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December 29, 2006

Gambling Addictions

The college bowl season is heating up and the NFL playoffs are on the horizon. For some that means a friendly wager with friends, but for others it can be more serious. Ken Winters, a U of M psychology professor, says
once you start gambling away more than you had ever planned, you're in trouble.

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Posted by jfalk at 11:29 AM

December 28, 2006

Childhood Obesity

What are the causes for the rise of childhood obesity? A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota, led by epidemiologist Leslie Lytle, aims to find out.

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Posted by jfalk at 10:48 AM

December 26, 2006

Don't Let Your Septic System Freeze

So far, it¹s been an extremely dry winter, which can be tough on home septic systems. Valerie Prax, a water resource management educator with the U of M Extension Service, says a combination of cold weather and lack of snow is one reason home septic systems can freeze.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:57 PM

December 25, 2006

Beware of the Norovirus

A mild case of overeating might be expected over the holidays. But make sure your family and friends don’t go home with norovirus; the foodborne illness we’ve heard about on cruise ships and in restaurants, hospitals and schools. Carol Ann Burtness, a food science educator with the U of M Extension Service, says norovirus is also the leading cause of foodborne illness outbreaks in Minnesota.

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Posted by jfalk at 11:28 AM

December 22, 2006

Holiday Traditions

The holidays bring traditions that help keep families strong, build a family history and make the holidays enjoyable and memorable. Colleen Gengler, a family relations educator with the U of M Extension Service, says young couples have the fun, and perhaps challenge of beginning new traditions.

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Posted by jfalk at 2:39 PM

December 21, 2006

A Mighty Fortress Far from Lake Wobegon

An exhibit from the U’s Immigration History Research Center – “A Mighty Fortress Far from Lake Wobegon? – takes visitors into 16 Lutheran congregations, and through photographs, audiovisual recordings and hymnals, shows that Minnesotans are more than just white and Scandinavian. University student Allison Adrian, who created the exhibit with renowned photographer Wing Young Huie, says the exhibit grew out of her interest in perceptions of who Minnesotans are and how the make-up of our state has changed.

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Posted by jfalk at 5:17 PM

December 20, 2006

A Night at the Bell Museum

The U of M’s Bell Museum is offering a free preview screening of the new 20th Century Fox holiday feature film “Night at the Museum? followed by a guided flashlight tour of the Bell Museum’s famous dioramas this Thursday evening. Jennifer Menken, who is helping to coordinate the big night, says the event will offer visitors a unique opportunity to see the museum’s renowned wildlife dioramas in a different, if not spooky, light.

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Posted by jfalk at 4:40 PM

December 19, 2006

Holiday Budget Crunch

Many of us like to splurge on gifts for the holidays. But Christmas cheer can turn into January panic when post-holiday bills fill the mailbox. Pareena Lawrence, an economics professor at the U of M Morris, says people should be aware of the warning signs that indicate you're in too deep.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:58 PM

December 18, 2006

Real Christmas Trees

As you go about selecting a Christmas tree this holiday season, you may wonder “what’s better for the environment, a real Christmas tree or an artificial one?? Carl Vogt with the U's department of forest resources says real trees truly are a renewable natural resource, while artificial trees in comparison are made from oil and more energy is used to produce artificial trees than real trees.

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Posted by jfalk at 11:41 AM

December 15, 2006

Holiday Blues

For most people the holiday season is an exciting time filled with parties, celebration and social gatherings. But for many people, it’s a time of sadness, self-reflection, loneliness and anxiety. Bruce Cuthbert, a U of M psychology professor, says there are several causes for holiday blues.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:01 PM

December 13, 2006

Holiday Air Travel

Many of us will be traveling by airplane this holiday season. And while ‘tis the season to be jolly, it also marks the beginning of the cold-and-flu season. Dr. Phillip Peterson, director of the U’s Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine, says an airplane cabin can be just like a giant incubator of disease.

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Posted by jfalk at 3:37 PM

December 12, 2006

The Overindulgence Trap

One of the major questions parents ask themselves every holiday season when considering gift and activity ideas is “how much is enough?? Minnell Tralle, a U of M Extension Service family relations educator, says parents should avoid the “overindulgence trap.?

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Posted by jfalk at 1:48 PM

December 11, 2006

A Rise in Corn Prices

Minnesota livestock producers have recently voiced concerns that the ethanol-fueled rise in the price of corn could drive their business into the red and force them to find other food to feed their cattle and swine. Dave Bau, a U of M Extension Service educator in agricultural business management, says corn prices are almost 50 percent higher than what they were a year ago.

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Posted by jfalk at 5:10 PM

December 8, 2006

Money and Behavior

Research conducted by Kathleen Vohs, assistant professor of marketing at the U's Carlson School of Management, demonstrates that money - more specifically, people's exposure to the concept of money - can have a significant impact on behavior. The research is published in the Nov. 17 issue of Science. Vohs says money can change people's motivation to achieve their own goals for the better and their behavior toward others for the worse.

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Posted by jfalk at 2:58 PM

December 7, 2006

Rhodes Scholar

Katie Lee, an honors senior at the U of M majoring in biochemistry and chemistry, has been named one of 32 U.S. Rhodes Scholars for 2007. The scholarships, which are the oldest and best known award for international study, cover up to three years of degree courses at Oxford University in England. Lee, a resident of Bloomington, says her undergraduate research work on lupus - an autoimmune disease - the metabolism of nicotine and cervical cancer helped her stand out among the other candidates vying for the coveted scholarship.

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Posted by jfalk at 4:14 PM

December 5, 2006

Midwest Dairy Expo

“Opportunities for Your Farm, Family and Future? is the theme of the 2006 Midwest Dairy Expo taking place at the St. Cloud Civic Center today and tomorrow. Jim Salfer, a U of M Extension Service dairy educator, says the event gives dairy farmers a unique opportunity to learn about the latest developments in the industry.

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Posted by jfalk at 10:57 AM

December 4, 2006

Carter Partnership Award

The Center for Small Towns at the U of M, Morris and the City of Morris have been named recipients of the renowned Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Partnership Award for Campus-Community Collaboration. The award is given to one program or partnership in each state where a college or university teams up with a community group to address areas of public need. David Fluegel, the center's community program specialist, says that the sustained cooperation on a host of community programs over an extended period of time made this nomination stand out.

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Posted by jfalk at 10:26 AM

December 1, 2006

Ag Activities Day

Today, the U of M, Crookston hosts it 25th annual Ag Activities Day competition. Ron Del Vecchio, head of UMC's agriculture department, says this marks an exciting day for some 1,300 high school students from all over northwest Minnesota as they compete for $32,000 in scholarship money.

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Posted by jfalk at 2:33 PM