honors an individual or organization that has made significant contributions to creating a barrier-free environment for persons with disabilities.

He was honored at the Greensboro Chamber of Commerce  annual Small Business Awards ceremony last week.

At the ceremony, three other Spartans received awards. Tinker Clayton, a UNCG alumnus and one of the owners of Hudson’s Hill, received the Retailer of the Year award. Minority Small Business Persons of the Year were Randy Wadsworth and Damion Moore, owners of Dame’s Chicken and Waffles.

Those apples: trends and wishes and Minerva

I only noticed a few coins at Minerva in the past weeks. I noticed no flowers there.

No paper notes were seen this entire semester.

Students left dozens of red apples and green apples on the statue’s base. Several apples prominently bore the subject of the wish, in silver ink or black ink – such as a history class “final paper.” One showed a Political Science course number.

The evening before exams began, about 65 apples lay at the Minerva statue. The morning of exams, the number had dropped (apparently some enterprising squirrels had, uh, squirreled some away overnight). But by the end of the first day of exams, the statue sported a lot of apples.

I stopped by to check them out again last Thursday. A tall young man stopped, placed his apple on a corner of the pedestal, looked at me as he paused and then looked at all the apples. “Traditions,” he said. And continued on, presumably to his exam.

I’ve been asked what the notes have said, in past years. Fact is, I’ve never opened a folded note to Minerva. Some have been folded tight. Very tight. As if the wish might spill out otherwise. One tiny missive, in a past year, was addressed simply to M. I wouldn’t have opened it and read it in a million years. It wasn’t addressed to me.

I did learn a secret technique this week. A student sitting on the bench near the statue told me a strategy for getting an apple into the hand of Minerva. It involved spearing the apple with a very long stick. Last year she and some fellow Spartans did just that, and cheered when they were finally successful. She bet that cheer could be heard throughout campus.

I should have asked her how she did on her exam. Seeing that kind of tenacity, I bet she did well.

There are a lot of hopes and ambitions represented in the apples. Every one of them carries a story. Most will never be told. But the desire and hard work behind each one will yield something powerful. You can bet on it.

See news report on WFMY-News2.

Story and photos by Mike Harris

UNCG Grounds in high gear for Graduation

Photo of trees, foliage and benching in the Herring GardenRain and more rain. It keeps the campus green, but for a couple of weeks there, it was a bit much.

“It rained on Monday and Tuesday (March 27-28) and it was so wet Wednesday we couldn’t mow,” said Hal Shelton, director of Grounds in Facilities. “It washed mulch out of beds everywhere on campus so we spent Thursday and Friday cleaning up and mowing.”

It rained so much, the wisteria in Peabody Park hardly had any blooms this year.

Then a storm lashed campus last Thursday night, with strong winds. “There were a lot of limbs down.”
But Grounds has put things in order.

A common refrain among visitors to campus? It’s beautiful. Its natural beauty shines through.
Here at the middle of Commencement Week, just as exams are finishing up, the campus has never looked better. Just a little more tidying by Grounds.

“We’ll have the campus ready for graduation by Friday,” Shelton said.

Looking Ahead: May 10, 2017

Board of Trustees meeting
Thursday, May 11, 8:30 a.m., Alumni House

Staff Senate meeting
Thursday, May 11, 10 a.m., Moran Commons, Room 109

UNCG May Commencement
Friday, May 12, 10 a.m., Coliseum

Baseball vs. Citadel
Friday, May 12, 6 p.m., UNCG Baseball Stadium

See/hear: May 10, 2017

YouTube Preview Image A hungry con-man finds a new venture to sink his teeth into, in this film created by two UNCG undergraduates, as part of Campus MovieFest. See story about the UNCG students’ upcoming trip to Cannes.