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Archive for January, 2016

Apple co-founder to speak at UT

Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Inc., is visiting The University of Toledo to speak as part of the Jesup Scott Honors College Distinguished Lecture Series.


More than 5,000 people have registered for the free tickets to the Silicon Valley icon’s talk at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 1 in Savage Arena on the UT Main Campus. Limited general admission tickets remain.

Wozniak and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs revolutionized the computer industry with the Apple I and II personal computers. These early designs influenced today’s Mac computer and innovative products that impact daily living, including the iPhone, iPad, iTunes and AppleTV.

The final talk in the 2015-16 Jesup Scott Honors College Distinguished Lecture Series will be Tuesday, April 5 when Ann Bancroft, one of the world’s preeminent polar explorers, speaks at 7 p.m. in Doermann Theater. Bancroft is an internationally recognized leader who is dedicated to inspiring women, girls and audiences around the world to unleash the power of their dreams.

For additional information or to request tickets, visit or call 419.530.2738.

Media Coverage
The Blade (Feb. 2, 2016)
The Blade (Feb. 2, 2016)
13 ABC (Feb. 2, 2016)
WTOL 11 (Feb. 2, 2016)
The Blade (Feb. 8, 2016)

UT seeks community input on campus diversity

The University of Toledo invites the community to join the campus conversation on diversity.

A Community Conversation on Diversity will be 6-8 p.m. Monday, Feb. 1 at the Kent Public Library, 3101 Collingwood Blvd.

The conversation is one of several UT is holding to engage campus in a dialogue about their experiences and perceptions of diversity and inclusiveness at the University. Focused conversations also have been scheduled to engage students, faculty and staff about their experiences.

“We want to learn how the UT and Toledo communities feel, as well as how we should go about creating an inclusive environment at The University of Toledo,” said Dr. Willie McKether, special assistant to the president for diversity who is working to create a comprehensive University diversity plan. “These efforts to listen and gather data are critical for understanding where we are now and where we want to go as a university community.”

The discussions are part of UT President Sharon L. Gaber’s commitment to diversity, inclusion and equal access to important institutional resources.

“The University needs to be sure all voices are heard, and these sessions are essential to our strategic diversity plan,” Gaber said. “We need to incorporate the feedback we receive into our policies, procedures and initiatives, as well as ensure that UT is an inclusive, welcoming and supportive environment for all stakeholders, from faculty and staff to students and the community we’re grateful to serve.”

In the conversations, McKether will explore with participants their views on how UT currently addresses issues of diversity and their perceptions of being welcomed, valued and included at the University. Topics will include, but not be limited to, student life, campus climate, community involvement, classroom climate and inclusion.

Media Coverage
The Blade (Jan. 29, 2016)
La Prensa (Feb. 2, 2016)

Celebrity Wait Night to raise funds for UT’s Eberly Center for Women

The Eighth Annual Celebrity Wait Night to benefit the Catharine S. Eberly Center for Women will be 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 11 at the Pinnacle in Maumee located at 1772 Indian Wood Circle.

The event will feature a dinner served by local celebrities, as well as a silent auction, scholarship recipient announcement and live entertainment. The University of Toledo President Sharon L. Gaber, Toledo Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson and other local luminaries will be among the celebrity wait staff on hand for part of the evening.

Notable silent auction items include a wine tasting at The Andersons, Detroit Tigers and Toledo Walleye tickets, Toledo Symphony tickets and weekend getaways.

Tickets are $60 each or $500 for a table of 10.  More than 400 guests are expected to attend. Proceeds support the Eberly Center’s Women’s Success Programming, which provides training and workshops to those hoping to go back to school, make a career change or better themselves. The center provides free resources and education on business etiquette, branding, resumé writing and more.

Dr. Shanda Gore, UT associate vice president for equity, diversity and community engagement, said the goal of the Women’s Success Programming is to teach people to be the best they can be.

Kate’s Closet, a boutique-style shop that provides free professional clothing to UT students, is another Eberly Center resource that will benefit from proceeds from this event.

“This has been a community of giving,” Gore said. “We really appreciate all the support from our students, faculty, staff and the community.”

RSVPs are requested by Monday, Feb. 1; call 419.530.8570.

Media Coverage
13 ABC (Feb. 12, 2016)

Lecturer to teach mindfulness practices Feb. 2

Inhale, be aware, exhale.

Mindfulness — the ability to be in the moment, focused and aware — is a practice that requires dedication and one that UT Senior Lecturer Jay Rinsen Weik recommends starting with a face to face interaction with an instructor.

