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October 2008

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UI rare book studies cited (New York Times, Oct. 31)
Rare books and manuscripts, once restricted to scholars and graduate students in white gloves, are being incorporated into undergraduate courses at institutions including the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.

IEM predicts Obama victory (Bloomberg, Oct. 31)
The IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS, operated by the University of Iowa, has traded political futures for the last 20 years for education and research. Traders on that exchange give the Democratic candidate an 86 percent chance of victory next week in the "winner take all" market.

Kirby comments on bacteria research (Innovations Report, Oct. 31)
Like something from a horror movie, the swarm of bacteria ripples purposefully toward their prey, devours it and moves on. Researchers at the University of Iowa are studying this behavior in Myxococcus xanthus (M. xanthus), a bacterium commonly found in soil, which preys on other bacteria. It might one day be used beneficially to destroy harmful bacteria on surfaces or in human infections, said JOHN KIRBY, associate professor of microbiology in the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine: "It would be amazing if we could adapt its predatory ability to get rid of harmful bacteria that reside in places we don't want them, including in hospitals or on medical implants."

UI study cited in story on drug-resistant bacteria (KOMO-TV, Oct. 31)
A groundbreaking investigation by the KOMO Problem Solvers has found toxic, life-threatening Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA) bacteria in some pork you might buy at grocery stores. This drug-resistant bacteria is already responsible for more deaths in this country than AIDS. What makes MRSA so potentially dangerous is the bacteria can make you sick just by touching it. A few months ago a UNIVERSITY OF IOWA study found a virulent strain of MRSA in pigs. But, in spite of that information, no one from the USDA is testing. KOMO is based in Seattle, Wash.

UI seeks to increase out-of-state tuition (WOWT-TV, Oct. 31)
Leaders of Iowa State University and the University of Northern Iowa say they'd like to keep nonresident tuition rates low enough to entice out-of-state students. Nonresident undergraduate tuition at Northern Iowa and Iowa State would increase by 2 percent and 2.8 percent respectively. That's under 2009-10 tuition proposals presented to the Iowa Board of Regents today. The UNIVERSITY OF IOWA is seeking to increase out-of-state tuition at a higher rate than in-state tuition. UI officials want to offer larger scholarships to top-notch nonresidents. They don't believe the higher increases will scare away out-of-state students. WOWT is based in Omaha, Neb.

Redlawsk comments on challenges of polling (NBC Nightly News, Oct. 30)
University of Iowa Political Scientist DAVID REDLAWSK is featured in a piece about the challenges of polling -- issues such as whether people are giving honest answers or trying to skew results, and lack of time and interest to participate in polls. The story notes that many polls do not include calls to cell phones, even though upwards of 17 percent of Americans, especially the young, have dropped their landlines. Redlawsk points out that low-income individuals may also be underrepresented in such polls because people without access to credit might rely on pay-as-you-go cell phones.

UI represented at university fair in Kuwait (Kuwait Times, Oct. 30)
Several top universities, including the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA, exhibited their academic programs and met with hundreds of students who wanted to avail of educational opportunities in the United States during a U.S. university fair in Kuwait. The US Educational Group (USEG) in cooperation with the America-Mideast Educational and Training Services (AMIDEAST) and the U.S. embassy in Kuwait organized the fair, which was held Tuesday. At her inaugural address, U.S. Ambassador to the Kuwait Deborah Jones thanked participating representatives of universities and colleges who traveled all the way from the United States to be with the prospective students from Kuwait.

UI team finds Viagra helps fight fatigue (Red Orbit, Oct. 30)
Feeling tired? Researchers say Viagra could help alleviate your fatigue. A team at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA found the drug helped animals with the mislocalized enzyme called neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS). They also revealed a difference between the prolonged fatigue after mild exercise in muscular dystrophy patients and the inherent muscle weakness caused by the disease. The studies found a faulty signaling pathway that leads to exercise-induced fatigue in mouse models of muscular dystrophy.

UI Hospitals to cut $25 million (WXOW-TV, Oct. 30)
UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HOSPITALS will cut its spending by $25 million to balance its budget. The hospital's chief financial officer, Ken Fisher, says expenses are 16.5 percent higher than last year and 2 percent over budget. He discussed the hospital's budget with the Iowa Board of Regents on Wednesday. WXOW is based in La Crescent, Minn. and also serves the La Cross, Wis. area.

Osborn comments on Palin's political future (Oct. 30, LiveNews)
At her packed rallies across the U.S., Alaska governor Sarah Palin talks about her desire to be the nation's next vice president, yet that hasn't stopped some in attendance from encouraging her toward a higher office. Homemade "Palin 2012" and "President Palin" signs now appear at those campaign events. And it doesn't take long to hear Palin's supporters state that she is the Republican Party's best bet to claim the White House four years from now. Win or lose, they say, Palin has claimed a place in the party's future. Just the same, Palin's silence has not stopped others from speculating how Alaska's populist, and popular, social-conservative governor will fit in the post-election Republican Party.  "In many ways her future is about the future of the party itself," said TRACY OSBORN, a University of Iowa political scientist who studies women in politics. LIVENEWS is based in Australia.

Osborn comments on Palin's future in politics (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 30)
, who studies women in politics at the University of Iowa, is quoted about Sarah Palin's future in politics. "In many ways her future is about the future of the party itself," Osborn said. "Do they highlight limited government? Do they strengthen the social conservatism? It could end up so many different ways." If Palin seeks a presidential bid in 2012, Osborn said she should use the next four years to become more familiar with national issues. "She needs to bulk up on policy," Osborn said. The story also appeared in the ARIZONA REPUBLIC.,0,7769067.story

IEM puts money on Obama (Tigard Times, Oct. 29)
Democratic candidate Barack Obama has an 87 percent chance of winning the U.S. presidential election, an electronic market for wagering on the election showed on Tuesday. With a week to go before American voters head to the polls, Republican candidate John McCain has just a 13 percent chance of capturing the White House, according to data posted by the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS. This REUTERS story appeared in the TIGARD TIMES, published in Portland, Ore., as well as seven other media outlets including the Spanish portal of YAHOO NEWS.

Obama's lead grows steadily on Iowa Electronic Markets (Fox Business, Oct. 28)
Democratic candidate Barack Obama has an 87 percent chance of winning the U.S. presidential election, an electronic market for wagering on the election showed Tuesday. With a week to go before American voters head to the polls, Republican candidate John McCain has just a 13 percent chance of capturing the White House, according to data posted by the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS. The IEM, which is run as a research tool by the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA business school, has shown Obama's lead growing steadily in recent weeks.

Gronbeck comments on scandals in political parties (USA Today, Oct. 28)
This USA Today article shows how scandals dog incumbents in both political parties and how lawmakers in both parties are wrestling with embarrassment and imbroglio as they seek another term in Congress. Candidates running against someone under investigation or in turmoil must be cautious in their attacks, said BRUCE GRONBECK, director of the University of Iowa Center for Media Studies and Political Culture. "You have to be careful you don't generate sympathy," Gronbeck said, noting that scandals get a lot of exposure. "If any of these opponents comes out really strongly they just haven't been paying attention to what's happening in the media world."

UI international students observe U.S. elections (Macroworld Investor, Oct. 28)
UNIVERSITY OF IOWA freshmen Yunshan Tao and Jingying Zhai arrived in the United States just in time to watch both major parties nominate their presidential candidates. Though they had been hearing about the American election in China, neither knew many details. Now they and more than 2,000 other UI international students must try to understand what graduate teaching assistant Gyorgy Toth described as "a fantastically intricate system." Most of the international students on campus seem to be observing the election process rather than actively participating -- just like him, he said. This story was originally published in THE DAILY IOWAN.

IEM forecast elections with eerie accuracy (Foreign Policy, Oct. 28)
Want to know who the next U.S. president will be? Forget the daily barrage of polls: For 20 years, an online project run out of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA has predicted the winner of presidential elections more accurately than opinion surveys. It's the stuff of pundits' dreams, but the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS (IEM) is the only legal market of its type in the United States. FOREIGN POLICY is a news site covering global politics, economics and ideas based in Washington, D.C.

