Mic/Nite Fall 2011 Presentations
The Fall 2011 Mic/Nite was held on Wednesday, October 19 at The Valarium located at 1213 Blackstock Avenue, Knoxville, TN.
Click on the thumbnail images below to view the presentation abstracts.
College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources
Neal S. Eash, Associate Professor of Biosystems Engineering & Soil Science
“The Link Between Carbon Sequestration and Agriculture in Lesotho, Southern Africa”
Agricultural soil management impacts carbon dioxide emissions and can help mitigate the effects of climate change. Limiting soil disturbance during food production can increase soil carbon levels over the long-term (decades) due to short-term (i.e., seasonal) sequestration of carbon dioxide. In order to determine the rate of carbon dioxide sequestration, micrometeorological stations were set up in two adjacent fields. These stations continuously record the environmental components necessary to complete the Bowen’s ratio energy balance equations for the fields, both of which are cropped in maize-bean rotations, one under no-till management and the other plowed. Comparison of the transfer of energy throughout the two different cropping systems over the course of the cropping cycle indicated the suspected superiority of no-till systems for maximizing the carbon dioxide uptake of agricultural systems, but only if the plow (and tillage) is abandoned. Other benefits of soil management include improved food security.
College of Architecture and Design
Tricia Stuth, Associate Professor of Architecture and Robert French, Assistant Professor of Architecture
“A New Norris House: A Sustainable Dwelling in the 21st Century”
In 1933 the Tennessee Valley Authority constructed a model community, Norris, Tennessee, as part of the Norris Dam construction project. A key feature of this New Deal village was the Norris House, a series of homes built as models for modern and efficient living. In light of the 75th anniversary of the Norris Project, an interdisciplinary team of UTK students and faculty are revisiting the Norris paradigm to create A New Norris House - a sustainable home for the 21st century. Phases include research, design, construction and evaluation to identify and address hurdles to sustainable architectural production and dwelling. The process implements interdisciplinary curricula centered on applied research, government and industry partnerships, and academically based community outreach. Contemporary life creates environmental and societal challenges and technological opportunities similar to those of the New Deal era. A New Norris House confronts both old and new issues to address impediments to the adoption of sustainable principles in existing communities.
College of Arts and Sciences — 1
Cynthia Peterson, Professor of Biochemical, Cell & Molecular Biology
“Views of Structure and Function at the Nanoscale”
Biological molecules are the engines that control life. Biochemistry has evolved to study just how that happens. Researchers are interested in the way our bodies fight injury and battle disease during clot formation and wound healing, the inflammatory response and cancer. In particular, our laboratory focuses on the structure and function of plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), the main regulator of blood clot lysis. We are unraveling the role of other proteins/cofactors in regulating PAI-1 activity. If left unregulated, PAI-1 would lead to bleeding disorders and inappropriate activities in tissues throughout the body. How do we tackle these problems? State-of-the art structural and computational tools are employed to address PAI-1 binding with its cofactors to understand the way that intimate details of protein shape guide molecular recognition. We cannot see PAI-1 or its cofactors, even with the most powerful microscopes. Instead, we use varied biological “lenses” to visualize these biomolecules and understand their size, shape and multiple interactions. With these approaches, we reconstruct a picture of what is happening on the nanoscale. Our recent work harnesses the power of neutrons to study biomolecules, working closely with colleagues at ORNL at the High Flux Isotope Reactor. This neutron scattering research is a means to tackle one of the most challenging areas left for structural biologists, which ironically is finding experiments to characterize intrinsically unstructured regions in proteins! Our work reveals that unstructured regions in the cofactors are some of the most important in regulating PAI-1.
College of Arts and Sciences — 2
Tina Shepardson, Associate Professor of Religious Studies
“This Land is My Land: Religion, Politics, and the Power of Controlling Places”
Ancient religious buildings compete on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount. An American president calls Iraq, Iran, and North Korea an “Axis of Evil.” For thousands of years, physical and rhetorical manipulations of powerful places have fundamentally shaped religious and political identities. My research on fourth-century Christian history suggests that we can better understand – and intervene in – these complex power dynamics if we realize that local places are not inert backdrops against which events transpire, but are ever-shifting sites of, and tools for, the negotiation of authority and identity. From constructing new buildings to describing places controlled by their rivals as morally and physically dangerous, early Christian leaders fundamentally shaped their landscape and thus the events that unfolded within it. Physically controlling the appearance and use of places, and rhetorically shaping perceptions of them, remain powerful, yet largely unrecognized, tools for negotiating the complex intersections of identity, religion, and politics.
