Welcome to a special summer issue of TGIF News. This e-mail newsletter is provided weekly, except during the summer and scheduled academic breaks, to subscribers who include students, alumni, employees and friends of The University of Montana.
|UM President Interviews Set for Fall
The UM Presidential Search Advisory Committee has completed initial candidate screening. Further screening will take place this summer, with campus interviews of finalists targeted for early September.
The committee is searching for the successor to UM President George M. Dennison, who planned to retire after two decades at the helm. Dennison will serve until the next president -- UM's 17th -- is found.
"This search has attracted some amazing individuals," said Clayton Christian, Montana Board of Regents chair. "The schedule we have developed for the remaining stages of the search process should facilitate broad participation in the campus interviews of finalists at the beginning of fall semester."
For more information, visit the presidential search website.
UM Presidential Search and Transition
|Endowment Honors Dennisons
Alumni and friends are ensuring future generations will remember the way President George Dennison and his wife, Jane, shaped UM. Trustees of the UM Foundation, University alumni and community members have contributed to an endowment to honor the Dennisons.
President Dennison plans to retire after 20 years of leading his alma mater. The George M. and Jane I. Dennison Doctoral Fellows in History Endowment will support fellowships in the UM Department of History, where he earned bachelor's and master's degrees.
The initial fundraising goal for the endowment is $1 million, with a long-term goal of a $3 million endowment that funds four $30,000 fellowships.
Dennison is the longest-serving president in UM history. His achievements as president include overseeing a nearly 50 percent increase in enrollment, a 138 percent increase in American Indian student enrollment, and the construction and improvement of numerous buildings on campus. During his presidency, grant research funding increased from $7 million to $71 million.
Contributions to the Dennison Doctoral Fellows in History Endowment may be made on the UM Foundation website or mailed to the UM Foundation, P.O. Box 7159, Missoula, MT 59807.
For more information, call Ric Thomas, UM Foundation vice president for development, at 406-243-5615 or e-mail email@example.com or visit the UM Foundation website.
|Educators Receive Excellence Awards
The UM College of Arts and Sciences has recognized two faculty members for their teaching excellence and exceptional work with University students.
Geography Assistant Professor Anna Klene and biology Assistant Professor Winsor Lowe each received a Helen and Winston Cox Educational Excellence Award at 2010 graduation ceremonies for their individual departments.
The awards, given annually since 1996, go to nontenured faculty members and are based on superior contributions to the education of UM students.
In addition to cash awards, Klene and Lowe will receive stipends to purchase scholarly materials of their choice for UM's Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library.
|UM Plans Study of Athletics Program
UM has contracted for an independent study to assess the internal strengths and weaknesses of its athletics program as compared with programs of peer institutions.
The study will provide accurate and timely information as the University confronts challenging choices concerning the future of Grizzly Athletics. It will help assure sound and informed decisions about the future direction of the program.
The UM president makes decisions about the program in consultation with the Montana Board of Regents. With the fluid nature of NCAA conference structures and the possibility of realignment, it will benefit UM to have the most accurate information possible about the current situation and likely trends.
The University will rely on privately donated funds to finance this important study.
|Endowment a Tribute to Administrator
The UM leader responsible for student financial aid for 25 years will have a privately funded, need-based grant for students named for him. Mick Hanson retired June 30 after 40 years of service to the University.
To honor Hanson for his dedication to UM students, family members, friends and UM, colleagues have created the Montana Investment in Character and Knowledge (MICK) Endowed Grant Fund.
"The University plans to use the MICK fund for grants for students in good academic standing who have demonstrated financial need," said Laura Brehm, president and CEO of the UM Foundation. "Making a gift to the MICK fund will be a wonderful way to help UM students."
To donate online, visit the UM Foundation website, click on "Give Online Now" at the bottom of the page and enter "MICK Endowed Grant Fund" in the special instructions box. Those who would like to donate also can send a check to the UM Foundation, P.O. Box 7159, 600 Connell Ave., Missoula, MT 59807-7159.
|Dean Receives National Award
Perry Brown, dean of the UM College of Forestry and Conservation, has received a Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Units Network National Award for his role in pioneering and sustaining the innovative partnership program for conservation science and education.
The award honors Brown, who also serves as UM's interim associate provost for graduate education, for his substantial work with the network, which promotes collaborative efforts to support science-based natural and cultural resource management.
