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Archive for April, 2012

The University of Toledo Celebrates Astronomy Day April 28

The University of Toledo Ritter Planetarium and the Toledo Astronomical Association will celebrate Astronomy Day Saturday, April 28, with a series of free, public shows on Main Campus.

“Astronomy Day is an effort by amateur and professional astronomers to reach out to as many people as possible to share information about the wonders of the universe around us,” said Dr. Michael Cushing, UT assistant professor of astronomy and director of Ritter Planetarium.

Free shows at 1, 3 and 5 p.m. will explore different aspects of the vast space beyond Earth’s atmosphere:

• 1 p.m. — Planetarium children’s program, “Zula Patrol: The Weather Down Under,” and a presentation titled “From Disks to Exoplanets: A New Role for Ritter Observatory” by Dr. Karen Bjorkman, dean of the UT College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

• 3 p.m. — Planetarium program, “Two Small Pieces of Glass,” and talk called “Cloudy With a 30 Percent Chance of Stars” by Dr. Tom Megeath, UT associate professor of astronomy.

• 5 p.m. — Planetarium program, “Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity,” and a presentation titled “A Separate Light — New Views of Galaxies Near and Far” by Dr. J.D. Smith, UT assistant professor of astronomy.

Meanwhile, the Toledo Astronomical Association will have telescopes on hand outside the planetarium for solar and astronomical viewing by the public, weather permitting.

For more information about the Toledo Astronomical Association and its Astronomy Day efforts, contact Frank Merritt at

Media Coverage
The Blade (April 25, 2012)
The Blade (April 25, 2012)
The Blade (April 25, 2012)
The Blade (April 26, 2012)

Leadership conference encourages teen leaders to take their imaginations seriously

More than 200 teen leaders from throughout Northwest Ohio will participate in a leadership conference that encourages them to take their imaginations seriously.

The Third Annual Lifeplan for Teen Leaders & Achievers Conference will be held 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday, April 25 in Savage Arena at The University of Toledo.

Lifeplan Toledo, in collaboration with Root Learning and UT, will welcome keynote speaker Janet Echelman, American artist from who reshapes urban airspace with monumental, fluidly moving sculptures that respond to environmental forces including wind, water and sunlight. The keynote session will be 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will be open to the public, a first for the leadership conference.

“For me, engaging change is more than just a concept, it’s embracing challenges that open doors into the world where great discoveries are born,” said John Livingston, Lifeplan conference host and founder of Whirlwind U Motivational Institute, about touching the lives of a ‘future generation of dreamers’ through the leadership conference.

The day’s events will include learning modules and exercises that allow teens to understand the value of the creative energy of others around them, developing unique and imaginative solutions to problems, discovering how visualizing ideas can drive clarity of meaning and learning the skills it takes to become a corporate executive.

Lawrence J. Burns, UT vice president of external affairs, will give a presentation on “The Power of You” about image and reputation followed by two UT students discussing the power of social media and personal branding.

Toledo’s Root Learning will provide a leadership competition for both students and executives to promote imagination and creativity in leadership.

“I believe self-discovery is a continual learning experience that not everyone embraces,” Livingston said. “Each year, our goal is to engage teens, education administrators and corporate executive in a unique learning experience by engaging change and entering the world of possibilities.”

Lifeplan Toledo was launched in 2010 by Livingston from the interactive, discovery-based learning program created by The Lifeplan Institute, which helps participants navigate the path of life, avoid its most common pitfalls, and become successful, thriving adults.

For more information on Lifeplan Toledo, follow them on Twitter at and Facebook at, or contact Livingston directly at

Media Coverage
13 ABC (April 26, 2012)

Yell & Tell rally Sunday to raise awareness about child abuse

Raising awareness about child abuse in the Toledo area is the focus of Yell & Tell: Stop Child Abuse Now, and the organization makes an extra effort during the National Child Abuse Prevention Month of April.

The ninth annual Yell & Tell: Stop Child Abuse Now Rally will take place Sunday, April 22, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Walbridge ParkShelter House, located on Broadway Avenue across from the Toledo Zoo.

The 2012 rally will include a keynote address from UT Head Football Coach Matt Campbell, with entertainment provided by soloist Amy Gibson and the Distinguished Clown Corps, which includes Dan Saevig, UT associate vice president for alumni relations.

“The rally provides an opportunity for students to gain material and knowledge about child abuse prevention methods,” said Pamela Crabtree, president and founder of Yell & Tell: Stop Child Abuse Now. “Students are the future and as an organization, our mission is to educate the future leaders of tomorrow on how to protect our children.”

In 2010, 743 Lucas County children were victims of maltreatment, according to Lucas County Children Services.

A number of UT events have raised funds for Yell & Tell’s awareness efforts. The nonprofit organization was the philanthropy choice of this year’s Songfest, which took place March 31. Proceeds from the Kappa Delta sorority 5K Shamrock run April 15 at Swan Creek Preserve Metropark benefited Yell & Tell, and the UT electricians each year sponsor a bowling tournament fundraiser.

“UT is always supportive of our annual rally and that is very commendable,” Crabtree said. “I am very proud and honored to be an alumna and retiree from UT.”

Local law enforcement, community organizations and service agencies will participate in the free, public rally. Refreshments will be provided.

Media Coverage
The Blade (April 21, 2012)
The Blade (April 23, 2012)

UT Chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi to initiate new members

The University of Toledo Chapter of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi will hold its initiation ceremony for new members Sunday, April 22, at 1 p.m. in Student Union Room 2582.

