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UTSA News Stories Week of October 4-8
Scott Kabrich

October, 2010


Port S.A. names new VP Danny Jones has been promoted to Port San Antonio's vice president for port management. Jones will oversee operations at Port San Antonio's Kelly Field, the joint-use runway the organization shares with Lackland AFB, and the port's East Kelly Railport. He also will be responsible for the organization's security functions.  Jones began his career at Port San Antonio in February 2008 as airport operations manager. His experience in airfield management includes a 26-year career with the U.S. Air Force, where he achieved the rank of master sergeant before retiring from the service.

Texas commercial construction company awarded for safety - EHS Today Magazine named CF Jordan Construction, a Texas-based commercial construction and management company, one of the safest companies in the nation.  Since 2002, the publication has awarded environment, health and safety leaders in the manufacturing, construction and service sectors. CF Jordan was one of 12 companies chosen this year.  “We are honored to earn this title,” said Patricia Kagerer, Vice President of Risk Management at CF Jordan Construction. “Everyone at CF Jordan works hard to maintain a safe working environment each and every day. We are delighted that our team's success in safety is being recognized.”  Companies must demonstrate several criteria for award eligibility, including management support, employee involvement, innovative solutions to safety challenges, low injury and illness rates, and comprehensive training programs.

Mexicans nominate new NADBank boss - Gerónimo Gutiérrez Fernández, a former Mexico foreign affairs undersecretary, has been nominated by Mexico's Finance Ministry to become managing director of the San Antonio-based North American Development Bank as early as Oct. 18.   Gutiérrez would replace NADBank Managing Director Jorge Garcés. The last day of Garcés' five-year term at the binational environment development bank is next Friday.  Gutiérrez's nomination, made by Mexico Finance Minister Ernesto Cordero Arroyo, still needs ratification from the NADBank board, which has 10 directors, five each from the United States and Mexico. A NADBank spokesman said Thursday that directors have been given a draft resolution and are expected to act soon.  The top executive position at NADBank rotates between a U.S. citizen and a Mexican citizen every five years. Garcés is a U.S. citizen. Héctor Camacho of Mexico has been deputy managing director the past five years and has been named by NADBank as chief financial officer, filling a vacant position, said NADBank Associate Director of Public Affairs Juan Antonio Flores.

H-E-B is Retailer of the Year - H-E-B on Wednesday was named 2010 national Retailer of the Year by Progressive Grocer, a trade magazine. In a ceremony at the company's San Antonio headquarters at 646 S. Main Ave., Progressive Grocer editor-in-chief Meg Major said H-E-B is a clear standout among the nation's supermarket retailers for its ability to be a fiercely tough competitor because its values and sense of purpose are made clear throughout the company, and because of its “remarkable corporate culture” that puts a high value on its employees at all levels of the organization.  Major and Steve Lichtenstein, vice president and group publisher, presented the award to H-E-B executives in the presence of Mayor Julián Castro and hundreds of the grocer's employees.

Tesoro fined $2.4 million in blast - Washington state officials hit Tesoro Corp. with a $2.4 million fine Monday — the highest penalty ever issued by Washington workplace safety regulators — after an investigation of an April 2 explosion that killed seven workers at the company's plant north of Seattle.  After a six-month investigation, the agency sharply criticized the San Antonio-based refiner for sending poorly trained, unprotected workers into an area where 40-year-old equipment had been inadequately tested. When a vessel cracked, it spewed vapors that ignited and led to the fiery explosion.

Help San Antonio name its new professional soccer team! - SAN ANTONIO -- This week the North American Soccer League awarded San Antonio a professional soccer franchise. Despite not taking the field until the spring of 2012, owner Gordon Hartman has most of the details worked out with one major exception – the team name.  Hartman said he wants the San Antonio community to decide the name and colors.  Hartman, the founder of Morgan’s Wonderland, will make a formal announcement on how this will all work in the coming weeks, but at the risk of being called for off-sides, we want to start the conversation now.

Headquarters IMCOM moves to San Antonio  - The U.S. Army Installation Management Command Headquarters officially transferred from Arlington, Va., to San Antonio during the public uncasing of its unit colors Tuesday at its temporary location.  The relocating of IMCOM to San Antonio includes the transfer or creation of 1,500 jobs to San Antonio's economy. The uncasing ceremony symbolically marks the command's permanent presence here and establishes San Antonio as the new base of operations for the Army's Installation Management community.

