2012 was an exceptional year for UND
By any measure, 2012 was a great year at the University of North Dakota. But one look at the top headlines of the past year suggests, dare we say, it was truly exceptional.
Here are some examples.
In a year of many milestones for the University, one of the most significant occurred in September, when UND announced $14 million in private and public partnership funding greatly enhancing efforts in petroleum geology and related fields. The announcement also included the naming of the Harold Hamm School of Geology and Geological Engineering in the UND College of Engineering and Mines, $10 million from Harold Hamm and Continental Resources, Inc., and $4 million from the Industrial Commission/Oil and Gas Research Program to fund "Public-Private Partnership to Support Geology and Geological Engineering Education and Research at UND."
That funding came on the heels of another gracious gift from a community health leader, in August, when Altru Health System pledged a $10 million through the UND Foundation in support of a sports medicine partnership between Altru and UND. According to UND President Robert Kelley, $9 million would serve as the leadership gift for a new UND Athletics Complex, an indoor practice and competition facility on campus.
Also, in August, in an exceptional display of community outreach, the new University of North Dakota Art Collections Gallery at the Empire Arts Center was established in downtown Grand Forks. The exhibition includes art of ancient Egypt to 18th and 19th Century paintings, and later works by nationally and internationally renowned artists such as Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, Audrey Flack, Roy Lichtenstein and many others.
On Oct. 9, UND got a chance to showcase its leadership in environmental stewardship when The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) awarded the addition and remodel to UND's historic Education Building with LEED Silver certification. It was UND's first LEED-certified project, the first LEED-certified building in Grand Forks and North Dakota's first LEED Silver higher education facility.
UND wasn't done there. Three days later, with the opening and dedication of the Gorecki Alumni Center, UND and the UND Alumni Association and Foundation again displayed an enduring commitment to the principles of sustainability: energy efficiency, people-friendly working environment and a reduced carbon footprint. The dedication ceremony for the Gorecki Center, named after Ben and Dorothy Gorecki, marked the opening of what would be North Dakota's first Platinum-certified LEED building and the first of its kind in the nation for alumni centers.
After posting record spring and summer enrollments, UND surged into the fall setting the school's all-time student enrollment record at 15,250 students, according to Suzanne Anderson, University Registrar. It's the first time that UND's enrollment has surpassed the 15,000-student mark.
It is very rare for UND to change the names of colleges, but the State Board of Higher Education approved two name changes in 2012: The School of Engineering and Mines became the College of Engineering and Mines and The College of Nursing became the College of Nursing and Professional Disciplines to more accurately reflect the make-up of the College.
In 2012, UND welcomed a number of new faces to its community, including Dr. Joycelyn Dorscher, associate dean for student affairs and admission at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences; Raymond Goldsteen, director of UND's Master of Public Health Program; Susan Balcom Walton, UND's new and first vice president of university and public affairs; Eric Plummer, UND's new director of public safety/chief of police; and Robert D. Hill, dean of UND's College of Education and Human Development. The University also welcomed Dr. Hamid Shirvani, chancellor of the North Dakota University System.
Several long-serving employees of the University retired in 2012, including Paty Nybo, department of music (52 years with UND and the State of North Dakota); Paul Clark, associate director of facilities management (40 years); Sally Page, affirmative action officer (35 years); Jim Laturnus, academic building services technician (35 years); Vern Kary, academic maintenance specialist (33 years); Duane Czapiewski, chief of police( 31 years); Ed Olson, EERC (31 years); Bridget Drummer, College of Nursing and Professional Disciplines honors program (30 years); Mike Lindquist, painter (28 years); and Del Hager, department of social work (26 years). There were many, many others.
The University community was greatly saddened in March to learn of the death of student Blake Ayling. We lost a member of our University family, a pre-entrepreneurship major who was on both the UND President's Roll of Honor and the UND Deans' List.
On the sports front, the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education directed UND to resume its transition away from the Fighting Sioux nickname following a June 12 vote of the people of North Dakota. The University had substantially transitioned away from the nickname and logo by the end of December 2011. However, when petitions that led to the June vote were filed with the North Dakota Secretary of State, the University, by law, had to resume using the nickname logo.
A more celebratory sports milestone was achieved on July 1, when all UND sports teams shed the transition label and entered the Division I era. On this day, many of UND's sports teams officially were accepted into the Big Sky Athletic Conference.
