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UTA In The News — Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

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Clean energy

UTA and The Korea Institute of Energy Research have signed an agreement to focus on developing and commercializing technologies that have global environmental impact, North Texas-based Korean Town News reported.

Eye on politics

Rebecca Deen, UTA chair and associate professor of political science, said new data that shows some election-induced hysteria among Texas voters doesn’t surprise her, the Star-Telegram reported. She said Trump core supporters seem to get more entrenched even when his positions are fact-checked because they feel the system might be rigged against them.

Quantifying water content

UTA chemists have invented a method to quantify water content in solid pharmaceutical drugs that is faster, cheaper, more accurate and more precise than the method currently recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and widely used worldwide, Pharmacy Choice reported.

Inside Cuba

The recent steps toward detente in the previously inert relationship between the United States and Cuba have had little visible effect outside of the main tourist centers in Havana and the various beach resorts that, until now, have been populated largely by Canadians and Europeans, wrote David LaFevor, a UTA assistant professor of Latin American History and Digital Humanities, in a Huffington Post column. 

New appointment

The North Texas Commission executive committee has selected James D. Spaniolo to serve as the regional, non-profit organization’s next president and chief executive officer, NTC-DFW.org reported. Spaniolo served as UTA president from 2004-13. His appointment will begin Oct. 3, 2016, but he will be introduced at the 45th Annual Members’ Luncheon on Sept. 15.

Data mining

UTA Computer Science and Engineering professor Heng Huang’s National Science Foundation-funded data-mining efforts could help improve the diagnosis and treatment of depression, Collective Intelligence reported.

Renewable energy

Krishnan Rajeshwar, UTA professor of chemistry and president of The Electrochemical Society, was interviewed on the ECS podcast about renewable energy. ECS membership totals about 8,000 scientists and engineers in more than 70 countries worldwide.

Taking the helm

The Dallas Morning News and The Oklahoman profiled Carl Sparks, the new CEO of Academic Partnerships, which helps universities expand their online offerings. The firm works with more than 40 universities, including The University of Texas at Arlington. The article also quoted Beth Mancini, senior associate dean for education innovation for UTA’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation. She said after employing Academic Partnerships, the online program for nursing increased from about 175 students to nearly 20,000 in the 2015-16 academic year.

Better prediction method

Environmentalists tried to answer how they can better predict how disasters like the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion will impact the ecosystem at a recent Ecological Society of American Scientific Meeting, a PLoS.org blog guest column said. The column mentioned Ashley Asmus, a UTA graduate research assistant, whose alternative prediction tool recommended characterization of a community not only in terms of the species it contains, but also the roles and functions those species can do.

High marks

UTA’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program placed among Value Colleges 2016 Top 50 in the best value category, NBC WAVE 3 in Louisville, Ky., CBS KFMB 8 in San Diego, Calif., and many other websites reported. Rankings were based on reputation, cost and projected salary outcome.

Student success

A recently graduated UTA master’s student is the first person to successfully flight test an unmanned aerial vehicle that uses moving weights in its wings instead of traditional control surfaces or ailerons to turn, Before It’s News reported.

Workload management system

A workload management system developed by a team including physicists from UTA, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Rutgers University and the University of Tennessee taps into unused processing time on the Titan supercomputer at the Oak Ridge Leadership Computing Facility to tackle complex physics problems, NewswiseScience Mag and Science Springs reported. New funding will help the group extend this approach, giving scientists in other data-intensive fields access to valuable supercomputing resources.

New student regent

Jeremy Stewart, a fourth-year medical student at the Paul L. Foster School of Medicine, was sworn in Friday as the student regent on the Texas Tech University System Board of Regents, El Paso Inc. reported. It’s the first time that a student from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso has been named to the board. Steward earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from UTA.

Alumni's new title

Christian Romieh has joined AXIS Accident and Health as vice president and business development manager for its Middle East and North Africa reinsurance business, Yahoo! Finance and many other websites reported. Romieh earned his MBA from UTA.