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Archive for February, 2015

Morning classes canceled in engineering buildings

The repair of a water main along Westwood Avenue by the city of Toledo will force the cancellation of today’s morning classes in Nitschke Hall, Palmer Hall and the North Engineering Building.

The College of Engineering Spring Career Expo — which is for UT engineering students and alumni only — will continue as scheduled.

These three buildings, as well as Olde Towne University Square apartments adjacent to UT’s engineering buildings, will be temporarily without water as the city drains a water main along Westwood to repair a valve in the line.

UT to promote interfaith awareness at Feb. 27 film screenings

In an effort to promote awareness of the struggles of the Baha’i faith in Iran, a film will be presented Friday, Feb. 27.

Toledo’s Baha’i community is partnering with The University of Toledo’s Center for Religious Understanding to offer two showings of “To Light a Candle” at 5 and 7 p.m. in Student Union Room 2591.

LightacandleThe screenings will be followed by interfaith panel discussions.

“Young people around the globe are facing hardships in obtaining an education due to inter- and intra-religious intolerance,” said Dr. Jennifer Hill, UT assistant professor of physiology, who is a member of the Baha’i faith.

In Iran, it is illegal for members of the Baha’i faith, the country’s largest religious minority, to teach or study at universities. However, the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education was established in 1987; the institute consists of informal courses taught in people’s homes via online lectures and mail correspondence. If caught, the participants and teachers in these classes are threatened and jailed.

The film was created by Maziar Bahari, a journalist featured in political satirist Jon Stewart’s 2014 film “Rosewater.” Bahari was incarcerated by the Iranian government in 2009 after disputed presidential elections in the country. Before his arrest, he worked as a journalist and filmmaker, creating pieces that objectively analyzed Iranian stereotypes.

Bahari’s film uses live footage and interviews to explore the struggles that Iranian Baha’is endure on a daily basis.

“Just look at the case of Malala Yousafzai, shot and wounded in Pakistan for being an advocate of education for young women,” Hill said. “In the case of Iran, the government knows it is being watched and has responded in the past to pressure to show leniency to Baha’is who have been arrested for the ‘crime’ of teaching Baha’i youth. The more the international community and people of compassion from every faith stand up and say this violation of a basic human right cannot be ignored, the more likely reform becomes.”

The panel following the film will include the Rev. Ed Heilman of Park Congregational United Church of Christ, Drs. Abdel-Wahab Soliman and Samina Hasan of the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo, and others working to promote interfaith dialogue in Toledo.

“Rather than focusing on politics or scapegoating any particular religion, we hope to address the question of how people from all backgrounds can promote and protect educational opportunities for young people and improve religious understanding in the process,” Hill said.

Bahari’s film ignited the Education is Not a Crime campaign that works toward education equality among all Iranian religions. After the screening, viewers are invited to sign a petition asking UT to recognize credits earned through the Baha’i Institute for Higher Education. They also are invited to record their responses to the film and upload them to the campaign’s website.

To learn more about the effort, visit educationisnotacrime.me. For additional information, contact Hill at JenniferW.Hill@utoledo.edu.

Toledo-Northern Illinois game rescheduled for Feb. 25; women to play Western Michigan at 5:30 p.m.

Tuesday’s UT Mid-American Conference men’s basketball game vs. Northern Illinois in Savage Arena will be made up Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 8 p.m. as part of a doubleheader.

thumb-rocket-color-logoThe Rocket women will face Western Michigan in the first game beginning at 5:30 p.m.

The men’s contest was postponed due to a water main break near Savage Arena.

Ticketholders for UT’s women’s game vs. WMU can sit in their assigned seats. If they would like to remain for the men’s game, they will need to move to Sections 201 or 207 at the conclusion of the women’s game.

Tickets for the Feb. 24 men’s game will be honored Wednesday. Individuals with tickets to the men’s game may sit in general admission seating during the women’s game and move to their assigned seats at the conclusion of the women’s game.

Individuals with parking passes for either the men’s Feb. 24 game vs. Northern Illinois or women’s Feb. 25 game vs. Western Michigan will be honored. Lot assignments are as follows:

• A passes can be used for Lot 3, Lot 4 and Lot 5.

• B passes can be used for Lot 1, Lot 2, Lot 10 and the East Parking Garage.

• GA passes can be used for Lot 1, Lot 2, Lot 17, Lot 19, Lot 20, Lot 25 and the East Parking Garage.

Concessions and service in the Joe Grogan Room for Wednesday’s games will be limited due to the water main break.

For questions about tickets, individuals can contact the UT Ticket Office at 419.530.GOLD (4653).

Women’s basketball team to entertain Western Michigan Feb. 25, game to be carried by ESPN3, BCSN

With under two weeks remaining in Mid-American Conference play, Toledo (15-10, 8-6 MAC) will host Western Michigan (16-9, 9-5 MAC) Wednesday, Feb. 25, looking to win its third-consecutive game.