Kobayashi, Campbell find Viagra alleviates fatigue (The Times of India, Oct. 29)
Researchers at the University of Iowa showed that Viagra could alleviate fatigue in animals with the mislocalized enzyme called neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS). They also showed that there was a difference between the prolonged fatigue after mild exercise in muscular dystrophy patients and the inherent muscle weakness caused by the disease. The researchers identified a faulty signaling pathway that apparently leads to exercise-induced fatigue in mouse models of muscular dystrophy. Also, the study, led by YVONNE KOBAYASHI, research associate in molecular physiology and biophysics, showed that targeting the signaling pathway might help develop therapies to treat this type of fatigue. "This is an exciting finding and our research suggests that there probably are many different neuromuscular conditions where fatigue could be treated by targeting this newly discovered pathway," Nature magazine quoted KEVIN CAMPBELL, UI professor and head of molecular physiology and biophysics, as saying.

Researchers study reasons for Neanderthal's big noses (Economic Times, Oct. 28)
Anthropologists have suggested that Neanderthals had big noses because of the degree to which their face used to jut forward, indicating that the odd feature was a fluke of evolution, not some grand adaptation. The traditional answer has been that Neanderthals have a big nose because they have a big mouth and a wide jaw, useful for ripping apart tough food, according to NATHAN HOLTON, a paleoanthropologist at the University of Iowa. "People have tried to explain the Neanderthal face as designed to produce high levels of bite force and trying to explain the rest of a wide nasal breath as part of a larger tend," he said. According to a report in New Scientist, to put this theory to the test, he and University of Iowa colleague ROBERT FRANCISCUS measured facial dimensions in dozens of Neanderthals and humans, ancient and modern. By correlating changes in the size of nose width, the distance between canine teeth, and other features, the researchers could determine whether or not big mouths went with big noses. Holton and Franciscus found a slight link between nose and mouth, but not enough to explain Neanderthal noses. The Economic Times is published in India.

Hornbuckle tested Chicago air (Science Centric, Oct. 27)
Although the industrial compounds known as polychlorinated biphenols or PCBs have been found in previous air samples collected in the city of Chicago, a University of Iowa researcher says that a new study of Chicago air sampled between November 2006 and November 2007 found PCB11, a byproduct of the manufacture of paint pigments and a potentially toxic substance, present throughout the city. "To the best of our knowledge, this is the first published report of PCB11 in ambient air," said KERI HORNBUCKLE, UI professor of civil and environmental engineering, in the online issue of the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Science Centric originates in Bulgaria.

UI researchers develop cystic fibrosis pig model (Science Centric, Oct. 27)
Researchers at the University of Iowa have developed a pig model for cystic fibrosis that appears to closely mimic the disease in human infants. Co-lead authors of the study were DAVID STOLTZ, UI assistant professor of internal medicine; DAVID MEYERHOLZ, UI assistant professor of pathology; and former postdoctoral fellow Christopher Rogers. The senior study author was MICHAEL WELSH, UI professor of internal medicine and molecular physiology and biophysics.

UI researchers studied Neanderthals (New Scientist, Oct. 27)
Why did Neanderthals have big noses? The traditional answer has been that Neanderthals had big mouths and wide jaws, says NATHAN HOLTON, a paleoanthropologist at the University of Iowa. To put this theory to the test, he and UI colleague ROBERT FRANCISCUS, measured facial dimensions in dozens of Neanderthals and humans, ancient and modern. By correlating changes in the size of nose width, the distance between canine teeth, and other features, the researchers could determine whether or not big mouths went with big noses. Holton and Franciscus found a slight link between nose and mouth, but not enough to explain Neanderthal noses. However, another measurement -- the degree to which the face juts forward -- seemed a better match for nose width. The New Scientist originates in the UK.

Osborn comments on Palin impact (The National, Oct. 27)
What has been the impact of Sarah Palin's candidacy? "After almost two months on the campaign trail, her net impact is the greatest surprise: zero. Palin has reverted to the traditional role of the Vice-President. It is the one that Joe Biden has played for the Democrats to considerably less attention. That role is to be an attack dog. 'In the end, her impact is going to be neutral. The base loves her, but she is not going to bring many people on board for McCain who aren't there already,' said Professor TRACY OSBORN, a political scientist and expert on women in politics at the University of Iowa." The National originates in the United Arab Emirates.

Kutzko mentored minority Ph.D.s (Inside Higher Education, Oct. 27)
The Institute on Teaching and Mentoring is one of the most unusual gatherings in higher education, where nearly 1,100 minority doctoral candidates and recent Ph.D. recipients convene to learn how to maneuver through the academy, to network, and to exhort each other to keep going. On of the faculty mentors at the latest gathering was University of Iowa mathematician PHILIP KUTZKO.

Viagra has other effects (Newspost, Oct. 27)
University of Iowa research has shown that Viagra can relieve fatigue associated with muscular dystrophy. The researchers included YVONNE KOBAYASHI, a research associate in molecular physiology and biophysics, and KEVIN CAMPBELL, professor and head of molecular physiology and biophysics. Newspost originates in India. This story is appearing internationally.

Fasano comments on asthma research (American Medical News, Oct. 27)
A new study links acetaminophen and the development of asthma in children. Asthma specialists said the finding was provocative, although they expressed caution about casting blame. "There might be something about children who require more frequent use of this medicine. [This study] certainly doesn't prove causality, and it would be inappropriate for ... clinicians to grasp onto this and no longer prescribe acetaminophen for children," said MARY BETH FASANO, associate clinical professor of medicine and pediatrics at the University of Iowa.

Rietz explains stability on IEM (The Politico, Oct. 26)
Finance professor THOMAS RIETZ said the Iowa Electronic Markets and other prediction futures markets are less volatile than public opinion polls because heavily partisan traders tend to hang onto contracts that they shouldn't.

Durham book is cited (Zenit, Oct. 26)
A story about a controversy sparked by photographer Bill Henson's depictions of nude children notes the recent publication of "The Lolita Effect" by UI journalism faculty member MEENAKSHI GIGI DURHAM, in which she complained that the media is "mishandling and distorting girls' sexuality." Zenit is a news agency in Italy.

Peterson laments political jokes (News & Observer, Oct. 26)
A survey by the Pew Center for the People and the Press in 2004 found that 61 percent of people under the age of 30 got some of their political "news" from late-night comedy shows. So what is wrong with this? Plenty, says RUSSELL PETERSON, a former stand-up comic and political cartoonist turned political scientist at the University of Iowa. The effect of endless jokes lampooning our political leaders is "implicitly anti-democratic," Peterson says. It plays to the deeply ingrained American belief that our political leaders are jokes and that the democratic system is "an irredeemable sham." The News & Observer is published in North Carolina.

Iranian scholar attended International Writing Program (Tehran Times, Oct. 26)
Noted Iranian poet, writer, translator and scholar Taheher Saffarzadeh attended the INTERNATIONAL WRITING PROGRAM at the University of Iowa.

Lewis Beck predicts election outcome (OpEdNews, Oct. 25)
MICHAEL LEWIS BECK, who teaches political science at the University of Iowa, has factored racial basis into his voting model and thinks Obama will win the popular vote, Couzin says, but lose in the electoral college.

UI will use temporary heaters (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 25)
About 50 liquid propane tanks will fuel temporary heaters on the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA west and arts campuses after spring flooding damaged buildings.,0,6480173.story

Polgreen comments on another flu effect (Bloomberg, Oct. 25)
Influenza outbreaks can help pave the way for drug-resistant intestinal infections that kill hospital and nursing home patients by spurring unnecessary antibiotic use. Annual peaks in U.S. cases of Clostridium difficile, a drug-resistant germ that works in the intestines, consistently trail major influenza outbreaks by about one to two months, said PHILIP POLGREEN, an infectious disease expert at the University of Iowa.

Regents consider tuition increase (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 25)
A proposal that will go before the Iowa Board of Regents next week calls for a more than 4 percent hike in tuition rates at the state's three public universities. Under the plan, UNIVERSITY OF IOWA students would see a 4.6 percent increase in tuition and fees.,0,2498626.story

Pollyvote uses IEM (Pensacola News Journal, Oct. 25)
Pollyvote, which very accurately predicted the outcome of the 2004 election, uses four forecasting methods, including the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS at the University of Iowa.

Sittenfeld attended the UI (Financial Times, Oct. 25)
An interview feature with author Curtis Sittenfeld notes that she worked as a journalist before enrolling at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA WRITERS' WORKSHOP. The Financial Times originates in the U.K.

Murray hails clubfoot genetic advance (Science Now, Oct. 24)
By studying a large family, researchers have found the first gene that causes clubfoot. JEFF MURRAY, a pediatrician who studies the molecular basis of birth defects at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, says he is excited by the discovery. "Finding a genetic connection is a major advance," he says. Science Now originates in Washington D.C.

