• Body: ResearchBy Jesi Jones-Bowman Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 23, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research recently announced 18 undergraduate winners of the 57th annual Oswald Research and Creativity Awards. Chad Risko, faculty director of the Office of Undergraduate Research, and several research ambassadors were on hand to congratulate the winners and distribute the awards.

    Established in 1964 by then-UK President John Oswald, the Oswald Research and Creativity Competition encourages undergraduate research and creative activities across all fields of study.

    Categories include biological sciences, design (architecture, landscape architecture and interior design), fine arts (film, music, photography, painting and sculpture), humanities (creative and critical-research approaches), physical and engineering sciences, and social sciences. All submissions are sent anonymously to faculty reviewers in related fields and are judged based on a rubric.

    Awards in each category are: First Place: $350, Second Place: $200, and Honorable Mention, if applicable. Entries are judged on originality, clarity of expression, scholarly or artistic contribution, and the validity, scope and depth of the project or investigation. Organizers expressed special thanks to the judges for their support of undergraduate research.

    This year's Oswald student award winners are:

    Biological Sciences

    • First Place: Shelby McCubbin, Honors neuroscience senior; Mentor: Robin Cooper; Pharmacological profiling of stretch activated channels in proprioceptive neurons
    • Second Place: Maya Abul-Khoudoud, Honors biology junior; Mentor: Matthew Gentry; Establishing Personalized Diagnoses for Lafora's Disease
    • Honorable Mention: Hannah Cleary, Honors agricultural and medical biotechnology senior; Mentor: Eve Schneider; Methods of Mechanotransduction in Corpuscles of Waterfowl

    Design

    • First Place: Quincy Ipsaro, biology senior; Mentor: Carolina Segura-Bell; Unorthodox but Functional Tools used for the Ecological Design and Implementation of Pollinator Gardens 
    • Second Place: Anna Claire Littleton, landscape architecture senior; Mentor: Jayoung Koo; Echoes of the Past: Huntertown Revival of "The Bottoms"
    • Honorable Mention: Abby Phelps and Katie Davis, landscape architecture juniors; Mentor: Ned Crankshaw; Urban Oasis

    Fine Arts

    • First Place: Sydney Daniels, neuroscience and economics senior; Mentor: Luke Bradley, Timothy Moyers and Michael Baker; The Symphony of the Cell
    • Second Place; Jayda Johnson, art studio junior; Mentor: n/a; Queen Mother/ Mitochondrial Eve
    • Honorable Mention: Brittani Garland, history and digital media design senior; Mentor: n/a; Visions

    Humanities: Creative

    • First Place: Tejaswini Sudhakar, Honors psychology and gender and women’s studies senior; Mentor: Rebecca Gayle Howell; hold fire 
    • Second Place: Quinn Troia, Honors gender and women’s studies and information communication technology junior; Mentor: Tara Tuttle; A Femme-ifesto

    Humanities: Critical Research

    • First Place: Erin Inouye, English junior; Mentor: Miriam Kienle; Animating Plastics: Shinto and Environmentalism in Sayaka Ganz's Reclaimed Creations 
    • Second Place: Danica Moon, Honors political science senior; Mentor: Tara Tuttle; Gender in the Garden 

    Physical and Engineering Sciences

    • First Place: Shelby McCubbin, Honors neuroscience senior; Mentor: Robin Cooper; Pharmacological profiling of stretch activated channels in proprioceptive neurons
    • Second Place: Tony Butera, mechanical engineering junior; Mentor: Martha Grady; Correlation Between Sample Preparation and SEM Imaging

    Social Sciences

    • First Place: Sydney Daniels, neuroscience and economics senior; Mentor: n/a; Rwanda's Coffee Industry: Colonialism and the Impact of Fair Trade Coffee
    • Second Place: Colton Barton, Honors English junior; Mentor: Zada Komara; Are We Doing Enough?: A Look at Current Issues Affecting LGBTQ Students at the University of Kentucky   
    • Honorable Mention: Haley Hintz, Honors psychology and political science senior; Mentor: Jonathan Golding; Juror Perceptions of Heterosexual and Same-Sex Spousal Rape in the Courtroom
    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEngineeringFine ArtsArtHonors College

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Elizabeth Chapin
    Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    "> Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2207 Summary: The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research recently announced 18 undergraduate winners of the 57th annual Oswald Research and Creativity Awards.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Akhira Umar Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 23, 2021) — One hundred years after “Black Wall Street” was burned down in the Tulsa Race Massacre, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumnus is trying to build a Black Wall Street that can stand the test of time online.

    In June 2020, Savon Gray, a 2018 journalism graduate, started Black Business Boxes with his best friend, Robbie Dobbs. The Louisville native had watched as the outrage over the killing of former UK student Breonna Taylor had grown into ongoing protests in his city. Gray decided to take action by addressing the underlying issues of race and economics in America. 

    Through research, Gray discovered some incredible figures on Black finances. Black Americans make up only 14% of the population yet spend around $1.2 trillion a year. Figuring that money runs the country and having worked in finance himself, Gray wanted to help give the Black community more control over their wealth.

    With the prevalence of the Black Lives Matter movement, public interest for Black-owned businesses increased. However, Gray knew how time-consuming it was to find and vet such businesses. He was also unsure of how often these business promotions led to sales for Black entrepreneurs. So, he created a solution to put Black-made products directly into people’s hands.

    “We want to be your one-stop-shop for everything Black-owned,” Gray said. “Let’s make it easy to support Black-owned businesses. You got one place where you know there’s going to be multiple different Black-owned businesses that you can support. Now we’re circulating the dollar in our community. We’re empowering Black entrepreneurs. We’re giving Black people money, period. And we’re building a Black economy, which is kind of our mission statement.”

    Through reaching out to Black-owned businesses across the country through professional events, social media and personal networking, Gray and Dobbs were able to create two services to help both Black entrepreneurs and their customers. By featuring businesses on Black Business Boxes’ online marketplace, consumers can easily find business’ websites to shop individual products. Gray and Dobbs also provide a monthly subscription box filled with various items from different businesses that follow a certain theme.

    The business partners’ first subscription box launched in July 2020, just a month after starting their company. That box featured a lavender-infused hand sanitizer to help fight off rising COVID-19 cases. Other items featured in their boxes have included specialty nut butters, sunglasses, lip scrubs, watches and more. Their current box has a self-care theme, and within the next year there are plans to have quarterly theme releases.

    Despite being a relatively young company, Black Business Boxes has caught the attention of many. It was named Minority Business of the Month by Louisville City Football Club and has been featured in the Courier-Journal, Black Enterprise, USA Today and several other news services. Gray believes his communication background and his abilities to speak and clearly convey the company’s idea have been a leading cause for their success. He also feels like the press coverage signals that they are doing something important that the world needs.

    “If Black Business Boxes can help add an hour to how long a dollar stays in our community, what does that do? What does that look like in the world?” Gray said. “That’s what drives us, and that’s the change we want to make.”

    If you would like to learn more about Black Business Boxes, visit https://blackbusinessboxes.com/

    Savon Gray, a 2018 journalism graduate.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: One hundred years after “Black Wall Street” was burned down in the Tulsa Race Massacre, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumnus is trying to build a Black Wall Street that can stand the test of time online.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Harrison Stiles Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 24, 2021) — Senior integrated strategic communication students in a University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information Event Planning class are working with the Downtown Lexington Partnership (DLP) to produce this year’s annual downtown Christmas Parade. 

    The event will begin 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, and is gearing up to be a staple of the holiday season in Lexington. UK students and DLP are excited to bring normal parade operations back to the city after a nontraditional reversed parade last year.

    “We are incredibly excited to collaborate with these creative and hardworking students to bring Lexington a wonderful parade in 2021," said Laura Farnsworth, DLP vice president of development and events. "As a result of their efforts, we will be welcoming several new high-energy entries to the parade, as well as promotions and events in our downtown businesses that will bring new customers to their front doors.”

    Students are working in a variety of teams including participant recruitment, event promotion, merchant events and logistics. One new aspect the students are focusing on incorporating is the participation from downtown businesses to host special events before, during and after the parade. 

    Attendees can expect a busy day of activities and events along with the parade. And, the parade itself is sure to be packed full of local bands, floats and even everyone’s favorite jolly fellow at the end. Stay tuned for more details as we get closer to the parade! 

    For more information about the partnership and event, contact Harrison Stiles at 502- 287-7068 or Harrison [at] downtownlex.com, or follow DLP on social media @downtownlexpartnership.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The event will begin 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 4, and is gearing up to be a staple of the holiday season in Lexington.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Craig Borie Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 23, 2021) — On Nov. 6, 2021, interprofessional student teams representing 12 University of Kentucky colleges, Lincoln Memorial University and the University of Louisville, competed in the annual Global Health Case Competition, with a focus on implementing hurricane disaster preparedness strategies in a changing global climate.

    The competition was hosted on UK’s campus and held virtually by the UK International Center’s Office of Global Health Initiatives, whose mission is to promote an area for study, research and practice that places a priority on improving health and achieving equity in health for all people worldwide.

    “The teams really worked together to bring comprehensive and exciting plans together in a short period of time,” said Melody Ryan, Ph.D., assistant provost for UK’s Office of Global Health Initiatives. “I think they learned a lot about the complexities of global health problems and the benefits of working with different professions.”

    During competition week, teams of undergraduates, graduates and professional students are challenged to create strategies addressing a global health issue and present their plans to a panel of judges. The winning team will represent UK at the International Global Health Case Competition, hosted by Emory University in Atlanta in 2022.

    Global Health Case Competition Team 6 took the $1,500 prize, with a high level of interdisciplinary cohesiveness and innovative solutions. Their strategy, titled “Pilipinas Malakas,” is a creation of a cyclone disaster preparedness plan.

    “It was really helpful to have a team with completely different past experiences and specializations,” said Emma Hague, a freshman in the College of Public Health and member of Team 6. “Each of us gravitated toward a certain piece of the project which we were then able to compile into a single succinct and well-rounded solution.”

    Fellow team member Caleb Chaudry, a junior studying marketing, came away with a better understanding of how to create change.

    “It’s clear we all have a drive to make the world a better place,” Chaudry said. “I learned that in order to make a change, it’s best to start local; get the communities involved and you’ll have all the help you’ll ever need.”

    Team 6 members are:

    • Caleb Chaudry – Gatton College of Business and Economics       
    • Emma Hague – College of Public Health
    • Morgan Mahone (team captain) – College of Social Work
    • Evelyn Mickschl – College of Communication and Information
    • Tran Nguyen – College of Pharmacy, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Team 7 took second place with their strategy of, “One Community, One Country, One Climate.” Team 7 members are:

    • Noah Clements – College of Medicine
    • Anna Dong – College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
    • Sasha Sairajeev (team captain) – College of Arts and Sciences
    • Matthew Sepulveda – College of Arts and Sciences
    • Hanna Shoaf – Lincoln Memorial University

    Team 2 took third place with its presentation, “Global Stewards: Climate Impact Institute.” Team 2 members are:

    • Mary Winifred Edom – College of Arts and Sciences
    • Abby Knoy – College of Arts and Sciences
    • Ojaswi Piya – College of Nursing
    • Farhad Shahidi – Gatton College of Business and Economics

    For more information about Global Health Initiatives, contact Craig Borie, Global Health Initiative program manager, at craig.borie [at] uky.edu.

    A team of UK students created strategies addressing a global health issue and presented it to a panel of judges. This winning team will represent UK at the International Global Health Case Competition in Atlanta next year. Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationMedicineNursingPharmacyPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Sally Woodson

    Summary: On Nov. 6, 2021, interprofessional student teams representing 12 University of Kentucky colleges, Lincoln Memorial University and the University of Louisville, competed in the annual Global Health Case Competition, with a focus on implementing hurricane disaster preparedness strategies in a changing global climate.
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Kel Hahn Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 19, 2021) — On Thursday, Nov. 18, the University of Kentucky Office of Philanthropy honored seven UK employees and volunteers at the Terry B. Mobley Philanthropy Awards Ceremony. Held in the Harris Ballroom of the Gatton Student Center, the Mobley Awards reward staff members and volunteers who have made substantial, impactful contributions to the university’s philanthropic mission.

    During the ceremony, several nominators noted how each recipient persevered through extraordinary challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. From exporting routine operations to remote worksites to advancing the university’s $2.1 billion Kentucky Can: The 21st Century Campaign in uncertain times, this year’s Mobley Award winners not only demonstrated dedication, but also achieved remarkable results for the Office of Philanthropy.

    Each recipient receives a commemorative julep cup, a stipend and recognition on the wall of award winners in the Sturgill Philanthropy Building. This year’s award winners include:

    Front Line Award: Albert Kalim, technical support specialist for the UK Alumni Association; Darlene Simpson, gift acknowledgement coordinator for the Office of Philanthropy.

    The Front Line Award is presented to a UK Philanthropy, UK Alumni Association or other support staff member to recognize outstanding performance in support of philanthropy efforts at the university.

    Rising Achievement Award: Nathan P. Darce, director of philanthropy for the College of Communication and Information; Meredith M. Weber, senior associate director for communications and membership for the UK Alumni Association, and director of communications for the Office of Philanthropy.

    The Rising Achievement Award is presented to a professional staff member who has UK Philanthropy, UK Alumni Association or college/unit philanthropy or alumni relations tenure of fewer than five years, and who demonstrates excellent work performance, significant success and potential of further outstanding achievement and impact as a philanthropy or alumni professional.

    Professional Achievement Award: Gregory W. Laur, assistant vice president for philanthropy; Mary Beth Neiser, senior director of philanthropy for the College of Pharmacy.

    The Professional Achievement Award is presented to a professional staff member who has UK Philanthropy, UK Alumni Association or college/unit philanthropy or alumni relations tenure of five or more years, and who consistently demonstrates excellent work performance and has achieved significant success and impact as a philanthropy or alumni professional.

    Philanthropy Service Award: Jennifer W. Mynear, director of Jarrett’s Joy Car and volunteer with Kentucky Children’s Hospital and DanceBlue.

    The Philanthropy Service Award is presented to a UK senior professional, administrator, faculty member or volunteer who has demonstrated extraordinary support for the philanthropy effort at the university, is a strong advocate for philanthropy and is not a full-time UK Philanthropy or UK Alumni Association professional.

    The Mobley Awards are designed to honor Terry Mobley’s distinguished advancement career. A former basketball player who played under Adolph Rupp, Mobley returned to his alma mater in 1977 and used his connections to grow the university’s fundraising from $3 million annually to about $61 million. The awards program has honored more than 70 individuals since its inception.

    (Left to right:) Mary Beth Neiser, Darlene Simpson, Albert Kalim, Meredith M. Weber, Nathan P. Darce, Jennifer W. Mynear and Gregory W. Laur.Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationPharmacyKentucky Children's Hospital

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Summary: The Terry B. Mobley Philanthropy Awards honor staff members and volunteers who have made substantial, impactful contributions to the university’s philanthropic mission. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Mariah Kendell Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 19, 2021) — University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information integrated strategic communication senior Camille Wright has been selected to participate in the American Advertising Federation’s (AAF) Most Promising Multicultural Students Class of 2022 program.

    The prestigious program connects the nation's top multicultural advertising students to leading industry professionals. Selected students gain invaluable networking and professional development opportunities. 

    Since AAF’s Most Promising Multicultural Students program launched in 1997, less than a thousand students nationwide have been selected to participate. This year, Wright was one of 50 students picked from a competitive pool of thousands of applicants across the country. She is the first UK student to ever be admitted to the program. 

    “When I learned I was selected, I literally started screaming,” Wright said. In February, she will make her first-ever trip to New York City to attend the program. 

    “This program will give Camille national exposure, allowing her to connect with top recruiters, agencies and peers,” said Adriane Grumbein, an associate professor in the Department of Integrated Strategic Communication.

    Achievements of this caliber are not uncommon for Wright. She has been recognized in various capacities during her college career and faculty and staff regard her as an integral part of the Department of Integrated Strategic Communication and other campus organizations like Ad Club and PRSSA with which she is involved.

    "I was thrilled when I was informed an ISC student has been selected," said ISC Department Chair Chike Anyaegbunam. "But I was not surprised when I learned that the student is our promising, illustrious and versatile Camille Wright."

    Wright attributes her success to the support of faculty like Grumbein, who encouraged her to apply.

    “The whole department is always super supportive. Whenever there is an opportunity, they always send it our way because they have so much faith in us,” Wright said. “It just encourages you more to want to apply because you have faculty and staff that are rooting for you the whole time.”

    Wright will graduate from UK in May of 2022 with degrees in integrated strategic communication and digital media design.

    Learn more about AAF’s Most Promising Multicultural Students Programs at https://aaf.org/mpms/.

    Camille WrightOrganizational Unit: Communication and InformationFine ArtsArt

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information integrated strategic communication senior Camille Wright has been selected to participate in the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Students Class of 2022 program.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Ryan Girves Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 22, 2021)  For University of Kentucky alumna Erin Simon, esports changed her life. 

    The billion-dollar industry has opened doors for her she didn’t know existed. Now, a multimedia personality, host, producer and consultant within esports, gaming and entertainment, Simon wants to open those same doors for others at the university through the Erin Ashley Simon Esports Internship Fund.

    “I wouldn't be where I am without UK,” said Simon, who is a 2014 graduate of the College of Communication and Information. “UK was where I really built my journalism skills and had professors and fellow students who believed in me and my future. Now that I'm a broadcaster in gaming and entertainment, as well as a co-owner of the new esports organization XSET, it's my turn to pay it forward.”

    Home to the first-of-its-kind global gaming and esports program, UK brings together academics, community, professional development, collegiate competition and multidisciplinary research around the growing global sport. Together, UK and its gaming partner, Gen.G, are creating an innovative program unlike any other in the country.

    “I wanted to start this scholarship because accessibility is not only an issue in education, but also an issue in esports and gaming,” Simon said. “I want to help create an additional route for the youth to not only gain experiences in esports and get an education but to have an amazing experience at the University of Kentucky, the same way I did when I attended.”

    The Erin Ashley Simon Esports Internship Fund will include a multi-year internship, which will offer extensive mentorship and experiential learning opportunities that engage and educate students on the many facets of the dynamic esports industry that extend far beyond the classroom. 

    Financial support will also be provided to recipients with demonstrable financial need who wish to pursue UK’s esports program. The initiative seeks to make the UK experience possible for students who may not have otherwise had the opportunity to attend. 

    Leaders at the university, like Heath Price, UK associate chief information officer, believe the internship fund will add an exciting new depth and dimension to UK’s esports program, while also helping the university to reach a broader student audience. 

    “UK wants to be a thought leader in the esports and video game community, building a foundation of technology investment that pushes the envelope in areas of social and competitive gaming and seeks to serve important community values — democratizing access to great career opportunities; respecting people on- and offline; and intentional outreach to interested parties irrespective of race, gender or identity,” Price said. 

    “Practical experiences are very important in the competitive professional landscape of today and tomorrow,” Price continued. “Opportunities like the Erin Ashley Simon Esports Internship Fund, that provide a combination of experience and mentorship, have the potential to be transformative when you consider the preparation necessary to compete for jobs and pursue careers across the rapidly evolving video game and esports industries.”

    The application for the internship fund will open in the fall of 2022. The criteria to apply is as follows:

    • Applicants must possess a minimum of a 3.00 unweighted high school grade-point average, out of a possible 4.0. 
    • Applicants must possess demonstrable financial need as evidenced in their individual financial aid record. 
    • Esports experience with gaming ties, which can include coding, broadcasting, content creation, event organization and more is preferred. 
    • Applicants are holistically considered on an individual basis. Diversity in all its forms is welcome and encouraged. 

    The landscape of esports is ever evolving, particularly collegiate esports.

    As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, UK has a bold and vital mission — to nurture an outstanding learning community that inspires students, staff and faculty alike, preparing them for an increasingly diverse and technological world.

    Not only will this fund help to fulfill the university’s mission, but it will also break barriers for students like Simon who didn’t know a future in the esports and gaming industry was possible.

    “I look forward to the start of this scholarship and am so thankful for UK, JMI, Gen.G, XSET and other companies that are interested in working with me on this opportunity for our youth,” Simon said.

    To learn more about the esports initiative at the university, go to: www.uky.edu/esports/

    More About Erin Simon

    Erin Ashley Simon is a multimedia personality, host, producer and consultant within esports, gaming and entertainment. Her love and passion for these areas has helped to shape who she is today, pushing the culture forward, breaking barriers as a female in the industry. In doing so, Simon was the first individual female public figure to be the face of PUMA’s new esports line. Additionally, she has worked tirelessly behind the scenes in the industry to provide more opportunities for those in underserved, underrepresented and marginalized communities, working with companies like Evil Geniuses, XSET and one of the largest video game publishers, Riot Games. Simon is also co-owner of one of the fastest growing esports organizations XSET. Within her role at the organization, she is helping to shape the culture of the organization to ensure the org has content and deep-rooted connections in music, entertainment and the gaming industry. Simon has been tapped by well-known brands and organizations such as AT&T, Riot Games, Bleacher Report, TBS, EA Sports, General Motors, Google Play, Tampax, Columbia Records, PUMA, Turtle Beach, Bacardi, Crown Royal, Forbes, Gen.G, Evil Geniuses, Cloud 9, The Wall Street Journal, University of Kentucky, Bleacher Report and more. As Simon's career moves forward, she looks to continue to build the intersection between gaming and culture, paving a path forward for future generations. Learn more about Simon at erinsimon.com.

    Erin Ashley Simon is working to break barriers in the esports industry for UK students. Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: For University of Kentucky alumna Erin Simon, esports changed her life. The billion-dollar industry has opened doors for her she didn’t know existed. Now, a multimedia personality, host, producer and consultant within esports, gaming and entertainment, Simon wants to open those same doors for others at the university through the Erin Ashley Simon Esports Internship Fund.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Catherine Hayden Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 16, 2021) — The 2021 James Madison Award from the University of Kentucky is going to Bennie Ivory and Stan Macdonald, both retired from the Louisville Courier-Journal, where their work provided high-quality journalism in Kentucky for 44 years, especially in numerous efforts to protect and expand First Amendment rights, including the transparency of public agencies in the state.

    Bennie Ivory was executive editor of the Courier-Journal from 1997 until 2013, and “excelled at encouraging and supporting aggressive investigative reporting at all levels,” First Amendment lawyer Jon Fleischaker, a previous James Madison Award winner who nominated both men, who worked closely with Ivory as the newspaper’s First Amendment attorney. “That effort was done in many ways, including resisting attempts by many to impinge on First Amendment rights and to uphold the public’s right to full transparency of public agencies. Bennie was totally supportive of efforts to enforce and expand the public’s right to full transparency of public agencies. Perhaps the best example of that is that in a time of real pressure to cut expenditures, he ensured that the effort to open records relating to the many failures of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services in dealing with child abuse was pursued to an extraordinarily successful conclusion.”

    Fleischaker also cited Ivory’s decision to publish the details of a lawsuit relating to clergy sexual misconduct against the Catholic Church in Lexington when other news media would not.

    Stan Macdonald began reporting for the Courier-Journal in 1969 and was city editor and special projects editor, retiring in 2013. He served as either lead reporter or primary editor for important series on topics such as law enforcement’s inadequate and inappropriate response to domestic abuse, inappropriate use of force by Louisville police, unequal treatment for female high school athletes that violated federal law, lack of enforcement by Kentucky authorities for serious coal-mining violations and voting irregularities in Eastern Kentucky, which was runner-up for a Pulitzer Prize.

    Macdonald also helped draft “substantial amendments to the Open Records Law and Open Meetings Law, recommendations which were implemented,” wrote Fleischaker. “During this entire period there were many outstanding journalists at the Courier-Journal, some of whom have been honored with this award. None is more deserving than Stan.”

    “Bennie and Stan always evidenced a deep commitment to the public's right to know and made it a driving force of their careers,” said UK Journalism Professor Al Cross, who was the C-J’s political reporter.

    The James Madison Award is scheduled to be presented at the Scripps Howard State of the First Amendment Address, to be delivered by news-media attorneys Tom Miller and Elizabeth Woodford, beginning 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, via Zoom. Details of the event are posted at https://ci.uky.edu/jam/state-first-amendment-address.

    The James Madison Award is presented annually by the Scripps Howard First Amendment Center of the School of Journalism and Media in UK’s College of Communication and Information to honor those who have made outstanding contributions to First Amendment rights. The award was created in 2006, and honors the nation’s fourth president, whose extraordinary efforts led to the ratification of the Bill of Rights. Nominees must have significant ties to Kentucky, and their efforts must have resulted in the preservation or expansion of freedom of the press and/or freedom of speech. The award recognizes a long-term commitment to these ideals.

    Bennie Ivory and Stan MacdonaldOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The 2021 James Madison Award from the University of Kentucky is going to Bennie Ivory and Stan Macdonald, both retired from the Louisville Courier-Journal, where their work provided high-quality journalism in Kentucky for 44 years, especially in numerous efforts to protect and expand First Amendment rights, including the transparency of public agencies in the state.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Amanda Nelson Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 12, 2021) — The work of University of Kentucky College of Education faculty and students will be showcased at the University Council for Educational Administration’s (UCEA) annual meeting. Taking place in Columbus, Ohio, Nov. 11-14, the event provides a platform to connect and share the latest information on preparing and serving as educational leaders.

    “Making an impact in schools and communities is at the top of our priority list. To have our college’s faculty and graduate scholars invited to share impactful work on UCEA’s national stage shows the tremendous level of accomplishments they have been making. We are continuing to find ways to be innovative and ensure our work is reaching those it impacts most,” said UK College of Education Dean Julian Vasquez Heilig. 

    Notably, two UK College of Education doctoral scholars taking part in conference sessions are part of the council’s Barbara L. Jackson Scholars Network.  Rasheed Flowers, a scholar in the Department of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation, was selected as a Jackson Scholar in 2020, and Stacey Love, a scholar in the Department of Educational Leadership Studies, was named a Jackson Scholar in 2021.  

    The theme of this year’s UCEA meeting is "Emerging Stronger: Reuniting to Advance Educational Leadership."

    Faculty and scholars accepted to take part represent the UK College of Education’s Department of Educational Leadership Studies and Department of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation. Additional details on presentation topics, including collaborators from other universities, can be found in the UCEA conference program

    Department of Educational Leadership Studies presenters include: 

    • Jeri M. Heileman, Graduate Student Ignite Session, “Towards a Strategic Onboarding Process for Online Doctoral Students”; 

    • Stuart Keogh, Ian MacPhail, Jessica Martinkosky and Jane E. Walsh, panel discussion, with Stacey Love and Dan Wolford serving as facilitators, “Practitioners, Parents, and Students: How Does This Trifecta Impact Teaching and Learning in Times of Pandemic?”; 

    • Ellie Holliday and Amanda Potterton, paper session, “Education Abroad Health and Safety Policies: Analyzing Reliance on U.S. Federal Travel Guidance”; 

    • Justin M. Bathon, Erica Friis (Fayette County Public Schools), Ellie Holliday, Dan O’Hair (UK College of Communication and Information), Mary John O’Hair, Karen Perry, Amanda U. Potterton and Lu Young, panel discussion, “Leading and Learning in Times of Crisis: Twin Pandemics, Fake News, Conspiracy Theories, and Insurrections”; 

    • Justin M. Bathon, special session, “Leadership for Deeper Learning: Lessons From 30 Innovative, Deeper Learning Schools”; 

    • John Beuhring Nash, conversation on developing the Café Series podcast; and 

    • John Beuhring Nash, paper session facilitator, “Technological Innovations in Leadership Preparation and Development.” 

    Department of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation presenters include: 

    • Kayla M. Johnson, paper session, “Learning on the Mountain: Illuminating Educational Inequities During COVID-19 to Develop Community-Informed Policy in Peru”; 

    • Julian Vasquez Heilig, paper session facilitator, “The Challenges of Leading Complex Organizations”; 

    • Rasheed Flowers, Jackson Scholars Network session, “Pray and Play: The Impact of Fellowship of Christian Athletes Among African American Football Players"; 

    • Julian Vasquez Heilig, paper session, “Beyond Social Justice: School Finance Equity and Civil Rights”; and 

    • Julian Vasquez Heilig, networking table facilitator, “Writing for Nonacademic Audiences.” 

    Photo provided by UK College of Education.Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationEducationGraduate School

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The work of University of Kentucky College of Education faculty and students will be showcased at the University Council for Educational Administration’s annual meeting. The event provides a platform to connect and share the latest information on preparing and serving as educational leaders.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Akhira Umar Thursday

    LEXINGTON, KY. (Nov. 11, 2021) — Combining their expertise in communications, the beauty industry, medicine and women’s health, two University of Kentucky alumnae are using their passion for helping women to change the skincare industry.

    Cecil Booth, a 1984 advertising graduate (now integrated strategic communication) from the College of Communication and Information, left behind a 20-year career in a Fortune 500 global beauty company to start her own company. In 2006, she started Beauty Booth with her sister, gynecologist Rebecca Booth, a 1981 general studies graduate from the College of Arts and Sciences. The sisters are equal co-founders and owners, but Cecil Booth serves as president and CEO, while Rebecca Booth serves as vice president and scientific officer. Together they founded the brand VENeffect.

    VENeffect is named after the Venus effect, a metaphor the Booth sisters came up with to describe women at peak hormonal vitality. The idea behind the company came after Rebecca Booth, who had 20 years of experience at her own medical practice, talked to Cecil Booth about the lack of understanding women have about their hormones and the few solutions to their hormonal challenges.

    “As a marketer working in a beauty company, I kind of had an aha moment,” Cecil Booth said. “Why don’t women know more about this so they can be strategic and plan for it, and where are the solutions that talk about the effects of hormonal change? And that’s when we decided to start the company.”

    With years of experience working for Alberto-Culver (now Unilever) in brand managing, new product development, acquisition, public relations and advertising, together with the stock options she had accumulated through her work, Cecil Booth was well-equipped to launch her business. What’s more, she felt her best work came when she was working on something she was truly interested in, which was the intersection of beauty and wellness. 

    Two years after forming Beauty Booth, the sisters launched their first product. Rebecca Booth authored a book titled “The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle…at Any Age” which details the intricate design of women’s unique hormonal cycle and how they can implement strategies through a diet, lifestyle and beauty program to maximize overall health and vitality throughout their lifetime as women. 

    Considering the book’s focus on hormone optimization, the sisters spent six years researching and developing skincare products that followed suit. In 2012, they launched VENeffect skincare, their first product line. What was originally four products at launch has now grown to 10. While the sisters plan to expand in other categories such as hair, body and supplements, Cecil Booth said it’s unlikely their brand will grow to hundreds of products as they simply wish to “provide focused and effective solutions” for women.

    “What makes our skincare line special is it’s the first line of skincare dedicated to optimizing skin based on hormonal variation throughout a woman’s lifetime,” Cecil Booth said. “Much of the beauty world is geared around the sun or environmental factors or genetics or just pure surface improvement. But for women, the way that hormones ebb and flow throughout the month and then decline, estrogen over time has a dramatic effect on our aesthetic. Estrogen is often misunderstood or vilified. So VENeffect is needed because women need to understand the science and understand their hormonal cycle and then they need to be given options for how they can optimize.”

    If you would like to learn more about VENeffect, visit www.veneffect.com/

    Cecil (left) and Rebecca BoothOrganizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Combining their expertise in communications, the beauty industry, medicine and women’s health, two University of Kentucky alumnae are using their passion for helping women to change the skincare industry.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 9, 2021) — With beauty, brains and the Big Blue Nation supporting her, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information (CI) alumna plans to try her luck at trading in her title as Miss Kentucky USA for Miss USA.

    Elle Smith, a 2020 journalism graduate, won the title of Miss Kentucky USA in May 2021. While her performance may have had some people believing she was a pageant veteran, this was her first time competing in a pageant. And the road that led her to the pageant life started at UK.

    Although Smith fell in love with UK the first time she stepped on campus, she felt like the odd one out once she started her freshman year. Not only was she unsure of what to major in, but she also seemed to be one of the few of her peers who hadn’t competed in pageants previously. But she set her mind to make a change. 

    Her interest in writing and politics led her to CI. Once she got a camera in her hands, it was only a matter of time before she fell in love with journalism. During her years in the college, she participated in the UK Student News Network, the Kentucky Kernel, WRFL and the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ), the latter of which she served as vice president during her senior year. It was through an NABJ conference that Smith landed her job with WHAS-TV in Louisville.

    “I felt so much support from staff, faculty, peers. And there are also so many different opportunities for journalism students,” Smith said. “I think those are what led me to get this job in Louisville right out of school.”

    WHAS-TV, an ABC-affiliated station, is a top 50 market, so Smith came into the job a bit intimidated. As a southern Indiana multimedia journalist, she is responsible for finding, pitching, shooting and editing hard news stories every day. She has a list of about 100 contacts that she has spent extensive time building relationships with, on and off the clock. She said her job was the kind you took home and was constantly on your brain. But thanks to her first “big girl job,” she was finally able to afford competing in her first pageant. 

    In December 2020, Smith committed to competing in the May 2021 Miss Kentucky USA pageant. Leading up to the competition, she prepared diligently, meeting a pageant coach and personal trainer multiple times a week, then every day as the competition drew near. 

    When the competition finally arrived, Smith was terrified. But once she was literally pushed onto the stage, she said she relaxed and had the most fun she’s had in a while. She competed as Miss Germantown against over 40 other women from across the state. After individual interviews and preliminaries, which included swimsuit and evening gown, the competition was cut down to just 15 women who competed in swimsuit, evening gown and on-stage question.

    Luckily for Smith, her life experiences helped prepare her for the pageant. Not only were interviews part of her everyday routine at work, but she also had modeled occasionally since her senior year of high school. While she acknowledges the Miss USA organization focuses on glamour, she believes they also value well-rounded women, and Smith clearly fit the bill.

    “The moment they called my name it was shock and then relief just because there had been so much hard work to get me to that moment,” Smith said. “And I never walked in wanting to win. I wanted to do the best that I could but also know that I had put in the work to be there, put in all the work I needed to do to be on that stage, and I could say that. That’s why I would’ve been happy no matter what.”

    As Miss Kentucky USA, Smith is representing the state for the next year in addition to working her full-time job as a reporter. She has made appearances at ball games and other pageants across different states while also appearing on camera to cover news stories for work.

    The juggling act that her responsibilities require are only intensified with the preparations Smith must make for the Miss USA pageant coming up on Nov. 26-29, 2021, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She will spend two weeks in Tulsa competing against 50 women on a grueling 4 a.m. to midnight schedule. Ahead of that competition, Smith has to design her own gown, state costume and self-branding on top of physically and mentally preparing herself. If she wins Miss USA, she will give her Miss Kentucky USA title to the Kentucky runner-up and move to Los Angeles on a full salary to represent the nation for a year. 

    It’s a tall order, but Smith thinks all the effort is worth it. After all, she entered pageantry to grow as a person through all the life skills and lessons pageant life brings. 

    “There’s no balance right now just because I think you have one year to take full advantage of all the opportunities that are given to you,” Smith said. “And so I am full-fledged trying to go 24/7, which is exhausting at times, but it’ll be so worth it next year when I pass down the crown and I’m like I took advantage of every single opportunity that was given to me over the past 365 days.”

    If you would like to learn more about the Miss Kentucky USA organization, visit www.misskentuckyusa.com/kyusa. If you would like to learn more about the Miss USA organization, visit www.missusa.com.

    Elle Smith, a 2020 journalism graduate.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Elle Smith, a 2020 journalism graduate, won the title of Miss Kentucky USA in May 2021. While her performance may have had some people believing she was a pageant veteran, this was her first time competing in a pageant. And the road that led her to the pageant life started at UK.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Erika Engstrom Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 1, 2021) — The 2021 State of the First Amendment Address, sponsored by the Scripps Howard First Amendment Center housed in the School of Journalism and Media at the University of Kentucky, will be delivered by media attorneys Tom Miller and Elizabeth Woodford, who successfully argued on behalf of the Kernel Press Inc., publisher of the student-produced Kentucky Kernel, in a yearslong open records case involving UK. In March of this year, the Kentucky Supreme Court ruled that the university acted improperly when it prevented the Kernel from obtaining records regarding its reporting of a Title IX investigation.

    Miller and Woodford, both with the Lexington firm Miller, Griffin & Marks, will discuss the case University of Kentucky v. Kernel Press, Inc., and the implications of the Kentucky Open Records Act, which stipulates "free and open examination of public records" even though such examination may cause “inconvenience or embarrassment to public officials or others." 

    The address is scheduled for 5-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, via Zoom..​ The event is free and open to the public. Access to the event will be available at https://ci.uky.edu/jam/state-first-amendment-address.

    Information about the Scripps Howard First Amendment Center at UK's School of Journalism and Media is available at https://ci.uky.edu/jam/scripps-howard-first-amendment-center

    Attorneys Elizabeth Woodford (left) and Tom Miller.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The 2021 State of the First Amendment Address, sponsored by the Scripps Howard First Amendment Center housed in the School of Journalism and Media at the University of Kentucky, is scheduled for 5-6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, via Zoom.​
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Danielle Donham Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 29, 2021) — The 40th annual Kentucky Book Festival returns to Lexington with a mix of virtual and in-person events scheduled from Monday, Nov. 1, to Saturday, Nov. 6. This year’s celebration features 140 authors who will sign books, participate in discussions and more, culminating in a daylong celebration at Joseph-Beth Booksellers on Saturday, Nov. 6. The weekdays events are a mix of in-person and ticketed events available at http://kybookfestival.org/2021-events

    These signings, conversations, trivia, meals, presentations and activities serve to celebrate the literary heritage within the Commonwealth. The University of Kentucky is the Main Stage sponsor of the festival on Nov. 6.

    Authors and editors from the University Press of Kentucky and UK, including College of Engineering alumnus and former UK trustee James HardymonCollege of Arts and Sciences and Lewis Honors College alumna and chef Ouita Michel, and College of Arts and Sciences faculty member and Kentucky Poet Laureate Crystal Wilkinson, will participate in various events during the festival. 

    Authors: Nonfiction

    Authors: Fiction and Poetry 

    • Bernard Clay, author of “English Lit.” Clay is a graduate of the UK Creative Writing Program and a member of the Affrilachian Poets collective.
    • Bobbie Ann Mason, author of “Dear Ann: A Novel.” Mason is a graduate of the College of Arts and Sciences, former writer-in-residence at UK and winner of two Southern Book Awards.
    • Crystal Wilkinson, author of “Perfect Black.” Wilkinson is a College of Arts and Sciences faculty member and Kentucky Poet Laureate. 
    • Ed McClanahan, author of “Juanita and the Frog Prince.” McClanahan is a graduate of UK and frequently guest lectures creative writing workshops on campus.
    • Frank X Walker, author of “Black Box: Poems.” Walker is a professor and the director of the MFA program for English in the Department of English in the College of Arts and Sciences. He is also a former Poet Laureate of Kentucky and founder of the Affrilachian Poets.
    • Gurney Norman, author of “Allegiance.” Norman is a UK graduate and professor of English in the College of Arts and Sciences as well as a former Kentucky Poet Laureate. 
    • Shawn Pryor, author of “Free Throw Contest.” Pryor is a computer support specialist for the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment School of Human Environmental Sciences.
    • Silas House, author of “Clay’s Quilt.” Silas is the 2021 recipient of the Kentucky Governor’s Award for his service to the arts in his home state.

    Other events featuring UK authors include:

    A program of Kentucky Humanities, the Kentucky Book Festival is a celebration of reading, writing and publishing which takes place each November. Festival events seek to connect booklovers and authors, spark engaging conversations and empower readers by providing access to new books as well as opportunities to learn more about writing in a fun, safe environment. It’s the biggest bookish celebration in Kentucky! 

    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtHonors CollegeLibrariesPatterson School of Diplomacy and International CommercePublic HealthUniversity Press of Kentucky

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: The 40th annual Kentucky Book Festival returns to Lexington with a mix of virtual and in-person events scheduled from Monday, Nov. 1, to Saturday, Nov. 6. This year’s celebration features 140 authors who will sign books, participate in discussions and more, culminating in a daylong celebration at Joseph-Beth Booksellers on Nov. 6.  Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Amy Brooks Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 27, 2021) — Linda Rutherford, executive vice president of People & Communications for Southwest Airlines, will deliver the 2021 James C. Bowling Executive-in-Residence lecture, titled “Taking Corporate America to Task: Activism in the Workplace,” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 4, in the University of Kentucky’s Gatton Student Center Worsham Cinema. This is the Bowling Lecture Series’ 22nd anniversary.

    The program, which is free and open to the public, is sponsored by the UK Department of Integrated Strategic Communication and the College of Communication and Information.

    Rutherford serves as chief communications officer for Dallas-based Southwest Airlines, the nation’s largest airline in terms of domestic customer boardings. In her role, she oversees communication and outreach; culture and engagement; diversity, equity and inclusion; people (human resources); and the Southwest Airlines University, which is the company’s employee development and training function. Prior to joining Southwest Airlines in 1992, she was a journalist in the Dallas area, including working for the Dallas Times Herald, and she began her career with Newsweek magazine in New York.

    A Texas Tech University alumna with a bachelor’s degree in journalism, Rutherford describes herself as having “a passion for education” and has shared her experience with today’s youth by serving as an adjunct instructor for undergraduate courses at universities throughout the country. Regarded as an expert in her field, she also authored a chapter in "Mastering Business for Strategic Communicators" (2017) and provided the foreword for "Business Acumen for Strategic Communicators" (2020).

    Rutherford is known for her participation in professional organizations and through service on advisory boards. She has dedicated her time to organizations including: The Make-A-Wish Foundation (current board member); Arthur W. Page Society (current trustee and co-chair of the member insights subcommittee); Texas Tech University President’s Search Committee (2016); Texas Tech College of Media & Communication National Advisory Board (current member); and Institute for Public Relations Board of Trustees (current trustee and immediate past chair).

    Some of her recognitions for leadership excellence and achievements in communications and civic involvement include: 2017 Citizen of the Year, Metrocrest Chamber of Commerce; 2016 Metrocrest Chamber of Commerce Business Woman of the Year; 2016 PR Week named one of 36 Women Champions of PR; 2012 inductee into the PR News Measurement Hall of Fame; 2009 inductee in to the Texas Tech College of Mass Communications Hall of Fame; and 2008 inductee into PR News’ Public Relations Hall of Fame.

    “We’re thrilled to welcome Linda Rutherford to UK,” said Chike Anyaegbunam, chair of the Department of Integrated Strategic Communication. “Her experience as a public relations instructor, her training and stint as a journalist, and her extensive industry expertise in corporate strategic communication, position her as an especially appropriate speaker for the 2021 James C. Bowling Executive-in-Residence program.”

    Anyaegbunam added that "both students and faculty will learn a lot from her about the practice of corporate public relations given her long list of extraordinary accomplishments in the profession.”

    In addition to honoring the Bowling Lecturer-in-Residence, the series names an annual awardee for Excellence in Public Relations. The 2021 winner is Susan Straub, longtime communications director for the Lexington Mayor’s Office.

    Straub is serving her fourth Lexington mayor as communications director, a job which she began in 1992 during the administration of Mayor Pam Miller. To date, she has served as communications director for Jim Newberry, Jim Gray and, currently, Mayor Linda Gorton. She is a College of Communication and Information journalism graduate; in 2018 UK named Straub a distinguished alumna of the School of Journalism and Media.

    The Bowling Executive-in-Residence Program began in 2000 and brings to UK nationally known public relations practitioners to not only deliver an address, but also meet with students interested in public relations careers. The program includes the Executive-in-Residence visit, the Excellence in PR Award and a scholarship for a senior integrated strategic communication major with an emphasis in public relations. The 2021 scholarship recipient will be announced at the lecture.

    The series honors James C. Bowling, the late retired assistant chairman of Philip Morris Companies Inc. He attended UK and later served the university as a member of the UK Development Council. In addition to serving on several national boards, Bowling also worked with the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, the UK Gatton College of Business and Economics and the UK Sanders-Brown Center on Aging.

    Linda RutherfordOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Linda Rutherford, executive vice president of People & Communications for Southwest Airlines, will deliver the 2021 James C. Bowling Executive-in-Residence lecture, titled “Taking Corporate America to Task: Activism in the Workplace,” at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 4, in the University of Kentucky’s Gatton Student Center Worsham Cinema.
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Akhira Umar Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 21, 2021) — When her sons were being bullied in school by other kids, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna was devastated and aggravated. After exhausting the proper channels for action, she decided to turn the tables on the bullies through education.

    Jeanne Marie Tidwell, a 1983 communication graduate, took the writing confidence she had gained at UK to create a cross-media series aimed at teaching children from kindergarten to third grade the importance of the Golden Rule, kindness, manners and empathy. Soon, she will be adding an online game to her repertoire that already includes an interactive mobile app, full-length musical album and Ph.D. created school curriculum.

    The “Sir Dapp!” series follows a rapping, dancing Schnauzer, named Sir Dapp, and his family and friends as they navigate social situations — teaching by example the right and wrong ways to do things not only for themselves but others.

    While the fictional world Tidwell created is quite literally all fun and games, her family acknowledges the inspiration behind it was much darker. Tidwell’s adult sons, Steven and Kyle, have vivid memories of their ordeals in school and understand there wasn’t much their mother could do at the time to stop it.

    “Through the experiences that I was having, I know my mom was there in every step of the way when there was an issue where we had to talk to a teacher, talk to another parent,” Steven said. “She was always there to kind of be the advocate.”

    Tidwell’s sons were told by teachers to “stop tattling” while the administration told their mother that there was nothing they could do. The bullying eventually got so bad for Kyle that switching schools was the only solution.

    “Being bullied is never easy, especially as a kid, and you’re growing up in an environment that doesn’t make you feel very good,” Kyle said. “My mom went through it with us. So, it’s just as difficult for the parent as it is for the child.”

    As difficult as it was for Tidwell and her family, she used the experience as creative fuel. Before Kyle, the younger of the two siblings, had graduated high school, the idea for “Sir Dapp!” was born. 

    “I channeled what I was feeling about my children being bullied and the frustration I had in trying to think of ways that I could help maybe other kids relate to each other better and understand that no one wants to be talked down to, no one wants to be harassed,” Tidwell said. “And I was able to use my communication and writing skills and formulate the basis for what became the ‘Sir Dapp! Game Show’ app that we launched in 2018.”

    The app showcases social emotional type categories that direct children to complete reason-based rhymes and solve whodunit mysteries, creating a fun platform for children to absorb lessons in consideration of others, self-care and social and environmental responsibility. While Tidwell had originally wanted to create a children’s television show, she and her sons realized that an app would be a better avenue and more effective since it is interactive and mobile. The digital product studio heading the project, Lightseed Inc., then had the app reviewed by Natascha Crandall, a Ph.D. expert in children’s growth and development, to create the curriculum for teachers. 

    Creating the “Sir Dapp!” concept and bringing it to fruition was a family affair under the organization name Crystal Tree Group. Tidwell provides the creative backbone and writing, Kyle provides the business and marketing expertise, and Steven helps with game design, public outreach and a little bit of everything else. Tidwell’s husband, Steve, joins his wife as an investor in the products.

    “It’s interesting having your family work with this product that we all believe so much in,” Kyle said. “And we all have a personal history as to why we all believe in ‘Sir Dapp!,’ in many different ways and many different perspectives. We’re all passionate about it and we believe in what we’re doing.”

    Kyle was the one who suggested creating an accompanying album for the “Sir Dapp!” crew. The cross-genre musical album, “This is Our Time,” features all of the characters who make up the fictional band, Sir Dapp & the Paw Prints, and explores similar lessons featured in the app along with messages of self-empowerment, diversity and the power of words. Despite writing moral lessons into the lyrics, Tidwell wanted the musical quality of the album to be enjoyable to everyone, not just kids. To achieve this, they worked with Miami Beach Recording Studios and music technologist Luciano “Looch” Delgado, who has worked with talents like Bonnie Pointer and Cee Lo Green. Three songs on the album have won awards from the Great American Songwriting Contest and the John Lennon Songwriting Contest.

    The family is currently working with the United Kingdom-based digital development studio Dubit on an online game version of “Sir Dapp!” to be featured on the Roblox platform that presents the brand’s values in a treasure hunt genre. The game, titled “Sir Dapp’s Mysterious Manor,” will launch Oct. 25. With Dubit’s clientele of companies like Discovery Channel and Cartoon Network, Tidwell hopes the game will bring them enough attention to attract a publisher for the handful of children’s books she has already written that expand on the world of “Sir Dapp!”

    With all these different avenues and the expansion of their reach, she wants her creations to help young kids communicate better with one another to prevent the physical and emotional turmoil her sons experienced.

    “I don’t want any kid to ever feel that way. That’s what drives me,” Tidwell said. “It’s important. Someone has to talk about it. That’s the main drive for all of us.” For more information about the “Sir Dapp! Game Show” or Sir Dapp & the Paw Prints, visit https://sirdapp.com/. If you would like more information about “The Mysterious Manor,” visit www.roblox.com/games/6336130187/The-Mysterious-Manor-PRE-ALPHA.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: When her sons were being bullied in school by other kids, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna was devastated and aggravated. After exhausting the proper channels for action, she decided to turn the tables on the bullies through education. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Erika Engstrom Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 19, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Scripps Howard First Amendment Center is accepting nominations for its James Madison Award, which honors a Kentuckian who is a champion of the First Amendment. The center, in the College of Communication and Information’s School of Journalism and Media, is accepting nominations to recognize those whose contributions protect or expand First Amendment freedoms.

    The nominator must submit a letter identifying the nominee, listing the nominee’s address, phone number and position, and explain why the nominee would be a worthy recipient. The letter should detail the specific efforts taken on behalf of First Amendment rights and should discuss obstacles and difficulties as well as the impact of the nominee’s efforts. 

    The James Madison Award recognizes someone who has worked in one or more of these areas: open government and open records; promotion of the watchdog role of the press; defense against government or private censorship, or robust debate in the marketplace of ideas.

    Nominees must have significant ties to Kentucky and their efforts must have resulted in the preservation or expansion of freedom of the press and/or freedom of speech. Dedication to the First Amendment principle of free expression is not accomplished in a day’s work but rather a lifetime. Thus, the award recognizes a long-term commitment to such ideals.

    Honorees do not have to be journalists. Nominees may include, for example, educators, lawyers, judges, scholars, librarians, students or ordinary citizens. The most deserving recipient will be someone who has made a significant contribution regardless of how much public attention it has received. 

    Send nomination letters via email to John Cruz, School of Journalism and Media projects manager, at john.cruz [at] uky.edu by Friday, Nov. 5.

    This year’s State of the First Amendment Address and James Madison Award will be presented at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17, via Zoom. The featured speakers are Tom Miller and Elizabeth Woodford, the media law attorneys who successfully argued on behalf of the Kentucky Kernel in University of Kentucky vs. Kernel Press, Inc. Event details will follow.

    For more information about the James Madison Award and past winners, go to https://ci.uky.edu/jam/james-madison-award.

    Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky Scripps Howard First Amendment Center is accepting nominations for its James Madison Award, which honors a Kentuckian who is a champion of the First Amendment.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Grace Colville Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 18, 2021) — Flu shots are now available for University of Kentucky students, faculty and staff. See below for a list of locations to receive your flu shot. UK HealthCare employees should see their department manager to receive their flu shot. If their manager has not received their flu shot toolkit, UK HealthCare employees are encouraged to get their shot at one of the retail pharmacy locations.

    Please bring your insurance card with you when you receive your flu shot.

    Gatton Student Center Blue Box Theater

    Students and employees can receive their free flu shot at the GSC Blue Box Theater. Walk-ins are welcome. You may also make an appointment here.

    • Monday-Friday: 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

    University Health Service

    Students can receive free flu shots in the first-floor lobby of UHS with a valid Student ID. Walk-ins are welcome and encouraged on each of the following dates from 9 a.m.-noon and 1-6 p.m. 

    • Tuesday, Oct. 19
    • Thursday, Oct. 21
    • Tuesday, Oct. 26
    • Thursday, Oct. 28

    If you are unable to get a flu shot at UHS during one of these days, call 859-323-2778 to make an appointment.

    UK Retail Pharmacy Locations

    UK students and employees may also receive their flu shot at any UK Retail Pharmacy site listed below. Make an appointment here. Walk-ins will be accommodated when possible, but appointments are preferred. If you need assistance, please call 833-333-UKRx (8579) toll-free and speak to the location of your choice.

    • Chandler Retail Pharmacy 1000 S. Limestone First Floor, Room A.01.114 Lexington, KY 40536 Phone: 859-218-3340
    • Good Samaritan Retail Pharmacy 310 S. Limestone Room C-017 Lexington, KY 40508 Phone: 859-218-4777
    • Kentucky Clinic Pharmacy 740 S. Limestone First Floor, Room J134 Lexington, KY 40536 Phone: 859-323-5855
    • Turfland Clinic Pharmacy 2195 Harrodsburg Road Lexington, KY 40504 Phone: 859-257-5899
    • UK Bluegrass Clinic Pharmacy 3101 Beaumont Centre Circle, Room 135 Lexington, KY 40513 Phone: 859-562-0220
    • Alumni Park Plaza 2317 Alumni Park Plaza Lexington, KY 40517
      • Open Saturdays 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

    When receiving your flu shot, there are a few important things to remember. Bring your valid UK student or employee ID and your prescription insurance card (if separate from your medical insurance card).

    • Students: If you are on your family's insurance plan, you should contact your family members and ask for this information. A screenshot of the insurance card is acceptable.
    • If you don’t have insurance, you will still be able to receive a free flu shot.

    For more information on flu shots and how to get yours, visit www.uky.edu/coronavirus/do-your-part/flu-shots.

    Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDentistryDesignEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtArts AdministrationDanceMusicTheatreGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesHonors CollegeLawLibrariesMartin School of Public Policy and AdministrationMedicineNursingPatterson School of Diplomacy and International CommercePharmacyPublic HealthSocial WorkStudent and Academic LifeUK HealthCare

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Grace Colville
    grace.colville [at] uky.edu
    "> grace.colville [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2294 Summary: Flu shots are now available for all members of the UK community.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Riley Fort Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 15, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate Team, housed in the College of Communication and Information, recently competed at the virtual 2021-2022 debate season opener hosted by Northwestern University.

    Nearly 300 students from 38 schools across 20 states competed in the four-day event. The topic for the season opener was “Resolved: The United States federal government should substantially increase prohibitions on anticompetitive business practices by the private sector.”

    Three partnerships from UK reached the elimination rounds. Sophomores Sophia Dal Pra and Lex Barrett, senior Marcus Williams and sophomore Lauren McBlain, and sophomores David Griffith and Jordan Di, reached the Sweet Sixteen. Along the way, UK defeated several powerhouse programs, including Harvard, Emory, Wake Forest and the University of Southern California.

    After the opener, the UK Debate team continued a busy and successful start to the season by both hosting and competing at two tournaments. First, they hosted the 50th “Run for the Roses” where only the top seven teams in the nation are invited. Kentucky joined an elite field that included Harvard, Kansas, Emory, Northwestern, Michigan and the University of Southern California.

    The UK team of David Griffith and Jordan Di finished with a very strong 3-3 record.

    Next, the team hosted the JW Patterson Open where more than 100 teams from across the country competed. The UK team of Lauren McBlain and Marcus Williams reached the round of 32 before losing to the eventual tournament champion from Michigan. 

    The team now readies for their next competition, the virtual Harvard Invitational held Oct. 29-31.

