For Students of The University of Texas at Arlington

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

AT&T Coding team

Winning team: Members of the UT Arlington team that won the 2013 AT&T Coding Challenge are, from left, freshman Keyurkumar Patel; juniors Andrew Toscano, Kevin Chung, Zaid Abdulla, and Sidharth Goyal; and senior James Fielder.

Engineering undergrads win for app that deters texting while driving

A team of UT Arlington undergraduate engineering students has taken first place and a $10,000 prize in the second annual AT&T Coding Contest for developing a cellphone app that discourages motorists from reading text messages when driving faster than 15 mph.

This is the second time UTA has earned first-place honors in the national competition.

David Levine, senior lecturer of computer science and engineering, advised the team but emphasized that the winning design was student-driven.

“It’s important to know that the AT&T contest was an engineering contest, not just a programming contest. They had to document, design, and build the app, not just program it,” Levine says. “What’s more amazing is that none of these undergraduate students have ever taken a smartphone programming course.”

The AT&T contest challenged students to devise software that curbed or prevented the social pressures of texting while driving as part of the communications giant’s "It Can Wait" anti-texting-while-driving campaign. 

Read more about the AT&T Coding Contest winning team.

Anderson Cooper

Trade old tickets for new ones this week to see Anderson Cooper on Feb. 10

Swap your general admission and preferred tickets to the postponed appearance of CNN anchor Anderson Cooper during a 48-hour exclusive "first buy" opportunity starting today, Tuesday, Jan. 14. Instructions will be sent via email.

Cooper will be on stage for the Maverick Speakers Series event at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 10, at College Park Center with moderator Krys Boyd, host and managing editor of KERA-FM's midday talk show Think.

Cooper's appearance Nov. 11 was postponed due to the journalist being assigned to report on the massive destruction in the Philippines caused by Typhoon Haiyan. 

All remaining tickets will be made available to the general public starting at 10 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 16, through

Tickets to the Nov. 11 event will not be honored. Questions should be directed to the UTA Box Office at 2-9595.

Cooper took his background in war correspondence for Channel One News and ABC to CNN in 2001, where he reported on major breaking news stories and handled live coverage for the military conflict in Baghdad. His show, Anderson Cooper 360°, has aired on CNN since 2003. He has earned many accolades throughout his career, including several Emmys, a Peabody, and two GLAAD Media awards.

Rowland Martin

Rowland Martin

Martin Luther King Jr. Day events include poetry slam, veterans fair, community service

UT Arlington will pay tribute this month to Martin Luther King Jr. and celebrate those who have shared the late civil rights leader’s dream of equality and justice.

Nationally syndicated columnist Roland Martin is the keynote speaker for the annual Advancing the Dream Awards Banquet at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 17, in the Bluebonnet Ballroom of the E.H. Hereford University Center. Martin is a former CNN political analyst, author, and host of News One Now, a one-hour weekday morning news program on TV One.

The banquet honors recipients of the first MLK Living Legend Awards and presents scholarships. CBS 11 news reporter and UTA alumna Elizabeth Dinh will emcee the event. Grammy Award-winning jazz drummer and artist-in-residence Adonis Rose will perform with the Fort Worth Jazz Orchestra. 

Banquet tickets are $40 at Delta Sigma Theta sorority hosts the awards banquet.

An Evening of Spoken Word Poetry Slam is set for 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, in the Bluebonnet Ballroom. Admission is $15 at

A Veterans Breakfast and Opportunity Fair kicks off Martin Luther King Jr. Day activities 9-11 a.m. Monday, Jan. 20, at the Maverick Activities Center.

At the same time Monday, hundreds of volunteers will gather at the MAC to learn their assignments for the MLK Day of Service.

flu shot

Don't take risks during influenza season; student insurance covers flu shot

Influenza reports are on the rise in North Texas, and health officials suggest the flu vaccine as the best preventive measure. 

Health Services has the flu vaccine for $20. No appointment is necessary. Clinic hours are 8:30 a.m.-noon and 1-4:30 p.m. Mondays-Fridays at the Health Services Center.

Tarrant County Public Health provides the flu vaccine for $20 at six locations. The closest site to campus is the Arlington Public Health Center, 536 W. Randol Mill Road, near North Cooper Street. Or use the Flu Vaccine Finder page for pharmacies offering the vaccine.

Student health insurance covers the cost of flu shots.

Influenza is a serious disease that kills an average of 23,600 Americans a year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Flu symptoms can come on quickly in the form of fever, dry cough, sore throat, headache, extreme tiredness, stuffed-up nose, and body aches.

To help prevent the spread of influenza, cover all coughs and sneezes, stay home if sick, and wash your hands frequently with soap and water or use hand sanitizer.