McGehee comments on efforts to reduce teen crashes (Washington Post, Oct. 24)
Last year, crashes involving drivers ages 16 to 20 killed 112 people in the state of Maryland. Now more than 100 families in Southern Maryland are enrolled in a state-sponsored study to install camera systems that record the moments before and after an unusual driving maneuver. State officials say the cameras could decrease the number of teen drivers killed in crashes, which are often caused not by alcohol or overt recklessness but by simple driver inexperience. The problem has persisted despite efforts by lawmakers to restrict teen driving privileges. "Really, the single most dangerous thing we let our children do is drive a car," said DANIEL MCGEHEE, director of the human factors and vehicle safety research program at the University of Iowa.

University presidents' bonuses linked to goals (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 24)
Presidents of Iowa's three public universities will have their annual bonuses tied to job performance. Iowa Board of Regents Executive Director Robert Donley says it's the first time the presidents of the University of Iowa, Iowa State University and the University of Northern Iowa will have their bonuses linked to goals that were set by the presidents and Board of Regents President David Miles. It was the performance of University of Iowa President SALLY MASON that came under scrutiny this fall amid controversy over the university's handling of sexual assault allegations involving two former football players. This AP story included information from the DES MOINES REGISTER.,0,2003130.story

Hawkeye Poll: young voters paying less attention to election (UPI, Oct. 23)
A UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HAWKEYE POLL indicates younger U.S. adults are paying less attention to the election than older voters. The national poll of 796 of registered voters, conducted Oct. 5-18, found 40 percent of younger voters say they are paying close attention to the election, compared to 53 percent of those age 35-54, 61 percent of those age 55-69, and 72 percent of those 70 and older.

Durham: parents irked about sexy kids' costumes (Macroworld Investor, Oct. 23)
A column describes the disturbing trend of sexy Halloween costumes for youngsters -- like a preschooler's ladybug costume featuring a black lace corset over a red-and-black miniskirt, a choker necklace and elbow-length gloves. "A lot of people are perturbed by these trends," says M. GIGI DURHAM, a University of Iowa professor and author of "The Lolita Effect." Even so, she said, "some parents just throw up their hands and say, 'What can I do? This is the culture we live in.'" The column was originally published in the WITCHITA EAGLE.

Petition urges Mason to reinstate Mills (KMTV, Oct. 23)
A University of Iowa professor is circulating a petition to reinstate Marcus Mills, the school's former general counsel who was fired in the wake of a report detailing the mismanagement of a sexual abuse case. Political science professor MICHAEL LEWIS-BECK says he will deliver nearly 200 signatures and plans to meet with University of Iowa President SALLY MASON Thursday. Lewis-Beck and two other professors -- CATHERINE RINGEN and TOM SOUTHARD -- will discuss the issue with Mason. KMTV is based in Omaha.

Pascarella: college teaches critical thinking (Seattle Times, Oct. 23)
A story about college costs skyrocketing while the economy worsens raises the question of whether college is a worthy financial investment for everyone. Experts point out that the college experience is not just about financial rewards. Students are able to explore their interests. They often become inspired by subjects they never knew existed and are able to view the world through a broader lens. "There's value added when it comes to critical thinking and moral reasoning," said ERNEST PASCARELLA, a University of Iowa professor who has studied the effects of college. The story originated in THE CHICAGO TRIBUNE.

Ferentz scheduled to testify in hearing today (KMTV, Oct. 22)
Among the witnesses set to testify at a hearing on sex abuse charges against two former University of Iowa football players is head coach KIRK FERENTZ. Abe Satterfield and Cedric Everson are accused of sexually assaulting a female student last October in Hillcrest Residence Hall. Twenty-year-old Satterfield is charged with second- and third-degree sexual abuse while 19-year-old Everson faces a charge of second-degree sex abuse. They are scheduled to appear today in Johnson County District Court. KMTV is based in Omaha.

Redlawsk identifies four types of voters (Politico, Oct. 22)
University of Iowa political science associate professor DAVID REDLAWSK has developed a model to explain how voters make decisions. "Our basic idea here is that there are different ways of making decisions, particularly voting decisions," he said. His model has four voter types: rational, intuitive, confirmative, and fast and frugal. Each category of voter uses a different decision-making process. The story originated in THE DAILY IOWAN.

Grant to help pay for sexual assault policy review (KTTC-TV, Oct. 22)
The Iowa Board of Regents says part of a $1 million federal grant the University of Northern Iowa received last year will help pay for a review of sexual assault policies at Regent institutions. Officials say UNI was awarded the grant in 2007 by the U.S. Department of Justice's Office on Violence Against Women. In September, the Regents ordered five institutions within its system to develop new sexual assault policies after investigations into the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA'S handling of an alleged sexual assault on campus. KTTC is based in Rochester, Minn. The ASSOCIATED PRESS story also appeared on the Web site of KMTV in Nebraska and WXOW-TV in Wisconsin.

Conductor and UI alumnus retires (Rapid City Journal, Oct. 22)
Jack Knowles, 85, recently stepped down from the podium as the Black Hills Symphony Orchestra conductor, but will still be musical director. "For 46 years, I taught in music education, 36 years in the symphony and 37 years as music director. I keep retiring by degrees. I keep waiting to stay in the music business as long as I'm mentally able. Physically, I'm not sure how long I will be able to last," he said. Knowles attended the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA in Iowa City for both his bachelor's and master's degrees.

Broadcaster graduated from the UI (St. Petersburg Times, Oct. 22)
Throughout his Hall of Fame broadcasting career, Harry Kalas has witnessed -- and called -- many unforgettable moments. The longtime Phillies play-by-play man, will be calling this World Series between the Phillies and Rays with his son, Todd, who is the pre-game host and in-game reporter for every Rays game on TV. Harry Kalas graduated from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA. The newspaper is based in Florida.

Redlawsk comments on Obama strength in Iowa (Arizona Republic, Oct. 21)
The once-key battleground states of Wisconsin and Iowa are slipping further into the Democratic column as polls indicate Barack Obama building a larger lead over Republican presidential candidate John McCain. In Iowa, Obama has benefited in the general election from having a good field organization going into the Iowa caucuses. "This is a state where on-the-ground organization matters a lot," said DAVID REDLAWSK, a University of Iowa political science professor. "Early on, Obama built it and McCain didn't."

Leverty: Insurance firms may need to raise premiums (Kansas City Star, Oct. 21)
A story notes that a combination of bad weather and a bad economy may mean an increase in insurance premiums for consumers. Insurers may need to raise rates to have enough money to pay future claims, said University of Iowa finance professor TYLER LEVERTY. "It's not as if insurance companies are punishing policyholders," said Leverty, who specializes in insurance.

Carrica gets Naval Research grant (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 21)
A UNIVERSITY OF IOWA researcher has received a $333,348 grant from the U.S. Office of Naval Research. Associate Professor PABLO CARRICA will use the money, which is spread over three years, to enhance ship design by improving computer code.,0,7069878.story

Leach spoke at UI forum on subprime mortgages (The Politico, Oct. 21)
An interview with former Congressman Jim Leach notes that he recently discussed the economy, banking and subprime mortgages as a speaker at a forum at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.

Langerud: programs help law students find jobs (National Law Journal, Oct. 20)
At the University of Iowa, the College of Law is trying to provide extra help to students who will be graduating into a difficult economy through workshops such as "The Job Search in Tough Times" and "Attributes of Successful Candidates: What You Need to Know in Tough Markets." The Midwestern law school, to a certain degree, is insulated from the turmoil of Wall Street, said STEVE LANGERUD, assistant dean for career services. Still, as much as two-thirds of the law school's graduating class leaves Iowa to take jobs elsewhere. "They're clearly nervous," he said. The same article also appeared on the Web site of NEW YORK LAWYER.

Columnist cites Hawkeye Poll (The Politico, Oct. 20)
A column about rumors that Barack Obama is Muslim cites numerous polls, including an open-ended question in a UNIVERSITY OF IOWA that found 8.4 percent volunteering that he's a Muslim. There are two ways to explain this, the columnist writes. Either everyone who was inclined to believe Obama is a Muslim settled on it sometime last year, and nobody new has been convinced. Or some share have been talked out of it, and replaced by new believers. But either way, this isn't a fast-spreading virus. It's a chronic condition -- annoying to the candidate, but ultimately, apparently, under control.

