Screen readers: Two navigational links to follow.Skip to site navigation.Skip to page content.
The University of Iowa News Services
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release


April 25, 2011

At A Glance

UI Arts Share program receives Alliant Energy grant

The University of Iowa Arts Share program has received a $3,000 grant from the Alliant Energy Foundation to support its 2011 educational outreach activities to Iowa schools and communities. The grant will cover up to half the cost of events in the Alliant service area.

This is the 14th year that Arts Share has received funding from the Alliant Foundation. For information on how Iowa schools and communities can benefit from this UI/Alliant partnership, contact Leslie Finer at 319-335-1618 or

Arts Share continues UI's long tradition of sharing creative resources from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Division of Performing Arts (music, dance, theatre), School of Art and Art History, and the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Its goal is to strengthen the arts in underserved areas, reaching out to provide access to life-enriching arts experiences throughout Iowa.

The Alliant Energy Foundation is an independent, nonprofit corporation established by Alliant Energy Corporation, an investor-owned, diversified energy services holding company headquartered in Madison, Wis., with offices in Cedar Rapids and Dubuque, Iowa. Since 1998, the Alliant Energy Foundation has contributed more than $26 million to projects and organizations in the communities it serves.


CLAS recognizes Rodgers and Cohen for contributions to diversity and community
The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) recently recognized two faculty members for their efforts to build diversity and engage the community. Vincent Rodgers, professor of physics, received the CLAS Diversity Award, and Mary Cohen, assistant professor of music education, received the CLAS Outreach and Public Engagement Award.
CLAS Dean Linda Maxson presented these new awards April 18 at the college's faculty honors reception. A complete list of the college's 2011 honorees is available at
Rodgers is co-director of Hawk-Eyes on Science, one of the nation's premier science outreach programs, which serves elementary schools and community centers across Eastern Iowa. He organizes Summer Theoretical Physics Sessions for ethnically diverse groups of students from across the country, and he co-directors the Iowa Biosciences Advantage for UI undergraduates.
Cohen founded and directs the Oakdale Community Choir, composed of community members and men incarcerated at the Iowa Medical and Classification Center. She established the Shelter House Choir, which builds bridges between homeless individuals and the community, and she is past director of Voices of Experience, a choir at the Iowa City/Johnson County Senior Center. Cohen involves students in service-learning projects related to the community choirs.


Museum Studies Exhibit celebrates 100-year anniversary of the program

A recently opened exhibit in the University of Iowa Old Capitol Museum celebrates the 100-year anniversary of the UI Museum Studies program, the oldest program of its kind in the United States. The free exhibit is open during regular museum hours and will remain open throughout the summer.

Featuring photographs and artifacts from throughout the century of the program's existence, the exhibit highlights coursework and student involvement in museum work. Visitors can experience the diversity of the museum world first hand, through artifacts such as a Black Swan Skeleton mounted in 1890 and a 1984 model of Iowa Hall.

Homer Dill, instructor and director of exhibits at the UI Museum of Natural History, officially began the Museum Studies program during the fall semester of 1910. One hundred years later, 50 UI students enrolled in the Introduction to Museum Studies course and 11 UI students graduated with a certificate in Museum Studies. Through the years, UI Museum Studies students have gone on to be directors, curators, conservators, and educators at state historical museums, national parks, historical sites, art, natural history and university museums.

For more information on the Old Capitol Museum, visit


UI, Discovery Education offer free technology conference April 30

The Technology Education Center and the soon-to-open Teacher Leader Center at the University of Iowa College of Education are teaming up with Discovery Education to offer a free professional development opportunity for teachers, students and other interested professionals.

The free, professional development conference will be offered from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 30, in Room 301 South, Lindquist Center, on the UI campus with the theme "Think Outside the Book." The event will feature seminars focused on providing educators with the skills and techniques needed to combine digital content and educational technology to improve student engagement.

The conference will be streamed live to more than 1,000 educators across the country.