    “It’s always a busy start to the season between hosting and competing, and we’ve managed to do a good job across the board,” said UK Debate Director David Arnett. “We’ve had three different partnerships in the elimination rounds of national tournaments and that shows the kind of depth we’re always striving for year in and year out.”

    Follow UK’s Intercollegiate Debate Team’s journey by visiting their website at https://ci.uky.edu/UKDebate/.

    The team of Lauren McBlain and Marcus Williams prepare for the JW Patterson Open Debate Tournament held at UK.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate Team, housed in the College of Communication and Information, recently competed at the virtual 2021-2022 debate season opener hosted by Northwestern University where three partnerships from UK reached the elimination rounds.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meg Mill and Steve Shaffer Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 14, 2021) — The University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information’s David Stephenson takes a hands-on approach to his own learning, along with that of his students.

    However, the idea of “doing” is not a new concept to the assistant professor in the CI School of Journalism and Media. “When I think about how I want to teach my classes, I think about how I want to learn — personally — and how I’ve learned the best and learned the most. For me it’s always been through doing.”

    Stephenson currently teaches classes using emerging technologies for storytelling like mobile phones, drones and virtual reality.

    “It’s easy to talk about the technical stuff in filmmaking and photography, but I want to make sure to teach how to apply those techniques to make their stories better. I want the entire package for my students — that’s my goal,” Stephenson said.

    When asked if he had any advice for current UK students Stephenson said, “The best thing a student can do is ask questions. If I can share with them something they want to know, it’s very rewarding. That is where the mentorship starts to happen. Anyone that has taught probably has had a good teacher in their life that inspired them, including me, and that helped me get to where I am today. I want to do the same thing — I want to have those same relationships with my students.”

    Learn more about Stephenson and how he creates mentorship opportunities for his students inside and outside the classroom in the video above.

    Get to Know Your Professors at UK: David Stephenson David Stephenson with a student from his VR class. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information’s David Stephenson takes a hands-on approach to his own learning, along with that of his students. Learn more about Stephenson and how he creates mentorship opportunities for his students inside and outside the classroom Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Arts & CultureBy Whitney Hale and Mark Mozingo Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 11, 2021) — As American society begins to question more and more how much of the Thanksgiving history they know is true, the University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance presents MacArthur Fellow and Native American playwright Larissa FastHorse’s hit satirical comedy "The Thanksgiving Play." Join UK Theatre as they take on "wokeness" and display how humor can fuel change by sparking productive dialogue around race and equity. "The Thanksgiving Play" will open UK Theatre's Main Stage Season Oct. 14-17, at the Briggs Theatre, located in the Fine Arts Building. 

    "The Thanksgiving Play" introduces audiences to four “woke” white artists attempting to devise a politically correct and historically accurate play for an elementary school in honor of Native American Heritage Month. What could go wrong? You’ll laugh, you’ll learn and you’ll be thankful you saw this gem of the theatre. "The Thanksgiving Play" challenges the myths surrounding Thanksgiving, FastHorse (Sicangu Lakota Nation) says, and how celebrating the holiday can erase and flatten Indigenous experiences.

    Director Peter Allen Stone, assistant professor, thinks this is the perfect time to bring this production to the UK Theatre stage, "It is such an exciting time to return to live theatre with this ensemble of talented, hilarious and collaborative actors. Our rehearsals have been an absolute joy, and I can't think of a more important and timely piece to be performing than 'The Thanksgiving Play.'"

    The cast of UK Theatre's production of "The Thanksgiving Play" features: theatre and arts administration senior Zoe Womack, playing Logan; theatre junior Wheeler Green, playing Jaxton; junior Mason Fryman, playing Caden; and nursing junior Breanna Duvall, playing Alicia, with a chorus including theatre and psychology sophomore Brandon Bost, theatre and arts administration senior Ceana Carey, theatre and integrated strategic communication sophomore Sara Spellman and chemical engineering freshman Alessandra Lozano. Theatre and journalism senior Spencer Neichter is serving as stage manager. 

    "The Thanksgiving Play" is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French Inc.  

    "The Thanksgiving Play" takes the spotlight 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, Oct. 14-16, and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 16 and 17. Tickets to "The Thanksgiving Play" are $10 for students with a university ID and $15 for the general public. To purchase tickets to UK Theatre and Dance's productions, contact the Singletary Center for the Arts ticket office at 859-257-4929, visit online at www.scfatickets.com, or visit the ticket office in person.

    UK Department of Theatre and Dance performances will be presented in compliance with the UK mask mandate

    The Department of Theatre and Dance, part of UK College of Fine Arts, is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre. Students in the department get hands-on training and one-on-one mentorship from professional theatre and dance faculty and renowned guest artists in acting, directing, playwriting, theatrical design and technology, and dance. From mainstage productions to student-produced shows, students have plenty of opportunities to participate on stage or backstage. Special programs include a musical theatre certificate, education abroad, as well as a thriving dance program that emphasizes technique, composition, performance and production.

    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEngineeringFine ArtsArts AdministrationDanceTheatreNursing

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: As American society begins to question more and more how much of the Thanksgiving history they know is true, the University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance presents MacArthur Fellow and Native American playwright Larissa FastHorse’s hit satirical comedy "The Thanksgiving Play." Join UK Theatre as they take on "wokeness" and display how humor can fuel change by sparking productive dialogue around race and equity. Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Mariah Kendell Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 11, 2021) — The University of Kentucky’s independent student newspaper, the Kentucky Kernel, has been selected as a Pacemaker finalist in the prestigious Associated Collegiate Press Competition.

    Often referred to as “the Pulitzer Prize of student journalism,” the National Pacemaker Award is the highest honor in collegiate journalism. Each year, the Associate Collegiate Press recognizes the finest broadcast, magazine, online, newspaper and yearbook publications.

    “The students from the Kernel and KRNL have made a very fine showing with this many national finalists,” Kentucky Kernel Advisor Ryan Craig said. “The UK community should be proud of all of the students who work hard in what I feel are two of the best collegiate publications in the nation. I wish them all the best in the upcoming national Pacemaker competition.”

    Additionally, 12 Kentucky Kernel and KRNL staffers have been announced as finalists for individual awards.

    Kendall Boron

    • Magazine Page/Spread finalist, “Back to Their Roots” and “Rewind To Nostalgia”

    Michael Clubb

    • Sports Game/Action Photo finalist, “NC State Bowl Game vs. Kentucky”
    • Sports Feature Photo finalist, “NCAA Volleyball National Championship”

    Sydney Hill

    • Multimedia Sports Story finalist, “Homefield

    Isaac Janseen

    • Environmental Portrait finalist, “Skater Park”

    Martha McHaney

    • News/Breaking News Photo finalist, “Honoring those lost to COVID-19”

    Kennedy Miller

    Natalie Parks

    Natalie Parks, Sarah Michels, Gillian Stawiszynski

    Akhira Umar

    Jack Weaver

    • News/Breaking News Photo finalist, “Vaccine Clinic”
    • Sports Game/Action Photo finalist, “Volleyball vs. Ole Miss”

    Justin Williams

    The winners will be announced at 6.p.m EDT Thursday, Oct. 14, during Associate Collegiate Press’ virtual Fall National College Media Convention.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky’s independent student newspaper, the Kentucky Kernel, has been selected as a Pacemaker finalist in the prestigious Associated Collegiate Press Competition.
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Elizabeth Chapin Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 6, 2021) — Recent studies by the University of Kentucky's HEALing Communities Study (Helping to End Addiction Long-term) researchers show a notable rise in opioid overdose death rates among non-Hispanic Black individuals.

    Opioid overdose death rates increased by 40% among non-Hispanic Black individuals between 2018 and 2019, despite having leveled off overall, according to study results published in the American Journal of Public Health this September.

    The death rate trends were determined using data from 67 communities disproportionately affected by opioid overdose, which represent 8.3 million individuals in Kentucky, Massachusetts, New York and Ohio.

    Another UK study published in JAMA this July found that the increase in opioid overdose death rates among Black individuals continued over the next year, rising 57% in Kentucky from 2019-2020.

    Historically, opioid overdose death rates have been disproportionately higher among white individuals. The new shifting demographics are shaping the way UK’s HEALing Communities Study (HCS) research team is helping to address the opioid epidemic in Kentucky, says Sharon Walsh, Ph.D., the principal investigator for UK's HCS and director of UK’s Center on Drug and Alcohol Research.

    “The data are being used to help inform communities about evidence-based practices proven to reduce opioid overdose,” said Walsh. “The HCS team is developing and implementing more culturally tailored interventions to reach communities of color in Kentucky, which face additional barriers to accessing treatment.”

    This includes outreach events in Black communities, which include overdose education and distribution of naloxone — a life-saving, highly effective medication that rapidly reverses an opioid overdose.

    The JAMA study also reports a significant increase in drug overdose mortality across all demographic groups in Kentucky in 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic began. The UK study was released before the CDC released their provisional 2020 estimates.

    “Kentucky has one of the most timely drug overdose surveillance data collection and reporting in the U.S. and the UK research team has been on the front line, informing other practitioners and researchers about changing trends in non-fatal and fatal drug overdoses,” said study co-author Svetla Slavova, Ph.D., associate professor in the UK College of Public Health’s Department of Biostatistics and faculty member in the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center

    Funded by the National Institutes for Health (NIH) and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), the HCS aims to significantly reduce opioid overdose deaths by helping communities implement evidence-based practices to treat opioid use disorder and reduce harms from opioid use. Learn more at www.uky.edu/healingstudy/.

    Research reported in this publication was supported by funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention under Award Number 6 NU17CE924971-02-01, by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration under Award Number HHSF223201810183C under Broad Agency Announcement Number 17-00123, and by the National Institutes of Health through the Helping to End Addiction Long-term Initiative under Award Numbers UM1DA049406, UM1DA049412, UM1DA049415, UM1DA049417 and UM1DA049394. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Food and Drug Administration or the National Institutes of Health. 

    BackyardProduction, iStock/Getty Images Plus. Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationMedicineNursingPharmacyPublic HealthSocial WorkUK HealthCare

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Elizabeth Chapin
    Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    "> Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2207 Summary: The death rate trends were determined using data from 67 communities disproportionately affected by opioid overdose, which represent 8.3 million individuals in Kentucky, Massachusetts, New York and Ohio.
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 4, 2021) — This weekend, the University of Kentucky inducted 27 new members into its esteemed Hall of Distinguished Alumni. The 2020 class of inductees returned to their alma mater on Friday to be honored for their meaningful contributions to the Commonwealth, nation and the world. 

    The prestigious event, held every five years, was postponed last year due to pandemic restrictions. 

    “The 2020 class is diverse in its range of accolades and achievements, but they each share a common characteristic: they make us proud to call them UK alumni,” said UK President Eli Capilouto.

    The inductees included:

    • Henry B. “Bub” Asman Jr. B.A. ’71 — Telecommunications, College of Communication and Information
    • Steven L. Beshear B.A. ’66 — History, College of Arts and Sciences; J.D. ’68 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law
    • Dana R. Canedy B.A. ’88 — Journalism, College of Communication and Information
    • Jon C. Carloftis B.A.’86 — Communication, College of Communication and Information
    • Joe Cross Creason* B.A. ’40 — Journalism, College of Arts and Sciences
    • James C. Duff B.A. ’75 — Philosophy, Political Science, History, College of Arts and Sciences
    • O. Gene Gabbard B.S. ’61 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering
    • F. Joseph Halcomb III B.S. ’74 — Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering; M.D. ’78 — Medicine, College of Medicine
    • John G. Heyburn II* J.D. ’76 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law
    • Ashley T. Judd B.A. ’07 — French, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Elmer T. Lee* B.S. ’49 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Alan C. Lowe B.A. ’86 — History, College of Arts and Sciences; M.A. ’89 — History, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Davis Marksbury B.S. ’80 — Civil Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Sally K. Mason B.A. ’72 — Zoology, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Martha M. McCarthy B.A. ‘66 — Elementary Education, College of Education; M.A. ‘69 — Elementary Education, College of Education
    • L. Stanley Pigman B.S. ’81 — Mining Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Eugene Poole Jr. A.S. ’80 — Hopkinsville CC; B.A. ’85 — Architecture, College of Design
    • Tommy L. Preston B.A. ’56 — Journalism, College of Communication and Information
    • Laura M. Schwab J.D. ’98 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law
    • William E. Seale B.A. ’63 — Chemistry, College of Arts and Sciences; M.S. ’69 — Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment; Ph.D. ’75 — Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
    • Charles L. Shearer B.S. ’64 — Accounting, Gatton College of Business and Economics; M.A. ’67 — Economics and International Diplomacy, Gatton College of Business and Economics
    • Valerie Still B.S. ’00 — Animal Sciences, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
    • Gregory L. Summe B.S. ’78 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Paul C. Varga B.B.A. ’85 — Finance, Gatton College of Business and Economics
    • Paul R. Wagner B.A. ’70 — English, College of Arts and Sciences; M.A. ’72 — Communication, College of Communication and Information
    • John A. Williams B.S. ’62 — Accounting, Gatton College of Business and Economics
    • Terry Woodward B.S. ’63 — Commerce, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    *Joe Creason passed away in 1974 at the age of 56. John Heyburn passed away in 2015 at the age of 66. Elmer Lee passed away in 2013 at the age of 93.

    To read full bios of the inductees, visit www.ukalumni.net/s/hall-of-distinguished-alumni.

    With the addition of the 2020 honorees, the total number of alumni honored to date is 333, since the hall was created in 1965.

    To learn more about the Hall of Distinguished Alumni and previous inductees, visit www.ukalumni.net/s/hall-of-distinguished-alumni.

    The University of Kentucky's 2020 Hall of Distinguished Alumni inductees on campus Friday, Oct. 1, 2021. Photo by Tim Webb.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringGraduate SchoolLawMedicine

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: The 27 inductees were recognized on Friday for their meaningful contributions to the Commonwealth, nation and the world. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Nadia Sesay Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 4, 2021) ­— The University of Kentucky's College of Communication and Information's (CI) Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee and American Sign Language & Deaf Culture Club (ASLDCC) will welcome certified sign language interpreter Virginia Moore — Kentucky's Communicator of the Year for 2021 — on Tuesday, Oct 5.

    The event, “Virginia Moore: Communicating For All Kentuckians,” will begin at 5 p.m. in the UK Athletics Auditorium at the William T. Young Library. Moore will speak about accessibility and inclusivity during a global pandemic. An American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter will be provided.

    Moore is the current executive director of the Kentucky Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (KCDHH). For many Kentuckians she became a familiar name, and sight, as she appeared on screen interpreting Gov. Andy Beshear’s daily COVID-19 briefings. Moore advocated for the nearly 700,000 Kentuckians who are deaf and hard of hearing and requested the governor utilize an interpreter at his briefings, marking the first time that any Kentucky governor had done so.

    The governor’s briefings were a steadfast component of Kentucky’s fight against coronavirus and Moore’s presence was an unmissable addition to the effort. The Kentucky District of the National Speech and Debate Association recognized Moore as Communicator of the Year for her commitment to ensuring deaf and hard of hearing Kentuckians had equal access to coronavirus updates at a most critical time for the state.

    Born into a family with deaf parents and siblings, Moore learned ASL as her first language. She graduated from Indiana State University and holds the highest level of interpreter certification from the National Association of the Deaf as well as the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf National Interpreter Certification. Moore joined KCDHH as the executive director’s interpreter and has worked with the agency for 25 years. In that time she has witnessed the enhancement of resources and implementation of new technologies for deaf and hard of hearing Kentuckians, including captioning services for all state agencies.

    Moore continues to be involved with DeaFestival - Kentucky, a biennial event and cultural program that celebrates the diversity, art and language of the deaf and hard of hearing community. She has also provided interpreting services for the USA Deaf Sports Federation, the United States Deaflympic Committee and the Kellogg Foundation.

    “Not only did Ms. Moore help bridge the gap in accessibility, she was an advocate and a voice for others. She brought forth much awareness to interpreting services; with many individuals desiring to learn ASL, pursue careers as interpreters, be advocates for the deaf community, among so many others,” said Courtney Martin, president, ASLDCC. “We cannot thank her enough for not only what she has done during COVID-19 but what she continues to do each and every day. She is and will continue to be an inspiration to us, and so many others.”

    The event honoring Moore is a capstone of CI DEI’s programming to highlight deaf awareness in line with Deaf Awareness Month, which is celebrated annually in September, and is a collaboration between CI DEI and ASLDCC that highlights UK’s ongoing commitment to diversity, inclusion and accessibility.

    This event is free and open to the public. A Zoom link will be provided here.

    For more information and accommodation requests please contact Kyra Hunting at kyra.hunting [at] uky.edu.

    The CI DEI Committee also thanks UK College of Education’s Kentucky Deaf/Blind Project.

    About American Sign Language & Deaf Culture Club (ASLDCC)

    ASLDCC is an organization on campus focused on promoting ASL proficiency while also educating members about deaf culture and raising awareness about issues facing the deaf community. ASLDCC partners with organizations on campus and in the Lexington community to share their mission and help others expand their knowledge of both ASL and deaf culture.

    Virginia MooreOrganizational Unit: Communication and InformationEducation

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky's College of Communication and Information's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee and American Sign Language & Deaf Culture Club will welcome certified sign language interpreter Virginia Moore — Kentucky's Communicator of the Year for 2021 — on Tuesday, Oct 5.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy UK PRSC staff Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 30, 2021) — Today is International Podcast Day. Not surprisingly as the popularity of the podcast format has exploded in recent years, University of Kentucky students, faculty and staff have launched a variety of podcasts to share their own expertise, ideas and stories. With a wide range of topics covered, it is likely the podcast lover in your family can find a UK podcast to meet their needs. 

    A resource for "all things UK," the "Behind the Blue" weekly podcast covers the university's latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers, along with the most important news impacting the institution. "Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify and transcripts for all episodes of "Behind the Blue" can be downloaded from the show’s blog page. You can also find the newest edition of "Behind the Blue" each Monday on UKNow.

    The UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment (CAFE) maintains a selection of podcasts for listeners interested in topics ranging from food sciences and gardening to agriculture, forestry and sustainability. UK CAFE's podcasts are as follows: 

    Visit www.ca.uky.edu/podcasts to access all these individual podcasts from one place. 

    For those wanting to focus on other issues related to sustainability, UK's Student Sustainability Council presents "Sustainability: Green Talks" highlighting the people and programs working on campus environmental and sustainability initiatives. You can hear "Green Talks" on WRFL.

    The Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce revived its podcast series, “Patterson Perspectives,” last year to speak with alumni responding to the COVID-19 pandemic in their professional roles. More recently, the school has expanded its reach discussing a wide range of global issues. 

    Those interested in the Appalachian region should tune into "Holler Back!" from Appalachian studies students in the UK College of Arts and Sciences. The podcast is one of the most active from the college.

    UK College of Education's podcast, "The Learning Project," has returned after a short hiatus for those interested in hearing about topics related to the field of education. 

    With the "Champions of Active Women" podcast, the UK Active Women’s Health Initiative (AWHI) shares stories of active female role models and individuals who support the active pursuits of women to encourage and inspire girls and women to be active for a lifetime, to reach their goals, and to break new barriers in sport and life. This podcast is brought to you by AWHI, part of the Sports Medicine Research Institute at UK's College of Health Sciences.

    The UK Libraries Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History has a treasure trove of audio and video recordings as part of its collection of more than 14,000 interviews. Through its "Wisdom Project Podcast," the center features stories from a collection that has focused on 20th century Kentucky history; Appalachia; agriculture; African American history; the history of education, politics and public policy; the arts; Kentucky writers; gender; diversity; the Civil Rights Movement; veterans; the University of Kentucky; health care; and industries such as the coal, equine and bourbon industries.

    In addition to the "Wisdom Project Podcast," the Nunn Center provides even shorter interview clips for a radio news format via its "Saving Stories" series with WUKY. 

    UK Human Resources produces the "Becoming Wildly Resilient" podcast, a series that explores a variety of well-being topics to help you thrive at work, home and beyond.

    The UK Staff Senate Employee Engagement Committee launched a podcast last year titled “The Kentucky WildCast: Making the Impossible Possible.” This podcast highlights the people at UK, conversations are not limited to work at the university but transcend into life stories, lessons learned, inspirations and personal accomplishments. 

    For research, scholarship and creative activity topics that lend themselves to a conversation format or extra content that doesn't fit into a short video, UK Research Communications produces podcasts, including “Research Made Possible.” See these and more at www.research.uky.edu/news-archive?news-type=5.

    Interested in happenings in the field of information technology? UK Information Technology Services produces "ITS Spotlight" to keep listeners in the know. 

    “From the Blue” is an interview-style podcast created by the UK Alumni Association to keep you connected with Kentucky alumni around the world through stories, interviews and discussions. No matter where you are, the “From the Blue” podcast will bring back a sense of nostalgia from your time on campus while keeping you informed with news and features about UK and your fellow Wildcat alumni.

    And in the wild, and wide, world of sports, Big Blue fans can go behind the scenes of their favorite Wildcat teams, get valuable insights and updates around each university athletic program, and hear original UK-related sports stories from UK Athletics. Tune into UK Sports Network on your favorite podcast provider to hear "UK Sports Network Radio," "Behind Kentucky Football" and "Behind Kentucky Basketball."

    The Kentucky Kernel also has a sports podcast for True Blue fans. Check out "Between the Blue and White Lines" for their coverage of the Wildcats.

    For those more interested in college lifestyle and fashion, the KRNL magazine has you covered through the podcast "KRNL Talks."

    UK also saw the launch of two other podcasts in recent months hosted by students. "Bowman’s Friends" was created to connect and inform students of issues, important deadlines and ways to get involved on campus. With a goal of amplifying student voices, the podcast includes conversations with people across the university relevant to current campus culture from the student’s perspective​.

    And, last spring “Breaking the Boundary,” a podcast produced by media arts and studies students in UK College of Communication and Information’s studio, made its debut. The podcast discusses the action needed to correct crises like the opioid epidemic, climate change and financial literacy.

    Bet_Noire from iStock / Getty Images Plus.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationHealth SciencesLibrariesPatterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: Not surprisingly as the popularity of the podcast format has exploded in recent years, University of Kentucky students, faculty and staff have launched a variety of podcasts to share their own expertise, ideas and stories.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Mariah Kendell Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 29, 2021) — How do Hollywood clichés perpetuate the status quo? Erika Engstrom, media content expert and director of the School of Journalism and Media in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information, explores this question in her new book “Gramsci and Media Literacy: Critically Thinking about TV and the Movies.”

    In this compelling analysis, Engstrom and co-author Ralph Beliveau, of the University of Oklahoma, compare case studies of movies and television shows that actively challenge societal stereotypes — or in Engstrom’s words, media that is “counter-hegemonic.”

    “Hegemony” is the dominant world view of most participants in society. This theory, first employed by Italian philosopher Antonio Gramsci in his critiques of capitalism, suggests that most of what we see is created by people in power with self-serving interests. To keep said power, hegemonic actors reinforce the status quo and suppress resistive voices.

    In entertainment media, hegemony is personified as overused character tropes: the damsel in distress, the wise old man, the girl next door, the stoic muscleman and more.

    “That’s why people get marginalized,” Engstrom said. “The people who make the movies and TV want you to keep watching. If there is something that seems a little unusual or out of the ordinary, you won’t want to watch.”

    However, Engstrom and movie critics alike sense a subtle shift in the industry. Thanks to streaming services, resistive stories have slowly gained popularity, influencing even big-box films like “Avengers: Endgame” — a case study in this book.

    Unlike other films in the Marvel cinematic universe, Engstrom thought “Endgame” was a terrific movie. Characters like Tony Stark, who were previously portrayed as hyper-masculinized and one-dimensional are now seen crying, going to support groups and contributing to their households.

    “They’re showing real men being people; it’s counter-hegemonic masculinity,” Engstrom said. "Resistive media does more than diversify stories on the big screen, it contributes to the evolution of our culture. Normalizing human emotions can change society and our relationships with others in our everyday life."

    "If we have more people able to show their emotions, we wouldn't have war; we wouldn't have violence against women."

    Although “Avengers: Endgame” does challenge society’s traditional view of masculinity, it is still hegemonic in some ways, especially in its portrayal of women. Therefore, Engstrom argues, all consumers of media must watch with a critical eye and question the media they love. To watch critically, Engstrom says, is to understand that you have a choice to do whatever it is you want to do.

    “That is what this book is about — let’s question what we know so that we can resist the hegemony,” Engstrom said. “That’s kind of my purpose on this earth, to make (people) understand that this is for the good of everybody.”

    For more information on “Gramsci and Media Literacy: Critically Thinking about TV and the Movies,” visit Rowman & Littlefield. The book is also available for purchase on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

    Erika Engstrom is a nationally known gender and media scholar, with specialties in studying the portrayal of gender, religion and weddings in mass media. Before joining UK in 2020, Engstrom served as a professor of communication studies at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, as well as the acting general manager of the campus radio station KUNV-FM.

    Engstrom holds a bachelor’s degree in radio-television and a master’s degree in communication from the University of Central Florida. Her doctorate, from the University of Florida, is in mass communication.

    The University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Media was founded in 1914. As one of only 114 fully accredited journalism schools in the world, UK JAM leads the way in training students for success in any media field, with emphasis on hands-on application.

    Erika Engstrom. Photo by Michael Clubb.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Erika Engstrom, media content expert and director of the School of Journalism and Media in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information, explores the Marvel Universe in her new book “Gramsci and Media Literacy: Critically Thinking about TV and the Movies.”Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Akhira Umar Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 28, 2021) — With singers for parents, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna is taking the family talents to country music’s most famous stage.

    Singer/songwriter Hannah Ellis, a 2012 integrated strategic communication (ISC) graduate, is making her debut tonight at the Grand Ole Opry. After turning her hobby into her career, this performance will mark a milestone for the rising star. 

    “I’d been wanting to play the Opry for a really long time, since I was a really young kid,” Ellis said. “To be able to stand up there where all of my heroes stood is going to be a really special moment.”

    Singing has been on Ellis’ radar nearly her whole life. Her parents were wedding singers who encouraged her and her siblings to sing in church and contests. However, it wasn’t until attending high school and committing to attend UK that Ellis decided singing was going to be her calling.

    She came to UK and joined CI. There she became an ISC major, learning all the tricks and trades of public relations and marketing the most important brand of her profession — herself.

    “You are the brand. You are the business. So being able to learn how to market myself and my music was exceptionally helpful when it came to my music career,” Ellis said. “I feel like I use tools that I learned in that major all the time in my music career.”

    Not only did her CI classes help prepare her for a life of singing, but her CI professors and administrators were instrumental in the infancy of her music career. Her professors helped push her in the direction of her dreams by accommodating her assignment submission times and absences when music conflicted. Beth Barnes, then the director of the School of Journalism and Media, helped Ellis get an internship that allowed her to work out of Nashville while still being applicable for her degree. 

    After graduating, Ellis moved to Nashville, the country music capital of the world. She worked her way through the music scene, songwriting with the local community and even competing on season eight of “The Voice.”

    Music became Ellis’ full-time job after she got a publishing deal in 2015. For the next two years, she focused on songwriting, performing shows and putting out her first, self-titled, self-financed EP (extended play).

    Her efforts were rewarded in 2018 when she was named one of Rolling Stone’s “Artists to Watch” and CMT’s “Next Women of Country.” The year after, she performed along the east coast on the CMT Next Women of Country Tour with Cassadee Pope and Claire Dunn.

    In March 2020, Ellis signed her record deal with Curb Records. With lots of new music coming out this fall, Ellis and her team knew this was the perfect time to perform at the Opry. This appearance will be particularly significant because it will also be a first for her dad, whom she called about the Opry news as soon as she got word.

    “He said to me one of the sweetest things. He said, ‘Can you imagine being a country music fan for 55 years and the first time you get to go to the Opry, your daughter’s playing?’” Ellis said. “It was a pretty special moment to get to call him and tell him something that we had dreamed about was coming true.”

    For her performance tonight at the Grand Ole Opry, Ellis is hoping to enjoy the moment she has worked so hard for and play for the fans who have helped her get this far. If you would like to watch or listen to Ellis’ Grand Ole Opry performance, Opry shows are available on Circle, the TV network that broadcasts the Opry, or stream the performances through the Circle website and the official Grand Ole Opry YouTube and Facebook pages. Opry broadcasts are also available live on Nashville's WSM-AM radio, as well as the station's website and mobile app.

    If you would like to listen to Ellis’ release of “Home and a Hometown,” it is available on all music streaming services. Her new song “Us” will be available anywhere you listen to music on Oct. 1.

    Watch the official video for "Home and a Hometown" by Hannah Ellis. Hannah Ellis. Photo by: BothurVisuals.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: With singers for parents, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna is taking the family talents to country music’s most famous stage. Singer/songwriter Hannah Ellis, a 2012 integrated strategic communication graduate, is making her debut tonight at the Grand Ole Opry. Homepage Feature: Primary feature
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  • Body: Campus NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley and Meredith Weber Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 28, 2021) — This Friday, the University of Kentucky will induct 27 former students into the 2020 Hall of Distinguished Alumni. The alumni will be honored for their meaningful contributions to the Commonwealth, nation and the world. 

    The prestigious event, held every five years, was postponed last year due to pandemic restrictions. 

    “This is a great group that we’re putting forward,” said Taunya Phillips, 2019-20 UK Alumni Association national president who served on the selection committee for the 2020 inductees. “The university has a wealth of people we could nominate for this honor, and some of the people who are going to be recognized this year I think really stand out. They have done great things in the world of arts, acting, education, engineering and all sorts of different areas. UK produces great people, and (the Hall of Distinguished Alumni) allows us to recruit students, faculty and staff from everywhere — they want to come here and be a part of the University of Kentucky. It also encourages our current students and others to look at these people and aspire to their achievements.”

    The 2020 inductees include:

    Henry B. “Bub” Asman Jr. B.A. ’71 — Telecommunications, College of Communication and Information

    Henry B. “Bub” Asman Jr. of Union, Kentucky, is a two-time Academy Award-winning sound editor. He spent 38 years editing the sound for more than 30 films for filmmaker Clint Eastwood and about 40 more films for various other directors in Hollywood. He and his co-editor Alan Murray received six Academy Award nominations for sound editing, winning Oscars in the category of Best Achievement in Sound Editing for the films “Letters from Iwo Jima” and “American Sniper,” both directed by Eastwood. The other nominations were for “Eraser,” “Space Cowboys,” “Flags of our Fathers” and “Sully.”

    Steven L. Beshear B.A. ’66 — History, College of Arts and SciencesJ.D. ’68 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law

    Steven L. Beshear of Lexington, Kentucky, served as the 61st governor of Kentucky from 2007 to 2015. He also served as attorney general from 1979 to 1983, lieutenant governor from 1983 to 1987 and was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1974 to 1979. While at UK, he was the student body president, a member of Phi Beta Kappa and served as an editor for the Kentucky Law Journal. Additionally, he served as a visiting scholar at the University of Kentucky College of Public Health in 2018.

    Dana R. Canedy B.A. ’88 — Journalism, College of Communication and Information

    Dana R. Canedy of New York City is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and the senior vice president and publisher of Simon & Schuster. She previously ran the Pulitzer Prizes, serving as a board member, selecting prize jurors, and announcing the winners. She was recently named one of Fortune Magazine’s Most Powerful Women. Canedy was a lead writer and editor on The New York Times series, “How Race is Lived in America,” which won the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. She is the author of “A Journal for Jordan” which has been made into a movie to be released by Sony in theaters this Christmas, directed by Denzel Washington and starring Michael B. Jordan. The book tells the story of her fiance, 1st Sgt. Charles Monroe King, and the 200-page journal he left for their son, Jordan, written before being killed in Iraq.

    Jon C. Carloftis B.A.’86 — Communication, College of Communication and Information

    Jon C. Carloftis of Lexington, Kentucky, is an award-winning rooftop gardener and garden designer. After moving to New York City in 1988, he became one of America’s pioneers in rooftop/small space gardening as he designed and installed rooftop gardens all over Manhattan for such celebrities as Julianne Moore, Edward Norton and Mike Myers.

    Carloftis was a contributing editor of Garden Design magazine and his gardens have been featured in more than 250 national magazines. He restored the Kentucky Governor’s Mansion Formal Gardens and the historic garden at the president’s home at the University of the Cumberlands. He is the author of “Beautiful Gardens of Kentucky in 2010” and has been named the Salonniere Top 100 Best Party Hosts in America for three years in a row.

    Joe Cross Creason* B.A. ’40 — Journalism, College of Arts and Sciences

    Joe Cross Creason of Louisville, Kentucky, was a journalist for The Courier-Journal. During his time at UK, Creason served as sports editor for both the Kentucky Kernel and The Kentuckian and was president of his fraternity, Alpha Tau Omega. After graduation, the Benton, Kentucky, native worked at several newspapers in Western Kentucky before accepting a writing position at The Courier-Journal in 1941. Except for a two-year period from 1944-1946 when he served as an officer in the U.S. Navy in the Pacific theater, he would work at The Courier-Journal for the next 34 years developing relationships with citizens from across the Commonwealth of Kentucky. In 1975, the University of Kentucky and the Bingham Enterprises Foundation created the annual Joe Creason Lecture Series bringing prominent journalists to Lexington to speak and meet with students and the public. Creason passed away in 1974 at the age of 56.

    James C. Duff B.A. ’75 — Philosophy, Political Science, History, College of Arts and Sciences

    James C. Duff of Bethesda, Maryland, is executive director of the Supreme Court Historical Society. He was director of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts from 2006 to 2011 and again from 2015 to 2021 where he also served as secretary of the Judicial Conference of the United States. From 1996 to 2000, Duff served as counselor to Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and was his liaison with Congress, the executive branch, and various state and federal organizations involved in the administration of justice. Duff is a member of Phi Beta Kappa, a graduate of the UK Honors Program, and was a walk-on on the UK basketball team in 1971-1972.

    O. Gene Gabbard B.S. ’61 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering

    O. Gene Gabbard of Cary, North Carolina, and Naples, Florida, has worked as a private investor and entrepreneur since 1993. He’s worked on more than 25 startups, invested in more than 40 start-up companies on a personal basis and served on more than 20 boards. He is a venture partner in Ballast Point Ventures, venture capital funds, based in Tampa, Florida. During his career, he served as executive vice president and chief financial officer (1990-1993) of MCI Communications Corp. (now Verizon Business); was on the board of directors (2005-2014) of COLT Telecom Group SA, Luxembourg, a provider of telecommunications and data center services to businesses throughout Europe; and became a member of the board (2010) of NetCracker Technology Corp., Waltham, Massachusetts, a leading provider of management and support systems and services to telecommunication carriers throughout the world.

    F. Joseph Halcomb III B.S. ’74 — Mechanical Engineering, College of EngineeringM.D. ’78 — Medicine, College of Medicine

    F. Joseph Halcomb III of Camarillo, California, is a physician, engineer and private equity investor with a distinguished career as an executive in the medical device and biotechnology industries. He is founder and CEO of Phoenix Initiãre and a partner at Telegraph Hill Partners. Both firms are dedicated to helping life science, medical device and health care companies achieve their growth objectives. In 2010, Halcomb established the Halcomb Endowed Fellowship in Medicine and Engineering at UK. After a larger commitment to the endowment in 2016, the Department of Biomedical Engineering became the first named department at the university. He also holds a M.S. degree in engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received the degree of Honorary Doctor of Engineering from UK in May 2021.

    John G. Heyburn II* J.D. ’76 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law

    John G. Heyburn II was nominated to the United States District Court as a United States District Judge for the Western District of Kentucky by President George H. W. Bush in 1992. His opinions were known for his indefatigable sense of fairness, respect for litigants and commitment to clear, logical and thoughtful rulings. His passions for the rule of law fueled his rise to leadership in the Federal Judiciary. He sought “to ever improve the legal system considered the envy of the world.” Heyburn presided over 7,645 cases in his 23 years on the bench. He served as the Chief Judge of the Court between 2001 and 2008. He passed away in 2015 at the age of 66.

    Ashley T. Judd B.A. ’07 — French, College of Arts and Sciences

    Ashley T. Judd of Franklin, Tennessee, and Cambridge, Massachusetts, is an award-winning actor, writer, humanitarian and activist. Her work as both an artist and advocate began right here on the UK campus. Her film and stage career has spanned 30 years and includes indie gems like “Ruby in Paradise” which won the Sundance Film Festival, and box office smashes such as “Double Jeopardy.” Since 2004, Judd has traveled to 22 countries in her capacity as a global ambassador for nongovernmental organizations such as Population Services International and UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund. In 2020, Judd was recognized by the United Nations as Global Advocate of the Year. She was the first actor to go on the record about Harvey Weinstein`s serial predation and is a leader of the #MeToo movement and co-founder of Time's Up. Her book “All That Is Bitter & Sweet” was a New York Times best seller and in 2010, Judd earned an M.P.A. from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

    Elmer T. Lee* B.S. ’49 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering

    Elmer T. Lee of Frankfort, Kentucky, joined the Air Force in 1942 where he flew on missions as a radar bombardier on a B-29 Superfortress. In 1946, he was honorably discharged and returned home to study electrical engineering at UK. He graduated with honors in 1949 and proceeded to take a position with George T. Stagg Distillery in Frankfort (renamed Buffalo Trace in 1999). Initially a maintenance engineer, Lee was promoted to plant superintendent in 1966. In 1969, he held the dual titles of plant manager and master distiller, becoming the distillery’s first master distiller. He would continue to hold both titles until his retirement in 1985. In 1984, Lee created Blanton’s Single-Barrel Bourbon which became the first single-barrel bourbon to be sold commercially. Lee passed away in 2013 at the age of 93.

    Alan C. Lowe B.A. ’86 — History, College of Arts and Sciences; M.A. ’89 — History, College of Arts and Sciences

    Alan C. Lowe of Knoxville, Tennessee, is director of the American Museum of Science and Energy and the K-25 History Center, both located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Previously, he held positions at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California and the Office of Presidential Libraries at the National Archives in Washington. He served as director of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library in New York and the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center at the University of Tennessee. From 2009 to 2016, Lowe was the founding director of the George W. Bush Presidential Library in Dallas, Texas, and from 2016 to 2019 was executive director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield, Illinois. Currently Lowe serves on the board of Childhelp Tennessee and on the advisory board for the UK Department of History. He co-hosts "American POTUS," a popular podcast about the presidency, and hosts "AMSEcast," a podcast dedicated to science, engineering, and technology.

    Davis Marksbury B.S. ’80 — Civil Engineering, College of Engineering

    Davis Marksbury of Lexington, Kentucky, co-founded Exstream Software in 1998 providing customer relationship document software solutions to enterprises around the world. Marksbury served as CEO of Exstream until it was acquired by Hewlett Packard in 2008. Marksbury is a pioneer in the document software industry, with Exstream being the third company he successfully launched to address complex technology challenges in the industry. He currently serves as chairman of the Marksbury Family Office and Family Foundation. Generosity from his family foundation to the UK College of Engineering helped construct the Davis Marksbury Building and donations to UK Athletics has provided funding for facilities.

    Sally K. Mason B.A. ’72 — Zoology, College of Arts and Sciences

    Sally K. Mason of Hilton Head, South Carolina, is senior fellow and executive search consultant for the Association of Governing Boards. She is president emerita at the University of Iowa, having served as the 20th university president (2007-2015). Trained as a cell/developmental biologist, she also retired as professor emerita from the UI Department of Biology. Mason served two consecutive terms as a presidential appointee to the National Medal of Science Committee, including a term as chair. Initially appointed to this committee in 2006 by President George W. Bush, she was reappointed by President Barack Obama in 2008. Mason is currently a trustee for two private universities, Des Moines University and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. She received an honorary degree from UK in 2012.

    Martha M. McCarthy B.A. ‘66 — Elementary Education, College of Education; M.A. ‘69 — Elementary Education, College of Education

    Martha M. McCarthy of Marina Del Rey, California, is a presidential professor in the School of Education at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. She is also a chancellor’s professor emeritus at Indiana University (IU), where she served as associate dean of the faculties and was founding director of the Indiana Education Policy Center and the High School Survey of Student Engagement. Her research focuses primarily on education law and policy, and the evolution and reform of leadership preparation programs. McCarthy has written or co-authored more than a dozen books and more than 350 articles or chapters. Among other recognitions, she was named the first female Living Legend by the International Council of Professors of Educational Leadership.

    L. Stanley Pigman B.S. ’81 — Mining Engineering, College of Engineering

    L. Stanley Pigman of Wilmington, North Carolina, is an entrepreneur who began his early professional career after college as a project engineer with a new mining company, Sierra Coal, a subsidiary of General Electric. Later in 1992, he joined two colleagues to form Sugar Camp Coal. Eventually, Pigman formed his own company, Pigman Coal Sales, providing sales services to an independently owned start-up company for a new mining project in Western Kentucky. Pigman routinely initiates and financially supports programs that connect high school youth with engineering and technology. A longtime advocate for Project Lead the Way in Eastern Kentucky schools, Pigman and his wife, Karen, recently committed to funding 16 new high school chapters of the Kentucky Technology Student Association. He and his family also provide scholarships for 70 UK engineering students each year. Their scholarship has benefited more than 200 Pigman Scholars thus far, including 20 first-year students this fall. UK awarded him an Honorary Degree of Humane Letters in 2017.

    Eugene Poole Jr. A.S. ’80 — Hopkinsville CC; B.A. ’85 — Architecture, College of Design

    Eugene Poole Jr. of District Heights, Maryland, is the jurisdiction executive and the senior project executive of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. The Hopkinsville, Kentucky, native is an architect and certified project construction manager with over 30 years of professional design/construction management executive-level experience. His work includes Air Force defense initiatives and Joint Air Force/Navy, and Air Force/Army Mil-Con construction projects overseas and within the United States. Poole is a decorated former United States Air Force officer who was honorably discharged after serving three tours of duty. His private industry architectural work includes hotel resorts, high schools, colleges, high-end mixed-use and retail buildings, casino and gaming resorts, private residences, urban planning, civic and religious facilities, health care facilities, airfield runway restoration repair and pilot training support facilities. His more recent government projects include the globally iconic U.S. Capitol Dome Restoration project, U.S. Supreme Court, Library of Congress, Senate and House Office Buildings, design/construction for three U.S. Presidential Inaugural ceremonies, the ongoing design/management of the new U.S. Capitol Visitor Center Exhibition Hall Museum, and he currently serves on numerous professional industry boards.

    Tommy L. Preston B.A. ’56 — Journalism, College of Communication and Information

    Tommy L. Preston of Nashville, Tennessee, founded The Preston Group in 1968, a consulting services firm that expanded into 42 states and D.C., leading to many national recognitions. Preston began his career as the youngest Kentucky newspaper editor in 1956 at the Carrollton News-Democrat, where he was born, and used unusual strategies and tactics to impact results for clients representing corporations, institutions and themselves as circumstances dictated. Later, his training in the U.S. Army proved beneficial for subsequent counterterrorism efforts, and he founded Preston Global, a companion firm, for strategies and training to attenuate violence at schools and other venues. He was senior advisor to Gov. and U.S. Sen. Wendell Ford and appointed executive director of the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security by Gov. Steve Beshear. He became the first such director to complete the U.S. Army War College National Security Program.

    Laura M. Schwab J.D. ’98 — Law, J. David Rosenberg College of Law

    Laura M. Schwab of San Clemente, California, is the global sales and marketing officer of Rivian, the electric car company launching several new vehicles this year and electrifying Amazon’s worldwide delivery fleet. From 2015 to 2020, she was president of Aston Martin the Americas, the first female to serve in the role in the company’s history and one of only two women to ever hold this title in the automotive industry. She was responsible for overseeing sales, service, marketing and communications to dealers and customers across two continents. Throughout her career, Schwab has championed the empowerment of women in the workplace and has spent her time helping to advance the careers of others along the way.

    William E. Seale B.A. ’63 — Chemistry, College of Arts and Sciences; M.S. ’69 — Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment; Ph.D. ’75 — Agricultural Economics, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    William E. Seale of Annapolis, Maryland, and Key Largo, Florida, is a partner in the ProFunds Group. As chief investment officer, he developed the financial models and investment techniques that direct the investments of the over 200 ProShares and ProFunds. Seale is a professor emeritus of finance at George Washington University, where he had been chairman of the Department of Finance and senior associate dean of the business school. He also was engaged in a consulting and expert witness practice through his firm, Financial Markets Group Inc. Seale was a commissioner on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, worked as government relations vice president for a New York futures exchange and was a senior legislative assistant to U.S. Sen. Walter D. Huddleston.

    Charles L. Shearer B.S. ’64 — Accounting, Gatton College of Business and Economics; M.A. ’67 — Economics and International Diplomacy, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Charles L. Shearer of Louisville, Kentucky, is the former president of Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky. He served as Transylvania’s 24th president and is the longest-serving president in the university’s history after 27 years in office. Shearer helped grow the institution’s student enrollment by more than 75%, with corresponding growth in the number of faculty members and majors offered. Shearer was named vice president for finance at Transylvania University in 1979 before becoming president in 1983. Shearer also holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in economics from Michigan State University. He was awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from UK in 2012 for his lifetime service to higher education.

    Valerie Still B.S. ’00 — Animal Sciences, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    Valerie Still of Palmyra, New Jersey, is a former professional basketball player and coach, author and musician. She also earned a master’s degree in African and African American studies and is finishing her Ph.D. in sports humanities at The Ohio State University, where she was a graduate research and teaching associate. She was a member of the UK women’s basketball team (1979-1983) and holds UK career records (men and women) in scoring (2,763) and rebounding (1,525). Still played professional basketball in Italy, hosted her own television show and was a TV commentator for men’s basketball. Later in the USA, she played in the American Basketball League, winning two world championships with the Columbus Quest and earning MVP for both championship series. She then joined the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) and became a WNBA assistant coach with the Mystics and Orlando Miracle. She founded the Valerie Still Foundation, a nonprofit organization that assists youth in their development, and launched STILL Java, a socially-conscious gourmet coffee company to assist charities and women and children in underdeveloped countries.

    Gregory L. Summe B.S. ’78 — Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering

    Gregory L. Summe of Naples, Florida, is the co-founder and co-chairman of NextGen Acquisition Corp. II, a special purpose acquisition company, which has announced a pending merger with Virgin Orbit. He was also the co-founder of NextGen Acquisition Corp I, which has merged with Xos Inc., a leading manufacturer of electric commercial vehicles. Summe is also the founder and managing partner of Glen Capital Partners LLC, a value-oriented hedge fund. He was managing director and vice chairman of Global Buyout at the Carlyle Group (2009-2014) and responsible for the buyout funds in financial services, infrastructure, Japan, the Middle East and Africa. He was also the chairman, CEO and president of PerkinElmer Inc. (1998-2009) and a senior advisor to Goldman Sachs Capital Partners (2008-2009).

    Paul C. Varga B.B.A. ’85 — Finance, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Paul C. Varga of Louisville, Kentucky, was elected president and chief executive officer of Brown-Forman Corporation in 2005 and became chairman of the company in 2007 before retiring in 2018. He has been a member of the company’s board of directors since 2003. Prior to becoming CEO, he served as president and CEO of the company’s Brown-Forman Beverages subsidiary and served as senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Brown-Forman Beverages. During Varga’s tenure at Brown-Forman, he partnered with UK’s Alcohol and Health Education Office to support alcohol awareness and education programs on campus. Varga is a charter member of the UK Tennis Hall of Fame and a Kentucky Tennis Hall of Fame inductee. He was a two-time All-SEC performer (both athletically and academically), became UK’s second player to ever qualify for NCAA singles competition and is the second winningest player in the school’s history.

    Paul R. Wagner B.A. ’70 — English, College of Arts and Sciences; M.A. ’72 — Communication, College of Communication and Information

    Paul R. Wagner of Charlottesville, Virginia, is an Academy Award and Emmy Award-winning independent filmmaker, who has received multiple grants of support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Wagner’s documentaries and dramatic features have premiered at the Sundance, Toronto, Telluride and Rotterdam film festivals. His films include “Miles of Smiles, Years of Struggle,” about the first African American labor union; “Signature: George C. Wolfe,” a portrait of the New York theatrical writer and director; “Thoroughbred,” an inside look at the world of big-time horse racing produced for Kentucky Educational Television; and “Out of Ireland,” a history of Irish emigration to America featuring Liam Neeson and Gabriel Byrne. In 2018, “Black in Blue” told a story of triumph and tragedy about UK football players Nate Northington, Greg Page, Houston Hogg and Wilbur Hackett, the men who broke the color line in the SEC. His current film project is a feature documentary about the artist Georgia O’Keeffe.

    John A. Williams B.S. ’62 — Accounting, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    John A. Williams of Paducah, Kentucky, is the founding executive of Computer Services Inc., headquartered in Paducah and is now chairman emeritus. His career also includes accounting and management consulting with Arthur Andersen & Co. in St. Louis; and serving in the U.S. Army Signal Corps (1963-1965) directing development of experimental data processing systems at the 7th Army Headquarters in Germany. He has been active in many organizations, such as the Association of Financial Technology (president), Boy Scouts Kentucky/Tennessee (president), Kentucky Chamber of Commerce (vice president), Federal Reserve — Louisville (chairman), among others. Williams also lectured on banking technology at UK, Louisiana State University, University of Nebraska and University of Georgia, and he was a faculty member at Paducah Community College.

    Terry Woodward B.S. ’63 — Commerce, Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Terry Woodward of Owensboro, Kentucky, is the owner and CEO of Wax Works Inc., one of the nation’s leading authorized wholesale home entertainment distributors. Located in Owensboro, Wax Works is one of the largest video distributors in America, servicing online and retail accounts nationwide. Woodward has long been of service to the business community. He was chairman of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) during the first three years of its existence; a board member of the Country Music Association; a board member and chairman of the National Association of Recording Merchandisers; and a trustee and chairman of the International Bluegrass Music Museum (renamed the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum in 2018). Inc. magazine named him Entrepreneur of the Year in 1990, he was awarded the IBMA Distinguished Achievement Award in 2005 and was inducted into the IBMA Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 2018.

    To read full bios of this year’s inductees, visit www.ukalumni.net/s/hall-of-distinguished-alumni.

    With the addition of the 2020 honorees, the total number of alumni honored to date is 333, since the hall was created in 1965. To learn more about the Hall of Distinguished Alumni and previous inductees, visit www.ukalumni.net/s/hall-of-distinguished-alumni.

    This Friday, the University of Kentucky Alumni Association will honor 27 former students for their meaningful contributions to the Commonwealth, nation and the world. The Hall of Distinguished Alumni induction ceremony is held every five years.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringGraduate SchoolHonors CollegeLaw

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: The recogntion ceremony will take place this Friday, Oct. 1, at the Gatton Student Center.
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  • Body: Campus NewsBy Riley Fort Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 21, 2021) — The Allegro Dance Project, a Lexington-based dance company, gives children with special needs the opportunity to dance through its Inclusive Outreach Program and adaptive classes. With the help of University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information students, the Allegro Dance Project had a very successful summer show.

    Jeana Klevene, the founder and director of the Allegro Dance Project, created the company after several interactions with children who did not have opportunities to dance in a traditional setting or with traditional instruction.

    “I noticed that any time we did any kind of community outreach, children with specific needs were encouraged to not participate,” Klevene said.

    Inspired to foster a more inclusive and accessible environment, Klevene created the Allegro Dance Project. Now entering its eighth season, the Allegro Dance Project has paved a path for all children to feel safe in the dancing community.

    In July, the Allegro Dance Project hosted its summer show, called “Renaissance,” which centered on parallels between the Renaissance period and the 21st century. The last piece of the show, a fan favorite, allowed participants from the Inclusive Outreach Program and adaptive classes to join the company on stage.

    “Renaissance” reached the highest attendance numbers for a show in the Allegro Dance Project’s history. Klevene gave partial credit to UK students for this success.

    “We were able to work with a group of students who, through The $100 Solution, helped us work on and strategize our marketing and advertising for the show,” Klevene said. “That was so much fun, not only for us, but for the students to get to make decisions that impact the organization.”

    These students — members of Allyson DeVito’s CIS 300 class — partnered with The $100 Solution to solve local organizations’ problems. DeVito tasked one of her groups with promoting the Allegro Dance Project's summer show.

    Additionally, UK students contributed to the show’s success as interns, musicians and company dancers. The interns — who are majoring in integrated strategic communication, political science and digital media and design — helped "Renaissance" by designing T-shirts, helping with outreach efforts and volunteering backstage.

    Two musicians, DeBraun Thomas and Keenan Ray, are also UK graduates, and company dancers Kate Cox and Marian Bokyo are in their second year of medical school and first year of physical therapy school at UK, respectively.

    “It’s a great experience for UK students to get to work with nonprofits,” Klevene said. “We are so grateful for all the ways we get to interact and engage with UK.”

    If you are interested in getting involved with the Allegro Dance Project, there are several opportunities for you to help create a safe space for self-expression.

    “In providing either live music for our outreach or composing and performing in a show, I think we have a lot of different opportunities for volunteering, interning and paid work,” Klevene said. “We would love to continue to develop a relationship with UK.”

    If you are interested in getting involved with the Allegro Dance Project, you can email info [at] allegrodanceproject.org or visit their website at www.allegrodanceproject.org/.

    Follow along on the Allegro Dance Project’s journey on Instagram (@allegrodanceproject).

    Photo credit to Ryan Peters Photographic.Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationFine ArtsArtDanceHealth SciencesMedicine

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The Allegro Dance Project, a Lexington-based dance company, gives children with special needs the opportunity to dance through its Inclusive Outreach Program and adaptive classes. With the help of University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information students, the Allegro Dance Project had a very successful summer show.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 17, 2021) — Students who dream of making their mark in the entertainment industry used to think they’d need to head to Hollywood, New York or Atlanta. But 10 University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information (CI) students and alumni added their names this summer to the credits of a new, nationally televised reality show without ever leaving Lexington.

    “Relative Justice,” which premiered earlier this week on Monday, Sept. 13, is the first nationally syndicated television show taped in Kentucky, and thanks to strong ties between the college and Lexington-based Wrigley Media Group (WMG), students and alumni were an integral part of the production crew.

    “Working on a nationally syndicated show was amazing in and of itself, but to be able to be a part of something like that right here in Kentucky was even better,” said CI alumna Katie Sam Smith. “I’m so glad that I was able to be involved in something that not only kickstarted my career but also benefited my home state by providing employment opportunities and supporting local business.”

    “Relative Justice” (check your local listings) is a family-based unscripted court show that “moves the drama from the family room to the courtroom.” With 150 episodes of more than 200 cases, viewers can expect a wide range of conflicts and emotions, all from real people with authentic disputes, presided over by Judge Rhonda Wills, a Houston attorney.

    WMG is a full-service content creation company founded by Misdee Wrigley that works on everything from short-form web series to long-form network programming. The company recently converted the former Cinemark Woodhill Movies 10 into a full media production facility, and the “Relative Justice” taping took place there from May to August.

    “The industry is changing to where you can make quality TV and films really anywhere in the world that you can then provide to the networks,” said Ross Babbit, chief content officer of WMG and executive producer of “Relative Justice.” “Misdee Wrigley decided to invest in this community because she believes, and I believe, we all believe, that Lexington is the next hot spot for television and film production.”

