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April 28, 2006

Barley Research

Researchers at the U of M have received a $2 million U.S. Department of Agriculture grant for barley research. Gary Muehlbauer, a professor of agronomy and plant genetics, says the U will serve as the lead institution in a nationwide, 30-scientist consortium that will explore methods to produce higher yielding, higher quality, and disease-resistant barley.

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Posted by jfalk at 2:32 PM

April 27, 2006

Volunteering

This week marks National Volunteer Week, which pays special tribute to volunteers across the country who give of themselves to better their communities and the lives of others. U of M Psychology Professor Mark Snyder has extensively studied volunteerism over the last 20 years. He says there are two broad categories that can help explain what motivates people to volunteer.

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Posted by jfalk at 9:55 AM

April 25, 2006

Distinguished Teachers

Pareena Lawrence, a professor of economics and management at the U of M Morris, is one of this year’s 15 recipients of the university’s highest recognition of teaching excellence – The Distinguished Teaching Award. Lawrence takes joy in making economics – often described as a dry subject matter – fun and engaging for her students.

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Posted by jfalk at 4:01 PM

April 24, 2006

FFA Annual Convention

The 77th annual Minnesota State FFA Convention is being held today and tomorrow on the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus. Christian Lilienthal, Minnesota State FFA president and a freshman majoring in agricultural education, says more than 3,000 students from 170 FFA chapters throughout the state are expected to attend the event.

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Posted by jfalk at 6:08 PM

April 20, 2006

Beautiful U Day

Today, the U of M celebrates Beautiful U Day, a nod to the university’s physical and natural resources. Kathleen O’Brien, vice president for University Services, expects more than 1,000 volunteers to participate in clean-up efforts, educational programs, public art installations and other projects to improve University of Minnesota campuses and enhance sustainability efforts.

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Posted by jfalk at 6:00 PM

April 18, 2006

Mumps Outbreak

An outbreak of mumps in Iowa--the largest in the country since 1988--has Minnesota officials concerned about the possibility of the disease spreading here. The virus is spread through the air by mucus or droplets from the nose or throat of an infected person, usually when that person coughs or sneezes or through the sharing of cups, drinking glasses or utensils. Dr. Mark Schleiss, a pediatric infectious disease specialist at the University of Minnesota, says it isn’t yet clear why so many have gotten sick in Iowa.

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Posted by jfalk at 4:22 PM

April 17, 2006

Pothole Season

If you’ve driven on any one of Minnesota’s roads or highways these past few weeks, you’ve probably gone out of your way to a avoid a pothole. Some experts are calling this the worst pothole season in years. Mihai Marasteanu, a U of M civil engineering professor, says this past winter’s abundance of freeze-thaw cycles are to blame for the pothole outbreak.

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Posted by jfalk at 12:30 PM

April 14, 2006

Minnesota Weather Almanac

Mark Seeley, a U of M meteorologist and Minnesota Public Radio commentator, has written a new book detailing all things you need to know about Minnesota’s often baffling weather: the Minnesota Weather Almanac. Seeley says the almanac offers a complete guide to Minnesota weather, including historical details, fun facts and scientific lessons.

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Posted by jfalk at 5:14 PM

April 13, 2006

Terrorism Survey

Americans are willing to spend more money than what’s currently spent to prevent future terrorist attacks, according to a national survey conducted by University of Minnesota economists. Nearly 98 percent of the 4,200 who responded said they believe there will be another terrorist attack in their lifetime. More than half believe at least one attack will occur within the next five years. While the food supply chain was thought to be the least likely target, the survey found significant support for increased spending to protect our nation’s food supply, said Jean Kinsey, co-director of the University’s Food Industry Center.

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Posted by jfalk at 5:56 PM

April 12, 2006

State Fair Reforesting Effort

A ceremony marking a major reforesting effort on the Minnesota State Fairgrounds will take place on Arbor Day, Friday, April 28, on the fairgrounds in St. Paul. Jeff Gillman, an associate professor of horticulture, says the event marks the kick-off of a concerted campaign to reforest the state fairgrounds with several varieties of disease and stress-resistant elm trees provided by U of M forestry and horticulture researchers.

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Posted by jfalk at 8:15 PM

April 11, 2006

Quit Smoking and Win

If there ever was an incentive for students to quit smoking, this is it. U of M students who work to quit during the month of April and signed up for the Quit and Win contest, have a chance to win prizes. Maria Rangel with the U’s Boynton Health Service says participants stand a chance to win a big bucks shopping spree.

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Posted by jfalk at 7:18 PM

April 10, 2006

The Minnesota Cup

This month organizers have launched the second annual Minnesota Cup – a statewide contest designed to discover, support, and promote Minnesota’s newest and most innovative business ideas. Scott Litman, a graduate of the U’s College of Liberal Arts and successful entrepreneur, serves as co-chair of the Minnesota Cup. Litman says the contest connects winning Minnesota entrepreneurs with the state’s leading business executives, investors, and the University of Minnesota.

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Posted by jfalk at 5:42 PM

April 7, 2006

Success in Reading

Children’s success in reading is a concern that affects all teachers and school administrators. Funded by a U.S. Department of Education grant, Barbara Taylor, a professor of reading education at the U of M, is helping teachers at 51 schools throughout Minnesota improve their students’ reading skills. The Minnesota Reading First Professional Development Program is especially targeted at schools in higher poverty and diverse areas of the state.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:25 PM

April 6, 2006

Smokers Study

Smokers who want to quit are more likely to do so if they receive support over the telephone, according to University of Minnesota researcher Larry An, in a study funded by the Veterans Administration.

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Posted by jfalk at 8:11 PM

April 4, 2006

Pillsbury Bake-Off Winner

Mary Buescher, a U of M food science and nutrition graduate student, is one of 12 winners in the 42nd Pillsbury Bake-Off®, held in late March in Orlando, Florida. Buescher’s recipe for pineapple-black bean enchiladas was among 100 chosen for final competition among tens of thousands of entries in this year’s Bake-Off. Buescher says the recipe originated as a creative solution to a wedding shower dilemma.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:19 PM

April 3, 2006

Peace Corps Volunteer

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the Peace Corps, an organization established by President John F. Kennedy in 1961 to promote peace and friendship throughout the world. Brian Valentine is one of the many U of M alumni who have answered Kennedy’s call. Having earned his undergraduate degree in recreation management at the U, Valentine last year completed a 27-month Peace Corps stint in a rural mountainous region of Guatemala, working on agriculture and forestry-related projects.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:17 PM