Though free, registration is required in advance and can be done online by visiting

For more information, call Christina Scripps with Discovery Education,
at 240-662-6502 or

Created by the Discovery Channel, Discovery Education engages students through dynamic curricular resources and supports teachers through customized professional development and assessment services with the goal of improving student achievement. For more information, visit

For more information on the Education Technology Center, visit For more information on the Teacher Leader Center, visit


'Don't forget Sudan' during two UI events May 2 and 3
Two events collectively themed "Don't Forget Sudan" on Monday, May 2, and Tuesday, May 3, hope to encourage public discussion and awareness of the current situation in Sudan regarding the referendum and the social and political climate. Both events are free and open to the public.
A discussion forum May 2 will feature University of Iowa students and members of the Iowa City Sudanese community from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in Meeting Room A of the Iowa City Public Library. No RVSP is required.
A dinner May 3 will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. in Room 1117, University Capitol Centre, and includes a keynote address by Omer Ismail. RSVP for this event to Kelsey Kramer at or 319-384-2208.
Originally from the Darfur region, Ismail fled Sudan in 1989 as a result of his political views and has spent over 20 years working both independently and with international organizations on relief efforts and human rights. He is currently policy advisor for "Enough," a project to end genocide and crimes against humanity.
The UI Center for Human Rights in International Programs, the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council, Iowa United Nations Association and PEACE Iowa are event sponsors.


UI Concert and University Bands share May 4 performance

The University of Iowa Concert Band under the direction of Hawkeye Marching Band conductor Kevin Kastens and the University Band under the direction of graduate student Carter Biggers will feature guest conductor Marc Decker and Curran Prendergast in a free performance at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, in the Main Ballroom of the Iowa Memorial Union.

The Concert Band program is "Homage To Perotin" by Ron Nelson, "Dance of The New World" by Dana Wilson and Johan de Meij's Symphony No. 1 "The Lord of the Rings," whose five movements -- written long before the popular Peter Jackson movies -- musically illustrate characters and episodes in the J.R.R. Tolkien trilogy.

The University Band will perform the "Marche des Parachutistes Belges" by Pierre Leemans, Variations on a Korean Folk Song by John Barnes Chance,
"Brigg Fair" by Percy Aldridge Grainger, Concertino for Tuba and Band by James Curnow featuring guest soloist Blaine Cunningham, and "American Civil War Fantasy" by Jerry Bilik.

Decker, Prendergast and Cunningham are UI School of Music graduate students.


UI spring undergraduate dance concert features 10 new works

The University of Iowa Department of Dance will present its spring undergraduate concert at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, May 5-7, in the Space Place Theater of North Hall.

The works, selected through adjudication, are Steven Gray's "Greener on the Other Side," Emily Rezetko's "Spokes," "Far From Home" by Erin Fitzgerald, "Re Progression" by Brittany Reuss, Madison DeWitt's "Inanimate Objects Are People Too," Stephanie Baer's performance of David Dorfman's "Lightbulb Theory," "Removing the "EX" from Urgency" by Kim Chmielewski, "Aspire to Prevail" by Julianna Walter, Erin Hull's "Soaked in Taint" and Libby Dunnigan's "Amongst the Grass."

The solos and small-ensemble pieces feature music ranging from the theme from "Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood" to Lesley Gore to a string quartet arrangement of Radiohead to Brad Paisley.

Tickets are $12; $6 for senior citizen and youth; free for UI students with a valid UI ID. Tickets are available in advance from the Hancher Box Office at 319-335-1160 or 1-800-HANCHER; online


May 7 recital features Agrell as composer, classical performer and improviser

Horn player Jeffrey Agrell, a faculty member in the University of Iowa School of Music, will be featured as composer, performer and classical improviser in a free recital at 8:30 p.m. Saturday, May 7, in the University Capitol Centre Recital Hall.

He will be joined by faculty pianist Rene Lecuona, percussionist Dan Spencer, pianist Aura Strohschein, and Evan Grulke on horn and percussion.

Agrell's compositions are "Ode to Arkady" for horn and percussion, "September Elegy" for natural horn and piano and variations on "How Dry…" for two horns. He will also perform "Moon Lilies" for horn and piano by Lydia Busler-Blais, the Sonata for horn and piano by Samuel Adler and "Lamento d'Orfeo" for horn and piano by Volker David Kirchner.

Agrell stresses that although his performance includes improvisation, the music is "classical" rather than jazz.

"Ode to Arkady" is dedicated to Russian improvising hornist Arkady Shilkloper and is completely improvised, with percussion accompaniment. "September Elegy" was Agrell's personal response in music to the tragic events of 9/11. The four variations on the first four notes of "How Dry I Am" are labeled "Perky," "Murky," "Quirky" and "Herky."

Read bios of Agrell and Lecuona at


Photos for At A Glance items, if available, may be found at

Campus events are searchable on the UI Master Calendar:

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation to participate in a program, please contact the sponsoring department in advance.