MavWire 2014 Archive » MavWire — Monday, December 15, 2014


For Faculty and Staff of The University of Texas at Arlington

Monday, December 15, 2014

Todd Castoe and team

Snake team: Research by Dr. Todd Castoe, left, assistant professor of biology, and graduate students Jacobo Reyes-Velasco and Drew Schield challenges current ideas about snake venom's evolution.

Team proposes new model for snake venom evolution

A new study by a team led by Todd Castoe, assistant professor of biology, challenges current ideas on how snake venoms came to be.

The work, which is being published in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution, is based on a painstaking analysis comparing groups of related genes or “gene families” in tissue from different parts of the Burmese python, or Python molurus bivittatus

Learning more about venom evolution could help scientists develop better anti-venoms and contribute to knowledge about gene evolution in humans.

Read more about the snake venom research.

UT Arlington earns national recognition for community service

UT Arlington has been named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. 

The honor roll, which includes 800 schools, is the federal government’s top award for community service in higher education and includes four categories of recognition: general community service, interfaith community service, economic opportunity, and education.

Between July 2012-13, UT Arlington faculty, staff, and students contributed more than 680,000 hours to the community.

Read more about the community service award.

Dr. Michael Vasilyev

Dr. Michael Vasilyev

Electrical engineer named fellow of Optical Society

Michael Vasilyev, professor of electrical engineering, has been named a fellow of the Optical Society, the highest membership distinction in the leading professional association in optics and photonics.

The group has 18,500 members in more than 100 countries.

Dr. Vasilyev, who has been at UT Arlington since 2003, has written or contributed to more than 170 scientific papers, holds 10 U.S. patents, and was a recipient of the 2008 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Young Faculty Award.

Read more about Vasilyev's honor.

Amber White

Amber White

Pre-Law and Legal Studies Center names director

Attorney Amber White has been hired as the new director of the Pre-Law and Legal Studies Center. She joins UT Arlington in January.

White has served at law firms with the U.S. government and as a sole practitioner. Most recently, she served as an account executive at Robert Half Legal, a company that specializes in the placement of highly skilled attorneys, paralegals, litigation support and legal support professionals.

In her new position, she will work closely with academic advisers from every college and academic unit at UT Arlington as well as law school admissions directors and attorneys.

Read more about White and the Pre-Law and Legal Studies Center.

Mav Pic Commencement fall 2014

Pomp and Promise

New graduates moved quickly from students to alumni last week when more than 4,000 degrees were conferred during Commencement ceremonies at College Park Center. Almost half of the undergraduate degrees—2,895 for fall and 1,026 for summer—were from the College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Graduate degrees totaled 1,158 from the fall semester and 651 completed in the summer term. See more photos.


Holiday, winter hours announced

The UTA campus transitions to holiday and winter hours for the next few weeks.

The P.O.D. Market in the E.H. Hereford University Center is open 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Thursday, Dec. 15-18, and 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, Dec. 19. The market is closed Saturday, Dec. 20-Sunday, Jan. 4. Hours are 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays, Jan. 5-19, and 7:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Fridays, Jan. 9 and 16.

The E.H. Hereford University Center is open 7 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday, Dec. 15-Monday, Dec. 22. Winter break closure is Tuesday, Dec. 22-Sunday, Jan. 4. Hours are 7 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday, Jan. 5-8, and 7 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday-Thursday, Jan. 9-15.

The Central Library is closed Dec. 24-25, and Jan. 1-3Check the hours for the Central Library, Architecture and Fine Arts Library, Science and Engineering Library, and electronic libraries.

The Maverick Activities Center has its winter break schedule online.

P.O.D. now offers hot food

The P.O.D. Market in the E.H. Hereford University Center now offers a variety of hot food options starting today, Monday, Dec. 15. Hot sandwiches, sliders, mac and cheese, tater tots, quesadillas, or even fried chicken are on the menu.

Check out the Dining Services website for hours during the winter break.

Renew your locker at MAC

Renew your locker at the Maverick Activities Center by Monday, Jan. 5, to save the space for the spring semester. If you choose not to renew, please clean out the locker by that date.

