Vol. 52, No. 5Fifth Week • Fall Semester • Sept. 20, 2004

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Featured Articles

Biologists awarded NSF grant for prairie restoration experiment

UW-Eau Claire shares in grant for laser-based research

United Way "Day of Caring" a success

UW-Eau Claire Forum Series opens season with 'The Gift

Alumna and book author Margaret Nelson to visit Sept. 30'

Language/travel seminar offered by Continuing Education

Free help available to student smokers

Did you know?


Biologists awarded NSF grant for prairie restoration experiment

Ox-eye sunflower.
This ox-eye sunflower was the UW-Eau Claire biology research team's first plant to bloom.

Two UW-Eau Claire biologists and their student assistants are using a 15-acre plot of ground in Eau Claire County as a scientific laboratory for a prairie restoration experiment.

The project will add to the basic science of plant biology and ecology and lead to a better understanding of how to restore prairies and grasslands in a way that is best for the land, the biologists said.

Kathye Miller, a biology graduate student, tosses seed mix over plot.
Kathye Miller, a biology graduate student, tosses seed mix over one of 45 large study plots.

Funded by a $316,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, Evan Weiher and Tali Lee are investigating how several important forces combine to control the composition of organisms in an ecosystem. They are collaborating with mycologist Steve Bentivenga, a fungi expert from UW-Oshkosh, who received an additional $70,000 for his piece of the project.

By varying the planting history, soil nitrogen and fungicide applications throughout the site, researchers can compare and assess their relative and independent importance in terms of species richness and composition, Weiher said. Full story. Go to top of page

UW-Eau Claire shares in grant for laser-based research

Nathan Pillsbury, 2003 graduate, and Stephen Drucker, chemistry, working in lab.
Stephen Drucker (right) works on a laser-based research project with Nathan Pillsbury, a 2003 graduate who currently is pursuing a Ph.D. in chemistry at Purdue. A new NSF grant will provide supplemental instrumentation to Drucker's lab, giving him more precise data on how small molecules react to light and providing students opportunities for advanced study and specialized training. (Photo by Rick Mickelson, TLTDC)

UW-Eau Claire's national reputation for undergraduate research in chemistry took another step forward with the news of an unusual shared grant from the National Science Foundation.

UW-Eau Claire is one of four undergraduate research programs that will share a transportable pulsed laser system, purchased with a $241,663 NSF grant. The other participating schools are Hope, Kalamazoo and Calvin colleges in Michigan, with technical support and maintenance coordinated by Purdue University.

"As far as I know, this is a unique model for undergraduate research in chemistry," said UW-Eau Claire physical chemist Stephen Drucker, who authored the grant. "The reviewers liked the novel approach, and I think this is the reason our proposal was funded. It's a model that widens the base of resources available to undergraduate research programs like ours and links us with a large research institution that has specialized support personnel."

The new laser system will reside at each school from three to nine months. "We are motivated to use it to its fullest extent during the time it is here," Drucker said. "Careful planning is required to be productive and have publishable results. The long-term goal is to make a case for having additional state-of-the-art laser instrumentation here full time." Full story. Go to top of page

From dunkin' ...
Katherine Rhoades and Don Christian wearing Student aims to dunk Chuck Major in tank.
to whiffin' ... to ice cream lickin' ...
Marshmallow golf participant misses. Young girl enjoying an ice cream cone.
... the United Way
"Day of Caring" was a fun success!
Charles Vue serving ice cream cone to student.

The Sept. 10 "Day of Caring" on the UW-Eau Claire Campus Mall, a fund-raising event for United Way of Greater Eau Claire, brought in nearly $500 as well as school supplies for area students.

