Officials with the University of Maine at Presque Isle recognized the Maine Community Foundation and local donors who have given a combined total of more than $50,000 in support over the next two years to the University's new NCAA Division I Nordic Ski program. The recognition ceremony took place during a special event held on Thursday, Oct. 29 in the Campus Center.The event served as a celebration for the ski program in achieving its new NCAA status and as an introduction of the new ski team and its new coach - Alexei Sotskov - to members of the region's skiing community. At the start of the event, University officials held a short recognition ceremony for major donors to the ski program.
Members of the campus and community are working together to create a new garden for the University that is tied to the local region and Native American culture.Professors Alice Sheppard and Dave Putnam received a 2009 Project Compass Educational Mini-Grant for about $1,000 this summer to work with students and community members on the installation of representative plant specimens at a small plot near the central campus park woods. These plants are used by the region's Native peoples in many ways, including food, healing, dyes, ceremonies, and artifacts.
UMPI Vice President of Academic Affairs Michael Sonntag has had an article he co-authored about the website RateMyProfessors.com published in the most recent issue of the peer-reviewed journal Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education.
Students in Art Professor Renee Felini's ceramics class headed to the Aroostook River on Sept. 30 for a special class project that helped them to understand more fully the organic nature of the art form they're learning about.Felini and her class gathered at the boat landing near the Route 1 Bridge at the north end of Presque Isle to release into the river more than a dozen hollow, clay spheres that they had made in the ceramics studio.
Thomas Wire, a 2008 University of Maine at Presque Isle graduate, recently made international headlines for a study he completed this summer which concluded that spending money on family planning, as opposed to more conventional green technologies, would be more cost effective in the global effort to reduce carbon emissions.Wire completed the study - which was commissioned by the Optimum Population Trust, a UK think tank concerned with the impact of population on the environment - in August 2009 as a postgraduate student at the London School of Economics. His study was mentioned in The Lancet, one of the world's leading medical journals, and the story was then picked up by media outlets such as The Economist, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post.
Officials with Project Compass, an effort on the University of Maine at Presque Isle campus to develop and improve culturally responsive strategies for its Native American students, has announced that it has funded 9 mini-grants to campus faculty and staff totaling nearly $18,000 that will help to support the mission of Project Compass while engaging students and increasing campus awareness of Native cultures.
The University of Maine at Presque Isle presents a night of improvisational jazz by the Brooklyn, New York based quartet SPOKE at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 30 in Wieden Auditorium.SPOKE - featuring Justin Wood (originally from Presque Isle) on saxophone, Andy Hunter on trombone, Danny Fischer on drums, and Dan Loomis on bass -- has performed in some of NYC's top jazz venues such as the Cornelia Street Café and Brooklyn's Tea Lounge. Individually, Spoke's members have performed around the world at clubs, concert halls, and festivals, including Radio City Music Hall, the Jazz Standard, the Montreal Jazz Festival, and the Playboy Jazz Festival.
The University of Maine at Presque Isle will hold its annual fall blood drive on Tuesday, October 20, from noon to 6 p.m. in the Campus Center's Multi-Purpose Room.The blood drive is sponsored by the University's Residence Life Office, the Brothers of Kappa Delta Phi and the Sisters of Kappa Delta Phi NAS. Walk-ins are welcome and door prizes will be given away during the drive. If donors wish to reserve a time in advance, they should call 768-9585 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Ms. Colleen J. Quint, Executive Director of the Senator George J. Mitchell Scholarship Research Institute, will speak on "The Mitchell Institute and Higher Education in Aroostook County" at the University of Maine at Presque Isle's next Business Breakfast, to be held at 7:30 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 30 in the UMPI Campus Center.The Mitchell Institute is a non-profit organization founded by Senator George Mitchell to provide scholarship assistance to Maine students, and to research means of removing obstacles to higher education. Each year the Mitchell Institute awards a $5,000 scholarship to a graduating senior from every public high school in Maine.
Dr. Bonnie Wood, a Biology Professor at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, will take part in a book signing event on Tuesday, Oct. 20 from 11:30 to 1:30 p.m. in the UMPI Bookstore to celebrate the publication of her new book Lecture-Free Teaching: A Learning Partnership Between Science Educators and Their Students.Dr. Wood, a fulltime faculty member since 1989, garnered a contract in 2007 from major science publisher NSTA [National Science Teachers Association] Press to write a book on her innovative lecture-free teaching strategies. The newly published book will be showcased for the first time to the local region during the Oct. 20 book signing.
The University of Maine at Presque Isle brings the editor and publisher of a Pulitzer Prize winning newspaper to the region when it hosts journalist Mike Jacobs as its second Distinguished Lecturer of the 2009-2010 academic year.
Jacobs will offer a free community workshop titled Replacing Place in Modern Communities? on Tuesday, Oct. 6, at 6 p.m. in the Campus Center. The next day, he will deliver a Distinguished Lecture titled Just How Anxious Are We? A Report from the Field on Media in America at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 7, in the Campus Center.Jacobs, the editor and publisher of the Grand Forks Herald in North Dakota and the recipient of several top journalism awards, brings to these events more than 40 years of journalism experience, including the 1998 Pulitzer Prize winning coverage his North Dakota newspaper provided in the wake of flooding, a blizzard and a fire that devastated much of Grand Forks in the spring of 1997.
Officials from around the County, the State of Maine, and New England will gather at the University of Maine at Presque Isle from Wednesday, Sept. 30 to Friday, Oct. 2 for a three-day meeting centered on the University's Project Compass grant program and its efforts to develop and improve culturally responsive strategies for its Native American students.
The event will feature a keynote address by John Bear Mitchell, the blessing of a new student center designed specifically for Native American students, and a gathering of educators and community leaders who will determine next steps for the grant program.
"This meeting marks an important milestone for the University's Project Compass efforts and is a recognition of how hard our community of practice group has worked to bring the program to this point," Dr. Ray Rice, who is overseeing the grant program at UMPI, said. "We are very much looking forward to the results of this gathering, and the brainstorming, idea sharing, and long range planning that will ultimately and most importantly benefit our Native American student population."