Luckily his upcoming lecture, “Zen Mindfulness,” could serve as that first step. The free, public lecture on Tuesday, Feb. 2 at 7 p.m. will be in the Center for Performing Arts Recital Hall. After a brief musical introduction, Weik plans to talk about the practice of mindfulness and teach some basic meditations for people to implement in their daily lives.

The talk will be an extension of the Mindfulness and Creativity Initiative that Weik directs at the University.

“The initiative brings together two important aspects of human fulfillment,” he said. “One of them is creativity studies, which is ridiculously relevant no matter what field we’re talking about. The other is mindfulness. That’s the ability to be present to one’s experience; really powerfully present. Creativity is the currency of progress, and mindfulness is the currency of peace.”

Both are developable and trainable, according to Weik, who also serves as an American Zen teacher. By practicing meditational exercises daily, mindfulness can alleviate stress and reduce suffering — producing a tangible difference in a person’s life.

“The more of us that are healthy, that are creative, that are fulfilled, the better it is for all of us,” said Weik, who teaches a course called Mindfulness and Creativity at UT focusing on introducing mindfulness through meditation and breathing methods.

A reception will follow the talk. Free parking will be available in the UT Law Center’s parking areas, 12, 12S and 12W.

The lecture is sponsored jointly by the UT Mindfulness and Creativity Initiative and the UT Center for Religious Understanding. It’s made possible by the University’s College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences, the Toledo Community Foundation and other local individuals, families and corporations that support the Center for Religious Understanding.

Media Coverage
The Blade (Jan. 30, 2016)

Author/activist to give keynote address at Conference for Aspiring Minority Youth

Political activist, motivational speaker and author Kevin Powell will be the keynote speaker at The University of Toledo’s 32nd Annual Conference for Aspiring Minority Youth on Saturday, Jan. 30.

This year’s event with the theme “Beyond the Classroom: The Rewards of Self-Directed Learning” will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Student Union Auditorium. It is sponsored by Toledo Excel and the UT Joint Committee.


An acclaimed community activist and award-winning writer, Powell was born and raised in Jersey City, N.J., by a single mom in extreme poverty surrounded by violence. In spite of these circumstances, Powell studied at Rutgers University and has become one of the most respected writers and voices of his generation. He shared that story in the 2015 autobiography titled The Education of Kevin Powell: A Boy’s Journey Into Manhood.

He is the author or editor of 12 books and has written for numerous publications, including The Washington Post, Newsweek, Essence, Ebony, Esquire, Rolling Stone and Vibe.

As a leader, Powell has worked on a range of concerns, including voter registration, Hurricane Katrina relief, education, the environment, eradicating poverty, and supply and resource support for post-earthquake Haiti.

As an extension of his public service work, Powell routinely lectures across America and internationally, and he is a frequent presence on television and radio offering his commentary on a variety of issues, including the national conversation on domestic violence and how men can help to end the assault on women and girls.

He is co-founder of a national organization, BK Nation, which focuses on education, job creation and small business development, civic engagement, and health and wellness.

“Recognized for his sociopolitical influence, Kevin has earned a reputation as a positive force among youth and young adults,” said David Young, director of the Office of Excellence and the Toledo Excel Program. “His commitment to fostering broad-based communication about issues related to politics, violence and socioeconomics will make him an outstanding speaker for this conference.”

After the general session featuring Powell, there will be a breakout session for parents and educators titled “Stop Picking on Me.” This session will be led by Heather Baker, director of pupil placement and child adjustment services for Toledo Public Schools, and Cathleen Smith, Toledo Public Schools educator.

A concurrent session for students titled “Self-Directed Learning: Seeking Education Beyond the Classroom” will be facilitated by Rhonda Sewell, government affairs and media strategist at the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library, and feature a panel of distinguished Toledo Excel alumni.

The free, public conference is hosted by Toledo Excel, which was established in 1988 to help prepare groups of students underrepresented in higher education for success in college.

Media Coverage
The Blade (Jan. 31, 2016)

UT to dedicate new research lab created with help of $250,000 gift from Shimadzu

The University of Toledo College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences will celebrate the dedication of a new state-of-the-art research laboratory created with the help of a leading scientific instrument company at noon Thursday, Jan. 28 in Health Education Building Room 103 on the UT Health Science Campus.

UT President Dr. Sharon Gaber, College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences Dean Dr. Johnnie Early and a representative from Shimadzu Scientific Instruments will give remarks at noon followed by the open house for the Shimadzu Laboratory for Pharmaceutical Research Excellence.

Shimadzu donated more than $250,000 to help UT pay for several new instruments, including a mass spectrometer that is capable of analyzing samples with a high degree of accuracy and unmatched speed.