    Producing the first season of “Relative Justice” saw a staff of half court show veterans and half Lexington locals. Along with other UK alumni, CI alumni and current students, many from the Media Arts and Studies (MAS) degree program, comprised a healthy portion of the Lexington crew:

    • Ross Allen (communication, 2019) is a full-time WMG production specialist and was key grip. He ensured all the set equipment was working properly and ready to shoot. Not only did that include fixing technical failures but also perfectly tailoring lighting to each plaintiff, defendant and their props.
    • Brianna Bellomo (MAS, 2021) was a stage production assistant. Her everyday responsibility was to get the set ready. This included prepping every plaintiff on the show and cuing them at the beginning of each case.
    • Sydney Carroll (MAS senior) was a production office assistant/runner. She worked with the executive in charge of production, kept records of who won their cases, made sure guests were paid and documented spending on shoot days. In post-production, she helped arrange air dates for the show and watched early cuts, ahead of broadcast.
    • Will Casada (MAS, 2021) was a production office assistant and worked in craft services. He was in charge of all food handling, from serving breakfast to going on grocery runs to planning catered lunches.
    • Jack Dillender (MAS senior) was a control room production assistant. His main responsibility was communicating with the remote producers and showrunner. He also got remote witnesses TV-ready via Zoom.
    • Maurice Fleming (MAS, 2020) was a stage production assistant. He helped maintain the set, escorted the audience members on and off stage, cued the litigants, helped the prop master and ensured everyone on set was following the director’s orders.
    • Austin Iannone (MAS, 2021) was an audience coordinator. He recruited audience members, welcomed and instructed the audience members about their appearance and ensured each day of filming saw a full gallery of engaged audience members.
    • Simon Relford (MAS, 2020) and Tatum Tucker (MAS, 2021) were creative production assistants. They each worked in a group of three with a producer and associate producer to find interesting cases for the show. This required online and in-person coaxing of a diverse group of people, from Lexington to Cuba. Once chosen, the guests were booked, their stories were pitched and their legal work was finalized before they could appear on the show.
    • Katie Sam Smith (MAS, 2021) was a COVID-19 compliance officer. She was tasked with keeping production up and running during a pandemic. This included enforcing social distancing and mask-wearing protocols, keeping up with employee and visitor vaccination cards and overseeing COVID-19 testing for the crew, talent, litigants and the audience. 

    Although the CI alumni and students had no previous experience working on a courtroom show, their diligence and eagerness to learn impressed Lou Dennig, another executive producer of “Relative Justice.” 

    “UK students stack up against the ‘Emerson Mafia’ and Syracuse University people in Los Angeles 100%,” Dennig said, referring to his experience guest lecturing at the communication powerhouse universities. “I didn’t realize that UK had such a deep program also. And clearly, the training that students get at UK is world-class because the people came in, they stepped up and they did a great job.”

    For many of the CI alumni and current students on the “Relative Justice” crew, the relevant training they received at UK came from Kyra Hunting, assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Media. Hunting had the opportunity to watch her students in action as an audience member. Denning took advantage of a break in taping to lead the entire crew in a round of applause for Hunting’s positive impact on the future of media.

    “It was incredibly gratifying to be able to watch our talented and dedicated students in their element on set,” Hunting said. “The students who worked on this program were among our very best — creative, enthusiastic and professional — and it was so special to be able to see all the potential I observed in the classroom at work as they helped make a TV series that will be seen nationwide. Our students are as prepared and talented as students from anywhere in the country, and it was wonderful to see them having theki opportunity to prove that and start on their journeys in the industry.”

    Real-world career track experiences are an integral part of CI, and WMG has been a strong partner in helping train students as interns for several years. CI and WMG are working to build on their relationship to include even more opportunities like “Relative Justice.” The hope is that the best and brightest media students-turned-professionals can have a storied “Hollywood” career right here in their home state.

    In the Lexington area, “Relative Justice,” airs on the CW Network Mondays through Fridays at 9 a.m. EDT. For more information, please go to www.relativejustice.tv.

    CI students and alumni work with other UK alumni at Wrigley Media Group to produce “Relative Justice,” the first nationally syndicated television show taped in Kentucky.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Students who dream of making their mark in the entertainment industry used to think they’d need to head to Hollywood, New York or Atlanta. But 10 College of Communication and Information students and alumni added their names this summer to the credits of a new, nationally televised reality show without ever leaving Lexington.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Shawntaye Hopkins and Danielle Donham Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 16, 2021) — The University of Kentucky J. David Rosenberg College of Law and College of Communication and Information is recognizing Constitution Day on Friday, Sept. 17, with a series of events and activities throughout the week.

    On Wednesday, Sept. 15, law students put their constitutional knowledge to the test with Constitutional Bingo from noon-1 p.m. in the G. Chad Perry III Grand Courtroom. Participants received a pocket copy of the U.S. Constitution. Prize packages were awarded at the conclusion of each of the five rounds of play.

    In addition, the law school will host a public reading of the entirety of the Constitution beginning noon Friday, Sept. 17, in the Stites & Harbison PLLC Commons located on the second floor near Common Grounds @ Law café. UK Rosenberg Law faculty and staff will take turns reading.

    Finally, the law library has a special book display in recognition of Constitution Day.

    The UK College of Communication and Information will host “Remembering David Hawpe: A Symposium at the University of Kentucky” Friday, Sept. 17. The symposium, sponsored by the School of Journalism and Media, is scheduled from 1 to 4 p.m. at Worsham Cinema in the Bill Gatton Student Center. The symposium will be livestreamed and can be viewed at this link

    The event honors journalist, UK alumnus and former UK Board of Trustees member Hawpe, known for his passionate defense of the First Amendment. The event is free and open to the public.

    More information about the event can be found here.

    Photo credit: alancrosthwaite, iStock / Getty Images Plus. Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationLaw

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: The University of Kentucky J. David Rosenberg College of Law and College of Communication and Information will recognize Constitution Day on Friday, Sept. 17, with a series of events and activities throughout the week.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 10. 2021) — Tomorrow, the nation will commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11 — a day that lives in infamy after nearly 3,000 people lost their lives in what was the deadliest terrorist attack in human history.

    Like most places, Sept. 11, 2001 at the University of Kentucky started out as an ordinary, late summer day. But as the events of that tragic morning unfolded, the university community, like everyone, was never quite the same.

    After the series of attacks occurred, classes were canceled for the rest of the day. According to the Kentucky Kernel, students quickly mobilized to donate blood and relief funds. Later that evening, a candlelight vigil took place outside of the William T. Young Library.

    In the following weeks, tribute walls with messages of hope and unity flooded campus, and gatherings that celebrated diversity and inclusion of students from all nationalities were organized in the wake of discrimination and hates crimes following the attacks.

    The people of UK lifted each other up during those dark days that followed, and just like the nation, they came together in a spirit of resilience and unity.

    While many of today’s UK students were likely too young to remember the events of 9/11 (or not yet born), many UK faculty and staff still vividly recall where they were that morning and how that day impacted their lives.

    Ahead of the 20th anniversary, UKNow invited those with personal stories or connections to the 9/11 victims and their families to share their stories.

    Content warning: Some of the stories below include recounts of the 9/11 violence and resulting deaths of family members and friends. Reader discretion is advised.

     

    Carl Nathe, public address announcer for UK Football and now-retired employee of UK Public Relations and Strategic Communications, shares his story on the loss of his childhood friend in the World Trade Center attacks.

    Rick Hall, and his younger brother Doug, moved in as my nextdoor neighbors in Pleasantville, New York, shortly before we both started kindergarten. Their father was a former minor league baseball player and taught the game to us — Mr. Hall took us to a baseball field anytime we wanted to learn how to hit, field, throw, run the bases, etc. Rick and I, along with Doug, became youth baseball players and added in basketball and football along the way. We all loved to listen to sports on the radio, watch games on TV or attend in-person whenever possible.

    Rick remained a close friend all the way through high school and beyond. We each went to different colleges, yet still saw each other during summers. We each moved to different places in the country to begin our full-time working careers after graduation, but still kept in touch. As we began to have families of our own and lived farther apart, we were not able to see each other very much. Still, each of us remained the other’s oldest friend. 

    The last time we got to see each other in person was in 1998 in New York City. My entire family went to visit Rick at his office on the 104th floor of one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. It was a wonderful 45 minutes or so, sharing stories and catching up on our respective lives. We still emailed each other after that, and had hopes to reconnect again down the road.

    On Sept. 11, 2001, I was out on UK's campus working on a project when someone told me there had been a “horrible accident” and that a plane had struck one of the towers. Immediately hustling back to my office, I prayed that somehow everyone in the World Trade Center and in the plane would be OK. I turned on one of the office TVs to see what was happening and then just a couple of minutes later, a second plane crashed into the other tower. Now it was readily apparent: this was not an “accident.”

    Like all of us experienced that day, there was a gnawing, sick feeling inside of me. I later learned that Rick’s building was the second one hit and that he was presumed dead, together with nearly 3,000 others. His body was not recovered from the wreckage until several weeks later.

    In November, back in our hometown of Pleasantville, we held a memorial service to honor Rick and remember him. He was just 49 years old.

    I have visited his gravesite on several occasions and his name is inscribed in the World Trade Center Memorial. We all miss him dearly, yet life must go on.

     

    Janie Heath, dean of the UK College of Nursing, shares her story on living in Washington, D.C., in 2001. Her husband worked at the Pentagon, and she recalls the agonizing wait to learn if he was safe.

    At exactly 8:46 a.m. my life as well as millions of others changed forever. It truly was the longest day of my life. I still vividly remember teaching Acute Care NP students at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., when word got to us that something so tragic and unimaginable was happening in our country.  

    We started hearing that a plane hit the World Trade Center and then we started seeing the smoke from the Pentagon and knew we were under attack.

    The town was literally shut down — no communication coming in or out and traffic was at a standstill. Students started running for their lives on campus and nursing students started running to the hospital to assist in any way possible for incoming victims — except no one came.  

    It was so surreal and hard to comprehend the full impact of what was going on — another plane had hit the second tower of the World Trade Center and a plane had crashed into a corn field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, (and then) smoke filled the sky in Washington, D.C.

    All I could think about was my husband — a U.S. Army colonel assigned to the Pentagon. I couldn’t remember if we exchanged our usual goodbyes and I love you — all phones were dead and I knew our kids were worried sick about us.

    Employees started walking home while I stayed paralyzed watching the news and waiting for a call that never came, until 12 hours later when I finally made it home and heard his exhausted voice:

    “I’m okay — I walked out of the Pentagon 20 minutes before the attack.”

    It would be another 24 hours before I saw my husband, as “duty calls” and “the soldier” gets to work with managing the devastation of so many civilian and military lives lost that day.  

    To this day whenever I hear a low-flying, loud plane, I cannot help to worry is it happening again, and no matter wherever I am and I see our beautiful American flag I am so proud of what it stands for and all those that serve to protect our freedom and safety that day and every day — firefighters, police, military, emergency personnel and more. 

     

    Beth Barnes, professor and director of undergraduate studies in the UK Department of Integrated Strategic Communication, was assistant dean for professional master’s programs at Syracuse University in 2001. She remembers many students who lost family members in the attacks, and recounts coming together with a large group of students, domestic and international, in the wake of prejudice and hate crimes against those of certain nationalities.

    My morning on Sept. 11, 2001 began with the fall kick-off event for the Syracuse (NY) Ad Club. I was president that year, and one of the city’s advertising agencies was hosting a fall TV preview, where we were seeing clips from the pilot episodes for the fall’s new TV series and hearing about each network’s primetime program lineup.

    As has often been reported, it truly was a beautiful day. In Syracuse, a little over four hours’ drive from midtown Manhattan, there was a nip of fall in the air and the sky was cloudless and bright blue. Syracuse University had started its fall semester a few weeks earlier, so we were into the swing of classes.

    The first sign that something was going on was when the mobile phones of the various station ad reps in our preview event began ringing. A call would come in, the rep would step out to answer it and then they didn’t come back. After that happened several times, the video clip we were watching was stopped and one of the agency tech people came out of the control room to tell us that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center towers. At that point, the assumption was that it was a small private plane. We ended the meeting and everyone headed to their jobs.

    I was still in my car driving to campus when the announcement came over the radio of the second plane hitting. As soon as I parked, I ran into our building, where I knew there would be TVs going. Sure enough, the building lobby was full of students, faculty and staff, all watching the news coverage. I hadn’t been inside long when the first tower fell. I particularly remember my dean, a native New Yorker, sitting in stunned silence.

    As the morning continued to unfold, my next, very vivid memory, is of trying to track down my brother. He was working in Boston at the time, and flying to the West Coast fairly often. (The two planes that hit the towers were both Boston departures heading for Los Angeles.) The person who first answered the phone when I called my brother’s company just wouldn’t tell me anything, which felt like a punch to the gut. But when I called back, the person I got the second time was able to reassure me that they had seen my brother that morning and he was there and in a meeting.

    By early afternoon, there was already tremendous speculation about who was behind the attacks, and already some reports of backlash against people from other countries happening. We decided to call a meeting of our master’s students; we had 200 or so across the school’s various programs, and about a third of them were international students from a range of countries. We wanted to give all of our students the chance to come together and talk, and to encourage everyone to look out for one another. I also remember being very aware that for some of our international students, terroristic violence on their own soil was something they were very used to. So, it was also a chance for them to share their experience of living with that with our domestic students.

    Over the next days as more details came out and as victims were identified, I learned that the older brother of one of my students had died at the World Trade Center. He didn’t work there, but he’d been at a breakfast meeting at Windows on the World, the restaurant on the top of the North Tower. Another of our students lost her father in the attack on the Pentagon. 

    Syracuse University lost 30 of its graduates in the 9/11 attacks. Many Syracuse students lost family members that day; the university draws a large portion of its students from the New York metropolitan area. And, tragically, SU was no stranger to terrorism; 35 of the people killed in the Pan Am bombing over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988 were current SU students on the way back from a semester-long study abroad program in London.

    One other 9/11-related memory that has stayed with me over the years was formed more than a month after the attacks. I traveled from Syracuse to Anchorage, Alaska to lead an accreditation team at University of Alaska. All of Central New York and, I’m sure, much of the East Coast was still draped in American flags and bunting. But I wasn’t expecting to see the same thing over 4,000 miles away as I walked around Anchorage. That really brought home to me the extent of the national grief.

    To this day, if I’m teaching on 9/11 at the time the first plane hit, I stop my class and ask my students to join me in a moment of silence. I’ve yet to be able to get through making that request without starting to cry.

     

    Peter Berres, now-retired assistant dean of student affairs in the College of Health Sciences, shares his story of losing his nephew in the World Trade Center attack.

    Like many Americans, my first memory of Tuesday, Sept. 11, is of the wondrously beautiful day it began as. And the unprecedented, horrific day it became.

    At home (as I prepared to drive to Bowling Green for a UK meeting) and watching the incomprehensible story unfold, aware of the first plane and hoping — though I found it impossible to believe — that a small plane had accidently hit the first World Trade Center Tower, I held to that belief even as I entertained other explanations, including purposefully violent attack scenarios.

    I knew that my sister’s son, Paul Kenneth Sloan, age 26, had recently moved from San Francisco to NYC with a financial-investment job. Unaware that he worked at the World Trade Center, I worried about him working close to the towers and that some of the secondary effects might threaten his safety.

    Around lunch time, I phoned my sister living in California, beginning the conversation by asking “how far is Paul from the towers?” The answer came in her tone, before her words registered with me: “he works in the south tower, I just talked to him, he is okay and now leaving the building.”

    Paul began descending the staircase from the 87th floor. Somewhere down, the public announcements insisted that it was more dangerous outside the building and to stay inside on your work floor. He returned to the 87th floor and called his dad, who was in a meeting in Houston, where they were watching the news accounts of the first plane. (While) telling his dad he had attempted to leave, but was persuaded back to his company’s offices, the second plane hit his building — with his dad watching — and the phone went dead.

    Unable to get a plane out, my brother-in-law drove his rental car straight to San Francisco, collected his two other sons and my sister, and then drove — nonstop —  from SF to NYC to meet with their daughter who lived north of city.

    Days of searching hospitals, days of hope fading …. Days of collecting his personal belongings and talking to the everyday people in his life — grocers, laundry-cleaners, parking attendants, door men, neighbors — all of whom spoke of his unique kindness and gentle and genuinely engaging personality.

    Crushed, they returned to California to await confirmation, wait for his body, and for a funeral and a spot to lay him to rest and a place to visit. The knock, finally, came early one morning, weeks later. Confirmation was made from a piece of thumbnail.

    Plans for a funeral were abandoned, instead a memorial was held. My sister asked me to eulogize Paul, which has remained the saddest, most difficult of 10 eulogies I’ve delivered. But his was the easiest, having such incredible material from his short life: his character grounded in values and ethical standards which represent the best of us; a work ethic which drove him to do the best in everything he attempted, often building on rather ordinary qualities which he willed into excellence. And, above all, evident from the earliest times of his young life, the kindest and sweetest personality, the kind we seldom see so clearly, so early.

    With all eulogies, my hope is that those qualities we admire in others will find their way into our own hearts. In the last 20 years, my thoughts return to Paul regularly as I recognize my many faults and flaws and look to Paul to remind me what a gracious, meaningful life looks like. The youngest of those I have eulogized (parents, two brothers, war buddies who ended their own lives) Paul’s short life has taught me more about being a human being than anyone. He has made me — and his friends and family — all better persons by his well-lived example than any other influence I am aware of. To that extent, Paul lives in so many people and continues to guide us and inspire us to the decent humans we are capable of being.

    My heart remains heavy for my sister and her family, a burden I wish I could carry for them all. 

    At this 20-year anniversary, I am both proud and humbled by my sister and brother-in-law’s courage and resiliency in carrying their burden and the grace and dignity with which they have managed themselves for the betterment and comfort of their children, grandchildren, extended family and friends. Life goes on, indeed, but Paul lives on in so many of us.

     

    Amanda Nelson, director of media and strategic relations in the UK College of Education, was a senior at UK in 2001. She shares a story of how a group of volunteers from her hometown of Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, traveled to New York City to assist with recovery efforts after 9/11.

    My father was the local newspaper publisher, so we drove from Lawrenceburg to New York to report on their work. It was surreal to be in the city with people I had known my whole life as they wore Red Cross vests and prepared meals.

    We were invited to go with them to the World Trade Center site to deliver packages of clean socks and freshly cut fruit to the rescue and recovery workers. I had watched 9/11 play out on campus televisions at UK, trying to process with my friends what was happening. I was nervous about how it would feel to see it in person. I recall the exhaustion on workers’ faces, being surprised by the vastness of the destruction and the smell of burning plastic. It was haunting to see the debris and dust in unusual places, like covering tombstones at St. Paul’s Chapel, and in a nearby jewelry store’s window display, frozen in time. It deepened my sense of reverence for what people experienced, and the memories of how that felt continue to be a profound part of my life.

    Looking back 20 years later, I realize what a pivotal time that was globally, and also in my own life. I was on the cusp of finishing school and entering adulthood and it was the first time I saw that level of tangible fear and grief. But it showed me that, no matter how devastated they are, people keep putting one foot in front of the other to get through, and that gave me hope.

                                                                                                                                                                     ***

    To read more personal accounts, UK Libraries’ Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History houses a collection of interviews and personal stories of Kentuckians surrounding their connections to Sept. 11, 2001.

    • “Bourbon in Kentucky: Women in Bourbon Oral History Project” featuring Jessica Pendergrass
    • “From Combat to Kentucky Oral History Project” featuring Tyler Gayheart and Ian Abney
    • “Peace Corps: Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (Kentucky) Oral History Project” featuring Tara L. Lloyd
    • “Quilt Alliance’s Quilter’s S.O.S. Oral History Project: American Quilt Study Group” featuring Mary Perini
    • “The John G. Heyburn II Initiative for Excellence in the Federal Judiciary Oral History Project” featuring Judge Joseph H. McKinley, Jr.
    • “Walter D. Huddleston Oral History Project” featuring U.S. Sen. and former Senate Select Committee on Intelligence member Walter D. Huddleston

    The University of Kentucky will commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11 in multiple ways tomorrow:

    • UK Army and Air Force ROTC will honor the victims of 9/11 by placing small flags in memory of each of the nearly 3,000 victims of 9/11 on the front lawn of UK's Main Building. From a podium, cadets will also read the name of each victim throughout the day. They will begin reading the names at 8:46 a.m., when the first attack occurred. Learn more here.  
    • UK Opera Theatre Director Everett McCorvey, along with three vocal students and alumni from the UK School of Music, will join the National Chorale, the U.S. Army Field Band and the Soldiers' Chorus at the Empty Sky Memorial Remembrance Ceremony, beginning 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, in Liberty State Park, located in Jersey City, New Jersey. Learn more here.  
    • This Saturday's UK vs. Missouri football game will also serve as the UK Heroes Day Football game. The game starts at 7:30 p.m. and a special ceremony will recognize all active, reserve and veteran members of the U.S. armed forces along with police, firefighters and other first responders.
    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationFine ArtsMusicGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesLibrariesNursing

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: Tomorrow, the university will commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11. UKNow invited those with personal stories or connections related to the attacks to share their memories.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Jesi Jones-Bowman Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 9, 2021) The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research (OUR) has selected 23 outstanding undergraduates for the 2021-2022 Undergraduate Research Ambassador program.

    The newly redesigned ambassador program’s mission is to increase awareness and create opportunities for students to actively engage in research and creative scholarship. Ambassadors must demonstrate academic excellence, leadership and be involved in mentored research or creative work. This year's ambassadors represent six colleges, 15 disciplines and 19 research areas.

    “Mentored research and creative work provide distinct opportunities for UK undergraduates to put to practice knowledge from the classroom and develop new skills,” says Chad Risko, director of the UK Office of Undergraduate Research. “This year’s class of ambassadors, who have each showcased success in their research and creative efforts, represent a broad spectrum of disciplines across the university. Such extensive representation is important as OUR seeks to make more visible the contributions of our fantastic undergraduate scholars and create opportunities for anyone that would like to pursue mentored research and scholarship.”    

    The student leaders’ goal is to make undergraduate research more accessible. Ambassadors will promote undergraduate research involvement and opportunities through student outreach and program events, such as tabling, information sessions, student workshops, speaking engagements, class and student organization presentations, and OUR sponsored events including the 5-Minute Fast Track Competition and Showcase of Undergraduate Scholars.

    The 2021-2022 Undergraduate Research Ambassadors include:

    ●     Sophia Abraham, College of Communication and Information

    ●     Maya Abul-Khoudoud, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Humza Anwar, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Bridget Bolt, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    ●     Kayli Bolton, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Shelby Brantley, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Trey Coburn, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Ethan Cofer, College of Design

    ●     Riley Droppleman, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Isabella Erickson, College of Nursing

    ●     Sarah Fields, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    ●     Claire-Marie Hall, College of Nursing

    ●     Wilson Harris, College of Engineering

    ●     Emily Keaton, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Caleb Kennedy, College of Engineering

    ●     Courtney Martin, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Shelby McCubbin, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Nadja Nelson, College of Nursing

    ●     Reagan Parker, College of Arts and Sciences

    ●     Avery Patrick, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    ●     Gretchen Ruschman, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    ●     Haley Shaver, College of Engineering and College of Fine Arts

    ●     Gabija Ziemyte, College of Arts and Sciences

    The Research Ambassadors are available by request for class and organization presentations, college and university research events, and campus outreach efforts. Requests must be submitted two to three weeks in advance and approved by OUR staff. If you would like to request a Research Ambassador presentation, please submit a request form.

    To learn more about the Office of Undergraduate Research, please visit https://our.uky.edu.

    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationDesignEngineeringFine ArtsNursing

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Elizabeth Chapin
    Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    "> Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2207 Summary: The student leaders’ goal is to make undergraduate research more accessible. Ambassadors will promote undergraduate research involvement and opportunities through student outreach and program events.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Mariah Kendell Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 8, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate Team is gearing up for their 2021-22 season.

    The policy team, led by coaches Casey Harrigan and Lincoln Garrett, returned to campus recently for their annual pre-season work retreat. Students researched and discussed the upcoming topic of the season — Resolved: The United States Federal Government should substantially increase prohibitions on anticompetitive business practices by the private sector by at least expanding the scope of its core antitrust laws.

    In policy debate, teams of two spend months researching both sides of the given topic. Before the competition, opposing teams are assigned as the “affirmative” (in favor of the resolution) or the “negative” (opposed to the resolution). The team with the most impactful argument wins the round.

    “This is an exciting time for the program with so many new initiatives. We’ve really embraced the value of promoting debate on and beyond our campus and hope to see a big impact over the coming season,” Debate Director Dave Arnett said.

    The policy team will open their season virtually on Sept. 18, just a month before the debut of UK Debate’s newly established public forum team on Oct. 9.

    Public forum is similar to policy debate, but it is more accessible and beginner-friendly with shorter rounds. UK is leading the way in the expansion of public forum debate as a founding member of the new Collegiate Public Forum League.

    This year’s public forum team, under the leadership of Katie Humphries, is preparing for the upcoming topic of the season — Resolved: When in conflict, the United States' obligation to protect public health outweighs the preservation of individual freedom.

    In addition to preparation for tournaments, UK Debate will continue to oversee the Bluegrass Debate Coalition. Director Bill Eddy and current UK debate students are sharing their resources with Kentucky middle and high students through after school classes, tournament opportunities and summer programs. Visit the BDC website at https://bluegrassdebate.org/.

    The UK Debate Team is the 2019 National Debate Tournament champion and is housed in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Kentucky. Follow the team at https://ci.uky.edu/UKDebate/.

    The policy team at their recent pre-season work retreat.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate Team is gearing up for their 2021-22 season.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Bill Eddy Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 3, 2021) — The Bluegrass Debate Coalition (BDC) is again offering no-cost, online public speaking and debate courses for the children of University of Kentucky’s faculty and staff. The after school debate program is part of a greater outreach from the UK College of Communication and Information aimed at enriching the lives of children across Kentucky. The initiative is helping students develop essential life skills now to substantially improve their self-confidence and their thinking/speaking abilities.

    This high-quality debate education experience is designed to be fun, educational and produces valuable life skills that last well beyond their school years. The BDC offers beginner, intermediate and advanced classes featuring a short lesson, group discussion and fun activities to generate new skills. These courses are provided in a virtual environment for safety and convenience.

    • Elementary courses are geared at students in grades four through six. The lessons are activities-based leading to lots of doing and time passes smoothly — and enjoyably. These classes meet once per week for 60 minutes over a period of six weeks. The BDC will also create a fun speaking event for them and give them medals like in the Olympics.
    • Middle school courses are geared at students in grades six through eight. No matter their experience in speech and debate, there is a course that will fit. Middle-school classes meet once per week for 90 minutes over a period of six weeks. At the completion of the course an event will be created for them and the BDC will give positive encouragement for the students to join a team and attend tournaments (if they are interested).
    • High school courses are geared at students in grades nine through 12. These classes will not occupy too much of a student’s time as the BDC strives to create a healthy balance to challenge students, but not overwhelm them. These classes meet once per week for 90 minutes over a period of six weeks. Students are encouraged to start a team, and go to speech and debate tournaments, which can be a lot of fun for them. Three experience levels are available: beginner, intermediate and advanced.

    Customized scheduling is also available. Students who have missed the deadline can be waitlisted so that additional classes can be created later in the month or possibly the following month. This creates a space for people to request classes that better align with their busy schedules.

    The courses are currently offered at no cost. The BDC initiative greatly appreciates donations, which help the program to offer even more classes and special events throughout the year.

    For questions or to enroll, please visit bluegrassdebate.org or call 859-218-8888.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The Bluegrass Debate Coalition is again offering no-cost, online public speaking and debate courses for the children of University of Kentucky’s faculty and staff.
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Catherine Hayden Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 2, 2021) — David V. Hawpe, whose journalism career had major impacts on Kentucky and its largest university, will be remembered by those who worked with him at “Remembering David Hawpe: A Symposium at the University of Kentucky” on Friday, Sept. 17.

    Hawpe, who died July 18, was a reporter and editor at the Louisville Courier Journal for almost 40 years. On his watch, the newspaper won four Pulitzer Prizes and was a strong voice for education reform and regulation of the coal industry. After his retirement in 2009, he was a UK trustee for six years.

    “We hope this event will pay proper tribute to one of Kentucky’s greatest journalists, and help the university community and the people of Kentucky realize more deeply the essential role that journalism must play in protecting and advancing the public interest, with news coverage that makes a difference in people’s lives,” said Al Cross, director of UK’s Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues. Cross is a faculty member of the School of Journalism and Media, which is sponsoring the event scheduled from 1 to 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 17, at Worsham Cinema in the Bill Gatton Student Center.

    UK President Eli Capilouto will join 11 other speakers who worked with Hawpe to help students, faculty and the public appreciate his impact on the state and the university.

    “David Hawpe devoted his life to Kentucky,” Capilouto said. “That commitment was particularly evident in his belief that Kentucky needed a strong system of higher education — and a nationally regarded flagship institution — to help our Commonwealth reach its potential. As a trustee at two institutions, Morehead State and UK, and as a passionate advocate for higher-education reform, he was unquestionably one of the strongest and most eloquent advocates for how an affordable, accessible system, with outstanding faculty, could transform the state. His role as a trustee was, in an important sense, an extension of his work as a journalist, someone who saw his role as a protector of the state but also someone who pushed it to be even better.”

    The other speakers will be:

    • Stephen J. Ford, who followed Hawpe in The Courier-Journal’s Eastern Kentucky Bureau and was a ranking editor under him for most of their careers at the newspaper. He will give an overview of Hawpe’s career and what it was like to work with him.
    • Richard Wilson, retired C-J reporter and former interim director of the journalism school, will recall Hawpe as the student reporter and editorialist who revealed player discontent on the football team.
    • Mimi Pickering, Appalshop filmmaker and board president of the Appalachian Citizens Law Center, and Steve Cawood, Pineville lawyer who first met Hawpe at the 1970 Hyden mine disaster that killed 38 miners, will discuss Hawpe and the coal industry.
    • Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd and state Sen. Morgan McGarvey of Louisville, for whom the retired editor was a volunteer aide, will discuss the politics of David Hawpe, who loved politics about as much as anything.
    • Jon Fleischaker and Kim Greene of Louisville, leading First Amendment lawyers in Kentucky, will discuss what it was like to be Hawpe’s attorney, and some of the battles they won for open government.
    • Betty Winston Baye, former C-J reporter and editor and member of the National Association of Black Journalists Hall of Fame, will discuss Hawpe’s leadership in the advancement of diversity in journalism.
    • David Thompson, executive director of the Kentucky Press Association and Hawpe’s friend of 55 years, will discuss his leadership in the industry as president of KPA and Associated Press Managing Editors.

    All speakers will be part of a concluding roundtable about the current state of journalism, where it may be going and how Hawpe’s career might inform that. Cross, who was C-J political writer under Hawpe, will moderate.

    The event is free and open to the public. Parking will be available in the Gatton Student Center lot, next to the center on Avenue of Champions.

    Following the symposium, UK College of Communication and Information Dean Jennifer Greer will host a reception in the student center.

    All officially recommended public health prevention measures will be observed.

    David HawpeOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: David V. Hawpe, whose journalism career had major impacts on Kentucky and its largest university, will be the focus of "Remembering David Hawpe: A Symposium at the University of Kentucky” on Friday, Sept. 17.
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 27, 2021) — The COVID-19 pandemic saw professional journalists worldwide working tirelessly to disseminate timely, consequential information to the public. This responsibility was just as weighty for student journalists. But despite the mounting pressure, University of Kentucky's Kentucky Kernel Media reigned triumphant over a trying year, raking in several state and national awards. Overall, the media organization and its staff won nearly 100 awards during the 2020-2021 school year.

    For the Kentucky Kernel and KRNL Lifestyle + Fashion, the tone for this past school year was set on March 6, 2020. That day, Natalie Parks was selected as the editor-in-chief for the Kernel while Rachael Courtney was selected for KRNL. But it was also the day that the coronavirus hit Kentucky.

    “The board of directors was selecting the new editor and the first COVID-19 case in Kentucky was announced while we were in the middle of selecting,” Student Media Advisor Ryan Craig said. “Basically, it was hanging over us like a cloud from the beginning of this current group, especially for Natalie and Rachael.”

    Rick Childress, 2019-2020 Kernel editor-in-chief, had rushed out of that selection meeting to cover the press conference announcing the case. He said the moment was “earth shattering” and the following months “absurd.”

    Parks said she felt distinctly that “everything from here on out would be different.” And her prediction would come to pass.

    Within a couple weeks, Childress’ former staff-filled newsroom would be empty, and he would have to virtually pass on his editorial responsibilities and knowledge to Parks. The weekly newspaper would also have its last print edition of the semester before going virtual as everything and everyone soon went on lockdown. 

    Luckily for KRNL, the staff had sent their Spring 2020 magazine to print before the lockdown started. Courtney was also fortunate to have been managing editor for Allie King, her predecessor. King said that made Courtney well-prepared for her new role, though that did not make her job any easier.

    The summer before the Fall 2020 semester was full of uncertainties for Parks and Courtney, filled with questions of how to operate their staffs virtually and if, when and how the university would resume in-person operations. And come the fall semester with CDC-compliant restrictions, Kentucky Kernel Media would face COVID-19 scares, absent staffers and the universally felt frustrations associated with adapting to online life. And challenges often faced by college media students, like limited media access and resources, were only worsened by the pandemic.

    Both Parks and Courtney agree that one of the hardest parts of their tenure was forming and keeping a sense of camaraderie among the staff. Kentucky Kernel Media is known among its alumni to host several social functions during the year, whether that be a summer staff retreat, semester tabling event or holiday office party. But while Courtney thought her KRNL staff were able to bond well via Zoom, Parks said that she and her Kernel staff missed out on “many of the things that make college journalism worth it.”

    However, these challenges did not come without reward. Beginning in October 2020 and continuing into July 2021, Kentucky Kernel Media’s multitude of state, national and international awards started rolling in. Though most of these awards were earned during Childress and King’s tenures, they provided a much-needed morale boost and motivator for Parks and Courtney’s staffs.

    For the 2019-2020 College Media Association Pinnacle Awards:

    • The Kernel won five awards.
    • KRNL won three awards.
    • Kentucky Kernel Year in Photos, the University of Kentucky’s unofficial yearbook, won two awards and one honorable mention. 

    For the 2019-2020 Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Awards, commonly referred to as the “Pulitzer Prize” of college journalism:

    • The Kernel won six Pacemakers, five honorable mentions, was a Newspaper Pacemaker finalist and won a first-place special award for COVID-19 coverage.
    • KRNL won one Pacemaker, one honorable mention, was a Magazine Pacemaker winner and placed second for the Best of Show Awards.
    • Year in Photos won one Pacemaker, one honorable mention and placed sixth for the Best of Show Awards.
    • Kentucky Kernel Inside UK, Kernel Media’s freshmen move-in magazine, placed second for the Best of Show Awards.

    For the 2019-2020 College Photographer of the Year Awards held in November, three Kernel staffers each won an Award of Excellence for the respective categories of sports portfolio, sports action and sports feature.

    Also in November, the Kentucky Kernel received the James Madison Award, awarded by the Scripps Howard First Amendment Center in the School of Journalism and Media at the UK College of Communication and Information in recognition of the organization’s outstanding contribution to the First Amendment.

    For the 2020-2021 Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program, which ran from December 2020 to July 2021:

    • Kernel staffers had four individual Top 20 finishes, two photojournalism and two writing, with two of them being Top 10.
    • KRNL staffers had two individual Top 20 finishes, one being Top 10, and one group Top 20 finish.
    • UK placed fifth in photojournalism, its highest ranking to date.
    • UK also placed 10th in overall finish, also its highest ranking to date.

    For the 2019-2020 Kentucky Press Association Awards held in February 2021, the Kernel won two Certificates of Merit and 45 awards, sweeping seven categories and taking home 18 first place finishes. Parks was also named Student Journalist of the Year in addition to receiving the Jon Fleischaker Freedom of Information award, the latter of which was also awarded to Craig.

    Also held in February was the 2021 Kentucky News Photographer Association Conference. Three Kernel photographers won 11 awards. Michael Clubb, Parks’ managing editor, won Sports Photographer of the Year, competing with professional photojournalists for the first time, and Runner-up Student Photographer of the Year.

    At the 2021 American Advertising Awards held in March, KRNL’s Kendall Boron won a Golden Addy for her work with the organization.

    Finally, in July 2021, the Associated Collegiate Press named the Kentucky Kernel a Top 100 Pacemaker Winner and aims to honor the organization during the ACP centennial celebration planned for October 2021 in New Orleans.

    “Awards are far from everything, but they’re certainly nice confidence boosters,” Childress said. “They’re a tried and true stamp that you’re doing a good job and I couldn’t help but feel extremely proud watching our reporters, photographers and designers reel in award after award. It was one thing for me to tell someone they did a good job, but when someone got national or state recognition, then they really knew it and so did everyone else.”

    Besides awards, the 2020-2021 class of Kernelites proved in other ways that they could uphold the tradition of strong journalism despite the pandemic. Though the Kernel staff never met in person and only allowed one staffer at a time in the newsroom, they continued their pre-pandemic weekly printed papers, even increasing the number of pages in some editions, while bolstering their electronic newsletter. The KRNL staff also expanded its multimedia coverage to include regular podcasts and video content while producing two magazines that Craig said were the best in the country college-wise.

    “I’ve talked to many advisors across the country, and we all agree that the adaptations students had to make to ensure each publication, whether a campus newspaper or special publication, came out on time and successfully was outstanding,” Assistant Student Media Advisor May May Barton said. “Kernel/KRNL students were focused, determined and dedicated to putting out the best product for the campus and the community.”

    Although the year was what Parks called “the opposite of the ideal college journalism experience,” she also thought the Kernel surviving through the year was the “height of success.” She and Courtney both hope for their successors, Rayleigh Deaton for the Kernel and Allie Diggs for KRNL, to be able to get back in the office, make lasting memories and create the top-tier content they know Kentucky Kernel Media is capable of.

    “The Kentucky Kernel and KRNL have a mission, and that mission is to cover the campus of the University of Kentucky fairly, equitably and, without a doubt, to tell the stories that aren’t being told,” Craig said. “This is a laboratory, we are learning, we are trying to uplift these students and make them realize their potential as journalists. And even if they don’t work in journalism, if they do something else, if they major in something else, their time working for the Kernel or KRNL will make their lives better and also make them see the world differently, and I think that’s where we can really excel.”

    The Kentucky Kernel staff celebrate winning the KPA General Excellence Award for Large Collegiate Papers in January 2020, the last time they were able to celebrate awards together before the pandemic began.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The COVID-19 pandemic saw professional journalists worldwide trying to disseminate timely, consequential information to the public. This responsibility was just as weighty for student journalists. But despite the mounting pressure, Kentucky Kernel Media reigned triumphant over a trying year, raking in several state and national awards. Overall, the media organization and its staff won nearly 100 awards during the 2020-2021 school year. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 20, 2021) — Children are usually told to “shoot for the moon” when planning their future careers. For one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumnus, he’s taking that advice literally — except he’s shooting for the moon AND Mars.

    John Ramsey, a 1995 telecommunications graduate (now media arts and studies), has turned his childhood love of flying and human spaceflight into a profession supporting NASA. Since 2017, he has served as the senior project manager and integrated product team leader for the Spaceport Command and Control System at Kennedy Space Center. 

    But it wasn’t a straight road from Space Camp to the Spaceport. Though Ramsey had attended the U.S. Space and Rocket Center summer camp multiple times as a child, he started his career with the military. 

    Having earned his pilot’s license at 17, Ramsey had envisioned himself as an Air Force fighter pilot. But these plans soon changed when he discovered he had worsening eyesight. Instead, he joined UK’s Army ROTC and, subsequently, the School of Journalism and Media, known then as the School of Journalism and Telecommunications.

    As a telecommunications major, Ramsey aimed to learn the parameters of the communication industry, such as the technical side of systems, while also dabbling in the array of classes offered at UK. He said his degree afforded elective flexibility that allowed him to expand his horizons.

    “I got this kind of rich mixture of different domains and different subject matter that was really interesting, and I didn’t realize at the time how well it would equip me for life later on,” Ramsey said. “The ability to explore my interests and to feed parts of my brain that I hadn’t or wouldn’t have otherwise tapped into gave me that Swiss Army knife set of capabilities to go out in the world and do some pretty diverse things.”

    After graduating, Ramsey went on to serve as an infantry officer before putting in 15 years in the telecommunications industry. He worked his way up from frontline management to the executive director and global practice lead for Solutions Architecture at Verizon.

    These years of career expertise made Ramsey a “valuable resource” for John Clark, associate professor in the School of Journalism and Media. Clark said Ramsey was an “engaging” and “diligent student” in his telecommunications network management class, and he would later return to the same class as a “guest expert speaker,” much to Clark’s appreciation.

    While reaching a top position at a Fortune 50 company is the pinnacle for some people’s careers, this was the moment Ramsey bowed out for a coincidental opening of his dream job.

    He had returned to Space Camp as a volunteer instead of a camper. While helping out the organization, he was appointed to the foundation board and helped to start the camp’s alumni association. This led to regular interaction with NASA and the contractor community. Through these connections, Ramsey learned that Jacobs, the prime contractor for ground systems supporting the human exploration program at Kennedy Space Center, was looking for a professional with his credentials.

    Now he’s responsible for a team of over 200 software engineers and developers, system engineers, hardware engineers and more. As the senior project manager and integrated product team leader, Ramsey oversees the design, development, test and sustainment of the primary command and control system for processing and launch of the vehicles in NASA’s Artemis program. The program aims to take the first woman and next man to the moon and, eventually, Mars.

    A previous coworker of Ramsey’s, Sandra Newfang, former senior manager for software delivery on the Test and Operations Support Contract at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, said, “John's leadership was so critical to the success of Launch Control Systems at Kennedy Space Center, and I especially admired both how thoroughly he understood such a complicated system, and his sheer talent for strategy.”

    Considering all the “cool things” Ramsey does in his role and the reality of living his childhood dream, there is one fact about his niche career that continues to amaze him even after four years on the job.

    “I’m constantly standing in those rooms where people have worked so hard to allow people to leave Earth,” Ramsey said. “That’s what we say about Kennedy Space Center — it is the place where you come to watch people leave Earth.”

    John RamseyOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: John Ramsey, a 1995 telecommunications graduate, has turned his childhood love of flying and human spaceflight into a profession supporting NASA. Since 2017, he has served as the senior project manager and integrated product team leader for the Spaceport Command and Control System at Kennedy Space Center. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 13, 2021) — A little girl from Kentucky who went to the local library housed in a jail cell has now become a section head at the Library of Congress (LC), turning her getaway into a realized dream job.

    Jasmyne Lewis-Combs, who earned her master’s degree in library science in 2014 from the School of Information Science (SIS) in the University of Kentucky’s College of Communication and Information, took her love of local libraries and transformed it into a career in the United States’ national library, one of the largest libraries in the world.

    “It took me a long time to get here, but it’s a good place to be now. You don’t leave LC,” Lewis-Combs said. “My dream job wanted me. I didn’t just want them. Some days I still can’t believe it.”

    Lewis-Combs’ library career started at the end of a nearly decade-long career teaching special education. Due to Great Recession budget cuts, she was let go from her school district. This left her scrambling for months trying to find a job, none of which stuck, until one opened up the door to further her education. 

    As a Kentucky girl, Lewis-Combs had always wanted to attend UK, but after getting her bachelor’s degree from Morehead State University, a master’s degree from Georgetown College and teaching certificate from West Virginia University, it was a forgotten dream. Thankfully, her short stint as a social worker finally gave her the opportunity as one of the job requirements was to apply for graduate school at UK. When she got her acceptance letter two months after quitting the job, her mother suggested she go into library science like she had dreamed of as a child.

    “As I fell out of love with teaching because of the bureaucracy involved, I fell even more in love with the library because I could teach what I wanted when I wanted to who I wanted, and it was like this perfect environment for me,” Lewis-Combs said. “I had this love of library anyway because it was always my escape. If I had something going on that I wanted to run from, well that’s where you found me. Or if I had any free time, my nose was in a book.”

    Though she had an affinity for libraries, she did not know all the work it took to be a librarian until she started her program at UK. There, she learned the philosophy, logistics and science behind libraries and how they operate. It was also at UK that she discovered her dream job through an internship program.

    The UK SIS Alternative Spring Break program offers library science students career-enhancing experience by working in the country’s leading national libraries and archives. While participating in the program, Lewis-Combs spent time interning in the LC. For the next 10 years, she gained progressive experience to work toward landing a job in the national library.

    Before she even graduated from UK, Lewis-Combs was already serving as a library director for the Rocky J. Adkins Public Library in Sandy Hook, Kentucky. Her focus there was to assist the community with what she observed as their main needs: free child care and meals during the summer. With a small budget from the Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Lewis-Combs ran an eight-week science-based summer reading program from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for 50 school-aged children. She also ran a two-week senior citizen computer class, teaching the elderly how to shop online, create an email address and use Facebook.

    “Everybody thinks books when they think library, but that’s not the case anymore. It’s not the books — it’s the people. Our libraries are the center of our community. Libraries are changing. It’s no longer older ladies with buns and glasses shushing patrons while carrying stacks of books. Our libraries are living, breathing entities that are the hubs of everyday life,” Lewis-Combs said. “All of these resources are available through your library, and all of the social aspects that we need as humans to be well-rounded people are available there.”

    Throughout the years, Lewis-Combs was also a correctional librarian in the Little Sandy Correctional Complex where she ran reading programs for inmates, a supervisor in the West Virginia Library Commission Division of Special Services, where she taught others skills to teach Braille and provided public library services to the visually impaired and blind through the LC’s National Library Service and an educational technology teacher/ librarian at Kentucky Christian University.

    Nine months into the KCU job, Lewis-Combs got a call from the LC about an application she had submitted before even applying to the university. After an interview she thought she bombed, two months of waiting for a call back and a 72-page background check, she was well on her way to becoming the section head for the Science, Medicine and Agriculture Section of the LC.

    “It’s an amazing feeling to be there and to be chosen for the job that you dreamed about and sought after for almost 10 years,” Lewis-Combs said. “It’s been the road meant to be traveled. Really bad circumstances turned into something really wonderful.”

    As a section head, Lewis-Combs supervises a team of cataloguers, two librarians and three technicians, who complete the Cataloguing in Publication (CIP) records for books in pre-publication and catalogue published books sent from the United States Copyright Office. Though the job is not public-facing, Lewis-Combs said she has a large enough staff and ample program opportunities to satisfy her social needs as a librarian.

    While her library career started from a love of books, it quickly blossomed into a love of helping others. She dreams of one day heading the NLS to help solve social inequalities like she had as a librarian in West Virginia and assisting with the Alternative Spring Break program to help set career goals for other future librarians.

    “So many times, our librarians get discounted as, ‘Oh, they’re just a librarian.’ But they’re not. They’re the keys to unlocking all this knowledge,” Lewis-Combs said. “They can be the catalyst for change in our communities for the better.”

    For more information please visit: 

    Library Science Program

    LIS Alternative Spring Break Program

    Library of Congress

    Jasmyne Lewis-CombsOrganizational Unit: Communication and InformationGraduate School

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Jasmyne Lewis-Combs, who earned her master’s degree in library science in 2014 from the School of Information Science in the University of Kentucky’s College of Communication and Information, took her love of local libraries and transformed it into a career in the United States’ national library, one of the largest libraries in the world.
    Category:
  • Body: Student NewsBy C. Lynn Hiler Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 23, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence is honored to announce the 2021 class of Chellgren Student Fellows.

    The Chellgren Center Student Fellows Program aligns with the university’s goal of cultivating undergraduate excellence. By providing experiences that go beyond the classroom, students become prepared for the next phase of their career, whether it be graduate school, a position in their field, or a gap year dedicated to service. Created in 2005 with a gift from Paul Chellgren, a UK graduate, and his family, the Chellgren Center creates unique educational opportunities for outstanding undergraduate students and professors at the university. Chellgren’s commitment to undergraduate education at UK has impacted thousands by creating countless number of opportunities for UK students, staff and faculty.

    The last academic year was certainly like no other, but the Chellgren Center is excited to return to a more traditional experience for the 2021 cohort of Chellgren Student Fellows as we celebrate our 15th year. Plans are also underway to add new opportunities for students, which will soon be shared. Philipp Kraemer, Chellgren chair, is optimistic about the coming year. “Technology certainly enabled the university to implement a meaningful higher education experience despite the pandemic, but we all look forward to a return to an in-person learning community.”

    The 2021-2020 Fellows are:

    College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    Chase Eastham

    Megan Johnston

    Bailey Smith

    College of Arts and Sciences

    Olivia Allran

    Madison Baker

    Meghan Brockman

    Isha Chauhan

    Ryan Crane

    Christine Haddad

    Leena Haider

    Shria Holla

    Tesslyn Hutchinson

    Katelyn Keen

    Abbey Loar

    Boston Oliver

    Emma Poole

    Nicholas Relich

    Hallie Rice

    Ross Shumard

    Lakyn Steffen

    Caroline Sumner

    Olivia Swanbeck

    Zora Woolfolk

    Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Megan Wiley

    College of Communication and Information

    Eliza Crans

    Nyah Marasigan

    College of Engineering

    Seun Adekunle

    Catherine Cornwell

    Anna Erpenbeck

    Jackson Huse

    College of Health Sciences

    Elizabeth Ruschman

    College of Public Health

    Kassidy Maust

    College of Social Work

    Kotomi Yokokura

    The Chellgren Student Fellows Program is supported by the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence within the Office of the Provost. To learn more about the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence, please visit www.uky.edu/chellgren/

    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEngineeringHealth SciencesPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: The University of Kentucky Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence is honored to announce the 2021 class of Chellgren Student Fellows.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Whitney Hale, Meg Mills, and UK Athletics Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 9, 2021) — “Records are meant to be broken.”

    University of Kentucky athletes competing in Tokyo seem to have taken celebrated Olympic swimmer Mark Spitz’s words to heart.

    From the start of the delayed 2020 Olympics, Kentucky Wildcats were breaking records with a school-record 22 athletes participating in The Games. The number of UK athletes alone was larger than delegations from 106 countries, territories and principalities vying for medals in Japan.

    And not long after the opening ceremony, UK rifle’s Will Shaner became the first Wildcat to medal in historic fashion. Not only did Shaner win gold, but it was the first ever for the Americans in men's air rifle and came after the three-time UK All-American set an Olympic record score in the final. And before leaving Tokyo, the Gatton College of Business and Economics senior from Colorado Springs, Colorado, placed sixth overall with teammate Alison Marie Weisz in mixed air rifle competition.

    Not to be outdone, UK’s second gold won by medical student Lee Kiefer was also historic. Kiefer, a Lexington native and graduate of Notre Dame University, was the first American to win a gold medal in an individual foil event defeating reigning Olympic champion Inna Deriglazova (ROC) 15-13. She also earned Team USA's first fencing medal of the 2020 Games. Later that week, she took fourth with Team USA in women’s team foil.

    More records were broken as track and field took center stage. Alumna Jasmine Camacho-Quinn would strike gold next for Puerto Rico with fellow track and field alumna and silver medalist Keni Harrison, a community and leadership development graduate of UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, on her heels in the 100-meter hurdles final. Camacho-Quinn, a native of Charleston, South Carolina, earned the Olympic record in the 100m hurdles semifinals (12.26) around 16 hours before her gold medal performance (12.37).

    The next record to fall came in the Olympic 400-meter hurdles, when track and field alumna Sydney McLaughlin of Team USA won gold with a new world record of 51.46. The previous world record also belonged to McLaughlin after she ran 51.90 at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials. To close out Olympic track and field competition and celebrate her 22nd birthday in spectacular fashion, McLaughlin teamed up with Team USA’s Allyson Felix, Dalilah Muhammad and Athing Mu to bring home gold in the 4x400-meter relay. McLaughlin, of Dunellen, New Jersey, is only the second Wildcat to win two medals in the same Olympics.

    Six other Wildcats also medaled in Tokyo. UK rifle star Mary Tucker and USA Shooting star Lucas Kozeniesky earned silver in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics mixed air rifle competition. The College of Education kinesiology sophomore from Sarasota, Florida, was the second UK rifle athlete to medal in shooting at the 2020 Olympics.

    Wildcats also took medals in two fencing events in Tokyo, as UK medical student Gerek Meinhardt, a San Francisco native, secured a bronze medal in men’s team foil with Team USA’s Alex Massialas, Nick Itkin and Race Imboden. The Notre Dame graduate and husband of Olympic gold medalist Lee Kiefer, previously won a bronze medal in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games.

    In track and field, UK alumna Javianne Oliver and Team USA teammates Jenna Prandini, Gabrielle Thomas and Teahna Daniels won a silver medal in the 4x100-meter relay at the Olympics. The medal earned by Oliver, a public health graduate from Monroe, Georgia, was the fifth medal on the track for a Wildcat.

    The final three gold medals for Wildcats came on the basketball court. Bam Adebayo, Devin Booker and Keldon Johnson, a quarter of the USA Basketball Team in Tokyo, helped lead the Americans to their fourth consecutive gold medal with an 87-82 victory over France on Friday at Saitama Super Arena in Japan.

    With Adebayo, Booker and Johnson’s medals and McLaughlin’s second gold on Aug. 7, UK finished the Olympics with a school-record 12-medals — eight gold, three silver and one bronze. Previously, the men’s basketball program held the record with nine medals in 1948. With a dozen medals, if UK was matched against countries medaling at The Games it would make the top 20. And according to Twitter account Olympians Made Here, UK tied for seventh in U.S. colleges earning medals in Tokyo.

    In addition to the 11 Olympic medalists, 11 other UK students, alumni and staff competed in Japan. The other Wildcats making Big Blue Nation proud in Tokyo were:

    • incoming College of Education freshman and UK softball player Alexia Lacatena, playing softball for Italy;
    • UK track and field’s Megan Moss, a human health sciences junior, running for the Bahamas;
    • graduate student, communication graduate and UK track and field runner Dwight St. Hillaire, running for Trinidad and Tobago;
    • Devynne Charlton, a volunteer assistant coach for UK’s track and field team, running hurdles for the Bahamas;
    • alumnus Daniel Roberts, running hurdles for Team USA;
    • journalism and kinesiology and health promotion graduate Brittany Cervantes, playing softball for Mexico;
    • marketing graduate Ali Galyer, swimming for New Zealand;
    • alumnus Henrik Larsen, shooting for Norway;
    • English graduate Leah Nugent, running hurdles for Jamaica;
    • kinesiology graduate Jennifer O’Neill, playing basketball for Puerto Rico; and
    • financing and accounting graduate Peter Wetzlar, swimming for Zimbabwe.
    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesMedicinePublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Summary: “Records are meant to be broken.” University of Kentucky athletes competing in Tokyo seem to have taken celebrated Olympic swimmer Mark Spitz’s words to heart. From start to end of the delayed 2020 Olympics, Kentucky Wildcats were breaking records. Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 30, 2021) — One University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information (CI) alumna is proving she’s “not just a graphic designer” by using her skills to help elevate collegiate athletes in a wave of Name, Image and Likeness (NIL) legislation.

    Erin Harville, a 2018 integrated strategic communication (ISC) graduate, came to UK looking for something outside the box. With the curiosity to pick up a diverse skill set and the drive to add to the pool of Black creatives in the professional world, she landed in ISC, an undergraduate program she said was scarcely available in her home state of Georgia.