Sivage accepts Builder of the Year award   The Greater San Antonio Builders Association named Sivage Homes’ Construction Superintendent Shane Cox as the organization’s Builder of the Year. Cox currently manages three subdivisions for Sivage. The company builds some 54 homes per year in San Antonio. Cox has been a construction superintendent in San Antonio since May 2005.  Sivage Homes has been building homes in Texas and in New Mexico for 30 years.

Mission Pharmacal tapped to lend marketing muscle for migraine drug - Mission Pharmacal Co. has agreed to co-promote Nautilus Neurosciences’s drug Cambia for the women’s health market.  Nautilus selected Mission to provide sales and marketing support for the drug because Mission has specialized in selling pharmaceutical and nutritional products for women for the last 60 years. Financial terms of the partnership were not disclosed.  The drug will be marketed to obstetricians, gynecologists and other women’s medical health professionals throughout the United States. Cambia is approved to sell in the United States for the acute treatment of migraines.

Biotech firm scores $600,000 venture capital infusion - A Birmingham-based biotechnology firm has received a $600,000 venture capital boost to continue operations and hire at least one more worker.  BioDtech Inc., a biomedical firm that detects and removes biological toxins from researchers’ test samples, was lured to Birmingham from Nashville in July 2007 with a $1 million venture capital infusion from the Birmingham Technology Fund.  The local technology fund partnered with a multistate venture capital fund, Targeted Technology Fund I, out of San Antonio, Texas, which provided $250,000 toward the deal. The local fund matched this capital and the remaining $100,000 was invested by private sources in the San Antonio region.^4057231



Samsung helps Austin rebuff recession by creating jobs  - In the lobby at Samsung Austin Semiconductor's headquarters, a scale model of its 300-acre site shows five buildings. Two already exist, including a $3.6 billion expansion that will be operating by spring. Three more are in the company's future.  It's the kind of positive outlook that led the world's second-largest chipmaker to announce a plan for growth during the recession. With the expansion, Samsung will boost its employment to 1,600 — 600 more than it had in June and increase its annual payroll to $112 million, creating what may be the largest chip-making plant in North America.   The Austin site is Samsung's only semiconductor manufacturing plant outside South Korea

National Instruments CEO cuts his own pay to $1 a year - After 34 years running the company he co-founded, National Instruments Inc., James Truchard is taking a salary cut to a dollar a year.  The company, a leader in the testing and measurement systems market, disclosed Thursday that the compensation committee of the board of directors, at Truchard's request, approved cutting his base salary from $200,000 a year to $1.  The new pay rate puts Truchard in the company of some other tech CEOs who make only a buck a year in base salary, including Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corp., and Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Inc.  Given that he is the largest stockholder in the company, with 16.6 million shares, that dividend income would amount to about $8.6 million a year. He said he had not received any stock awards since National Instruments went public in 1995. His shares were worth about $543 million as of Thursday's closing price of $32.71 . 

AT&T to pay $300 million to IRS - AT&T Inc. has reached a tax settlement with the Internal Revenue Service, according to a regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  AT&T will pay the IRS $300 million during the fourth quarter of 2010. This payment settles a dispute over certain disallowed deductions taken in 2008 and 2009 related to a restructuring of the company’s wireless operations.


Deficit near $1.3 trillion - The federal government ran a deficit of nearly $1.3 trillion in the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, according to preliminary estimates released Thursday by the Congressional Budget Office.  The Treasury Department will deliver the official deficit numbers later this month.  According to CBO, the fiscal year 2010 deficit came in $125 billion below last year -- the worst on record since World War II.

Workbooks Selected as Number One Business Application by -, the leading provider of web based CRM and business applications for small and medium businesses, was today selected as the Number One Business Application for October 2010 by, the business software engine.;_ylt=AgvvUDx6Lo7f3P3y8NpnJ3PNybYF;_ylu=X3oDMTJsbWlyODQyBGFzc2V0A3Byd2ViLzIwMTAxMDA4L3Byd2ViNDYyMzEyNARwb3MDMQRzZWMDeW5fcGFnaW5hdGVfc3VtbWFyeV9saXN0BHNsawN3b3JrYm9va3NzZWw-

James Jones to step down as national security advisor - President Obama will announce Friday that retired Gen. James L. Jones is resigning as national security advisor, to be replaced by deputy national security advisor Tom Donilon, an administration official confirmed.  Jones' departure comes amid a larger turnover of staffers in the Obama White House this fall. Just a week ago, Obama announced in the East Room that Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel was leaving.  Donilon, a White House veteran and onetime State Department chief of staff, was under consideration to serve as Obama's new chief of staff. He has advised Obama on foreign policy matters since early in the president's campaign for the White House.