Ramey comments on chronic stress (American Medical News, Oct. 20)
Police, like firefighters, nurses, teachers and even newspaper reporters, are vulnerable to the effects of chronic stress. These findings signal the need for additional precautions by physicians, especially those whose patients are either still in law enforcement or are retirees, said SANDRA RAMEY, assistant professor of nursing at the University of Iowa College of Nursing. "A red flag should go up, and more screening should be considered beyond the routine."

UI study finds value in 'junk' DNA (MediLexicon, Oct. 20)
For about 15 years, scientists have known that certain "junk" DNA -- repetitive DNA segments previously thought to have no function -- could evolve into exons, which are the building blocks for protein-coding genes in higher organisms like animals and plants. Now, a University of Iowa study has found evidence that a significant number of exons created from junk DNA seem to play a role in gene regulation. The study's lead authors are LAN LIN and YI XING. MediLexicon originates in the UK and Mexico. Variations of this story are appearing worldwide.

Pulitzer-winning author attended the UI (The Reporter, Oct. 20)
A feature about Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Michael Cunningham notes that he received a Michener Fellowship from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA. The Reporter is published in Pennsylvania.

Choral conductor attended the UI (Las Vegas Sun, Oct. 20)
A feature about Doug Peterson, choral director of the Southern Nevada Musical Arts Society, notes that he holds a Doctor of Musical Arts from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.

Kuhl comments on mileage-tax study (Austin Statesman, Oct. 20)
Many "average Joes" are wondering why a study researching taxing on miles driven rather than gasoline purchased requires an electronic device to track mileage, when every car is equipped with an odometer. Not only are odometers vulnerable to tampering, but JON KUHL, the UI professor doing the study, said states also want to know where you drove so that the tax could be apportioned to where you put in the miles. Odometers aren't smart enough to do that.

Nelson talks about market discrepancies (New York Times, Oct. 19)
The prediction market has been out of step with the other prediction markets, including the Iowa Electronic Markets, revealing that a single investor was manipulating the results. "The surprising thing is not that there was some manipulation, it is that it was sustained," said FORREST NELSON, who teaches at the University of Iowa. Variations of this story are appearing widely.

UI offered first gender-neutral dorms (Providence Journal, Oct. 19)
Thirty American universities now offer gender-neutral campus housing. The first was the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA, in 1996.

UI student joins online 'nerd-fest' (Science Centric, Oct. 19)
University of Iowa graduate student Alok Shah spends many hours in the lab of Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine researcher MICHAEL WELSH, studying human and mouse airway cilia to understand the genetic causes of developmental defects and cystic fibrosis. In his free time, he gathers with fellow students and scientists to take part in what he calls a 'wonderful nerd-fest,' the social/professional networking site

Lewis wrote play at the UI (Cincinnati Enquirer, Oct. 19)
A story about Sean Lewis' play "Militant Language" notes that he wrote the script three years ago when he was a student at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.

Gable dispenses wisdom (Lancaster Newspapers, Oct. 19)
A feature describes the wisdom passed on to students during a visit to the Pennsylvania Wrestling Coaches Association by former University of Iowa coach DAN GABLE. The article described his "bottomless well of instruction."

Beard avoided UI massacre (Salt Lake Tribune, Oct. 18)
A feature about writer Jo Ann Beard begins, "With 'The Fourth State of Matter,' originally published in June 1996 in The New Yorker, Jo Ann Beard published arguably one of the most important pieces of recent contemporary nonfiction. The essay, the centerpiece of her book 'The Boys of My Youth,' is a stunningly lyrical and intimate story of the day when she missed being killed in a mass murder at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA PHYSICS DEPARTMENT, where she worked but had left early because she was tired. On her way out of the building, she passed the graduate student who later that afternoon would go crazy with a .38-caliber handgun and a .22-caliber revolver. 'At the end of the hallway,' she writes, 'are the double doors leading to the rest of my life.'"

Wisconsin author attended UI (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Oct. 18)
After a silence of 33 years following a near-fatal motorcycle accident, Wisconsin author David Rhodes has published the novel "Driftless." He attended the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA WRITERS' WORKSHOP, and his first novel was accepted for publication before he graduated in 1971. He had three novels out while still in his 20s, before the 1977 accident.

Mason names Braun chief of staff (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 18)
University of Iowa President SALLY MASON has hired Mark Braun as her new chief of staff.,0,6830913.story

UI will host 'Mad Money' (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 18)
The UNIVERSITY OF IOWA is set to play host to CNBC's popular TV show "Mad Money." The nightly show, known for the energetic performances of its host, Jim Cramer, will be filmed in the main lounge of the Iowa Memorial Union on Nov. 12.,0,2552602.story

Poet attended the UI (Trinidad Times Independent, Oct. 17)
A feature about poet Jancy Takacs notes the she received a Master of Fine Arts degree from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA. The Times Independent is published in Colorado.

Robinson's 'Home' is reviewed (The Australian, Oct. 17)
A review of UI faculty member MARILYNNE ROBINSON's "Home" praises the book for its "quiet and profound insights into human frailty.",25197,24496055-5001986,00.html

Baltimore drivers may contribute to UI gas tax study (WJZ-TV, Oct. 16)
After a summer of $4-a-gallon gas, prices are finally going down. The amount you pay at the pump has a lot to do with how much tax the state charges. Dennis Edwards reports there's serious talk about whether we should swap the gas tax for a mileage tax, and Baltimore drivers could become a key factor in the debate. The UNIVERSITY OF IOWA gets millions to test whether it's better to pay for roads by the mile or by the gallon. WJZ-TV is based in Baltimore.

UI helps detect radio emission from galaxy cluster (Red Orbit, Oct. 16)
A team of scientists, including astronomers from the Naval Research Laboratory, have detected long wavelength radio emission from a colliding, massive galaxy cluster which, surprisingly, is not detected at the shorter wavelengths typically seen in these objects. The discovery implies that existing radio telescopes have missed a large population of these colliding objects. The team revealed their findings in the Oct. 16, 2008 edition of Nature. This new population of objects is most easily detected at long wavelengths. The Long Wavelength Array is led by the University of New Mexico, and includes the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA, among other institutions.

UI Hygienic Lab tests bottled water for contaminants (Glamour, Oct. 16)
Do you know someone who refuses to drink tap water? It's easy to get the feeling that bottled water is cleaner, purer, somehow superior to tap. But, wait until you hear what may really be lurking in that bottle. The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit research group in Washington D.C., had 10 major bottled water brands tested by the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HYGIENIC LABORATORY. And the results were pretty startling. In total, they found that the water contained 38 contaminants including disinfecting products, industrial chemicals, arsenic, bacteria, Tylenol and caffeine.

Some health care workers decline flu shots (Associated Press, Oct. 16)
Despite recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that all health care workers -- from hospital volunteers to doctors -- get vaccinated, nearly 60 percent of health care workers fail to get a flu shot. Operating room nurse PAULINE TAYLOR, who works at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, knows her refusal to get a flu shot is based on faulty logic. But ever since she got sick after getting a shot a few years ago, she's sworn off the vaccine.

Bottled water tested for toxicity levels (San Francisco Chronicle, Oct. 15)
Bottled water brands do not always maintain the consistency of quality touted in ads featuring alpine peaks and crystalline lakes and, in some cases, contain toxic byproducts that exceed state safety standards, tests show. The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit organization with offices in Oakland, tested 10 brands of bottled water and found that Wal-Mart's Sam's Choice contained chemical levels that exceeded legal limits in California and the voluntary standards adopted by the industry. In the study, the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HYGIENIC LABORATORY screened for 170 possible contaminants. The lab found 38 pollutants in 24 samples from 10 major brands purchased by the group in California, Washington, D.C., and eight other states. A similar article appeared on WEBMD.COM.

Texans sought for road use study (KNVA, Oct. 15)
People in five Central Texas counties have the chance to be guinea pigs for a new federal government gas tax-alternative study dubbed the Road User Study. The Public Policy Center of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA is conducting a study that looks at taxing drivers by how much they drive, not on gasoline. The Mileage-Based Road User Charge is funded through the U.S. Department of Transportation and is taking place in Central Texas, in addition to five other areas nationwide. The TV station is based in Texas. A related article appeared on the Web site of WOAI radio in Texas.

IEM traders favor Obama by large margin (Reuters, Oct. 15)
Traders betting on future events in the political prediction markets are overwhelmingly predicting a Barack Obama victory in the U.S. presidential election, giving the Illinois Democrat a better than 80 percent chance of winning. On the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS, run as a research tool by the University of Iowa business school, traders were giving the Democrat an 82 percent chance of winning and the Republican an 18 percent chance of winning. The article appeared in several media outlets, including the BOSTON GLOBE, NEW YORK TIMES, and others.

