For Students of The University of Texas at Arlington

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


Early voting begins today on campus

UT Arlington is an early voting site 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, June 7-9, for the June 18 runoff election. Cast your ballot in the Palo Duro Lounge of the E.H. Hereford University Center.

Voter registration information and links to local election offices are available through the Texas Secretary of State office at

For more information, contact Jennifer Fox at or 817-272-0556.

UT Arlington named to Community Service Honor Roll for fifth year

For the fifth year in a row, UT Arlington has been named to the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, which recognizes colleges and universities for their commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.

“Being a Tier One university means committing yourself to making a difference in your community—whether it’s through innovation, teaching, or service-learning,” President James D. Spaniolo says. “This is national recognition that we’re giving back in important ways. That’s what Mavericks do.”

The Honor Roll is sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service, the U.S. Department of Education, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact, and the American Council on Education.

“Our students engaged in approximately 400,000 hours of service in the local community, and approximately 100 service-learning classes across the University enhance content knowledge through active learning,” says Shirley Theriot, director of the Center for Community Service Learning.

  Fresh Pix World No Tobacco Day

Tobacco free

Students and staff members learn about tobacco at World No Tobacco Day last Tuesday in the Palo Duro Lounge at the E.H. Hereford University Center. Health Services sponsored the fair, which provided information about toxins in cigars and cigarettes and about dangerous new products leading to new trends in smoking. UT Arlington becomes a tobacco-free campus Aug. 1 to foster a healthier community for students, employees, and visitors. See more about UT Arlington's tobacco-free policy.

Scholarships offered for Mind, Brain, and Education graduate students

Scholarships have been established for the two-year, 36-hour master’s degree program in Mind, Brain, and Education that begins this fall, thanks to the generosity of Steffen and Betsy Palko. Steffen Palko serves on UT Arlington's Development Board and is a member of the advisory council in the College of Education and Health Professions.

Five scholarships are available and will pay full tuition for the first year. Funding for the second year is available to scholarship recipients who maintain a minimum GPA of 3.5; complete a minimum of six hours during each fall, spring, and summer semesters; and prepare a successful student plan for their second year. This competitive scholarship would allow non-resident recipients to pay tuition at the in-state resident rate.

To qualify, a student must apply, gain admission, and enroll for the fall 2011 semester. Candidates can find applications and instructions for the scholarship online at the Southwest Center for Mind, Brain, and Education. Deadline to apply is Wednesday, June 15.

For more information, call 817-272-0526 or email

University licenses process to convert natural gas to synthetic fuel

UT Arlington has announced a licensing agreement with 1st Resource Group Inc. of Fort Worth to commercialize a new, efficient process for converting natural gas to clean, synthetic fuel at a cost lower than current market rates.

UT Arlington engineering and science researchers have designed a portable conversion unit that transforms natural gas from the field for use as clean-burning, synthetic fuels.

1st Resource has partnered with UMED Holdings Inc., a Fort Worth-based, publicly traded company, to aid in commercializing the patent-pending process. 1st Resource plans to deploy conversion units in domestic and international gas fields to yield synthetic jet fuels and diesel.

The application is expected to be particularly useful in stranded gas fields, on sites where natural gas must be vented or flared, and when it is not economically viable to move gas to a pipeline because of adverse market conditions.

Read more about the natural gas conversion process and licensing agreement.

Fresh Pix College Park Center topping

Making his mark

Jose Hernandez, a field engineer with Austin Commercial, adds his name to a wall during the "topping" ceremony for a parking garage at the College Park District last week. Watch the district's progress on the construction webcams.


Professor's research aimed at helping dyslexic children learn

A new MRI-based study of children with dyslexia by a UT Arlington professor could explain why a small percentage of dyslexic children don’t respond to current teaching strategies.

Assistant professor of psychology Timothy Odegard’s work was recently published in the journal Neurocase. Emily Farris, Dr. Odegard’s doctoral student, is the lead author on the paper that details the findings from Odegard’s team.

Researchers examined functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data from 15 children, ages 8-14. They found that children with dyslexia who responded to treatment and non-dyslexic readers showed greater functional connections between the interior frontal regions of their brains than dyslexic children who had not responded to treatment. The tests were conducted while the children performed basic reading tasks.

Read more about Odegard’s dyslexia research.

Graduate Studies receives bridge grant

The Office of Graduate Studies has received a grant from the National Science Foundation for the Texans Building Robust, Innovative, and Diverse Graduate Education (TX BRIDGE) project.

TX BRIDGE aims to build an alliance between UT Arlington, UT Brownsville, UT Dallas, UT Pan American, UT Permian Basin, UT San Antonio, UT Tyler, and Texas Southern University.