“This donation will help UT train the scientists of tomorrow with cutting-edge technology,” Phil Martin, Life Science Account Manager with Shimadzu, said.  “The liquid chromatograph mass spectrometer can analyze a wide array of sample types, including biological and environmental, with great speed, accuracy and ease-of-use. The LCMS-8050 will open new avenues of teaching and research including drug discovery and metabolism, disease biomarkers and oxidative damage to DNA.  This technology also can be used to monitor water quality and detect dangerous algal toxins in Lake Erie faster and with more accuracy than other techniques.”

“Shimadzu’s goals are very strongly aligned with UT’s in striving to best prepare the next generation of pharmacists, researchers and scientists to improve the world,” Dr. Gaber said. “On behalf of The University of Toledo, I want to extend sincere thanks to them for their generous contributions and collaboration.”

“Through this partnership, state-of-the-art equipment for pharmaceutical analysis will be available to students, faculty and members of the corporate sector, all with the support of trained and knowledgeable experts in the area of pharmaceutical research,” Dr. Early said.

Shimadzu Scientific Instruments (Columbia, Maryland) is the American subsidiary of Shimadzu Corporation (Kyoto, Japan).  A global leader in analytical technologies, Shimadzu is proud to produce its most innovative technology in the U.S.A.  The LCMS-8050 is built in Shimadzu’s U.S. manufacturing facility, located in Canby, Oregon.

“The company has a history of identifying researchers who are doing cutting edge work at institutions poised to make an impact on the training of students,” Dr. Amanda Bryant-Friedrich, associate professor of medicinal and biological chemistry, said.  “I have been delighted to work with Shimadzu over the years to make this relationship a reality.”

Media Coverage
WTOL 11 (Jan. 28, 2016)
The Blade (Jan. 29, 2016)
NBC 24 (Jan. 29, 2016)

Scientist to discuss water quality monitoring in the western Lake Erie basin

As the northwest Ohio region remains on guard about toxic algal blooms and the overall health of Lake Erie, a U.S. Geological Survey scientist based in Ohio will address water quantity and quality monitoring with the community at The University of Toledo Lake Erie Center.

U.S. Geological Survey Scientist Richard Bartz, who is based out of Columbus, will give the free, public talk at 7 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 21 at the center, located at 6200 Bayshore Road in Oregon.

His talk, titled “Western Lake Erie Basin: Stream Flow and Water Quality Monitoring,” is part of the Lake Erie Center’s Public Lecture Series.

“We have about 14 different water quality monitoring stations in the watershed, including almost all of the major tributaries,” Bartz said. “I want to talk about where we do gages for nutrient management and pollution issues, as well as what is involved.  Anyone interested will get an overall view of how the USGS in cooperation with the state of Ohio is working together for clean water in the western Lake Erie watershed.”

The USGS is the science agency for the U.S. Department of Interior.  The organization studies and provides information on the health of the ecosystems and environment, the natural hazards that threaten communities across the country, the natural resources citizens rely on, and the impacts of climate and land-use change.

Media Coverage
The Blade (Jan. 21, 2016)

ICE AGE SCIENCE: UT geologist receives national fellowship for glacier, climate change research

For 26 years Timothy Fisher has clocked countless helicopter hours flying to frozen lakes across Canada and the northern United States to study the effects of ancient glaciers.

“We are learning from past global climate change to predict what might happen in the future,” Fisher said. “I have disproven common assumptions in the scientific community by coring into the bottom of snow and ice-covered lakes for sediment samples to reconstruct and understand conditions on planet Earth more than 10,000 years ago.”

Timothy Fisher

Timothy Fisher

One of the world’s largest geological societies recently honored The University of Toledo geology professor and chair of the Department of Environmental Sciences as one of the best in his profession by electing him as a Fellow of the Geological Society of America (GSA), an association with more than 26,000 members in 115 countries. The GSA promotes geoscience research, discovery and stewardship of the Earth.

“This is quite an honor,” Fisher said. “The GSA fellowship carries weight over the quality of my work to reconstruct past positions of receding glaciers and glacial lake levels to decipher whether there is a relationship with climate records in the Greenland ice-cores.  This adds more confidence to what I do and perhaps I will be more aggressive applying for research grants.”

Fisher was nominated for his “significant contributions to the understanding of Glacial Lake Agassiz, the Great Lakes and associated environments,” according to the GSA award.  “His field work, which spans several Canadian Provinces and northern states, has led to publications that change the way we think about the history of some of the predominate landscapes of North America.”

