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UM Weekly: News from UM

March 7, 2014 |
Joe Butler puts aside his carpentry tools to help with snow removal on the roof of Brantly Hall on Monday. UM thanks all the employees who have worked long hours moving snow after the recent storms.

Washington Foundation Gifts $2.4 Million for Statewide Online College-Prep Curriculum

Fully 28 percent of students arrive on Montana college campuses needing remedial courses. In response, the Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation has made a $2.4 million gift to the Montana Digital Academy at UM to launch a statewide project designed to help students avoid remedial coursework when they attend college.

During the next three years, the Montana Digital Academy will test EdReady, a curriculum from the National Repository of Online Courses that was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The Washington Foundation gift will allow Montana students to be the first in the nation to use the curriculum statewide. It is intended to help students boost their scores on commonly used placement exams so they can begin their post-secondary education without remedial help.

Read more: Dennis and Phyllis Washington Foundation Provides $2.4 Million for Statewide Online College-Prep Curriculum

Wyoming Couple Donates $1.5 Million to UM

A UM alumnus has committed $1.5 million of his estate to the College of Forestry and Conservation. The gift from Earle Layser and his late wife, Pattie, of Alta, Wyo., will endow a professorship in conservation biology and policy.

“Through this generous gift, the University of Montana will do even more to preserve the natural resources of the land the Laysers love,” UM President Royce Engstrom said. “We are grateful for their dedication to conservation education and research.”

The position will be called the Earle and Pattie Layser Endowed Distinguished Professorship in Conservation Biology and Policy. It will increase the number of existing or planned endowed faculty positions in the college to four. Others include the Joel and Patti Meier Wildland Recreation Management Chair, the John J. Craighead Chair of Wildlife Conservation, and the Boone and Crockett Professor of Wildlife Conservation. 

Read more: UM Receives $1.5 Million Boost for Conservation from Wyoming Couple

UM Dining Director Wins Sliver Plate Award

UM Dining Director Mark LoParcoUM Dining Director Mark LoParco has won the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association Silver Plate Award for the colleges and universities category.

In addition to directing all UM Dining services such as the Food Zoo, UM Farm to College Program and UM Catering, LoParco also is president of the National Association of College and University Food Services. He is the first standing president of the NACUFS to win a Silver Plate Award.

Read more: UM Dining Director LoParco Wins Silver Plate Award

Author to Lecture on 'New American Militarism'

Author and Boston University Professor of International Relations and History Andrew J. Bacevich will deliver a lecture titled “The New American Militarism” as part of President’s Lecture Series at 8 p.m. Wednesday, March 12, in the University Center Ballroom at UM.

Bacevich also will deliver a seminar titled “The Importance of Reinhold Niebuhr’s ‘Irony of American History’” in collaboration with the UM Philosophy Forum and Mansfield Ethics and Public Affairs Program from 3:10 to 4:30 p.m. that same day in Gallagher Business Building Room 123.

Read more: Author to Lecture at UM on ‘New American Militarism’

UM Adds Powerful New Instrument to Analyze Crystals

Scientists and students studying at the subnanometer level can rejoice: the University of Montana has purchased a single-crystal X-ray diffractometer valued at $515,000. The device is the only small-molecule diffractometer in Montana and this part of the Rocky Mountain West.

“This is a state-of-the-art instrument,” said Orion Berryman, a UM assistant professor of chemistry. “We are really excited to have it here.”

Read more: UM Adds Powerful New Instrument to Analyze Crystals

Team of Students Wins Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl

A team of UM students recently won the 18th International Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl after competing against undergraduate students from 32 different universities.

Students Hayden Hooker and Joel Johnson both are seniors studying philosophy; Alan Rolph is a senior studying political science and journalism; and team coach Neil Bennett is a graduate student pursuing a master’s in economics. This is the first UM team to win the competition since 1997.

Read more: UM Team Wins International Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl

More News

Experts to Visit UM During Three-Part Lecture Series
Mansfield Center Offers Faculty Members Awards for Asia Research
97th Foresters’ Ball, Community Events Slated for March 21-22
Bloomberg Businessweek Reporter to Lecture at UM

MTCC Welcomes New Class of AmeriCorps VISTA Members


Men's tennis hits the road for three matches

ady Griz host final home games this week

Men's basketball closes regular season with road games

Indoor track and field teams both finish third at championships


School of Theatre & Dance Presents 'Book of Days'

'Western Rivers' Community Lecture Series Continues March 11

Wilderness Lecture Explores Indigenous Lands

Guest Lecturer to Discuss American Evangelicalism

Rep. Diane Sands Looks at Political History of Women in Montana
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