The planning process will create the infrastructure for an innovative Alliances for Graduate Education in the Professoriate program that (1) encourages undergraduate research and mentoring interest in graduate STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education; (2) integrates mentoring, academic, and professional support across baccalaureate, master’s, doctoral, and postdoctoral training; (3) makes research and mentoring opportunities at doctoral institutions available to master’s students studying at comprehensive universities; and (4) creates a cost- and time-efficient bridge for those master’s students to enter doctoral studies at research-high activity universities.

Dr. Kevin Schug

Dr. Kevin Schug

Chemistry professor to focus study on well water near rural drilling sites in North Texas

Kevin Schug, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, will assist in a new study to examine rural well water from areas near natural gas drilling sites. The study aims to provide clear, accurate information about the potential impact of chemicals used to extract gas from rock formations.

Dr. Schug will work with independent researchers with support from Assure Controls, a product development and marketing company in San Diego, Calif. The research team plans to test for contamination in well water samples from more than 100 locations.

“This is an important study for us to undertake because North Texas is so heavily invested in natural gas production,” Schug says. “We want to help figure out if there are valid environmental and health concerns associated with these operations, especially in more rural areas where well water quality is not specifically regulated by the EPA.”

Read more about the research on well water near gas drilling sites.

Dr. Colleen Fitzgerald

Dr. Colleen Fitzgerald

Linguist wins NSF grant to breathe new life into endangered Native American languages

Colleen Fitzgerald, associate professor and chair of the Department of Linguistics and TESOL, is working to save disappearing languages in Native American communities in Oklahoma—a state with the highest native language diversity in the United States, but very little documentation.

Dr. Fitzgerald has won a National Science Foundation grant along with Mary Linn, an anthropologist at the University of Oklahoma and curator of Native American language at the Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History.

The grant will fund research associated with the Oklahoma Breath of Life workshop planned for May 2012 in Norman, Okla.

Read more about the NSF grant for Native American languages.

Chilean soapbark tree

Medical miracle tree: Research by Dr. Michael Roner shows that extracts from the Chilean soapbark tree may help prevent viral infections in children.

Biology professor says Chilean soapbark tree may hold key to reducing rotavirus deaths

A natural additive used to make foam in soft drinks also may help prevent the sometimes deadly rotavirus infection in children or reduce its severity.

Biology Associate Professor Michael Roner co-authored a paper—“Characterization of in vivo anti-rotavirus activities of saponin extracts from Quillaja Saponaria Molina”—that was published in Antiviral Research, the official publication of the International Society for Antiviral Research.

Rotavirus is the leading cause of severe, dehydrating diarrhea in newborns and young children worldwide, with more than 500,000 children under 5 dying each year, according to the World Health Organization’s rotavirus program. About 85 percent of the deaths happen in developing countries, where current vaccines are not widely available.

Dr. Roner and co-author Ka Ian Tam, who earned her doctorate from UT Arlington in August 2010, say there is strong evidence that extracts from the Chilean soapbark tree are able to block the rotavirus by disrupting its interaction with target cells. They used saponin molecules extracted in fluid form from the tree called quillaja saponaria for their study. Dr. Tam works for the U.S. Center for Disease Control’s Rotavirus Surveillance Team.

Read more about the Chilean soapbark tree research.

Get summer access to the MAC

Students may use the Maverick Activities Center during the summer if they:

     • are registered for at least one summer session,

     • were a fall 2010 or spring 2011 student and have paid the $75 for summer access, or

     • graduated in May 2011 and are Alumni Association members.

For more information, visit the MAC services and information desk.

Movin' Mavs announce legacy scholarships

The Movin’ Mavs adapted sports program has created three legacy scholarships honoring individuals who have made unique and distinctive contributions to the program and the development of wheelchair basketball. These scholarships include a $5,000 commitment from the Movin’ Mavs program.

The scholarships honor the late coach Jim Hayes, who founded UT Arlington’s adaptive sports programs; the late Randy Snow, a former Movin’ Mavs player and the first paralympian inducted into the Olympics Hall of Fame; and the late Harry Vines, former president of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association and founder of the University of Arkansas’ Rollin’ Razorbacks program.

Tax deductible donations to a legacy scholarship will be matched by the Movin’ Mavs program. To donate or to apply for a scholarship, contact Doug Garner at

Check List


June 9

Census date

June 27

Last day to drop classes for summer first five-week term

Registration continues for summer classes

Registration timetables are online for summer terms. Late registration for the 11-week and the five-week sessions is today, Tuesday, June 7.