Fisher comments on hospital spending (Post-Bulletin, Oct. 15)
Health-care organizations are closely watching their investments -- and their spending. Mayo Clinic in Rochester continues employment growth but has placed a greater priority on patient-care hires, said spokesman Adam Brase. The University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City is being "very disciplined" about even hiring patient-care people right now, said KEN FISHER, associate vice president for finance and chief financial officer. The newspaper serves Rochester, Minn.

Borreca comments on political theater (New York Times, Oct. 14)
Political theater in America is overwhelmingly liberal. ART BORRECA, who has been the head of the Iowa Playwrights Workshop since 1997, said he reads at least 100 new plays a year by students and applicants and had come across only one that had what could be considered a conservative viewpoint -- and that was written by a liberal professor who thought his skepticism of multicultural courses was being unfairly characterized.

Medical student burnout discussed (Minnesota Public Radio, Oct. 14)
Fourth-year UNIVERSITY OF IOWA CARVER COLLEGE OF MEDICINE student Lauren Hughes was one of the three guests on an Oct. 14 Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) discussion on medical students and burnout. MPR said a recent study shows that nearly half of the medical students surveyed reported burnout, and more than 10 percent say they have considered suicide in the past year. Some wonder if there is a link between medical school burnout and high rates of suicide among physicians. The audio can be accessed at

UI center conducts road use tax study (Maryland Daily Record, Oct. 14)
Baltimore-area drivers are being recruited for a federally funded study designed to gauge the effectiveness of supplementing the gasoline tax with a levy on miles traveled. The study, by the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA PUBLIC POLICY CENTER, will install computer systems in the vehicles of 200 drivers in Baltimore and its surrounding counties that would measure the distance they travel. The devices would then report the information to a remote database that could eventually be used to bill drivers and generate new highway revenue. For now, though, nobody will be charged anything. This study, which is also being conducted in Eastern Iowa; San Diego; Austin, Texas; Raleigh, N.C.; and Boise, Idaho, is intended to test the equipment and people's response to it.

UI study predicts Obama win (, Oct. 14)
Using a variety of economic, social and political indicators, several recent studies by political scientists are predicting that Barack Obama will likely become the nation's next president. MICHAEL S. LEWIS-BECK of the University of Iowa and Charles Tien of Hunter College, who factored race into their forecasting equation and predicted that the Republicans "will experience a shattering defeat." The Lewis-Beck/Tien model, which made the prediction based in part on the number of jobs created in the labor market, has only a 1 in 14 chance of being wrong, the authors said. The news Web site is based in Denver.

Rietz: Markets might predict flu patterns (BusinessWeek, Oct. 14)
The Iowa Electronic Markets, while most known for their political prediction markets, is now experimenting with a private flu market that would enable health-care professionals from different states to bet on when flu will erupt in the United States and how severe the outbreak will be. THOMAS RIETZ, a professor of finance, says the flu market may solve a thorny problem for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, which until now had to watch flu outbreaks in a rearview mirror, too late for hospitals to prepare. "Flu is actually spread in a predictable pattern," Rietz says. "Kids get it first, parents stay home with the kids, and local clinics and nurses see it happening," he explains. "If we can get their information aggregated, hospitals can have an early warning." Academics now hope to move prediction markets beyond single future predictions to evaluation of many alternative, possible futures.

Pascarella: College has more benefits than education (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 14)
Money is only one of the reasons to go to college, of course. But with college costs skyrocketing and the economy worsening, the question of whether higher education is a worthy financial investment is no longer a no-brainer. Experts point out that the college experience is not just about financial rewards. There is also that business about learning a few things. Students are able to explore their interests. They often become inspired by subjects they never knew existed and are able to view the world through a broader lens. "There's value added when it comes to critical thinking and moral reasoning," said ERNEST PASCARELLA, a University of Iowa professor who has studied the effects of college.,0,1864072.story

MBA students to meet with Buffett (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 14)
A group of UNIVERSITY OF IOWA MBA students are set to meet with Warren Buffett, the so-called Oracle of Omaha, during a visit to Nebraska. Second-year MBA student Anne Thimsen says she's gearing up for a "once in a lifetime opportunity" to pick Buffett's brain.,0,5506436.story

Redlawsk divides voters into four groups (Time, Oct. 13)
Despite polls showing that many people say they are following the presidential campaign closely, most Americans know little about politics. When faced with an important decision like picking a President, we often struggle to see through the blizzard of conflicting information. That's where shortcuts can come in. Political scientists Richard Lau at Rutgers and DAVID REDLAWSK at the University of Iowa have developed four models of how people actually pick candidates. No partisan or demographic group is predisposed to a particular model, and a voter might use different strategies for different contests. The four categories are: rational; passive; frugal; and intuitive.,28804,1848314_1848341,00.html?xid=rss-nation

McMurray comments on bird babbling (Natural News, Oct. 13)
Just like human infants, baby birds also babble before mastering complex verbal communication, according to a new study conducted by researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and published in the journal Science. While adult bird song is highly structured and individualized, baby zebra finches start out by making a seemingly random collection of vocalizations constantly. This parallels the pattern seen in other kinds of learning, in which juvenile animals might move their limbs around before learning to walk, and highlights the importance of play in the learning process. "The parallels between human and bird language are indeed striking," said BOB McMURRAY, a psychology professor from the University of Iowa, who was not involved in the study. "This work illustrates that language learning may operate by very general principles ... that can be seen across species as different as finches and humans."

UI Libraries to help back up Google library (New York Times, Oct. 13)
Google often says that it likes to take the long-term view of things. But Google's idea of long term does not appear to be long enough for some librarians, who tend to equate long term with forever, at least when it comes to preserving books. On Monday a group of major libraries that is participating in Google's Library Project said they are working together to create what amounts to a publicly accessible backup of the digital library that Google is creating. The project, called HathiTrust, includes libraries at 12 Midwestern universities like the University of Michigan, the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA and the University of Illinois, and the 11 libraries of the University of California system. (Hathi is Hindi for "elephant," an animal that is said to never forget.)

UI to conduct driving experiment in Texas (Austin American-Statesman, Oct. 13)
A columnist writes about research by the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA that would install global positioning systems in automobiles to record how many miles they drive, then charge the drivers for their driving. The system would replace the gas tax, and is looking for volunteers in several cities across the U.S., including Austin. Stories about this project were also published on the Web sites of the CHICAGO TRIBUNE, IDAHO STATESMAN (Boise), KVUE-TV (Austin), KXAN-TV (Austin) and several others.

Franken rallies, Coleman tanks on IEM (, Oct. 13)
Democratic challenger Al Franken has moved ahead of Minnesota Republican Senator Norm Coleman on the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS' Minnesota Senate race market, as traders now believe he has a roughly 60 percent chance of winning next month's election.

Minnesota teen makes blankets for flood victims (Houston County News, Oct. 13)
As Lauren Graf followed news of flooding this summer on the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA campus where her older brother Tyler is a student, she knew she had to do something. So as part of a 4-H project, the 13-year-old La Crescent resident began making blankets for flood victims. By the time she finished, she had handcrafted 13 polar fleece blankets using nearly every color of the rainbow, including a special blanket emblazoned with Hawkeye black and gold. On Aug. 21, Lauren came to Iowa City to present the blankets in person to university advisor LOLA LOPES, graduate school dean JOHN KELLER, and student government president Maison Bleam. The News is published in Minnesota.

UI student featured in PBS documentary (Christianity Today, Oct. 13)
A story about the documentary "Soldiers of Conscience," about Christian soldiers in Iraq who wrestle with their duty, notes that one of the soldiers interviewed, Joshua Casteel, is now completing an MFA at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA. He traveled with a delegation of Catholic leaders to meet with the Pope in March 2007. His book is Letters from Abu Ghraib. The documentary will be broadcast this week on PBS' "Point of View" program.

UI research links chemical with disease (News-Medical, Oct. 13)
UNIVERSITY OF IOWA scientists collaborated in a study that found a link between the chemical BPA and disease.

UI is conducting tax study (Idaho Statesman, Oct. 13)
The UNIVERSITY OF IOWA received a $16 million federal grant to test a system that charges drivers a mileage tax rather than a gasoline tax. The goal is to find out if the approach is user-friendly, secure, trouble-free and acceptable to drivers.

Minnesota senator attended the UI (Minneapolis Star Tribune, Oct. 13)
A feature about Minnesota Sen. Norm Coleman notes that he is an alumnus of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.