    “I was a person that wanted to do a little bit of everything but have one specific focus, and that was the only program that was like ‘this is how we can teach you everything, and you get to choose where you want to go and how you build your own path,'" Harville said.

    And the path that Harville chose was sports. Though she had always been part of the athletic world, it wasn’t until her internship with UK Athletics in her junior year that she realized the scope of creative opportunities. Branding herself as a “sports creative and visual strategist,” she has set her sights on becoming a creative officer.

    While serving as a creative services student intern in UK Athletics’ in-house creative department, Harville used the campaign skills she learned from CI to create digital and print campaigns for several of UK’s 22 varsity teams. This work expanded as she transitioned into the role of creative services assistant upon graduating, leading her to provide more creative direction, collaborate with different departments, mentor interns and manage projects. All this experience is why Harville calls UK Athletics “the best breeding ground for sports, ever.”

    “It’s almost like the Harvard of athletics,” Harville said. “If you want to understand how things operate and what’s the right way to operate, that’s exactly what you’ll get from being under that umbrella.”

    Her time working for UK Athletics has helped her seamlessly transition into the same role at the University of Oregon’s athletic department while she pursues her MBA at the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center. She works with Senior Associate Athletic Director Lisa Peterson, a former UK Athletics employee who worked in various roles over an eight-year career. Peterson and current UO Athletic Director Rob Mullens worked under UK Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart, and Harville said this allowed her caliber of work to be recognized and understood.

    Joining UO also introduced Harville to INFLCR, a platform for sports teams to store, track and deliver content across their networks. UK was INFLCR’s first client, using the platform for photo and video content. Now, however, Harville is working with the platform to promote a wave of new legislation across the nation.

    The NCAA recently adopted an interim policy that allows collegiate athletes to profit from their Name, Image and Likeness (NIL). In 2019, California was the first state to pass an NIL bill that would allow athletes to begin to profit from NIL in 2023. Several states followed suit, including Kentucky via executive order to allow athletes to make money from NIL.

    Leading up to the legislative rollout, Harville was hard at work for INFLCR, data mining and content creating to help the over 7,000 collegiate athletes on the platform take advantage of the new legislation. Now, she’s continuing her freelance work with INFLCR to provide written content and graphics for the social media strategies she creates.

    “This is a new era for student-athletes and there is so much to navigate, but I am glad that I am on the forefront of this and looking forward to seeing what the future holds for NIL,” Harville said.

    INFLCR is also partnering with Navigate, an advisor to leading brands and organizations in sports and entertainment, to provide athletes with their estimated fair market values and education to guide them through their NIL rights. Harville believes educating and advocating for athletes is the best way to prepare them for their post-playing careers, helping them to become fully realized people who can use their fame for good. Not only could athletes profit off sponsorships or autograph signings, but they could also become the faces of their nonathletic passions like the WNBA was for social justice in 2020.

    “I just think it’s the perfect time to sit here and shake the table and let people realize — use your voice and use your platform for change,” Harville said. “It’s all about the best decisions that you can make while you’re living in the spotlight, because once that dims down, what do you do?”

    For current students, athletes or not, Harville advised taking advantage of all that UK has to offer, whether that’s free software or advice from professors. After all, she credits her UK connections for helping her get where she’s at today.

    Erin HarvilleOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: One University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna is proving she’s “not just a graphic designer” by using her skills to help elevate collegiate athletes in a wave of Name, Image and Likeness legislation.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy MiKayla Carter Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 29, 2021) — University of Kentucky LibrariesSpecial Collections Research Center (SCRC) earned two special recognitions this summer at the annual Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation Awards

    SCRC librarian Reinette Jones was honored with the Clay Lancaster Heritage Education Award, given to an individual or group for their service in researching and disseminating information about the Central Kentucky region, and the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History was honored with the Public Service to Preservation Award, given to a government agency or official for their service to the preservation movement or to a specific project. 

    “I was so excited that Reinette and the Nunn Center were selected for Blue Grass Trust Awards,” said Deirdre Scaggs, UK Libraries associate dean and director of the Wendell H. Ford Public Policy Research Center. “Our missions in preserving Kentucky’s cultural history are closely aligned, and it’s incredible for them to be recognized for the important work they do for the Commonwealth and beyond.”

    Reinette Jones received a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a master’s degree in library science from UK. She has served the university and Lexington community at several campus locations since joining UK Libraries in 1988.

    Currently serving as a member of the SCRC in community outreach, reference and research, and as an affiliate with African American and Africana Studies in the UK College of Arts and Sciences, Jones has developed several important resources for researchers at UK and beyond, including the research guide for lesbian studies and the Notable Kentucky African Americans (NKAA) Database

    Co-founded by Jones and fellow UK librarian Rob Aken in 2003, the NKAA Database features entries with names, places, events, communities and sources that share the often untold or marginalized stories of African Americans in and from Kentucky.

    “The main goal of the NKAA website is to bring together the pieces of information found in various resources in order to give our patrons a solid starting point for learning more about the African American experience in Kentucky,” Jones said. 

    Boasting over 450,000 visits in the past year, the NKAA Database serves today as a major resource for research and learning at the state level with a growing patron base nationally and internationally. 

    Since its founding in 1973, the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History has engaged individuals and communities across the Commonwealth and nation to record their stories through comprehensive interviews with Nunn Center personnel or collaborative partners. 

    “We have an incredible team at the Nunn Center, and I am so proud of the work we do,” said Doug Boyd, director of the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History. “We are deeply honored by this award and for BGT's recognition of oral history's importance to preservation and community.”

    The Nunn Center provides access to these interviews through the center’s online catalog, offering a unique look into histories of Kentucky and other regions. As of May 2021, the Nunn Center had officially accessioned its 15,000th interview. 

    Recognized as a leader and innovator in the recording and preservation of oral histories, the Nunn Center has compiled a collection that encompasses a variety of topics, such as Appalachian history, the Civil Rights Movement, politics, public policy, health care and industries such as the coal, equine and bourbon industries. 

    The Blue Grass Trust (BGT) for Historic Preservation Inc. is a membership-based nonprofit that advocates for historic preservation by protecting, revitalizing and promoting special historic places in Lexington in order to enhance the quality of life for future generations. Today, the BGT works to fulfill its mission of education, service and advocacy through the BGT plaque programBGT deTours, Preservation Matters magazine, seminars, walking tour brochures and more.

    The Special Collections Research Center at UK Libraries sustains the Commonwealth’s memory and serves as the essential bridge between past, present and future. By preserving materials documenting the social, cultural, economic and political history of Kentucky, the center provides rich opportunities for students to expand their worldview and enhance their critical thinking skills. Special Collections Research Center materials are used by scholars worldwide to advance original research and pioneer creative approaches to scholarship. UK Libraries’ Special Collections Research Center is the Archives, the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, the King Library Press, the Wendell H. Ford Public Policy Research Center, the Bert T. Combs Appalachian Collection, the John G. Heyburn Initiative and ExploreUK.

    Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationGraduate SchoolLibraries

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: University of Kentucky Libraries’ Special Collections Research Center earned two special recognitions this summer at the annual Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation Awards. Librarian Reinette Jones was honored with the Clay Lancaster Heritage Education Award, given for researching and disseminating information about the Central Kentucky region, and the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History was honored with the Public Service to Preservation Award, given to a government agency or official for their service to the preservation movement or to a specific project. 
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meg Mills, Whitney Hale, and UK Athletics Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 23, 2021) — As the eyes of the world turn to Tokyo for the delayed 2020 Olympics, University of Kentucky fans may spy many students, alumni and staff competing for their home countries for the first time as the Parade of Athletes enter Olympic Stadium during the opening ceremony this morning. From basketball, softball and track and field to shooting, swimming and fencing, the 22 UK competitors shatter the previous school record of nine men's basketball players in 1948.

    Out of the 22, four are current students competing for the “Red, White and Blue” — Lee Kiefer, Gerek Meinhardt, Will Shaner and Mary Tucker.

    UK College of Medicine's married competitors Lee Kiefer and Gerek Meinhardt — who are currently students at the university, but not part of the varsity athletics program in UK Athletics — have competed in multiple Olympics in fencing and will compete again this year. Kiefer, a Lexington native and Paul Lawrence Dunbar High School alumna, will compete in her third Olympics in the discipline of foil fencing. Meinhardt, who is also a Lexington local, will be representing the U.S in his fourth Olympics after winning bronze in the 2016 Ria de Janeiro Games.

    Will Shaner, a senior majoring in economics in the Gatton College of Business and Economics, will compete in the men’s 10-meter air rifle and mixed shooting 10m air rifle. Prior to representing the U.S. he was the NCAA air rifle individual national runner-up in 2021, helping Kentucky to its third national team title. Shaner was a first-team Collegiate Rifle Coaches Association All-America in all three disciplines in 2021 and was first-team overall in 2020. Additionally, he was a nine-time first-team All-Great America Rifle Conference honoree and was named national rookie of the year as a freshman in 2019.

    Mary Tucker will compete in the in women’s 10-meter air rifle, women’s 50-meter smallbore and mixed team shooting 10m air rifle — making her the only UK athlete to qualify for the Olympics in both air rifle and smallbore. Before her Olympic debut, the sophomore majoring in kinesiology in the UK College of Education, was the smallbore, air rifle and overall individual NCAA Champion in 2021, leading the Wildcats to a third national team title in program history. She was also two-time National Athlete of the Year by the Collegiate Rifle Coaches Association and is a first-team All-America honoree in all three disciplines each of the last two seasons. 

    Three other UK students, Alexia Lacatena, Megan Moss and Dwight St. Hillaire, and a coach, Devynne Charlton, will exchange their blue and white for their home countries’ colors as they compete in softball and track and field.

    Ranked 37th nationally in the recruiting Class of 2021, incoming College of Education freshman and UK softball player Alexia Lacatena already took the mound earlier this week playing for Italy. The pitcher is a member of the country’s 2021 European Softball Championship team. Lacatena previously played for Lenape Valley High School in Stanhope, New Jersey, where she was first team all-state twice.

    UK track and field’s Megan Moss, a human health sciences junior in the UK College of Health Sciences, will run the 4-x-400 meter relay for the Bahamas after finishing third in the 400-meter dash at The Bahamas National Championships. At UK, Moss was first-team All-America in the 4-x-400 at the 2021 NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Championships, where Kentucky finished fifth and eighth, respectively. In February, she ran the lead leg on the relay team that set the UK indoor record. 

    Graduate student and UK track and field runner Dwight St. Hillaire will run the 400-meter dash and 4-x-400 meter relay for Trinidad and Tobago. St. Hillaire, who earned a bachelor’s degree in communication from UK College of Communication and Information, is a 2021 first-team All-America in four events — indoor and outdoor 400 and indoor and outdoor 4x400 relay. He also holds three school records for the 400 and as part of the indoor and outdoor 4x400 relays.

    Devynne Charlton, a volunteer assistant coach for UK’s track and field team, will also compete in Tokyo for the Bahamas. Charlton will run the 100-meter hurdles for the country. An alumna of Purdue University, she won an NCAA silver medal in 100 hurdles and NCAA silver and bronze medals in the 60-meter hurdles.

    Joining the eight Wildcats above in Tokyo will be 14 UK alumni — seven competing for the U.S. and seven others representing Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway and Zimbabwe.

    The UK alumni named U.S. Olympians are:

    • Bam Adebayo, USA Basketball (UK 2016-17 season); 
    • Devin Booker, USA Basketball (UK 2014-15 season);
    • Keni Harrison, USA Track and Field (UK 2014-15), who holds a bachelor’s degree in community and leadership development from the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, the world record holder competing in 100-meter hurdles;
    • Keldon Johnson, USA Basketball (UK 2018-19 season); 
    • Sydney McLaughlin, USA Track and Field (UK 2018), world record holder competing in 400-meter hurdles;
    • Javianne Oliver, USA Track and Field (UK 2015-17), who holds a bachelor’s degree in public health from the College of Public Health, competing in 100-meter dash; and
    • Daniel Roberts, USA Track and Field (UK 2017-19), competing in 110-meter hurdles.

    The other UK alumni competing in Tokyo are:

    • Jasmine Camacho-Quinn, Puerto Rico Track and Field (UK 2016-18), competing in 100m hurdles;
    • Brittany Cervantes, Mexico Softball (UK 2009-12), who holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from UK CI and a master’s degree in kinesiology and health promotion from UK College of Education;
    • Ali Galyer, New Zealand Swimming (UK 2016-20), who holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Gatton College, competing in the 100 backstroke, 200 backstroke and 4x200 freestyle relay;
    • Henrik Larsen, Norway Shooting (UK 2017-18), who will shoot in men’s 50-meter smallbore;
    • Leah Nugent, Jamaica Track and Field (UK 2014-15), who holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the UK College of Arts and Sciences, who will compete in the 400-meter hurdles;
    • Jennifer O’Neill, Puerto Rico Basketball (UK 2011-15), who holds a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology from UK College of Education; and
    • Peter Wetzlar, Zimbabwe Swimming (UK 2016-20), who holds bachelor’s degrees in finance and accounting from Gatton College, competing in 50 freestyle.

    To cheer on your favorite Big Blue athletes through the run of the Olympics ending Aug. 8, check television local listings for NBC, NBCSN, USA Network, CNBC, Olympic Channel, Telemundo and NBC Universo; online at NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app; and streaming on Peacock. The opening ceremony will re-air beginning at 7:30 p.m. tonight (July 23). The competition schedule for sports featuring UK athletes, with all dates based on Tokyo time are as follows:

    • Softball: July 21-27
    • Fencing: July 24-Aug. 1
    • Swimming: July 24-Aug. 1
    • Shooting: July 24-Aug. 2
    • Men’s Basketball: July 25-Aug.7
    • Women’s Basketball: July 26-Aug. 8
    • Athletics (track and field): July 30-Aug. 8
    UK's delegation of 22 Wildcats competing in Tokyo includes seven current students: (l to r) Dwight St. Hillaire, Alexia Lacatena, Lee Kiefer, Gerek Meinhardt, Will Shaner and Mary Tucker. Photos courtesy of UK Athletics, USA Fencing. Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesMedicinePublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: As the eyes of the world turn to Tokyo for the delayed 2020 Olympics, UK fans may spy many students, alumni and staff competing for their home countries for the first time during the opening ceremony. From basketball, softball and track and field to shooting, swimming and fencing, the 22 UK competitors shatter the previous school record of nine men's basketball players in 1948.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Elizabeth Chapin Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 26, 2021) — A University of Kentucky study launching this summer will seek to address COVID-19 vaccine hesitancy among racial and ethnic minority populations in the Commonwealth.

    The project, funded by UK’s UNited In True racial Equity (UNITE) Research Priority Area, will enhance understanding of COVID-19 vaccine skepticism among populations historically less likely to become vaccinated, particularly Black people.

    Racial and ethnic minorities are historically less likely to become vaccinated for a number of reasons including medical mistrust. A recent Pew research survey found that Black adults expressed less confidence in the coronavirus vaccine research and development process — a judgment closely aligned with intent to get vaccinated.

    “Success in combating the spread of COVID-19 depends on sufficient numbers of individuals becoming immunized,” says Kimberly Parker, Ph.D., study lead and associate professor in the UK College of Communication and Information Department of Integrated Strategic Communication. “The outcomes of this study could contribute to messaging that resonates with communities of color who are reluctant or skeptical to get the COVID-19 vaccine.”

    Throughout spring of 2021, UK partnered with predominantly Black churches in the Lexington area to operate mobile vaccine clinics. With focus groups and in-depth interviews, Parker’s research team will gain insight from community members who accepted and declined invitations to these clinics, as well as immunizers who worked at them.

    They will then use this understanding of vaccination attitudes to develop and test a series of messages designed to promote vaccination among hesitant members of Lexington’s Black community.

    If effective, these messages could form the basis of a strategy for messaging interventions to address vaccine hesitancy among underserved populations, Parker says.

    Parker's project was selected after UNITE put out a request for pilot project applications to help address COVID-19-related health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities in Kentucky.

    “COVID-19 is yet another major health disparity disproportionately impacting communities of color. And the impacts go beyond disparate access to care and the quality of health care received by people of color,” said UK’s Assistant Vice President for Research, Diversity & Inclusion Danelle Stevens-Watkins, Ph.D., who leads UNITE. “The effort is another example of how research at UK is helping to build community partnerships and bridge the gap between UK and communities of color.”

    After the project’s conclusion next year, the research team will submit results for publication and seek additional extramural funding to build additional strategic interventions targeting vaccine hesitancy.

    Launched last year, UNITE is focused on supporting research that will promote racial equity and aims to recruit and retain racially diverse faculty, staff and students at UK. The research priority area has fostered a number of other initiatives and opportunities for collaboration to support diversity and inclusion in research at UK.

    The UK Research Priorities Initiative, funded by the Office of the Vice President for Research, encompasses seven priority areas: cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes & obesity, diversity & inclusion, energy, neuroscience, and substance use disorder. These areas were chosen based on local relevance, existing funding strength, sustainability and disciplinary scholarly diversity. Learn more at www.research.uky.edu/unite-research-priority-area/unite-research-priority-area.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationEducation

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Elizabeth Chapin
    Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    "> Elizabeth.chapin [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2207 Summary: The project, funded by UK’s UNited In True racial Equity (UNITE) Research Priority Area, will enhance understanding of COVID-19 vaccine skepticism among populations historically less likely to become vaccinated.
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 19, 2021) — The School of Journalism and Media in the University of Kentucky’s College of Communication and Information has earned its highest ever rankings in the prestigious Hearst Intercollegiate Journalism Awards by garnering a fifth-place finish in Intercollegiate Photojournalism and a 10th place overall finish.

    UK has previously finished as high as seventh in photojournalism, so this year’s fifth place finish is a sweet ending to a challenging year.

    “To be recognized as among the best in the country is a fantastic accomplishment for our student photographers. I'm so proud of their hard work and dedication to the stories they produced for our student publications, especially during last year's exhausting and challenging circumstances," said David Stephenson, School of Journalism and Media assistant professor and Kentucky Kernel photojournalism advisor.

    Contributing to the overall photojournalism finish were Kentucky Kernel photographers Arden Barnes and Michael Clubb who won individual Hearst Awards with portfolios containing sports, news and feature photographs from assignments published in the student newspaper and the KRNL Lifestyle + Fashion magazine. Also, former Kernel editors-in-chief Natalie Parks and Bailey Vandiver both had top five individual writing awards for student publication work in the Kernel and KRNL. Finally, Akhira Umar, the former lifestyle editor for KRNL, placed in the top 20 in multimedia for her work in KRNL.

    “I think the students did phenomenal work in very challenging times,” University of Kentucky Student Media Adviser Ryan Craig said. “I’m glad others across the country are seeing what a great opportunity UK gives potential journalists and photojournalists and that we have some of the best student newsrooms in the nation.”

    While UK previously placed higher in the individual categories of photojournalism and writing, this year’s 10th place overall finish is the institution’s highest.

    Associate Professor Scoobie Ryan, who coordinates UK’s entries for the School of Journalism and Media, knows how special the Hearst Awards, often called the “Pulitzers of college journalism,” are. Only accredited journalism programs around the country, of which there are just over 100, may enter the competitions.

    “Our students are competing with the best of the best. And then, to have our students put our program in the top 10 overall, that’s really a tribute to them, to the Kernel and its fine advisers and to our faculty,” Ryan said.

    The Hearst program holds yearlong competitions in writing, photojournalism, audio, television and multimedia for journalism undergraduates across the country. The points accumulated in monthly student competitions help determine the 2020-2021 annual competition winners.

    Kakie Urch, associate professor of multimedia, is one of the many School of Journalism and Media faculty who are not surprised by UK’s strong overall finish.

    "From their first introductory class to their capstone multimedia course and their internship experiences, we prepare our UK students to be top-level student journalism practitioners, thinkers and creators. This Hearst Top 10 overall and Photojournalism Top Five and their career success underscores that, " Urch said.

    More information about the Hearst Awards program can be found at www.hearstawards.org/.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The School of Journalism and Media in the University of Kentucky’s College of Communication and Information has earned its highest ever rankings in the prestigious Hearst Intercollegiate Journalism Awards by garnering a fifth-place finish in Intercollegiate Photojournalism and a 10th place overall finish.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Arts & CultureBy Whitney Hale Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 16, 2021) — This weekend University of Kentucky will say goodbye to more than 250 of the state’s most creative high school students as the curtain falls on the 2021 Governor’s School for the Arts, a tuition-free intensive three-week summer program.

    As part of GSA 2021, this Saturday student-artists from 43 Kentucky counties will complete their rigorous schedule of daily online seminars, creative projects, master classes and lectures, with instruction focused on the school’s nine disciplines: Architecture + Design, Creative Writing, Dance, Drama, Film + Photography, Instrumental Music, Musical Theatre, Visual Art and Vocal Music. 

    Like many GSA students, faculty and staff, 2021 UK arts administration and communication graduate and UK College of Fine Arts GSA staffer Emma Lucas will be sad to see all the smiling faces leave, but hopeful for the future of the arts in Kentucky.

    UKNow recently caught up with Emma Lucas, a Louisville native and former GSA participant, to find out more about GSA's impact and her experience working on the summer program at her own alma mater.

     

    UKNow: When did you first hear about GSA?

    Emma Lucas: I think my mom first brought up GSA about a year or two before I was eligible to apply. I also had some friends who went to GSA before I did. I really learned more about the program through talking with them and hearing about their experiences, which made me eager to apply.

    UKNow: What was the experience like for you personally as a student?

    Lucas: It was one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had.

    I was actually named an alternate the first year I applied. I worked really hard and was accepted the next year.

    I went during the summer of 2016 for dance, and the program was hosted at Centre (College) at the time. The experience in itself is one that is hard to put words to. I still think back on it and can’t believe I was lucky enough to be a part of something so special.

    I was surrounded by young, eager, creative minds and people who were passionate about the same things I was. I was able to learn from some amazing teachers and grow as a dancer but also as a human being. I got to spend three straight weeks doing what I love. It was definitely hard, and it pushed me outside of my comfort zone, but that only made the experience more fulfilling. I had always heard that GSA would be "the best three weeks of your life," and it truly lived up to those expectations.

    UKNow: Any favorite memories?

    Lucas: So many! We had a dodgeball tournament on the Fourth of July, which was so fun. Every morning we would count off in our artform groups to make sure everyone was present — those count-offs are harder than you would think! And the choreography that I learned was so much fun to perform.

    But the collaborations were my favorite. We collaborated with Visual Art, where we painted our hands and feet and then danced on a blank canvas in the parking lot. We also were working on a collaboration with Architecture + Design, and they created a structure that we performed in/around outside. We had our dress rehearsal one night, and it started raining. Our faculty just kept yelling “don’t break character! Keep going!” so we kept dancing in the rain. But eventually it really started pouring so they finally stopped us, and we all sprinted across the lawn with all of our stuff to get under cover. We were still laughing about it weeks later.

    UKNow: How do you think GSA prepared you for college?

    Lucas: GSA solidified the fact that I wanted to be involved in the arts in some way, shape or form, and it was also where I first learned about the field of arts administration.

    We had a College & Career Day, so we got to meet with representatives from all sorts of universities and programs across the country. I was able to listen to a presentation given by GSA’s two interns, and they talked about what their role was with GSA and about arts administration. As I was listening to them talk, I just kept thinking “this is definitely something I can see myself doing.”

    UKNow: What made you choose UK for college and your areas of study?

    Lucas: There were a couple of factors, the first being that I got a GSA scholarship for UK. I also knew that I wanted to be able to dance, and UK’s dance minor would allow me to explore other opportunities while still giving me that creative outlet.

    But what solidified it was the arts administration program. I had always been fascinated with the “behind-the-scenes” part of the arts, and GSA made me even more intrigued, especially after having great conversations about the future with my teachers, other faculty and the RAs (residential advisors). I looked more into the programs at UK and really thought both the arts administration program and the dance program would be a great fit for me.

    I worked with Theresa Bautista at GSA, but she also teaches at UK, so knowing I would have the opportunity to continue working with her was a huge plus. I was sold on arts administration pretty quickly, and then I was able to add a communication major to help enhance my skill set. Once I got going, I quickly felt at home in all three programs.  

    UKNow: You were a GSA intern during college. What made you go back to GSA?

    Lucas: I worked as the intern for GSA during the summer of 2020. I knew that I wanted to go back to GSA as an intern after I experienced the program. Again, it goes back to that fascination with making programs like that happen. I was fortunate to have been accepted and to have had a life-changing three weeks, so I wanted to be a part of giving another group of students the same experience.

    Summer of 2020 was a bit different, though. Because of COVID-19, GSA hosted an all-virtual program. I was so grateful and proud to be part of a team that was able to make that virtual program happen. I learned so much from the GSA team during my time with them last summer.

    UKNow: What did you do in that intern position?

    Lucas: I assisted the GSA administrative team with developing ideas and a sort of “framework” for parts of the summer program, as well as manage logistics. I helped manage all the Zoom details (meeting links, schedules, etc.) and helped produce some of the virtual morning performances and the virtual opening and closing ceremonies.

    I also worked on the #HeyGSA fundraising campaign that raised over $20,000 last summer to help ensure that future groups of students get to experience the program.

    UKNow: How was that experience working with young artists virtually?

    Lucas: It was so rewarding! Unfortunately, I didn’t get to be in direct contact with the students, but I was still able to learn so much from them. I could immediately tell that the students last year were so eager to learn as much as they could, which was really inspiring for me to witness.

    Learning virtually during 2020 was a challenge for all of us, so to see these students so engaged and interactive during this virtual program was really motivating and refreshing to see. We had virtual morning announcements, and I would sit and watch their comments come through and read about what they had learned, what they were looking forward to that day, and the affirmations they left each other. It only solidified to me that this program truly is special, and it can positively impact everyone involved no matter where you are.  

    UKNow: You are now back in a third capacity, working for UK College of Fine Arts as it hosts GSA. What made you want to take this job?

    Lucas: I am so grateful to Emily Elkins and the UK team for letting me assist with GSA this summer. I was so excited to be involved in a different capacity and to see the program from a different perspective.

    I took this job for a lot of reasons — I knew I could gain valuable experience, stay on campus for a bit longer after graduation, and continue to work with and learn from Emily. But I was also beyond excited to help make this experience possible for another group of students. I have loved getting to watch this program happen in person. 

    UKNow: How excited are you that UK has been the host that last several years?

    Lucas: I think it is so great that UK is able to host. Our campus is beautiful, and our studio spaces are second to none.

    I also think it’s a testament to CFA’s faculty and staff and their willingness to welcome young creative individuals into their spaces. I have always admired our faculty and staff for their ability to create a welcoming environment and their willingness to connect with their students, so the fact that they have been willing to do the same for GSA students is amazing. They have all been so helpful and accommodating, which speaks to their welcoming nature.

    UKNow: What have you learned about GSA from this perspective?

    Lucas: I’ve still been working on lots of logistics. But this time around, I’m working on them from UK’s side of things. So, I’ve been working on the GSA footprint and making sure all the spaces GSA occupies during their three weeks on campus are ready to go. I also helped welcome the students to campus and find recruitment opportunities to showcase the College of Fine Arts and the University of Kentucky.

    In addition, I supported the CFA student staff that were hired on for technical support for the program, and I worked closely with Singletary Center staff and CFA staff to ensure adequate coverage and assistance was provided during GSA’s time on campus.

    Finally, because of my familiarity with Holmes Hall from my experience being the senior peer mentor for the Creative Arts LLP (living learning program), I was able to help GSA’s Residential Life staff with their needs and provide assistance in those spaces. 

    UKNow: Any favorite memory this time?

    Lucas: I think one of the best memories from this time around has just been seeing it all happen. Because I had been involved in the program before, I sort of knew what to expect once the students arrived on campus, but the past few weeks have exceeded those expectations.

    Welcoming students and helping them move in took me all the way back to my move-in day five years ago. I’ve had a couple of chances to see the students in studio, but I’ve found joy in the little things. Just hearing music around the building has been so wonderful because it’s been so long since I’ve been able to hear live music.

    UKNow: What do you hope this year's class takes away from the experience?

    Lucas: I hope this year’s class walks away knowing that they are a part of something special, and they are joining a supportive community of alums. I also hope they walk away knowing that this is an experience that they will carry with them for a long, long time.

    UKNow: Finally, what's next for you?

    Lucas: I’m heading back to Louisville after GSA wraps up! I’m actively seeking opportunities and ways to continue learning and growing as an arts administrator. I am also a dance teacher at Louisville Academy of Fine Arts, so I’ll be gearing up for our fall semester to start!

     

    ABOUT GSA

    GSA is a public/private partnership inaugurated in 1987 by The Kentucky Center (now Kentucky Performing Arts), The Commonwealth of Kentucky and numerous private supporters. Today, the vital funding required to make GSA a reality is provided by the state through the leadership of the Governor’s Office and the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet, as well as The Kentucky Center Endowment Fund, Toyota Motor Manufacturing and more than 300 corporations, parents, educators, alumni and friends of GSA. 

    To keep up with GSA, follow the program online on FacebookTwitter and Instagram of search for #HeyGSA.

    ABOUT UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS

    The University of Kentucky College of Fine Arts offers Kentucky’s broadest collection of visual and performing arts academic programs with four academic units. The college is also home to the Singletary Center for the Arts and the UK Art Museum. The College of Fine Arts declares that the arts are essential to the life of the individual and the community. We express our commitment to the arts through our dedication to teaching, scholarly research, artistic experimentation, performance, and exhibition. 

    ABOUT KENTUCKY PERFORMING ARTS

    The mission of Kentucky Performing Arts is to build lifelong relationships with the arts. As an integral member of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts, and Heritage Cabinet, Kentucky Performing Arts, along with the other agencies, seeks to preserve and promote the history, heritage and arts of the Commonwealth.

    Three locations comprise the family of venues under The Kentucky Performing Arts umbrella:

    The Kentucky Center is located at 501 West Main Street, Louisville, KY 40202

    The Brown Theatre is located at 315 West Broadway, Louisville, KY 40202

    Old Forester’s Paristown Hall is located at 724 Brent Street, Louisville KY 40204

    To learn more, visit www.KentuckyPerformingArts.org and KentuckyGSA.org.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationFine ArtsArts AdministrationDanceTheatre

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: This weekend University of Kentucky will say goodbye to more than 250 of the state’s most creative high school students as the curtain falls on the 2021 Governor’s School for the Arts, a tuition-free intensive three-week summer program. UK graduate and College of Fine Arts staffer Emma Lucas, a former GSA participant, reflects on the school’s impact and her experience working on the summer program,Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chris Shoals Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 8, 2021) — Kentucky Volleyball setter Madison Lilley was named the 2020-21 Roy F. Kramer Southeastern Conference Female Athlete of the Year, the conference office announced Wednesday morning. She is the first-ever volleyball player to win the award in the history of the SEC.

    Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith, who won the Heisman Trophy at Alabama, was named the male winner of the award for 2020-21.

    "We are proud to honor DeVonta and Madison, who not only excelled in the SEC but were also recognized as the best in their sport across the country. They are the ultimate examples of what it means to be a student-athlete in the Southeastern Conference,” said SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. “DeVonta and Madison both were members of national championship teams and recipients of their sport’s national player of the year award. Each has competed at the highest level of collegiate athletics, benefited from the world-class support provided by their universities and, through their hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence, have reached the pinnacle of collegiate athletic success. Congratulations to DeVonta and Madison and thank you for being part of the SEC!”

    Lilley becomes just the second female student-athlete from Kentucky to win the award, joining Jenny Hansen in 1995. She is the eighth athlete from UK ever to win the award (AJ Reed, 2014; Anthony Davis, 2012; Tim Couch, 1999; Jenny Hansen, 1995; Jamal Mashburn, 1993; Kyle Macy, 1980; Jack Givens, 1978). The SEC began the men’s award in 1976 and the women’s award in 1984.

    Past winners of this award from the SEC are Peyton Manning, Joe Burrow, Candace Parker, Tim Tebow, Bo Jackson and Bridget Sloan.

    Lilley was named the conference’s Player of the Year this season, in addition to winning AVCA National Player of the Year honors and capturing the 2020-21 Honda Award for volleyball. She was one of the key pieces to Kentucky’s first-ever NCAA national championship win over Texas, logging 53 assists and a career-high 19 digs in the title match.

    “Given the number of incredible athletes in our league, to be elected SEC Female Athlete of the Year is an elite honor,” said Mitch Barnhart, UK Director of Athletics. “What made Madison so special is that she is worthy of being chosen from both an individual and a team perspective.  Individually, her record-setting performance on the court speaks for itself. In addition, the way she led her team – with unyielding commitment to make her teammates their very best and her indomitable will to win – makes her deserving of this distinction.”

    Lilley is one of four finalists for the 2021 ESPY Award in the category of Female College Athlete of the Year. The winners will be announced during the ESPYS, scheduled to take place July 10 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

    “I’m proud of what Madison has achieved as an athlete. It’s truly incredible what she’s accomplished,” UK head coach Craig Skinner said. “What I’m even more proud of is her vision that she set forth for herself and the team. She set out a path to win a national championship and she followed through with it like the champion she is.”

    Exceptional in the classroom, as well, Lilley graduated from Kentucky in the spring with a degree in integrated strategic communications and was named CoSIDA Academic All-District this season for the first time in her career. She is on the ballot for Academic All-America, currently in the voting process.

    Madison Lilley Season Accomplishments:

    • 2020 NCAA National Champion
    • 2020 NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player
    • 2020-21 AVCA National Player of the Year
    • 2020-21 AVCA First Team All-American
    • 2020-21 SEC Player of the Year
    • 2020-21 AVCA Region Player of the Year
    • All-time assists leader at Kentucky
    • Led the NCAA with 12.37 assists per set
    • Paced the UK offense to the highest hitting percentage of any team in the NCAA
    • Senior CLASS Award finalist
    • Graduated from Kentucky in May with a degree in integrated strategic communication

    For the 2020-21 season, the other male nominees were: Kevin Kopps, Arkansas (baseball); Ryan Bliss, Auburn (baseball);  Kieran Smith, Florida (swimming & diving); Karel Tilga, Georgia (track & field); Liam Draxl, Kentucky (tennis); JuVaughn Harrison, Louisiana State (track & field); Elijah Moore, Ole Miss (football); Tanner Allen, Mississippi State (baseball); Danny Kovac, Missouri (swimming & diving); Daniel Rodrigues, South Carolina (tennis); Adam Walton, Tennessee (tennis); Shaine Casas, Texas A&M (swimming & diving); Kumar Rocker, Vanderbilt (baseball).

    For the 2020-21 season, the other female nominees were: Mercy Chelangat, Alabama (cross country); Chelsea Dungee, Arkansas (basketball); Joyce Kimeli, Auburn (track & field); Trinity Thomas, Florida (gymnastics); Katarina Jokic, Georgia (tennis); Haleigh Bryant, Louisiana State (gymnastics); Julia Johnson, Ole Miss (golf); Shayla Broughton, Mississippi State (track & field); Brooke Wilmes, Missouri (softball); Aliyah Boston, South Carolina (basketball); Latavia Maines, Tennessee (track & field); Tyra Gittens, Texas A&M (track & field); Christina Rosca, Vanderbilt (tennis).

    Madison Lilley is the first-ever volleyball player to win the award in the history of the SEC. Photo courtesy of UK Athletics.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Kentucky Volleyball setter Madison Lilley was named the 2020-21 Roy F. Kramer Southeastern Conference Female Athlete of the Year, the conference office announced Wednesday morning. She is the first-ever volleyball player to win the award in the history of the SEC.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meredith Weber Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 7, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Alumni Association recently announced its 2021-2022 Board of Directors’ officers during its annual Summer Workshop. This year’s officers are Mary L. Shelman, president; Antoine Huffman, president-elect; Janie McKenzie-Wells, treasurer; and Jill Smith, secretary. The new slate officially took office July 1, 2021, and will serve until June 30, 2022.

    Mary L. Shelman of Belmont, Massachusetts, was elected president of the UK Alumni Association. She received a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering in 1981 and an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1987. She has been serving as treasurer of the UK Alumni Association this past year and has held several committee leadership positions including chair of Budget, Finance & Investments, Nominating for Board, Diversity and Group Development, and Alumni Service Awards committees. She was also vice-chair of Communications, Membership, and Nominating for Board committees. She is also a 2021 recipient of the UK Alumni Association Distinguished Service Award. Shelman is an internationally recognized thought leader on the global ag-tech and agri-food system. She has consulted, taught and presented at conferences in 20 countries. She is past president of the International Food and Agribusiness Management Association and past president of English At Large, an adult literacy organization. She is a Life Member of the UK Alumni Association and a Wildcat Society member. Shelman is a native of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, where she still owns a farm. She is married to Nathan “Chip” Cohen and they have one son, Alexander "AJ" Shelman-Cohen.

    Antoine S. Huffman of Prosper, Texas, was elected president-elect of the UK Alumni Association. He received his bachelor’s degree in telecommunications in 2005. While at Kentucky, he was a three-year starter for the Wildcats football team, becoming a UK NCAA record holder. He was also a member of the UK Athletic Association Board of Directors. He served three years as the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee president, two years as chairman for the UK Athletics Outreach Committee and was a member of the ODK National Leadership Honor Society. In 2005, Huffman became the first African American to be crowned UK Homecoming king. He is active in the community with Habitat for Humanity, Boys and Girls Club, the Salvation Army, and is a motivational speaker at local churches, schools and special regional events. From 2002 to 2005, the Atlanta, Georgia, native was nationally recognized for his community service, academics and athletic achievement. In addition, he was a finalist for the Wuerffel Trophy. He received the ARA Sportsmanship Award, two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America, four-time NCAA Academic All-American, four-time SEC Academic honor-roll, and named a member of the Good Works Team. Huffman has served as chairman for the Membership, Communications, Club Development, and Nomination committees within the UK Alumni Association and served two terms as president of the Greater Nashville UK Alumni Club. He is in the medical field as a regional director of sales for the Southwest and he and his wife, Jessica Kibbe Huffman, who is a UK College of Education graduate, are Life Members of the UK Alumni Association. They have two sons, Jayden and Adonis.

    Janie C. McKenzie-Wells of Staffordsville, Kentucky, was elected treasurer of the UK Alumni Association. She earned a bachelor’s degree in political science in 1983 and a law degree from the UK J. David Rosenberg College of Law in 1986. She was admitted to the practice of law in 1986, and was the first woman elected as 24th Circuit Family Court Judge. She is also a member of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. She has served on the UK Alumni Association Board of Directors for several years as a representative from District VIII and the UK College of Law, and has been chair and vice-chair of numerous committees. She is an active member and officer of the Big Sandy UK Alumni Club. McKenzie-Wells is also a member of the UK Alumni Band and served as president and member of the UK Alumni Band Board. She received the UK Alumni Association Distinguished Service Award and the UK Law Alumni Association Distinguished Jurist Award. She is a member of UK Women & Philanthropy, and serves on the Leadership Council. In 2016, she was inducted into the Paintsville High School Alumni Association Hall of Distinguished Alumni. She and her husband, Frank, are life members of the UK Alumni Association, and have a daughter, Katherine, who is a UK medical student.

    Jill H. Smith of Lexington, Kentucky, is secretary of the UK Alumni Association. She earned a bachelor’s degree in marketing and management from the University of Kentucky in 2005 and a master’s degree in career, technical and leadership education from the University of Kentucky in 2011. She joined the UK Alumni Association in 2006 as a program coordinator and held four other positions at the association before becoming executive director in February 2020. She also serves as associate vice president for alumni engagement and secretary of the UK Alumni Association Board of Directors. She has been an active volunteer with the Council for Advancement and Support of Education at both the state and district level. She is an advisor to the Delta Rho chapter of Delta Delta Delta and an active participant in Lexington area Tri-Delta alumni activities. She is a Life Member of the UK Alumni Association and UK Fellow and serves on several university committees. She and her husband, Ryan Smith, who is a UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment graduate, have two children, Tanner and Emmy.   

    The UK Alumni Association is committed to fostering lifelong engagement among alumni, friends, the association and the university. For more information about the UK Alumni Association, visit www.ukalumni.net or call 800-269-2586.

    This year’s officers are Mary L. Shelman, president (right); Antoine Huffman, president-elect (top center); Janie McKenzie-Wells, treasurer (bottom center); and Jill Smith, secretary (left). Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEngineeringGraduate SchoolLaw

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Summary: This year’s officers are Mary L. Shelman, president; Antoine Huffman, president-elect; Janie McKenzie-Wells, treasurer; and Jill Smith, secretary.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 6, 2021) — December 2020 journalism graduate Akhira Umar tied for 13th place in the Multimedia Narrative Storytelling Competition of the 2020-20201 Hearst Journalism Awards Program. She also placed 17th in the team category — along with Kendall Boron, Isaac Janssen, Amber Ritschel and Rachel Courtney.

    Umar’s project, titled “Black Hair: Back to Their Roots,” focuses on the often-politicized subject of African American hair and the experiences that having such hair brings. From University of Kentucky students and hair stylists to a model and even a Kentucky state representative, the project explores the internal and external consequences of going against Eurocentric standards to wear one’s hair in its natural state.

    “Black hair has been a subject near and dear to my heart for as long as I can remember,” Umar said. “After all, I live that story. My Black hair has a story of its own.”

    “Black Hair: Back to Their Roots” consists of a written article, a YouTube video, photographs and social media posts. The project can be found at www.krnlmagazine.com/post/black-hair-going-back-to-their-roots.

    Though her project was initially intended to be her capstone project for Associate Professor Kakie Urch’s JOU 498: Advanced Multimedia course in Spring 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic delayed Umar’s production process until the following semester. Instead, she produced the project for Assistant Professor David Stephenson’s JOU 367: Mobile Journalism course and KRNL Lifestyle + Fashion’s Fall 2020 magazine, where she served as an editor.

    “While Kakie helped me plan my story, suggesting which bases to cover and who to talk to, David helped that vision come to life,” Umar said. “He allowed me the creative liberty to really let the story speak for itself. It’s much more artsy than a typical journalistic story, and I think it really benefited from that.”

    “I think that when a student who came into my multimedia storytelling class saying that she is a ‘print person’ wins, within a year, one of the top national honors for multimedia and helps her school place Top 10 Overall in the Hearst competition, that it's a testament to that student's individual brilliance and to her smart strategy and courage in applying in-class and student media experience and mentorship under pandemic conditions,” Urch said. “And it brings a view of Black hair — a major workplace, education and cultural issue — to the parts of the audience who are in need of learning about this key element of daily life.”

    Although placing in the Hearst Awards was gratifying for Umar, she said she is just happy that people are hearing, and liking, a story that truly matters.

    “This story was my baby, but more than that it gives voice to an issue that too often people don’t know about or disregard,” Umar said. “I hope my story opens peoples’ eyes and, hopefully, leads to some change and some good.”

    The Hearst Journalism Awards Program was founded in 1960 to support and assist journalism education at the collegiate level. The program awards scholarships to students with outstanding performance in writing, photojournalism, audio, television and multimedia competitions. To enter Hearst Awards competitions, students must participate in campus media and have published articles, photographs, newscasts, podcasts or social media posts that can be submitted.

    Akhira Umar’s project, titled “Black Hair: Back to Their Roots,” focuses on the often-politicized subject of African American hair.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: December 2020 journalism graduate Akhira Umar tied for 13th place in the Multimedia Narrative Storytelling Competition of the 2020-20201 Hearst Journalism Awards. Umar’s project, titled “Black Hair: Back to Their Roots,” focuses on the often-politicized subject of African American hair and the experiences that having such hair brings. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 2, 2021) — Tyona Golden and Johnnetta Burns came to the University of Kentucky as freshmen in 2013. As two longtime friends from the South Side of Chicago, they reconnected in Lexington, and both had dreams of pursuing careers in medical fields. But for them, like many women, and particularly women of color, pursuing advanced degrees came with a variety of obstacles.

    These obstacles often include obvious factors, like money or grade-point averages. But for many Black students, there are also barriers rooted in the lack of representation. When nobody in your desired field looks like you, or has a similar background as you, it’s difficult to see yourself in that space, let alone find someone to help guide you.

    For Burns, there were many reasons she ultimately chose to not further pursue her studies in medicine.

    “Choosing a career in medicine is a lifelong commitment and if anything happens where you don't have the financial support, it can come to a screeching halt,” she said. “I was the first person in my family to attend college right after high school. Navigating the world of educational institutions is very difficult if you have no blueprint available.”

    Burns also had to leave UK in 2017, just one semester shy of graduating, to help care for ill family members. During this time, she observed firsthand the underrepresentation of Black professionals, especially Black women, in health care.

    “While accompanying my family members to appointments, I realized how important it was to have people who come from similar upbringings (as us) — or at least understand them,” Burns said. “There were many times where we felt unseen and misunderstood, and experienced the pain that comes from that.”

    Golden graduated from UK in 2017 with a degree in economics, and she ultimately did go on to medical school. But she also faced her own set of challenges.

    “The application process for medical school is grotesquely expensive, in addition to test prep,” said Golden, who just completed her first year as a student at Southern Illinois University School of Medicine. “I believe it to be a huge barrier to Black and brown students who are deserving of an opportunity to apply to professional school programs.”

    Considering her personal experience, as well as other friends who faced similar struggles, Golden wanted to do something to help women like her and her peers who felt there was not space for them in biomedical science fields. So she decided to reach out to her good friend from the South Side of Chicago.

    Three years after leaving UK, Burns had finally completed her UK studies online in 2020, graduating with a degree in communication.

    “My degree is in communication, but my first love was science,” Burns said. “Knowing this, Tyona approached me with the idea of starting a nonprofit organization for people who look like us and come from the same places we do.”

    The two friends then reached out to four other friends for input and support, who also happened to be UK graduates they knew during their undergraduate years. All six alumnae shared a passion for a science, as well as personal stories of struggles while pursuing their education and career goals.

    “Through our friendship and conversation, we realized there was a need for support for Black women entering into professional biomedical schools, and that we should use our experiences and resources to be the mentors we wish we had,” Burns said. “We knew it would be hard, but the impact we would have on so many lives would make it worth it.”

    With Golden as founder, and the others serving as board of directors, the women launched their nonprofit organization, Science Sistas Inc., in May 2020.

    “I just wanted to create an organization that helps to offset these financial costs and allows for equality in these disciplines,” Golden said. “It is important for the younger generation to see people that look like them in positions they aspire to be in.”

    The mission of Science Sistas is to provide resources to help diminish the barriers that women face entering into graduate biomedical and professional health care programs, especially Black women. The program offers guidance and scholarships to women who are nearing the completion of their undergraduate degrees and are seeking entry into professional health care programs.

    For women who may not have access to a professional mentor, Science Sistas will help connect them with someone, as well as offer career exploration opportunities and “real-world advice” for various disciplines.

    “Often times, careers are not equally discussed with all groups whether it’s due to bias, racism, sexism, lack of resources, support or simply knowledge on the opportunities not being available,” said Ninah Bertrand, vice president of scholarship for the organization. “Science Sistas has the ability to help close the gap to not only help future scholars learn about disciplines, but also by providing support to pursue necessary education and hopefully gainful employment in careers that have the ability to change their communities for the better.”

    “Being a Muslim immigrant, Black woman, I felt I had to overcome a lot of obstacles and wasn’t aware how to manage the program and aspects outside the program (such as application fees, loans and other finances),” said Samra Nageye, a pharmacist and vice president of the organization. “Science Sistas strives to break down these barriers for Black women and provides resources for various health care and science fields. Representation is important and to be connected with other Black women in these fields is inspirational.”

    In just over a year, the organization has begun connecting students with mentors, providing test prep materials and guidance for students applying to graduate programs and awarding scholarships. Fourteen scholarships were awarded in May to celebrate Science Sistas’ one-year anniversary.

    “Students have expressed how this organization helps confirm their dreams are not unattainable, because there are women and people who look like them in the places they want to go,” Golden said. “Ultimately, I hope that Science Sistas can continue to be a resource to students by providing insightful information and giving opportunities to those who deserve a fair chance.”

    For Burns, Science Sistas is giving her the opportunity to bring her two passions together. As vice president of communications for the organization, Burns is helping connect students across the country with resources they need.

    “Science Sistas gives me the ability to marry these two worlds of communications and science,” she said. “My personal goal within the world of communication is to think about diverse groups that are usually marginalized and create content that truly represents and depicts them in a way that promotes acceptance and understanding.”

    In addition to Golden and Burns, the board of directors for Science Sistas includes UK graduates Jacqueline Leachman (2017 B.S. in biology and now doctoral candidate in nutritional sciences);  Ninah Bertrand (2018 B.S. in kinesiology and 2020 M.S. in sport and exercise psychology); Ariana Chambers (2017 B.S. in human nutrition and 2021 doctorate of pharmacy candidate); and Samra Nageye (2015 bachelor of business administration and marketing). The board also includes Shalbereyl Thomas, a 2019 Kentucky State University graduate.

    Science Sistas’ annual scholarships are awarded to students applying to professional programs in the fields of biomedical sciences, dentistry, kinesiology, medicine, nursing, optometry and pharmacy. The deadline to apply for next round of scholarships is Oct. 1, 2021. More information is available at www.sciencesistas.org/scholarship.

    If you are interested in becoming a mentor to a student through Science Sistas, visit www.sciencesistas.org/mentorship.

    To learn about ways to support Science Sistas, connect with them on Instagram, FacebookTwitter or LinkedIn.

    For more information or partnership opportunities, contact info [at] sciencesistas.com or visit www.ScienceSistas.org.

    Six UK graduates serve on the founding board of directors for Science Sistas Inc. (Left to right:) Jacqueline Leachman, Ariana Chambers, Tyona Golden, Johnnetta Burns, Ninah Bertrand and Samra Nageye.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationGraduate SchoolMedicinePharmacy

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: Through their friendship and conversation, six UK graduates realized there was a need for support for Black women entering into professional biomedical schools. By launching their nonprofit organization, the women are using their own experiences and resources to help the next generation of medical professionals. Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 1, 2021) — With a half a century of journalism experience under his belt, veteran political reporter turned professor Al Cross has dedicated his life to reporting on and serving his community. Since 2004, much of that service has been through the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information’s Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues (IRJCI).

    Now in his 17th year as a faculty member, Cross remains the university’s sole extension professor outside of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment. He is one of few, if not the only, extension professor of journalism the United States.

    Cross, a full professor, also is the director of the IRJCI, housed in the School of Journalism and Media. The institute helps rural journalists, primarily in Appalachia but also nationwide, define the public agenda in their communities by localizing broader issues. The IRJCI also interprets rural issues for metropolitan journalists.

    “I can’t overstate the value of the IRJCI and the impact it has on rural newspapers and rural journalists,” said Kentucky Press Association President Sharon Burton. Burton, of Columbia, Kentucky, is the publisher of the Adair County Community Voice and The Farmer’s Pride, a statewide agricultural newspaper.  

    “I’ve attended seminars; I’ve picked up the phone because I needed sound advice from a trusted friend; I’ve learned of news topics of interest to my community — all through the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues. When rural journalists are invited to the table, it reminds us that what we do is just as important as providing national or state news coverage,” Burton said.

    The institute was co-founded in 2004 by Cross and his longtime friend and mentor, the late Al Smith. Smith, chair emeritus of the institute’s advisory board, was also owner of a small chain of rural weeklies, founding producer of Kentucky Educational Television's "Comment on Kentucky" and co-chair of the federal Appalachian Regional Commission in the Carter and Reagan administrations.

    In 2006, Smith and institute advisory board member Lois Mateus created the UK Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues Endowed Fund for Excellence, to ensure the continuation of the institute even after Cross’ retirement. The fund provides support for rural journalism research, the Tall Grass Farm Foundation Graduate Fellowship, a Professorship in Rural Journalism and Community Issues, and conferences, workshops and meetings.

    The IRJCI produces three publications serving audiences as targeted as Midway, Kentucky, and as broad as the nation. These publications are The Rural Blog, Kentucky Health News and The Midway Messenger.

    "These publications have been as active and crucial this year as any time in the institute’s history, with the rise of political and racial tensions and the COVID-19 pandemic," Cross said.

    In 2004, just two weeks into his career shift from lifelong reporter to college professor, Cross started The Rural Blog. Hampered by socioeconomic conditions and population decline, local newspapers in Central Appalachia had been weakened. Cross saw the need for reliable journalism that provided leadership on local issues. Shortly after its inception, Cross broadened the reach of The Rural Blog to rural journalists across the nation, who were feeling the same pressures as those in Eastern Kentucky. 

    In recent years, the decline has accelerated as advertisers have shifted their dollars to targeted digital platforms.  

    “For the first time, we are seeing multiple Kentucky counties lose their local newspaper, or see them consolidated across county lines,” Cross said.

    Cross highlighted just how important Kentucky newspapers are by compiling their reports on the coronavirus in a special project for the Kentucky Press Association. The report was cited nationally and republished in newspapers across the state to highlight the essential public service local newspapers provide, despite the tough obstacles they continue to face.

    “In perhaps the most challenging year for newspapers in their history, the community papers of Kentucky came through for Kentuckians,” Cross wrote in the report.

    Over the years, The Rural Blog has declared itself as “a digest of events, trends, issues, ideas and journalism from and about rural America.” As the political turmoil of the 2020 election spread, the blog did not shy away from the subject. Cross ensures that the blog takes no political position but also pulls no punches. Being a longtime political reporter himself, Cross understood the importance of accurate information in a sea of political misinformation and disinformation.

    “We have to stand up for the truth even if millions of people believe otherwise,” Cross said.

    Heather Chapman, chief author of The Rural Blog, said the 19% of Americans living in rural America have a disproportionate effect on national politics, because of the way U.S. senators are elected. The blog aims to help keep those residents informed about the rest of the nation while also informing the nation about rural areas, reporting on policy that affects rural communities. 

    “You can’t really participate in democracy unless you know what’s going on, and you can’t solve problems unless you know what’s going on either,” Chapman said. “And part of that means understanding these huge factors that go into rural issues.”

    The institute’s second publication, Kentucky Health News, has been an invaluable source of information to the entire state throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. This publication focuses on health issues in a state that is one of the nation’s least healthy.

    Cross said his research showed that health was neglected in local news coverage and he felt a “personal obligation” to change that. With funding from the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, Cross began publishing Kentucky Health News in 2011. Though it first focused on personal health, Kentucky Health News evolved into covering public policy with Kentucky’s expansion of Medicaid and other aspects of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, while still covering personal health topics.

    From March 7, 2020, to April 4, 2021, Kentucky Health News posted a coronavirus-related article every day. Many articles elaborated on Gov. Andy Beshear’s daily briefings, but other articles broke down health numbers for public knowledge. For example, when Gov. Beshear and Health Commissioner Steven Stack wouldn’t say how they used data to guide their decisions, KHN published a story that showed data models they were probably using.

    “What we’re doing here is helping a state with poor health status improve that status, and to deal with the public policy questions that surround health, and now to deal with a pandemic,” Cross said. “It’s become almost a full-time job being editor and publisher of Kentucky Health News in a pandemic.”

    Kentucky Health News’ sole reporter, Melissa Patrick, said the service has worked hard to compile national and local COVID-19 news to keep Kentuckians informed.

    “My mission every day is to improve the health of Kentuckians through the written word, through shared information,” Patrick said.

    While The Rural Blog and Kentucky Health News have provided political and pandemic coverage to an audience numbering millions, the IRJCI’s third publication focuses on a single zip code. 

