University Beat

University Beat is a radio and television program that focuses on the research and work at the University of South Florida and how it benefits the Tampa Bay area, Florida, and the world around us.

Each week, reporter Mark Schreiner looks at the latest USF efforts in medicine, engineering, education, arts and sciences and explores other programs that reach out to both students and the community.

The Oracle

A Tampa teenager who posted what law enforcement officials called "vague and nonspecific anonymous threats" against the University of South Florida on a social media site Sunday night will not face charges.

According to the University Police Department, Antonie Romel Taylor, 18, lives near USF but is not a student at the school.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

During his time at the University of South Florida, Ismet Handžic earned both a master’s degree and a doctorate in mechanical engineering.

But instead of leaving the university and taking his ideas to the corporate world, he joined Moterum, one of the almost fifty startup companies based in the USF Office of Technology Transfer. (see the list of startups here)

Working with principal investigator Kyle Reed and mentor David Huizenga, they are bringing one of those concepts– an adapter for crutches – to the marketplace.


Aimee Blodgett / USF

John F. Germany was remembered by a crowd of about 600 people at his funeral at St. John's Episcopal Church in Tampa Saturday.

The lawyer, judge and co-founder of the University of South Florida died last Wednesday at the age of 92.

The day before his funeral, university officials announced that the school had renamed a park just south of the USF Library as the "John F. Germany Legacy Park."

Caridad Jimenez

UPDATED WITH ARRIVAL INFORMATION 8/30 11 PM:
USF student Barbara "Barbie" Jimenez returned to Tampa Friday afternoon, where she was reportedly able to walk from a medical transport plane to an ambulance.

The 22-year-old senior was taken from the International Jet Center to Tampa General Hospital, where she will continue recovering from injuries sustained in a car accident in Cuba in early August.

Jimenez and her family didn't say anything reporters Friday, but they said she would speak in the coming days.

Aimee Blodgett / USF

The start of a new school year brings yet another multi-million dollar donation to the University of South Florida’s Muma College of Business.

However, this time it’s not a school in the College that’s being renamed, but an entire set of programs that are considered key to student success.

Barron "Barry" Gift Collier III and his wife, Dana, are giving his alma mater $10.85 million to start the Collier Student Success Center.


USF Beta Gamma chapter of Lambda Theta Alpha

The University of South Florida student stuck in a Cuban hospital because her family doesn't have health insurance may be a step closer to returning home.

Barbara "Barbie" Jimenez, 22, was in a coma for five days after a car accident in Cuba. She's since come out of the coma, but has been stuck in Cuba since her family can't afford to fly her back to the U.S.

Now, according to Congressman David Jolly, a Bay area air ambulance company has offered to bring Jimenez home free of charge.


USF Parking and Transportation Services

UPDATE AT NOON 8/25 with details on expected length of closure.

As if navigating the University of South Florida's Tampa campus wasn't difficult enough during the first week of classes, a sinkhole has forced the closure of a road.

Sycamore Drive, on the far east side of campus near the Chapel Center, has been shut down because of a sinkhole that developed Monday afternoon.

USF Beta Gamma chapter of Lambda Theta Alpha

A University of South Florida senior is in a Cuban hospital following a recent car crash, but she can't return to the United States because her family doesn't have health insurance. 

A panel is recommending a University of Central Florida fraternity not be found in violation of the school’s sexual misconduct policy. Sigma Nu’s suspension could be lifted this week.

The fraternity was accused of condoning sexual misconduct. The trouble started with an undercover video where one member of Sigma Nu can be heard chanting “rape ‘em” after a night of drinking.

Daylina Miller / WUSF 89.7 News

Summer break is ending and things are getting busy at Bay area college campuses once again.

3,500 new students - a mix of freshmen, transfer and international students - moved into residence halls on the University of South Florida's Tampa campus Thursday.

USF Communications and Marketing

The University of South Florida will confer more than 2,800 degrees to students from its three campuses this weekend.

There are two ceremonies scheduled for Saturday at the USF Sun Dome, one at 9 a.m. and the second at 1:30 p.m.

Two Gainesville residents face multiple charges following an argument that escalated into gunshots being fired outside a University of Florida dormitory.

University police Maj. Brad Barber told The Gainesville Sun an argument broke out as people were leaving a bar.

AP Photo

The University of South Florida College of Nursing has received a $2.7 million grant from a branch of the National Institute of Health (NIH) to conduct a study of the gut microbiome in premature infants and determine how it affects their growth and development.

Maureen Groer, PhD, is the Gordon Keller professor at the USF College of Nursing. She also serves as the lead researcher of an interdisciplinary team of USF scientists conducting the study.

"It's the only way to do this kind of science - it's team science," Groer said. "We all have particular knowledge and skills and we can collaborate and cooperate and come out with wonderful ideas together that we wouldn't have ever had on our own."


M.S. Butler / WUSF 89.7 News

Among the voices weighing in on the deal announced Tuesday limiting Iran's nuclear program is a University of South Florida expert on the Middle East.

Dr. Mohsen Milani, the executive director of the USF World Center for Strategic and Diplomatic Studies, called the agreement "a victory for diplomacy."

But, he added, make no mistake about it - this is not a deal that's built on trust.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

It’s not every class that has students taking pictures of chickens on a farm one day and then pictures of them – well, not so alive – as they sit on the grill at a market on another day.

"The name of the class is "Sizzling Images," a short course in food photography, and so the purpose of the class is to immerse the students into the world of food photography," University of South Florida St. Petersburg visiting assistant professor Janet Keeler said.

While the University of South Florida received funding in the state budget for its downtown Tampa medical school and a St. Petersburg business school, money that would have gone to a new research vessel was removed by Governor Rick Scott's veto pen earlier this week. The Florida Institute of Oceanography, the collaborative effort of dozens of research institutes and agencies, is based out of the USF College of Marine Science in St. Petersburg. The $6 million FIO was seeking would be used to buy a research boat to replace the aging Bellows. The Tampa Bay Times reports that FIO officials and state lawmakers are trying to figure out what to do next.

Angela DeBose, the University of South Florida registrar who's currently on leave, wants a Hillsborough County civil court to compel USF to release emails that she says will show a USF official discriminated against her because of her race and gender. The Tampa Bay Business Journal says DeBose's request claims that emails will show Vice President for Student Success Paul Dosal discriminated against her because she's black and a woman. She also says Dosal became more aggressive towards her after she asked the Federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to investigate him. USF is set to fire DeBose when her professional leave ends in August.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

While University of South Florida officials wait to see if the Florida Legislature and Gov. Rick Scott sign off on the state budget and more than $29 million for two important projects, they're also waiting for approval of millions more in performance-based rewards.

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

The University of South Florida sits among such intellectual titans as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University and the California Institute of Technology on the top ten list of U.S. patents issued to American universities in 2014.

USF's 104 patents issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ranked 10th nationally and 13th among all public and private universities worldwide. It's the fifth year in a row USF has placed in the top 15 worldwide.

In a business plan filed with the state, USF said the project would unite researchers, patients at Tampa General Hospital, the existing USF Center for Advanced Medical Learning and Simulation and corporate space in Vinik's planned office, residential and entertainment district. The USF project is seen as an anchor for Vinik's larger $1 billion redevelopment in downtown Tampa. City Hall and Hills­borough County are expected to spend up to $30 million on street and infrastructure improvements. Vinik's development company plans to build a medical office building and parking garage on the site with a value estimated at $90 million. USF had said that being close to Tampa General would help the heart institute attract researchers who would bring in an estimated $28 million more per year in research grants, and a more robust research environment would draw biotech start-ups to downtown.

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