Writer/blogger Miller attended UI (Chicago Sun-Times, Oct. 12)
A feature about writer/blogger Matthew Miller notes that he studied documentary-film production at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA.,chilit101208.article

Redlawsk puzzles about McCain's Iowa campaign (LA Times, Oct. 12)
The McCain campaign remains optimistic about Iowa, where polls show him trailing by double digits. The optimism puzzles some longtime political observers, like DAVID REDLAWSK, an associate professor at the University of Iowa and director of the Hawkeye Poll. "It's really surprising that at this stage of the campaign -- when the most valuable thing a candidate has is his time -- that he'd be putting the time into a state that really does look out of reach, at least by all public indicators," Redlawsk said.,0,7364329.story

UI alumna helps homeowners (Philadelphia Inquirer, Oct. 12)
UNIVERSITY OF IOWA social work alumna Emily Carlson is on the front lines of a program to prevent financially struggling homeowners from losing their homes.

UI alumnus wins short-story award (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Oct. 12)
Anthony Varallo, a UNIVERSITY OF IOWA alumnus who won the Simmons Short fiction Prize from the UI, has now won the $15,000 Drue Heinz Literature Award.

UI Press author writes about cemeteries (Hartford Courant, Oct. 12)
David Leff, who has a book forthcoming from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA PRESS, writes about Connecticut's dying cemeteries.,0,6667869.story

Whelan study shows smart men marry smart women (The Guardian, Oct. 11)
Men are likely to choose partners who remind them of their mothers, but they also want women to be as smart as their mothers. A study by sociologist CHRISTINE WHELAN at the University of Iowa surveyed 800 men who earned salaries in the top 10 percent of their age group (they were in their 20s and 30s) and found that nearly 80 percent of those whose mothers had bachelor degrees had wives who were educated to a similar level.

The bill is in on UI report (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 11)
A St. Louis law firm, Stolar Partnership, is billing the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA $247,588 for a report on the school's handling of an alleged sexual assault involving two former Hawkeye football players.,0,3908333.story

IEM shows McCain sinking (IPS, Oct. 11)
Overwhelmed by crashing stock markets and what is increasingly seen by even traditional conservatives as a Faustian bargain with the extreme right-wing core of his Republican Party, Sen. John McCain's chances of winning the Nov. 4 presidential elections have fallen sharply over the past three weeks. The IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS, run by the College of Business at the University of Iowa, is currently rating McCain's chances of winning the White House at less than one in six, significantly worse than the better than one-to-three odds it offered as recently as Sep 29. IPS is the Italian Press Service.

UI makes advance in macular degeneration research (Medical News Today, Oct. 11)
Scientists from the University of Southampton and the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA have discovered a new genetic association with age-related macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness. Medical News Today originates in the UK.

Sundberg becomes senior vice president (Calesburg Register-Mail, Oct. 10)
Former UNIVERSITY OF IOWA baseball star Jim Sundberg has been named senior vice president of the Texas Rangers. Sundberg will assist team president Nolan Ryan in oversight of the Rangers, and become the liaison for the club's spring training facility in Surprise, Ariz.

Review recommends Kidder's new book (Sierra Sun, Oct. 10)
A review recommends "Old Friends," the new book by Tracy Kidder, a Pulitzer Prize-winning alumnus of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA WRITERS' WORKSHOP.

Schoenbaum writes about violin values (International Herald Tribune, Oct. 10)
University of Iowa history professor DAVID SCHOENBAUM writes about a durable asset that is usually overlooked: vintage violins.

Osborn comments of Palin debate performance (Al-Ahram Weekly, Oct. 9-15)
Before the vice presidential debate, Sarah Palin was heavily criticized for her television interview with CBS commentator Katie Couric. Palin struggled to answer questions about foreign policy, Supreme Court rulings and even which newspapers she reads. "Palin's performance helped to re-solidify her position as McCain's running mate," said assistant professor of political science TRACY OSBORN, who studies women in American politics at the University of Iowa. "When she first started on the campaign trail a couple of months ago, people were excited and loved her speech at the Republican convention. Since then, however, she's looked inexperienced and uninformed, particularly in some nationally televised interviews." Al-Ahram is published in Egypt.

Leicht comments on fading American Dream (U.S. News, Oct. 10)
The financial crisis is putting the American Dream at risk for the middle-class. "The major reason I think the middle class is threatened is because most of the things we describe as revolving around the American Dream -- owning a house in a good neighborhood and sending your children to good schools, owning and paying for a car or two, and saving money for retirement -- all of that depends on having steady jobs with incomes that rise," said KEVIN LEICHT, a sociologist at the University of Iowa. "People are supposed to accumulate ... a lot of debt when they're young and gradually pay it off as they age, and go less and less into debt."

Some art works return to the UI (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 9)
Some of the artwork from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA MUSEUM OF ART'S permanent collection has been returned to campus. June's flooding forced officials to close the museum. Nearly 250 works of art, including prints, photographs and drawings, are now available for viewing by appointment in the school's special collections.,0,6854716.story

Leicht: middle class hurt by stagnant incomes (, Oct. 9)
Real income (which adjusts for inflation) has been stagnant since the 1970s, straining middle-class budgets and pushing wealth and power into the hands of the very few. Now some economists and sociologists fear the current crisis could make it all even more inequitable. "The major reason I think the middle class is threatened is because most of the things we describe as revolving around the American Dream -- owning a house in a good neighborhood and sending your children to good schools, owning and paying for a car or two, and saving money for retirement -- all of that depends on having steady jobs with incomes that rise," said University of Iowa Sociologist KEVIN LEICHT. "People are supposed to accumulate ... a lot of debt when they're young and gradually pay it off as they age, and go less and less into debt."

Redlawsk identifies four types of voters (TIME, Oct. 9)
When faced with an important decision like picking a president, we often struggle to see through the blizzard of conflicting information. That's where shortcuts can come in. Political scientists Richard Lau at Rutgers and DAVID REDLAWSK at the University of Iowa have developed four models of how people actually pick candidates: the rational voter who weighs the positives and negatives, the passive voter who votes with their party and impressions of candidates, the frugal voter who focuses on a handful of key issues, and the intuitive voter who seeks only enough information to reach a decision.,28804,1848314_1848341_1848407,00.html

Kuhl: gas tax won't provide enough funding for highways  (Detroit News, Oct. 9)
A study is about to begin in six states to test the concept of taxing drivers for the miles they drive instead of by the gallons of gas they purchase. The $16.5 million Road User Charge Study will enlist drivers in California, Idaho, Iowa, Maryland, North Carolina and Texas to determine whether the technology works, and whether Americans would accept a new mileage tax. "The gas tax is not going to be a viable way of funding our highways in the future," said JON KUHL, a University of Iowa professor who is directing the study. "The national Highway Trust Fund is already going broke, and the situation is going to get worse." The story was originally published in the RALEIGH NEWS & OBSERVER.

Airliner popular with UI students for six decades (USA Today, Oct. 9)
students have been patronizing The Airliner for more than six decades, so it's no wonder the bar/restaurant has one of the best atmospheres for college football in the Midwest. If location is everything, The Airliner scores extra points with its prime spot across the street from the Pentacrest, the heart of the Iowa campus. The bar's window seats face the golden dome of the Old Capitol, which housed the state government before the capital moved to Des Moines.

UI Press publishes photography of small-town Iowa (New York Times, Oct. 8)
As a teenager in the late 1930s, Everett W. Kuntz, the farm boy everybody called "Scoop" because he always seemed to have a camera slung around his neck, walked around his hometown snapping pictures of everyday life. He did not have the money to have the shots printed, and eventually, as he went off to college and later settled in Minneapolis, he forgot he even had them. Some 60 years later, as he lay dying of cancer, he remembered. The UNIVERSITY OF IOWA PRESS has just published the pictures in a slim volume, "Sunday Afternoon on the Porch: Reflections of a Small Town in Iowa, 1939-1942."

UI sexual assault case noted (News Chief, Oct. 8)
In a column claiming that colleges tend to play down scandal, particularly when it involves sports team, the situation at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA is described. Last October, a female athlete accused then-football players Abe Satterfield and Cedric Everson of raping her on campus. The newspaper is based in Winter Haven, Fla.

Band member injured at concert (Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Oct. 8)
Singer and guitarist Jim James of the Southern-rock group My Morning Jacket has been injured in a fall during a concert at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA. A Cedar Rapids newspaper reports he slipped and fell about 30 minutes into the show Tuesday night, Oct. 7. The Gazette says he apparently hit his head in the fall, which happened between songs. James was taken to a hospital, but the extent of his injuries was not known. The ASSOCIATED PRESS story appeared in several media outlets.