The contest against the Broncos is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. in Savage Arena and can be seen on ESPN3 and BCSN.



The Rockets, who are 7-4 at home this season, also will be aiming to sweep the season series against WMU for the fifth time in the last seven seasons. UT claimed a 65-46 victory over its division rival in University Arena Jan. 17.

UT enters the match-up in third place in the highly competitive division standings and is one game behind second-place WMU and three below frontrunner Ball State (15-10, 11-3 MAC). With a win against the Broncos, the Rockets will put themselves back into the discussion for a possible bye in next month’s MAC Tournament.

Toledo is coming off an 81-72 come-from-behind victory at Eastern Michigan Saturday. UT trailed 63-51 at the 8:20 mark in the second half before outscoring EMU 30-9 for the remainder of the division showdown to post the road triumph.

Sophomore Sophie Reecher led five Rockets in double figures with a career-high 22 points and 11 rebounds to post her third career double-double.

Sophomore Janice Monakana added 17 points with a career-high four assists, senior Inma Zanoguera had 16 points and a game-high 12 caroms, junior Brenae Harris tallied 12 points with eight rebounds, and freshman Jay-Ann Bravo-Harriott totaled 10 points, a season-high seven boards with a squad-best two thefts.

As a team, Toledo shot 47.0 percent (31 of 66) from the field, including 30.0 percent (6 of 20) from three-point land, and a sparkling 86.7 percent (13 of 15) from the free-throw line to bounce back from a 14-point loss to the Eagles Jan. 24 at home.

UT also controlled the glass and finished with an astounding 57-22 edge, including 23 offensive boards. Toledo took full advantage of those offensive caroms and translated them into 19 second-chance points. All five starters for Toledo had at least seven rebounds.

The Rockets were at their best in the pivotal second half, shooting a blistering 56.7 percent (17 of 30) from the floor. The Midnight Blue and Gold posted 49 points after the intermission and outscored the Eagles by 12, 49-37, en route to securing their fifth win in the last seven trips to Ypsilanti.

The quartet of Zanoguera (16.1 points per game), Bravo-Harriott (9.4 points per game), Monakana (9.4 points per game) and Harris (9.4 points per game) continue to lead the Rockets offensively, all scoring at least nine points per game.

Toledo will face a Western Michigan squad that has dropped back-to-back games for the first time since early December. Most recently, the Broncos suffered a 63-51 setback at Central Michigan Saturday.

The Rockets lead the all-time series, 50-21, including a 25-8 advantage in games played in Savage Arena.

University sets goals for sustainability in new plan

At the University, blue and gold continue to make green with UT’s new sustainability plan.

SEED logoAfter two years of collecting data, researching and collaborating, the plan is ready for action and focuses on four major goals: active engagement; energy and water efficiency and conservation; zero waste; and carbon neutrality.

“We wanted to create a large plan that would guide our actions for the next several years,” Brooke Mason, UT sustainability specialist, said. “And we’re hoping it will be an evolving plan that will constantly be looked at and revised.”

The first goal, active engagement, focuses on getting the campus population involved with the University’s sustainability practices. Engagement will be tracked by the percentage of UT’s population that the Sustainability, Energy Efficiency and Design (SEED) Initiative interacts with directly.

SEED’s goals are to increase engagement by 10 percent by 2020, 20 percent by 2025, 30 percent by 2030 and 40 percent by 2035. Some projects already involve the campus community, including BlackoUT, a residence hall energy competition, and Friday Night Lights, where student volunteers turn off lights in academic buildings each week.

“I think the biggest part of the plan is the engagement piece,” Mason said. “I hope that by using our partnerships and getting more students involved, we can make a significant change on campus.”

The second goal is energy and water efficiency and conservation, which involves reducing energy use, increasing the use of renewable energy, reducing water consumption, and increasing the use of grey water, which is wastewater that is clean enough to be recycled onsite and used for things such as toilet flushing.

Along with decreasing energy use, UT is hoping to expand its use of natural sources of energy like wind, photons and earth-generated thermal energy transfer. The University already uses a cogeneration plant at the Computer Center, steam and chilled water lines, natural gas, solar panels, and wind turbines.

SEED web pageGoal three is zero waste, which is defined as diverting 90 percent or more of the solid waste generated on campus from landfills through recycling, repurposing, reusing and composting. In the plan, UT wants to achieve this goal by increasing recycling on campus by 2 percent annually, increasing item reuse, and decreasing excess purchasing.

According to the plan, diverting waste from landfills is not only environmentally responsible, but economically beneficial for the University. When solid waste is no longer going to a landfill, UT no longer has to pay for that service, saving thousands of dollars.

