MavWire 2015 Archive » MavWire — Thursday, April 30, 2015


For Faculty and Staff of The University of Texas at Arlington

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Shanna Peeples

Top teacher: Alumna Shanna Peeples is the first Texas teacher to win the National Teacher of the Year award since 1957 and the first from UT Arlington. (photo courtesy of Davy Knapp)

Alumna is named 2015 National Teacher of the Year

Alumna Shanna Peeples is the first Texas teacher to win the National Teacher of the Year award since 1957 and the first from UT Arlington. America’s oldest and most prestigious honor of its kind is given by the Council of Chief State School Officers

A high school English teacher in Amarillo, Peeples earned a Master of Education degree in curriculum and instruction from the College of Education in 2013.

President Barack Obama recognized Peeples in a ceremony at the White House on Wednesday.

Read more about the National Teacher of Year.

Dr. Szu-Yen Neal Liang

Dr. Szu-Yen Neal Liang

Assistant professor of Chinese honored with international distance learning award

The United States Distance Learning Association honored Szu-Yen Neal Liang, assistant professor of Chinese in the Department of Modern Languages, for his effort to promote the development and application of international distance education.

The honor marked a record seven times that UT Arlington has received a USDLA award, the world’s most prestigious distance learning honors presented for excellence in distance learning.

Dr. Liang earned the organization’s Bronze level-Best Practices Award for Excellence in Distance Learning Teaching in the field of Online Technology.

Read more about Liang's USDLA award.

George Siemens

Dr. George Siemens

LINK Lab receives funding for continued adaptive learning research

The Learning Innovation and Networked Knowledge (LINK) Research Lab has received funding to support two postdoctoral students from Intel Corporation.

The $130,000 annual award is based on work in the LINK Lab, including personalized and adaptive learning.

“With the growing attention directed toward adaptive learning, including a range of new startups, these positions will provide valuable insight into practices that work and those that don’t,” says George Siemens, executive director of the LINK Lab.

Applicants will have a strong awareness of labor data and employment trends, as well as a strong background in digital learning methods in higher education. Interested candidates should apply online.

Read more about the LINK Lab award.

nepal candlelight vigil

Nepal earthquake victims remembered in candlelight vigil

A candlelight vigil Wednesday night showed UT Arlington's support for those affected by the earthquake in Nepal.

The Nepalese Student Association organized the vigil on the library mall. The group is collecting donations for disaster relief on the University Center mall this week.

"UTA stands united in sympathy with the people of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh in the aftermath of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake that struck central Nepal on Saturday," says Timothy Quinnan, vice president for student affairs. "Our thoughts are with the Nepalese community during this extremely difficult time."

The quake affected more than 6.6 million people and caused widespread destruction.

The University is assisting those directly impacted by the quake—which includes 300 Nepalese students—with communication with family members, expediting travel home, offering counseling and other support services, and fundraising for relief efforts.

For additional assistance or questions, contact Satu Birch of the Office of International Education at 2-2355.


Vote early on campus for May elections

UT Arlington is an early voting site for the May 9 joint election. The polling site will be open from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. today, Thursday, April 30, in the Maverick Activities Center.

To vote early on campus, you must be registered to vote in Tarrant County and must present an approved photo identification such as a Texas driver license or Texas election identification certificate, Texas concealed handgun license, or U.S. passport.

For more information on early voting, see and Tarrant County elections.

Contact Student Congress at 2-0556 with any questions.

Individuals needed for information resource roles

University deans and vice presidents are invited to appoint individuals to information resources roles on the IT Governance SharePoint group. Add names to the IT Governance SharePoint site or send an email with the appointee's name to

For more information about the appointment of the information resource roles, see procedure 19-2

  Mav Pic Shimadzu Industries and Start-Up Lounge

Funding innovation

Shimadzu Scientific Instruments officials presented the last portion of the company’s $7.5 million gift to UT Arlington at the debut of the StartUp Lounge on Tuesday. The StartUp Lounge will be a meeting place where ideas may begin the journey toward becoming inventions, products, or processes. From left are Joe Barrera, director of UTA's Shimadzu Institute for Research Technologies; Dave Jorissen of Shimadzu; Ben Figard of Shimadzu; Michael Kingan, vice president for development and alumni relations; Duane Dimos, vice president for research; Jeff Ratliff of Shimadzu; Carolyn Cason, professor of nursing; Kevin Schug, the Shimadzu Distinguished Professor of Analytical Chemistry; and President Vistasp Karbhari.

Faculty, associates honored at annual spring meeting Tuesday

President's and provost's awards are just a few of the accolades to be distributed at the Spring Meeting of the Faculty and Associates at 4 p.m. Tuesday, May 5, in the Rio Grande Ballroom at the E.H. Hereford University Center.

