University Beat

USF Athletics
10:33 am
Mon March 31, 2014

USF Women's Basketball Makes WNIT Final Four

Courtney Williams (center) celebrates with her teammates after hitting a game-winning shot against Mississippi State in the WNIT quarterfinals Sunday.
Credit Bill Simmonds /

Even after getting snubbed by the NCAA Tournament selection committee, the USF Bulls' women team hasn't quit. Now they're in the final four of the Women's National Invitation Tournament (WNIT) with a chance to make history.

The Bulls knocked off Mississippi State 60-58 in Starkville, Miss., Sunday on Courtney Williams' buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

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University Beat
3:32 pm
Tue March 18, 2014

Tasty Teaching at USF Sarasota-Manatee's Culinary Innovation Lab

Chocolate truffles adorn a table at the new USF Sarasota-Manatee Culinary Innovation Lab.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

USF Sarasota-Manatee’s new Culinary Innovation Lab recently opened, and what better way to mark the occasion than with a party catered by students from the College of Hospitality and Technology Leadership?

But when Ashley Pitcher walked into the lab to start cooking, the junior admits she didn’t know what to think.

"It’s definitely not what I expected," the hospitality and event management major said. "I actually was lost the first day I got here; I did not know what we were going to be doing, because there are so many types of kitchens, there’s a bar, there’s a hibachi-style kitchen when you first get in, and then the Tuscan-style kitchen on the side."

Add in a top of the line barbeque out in front of the Lab’s storefront on Lakewood Ranch's Main Street, and you have a veritable chef’s paradise.

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University Beat
2:15 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Middle East, Central Asia of 2020 Focus of USF Conference

One of the most powerful questions that can be asked is "What if?"

What if America lowers its troop presence overseas? What if there's another Arab Spring? What if a new country or even terrorists get their hands on a weapon of mass destruction?

As Dr. Mohsen Milani explains, those kind of scenarios are the focus of a conference, The Greater Middle East and Central Asia in 2020 and Its Implications for American Foreign Policy, taking place at the University of South Florida next Monday and Tuesday.

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University Beat
7:27 am
Wed March 12, 2014

USF Has Big Goals with Cybersecurity Center

Dr. Peter Warren Singer of the Brookings Institution talks about cybersecurity at the USF SunTrust Foundation Lecture Series on Global Economics
Credit Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

When it comes to the new Florida Center for Cybersecurity at USF, managing director Sri Sridharan isn’t afraid to aim high.

“If someone has a question a couple of years from now in Billings, Montana, and says, ‘I have a question on cybersecurity,’ the answer should be, ‘Hey, go to those guys at University of South Florida, they’ll have the answer for you,’” Sridharan said.

Beginning this fall, the center will offer a master’s degree in cybersecurity through a program that goes well beyond typical information technology (IT) offerings.

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University Beat
1:43 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Russia's Actions in Ukraine Subject of USF Talk

Dr. Mohsen Milani (l-r), Professor Walter Andrusyszn, Dr. Darrell Slider and Bill Ostrowski talk to USF students, faculty and community members at a 'campus conversation' Thursday about Ukraine.
Credit Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

On Wednesday, Dr. Mohsen Milani's boss came to him with an idea.

USF Provost, Dr. Ralph Wilcox, wanted Milani, the Executive Director of the USF Center for Strategic and Diplomatic Studies, to organize an event focusing on recent events in Ukraine, including Russia's military intervention in Crimea.

"His argument was that as a globally engaged university, it is one of the responsibilities of our university to inform and educate our students as well as the community about important and developing news," Milani said.

So, between USF faculty and Milani's contacts in the world of foreign affairs, he had three experts lined up to take part in a 'campus conversation' Thursday afternoon - barely 26 hours after Wilcox's initial request.

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University Beat
8:29 am
Wed March 5, 2014

Small Explosion Shuts USF Building

A clean-up crew works outside the USF Research and Innovation Building on the Tampa campus, which is temporarily closed after a small lab explosion overnight.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

A small laboratory explosion overnight has led authorities to temporarily close the Research and Innovation building on the University of South Florida's Tampa campus.

According to Tampa Fire Rescue officials, crews responded to an automatic fire alarm at the building at 3720 Spectrum Blvd. around 2:45 Wednesday morning.

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University Beat
4:15 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

WUSF Opens USF St. Petersburg Studio

Outside of the new WUSF studio at USF St. Petersburg
Steve Newborn WUSF 89.7 News

UPDATED 4:15 P.M. 3/4/14

Here's the University Beat TV report on the new WUSF studio at USF St. Petersburg.

Hear this week's University Beat radio report by clicking on this link.

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University Beat
6:59 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Young Local Inventor + Cute Dog = 'Tonight Show' Gold

Clearwater inventor Melissa Streng and her dog Mojo show Jimmy Fallon her patented, award-winning Puff-N-Fluff dog drying system on a recent episode of NBC's Tonight Show.
Credit Getty Images

This one almost snuck past us, but the combination of a cute dog and a local innovator with a cool invention once again caught our eye -- just like it caught the attention of new "Tonight Show" host Jimmy Fallon.

