UA In the News — April 15

  • April 15th, 2016

University of Alabama and NASA partner on earthquakes
CBS 42 (Birmingham) – April 15
It seems like an unlikely collaboration when it comes to earthquakes: the University of Alabama and NASA. After all, NASA is more commonly associated with the space program, and Alabama isn’t an area notorious for recent, devastating seismic activity. However, NASA is testing what’s known as disruptive tuned mass technology, or DTM for short, when it comes to mitigating a structure’s response to earthquakes. This technology was originally developed to fix a severe vibration issue on a rocket. However, scientists saw that it could have a broader impact. The University of Alabama came into play because of it’s recently opened Large Scale structures Lab, which includes a seismic simulator–or shake table. There isn’t another one like it in the southeast.
Fox 6 (Birmingham) – Apr 14
ABC 33/40 (Birmingham) – April 14
WVUA 23 (Tuscaloosa) – April 14
CBS 42 (Birmingham) – April 14 (Video report)

Book festival offers ‘something for every interest’
Montgomery Advertiser – April 15
Hundreds of book lovers are expected to join more than 35 recently published authors this week at the 11th annual Alabama Book Festival on April 23. The all-day event will take place at Old Alabama Town in downtown Montgomery. “We’re excited about welcoming all our authors,” said Kim Nix, publicity chairperson of the festival. Nix said there are some names many local readers will recognize. “Rick Bragg, who is a native Alabamian and Pulitzer Prize winner, is always crowd favorite,” Nix said. “His presentation style is very laid back and conversational, and usually quite humorous.” Many people may identify him from his books, such as All Over But the Shoutin’, and recent collection of essays, My Southern Journey: True Stories from the Heart of the South. He also writes regular articles for Southern Living magazine. Bragg is currently a Professor of Writing at the University of Alabama.

French farce ‘Boeing, Boeing’ wraps up UA theater season
Tuscaloosa News – April 14
Behind the scenes, the comedic art of the classic farce “Boeing, Boeing” is boiled down to a science, precisely, so audiences can erupt with laughter. The show, written by French playwright Marc Camoletti, premiered in 1960, and will end the theater season at the University of Alabama, beginning Tuesday. The student cast worked with guest director Carolyn Howarth throughout the four-week rehearsal process to perfect jokes and accents. In the farce, three stewardesses — Italian, German and American — are all engaged to Bernard (David Trump), but unaware of the others’ existence. Juggling the schedules becomes increasingly difficult when Boeing introduces a new, faster jet, allowing the three women to come and go more quickly and frequently to Bernard’s bachelor pad in Paris. Although the plot twists alone would be entertaining, Howarth worked with the actors on the rhythmic craft to making comedy as successful as possible.

Why Dickens Should Have Been a Southerner
Deep South Magazine – April 9
Rick Bragg is a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and writer, whose memoirs about his family in the rural South have received much critical acclaim. A native of Calhoun County, Alabama, Bragg teaches writing at the University of Alabama and pens a monthly column for Southern Living magazine. His latest book, My Southern Journey: True Stories From the Heart of the South, was published last fall. During the 2016 Tennessee Williams/ New Orleans Literary Festival last weekend, Bragg met his match in fellow storyteller Mary Badham, taught a master class on sense of place and discussed airing your “Dirty Laundry” on a panel with Dorothy Allison and bounce star Big Freedia. Cerith Mathias caught up with him to talk about capturing the South on the page, vanishing traditions and literary influences — and why Dickens should have been a Southerner.

Alabama wins 2016 SEC MBA Case Competition
SEC – April 15
The University of Alabama took first place in the 2016 SEC MBA Case Competition held at the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas on Saturday. The winning team was comprised of Abhinav Bhattacharya, Matt Collins, Katie Grayson, and Katie Lamberth, and it was the university’s first SEC competition title. “I could not be more excited right now because this team has worked so hard all year long, and I am so proud of how they competed today,” said Tut Wilson, Director of Recruiting and Admissions, MBA Program at the University of Alabama. “The members of this team have very different strengths and very different personalities, but they really came together. They are exhausted, but they are elated, and I’m thrilled for them.” The University of Florida finished second in the competition, followed by Texas A&M University and Mississippi State University.