College of Arts and Sciences — 3
Kenton Yeager, Associate Professor of Theatre
“The Development of the Classroom Theatre Lab”
In my search to create the perfect theatre lighting lab, I developed an integrated system of teaching theatrical design, directing and stage management. This one-to-six scale theatre allows us to expand beyond lighting and create a complete scaled fully working theatre that fits into a classroom. It has everything an actual theatre has, including lighting, sound, projection, flying and rigging system, legs, borders, drops, scrims, even stage traps and turntables. Called Yeagerlabs, this system has been adopted for use at ten universities, three high schools and a Broadway master class in New York City to teach lighting, scenic, sound, and media design, stage technology, directing and stage management. This system provides a useful educational model designed to develop collaborative skills in our next generation of theatre artists.
College of Business Administration — 1
Laura Cole, Instructor and Director of the Masters Investment Learning Center
“Masters Investment Learning Center”
The Masters Investment Learning Center (Masters ILC) is a high-technology learning hub located off the atrium in the James A. Haslam II Business Building. Funded entirely through private donations, by Mike Masters, Chris LaPorte, and many others, this high-profile center provides experiential learning, research opportunities, and enrichment activities that have, to date, transformed the academic experience and marketability of 850 students and faculty campus-wide. The cornerstone of the center is its cache of ten Bloomberg terminals, which enable users to access news, analytics, and financial market data on more than five million securities and provide support to the real-world learning activities offered through the center. Of these many opportunities, the most prominent are the Haslam and LaPorte Torch Funds. Full-time MBA students compete against one another and the S&P 500 while managing real-world security portfolios on behalf of their benefactors and on average consistently outperforming the S&P 500.
College of Business Administration — 2
Lynn Youngs, Executive Director of the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation
“Fostering Business Creation: The Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation”
Although housed in the College of Business Administration, the Anderson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation is a resource for the entire university and the broader community. The Anderson Center is funded entirely throughout private gifts to the College of Business, and its primary mission is to foster business creation across the university and local business community. Center staff and faculty oversee management of the University of Tennessee Incubator, orchestrate business mentoring for aspiring entrepreneurs, and cooperate with a broad set of regional players to strengthen the area's "entrepreneurial ecosystem." The center also works with faculty from the College of Business Administration to offer course work for young entrepreneurs in the school's undergraduate and MBA programs, and provides funding in support of faculty and doctoral student research. At any given time, faculty in the Anderson Center are engaged in enabling a dozen or more start-ups, greatly adding to the vitality and vibrancy of the university and local community.
College of Communication and Information
Peiling Wang, Professor of Information Sciences
“Perspectives On INformation TechnologieS”
Our information environment is becoming increasingly diverse and dynamic. How can we design information technologies that accommodate users from all walks of life? This talk takes the user-centered perspective to challenge current IT system designs. Selected are the six principles/goals or U2SA3: Usefulness—an IT must be useful; Usability—an IT must be usable; Simplicity—KISS; Adaptability—an IT must be adaptable; Adaptivity—an IT must be adaptive; Affordance—an IT’s interfaces must provide adequate clues on actions and results. Violations of these principles are illustrated with examples along with the questions: When and why is default a bad design? What does it mean to personalize IT for users? How can we better understand users’ behaviors?
College of Education, Health and Human Sciences
Gene Hayes, Professor of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport Studies
"Camp Koinonia—An Experience that Will Last a Lifetime"
Camp Koinonia is a week-long residential outdoor education and recreation program for 150 children ages 7 to 21 with significant and multiple disabilities from East Tennessee. The program is the culmination of a semester long class including 200 UTK students who become the entire staff for the program. “Koinonia” is a Greek word that means fellowship and caring community. This presentation will highlight many of the activities in which the children with disabilities participate with the UTK students who plan and conduct the activities. The interaction and relationships between university students and campers is what makes Camp Koiononia a “Lifetime Experience” for all participants.