Here is a rundown of UND achievements in 2012:
- Jacob Greenmyer, a 17-year-old senior from Stirum, N.D., who attended North Sargent High School in Gwinner, N.D., was named the recipient of the first $10,000 "Vikings + UND Scholarship.
- UND was listed one of the top schools in the nation for online military-friendly schools, according to the 2012 Guide to Online Schools, a leading education portal for aspiring college students.
- UND's online programs were ranked No. 3 in the nation on the Guide's list after an evaluation of more than 200 accredited online schools. The top 30 schools are listed on the Guide's official website at guidetoonlineschools.com/online-colleges/2012-military-friendly.
- The State Board of Higher Education approved a new Department of Petroleum Engineering at the University of North Dakota as part of the UND School (now College) of Engineering and Mines, which offers the only petroleum engineering degree program in the state.
- The January 2012 issue of the National Jurist ranked UND Law School 16th in the category of Best Schools for State and Local Clerkships. This ranking was based on the percentage of graduates who are hired into judicial clerkship positions.
- UND and Neomatrix, LLC announced that they signed an exclusive agreement to develop technology for the early detection of breast cancer using the company's HALO® Breast Pap Test device. The HALO® breast test is for physicians and is designed to help screen and assess breast cancer risk in women using techniques from cell biology. The UND technology, used with the HALO® device, is based on the detection of cancer indicators in breast nipple aspirate fluid (NAF).
- The dedication and efforts of faculty, staff and students in the department of occupational therapy at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences were instrumental in achieving a 10-year reaccreditation for the department, which has a program in Grand Forks and a satellite program in Casper, Wyo.
- Dr. Terrence Roberts, one of the famous "Little Rock Nine", a group of brave black students that led desegregation of public schools in the late 1950s, presented "Lessons from Little Rock," on Feb. 6 at UND. Roberts talked about the nine teenagers inside Central High School in Little Rock, Ark. who fought back against forces of discrimination in 1957.
- After two months in a remote valley of the world's coldest and driest continent, UND geomorphologist Jaakko Putkonen and his student team returned to Grand Forks. They successfully finished their second trip to Antarctica as part of a research project to discover how the wind shapes the barren landscape there.
- UND was ranked No. 11 out of more than 200 nonprofit schools in the nation for online education, according to this year's rankings by Guide to Online Schools, a leading education website for aspiring college students.
- UND's Center for Human Right and Genocide Studies, along with the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, co-sponsored a traveling exhibition at UND that explored Nazi persecution of Homosexuals (1933-1945).
- UND presented two "Great Conversation" in April, one with famed modern-day polar explorer Ann Bancroft, and another with Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Jane Smiley. Bancroft, a native of Scandia, Minn., was the first known woman in history to ski across ice to the North and South Poles. Also, in 1986, she and Will Steger were part of an expedition that used dogsleds to cover more than 1,000 miles from the Northwest Territories of Canada to the North Pole. She also led the 1993 American Women's Expedition to the South Pole, a 67-day trek of 660 miles on skis. Smiley is an award-winning author and was the featured artist at the 2012 UND Writers Conference.
- UND's Energy & Environmental Research Center successfully developed and demonstrated a mobile, trailer-mounted biomass gasification technology that converts wood waste into methanol and can be transported to remote, off-grid sites. The methanol can then be reformed into hydrogen to power fuel cells to produce electricity.
- UND unveiled its third series of More Than Beads and Feathers posters, featuring highly accomplished graduates from a variety of tribal affiliations and majors. The posters inform the general public, American Indians, the region and nation about the UND experience for American Indians. They feature American Indian graduates of UND who are making professional contributions and significant differences in their tribal communities and beyond as a result of their education at UND.
- UND was listed as one of the country's "greenest schools," according to the Princeton Review's Guide to 322 Green Colleges-2012 Edition. The public can check out UND's profile in the guide and download the full guide at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide and on the website of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) Center for Green Schools at www.centerforgreenschools.org/greenguide. UND first made Princeton Review's greenest schools list in the spring 2011.
- Ten medical schools that have contributed the most to the pipeline of family physicians were honored when the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) presented its Top Ten Awards during the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine Annual Spring Conference on April 27 in Seattle. The awards recognize schools that, during a three-year period, graduate the greatest percentage of students who choose first-year family medicine residency positions.