The University of Michigan Ranked As The Nation’s Most Influential Law School
US News and World Report – April 15
A public university – the University of Michigan – turns out the nation’s most influential federal judges, according to new rankings from Ravel Law. Michigan topped the list that also includes Harvard, Yale and Northwestern, but also schools with less of a national prominence in academics, including the University of South Carolina and University of Alabama. The list, while containing some of the same schools, differs from the recently released Best Law Schools rankings from U.S. News. . . . 8. University of Alabama.

Law Schools with the Highest Bar Pass Rates
Arizona Daily Star – April 15
For law students, passing the bar exam has always been a difficult challenge. However, recent data suggests that prospective lawyers are having more difficulty now than in previous years. In November 2015, the National Law Journal reported that bar exam pass rates had decreased nationwide. The suggested reason for this decline is the falling number of law school applicants, according to Derek Muller, an associate professor at Pepperdine University School of Law. “As demand for law schools has dropped over the last few years, law schools, as a result, have been admitting and graduating less-qualified students,” Muller said. . . . #4. University of Alabama School of Law

Interview with mayor begins Tuscaloosa Weekend on C-SPAN
Tuscaloosa News – April 15
An interview with Mayor Walter Maddox will kick off C-SPAN’s Tuscaloosa Weekend, showing on Washington Journal, between 6 and 9 a.m. today, on Comcast Channel 18. For those who didn’t rise early enough, it’ll be viewable at airing. As part of its ongoing Cities Tour, featuring work shot in Tuscaloosa by three video teams in March, about a dozen segments of roughly 10 to 20 minutes each will air in blocks Saturday and Sunday. . . . Segments were shot at the Moundville Archaeological Park and Museum, Jemison-van de Graff Mansion and Murphy-Collins House. Along with Maddox, other interviewees were Earl Tilford, author of “Turning the Tide;” Jennifer Horne, writer and co-editor of “All Out of Faith: Southern Women on Spirituality;” Lila Quintero Weaver, creator of the graphic novel “Darkroom: A Memoir of Black and White;” Ellen Spears, author of “Baptized in PCBs: Race, Pollution and Justice in an All American Town;” and Robin McDonald and Valerie Pope Burnes, authors of “Visions of the Black Belt: A Cultural Survey of the Heart of Alabama.” Segments were also created about the life of late U.S. Rep. Carl Elliott, and the 19th century of Tuscaloosa, including the founding of the University of Alabama.

UA student loses on “Jeopardy!”
Tuscaloosa News – April 15
Carter Spires, the University of Alabama School of Law student who won two episodes of the quiz show “Jeopardy!” that aired this week, was beaten on Thursday afternoon’s episode. Spires, a Birmingham native, was dethroned by Margaret Miles, a librarian from North Carolina. His two days as champion earned him $31,200, money that Spires said he plans to invest or save, although he admitted some might be splurged on celebrating his law school graduation next May. He received an additional $2,000 for his second place finish on Thursday’s show.
CBS 42 (Birmingham) – April 14
WVUA (Tuscaloosa) – April 14

Virtual school, dual enrollment expansion possible for EHS
Southeast Sun – April 15
During a March 29 Enterprise Board of Education meeting, Dr. Brent Hanchey, director of secondary education, presented virtual school policy changes and expansions in dual-enrollment options. . . . During the meeting, Hanchey also provided a proposal to further expand dual enrollment opportunities with the University of Alabama through its Early College. Students and parents were able to provide input prior to the board’s decision, through a survey and conversations with Hanchey. Hanchey said Alabama would offer courses not offered at local junior colleges as well as counseling for online students.

The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.