    Started in 2008, The Midway Messenger was originally an experiment Cross devised to help students get real-world experience, to give Midway a local news outlet again and to encourage rural newspapers to embrace digital platforms. Cross said good students in his community journalism course and a newsworthy town have made the Messenger blog and its twice-yearly print edition successful.

    “It’s hard to overstate the importance of The Midway Messenger to our community,” said Midway Mayor Grayson Vandegrift. “While we get good coverage from The Woodford Sun, The Midway Messenger has become our paper of record. I can tell anecdotally that more people in Midway are getting their local news from the Messenger than from the Sun.”

    Having led the IRJCI from its inception, Cross has ensured a solid foundation for the benefit of rural communities across the nation and for a healthier Kentucky. Although he does plan to reduce his numerous responsibilities in his phased retirement starting in the 2021-2022 academic year, his effect on rural journalism through the IRJCI will be his legacy.

    “Our overall aim is to help life in rural America and rural Kentucky,” Cross said, “and we operate under the proposition that rural Americans deserve good journalism as much as anybody else in America.”

    Al Cross speaking to a group of Latin American journalists visiting Bardstown in 2019. Photo by Forrest Berkshire, The Kentucky Standard.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: With a half a century of journalism experience under his belt, veteran political reporter turned professor Al Cross has dedicated his life to reporting on and serving his community. The institute is known for helping rural journalists, primarily in Appalachia but also nationwide, define the public agenda in their communities by localizing broader issues. Homepage Feature: Primary feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 2, 2021) — For the second time in recent University of Kentucky history students in the College of Communication and Information’s Department of Integrated Strategic Communication’s National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) team have made it to the national finals.

    This year’s team ended their incredible season with a fifth-place finish in the nation with their presentation and plans book for 2021 NSAC client Tinder, the world’s most popular dating app.

    The NSAC provides college students from across the nation the opportunity to create a comprehensive strategic marketing/advertising/media campaign for a corporate client, offering real-world experience that students can earn while still in the classroom.

    Each client provides an assignment or case study outlining the history of its product and a current challenge. The case study reflects a real-world marketing challenge the student teams must research and then develop and test solutions. Student teams create a presentation and plans book and then “pitch” their solutions to a panel of judges, from the district to the national level.

    This year’s team, led by ISC Associate Professor Adriane Grumbein, won the District Five competition in April. District Five encompasses American Advertising Federation college chapters in Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia. 2021 was the 10th time a UK team won the Fifth District competition.

    Following the District Five win, the team moved on to the semifinal round in May where they competed against 17 other district winners around the nation.

    The top eight teams from semifinal competition were invited to the national finals, held virtually on June 3.

    This year marks the UK team’s best finish ever. The team also won the AdMall by SalesFuel Best Research Award, given to the national finalist team deemed to have demonstrated the best marketing research in their presentation and plans book.

    “Proud does not feel like a big enough word for how I feel about this team and their accomplishments,” Grumbein said.

    “This remarkable group of students exceeded every goal I set for them. They rose to every challenge. They worked late nights and early mornings. They did in-depth research that wowed the judges. They did beautiful creative that brought their insights to life. And, they did it all with passion, camaraderie and joy. It has been an absolute pleasure to work with this team. In a year unlike any other, this team’s resilience, creativity and talent reminds me that our profession has nothing to fear. Their future is fire."

    May 2021 graduate and two-year NSAC team member Kendall Boron recapped the team’s unprecedented year saying, “The team supported one another and played up to everyone’s strengths. It was the most rewarding experience — not just taking fifth in the nation but also the friendships that followed. There is some crazy talent on this team, and we were happy to set the bar high for next year.”  

    The 2020-2021 NSAC team members were ISC students Alyiah Austin, Kendall Boron, Nia Brown, Addison Cave, Grayson Dampier, Katelyn Dougherty, Emily Fay, Peyton Fike, Annie Gillenwater, Haley Heisler, Jeremy Middleton, Zachary Neighbors, Michael Noble, Chaney Willett and Olivia Zidzik.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: This year’s team ended their season with a fifth-place finish in the nation with their presentation and plans book for 2021 NSAC client Tinder, the world’s most popular dating app.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 28, 2021) — To go from reading the news to writing the news, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna channeled her love for writing to land a spot at Kentucky’s largest newspaper and become a Pulitzer Prize finalist.

    It was during a three-week power outage brought on from a bad 2009 winter storm that Sarah Ladd, a 2019 journalism graduate, wondered how the families around her were doing. This intrigue in human interest stories blossomed into an affinity for journalism that carried her through college and into her career field.

    Ladd grew up in a small, Western Kentucky town feeling isolated from the rest of the state — that is, except for a UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment extension office right outside her town. Seeing that UK sign made her feel like the university cared, leading her to transfer there after completing her associate degree at West Kentucky Community and Technical College.

    However, before she had officially stepped foot on UK’s campus as a student, she was already active in the Kentucky Kernel. The student newspaper would make up much of her college experience as it acted as an “oasis” for Ladd and what she called “a safe place for growth, for friendships, for learning.”

    “It can’t ever hurt to be surrounded by like-minded people,” Ladd said. “There was a sense of a sisterhood, and I say sisterhood because there were so many powerful, young women running the Kernel when I was there — and there still is.”

    During her time with the Kernel, she served as a news reporter and the opinions editor. Her reporting in these roles earned her and the organization multiple accolades, among them an Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker, College Media Association Pinnacle Awards and awards from the Kentucky Press Association.

    Kakie Urch, associate professor in the School of Journalism and Media and Ladd’s biggest mentor from UK, said, “Sarah Ladd embodies the excellence that students can demonstrate in all areas of the major: academic work, lab and studio work, student media work … Sarah brings 100% to the table. It's a joy and a pleasure as a professor to spread the tablecloth for her and ring the dinner bell.”

    It was at the 2019 Kentucky Press Association Annual Convention that Urch introduced Ladd to Kristina Goetz, then-narrative editor at the Courier-Journal. Conquering her introversion, Ladd networked her way into a guided tour of the news organization and a short interview with then-editor Rick Green. From that conversation, she secured a post-graduation internship as a breaking news reporter.

    Despite her seemingly temporary position, Ladd didn’t let that hinder her from acting as a full-time reporter. She got a diversity of reporting experience, from covering everyday crime to bigger enterprise stories. Not once did she feel held back, and she said her time with CI helped prepare her for that.

    A mere month into the internship, Ladd was called into a meeting with Green and some of her other mentors. She was told to take notes as her boss asked everyone else in the room what qualities make a good reporter. In the end, she was told these were all qualities she possessed and that she would be a full-time reporter in three months’ time.

    “I have been recruiting interns for nearly 25 years, and it’s incredibly rare to know almost immediately that someone is going to be a high-achiever and land an immediate spot on the reporting staff. Sarah Ladd was one of the exceptions,” Green said. “I knew pretty quickly she was an exceptional journalist. Her skills, the willingness to tackle whatever story we gave her and make it special, the quality of ideas she pitched to me and other editors — all added up to someone I knew deserved a full-time spot on the Courier-Journal staff.”

    Ladd continued to work as a breaking news reporter for many months before transferring to a focused beat. In December of 2019, less than a year on the job, she requested and was sent to cover the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge in Belgium. During the latter half of 2020, she reported on higher education before landing in her current role of COVID-19 coverage.

    In 2020, Ladd was also part of the staffwide effort to cover the police killing of Breonna Taylor and the more than 180 days of protests it sparked in Louisville. The coverage by Ladd and her colleagues earned the paper 2021 Pulitzer Prize finalist status in the breaking news and public service categories.

    "Working in a Pulitzer Prize-winning newsroom has always been a source of pride and a truly humbling experience for me. Being part of a finalist team made it that much more real and humbling,” Ladd said. “But I do think it's important to remember why we were finalists this year. It was for covering the death of a young woman and the pain of a city. I am proud that the CJ was here covering it, though, and I'm grateful to everyone who shared their stories and emotions with reporters. I know we'll never stop digging for truth and answers for our city, and that's something to be proud of and excited about." 

    When reflecting on the catalyst of her journey with the Courier-Journal, Ladd advises other journalists to network. She said while networking is hard for introverts like her, she wouldn’t have the amazing job she has today if she hadn’t asked a stranger for advice. Now that stranger, Goetz, is a good friend and a big mentor who cheers on Ladd’s success.

    “Sarah is an extraordinary writer and reporter. She's as kind as she is ambitious,” Goetz said. “I expect great things from her in her career. But as far as I'm concerned, she's already a star.”

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: College of Communication and Information alumna Sarah Ladd channeled her love for writing to land a spot at Kentucky’s largest newspaper and become a Pulitzer Prize finalist.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Jay Blanton and Kody Kiser Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 28, 2021) — Jen Smith is an instructor in the University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Media and a self-described recovering sportswriter who worked for the Lexington Herald-Leader in various positions for more than 20 years, including writer, copy editor and designer.

    While working in the sports department, she covered everything from high school sports to racing — both the horse and horsepower kinds — before settling into the University of Kentucky football beat in 2011. She also covered UK women’s basketball for more than 15 seasons. 

    Smith has a passion for sports, but also for good storytelling across multiple platforms, editing and journalism history. In addition to her teaching duties, Smith is now focused as well on creating a sports journalism program and academic path at UK.

    In 2016 and 2017, she was named Kentucky Sports Writer of the Year by the National Sports Media Association. Smith also was a Top 10 sports beat writer in the country in 2017, according to the Association of Professional Sports Editors. During her two decades in the journalism industry, she won multiple sports feature and story competitions.

    In this episode of "Behind the Blue," Smith discusses taking on her new role as a teacher, the state of journalism and what’s next for the profession in a time of economic challenge. (This interview was recorded in February of 2021.)

    "Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes of “Behind the Blue” each week. UK’s latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers will be featured, along with the most important news impacting the university.

    For questions or comments about this or any other episode of "Behind the Blue," email BehindTheBlue [at] uky.edu or tweet your question with #BehindTheBlue. Transcripts for this or other episodes of "Behind the Blue" can be downloaded from the show’s blog page.

    To discover what’s wildly possible at the University of Kentucky, click here.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jay Blanton
    jay.blanton [at] uky.edu
    "> jay.blanton [at] uky.edu
    859-257-6605 Summary: In this episode of "Behind the Blue," Smith discusses taking on her new role as a teacher, the state of journalism and what’s next for the profession.Media Embed: <iframe style="border: none" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/19595882/height/90/theme/custom/thumbnail/yes/direction/backward/render-playlist/no/custom-color/0033a0/" height="90" width="100%" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen></iframe>
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 25, 2021) — A picture is worth a thousand words, but a letter is worth a lifetime of memories — and a feature by Humans of New York.

    Rosie Ecker, a 2016 integrated strategic communication graduate, has received handwritten letters from her dad, Buz, nearly every day since fourth-grade summer camp. While some of the letters profess the doting dad’s love for her, others are a bit eccentric. To Ecker, this was a story worth sharing with the world.

    “There is something really, really special about a handwritten card from somebody. And I think that my dad has made the mailbox an exciting place for me to be,” Ecker said.

    Early last year, photographer Brandon Stanton, creator of HONY, started a new coronavirus-adapted series called #QuarantineStories. He put out a call to his millions of followers for story submissions to potentially be featured. Ecker was one of many who answered that call. 

    After mulling it over, Ecker sent an email with the story of how her dad has written her letters every day from that grade school summer camp to her life post-college. Three weeks later, she was shocked by an email from Stanton and an on-the-spot interview with him.

    But instead of being interested in the letters, Ecker said Stanton was more interested in her dad, and she understood why. She calls her father a “gem of a human being” not because he’s easy to love, but because he’s lovable despite also being difficult and quirky. This quirkiness not only saw her through hundreds of letters growing up, but it has also inspired her to write letters to loved ones every day for Lent in 2021 in hopes of instilling the same love her father’s letters instilled in her.

    “My hands have touched the letters, so have hers. She will still have these daily letters long after I am gone,” Buz said. “She will know a piece of me is always with her, no matter what, and this piece she has is the love I have for her. This love is sunup to sundown, year after year, from one century to the next, and all those letter moments in between.”

    Despite all the attention the HONY feature brought the pair, their story first debuted on UK’s campus five years earlier via the Kentucky Kernel. 

    Ecker joined Kernel Media her freshman year of college where she would serve in three different roles before graduating. Throughout freshman and sophomore year, she was an advertising representative for KRNL. During junior year, she was KRNL editor-in-chief. And in her final semester as a senior, she was the Kentucky Kernel’s managing editor.

    Chris Poore, former student publications director, suggested Ecker write the letter story when he first got word of it. Aptly named “Dear Rosie,” her story was published on Oct. 1, 2015.

    “Research has shown that letter writing, and receiving, makes you happier. So it’s altogether fitting that Rosie is one of those rare human beings left on this planet who writes and receives letters,” Poore said. “It’s heartening to see the story of Rosie and her dad catch on; it’s even more touching to think that their story has inspired at least a few more parents and kids to push a pen around on paper and send notes to each other.”

    But Ecker’s storytelling doesn’t stop there. In the past few years, she has taken on roles to expand her love for the written word. Along with being an avid letter reader, she is also a communications specialist for Cincinnati Children’s Hospital’s Heart Institute, director of storytelling for WISe Wellness Guild and founding creator of Queen Speak. While her role at the hospital connects back to her own treatment there as an infant, her latter positions relate more to following her ambitions. 

    WISe Wellness Guild is an organization that promotes whole-self wellness in women. It was founded by Stevi Carr, Ecker’s former colleague at UC Health. Carr started the organization after experiencing burnout and wanted to help other women take care of themselves.

    Carr’s audacity served as the inspiration for Ecker to found Queen Speak, a collection of narratives from women sharing their mistakes, tips and guidance for others. The blog has transformed from Ecker’s passion project to a serious point of interest in job interviews. 

    Just as she went out on a limb with her submission to HONY, the blog is something she is proud for being brave enough to pursue. While she believes anxiety is what holds people back, she encourages others to think of all the positives that could come from venturing out.

    “Putting yourself out there is always a good idea,” Ecker said. “You might get hurt but your rewards are so much bigger if you do instead of never trying.”

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Rosie Ecker, a 2016 integrated strategic communication graduate, has received handwritten letters from her dad, Buz, nearly every day since fourth-grade summer camp. While some of the letters profess the doting dad’s love for her, others are a bit eccentric. To Ecker, this was a story worth sharing with the world — resulting in a feature by Humans of New York. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 15, 2021) — In a challenging year of delivering the news while masked, distanced and remote, students in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information’s School of Journalism and Media proved that they were willing and able to rise to the challenge.

    In a virtual awards ceremony held on Tuesday, June 8, 2021, the Kentucky Broadcaster’s Association presented the 2021 Impact Broadcast Awards. The annual awards were formerly known as the Kentucky Associated Press Broadcast Awards.

    UK students placed in six of the nine college TV categories awarded and earned a total of seven awards including one first place, four second place and two third place awards in the College TV category. UK also scored a first place award in the College Radio category.

    The winning UK entries are:

    • Feature Story: First, Zach Epperson, "Underground Railroad"
    • Public Affairs: Second, Brandon Jent, "Voting in Fayette County"
    • Sports Coverage: Second, Hayden Gooding, "Special Olympics"
    • News Story: Third, Alaina Kwan, "Medical Waste Management"
    • Television Reporter: Second, Brandon Jent; Third, Alaina Kwan
    • Overall Newscast: Second
    • Public Affairs College Radio: First, Lauren McCally and Andrew Sutherland, "Campus Voices — The Keto Diet"

    Andrew Dawson, lecturer in the School of Journalism and Media, directs the student news broadcasts.

    "Our students never cease to amaze me with their hard work and dedication to learning the craft of journalism. It is especially rewarding seeing them shine in such uncertain and difficult times. They continue to take instruction, learn and go out and make all of us in the school proud,” Dawson said.

    The full list of KBA Impact Broadcast Awards can be found at www.kba.org/impact-broadcast-awards-finalists/.

    UK students placed in six of the nine college TV categories for the Impact Broadcast Awards.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: In a challenging year of delivering the news while masked, distanced and remote, students in the UK College of Communication and Information’s School of Journalism and Media proved that they were willing and able to rise to the challenge. UK students placed in six of the nine college TV categories for the Impact Broadcast Awards.
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Amanda Nelson Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 8, 2021) — A new book, “Communicating Science in Times of Crisis: COVID-19 Pandemic,” features research and analysis from University of Kentucky faculty.  

    H. Dan O’Hair, professor in the College of Communication and Information, and Mary John O’Hair, professor of educational leadership studies in the College of Education, are co-editors of the book, a first volume in a new series about the study of science communication in times of crisis. Both are former deans of their respective colleges. 

    “The COVID-19 pandemic will be a case study in the communication field for decades to come. While pandemics are part of our world history, the communication methods used this time are unprecedented, as we had never experienced an outbreak of this scale in the age of digital and social media,” said Dan O’Hair. 

    In all, 43 authors from across the U.S. contributed to the text.  

    “As the pandemic began to play out, we saw a need to bring together a group of researchers and professionals who could, in real-time, examine the ways health and science information reached the public and how it was received. Those who contributed to this book represent a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives, coalescing around one central topic. It shows the broad scope of challenges, but also offers reassurance that analysis and action will be taking place for years to come, from a variety of professionals seeking to help improve the future,” said Mary John O’Hair. 

    In addition to co-editors Dan O’Hair and Mary John O’Hair, contributors from UK include: 

    • Justin M. Bathon and Lu S. Young, College of Education Department of Educational Leadership Studies; 

    • Michael T. Childress and Michael W. Clark, Gatton College of Business and Economics Center for Business and Economic Research; 

    • Erin B. Hester, Bobi Ivanov, and Kimberly A. Parker, College of Communication and Information Department of Integrated Strategic Communication;  

    • Kevin Real, College of Communication and Information Department of Communication; and  

    • Alyssa Clements-Hickman and Jade Hollan, both graduate students in the College of Education Department of Educational, School and Counseling Psychology (in a chapter co-authored with former College of Education faculty member Robert J. Reese of Auburn University). 

    Book chapters include:  

    • Managing Science Communication in a Pandemic 

    • Comprehending Covidiocy Communication: Dismisinformation, Conspiracy Theory, and Fake News  

    • Equally Unpleasant Choices: Observations on School Leadership in a Time of Crisis  

    • The Use of Telehealth in Behavioral Health and Educational Contexts During COVID-19 and Beyond  

    • How Existential Anxiety Shapes Communication in Coping with the Coronavirus Pandemic: A Terror Management Theory Perspective  

    • Communication and COVID-19: Challenges in Evidence-based Healthcare Design 

    • Identity and Information Overload: Examining the Impact of Health Messaging in Times of Crisis  

    • Overcoming Obstacles to Collective Action by Communicating Compassion in Science  

    • Communicating the Science of COVID-19 to Children: Meet the Helpers  

    • Science Communication and Inoculation: Mitigating the Effects of the Coronavirus Outbreak 

    • Communicating with Policymakers in a Pandemic  

    • Controlling the Narrative: Mixed Messages and Presidential Credibility  

    • Communicating Death and Dying in the COVID-19 Pandemic  

    • Perspective Change in a Time of Crisis: The Emotion and Critical Reflection Model  

    • Social Media Surveillance and (Dis)Misinformation in the COVID-19 Pandemic 

    • Advancing Models of Information and Media Toward a New Model of Public Relations Crisis and Risk Communication Following Pandemics  

    The second book in the series will be published in the spring of 2022 and will focus on catastrophic events. 

    Dan O’Hair, professor in the College of Communication and Information, and Mary John O’Hair, professor of educational leadership studies in the College of Education, collaborated on a new book on communication during the COVID-19 pandemic.Organizational Unit: Business and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationGraduate School

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: A new book, “Communicating Science in Times of Crisis: COVID-19 Pandemic,” features research and analysis from University of Kentucky faculty.  Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Maia Dubin Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 4, 2021) ­— Allyson DeVito, senior lecturer in the School of Information Science in University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information, tasked more than 50 students in her CIS 300: Strategic Business Communication classes with finding a solution to a local nonprofit’s problem. The catch was that they only had $100 to make it happen.

    DeVito partnered with The $100 Solution, a nonprofit organization that works towards making a sustainable impact around the world. Students are provided with just $100 and five guiding principles: partnership, reciprocity, sustainability, capacity building and reflection to come up with their solution. 

    Student teams partnered with nonprofit organizations in the greater Lexington community to work on $100 Solution Projects. They conducted Zoom meetings with the organization to find out about their history, what they do, who they serve, their needs, how the pandemic has changed things and more.

    DeVito arranged for students to partner with 10 local organizations: Girls on the Run, The Nathaniel Mission, The Ronald McDonald House, The Refuge Clinic, TOPSoccer, Allegro Dance Project, Ashland Terrace Senior Living Community for Women, International Book Project, Urban Impact and Step by Step.

    “We know many people and organizations have faced difficulties during the past year because of the pandemic, and the goal of The $100 Solution organization is to make a sustainable difference by improving some aspect or solving a problem,” DeVito said.

    DeVito also coordinates and teaches CIS 112, an accelerated composition and communication course in the college, where she introduced the $100 Solution project back in 2017. This is the first year the project has been introduced into the CIS 300 curriculum.

    “Since the team project is a major assignment in the course, I had the idea to introduce The $100 Solution project because I thought business students would enjoy working with these organizations, learning about them and some of the issues they face and then figuring out how to solve a problem using $100,” DeVito said.

    Students presented their final projects via Zoom to the nonprofit community partners and the $100 Solution Board of Directors during the final week of class. Each presentation outlined the background history of the organization, a problem at hand and how each team will utilize their $100 to solve that problem.

    “This project really opened my eyes to how nonprofits work and showed me how $100 can be spent in various ways,” said Maddie Yaden, a junior accounting major. “I’m used to maximizing revenue, and during this project I was able to see that play out in a real-life situation. We used every amount of money we had, down to the last dollar, in advertising.”

    Yaden’s team was partnered with the Allegro Dance Project, a nonprofit contemporary dance company that provides children with special needs the opportunity to take dance classes. By focusing primarily on advertising, her group is hoping to spread awareness of Allegro’s upcoming July dance performance. Increased ticket sales will help Allegro’s bottom line and help them move forward post-pandemic.

    “As a small, still relatively new nonprofit organization, $100 is a big help to our modest advertising budget — and could have a significant long term impact by helping us reach more children with specific needs through our Inclusive Dance Outreach programming,” Jeana Klevene, director and founder of Allegro Dance Project, said. “This project has provided valuable practical learning experience for students and encouraged partnership and philanthropy with the nonprofits in their community.”

    Maddie Yaden’s team partnered with the Allegro Dance Project, a nonprofit contemporary dance company.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Allyson DeVito, senior lecturer in the School of Information Science in UK’s College of Communication and Information, tasked more than 50 students in her CIS 300: Strategic Business Communication classes with finding a solution to a local nonprofit’s problem.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Haley Williamson Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 4, 2021) The University of Kentucky’s HEALing Communities Study and Voices of Hope are teaming up for the free virtual June Learning Collaborative, “Come as You Are: Transformational Housing.” The event will take place 4-5:30 p.m. Thursday, June 17, 2021, and will tackle the topic of innovative, harm reduction-informed housing options for people with substance use disorders.  

    The event will discuss innovative harm reduction models, such as managed alcohol programs and “Come as You Are” residential programs. Participants will learn about practical strategies for expanding recovery housing for people on medication for opioid use disorder, as well as meet other advocates that are passionate about the topic. Attendees will help make a plan to expand housing options in Kentucky.

    The panel includes local, national and international experts, including:

    Interested attendees can register online here.

     

    The University of Kentucky’s HEALing Communities Study and Voices of Hope are teaming up for the free virtual June Learning Collaborative, “Come as You Are: Transformational Housing.” Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationMedicinePharmacyPublic HealthSocial WorkUK HealthCare

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Allison Perry
    allison.perry [at] uky.edu
    "> allison.perry [at] uky.edu
    (859) 323-2399 Summary: The University of Kentucky’s HEALing Communities Study and Voices of Hope are teaming up for the free virtual June Learning Collaborative, “Come as You Are: Transformational Housing.” The event will take place 4-5:30 p.m. Thursday, June 17, 2021.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Leslie Threlkeld Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 2, 2021) — Throughout the history of the United States Eventing Association (USEA) Intercollegiate Eventing Championships, the University of Kentucky has competed every year and fought hard for Big Blue Nation. On Sunday, UK earned its first championship title at the 2021 edition held during the Virginia Horse Trials (VHT) International at the Virginia Horse Center. 

    This year, UK team sent a record number of riders to the event.

    The UK team of Cosby Green, Ivie Cullen-Dean, Caroline Dannemiller and Abbey O’Day posted a team score of 94.41, winning by just over 2.0 penalty points. Cullen-Dean, a communication junior from Newnan, Georgia, finished second individually in Open Beginner Novice Horse with her brand new ride Redfield Lorimer. Green, a managing and marketing sophomore from Lexington, won Training Horse A with McCreary, earning the team’s best individual score of 30.0. Dannemiller, a marketing and Lewis Honors College senior from Roswell, Georgia, and Fernhill Dreaming finished third in Modified B. 

    "I think this is the biggest team we’ve ever had," Cullen-Dean said. "It’s just the best atmosphere. Walking up and down the aisle you’re always saying good luck and have fun or they’re saying it back to you."

    When it came to how to best structure UK's eight teams, O'Day, a political science senior from Smethport, Pennsylvania, explained, "We looked mostly over our records from last year to this year, because this year we didn’t get to come out a lot. We looked at the scores between each other and stacked our teams in certain ways so we could help each other the most.”

    Finishing second in the team competition was the University of Georgia Red Team. UGA brought two teams of three to the championships and both finished in the ribbons. 

    The Randolph-Macon College Yellow Jackets were the overnight leaders on Saturday, but unfortunate penalties in show jumping dropped them down to third place on a score of 98.99. The competition was incredibly close, with fewer than five penalty points separating the top three.

    In the Graduate Division, reserved for current graduate students as well as 2020 seniors who missed out on the championships due to COVID-19, a scramble team from James Madison University (Amelia Bayer), University of Kentucky (Macy Clark) and Virginia Tech (Makenzie Krason) took top honors.

    The coveted Spirit Award was hard fought this year. The students pulled out all the stops to show their school spirit and exhibit teamwork. Ultimately, the panel of judges who observed the students throughout the week named Auburn University the winners of the Spirit Award. This team not only supported each other but fellow competitors from other schools, too. They also put in volunteer hours for the event. 

    The 2022 Intercollegiate Championships will take place at Chattahoochee Hills in Fairburn, Georgia, before returning to VHT in 2023. 

    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationGraduate SchoolHonors College

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Holly Wiemers

    859-257-2226 Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: UK earned its first championship title at the 2021 edition of the VHT International at the Virginia Horse Center. This year, the team sent a record number of riders to the event.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Trey Conatser and Jill Abney Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 3, 2021) — Of its many effects, the COVID-19 pandemic brought about rapid innovations in teaching. Courses were redesigned for a range of delivery modes to in-person and remote students (often at the same time) and the conversation about active learning, class community and belonging took on new urgency as the challenges of the pandemic amplified the barriers — systemic and discrete — to student engagement, motivation and success.

    Innovation, of course, is a long-term project whose importance is further underscored by the past 15 months. In February 2020, just before the shift to emergency remote instruction, the Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT) launched the Teaching Innovation Institute, a yearlong, cohort-based program for exploring, experimenting, reflecting on and implementing innovative and inclusive teaching methods. Coordinated by Jill Abney, the institute involves interdisciplinary and cross-college collaboration among the cohort as well as a partnership with the UK Smart Campus Initiative through which faculty participants receive iPads for the development of digital activities, assignments and curricula. Despite the twists and turns of 2020, the institute’s first faculty cohort persisted and thrived as a learning community.

    After soliciting applications during the spring semester, CELT is pleased to announce the second cohort of the Teaching Innovation Institute. During the 2021-22 academic year, these teacher-scholars will learn with and from each other as we look to the futures of teaching and learning at UK and for higher education as a whole. Their work embodies the faculty-driven spirit of our institution as well as its teaching mission in the Commonwealth and beyond.

    The cohort will include: 

    • Ruth Brown, Hispanic Studies, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Diana Byrne, Civil Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Julian Dupuis, Entomology, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
    • Amanda Ellis, Biostatistics, College of Public Health
    • Heather Erwin, Kinesiology and Health Promotion, College of Education
    • Lindsey Fay, Interiors, College of Design
    • Jane Grise, Legal Research and Writing, College of Law
    • Regina Hannemann, Electrical and Computer Engineering, College of Engineering
    • Kyra Hunting, Journalism and Media, College of Communication and Information
    • Aaron Hynds, Music, College of Fine Arts
    • Anushka Karkelanova, Statistics, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Darshak Patel, Economics, Gatton College of Business and Economics
    • Katherine Paullin, Mathematics, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Kristen Platt, Neuroscience, College of Medicine
    • Kathy Swan, Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education
    • Mark Swanson, Health, Behavior, and Society, College of Public Health
    • Katie Twist, Internal Medicine, College of Medicine
    • Elizabeth Williams, Gender and Women’s Studies, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Jessica Wilson, College of Nursing
    • Heather Worne, Anthropology, College of Arts and Sciences
    • Cheryl Vanderford, Physician Assistant Studies, College of Health Sciences

    The selection process was highly competitive, based on how plans for innovation would impact student learning in meaningful and diverse ways, address classroom challenges and barriers to learning, and prompt the design and implementation of curricula, activities and assignments based on principles of inclusive and digital pedagogies. CELT looks forward to working with the 2021-22 cohort as they address teaching practices and pedagogical commitments while also imagining new possibilities for student learning.

    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringFine ArtsMusicHealth SciencesLawMedicineNursingPublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: After soliciting applications during the spring semester, CELT is pleased to announce the second cohort of the Teaching Innovation Institute.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Jay Blanton and Kody Kiser Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 1, 2021) — Jennifer Greer joined the University of Kentucky in 2019 as dean of the College of Communication and Information.

    She came to UK after several years as an academic administrator at both the University of Alabama and the University of Nevada. She served as associate provost at the University of Alabama, handling faculty personnel issues, faculty orientation and leadership programs, and providing oversight for several academic support and compliance units in Academic Affairs.

    She also has been recognized for her excellence in teaching, winning collegewide teaching awards at Nevada and Alabama and was honored with a university award for excellence in academic advising at Alabama.

    This academic year, she returned to the classroom to teach — in the midst of a pandemic.

    In this episode of "Behind the Blue," Greer discusses the challenges of running a growing college, returning to the classroom and the future of communication and media.

    "Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes of “Behind the Blue” each week. UK’s latest medical breakthroughs, research, artists and writers will be featured, along with the most important news impacting the university.

    For questions or comments about this or any other episode of "Behind the Blue," email BehindTheBlue [at] uky.edu or tweet your question with #BehindTheBlue. Transcripts for this or other episodes of "Behind the Blue" can be downloaded from the show’s blog page.

    To discover what’s wildly possible at the University of Kentucky, click here.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jay Blanton
    jay.blanton [at] uky.edu
    "> jay.blanton [at] uky.edu
    859-257-6605 Summary: In this episode of "Behind the Blue," Greer discusses the challenges of running a growing college, returning to the classroom and the future of communication and media.Media Embed: <iframe style="border: none" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/19247402/height/90/theme/custom/thumbnail/yes/direction/backward/render-playlist/no/custom-color/0033a0/" height="90" width="100%" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen></iframe>
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chaney Willett Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 27, 2021) — The University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information is producing a new podcast pioneered by UK students Trace Williams, Michael Morgan and Trevor Payne. The podcast, “Breaking the Boundary,” emphasizes the need to shift the focus of unsolved global issues to a solution-oriented approach.

    Produced by media arts and studies students in CI’s studio, “Breaking the Boundary” discusses the action needed to correct crises like the opioid epidemic, climate change and financial literacy.

    Trace Williams, a May 2021 MAS graduate, hopes this podcast can reach all students on UK’s campus. “The ultimate goal is to work with students from every college, whether that be students from those colleges coming to talk about an issue that they are passionate about or helping behind the scenes.” Williams knew his MAS peers would boost this project, sharing the idea with CI.

    “Trace and his teammates presented a great idea that would be helpful for a wide audience and our CI Studio production team wanted to make their message as good as possible,” said Nathan Stevens, lecturer in CI’s School of Journalism and Media. “We offered our CI Studio to help ease his production life so that he could focus on helping out with the show’s content, and the show turned out great.”

    Williams and co-hosts, Lewis Honors students Michael Morgan and Trevor Payne, developed this idea under the inspiration of Patrick Walker, Lewis Honors College’s Ruth Jones Lewis Faculty Scholar in Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise. Williams and other student leaders adopted Walker’s goal of revitalizing campus through entrepreneurial mindsets, creating a student organization called No Limits Productions that focuses on the podcast and other campuswide projects.

    The podcast is sponsored by the Institute for the Study of Free Enterprise and the Lewis Honors College. The sponsorship is used to help market the podcast and cover administrative costs.

    With one season fully recorded and season two underway, Williams expresses his gratitude for the partnership between CI and No Limits Productions. “This partnership has allowed us to access professional production equipment, bringing our podcast to the next level,” Williams said. “We’re so grateful to everyone who has had a role in this show.”

    To listen to season one of "Breaking the Boundary," visit Spotify, Amazon Music or Stitcher.

    The University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information is producing a new podcast titled “Breaking the Boundary."Organizational Unit: Business and EconomicsCommunication and InformationHonors College

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information is producing a new podcast pioneered by UK students Trace Williams, Michael Morgan and Trevor Payne. The podcast emphasizes the need to shift the focus of unsolved global issues to a solution-oriented approach.
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Meg Mills Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 26, 2021) — The Bluegrass Debate Coalition (BDC), housed in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and information, is celebrating their inaugural season in a big way. On Thursday, May 27, at 7 p.m. EST, the BDC is hosting a one hour online event featuring a special message from Gov. Steve Beshear. Also included in the program is a short demonstration debate between UK and Western Kentucky University debaters and alumni and additional information about the BDC.

    “The mission of our program is to promote debate both on campus and beyond," said Dave Arnett UK's director of debate. "The BDC is focused on helping the students who need it the most find their voices and build the confidence and skills necessary to advocate for positive changes in their communities.”

    The UK Intercollegiate Debate Team housed in CI, one of the most successful collegiate debate teams in the country, launched the BDC to share their resources and expertise with middle school and high school debaters across the state of Kentucky. 

    The BDC works with Kentucky schools to make competitive debate available to every middle school and high school student in the state. Debate has been proven to increase student academic performance. It also enriches and expands college and career opportunities and provides intellectual and networking tools for young people to thrive as active, responsible leaders in their communities. The BDC offers free educational resources, supports the development of new debate programs and hosts free online tournaments.

    For more information about the event and the Zoom link visit https://www.bluegrassdebate.com/celebration-of-digital-debate.

    For more information about the BDC visit https://www.bluegrassdebate.com.

    Mark Cornelison | UK PhotoOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The Bluegrass Debate Coalition (BDC), housed in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and information is celebrating their inaugural season in a big way. On Thursday, May 27 at 7 p.m. EST, the BDC is hosting a one hour online event featuring a special message from Governor Steve Beshear. Also included in the program is a short demonstration debate between UK and WKU debaters and alumni and additional information about the BDC.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Allison Perry Tuesday

    RICHMOND, Ky. (May 25, 2021) – The University of Kentucky’s $87 million HEALing Communities Study has partnered with Voices of Hope and the Madison County Detention Center to increase access to medication for opioid use disorder for people who are being released from the jail.

    The Madison County Detention Center, under the leadership of Jailer Steve Tussey, detains about 5,600 people per year. The jail is located in Richmond, Ky. and does not currently have a substance use treatment program. Madison County is one of the 16 Kentucky counties participating in the HEALing Communities Study. The study has the ultimate goal of reducing opioid overdose deaths by 40% in participating communities that represent more than a third of Kentucky’s population.

    “The Madison County Detention Center is excited to add this missing piece to the lives of the population of this facility,” Tussey said. “Our truest hope is to provide an avenue to stop the cycle of incarceration and provide the support necessary to return to productive citizenship.”

    Voices of Hope is an organization that helps people in recovery stay in recovery by providing no-cost recovery support services, conducting research, and educating and advocating for the community they serve. The organization’s overarching goal is to enhance the quantity and quality of support available to people seeking and experiencing long-term recovery from alcohol and other substance use disorders.

    Under the new partnership, HEAL grant funds are used to place a Voices of Hope peer support specialist full-time in the jail to offer education and services to every person who is being released, including:

    • Opioid overdose education
    • A free naloxone (Narcan) unit
    • Assistance for people who are interested in being screened/assessed and connected to medication for OUD
    • Help in addressing barriers to treatment, such as insurance issues or lack of transportation

    Peer support specialists are people in recovery who are trained to help those who want treatment for substance use disorders. Having someone who understands that experience can be a game-changer for those seeking remission and recovery, says Gary Biggers, a peer support specialist with Voices of Hope.

    “Every time I was incarcerated, I never had any intention of getting out and staying sober. But if I had had a peer support specialist who was willing to sit with me and help me come up with a plan of action upon my release, my chances of recovery would have been higher,” Biggers said. “I would have had someone to talk to so I wouldn’t feel so alone, someone who could understand what I have been through, and someone to help me get linked with treatment. I wish I had had someone who I felt like was really in my corner.”

    The risk of overdose is increased when people are released from a correctional facility – because they have gone for an extended length of time without using an opioid, their tolerance for the drug has decreased significantly. An attempt to use the same amount of opioid may lead to overdose or death. 

    “Due to their diminished physiological tolerance to opioids, people are at a significantly elevated risk of an opioid overdose in the first two weeks after they’re released from jail,” said Carrie Oser, Ph.D., professor of sociology in the UK College of Arts and Sciences and a lead researcher on HEAL. “Having a peer support specialist on-site to speak with people about their options for finding medication treatment for opioid use disorder before they’re being released is incredibly important, because medications have the strongest efficacy in preventing overdoses.”

    By offering education, support and evidence-based treatment to people during a critical time in their life, the groups hope to reduce overdose events and deaths and give the formerly incarcerated the tools to help them begin a new trajectory in life. This partnership is being facilitated by Oser and Melissa Reedy-Johnson, who is a member of the HEAL implementation facilitator team and a resident of Madison County.

    “The opioid epidemic has had and continues to have a devasting impact on so many lives in Madison County,” said Reedy-Johnson. “I feel grateful and fortunate, as a resident of Madison County, to work beside my community members to provide services that will save lives.”

    A package of buprenorphine, one medication used to treat opioid use disorder, and a naloxone nasal spray. UK Photo | Pete ComparoniOrganizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationMedicineNursingPharmacyPublic HealthSocial WorkUK HealthCare

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Allison Perry
    allison.perry [at] uky.edu
    "> allison.perry [at] uky.edu
    (859) 323-2399 Summary: The University of Kentucky’s $87 million HEALing Communities Study has partnered with Voices of Hope and the Madison County Detention Center to increase access to medication for opioid use disorder for people who are being released from the jail.
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Ryan Girves Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 25, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Advising Network has recently announced the recipients of the 2021 Ken Freedman Awards during the Ken Freedman Day of Recognition virtual awards ceremony. 

    Each year, the Ken Freedman Outstanding Advisor Award is presented by the UK Advising Network to one full-time professional advisor and one faculty advisor for outstanding service. Ken Freedman, the award’s namesake, was one of the founders of the UK Advising Network in 1986 and served as a professional advisor at UK until his death in 2001. 

    Awardees received a $500 monetary award from UK Student and Academic Support, a unit of Student Success. Awardees in all categories are also nominated by the UK Advising Network for the Region 3 and National NACADA (academic advising association) awards. 

    This year’s professional advisor award went to Jennifer Riggs Doerge from the College of Engineering. Riggs Doerge currently serves as the senior director of Advising and Student Success in the College of Engineering and works with the Scholars in Engineering and Management (SEAM) Honors pathway students. 

    Riggs Doerge started at UK in 2006 as an account manager in the computer science department where she discovered her true calling: academic advising. Riggs Doerge had a close mentor who helped mold her into the advisor she is today, her mother, Jane Riggs, who worked for years in the College of Engineering as the advising director. 

    As a freshmen advisor, Riggs Doerge is grateful to play an instrumental role in helping students transition from high school to college. She is proud that many keep in touch as they progress through their majors and even after graduation.  

    This year’s faculty advisor award winner is Sherali Zeadally from the College of Communication and Information. Zeadally is an associate professor and a university research professor in the School of Information Science in the College of Communication and Information. He teaches undergraduate/graduate courses in cybersecurity and privacy in the Information Communication Technology (ICT) program. Over the years, he was won several outstanding teaching, research and advising awards. 

    NACADA Aligned Award winners include:

    Outstanding New Advisor: Heather Hardesty, College of Health Sciences

    Innovative Advising: Nathan Vanderford, College of Medicine

    Outstanding Advising Administrator: Casey Shadix, College of Health Sciences

    To watch the virtual awards ceremony, click here. To see the full list of previous Ken Freedman awardees, click here; to see the full list of University of Kentucky advisors recognized by NACADA, click here.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationEngineeringGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesHonors CollegeMedicine

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: Awardees in all categories are nominated by the UK Advising Network for the Region 3 and National NACADA (academic advising association) awards. 
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 20, 2021) — Leaning into his excitement to showcase “America and her people,” one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information (CI) alumnus has graduated from the Big Blue Nation to the big screen.

    Academy Award and Emmy Award winning filmmaker Paul Wagner, a 1972 master’s in communication graduate, has produced and directed more than 40 films in his over 40-year career. However, his affinity for film budded not from a specific passion but from a general interest in communication.

    Growing up, Wagner wasn’t always the best student — that is, until he started UK CI’s master’s program in communication. The atmosphere of respectable faculty and likable peers helped him to “come alive intellectually” and experience “personal enrichment” like he had never felt before. Though it would take around five years after graduating before he found his calling, his CI experience helped indirectly catapult him into his future endeavors.

    “The master’s program helped me engage with the world,” Wagner said. “The graduate program was the first time that I was intellectually and emotionally ready to reimagine myself as a filmmaker and an artist and a person who has opinions about the world and wants to express those opinions.”

    It wasn’t until years later, stumbling across an anthropological film class at the University of Pennsylvania that film clicked for Wagner. The class revolved around a subset of documentary films that explored people and cultures — what would become Wagner’s specialty. As someone who had fallen in love with “the world of ideas” while at UK, he knew that filmmaking was his entry to further explore this world and share it with others.

    In 1989, Wagner and his wife, Ellen Casey Wagner, incorporated American Focus, a small nonprofit organization that independently produces films about American life in its many facets. One of these films was “Black in Blue,” a documentary about the four Black football players at UK who integrated the Southeastern Conference in the 1960s.

    The film details the trials faced by Greg Page, Nate Northington, Wilbur Hackett and Houston Hogg as the first Black football players on the then-all-white team and SEC. Though a historic moment for UK, Kentucky, the SEC and America, the public knew little of what these men had to endure. It was Paul Karem, former UK quarterback from the late ‘60s and teammate of Hackett and Hogg, who encouraged the UK Athletic Department to create statues in these men’s honor and who brought the story to Wagner.

    “Paul Wagner is the unique artist that puts his heart in his work and puts what is in his heart above all other considerations, including financial gain,” Karem said. “In ‘Black in Blue,’ no stone, no opinion, no voice is silenced in the telling of their stories. I knew when I met Paul Wagner for the first time, at my home in Louisville with Wilbur Hackett, Houston Hogg, Nate Northington and Melvin Page, that no other filmmaker could make our film.”

    Though this wasn’t Wagner’s first historical documentary, nor his first film centered on Black history, he still felt pressure and an obligation as a white filmmaker to ensure the movie was authentic to the culture and characters of those four men. He described the interview featuring the late Page’s cousins as “the hardest interview” he’s ever conducted and one that still makes him tear up. He also employed the Louisville-based singing group Linkin’ Bridge to create the arrangements of traditional spirituals for the soundtrack, which has become one of Wagner’s favorites to work on.

    After six years of archival research, personal interviews and musical composition, the film premiered  April 20, 2020, on KET. While it provided a backstory to the statues of the four men placed between UK's Kroger Field and the football training facility, it also shed light on issues of the past that are still found in the present. In his position as a filmmaker, Wagner said it is his job to retrieve these stories and witnesses of history to bring them forward into now so people may learn from them.

    “You have to know the history. You can’t just care about the present and not care about the history — it doesn’t make sense. And to truly care about the present and to take effective action in the present, you have to understand the history,” Wagner said. “For those of us who care about the university, who care about the state of Kentucky, who care about the South more broadly or America, and who care about this issue of race, it’s a really important story and it’s really enlightening, I think, and helps you understand better what’s going on now and why these issues are still a challenge for us as a nation.”

    If you would like to purchase or rent a streaming copy of “Black in Blue,” visit http://www.blackinblue.org/buy. If you would like to watch “Black in Blue” for free, visit https://www.ket.org/program/black-in-blue-13193/. If you would like to purchase Wagner’s other films, visit http://www.paulwagnerfilms.com/films/.

    Paul WagnerOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Academy Award, and Emmy Award, winning filmmaker Paul Wagner, a 1972 master’s in communication graduate, has produced and directed more than forty films in his over forty-year career. However, his affinity for film budded not from a specific passion but from a general interest in communication.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 14, 2021) — Beginning today, the University of Kentucky will honor its graduates at the first in-person Commencement Ceremonies to take place in nearly 18 months.

    Around 4,400 graduates registered to participate across 10 ceremonies May 14-16, in Rupp Arena. About 1,000 of those are 2020 graduates who were also invited to take part in the 2021 ceremony, after not having an in-person ceremony last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Overall 5,173 degree candidates were conferred for approval by the UK Board of Trustees last week. This includes 3,599 undergraduate, 1,085 graduate and 489 professional degree candidates for May 2021.*

    Ceremonies include:

    Ceremony 1

    9 a.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Education
    • College of Medicine

    Ceremony 2

    Noon Friday, May 14

    • College of Fine Arts
    • College of Public Health
    • College of Social Work
    • College of Pharmacy

    Ceremony 3

    3 p.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Nursing
    • College of Health Sciences
    • College of Design

    Ceremony 4

    6 p.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Engineering

    Ceremony 5

    9 a.m. Saturday, May 15

    • College of Arts and Sciences 1

    Ceremony 6

    Noon Saturday, May 15

    • College of Arts and Sciences 2

    Ceremony 7

    3 p.m. Saturday, May 15

    • Gatton College of Business and Economics 1

    Ceremony 8

    6 p.m. Saturday, May 15

    • Gatton College of Business and Economics 2

    Ceremony 9

    9 a.m. Sunday, May 16

    • College of Communication and Information
    • Martin School of Public Policy and Administration and Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce 

    Ceremony 10

    Noon Sunday, May 16

    • College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    All 10 ceremonies will be livestreamed on UK’s YouTube channel, which will be accessible this weekend via the UKNow homepage.

    Graduate Stories

    While all graduates are celebrated for their tremendous achievements, many have particularly interesting stories to share about their lives and time at UK. Read more stories about UK's May 2021 graduates.

    Honorary Degrees

    The Board of Trustees has approved honorary degrees for four citizens who have distinguished themselves in their careers and community service. The recipients are W. Harry Clarke, F. Joseph Halcomb III, Deirdre Lyons and Carl F. Pollard. 

    Clarke, Halcomb and Lyons will receive their honorary doctorates during this weekend’s ceremonies. Pollard, who is unable to attend, will be honored at a later date.

    Honorary degrees will be presented at the following ceremonies:

    • W. Harry Clarke: noon Friday, May 14
    • F. Joseph Halcomb: 6 p.m. Friday, May 14
    • Deirdre Lyons: noon Sunday, May 16

    Read more about the May 2021 honorary degree recipients.

    Student Speakers

    Five student representatives have been selected by UK President Eli Capilouto to address the audiences at two ceremonies each. Given limitations on the number of people allowed on the stage, the speeches have been pre-recorded.

    The speakers include:

    • Sy Bridenbaugh, from Richmond, Kentucky, who will speak at the 9 a.m. and noon ceremonies Friday, May 14. He is graduating with a doctoral degree in educational policy studies and evaluation from the UK College of Education.
    • Lauren Sammons, from Gurnee, Illinois, who will speak at the 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. ceremonies Friday, May 14. She is graduating with a bachelor's degree in clinical leadership and management in the College of Health Sciences, with minors in Spanish and health advocacy.
    • Bilal Shaikh, from Louisville, Kentucky, who will speak at the 9 a.m. and noon ceremonies Saturday, May 15. He is graduating with a bachelor's degree in political science from the UK College of Arts and Sciences. He is also a student in the Lewis Honors College.
    • Abbi Woodcock, from Bowling Green, Kentucky, who will speak at the 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. ceremonies Saturday, May 15. She is graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics from the UK Gatton College of Business and Economics. She is also a student in the Lewis Honors College.
    • Cameron French, from Wolfe County, Kentucky, who will speak at the 9 a.m. and noon ceremonies Sunday, May 16. He is graduating with a bachelor's degree in community leadership and development from the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment with a minor in political sciences.

    Read more about the student speakers here.

    Full video of each ceremony will be available within two weeks after Commencement on the university’s YouTube channel, www.youtube.com/universityofkentucky.

    Social media users are encouraged to use the hashtag #UKgrad.

    For more information about UK Commencement, visit www.uky.edu/commencement.

    *These numbers reflect degree candidates, not individual graduates (some graduates earn more than one degree, thereby being counted as a degree candidate multiple times). Degrees will be certified by the UK registrar, ensuring individuals have satisfactorily completed all requirements. The most up-to-date information is available through UK and Institutional Research, Analytics and Decision Support.

    Watch live at 9 a.m., noon, 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. as UK celebrates its graduates. Ensure your device's software is up to date. UK will celebrate its graduates May 14-16. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtArts AdministrationDanceMusicTheatreGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesHonors CollegeMartin School of Public Policy and AdministrationMedicineNursingPatterson School of Diplomacy and International CommercePharmacyPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: Watch the live ceremonies here as UK celebrates May 2021 and 2020 graduates this weekend at Rupp Arena.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 14, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Office of Undergraduate Research recently awarded four faculty members for their exemplary commitment to undergraduate research mentoring.

    "Undergraduate research and creative scholarship provide distinct platforms for our undergraduate scholars to put to practice the knowledge and skills that they learn in the classroom, and further develop critical thinking skills that are transferable across disciplines and activities,” said Chad Risko, faculty director of undergraduate research. “The mentors that received this year's awards are each fantastic, as evidenced in part by the genuine appreciation shown by their student nominators. The dedication of each of the award winners to the undergraduate mission of the university is quite amazing." 

    The Excellent Undergraduate Research Mentor Awards were presented during the 15th Showcase of Undergraduate Scholars on April 27.

    The winners are:

    • Patrick Hannon – College of Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology
    • Melinda Ickes – College of Education, Kinesiology and Health Promotion
    • Nathan Vanderford – College of Medicine, Toxicology and Cancer Biology
    • Sherali Zeadally – College of Communication and Information, Information Communication Technology

    Melinda Ickes is an associate professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion. She was nominated by Julia Estes.

    "Dr. Ickes has shown great commitment to undergraduate researchers and does not fail to offer an abundance of opportunities,” Estes said. “She has introduced new areas of research interest and does not hesitate to inform me of opportunities to get involved with other programs outside of my primary research realm. I believe this has allowed me to grow and gain quality, well-rounded experience to further develop my research. She is a person who I look up to and strive to be on a level beyond professional and academic endeavors. Due to her guidance, I am a better person all around."

    Patrick Hannon is an assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He was nominated by Frances Miller and Katie Land.

    “(Hannon) encourages me to think critically by challenging me academically while also fostering a space where I feel comfortable to be completely wrong but learn from it, which is why I truly believe he is shaping the future of science by making a commitment to mentoring and teaching undergraduate researchers like me,” Land said.

    Nathan Vanderford is an assistant professor in the Department of Toxicology and Cancer Biology. He was nominated by Kaley Collett, Carrigan Wasilchenko, Lauren Hudson and Courtney Martin.

    "He introduced a number of opportunities and always encouraged me to pursue them,” Martin said. “Before working with him, I had never formally presented my research, though, something I wanted to do. He is continually inspiring students to challenge themselves, pursue opportunities, and achieve all their goals (academic, personal and career-related).”

    Sherali Zeadally is an associate professor in the School of Information Science and a University Research Professor. He was nominated by Bryan Kirshe.

    “(Zeadally) inspires his students to follow THEIR OWN research dreams and interests and his enthusiasm for research is highly infectious,” Kirshe said. “For him failure did not matter at all, in fact, he used to remind us for each failure, we get closer to success — we just have to keep going forward in the research while learning from past mistakes and not repeating them again.”

    A record 37 faculty were nominated by their undergraduate research mentees.

    For more information about the Excellent Undergraduate Research Mentor Awards, visit https://our.uky.edu/faculty/faculty-mentor-year-award.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationEducationMedicine

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: The Excellent Undergraduate Research Mentor Awards were presented during the 15th Showcase of Undergraduate Scholars on April 27. Winners include Melinda Ickes, Patrick Hannon, Nathan Vanderford and Sherali Zeadally.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Lily Nellans Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 13, 2021) — This summer, The University of Kentucky’s Bluegrass Debate Coalition (BDC) will host a free virtual summer camp designed to introduce Kentucky middle and high schoolers to the fundamentals of competitive debate.

    The BDC Summer Debate Camp will take place virtually from Monday, June 21, through Saturday, June 26. Students will practice their debate skills during the week and showcase them during a camp tournament on Saturday.

    During camp, students will learn the fundamentals of argumentation, persuasive writing, research and public speaking. Students will also have the opportunity to learn about current events from the experts that study them. Through a variety of fun activities, lively discussions and practice debates, students will become more critical thinkers and confident public speakers. In addition, experienced debaters will have the chance to hone their abilities and learn advanced debate strategies. The skills learned through debate encourage achievement in school, success in the workplace and meaningful engagement with our communities and the world around us.

    The Summer Debate Camp is open to all middle school and high school students in Kentucky. The camp is designed for both students who are new to debate and more experienced debate students. No prior debate experience is required, and students do not need to be a member of a school's debate team to attend.

    If a student is not sure if debate is for them or not, this camp is a great way to try out debate in a supportive and fun environment.

    Register by May 14 to guarantee a spot. Learn more about the camp and register at www.bluegrassdebate.com/summer-camp-2021.

    The BDC will also co-host a free Coaches Clinic for teachers and new coaches interested in learning more about coaching debate. Information on the Coaches Clinic can be found here: www.bluegrassdebate.com/summer-coaches-clinic-2021.

    The BDC is part of Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate, housed in the UK College of Communication and Information.

    Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: This summer, UK’s Bluegrass Debate Coalition will host a free virtual summer camp designed to introduce Kentucky middle and high schoolers to the fundamentals of competitive debate.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Marci Adams Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 14, 2021) University of Kentucky Information Technology Services has recognized 40 employees who celebrated milestone years of service during the year 2020. These 40 employees, ranging from seven different ITS divisions, combined for a total of 635 years of service at UK.

    ITS also recognized student, faculty, and staff recipients of their Customer Excellence in Leadership in IT Advancement Award. These award winners were recognized for their leadership in technology and their commitment to furthering IT advancement at the university.

