Chancellor's Report

June 2015

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UAF alumnus Ben Grossmann, the winner of an Academy Award in 2012 for his work on special effects in the movie “Hugo,” delivers the keynote speech during UAF’s 93rd commencement ceremony, held in Fairbanks on May 10. Approximately 1,353 students received 1,459 degrees and certificates. Of those, 208 students received master’s degrees and 40 received doctoral degrees.

Achievements

Two UAF researchers are among 17 scholars selected as the inaugural cohort of the U.S. Department of State’s Fulbright Arctic Initiative — an interdisciplinary collaborative research program to study the changing Arctic. Gwen Holdmann and Tamara Harms were selected from among a pool of more than 100 applicants from eight Arctic Council nations.

The University of the Arctic’s Institute of Arctic Policy, co-chaired by UAF and Dartmouth College, published “Arctic Council Initiatives to Sustain Arctic Cooperation,” a report that aims to address priorities for the Arctic Council. Canada handed the two-year rotating chairmanship of the Arctic Council to the United States on April 24.

The Alaska Satellite Facility at UAF’s Geophysical Institute aided earthquake relief efforts in Nepal by making satellite data and imagery available online. The data can be used to measure the movement of ground and structures, help identify hazards and predict which areas may be vulnerable to aftershocks and future earthquakes.

The recipients of the 2015 Emil Usibelli Distinguished Teaching, Research and Service Awards have been announced. Professor of Physics David Newman received the teaching award, Professor of Geophysics Hajo Eicken received the research award and Professor of Horticulture Patricia Holloway received the service award. They will be honored at an event this fall.

The National Science Foundation awarded two UAF graduate students and an alumnus each a prestigious 2015 Graduate Research Fellowship. Doctoral students Douglas Brinkerhoff and Wendel Raymond and alumnus Jonathan Nations each will receive a $34,000 annual stipend and a $12,000 cost-of-education allowance.

More than 265 donors, students and UAF colleagues gathered to celebrate at the 2015 Scholarship Breakfast, Inspiring Student Success, on April 21 in Wood Center’s Carol Brown Ballroom.

Alaska Sea Grant hosted the 30th Wakefield Fisheries Symposium, “Tools and Strategies for Assessment and Management of Data-Limited Fish Stocks,” in Anchorage, May 12–15.

In Progress

UAF’s Office of Development and Alumni Relations has raised $9.7 million, surpassing its end-of-the-year fundraising goal of $8.7 million. The total included contributions from 4,308 donors and proceeds from a student-led phonathon that raised nearly $27,000 in eight weeks.

Contractors are in their final push to complete exterior work on the new engineering building by July 2. If no additional funds are found, construction to finish the building will stop this fall.

Summer Sessions is sponsoring Discover Alaska, a free lecture series on Wednesday evenings through Aug. 14. Topics are diverse, ranging from glaciology and the aurora to poetry and cartooning in Alaska.

What's Next

UAF will celebrate its first centennial milestone when we rededicate the 100-year-old cornerstone on July 6. The event will begin with a traditional blessing at Troth Yeddha’ Park and culminate in the rededication in Cornerstone Plaza that will return the cornerstone to public display. The celebration is open to everyone.

The 32nd edition of the Midnight Sun Run will start at the Patty Center on June 21 at 10 p.m. The course meanders through a number of Fairbanks neighborhoods and ends in Pioneer Park. In recent years, the race has attracted more than 3,500 participants.

The Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival will take place on the UAF campus July 12-26. Workshop categories include music, dance, literature, theater, and visual, culinary and healing arts. Registration is now open.

through the lens: recent images

The UAF Steel Bridge Team won first place in a contest at the American Society of Civil Engineers Pacific Northwest Regional Conference, held April 25 at Idaho State University.

For the first time in UAF history, the team also took first place in all six individual bridge-building categories — efficiency, stiffness, economy, display, lightness and construction speed.

With its regional win, the UAF team advanced to the National Steel Bridge Competition on May 22 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Team members, left to right, are Catherine Estus, Nathan Goering, Chase Delatush, Will Riley, Elliott Anderson, Daniel Hjortstorp, Nathan Barnette, Wilhelm Muench and Leroy Hulsey.

UAF photo by JR Ancheta



Photos, clockwise from top left 

Students in the Community and Technical College paramedics training program huddle up during a break in their cold-water rescue class March 26 by the icy Chena River.

Hannah Foss, a staff artist at the University of Alaska Museum of the North, demonstrates a life-sized puppet model of an Alaska dinosaur for the upcoming “Expedition Alaska: Dinosaurs” exhibit, which features authentic Alaska dinosaurs from the museum’s collections.

Engineering majors Jesse Frey, left, Morgan Johnson, center, and Patrick Wade hold the “cubesat” they designed and built as part of their work with the Alaska Space Grant program. The miniature satellite is scheduled to be launched into space in August 2015 from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

Faculty and staff with UAF’s School of Education organize a human ribbon on the plaza in front of the Gruening Building to draw attention to autism.

UAF photos by Todd Paris unless otherwise indicated.

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