Cuts in Government Led US Economy to Lose 95000 Jobs - The economy shed 95,000 nonfarm jobs in September, the Labor Department reported Friday, with most of the decline the result of the layoffs by local governments and of temporary decennial Census workers.  The steep drop was far worse than economists had been predicting. Most estimates were for a loss of only a few thousand jobs.  A broader measure of unemployment, which includes people who are working part-time because they cannot find full-time jobs, and people who have given up looking for work, rose to 17.1 percent from 16.7 percent in August. This was largely because of a jump in the number of people who are reluctantly working part-time. That, coupled with the fact that the average length of the workweek has remained more or less unchanged for six months, are also bad signs for the job market over the next few months.


A&M-San Antonio celebrates its first chief - Maria Hernandez Ferrier, founding president of Texas A&M University-San Antonio, was inaugurated Tuesday in a ceremony that featured the debut of the school's alma mater, written by local jazz icon Jim Cullum, and a cascade of praise for the university's energetic leader. Ferrier began her higher education at age 30 at San Antonio College, which hosted the inauguration ceremony in the McAllister Auditorium. A single mother with two young children, Ferrier completed her bachelor's and master's degrees at Our Lady of the Lake University, and later a doctorate in educational administration from Texas A&M University.

TEDx San Antonio conference to be streamed - The upcoming TEDx San Antonio conference will be streamed live on the Internet thanks to San Antonio-based NewTek, a graphics and video technology firm. NewTek's TriCaster production system will be used to provide live online feeds of the conference, scheduled for Oct. 16 at Trinity University's Stieren Theater. The event will be streamed at  It's the city's first, full-fledged TEDx event, community-organized conferences examining innovative ideas from a variety of specialists. San Antonio's program features 16 speakers, including Harvard University law school professor Lawrence Lessig, Rackspace Hosting Chairman Graham Weston and San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro.  The purpose of TEDx “is the spreading of great ideas,” said George Riley, one of the event's organizers. “The NewTek TriCaster will allow us to create a memorable experience for our live audience by controlling the presentation of multiple HD cameras and multimedia sources, all while streaming it live to the Internet and archiving it for later, on-demand viewing.”

4-H unveils program in sciences - The San Antonio Stock Show also will have a science fair this year, another part of the effort to encourage more young students to take an interest in science, engineering and technology and eventually keep the country among the leaders in those fields.  4-H clubs in Texas are stretching their program into a new but increasingly important area — science, engineering and technology, or SET.  “It’s a new concept for 4-H,” said Charla Bading of the District 7 office in San Angelo. “But everything we do can be a type of science.”

The Southwest School announces a Bachelor in Fine Arts program - Paula Owen, president of the arts-educational entity known originally as the Southwest Craft Center, then later as the Southwest School of Art and Craft, and newly, the Southwest School of Art, sat down to talk with the San Antonio Current about theory, hope, and specifics.

Texas Lutheran University Presidential Search Committee Announced

Joe McKinney, Treasurer, Board of Regents
The Rev. Dr. Stan Meyer, Board of Regents
Russ Rinn, Board of Regents
Laura Sanford, Board of Regents
Willie Staats, Vice Chair, Board of Regents
Lewis Westerman, Board of Regents
Dr. Annette Citzler, Professor, Business Administration and Economics
Dr. Bob Jonas, Professor, Biology
Dave Legore, Associate Professor, Dramatic Media
Steve Anderson, Senior Vice President
Lana Urbanek, Director of Auxiliary Services
Paul Riser, TLU Senior and President of TLU’s Student Government Association

Mexican American Business Institute Presents Business Seminar - The Mexican American Business Institute (MABI) at the University of the Incarnate Word will hold its monthly meeting on Wednesday, October 13, at UIW’s International Conference Center (847 E. Hildebrand).  The meeting will begin at noon.  Cost is $30 for non-members and free for students and members.  Dress is business casual.  This month’s guest speaker is Heriberto Herrera, Senior Career Management Consultant-Right Management Inc.  Herrera brings extensive experience delivering business and career consulting services, specializing in executive coaching, business development, entrepreneurship, and networking. In addition, he has owned and operated businesses in real estate, office furniture and equipment dealerships, and a company that developed strategic international ventures.