UM is one of the four original host institutions in the nation for the network, which includes 17 units representing biogeographic regions across the U.S. and its territories. The units serve a broad role as providers of research, technical assistance and education to federal land management, environmental and research agencies, and their potential partners.
|'Griz Tunnel Run' Video Wins Silver
UM's "Griz Tunnel Run" video won a silver award June 23 at the National Association of Collegiate Marketing Administrators annual conference in Anaheim, Calif.
The NACMA awards honor outstanding achievement in marketing and promotion. Awards are presented in 16 categories, with each category divided into three groups based on school size and conference affiliations. More than 650 entries were submitted for the 2009-10 year.
UM won silver in the Group II "Video Board Segment" category. The gold award went to the United States Military Academy. Drake University took bronze.
The UM video was produced by Chisel Industries, a Montana-based company. UM Executive Vice President Jim Foley supervised the production.
View the UM Video Ads
|Former Griz Nominated for ESPY Award
Former UM star guard Anthony Johnson continues to add to his legacy, as ESPN announced last month that he was one of four athletes nominated for a 2010 ESPY Award in the category of Best Championship Performance.
Johnson joins some elite competition for the prestigious award. The finalists along with Johnson included Drew Brees, Super Bowl XLIV; Michael Phelps, World Swimming Championships; and Shaun White, Winter Olympics. The ESPYs took place July 14 at the Nokia Theater in Los Angeles. Brees won the award.
Johnson, who scored 34 second-half points to rally Montana from a 20-point halftime deficit, became a national sensation in earlier this year when he led the Grizzlies to a Big Sky Conference tournament championship win over Weber State, which led Montana to an NCAA tournament berth. The game was shown on ESPN2.
Also in June, Johnson and his wife Shaunte Nance-Johnson, who played for the Lady Griz, were both selected by the Harlem Globetrotters in the team's annual draft. The basketball-playing couple becomes the first husband-wife duo to be drafted by a professional sports team.
The Globetrotters' annual draft is an invitation to the team's fall training camp to vie for the opportunity of being a Globetrotter for the team's 85th consecutive season of touring the world. Though he was drafted, Johnson's main focus continues to be the NBA or playing overseas.
The Johnsons, both from Tacoma, Wash., were married in 2006 and joined the Griz and Lady Griz programs prior to the 2008-09 season for their final two years of collegiate basketball.
Johnson spent two seasons at Yakima Valley Community College in Washington before transferring to Montana. Nance-Johnson played one season at Northwest Nazarene in Nampa, Idaho, and one season at Yakima Valley.
Johnson wrapped up his brilliant two-year career with the Grizzlies by leading the team to its eighth NCAA tournament appearance in March. Montana, which tied for third in the regular season, made the NCAA tournament after a riveting 66-65 victory over top seed and host Weber State at Ogden, Utah, in the Big Sky Conference tournament championship game.
Johnson scored a school and tournament record 42 points against the Wildcats, including 34 in the second half and UM's final 21, as the Griz stormed back from a 40-20 halftime deficit in front of a national television audience.
|Exhibit Celebrates Glacier Centennial
The "Glacier National Park Centennial Exhibition" is on view at the Montana Museum of Art & Culture's Meloy and Paxson galleries through Saturday, Aug. 7.
The exhibition examines the strong aesthetic legacy surrounding the park through traditions held by American Indians and the contributions of the Great Northern Railway, which was pivotal in the development of Glacier's artistic history through a rich graphic tradition in publications, countless photographs and fostering of artistic exchanges.
In conjunction with the exhibition, UM art Professor Rafael Chacón will present a lecture titled "Artists of Glacier Park" at 7 p.m. Wednesday, July 21, in the Meloy Gallery. The event is free and open to the public.
MMAC is located in UM's Performing Arts and Radio/Television Center. Summer hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday. A $5 donation is suggested, and free parking is available near the northeast corner of the PAR/TV Center. For more information, call 406-243-2019 or visit the museum's website.
Montana Museum of Art & Culture
|Four Honored for Sustainability Efforts
The UM Sustainable Campus Committee recently presented Greening UM Awards to Jack Mondloch, Nicky Phear, Zack Porter and Robert Duringer to recognize them for their work to help make UM a sustainable campus.
Mondloch, a Facilities Services custodial services supervisor who was active in creating the University's first green cleaning policy, received the Staff Greening UM Award. He and his co-workers have completed research that is integral to institutionalizing green cleaning products that work. Mondloch also has been a valuable resource for UM environmental studies student projects.