If you become ill, health care providers at the Health Services Center can provide a doctor’s note. However, it is up to the instructor to accept it.

For more information and vaccination locations, go to Also, check the Flu and You page.

MavPic Wendy Davis

Educational plan

State Sen. Wendy Davis introduced her "Great Schools: Great Texas” plan at a news conference last Thursday at the E.H. Hereford University Center. Davis, D-Fort Worth, and Republican Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott are seeking their parties' nomination for governor in the Nov. 4 general election. Also participating in the event were businessman Dan Dipert, Tarrant County College Chancellor Erma Johnson Hadley, Fort Worth school Trustee Jacinto Ramos Jr., and state Rep. Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie.


ACES is now accepting proposals

The Annual Celebration of Excellence by Students (ACES) is a University-wide symposium that showcases UT Arlington’s undergraduate and graduate students’ research and creativity.

Undergraduate and graduate students work with faculty mentors in their disciplines to write and submit abstracts for the competition. Past winners have presented research on gene therapy, business relations, army recruiting, pain control, better tools for builders, history, philosophy, biochemistry, and engineering. They have presented works of art, literature, music, and stage performances. Winners receive monetary prizes.

Deadline for abstracts is midnight Friday, Feb. 7.

The ACES Symposium is set for Wednesday, March 26, in the E.H. Hereford University Center.

Diversity certification offered

The Diversity Certificate Program (DCP) is recruiting for its first class for spring 2014.

Offered through the School of Social Work, the DCP is a 12-credit hour program that enhances students’ scholarly training and career preparation by providing them with the opportunity to develop multicultural literacy.

DCP students pursue specialized study in racial and ethnic relations, gender and sexuality, and social and economic inequality to understand diverse identities, cultures, and communities.

Applications are on the DCP website. Read more on the DCP Facebook page.

Questions? Contact DCP adviser Jennifer Miller at

Textbook discount offered by Student Alumni Association

Join the UTA Student Alumni Association and receive a 10 percent discount on textbooks this week at the UT Arlington Bookstore. The $10 membership is available 10 a.m.-2 p.m. through Friday, Jan. 17.

Link to College Park restaurants for specials, coupons

Be among the first to find out about events, specials, and receive coupons for the College Park District restaurants. Click here to sign up for the College Park Newsletter and receive a coupon just for signing up.

Check List


Friday, Jan. 17

Late registration ends for spring term

Winter intersession grades are official by Office of Records

Monday, Jan. 20

Martin Luther King Jr. holiday

Monday, Jan. 27

Deadline for application for spring graduation

Wednesday, Jan. 29

Census Date

Sections added for spring schedule of classes

More sections have been added to the schedule of classes for spring 2014. Log in to MyMav to check on new sections for your classes.

Late registration continues through Jan. 17

If you have not registered for spring classes, check your portal page on MyMav to determine if you need adviser clearance. 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 (DEP hold). If adviser permission is needed to register for the class, you must see an adviser before close of business Friday, Jan. 17. A list of advising offices is online.

Alumni Game

Add, swap, drop, or withdraw from spring classes

Students can add and swap classes through the last day of late registration, Friday, Jan. 17.

To withdraw from classes once the term has begun, undergraduate students must meet with an academic adviser in their major department.

If you drop or withdraw on or before the Census Date, Wednesday, Jan. 29, no grade will be recorded on your transcript to reflect the drop. Courses dropped by the Census Date also will not be counted toward the six-course drop limit that affects students who entered a Texas public college or university in fall 2007 or later or the excessive hours tuition law that affects students who have more than 45 hours in excess of the hours required for a degree plan. Read more about this state law and procedures for its implementation at UT Arlington.

Final grades for winter intersession posted Friday

Grades for the winter intersession are expected to be official and available in MyMav by Friday, Jan. 17. Some grades will be available to view as early as Wednesday, Jan. 15. However, academic standing and drops for standing and prerequisites will not complete until Saturday, Jan. 18. Check the Office of Admissions, Records and Registration website and the MyMav portal for updates on when end-of-term processes have completed.

Note deadlines to apply for graduation for spring candidates

Monday, Jan. 27, is the deadline to apply for graduation for the spring 2014 term. The filing fee is $40 and is non-refundable and non-transferable. Students should apply to graduate in MyMav. Read the graduation application instructions

Before students apply to graduate, they should verify with their academic adviser that they are eligible to graduate at the end of the graduation application term. The fee is not refundable or transferable to a future term if a student applies and is then found to be ineligible to graduate.

Candidates for graduation who miss this deadline can apply through Monday, Feb. 24, with an additional $60 late fee.

Read more about graduation requirements.

Meningitis vaccination documentation required

Texas college students who are new to the institution and students returning after an absence of at least one fall or spring semester who are under age 22 are required to submit documentation of immunization against bacterial meningitis. Visit UT Arlington’s meningitis vaccination page for more information.