Awards will be announced for teaching, research, mentoring, advising, service learning, grants, and distance education, with remarks by President Vistasp Karbhari. The event is open to the public. A reception follows.

Emergency generator test on Friday

Facilities Management will test the emergency electrical generators 1-2:30 p.m. Friday, May 1.

Buildings involved are College Park Center, Davis Hall, Fine Arts Building, The Heights on Pecan Apartments, Kalpana Chawla Hall, Life Science Building, Maverick Activities Center, Texas Hall, and University Hall.

The test will only affect the electrical services tied to each building’s generator, not the entire building. There will be a slight “blip” lasting a half-second as the electrical service transfers to the generator and another as it is transferred back to the normal building service. Keep computer work in progress saved during this time to prevent any possible data loss.

Questions? Call Toby Buhrkuhl at 972-832-1490 or Jeff Johnson at 817-798-8456.

Part of Lot F6 reserved for early voters

Parking spaces in Lot F6, north of the Maverick Activities Center, will be reserved today, Thursday, April 30, for early voter parking. Parking options include permit spaces in the surrounding lots. Contact Parking and Transportation Services at or 2-3907. 

faculty-staff night

Weekend fun at Faculty-Staff Night, Derby Day

Maverick baseball and softball teams plan a fun-filled weekend of sports, tailgating, freebies, and $3 tickets.

At Faculty and Staff Night on Friday, May 1, the first 200 faculty and staff will receive a free UTA Maverick license plate holder. The baseball game against Arkansas-Little Rock starts at 6:30 p.m. at Clay Gould Ballpark. Admission is only $3 when you use promo code STAFFBSB at

Wear your derby hats for a softball Derby Day tailgate at noon Saturday, May 2, in the Winners' Circle between Allan Saxe Field and Clay Gould Ballpark. Fuzzy's Taco Bar opens at noon and is $10 for the public and $5 for Maverick Club members. The first 100 students will receive a free pair of UTA flip flops, and there are prizes for the most spirited fans. 

The $3 tickets get you in to all three Saturday games. The softball Mavs take on Texas State at 1 and 3 p.m. at Allan Saxe Field, and the baseball team faces Arkansas-Little Rock at 2 p.m. at Clay Gould Ballpark. 

Friday deadline to register for annual Metro Golf Tournament

The 42nd annual Metro Golf Tournament tees off Monday, May 18, at Iron Horse Golf Course in North Richland Hills.

Hosted by Campus Recreation, the tournament is open to faculty and staff members of area colleges and universities along with UT Arlington alumni and friends.

Register by Friday, May 1, by contacting contact Chris Muller at or 2-3277.

blazing race promo

Get in shape for Blazing Race on May 20

Team up for the 2015 Blazing Race at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 20. The race begins at College Park Center.

Participants can walk or run either a low- or high-impact campus adventure course. The Wellness Committee hosts the free event. Find details and registration information online or email

Catering Services offers variety for your event

When ordering food and beverages on campus, utilize Catering Services.

The on-campus catering provider has a variety of menu offerings and pricing categories for plated meals, buffets, casual catering, and pick-up orders, large or small. Call to customize your menu, or create your own on CaterTrax. For details, contact Tina Gil, catering services coordinator, call 2-2304 or

Read the University's policy for food and beverages, HOP ADM 5-309 of the Handbook of Operating Procedures

Summit Avenue closed for water line upgrade, road resurfacing

Summit Avenue from Greek Row Drive to Fourth Street will be closed for approximately three weeks to allow the city of Arlington to upgrade water and sewer lines and resurface the street.

Arbor Oaks tenants will need to enter their parking lot from either Kerby Drive or Fourth Street.

Extra Credit

Thursday, April 30

Time Management: Keys to Everyday Office Success Register online. 9-11 a.m., Room 200, J.D. Wetsel Service Center. Human Resources.

Qualitative Research Networking Dorothy Kalanzi, visiting assistant professor of sociology and anthropology, discusses "HIV/AIDS Studies and Designs from Previous Research." Noon-1 p.m., Room 415, Central Library. Qualitative Research Networking.

Biology Colloquium David Pollock of the University of Colorado Denver, "Molecular Convergence, Adaptation, and Coevolution." Free. 4-5 p.m., Room 124, Life Science Building. Biology.

counting to infinity

Mathematics Lecture David Eisenbud of the University of California, Berkeley and director of the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute presents “Counting From Infinity: A Non-Technical Account of a Mathematical and Personal Triumph.” Clips of the movie Counting from Infinity: Yitang Zhang and the Twin Prime Conjecture shown. Free. 5-6 p.m., Room 100, Nedderman Hall. Office of the Provost.

