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UTA In The News — Monday, July 30, 2012

Monday, July 30, 2012

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Spotlight on the UT Arlington Research Institute, new director

The UT Arlington Research Institute and its new director, retired Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch, were the focus of a Fort Worth Star-Telegram story and photo gallery. The institute has an ambitious 10-year goal of generating $100 million annually in research funding, and of increasing its workforce from 40 to 400. "We're focusing on ideas that are commercially viable within two years," said Lynch, who visited well-established institutes in San Antonio, Georgia and Ohio to see how they operate. "I envision having an office for Lockheed, an office for Bell, an office for Sikorsky or whoever. This will allow the industry to influence the research."

UT Arlington Student Money Management Center, new director mentioned in Dallas Morning News business article

Shakeela Hunter, director of the Student Money Management Center at The University of Texas at Arlington, was included as an expert in a Dallas Morning News business piece about the new Financial Aid Shopping Sheet forms that detail college expenses, financial aid and loans. Hunter said many students "aren’t aware of, or understand how much in loans they’re taking out,” and added: “When they complete their FAFSA [the Free Application for Federal Student Aid], what they’re most worried about is, is it enough to cover the tuition and the fees. They’re not so concerned about the loan repayment or the amount of debt they’re accruing until graduation, and it’s time to pay the loan back, and then they realize, ‘Wow, I took out this much money.’” Bloomberg Businessweek also carried the story.

UT Arlington partners with local educators to make college more affordable

WBAP/820 AM interviewed Dale Wasson, UT Arlington senior associate vice president of student enrollment services, about The University of Texas at Arlington partnership with area educators to offer a bachelor’s degree for $10,000. The program begins with students taking college level courses while still in high school. “You have to plan and you have to work, because in order to get into the dual credit program with Tarrant County College, at either Arlington ISD or Mansfield ISD, you have to be a ‘B’ student,” Wasson said. “They don’t want any Tom, Dick or Harry getting into these college-level classes.”

Saxe quoted in Houston Chronicle/San Antonio Express-News political story

Allan Saxe, a UT Arlington associate political science professor, was quoted in a Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express-News article about the runoff race between U.S. Senate candidates Ted Cruz and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst. Once the clear favorite to win the GOP nomination, Dewhurst now is in a dogfight with tea party-backed Cruz. The “real hard money has to go with David Dewhurst,” Saxe said. “[But] Ted Cruz has done something that nobody would have thought was possible. Nobody even knew his name.” Saxe calls Tuesday’s runoff contest a toss-up.

Researchers use 'toy' robot to better understand children with autism

The Charlotte News & Observer, Sacramento Bee, Idaho Statesman and several other McClatchy Newspapers published a story about researchers from The University of Texas at Arlington and the University of North Texas Health Science Center who are using a toy robot to gain insight into children with autism. The researchers hope that their collaborative work will lead to earlier diagnosis and better treatment for children with the neurological disorder. The story was initially reported by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Using social media to cope with grief and axiety

Ben Agger, UT Arlington sociology professor and director of the Center for Theory, was quoted in a Scranton, Penn. Times-Tribune story about a woman who set up a Facebook page after her 5-year-old daughter was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. The page was "liked” by 12,000 people and strangers showed up at the mother’s home after her child died. Agger said many people find online support as a way to deal with their grief and anxiety, but that they should understand the inconveniences and potential pitfalls of sharing intimate details online.

Arlington Archosaur Site faces setback

The research of prehistoric creatures at an Arlington fossil dig faces a setback after thieves stole more than $1,000 worth of equipment last week. According to a Dallas Morning News report, looters stole several large hand tools, tents and a wheelbarrow, all of which were hidden between two dirt mounds at the site in north Arlington. “They have hurt us quite severely,” said Christopher Noto, paleontologist and visiting researcher from Wisconsin. “Every dollar counts for us.” The Arlington Archosaur Site was discovered in 2003 by University of Texas at Arlington students and two nearby residents, who found dinosaur and prehistoric crocodile fossils.