Phear, an adjunct instructor in the College of Forestry and Conservation, received the Faculty Greening UM Award. She was instrumental in the establishment of the minor in climate change studies at UM and is coordinator of the University's Wilderness and Civilization Program. Phear also serves as faculty adviser to the UM student group Climate Action Now.
Porter, who majored in geography at UM, is co-president of Climate Action Now. He received the Student Greening UM Award. He has made significant contributions to campus sustainability through his coordination of sustainable residence hall committees and his work with the University's Revolving Energy Loan Fund.
Duringer, UM's vice president for administration and finance, received the Administrator Greening UM Award, in part for his support of the work of Climate Action Now, the Associated Students of UM Sustainability Center and the University's Office of Sustainability. Duringer also participated in the development of the University's recently completed Climate Action Plan that details the goal of carbon neutrality for UM by 2020.
The University's Climate Action Plan and information about campus sustainability programs are available on the Greening UM website.
|UM Announces Presidential Scholars
UM Presidential Leadership Scholarships have been awarded to 24 exceptional incoming UM freshmen.
The scholarships recognize outstanding talent, academic performance, leadership and contribution to the community.
This year's scholarship winners were chosen from a field of more than 400 qualified applicants. Scholarship recipients become members of UM's Davidson Honors College and receive a four-year tuition waiver and an additional $5,000 to $7,500 per year.
Montana's crop of 2010 Presidential Leadership Scholars are Sarah Kinsey, Bozeman; Laura Cornelisse, Corvallis; Emilie Jacobsen, Payton Skawinski, Schuyler Watt and Matthew Weir, Great Falls; Rebecca Boslough, Helena; Tess Barker and Abigail Connolly, Kalispell; Margaret Matchett, Lewistown; Jeanette Comstock, Rose Dickson, Kathryn Newhart, Keogh Paulson and Rodolfo Villarreal-Calderon, Missoula; Allison Bye, Sunburst; and Kellee Glaus, Whitehall.
Seven Presidential Leadership Scholars will come to UM from other states. They are Skyler Hamler of Talkeetna, Alaska; Paige Ely of Carlsbad, Calif.; Larisa Carter of Reedley, Calif.; Jenna Lyons and Kathryn Tokle of Pocatello, Idaho; Andrew Hursh of Lake Quivira, Kan.; and Amy Sisk of Redmond, Wash.
|Student-Athletes Make the Grade
Nine of the 12 intercollegiate athletic teams at UM posted cumulative grade-point averages above 3.0 spring semester, and the students achieved a higher cumulative GPA than the University's undergraduate population.
The 286 UM student-athletes registered spring semester posted a team cumulative GPA of 3.06. On average, student-athletes completed more than 13 credits, and 168 of the athletes earned a 3.0 GPA or better.
The women's cross-country and women's track teams led the way with a 3.27 cumulative GPA. Women's basketball, cross-country, golf, soccer and volleyball teams and the men's cross-country team all earned GPAs above 3.2 spring semester.
Eleven UM student-athletes earned a 4.0 GPA, and 64 made the Dean's List. To qualify for the Dean's List, students must earn a semester GPA of 3.5 or higher and receive grades of A or B in at least 9 credits.
|Filmmakers Rake in Emmy Awards
It was a good night to be a Griz at this year's Northwest Regional Emmy Awards, held June 5.
UM radio-television student projects from 2008-09 won Emmys in two of three student categories, and UM adjunct professors and former students also received awards.
Last year's UM student documentary, "Unspoken," won the award in the news-long form category. Sixteen students produced the hourlong documentary that examines suicide in Montana. UM Associate Professor Denise Dowling and Adjunct Professor Gita Saedi-Kiely were faculty advisers.
In addition, 2010 UM graduates Ashley Korslien and Dustin "Buddy" Cowart won a student Emmy in the news-short form category for their profile of a small business called "Lissie's Luv Yums." The profile was an episode of the program "Business: Made in Montana," which is produced each year by students in the University's radio-television department. The dog biscuit company is run by a woman with developmental disabilities because of fetal alcohol syndrome. Dowling and radio-television Chair Ray Ekness advised.
Both winning UM student projects aired on MontanaPBS.
Emmy Awards also went to UM Adjunct Professors Gus Chambers, John Twiggs and Kagan Yochim of KUFM/MontanaPBS. Chambers and Yochim earned their undergraduate degrees at UM, and Twiggs earned his master's degree at the University.