Friday, May 1

Materials Science and Engineering Seminar Anton Malko of UT Dallas presents "Quantum Phenomena to Applications in Energy Sustainability." 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Room 104, Engineering Research Building. Materials Science and Engineering.

Flying with SOFIA M.H. Tykoski, an eighth-grade science teacher in Wylie, tells about her flight on the SOFIA, the Stratospheric Observatory For Infrared Astronomy. 5:30 p.m. reception, 6 p.m. lecture, Planetarium. Planetarium

Connections Mini Conference An afternoon of innovative ideas and networking for faculty and staff. RSVP. Free. 12:15-3:30 p.m., Room 228, Engineering Research Building. Professional Learning CommunityLearning Innovation and Networked Knowledge (LINK) Research Lab.

Wednesday, May 6

Arlington Technology Association George Siemens, executive director of the Learning Innovation and Networked Knowledge (LINK) Research Lab, explores how education is changing due to massive open online courses (MOOCs), big data, digital networks, and the Internet. Light breakfast provided. RSVP. Free. 7-8 a.m., Room 100, Nedderman Hall. Arlington Technology Association.

Thursday, May 7

Social Work Colloquium Jeffrey Jenson is guest speaker at the Colloquium on Agency Collaboration and Community-Based Human Service Innovation. He will discuss the public health approach for preventing child and adolescent health and behavior problems and preventive interventions aimed at promoting positive youth development. Dr. Jenson is the Philip D. and Eleanor G. Winn Professor for Children and Youth at Risk at the University of Denver. Register online. 1-4 p.m., Room 107, Social Work Complex General Academic Building. Social Work.

Coming up

U.S. Manufacturing Symposium The symposium is a Walmart initiative to create affordable, flexible automated solutions to bring manufacturing back to the United States. See the schedule. Admission $35, $120 for exhibitors; 25 free passes for students. Wednesday, June 3, UTARI, 7300 Jack Newell Blvd. S., Fort Worth. UT Arlington Research Institute.

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

Sports Notes
Nillsson and Sibley

Athletes of the Year: Cross country's Hannah Nilsson and baseball's Travis Sibley were honored as the Athletics Alumni Student-Athletes of the Year at the All-Sports Banquet on Tuesday.


Athletes honored at All Sports Banquet

UTA Athletics celebrated the accomplishments of Maverick student-athletes Monday at the annual All Sports Banquet at College Park Center.

The evening featured remarks by Athletic Director Jim Baker, President Vistasp Karbhari, and alumnus George Riba, who recently retired after 37 years as a sports reporter at WFAA/Channel 8 in Dallas.

Among the many awards presented were the Athletics Alumni Student-Athletes of the Year, which went to cross country's Hannah Nilsson and baseball's Travis Sibley.

Read more about the All Sports Banquet and see a list of winners.

Baseball team falls to Houston Baptist

UTA committed a season-high five errors in losing 10-4 to Houston Baptist on Tuesday in Houston.

Despite being tagged with the loss, right-hander Justin Schnedler had a strong showing on the mound, allowing four hits and no earned runs in four innings.

The Mavericks are 17-26 overall and 8-13 in the Sun Belt Conference. They host Arkansas-Little Rock for three games Friday-Sunday, May 1-3, at Clay Gould Ballpark.

Mavericks drop doubleheader at Troy

The softball team lost a doubleheader 5-3 and 9-4 to Troy on Sunday in Troy, Ala. Saturday’s game was canceled due to inclement weather.

The Mavericks left 15 runners on base in the two games. Senior Nina Villanueva extended her streak of reaching base safely to 23 games with a hit in each contest.

UTA is 27-24 overall and 8-12 in the Sun Belt Conference. The team returns to action this weekend when it welcomes Texas State for a three-game series beginning Saturday, May 2, at Allan Saxe Field. Senior Day is scheduled for noon Sunday, May 3.

Track teams impressive in regular season finale

The women’s and men’s track and field teams wrapped up the outdoor regular season with strong performances Saturday at the Bobcat Classic in San Marcos.

Sophomore Tamerah Gorham finished first in the 800 meters while teammate Latricia Brooks was second. In men’s action, junior Roland Sales won the high jump.

The Mavericks compete in the 2015 Sun Belt Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships beginning Friday, May 8, in Gulf Shores, Ala.

Intramural deadlines include FIFA video game

Upcoming entry deadlines for intramural sports include FIFA video game, Wednesday, May 6, and poker tournament, Thursday, May 7.

