– The University of Maine at Presque Isle’s Faculty Noon Seminar Series has returned for the Spring 2011 semester with presentations on brain research, juvenile court systems, and genealogy.
Seminars will be held on Thursdays from 12:30-1:30 p.m. in the Normal Hall Faculty Lounge. Presentations will be 20-30 minutes in length, followed by a discussion. Those attending are welcome to bring their lunches and join in the discussion.
Two presentations are scheduled for the second half of the fall semester. On March 31, Dr. Richard Kimball will present Pathways Between New England and Nova Scotia: A Genealogical Approach. This brief, roughly chronological survey of Nova Scotia history (1600 – 1910) will include stories of how many families have affected and been affected by this history. Each instance of New England/Nova Scotia interaction that Kimball discusses will be illustrated by stories of individuals from his own and his wife’s families. The instances covered will include: Native Americans/First Nations, Acadians, Foreign Protestants, New England Planters, Scots-Irish, United Empire Loyalists, and German (“Hessian”) soldiers. Kimball’s presentation will take place in Folsom Hall, room 105.
On April 28, Dr. Tomasz Herzog will present Empire of Illusion? America’s Problem with Contemporary Public Discourse. According to Herzog, “As one commentator wrote recently: ‘We can’t win the future by ceding the present and romanticizing the past.’ To do that, America needs a new, nonpartisan, public discourse that will not only help prevent it from further eroding but, in the long run, also help reinvigorate the ideals underpinning the American Dream and a flourishing civil society.” Herzog’s presentation will address, from a social sciences stance, the issues that might be, or need to be, the core of a new American public discourse.
Two other presentations were given earlier this spring. The series kicked off with a presentation on Feb. 10 when Dr. Rachael Hannah presented Blood Flow in Our Brains; Coordinated Communication in an Instant. According to Hannah, blood flow in the brain is a critical determinant of life; it remains at a constant pressure even during exercise or cardiac insufficiency and, within micro environments in our brains, it increases locally in response to increased neural activity. Hannah delivered a short primer on brain blood flow physiology and discussed the possible confounding factors of reduced blood flow in situations such as head trauma and stroke, and with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.
On Feb. 17, Dr. Charles Johnson presented Models for Change – Systems Reform in Juvenile Justice: An Evaluation of the Spokane County (WA) Juvenile Court Models for Change Project. Johnson presented the findings of his collaborative program evaluation concerning a restorative justice-oriented project that was designed to re-engage truant youth with their schools. Funded by the MacArthur Foundation’s Models for Change initiative, the study reported promise in reducing both truancy and juvenile-justice oriented court referrals. Johnson’s presentation was intended to reach those in the fields of criminal justice and education as well as citizens interested in discovering what they can do to help create a community-based truancy board at the local level.
The purpose of the Faculty Noon Seminar Series is to foster awareness of research and teaching activities taking place on campus and to provide a forum for dissemination between faculty members. The series also offers the opportunity to network and encourage transdisciplinary scholarly activity. As a campus wide forum, students, faculty and administrative staff are invited to present their work during the seminar series.
For more information about the Faculty Noon Seminar Series, contact Lynn Eldershaw at 768-9749.