“I am very pleased to congratulate Dr. Fisher on his election as a Fellow of the Geological Society of America,” Karen Bjorkman, dean of the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, said.  “His selection is a recognition of his outstanding work in improving our understanding of glacial landscapes, including our own Great Lakes.  It also provides additional evidence of the excellent faculty members we are fortunate to have here at The University of Toledo.”

Fisher has written 67 peer-reviewed publications to argue ideas in his areas of specialty, including the history of Great Lakes sand dunes and how they serve as a record of climate variability.  One article published in the Journal of Paleolimnology was named one of the top ten most cited papers in the scientific journal in 2014.

Fisher’s main research focus has been on the problems of a long-gone glacial lake in north-central North America known as Lake Agassiz, which filled with meltwater at the end of the last glacial period over an area more than three times larger than the modern Great Lakes combined.

“Lake Agassiz doesn’t exist anymore.  Remnants of the glacial lake are in Lake Winnipeg in Manitoba,” Fisher said. “The controversy lies in where all of that freshwater went at the end of the last ice age. Did it drain into the Arctic or North Atlantic oceans, slow down the Gulf Stream and trigger rapid climactic shifts in the northern hemisphere?  That’s now unlikely because the drainage outlet routes are too young. My age control data from coring lakes leads me to believe it’s possible that much of the freshwater from Lake Agassiz evaporated.”

The scientist is working to document a chronology of when and how glaciers retreated to understand the relationship between lake levels and past climate changes.

“I am working on big questions, such as if that relationship is cause and effect,” Fisher said.  “This is background for trying to understand climate change in the future.”

As debate rages worldwide over warming temperatures, Fisher said, “We won’t see a similar glacial cycle again.  The chemistry of Earth’s atmosphere has forever changed with the steady influx of greenhouse gases.”

Media Coverage
13 ABC (Jan. 20, 2016)

UT alumni open bubble tea business Jan. 11 at Gateway

The University of Toledo alumni who are the co-founders of Balance Pan-Asian Grille are opening a new spin-off business at the Gateway that will tickle your tastebuds.

Bubble Tea will open its doors Monday, Jan. 11 at the retail center on the corner of Dorr Street and Secor Road when students return from winter break.


“Bubble tea is a hand-shaken virgin cocktail based on tea,” Prakash Karamchandani, who graduated from UT in 2008, said.  “We plan to be experimental and try different concepts. This is going to be our test lab.  Students are the best test market.”

The Asian specialty drink contains flavored tea and tapioca balls or fruit juice bubbles.

“It’s nostalgic,” Hochan Jang, who graduated from UT in 2009, said.  “We met in the College of Business and developed the plan for Balance here.  It feels good to be back on campus.  We wanted to be part of the reinvention happening at UT.”

Balance Pan-Asian Grille sells bubble tea at its locations in Sylvania, Maumee and a third opening soon in Perrysburg.  However, Bubble Tea will be a stand-alone shop separate from the Asian-fusion restaurants.

The owners of Bubble Tea are holding a grand opening celebration 3 p.m. Friday, Jan. 15. Customers are invited to help complete an art installation on the wall by blowing paint bubbles.

“We are proud these innovative alumni chose to come back to campus to expand their business that is sure to be appealing to students,” Brenda Lee, president of the UT Foundation, said.  “Bubble Tea is a vibrant addition to all of the businesses at the Gateway anchored by Barnes & Noble and Gradkowski’s, owned by another successful graduate. Since breaking ground nearly five years ago, Gateway has become a great asset to revitalize the Dorr Street corridor.”

Bubble Tea will be open Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Gateway opened two years ago and features restaurants, stores, and loft-style apartments.  Businesses include Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Gradkowski’s, Starbucks, Rice Blvd., Verizon Wireless Zone, Huntington, Great Clips, and Jimmy John’s.

For more information about Gateway at The University of Toledo, visit

Media Coverage
WTOL 11 (Jan. 12, 2016)
13 ABC (Jan. 12, 2016)
NBC 24 (Jan. 12, 2016)
Toledo City Paper (Jan. 2016)
The Independent Collegian (Jan. 20, 2016)

January UT Board of Trustees Meetings

Wednesday, January 6, 2016
Driscoll Alumni Center, Board Room
5:30 p.m. Board of Trustees Social Dinner

Monday, January 11, 2016
Driscoll Alumni Center, Schmakel Room
10:30 a.m. Clinical Affairs Committee Meeting
1:00 p.m. Academic and Student Affairs Committee Meeting
2:30 p.m. Finance and Audit Committee Meeting
3:30 p.m. Trusteeship and Governance Committee Meeting

Any questions may be directed to the University Communications Office by calling (419) 530-7832 or via email at