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University of Iowa News Release


April 26, 2011

At A Glance

Longtime UI leader and scholar Duane Spriestersbach dies at 94; Service set for May 15
Duane C. Spriestersbach, the University of Iowa alumnus and professor emeritus who served as a dean, vice president, and interim president over a five-decade-long UI career, died April 25 at Mercy Hospital in Iowa City. He was 94.
Spriestersbach -— or simply "Sprie" (pronounced "Spree") to friends and colleagues -— earned master's and doctoral degrees from the UI in 1940 and 1948. He served as Graduate College dean from 1965 to 1989 and vice president for research from 1966 to 1970, when he was named vice president for educational research and development. He also served as interim UI president for seven months from 1981 to 1982, between the administrations of Willard "Sandy" Boyd and James Freedman.
During Spriestersbach's tenure as vice president, university researchers attracted more than $1 billion in grants and gifts. The Graduate College's D.C. Spriestersbach Dissertation Prize, presented each year for meritorious graduate student research, honors Spriestersbach's legacy.
Spriestersbach's other UI achievements include establishing the University of Iowa Press, launching the Technology Innovation Center and helping develop the Oakdale campus, and starting the Cleft Palate Research Program -— one of the university's longest-running National Institutes of Health partnerships -— in 1955.
Read more about Spriestersbach's life and career in this June 2010 profile.

A service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Sunday, May 15 at The Englert Theatre in Iowa City. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to the UI Foundation for the Fund to Support Student Excellence at the UI Graduate College. An obituary is located at


Facilities Management begins listserv, website for construction and access alerts

To better serve the University of Iowa campus and surrounding communities, UI Facilities Management has established a new access and construction alert notification system. This new system automates the notification process and will help provide important information about accessible paths of travel to individuals with disabilities.
A listing of all current UI Facilities Management projects that affect access to roads, sidewalks, parking lots, elevators and building entrances is now available online at
To receive notifications of closures via email, sign up at  

For questions or concerns about this new notification system, contact Wendy Moorehead at  For questions or concerns about a specific closure, call Facilities Management at 319-335-5500.


UI interdisciplinary health fair April 29 at Coral Ridge Mall

If you want to try your hand at the "Name that Brain" game, visit an interdisciplinary health fair put on by University of Iowa graduate and professional students Friday, April 29, at Coral Ridge Mall. The health fair, held in conjunction with the mall's "Family Free Friday" promotion, will run from 5 to 8 p.m.

Students in the UI's Neuroscience Interdisciplinary Graduate Program will allow people to examine animal brains in unmarked jars and ask them to match each brain with the correct animal. This will be one of many interactive activities offered by students representing the UI's Audiology Program, Carver College of Medicine, College of Dentistry, Neuroscience Program, and College of Pharmacy.

For more information on the various booths, visit

Coral Ridge Mall will feature free carousel rides, free admission to the Iowa Children's Museum, and a free children's meal at participating food court retailers (one child free with each purchase of an adult combo meal). From 5 to 7 p.m., admission to the Ice Arena is free (two kids free with one paid adult).


Reading celebrates new issue of UI earthwords literary journal

A free reading at 4 p.m. Saturday, April 30, in Prairie Lights Books will celebrate the release of the new issue of earthwords, the University of Iowa undergraduate literary/arts review. The Writing University website -- -- will stream the reading live and then add it to the archive.

Earthwords strives to showcase the creative works of UI undergraduates in literature and the arts while providing students with the educational experience of producing a literary magazine. The earthwords editorial board changes every year and with it the content, style and length of the magazine.

Learn more at


UI Electronic Music Studio spotlights new electronic music from Korea

Composer/violinist Andrew May from the University of North Texas and new electronic music from ChuGye University for the Arts in Seoul, South Korea, will be featured along with new music by University of Iowa students when the UI Electronic Music Studios present a free concert at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, May 1, in Room 101 of the Becker Communication Studies Building.

Included will be works by Jun-Tae Baek and Seong-Joon Moon of ChuGye, and UI School of Music students Jason Gregory and Brian Penkrot and alumnus Israel Neuman.

May, who teaches composition and computer music at North Texas, where he also directs the Center for Experimental Music and Intermedia, will be featured in his "Ripped-Up Maps" for electric violin and computer.

In his work the computer chooses its behaviors based on the actions of the performer, who in turn responds to the machine. The computer is moody and temperamental, switching between four different states of behavior. The computer can be nudged toward one or another state by the music the performer plays, but can never be controlled. Meanwhile, the performer shapes the computer's voice by giving it new samples to use as its "orchestra."


UI Press releases new volume explaining Blake's theory of creativity

The University of Iowa Press will release a new book of literary scholarship about William Blake -- "My Business is to Create: Blake's Infinite Writing" by Eric G. Wilson -- on May 1.

The book will be available at bookstores or directly from the UI Press, 800-621-2736 or Customers in Europe, the Middle East or Africa may order from Eurospan Group at

In both his life and his art, Blake provided a powerful example of creativity at any cost—in the face of misunderstanding, neglect, loneliness, poverty, even accusations of insanity. The artists' handbook "My Business Is to Create" emulates Blake, presenting his theory of creativity as well as the practices it implies.

Wilson is the Thomas H. Pritchard Professor of English at Wake Forest University. He is the author of "Against Happiness: In Praise of Melancholy" and "The Mercy of Eternity: A Memoir of Depression and Grace." He is also the author of "The Strange World of David Lynch," "Secret Cinema: Gnostic Vision in Film," "The Melancholy Android: On the Psychology of Sacred Machines," "Coleridge's Melancholia: An Anatomy of Limbo," "The Spiritual History of Ice, Romantic Turbulence" and "Emerson's Sublime Science."


UI to celebrate publication of 'Bourgeois to Boojie: Black Middle-Class Performances' May 4

The University of Iowa will celebrate the publication of "From Bourgeois to Boojie: Black Middle-Class Performances" -- a book resulting from the 2007-08 Humanities Symposium at the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies -- from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at the Iowa City Public Library, Meeting Room A.

The book is edited by former UI faculty member Vershawn Ashanti Young and Bridget Harris Tsemo, an assistant professor in the Department of Rhetoric and the African American Studies Program in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. It is a collection of essays, poems, visual art and short stories that define the contemporary black middle class. A description is available at

Hosted by the Obermann Center and the African American Studies Program, the free, public event will kick off with a reception at 5 p.m. A roundtable discussion will begin at 5:40 p.m., featuring Tsemo and Young, artist Jean Berry, UI Associate Professor of Journalism and Mass Communication and African American Studies Venise Berry, UI Associate Professor of English Harry Stecopoulos; and UI Assistant Professor of American Studies Deborah Whaley. A Q&A session will begin at 6:40 p.m.

For more information or to request an accommodation, call 319-335-0285.


'HiStory Time' program on UI railroad collections' slated for May 7 at Old Cap

Special guest Colleen Kelley of the University of Iowa Libraries and Special Collections will visit Old Capitol Museum for a special "HiStory Time" program to celebrate National Train Day at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, May 7. The event is free and geared towards elementary-age children and their families. No registration is required.

Kelley, who is the UI Library's Ruth Bywater Olson Fellow, will bring unique items from the Levi Leonard Train Collection and share her insights on taking care of historic items. Following the demonstration, there will be historically themed educational activities for guests, including the opportunity to make their own miniature locomotive.

For more information call 319-335-0548 or visit


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.