ExxonMobil Exploration Company President Named to UH Energy Advisory Board - Stephen M. Greenlee, president of ExxonMobil Exploration Company, has joined the University of Houston's Energy Advisory Board. UH Energy is a collection of top researchers from engineering, law, business, geosciences and technology who concentrate on research, innovation and educating the next generation of energy leaders.  The UH Energy Advisory Board, a team of 12 global leaders in energy development, management and implementation, focuses on strategic planning and external coordination of the research projects developed at the university.  Greenlee, who joined Exxon in 1981, is a geoscientist with various technical and management assignments in Exxon and ExxonMobil's research, exploration and production affiliates. Prior to his current assignment, he was president of ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company, where he was responsible for ExxonMobil's extensive research program supporting its global oil and gas exploration and production business.   Greenlee is a member of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists.  He is currently on the executive committee for the Sam Houston Area Council - Boy Scouts of America.  Greenlee received his bachelor's degree in geology from Duke University in 1979 and a master's degree in oceanography from the University of Rhode Island in 1981.

James Gaertner Named Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs - Texas State University System Chancellor Brian McCall, Ph.D., announced the appointment of Dr. James Gaertner as interim vice chancellor for academic affairs. In this role, Dr. Gaertner will serve as the university system’s chief academic officer, overseeing academic program planning and review, curriculum development, and academic standards and policies.  Dr. Gaertner is president emeritus of Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, having served as president of  SHSU from 2001 to 2010. Prior to arriving at SHSU, he served as dean of the College of Business at the University  of Texas at San Antonio and as a professor at UT San Antonio and the Notre Dame University. While at Notre Dame, he was director of the university’s London Master of Business program in England.

NFL picks Arlington for the site of its Youth Education Town - The North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee announced Thursday at the State Fair of Texas that Arlington will be the location of  the Youth Education Town (YET), which provides at-risk young people an opportunity to learn and live in a safe environment.  The youth center will open as an after-school and weekend facility, focusing on recreation, education, computer training, music, arts and crafts and anti-gang programs.

Texas public universities trying to improve graduation rates - Graduation rates at some public universities in Texas are so low that the schools have been labeled "dropout factories."  Only 1 of 8 freshmen who started at the University of Houston's downtown campus in 2002 had earned a diploma six years later, according to state data. At Sul Ross State University in rural West Texas, 17.9 percent of freshmen who arrived in 2002 had graduated by 2008.  The results invite criticism, but college leaders say statistics don't tell the whole story.  As universities post historic high enrollments, the spotlight is moving to graduation rates. University leaders statewide agree that not enough students are staying in college and earning degrees.  Education experts measure graduation rates by how many incoming freshmen earn a bachelor's degree within six years. At Texas public universities, rates are as high as 78.4 percent at Texas A&M and 77.5 percent at the University of Texas at Austin. But many other universities' rates fall below the national average of 57 percent, including Texas Woman's University's and the University of North Texas', both 45.6 percent, and Tarleton State's, 39.3 percent.  Experts said that isn't good enough to create a strong work force. While more and more jobs require a college degree, only about 31 percent of Texans ages 25-34 have one, according to Complete College America, a nonprofit group working to increase graduation rates.  The danger of not making improvements is that too many students walk away from college with no degree, heavy debt and no ticket to the middle class.

College trustees argue over changes to UTB agreement - Disputes over a new partnership agreement between UTB and TSC have pitted members of the TSC Board of Trustees who want to approve the the draft against those who say it needs changes.   A draft of the new partnership made available to the public nine days ago stipulates that under the new arrangement, the University of Texas at Brownsville and Texas Southmost College would combine assets in a trust and become one legal entity as a four-year university.  Those in favor of approving the document say the merger would result in a better institution, one where students can transition seamlessly from junior college programs to those offered at a four-year university.  Those opposed to the draft believe the University of Texas System is taking steps to “dissolve” TSC while still requiring the junior college to collect taxes—which goes against the Texas higher education code that sets the rules for four-year universities.