Jordan Caskey, a 2003 UM School of Journalism graduate, won four Emmy Awards in documentary, sports and editing categories.
|NSF Honors Paleo Exploration Project
The National Science Foundation's Directorate for Education and Human Resources has selected the UM Paleo Exploration Project's "DinoMap: Spatial Analysis of Fossil Finds in the Northern Plains" as one of its 69 Highlights for 2010.
Highlights showcase exceptional NSF presentations and serve to inform a diverse national constituency about the projects' work and impacts.
Led by UM College of Arts and Sciences associate researcher Heather Almquist and geosciences Professor George Stanley, who directs the University's Paleontology Center, the Paleo Exploration Project engaged K-12 teachers and middle school students from eastern Montana in the use of geographic information systems as a paleontological prospecting tool.
Read the Full News Release
|Regents Approve Research Center
The National Center for Landscape Fire Analysis at UM was approved as an official Montana University System center at the May 28 Board of Regents meeting in Havre.
The approval formally establishes the center to provide research, service, education, training, and technology and application development to help active, on-the-ground natural resource managers make more effective and safe fire and land management decisions. The center designation gives UM regional stature as an innovative hub of wildland fire research, application development, outreach and education.
"It formalizes our commitment to the University, to the region and to fire and land management," said center Director LLoyd Queen.
In 2001 the Montana congressional delegation saw the need for a university-based fire research program to complement fire research conducted at federal agencies. The National Center for Landscape Fire Analysis was formed as a program in UM's College of Forestry and Conservation to develop a research relationship between the University and the U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station.
National Center for Landscape Fire Analysis
|Jimmy Wilson to Play for Griz Again
The NCAA has granted one more year of athletic eligibility to former UM cornerback Jimmy Wilson.
Wilson, 23, was a member of the Griz football team from 2004 to 2006. In a jury trial last summer, he was acquitted of a murder charge involving an incident that occurred in the Los Angeles area in June 2007 -- a charge he contended all along was a matter of self-defense. The 12-person jury unanimously agreed with Wilson. The original jury trial the previous year resulted in a hung jury (11 jurors voting not guilty and one guilty), after which the prosecution chose to retry the case.
This past year, Wilson has been employed and living in Southern California and spending time with his family. Earlier this year, Wilson contacted UM officials about re-enrolling in school and asked that a waiver be filed with the NCAA seeking restoration of his senior year. Thanks to the efforts of UM Associate Athletic Director Jean Gee, a strong case was made and approved by the NCAA staff.
Wilson, a three-year starter at UM before his incarceration, was ineligible to return to Division I football because his eligibility under the five-year clock rule expired following the 2008 football season. NCAA bylaws state that once students enroll full time in an institution, they have five years to complete their seasons of competition.
"The NCAA has ruled in favor of Jimmy, and we support the decision," said UM Athletic Director Jim O'Day. "This will allow this young man to restore what he's been missing the past three years and follow his dreams both academically and athletically. We will welcome Jimmy back into the Griz family with open arms and wish him success."
UM President George M. Dennison said, "The legal system has run its course, and we agree with the outcome that was achieved. We relish this opportunity to help this student-athlete get his life back on track with an education at The University of Montana."
Read the Full News Release
|Nonprofit Administration Classes Online
Extended Learning Services and the Office for Civic Engagement at UM have partnered with the Montana Nonprofit Association to offer the Online Professional Certificate Program in Nonprofit Administration.
The program's courses, which begin this year on Monday, Aug. 16, are offered entirely online and are designed for students seeking professional development in a promising field, as well as for busy professionals working in the nonprofit sector. Practicing administrators and others interested in building skills relating to nonprofit administration are encouraged to register.
Students may elect to pursue a certificate requiring 12 course credits plus a four-credit internship, or they may take individual courses for graded credit or for no credit. Certificate seekers must take all courses for graded credit. No formal UM application process is necessary to register for the courses, which run six weeks and 10 weeks with a per-course cost starting at $100.
To register or for more information, visit the program website, call Marian Palaia at 406-243-6324 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nonprofit Administration Online Program
|COT Offers Free Classes for Veterans
The UM College of Technology will hold free college prep classes for qualified veterans through the Montana Veterans Upward Bound program.
Classes in math, writing and basic computer skills will take place Monday through Thursday evenings at the COT campus, located at 909 South Ave. W. in Missoula. Start times vary from 5 p.m. to 7:15 p.m., and classes end no later than 9:15 p.m.