- Kirk Ogaard, originally from Bismarck, earned UND's first Ph.D. in computer science, opening the path for several others behind him who are also enrolled in the program. Ogaard also received his bachelor's and master's degrees in computer science from UND, known for its prowess as a center of learning in computational science.
- UND was named the third-healthiest college in the United States by Greatist.com, a health and fitness website promoting wellness by providing factual information that leads to healthier lifestyle choices.
- Robin Runge, assistant professor at the University of North Dakota School of Law, received a Fulbright Research Scholar grant to study the developing legal system response to violence against women in China during the 2012-2013 academic year.
- The State Board of Higher Education approved name changes that affected one of the University of North Dakota's oldest divisions: The School of Engineering and Mines became the College of Engineering and Mines. The Department of Geology and Geological Engineering became the School of Geology and Geological Engineering (soon to become the Harold Hamm School of Geology and Geological Engineering) as a component within the College of Engineering and Mines.
- The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education directed UND to resume its transition away from the Fighting Sioux nickname following a June 12 vote of the people of North Dakota.
- On July 1, UND sports teams shed the transition label and entered the Division I era. On this day, many of UND's sports teams officially were accepted into the Big Sky Athletic Conference.
- UND Scientist Mark Hoffmann, a computational chemist, and his colleagues Tryve Helgaker, a well-known Norwegian scientist, and co-authors E.I. Tellgren and K. Lange, also working in Norway, discovered a molecular-level interaction that science had puzzled over for decades but had never seen. That discovery, it turns out, may redefine how science views chemical compound formation. It also answers questions about what goes on in places like white dwarfs, the super dense cores of stars closing in on the end of their life cycle.
- The Ambassador of Japan to the U.S. Ichiro Fujisaki met with business and community leaders, as well as Japanese students studying aviation at UND, where he gave a Japan-North Dakota Symposium on July 31.
- The start of the 2012-2013 academic year marked 79-year-old Gordon Iseminger's 100th semester as a college professor in the Department of History at UND.
- UND "Welcome Weekend" took a new approach this year to be more inviting to incoming freshman, new transfer students and parents. The weekend's highlight was a mass "class photo," taken at UND's Memorial Stadium during an evening pep rally.
- The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust awarded the ND STAR (North Dakota Simulation, Teaching and Research) Center for Healthcare Education at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences a $4.98 million grant to bring mobile simulation education to rural North Dakota. The new program, called SIM-ND (Simulation in Motion-North Dakota), provides education and training in medical-trauma events to help providers in the state deliver high-quality health care in the safest way possible.
- The National Institutes of Health awarded $5.1 million to the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) at the School of Medicine and Health Sciences. This five-year grant marks the second time this grant was renewed on its first attempt and brings to 15 the total number of years NIH will have supported UND's world-class neuroscientists through this funding mechanism.
- Altru Health System pledged a $10 million through the UND Foundation in support of a sports medicine partnership between Altru and UND. According to UND President Robert Kelley, $9 million would serve as the leadership gift for a new UND Athletics Complex, an indoor practice and competition facility on campus.
- The new University of North Dakota Art Collections Gallery at the Empire Arts Center was established in downtown Grand Forks. The exhibition includes art of ancient Egypt to 18th and 19th Century paintings, and later works by nationally and internationally renowned artists such as Andy Warhol, Salvador Dali, Audrey Flack, Roy Lichtenstein and many others.
- UND surged into the fall setting the school's all-time student enrollment record at 15,250 students, according to Suzanne Anderson, University Registrar. It's the first time that UND's enrollment has surpassed the 15,000-student mark.
- UND's Department of Social Work together with officials from Sitting Bull College began collaborating on a new UND undergraduate Social Work degree being offered at Sitting Bull College on the Standing Rock Reservation in south central North Dakota.
- UND set an all-time record for staff and faculty involvement in work site wellness programs, enabling the University to apply for the American Heart Association platinum-level Fit-Friendly Company award for 2012. UND has been recognized as a Platinum-Level Start! Fit-Friendly Company by the American Heart Association's Start! initiative for helping employees eat better and move more. This is the fourth year that UND has received top honors for this national award.
- In the fall, the Women and Gender Studies Program at UND began celebrating 30 years on campus. In 1982, the program, then called Women Studies, was founded, born of much work and collaboration—occasionally even protests—by students, faculty, and Dean Bernard O'Kelly.