College of Engineering — 1
Bruce MacLennan, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
“Embodied Intelligence: Natural and Artificial”
Intelligence pervades nature; from slime mold amoebas, which self-assemble into a multicellular slug capable of sensation and crawling; to self-organized embryological development, which coordinates the differentiation and arrangement of the 100 trillion cells of an adult person; to the swarm intelligence of social insects, governing millions of individuals without a leader; to the massively parallel information processing of the human brain’s 100 billion neurons. How can we understand such enormously complex systems? And how can we apply our knowledge in future technologies, such as brain-scale neurocomputers and swarms of millions of micro-robots? One key is that natural intelligence is embodied: its primary purpose is to govern a physical body situated in its environment. Indeed, we are beginning to understand that genuine intelligence — both natural and artificial — requires embodiment. These observations yield new insights into the relation of mind and body throughout nature.
College of Engineering — 2
Glenn Tootle, Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering
“Civil Engineering in a Changing Climate: Glacier Recession Impacts on Water Supply”
Mountain glaciers are important regional climate change indicators due to their high sensitivity to temperature and precipitation changes. Recent studies in the Northern and Central Rocky mountains of North America indicate glaciers are retreating in response to regional climate warming. This results in significant impacts on summer stream flows, which replenish reservoirs and provide irrigation water for agriculture purposes. Civil Engineers are faced with the challenge of quantifying the impacts of glacier recession, which includes the loss of glacial mass, and the delay of runoff due to the storage/release of internal liquid water and delayed snowmelt. Glaciers are located in high elevation watersheds where the agricultural growing season is limited. A continued loss of these “frozen reservoirs” and the resulting impact on the timing of runoff (earlier in the growing season) requires Civil Engineers to develop adaptable and sustainable alternatives such as new impoundments or the development of groundwater resources.
College of Law
Alex Long, Associate Professor of Law
“[Insert Song Lyrics Here]: The Uses and Misuses of Popular Music Lyrics in Legal Writing”
Legal writers frequently utilize the lyrics of popular music artists to help advance a particular theme or argument in legal writing. Often, attorneys use the lyrics of popular music in fairly predictable ways in their writing, sometimes with adverse impact on the persuasiveness of the argument they are advancing. Occasionally, legal writers incorporate the lyrics of popular music into their writing in more creative and effective ways. This presentation explores the ways in which lawyers and judges use pop music lyrics (and in particular, the lyrics of Bob Dylan) in legal scholarship and judicial opinions, and what their choices in terms of the artists cited say about the legal profession.
Jennifer Beals, Associate Professor and Head of Special Collections and Michelle Brannen, Studio Manager of University Libraries
“Engaging Students Outside the Classroom”
Among the most used learning spaces outside the campus classroom, the University Libraries engages students through outreach programs, services, and spaces. In the Libraries students express themselves, get their work done, and even kick back to have fun. From raves to reports, friends to finals, morning to midnight, study to sleep, quarrels to quiet, computers to centaurs, pizza to programs, copying to coffee, paper to projector, or books to bytes, students use the Libraries to connect to each other and to the University. Featured programs, services and events include The Commons, Film Movement Series, Raves, Art in the Libraries, Writers in the Library, Free Range Video Contest, National Day of Writing, The Culture Corner, Life of the Mind, Graduate Student Open House, Open Access Week, Research Assistance, Music and Agriculture-Veterinary Medicine special libraries, Special Collections and University Archives, digital collections, and the Leisure Reading Book Club. Faculty and staff involved in this initiative include Michelle Brannen, Jennifer Beals, JoAnne Deeken, Chris Durman, Steven Milewski, Martha Rudolph and Greg Womac.
