April 14 - 27, 2006
Vol. 36, Issue 7
Back Issues
IN THIS ISSUE
South Lawn gets green light
Five U.Va. grad schools among nation's best
Guaranteed admission program created
U.Va. extends offers to Class of 2010
Digest
Professor held one of the most influential tax posts
What's wrong with the media?
Supermassive black holes
Stellar misfits
Prior new chancellor at Wise
Taking the 'Mud' out of Mad Bowl
Lectures shed light on the arts in the time of Jefferson
U.Va. celebrate historic garden week on April 25
National Physics Day show
Former student activist to speak April 26

Students bring music with a message to Mali

 

 

News briefs

STATE OF THE UNIVESITY ADDRESS APRIL 21
U.Va. President John T. Casteen III will deliver this year’s State of the University address on April 21 at noon in Old Cabell Hall Auditorium.

SCHOLARSHIP FOR CHILDREN OF FACULTY AND STAFF; DEADLINE APRIL 15
If you have a child who is a U.Va. student, he or she may be eligible to apply for a special scholarship. Dependent children of current, full-time faculty and staff who have worked at U.Va. for at least one year are eligible to apply for the Faculty and Staff Undergraduate Scholarship for the 2006-2007 academic year. Applicants for the scholarship may be new, transfer or currently enrolled students at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), the University Financial Aid application and the Faculty and Staff Undergraduate Scholarship application by April 15. Those forms can be found at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov and at http://www.virginia.edu/financialaid. Questions? Contact Student Financial Services at 982-6000 or faid@virginia.edu.

NEW FEATURES IN 'PAYSLIP' SYSTEM
On April 24, the employee Integrated System, which provides “Payslip” and W2 tax information online, will add several new self-service capabilities, including:

  • Personal Information: Employees will be able to update their preferred name, previous last name, marital status, phone numbers and main address.
  • Banking Information: Change your bank information for pay checks and other deposits.
  • Tax Form: Employees can view their federal tax withholding information (W4 form) and change the withholding option.
  • My Information: For employees’ viewing purposes only, there will be basic job data, including organization, position, supervisor’s name, grade, salary, performance rating and the date of last review.

NOTABLE
Faculty Awards and Achievements

  • Richard Kent, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, won the Best Scientific Paper award for 2005 from the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine. His paper is titled “On the Fatal Crash Experience of Older Drivers.”
  • William Fornadel, program director for the School of Continuing and Professional Studies University Center, was elected to the Leadership and Management Commission of the University of Continuing Education Association (UCEA). As such, he will help UCEA’s professional programs and contributed to opportunities for the continuing education community.

OFF THE SHELF
Recently published books by U.Va. faculty and staff

  • James Davison Hunter, William R. Kenan Professor of Sociology and Religious Studies, “Is There a Culture War?: A Dialogue on Values And American Public Life” (Brookings Institution Press).
  • Karen Chase, professor of English, editor and contributor for “Middlemarch in the Twenty-First Century” (Oxford University Press).
  • Deborah Eisenberg, professor of creative writing, “Twilight of the Superheroes: Stories” (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).
  • Brantly Womack, professor of politics and director of the East Asia Center, “China and Vietnam: The Politics of Asymmetry” (Cambridge University Press).
  • Timothy Naftali, associate professor and director of the Presidential Recordings Program and Kremlin Decision-making Project, “Khrushchev’s Cold War” (W. W. Norton & Company).
  • G. Edward White, David and Mary Harrison Distinguished Professor of Law, “Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. (Lives and Legacies Series)” (Oxford University Press).
  • Louis P. Nelson, assistant professor of architectural history, “American Sanctuary: Understanding Sacred Spaces,” (Indiana University Press).
  • John D. Quale, assistant professor of architecture, “Trojan Goat: A Self-Sufficient House,” (University Press of Virginia).
  • Gary W. Gallagher, John L. Nau III Professor in the History of the American Civil War, (Introduction to) “The American Civil War: 365 Days: From the Library of Congress,” (Abrams).
  • R. Edward Howell, vice president and CEO of the Medical Center, wrote a chapter, “Looking to the Horizon and Beyond,” in “Leadership Plans for CEOs” (Aspatore).

BETTER CUSTOMER SERVICE AIM OF TIAA-CREF CHANGES
TIAA-CREF, one of the companies on contract with the University to provide retirement benefits to faculty and staff, has announced plans to add consultants to its Telephone Counseling Center and implement new tools for boosting call-handling capacity, as well as upgrade the systems that run payments processing and online functions. The changes are intended to improve service quality and reliability over the long term, including reducing phone wait times.

In recent months, a small number of TIAA-CREF clients have experienced service problems, including inaccurate displays of account activities, balances and late or incorrect processing of select transactions. TIAA-CREF is compensating clients who have incurred penalties, fines or other charges as a consequence of transactions that have been delayed or processed incorrectly. U.Va. faculty and staff who have had problems accessing their retirement benefits with TIAA-CREF or want more information about services should contact Randy McLaurin in the TIAA-CREF Charlottesville office at 964-2600 or toll free (866) 842-2044, or schedule an appointment at the local office at 1000 Research Park Boulevard. U.Va. employees also can call the main Telephone Counseling Center at (800) 842-2776; consultants are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

 Additionally, a TIAA-CREF financial adviser is on Grounds three times a month and is available to discuss your retirement portfolio.