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University Beat
10:57 am
Thu February 27, 2014

USF Conference Examines 'Human Side' of Modern Warfare

Poster for the USF Citizenship Initiative conference, “Modern Warfare’s Complexity and the Human Dimension.”
Credit Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

With the war in Afghanistan possibly winding down, at least when it comes to U.S. involvement, but the situation in Syria remaining in question, the timing of a recent conference at the University of South Florida on the nature of warfare was impeccable.

Retired U.S. Army Colonel Derek Harvey is Director of Research and Strategy for USF’s Citizenship Initiative, which organized the conference, “Modern Warfare’s Complexity and the Human Dimension.”

“The purpose of the conference is to bring academics, think tanks, military officials, non-governmental organizations and others together who deal with conflicted societies where conflict exists or might exist, and make sure that we are learning the right lessons from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq,” Harvey said.

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University Beat
5:15 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

USF Wind Ensemble Needs $ to Play Carnegie Hall

USF Director of Bands John Carmichael rehearses with the Wind Ensemble in preparation for their March 4 performance at Carnegie Hall.
Credit Aimee Blodgett / USF News

You know the old adage, "What does it take to get to Carnegie Hall?"

The USF Wind Ensemble is finding out that not only does it take "Practice, practice, practice," it also takes "Money, money, money!"

The ensemble is one of only three bands scheduled to perform at the sold-out 12th Annual New York Wind Band Festival showcase concert March 4th. It takes place at Carnegie Hall, which USF Director of Bands and Professor of Conducting John Carmichael calls the "most prestigious concert venue in America."

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University Beat
6:45 am
Fri February 14, 2014

St. Pete Welcomes World Affairs Forum

Credit USF St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs

For the second year in a row, St. Petersburg is hosting foreign affair specialists to talk about some of the most important international issues of the day, ranging from the United States' role in the Middle East, cyber-terrorism, and climate change.

The St. Petersburg Conference on World Affairs, which began Thursday, is taking place at the USFSP University Student Center today from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to noon. 

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University Beat
3:42 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

USFSM Graduate Killed in Car Accident

USF Sarasota-Manatee graduate James Dylan Proctor, 42, was killed in a car accident near Tampa Wednesday. He's the fifth member of the USF family killed in vehicle accidents this week.
Credit USF Sarasota-Manatee

For the second time in less than a week, a member of the University of South Florida family has been killed in a car accident. 

James Dylan Proctor, a recent graduate of USF Sarasota-Manatee, was killed in a car accident near Tampa early Wednesday.

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USF Athletics
7:36 am
Wed February 5, 2014

USF Ice Bulls Play for Fun but Seek Fans

The USF Ice Bulls (dark jerseys) prepare to face off against UCF at a recent game.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

When Matthew Meyer tells people he plays hockey for the USF Ice Bulls, he usually gets the same questions.  

"'Does USF really have a hockey team?' or 'How do you play hockey in Florida?' Something of that nature," the senior accounting major and team captain said. "Usually my answer is, you know, 'Hockey can be played anywhere, and it’s not like you’re playing outside.'"

As a matter of fact, the Ice Bulls have been playing for 25 years.

But the reason you probably haven’t heard of the team is because, at USF, hockey is classified as a "club sport."

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University Beat
7:21 am
Wed January 22, 2014

Concert, Art Exhibition: Guns Turned Into Musical Instruments

Artist Pedro Reyes with a guitar made out of guns & gun parts
USF Contemporary Art Museum

In 2008, Mexican artist Pedro Reyes took the concept of turning swords into plowshares literally and created an art campaign called Palas por Pistolas. People voluntarily gave up more than 1500 weapons, which he first melted down to turn into the same number of shovels, then used them to plant a corresponding number of trees.

Shortly after that, government officials pointed out there was a similar gun return policy in the city of Juarez and asked Reyes if he wanted to use those weapons in his art. He said yes, and in return, received more than 6700 firearms.

But instead of shovels, this time Reyes broke them down and turned their components into musical instruments.

“Same as a shovel plants a tree, a musical instrument is also something that is alive," Reyes says. "Every time you use it, you generate a new sound, a new event and people can gather around the music and I believe that just instruments are kind of the diametrically opposite to what a gun is - like, the guns are the rule of fear and music is the rule of trust.”

Some of those musical instruments are currently on display at the USF Contemporary Art Museum as part of the celebration of its 25 anniversary, CAM@25: Social Engagement.

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University Beat
12:54 pm
Fri January 17, 2014

USF Fraternity Gives Almost $9000 to Tampa Fire Memorial

Tampa Fire Rescue Chief Tom Forward & Pi Kappa Alpha external VP Jordan Romero with the check for more than $8600 raised by the Fireman's Challenge
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

Last November, the USF chapter of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity held its first annual Fireman's Challenge.

More than 400 members of USF's Greek system competed in a number of contests that mimicked the training of real firefighters, as well as a fire truck pull.

The event raised money for a planned memorial for Tampa Fire Rescue members who have died in the line of duty.

On Friday, fraternity members presented Tampa Fire Rescue Chief Tom Forward with a check for more than $8,600.

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