For details, email Blair Schuyler or call 2-0207. Visit the Campus Recreation website for MAC programs and services.

Maverick gifts

Maverick gifts are perfect for holidays; use discount program to save

Several local retailers carry UT Arlington logo items that may be the perfect gifts for the Mavericks in your life.

WalMart on South Cooper has cozy slippers and cold-weather scarves emblazoned with Blaze. Target on South Cooper has UT Arlington T-shirts. Costco on Arbrook has embroidered hoodies. Anything Goes on West Park Row has UTA gift items including jewelry, cups, and home decor. The UTA Bookstore has the most Maverick spirit with a complete line of apparel, gift items, and supplies.

Visit Wear Your Maverick Pride on Facebook to stay up to date on the latest Maverick merchandise trends. 

Watch your budget this holiday season by taking advantage of the Maverick Discount Program. Show your Maverick ID to local business participants or use a unique UT Arlington discount code to shop online. Participating businesses provide a minimum 10 percent discount.

Paychecks available for pick up Jan. 2; sign up for direct deposit by Tuesday

To avoid a trip to the University during your holiday break, sign up for direct deposit by Tuesday, Dec. 16.  

The next monthly payday is Friday, Jan. 2, when the University will be closed for winter break. To accommodate employees who pick up their paychecks, Payroll Services will be open 8 a.m.-noon Friday, Jan. 2

All other payroll business or any payment issues will be handled when University offices open Monday, Jan. 5.

Email for details.

Mav Pic fog

In a fog

A lone student walking into the mist creates a dream-like image on a foggy morning last week.


Texas Hall temporarily closed

Texas Hall will be closed for electrical updates starting Monday, Dec. 15. The closure is expected to last three or four days. For questions, contact Toby Buhrkuhl at 972-832-1490 or Jeff Johnson at 817-798-8456.

UTA Bookstore hiring temps

The UTA Bookstore is hiring temporary workers. Retail or cashiering experience is preferred. You’ll be eligible for discounts on textbooks, clothing, and gifts. Apply at

Restrooms to close in some buildings

In order to replace a major campus sewer line, all restroom facilities will be closed Monday, Dec. 15-Sunday, Jan. 4, in the Chemistry and Physics Building, Chemistry Research Building, Geoscience Building, and Science Hall.

Restroom facilities nearby are in Carlisle Hall, Hammond Hall, Nedderman Hall, Preston Hall, Ransom Hall, Trimble Hall, and Woolf Hall.

For questions, contact Jeff Johnson at 817-798-8456.

Plan for departmental summer camps

If your department is interested in sponsoring a day or overnight summer camp, check the Conference Services website for information and requirements for making your program a success.

All camps are required to complete a Request to Host form for approval. Programs wanting overnight housing must submit forms by Monday, Dec. 15, for priority reservations.

Questions? Contact Maggie Quinn at

Planetarium Place closed Tuesday morning

Planetarium Place will be closed until noon Tuesday, Dec. 16, to accommodate construction equipment for the new cold storage facility in the Central Library.

power down over break

Electrical outage set during winter break

Plan now to accommodate an electrical outage Friday-Saturday, Jan. 2-3.

Facilities Management has scheduled the outage to complete major electrical updates in Davis Hall, Fine Arts Building (Main Stage Theatre only), Central Library, Life Science Building, Physical Education Building, Preston Hall, Science Hall, Smart Hospital, Texas Hall, Trinity House, and University Hall.

For those buildings with emergency generators, power will be supplied to support egress lighting, life safety, UTA Police dispatch, and all research facilities currently connected to the generator. All buildings will remain locked during this time.

To prepare for the outage:

• Clean out all refrigerators and freezers before leaving on Monday, Dec. 22.
• Turn off all electronic equipment including computers, scanners, and copiers before leaving on Monday, Dec. 22. These devices do not need to be unplugged.

If you have questions or concerns, special requirements during this time, or newly established research that must retain power, contact either Toby Buhrkuhl at 972-832-1490 or Jeff Johnson at 817-798-8456.