Proposed statewide property tax could help Texas schools - Texans may soon pay a statewide property tax that could help the school finance system, but it would take your vote.  Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said amending the Texas Constitution to add a statewide property tax could help the state and its method for funding public education.   "I think a statewide property tax is not what most people think it is," Lt. Gov. Dewhurst said. "It's an effort to avoid recapture. It's an effort to create equity among all the school districts."   Texas public schools are paid for through a mix of state and local tax dollars.   The current "Robin Hood" system takes revenue from property rich school districts and redistributes it to property poor districts to fund education. "We have been waiting a long time for this to come back to the table," Texas State Teachers Association President Rita Haecker said.  Haecker said TSTA is willing to give the property tax plan a listen because the current system is flawed. She said recent so-called fixes by the state haven't helped with funding either.

Judge removes Texas schools from court supervision - A federal judge has lifted a 39-year-old statewide school desegregation order from all but nine rural Texas public school systems, a largely symbolic move that the state's top education official praised Thursday as a reflection of the state's progress.  U.S. District Judge Michael H. Schneider ruled this week that the rest of Texas' public school districts have been released from desegregation by other federal judges, are under separate desegregation rulings or weren't parties to the 1970 suit that spawned the statewide order.  The ruling is "an opportunity to reflect on how far Texas has come in our lifetimes," Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott said in a statement.


Stronger Federal Oversight Needed to Enforce Ban on Incentive Payments to School Recruiters  -  GAO says US Dept. of Ed hasn't cracked down hard enough against illegal bonuses for college recruiters.

Research Highlights Colleges That Add Value - Recent headlines about rising student loan default rates, soaring tuition pricing out low- and middle-income students, and scandals among for-profit college recruiters could obscure some good news: Many colleges take in low-income students and produce graduates who get jobs that enable them to pay back their loans.

High School Rigor Narrows College-Success Gap - Students from some racial- and ethnic-minority groups and those from low-income families enroll in college and succeed there at lower rates than their white, wealthier peers. But a new study suggests that if teenagers are adequately prepared for college during high school, those gaps close substantially.  The “Mind the Gaps” study, by ACT, draws on the Iowa City, Iowa-based testmaker’s earlier research showing that taking a strong core curriculum in high school and meeting benchmark scores in all four subjects of the ACT college-entrance exam enhance students’ chances of enrolling in college, persisting there for a second year, earning good grades, and obtaining a two- or four-year degree.

Students Turn Out in Defense of Public Education - Less than a month before midterm elections, students, faculty members, and advocacy groups held rallies on campuses across the country on Thursday to show elected officials their support for public higher education.

Higher Taxes for Higher Ed? Maybe Not - Most people would be willing to pay higher taxes for public schools and health and human services, according to a new report from the Pew Center on the States. But more taxation for colleges? Not so much. The center has just released an analysis of public attitudes about the fiscal problems in Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, and New York, which make up nearly a third of the country's population and economic output. Collectively, the states also account for 45 percent of the total budget gaps that states will face in the current fiscal year. Nearly 70 percent of respondents to Pew's survey said they would be willing to pay higher taxes to protect public schools. Higher education, however, was a distant third on that particular question, behind health and human services, with fewer than half of those polled saying they would pay more taxes to maintain money for colleges.



Ex-teacher gives $22 million to UTSA - The University of Texas at San Antonio has received the largest gift in its 40-year history, a $22 million scholarship endowment from the estate of Mary E. McKinney, a former schoolteacher and savvy investor who inherited 5,200 acres of oil-rich South Texas ranchland from her parents.  McKinney, who died in November at age 79, was not an alumna of UTSA. A lifelong learner, McKinney took a few classes at UTSA in the 1990s.

