University Beat

University Beat
5:17 pm
Tue May 13, 2014

USF Spring Commencement by the Numbers

The view from the stage as USF graduates sing the Alma Mater at a commencement ceremony
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

The recent Spring Commencement Ceremonies at the University of South Florida were certainly big on numbers, according to this week's University Beat.

Over 6,400 hundred degrees were awarded at seven ceremonies - Five exercises were held at USF's Tampa campus, and one each at USF St. Petersburg and USF Sarasota-Manatee. It's the most degrees ever conferred in a single commencement by the USF System.

Read more
University Beat
11:45 am
Sun May 11, 2014

Record Run for Miles for Moffitt

Runners in the 5 mile race at Miles for Moffitt leave the starting line.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

Saturday was a record-setting day for Miles for Moffitt, both in terms of participants and in money raised for cancer research.

Around 7,500 people took part in the event, raising more than $594,000 for research at the Moffitt Cancer Center. Since starting in 2006, Miles for Moffitt has raised more than $2 million.

Read more
University Beat
6:28 am
Fri May 9, 2014

Memorial Service Planned for 'Tampa's Artist,' Theo Wujcik

Theo Wujcik in the studio. Wujcik, who passed away in March at the age of 78, will be remembered at a ceremony at the USF Contemporary Art Museum this Saturday.
Credit USF Contemporary Art Museum

Margaret Miller remembers first meeting Theo Wujcik in 1972, when they shared the same office hallway shortly after both started working at the USF School of Art and Art History.

Miller, now the Director of the USF Institute for Research in Art, would stay late, studying to become a curator. Wujcik would also burn the midnight oil, working intensely on portraits using the traditional technique of silverpoint on paper.

Read more
University Beat
8:39 am
Wed May 7, 2014

Student Healthcare Innovators Do Battle 'Shark Tank' Style

12 teams of competitors from 8 state universities faced off at the 2nd Annual State of Florida Healthcare Innovation Competition
Candace Kaw

Twelve teams of students from eight Florida universities recently faced off at the Second Annual State of Florida Healthcare Innovation Competition to determine whose medical technology reigned supreme -- and the winners walked away with $10,000.

"The competition brings together collegiate healthcare innovators from across the state, and allows them an opportunity to pitch their innovation ideas, concepts, and products before a panel of qualified judges," said Dr. Michael Fountain, director for event co-sponsor, the University of South Florida Center for Entrepreneurship. "In addition to winning cash prizes, these innovations gain insight from these world-class experts to help them move their technologies forward."

A wide variety of products and ideas was pitched, from a Google Glass application for people with cognitive and physical disabilities to a grocery store chain that sells healthy food in low-income neighborhoods.

"I think it speaks, very clearly, to the breadth of what can be done in healthcare innovation, whether it starts out with an application all the way to a small molecule," Fountain added.

Read more
University Beat
11:11 am
Fri May 2, 2014

Family of Grads, Retiring Announcer among USF Commencement Highlights

Kathryn, David and Matthew Turner will all receive degrees at this weekend's USF Spring Commencement ceremonies.
Credit GradImages

In addition to the "to selfie or not to selfie" debate, there are a number of other stories making news at this weekend's University of South Florida Spring Commencement - including a family of graduates, a former migrant worker turned educator, and a USF professor whose voice is recognizable to thousand of alumni.

Read more
University Beat
10:31 am
Thu May 1, 2014

Is It Still College Without Football?


Originally published on Thu May 1, 2014 9:02 am

A small number of universities are starting to go against the grain, reducing amenities and frills in favor of keeping the costs relatively low.

Neil Theobald is the president of Temple University, which recently began offering students $4,000 per year in grants — if they promise to limit the number of hours they work during the school year and graduate on time.

Read more
University Beat
4:55 pm
Tue April 29, 2014

Running for Research at Miles for Moffitt

Runners break from the starting gate at the 2013 Miles for Moffitt.
Moffitt Cancer Center

(Story has been updated with Miriam Zimm's status for Miles for Moffitt in the third paragraph)

When Miles for Moffitt steps off on Saturday, May 10, Miriam Zimms will once again be there.

A bout with breast cancer four years ago didn’t stop her. Neither will last year’s bone cancer scare that saw surgeons remove a large section of her pelvis and replace it with a bone from a cadaver.

"I know that it will be an incredibly different type of walk for me this year because of the fact that I don’t have full mobility and I cannot fully walk on both my legs, so it will be a very different experience," said Zimms, who's undergone six months of physical therapy. She plans to walk about 300 feet or so at the event using either crutches or a walker, and her husband will push her the rest of the one mile in her wheelchair.

She's taking part, not just for herself but also for her loved ones. Her team of walkers and runners, the Guatemalan Globes, is named for her birth country and for the four other women in her family who’ve also battled breast cancer, including her mother, who died from the disease in 1992.

An estimated seven thousand participants are expected to join Miriam in taking part in Miles for Moffitt, a series of races and walks that raises money for research at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center. 

Read more
University Beat
1:09 pm
Tue April 29, 2014

Mini-Horse, Dogs Provide Break During USF Finals

Tucker greets a USF student. The 5 year-old puggle and the other dogs, most rescues, are part of Therapy Pet Connection, Incorporated.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

Is there a better way to handle the stress of final exams than by petting a miniature stallion?