More than 100 undergraduate and graduate students and three UT faculty members will be inducted into the honor society this year. Dr. Curtis Black, UT professor emeritus of pharmacy and national Phi Kappa Phi vice president for finance, will present the keynote address.

Inductees into the honorary must be in the top 7.5 percent of the junior class in their college, or the top 10 percent of their senior or graduate school college to qualify for membership.

In addition to inducting new members, the society will honor three scholarship winners and the chapter’s nominee for the national Phi Kappa Phi Graduate Fellowship Award.

The chapter is awarding three $500 scholarships this year. The winners were selected based upon academic performance, an essay and letters of recommendation from faculty members. The winners of the scholarships areYasmine Ayoub (Sylvania), Jeanetta Mohlke-Hill (Toledo) and Jessica Wenninger (Paulding County, Ohio).

Ayoub is a freshman majoring in pre-med and biology. She is a student in the Honors College and volunteers at the Lake Park Nursing Facility in Sylvania. One of her nominators for the scholarship noted, “She is a very talented student and is devoted to pursuing a career as a physician.”

Mohlke-Hill is a junior majoring in women’s and gender studies. Also in the Honors College, Mohlke-Hill is assistant director of the UT Writing Center, where she tutors students. She has received numerous scholarships for studies in the humanities and has presented research at a national conference. She is working on her senior thesis project, which examines how girls today are taught through popular culture to embody feminism.

Wenninger is a freshman majoring in exercise science and is in the Pre-Physical Therapy Program and the Honors College. In her scholarship application essay, she described the personal impact of a volunteer summer trip to help a deaf village in Montego Bay, Jamaica. She has continued her volunteer efforts by working at an orphanage in Mexico last year, and helping to clean up after a tornado in Alabama over spring break this year. One of her nominators for the scholarship noted her strong critical thinking skills and writing abilities.

The UT Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi also will honor its nominee for the national Phi Kappa Phi Graduate Fellowship Award, Lisa Marie Kitzler. One graduating senior is selected by the chapter each year for nomination as a national fellow. Kitzler will pursue graduate study in the field of speech-language pathology.

In addition to the undergraduate and graduate students who will be inducted into the honor society, UT faculty members will be inducted. They are Dr. Susanna Hapgood, assistant professor of curriculum and instruction in the Judith Herb College of Education, Health Science and Human Service; Dr. Barbara Mann, assistant professor in the Honors College; and Dr. Nagi Naganathan, dean of the College of Engineering.

For more information, contact Dr. Mohamed Samir Hefzy, UT Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi president, at 419.530.6086.

Students set to dance the night away for Children’s Miracle Network

More than 500 students are registered to stay on their feet for 18 hours this weekend at The University of Toledo’s Dance Marathon to raise money for health care for children.

Participants in UT’s 11th annual Dance Marathon will spend the entire night in the Student Recreation Center playing games, participating in contests and activities and, of course, dancing. The event will run from7:12 p.m. Friday, April 13, to 1:12 p.m. Saturday, April 14.

“Dance Marathon is such a great event because you have the ability to see exactly where the money you are raising is going. We support the Children’s Miracle Network through Mercy Children’s Hospital in downtown Toledo. Students can sign up to go on a tour of the hospital to see what exactly their money is buying,” said Alex Friend, this year’s director of Dance Marathon. “Families who have been helped by money that we have raised also attend Dance Marathon. It is really inspiring for our participants to be able to interact with them.”

Friend said that each year there are about a dozen families who attend the event and share inspiring stories about their children battling the odds.

Last year’s Dance Marathon raised nearly $60,000 for families in the greater Toledo area. This year’s goal is $80,000.

Since 2001, the University community has come together to raise nearly $400,000 to support research and technology to uphold the standard of care for children.

Media Coverage
WTOL 11 (April 16, 2012)

“Meet The Chef Day” to introduce UTMC executive chef, remodeled Four Seasons Bistro

The executive chef of the newly remodeled Four Seasons Bistro at The University of Toledo Medical Center is an accomplished culinary artist with training at the Culinary Institute of America.


Chef Scott Sundermeyer, who previously served as the executive chef of Ford Motor Company, joined the UT Medical Center as part of a transformation of the former Skyview Cafeteria to the Four Seasons Bistro.

“The UT Medical Center is the only hospital in the region with an executive chef and we are honored to have Chef Scott as part of ourculinary team,” said Ioan Duca, service excellence officer for the University. “UTMC is committed to making the patient experience the best possible and the dining experience is an important component.”

The community is invited to meet Sundermeyer and enjoy a complimentary tasting from a live cooking demonstration at “Meet The Chef Day” 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, April 6 in the Four Seasons Bistro. (MEDIA ALERT: The best time for photos/interviews is 12:30 p.m.)

Sundermeyer joins the UT Medical Center from Metro Health Hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich. In addition to serving as executive chef for Ford, he also led catering events at Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village and served as chef for Hyatt hotels in Dearborn, Mich. and Hilton Head, S.C.

The UT Medical Center recently renovated the hospital cafeteria to create a new remodeled dining space with new flooring and new tables and seating, including hotel-style couches and lounge chairs. Updated light fixtures, fresh paint and a new artwork collection add to the vibrantappearance.

The physical changes are in addition to a new menu featuring high-quality ingredients and a larger variety of meal options.

“Meet The Chef Day” is free and open to the public.

Media Coverage
The Blade (April 6, 2012)
13 ABC (April 10, 2012)