Affirmative action study announced (Chronicle of Higher Ed, Oct. 8)
A survey of students at seven law schools has found no evidence that affirmative action stigmatizes members of the minority groups that benefit from it, according to an article scheduled for publication in the California Law Review. In a news release issued by the University of Iowa to announce the study's results, ANGELA ONWUACHI-WILLIG, a professor of law at Iowa, said the findings call into question the common argument that affirmative action hurts the people it was designed to help. "Our study suggests it doesn't," she said, "and we think it's important to share this evidence so people can use it to continue to support diversity in education."

Affirmative action stigma questioned (Inside Higher Ed, Oct. 8)
Some critics of affirmative action say that one of their goals is to end a stigma faced by minority students who may feel that their qualifications are doubted. A new study by UNIVERSITY OF IOWA scholars questions whether minority students feel such a stigma. The study compared the attitudes of students at law schools with affirmative action, and those in states where consideration of race in admissions is barred. Generally, minority students at the two sets of institutions feel good about their qualifications and how others treat them, the study found. While the authors say that their findings raise doubts about the stigma issue, they also acknowledge very small sample sizes.

Jones: voting machines may not be properly calibrated (Wired Blog, Oct. 7)
Problems with ballot-reading machines in a Florida primary recount revealed grave voting problems just one month before the presidential election. DOUGLAS JONES, a professor of computer science at the University of Iowa who has consulted with a number of states on voting machine issues, said the problem with the machines is likely inconsistent calibration among machines. Jones blamed the federal voting system standards by which voting systems are tested and certified. He says the federal standards don't set a threshold for what should be an acceptable number of scanning mistakes and calibration decisions are thus left to the companies that make them.

Foreclosure sales bring housing crisis close to home (WQAD-TV, Oct. 7)
At the Scott County Courthouse, foreclosure sales are becoming a Tuesday morning tradition. At agencies like United Neighbors, the sales are a symptom of national struggles. United Neighbors hope that a special session at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA on Friday and Saturday will explore ideas and lead to solutions. The PUBLIC POLICY CENTER is hosting the session "The Subprime Housing Crisis: Interdisciplinary Policy Perspectives."

UI explores social networking sites for alerts (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 7)
University of Iowa officials are exploring whether to use social networking sites such as Facebook and MySpace as additional tools to send emergency notifications to students. Spokeswoman LINDA KETTNER says officials are examining whether the sites could be used in the event of a natural disaster or violent crime. But, she says, the school isn't ready to act on the idea just yet. CHUCK GREEN, the university's public safety director, says that for now the school is sticking with the Hawk Alert, which was launched in the fall of 2007. It allows the university to get messages fairly rapidly to 45,000 faculty, staff and students by a variety of mediums, such as text, cell phone, home phone or e-mail.,0,2936768.story

Bloom, Feldman publish 'The Oxford Project' ( Oct. 7)
A new book, "The Oxford Project" combines black-and-white portrait photographs -- one from 1984, a second 20 years later -- with oral histories to give a mosaic of a small town, of hopes and dreams, of triumphs and tragedies, of life and death. Photographer PETER FELDSTEIN, a University of Iowa arts professor, took the photographs of 670 people. Two decades later, Feldstein set out on a new quest to re-photograph as many people as he could find from 1984. But this time he brought along STEPHEN G. BLOOM, a University of Iowa journalism professor, to interview the residents and record their life histories. "I learned secrets. I learned things that some of them hadn't even told their spouses," says Feldstein, a resident of the town since 1978. "More than anything, I learned about my neighbors."

Billett comments on business professors' salaries (Wall Street Journal, Oct. 7)
Most business-school professors earn higher salaries than the university average -- which is about $61,000 for an assistant professor with a few years experience, according to the American Association of University Professors. That's because there is direct competition with the private sector for talent, says MATTHEW BILLETT, a finance professor at the University of Iowa's Tippie College of Business.

Kuhl project may replace gas tax (Raleigh News Observer, Oct. 7)
Two hundred Triangle drivers will be recruited this fall to road-test a satellite-technology system that might be used one day to collect highway taxes on every mile we drive -- replacing the gas tax on every gallon we buy. "The gas tax is not going to be a viable way of funding our highways in the future," JON KUHL, a University of Iowa professor who is directing the study, said in an interview. "The national Highway Trust Fund is already going broke, and the situation is going to get worse."

UI rowing program noted (Boston Herald, Oct. 7)
A story about a group of Boston-area parents who help high school rowers attend colleges with rowing programs notes that several Midwestern schools, including the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA, have teams in the sport.

UI student writes of Olympic experience (China Daily, Oct. 7)
Nicholas Compton, a student at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA, writes about his memories as a volunteer at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.

Writer remembers Crumley (TIME, Oct. 6)
Writer and graphic novelist Max Alan Collins wrote about mystery writer James Crumley, who died on Sept. 17 at 68. Collins said he and Crumley were both at the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA WRITERS' WORKSHOP in the late 1960s. Collins wrote: "I can only wonder if he ran into the same mix of skepticism and condescension toward 'popular fiction' that I encountered." No Web link is available for the story.

Chef Donovan shows determination (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 6)
Many people could learn a lesson in determination and climbing the professional ladder from the University of Iowa's newest chef. As a 17-year-old living in his native Jamaica, DONOVAN CAMPBELL detested his first job washing dishes at a Sandals resort, but he loved the professional kitchen, and he desperately wanted to learn to cook. So he approached his chef and asked to come in early to help the cooks. "For four months, I never missed a day," he said.,0,5723676.story

UI study finds cleft palate gene (Straits Times, Oct. 6)
Scientists said yesterday that they had identified a flawed gene that is a major cause of cleft lip. A single change in a sequence of a gene called interferon regulatory factor 6, or IRF6, boosts the risk of cleft lip by 18 per cent, according to an investigation led by scientist JEFFREY MURRAY of the University of Iowa in the United States. The study, published online in the journal Nature Genetics, involved lab animals and compared groups of people with a high incidence of inherited cleft lip. The Times is published in Singapore. The same story was published in the BAHRAIN TRIBUNE (Bahrain), CANBERRA TIMES (Australia).

Kaldjian study urges doctors to learn from mistakes (The Hindu, Oct. 6)A new University of Iowa study shows that most general practice doctors in teaching hospitals are willing to discuss their own patient care errors with colleagues, but about one in four do not. At the same time, nearly nine of 10 doctors said that if they wanted to talk about a mistake, they knew a colleague who would be a supportive listener. The findings are reported in the Oct. 1 issue of the Journal of Medical Ethics.The results suggest that it is important to ensure that learning occurs not just in the person who made the mistake but also among their peers, said the study's lead author, LAURIS KALDJIAN, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of internal medicine at the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine. The Hindu is published in India.

Board recommends UI not sell Pollock painting (Inside Higher Ed, Oct. 6)
A brief notes that a UNIVERSITY OF IOWA advisory board has urged the Board of Regents to not sell the Jackson Pollock painting, "Mural." The board believes that to do so would threaten the UI Art Museum's accreditation.

UI study cited (Diversity Inc., Oct. 6)
A story offering employers tips on hiring disabled workers notes that the primary consideration is accommodations. A study from the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA states that "the primary economic benefits to an employer of providing accommodations may be in retaining employees and avoiding the costs of job searches, hiring and training replacement employees." So it stands to reason that those companies that are considered "friendly" toward people with disabilities have better employee recruitment and retention rates.

Porter study finds banks with no proof they own homes (Tampa Tribune, Oct. 5)
A growing number of homeowners whose homes are in foreclosure are taking advantage of laws that force the bank to prove they own the home, thereby able to stay in the home for months or years. One reason to fight foreclosure is the amount of excessive fees some lenders charge, said KATHERINE PORTER, an associate professor who specializes in bankruptcy at the University of Iowa College of Law. In nearly half the foreclosure cases she studied recently, she found hefty or vaguely described fees. It's difficult to say how many lenders begin foreclosure on loans they can't prove they own. To get a better idea, Porter recently combed through 1,733 bankruptcy files for homeowners who faced foreclosure. She found 40 percent contained no proof the plaintiff owned the mortgage. "My impression is that most mortgage companies would be able to come up with documents to prove it eventually, but it's also my impression that lenders are being sloppy and not following all the rules because they're swamped," Porter said. "This opens up doors for consumers to fight."

