News

2/24/2020
A photo of Rafael Radi in a lab.

By Jenny Wells-Hosley

Next week, the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Department of Chemistry in the UK College of Arts and Sciences will host renowned biochemist Rafael Radi for two special events on campus.

Radi will serve as the College of Medicine's Dean's Distinguished Lecturer at noon Monday, March 2, in Room HG611, the Chandler Hospital auditorium in Pavilion H. The following day, he will present a seminar for the chemistry department at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, March 3, in the William T. Young Library's UK Athletics Auditorium. The events will highlight both clinical and basic science aspects of his research on nitric oxide and its beneficial and harmful effects.

2/21/2020
A photo of Nikky Finney

By Kathy Johnson

Two people with close ties to the University of Kentucky will be recognized for their achievements with honorary doctorates. The UK Board of Trustees approved awarding an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters to William Harry Clarke and an Honorary Doctor of Humanities to Nikky Finney.

Clarke is professor emeritus of the UK School of Music, where he served for 43 years. He came to UK in 1965 as a teaching assistant for the marching band while working on his doctorate. In 1968, he became director of bands, a position he held for 21 years. During that time, Clarke grew the Wildcat Marching Band from 30 members to 300, expand the band to include women and established the band’s reputation as one of the best in the country. He also served as director of the UK School of Music and received the

2/21/2020
A photo of Jillean McCommons discussing a topic in front of a white board.

By Jenny Wells-Hosley 

In just a few weeks, the University of Kentucky will welcome students, scholars and activists to campus for the 43rd annual Appalachian Studies Association (ASA) conference March 12-15. Themed "Appalachian Understories," the conference will emphasize the often obscured voices of the region, including black Appalachians.

Jillean McCommons, a doctoral student in the UK College of Arts and Sciences' Department of History, studies black Appalachian history and is serving as an organizer for the upcoming conference. One of the conference's four plenaries, "Black Appalachian Women: Testimonies,

2/21/2020
A photo portrait of Bing Zhang

By Jay Blanton

University of Kentucky faculty member Connie Wood accepted a collect call in 1989 from a student a world away who was in need of a connection and a path forward.

For Bing Zhang, the willingness of a director of Graduate Studies to accept that phone call and offer help in a time of need has made all the difference in a life’s work and, now, what has been a lifetime of giving back.

Flash forward more than 30 years.

Today, President Eli Capilouto is recommending that the UK Board of Trustees accept a $6.35 million pledge Zhang is making to the university’s Department of Statistics, where he received his doctorate a generation ago. Capilouto also is recommending that the board approve naming the department the Dr. Bing Zhang Department of

2/20/2020

By Richard LeComte

A new Africana Saturday School begins this weekend at the historic downtown Lyric Theatre & Cultural Arts Center at 9 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 22.

The Saturday School will be a series of double lectures given once a month through May. The theme for spring 2020 is “New Visions for Black Men: From Maleness to Manhood.” Events start at 9 a.m. and are free to the public.

Frank X Walker, organizer of the event and poet and University of Kentucky English professor in the College of Arts & Sciences, will kick off the series with a talk and reading titled “Honor Thy Mother & Father: Making the Case for a New Vision.” UK faculty participating in the series include Derrick White and Gerald Smith, both UK history professors as well as members of the UK Black

2/17/2020
A photo of Michael Zillis behind a graphic board.

By Whitney Hale and Jenny Wells-Hosley

The year 2020 kicks off a new decade. What will the next 10 years bring in the areas of health, technology, climate, the economy, politics and more? In a new recurring series, UKNow explores the next decade by asking University of Kentucky experts to discuss and predict upcoming trends in their areas.

Today, we spoke with Michael Zilis. As an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science, he is looking ahead at the issues that will shape 2020 and beyond.

Zilis teaches courses on American government, constitutional law and judicial decision-making. He emphasizes student engagement inside and outside of the

2/13/2020

By Tom Neely

A total of 82 University of Kentucky student-athletes earned a place on the 2019 Fall Sports Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll, announced last Friday by SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey. UK had the third-highest number of honorees and the Wildcat volleyball team tied for first in that sport. 