College of Nursing
Lisa Lindley, Assistant Professor of Nursing
“Healthcare Reform and Concurrent Care for Children”
Children with terminal illnesses often need hospice care at end of life, yet most children do not access hospice services. Hospice eligibility rules have been identified as a critical barrier to pediatric hospice utilization. Healthcare reform or the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) is a policy response that modifies hospice eligibility rules for children at the end of their lives. On March 23, 2010, the ACA was signed into law by President Obama, and Section 2302 - Concurrent Care for Children become one of the first provisions to be enacted that same day. The provision eliminated the requirement that children enrolled in Medicaid or state Children's Health Insurance Plan must discontinue life-prolonging or curative therapies in order to enroll in hospice care. Although many provisions of the ACA will be effective in subsequent years (i.e., 2013, 2014), the early enactment of Section 2302 will be an important bellwether of how other ACA provisions are enacted and implemented. Therefore, the aim of this presentation is to discuss the impact of the Concurrent Care for Children provision on the delivery of end of life care for children and review the status of its implementation at the state level.
Note: This is a replacement for the previously scheduled presentation “Health Reform: What’s In It for Me?” by Carole Myers.
College of Social Work
Elizabeth Strand, Clinical Associate Professor and Director of Veterinary Social Work Services
“The Human-Animal Connection from a Veterinary Social Worker’s Perspective”
The connection between people and animals is varied and diverse. Species, cultures, breeds, ethnicities, and faith traditions all intermingle and coalesce to create these complex human-animal ties. One thing is common among all these connections, however- the intensity of emotion and strength of opinion that is aroused in response to them. Human beings are invested in how people interact with animals. The love between pet parents and their animal companions as well as the violence toward abused animals stir people deeply. The sincere division between dedicated hunters and those who wear only Naugahyde arouses conflict and “positions” on either side of a fence. Without a “right” or “wrong” agenda, this talk guides viewers through the sights, stories, and science to explore the human animal connection from a social work (strengths-based) and mindfulness (present-moment) perspective.
College of Veterinary Medicine
John C. New, Jr., Professor of Veterinary Medicine
“HABIT, Overcoming Life’s Obstacles”
We encounter obstacles at all stages of our life. To overcome some, we need help. HABIT (Human-Animal Bond in Tennessee) was founded 25 years ago to help people deal with obstacles through the phenomenon of the human-animal bond (H-AB). The Bond is defined as a mutually beneficial, dynamic relationship between people and animals that is essential to the health and well-being of both. As a program of the UT College of Veterinary Medicine, HABIT sponsors animal-assisted therapy in 12 counties and 120 program sites in nursing/retirement homes, assisted living centers, hospitals, and area schools. It is powered by the dedication and compassion of over 300 volunteers, including some from the University. HABIT includes over 350 medically and behaviorally screened dogs, cats and rabbits, and its volunteer teams made over 150,000 visits last year. However, the best way to understand how HABIT volunteers help others deal with obstacles is through their stories.
Presentation Video Podcasts (iTunes U)
A video podcast for each of this event's presentations is available for viewing and download through iTunes.
Kenton Yeager: The Development of the Classroom Theatre Lab
Tricia Stuth & Robert French: New Norris House — A Sustainable Dwelling in the 21st Century
Elizabeth Strand: The Human-Animal Connection from a Veterinary Social Worker's Perspective
Alex Long: The Uses and Misuses of Popular Music Lyrics in Legal Writing
UT sweatshirt/hoodie from Faculty Senate:
John Friend, Classics, Arts and Sciences
UT soft cooler from Faculty Senate:
Gisela Goeritz, Nuclear Engineering
Two tickets to November 19 UT football game vs. Vanderbilt:
Lacy Kniseley, Student Health
Two tickets to CBT Production of Fuddy Meers in February 2012:
Marlene Taylor, Communication and Information
Two tickets to the November 29 women’s basketball game vs. MTSU:
Mike Wirth, Communication and Information
UT sweatshirt/hoodie from Faculty Senate:
Cynthia Peterson, BCMB, Arts and Sciences
Two tickets to Clarence Brown Theatre production of Black Pearl Sings:
Connie Mroz, Mathematics, Arts and Sciences
Two tickets to the January 7 men’s basketball game vs. Florida:
Peiling Wang, Communication and Information
Two tickets to Clarence Brown Theatre production of Kiss Me Kate:
Joan Thomas, OIT
One parking hang-tag for an unreserved faculty staff lot for 2012-13:
Avigale Sachs, Architecture and Design