    Student recipient Lisa Parker was recognized as an exemplary student to work with during the pandemic. While completing her coursework at home, the anthropology and sociology student was grateful and gracious with her time — giving ITS valuable information about how the technology provided as a part of the LearnAnywere initiative was performing in other parts of Kentucky. ITS will continue to use her feedback as a learning opportunity to continuously improve customer service and leverage technology across campus.

    Nathan Stevens, from the College of Communications and Information was the faculty recipient for 2020. As an integral part of UK esports program, Stevens serves as a mentor and teacher to students who help produce and manage esports content. He has collaborated with ITS in programming and producing various esports shows and content. Stevens additionally furthers student interests in technology through his courses covering topics in gaming and broadcasting.

    ITS honored two staff recipients for the year 2020: Marianne Young from Student Success and David Boyd from UK Athletics. Throughout 2020, Young’s partnership and expertise was pivotal to the successful launch of three significant implementations — Online Major Change, Advising Hub 2.0 (beta), and the Academic Alerts System. Due to Young’s boots-on-the-ground experience, she brought ideas to the table to work out solutions for the betterment of UK’s mission to serve students. Boyd was a valued partner throughout 2020 when many athletics venues had to quickly change operations due to COVID-19. He was more than willing to help with the university’s pandemic response by allowing ITS staff to transform Athletics networks for functional hospitals, vaccine clinics, and temporary testing facilities. Boyd additionally coordinated with vendors like Ticketmaster for required downtime during maintenance windows.

    Chief Information Officer Brian Nichols joins in recognizing these accomplishments.

    “Furthering our vision of ‘IT Abundance’ is not possible without dedicated employees and valued partners,” he said. “ITS recognizes our employees and many collaborators throughout the university by giving our sincere gratitude.”

    For a complete list of those honored for 2019 and 2020, read the ITS 18 Month Report on the ITS website.

    Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Summary: University of Kentucky Information Technology Services has recognized 40 employees who celebrated milestone years of service during the year 2020. ITS also recognized student, faculty, and staff recipients of their Customer Excellence in Leadership in IT Advancement Award. These award winners were recognized for their leadership in technology and their commitment to furthering IT advancement at the university.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meg Mills, Amy Jones-Timoney, and Brad Nally Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 12, 2021) — Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald came to the U.S. from Nigeria when he was only 12 years old. He arrived in Lakeland, Florida, where he found his adoptive family, as well as a love for football. His athletic passions led him to the University of Kentucky where he found his other family — the Big Blue Nation. Abadi-Fitzgerald will graduate this weekend with a bachelor’s degree in human communication from the College of Communication and Information. He now aspires to be a role model for his family in Nigeria.

    Watch the video above to learn more about why Abadi-Fitzgerald fell in love with UK and discover how his journey to the United States from his home in Nigeria eventually led him to be a member of the Wildcat family.

     

    Discover how this UK Football player's journey to the U.S. from his home in Nigeria eventually led him to UK. of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald came to the U.S. from Nigeria when he was only 12 years old. He arrived in Lakeland, Florida, where he found his adoptive family, as well as a love for football. His athletic passions led him to the University of Kentucky where he found his other family — the Big Blue Nation. Abadi-Fitzgerald will graduate this weekend with a bachelor’s degree in human communication, and now aspires to be a role model for his family in Nigeria. Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Facundo Luque and Lindsey Piercy Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 12, 2021) — The International Center at the University of Kentucky has announced the 2021 UK Global Impact Award (GIA) winners.

    Recipients include faculty, staff and alumni who have significantly contributed to the university’s global engagement through education, research and service, as well as fostered a culturally diverse, welcoming environment that is conducive to comprehensive campus internationalization.

    “After being presented with significant challenges to traveling and working across borders, this past year has reinforced just how interconnected our world really is, and how critically important international collaboration is in research and higher education,” Sue Roberts, associate provost for internationalization, said.

    This year, five awardees are being recognized with Global Impact Awards in five different categories:

    UK Alumni Global Impact Award

    Mosoka Fallah, Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics, Class of 2011

    Fallah, an alumnus of the College of Medicine, was chosen for his efforts in fighting the Ebola epidemic. For his work, in 2014, he was named “Man of the Year” by Time Magazine.

    Additionally, Fallah has provided critical medical care to 58,000+ patients in Monrovia and rural areas of Liberia. He played an instrumental role in establishing the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL). Fallah is also the co-principal investigator of the largest cohort study investigating survivors of the Ebola virus, funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.

    “Fallah has utilized his training at UK to have a truly global impact, especially in the area of providing quality health care to people in need,” Professor Subbarao Bondada in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics said.

    More recently, Fallah is a respected advocate for the equitable distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine in the developing world.

    “It was at the University of Kentucky that my academic development, scientific astuteness and commitment to hard work for a better society was developed. It was there that I founded Refuge Place International; most of my early funding for this NGO came from friends, instructors and contacts at the university,” he said. “My great alma mater continues to see that potential they saw in the young man from Africa and chose to honor me for representing the values they instilled in me over those years. I am forever grateful, humbled and honored.”

    UK Global Impact Award for Distinguished Faculty Achievement in International Research and Scholarship

    Sherali Zeadally, associate professor, School of Information Sciences, College of Communication and Information

    This award recognizes Zeadally for his impactful research in the areas of cybersecurity and privacy. He has published more than 300 papers in international journals, serves as editor-in-chief of two academic journals and has chaired more than 35 conferences, symposiums and workshops around the world.

    “Sherali and his international research collaborators have developed innovative cybersecurity and privacy solutions that have a huge impact on improving the computer security of various systems,” Professor Badis Hammi, who collaborated with Zeadally while at Paris TECH University in France, said. “His research results have been internationally recognized and adopted by his peers and cybersecurity industries around the world.”

    Zeadally said he couldn’t have achieved such success without the help of his devoted colleagues. “All the credit should really go to all my international research collaborators — junior and senior faculty colleagues, postdocs, graduate and undergraduate students. I’ve been very fortunate to work with so many talented international researchers from Africa, Europe, Asia, South America, Australia and New Zealand over the last two decades,” he explained. “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all my colleagues at the University of Kentucky for their support over the years.”

    UK Global Impact Award for Distinguished Faculty Achievement in Education Abroad

    Larry Grabau, professor, Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    This award recognizes Grabau for his dedication to expanding education abroad opportunities for students in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment (CAFE). Over the years, he has developed and implemented transformative, faculty-led multidisciplinary experiences for students.

    “I cannot imagine a more worthy recipient of this award. Larry Grabau was one of the first faculty to fully integrate education abroad experiences into the UK curriculum,” Rebecca McCulley, professor and chair of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, said. “He helped institute the practice in our college and has played an instrumental role in making education abroad a possibility for everyone at UK.”

    Additionally, during Grabau’s time as associate dean for instruction, he successfully advocated for the creation of the “Dean’s International Incentive Fund,” which provides support for CAFE faculty to significantly increase the college’s portfolio of faculty-led education abroad opportunities.

    “I have met many faculty and staff who perceive the immense value of well-crafted and finely tuned international experiences for our students, and their collective work, energy and enthusiasm has helped many students develop enriched understandings of a global community,” Grabau said. “I’m glad the GIA selection committee felt that I have contributed in a modest, yet meaningful, way to that collective impact.”

    UK Global Impact Award for Distinguished Faculty Achievement in Internationalizing the Curriculum

    Sharon Brennan, associate professor, Department of Curriculum and Instruction, College of Education

    This award recognizes Brennan for her advocacy for inclusion of global competencies and learning outcomes. She has played key leadership roles in the Consortium for Overseas Student Teaching (COST) program, which has enabled more than 375 UK education majors to complete student teaching requirements abroad.

    Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Brennan has worked in innovative ways to connect with native Chinese language instructors currently teaching in Kentucky public schools. “She has kept a global outlook at the forefront of all decisions made in the department,” Jared Stallones, professor and chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, said. “And her impact is felt in countless schools throughout our Commonwealth, nation and world — where our alumni are practicing what they’ve learned from her in their classrooms.”

    “Receiving news about the award has prompted me to think about how much the effort to build a global mindset on campus has grown since I became the director of our overseas initiative in 1984,” Brennan added. “There are many faculty members across campus who are doing wonderful and important work to broaden the global perspectives of students, and it's been a joy to have been a small cog in that big wheel.”

    UK Global Impact Award for Distinguished Staff Achievement in Campus Internationalization

    Patricia Bond, senior assistant dean, Office of Graduate Admissions and Recruitment, The Graduate School

    This award recognizes Bond’s dedication to supporting international graduate students at UK. In 2009, she joined a contingent of U.S. university representatives to develop a project, which provides higher education to Iraqi citizens.

    Additionally, Bond has served in leadership roles in the International Hospitality Program in Lexington, and she takes a very hands-on approach in helping UK’s international graduate students settle into their lives in the Commonwealth.

    “She is the ultimate professional who puts the needs of our students as her number one priority,” Brian Jackson, interim dean of The Graduate School and professor in the Department of Physiology, said. “Her commitment to improving the lives of people everywhere through educational opportunity has been multifaceted.”

    Bond said she shares this recognition with the many colleagues who work hand in hand to welcome and support international students and scholars. “The University of Kentucky enjoys an impressive network of administrators, students, faculty and staff who value internationalization and the expansion of diversity within our community,” she said. “Together, through our educational exchanges, we can make a difference and show the best face of the U.S. to our new friends from around the world. I am honored to work among them.”

    About the UK Global Impact Awards

    The GIA’s were established to recognize, highlight and celebrate the wide range of global engagement activities undertaken by UK faculty, staff and alumni.

    Nominees for the various award categories are reviewed by the International Advisory Committee and receive additional review from campus stakeholders, such as the Staff Senate.

    The 2020-21 recipients will be recognized at an event planned for this fall.

    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentCommunication and InformationEducationGraduate SchoolMedicine

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Lindsey Piercy
    lindsey.piercy [at] uky.edu
    "> lindsey.piercy [at] uky.edu
    859-323-5613 Summary: The International Center at the University of Kentucky has announced the 2021 UK Global Impact Award winners. Recipients include faculty, staff and alumni who have significantly contributed to the university’s global engagement through education, research and service, as well as fostered a culturally diverse, welcoming environment that is conducive to comprehensive campus internationalization.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Whitney Hale Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 10, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Office of Nationally Competitive Awards has announced that 10 students and recent graduates have been selected to receive government-funded National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships. In addition, a UK doctoral student and four alumni received honorable mention recognition from the NSF. 

    As part of the five-year fellowship, NSF Fellows receive a three-year annual stipend of $34,000 along with a $12,000 cost of education allowance for tuition and fees for a research-based master's or doctoral degree in a STEM (science, technology, engineering or mathematics) field. In 2020, the NSF awarded approximately 2,000 fellowships from an applicant pool of over 13,000.

    UK’s newest NSF fellows and the areas of research they will be pursuing are:

    • Rosemary Alden, a graduating electrical engineering senior from Nicholasville, Kentucky, who will pursue research in electrical and electronic engineering and her doctorate at UK;
    • Shelby Rae Buckman, a 2019 economics, mathematics and Lewis Honors College graduate from Henderson, Kentucky, who will pursue research in economics at Stanford University;
    • Matthew West Coile, a 2019 chemical engineering and Lewis Honors College graduate from Gaithersburg, Maryland, who will pursue research in chemical engineering at Northwestern University;
    • Benjamin Farmer, a 2019 biology and Lewis Honors College graduate from Lexington, who will pursue research in ecology at Louisiana State University;
    • Benton Girdler, a 2020 mathematics graduate from Lancaster, Kentucky, who will pursue research in artificial intelligence;
    • Donovin Denis Lewis, a graduating electrical engineering senior from Paducah, Kentucky, who will pursue research in electrical and electronic engineering and his doctorate at UK;
    • Jordan Ashlee McCray, a graduating geography master’s degree student from Alexandria, Virginia, who will pursue research in geography and her doctorate at UK;
    • Evan Thomas Miller, a pharmaceutical sciences doctoral student, from Worthington, Ohio, who will pursue research in biochemistry at UK;
    • Kristen Juranda Price, a 2019 mechanical engineering graduate from St. Charles, Missouri, who will pursue research in mechanical engineering and her doctorate at UK; and
    • Ronald Justin Vogler, a graduating chemical engineering and Lewis Honors College senior from Mason, Ohio, who will pursue research in chemical engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

    Many of this year’s UK recipients will use their fellowship to take on several of the nation’s biggest topics of discussion including gentrification, climate change and remote work.

    When asked how the fellowship would help her, McCray shared how the funding will further work on research that is very personal to her. “The NSF GRFP will allow me to develop as in-depth a research project as I am able, something that is very important to me given the personal nature of my research on Black churches in Alexandria, Virginia.”

    McCray’s current research project combines the subfields of Black geographies, urban geographies, and critical geographies of religion to examine how leaders in Black churches in Alexandria perceived the process of gentrification in the city and subsequently, how the church responded to the disproportionate displacement of the city’s working class/poor and or African American communities. The scholar believes the fellowship will allow her to make more connections within the Black religious communities in her hometown and beyond.

    For Farmer, the fellowship is all about advancing his work for the environment. “The NSF GRFP opens the door for me to pursue my dream graduate research project. I began my master's research in oceanography and coastal sciences at LSU in the fall of 2020, and now I have the funding to transform my work here into a Ph.D.

    “Before arriving at LSU, I completed a wonderful undergraduate education in biology at UK. While Kentucky is quite landlocked, which makes it difficult to study the ocean, the foundations in biology and ecology I gained at UK were instrumental in preparing me for the challenges of graduate study. In terms of next steps, I now have the time and resources needed to dive further into my passion of researching coral disease epidemiology, while also integrating concepts of marine spatial ecology and fisheries management into a fully fledged dissertation. I am also very excited to contribute to climate change activism in my local community of Baton Rouge and contribute to a growing movement, which is challenging scientists to carefully consider their work within the lens of climate justice.”

    And as the pandemic draws to an end, Buckman will use the NSF GRFP to learn more on how working remotely may impact the economy.

    “This fellowship will allow me to focus on my research proposal where I will examine how firms and individuals relocate under the option of telework, and if this revitalizes local labor markets. These questions will help shape our understanding of how the labor market will change in coming years and can inform place-based policies designed to promote economic growth in a highly connected digital economy,” Buckman said.

    Five others with UK ties, one current doctoral student and four alumni, received honorable mention recognition from the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program. Those recognized with an honorable mention were:

    • Mariah Bezold, a 2020 chemical engineering and Lewis Honors College graduate from California, Kentucky, who is currently working on a doctorate in biomedical engineering at Vanderbilt University;
    • Tara Hawkinson, a biochemistry doctoral student in the UK College of Medicine from Brighton, Michigan;
    • Hollyann Huber, a 2019 psychology, communication and Lewis Honors College graduate from Georgetown, Kentucky, who is currently doing graduate work at Indiana University;
    • Alysia Kohlbrand, a 2019 chemistry and neuroscience graduate from Villa Hills, Kentucky, who is currently working on her doctorate in chemistry and biochemistry at University of California San Diego; and
    • Collin Laaker, a 2017 biology graduate from Lexington, who is currently doing graduate work at University of Wisconsin-Madison.

    The NSF GRFP is the country’s oldest graduate fellowship program directly supporting graduate students since 1952. GRFP is a critical program in NSF's overall strategy to develop a globally engaged workforce necessary to ensure the nation's leadership in advancing science and engineering research and innovation. A hallmark of GRFP is its contribution to increasing the diversity of the STEM workforce, including geographic distribution, as well as the participation of women, underrepresented populations, persons with disabilities and veterans.

    The Office of Nationally Competitive Awards assists current UK undergraduate and graduate students and recent alumni in applying for external scholarships and fellowships funded by sources (such as a nongovernment foundation or government agency) outside the university. These awards honor exceptional students across the nation. Students who are interested in these opportunities are encouraged to begin work with the office, housed in the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence, well in advance of the scholarship deadline. Staff is available for appointments to discuss opportunities for the 2021-2022 academic year and beyond.

    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEngineeringGraduate SchoolHonors CollegeMedicinePharmacy

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: The University of Kentucky Office of Nationally Competitive Awards has announced that 10 students and recent graduates have been selected to receive government-funded National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowships. In addition, a UK doctoral student and four alumni received honorable mention recognition from the NSF. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Alicia Gregory Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 4, 2021) — At the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees meeting on May 4, University Research Professorship Awards to 14 faculty members were announced. These awards recognize excellence in research and creative work that addresses scientific, social, cultural, economic and health challenges in our region and around the world.

    The University Research Professorships were established by the UK Board of Trustees in 1976 to recognize outstanding research achievements. The professorships program recognizes excellence across the full spectrum of research, scholarship and creative endeavors within each college at UK. College leadership developed criteria for excellence within their area of expertise, and then nominated faculty who excelled at these criteria. Each University Research Professor receives a one-year award of $10,000 to be used to further their research, scholarship and creative endeavors.

    “The impact of these faculty to the university, and to the Commonwealth, cannot be overstated,” said Lisa Cassis, UK vice president for research. “They are shining examples of the tireless work that is moving the research enterprise forward, creating new knowledge, discovering new cures, and empowering the next generation of scientists and scholars under their mentorship to change their world for the better.”

    The 2021-2022 University Research Professors are:

    • Surendranath Suman: Animal and Food Sciences; College of Agriculture, Food and Environment
    • Anne-Frances Miller: Chemistry; College of Arts and Sciences
    • Carol Mason: Gender and Women’s Studies; College of Arts and Sciences
    • Maria Cahill: School of Information Science; College of Communication and Information
    • Xin Ma: Educational, School and Counseling Psychology; College of Education      
    • Issam Harik: Civil Engineering; College of Engineering
    • Jonathan McFadden: Art and Visual Studies; College of Fine Arts
    • Christopher R. Bollinger: Economics; Gatton College of Business and Economics
    • Christopher Fry: Athletic Training and Clinical Nutrition; College of Health Sciences
    • Richard H. Underwood: J. David Rosenberg College of Law
    • Thomas E. Curry Jr.: Obstetrics and Gynecology; College of Medicine
    • Yvonne Fondufe-Mittendorf: Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry; College of Medicine   
    • Jill Kolesar: Pharmacy Practice and Science; College of Pharmacy                                                              
    • April M. Young: Epidemiology; College of Public Health                                                                                                                                                                                         
    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtHealth SciencesLawPharmacyPublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary:  These awards recognize excellence in research and creative work that addresses scientific, social, cultural, economic and health challenges in our region and around the world.
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Susan West and Danielle Donham Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 4, 2021) ­— The University of Kentucky Beta Iota Chapter of the national leadership honor society Order of Omega inducted their largest class with 59 new members Sunday, April 18. Order of Omega recognizes juniors and seniors who have attained a high standard of leadership within the fraternity and sorority community.

    Membership selection is usually conducted each semester, but no more than 3% of the total number of enrolled full-time fraternity and sorority undergraduates may be initiated into membership in any one year. The Beta Iota Chapter was established at the University of Kentucky March 28, 1978.

    “This year, Order of Omega has expanded as an organization on campus, and I am so excited we were able to initiate our largest initiation class to date and hold our first in-person initiation in over a year,” said Savannah Miller, chapter president.

    This past semester, Order of Omega sponsored two blood drives on campus. The current officers also include Vice President Kelli Burnett and Director of Programming Ainsley Flask.

    The Spring 2021 inductees are: 

    College of Agriculture, Food and Environment: Aryanna Gomez, Amanda Pacyna, Rachel Rathje

    College of Arts and Sciences: Lauren Baer, Madison Baker, Drew Beecham, Katherine Cermack, Tabitha Charter, Carmen Cox, Justin Denny, Adrian Dozal, Lindsay Hair, Alyssa Hargis, Spencer Hodson, Lindsay Holeman, Sophia Marcolla, Anne McAtee, Frances Miller, Flor Mucino, Emma Olmstead, Grace Salmon, Emily Schneck, Natasha Steele, Mia Stefanelli, Rachael Twehues, Rachel Von Ebers

    Gatton College of Business and Economics: Allyson Carson, Kendell Clark, Kendall DuLaney, Zachary Hampton, Hannah Jelf, Sophia Maggs, Aidan Salmon, Brianne Thomas

    College of Communication and Information: Aniya Hall, Erin Lemmon, Scott Manning, Nizhoni McDarment, Catherine Simonis, Erika Williams

    College of Design: April Morris

    College of Education: Amanda Jones

    College of Engineering: Mekenzie Dunnuck, Anna Erpenbeck, Tyler Ly, Brayden Reichelderfer, Stephen Schniers

    College of Health Sciences: Emilee Cox, Abigail Elbert, Lana Heslop, Ragan Howard, Sabrina Sadr

    College of Nursing: Lynsey Tyree, Bailey Willis

    College of Public Health: Madeline Bilicki, Gracelyn Bush, Jessah Hughes

    Honorary Members: Travis Buchanan and Mallory Griffith

    Order of Omega is supported on campus by the Fraternity and Sorority Life Office within the Dean of Students Office. For more information on membership, please contact FSL [at] uky.edu.

    Ainsley Flask, director of programming (left), Savannah Miller, president (middle), and Kelli Burnett, vice president (right) pictured at initiation on April 18, 2021.  Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringHealth SciencesNursingPublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary:  The University of Beta Iota Chapter of the national leadership honor society Order of Omega inducted their largest class with 59 new members on April 18. Order of Omega recognizes juniors and seniors who have attained a high standard of leadership within the fraternity and sorority community.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chaney Willett Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 4, 2021) — Kentucky Kernel Editor-in-Chief Natalie Parks, a University of Kentucky English major, placed fourth in the Hearst Sports Writing Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program. In addition to being recognized among top journalists in the nation, Parks has received a $1,000 scholarship.

    In a story titled "Breaking down the UK cheerleading hazing investigation,” Parks investigated the 2020 UK cheerleading probe that resulted in termination of the cheerleading coaches. Her story discussed UK’s decision to turn management of the cheerleading program over to the UK Athletics Department and analyzed the reports in question.

    Although honored to win a Hearst Award, Parks says that she wants Kernelites’ work to be appreciated by the community. “Awards are announced once or twice a year, but we put in the work day in and day out,” Parks said. “I would much rather know that the Kernel makes a difference to our community than I would win any award.”

    Ryan Craig, student media advisor for the Kentucky Kernel and KRNL Lifestyle + Fashion, said that Parks’ work is a “classic example of Natalie taking a breaking news story that was about sports and making it understandable to anyone who read it. She showed a lot of skill in her fact gathering to be able to write on such a complicated matter in such a short period of time. Both the readers of the Kernel and the UK community should be proud of the work she does.” 

    Parks also congratulates fellow Kernelites Arden Barnes and Bailey Vandiver, who both won Hearst Awards in February.

    The Hearst Journalism Awards Program was founded as a way to support and assist journalism education at the collegiate level. The program awards scholarships to students with outstanding performance in divisions including writing, photojournalism, audio, television, and multimedia competitions. To enter any competition hosted by the Hearst Awards, students must be involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs or newscasts that can be submitted.

    The School of Journalism and Media is part of the University of Kentucky’s College of Communication and Information. The Department of English is in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Kentucky. The Kentucky Kernel and Student Media are also housed in the College of Communication and Information.

    Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Kentucky Kernel editor-in-chief and English major Natalie Parks placed fourth in the Hearst Sports Writing Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (May 3, 2021) — From Kentucky to Los Angeles to New York, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna's passion for fashion has taken her from coast to coast and landed her in one of the fashion capitals of the world.

    Madison Rexroat, a 2018 communication and marketing graduate, knew from a young age that she wanted to work in the fashion industry. Her dreams of becoming the next Anna Wintour manifested themselves in the early 2000s by dressing up her Bratz and Barbie dolls to cutting up magazines to create unintentional mood boards. And with plenty of perseverance and professional positions under her belt, she’s managed to find a spot for herself at one of the world’s largest fashion magazines — ELLE.

    Since August 2019, Rexroat has served as one of the powerhouse publication’s fashion assistants and the senior market editor’s assistant. More recently, she took on the temporary role of assistant to Editor-in-Chief Nina Garcia in February of 2021. But to get there, she had to claw her way up in the notoriously exclusive industry.

    Rexroat got her start with fashion magazines at UK through Kernel Media’s KRNL Lifestyle + Fashion Magazine. She began as the magazine’s content editor and social media manager, and ended her time there as the editor-in-chief, along with being the Kentucky Kernel’s social media marketing manager.

    This opportunity was her first look into the magazine and photoshoot process. She said it was the “highlight” of her college career and that it gave her lots of confidence. Though the magazine team was much smaller and more constrained by budgeting than it is now, the experience she gained was still invaluable. 

    Chris Poore, former student publications director and Rexroat’s mentor, said, “Madison walked through the Kernel’s doors knowing where she wanted to go and what she wanted to do. That sounds like a cliche. But she’s just over a year or so out of school and she’s where she wanted to go and doing what she wanted to do. I suspect we’ll be reading a lot of success stories about her over the years.”

    It was all the social media experience Rexroat had built up that led her to LA. Although she had spent her senior year applying to opportunities in New York, she submitted a single application elsewhere — to the West Coast. This sole application became her only acceptance, and after graduating, she headed to Los Angeles to intern as a fashion assistant to celebrity stylist Law Roach.

    Rexroat said the experience was “intense in the best and worst ways,” since she had mostly lived in Kentucky her whole life. Moving to California by herself was a culture shock that she admitted helped to build character. On top of that, her position had her working around the clock on social media and photoshoots, though, in consolation, she got to see plenty of celebrities.

    Her connections to Roach would help her later in her career after moving to New York at the conclusion of her internship. With help from Roach’s assistant, Rexroat managed to snag a four-day, all work and no play freelance opportunity to dress the models for New York Fashion Week. Thanks to her training in LA, she was ready for this kind of grueling work.

    As one of the fashion capitals of the world, New York City is a no-brainer for any aspiring fashionista. And although Rexroat had finally made it there, she quickly learned that without many local connections or internship experience, breaking into the industry was a tough task. So from December 2018 to August 2019, she set about strengthening her resume and network.

    She had no connections to ELLE magazine when she applied for an open position. It was her experience with Roach, she believes, that made her the best candidate for the job. She also thinks the different positions she has held throughout the years have given her adaptability and a well-rounded perspective on the industry.

    "When she let me know that she got a position at ELLE in August of 2019, I knew that she was truly in her element," said May May Barton, design advisor for Kernel student publications. "Her time in the College of Communication and Information and KRNL were definite steppingstones that have led her down an exciting path as she continues to fulfill her dreams."

    As a fashion assistant, she works for the closet team, handling clothes and the logistics of photoshoots. In her role as an assistant to the senior market editor, she communicates with brands and builds schedules for Fashion Week. And in her interim role assisting Garcia, she does everything from managing her schedule to handling her expense materials.

    Though she knows the fashion industry doesn’t always show love back to those who “hustle and grind,” Rexroat thinks it’s all been worth it. The fashion salary may be hard to live on in the city, but it’s afforded her some rare opportunities like attending a few shows of the February 2020 New York Fashion Week. She views it all as a growing experience.

    “Even when I’m hating my life and working all the time, I still love it because I get to work in the industry that I fantasized about as a kid and that was in all the movies,” Rexroat said. “Really nothing else would’ve been fulfilling. As much as it’s difficult — it doesn’t pay very well, it’s really hard to get into and it takes a lot of work — I can’t think of another job that I’d be like, ‘Yeah, that’ll make me happy.’”

    For anyone else looking to break through the industry, Rexroat advises to be patient and perseverant. While building skills and networks, don’t forget to genuinely connect with people. These connections can open doors down the line, whether asked for or simply opportune. Either way, Rexroat said there’s always room to grow, “Even if you don’t think there is.”

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: From Kentucky to Los Angeles to New York, one College of Communication and Information alumna's passion for fashion has taken her from coast to coast and landed her in one of the fashion capitals of the world. Madison Rexroat managed to find a spot for herself at one of the world’s largest fashion magazines — ELLE.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meg Mills, Amy Jones-Timoney, and Brad Nally Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 30, 2021) — University of Kentucky alumna Blair Spitzer starts her workday not knowing what the day will bring — but is ready for the challenges of live television, thanks to her experiences learned as a UK student. The 2013 graduate from the School of Journalism and Media in the College of Communication and Information is currently an associate director at CBS News in New York.

    “In my position at 'CBS This Morning,' I’m in charge of updating the show for the Midwest and West Coast feed,” Spitzer said. “The shows are not only edited in my room, but fed out to the world in my room, so I hold a lot of really cool responsibilities. It’s exciting, with live television anything can happen.”

    However, Spitzer wasn’t always sure of what her passion was. Spitzer started her professional journey as a UK student who was simply trying to figure out what she wanted to do for her career. In her sophomore year she declared her major of journalism and fell in love. Following her already existent love of sports, and her newfound passion for journalism, she was determined to find something that she loved doing every day. Spitzer applied for an internship at a local Lexington news station, and the rest is history. From her internship with the local station, she applied for another internship at CBS, which grew into her current job.

    Spitzer credits UK and CI for the lessons she learned while working in live television during college — which help her every day in her job at CBS News in New York.

    “UK set the foundation by taking it back to the basics. Working with my professors and classmates I learned the basics of teamwork and communicating. Even though we are in a business of communication, it’s hard to be the communicator. I find communication important in all aspects of jobs not just in communications of journalism itself,” Spitzer said. “Internships and real life experience are very important, and at UK they are there to help you receive that. Without my internships I would have had no idea of the endless possibilities in television.”

    Spitzer is very proud to be a Wildcat — even sporting the nickname "Kentucky" at work.

    For the Wildcats that have yet to figure out their future, Spitzer has this advice, “If you want to figure out what you’re passionate about, start with what you love, what makes you happy, what makes you wake up every day and makes you want to get out the door. For me, that started with UK basketball and I found a job from there that I love.”

    Watch the video above to learn more about why Spitzer enjoys her job — and why she loves telling everyone she works with that she is a UK grad.

    Alumna Blair Spitzer says the lessons she learned at UK help her every day in her job at CBS News. University of Kentucky alumna Blair Spitzer. Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: University of Kentucky alumna Blair Spitzer starts her workday not knowing what the day will bring — but is ready for the challenges of live television, thanks to her experiences learned as a UK student. The 2013 graduate from the School of Journalism and Media in the College of Communication and Information is currently an associate director at CBS News in New York.Homepage Feature: Primary feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Danielle Donham and University Press of Kentucky Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 28, 2021) — Kentucky restaurateur and University of Kentucky alumna Ouita Michel has released her first cookbook, “Just a Few Miles South: Timeless Recipes from Our Favorite Places,” stuffed with recipes celebrating the Bluegrass, just in time for the Kentucky Derby.

    Authored by Michel, Sara Gibbs and Genie Graf with a foreword by Silas House, this extensive collection is sure to satisfy your cravings with recipes from the unique but familiar cuisine that Michel is known for.

    For 20 years, diners in the Bluegrass have been able to satisfy their cravings for Ouita Michel's sustainable, farm-to-table cuisine at her acclaimed restaurants. 

    At each of her many restaurants — from Wallace Station to Holly Hill Inn — diners can enjoy traditional Southern staples like buttermilk biscuits, country ham, and po'boy sandwiches, or opt for special variations on international favorites and American classics. 

    Now, readers around the country can experience what makes Ouita Michel a culinary and cultural treasure. “Just a Few Miles South,” published by the University Press of Kentucky, serves up the recipes that patrons have come to know and love, including the Bluegrass Benedict breakfast sandwich, Ouita's Sardou panini, Wallace Station's creamy chicken and mushroom soup, and Honeywood's hoecake burger. 

    Some dishes offer creative twists on classics, like the inside out Hot Brown, the Wallace Cubano or the Bourbon banh mi. Throughout, the chefs responsible for these delicious creations share the rich traditions and stories behind the recipes. When you can't get down to your favorite place, this book will help you bring home the aroma, the flavors, and the love of fresh foods made with locally sourced ingredients — and share it all with friends and family.

    While at UK, Michel majored in political science in the College of Arts and Sciences, participated in the honors program (now the Lewis Honors College) and was a member of the first class of the Gaines Center for the Humanities Fellowship program. She was also a member of the debate team (housed in the College of Communication and Information), and became the second woman to win a national debate championship in 1986.

    Michel is a six-time James Beard Foundation Award nominee, including nominations for Outstanding Restaurateur and Best Chef Southeast. Michel and her restaurants are regularly featured in local and national media. She lives in Midway, Kentucky.

    Sara Gibbs is a chef as well as a recipe writer and editor. She lives in Central Florida.

    Genie Graf is the special projects director at the Ouita Michel Family of Restaurants. She is a graduate of the UK College of Communication and Information and lives in Midway, Kentucky.

    The University Press of Kentucky is the scholarly publisher for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, representing a consortium that includes all of the state universities, six private colleges and two historical societies. The press’s editorial program focuses on the humanities and the social sciences. Offices for the administrative, editorial, production and marketing departments of the press are found at the University of Kentucky, which provides financial support toward operating and publishing expenses.​

    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationHonors CollegeUniversity Press of Kentucky

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: For 20 years, diners in the Bluegrass have been able to satisfy their cravings for Ouita Michel's sustainable, farm-to-table cuisine at her acclaimed restaurants. Now they can make these recipes at home with her first cookbook, “Just a Few Miles South: Timeless Recipes from Our Favorite Places.”Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Tony Neely Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 27, 2021) — A total of 72 University of Kentucky student-athletes earned a place on the 2021 Winter Sports Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll, announced last week by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. UK tied for the third-highest number of honorees in the league. 

    The 2021 Winter SEC Academic Honor Roll is based on grades from the 2020 Spring, Summer and Fall terms. UK’s gymnastics team had 17 representatives, most in the league in that sport. UK’s 23 entries in women’s swimming and diving is third-highest in that sport. In addition, there are four representatives from men’s basketball, seven from women’s basketball, nine from rifle and 12 from men’s swimming and diving. Among other qualifications, a student-athlete must have a 3.0 grade-point average for the preceding academic year or a cumulative 3.0 GPA in order to be named to the list. 

    In addition to the academic success, Kentucky also had a pair of championship teams among the winter sports. The rifle squad won its third NCAA championship and also the Great American Rifle Conference regular-season title for the eighth time. Women’s swimming and diving won its first SEC championship in school history. 

    In addition to tying for the third-highest total on the SEC Winter Sports Honor Roll, UK had the second-best total for the 2020 Fall Sports Honor Roll, as 100 Wildcats achieved that distinction. 

    2021 SEC WINTER SPORTS HONOR ROLL

    Kentucky – Sport – Major

    Keion Brooks Jr. - Men's Basketball - Communication

    Brennan Canada - Men's Basketball - Communication

    Alexander Payne - Men's Basketball - Communication

    Riley Welch - Men's Basketball - Liberal Studies

    Dre’una Edwards - Women's Basketball - Social Work

    Blair Green - Women's Basketball - Kinesiology

    Emma King - Women's Basketball - Human Health Sciences

    KeKe McKinney - Women's Basketball - Social Work

    Chasity Patterson - Women's Basketball - Media Arts and Studies

    Kameron Roach - Women's Basketball - Kinesiology and Health Promotion

    Tatyana Wyatt - Women's Basketball - Psychology

    Raina Albores - Gymnastics - Kinesiology

    Josie Angeny - Gymnastics - Communication

    Madison Averett - Gymnastics - Kinesiology

    Makenna Clarke - Gymnastics - Dietetics

    Kaitlin DeGuzman – Gymnastics - Communication

    Anna Haigis - Gymnastics - Kinesiology

    Mackenzie Harman - Gymnastics - Human Health Sciences

    Kassidy Howell - Gymnastics - Kinesiology

    Ashlyn LaClair - Gymnastics - Social Work

    Shealyn Luksik - Gymnastics - Human Health Sciences

    Megan Monfredi - Gymnastics - Sport and Exercise Psychology

    Cally Nixon - Gymnastics - Social Work

    Arianna Patterson - Gymnastics - Digital Media and Design

    Elyssa Roberts - Gymnastics - Biosystems Engineering

    Allison Snyder - Gymnastics - Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology

    Ella Warren - Gymnastics - Communication

    Raena Worley – Gymnastics - Kinesiology

    Richard Clark - Rifle - Kinesiology

    Mason Hamilton - Rifle - Agricultural Economics

    Mason Joachim - Rifle - Psychology

    Mitchell Nelson - Rifle - Biology

    Emmie Sellers - Rifle - Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology

    William Shaner - Rifle - Economics

    Hailee Sigmon - Rifle - Career and Technical Education

    Jaden Thompson - Rifle - Animal Sciences

    Mary Tucker - Rifle - Kinesiology

    Kyle Barker - Men's Swim & Dive - Kinesiology

    Louis Barker - Men's Swim & Dive - Management

    Daniel Blake - Men's Swim & Dive - Mechanical Engineering

    Jakob Clark - Men's Swim & Dive - Computer Science

    Timothy Ellett - Men's Swim & Dive - Finance

    John Michael Gordon - Men's Swim & Dive - Finance

    Maxwell Hawton - Men's Swim & Dive - Public Health

    Chase Lane - Men's Swim & Dive - Kinesiology

    Daniel Orcutt - Men's Swim & Dive - Management

    Hank Siefert - Men's Swim & Dive - Finance

    Mason Wilby - Men's Swim & Dive - Integrated Strategic Communication

    Mingli Zhang - Men's Swim & Dive - Management Technology

    Emily Baeth - Women's Swim & Dive - Information Communication

    Bailey Bonnett - Women's Swim & Dive - Elementary Education

    Caitlin Brooks - Women's Swim & Dive - Communication

    Gillian Davey - Women's Swim & Dive - Kinesiology

    Lauren Denham - Women's Swim & Dive - Community and Leadership Development

    Riley Gaines - Women's Swim & Dive - Human Health Sciences

    Jaida Garrett - Women's Swim & Dive - Psychology

    Isabella Gati - Women's Swim & Dive - Kinesiology

    Hayley Griesser - Women's Swim & Dive - Communication Sciences and Disorders

    Parker Herren - Women's Swim & Dive - Political Science

    Jaclyn Hill - Women's Swim & Dive - Kinesiology

    Cara Hudson - Women's Swim & Dive - Clinical Leadership and Management

    Olivia Huffman - Women's Swim & Dive - Psychology

    Kyndal Knight - Women's Swim & Dive - Marketing

    Beth McNeese - Women's Swim & Dive - Writing, Rhetoric, and Digital Studies

    Payton Neff - Women's Swim & Dive - Psychology

    Lauren Poole - Women's Swim & Dive - Sociology

    Kelly Rodriguez - Women's Swim & Dive - Marketing

    Sophia Sorenson - Women's Swim & Dive - Marketing

    Morgan Southall - Women's Swim & Dive - Management

    Caroline Szydlowski - Women's Swim & Dive - Public Health

    Trinity Ward - Women's Swim & Dive - Mechanical Engineering

    Kaitlynn Wheeler - Women's Swim & Dive - Communication 

    UK’s players on the SEC Honor Roll continues the trend of strong academic news:

    • In November, it was announced that UK student-athletes broke both school records for NCAA Graduation Success Rate and Federal Graduation Rate. UK has broken or tied the GSR school record every year since the NCAA began measuring that statistic in 2005.
    • Including the 2020 winter commencement and last spring’s graduation, 98 Wildcat student-athletes earned degrees during the 2020 calendar year.
    • In December, 380 Wildcats achieved a GPA of 3.0 or higher for the fall semester, including 109 Cats who reached 4.0 for the semester. That continued UK Athletics’ streak of 17 consecutive semesters with a department-wide GPA of 3.0 or higher. 

     UK Athletics supports the academic success of its student-athletes through CATS — the first academic center of its kind dedicated solely to serving student-athletes. CATS is an important component of UK’s Student-Athlete Experience division, launched as a renewal of the department’s commitment to prepare student-athletes to enter life after UK.

    Photo provided by UK Athletics Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtHealth SciencesPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: A total 72 University of Kentucky student-athletes earned a place on the 2021 Winter Sports Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll, announced last week by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. UK tied for the third-highest number of honorees in the league. 
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Danielle Donham and Jenny Wells-Hosley Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 21, 2021) — Tickets for the University of Kentucky May 2021 Commencement ceremonies will be available online starting 10 a.m. EDT Thursday, April 22. 

    To reserve your complimentary tickets, please go to https://commencement.uky.edu/tickets and use the link appropriate for your commencement ceremony to access the Ticketmaster event. 

    Participating graduates may bring up to four (4) guests to their ceremony. All seats are reserved. Please secure your seats early to ensure the best seats. All students should reserve tickets no later than Friday, May 7. Ticket sharing with another graduate is not allowed.

    Health and safety protocols, including mask requirements and physical distancing, will be enforced at the in-person ceremonies, and seating will be limited.  

    UK will host 10 in-person Commencement ceremonies the weekend of May 14-16. The ceremonies, divided by campus colleges and professional schools, will celebrate May 2021 and all 2020 graduates.

    The in-person ceremonies will be livestreamed for any guests who cannot attend and will be posted to the Commencement website to allow any student who cannot attend the opportunity to participate virtually.

    The schedule of ceremonies can be found here. For more information, visit commencement.uky.edu. For questions, contact commencement [at] uky.edu.

    Commencement ticketing instructions: 

    • To reserve your tickets, go to https://commencement.uky.edu/tickets and use the link appropriate for your Commencement ceremony to access the Ticketmaster event.
    • Your 8-digit student ID number (usually beginning with 1 or 0) will be required as the offer passcode to unlock seating.
    • Once seats have been selected, proceed to checkout.
    • Tickets are complimentary; however, they must be reserved online in advance and will not be available at the door.
    • To ensure physical distancing between parties, all seating will be reserved and it will be important for guests to sit in their assigned seats. Graduates will be seated on the floor and do not need to obtain a ticket for themselves. 

    Helpful tips:

    • You will need to create or sign in to a Ticketmaster account. It is recommended you do this in advance of the ticket offering to ensure a smooth transition through checkout.
    • There is a strict four (4) ticket limit and you must select all 4 tickets in the grouping. Note: Tickets cannot be shared with other graduates. Tickets are assigned in groups of 4 for the health and safety of each family.
    • Once orders have been completed and tickets are in your Ticketmaster account, you will be able to transfer them to your guests as needed. All tickets will be distributed via mobile delivery, and your guests will need to access them on a smartphone for entry into Rupp Arena. Note: You can no longer access tickets once they are transferred and accepted.
    • If your student ID number is not working: double-check that you are in the correct ceremony date and time. If so, did you RSVP to participate in commencement? If you did not RSVP, or are experiencing issues, please contact commencement [at] uky.edu .
    • If you are experiencing trouble, please contact the Central Bank Center Ticket Office at 859-233-3535. Note: Staffing is limited and you may experience longer call times. For additional Commencement questions, please reach out to commencement [at] uky.edu.

    Reminder that Rupp Arena policy permits guests to bring in one clear bag (no larger than 12"x12"x6") or one small clutch purse, with or without handle or strap (no larger than 4.5"x 6.5") for their personal items. All bags and items will be searched. More information about arena policies can be found here

    Pete Comparoni | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtArts AdministrationDanceMusicTheatreGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesHonors CollegeMartin School of Public Policy and AdministrationMedicineNursingPatterson School of Diplomacy and International CommercePharmacyPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Danielle Donham
    danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    "> danielle.donham [at] uky.edu
    859-562-2660 Summary: Tickets for the University of Kentucky May 2021 commencement ceremonies will be available online starting 10 a.m. EDT Thursday, April 22. To reserve your complimentary tickets, please go to https://commencement.uky.edu/tickets and use the link appropriate for your commencement ceremony to access the Ticketmaster event. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy C. Lynn Hiler and Savina Williams Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 21, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Nu Circle of national leadership honor society Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) inducted 71 new members at a virtual ceremony Tuesday, April 13, 2021. ODK recognizes superior leadership and exemplary character and encourages collaboration among members across the five phases celebrated by the society: scholarship, athletics, service, communications and arts.

    The Circle was established  May 2, 1925, and was recognized with a Superior Circle award from the national organization in 2018.

    “Being able to serve as the president of the Nu Circle of ODK has been a privilege and a blessing,” said 2021 Circle President Cade King. “Our service event with the Special Olympics of Kentucky and their Lexington Polar Plunge was one of the highlights, especially since it was our first in-person service event in the academic year. On top of such an exciting service event, I've been honored and humbled with the Nu Circle's Leader of the Year award, granted by ODK's Nationals. Nonetheless, the positive influence, memories, and lessons from those I've worked alongside far outweigh any trophy or medal. Encouraging young leaders has been a privilege, and I advocate for any member or student to take up such an opportunity whenever possible. Under the leadership of our most recent initiates, I see great things in ODK's near future.”

    Issam Harik, a professor in the Department of Civil Engineering, has been the faculty advisor since 1996. He is stepping down this year, although ODK holds a special place in his heart. “This is my last year as faculty advisor, but definitely not my last year as an ODK member and an active member in the future.” He reflected on his time as the faculty advisor, reminding students that the “rewards (of membership) come from the friendships you make, which last a lifetime and meeting amazing people from all feeds of study at the University of Kentucky.”

    The 2021 inductees are: 

    College of Agriculture, Food and Environment: Brooke Barker, Megan Johnston, Hayden Klemanski, Taylor Nackers, Amanda Pacyna, Allie Grace Roberts, Katlyne Terrill, EmmaGrace Wells

    College of Arts of Sciences: Ashleigh Adkins, Christen Bailey, Vickie Booth, Kayli Bolton, Eliot Bradshaw, Meghan Brockman, Zachary Brown, Robert Castle, Kaitlynne Cone, Joshua Griffith, Richard Hamlin, Kara Hucaby, Lily Hurt, Gracie Johnson, Jennifer Lamb, Lauren Magnani, Anne Marie McAtee, Hunter Morrison, Brooklyn Niravong, Victoria Orcutt, Ashlyn Pechon, Kristen Price, Gianna Riley, James Roberts, Meghana Sharma, Lakyn Steffen, Jason Wang

    Gatton College of Business and Economics: Marissa Armstrong, Brennan Aucutt, Beckett Cromwell, Charles Fitzpatrick, Olivia Jenkins, Sheldon Keller, Mikale Smith, Alicia Soldat

    College of Communication and Information: Lisa Blake, Chelsea Edgar, Alexandra Kraimer, Hope Rowland, Kristin Smith

    College of Education: Kelsey Davis, Sydney Lough, Austin Rice, Patrick Haycraft, Dylan Richards 

    College of Engineering: Anna Erpenbeck, Braiden Mara, Jayla McCoy, Brayden Reichelderfer, Cody Robinson, Rob Yates 

    College of Fine Arts: Katherine Goble, Josephine Hyde, Madeline Mattheu, Kate Walker 

    College of Health Sciences: Abigail Elbert, Alyssa Glavinos, Calley Moore, Kendall Rollman, Chaney Troutman 

    College of Nursing: Allison Coleman 

    College of Public Health: Phoebe Phan 

    College of Social Work: Katilynn Heilman

    The full induction ceremony is available on YouTube

    Omicron Delta Kappa is supported on campus by the Chellgren Center for Undergraduate Excellence within the Office of the Provost. For more information on membership, contact chellgrencenter [at] uky.edu.

    The University of Kentucky Nu Circle of Omicron Delta Kappa held a virtual ceremony inducting 71 new members. Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationEngineeringFine ArtsHealth SciencesNursingPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: The University of Kentucky Nu Circle of national leadership honor society Omicron Delta Kappa (ODK) inducted 71 new members at a virtual ceremony on Tuesday, April 13, 2021. ODK recognizes superior leadership and exemplary character and encourages collaboration among members across the five phases celebrated by the society: scholarship, athletics, service, communications and arts.
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Meghan Arrell Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 19, 2021) — Recently, a team of students from the University of Kentucky Lewis Honors College finished in third place in the Small Business Institute’s Project of the Year, in the Specialized Case Analysis category.

    The students were enrolled in Patrick Walker’s "The New C.E.O.: Chief Entrepreneurial Officer" course.

    The Small Business Institute’s Project of the Year competition is an annual competition for member institutions and their faculty to involve students in practical consulting projects. These projects serve clients who own or operate local small businesses. Supervised by faculty, these projects provide students opportunities to help make lasting improvements in their clients' business operations. This culminates in a final written case report that is delivered to the client. The winners of the competition are announced at the Small Business Institute’s annual conference, which was held virtually in 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    This year, there were 17 different universities represented in the student Project of the Year competition. There were tracks for undergraduate and graduate projects. Within those two tracks, teams could submit to Consultation, Comprehensive, Feasibility Study, or Specialized. Each submission was judged by three or more judges.

    The UK Honors team’s project, “The New C.E.O. Specialized Case Analysis: Aisley Autumn & the Music Industry,” analyzed the major entrepreneurial issues facing musician and fellow team member, Aisley Stuebs, or “Aisley Autumn” as she is known musically.

    Members of the team include:

    • Aisley Stuebs, a sophomore marketing major and vocal performance minor;
    • Madelyn Buckingham, a natural resources and environmental sciences major and a 2020 graduate;
    • Patrick Huckleberry, a senior finance major;
    • Taylor McDaniels, a management major, communication minor and a 2020 graduate; and 
    • Ashley Watkins, a senior writing, rhetoric, and digital studies major and business analytics minor.

    According to the Small Business Institute’s Vice President of Research and Publications Jana Minifie, who oversees the Project of the Year competition, the “Specialized” category, in which the UK Honors team placed third, is the most competitive of all the tracks.

    “The opportunity to compete on a national level with business experts was a wonderful learning experience for our honors students. We are proud that their project was recognized for its quality with third placement — which was icing on the cake,” said Laura Bryan, Lewis Honors College interim dean.

    The team focused on the unique challenges presented in the music industry for aspiring musicians and how Aisley Autumn could create new revenue streams for her business and better her live performance opportunities while staying true to her mission and business strategy. Its research focused on social media marketing strategies and how musicians can monetize their brand.

    “Through this research project and with dedicated hard work hereafter, I am growing in confidence that I can build a sustainable career as a singer-songwriter if I continuously strategize, remain adaptive in my marketing strategies, collaborate with team members and fellow creatives, and develop additional revenue streams as my platform grows and as the music industry changes,” said Stuebs, project team member and client. “Above all, I now navigate my work as a singer-songwriter through the lens of an entrepreneur and leader with the goal to positively impact as many lives as I can with the songs I write.”

    As many honors courses are interdisciplinary, the team was made up of students with five different majors. As a finance major, Patrick Huckleberry said he originally had some doubt when he learned that his group would be advising a music business. However, Walker quickly assured him that he would bring a valuable skill set to the group.

    “Aisley, at that point, had not started to actually look into what her business model looked like or how she planned on making money, so my solution to this was to come up with a functional budget that she could put in realistic projections for known revenue/expense items to come up with different profit/loss projections depending on which revenue/expense items are included in calculating final profit/loss,” Huckleberry said. “She took kindly to this idea, and with tweaks using her input, the final product was a budget/budget template that she could use for the coming years to project her profitability considering multiple different revenue streams/expense items.”

    The team has to adapt its approaches to live performance goals as the project was completed during the spring 2020 semester and heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, the team had booked and marketed two live performances for Aisley Autumn. Both were canceled due to COVID-19 shutdowns, but the team quickly pivoted and strategized new ways to remain connected to her audience by posting videos, creating social media challenges and livestreaming performances from her home.

    Experiencing the distinctive challenges presented by the music industry and the pandemic, team members learned that they could still be successful if they were malleable and creative with their business plan and goals.

    “Through working with Aisley Autumn, I was able to learn the basic in-and-outs of the music industry and how to continually work with any curveballs the world throws my way. In relation to my own future goals, it has taught me how to create dynamic plans to improve my projects in an innovative way,” said Watkins.

    Walker’s course was designed to encourage entrepreneurial thinking through an interdisciplinary approach to experiential learning. By navigating real-life business challenges, students learn how to uncover new opportunities in times of uncertainty.

    “Words alone cannot adequately express how proud I am of these amazing, talented, resilient students," Walker said. "When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, they readjusted and kept going until their work was complete. They embodied what an entrepreneurial mindset is all about." 

    (From left to right) Patrick Huckleberry, Patrick Walker (faculty), Ashley Watkins and Aisley Stuebs. Not featured are Madelyn Buckingham and Taylor McDaniels because they have graduated since the May 2020 course. Photo by Meghan Arrell.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationFine ArtsMusicHonors College

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: The UK Honors team’s project analyzed the major entrepreneurial issues facing musician and fellow team member, Aisley Stuebs, or “Aisley Autumn” as she is known musically.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Catherine Hayden Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 16, 2021) — Nearly 50 students, staff and faculty from the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information (CI) arrived at UK’s Kroger Field COVID-19 vaccination clinic early April 10 to volunteer, playing a part in a record-setting day when 4.6 million doses were administered across the U.S.

    While those in the health care related colleges at UK have been active since the clinic opened, drawing doses and immunizing the public, many volunteer roles can be filled by anyone. CI Dean Jennifer Greer worked with UK Health Corps to organize CI day at the clinic, placing students, staff and faculty in positions like registration, wayfinding, transporting patients and taking doses to immunization stations. Greer checked in volunteers and provided relief to those in other roles throughout the day.

    “Serving our community is central to everything we do at CI,” Greer said. “This opportunity was a way to do that while also coming together physically as a whole college for the first time in more than a year. It was a special day.”

    Drew Lane, the college personnel officer in CI, called his time volunteering “incredibly inspiring.”

    “Our community has a real reason to be proud — the vaccine clinic at Kroger Field is a world-class operation, and it was truly awe-inspiring to see it from the volunteer side,” Lane said. “I am so proud to work at UK, and I am especially proud to work in CI, where we live out our mission of service in everything we do.”

    Giving back is exactly why CI doctoral student Adam Tristan has been volunteering weekly for more than a month. To encourage the CI community to sign up for the volunteer event, Tristan made a video. In the video, he shares how full of hope he was after receiving his first vaccination. He now sees that same hope on the faces of those getting immunized.

    “The hope that was given to me, I want to give to others,” he said. “We need to show the rest of the UK community how important they are to us, and how important it is to get vaccinated.”

    Fittingly, Tristan transported in a wheelchair the last member of the public vaccinated during the April 10 shift, closing out CI’s day at the clinic.

    Another CI student, Camille Wright, a double major in integrated strategic communication and digital media and design, was assigned a wayfinding role for her shift. Wright greeted each patient sent to her station with a cheerful “good morning,” as she pointed them to the next open vaccination station.

    Wright, who could be seen happily dancing in place when not directing traffic, said she loves the college, loves to volunteer and encouraged others to do the same as it is the quickest way back to “normal.”

    UK Health Corps’ Emily Boggs, who served as volunteer manager for the April 10 clinic, said it was wonderful to see so many volunteers from a single college. The CI personnel wore matching shirts, which made the team presence visible throughout the day.

    “As we have seen our numbers of vaccines go up, our volunteer numbers have gone down,” Boggs said.

    As of March 30, the clinic operates two shifts Tuesday through Friday and one shift on Saturdays. Each clinic shift relies on about 100 volunteers, including clinical and non-clinical positions. The clinical positions are usually filled by volunteers from most of UK’s health care colleges

    Dr. David DeVito, assistant professor in the Division of Oral Diagnosis and Oral Medicine in the College of Dentistry, is in his fifth weekend of volunteering. DeVito, the husband of CI Senior Lecturer Allyson DeVito, said working at the clinic is an opportunity to help move the Commonwealth to pre-pandemic life.

    “The people who come are excited by the opportunity to bring their lives back to normal, and it is exciting to me to be a part of that,” DeVito said.