See the intramural sports schedule. Pick up entry forms at the Services and Information Desk of the Maverick Activities Center. For questions, call 2-3277 or email

(For more sports news, go to,, or

Going Out
  UTA Presents

Berachah Home exhibit a new digital collection

berrachah home

In an often overlooked corner of the UT Arlington campus lies a graveyard. Its flat stones are all that remain of a 67-acre complex known as the Berachah Industrial Home for the Redemption of Erring Girls.

Now, UT Arlington Libraries is highlighting this piece of local history with an online pilot project of 18 digital images.

The Berachah Home was established in 1903 by the Rev. J.T. Upchurch and his wife, Maggie Mae, as a place for homeless, usually pregnant, young women. The Upchurches strongly believed that mother and child should not be separated, so they helped the women learn to care for their children and taught them a trade so they could support their families.

One of those trades was printing. The Berachah Home had its own printing facility and printed the Purity Journal, a periodical that campaigned against brothels and saloons, but also shared stories of redemption and salvation. Three Purity Journal covers are included in the online collection.

The Berachah home closed in 1942, and the land was sold to Arlington State College (now UTA) in 1963. UTA Libraries Special Collections acquired the Berachah Home materials in 1982 and 1984.

The digital collection is the first in what UTA Libraries hopes will be many more digital projects supported by Omeka, a content management and Web publishing tool.  

See the Berachah Home digital exhibit.

For information about the home or the project, contact Special Collections at or 2-3393.

Thursday, April 30

UTA Choir Concert Tickets $9 for adults, $5 for students and seniors. 7:30 p.m., Irons Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building. Music.

Friday, May 1

Baseball Mavericks vs. Arkansas-Little Rock. Tickets $5-7; $3 students. 6:30 p.m. Also, 2 p.m. Saturday, May 2; 1 p.m. Sunday, May 3. All at Clay Gould Ballpark. Athletics

Guest Bass Recital Nick Scales of West Texas A&M performs. Free. 7:30 p.m., Irons Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building. Music.

Saturday, May 2

Softball Mavericks vs. Texas State. Tickets $5-7; $3 students. 1 and 3 p.m. Also, noon Sunday, May 3. All at Allan Saxe Field. Athletics.

The Day of the Child A multicultural celebration of children, families, and reading that emphasizes the importance of advocating literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds. More than 300 children are expected to participate in bedtime stories in several languages, crafts, dancing, clowns, and sports. 2-4 p.m., Maverick Activities Center. Modern Languages, Arlington Public Library.

Monday, May 4

BFA Art Exhibit The work of 43 Bachelor of Fine Arts candidates includes painting, drawing, sculpture, glass, printmaking, film/video, photography, digital imaging, and visual communication. Hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Fridays, noon-5 p.m. Saturdays. Through Saturday, May 16The Gallery at UTA.

Friday, May 8

Baseball Mavericks vs. Appalachian State. Tickets $5-7; $3 students. 6:30 p.m. Also, 2 p.m. Saturday, May 9; 1 p.m. Sunday, May 10. All at Clay Gould Ballpark. Athletics.         

UTA Dance Ensemble Recital Performances and choreography by students and faculty. $5 with student ID, $7 general admission. 8 p.m., Mainstage Theatre. Also, Saturday-Sunday, May 9-10Theatre Arts Department.

Coming up

Commencement The Class of 2015 graduates. Tickets required. Thursday, May 14, 7 p.m., College of Nursing and Health Innovation. Friday, May 15; 11 a.m., School of Urban and Public Affairs/School of Social Work/University College/School of Architecture; 3 p.m., College of Science; 7 p.m., College of Liberal Arts. Saturday, May 16, 11 a.m., College of Business; 3 p.m., College of Engineering; 7 p.m., College of Education. All at College Park Center. Commencement


MavsArt The semi-annual UTA community art show features 67 works by 25 artists who are UTA students, faculty, and staff. Through May 15UT Arlington LibrariesMavsArt.

Juneteenth in Texas: 150 Years of Freedom More than 60 photographs explore issues of Texas African-Americans from Emancipation to the Civil Rights era. Hours 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Through Aug. 9. Sixth floor, Central Library. Center for Greater Southwestern Studies.

secret of the cardboard rocket

Special Collections: !Viva Mexico! A Comic Book History of Mexico A rare look inside the rise of comic books in 20th century Mexico, their literary, cultural, and entertainment value, and influence by the Mexican government. Hours 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, sixth floor, Central Library. Through Aug. 8UT Arlington Libraries Special Collections.

Planetarium The spring schedule features Black Holes, Dynamic Earth, Pink Floyd, Secret of the Cardboard Rocket, 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

Vice President for University Communications: Lynne T. Waters

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

© 2015 The University of Texas at Arlington


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