Orientation will take place from 5 to 6 p.m. Monday, Sept. 13, in the COT Commons. A graduation ceremony will be held Thursday, Nov. 4.
For more information or to enroll, call 877-356-VETS or visit the Montana Veterans Upward Bound website.
Montana Veterans Upward Bound
|Help Promote UM at State Fair
University Relations is seeking volunteers in the Great Falls area to help promote UM at the Montana State Fair from Friday, July 30, through Saturday, Aug. 8.
Volunteers will provide information and answer questions about UM and hand out marketing materials, Griz posters and prizes at the University's booth at Montana ExpoPark. Fair hours are 11 a.m. to midnight on weekends and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays, except for Friday, July 30, when fair hours are 5 p.m. to midnight. Volunteers can work as many hours as they'd like.
For more information or to sign up to volunteer, call Allison Squires, University Relations events coordinator, at 406-243-4853 or e-mail email@example.com.
|Observatory Hosts Public Viewing Nights
Explore planets, nebulae and distant galaxies during free public observing nights this summer at the Blue Mountain Observatory. The events are family-friendly, and children are welcome.
The observatory, located on top of Blue Mountain at an elevation of 6,300 feet, is operated by UM. Astronomers will be on hand at all events to talk about constellations, how the night sky figures into different cultures and how to find interesting celestial objects with the naked eye or a pair of binoculars.
Observing begins about an hour after sunset, and organizers recommend bringing warm clothes for cool evenings and a flashlight for the walk from the observatory to the parking lot.
Viewing nights will be canceled only if the sky is cloudy or thunderstorms threaten. Before heading up to the observatory, call 406-243-5179 for weather and cancellation updates.
Following is the schedule for public observing nights with approximate starting times:
- Aug. 6, 10 p.m.
- Sept. 10, 9 p.m.
- Sept. 17, 8 p.m.
During the Sept. 17 event, the moon will be bright and will be one of the main targets for viewing. Dimmer objects will not be visible.
More information and directions are available on the observatory website.
Blue Mountain Observatory
|'Celtic Woman' Tour Hits UM Aug. 23
Irish music phenomenon Celtic Woman will take the stage at UM's Adams Center at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 23, for the second U.S. leg of their "Songs from the Heart" tour.
Tickets to the performance are on sale at all GrizTix outlets by calling 406-243-4051 or 888-MONTANA. They cost $60 and $35, plus venue and ticket fees.
Formed in 2005, Celtic Woman consists of vivacious, versatile and charismatic Irish women. The extended tour will feature vocalists Chloë Agnew, Lynn Hilary and Lisa Kelly and fiddler Máiréad Nesbitt.
Celtic Woman recently performed at the National Christmas Tree Lighting in Washington, D.C., and on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars," singing for millions of viewers, while their PBS TV specials have dominated the broadcast airwaves over the past five years.
|View Commencement Time-Lapse Video
A time-lapse video of UM's 2010 Commencement ceremony held May 15 on the Oval and the preparation that occurred the day before is now posted on the University's official YouTube channel.
UM School of Journalism student Devin Schmit took a photograph once every minute during the transformation of the Oval on May 14 from its usual park-like setting into the site of a massive stage and 10,000 white chairs, as well as during the ceremony that occurred the following day. The UM Department of Information Technology then used nearly 1,000 of the photographs to create the 62-second video.
UM's 2010 Commencement ceremony was held on the Oval for the first time in the University's 117-year history.
UM's Official YouTube channel
|Rodney Carrington at UM Nov. 23
Rodney Carrington will be at the UM Adams Center on Thursday, Nov. 18, to entertain concertgoers with his comedy and music about the funny side of redneck lifestyles, women at bars, men acting like men and oddball sex.
The live concert of his new tour begins at 7 p.m. and is for mature audiences. Tickets are on sale now and cost $49.25 plus fees, and are available at the Adams Center box office, by calling 406-243-4051 or 888-MONTANA, or through GrizTix. All seats are reserved, and $2 per ticket will benefit the Rodney Carrington Foundation.
Carrington's latest album, "El Nino Loco," is the follow-up to his highly successful release "King of the Mountains."
He currently enjoys a string of success that include a Comedy Central special, his first DVD, "Rodney Carrington Live at the Majestic Theatre," and a book titled "Coming Clean." He also recently co-starred with Toby Keith in the film "Beer for My Horses," which he wrote.
Jennifer Sauer, TGIF editor
The University of Montana