It's not too late to buy raffle tickets for one of these fabulous theme baskets: It's a Dog's Life (Advising, Testing and New Student Orientation), Recreation and Relaxation (University Recreation), No More Excuses — Healthy Habits (Management and Marketing), Family Fun (Student Development and Diversity), Sweet Tooth (Human Resources), Let Us Grill You/Grilling (News Bureau), Down and Dirty/Gardening (Career Services), Leisure Time Activities (Admissions), Packers Football (Facilities and Management), It's Show Time (Publications Office), Comfort Food (Office of Multicultural Affairs), Blugold Basket (Foundation/Alumni Relations) and Let Us Entertain You (Student Services). Raffle tickets are one for $1 or six for $5. Stop by the respective departments/offices to buy your tickets or look for the baskets in Davies Center Sept. 29-Oct. 1. The drawing will be held Oct. 1. Go to top of page

Becky Wurzer, Children's Center, purchasing raffle tickets for the theme baskets.
(Photos by Rick Mickelson, TLTDC)

UW-Eau Claire Forum Series opens season with 'The Gift'
Louise HogarthDocumentary filmmaker Louise Hogarth will present the first event of the 63rd season of The Forum at UW-Eau Claire Monday, Sept. 27, and Tuesday, Sept. 28.

Her challenging 2003 film, "The Gift," documents the phenomenon of deliberate HIV infection. Hogarth's presentations in Schofield Auditorium will begin at 7:30 p.m. each evening with a screening of her 62-minute documentary. She will then lead a discussion of the issues raised in the film, and talk about the process of creating the documentary.

"The Gift" is not recommended for those under the age of 17, as the documentary explores controversial social and psychological issues and contains frank sexual discussions, some nudity and language that may be offensive. Due to graphic content, viewer discretion is advised. Full story and ticket information. Go to top of page

Alumna and book author Margaret Nelson to visit campus Sept. 30
Margaret NelsonMargaret (Mogensen) Nelson, a 1969 UW-Eau Claire political science graduate and veteran journalist, is the author of a new book, "Saving Body & Soul: The Mission of Mary Jo Copeland," which was released Sept. 18. The book, with photos by Keri Pickett, was featured in a Sept. 5 article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune. The book chronicles the work of Copeland, who has been called " America 's Mother Teresa" for her work with the poor in the Minneapolis area. Nelson will visit the UW-Eau Claire campus at 4 p.m. Sept. 30 to speak about the book and its subject matter and to answer questions. Her book will be for sale through the University Bookstore and she will be available to sign books. Nelson will speak in the Tamarack Room in Davies Center . Go to top of page

Language and travel seminar offered by Continuing Education
UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education/UW-Extension will offer a language and travel seminar beginning in December. The seven-week Spanish language course will be held from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning Dec. 2, followed by a tour of Costa Rica Jan. 12-22.

The seminar is open to anyone who would like to learn Spanish, travel and explore another culture. Language instructor and tour guide Dale Omtvedt Gable teaches Spanish and English as a Second Language at UW-Eau Claire. She has taken university student groups to Costa Rica and Mexico and traveled extensively in Central America, Spain and Colombia.

An informational meeting will be held from 7 to 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23, at the UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education office, 210 Water St. The tour guide and language instructor will be present to answer questions; refreshments will be served. Full story. Go to top of page

Free help available to student smokers
Student Health Services at UW-Eau Claire now is offering free nicotine patches to support their ongoing efforts to encourage smoking cessation. The free patches are available to students who smoke at least a half pack of cigarettes per day or use chewing tobacco daily, and are interested in quitting smoking.

Student Health Services also offer a Fax-To-Quit program, in which students can request that a professional cessation counselor call them at a mutually negotiated time to provide additional cessation support.

These services are paid for by funds from the Center for Tobacco Research & Intervention at the University of Wisconsin Medical School.

For more information, contact Student Health Services at 836-5360.Go to top of page

Did you know?
UW-Eau Claire faculty and staff brought in nearly $14 million in grants from federal, state and private sources during the 2003-04 academic year — an all-time high for external funds secured by the university in a single academic year. Go to top of page


University Bulletin
Published weekly during the fall and spring semesters by the UW-Eau Claire News Bureau. News items and notices should be sent to the News Bureau, Schofield 201, by 10 a.m. Monday for publication in the following week’s issue. E-mail submissions to Liz Wolf Green at greenew@uwec.edu are encouraged. Faculty/staff news items are published on a space-available basis.

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News Bureau
Liz Wolf Green, Editor, UW-Eau Claire News Bureau, Schofield 201, (715) 836-4741
Diane Walkoff, Editorial Assistant. Updated: September 22, 2004

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