To determine if you need adviser clearance, check your portal page at MyMav and click on Student Center. You will see a section on the right titled Holds. Click the details link for specific hold information. If your academic department requires advising, you will see an academic department service indicator (hold).

A list of advising offices is online. The schedule of classes for summer and fall is at

Freshman Interest Group application deadline nears

Apply now for a Freshman Interest Group for next year. If you have applied to join a FIG, register for one of our exclusive FIG-only orientation sesssions Thursday-Friday June 9-10, or Monday-Tuesday, June 13-14.

Prerequisite checking enforced

Prerequisite checking will be enforced in MyMav prior to the summer term. If you have either successfully completed the pre-requirement(s) or are currently enrolled in a course prerequisite, you will be able to register for the next-level course for summer or fall.

If you are enrolled for summer and do not successfully complete the prerequisite in the spring term, you will be dropped from the next-level course when spring grades are posted.

If you are enrolled for fall but not summer, prerequisite completion will be checked when summer grades are final in August.

Prerequisites not only include courses that must be taken in sequence, but also some restricted to class level, GPA, or concurrent enrollment. Check Class Details in the MyMav Class Search.

Questions regarding prerequisites should be directed to your academic adviser. A list of advising offices is online.

Going Out
  UTA Presents

Free summer movies on MAC lawn

Lincoln Lawyer

EXCEL Campus Activities presents its outdoor Summer Movie Series on Thursday evenings after dusk, approximately 9 p.m., on the west lawn of the Maverick Activities Center. Admission is free. Bring lawn chairs and blankets. Find refreshments at the concession stand.

The June lineup includes:

June 9—The Lincoln Lawyer. Rated R. A slick, charismatic criminal defense attorney lands the case of a lifetime that develops into a deadly match of manipulation.

June 16—Ferris Bueller's Day Off. Rated PG-13. John Hughes' magical comedy about how playing hooky for a single day can produce a lifetime's worth of adventure.

June 23—Limitless. Rated PG-13. A designer pharmaceutical makes an out-of-work writer laser focused with everything he’s ever read, heard, or seen.

June 30—Goonies. Rated PG. Seven young friends find themselves on an underground adventure as they seek the secrets behind the treasure of the notorious pirate.

See the free summer movie schedule online.

Wednesday, June 8

$2 Movie: Gnomeo & Juliet The neighboring gardens of Montague and Capulet are at war, but the gnomes, Gnomeo and Juliet, are in love. Rated G. 5:30 p.m. Also 5:30 p.m. Friday and 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Planetarium, 817-272-1183.

Texas Rangers Discount Tickets Get tickets for the June 8 Texas Rangers game against the Detroit Tigers. Discounts are available for various games through the end of the season. Access the list of games at and use the password rangers.

Wednesday-Sunday, June 8-12

Despicable Me

Levitt Pavilion Concert Series Performing this week are Secret Agent, 2300 Skidoo, Wednesday; Cas Haley, Thursday; Carrie Rodriguez, Friday; Turnpike Troubadours, Saturday; and The Spring Standards, Sunday. Free. See the concert schedule. 8 p.m. Levitt Pavilion, 100 W. Abram St., Arlington.

Thursday, June 9

Opening Reception for 897 Square Features contemporary art ranging from 2D and 3D to installation-type work. Free. Reception 6-8 p.m. Exhibit runs through July 30. Gallery 76102, Fort Worth Center.

Wednesday, June 15

$2 Movie: Despicable Me When a criminal mastermind uses a trio of orphan girls as pawns for a grand scheme, he finds their love is profoundly changing him for the better. Rated PG. 5:30 p.m. Also 5:30 p.m. Friday and 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Planetarium, 817-272-1183.

Wednesday-Sunday, June 15-19

Levitt Pavilion Concert Series This week’s lineup includes Lannaya West African Drum and Dance Ensemble, Wednesday; The Orbans, Thursday; Terri Hendrix, Friday; Rick Trevino, Saturday; and Blame Sally, Sunday. Free. See the concert schedule. 8 p.m. Levitt Pavilion, 100 W. Abram St., Arlington.


Flow: Dalton Maroney 1982-2011 Exhibit is composed of 17 sculptures and six works on paper created by Maroney, an associate professor in the Department of Art and Art History. Reception 6-9 p.m. Friday, June 17. Free. 1-5 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturdays, 1-5 p.m. Sundays. Through July 31. Arlington Museum of Art, 201 W. Main St., Arlington.

Exposure: Photos from the Second Battle of Fallujah Photographs from the Second Battle of Fallujah taken by UT Arlington student and Marine Corps veteran Joel Chaverri. Free. Through Aug. 6. Sixth floor parlor, Central Library.