Learn about students and the Affordable Care Act

Read about how the Affordable Care Act affects students. Go to websites for UTA's Affordable Care Act and You and the UT System student health insurance plan.

Print your own enrollment verification

Enrollment verification for the winter intersession semester is available online. To print your verification, log on to MyMav, go to Student Center, and click on Request Enrollment Verification to access the National Student Loan Clearinghouse.

Going Out
  UTA Presents

Three new shows debut at Planetarium

Solar System

Shows are really big and really small for the Planetarium's spring schedule, which runs through June 1.

Two of the three new shows for spring travel to space, while one focuses on life's tiniest matters.

Back to the Moon for Good, narrated by Tim Allen, immerses you in the Google Lunar XPRIZE race to the moon and the human stories of both the competition and the collaboration it inspires.

Exoplanets follows mankind’s first space probe as it journeys outside our solar system to the many new worlds astronomers are discovering.

Molecularium is a magical, musical adventure into the world of atoms and molecules.

Returning for spring are Pink Floyd, a combination of amazing visual effects and classic tunes by the rock band, and Spacepark 360, out-of-this-world amusement park rides in surreal vistas. 

The Planetarium is located in the Chemistry and Physics Building.

Tuesday, Jan. 14

Maverick Club Coach Darin Thomas and coach Kristie Fox preview the upcoming baseball and softball seasons. $5 members; $10 guests. Noon, Hospitality Suite, College Park Center. Maverick Club.

Guest Tuba and Trombone Recital Tim Buzbee and Jessica Buzbee, who teach at the Monash University in Australia, perform. Buzbee is the principal tuba in the Melbourne Symphony. Free. 7:30 p.m., Irons Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building. Music.

Friday, Jan. 17

First Pitch Fundraiser Former Texas Rangers CEO and Baseball Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan is the guest speaker. Tickets $25 students, $50 general public. 6:30 p.m., Capital 1 Club, Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Parking in Lot J; use Home Plate gate entrance. Athletics.

MLK Day: Advancing the Dream Awards Banquet Nationally syndicated columnist Roland Martin is the keynote speaker. Tickets $40. 6:30 p.m., Bluebonnet Ballroom, E.H. Hereford University Center.

Saturday, Jan. 18

MLK Day: An Evening of Spoken Word Poetry Slam Tickets $15. 7:30 p.m., Bluebonnet Ballroom, E.H. Hereford University Center.

Sunday, Jan. 19

Faculty Piano Recital John Solomons, professor of piano, performs. Free. 7:30 p.m., Irons Recital Hall, Fine Arts Building. Music.

Coming up

Reger Dowell

Women's Basketball Mavericks vs. Troy, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 22; vs. South Alabama, 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25; vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, noon Thursday, Feb. 6; and vs. Texas State, 5 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15Tickets $3 with student ID. Games at College Park Center. Athletics.

Men's Basketball Mavericks vs. Troy, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 23; vs. South Alabama, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25; vs. Louisiana-Lafayette, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6; and vs. Texas State, 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 15Tickets $3 with student ID. Games at College Park Center. Athletics.

Friday Night Films Captain Phillips, Jan. 24The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Feb. 7; and Gravity, Feb. 21. Free fresh-popped popcorn while supplies last; other concessions for sale. Tickets $1, $1.50 with credit card. 8 p.m., Rosebud Theatre, E.H. Hereford University Center. EXCEL Campus Activities.


The Gallery at UTA: Faculty Biennial XIV This exhibition shows what Department of Art and Art History professors accomplish in their creative endeavors outside the classroom. Gallery hours 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays-Fridays and noon-5 p.m. Saturdays. Through Feb. 8Art and Art HistoryThe Gallery at UTA.

Gallery 76102: Beyond Memory Paintings by people with dementia are part of Memories in the Making, an art program of the Alzheimers Association. Paintings are available through an online auction Jan. 16-25. Calendars, note cards, and small matted paintings are for sale at the event. Gallery hours noon-6 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays. Opening reception 5-8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 16. Through Saturday, Jan. 25. Gallery 76102, Fort Worth Center.

Mindful Moments Learn mindfulness techniques to help deal effectively with stress. New day. Free. 12:15-12:45 p.m., Mondays, Room 310, Ransom Hall. Health Services.

Special Collections: Howdy, Mr. President! A Fort Worth Perspective of JFK Photos of President John F. Kennedy's visit to Fort Worth in November 1963 are from the historic Fort Worth Star-Telegram Collection in Special Collections. Gallery hours 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays, sixth floor, Central Library. Through Feb. 8. UT Arlington LibrarySpecial Collections.