    For Erika Engstrom, director of the School of Journalism and Media (JAM), it marked the first time she had met people in the school and college outside of Zoom. Engstrom was hired during the height of the pandemic, when many operations were remote.

    "What an absolute thrill to finally see my CI colleagues and JAM school faculty in person,” Engstrom said. “Even though we were all masked up, just being together and doing our part in this vaccination effort was so wonderful. I'm so, so proud to be at UK and part of the CI team." 

    Those interested in volunteering at the vaccination clinic in either a clinical or non-clinical capacity can sign up here.

    The CI personnel wore matching shirts, which made the team presence visible throughout the day.Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationDentistryGraduate School

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Nearly 50 students, staff and faculty from the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information arrived at UK’s Kroger Field COVID-19 vaccination clinic early April 10 to volunteer, playing a part in a record-setting day when 4.6 million doses were administered across the U.S.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Whitney Nicole Porter Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 15, 2021) — The University of Kentucky’s Department of Integrated Strategic Communication event planning students, within the College of Communication and Information, in partnership with the Lexington Legends professional baseball organization, are planning an in-person vendor fair, while respecting CDC pandemic measurements, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.Saturday, April 24, at Whitaker Bank Ballpark, the Legends' home field. 

    The event, to be held rain or shine, is expected to attract people from across Lexington, Fayette and surrounding counties while giving nearly 25 local businesses an excellent opportunity to showcase their products and/or services. The Lexington Legends want to provide small businesses in the area a chance to reach the local community through an in-person event (while observing CDC protocols) following a most trying several months.

    "I have been so impressed by the hard work and determination of the students from UK's Department of Integrated Strategic Communication,” said Kara Shepherd, chief brand officer for the Lexington Legends. “I am confident our event will be a success with these bright young minds leading the charge!" 

    ​Along with featuring several local businesses, the event will feature unique items for sale, food and activities for families of all ages. Vendors will set up their booths around the concourse for guests to come shop and enjoy a day at the ballpark while maintaining social distance. Lexington Legends Big L and the UK Wildcat will also be on hand to welcome guests.

    “We are really excited about teaming up with the event planning class in the Department of Integrated Strategic Communication at UK! This is the definition of a mutually beneficial partnership,” said Andy Shea, president and CEO of the Lexington Legends. “Great real-world experience for the students and a very great event for the Legends!" 

    ​“Shop Local with the Legends” is free and open to the public. Guests are reminded to adhere to CDC safety guidelines related to COVID-19 while on site, including wearing a mask and physically distancing. 

    Photo courtesy of Lexington Legends.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: University of Kentucky’s Department of Integrated Strategic Communication, within the College of Communication and Information, event planning students, in partnership with the Lexington Legends professional baseball organization, are planning an in-person vendor fair, while respecting CDC pandemic measurements, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, April 24, at Whitaker Bank Ballpark. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Whitney Hale Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 8, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Gaines Center for the Humanities has selected 12 undergraduate students as new scholars for the Gaines Fellowship Program.

    The Gaines Fellowship is presented in recognition of outstanding academic performance, demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, an interest in public issues and a desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities. Founded in 1984 by a generous gift from John and Joan Gaines, the Gaines Center for the Humanities functions as a laboratory for imaginative and innovative education on UK’s campus. The Gaines Center is designed to enrich the study of the humanities at the University of Kentucky.

    Amid the pandemic, the Gaines Center experienced a banner year of applications for the prestigious program.

    “This has been a challenging year for everyone, so we were concerned that our recruitment efforts would be negatively impacted by those challenges. Instead, we had a record number of applications for the Gaines Fellowship this year,” Gaines Center Director Melynda Price said. “I believe this was the result of the hard work or our Associate Director Chelsea Brislin and a yearning among the students for programs that develop them as scholars and human beings. We are very proud of the new cohort and the work we will do together.”

    This year’s scholars represent eight different colleges on campus including: the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment; College of Arts and Sciences; College of Communication and Information; College of Design; College of Education; College of Public Health; Gatton College of Business and Economics; and Lewis Honors College.

    UK’s 12 new Gaines Fellows are:

    Upon learning of her selection, Haley Nelson could hardly contain her joy. “I am very humbled and excited — I feel blessed to have an opportunity to learn with and from others in the program. I believe this program will help me grow as a student, individual and leader.”

    Riley Droppleman said she is also looking forward to the learning opportunity the fellowship will afford her. “I hope to engage with the humanities in a way that challenges me to view the world differently. I want to craft an academic and social experience that I would not be able to find anywhere else."

    As Gaines Fellows, these scholars are required to take a specially designed, four-credit hour per semester seminar during both semesters of their junior year. In addition, each junior fellow must complete a service project to benefit a community, whether it be campus, Lexington, the fellow's hometown or a community further afield.

    In their senior year, each fellow must complete a major independent study thesis project of six to 15 credit hours. The project must be submitted and defended in front of a thesis committee of three university faculty members and the director of the Gaines Center.

    Any student at the University of Kentucky may apply for a Gaines Fellowship. Students in all disciplines and with any intended profession are given equal consideration. Any undergraduate demonstrating excellence in his or her undergraduate career is encouraged to apply. Applicants must have two years of planned undergraduate study remaining and must have an outstanding academic record.

    The Gaines Center for the Humanities announced their 2021 cohort of Gaines Fellows representing eight UK colleges..Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationHonors CollegePublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: The Gaines Fellowship is presented in recognition of outstanding academic performance, demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, an interest in public issues and a desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Duane Bonifer Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 8, 2021) — Ten journalists with careers that covered some of the biggest stories of the late 20th and early 21st centuries make up the 41st class of the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.

    This year’s induction ceremony will be held online May 4.

    This year’s 10 inductees are:

    • Michael Collins, who covers economic issues and the White House for USA Today;
    • the late Bill Cox, who served as an editor at The Honolulu Star-Bulletin and The Courier-Journal;
    • Monica Dias, senior counsel for content and intellectual property at The E.W. Scripps Co. and former reporter for The Cincinnati Post/The Kentucky Post;
    • John Lansing, president and CEO of National Public Radio and former managing editor at WAVE-3;
    • Keith Lawrence, longtime reporter and columnist with the Owensboro Messenger-Inquirer;
    • the late Chuck Olmstead, who was a longtime reporter with WHAS-11;
    • the late Bill Powell, who was a reporter for the Paducah Sun;
    • Keith Runyon, former editorial page editor of The Courier-Journal and editorial writer of the Louisville Times;
    • Pam Spaulding, former photographer of The Courier-Journal; and
    • Melissa Swan, former reporter and anchor for WHAS-11.

    Created by the University of Kentucky Journalism Alumni Association in 1981, the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame honors achieving journalists who are Kentucky natives or have spent a significant portion of their careers working for Kentucky media organizations. More than 200 individuals, both with and without formal ties to UK, have been inducted into the hall of fame.

    The 2021 induction ceremony will be held May 4 at 5 p.m. ET online at http://ci.uky.edu/jam/hall-of-fame. For more information, contact UK School of Journalism and Media Project Manager John Cruz at john.cruz [at] uky.edu or 859-257-3904.

    Class of 2021 Kentucky Journalism Hall of FameOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Ten journalists with careers that covered some of the biggest stories of the late-20th and early 21st centuries make up the 41st class of the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame.
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Amy Brooks Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 7, 2021) — The University of Kentucky Department of Integrated Strategic Communication in the College of Communication and Information will host its first all-virtual Alumni Symposium, via Zoom, at 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 7. The panel, titled "Awesome ISC Careers and How to Get Them," aims to connect multigenerational alumni from strategic communication fields, including advertising, public relations, direct response and account management, with current ISC students and the larger CI community. 

    This year's alumni panel, moderated by ISC student Peyton Fike, features Tessie Bertrams of Gravity Diagnostics; United States Air Force 1st Lt. Savanah F.S. Bray; Sheridan Broady, social marketing coordinator at Fenty Beauty and Fenty Skin; Glenn Goodman, executive creative director at The Power Agency; Elena Griffo, a Nashville-based social media account supervisor at GS&F; ADDY award-winning graphic designer Claire Monkman of Zipie; Chelsea St. Clair, senior creative strategist at hi5 agency; and Ronnie Dickerson Stewart, Zoom’s Diversity Equity & Inclusion Marketplace & Community lead.

    Panelist Sheridan Broady, asked for her recommendations to aspiring social media managers, advised them to “… start where they are. I managed social for the organization I was a part of at UK (Underground Perspective/UGP), and in that position, I learned that social media goes far beyond our personal use. It’s multiple full-time jobs combined and takes an incredible amount of creative energy and stamina. We are in such an innovative time for social marketing right now, so start early by getting involved and going the extra mile to soak up everything you can about these platforms and begin to master your talents.”

    Read more about this year’s Alumni Symposium panelists at ISC’s web page, where a Zoom event link will go live on April 7. No registration is necessary, but you are invited to RSVP and follow Alumni Symposium news at the Facebook event page.

    UK ISC's Alumni Symposium will begin 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 7, on Zoom.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The virtual panel, titled "Awesome ISC Careers and How to Get Them," aims to connect multigenerational alumni from strategic communication fields including advertising, public relations, direct response and account management, with current ISC students and the larger CI community. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2021) — The University of Kentucky announced today its plan to host 10 in-person Commencement ceremonies the weekend of May 14-16, at Rupp Arena, for May 2021 and all 2020 UK graduates.

    In the interest of health and safety, multiple ceremonies have been scheduled to limit seating, ensuring proper physical distancing can be implemented. Masks will also be required for all graduates and guests who attend.

    Ticketing information will be communicated to the graduates and families in the coming weeks. Participating graduates may bring up to four (4) guests to their ceremony. The ceremonies will also be livestreamed for guests who cannot attend.

    The Commencement ceremonies schedule is as follows:

    Ceremony 1

    9 a.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Education
    • College of Medicine

    Ceremony 2

    Noon Friday, May 14

    • College of Fine Arts
    • College of Public Health
    • College of Social Work
    • College of Pharmacy

    Ceremony 3

    3 p.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Nursing
    • College of Health Sciences
    • College of Design

    Ceremony 4

    6 p.m. Friday, May 14

    • College of Engineering

    Ceremony 5

    9 a.m. Saturday, May 15

    • College of Arts and Sciences 1*

    Ceremony 6

    Noon Saturday, May 15

    • College of Arts and Sciences 2*

    Ceremony 7

    3 p.m. Saturday, May 15

    • Gatton College of Business and Economics 1*

    Ceremony 8

    6 p.m. Saturday, May 15

    • Gatton College of Business and Economics 2*

    Ceremony 9

    9 a.m. Sunday, May 16

    • College of Communication and Information
    • The Graduate School, Martin School of Public Policy and Administration and Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce 

    Ceremony 10

    Noon Sunday, May 16

    • College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    *Graduates from colleges that have two ceremonies scheduled will be assigned a ceremony in the coming days.

    All graduates who registered for the in-person ceremonies should receive follow-up information at their UKY email address. For more information, visit commencement.uky.edu. For questions, contact commencement [at] uky.edu.

    December 2019 UK Commencement, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDesignEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtArts AdministrationDanceMusicTheatreGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesMartin School of Public Policy and AdministrationMedicineNursingPatterson School of Diplomacy and International CommercePharmacyPublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: UK will host 10 in-person ceremonies over the May 14-16 weekend at Rupp Arena in Lexington.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Kathy Johnson Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2021) In a strong show of support for the Asian community, hundreds of people attended a rally on the University of Kentucky campus last week to denounce the mass killing of Asian Americans in Atlanta as well as the overall discrimination against Asians and Asian Americans in the U.S.

    The crowd of nearly 400 gathered in front of Memorial Hall March 24, many carrying signs, and all supporting a call for change. Second generation Asian American Donna Kwon, associate professor of ethnomusicology in the UK College of Fine Arts, performed beautiful Korean singing and led a chant of the Atlanta victims’ names.

    One of the rally organizers, Associate Professor Ying (Tracy) Lu, in the Department of Retailing and Tourism Management in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, was uplifted by the support.

    “I saw humanity when I saw this scale of the turnout. The supporters were diverse, including people with different colors, backgrounds, minority groups and kids of UK employees,” Lu said. “We are glad to see the support from UK campus and the unity of Asian and Asian Americans. Asians and Asian Americans shall be treated equal as citizens. I hope that day could come earlier before my kids grow up, so I could tell my kids that your parents together with so many honest people with humanity have spoken for you and fight for you, which is also part of American history.”

    Among the speakers at the rally was Haoying Sun, Warren W. Rosenthal Associate Professor in the Department of Marketing and Supply Chain Management in the Gatton College of Business and Economics. She said the Asian American community becomes the scapegoat for American society’s problems, being accused of bringing viruses to the U.S., stealing jobs and spying for the Chinese government.

    “Of course, none of these is true! Enough is enough!” she said. “We came to this land to chase our American dreams. Along the way, we build this country, just like everyone else! We want equal treatment and equal protection, just like everyone else! We want to leave our children a prosperous America, just like everyone else! So, stop treating us like foreigners, stop attacking the most vulnerable in our Asian American community, and stop dismissing our concerns! We are speaking up, and please hear us.”

    Professor Keiko Tanaka, in the Department of Community and Leadership Development in the College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and co-chair of the UK Asian and Asian American Affinity Group, told the group she is from Japan but has spent 35 years in the U.S. and considers herself a first generation Asian American immigrant. She said the Atlanta shooting “was like a punch to my gut.”

    “It broke a dam of years of my frustrations, disappointments, sorrows and angers that have been building inside of me — of what it means to be an Asian American in this country,” she said. “We, Asians and Asian Americans, are not a homogeneous group who fits in one set of stereotypes as so called ‘model minority’ or ‘math/science wiz.’ Let us stop this ‘model minority’ as an excuse to treat Asian Americans as a convenient minority. On the one hand, we are not categorized as an underrepresented minority group by the number/ratio, and therefore being disregarded from our contributions to enriching American sociocultural fabrics. On the other hand, we are part of the community of the people of color who endure constant prejudices, racism, mistreatments and hate crimes.”

    Tanaka further urged the community not to turn anger, frustrations, sorrows and pains into hate.

    “Let us not reduce ourselves to the same level as white terrorists. Instead, let us build a coalition wide and deep. Let us build alliances that can amass energy and creativity based on respect and love for one another. Let us create a culture that does not tolerate racism and hate any longer.”

    Representing the student perspective, Yan Xia, an MBA student and father of two young children spoke to the rally goers, “I told my kids last night that Dad will be their superhero because I’ll be standing here and speaking out for them. When our kids go to school, they should not be discriminated because of their hair color, their gender, or laughed at for their accent of English, or felt embarrassed for the lunch prepared by their Asian mom. It is not fair. We are not foreigners. We are citizens although we are never treated as equal.”

    UK Provost David Blackwell also addressed the crowd.

    “The Asian and Asian American members of our community are valued, integral parts of the UK family. They are part of the rich tapestry that makes us who we are,” Blackwell told the crowd. “We also recognize that we must back our words with actions. That’s why our university is engaging in comprehensive efforts to enhance the diversity, equity and inclusion of our campus community. It’s important work, at a crucially important time.”

    Other powerful speeches and a strong show of support came from Sue Roberts, associate provost for internationalization; Huajing Maske, director of the Office of China Initiatives; Kyra Hunting, director of diversity and inclusion in the College of Communication and Information; Rudy Buchheit, dean of the College of Engineering; and other department heads from the university.

    Lu said the presence and support of these administrators is appreciated.

    “We look forward to working with the university administration to make the UK community a safe and proud place for UK Asian and Asian American employees, students, friends and affiliates,” she said.

    Other supporters who are speaking out against anti-Asian crimes and discrimination include Mark Swanson, associate professor in the Department of Health, Behavior and Society in the UK College of Public Health and a former Third District Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council member.

    “The tragedy in Atlanta is only the manifestation of the deep, underlying problem of racism faced by our Asian colleagues and friends on a regular basis,” he said. “I think it’s really important to realize that Asian Americans aren’t the cause of this hate and discrimination — White Americans are. And Asian Americans can’t solve the problem — but White Americans have to be, and can be, the solution to racism in all its forms.”

    Nancy E. Schoenberg, Marion Pearsall Professor of Behavioral Science in the College of Medicine and director of the Center for Health Equity Transformation, said the horrific attack in Atlanta sends yet another bell of alarm in a nation already besieged and undermined by division and hate.

    “The Center for Health Equity Transformation is united with all people and is committed to calling out and working to rectify hatred, misogyny, racism and xenophobia,” she said. “We grieve the loss, suffering and anxiety of the Asian community impacted by this violent, xenophobic and racist attack. We call on each of us to speak out against this and every other act of bias and violence, to seek and secure justice, and to work to end all forms of structural and personal racism. Our lives and our nation depend on it.”

    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEngineeringFine ArtsMusicGraduate SchoolMedicinePublic Health

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Kathy Johnson
    kathy.johnson [at] uky.edu
    "> kathy.johnson [at] uky.edu
    859-257-3155 Summary: In a strong show of support for the Asian community, hundreds of people attended a rally on the University of Kentucky campus last week to denounce the mass killing of Asian Americans in Atlanta as well as the overall discrimination against Asians and Asian Americans in the U.S.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Jenny Wells-Hosley Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 31, 2021) — The University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences will induct six new members into the A&S Hall of Fame next week as part of its 2020 class of inductees.

    For the first time in 21 years, the Hall of Fame ceremony will take place virtually, offering the campus community and the public the opportunity to watch the induction ceremony and celebration. The ceremony had to be delayed last year due to COVID-19 restrictions. Those interested in attending must register at https://forms.as.uky.edu/hof-rsvp and can tune in at 7 p.m. EDT Friday, April 9, at www.as.uky.edu/hall-fame-live.

    The 2020 alumni inductees include:

    Ouita Papka Michel (Political Science B.A. ’87)

    Since 2001, when Ouita Michel and her husband, Chris, opened their flagship Holly Hill Inn in Midway, Kentucky, she has made locally grown ingredients a priority in her cuisine. Michel’s restaurants have bought $3 million of Kentucky-grown meats, dairy and produce. She has been a James Beard Foundation Award nominee numerous times; her most recent nomination was in 2020 for Outstanding Restaurateur. Michel and her restaurants are regularly featured in media such as The New York Times, Southern Living, Garden & Gun, Food Network and Cooking Channel. She was a guest judge on Season 16 of Bravo’s "Top Chef."

    Active in her community, Michel is a member of Southern Foodways Alliance, James Beard Foundation and Les Dames d’Escoffier; the free community supper programs coordinator for Midway Christian Church; board member of FoodChain, a nonprofit food incubator in Lexington; and founder of FEAST, a fundraiser for FoodChain that celebrates women chefs. In addition, she is board member of Hindman Settlement School, which is dedicated to enriching central Appalachian culture, and is a member of the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, a statewide citizens group working to improve education for Kentuckians. Recent honors include induction into the Junior Achievement Bluegrass Business Hall of Fame and the Bluegrass Tomorrow Josephine Abercrombie Award, given to a person who contributes tirelessly to improve quality of life in the Bluegrass.

    Michel majored in political science at UK and was a member of the debate team, honors program (now Lewis Honors College) and the first class of Gaines Fellows. In 1986, she became only the second woman to win a national debate championship. After finishing her studies at UK, Michel moved to New York, where she graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York.

    Hon. Winn Fleming Williams (Sociology B.A. ’71)

    Originally from Northern Virginia, Judge Winn Fleming Williams (retired) graduated from the University of Kentucky in 1971 with a double major in sociology and political science.   

    Upon his graduation, he entered federal service in October 1974. After receiving his criminal investigator training at Quantico, Virginia, and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Brunswick, Georgia, he became a federal law enforcement officer. During his federal career, he served in numerous capacities as a special agent and special agent in charge for law enforcement organizations across the country. He also served on many anti-terrorism and counter-terrorism, anti-gang, drug enforcement and white-collar crime task forces. His senior management skills and services were also lent to the White House, the Office of Management and Budget and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

    After 9/11, he was recruited to assist in the creation of two new federal agencies, the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security. He became the first director of the DHS training academy in Artesia, New Mexico.

    Since leaving federal service, Williams has been a program manager, director of operations, vice president and senior consultant for security contracting companies across the country. In August 2017, he was appointed as a Municipal Court judge, serving the municipality of Greer in addition to the counties of Greenville and Spartanburg, South Carolina.

    Among Williams' many commendations are the President's Council on Integrity and Efficiency Award for Excellence, the U.S. Attorney’s Award for outstanding achievement, two Department of Homeland Security gold medals and the Department of Homeland Security’s highest honor, the Secretary's Excellence Award. He was also presented the University of Kentucky Distinguished Service Award in June 2019.

    Within UK, he represents the College of Arts and Sciences for the UK Alumni Board, where he serves on the Leadership Advisory Council as well as the Diversity/LGBTQ committee. He is a past president of the UK Alumni Club as well as the president of the Kentucky Society, both in Washington, D.C. He lives outside Greenville, South Carolina. 

    George C. Wright (History B.A. ’72; Sociology M.A. ’74; Honorary Doctorate ’04)

    George C. Wright received his bachelor’s degree in history from UK in 1972, his master’s degree in history from UK in 1974 and his Ph.D. in history from Duke University in 1977. Wright’s teaching experience began in 1997 as an assistant professor of history at UK. In 1980, he started teaching at the University of Texas at Austin, where he eventually became a full professor and the holder of the Mastin Gentry White professorship of Southern History. For 12 consecutive years at UT, Wright was voted one of the 10 Best Faculty on the annual list of "10 Best and 10 Worst Faculty.” He received the Jean Holloway Award for Teaching Excellence in the College of Arts and Sciences and the top teaching award for the entire university, the Lillian and Tom B. Rhodes Centennial Teaching Fellow, which carried a $10,000 prize.

    In 1993, Wright joined the faculty at Duke University as vice provost for undergraduate programs and director of Afro-American Studies, and he held the William R. Kenan Jr. Chair in American History. From 1996 to 2003, Wright served as executive vice president for academic affairs and provost at the University of Texas at Arlington. He served as president of Prairie View A&M University from 2003 to 2017.

    Wright has received a number of awards from UK, including an honorary Doctorate of Letters and induction into the Hall of Distinguished Alumni. He is a distinguished research professor at UK and senior adviser to the president. Also, during the 2020-21 school year, he is serving as the interim vice president for institutional diversity at UK.

    Wright has written three books on race relations. For his scholarly activities, Wright received the UK Libraries’ Medallion for Intellectual Achievement in 2015.

    Bing Zhang (Statistics M.S. ’91 & Ph.D. ’94; Computer Science M.S. ’93)

    Born in the Jiangsu province in China, Bing Zhang arrived in the United States to study at UK in 1989. Zhang flourished at UK, diving deep into graduate statistics courses and work, tutoring in English, pursuing an active life in the Department of Statistics and experiencing life among a growing Chinese student population on campus and in the community. A successful student, Zhang earned his master’s and doctoral degrees in statistics in 1991 and 1994 respectively. He also earned a master’s in computer science from UK in 1993.

    Zhang began his professional career in Lexington as a biostatistician and then moved his young family to the Philadelphia area to begin work at AstraZeneca. He founded MacroStat Inc., a statistics consulting firm that serves pharmaceutical companies, in 2002. He cofounded MacroStat (China) Clinical Research Ltd. in 2005. The company has since merged with Tigermed, the leading clinical Contract Research Organization in China. Throughout his career, he has applied statistical expertise to the development of new drugs in various therapeutic areas and contributed to a number of new drugs approved for the treatment of hypertension, hyperlipidemia, asthma, psychiatric disorders and pain.

    Zhang is passionate about giving back. Zhang and his wife, Rachel, founded a private foundation to support community services, scientific research and education. Zhang has also been an engaged and generous supporter of his alma mater and especially the Department of Statistics. In 2020, the University of Kentucky Board of Trustees named the department the Dr. Bing Zhang Department of Statistics in recognition of his philanthropy.

    Bing and Rachel currently live in Orlando, Florida, and have two children, Emily and Brian, both born in Lexington.

    The 2020 faculty inductees include:

    Patricia A. Cooper (Gender and Women’s Studies)

    Patty Cooper, born in 1949, grew up in Blacksburg, Virginia. Her feminist consciousness and anti-war activism arose while she was an undergraduate student at Mary Washington College and Wittenberg University from 1967 to 1971. Eager to help rewrite the conventional narrative of U.S. history, Cooper started graduate studies in 1972 at the University of Maryland. She focused on women’s, Black and working-class history and held assistantships with the Booker T. Washington Papers and the Samuel Gompers Papers editorial projects. She received an M.A. in American studies in 1973 and a Ph.D. in U.S. history in 1981. 

    After a year’s fellowship at the Museum of American History at the Smithsonian Institution, Cooper in 1983 joined the History and Politics Department of Drexel University in Philadelphia. She worked with other faculty and staff to create processes for addressing sexual harassment. She collaborated with Ellen Rose and other faculty at Drexel to establish a women’s studies program and taught the first course at Drexel in U.S. women’s history. Her book, "Once a Cigar Maker: Men, Women and the American Cigar Industry, 1900-1920," appeared in 1987. 

    Cooper moved to UK in 1993 as director of the Women’s Studies Program with a joint appointment in the Department of History. In her first year as director, Cooper helped create bylaws and guidelines for faculty affiliation with the program and secured paid staff for the first time. She helped to launch the Women’s Studies Graduate Certificate and with assistance secured a suite of rooms in Patterson Office Tower for new program offices. After four years, she stepped down as director. Cooper served on the UK Commission on the Status of Women and taught classes in the women’s studies and history departments.

    In 2009, the renamed Gender and Women’s Studies Program became a department with a major, and Cooper became its first chair. She helped in the final stages of the approval process for the department’s Ph.D. program, which was established in 2012. Cooper stepped down as chair in June of 2012 and began phased retirement. She has had fun traveling, hiking and volunteering for RVing Women, her neighborhood association and God’s Pantry in Lexington.  

    Ronald D Eller (History)

    Originally from southern West Virginia, Ron Eller has spent more than 40 years writing and teaching about the Appalachian region. He served for 15 years as the director of the UK Appalachian Center where he coordinated research and service programs on a wide range of Appalachian policy issues including education, health care, economic development, civic leadership and the environment. As a Distinguished Professor of History at UK, Eller spoke on Appalachian issues at colleges, conferences and community forums throughout the nation, and he served as a frequent consultant to civic organizations and the national media. A former Rockefeller Foundation Scholar, he holds a Ph.D. in American history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is known as a scholar of Appalachian history and the study of rural economic development and social change.

    He has published more than 60 articles and reports but is most well-known for his award-winning books. "Miners, Millhands and Mountaineers: The Industrialization of the Appalachian South" was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 1983 and won the 1982 Willis Weatherford Award in Appalachian Studies and the 1983 Thomas Wolfe Literary Award. His most recent book, "Uneven Ground: Appalachia Since 1945" published by University Press of Kentucky, won a second Willis Weatherford Award in 2008 as well as the 2009 V.O. Key Award from the Southern Political Science Association.

    Eller has served as chair of the Governor’s Kentucky Appalachian Task Force, the first chair of the Kentucky Appalachian Commission and as a member of the Sustainable Communities Task Force of President Clinton’s Council on Sustainable Development. Among other awards, he is the recipient of the Jim Wayne Miller Award for Distinguished Service to Appalachia, two East Kentucky Leadership Foundation Special Awards (1999 and 2009) and the UK William E. Lyons Award for Outstanding Public Service. Also, he has worked on projects in rural education reform with the Ford Foundation, the American Council on Education and the American Association of Community Colleges, and he has served as the John D. Whisman Visiting Scholar for the Appalachian Regional Commission in Washington. He retired from teaching in 2013.

    Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEngineeringGraduate SchoolHonors CollegeUniversity Press of Kentucky

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: For the first time in 21 years, the Hall of Fame ceremony will take place virtually, offering the campus community and the public the opportunity to tune in to the induction ceremony.
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Catherine Hayden Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 1, 2021) — Renowned journalists Peter Baker and Susan Glasser, political journalism’s “first couple,” are scheduled to deliver the Joe Creason Lecture, held by the University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Media in the College of Communication and Information, at 6 p.m. EDT Wednesday, April 21, via Zoom.

    The husband and wife duo are longtime Washington journalists who have written for years about the intersection of politics and the world. Peter Baker is the chief White House correspondent for The New York Times and an MSNBC political analyst. He has covered the last five presidents for both The Times and The Washington Post and is the author or co-author of six books, including "Days of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House," selected as one of the Top 10 Books of 2013 by The New York Times Book Review, and "The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton," a New York Times bestseller. 

    Susan Glasser is a staff writer for The New Yorker and author of the weekly “Letter from Biden’s Washington” as well as a global affairs analyst for CNN. She previously was the editor of POLITICO and founder of POLITICO Magazine. Before that, she was editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy magazine following a long stint at The Post, where she was assistant managing editor for national news and editor of the paper’s Outlook section. Publications she has edited have won multiple National Magazine Awards.

    Baker and Glasser have written several books together, most recently "The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III," a New York Times bestseller. They live in Washington with their son and are currently at work on a book on the Trump presidency. The two often appear both separately and together on television news programs such as "Washington Week" on PBS, NBC’s "Meet the Press" and "Washington Journal" on C-SPAN.

    “We are thrilled to have both of these incredible journalists share their insights and experiences regarding politics and the news industry with our students, faculty and greater UK community,” said Erika Engstrom, director of the School of Journalism and Media. “Our ‘catch’ of Peter Baker and Susan Glasser is thanks to our own Al Cross, journalism extension professor and director of the Institute of Rural Journalism and Community Issues, whose vast ties to the journalism profession helped us to secure this stellar team to deliver this year’s Creason Lecture.”

    The Joe Creason Lecture Series honors the memory of outstanding Kentucky journalist and honored alumnus Joe Creason. Made possible through a matching grant from the Bingham Enterprises Foundation of Kentucky and gifts donated by UK alumni and friends, the Joe Creason Lecture Series Fund was established in 1975. 

    This year’s lecture on April 21 via Zoom will be available at https://ci.uky.edu/jam/events.

    This year’s Creason Lecture features renowned political journalists Peter Baker and Susan Glasser. Photo courtesy of Peter Baker and Susan Glasser.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Renowned journalists Peter Baker and Susan Glasser, political journalism’s “first couple,” are scheduled to deliver the Joe Creason Lecture, held by the UK School of Journalism and Media in the College of Communication and Information, at 6 p.m. ET Wednesday, April 21, via Zoom.
    Category:
  • Body: Arts & CultureBy Mark Mozingo and Whitney Hale Tuesday

     

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 30, 2021) From a campus parking garage to a rose garden, the arts will spring up around campus this weekend as the University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance presents EchoLocation: The Mobile Tour, a site-specific dance performance, April 2 and 3.

    With many safety protocols still in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UK’s dance program hopes to present a diverse performance opportunity for students, faculty, staff and Central Kentucky community. Most recently, the focus is on “site-specific performances” in which the venue is intrinsic to the work. Locations of performances will be easily accessible through the production’s program and a map which can be found on a phone or tablet — “mobile.” And the audience will move from location to location — “tour.” 

    “EchoLocation” consists of choreography by UK students and faculty performed at various locations on the University of Kentucky campus. The seven locations travel from outside Singletary Center for the Arts up Rose Street to The Arboretum, and the choreography explores a variety of themes from COVID-19, politics, culture, environment and simply movement for movement’s sake. 

    Work featured in “EchoLocation” includes:

    “Plum Blossoms” — EveMarie Bessenbach, adjunct faculty UK Theatre and Dance 

    According to Chinese philosophy, the plum blossom symbolizes perseverance, hope, and renewal in overcoming adversity. The plum blossom blooms between the winter and spring seasons, a parallel to our current world in 2021 as we slowly emerge from the quarantine of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Plum Blossoms” is an exploration and visual representation of the adversities experienced during the pandemic, yet there is always the promise of spring and of hope.  

    “Self-Acceptance” — Madi Moorhead, dance sophomore from Grand Rapids, Michigan  

    Self-acceptance is something that a lot of people in today's world struggle with. “Throughout this solo work I wanted to share my personal experience with my audience. I am taking all of the negative thoughts and words I have been called and writing them onto my body. As the piece goes on, I finally find peace and happiness within myself and wipe these negative words off of my body,” said Moorhead. She hopes the audience finds moments to connect to, relate with and find solace from her work.  

    “Woven Wishes” — Brittany Johnson, dance and family sciences senior from Louisville, Kentucky 

    “Woven Wishes” is a work grounded in attachment theory, the idea that childhood and lived experiences affect our behaviors and attitudes surrounding relationships and intimacy. Drawing on in-depth research and personal experience, the resulting work is an exploration of what it means to connect with another human and all the joy, tension and discomfort that can sometimes follow. How do we see and experience connection? How do we respond when people get too close? And more importantly, when presented with the fire of connection, how do we choose to keep warm?  

    “Proximity” — Haley Shaver, dance and chemistry freshman from Lexington  

    Haley Shaver explores what it means to just dance in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Her piece, set atop a parking garage, dives into movement for movement’s sake. The duet with Claire McDermott, a dance senior from Lexington, is meant to be an analysis of organic, unifying movements set against the backdrop of the isolating times of COVID-19.   

    “ISA” — Sylvannah Regalado, dance junior from Lexington 

    “Isa,” which means “one” in Tagalog, dives into the effects and emotions that result from isolation. It challenges you to think about how being isolated can take a toll on your well-being. Quarantine, time-outs, being alone in your room, prison cells, etc. What does that do to a person? This work delves into the thoughts that arise, how people reflect on their selves, and more. Do you like being alone?   

    “Unfolded” — Caitlin Espinueva, dance senior from Louisville

    With the ever-growing culture of fast fashion, “Unfolded” comments on the realities of the industry and its damaging effects on both the environment and human rights. The fast fashion industry has a business model built on cheap materials using cheap labor, resulting in a mass production of low-quality clothes with a short lifespan made at the expense of massive amounts of textile waste and extremely low wages for garment workers. 

    “How it Started vs. How it's Going” — Genesis Lorjuste, dance and integrated strategic communication senior from Kennesaw, Georgia

    “How it Started vs How it's Going” examines the affects that trauma has on the everyday emotional and physical activities. The piece explores this idea through past, present and future lenses. Additionally, the dancers and Lorjuste give everyday anxiety, human characteristics through personification. After enduring a traumatic experience, it is common to dwell on the "should've, could've, would've" which can be crippling when there are so many things we must think about as humans. “The dancers will be acting the wars in my mind and pulling from their own experiences to bring life to my personal narrative as a survivor,” explained Lorjuste.

    “Supercuts” — Breanna Hagan, dance and biology senior from Owensboro, Kentucky  

    Due to the recent pandemic, we can’t spend time with our friends and loved ones like we used to. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t still spend time with each other. “My friends and I love to get into a studio late at night and create little works just for us, and we’ve been able to become closer by creating together through heartbreaks to celebrations. ‘Supercuts’ is a small glimpse into our little world,” Hagan said.   

    “To feel the earth beneath my feet” Stephanie Harris, lecturer 

    There is a constancy to nature which remains a steady gravitational force within our unstable world. “I have spent the past year, seeking its sanctuary as a space of enlightenment, a space of knowing as I struggle to perceive this existence,” Harris said. “We are of the earth and it calls to us to remember the impermanence of things. This enduring companion calls us forth to dance with delight in the knowing of the freedom that can be found within its shelter. I feel the earth below me and the sky looking endlessly above and within that place, my heart remains open.” 

    “EchoLocation” will be presented 5 p.m. Friday, April 2, and 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday, April 3. Tickets for “EchoLocation” are $10. To purchase tickets, visit the Singletary Center for the Arts box office online at www.scfatickets.com.

    After purchasing a ticket online, the schedule and more information will be available. During the performance, the audience will move together from one location to the next, beginning at the Singletary Center for the Arts and ending at The Arboretum.

    All patrons are asked to follow CDC guidelines during this event and golf carts will be available for those who require assistance traveling from location to location. Please contact the Department of Theatre and Dance at uktheatre [at] uky.edu or 859-257-3297 if you require mobility assistance. 

    The Department of Theatre and Dance, part of UK College of Fine Arts, is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre. Students in the department get hands-on training and one-on-one mentorship from professional theatre and dance faculty and renowned guest artists in acting, directing, playwriting, theatrical design and technology, and dance. From mainstage productions to student-produced shows, students have plenty of opportunities to participate on stage or backstage. Special programs include a musical theatre certificate, education abroad, as well as a thriving dance program that emphasizes technique, composition, performance and production.

    of Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationFine ArtsArts AdministrationDanceTheatre

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: From a campus parking garage to a rose garden, the arts will spring up around campus this weekend as the University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance presents “EchoLocation: The Mobile Tour,” a site-specific dance performance, April 2 and 3.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chaney Willett Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 26, 2021) — This past February, Ad Club Lexington virtually hosted its 2021 American Advertising Awards (ADDYs). Five ISC students were awarded with student ADDYs .

    The winners are:

    Kendall Boron — two Gold ADDYs (Philosophies Conference Booklet and KRNL); two Silver ADDYs (Quilted Northern Packaging Redesign and Painter’s Cocktail Book); and the $1,000 Student Scholarship from Ad Club Lexington.

    Peyton Fike, Addison Cave and Maggie Smith — one Gold ADDY (Ulta Beauty Campaign) and the inaugural Mosaic Award (for excellence in multicultural advertising)

    Haley Heisler — one Silver ADDY (Medallion Chocolate)

    Associate Professor Adriane Grumbein is always proud to see her students recognized for their hard work and creativity. “I’m thrilled that our students did so well in this year’s ADDY competition and so proud of them,” Grumbein said. “Since the ADDYs are recognized industry-wide, these awards are a great way for students to show potential employers the quality of their work. ADDYs are like a high five from the industry. Plus, awards are just fun.”

    To see all student submissions, visit www.aaflexington.com/2021-addys-entrants/.

    The American Advertising Awards are the advertising industry’s largest competition, conducted annually by local chapters of the American Advertising Federation. The three-tiered competition receives over 40,000 local entries each year. Ad Club Lexington hosts local ADDYs annually.

    To watch Ad Club Lexington’s 2021 ADDY Awards, visit https://youtu.be/vVtWI61ACPw

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: This past February, Ad Club Lexington virtually hosted its 2021 American Advertising Awards. Five ISC students were awarded with student ADDYs .Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Maia Dubin Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2021) — Kentucky Kernel managing editor and photographer Michael Clubb was named Kentucky’s sports photographer of the year and runner-up student photographer of the year at the annual Kentucky News Photographer Association meeting in February 2021.

    Clubb earned multiple awards, including Kentucky sports photographer of the year, where his portfolio was judged against professional Kentucky photographers, even though he is still an undergraduate student. 2021 was the first year that student entries were allowed to compete in what has traditionally been a “professional” category, so the win was even more meaningful.

    The sports photographer of the year category was open to professional and student portfolios consisting of no more than 10 images taken during the 2020 calendar year. Clubb won the sports photographer of the year, beating out the professionals including staff photographers from the Courier Journal, the Herald-Leader and UK Athletics. 

    “It always feels great to receive recognition for your hard work, and the fact that I won sports photographer of the year against students and professionals makes it even more special,” Clubb said.

    Clubb was awarded first place in the news picture story category, first place in sport news and first place in general news. Additionally, he swept the sports action category, earning first, second and third place.

    “I wouldn’t have made anywhere close the amount of progress I’ve made when it comes to my photography without the help and support of so many, especially from the Kernel. David Stephenson especially, the Kernel’s photo advisor and a UK professor, has always been there to help and teach me and push me to my potential,” Clubb said.

    “Michael is an incredibly talented photographer,” Stephenson said. “I’m excited for him that he is recognized at this level for his talent and hard work. We are lucky to have him at the Kernel.”

    Several other College of Communication and Information students were recognized at the Kentucky News Photographer Association contest, including Arden Barnes, a 2020 journalism graduate, who won honorable mention in both general news and the sports featured categories.

    Jordan Prather, a 2020 journalism graduate won second and third place in the sports action category, and second place in the week’s work category, honoring various photographs taken in a one-week span.

    Barnes and Prather earned several awards in the professional category, even though the bulk of their images were taken while they were students.

    The Kentucky News Photographer's Association is a nonprofit organization founded to promote and advance photojournalism in practice and ideology in both still and video mediums across the Commonwealth. The KNPA is an accredited member of the National Press Photographer's Association.

    Photo by Michael Clubb.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Kentucky Kernel managing editor and photographer Michael Clubb was named Kentucky’s sports photographer of the year and runner-up student photographer of the year at the annual Kentucky News Photographer Association meeting in February 2021.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 5, 2021) ­— In an effort to have a positive impact on his community, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumnus has helped start a scholarship foundation for underprivileged Black scholars.

    Like so many others, Aaron Porter, a 2019 journalism graduate, experienced financial strain throughout his college career. However, he and his cousins aimed to create a solution that would provide relief for students facing the same burden.

    In the first months of 2020, Porter and his cousins, Darrell Williams and Andrew Porter, began researching and planning how to create a scholarship fund. By Dec. 1, they launched the Lawson Porter Scholarship Foundation, named after their grandfather, who instilled generosity within the family.

    The nationwide scholarship is aimed at helping Black academics like themselves afford higher education, wherever that may be. Unlike many other scholarships that are merit-based and designated for certain majors, this scholarship is open for students of all fields of study with a GPA of at least 2.0. Porter noted that financial availability is an issue for many Black households, so this scholarship is widening the accessibility of financial aid. 

    “Being someone who had limited resources, being someone who had to take student loans, being someone who has debt as we speak, we really wanted to focus in on how can we create an avenue for Black students in all aspects of college and learning,” Porter said, “Kind of give them an opportunity to not have to worry about ‘can I pay for this’ or ‘can I pay for that’ or ‘can I do this’ or ‘can I do that.’ They can just go and be students.”

    Porter came to campus as a quiet, out-of-state kid who hardly knew anyone and didn’t know what to major in. From semester to semester, he was always left wondering if he’d be able to continue at UK. In fact, without an unexpected grant one year, he was sure he would have to return home to attend community college in Indianapolis.

    Despite these obstacles, Porter grew to become a leader on UK’s campus. He became a resident advisor, a singer in the UK Black Voices Gospel Choir and president and vice president of UK’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. In 2019, he also won the NAACP UK Chapter Citizen of the Year Award for his work with the Black Student Advisory Council.

    After graduating, Porter took a position as a public affairs assistant for the United States Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service for the state of Mississippi. Despite taking up this new job and its added responsibilities, he knew it was still important to keep giving back.

    “Aaron is one of the best humans I know. His passion for social and racial justice, his love for his community and his unwavering faith are front and center with him always,” said Carol Taylor-Shim, director of UK’s Office of Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice (formerly Bias Incident Support Services) and one of Porter’s biggest mentors at the university. “Aaron always honors and protects the humanity of others; it is the center of who he is. What a gift he gave us by choosing UK and we are far better for it.”

    The dedication Porter has for supporting his fellow Black peers is something he shares and regularly discusses with his cousins. Black awareness and appreciation not only fueled who the recipients of their scholarship would be but also every other aspect of the foundation. Everything on their website from the logo to the color palate is “Black inspired, Black imagined, Black created,” Porter said. The application process also requires applicants to create a submission piece that “captures some form of Afrocentric history” in order to combat the lack of Black history that is taught in education systems.

    “What is most impressive about Aaron is that self-recognition was never at the heart of his work. He was always concerned about paths of opportunity he was creating for other students, particularly students of color who are marginalized in predominantly white institutions,” said Mel Coffee, a former School of Journalism and Media faculty member and current director of the Capital News Service Broadcast Bureau at the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. “Aaron had a fluid relationship with students and administrators that allowed him to create positive dialogue and change. He’s the student I loved having in class, a colleague I admire in his post-student status, and a man I am proud to also call my friend.”

    Although the scholarship foundation is still in its infancy, Porter said they have already received donations from across the nation from friends and colleagues to complete strangers. While he’s putting his journalism experience to use as the scholarship foundation’s social media content manager, he looks forward to the day when he’ll be able to disperse scholarship funds as the foundation’s treasurer. He hopes his work will allow him to help others just as his support system had done for him.

    “You may never know my name, you may never know who I am, and I’m okay with that,” Porter said. “But if deep down I know that I made an impact on society somewhere, I think that really drives me, and that’s what drives all three of us to do the work that we have committed to doing with the scholarship foundation. I’ll take pleasure in that seven days a week and twice on Sunday.”

    If you would like more information about donating to or applying for the Lawson Porter Scholarship Foundation, visit https://thelpsf.org/.

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: In an effort to have a positive impact on his community, one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumnus has helped start a scholarship foundation for underprivileged Black scholars.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Arts & CultureBy Mark Mozingo Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 17, 2021)  The University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance will present a staged reading of "The Watsons," by Laura Wade, available on-demand online March 19-21, 2021. 

    "The Watsons," directed by Christina Ritter and stage managed by theatre and journalism junior Spencer Neichter, takes audiences to the era of Jane Austen. What happens when the writer loses the plot? Emma Watson is 19 and new in town. She's been cut off by her rich aunt and dumped back in the family home. Emma and her sisters must marry — fast. If not, they face poverty, spinsterhood, or worse: an eternity with their boorish brother and his awful wife. Luckily there are plenty of potential suitors to dance with, from flirtatious Tom Musgrave to castle-owning Lord Osborne, who's as awkward as he is rich. So far, so familiar. 

    But there's a problem: Jane Austen didn't finish the story. Who will write Emma's happy ending now? Based on her incomplete novel, this sparklingly witty play looks under the bonnet of Jane Austen and asks: what can characters do when their author abandons them?  This reading is free, but registration is required at: www.eventbrite.com/e/the-watsons-by-laura-wade-tickets-142101957781?aff=ebdssbonlinesearch

    "The Watsons" was first performed at The Chichester Festival Theatre, directed by Samuel West on Nov. 8, 2018. This reading is was made possible by arrangement with Knight Hall Agency Ltd. This is an amateur status production. 

    The Department of Theatre and Dance, part of UK College of Fine Arts, is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre. Students in the department get hands-on training and one-on-one mentorship from professional theatre and dance faculty and renowned guest artists in acting, directing, playwriting, theatrical design and technology, and dance. From mainstage productions to student-produced shows, students have plenty of opportunities to participate on stage or backstage. Special programs include a musical theatre certificate, education abroad, as well as a thriving dance program that emphasizes technique, composition, performance and production.

    UK Theatre and Dance will present at staged reading of "The Watsons" March 19-21.Organizational Unit: Communication and InformationFine ArtsArts AdministrationTheatre

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: The University of Kentucky Department of Theatre and Dance presents a staged reading of "The Watsons" by Laura Wade, available online March 19-21, 2021. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Meredith Weber Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 16, 2021) The Women and Philanthropy Network at the University of Kentucky recently awarded $217,342 to six academic initiatives at UK. This brings their lifetime grants to $2,484,392.

    The Women and Philanthropy Network was formed in 2007 to motivate and foster women as leaders, donors and advocates for UK. This group of women created a new culture of service and philanthropy through their gifts of time, talent and resources, all in support of UK students.

    Individuals contribute $1,000 annually (or $500 for women age 40 and under), then pool that money to award grants that further research, provide scholarships, fund creative programs and train future leaders. Colleges and programs are invited to submit proposals and members vote on which proposals to fund. 

    "The selection process for the UK Women and Philanthropy Network academic grants is rigorous and competitive," said Lisa Atkinson, executive director of Philanthropic Engagement with UK Philanthropy. "Each proposal is thoroughly reviewed by the membership and evaluated on its merits of supporting the academic mission of the university, creativity and innovation, and demonstrating measurable student academic outcomes. We commend each award winner and thank all who submitted a proposal. They were all excellent."

    Grant funds were awarded to support the following proposals:

    College of Nursing — The Agriculture Nursing Scholars Program for Kentucky Rural Health and Wellness, $50,000      

    College of Public Health — Champions for Prevention, $30,000

    College of Dentistry — Professional Education Preparation: Discover Modern Dentistry, $7,000

    College of Agriculture, Food and Environment — UK Cooperative Extension Summer Internships; A Model for Community Engagement and Employment, $50,000

    College of Arts and Sciences and College of Engineering — Engineering Sustainable Solutions to the Plastic Waste Crisis by Bridging Disciplinary Divides, $35,000

    College of Communication and Information – Removing Barriers to Graduation for Underrepresented Minority Students, $45,342

    For more information concerning the University of Kentucky Women and Philanthropy Network, please contact Atkinson at UK Philanthropy, William B. Sturgill Building, Lexington, KY 40506-0015; 859-257-7885 or lisa.atkinson [at] uky.edu.  

    To follow the work and activities of the network on Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/UKWomenandPhilanthropy/.

    Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationDentistryEngineeringNursingPublic Health

    Kentucky Can: The 21st Century Campaign is a comprehensive campaign focused on increasing opportunities for student success, funding innovative research, improving health care, strengthening our alumni network, and supporting our athletic programs. For more information about Kentucky Can, visit kentuckycan.uky.edu.

    Summary: The new awards brings the group's lifetime grants to $2,484,392.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Ryan Girves Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky, (March 15, 2021) — The University of Kentucky will launch a podcast titled "Bowman’s Friends," starting tomorrow. Hosted by four UK students, "Bowman’s Friends" was created to connect and inform students of issues, important deadlines and ways to get involved on campus. With a goal of amplifying student voices, the podcast will include conversations with people across the university relevant to current campus culture from the student’s perspective​.

    Hosts include Rana Mitchell, Samantha Valentino, Gillian Stawiszynski and Neha Yousuf. 

    “On the podcast, we plan to talk with the MoneyCATS team who will speak on financial literacy, co-founder and vice president of BOOK-ish to talk about the BOOK-ish organization, and Melody Flowers, executive director for strategic analysis and policy here at UK, who will touch on the new Cornerstone building on campus,” Valentino said. “We also plan to have some episodes with just the four hosts, discussing various topics from the students’ perspective. We recently recorded an episode where we discussed the ways in which COVID-19 has affected our lives as college students.”

    New episodes of ​"Bowman’s Friends" will go live every Tuesday and Friday wherever podcasts are available. The teaser episode will go live Monday, March 15, with the first full episode going live the following day, Tuesday, March 16, and the next on Friday, March 19. 

    More about the hosts of "​Bowman’s Friends"​: 

    Rana Mitchell is a senior from Fishers, Indiana, and a media arts and studies major with a minor in creative writing. She works in the College of Education as a Student Success Worker. She is interested in writing, film, television, reading and pop culture. After graduation, Mitchell plans to pursue screenwriting and production. 

    Samantha Valentino is a junior from Meriden, Connecticut. She is studying broadcast journalism with a minor in criminology. Valentino is both a writer and the co-campus correspondent for UK’s chapter of Her Campus, an online magazine targeted at the female college demographic. She is also a Pop Culture Committee chair on the UK Student Activities Board. After graduation, Valentino plans to pursue a career in entertainment journalism. 

    Gillian Stawiszynski is a senior from Orlando, Florida, and she is studying journalism and anthropology with a minor in French. She is the assistant opinions editor at the Kentucky Kernel. After graduation, Stawiszynski is interested in pursuing documentary work as well as journalistic writing alongside activism. 

    Neha Yousuf is a senior from Northern Kentucky. Yosuf is majoring in broadcast journalism and minoring in writing rhetoric and digital studies. She works for the SEC Network, Residence Life and is an ambassador for the College of Communication and Information. Post-graduation, she is interested in pursuing communications or producing. 

    To listen to the teaser episode, click here. To stay up to date on podcast information, follow "Bowman’s Friends" on Instagram @bowmansfriends

    Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEngineering

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Ryan Girves
    ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    "> ryan.girves [at] uky.edu
    859-323-8464 Summary: Hosted by four UK students, "Bowman’s Friends" was created to connect and inform students of issues, important deadlines and ways to get involved on campus. With a goal of amplifying student voices, the podcast will include conversations with people across the university relevant to current campus culture from the student’s perspective.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Akhira Umar Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 17, 2021) — Sometimes tragedies can hold people back, but sometimes they can propel people forward and give them a purpose in life. That’s what happened to one University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information alumna who used a childhood crash to inspire her lifelong career.

    Alex Otte, a 2018 journalism graduate, became the youngest president ever appointed for Mothers Against Drunk Driving when she took office this past January. At just 24 years old, Otte has a vision for the nonprofit that she hopes will bring them that much closer to No More Victims®, MADD’s registered trademark and something she’s dreamed of since she became a victim herself.

    In 2010, Otte was gravely injured by a drunk boater on Herrington Lake near Danville, Kentucky. She had been on a jet ski while her mother and brother were docking their boat nearby. Having had her boating license and experience on the water for years, she knew not to move when a 17-foot bass boat started coming their way. Though the boat was originally headed for her mother, it suddenly banked left, hitting Otte head-on at over 60 mph. 

    The then 13-year-old was flung from her jet ski, landing face down in the water with the boat coming down on top of her. Otte sustained a severe brain injury similar to shaken baby syndrome, a shattered jaw, a destroyed root system of her teeth, a broken neck and collarbone, a lacerated liver, two shattered femurs and a leg injury that required amputation of her right leg at mid-calf. As she was airlifted to UK's hospital, her parents were told she wouldn’t survive.

    After spending four days in a coma, three more days in a drug-induced coma and a week of eight emergency surgeries, Otte miraculously persevered. Her “new life” after the crash included three plates and 12 screws in her face, a prosthetic foot, countless regular surgeries, a never-ending recovery process and her start with MADD. 

    “I figured out very quickly that I wanted to be the last little girl that this ever happened to, and I know 10 years later that I wasn’t,” Otte said. “But I will continue to fight and spend my life making sure that the day comes where there is a last victim of drunk driving. And I desperately hope that I live to see that day.”

    Since her crash, Otte has done well to make good on that promise. While in high school, she got involved with MADD on a state level through its legislative efforts. She spent many days in legislators’ offices sharing her story and advocating for bills that would help end drunk and drugged driving and support victims’ rights. Among the bills she helped to pass were the ignition interlock and DUI laws, the law that extended the look-back period on DUIs, and Marsy’s Law. 

    For her role in the ignition interlock legislation of 2015, she was named MADD’s National Youth Activist of the Year. In the previous year, she was one of 10 teens selected for MADD’s national teen influencer group.

    Otte said her experience lobbying helped set her up for success in the public speaking realm and, consequently, her work as a journalist. Though she had dreamed of becoming a children’s book author when she was younger, she said the creative part of her brain was destroyed in her crash. But knowing she still wanted to write, she chose journalism because facts never change even if creativity does. She also chose to minor in political science to strengthen her legislative efforts.

    Choosing UK was intentional for Otte because she knew her disability wouldn’t make her seem “weird” on such a big and diverse campus. Instead of focusing on her injury, she could then focus on her goal to become the next Erin Andrews, covering football games from the sideline. She lived this dream for six years, photographing UK football and impressing her former journalism professor Kakie Urch not only with her career aspirations but her philanthropic aspirations as well.

    “I can see why MADD would give her this responsibility and how she will shine at that as well,” said Urch, associate professor in the School of Journalism and Media. “Alex Otte is so smart and generous and interested that it is difficult not to be drawn to her and her direct, uncompromising commitment to this issue that has had such an impact on her life. And her example helps others see what is possible and inspires drivers, boaters and communities to renew their commitment to eliminate impaired driving. I am overjoyed — but not surprised — to see this appointment.”