Last year, Rocket Recycling increased the University’s recycling rate from 14.7 percent to 18.2 percent and brought in $38,000. The University also created five student jobs and one full-time job for recycling on campus and installed 11 water bottle refill stations.

The fourth and final goal is carbon neutrality, which is defined as having no net greenhouse gas emissions. The University will accomplish this by reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 2 percent annually, reaching carbon neutrality by 2058.

Several projects — many of which are in progress — will help the University to accomplish these four goals.

Over time, the goal of expanding the bicycle-sharing program is to help reduce the need for the bus loops, which operate for approximately 122 hours each week during spring and fall semesters. Replacing 17 vehicles of the UT fleet with newer, more efficient models also will reduce emissions.

Over the summer, UT replaced four boilers in Savage Hall, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 566 metric tons and saving the University more than $128,000 each year. Improving the efficiency of the steam system would cut costs of basic maintenance and prevent leaks, saving more than $122,000 annually.

Each year, the University generates approximately 219 tons of food waste that can be composted and used to replace the current synthetic fertilizer used on campus.

Last summer, UT replaced the lighting fixtures with more efficient lighting throughout the University, which will save more than $116,000 each year and reduce metric tons of carbon dioxide by 1,478.

Other projects include a heating, ventilating and air conditioning reduction (HVAC) policy, installing new HVAC sensors, building a solar field on Health Science Campus, creating and implementing student and faculty-led initiatives, toilet and urinal retrofits, a carpool program, paper use reduction, recycling and composting programs, and education.

Though organized by SEED, the plan could not have come to fruition without citywide collaboration, Mason said. Primary contributors include Facilities and Construction, Transit Services, civil engineering and sustainability engineering classes, the Student Green Fund, and the city of Toledo.

“I couldn’t have done it without the help of the committee and my student interns,” Mason said. “These are really lofty goals, but if we work together even accomplishing half of them, we will have made a huge impact on the University and our environment.”

To learn more about sustainability at The University of Toledo or to get involved in the goals of the plan, visit utoledo.edu/sustainability.

Men’s basketball game vs. Northern Illinois postponed

Tonight’s University of Toledo Mid-American Conference men’s basketball game vs. Northern Illinois has been postponed due to a water main break by Savage Arena.

The contest has been rescheduled and will be played Wednesday, Feb. 25, as part of a doubleheader with the Rocket women’s basketball team, which will face Western Michigan.

The women’s game will start at 5:30 p.m., and the men’s contest will tip off at 8 p.m.

Howard’s second forum focuses on success of UT’s academic health center

Dr. Christopher Howard shared his experiences in the pharmaceutical industry and vision for The University of Toledo Medical Center in his second presidential search open forum on Tuesday.



Howard, one of three finalists to be UT’s 17th president, said the next president of the institution needs to build synergies between Main Campus and Health Science Campus and empower the leadership to create a model for the University’s academic health center that ensures the clinical enterprise is large enough to support its academic mission.

He is the president of Hampden-Sydney College in Virginia.

During his visit to Health Science Campus, Howard tailored his talk to focus on the president’s role in supporting translational research, addressing funding challenges impacted by the Affordable Care Act reimbursement model and the imperative to serve indigent patients, keeping up with medical technology, and improving patient and student satisfaction.

We live in a Coke Zero world, he said, noting the advertisement where the young person featured keeps saying “and” to add to the list of his demands in a job negotiation.

“What’s going to happen in places like this is patients and students want zero defect care and a state-of-the-art facility and hospitality, while students want world-class faculty and access to student residencies and fellowships and a reasonable cost. Hence, the Coke Zero ‘and world’ that we live in,” Howard said. “The new president will have to work to address these daunting issues because any perceived shortcomings inevitably end up on Facebook where everybody reads them.”

Howard, who also spoke about his experience with the Bristol-Myers Squibb biopharmaceutical company learning about the miracle of modern medicine, said the leadership of UTMC is well-positioned to handle the upcoming challenges.

He answered questions from the audience about increasing the diversity of students and faculty, what attracted him to UT, working with the Board of Trustees, his average day as a university president, views on funded and unfunded research, working with student leaders, ensuring good relationships with UT neighbors, navigating a challenging financial environment, instituting change while valuing tradition, supporting entrepreneurship, and supporting women in leadership roles.

If you would like to share your views with the UT Board of Trustees, fill out the feedback questionnaire available on Howard’s profile page on the presidential search website through Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 5 p.m.

For more information on the presidential search and schedule for future forums for another candidate this week, visit utoledo.edu/presidential-search.

Head women’s soccer coach resigns

Brad Evans resigned his post as The University of Toledo’s head women’s soccer coach, UT vice president and athletic director Mike O’Brien announced today.

Evans indicated he will begin a new career outside of the coaching profession, and that he appreciated the opportunity to be the UT women’s soccer coach for the past 14 seasons.