Six Flags Over Texas Exhibit Celebrate 50 years of an Arlington landmark with this interactive exhibit. Free. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Saturdays. Through Aug. 13. Special Collections, sixth floor, Central Library.

Planetarium Summer schedule begins today. See the complete Planetarium schedule, 817-272-1183.

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

Learn More


Wednesday, June 22

Thesis and Dissertation Formatting Learn the Graduate School requirements for formatting and submitting your document electronically. Bring a section of your thesis or dissertation if you have specific formatting questions. Reserve online. Free. 3-5 p.m., 004, University Hall. Also 6-8 p.m. Thursday, June 23. Graduate Studies, Michael Saenz,

Thursday, June 23

Thesis and Dissertation Preparation Explore the importance of choosing a mentor and introduce the processes involved in successfully completing the thesis or dissertation. Designed for students who are early in their graduate career. Lunch provided. Reserve online. Free. 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., B17, Davis Hall. Graduate Studies, Michael Saenz,

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

Sports Notes
  Doug Garner

Golden touch: Movin' Mavs coach Doug Garner guided the Army's wheelchair basketball team to a gold medal at the Warrior Games in May.

Movin' Mavs coach guides Army team to gold

Doug Garner, coach of the Movin' Mavs wheelchair basketball team, guided the Army team to the gold medal at the Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo., in May. The games were hosted by the U.S. Olympic Committee.

Garner was asked to coach the Army team and held training camps on campus earlier this year for wounded soldiers from around the world.

Three members of the Movin' Mavs who are Army veterans—Blake McMinn, Anthony Pone, and Juan Soto—played for the Army team, which defeated the Marines 44-19 in the championship game.

Read more about the Warrior Games and watch the Army vs. Marine Corps championship game.

Men's tracksters qualify for national meet

Now ranked No. 24 in the nation, the men's track team has nine entries in the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships Wednesday-Saturday, June 8-11, at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.

Six individuals and the 4x100-meter relay team recorded qualifying performances at the West Preliminaries May 26-28 in Eugene, Ore., as senior Cordero Gray qualified in two events, the 100- and 200-meter dashes, finishing second and third, respectively.

Gray also ran with senior Juan Lewis, sophomore Andrew Pettis, and freshman Clayton Vaughn on the relay team that placed 11th.

Vaughn also qualified in the 100-meter event while senior Casey Keeter (shot put), junior Isiah Clements (high jump), freshman Jeff Rodriguez (pole vault), and freshman Ivan Storic (javelin) added qualifying performances in field events.

Sophomore Romain Martin had qualified earlier in the decathlon, where he ranks second in the nation.

Entries for summer intramurals due Wednesday

Summer intramural entries for softball, tennis, and racquetball are accepted through Wednesday, June 8.

For more information, see the summer intramural sports calendar.

Sports shorts

Tennis - Four members of the women's and men's tennis teams have been selected to the 2011 Southland Conference All-Academic Team. Senior and SLC Player of the Year Daiana Negreanu and junior Maria Martinez-Romero were named to the women's first team while junior David Subirats and sophomore Yauheni Yakauleu were listed on the men's first team.

Golf - Sophomore Hunter Brown was named to the SLC All-Academic first team for men's golf.

Baseball - Senior third baseman Brian Nephew was named to the All-SLC second team while senior catcher Chad Comer was selected to the third team.

(For more sports news, go to,, or

In Quotes

No end to government debt purchases?

Microrobots could start industrial revolution

Could sonogram law be challenged?

"I don't think there is going to be any choice but for the Fed to continue buying government debt."

"They collect information and then tag them on their clothing with the smaller robots and track them to their secret hideouts."

"The real question will be if this law, and others like it, are challenged."

— Dr. Roger Meiners, professor and chair of the Department of Economics in the College of Business, on the government debt program.
Housing Wire

— Dr. Harry Stephanou, professor of electrical engineering and director of the Automation and Robotics Research Institute, concerning microrobots.

— Dr. Rebecca Deen, associate professor and chair of the Department of Political Science in the College of Liberal Arts, on a new Texas law that requires women seeking abortions to first have a sonogram.
College Times



Editors: Teresa Newton, Jim Patterson

Executive Director for University Publications: Mark Permenter

Associate Vice President for Communications and Marketing: David Johnson

Vice President for Communications: Jerry Lewis

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

© 2011 The University of Texas at Arlington


TrailBlazer is published by the Department of University Communications on Tuesdays during the fall and spring semesters, and every other Tuesday during the summer. To submit items for possible inclusion in TrailBlazer, email Items must be received three working days before distribution. Inclusion of events and activities in TrailBlazer does not necessarily constitute an endorsement by the University. Read the TrailBlazer Guidelines.

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