UTSA gains Halsell foundation support for math, science teacher education program - The Ewing Halsell Foundation has given the University of Texas at San Antonio a two-year, $287,050 grant to support its Generating Educational Excellence in Mathematics and Science (GE2MS) program.  The program focuses on preparing more math and science students to become effective school teachers. The program is offered as a partnership between the College of Sciences and the College of Education and Human Development. Undergraduate students are given an opportunity to earn their teaching credentials while earning their math or science degrees. UTSA students are also given opportunities to visit San Antonio classrooms, attend seminars and network with new and seasoned teachers.  The Ewing Halsell Foundation is providing up to 50 UTSA students with $3,000 scholarships between now and the spring 2012 semester. Separately, the funding will also support the salaries of three education professionals who will regularly observe and communicate with new and student teachers. The grant will also cover the costs of a two-day symposium to provide classroom technology training for 25 new teachers, expenses for 25 teachers to attend a statewide math and science conference and the cost of 18 hours of graduate coursework for 15 educators to teach a secondary math or science subject.

SAISD gets funding to keep students - A dropout-prevention program that began at two San Antonio Independent School District middle schools in January will soon be offered at all 14 district middle schools thanks to a $14 million federal grant. San Antonio was one of just 29 school districts to receive a High School Graduation Initiative grant and the only district in Texas. The five-year grant from the U.S. Education Department will allow the district to expand its Middle School Partners program, which has already been successful in helping struggling students get back on track to graduate with other students their age.

San Antonio Area Foundation honored nationally for helping families of combat vets - San Antonio Area Foundation has been recognized for the support it has given to military families impacted by deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.The San Antonio Area Foundation, the Dallas Foundation and the Permian Basin Area Foundation have been named co-recipients of the 2010 Critical Impact Award by the Council on Foundations.

 Education Department awards $733,000 to North East ISD - North East Independent School District will bulk up its physical education program — thanks to a U.S. Department of Education grant.  NEISD received $733,680 from the government’s Carol M. White Physical Education Project. The school district will use the money to beef up physical fitness programs and improve student health. This funding will be used to provide training and education for teachers and staff, as well as to purchase equipment.

Alteza Sponsors Texas Holdem Tournament to Benefit San Antonio South Texas CCIM Education Endowment - Alteza, San Antonios luxury residences above the Grand Hyatt Hotel, announced that it will co-sponsor, with Lone Star National Bank, the First Annual Texas Holdem Poker Tournament on October 7, 2010. A portion of the tournament proceeds will benefit the San Antonio South Texas CCIM (Certified Commercial Investment Member) Institutes Education Endowment as a tax deductible donation.  “We are delighted to sponsor this event and support the work and education endowment for our local CCIM Chapter,” said Jim Jaco, President and COO, TX Riverwalk Residences, LP, Alteza Developer.


 Vital Longevity Researcher Earns Major NIH Grant - For the second time this year, a postdoctoral fellow in UT Dallas’ Center for Vital Longevity has earned a prestigious, highly competitive career-development grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH).  Dr. Karen M. Rodrigue was selected to receive the K99/R00 Pathway to Independence Award. The five-year, two-phase grant totals just under $1 million. It comes from the National Institute on Aging, which usually awards only seven or eight K99s per year.

Romanian Literature Translator Wins NEA Grant - A National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grant will support a UT Dallas professor’s quest to make the work of an acclaimed Romanian poet available to readers in English.  Dr. Sean Cotter, associate professor of translation studies, international modernist literature and Romanian literature, was among the 20 recipients of a 2011 Literature Fellowship for Translation Projects from the NEA.  The $12,500 grant will support the translation from the Romanian of Belgrade in Five Friends and Other Poems by Nichita Stanescu. Stanescu is a major figure in Romanian postwar poetry, credited with bringing modernism into the Communist era, but remains largely un-translated into English.

UTEP Awarded Grant to Study Desalination Methods - The University of Texas at El Paso's College of Engineering recently was awarded half of a $1.3 million grant by the Bureau of Reclamation to advance water treatment research.  Bureau commissioner Michael L. Connor announced in September that the money will be allocated to five research and laboratory study facilities, one pilot test and one demonstration project under the Desalination and Water Purification Program.   UTEP received $500,000 to conduct the demonstration project and $150,000 for a research project.

Governor Presents UH Researcher with Grant for Cardiac Device - A group of researchers in the Abramson Center for the Future of Health at the University of Houston (UH) received a $250,000 pre-seed grant from the Texas Emerging Technology Fund (ETF) for a system that assesses cardiac function in the home and alerts the user to the need for intervention. Upon reaching specific milestones with the project, the researchers will receive the remaining $750,000 of the $1 million grant.