Review: 'Oxford Project' real, stark (Washington Post, Oct. 5)
A review of "The Oxford Project" by PETER FELDSTEIN, professor emeritus of art, and STEPHEN BLOOM, professor of journalism, notes that the book is "stark, almost to a point of severity. It is the Iowa that certain reporters try to bring to life every primary season in an election year, and of course fail to exactly portray while writing on the fly. Some have seen "The Oxford Project" and are reminded of the work of Studs Terkel or Mike Disfarmer. Alone, Feldstein's photographs have the allure, if not the technical quality, of August Sander's portraits of everyday Germans in the 1920s: People don't get much more real than this, and there's a heartbreaking, forensic pleasure in paging through the book to stare at the pictures for minutes at a time, looking at the thousands of ways in which the years change each of us." The same story was published on the Web site of the SEATTLE TIMES.

Porter: U.S. Trustee, courts challenge creditors (Wall Street Journal, Oct. 3)
The U.S. Trustee Program, an arm of the Justice Department that monitors bankruptcy courts, settled with Capital One Financial Corp. on Thursday over allegations that its credit-card unit filed about 5,600 claims on credit-card debts that it wasn't entitled to and improperly received $340,000 from debtors as a result. The settlement marks a victory for the U.S. Trustee Program, which in recent years stepped up its investigations into potential wrongdoing by some creditors against debtors in bankruptcy. "The willingness of the U.S. Trustee, and bankruptcy courts, to challenge creditor behavior is a recent development," says KATHERINE PORTER, a bankruptcy-law professor at the University of Iowa who has studied the behavior of mortgage companies in the bankruptcy system.

Berg discusses Iowa Electronic Markets (Congressional Quarterly, Oct. 3)
JOYCE BERG, professor of accounting and director of the Iowa Electronic Markets at the University of Iowa, explains the mechanics of the IEM and how it operates as a political prediction market. The link is to a video.

UI researchers help develop new anti-tumor vaccine (, Oct. 3)
Scientists and clinicians at Children's National Medical Center in collaboration with UNIVERSITY OF IOWA researchers have developed a new anti-tumor vaccine for neuroblastoma and melanoma. While conducting a study on mice, researchers found that the vaccine uses the tumor's own protein to induce an immune system response, allowing for a personalized approach to treatment. NEWKERAL.COM is a news Web site in India.

Kerber: women should know constitutional history (La Crosse Tribune, Oct. 3)
Columnist KJ Lang writes, "In a classroom packed with people, all the women but one were wearing pants." The lecturer, LINDA KERBER, is a professor. The women she teaches have the right to vote. Many of those rights grew out of the grassroots feminist movement of the last generation, said Kerber, a history professor and law lecturer at the University of Iowa. She also is author of 'No Constitutional Right to Be Ladies: Women and the Obligations of Citizenship." LA CROSSE TRIBUNE is published in La Crosse, Wisc.

Gantz: implants can help those with severe hearing loss (MSNBC, Oct. 2)
A growing number of seniors who were suffering from hearing loss are turning to quarter-sized cochlear implants, tiny electronic devices able to restore hearing to ears of any age and external processors, to restore communication and connection -- and to prove that a slow descent into deafness is not an inevitable consequence of aging. Of some 33 million hearing-impaired people in the United States, perhaps 1 million suffer from the severe to profound losses that can be helped by the implants, said Dr. BRUCE GANTZ, professor and head of the University of Iowa's Department of Otolaryngology.

IEM cited in article on prediction markets (Washington Post, Oct. 2)
Prediction markets have been around in one form or another for decades. Throughout the 2008 presidential campaign, Intrade has generated nearly $50 million worth of futures contracts. Betfair, a market based in the United Kingdom also attracts millions of dollars in bets. Its Web site predicts nearly $70 million will be invested on the U.S. presidential election. U.S. law prevents predictive trading nationwide, with the exception of the IOWA ELECTRONIC MARKETS, which began as an academic research tool and today caps investments at $500.

Gantz: Boomers can benefit from cochlear implants (MSNBC, Oct. 2)
A story about cochlear implants for adults notes that of some 33 million hearing-impaired people in the United States, perhaps 1 million suffer from the severe to profound losses that can be helped by the implants, said Dr. BRUCE GANTZ, professor and head of the University of Iowa's Department of Otolaryngology. That likely includes a burgeoning number of aging baby boomers whose hearing was squandered by loud music, loud traffic, road construction and other sources of noise pollution that have flourished in the last century, he said.

Alward speaks at eye care conference (The Hindu, Oct. 2)
Speaking at an international eye care conference in India this week, WALLACE J. LEE ALWARD, professor of ophthalmology at the University of Iowa, expressed the hope that Aravind Eye Care System would enjoy the same level of success in research as it had in treatment and manufacturing of lens and drugs. The Hindu is published in India.

Redlawsk comments on Obama poll lead (Associated Press, Oct. 1)
Barack Obama has surged to a seven-point lead over John McCain one month before the presidential election, lifted by voters who think the Democrat is better suited to lead the nation through its sudden financial crisis, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll that underscores the mounting concerns of some McCain backers. Democrats hope Obama is starting to build a lasting lead. "We have a light optimism," said DAVID REDLAWSK, a delegate to the Democratic National Convention who teaches political science at the University of Iowa. "We've already learned in the last several weeks that we can be whipsawed back very, very quickly." The story was published on the Web sites of the WASHINGTON POST, CHICAGO TRIBUNE, ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, SAN MATEO (CALIF.) DAILY JOURNAL, CHINA ECONOMIC NEWS, BALTIMORE SUN, LOS ANGELES DAILY NEWS, SEATTLE TIMES, DETROIT NEWS and numerous other news

Petition asks for reconsideration of Mills' firing (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 1)
University of Iowa political science professor MICHAEL LEWIS-BECK is circulating a petition asking officials to reconsider a decision to fire the school's general counsel.,0,4127870.story

Former dean leaves more than $2 million for UI (Chicago Tribune, Oct. 1)
Dewey Stuit, who was dean of the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA COLLEGE OF LIBERAL ARTS AND SCIENCES from 1948 to 1977, has left more than $2 million to the university. He died on Jan. 9. The gift will be added to previous funds created by Stuit and his wife, Velma, who died in 1997. Gifts made by the Stuits when they were alive totaled more than $1.3 million. The funds will be used for scholarships and support for the university's Museum of Art; the departments of psychology, religious studies and theater arts; and the schools of art and art history and music. The ASSOCIATED PRESS story also appeared on the Web sites of WXOW-TV in Wisconsin, KTTC-TV in Minnesota, and several others.,0,5424512.story

UI investigates anti-gay graffiti (Edge Boston, Oct. 1)
The University of Iowa is increasing harassment training after anti-gay graffiti was found in a restroom at the School of Social Work's North Hall. The university's director of public safety, CHUCK GREEN, said officers are investigating the incident, which was reported Monday, Sept. 29. Green said there is not enough information to classify it as a hate crime. Associate Professor ED SAUNDERS says a male student reported that he saw a message written on a chalkboard in a restroom in North Hall several weeks ago. Saunders said the message was an anti-gay slur against a doctoral student and teaching assistant.

Pettys suggests letting SCOTUS pick its own chief (ABA Journal, October 2008)
In a story about reforming the United States Supreme Court, TODD PETTYS, a professor of law at the Univeristy of Iowa College of Law, suggests letting the justices themselves select the chief justice, instead of the president. He points out that early Americans -- following the British example -- viewed the chief justice as a presidential adviser. George Washington selected John Jay on that assumption. It wasn't until 1801 and the John Marshall era that the court -- and its chief -- grew into a separate eminence. The ABA Journal is the monthly magazine of the American Bar Association.

Jones comments on voting machine accuracy (Scientific American, October 2008)
A story about voting machine technology notes that various studies have reached disparate conclusions about which technologies more accurately count votes and which are hardest to hack, although voter mistakes are lower for direct recording electronic (DRE) machines. New York State asserts that lever machines are as good as other technologies, but some experts disagree. A review by California, which uses a mix of options, found none to be clearly superior. Even though lab tests have shown differences, "when you factor in real-world variables, like ease of use and proper administration by poll workers, accuracy ends up being similar" -- about one error in 10,000 votes, says DOUGLAS W. JONES, a computer science professor at the University of Iowa and an expert on voting technology. Better ballot design could also reduce mistakes. "We've been designing hard-to-use ballots since this country began, and that's not about to change," Jones quips.






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