The 2019 Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll is based on grades from the 2019 spring, summer and fall terms. UK’s SEC champion volleyball team had 11 honorees, tied for the league lead in that sport. In addition, UK had six representatives from men’s cross country, eight from women’s cross country, 30 from football, 17 from men’s soccer and 10 from women’s soccer. 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

2/12/2020
A portrait outdoors of Eve Schneider

By Jenny Wells-Hosley

Eve Schneider, an assistant professor in the University of Kentucky College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Biology, has been named a 2020 Sloan Research Fellow by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The award honors early-career researchers.

Schneider is one of 126 selected across the U.S. and Canada, and is first UK scholar to receive the fellowship in 25 years. She is also the first woman from UK to receive the honor. 

"I’m incredibly honored to join the ranks of all the distinguished researchers who’ve won this award. It’s a lot to live up to! This fellowship is an amazing vote of confidence that my burgeoning lab is on the right path," Schneider said.

2/12/2020

By Gabriela Antenore

The University of Kentucky’s College of Arts and SciencesEnvironmental and Sustainability Studies program will host a speaker series to give students a realistic look at what they can do with their degrees. The three-part “What can I do with an ENS degree” Spring 2020 Speaker Series is set to begin Feb. 13.

“As corporations are starting to put the planet before profits, our speaker series demonstrates the diversity and growing job market in the field of sustainability,” said Betsy Beymer-Farris, director of Environmental and Sustainability Studies at UK. “It gets students excited and

2/11/2020

By Lindsey Piercy

The University of Kentucky has been named one of the Top Producers of U.S. Fulbright Scholars among colleges and universities for 2019-20. The Chronicle of Higher Education publishes the list annually.

The Fulbright Program is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the United States Department of State. Since its inception in 1946, the prestigious program has provided more than 390,000 participants — chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential — with the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, while finding solutions to shared international

2/6/2020

Now in his 11th year at the helm of the University of Kentucky's largest college, Mark Kornbluh is currently the longest-serving of UK’s 19 deans. The College of Arts and Sciences spans the liberal arts and hard sciences, social science fields and new and emerging areas, such as dual degree programs that focus on world languages and so-called STEM areas (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). 

Dean Kornbluh is an innovator in thinking about — and acting on — new approaches to teaching, learning, research and discovery. In this edition of "Behind the Blue," he talks with Kody Kiser and Jay Blanton about trends in teaching, the importance of diversity, and the special points of distinction that make UK stand out in the 21st century.

"Behind the Blue" is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher and Spotify. Become a subscriber to receive new episodes

2/5/2020

By Aly Bourne

Ron Spriggs, a retired U.S. Air Force veteran and founder of the Ron Spriggs Exhibit of Tuskegee Airmen (RSETA), will speak on campus at an event presented by UK Air Force ROTC Detachment 290. The free public talk, which will begin 4 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 20, in the William T. Young Auditorium, will be focused on the historic military unit.

An integral part of World War II, the Tuskegee Airmen fought for the United States in defeat of the AXIS powers all while overcoming segregation. The group of African American pilots were the first African American military aviators in U.S. armed forces history.

Founded in 2002, RSETA works to communicate the importance of the

2/5/2020

By Whitney Hale

Shayla Lawson and Keith Wilson are among the esteemed writers known as the Affrilachian Poets.

The Visiting Writers Series (VWS), hosted by the Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program in the University of Kentucky Department of English, is set to welcome Affrilachian Poets Shayla Lawson and Keith Wilson. The free public discussion, presented in partnership with Gaines Center for the Humanities, will begin 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6, in the William T. Young Library UK Athletics Auditorium.

The VWS began in the spring of 2014 with a reading by poet Roger Reeves. Each year, the program

1/29/2020

It was 1949, World War II had ended and twice as many students were enrolled in universities across the country compared to pre-war enrollment, many were on the GI Bill. I was one of those June 1949 GI Bill seniors, graduating from UK with a BS degree in physical chemistry. My name is Alan Veith.

My days at Kastle Hall, the chemistry building at that time, were coming to an end.  I was a lucky senior ; the only BS graduate in chemistry, not planning on postgraduate work, that had an industry job offer at the time of graduation. After a campus interview BF Goodrich (BFG)  had offered me employment in Akron OH.  A 3.44 grade average probably helped.