For more information about retirement, contact the University Benefits office at 924-4392 or e-mail benefits@virginia.edu.

U.VA. PRESS BOOK LAUDED
The book “Equity and Excellence in American Higher Education,” published bythe U.Va. Press, just received two awards. It was named the 2006 Book of the Year by the American Educational Research Association and won the 2006 Philip E. Frandson Award for Literature by the University Continuing Education Association. One of the book’s three authors, William G. Bowen, addressed the book’s topics in the 2004 Thomas Jefferson Foundation Distinguished Lecture Series in celebration of the Curry School of Education’s centennial. The authors argue that despite our rhetoric of inclusiveness, a significant number of youth from poor families do not share equal access to America’s elite colleges and universities. While America has achieved the highest level of educational attainment of any country, it runs the risk of losing this position unless it can markedly improve the precollegiate preparation of students from racial minorities and lower-income families. They offer recommendations ranging from reform of the admissions process, to restructuring of federal financial aid and state support of public universities, to addressing the various precollegiate obstacles that disadvantaged students face at home and in school.

HILLEL STUDENTS FEATURED ON PBS
The PBS show “The Newshour with Jim Lehrer” aired a story on March 29 about students working to clean up the Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The broadcast featured footage of U.Va. Hillel students wearing white protective suits while they helped with the cleanup effort during their spring break. The story also featured interviews with students Victoria Young and Jill Raney.

NEXT FILM FESTIVAL THEME: REVELATIONS
And God said, “Let there be light”… from the projector. The next Virginia Film Festival will be organized around a theme of “Revelations: Finding God at the Movies.” The 19th annual festival will take place this fall, on Oct. 26-29.

The festival will explore the growing role of religion in the public sphere. Festival director Richard Herskowitz predicts, “The films we present will be reverent and irreverent. We intend to feature works by filmmakers who are addressing the growing tension between secular and religious cultures worldwide. We plan to give special attention to the rich tradition of spiritual cinema—films by Scorsese, Tarkovsky, Bresson and others that do not necessarily address religion, but aim to provoke a spiritual experience in the viewer.”

The festival will bring back, for the third year, the highly successful “Adrenaline Film Project” that challenges 30 student and community filmmakers to make a film within the first three days of the festival, culminating in a public screening. There will be more than a dozen premiers of feature films in advance of their national release among the 70-plus films that will be shown. More than 80 guest artists and speakers are expected to participate, along with, as in past years, extensive art exhibits, musical performances, and gala parties.

For the first time, the public is encouraged to participate in choosing festival programming (films, guests and speakers) through a new online blog called “Revelations of a Programmer” found at http://www.vafilm. blogspot.com/, where Herskowitz will respond to suggestions and share behind-the-scenes stories as the program comes together. For year-round announcements about the festival visit http://www.vafilm.com.

STUDENT PLANTING PROJECT

When: Friday, April 21, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (almost Earth Day)
Where: McIntire Amphitheatre (next to Minor Hall)  

The University's Arboretum & Landscape Committee is seeking faculty and staff volunteers to help with the second annual student-led Planting Project to beautify the mulched/dirt area between the McIntire Amphitheatre  and the bus stop on McCormick Road, just north of Minor Hall.  You may choose one of two shifts, either 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. or noon to 3 p.m.  Free pizza and sodas provided at noon. Interested? Email Ashby Leavell at mal6c@virginia.edu.

MAKING HEADLINES

U.Va. faculty and staff in articles cited in Headlines@U.Va.:

  • Richard J. Bonnie, director of the Institute of Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy, “A Matter Over Mind/The Supreme Court is Poised to Review the Insanity Defense, An Issue That Has Confounded Courts, Psychiatrists and Lawyers,” American Bar Association Journal, March 30.
  • Glenn Gaesser, professor of exercise physiology and director of the kinesiology program, “Research Finds Quality Fat is Most Important,” San Antonio (TX) Express-News, April 3.
  • Wendy Huber, associate admissions director for Darden, “Looking For Ms. MBA,” US News & World Report, April 10.
  • Daniel Meador, emeritus professor of law, “Monticello’s Renewal Makes a Perfect Gift,” Washington Times, April 6.
  • Jonathan Moreno, director of the Center for Biomedical Ethics, “Legislators OK Stem Cell Bill/Md. to Become Fourth State to Authorize Tax Dollars for Embryonic Cell Research,” Baltimore Sun, March 30.
  • Peter L. Sheras, professor of education, “Professor Dispels Myths on School Violence,” The Winchester Star, March 31.
  • Robert Turner, associate director of the Center for National Security Law, “No Traction on Censure, But Much Theater,” Christian Science Monitor, April 3; “Watergate Figure Returns From the ‘Dark Side’ To Condemn Bush,” Agence France Presse, April 1; “Seats Notably Empty at Censure Hearing/The Senate Judiciary Committee Begins to Weigh a Measure Against President Bush, With Several Members of Both Parties Absent,” Los Angeles Times, April 1; “John Dean Assails Bush Wiretapping/U.Va. Professor Calls Such Conduct Legal, Essential in Wartime,” Richmond Times-Dispatch, April 1.


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