The Maverick Lens: Views from the Library This annual photo exhibit reflects the diversity of learning, living, and working at UT Arlington. See also "50 Years of Views." 8 a.m.-7 p.m., sixth floor parlor, Central Library. Through March 5. UT Arlington Library.

Visual Resource Commons and Gallery The Jonathan A. Campbell and Tanya G. Dowdey 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 spring schedule includes new shows Back to the Moon for GoodExoplanets, and Molecularium, plus returning favorites Pink Floyd and Spacepark 360Planetarium.

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

Learn More


Wednesday, Jan. 15

Engineering Distinguished Speakers Series Don Giddens of the Georgia Institute of Technology and Emory University discusses "Engineering Education in a Rapidly Changing World: How Can We Stay Ahead?" Free. Reception 5 p.m. Room 601, lecture 6 p.m. Room 100, Nedderman Hall. Engineering.

Monday, Jan. 27

Unmanned Systems Consortium Leaders in the unmanned systems field gather to discuss their current work and the future of these advanced technologies. RSVP by Friday, Jan. 17, to 817-272-5921 or 10 a.m.-4 p.m., UTA Research Institute.


Center for Students in Recovery Celebrate Recovery 12-step meeting, 7 p.m. Tuesdays, Room 107, Social Work Building; and student-led, open Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meeting, noon, Wednesdays, Room 314, Central Library. Center for Students in Recovery.

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

Sports Notes
  Nolan Ryan

First Pitch man: Baseball legend Nolan Ryan will speak at the First Pitch Fundraiser, a dinner that benefits the UTA baseball program.

Nolan Ryan featured guest at First Pitch Fundraiser

Former Texas Rangers CEO and Baseball Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan is the guest speaker for the First Pitch Fundraiser on Friday, Jan. 17, that benefits the UTA baseball program. Rangers Ballpark in Arlington is hosting the event at 6:30 p.m. in the Capital 1 Club.

UT Arlington coach Darin Thomas will look back on the 2013 season, which included a Western Athletic Conference title, and preview 2014, the first season in the Sun Belt.

The evening includes the presentation of the 2013 WAC championship rings. Members of the 2014 baseball team and former UTA players will be in attendance.

Tickets are $25 for students and $50 for the general public at Parking at Rangers Ballpark is available in Lot J, and access to the Capital 1 Club is through the Home Plate gate entrance.

Maverick take on Texas State this week

The basketball teams face rival Texas State this week in San Marcos. The women's game starts at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15, while the men's game begins at 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 18.

Both Maverick teams lost to Louisiana-Lafayette on Saturday. The women fell 66-64, making them 1-14 for the season and 0-4 in Sun Belt Conference play. The men’s team, which lost 90-70 to ULL, won 83-79 in overtime against Louisiana-Monroe last Thursday. The men are 6-10 overall and 1-3 in the conference.

Movin' Mavs adaptive sports honored; Sanchez, alumni named to USA team

The Movin’ Mavs adaptive sports program has been recognized for the second year in a row with a Gold Award from the National Association of Student Affairs Professionals. The Get Back in the Game adapted sports and recreation for injured service veterans program won in the category for civic learning, democratic engagement, service-learning, and community service. The Movin’ Mavs program received NASAP's Silver Award for 2010-2011.

Jorge Sanchez, Movin' Mavs wheelchair basketball co-captain, and former team members Aaron Gouge, Mike Paye, and Paul Schulte have been selected to the USA National Senior Team preparing for the 2014 World Championships in July in Seoul, Korea.

The Movin' Mavs and Paralympic Sport Arlington/UTA DFW Freewheelers each were undefeated at the Pioneer Classic at Lakeshore Foundation last weekend. UTA went 5-0 and the Freewheelers were 6-0.

(For more sports news, go to,, or

In Quotes

Malaria epidemics like U.S. in 1930s

Study shows Earth's expanding waistline

Deduction decision delayed by Congress

"It's almost impossible for us to imagine, but in the rural South, as late as the 1930s, the extent of malaria was in many ways comparable to what it is today in sub-Saharan Africa."

"The nice thing about GPS satellites is that we know their orbits really, really well."

"They usually make this retroactive. It is not a good way to handle such important issues on the part of Congress."

— Daniel Sledge, assistant professor of political science, on an American malaria epidemic that resulted in government-led destruction of mosquito breeding grounds.
National Public Radio

— Ben Harris, assistant professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, on using satellites to "feel" dark matter around the Earth's equator.

— Allan Saxe, associate professor of political science, on inaction by Congress on whether taxpayers in states with no income tax can deduct state and local sales taxes on their federal tax forms.



Editor: Teresa Newton

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.

© 2014 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.

The University of Texas at Arlington

The Shorthorn UT Arlington Magazine Maverick Calendar TrailBlazer Archives


Mavericks Go Green