Okay, it's not Wellness USF's entire plan to help students manage the fear of the last days of class, but Scooby Boo, a tiny 12 year-old horse (wearing USF green sneakers), is one of the organization's secret weapons to provide a break from the pressure.

Read more
University Beat
4:04 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

USF Grads Warned: No Selfies!

Ad posted in the USF student newspaper, The Oracle, requesting that students taking part in next week's graduation ceremonies don't take selfie photos - among other "inappropriate behaviors" - when they receive their diplomas.

If you're a University of South Florida student graduating next month and your plan is to take a selfie photo on stage, the University has one word for you: don't!

In a story that's receiving national attention, the USF Division of Student Affairs sent out a notice to all graduating seniors and placed an ad in the school newspaper, The Oracle, requesting that they don't take pictures of themselves when they receive their diplomas from President Judy Genshaft.

Also on the list of what's labeled as 'inappropriate behaviors' are stepping, strolling and marching. Just a simple handshake, pose for the official photo with the President and move on, please.

Violators may face disciplinary action, including the withholding of their degree.

Read more
University Beat
9:06 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Girl with 'Bionic' Arm Returns to Moffitt, Shriners

11-year-old Josalyn Kaldenberg paints a picture of a horse at Moffitt Cancer Center. The faint scar on her right arm is the only visible sign of her pioneering surgery.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

You wouldn't know it by looking at her, but Josalyn Kaldenberg has a bionic arm.

Even if you looked hard at her right arm, you'd only see a small scar, a barely noticeable, faint line that starts around her elbow and then runs up her arm. It looks like it could be the result of an injury any 11-year-old like Josalyn would have - maybe she fell off a swing or got injured rough-housing with her four younger siblings back home in Woodward, Iowa.

But that scar is actually historic. You see, under that scar, Josalyn Kaldenberg has an expandable, prosthetic upper arm bone - the first of its kind in a child in the United States.

Read more
University Beat
3:58 pm
Wed April 16, 2014

USF Health Puts Medical Careers in Focus for Tampa Students

Dr. Kevin Sneed, Dean of the USF College of Pharmacy, talks to students at Franklin Middle Magnet School's Career Day.
Mark Schreiner WUSF 89.7 News

Separated by only two miles, Ferrell Middle Magnet School and Franklin Middle Magnet School have a lot in common.

Both East Tampa preparatory academies formed three years ago. Both are Title One schools, receiving federal funds while serving mixed student bodies of various races and economic backgrounds, with two-thirds to three-quarters of the pupils receiving free or reduced cost lunches.

And both single-sex schools are posting tremendous improvement in student performance: all-boys Franklin saw their school wide FCAT grade jump from a D in 2012 to a B in 2013; all-girls Ferrell went from a C to an A.

Representatives of USF Health are trying to help those schools sustain their success—and show the students possible future paths—through a series of recent career days.

Read more
University Beat
4:28 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

STEM Superheroes Kickstart Next Phase of Work

The Scientific League of Superheroes, MegaByte and Sublimation, demonstrate principles of pH to Woodbridge Elementary students.
Credit Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

Since we're going to talk science and math here, let's start with an equation: (Bill Nye the Science Guy + Batman) x 3 = The Scientific League of Superheroes. 

We introduced you to the trio of University of South Florida graduate students who don superhero costumes to teach STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) concepts in local elementary schools two years ago. 

Now they're back for a sequel - and this time they're looking for some help from their fans.

But before we get to that, let's recap the origins - both the real-life and the comic book ones.

Read more
University Beat
10:33 am
Thu April 10, 2014

USF Professor of Year Preps 'Last Lecture'

USF Mechanical Engineering Professor Autar Kaw delivers a "Last Lecture" in the Marshall Student Center tonight.
Credit USF News

University of South Florida Mechanical Engineering Professor Autar Kaw knows what people are thinking when they hear he's delivering a 'last lecture' tonight at the Marshall Student Center.

"When somebody hears the 'last lecture,' they think it's ominous, that you're dying or you're retiring," Kaw says with a laugh. "I don't want to do (either) at this age!"

Notice that the first paragraph said 'a' last lecture - that's because Kaw, who was named one of the 2012 Professors of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, is taking part in the Last Lecture series.

It's a concept that's been around for years - including at USF since 2010 - where top professors and faculty give a hypothetical last speech about something that truly matters to them and try to pass along lessons they've learned in life.

Read more
University Beat
11:06 am
Wed April 9, 2014

USF St. Pete Club Baseball Lets Students Play for the Love of the Game

Al Lang Field
Nathan Powell WUSF

Al Lang Field in St. Petersburg has played host to some of the best teams in Major League Baseball history, featuring players like Babe Ruth, Hank Aaron and Ken Griffey Junior.

Now it's one of the home fields for the University of South Florida St. Petersburg club baseball team - a team that gives some students the opportunity to get back on a diamond for the first time since high school.

Read more
University Beat
11:34 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Feds Investigate FSU Handling of Winston Case

Florida State Univ. quarterback & 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston speaks at the State Capitol as part of "FSU Day" Tuesday.
Credit Phil Sears / Associated Press

Florida State University is under investigation by the U.S. Department of Education for possible Title IX violations in its response to sexual violence complaints.

Read more