    Otte said the “incredible” teachers she had at UK had a huge impact on her then and now. They challenged her to explain herself and her way of thinking, making her a better student and leader. She said that knowing they wanted her to succeed only helped push her to do so.

    “Alex stood out to me as a teacher long before I learned of her tragic life story,” said Stephen Voss, associate professor in the College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Political Science. “Her attentiveness in class, her poise when engaging with intellectual challenges and her work ethic all made her stand out from the crowd in my first-year course. The tragedy that struck Alex as a girl might make her a fitting symbol for MADD's mission, but the qualities I saw from Alex as a starting student surely must explain why MADD saw her as a fitting leader."

    Despite her love for journalism, Otte knew she had another calling when she joined the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) after graduating from UK. It was there that she got to conduct research and advocate more for legislation dealing with drunk and drugged boating, which dealt specifically with her crash.

    Her work with NASBLA later inspired the three goals she set for herself once selected as president of MADD. She wants the nonprofit to engage more with injured victims, train law enforcement on dealing with victims and families immediately after a tragedy and develop resources for people who are killed or injured by modes of transportation other than cars. 

    Otte said the timing of her presidency couldn’t be better. Since she and her fiancé do not have children, she currently has time for the demands of the job. Though she can’t exactly picture what the future will hold, she’s excited to see what she can accomplish in her two-year term.

    “I firmly believe everything happens for a reason. I think I will spend the rest of my life trying to figure out what my reason is because there’s no medical reason that I survived,” Otte said. “That’ll be the rest of my life until there are No More Victims®, and even after that because those that have already been victimized will live with this for the rest of their lives. The advocacy both for boating and water safety, boating under the influence and driving under the influence will never end. It will always be a part of my life.”

    Alex OtteOrganizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Alex Otte, a 2018 journalism graduate, became the youngest president ever appointed for Mothers Against Drunk Driving when she took office this past January.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Wednesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 24, 2021) — The National Debate Tournament Committee has ranked the University of Kentucky team of David Griffith (freshman) and Jordan Di (freshman) as one of the top 16 teams in the nation. This ranking means the duo will receive a “first round bid” or automatic invitation to the 2021 National Debate Tournament (NDT).

    The Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate team, housed in the College of Communication and Information at UK, will join a list of historically strong programs including debate powerhouses such as Harvard University, Dartmouth College, Northwestern University, Emory University, Wake Forest University, the University of Southern California and the University of California, Berkeley at the upcoming NDT.

    2021 marks the seventh consecutive year that UK Debate has received at least one first round bid. Since the first-round bid process began in 1973, only seven all freshman teams have earned automatic bid honors. It is not, however, the first time UK has accomplished the feat, as the team of Dan Bannister and Anthony Trufanov earned this honor in 2016 and finished the season as the 13th ranked team in the country.

    The team, led by Director of Debate Dave Arnett, now turns its focus to the postseason, starting with the American Debate Association Championship in early March.

    “We have a very young squad and are facing many of the same challenges as everyone else this year. Our primary goals were sticking together, growing as a team and focusing on the fundamentals, and I feel really good about what we achieved in those areas. That we also have some impressive competitive accomplishments to show for it really speaks to the resilience of these students and the rest of the coaching staff,” Arnett said.

    The 75th National Debate Tournament will take place virtually March 25-31, 2021.

    The Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate team.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The National Debate Tournament Committee has ranked the UK team of David Griffith (freshman) and Jordan Di (freshman) as one of the top 16 teams in the nation. This ranking means the duo will receive a “first round bid” or automatic invitation to the 2021 National Debate Tournament. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Maia Dubin Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 23, 2021) — Sherali Zeadally, an associate professor in the School of Information Science at the College of Communication and Information, was selected as the winner of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Region 3 Outstanding Engineer Award. Region 3 encompasses over 24,000 IEEE members across nine states in the southeastern United States and Jamaica.

    This is the first time in the IEEE’s Outstanding Engineer Award’s 49-year history that someone from the University of Kentucky has received this award, IEEE said.

    This award is open to all engineers working in the engineering industry, as well as academia, in the region. Through this award, the IEEE recognizes a member who has greatly contributed to the electrotechnology profession through their technical and professional abilities.

    Jeffrey Huber, director of the School of Information Science, is not surprised about Zeadally’s recognition. “Professor Zeadally has built a strong scholarly reputation among his colleagues. His work is cited regularly regarding his areas of expertise.” Huber said.

    “I am delighted to win such a highly competitive award," Zeadally said. "As always, I share this award with all my research collaborators who have worked with me over the years to produce outstanding research results that have been widely recognized nationally and internationally. I would also like to thank all my colleagues at the University of Kentucky for all their support in my research activities.”

    Zeadally will be presented this award at the upcoming Region 3 Award ceremony, as part of the annual regional meeting at SoutheastCon 2021 on Saturday, March 13. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, SoutheastCon will be held virtually.

    Sherali Zeadally Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Sherali Zeadally, an associate professor in the School of Information Science at the College of Communication and Information, was selected as the winner of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Region 3 Outstanding Engineer Award.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chaney Willett Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 16, 2021) — May 2020 journalism graduate and former Kentucky Kernel editor-in-chief Bailey Vandiver placed fourth in the Explanatory Reporting Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program. In addition to being recognized among top journalists in the nation, Vandiver has received a $1,000 scholarship.

    Vandiver’s story, titled “Lexington’s East End: A changing neighborhood,” encompasses the lives of the citizens of Lexington’s East End and how they envision the future of their home. Vandiver specifically wanted to collect the stories from the historically Black neighborhood to open a discussion on the effects of revitalization and gentrification to the neighborhood.

    “Lexington’s East End: A changing neighborhood” also features photos from 2020-2021 Hearst Award winner and Vandiver’s peer, Arden Barnes. The complete story and photography can be found in the Kentucky Kernel: www.kykernel.com/news/lexingtons-east-end-a-changing-neighborhood/article_5ca903f4-6f74-11ea-b815-0772a8247c7e.html.

    Recognized among national scholarship winners, Vandiver was thrilled to see her work and the East End earn traction. “It’s hard to describe the story because it’s hard to describe the East End — which is really the point of the story,” Vandiver said. “My job was just to listen and put several of their experiences together in one story.”

    While Vandiver was excited to receive a Hearst Award, she was initially shocked;

    Instead of entering her own work into the awards program, Kentucky Kernel and Student Media Advisor Ryan Craig took the liberty of entering Vandiver’s piece.

    “Bailey, with this story and just like when she was editor-in-chief of the Kentucky Kernel, is a very gifted journalist and I feel was one of the best collegiate journalists in the nation the last couple of years,” Craig said when asked what compelled him to enter Vandiver’s story for consideration. “In each paragraph, I felt the emotion of those who live in Lexington's East End regardless of which side of the issue they happened to be on.”

    The Hearst Journalism Awards Program was founded as a way to support and assist journalism education at the collegiate level. The program awards scholarships to students with outstanding performance in divisions including writing, photojournalism, audio, television and multimedia competitions. To enter any competition hosted by the Hearst Awards, students must be involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs or newscasts that can be submitted.

    The School of Journalism and Media is part of the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information. The Kentucky Kernel and Student Media are also housed in the College of Communication and Information.

    Bryan Greene, 25, and Lakell Gates, 11, play basketball on the court in Duncan Park in Lexington, Kentucky, on Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020. Photo by Arden Barnes, courtesy of Kentucky Kernel.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: May 2020 journalism graduate and former Kentucky Kernel editor-in-chief Bailey Vandiver placed fourth in the Explanatory Reporting Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Tony Neely Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 15, 2021) — A total of 100 University of Kentucky student-athletes earned a place on the 2020 Fall Sports Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll, announced by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. UK had the second-highest number of honorees in the league. 

    The 2020 Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll is based on grades from the 2020 Spring, Summer and Fall terms. UK had seven representatives from men’s cross country, 10 from women’s cross country, 37 from football, 19 from men’s soccer, 17 from women’s soccer and 10 from volleyball. Among other qualifications, a student-athlete must have a 3.0 grade-point average for the preceding academic year or a cumulative 3.0 GPA in order to be named to the list. 

    In addition to the academic success, Kentucky teams also had success on the fields of competition in the fall — much of which is carrying over to the spring. Volleyball has resumed its season already and has a 10-0 record and No. 3 national ranking. Men’s soccer resumes this week after having posted a 5-1 mark and being nationally ranked in the fall. The women’s and men’s cross country teams have completed the regular season and are awaiting potential bids to the NCAA Championships. Football finished its all-SEC regular-season schedule with a Senior Night win over South Carolina and a win over No. 24-ranked North Carolina State in the TaxSlayer Gator Bowl. 

    2020 SEC FALL SPORTS HONOR ROLL

    Athlete – Sport – Major

    Dylan Allen - Men's Cross Country - Marketing

    Jacob Brizendine - Men's Cross Country - Biology

    McLean Griffin - Men's Cross Country - Accounting

    Patrick Schaefer - Men's Cross Country - Kinesiology

    Gabriel Szalay - Men's Cross Country - Economics

    Trevor Warren - Men's Cross Country - Economics

    Aaron Withrow - Men's Cross Country - Finance

    Rachel Boice - Women's Cross Country - Biology

    Sophie Carrier - Women's Cross Country - Elementary Education

    Rachel Curry - Women's Cross Country - Human Health Sciences

    Kaylie Kenne - Women's Cross Country - Human Health Sciences

    Kaitlyn Lacy - Women's Cross Country - Accounting

    Mallory Liggett - Women's Cross Country - Kinesiology

    Lainey McKinley - Women's Cross Country - Kinesiology

    Sarah Michels - Women's Cross Country - Journalism

    Madisyn Peeples - Women's Cross Country - Elementary Education

    Kelli Walsh - Women's Cross Country - Finance

    Abule Abadi‐Fitzgerald - Football - Communication

    Alexander Bascom - Football - Finance

    Richard Bascom - Football - Finance

    Zachary Berezowitz - Football - Economics

    Jamari Brown - Football - Social Work

    Jared Casey - Football - Community and Leadership Development

    Yusuf Corker - Football - Economics

    Tyler Couch - Football - Sociology

    Eli Cox - Football - Integrated Strategic Communication

    Jamin Davis – Football - Community and Leadership Development

    Patrick Delahunty - Football - Accounting

    Taj Dodson - Football - Communication

    Max Duffy - Football - Kinesiology and Health Promotion

    Braxton Eiserman - Football - Art Studio

    Luke Fortner – Football - Mechanical Engineering

    Colin Goodfellow – Football - Nursing

    Manny Harper – Football - Kinesiology

    Collin Hartmann – Football - Economics

    Jackson High – Football - Management

    Drake Jackson – Football - Kinesiology and Health Promotion

    Zach Johnson - Football - Health Promotion

    Shawn Lawson - Football - Sociology

    Jordan Morrow - Football - Communication

    William Nalty – Football - Management

    Joshua Paschal - Football - Family Sciences

    Chance Poore - Football - Consumer Econ and Family Financial Counseling

    Asim Rose Jr. – Football - Community and Leadership Development

    Matt Ruffolo - Football - Finance

    Nik Scalzo – Football - Marketing

    Brett Slusher - Football - Accounting

    Sawyer Smith - Football - Kinesiology and Health Promotion

    Clevan Thomas Jr. - Football - Kinesiology and Health Promotion

    John Varga Jr. - Football - Undeclared

    Dillon Wheatley - Football - Agricultural Economics

    Quintin Wilson - Football - Management

    Jordan Wright - Football - Community and Leadership Development

    Landon Young – Football - Agricultural Economics

    John Michael Bandy - Men's Soccer - Clinical Leadership and Management

    Eythor Bjorgolfsson - Men's Soccer - Marketing

    Case Cox - Men's Soccer - Accounting

    Kalil ElMedkhar - Men's Soccer - Accounting

    Daniel Evans - Men's Soccer - Finance

    Enrique Facusse - Men's Soccer - Communication

    Luis Grassow - Men's Soccer - Sociology

    Cole Guindon - Men's Soccer - Management

    Clay Holstad - Men's Soccer - Chemical Engineering

    Colin Innes - Men's Soccer - Finance

    Leon Jones - Men's Soccer - Chemical Engineering

    Brock Lindow - Men's Soccer - Computer Engineering

    Aimé Mabika - Men's Soccer - English

    Marcel Meinzer - Men's Soccer - Communication

    Bailey Rouse - Men's Soccer - Civil Engineering

    Robert Screen - Men's Soccer - Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology

    Ryan Troutman - Men's Soccer - Management

    William Wagner - Men's Soccer - Management

    Jansen Wilson - Men's Soccer - Management

    Lisa Blankestein - Women's Soccer - Psychology

    Marissa Bosco - Women's Soccer - Educational and Counseling Psychology

    Cami Dade - Women's Soccer - Marketing

    Alexandra Fava - Women's Soccer - Mechanical Engineering

    Emily Hahnel - Women's Soccer - Economics

    Tatiana Hagan - Women's Soccer - Psychology

    Miranda Jimenez - Women's Soccer - Communication

    Josephine Knight - Women's Soccer - Psychology

    Gretchen Mills - Women's Soccer - Accounting

    Madison Rennie - Women's Soccer - Management

    Jordyn Rhodes - Women's Soccer - Kinesiology

    Hannah Richardson - Women's Soccer - Undeclared

    Peyton Rimko - Women's Soccer - Management

    Emma Shields - Women's Soccer - Elementary Education

    Sarah Siekkinen - Women's Soccer - Civil Engineering

    Stephanie Stull - Women's Soccer - Biomedical Engineering

    Caroline Trout - Women's Soccer - Finance

    Maddie Berezowitz - Volleyball - Finance

    Gabrielle Curry – Volleyball - Business Administration

    Gabrielle Goddard – Volleyball - Human Health Sciences

    Madison Lilley - Volleyball - Integrated Strategic Communication

    Kendyl Paris - Volleyball - Kinesiology

    Cameron Scheitzach – Volleyball - Kinesiology

    Avery Skinner - Volleyball - Communication Sciences and Disorders

    Alli Stumler – Volleyball - Elementary Education

    Azhani Tealer - Volleyball - Biology

    Lauren Tharp – Volleyball - Special Education

    In December, 380 Wildcats achieved a GPA of 3.0 or higher for the fall semester, including 109 Cats who reached 4.0 for the semester. That continued UK Athletics’ streak of 17 consecutive semesters with a department-wide GPA of 3.0 or higher. 

    UK Athletics supports the academic success of its student-athletes through CATS — the first academic center of its kind dedicated solely to serving student-athletes. CATS is an important component of UK’s Student-Athlete Experience division, launched as a renewal of the department’s commitment to prepare student-athletes to enter life after UK.

    Photo provided by UK Athletics.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationEducationEngineeringFine ArtsArtHealth SciencesNursingSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: A total of 100 University of Kentucky student-athletes earned a place on the 2020 Fall Sports Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll, announced by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. UK had the second-highest number of honorees in the league. 
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Meg Mills and Catherine Hayden Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 8, 2021) — Award-winning journalist and CBS News correspondent Wesley Lowery will give a talk, “Covering Social Justice in the Era of Social Media,” as the inaugural speaker for the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information's (CI) Angelo B. Henderson Lecture Series Tuesday, Feb. 9, from 5-6:30 p.m. EST.

    “We are excited and honored to launch the Angelo B. Henderson Lecture Series with such an important and timely topic and speaker. Wesley Lowery’s work exemplifies the vital role of good journalism in a democracy,” said Erika Engstrom, director of the UK School of Journalism and Media in CI.

    Lowery, a nationally renowned journalist and book author, specializes in the coverage of diversity, race, crime, urban and political issues. Prior to CBS News, he reported for The Washington Post, where his work on “Fatal Force,” a project on police shootings, helped the Post win the Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting in 2016. He previously reported for the Boston Globe and the Los Angeles Times. His work also has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Detroit News, The Atlantic and GQ Magazine.

    The Angelo B. Henderson Endowed Scholarship and Lecture Series Fund at UK was created by his wife, Felecia Henderson, in his honor. The Angelo B. Henderson Endowed Scholarship will be announced during the Feb. 9 event and will be awarded for the first time in 2021.

    Angelo B. Henderson, a Louisville native and 1985 University of Kentucky journalism graduate, worked as a reporter for The Detroit News, The Courier-Journal, The Wall Street Journal and the St. Petersburg Times. He also served as a leader in the National Association of Black Journalists. In 2005, he was inducted into the University of Kentucky Alumni Hall of Fame and posthumously inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame in 2016.

    As Deputy Detroit Bureau Chief of The Wall Street Journal, Henderson won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing in 1999 for reporting on the long-lasting effects of crime after an attempted robbery at a drug store ended in the robbery suspect’s death.

    Later, he began a second career as a talk-show host for WCHB-AM, became an ordained minister, co-founded a crime-watch group and started Angelo Ink, a freelance-writing, speaking and consulting business.

    Henderson was known for his community service, engaging personality and wide network of sources, as well as his ability to report about people in all walks of life. When Henderson passed away in 2014 at age 51, then Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan noted that few people had worked as tirelessly and passionately to improve the community.

    “Angelo Henderson was a shining example of all that we hope our graduates in the College of Communication and Information will accomplish in their careers,” Dean Jennifer Greer said. “Although his life was cut short, the impact he had on the profession and the community was vast and profound. We are honored to keep his legacy alive with this series and the scholarship in his name.”

    Full information on the Angelo B. Henderson Lecture Series can be found here.

    Wesley Lowery (left) and Angelo B. Henderson Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Award-winning journalist and CBS News correspondent Wesley Lowery will give a talk, “Covering Social Justice in the Era of Social Media,” as the inaugural speaker for the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information's Angelo B. Henderson Lecture Series Tuesday, Feb. 9.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Whitney Hale Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 4, 2021) — For 18 years a one-of-c-kind database has captured the wide-ranging array of contributions Black Kentuckians have made in the Commonwealth and beyond. The Notable Kentucky African Americans (NKAA) Database ensures that generations to come will have access to information on the substantial impact these citizens made on the state's history.

    The NKAA Database was introduced in 2003 by University of Kentucky librarians Reinette Jones and Rob Aken. The project’s web pages, which focus on African Americans in and from Kentucky from the 1700s to the present, were developed to bring together names, places, events and sources where additional information could be found. From its inception, UK students, researchers and library patrons far and wide gave the database an unexpected and overwhelmingly warm reception with requests for more content.

    Almost two decades later, the NKAA Database continues to grow with new and updated entries and sources that are used by more than 200,000 patrons annually. While the majority of the database’s users are from Kentucky, it has patrons throughout the U.S. and in other countries. 

    To learn more about this important resource on Kentucky’s history and the obstacles it had to overcome, UKNow recently caught up with Reinette Jones and Rob Aken, its creators and founders at UK Libraries.

    UKNow: How did the idea for the NKAA Database come to be?

    Jones: For years I had noticed there would be researchers coming to the various libraries asking about African Americans who were supposedly from Kentucky. The names were not any that I had ever heard before. The researchers never seemed to have much success finding what they wanted. So, I started writing the names down and doing my own research, and soon learned that there were other avenues for locating information about African Americans in and from Kentucky.

    The idea of NKAA grew from there. Though, for about a decade before it went live, NKAA was not a welcomed discussion because the idea was thought to be a waste of time, no one would use it, and it was not really needed because the UK Libraries already had the best the state could offer. Once NKAA went live, it was not too long after that I was told that I would have to give it away because it wasn’t really needed anymore, and well, that was another discussion. Let’s just say, there were some growing pains.

    Aken: I became involved when Reinette came to me in 2003 with the idea of providing information online about African Americans from Kentucky of note. I worked up a website to present the entries, and as Reinette added entries, I modified the website to organize the entries into categories. Over the years, we have worked with others in the Libraries to provide a more sophisticated database structure, and I have taken on the task of editing and maintaining and updating links to related resources.

    UKNow: Was it modeled on another resource? Has it become a model for others?

    Aken: To the best of our knowledge, NKAA is a unique resource for state-related African American history and biography maintained online as a free resource. We have worked with other librarians who had an interest in creating similar databases for regional coverage in other states, but to date, I am unaware of any comparable resource for other areas. Reinette could address this question more thoroughly than I. Her imagination, research and perseverance are the primary reason this resource exists.

    Jones: As Rob noted, the NKAA Database is an original. Back in 2003, when I asked Rob for help, he instantly jumped on board with the idea and outlined the website, and we tinkered and talked until it was ready to go live. As soon as it went public, NKAA started growing faster than either of us had anticipated. We thought we were really cooking with gas when suddenly there were 100 patrons a day using the site.

    UKNow: How long did it take to get the NKAA Database up and running?

    Jones: I think it took a few months of construction before going live on Sept. 19, 2003.

    Aken: The initial listings began in September 2003 with a couple hundred entries. I would say it took maybe a couple of months to set up the organization we wanted and to build the website. Over the years, we have modified the presentation as Reinette has added thousands of entries, sources and side projects (e.g., the African American Library Directors in the USA), and others have become involved in providing more sophisticated structures to support the continued growth and accessibility of the NKAA.

    UKNow: What work goes into creation of content and database maintenance? 

    Jones: Well, once NKAA proved to be a viable library resource used by hundreds of patrons every day, we got better support from the library administration, and darn good help from colleagues in the library, and vital help from community researchers around the state, around the country, and from abroad.

    On the other end, UK students and faculty started requesting more information and sources like those listed in the NKAA Database. There had been requests long before NKAA came to be, but that demand has grown to be many times more than what it had been.

    Aken: The content creation is almost exclusively Reinette’s work. She does the research for the entries, which may include following directions from folks in the state who, for example, describe the location of a private cemetery in an out-of-the-way location that may require her to put on boots and go slogging along a creek to examine.

    Creation of the entries comes from Reinette’s commitment to researching any aspect of the African American experience, contributions, and history in Kentucky or by Kentuckians who have made notable contributions throughout the country and the world.

    It should be noted, too, that much of the database has been developed by following up on questions or contributions from patrons and information provided by users of the database — this resource is in large-part a grassroots development, as we learn about many of the notable African Americans recorded in the NKAA from those who use the database: some provide basic information that Reinette then researches and writes up; some write entries themselves or provide the bulk of the information themselves; and other researchers ( e.g., Yvonne Giles of Lexington) provide information.

    UKNow: What topics and/or people does the NKAA Database cover?

    Aken: I believe the original 2003 database had 10 or so subjects. Many of the entries are about individuals and those activities that have made them “notable,” regardless of why they are notable. Most of the individual person entries do highlight significant contributions involving leadership, celebrity, talent and creativity, often while highlighting a broad range of specific fields of endeavor (e.g., actors, agriculturalists, nurses, physicists, poets). Others make note of significant historical development (e.g., the history of African American education in Kentucky), locations related to Kentucky African Americans (e.g., Nicodemus, Kansas), collections (e.g., oral history collections, many available online through the UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center), and data (e.g., Slave Owners, Slaves, Free Blacks, Free Mulattoes in Kentucky, 1850-1870).

    Really, anything that is specifically an aspect of the historical and current African American experience in the state of Kentucky or related in some way to individuals who have a Kentucky connection is included in NKAA. Each entry includes the pertinent subjects related to that entry at the bottom, linking out to other entries in the database that are related to those subjects. And links to video, sound recordings, and photographs and other images are included when available.

    Jones: Today, the NKAA Database covers 242 topics from the first African American families to zoologists. There is even a category for “Other,” those scattered topics that are one of a kind, such as comic book collections and African Americans with the first name Kentucky. 

    You can find all the database subjects at https://nkaa.uky.edu/nkaa/references/subject.

    UKNow: Any favorite specific entries or topics covered?

    Jones: Nope. Whatever I am working on is my next favorite.

    Aken: I agree with Reinette. My work involves going through the entire database, editing entries, updating links and providing updated information when available. I must say that every entry I work on is my favorite at that moment.

    There is such a wealth of information here providing examples of fortitude, creativity and contributions to the advancement of the race, the state and humanity in general. There are also historical entries that provide a picture of what slavery and racism have done to our state and country, but also examples of how people of the state have contributed to overcoming this history and continue to work toward overcoming the continuing impact of racism through perseverance and cooperation. Some of those entries include white individuals who have contributed as well to this fight (e.g., John Gregg Fee, founder of Berea College).

    I would point out that NKAA has led to requests to use the information (e.g., one year for Black History Month, the Lexington Herald-Leader used one NKAA entry each day to highlight various Kentuckians and their accomplishments). We have also talked with various history and genealogy groups throughout the state about the NKAA, and it also won the American Library Association Reference and User Services Association Award in 2009: www.ala.org/news/news/pressreleases2009/april2009/rusagalecengagewinner.

    UKNow: Do you continue to add new information to the database today?

    Jones: New information is added almost daily. Contributions come from reference questions, submissions or requests that fill a research gap, such as Black Names in Kentucky or Cabinetmakers.

    Aken: I can’t imagine the database would ever be “complete”; issues and individuals continue to develop, and so much historical information is incomplete, there will always be more information that can be added to this ongoing story.

    UKNow: What ways have you seen the database used over the years?

    Jones: The NKAA Database is used by all grade levels, senior centers, community researchers and genealogists. The database has been listed as a reference source in various publications and on library and school websites. When NKAA was a couple of years old, I found out that parents and community researchers were periodically printing the entire website because they thought it was something that UK was presenting for Black History Month and had not gotten around to taking it down. The fear was that it would not last and would soon be going away. No matter how many times I assured them that was not the case, I just could not say it enough or prove it, so we showed them that it would be around for a while.

    Aken: When I worked in Reference, I would perhaps guide a student or other user of the Libraries to entries in NKAA to assist them in their research.

    Also, users contact us via email or call to find out more information about entries, and we work with them on their research. Most recently for example, a person who is buying and restoring a house that was (he thinks) designed and built by Samuel Plato in Marion, Indiana, had looked at the entry for Plato in the database, and he wanted to know “how to best retrieve items listed in the NKAA database.” I was able to tell him how to get copies of the material he wanted. The database provides, then, introductory information on the person or topic, but also importantly provides references to information with more detail about the entry — NKAA often serves as a starting point to additional information that exists in other works.

    UKNow: Do you have an idea of how many people have used the database?

    Jones: The numbers have grown from 100 or so hits per day in 2003 to anywhere from 1,000-4,000 hits per day this year.

    This year has really been one for the books, and not just because of the coronavirus and students learning virtually. The life and death events surrounding African Americans in Kentucky and nationally caused major usage spikes. When Breonna Taylor was murdered, suddenly anybody and everybody wanted to know more about the life experiences of African Americans in Kentucky. Who? What? Where? When? How? Why? 

    UKNow: What do you hope users take away from the resource?

    Aken: There are so many ways the resource can be useful to a wide range of users. Younger students learn the breadth of contributions so many people have made to the human race, and they see the history of a central state in the African American experience. They also can find starting points for further research. Scholars can also find sources of information and material specific to the state of Kentucky, a state that has been central to the history of African Americans.

    Jones: Kentucky is a state that has a lot of unexplored history. Rob and I will not have enough lifetime to mark down all the noted African American people, places and events in Kentucky. There will always be more. Go find it. 

    UKNow: Any future plans for the NKAA Database to grow or expand?

    Aken: I’m sure Reinette has specific ideas, and I’ll be there to do what I can to help with the expansion. I know it has grown steadily since 2003, and the bulk of that growth is because of Reinette’s dedication, imagination and perseverance.

    Jones: For now, it will continue to grow with updates and new information. The final plans for NKAA are still being discussed. It has been fully sponsored and supported by the UK Libraries for almost two decades and is provided to all who have internet access.

    NKAA has been extremely well received by the campus and the community. UK Special Collections would be a good resting place for the NKAA Database. We will see where it lands when the time comes.

    Aken: I’ve worked on a number of projects in my career, but NKAA holds a special place in my heart. To have contributed in whatever way I can to help Reinette bring her vision together has been one of the highlights of my career. It’s an honor to contribute to such an important resource that touches so many people; I’m grateful for the opportunity to be a part of NKAA.

     

    The Notable Kentucky African Americans Database remains a free online resource for all who have access to the internet at https://nkaa.uky.edu/.

    Reinette Jones, who earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism and master’s degree in library science from UK, started out as a member of the university’s Student Financial Aid office before joining UK Libraries Reference team in Margaret I. King Library.

    Over the years, Jones has worked in the UK Libraries’ Communications Reading Room, Shaver Engineering Library, International Documents in King Library and with Reference at William T. Young Library. After working with Reference, she transitioned to the Special Collections Research Center’s Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, and now serves in Special Collections doing community outreach, reference, and research, and as an affiliate with African American and Africana Studies in the College of Arts and Sciences. In addition to the NKAA Database, Jones also created the research guide for lesbian studies for UK Libraries — one of the most used research guides on campus.   

    Rob Aken, who holds a bachelor’s degree in English from West Virginia University, came to UK in 1976 to pursue his master’s degree in English and serve as a teaching assistant in the department. While working on his second master’s degree in library science, he worked as a graduate assistant in the King Library’s Reference Department. Aken began working as a reference librarian upon graduation. During his career with UK Libraries, he served as a bibliographer for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance as well as English; coordinator of the Reference Collection Development; coordinator of Bibliographic Instruction; coordinator of Automated Reference Services; head of Reference; a WWW resources librarian (later web administration librarian, including Research Guides startup and administration; and official representative, Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research).

    Outside of UK Libraries, Aken was also involved in a variety of first-generation projects, having been a first-generation student himself, and served as a reviewer for Library Journal and Choice. He also developed a Virtual Alternative Media database in conjunction with a Department of Communications faculty member and developed and maintained a website for Radio Eye for many years.

    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationLibraries

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: For 18 years, a one-of-its-kind database has captured the wide-ranging array of contributions Black Kentuckians have made in the Commonwealth and beyond. Spearheaded by Reinette Jones and Rob Aken, the Notable Kentucky African Americans Database ensures that generations to come will have access to information on the substantial impact these citizens made on the state's history.Homepage Feature: Primary featureSection Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Chaney Willett Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 4, 2021) — May 2020 journalism graduate Arden Barnes placed 13th in the Multimedia Narrative Storytelling Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Journalism Awards Program.

    Barnes’ project, titled “The Courage to Win,” focused on 15-year-old Dani Brown from Lexington, who is an eight-time National Boxing Champion and current Team USA boxer set to compete in the 2024 Olympics. Brown began boxing at 9 years old when she joined Legends Boxing along with her older brother, Dale, who started boxing to help rehabilitate his lungs after having a double lung infection and pneumonia while he was in high school. “Brown said that her brother is her biggest inspiration,” said Barnes, when commenting on her work.

    “The Courage to Win” comprises of a written portion, a YouTube video, several photographs and a content plan for Instagram. “The Courage to Win” can be found in its entirety at www.ardenbarnes.com/the-courage-to-win.

    Barnes’ project was initially a product of her capstone JOU 498: Advanced Multimedia class, which is a requirement for journalism majors in the School of Journalism and Media within the College of Communication and Information. According to Barnes, Assistant Professor David Stephenson was her navigation through the unusual Spring 2020 semester. “Professor Stephenson was incredibly helpful in guiding the project, especially when we went completely virtual in March,” Barnes said. “It’s wonderful to see that good work can come out of different times of learning, even in a pandemic.”

    "I'm so proud of Arden for being recognized at the national level for her talent and hard work. Our class and her project were completely upended in March by the pandemic, yet she persisted and finished with a great story," Stephenson said.

    Barnes is happy to see her hard work pay off in the Hearst Awards. “It’s always really exciting to see the University of Kentucky alongside other nationally renowned journalism schools.”

    The Hearst Journalism Awards Program was founded as a way to support and assist journalism education at the collegiate level. The program awards scholarships to students with outstanding performance in divisions including writing, photojournalism, audio, television and multimedia competitions. To enter any competition hosted by the Hearst Awards, students must be involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs or newscasts that can be submitted.

    Watch Arden Barnes' video for "The Courage to Win" above. Photo by Arden Barnes.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: May 2020 journalism graduate Arden Barnes placed 13th in the Multimedia Narrative Storytelling Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Journalism Awards Program.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meredith Weber Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 29, 2021) The University of Kentucky Alumni Association Lyman T. Johnson African American Alumni Group, in partnership with the UK Office for Institutional Diversity, will host the 30th annual Lyman T. Johnson Torch Bearer and Torch of Excellence awards via Facebook Live at noon Monday, Feb. 1. The program honors and celebrates African American students and alumni from each college who epitomize the ideals of Lyman T. Johnson.

    UK’s academic colleges select alumni whose faith, hard work and determination have positively affected the lives of people on the UK campus, the city, state or nation. These individuals receive the Lyman T. Johnson Torch of Excellence Award. These colleges also choose students within their respective college whose academic achievement and ability to impact the lives of others would warrant them to receive the Lyman T. Johnson Torch Bearer Award.

    To watch this year’s awards presentation, tune into the UK Alumni Association’s Facebook page at noon Monday Feb. 1.

    This year’s award winners are:

    College of Agriculture, Food and Environment

    Torch Bearer: Jahqethea Johnson 

    Torch of Excellence: Tiffany Monroe

    College of Arts and Sciences

    Torch Bearer: Jacob Barnes, Trinity Houston, Pasama Cole-Kweli, Jillean McCommons, Jordan Ashlee McCray, Kayla Woodson

    Torch of Excellence: Eunique Gaither, Arethia Hamilton, Ursula Mullins

    Gatton College of Business and Economics

    Torch Bearer: Ariel Brent

    Torch of Excellence: Erica Miles

    College of Communication and Information

    Torch Bearer: Akhira Umar

    Torch of Excellence: DeBraun Thomas

    College of Dentistry

    Torch Bearer: Udechukwu Ideduru                            

    Torch of Excellence: Dr. Linda Larkin-Scott

    College of Education

    Torch Bearer: Heather Cowherd

    Torch of Excellence: Felicia C. Smith

    College of Engineering

    Torch Bearer: K’Lynn King

    Torch of Excellence: Tracy Drain

    College of Fine Arts

    Torch Bearer: Moniece La’Shay Mosely

    Torch of Excellence: Key’Mon Murrah

    College of Health Sciences

    Torch Bearer: Isaiah Jones

    Torch of Excellence: Brandon Reeves

    J. David Rosenberg College of Law

    Torch Bearer: Maya S. Marshall

    Torch of Excellence: Steven S. Reed

    College of Nursing

    Torch Bearer: Danielle Duncan

    Torch of Excellence: Delanor Manson

    College of Pharmacy

    Torch Bearer: Anisa Moore

    Torch of Excellence: William Ifeachor

    College of Public Health

    Torch Bearer: Kayla Dougherty

    Torch of Excellence: Sydney S. Taylor

    College of Social Work

    Torch Bearer: Shawndaya Thrasher

    Torch of Excellence: Shaniek Tose

    The Graduate School

    Torch Bearer: Kevely Dumay

    Torch of Excellence: Jeana Dunlap

    Lewis Honors College

    Torch Bearer: Khari Gardner

    Torch of Excellence: Tracy Drain

    To learn more about the UK Alumni Association Lyman T. Johnson African American Alumni Group, visit www.ukalumni.net/LTJ. For information, contact Katie Schaffer at Kathryn.Schaffer [at] uky.edu or 859-257-7172.

    The UK Alumni Association is committed to fostering lifelong engagement among alumni, friends, the association and the university. For more information about the UK Alumni Association, visit www.ukalumni.net or call 800-269-2586.

    Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesBusiness and EconomicsCommunication and InformationDentistryEducationEngineeringFine ArtsMusicTheatreGraduate SchoolHealth SciencesHonors CollegeLawNursingPharmacyPublic HealthSocial Work

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Jenny Wells-Hosley
    jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    "> jenny.wells [at] uky.edu
    859-257-5343 Summary: The University of Kentucky Alumni Association Lyman T. Johnson African American Alumni Group, in partnership with the UK Office for Institutional Diversity, will host the 30th annual Lyman T. Johnson Torch Bearer and Torch of Excellence awards via Facebook Live at noon Monday, Feb. 1. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Meg Mills Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 29, 2021) — The University of Kentucky and the Republic Bank Foundation are presenting sponsors of Kentucky to the World’s Digital Speaker Series program “The War on Terror to the War on Truth: Pulitzer-Winning Journalist Dana Canedy.” To kick off Black History Month, Kentucky to the World has launched its first digital-exclusive program featuring former Courier-Journal Editor-in-Chief Rick Green in a conversation with Canedy to discover her thoughts on the nation and the world as it pertains to the uncertain times we live in.

    Canedy, a UK alumna, was the first African American woman senior vice president and publisher of Simon & Schuster, one of the largest publishing houses in the world. A former New York Times Pulitzer-winning journalist, she has written extensively on a broad range of topics, including The Times' series “How Race Is Lived in America,” about race relations in the United States, which won the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting.

    She is the author of “A Journal for Jordan,” which is currently being adapted into a feature film directed by Denzel Washington and starring Michael B. Jordan. “A Journal for Jordan” focuses on life with her war-hero partner and the journal he left for their infant son before being killed in combat in Iraq. Before being slated for a feature film, the New York Times bestselling book was published in 10 countries and eight languages. 

    Raised in Radcliff, Kentucky, Canedy graduated from UK with a bachelor’s degree in journalism, was named a Distinguished Alumna in the School of Journalism and Media in 2017, and was inducted into the UK Alumni Association's Hall of Distinguished Alumni in 2020. 

    “We are so proud of Dana’s accomplishments over her career and are proud to call her a College of Communication and Information alumna. She’s made such a difference in how we see the world and how we amplify diverse voices as we move forward as a society,” College of Communication and Information Dean Jennifer Greer said.

    Greer was invited to record the introduction of Canedy for the event.

    The speaker series is pre-recorded and will be released to the general public at 6 p.m. Monday, Feb. 1, 2021. A digital student program, which is also being recorded and will offer local high school students an opportunity to pose questions to Canedy, will launch simultaneously. The program can be found on FacebookInstagram and YouTube.

    About Kentucky to the World

    Kentucky to the World, Inc. (KTW) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit cultural organization whose mission is to enhance the reputation of Kentucky, its people and its assets by featuring and promoting the stories of extraordinary individuals who are passionate about their Kentucky ties. KTW inspires Kentuckians of all ages to realize their own potential and boosts awareness of the state’s positive impact across the country and around the world.

    For more information, call 502-897-3819, or visit www.kentuckytotheworld.org.

    Dana CanedyOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky, along with the Republic Bank Foundation, is proud to sponsor Kentucky to the World’s Digital Speaker Series “The War on Terror to the War on Truth: Pulitzer-Winning Journalist Dana Canedy.”
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Catherine Hayden Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 26, 2021) — The Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate team, housed in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Kentucky, is off to a fast start for the Spring 2021 debate season with an impressive win at their first tournament, a three-day event hosted by the United States Naval Academy this month.

    The team of David Griffin (freshman) and Jordan Di (freshman) finished as champions with a 9-1 record, defeating a host of strong teams along the way including Emory University, Dartmouth College, Georgetown University and the University of Michigan.

    “The Naval Academy tournament is something the team prepares especially hard for every season. The fact that Jordan and David accomplished this in their first year speaks volumes about their maturity and ability,” said UK Debate Director David Arnett.

    UK Debate is currently preparing for their next tournament hosted by Northwestern University and will then turn their attention toward their virtual post-season tournament preparations.

    Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate is off to a fast start for the Spring 2021 debate season.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The Kentucky Intercollegiate Debate team, housed in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Kentucky, is off to a fast start for the Spring 2021 debate season.
    Category:
  • Body: UK HappeningsBy Allison Perry Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 14, 2021) – The University of Kentucky is sponsoring a free virtual town hall, “Undoing the Harmful Legacy of the War on Drugs: A Focus on Communities of Color,” on Thursday, Jan. 28, 1-4 p.m.

    The town hall, hosted in partnership with Voices of Hope, will identify the harmful consequences of the War on Drugs, describe the barriers to treatment and recovery faced by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and People of Color) that have been exacerbated by the War on Drugs, and discuss the intersection between recovery advocacy and anti-racism activism.

    The UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment’s Alex Elswick, co-founder of Voices of Hope, will moderate the discussion; UK College of Medicine Associate Professor and medical historian Claire Clark will be a featured speaker. Other speakers include Shelton McElroy and Shameka Parrish-Wright with The Bail Project, Phillip Rutherford, chief operating officer at Faces & Voices of Recovery, and Jeremy Byard, co-founder and director of the Louisville Recovery Community Connection.

    Registration is free and open to the public. To register, visit voicesofhopelex.org/events/war-on-drugs.

    The University of Kentucky is sponsoring a free virtual town hall, “Undoing the Harmful Legacy of the War on Drugs: A Focus on Communities of Color,” on Thursday, Jan. 28, 1-4 p.m.Organizational Unit: Agriculture, Food and EnvironmentArts and SciencesCommunication and InformationEducationHealth SciencesMedicineNursingPharmacyPublic HealthSocial WorkSummary: The University of Kentucky is sponsoring a free virtual town hall, “Undoing the Harmful Legacy of the War on Drugs: A Focus on Communities of Color,” on Thursday, Jan. 28, 1-4 p.m.
    Category:
  • Body: Professional NewsBy Lillian Nellans Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 7, 2021) — The Bluegrass Debate Coalition (BDC) launched in September 2020 to bring competitive debate to middle schoolers and high schoolers across Kentucky. Overseen by the University of Kentucky's championship intercollegiate debate team and housed in the UK College of Communication and Information, the BDC is a first-of-its-kind project. Combining the expert knowledge and resources of UK’s debate team with the power and accessibility of digital debating has allowed the BDC to breakthrough to Kentucky students, parents and schools. Nearly 50 students from across the state participated in the BDC’s first semester of programming.

    Students meet once a week online for 90 minutes to learn the basics of debate and hone their skills in the After School Debate Program — one of the BDC’s signature initiatives. Open to all middle school and high school students in Kentucky, the program provides high-quality debate instruction to interested students in the state. Classes are fun, educational and the skills learned — like public speaking, persuasive writing, argumentation and research — benefit students far beyond debate. 

    Students do not need to have any previous debate experience or be members of a school debate team to sign up. The BDC offers a novice course for beginners. Each class features a short lesson, group discussion and fun activities to practice new skills. An intermediate course is also offered for students who have previous experience and are looking to take their skills to the next level. Courses will be led by BDC Director Lily Nellans and UK Debate Coach Genevieve Hackman. 

    Classes are completely free for children of UK faculty and staff. All middle school and high school students are eligible to participate. Students meet once a week for 90 minutes in an online classroom with eight to 10 other Kentucky students and an instructor. Each session consists of six weeks of classes. Registration is due by Friday, Jan. 8. Classes begin the week of Jan. 18 and conclude the week of Feb. 22. Learn more about the After School Debate Program and register at the BDC website: https://www.bluegrassdebate.com/after-school-program.

    Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Combining the expert knowledge and resources of UK’s debate team with the power and accessibility of digital debating has allowed the BDC to breakthrough to Kentucky students, parents, and schools. Nearly 50 students from across the state participated in the BDC’s first semester of programming.
    Category:
  • Body: Campus NewsBy Erika Engstrom Tuesday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 5, 2021) — Nominations for the 2021 Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame are being accepted now until Jan. 15, 2021. The sole criterion for selection is that nominees should have a significant connection to Kentucky and have been active in journalism long enough to establish that the contributions they have made to the profession are significant. Kentucky natives or journalists who were raised or educated in Kentucky but practiced journalism elsewhere are eligible for nomination and selection.

    Letters of nomination should include the nominee's Kentucky connections, current and past employment, career highlights and significant contributions to journalism and society. A list of past inductees is posted at http://ci.uky.edu/jam/hall-of-fame/inductees

    For details and instructions on how to make a nomination, go to http://ci.uky.edu/jam/hall-of-fame.

    The Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame is housed in the School of Journalism and Media in the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information.

    Nominations for the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame are now being accepted. Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Nominations for the 2021 Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame are being accepted now until Jan. 15, 2021.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Meg Mills Friday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 18, 2020) — Thanks to an innovative teaching idea from University of Kentucky faculty in the College of Communication and Information, students were able to experience a sense of normalcy in their public speaking and writing courses — with the help of clear face masks.

    One of these faculty members is senior faculty lecturer Allyson DeVito, who turned her CIS 112 final presentation into a TED-like-talk utilizing the clear face masks. Students had the option to deliver their six to eight minute speeches on a subject they are passionate about via Zoom, or in-person using a clear face mask.

    The masks were purchased by the CI dean’s office, and were given to the students ahead of their presentations so they could practice speaking while wearing them.

    “Whether the students chose to deliver their presentations via Zoom or in person, it was great practice for them,” DeVito said. “Most job interviews are happening in virtual settings, so this assignment gave them the opportunity to think about how they would conduct themselves virtually — decide what to wear, how they would keep eye contact, etc.”

    About 40 students in multiple sections of CIS 112 chose to deliver their talks in person.

    Brennen Mullins was one of those students. “The chance to give my TED Talk in-person, using the clear masks, gave me more incentive to practice and prepare my speech. During a semester where many classes were online, it was refreshing to build anticipation for an important, in-person, and relevant talk. I feel like I am better prepared to speak in the future, after we move on from this virus, because of my choice to use a clear mask."

    The clear masks allowed students to show facial expressions to their audience as well as move around the room — both important aspects of public speaking.

    “It was obviously not safe for students to remove their masks, so we did the best we could to give the students the experience of delivering speeches to an audience,” DeVito said. “I believe this adaptation provided a sense of normalcy for the students, as well as for myself. Even with the masks, I didn’t feel my class was drastically different compared to last fall.”

    Looking forward to the spring semester, DeVito hopes to use a similar teaching style and hopes more students will choose to deliver the speech using the clear masks.

    A student presenting in a clear face mask. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Thanks to an innovative teaching idea from University of Kentucky faculty in the College of Communication and Information, students were able to experience a sense of normalcy in their public speaking and writing courses — with the help of clear facemasks.Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: Student and Academic LifeBy Erika Engstrom Thursday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 17, 2020) — The University of Kentucky has made the top 10 in the national Hearst Photojournalism Features and News Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Journalism Awards Program. UK student Michael Clubb is the ninth-place finalist and fellow student Arden Barnes is the 11th-place finalist. Clubb and Barnes' submissions consisted of portfolios of eight images each. The winners were selected from 117 entries submitted from 65 universities nationwide in the first of two photo competitions of the year.

    UK is now in a tie for third place in the Intercollegiate Photojournalism Competition, following Western Kentucky in first place and Ohio University in second. UK shares the tie with the University of North Carolina. The ranking is based on the highest accumulated student points from the first of two photo competitions held this year.

    "Western Kentucky, Ohio University and the University of North Carolina all have photojournalism programs while we do not. So to have the University of Kentucky in their company at a national level is great news," said School of Journalism and Media Assistant Professor David Stephenson, who is also the photojournalism and multimedia adviser for the Kentucky Kernel. "Our students are competing at the highest levels," on par with such highly recognized schools, he added. "I'm very proud of them."

    The final intercollegiate winners will be announced after the Photo II competition in April. The Hearst Awards Program is conducted under the auspices of accredited schools of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication and fully funded and administered by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation. 

    of Organizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: The University of Kentucky has made the top 10 in the national Hearst Photojournalism Features and News Competition of the 2020-2021 Hearst Journalism Awards Program. Section Feature: Section Feature
    Category:
  • Body: ResearchBy Meg Mills Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Dec. 14, 2020) — Sherali Zeadally, in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Kentucky, has been named one of the most highly cited researchers in the world.

    Zeadally, an associate professor and University Research Professor in the School of Information Science, is the first UK researcher since 2014 to be named to the Highly Cited Researcher annual list published by Clarivate, The Web of Science Group.

    Clarivate’s annual list of Highly Cited Researchers recognizes the world's most influential researchers of the past decade. Researchers are selected for their exceptional performance in 21 fields of the sciences and social sciences — that includes agricultural sciences, social sciences, biology, biochemistry, chemistry, clinical medicine, computer science, economics and business, engineering, environment, ecology, geosciences, immunology, materials science, mathematics, microbiology, molecular biology and genetics, neuroscience and behavior, pharmacology and toxicology, physics, plant and animal sciences, psychiatry, psychology and space science — and a further cross disciplinary category.

    Those recognized have demonstrated significant and broad influence reflected in their publication of multiple papers, highly cited by their peers in the past 10 years. These highly cited papers rank in the top 1% by citations for a chosen field or fields and year in Web of Science. Of the world’s population of scientists and social scientists, the Web of Science Group’s Highly Cited Researchers are one in 1,000 or fewer than 0.1% of the world's researchers who have earned this exclusive distinction.

    This year, researchers from more than 60 countries have been recognized — including Zeadally in the field of computer science. He is one of 124 computer science researchers worldwide recognized this year and one of only 13 researchers from the United States.

    “We are proud of Dr. Zeadally on this exceptional achievement,” said Dean Jennifer Greer of the College of Communication and Information. “He is highly prolific, and this honor shows that he is among the elite researchers in his field making an impact worldwide.”

    Zeadally’s expertise is in the areas of cybersecurity, privacy, the internet of things and computer networks. He has published more than 420 peer-reviewed publications. He has received more than 50 awards/honors/prestigious fellowships nationally and internationally for his research, teaching and service in his career.

    "This worldwide recognition is a big surprise for me,” Zeadally said. “I feel honored to be on this very prestigious list of 2020 Highly Cited Researchers in the world and to be recognized by one’s peers for the quality of work I have conducted with my research collaborators. I have been extremely fortunate to work with exceptionally talented students, postdocs, junior and senior faculty colleagues around the world throughout my academic career. I take this opportunity to share this achievement with all of them for their efforts, dedication and hard work they have put into our research collaborations without which this award would not be possible.

    "This prestigious award belongs to the University of Kentucky. I would like to thank my colleagues at the University of Kentucky for all their support and encouragements in my research."

    About Web of Science

    Web of Science is the world’s most trusted and largest publisher-neutral citation index, powering global discovery and citation analytics across the sciences, social sciences, and art and humanities. With over 1.4 billion cited references going back to 1900 and millions of users per day — from leading government and academic institutions and research-intensive corporations — the Web of Science citation network serves as the foundation for the Journal Impact Factor, In Cites and other powerful and trusted citation-impact measures. The Web of Science helps researchers, research institutions, publishers and funders discover and assess the citation impact of over a century of research publications found in the most prestigious books, conference proceedings and journals.

    Sherali ZeadallyOrganizational Unit: Communication and Information

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Meg Mills
    Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    "> Margaret.Mills [at] uky.edu
    859-323-7978 Summary: Sherali Zeadally, in the College of Communication and Information at the University of Kentucky, has been named one of the most highly cited researchers in the world.
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  • Body: Arts & CultureBy Whitney Hale Monday

    LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 30, 2020) At the end of each fall semester, University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies (SA/VS) celebrates its best and brightest young artists as part of the Carey Ellis Juried Student Show and awards ceremony presented at the school’s annual visual art celebration, Open Studio. While this fall looks different due to the pandemic, the school was still able to honor this year’s 18 winners with an online ceremony held Nov. 20.

    Although 2020 has proven to be a challenging year, UK’s SA/VS students have persevered, generating work that is thoughtful and inspired. As part of the annual juried show, the best work from three undergraduate degree areas — Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Science — was recognized. The winners were selected by Brooklyn-based textile artist, surface designer and fine art printmaker Stephanie Santana.

    This year’s Carey Ellis Bachelor of Arts award winners are:

    • Ember Kawarada, an art studio junior from Lexington, who is also minoring in Japan studies, who took first place;
    • Abigail Peck, an art studio senior from Lexington, who is also minoring in art history, who took second place;
    • Channing Salazar, an art studio senior from Lexington, who took third place; and
    • Marie McClary, an art education and art studio senior from Owensboro, Kentucky, who received a merit award.

    This year’s Carey Ellis Bachelor of Fine Arts award winners are:

    • Reagan Profit, an art studio senior from Nicholasville, Kentucky, who took first place;
    • Ellan Luna, an art studio senior from Bowling Green, Kentucky, who took second place;
    • Mia Rambo, an art studio senior from Lexington, who is also minoring in art history, who took third place; and
    • Brianna Armstrong, an art studio senior from Lexington, who received a merit award.

    This year’s Carey Ellis Bachelor of Science award winners are:

    • Abby Green, a digital media and design senior from Carlisle, Kentucky, who is minoring in art history, who took first place;
    • Jonah Peck, a digital media and design sophomore from Lexington, who took second place;
    • Jordan Reese, a digital media and design junior from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, who took third place; and
    • Christopher Corbett, a digital media and design sophomore from Louisville, Kentucky, who is minoring in media arts and studies, who received a merit award.

    The 2020 Carey Ellis Best Art History and Visual Studies Paper Scholarship was awarded to Haley B. Drake for her paper titled "Touch Sanitation: An Ecofeminist Approach to the Abjection of Maintenance." Mentored by SA/VS faculty member Miriam Kienle, Drake is an art history senior and Lewis Honors College member from Lexington.

    Other SA/VS honors presented as part of the virtual awards ceremony included the Theophilia Joan Oexmann Original Art Awards given to Luna, Profit and Katie Creech, an art studio and arts administration senior from Georgetown, Kentucky. The SA/VS faculty presented the Oexmann Awards to students who showed great promise in their work through creativity and originality.

    The Ross Zirkle Memorial Art Studio Award was presented to Isabelle Pethtel, a Lewis Honors College member and digital media and design and writing, rhetoric, and digital studies junior, minoring in Japan studies, from Palestine, West Virginia. Created in memory of faculty member Ross Zirkle, funds for this award were raised by donations from family, friends and former students of Zirkle. This award is presented to a student who is studying printmaking or drawing, and demonstrates qualities of artistic excellence, hard work and interest in helping the community, like Zirkle.

    The NCAA Award was presented to Madison McGill, an art studio senior from Goshen, Kentucky. The award provides financial aid to students who demonstrate potential for academic and/or artistic success. This award is made possible from an endowment set up with proceeds from posters created by UK art faculty for the 1985 NCAA tournament at Rupp Arena.

    The Cheryl Kelly Haffler Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Marie McClary. This honor recognizes academic and creative excellence and is presented to a student who displays a dedication to learning and a passion for the arts, while playing an active role in the community.

    The Kim Adler Memorial Scholarship was presented in memory of 1996 UK graduate and sculptor Kim “Kimmer” Adler. This year’s recipient is Amalia Galdona Broche, a graduate student from Jacksonville, Florida.

    In addition to the scholarships and awards above, SA/VS also recognized its two Windgate candidates. UK was allotted two nominees to be considered for the prestigious Windgate Fellowship, one of the largest awards offered nationally to college graduating art students. This year’s nominations went to Brianna Armstrong and art studio senior Terence “Terry” Powell Jr. of Lexington.

    The UK School of Art and Visual Studies, part of the College of Fine Arts, offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fields of art studio, art history and visual studies, art education, curatorial studies and digital media design.

    of Organizational Unit: Arts and SciencesCommunication and InformationFine ArtsArtArts AdministrationGraduate SchoolHonors College

    The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion three years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for four straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.

    Contact Whitney Hale
    whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    "> whitney.hale [at] uky.edu
    859-257-8716 Summary: At the end of each fall semester, University of Kentucky School of Art and Visual Studies celebrates its best and brightest young artists as part of the Carey Ellis Juried Student Show and awards ceremony presented at the school’s annual visual art celebration, Open Studio. While this fall looks different due to the pandemic, the school was still able to honor this year’s 18 winners with an online ceremony held Nov. 20.Section Feature: Section Feature
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