Extra Credit

Coming up

Integrating the A380 Jumbo Jet at DFW Airport Two consulting engineers describe changes to DFW Airport facilities that were required to accommodate flights by airlines using the double-decked Airbus A380 jumbo jets, which can hold more than 800 passengers. Light breakfast provided. RSVP. Free. 7-8 a.m., Wednesday, Jan. 7, Room 100, Nedderman Hall. Arlington Technology Association.

Human Resources Training Register online. Effective Delegation , 9-11 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 13; Advanced Supervisory Skills, 9-11:30 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 15; Managing Projects and Making Decisions, 9-11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 21; Dealing with Difficult Employees and People, 9-11 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27; Motivating Your Employees, 10 a.m.-noon Friday, Jan. 30. All in Room 200, J.D. Wetsel Service Center. Human Resources.

Faculty Peer Observation of Teaching Info Sessions Information sessions for faculty and academic administrators. 2-3:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 15, Room 601, Nedderman Hall, and 10-11:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 16, Room 601, Nedderman Hall. Center for Teaching and Learning ExcellenceFaculty Affairs.

(For an expanded list of events, see the UT Arlington Calendar.)

Going Out
  UTA Presents

Jessie J headlines Spring Concert

Jessie J

Singer and songwriter Jessie J will headline the Spring Concert at 8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 10, at Texas Hall.

The artist is recognized for an unconventional musical and performance style, mixing soul vocals with contemporary R&B, pop, electropop, and hip-hop beats. Her hits include Price Tag, Domino, Who You Are, Nobody's Perfect, and her latest release, Bang Bang.

Tickets go on sale Wednesday, Jan. 7, at

Wednesday, Dec. 17

Women's Basketball Mavericks vs. McMurry. Tickets $7. 7 p.m., College Park Center. Also, vs. Georgia Southern, 5 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30; vs. South Alabama, 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 3Athletics.

Saturday, Dec. 20

Men's Basketball Mavericks vs. Howard Payne. Tickets $7. 2 p.m., College Park Center. Also, vs. Georgia Southern, 7:15 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 30; vs. South Alabama, 7:15 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 3Athletics.

Coming up

Friends of the Library Tour the Fabrication Laboratory—FabLab—with cutting-edge technology for research in digital and data visualization, including nine 3-D printers, laser cutter, vinyl cutter, 3-D scanners, and digital media software and hardware. Free. 7:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 9, first floor, Central Library. Friends of the Library

Music Concerts and Recitals Free. Faculty Flute Recital with Terry Sanchez, Friday, Jan. 16; Tessitura Trio, 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 17; Guest Flute Recital with Christina Jennings, 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17; Faculty Bass Recital with Jack Unzicker, Thursday, Jan. 22; and Guest Violin Recital with Alessandra Jennings Flanagan, Monday, Jan. 26. All 7:30 p.m., Irons Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building. Music.


Cuba: Histories of the Present Explore daily life in modern Cuba through photographs by David LaFevor, assistant professor of history. Sixth floor, Central Library. Through Dec. 22.

Special Collections: The Price of Manifest Destiny Discover how maps and war interlocked in the 19th century. Hours 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, sixth floor, Central Library. Through Feb. 7, 2015UT Arlington Libraries Special Collections.

Visual Resource Commons and Gallery The African Art Collection is a multi-dimensional collection of 11th-20th century art and artifacts. Free. 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Fridays, Suite 2109, Fine Arts Building. Art and Art History.

Planetarium The winter schedule through Dec. 21 features Season of Light; Holiday Music Magic; Back to the Moon for Good; Experience the AuroraOne World, One Sky: Big Bird's AdventurePink Floyd; and Spacepark 360 InfinityPlanetarium.

(For an expanded list of events, see the UT Arlington Calendar.)


Editors: Teresa Newton, Kathryn Hopper

Executive Director for University Publications: Mark Permenter

Associate Vice President for Communications and Marketing: David Johnson

Published by University Communications. Photography, video, design, and online services provided by the Department of Communications and Marketing.

© 2014 The University of Texas at Arlington


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