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Mark Schreiner

Assistant News Director

Mark Schreiner has been the producer and reporter for "University Beat" on WUSF 89.7 FM since 2001 and on WUSF TV since 2007.

He has worked as an anchor, reporter and producer at radio stations in Tampa and his native Chicago since 1992.

Contact Mark at 813-974-8693, on Twitter @wusfschreiner or by email at mschreiner@wusf.org.

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University of South Florida

With Election Day still four months away, the anger and elation felt in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act may die down slightly by November. But if the economy is issue-1 on people's minds when they go to the polls, USF Political Science Professor Dr. Susan MacManus says healthcare reform will likely be issue-1a.

"Clearly the economy and jobs is still going to be preeminent," she said. "But what this ruling does do is to now interweave healthcare as a cost item and a job creation item into the debate. So in that way, it sort of joined the two issues."

USF News

The leaders of the University of South Florida's Saint Petersburg and Polytechnic campuses are both stepping down, but under somewhat different circumstances. 

David Touchton, the interim chief of USF Polytechnic for the past six months, is leaving as the campus prepares to close. USF Associate Vice President Kathleen Moore will lead USF Poly through its planned "teach out" of the students who remain after the state approved its transition to an independent university. Touchton's last day will be Friday. 

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

Even as the rains from Tropical Storm Debby fell at her Clearwater mobile home Sunday afternoon, Pamela Andrews thought she'd have time to get things together if she, her boyfriend and her son had to leave.

They didn't get the chance, as the nearby Cross Creek Bayou overran its banks, forcing them and other residents of the Mariner's Cove Mobile Home Park to grab whatever they could and flee the area. 

Tampa Bay & Company

Calling it a "game-changer" for downtown development, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn says the city will receive an $11 million federal grant to finish the Riverwalk.

The walkway along the Hillsborough River has come a long way in recent years, with the addition of the Tampa Art Museum, Glazer Children's Museum and Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park.

But the pathway was broken in two parts, with a big gap in the middle.

Superhero Training Network

Sam DuPont and Audrey Buttice were once mild-mannered USF Ph.D. students. As part of a National Science Foundation-funded fellowship program, they’d visit elementary schools around the Tampa area and do science demonstrations. But they thought that they could reach more students by videotaping their work—they just needed a hook. DuPont says they found their answer while waiting in line at Disney World.

"At first we’re like, ‘Pirates!’ and we’re like, ‘Nah, that’s not good.’ Then we’re like, ‘Clowns!’ and we’re like, ‘Ah, that’s a little too juvenile,’ and then we were like, ‘Ah, I got it, superheroes!’ and from there, that’s history!”

So, along with classmate Robert Bair, they came up with new alter egos and a back story--a lab accident that transformed them from normal scientists to super-powered members of The Scientific League of Superheroes.

Taegan McMahon

New research from USF is finding that a commonly-used fungicide may be toxic to aquatic life.

The chemical is chlorothalonil, the most commonly used synthetic fungicide in the United States. It’s used on peanuts, tomatoes, potatoes, and turf grass.

It’s in the same family as DDT, the chemical that was banned after conservationist Rachel Carson’s 1962 book “Silent Spring.”

USF biologist Taegan McMahon, a doctoral candidate in the USF Department of Integrative Biology, has published two papers with associate professor Jason Rohr about the dangers of chlorothalonil.

Dennis Garofalo

UPDATED Sun 6/10 4:30 pm with more info from Speer
 

In addition to the ducks, squirrels and Bulls that populate USF's Tampa campus, there's another species roaming the grounds, as at least one bobcat has been caught on camera.

Aramark/USF Dining Services Production Manager Dennis Garofalo took pictures of a bobcat eating a duck near the Argos Center around 6:30 Thursday morning.

Garofalo says the bobcat, which he and employees have taken to calling the "Fresh Food Company Cat" after the division they work in, has been seen lurking in the area for the last month or so. 

USF Sun Dome / Global Spectrum

With a list of past performers that includes such luminaries as U2, Garth Brooks and Frank Sinatra, a major name was needed to headline the newly renovated USF Sun Dome's grand opening.

Arena officials think their choice - Sir Elton John - more than fits that bill. The award-winning singer/songwriter will play the Sun Dome Friday, September 14th at 8 p.m.

USF College of Marine Science

Researchers at USF's College of Marine Science are finding new and creative ways to use social media to share what they're learning. This week's University Beat on WUSF Public Media looks at how one teacher used Skype to continue teaching her Honors College classes while in the middle of the ocean on a once in a lifetime research cruise. It also shows us how an underwater vehicle is using Twitter to share the information it’s discovering with both researchers and the public.

USF Athletics

In a game in which the only run scored on an infield pop-out, USF softball's magical season ended Saturday with a 1-0 nail-biter loss to LSU in the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City. 

USF Athletics

Hustle put the USF Bulls Softball team up 1-0 over the University of Oklahoma midway through the first game of the NCAA Women's College World Series Thursday, but the Sooners' big bats exploded a short time later as OU rallied for a 5-1 victory.

Can red wine change the course of Alzheimer’s disease? Not red wine specifically—but resvaratrol, a component of it that can also be found in chocolate, berries and peanuts. The USF Health Byrd Alzheimer’s Institute is taking part in a national study that hopes to determine what part that component plays in slowing down memory deterioration.

USF Athletics

For the first time ever, the USF Softball team is on their way to the NCAA Women's College World Series.

Head Coach Ken Eriksen said his team was actually looking forward to the long trip to Oklahoma City, as it's the first chance many of the them have had to rest since winning a nail-biting, three-game series over Hofstra this past weekend to make the tournament.

USF Athletics

While the USF Softball team prepares for its first trip to the Women's College World Series, the USF Baseball team will stay home after not being chosen for an at-large slot in the NCAA Men's Tournament.

Two separate wildfires in Brooker Creek Preserve broke out at the beginning of the Memorial Day weekend before being brought under control by East Lake Fire Rescue and Palm Harbor Fire Rescue.

Thursday was a day of weather extremes for the Tampa Bay area. 

The National Weather Service in Ruskin reports Tampa and Sarasota both set new high temperature records for May 24 with highs of 96 and 95 respectively. Both Brooksville in Hernando County and Bronson in Levy County posted highs of 97. 

Then, thanks to that heat and humidity, strong storms popped up along the sea breeze Thursday evening. 

Forbes

What does Tampa Bay Buccaneers owner Malcolm Glazer have in common with rapper Kanye West and actor/comedian Robin Williams? They've all been subjects of death hoaxes on Twitter. 

USF isn’t just launching one summer program for high school and homeschool students, but thirteen different programs. University Beat on WUSF 89.7 has a preview of the new Pre-College 2012 initiative, which is designed to get young people interested early in both college and future careers. 

USF Dept. of Government & Intl. Affairs

The University of South Florida's brand new Center for Strategic and Diplomatic Studies holds its first official event Monday night, as it welcomes British journalist Christopher de Bellaigue.

The Center unites experts from the academic, government, military and private worlds to discuss how the United States' foreign and domestic policies interact.

Ironman.com

Polk County saw one of the greatest bicycle racers ever continue his successful transition to the world of triathlons, as Lance Armstrong won the Ironman 70.3 Florida race in Lake Eva Park in Haines City Sunday.

The seven time Tour de France winner posted his first win in four races this year with a time of 3:45:38, ten minutes ahead of second place finisher David Kahn.

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