- A joint team of government, a not-for-profit research and development organization and academia completed two weeks of flight testing "sense and avoid" technology that could someday help unmanned aircraft better integrate into the national air transportation system. The MITRE Corporation and the University of North Dakota (UND) developed automatic sense and avoid computer software algorithms that were uploaded onto a NASA Langley Research Center general aviation aircraft.
- UND announced $14 million in private and public partnership funding greatly enhancing efforts in petroleum geology and related fields. The announcement also included the naming of the Harold Hamm School of Geology and Geological Engineering in the UND College of Engineering and Mines, $10 million from Harold Hamm and Continental Resources, Inc., and $4 million from the Industrial Commission/Oil and Gas Research Program to fund "Public-Private Partnership to Support Geology and Geological Engineering Education and Research at UND."
- The International Space Station Agricultural Camera (ISSAC), designed and operated by students at UND, is helped NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) monitor impacts of change due to Superstorm "Sandy."
- In a bold and innovative move, UND formed the country's first Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Research Compliance Committee that aims to get ahead of federal plans to regulate UAS in terms of privacy concerns and other social issues.
- UND received gifts from U.S. Bank and the Bank of North Dakota for a new program called "Financial Wellness," which aims to expand ongoing efforts on campus to improve financial literacy among students. U.S. Bank has long been a partner with the UND Business School to help educate students on the how credit works and the value of good credit.
- UND once again was listed by Victory Media, the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life, on its coveted Military Friendly Schools ® list.
- The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) awarded the addition and remodel to UND's historic Education Building with LEED Silver certification. It was UND's first LEED-certified project, the first LEED-certified building in Grand Forks and North Dakota's first LEED Silver higher education facility.
- The dedication ceremony for the Gorecki Center, named after Ben and Dorothy Gorecki, marked the opening of what would be North Dakota's first Platinum-certified LEED building and the first of its kind in the nation for alumni centers.
- UND Football broke records when it secured a 40-34 victory over Montana. Senior Braden Hanson threw for a school and Big Sky record 660 yards and five touchdowns, while junior Greg Hardin hauled in a career-high 12 of the school-record 42 completions.
- It was a huge victory for the Xukurú tribe and a University of North Dakota scholar Marcia Mikulak when the Fifth Regional Tribunal in Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil decided to drastically reduce the criminal sentences of their chief and more than 40 tribal members. Mikulak had worked tirelessly over a decade to write letters to international human rights groups and to fight against injustices done against Brazilian tribal members.
- For the first time ever, a UND band performed at the prestigious Western International Band Clinic (WIBC), an annual music conference held in Seattle. The UND Wind Ensemble, conducted by James Popejoy, UND professor of music and director of bands, presented a featured performance at the 2012 WIBC event on Nov. 17. The band also featured Robert Brooks, UND associate director of bands, a guest conductor in the performance.
- The North Dakota State Board of Higher Education today approved a name change for the UND College of Nursing to the University of North Dakota College of Nursing and Professional Disciplines to more accurately reflect the make-up of the College.
- Under the guidance of UND's Office of Instructional Development, the University held a Nov. 16 ribbon-cutting for a new atrium for the new teched-up student-centered classrooms that is already are showing results in getting students more engaged in their learning. The classrooms and all of the associated technology are referred to as "SCALE-UP," Student-Centered Active Learning Environment for Undergraduate Programs.
- The UND Department of Theatre Arts' production of My Generation received a prestigious invited to the Region V Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival (KCACTF) in Lincoln, Neb.
- The UND Center for Innovation, part of the College of Business and Public Administration, named Jay Schuler of Wahpeton has been named the first Holaday Entrepreneur-in-Residence. Schuler launched his first venture, a hybrid seed company, while in college in 1973. His sons, Robert and Jason, alumni of the UND Entrepreneur Program and leaders in GIANT Sunflower Seeds, have expanded the venture since their UND days.
- Hai Wang walked across the stage for winter commencement 2012 with something really special: UND's first doctorate degree in chemical engineering.
- The Rural Assistance Center (RAC), a national information resource for rural health and human services, celebrated 10 years of service to rural America. Since its launch in December 2002, RAC's website, www.raconline.org, has received over 6 million visits, and RAC staff members have responded to over 8,700 information requests from people across the country.
David L. Dodds, Media Relations/Writer & Editor, Office of University Relations, 701.777.5529| email@example.com