He coached the Rockets from 2001 to 2014. In that time his teams had a 138-116-29 record and won three regular season Mid-American Conference Championships and four MAC Tournament titles. The Rockets made it to the NCAA Tournament in 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2011. He was named MAC Coach of the Year in 2010 and 2011.

O’Brien said the process for finding a new head coach will begin immediately.



Water main break shuts down Stadium Drive; food service suspended in Student Union

Crews are working to isolate a water main break that has closed Stadium Drive on UT’s Main Campus to through traffic. The break also has resulted in no food service available in the Student Union until further notice.

Vehicles and pedestrians are able to access parking area 10 north of the Glass Bowl via the entrance right after the Root Bridge on Stadium Drive.

The water main break is at the foot of the hill by the Glass Bowl, according to Jason Toth, associate vice president of facilities.

“Due to the extreme cold, the water main on Stadium Drive froze and broke. While that line is fed from multiple city mains around campus, the location of the break has dropped water main pressure for all surrounding buildings, including the Savage Steam Plant,” Toth said.

“We’re working to repair immediately, but it may take several hours. We have been forced to cut back heat in most buildings as we work to make repairs. You may notice buildings beginning to feel cool. Thank you for your understanding.”

A contractor is being called in to help with repairs, and Toth said updates will be provided to the campus community as information becomes available.

Disability studies faculty to present at next Humanities Happy Hour

If you’ve ever wondered about the history of disability studies, this semester’s second Humanities Happy Hour is where you’ll want to be this Friday.

Dr. Kim Nielsen, UT professor of disability studies, and Dr. Ally Day, UT assistant professor of disability studies, will present Friday, Feb. 27, from 6 to 7 p.m. in the Libbey Hall dining room.

humanities textThe free, public event will begin at 5 p.m. with a beer and wine cash bar and free refreshments that will continue through the talks and end at 8 p.m.

Nielsen’s talk, “The Doctoress and the Bullwhip: Insanity and Diagnosis in 19th-Century America,” will focus on Dr. Anna Ott, a successful physician in the mid-1800s who was institutionalized and spent the last 20 years of her life in an insane asylum.

“I want to talk about what her diagnosis was like, her life, and what it was like to be treated by her former male colleagues,” she said. “She was clearly very ornery and unusual. She was institutionalized the same year that one of the leading physicians in the United States charged that women going to college would render them insane. I want to use her to talk about how diagnoses change over time.”

“She was a person who chased her husband’s mistress down the street with a bullwhip,” she added with a laugh.

Nielsen said she will use Ott’s story to discuss how diagnoses during different time periods reflect the history.

Day will focus on a new project — human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in poetry — with her talk, “Blood, Breast-Milk and Boundary-Making: Toward a Disability Bioethics in the Poetry of Tory Dent.”

Dent wrote three volumes of poetry focusing on her struggles with HIV. Day said she will explore two poems that Dent wrote: “HIV Mon Amour” and “Black Milk.” The second title is actually dedicated to the first one, a peculiar concept Day said she wants to explore.

“One of the things that’s really cool about her poetry is that she really centers her female-embodied experience,” Day said. “She uses images of pregnancy and miscarriage to think about the HIV virus. At one point she talks about the virus being almost like small children in her womb. And another time she talks about the virus killing the children in her womb. It’s like there’s this conflict.”

At the time Dent was writing her poetry, there wasn’t a lot of knowledge about HIV in women, Day said.

“She’s one of the first women in the United States to be so up front and out about that status and what that means to her as a female,” she said.

Day said she will be using Dent’s work to discuss how HIV influences disability poetry. Sometimes disability poetry is difficult to understand because the author refuses to follow strict genre guidelines, she said.

Both women said they want their talks to impart the importance of disability studies.

“Disability history matters,” Nielsen said. “It really is very widely applicable and of interest.”

“I think Kim and I both want folks to understand disability studies really broadly,” Day agreed. “It uses tools from a lot of different disciplines, but the humanities remain centrally important. Disability studies offers a lot of tools for someone working with literature, especially as sort of an analytic tool to look at how we represent ourselves as a world.”

Humanities Happy Hour is an initiative through the Humanities Institute in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences. The institute serves as an advocate and support for the study of human cultures at UT.

“Disability studies is an exciting interdisciplinary area of study that incorporates the humanities, social sciences and sciences,” said Dr. Christina Fitzgerald, director of the institute and professor of English. “On the humanities side, disability studies explores key issues of the history, representation, identity and selfhood of people with physical and mental disabilities. The humanities in general seek to understand the entire range of human culture and experience, and disability is part of what it means to be human.”

For more information, contact the Humanities Institute at 419.530.4407 or HumanitiesInstitute@utoledo.edu.