Texas Tech Engineering Receives $1.75 million in NSF Grants Texas Tech’s Edward E. Whitacre Jr. College of Engineering has garnered about $1.75 million in grants recently from the National Science Foundation.    Two of the nine awards are NSF rapid response grants to support research related to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill. One seeks to lengthen the life of wind turbines, reducing the cost of wind energy.

GIS gets $2.5M grant for smart grid training - Austin-based Green Integrated Services LLC and Texas Business & Education Coalition have received a $2.5 million stimulus grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop a smart grid workforce training program.  The DOE grant is the largest workforce grant awarded in Texas. It was awarded to the University of Houston-led Smart Grid Energy Training Coalition, which consists of Green Integrated Services in partnership with the Texas Business & Education Coalition, Skillsnet, CenterPoint Energy, San Jacinto College and the Power Technology Institute, officials said.  GIS is expected to build the smart grid talent pipeline for Texas. The initial phase is the establishment of an online community to connect ready and future workers from diverse industries with training programs to develop the skills necessary to fill the talent needs of the rapidly growing smart grid industry, officials said.  The grant will also fund a training program, from basic entry-level training to the specialized skills needed to manage the technology infrastructure. It’s designed to train line mechanics, engineers, cyber security specialists, transmission and distribution system operators, dispatchers and communication network specialists.


 Rockefeller Foundation Awards $3 Million to Support New York City Arts Groups - The Rockefeller Foundation has announced more than $3 million in grants through its New York City Cultural Innovation Fund to eighteen New York City-based arts organizations. Launched in 2007, the fund awards two-year grants of between $50,000 and $250,000 in support of groundbreaking initiatives that enrich New York City's cultural life and help ensure the continued economic strength and diversity of the city's creative sector. Two prominent leaders from the fields of innovation and the arts — David Thorpe, director of innovation at the Institute for State Effectiveness, and Z + Partners founder Andrew Zolli, who also curates the annual Pop!Tech conference — served as advisors to the fund.

Guggenheim Foundation, BMW Group Announce New Global Initiative - The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation and Museum and the BMW Group have announced the launch of a global initiative designed to engage the next generation of architecture, art, science, design, technology, and education leaders in addressing challenges likely to face the cities of the future. The BMW Guggenheim Lab will bring together teams of early- to mid-career professionals identified as emerging leaders in their fields to develop new concepts and designs around a specific theme. Three different labs, each with its own architect, graphic designer, and theme, will travel around the world in separate, consecutive two-year cycles. Site-specific workshops, public discussions, performances, and formal and informal gatherings will tie the lab into the everyday fabric of a city. At the conclusion of each three-city cycle, an exhibition exploring issues addressed at the different sites will be presented at the Guggenheim Museum in New York City.

America's Biggest Givers: 2009 -

NM university gets 5-year federal grant - PORTALES, N.M. (AP) - Eastern New Mexico University will use a 5-year federal grant to expand opportunities for Hispanic, low-income and graduate students.  The U.S. Department of Education has awarded Eastern more than $2.87 million as a Hispanic-serving institution.   The award to the Portales-based school was based on the percentage of Hispanic students, which was over 32% this fall.  The grant also is based on the school's large number of low-income students.

$1 million grant boosts Alfred University's school psychology program - Alfred, N.Y. —   If you are planning on being an advanced psychology student at Alfred University, a $1 million grant should make a difference in the type of education you receive.   The Lea R. Powell Institute for Children & Families has received a Leadership Personnel Preparation grant that will allow it to further train professional psychologists.  Alfred applied for the competitive grant in July. The money will allow the school to expand its doctoral psychology program from four to five years and broaden its scope.   The award will address two problems simultaneously: the lack of school psychologists nationally, and the scarcity of professional psychology educators to train those to fill the gap, according to a statement from the college.

University professors receive $250,000 grant - A team of LSU professors and students have received a $250,041 to investigate the salt industry of the ancient Mayan civilization, according to a University press release.  Latin American studies professor Heather McKillop and oceanography and coastal sciences professors Harry Boyd and Karen McKee will join a researchers from Auburn University-Montgomery to conduct the study, titled "Ancient Maya Wooden Architecture and the Salt Industry," funded by the national science foundation.  The scientists will attempt to reconstruct the environment and buildings of the period to study how the Mayans obtained, stored and used salt.

Scott Kabrich

Researcher - University Advancement



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