I had two careers in my professional life - one in industrial research with BF Goodrich and one in industrial standardization development, with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and also with the

1/28/2020
A photo of Dr. Lauren Cagle in an office.

By Carol Lea Spence

A new statewide consortium with its headquarters at the University of Kentucky is developing interdisciplinary climate research and teaching collaborations to empower people to become well-informed stewards of the environment. The mission of the Kentucky Climate Consortium is to act as a catalyst for climate research and education in the state by providing networking opportunities for Kentucky-based climate scholars and educators from universities, nonprofits and government organizations. This will enable them to leverage their expertise and passion to collaboratively pursue climate-related research, teaching and public outreach.

Co-founders Carmen Agouridis, associate dean in the

1/27/2020

By Jenny Wells-Hosley
 

Gurney Norman is a professor of English and scholar-in-residence at the UK Appalachian Center. Photo courtesy of Morris Grubbs.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 24, 2020) — The University of Kentucky Appalachian Center is pleased to announce that its scholar-in-residence, Gurney Norman, will continue his "Conversations with Gurney" speaker series this spring. The series features premier authors from the Appalachian region.

The series will kick off 5 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27, with Willie Davis, author of the novel "Nightwolf." The event will take place in the Davis Marksbury Building's James F. Hardymon Theater.

A native of Whitesburg, Kentucky, Davis earned graduate degrees in creative writing from

1/27/2020
A photo of Crystal Wilkinson sitting on a couch in the front yard of a home.

By Lindsey Piercy

Crystal Wilkinson didn't become a writer to obtain fame and fortune. But the accomplished author is receiving some well-deserved recognition and funding to support her craft.

"I am absolutely elated."

Wilkinson, who is also an associate professor of English at the University of Kentucky, has been named a 2020 USA Fellow by United States Artists.

Since being founded in 2006, United States Artists (USA) has awarded unrestricted monetary grants to compelling artists in various disciplines. Following a rigorous nomination and panel process, each chosen fellow is given $50,000 — which can be used for whatever means the artist wishes.

“We

1/24/2020
Maria Horn's digital map shown in color.

By Madison Dyment

LEXINGTON, Ky. --- Maria Horn, a master’s student in the UK's College of Arts and Science’s Geography Department’s New Maps Plus digital mapping graduate program, recently was awarded the top prize in the NACIS Student Dynamic Maps Competition for her digital map “Conservation Areas in South America.” The competition is a national-level contest for students in the field of dynamic mapping in cartography. Horn is the second consecutive student from the UK Geography Department to win the prize. 

Horn, a native of Bolivia, received a bachelor’s degree in biology from Gabriel Rene Moreno University in Santa Cruz. She moved to the United States after getting married in 2006. Because she

1/24/2020
A photo of Carrie Oser outdoors.

By Allison Perry

The University of Kentucky recently received $3 million from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and National Institute on General Medical Sciences to fund new opioid-related research in the criminal justice system.

Known as the Geographic variation in Addiction Treatment (GATE) study, the five-year project is led by Carrie Oser, professor of sociology in the UK College of Arts and Sciences. Oser and her colleagues will be focusing on the factors that influence a person’s decision to use one of the three FDA-approved medications for the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD) — methadone, buprenorphine and extended-release naltrexone.

Although research shows that these medications are highly effective at reducing opioid use, infectious disease transmission and drug-related

1/24/2020
A logo of a hooded man with information on the Willie Davis event on January 27.

By Jenny Wells-Hosley

The University of Kentucky Appalachian Center's scholar-in-residence, Gurney Norman, will continue his "Conversations with Gurney" speaker series this spring. The series features authors from the Appalachian region.

The series will kick off 5 p.m. Monday, Jan. 27, with Willie Davis, author of the novel "Nightwolf." The event will take place in the Davis Marksbury Building's James F. Hardymon Theater.

A native of Whitesburg, Kentucky, Davis earned graduate degrees in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University and the University of Maryland. He has taught English and creative writing at the University of Maryland, Kentucky State University, Georgetown College and the

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