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The coeducational a cappella singing group Illini Awaaz performed Dec. 11 at the Holiday Open House, hosted by Chancellor Phyllis M. Wise at the Illini Union. The event was held for campus employees “in appreciation of your service and dedication during the past year,” Wise said. Illini Awaaz comprises South Asian U. of I. students who bring together Bollywood and Hollywood classics “to create a musical experience like no other,” according to the group’s website.
Photo by L. Brian Stauffer

Winter tones
The coeducational a cappella singing group Illini Awaaz performed Dec. 11 at the Holiday Open House, hosted by Chancellor Phyllis M. Wise at the Illini Union. The event was held for campus employees “in appreciation of your service and dedication during the past year,” Wise said. Illini Awaaz comprises South Asian U. of I. students who bring together Bollywood and Hollywood classics “to create a musical experience like no other,” according to the group’s website.

 

 

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Office is in the business of identifying, reducing risk

Even the smallest of units now can tap into the university’s scaled-up resources to help identify and mitigate risk before it becomes a real-life headache. The department of enterprise services, a part of university administration, has been expanding its educational reach and helping more units identify and mitigate risks by offering them the same processes university risk owners use on a grander scale.

Senate approves first-round revisions of university statutes

Senators approved the first round of revisions of the university statutes at the Dec. 8 meeting of the Urbana-Champaign Senate, though they added a caveat to allow future discussion of some of the more complicated or interlinked passages.

On the Job: Todd Hearn

You may not know Todd Hearn, but you’ve likely seen his handiwork. Hearn is a graphic design manager for Facilities and Services and has left his fingerprints on some of the most recognizable projects on campus.

New journal looks at significance of research on the Black Death

It was one of the most famous health issues in history. The Black Death spread from Asia throughout the Mediterranean, North Africa and Europe in the 14th century, and in just a decade it killed between 40 and 60 percent of the people living in those areas.


NEW FACES 2014

Among the newcomers to the Urbana campus are faculty members whose appointments began this summer or fall. Inside Illinois continues its tradition of introducing some of the new faculty members on campus and will feature at least two new colleagues in each fall issue.

  • Heidi Imker, director of the Research Data Service and associate professor, University Library

  • Dr. Rebecca Smith, assistant professor of epidemiology, department of pathobiology, College of Veterinary Medicine

Tenure-system faculty, unionization and some FAQs

Units and employees have contacted campus human resources with questions about the Campus Faculty Association’s ongoing efforts to unionize tenure-system faculty members at Illinois. Academic Human Resources has provided the following in response to specific questions and issues that have been raised regarding those efforts.

 

Research »

Now researchers can see how unfolded proteins move in the cell

When a large protein unfolds in transit through a cell, it slows down and can get stuck in traffic. Using a specialized microscope -- a sort of cellular traffic camera -- University of Illinois chemists now can watch the way the unfolded protein diffuses.

Women with serious mental illness less likely to receive cancer screenings

Women with symptoms of serious mental illness are significantly less likely to receive three routine cancer screenings – Pap tests, mammograms and clinical breast exams – than women in the general population, despite being at elevated risk for medical comorbidities and early death, a new study indicates.

Birds find their place in the avian tree of life

An international effort involving more than 100 researchers, nine supercomputers and about 400 years of CPU time has yielded the most reliable avian tree of life yet produced, researchers report in the journal Science. The tree reflects the evolutionary relationships of 48 species of birds.

New method helps map species' genetic heritage

Where did the songbird get its song? What branch of the bird family tree is closer to the flamingo – the heron or the sparrow?

Study: Different species share a ‘genetic toolkit’ for behavioral traits

The house mouse, stickleback fish and honey bee appear to have little in common, but at the genetic level these creatures respond in strikingly similar ways to danger, researchers report. When any of these animals confronts an intruder, the researchers found, many of the same genes and brain gene networks gear up or down in response.

Illinois researchers develop social sensing game to detect classroom bullies

A social computer game designed by researchers in computer science and educational psychology at the U. of I. can identify bullies in elementary school classrooms and help scholars better understand peer aggression, whether it occurs face to face or online.

Long work hours for moms mean less sleep, higher BMI's for preschoolers

The majority of preschoolers may not be getting the amount of sleep they need each night, placing them at higher risk of being overweight or obese within a year, according to a new study.

Low-crime, walkable neighborhoods promote mental health in older Latinos

Older Latinos living in the U.S. who perceive their neighborhoods as safer and more walkable are less likely to develop severe depressive symptoms, and the effect may be long term, a new study suggests.

HONORS

Five Illinois scholars awarded NEH Fellowships

Five University of Illinois scholars have received National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowships for 2015. The U. of I. is the only institution to be awarded more than three of the fellowships for the coming year.

Book Corner

U.S. House rules about much more than housekeeping

When the U.S. House of Representatives convenes in January, adopting rules of procedure will be among the first orders of business. Pretty mundane stuff, it would seem. Pay attention, though, says Gisela Sin, the author of a new book that analyzes over a century of House procedural rule-making, up through 2013. Those rules, written by the majority party, will have a huge impact on what follows in Washington over the next two years.

a minute with™ ...

Jennifer Delaney, expert on higher education funding, on fewer students graduating on time

Many college students in the U.S. do not graduate on time, a trend that is the focus of a recent report titled “The Four-Year Myth,” released by the nonprofit group Complete College America. The report’s authors propose a number of curricular and policy reforms to shorten students’ time to degree and help them contain their college costs. Education professor Jennifer A. Delaney, an expert in higher education funding at the U. of I., discussed those proposed reforms with News Bureau education editor Sharita Forrest.

U. of I. historian Tamara Chaplin on the Christmas Truce of World War I

It seems the stuff of Hollywood, but it wasn’t. Around Christmas 1914, more than four months into the four-year carnage of World War I, soldiers in opposing armies, mostly along the Western front, laid down their weapons and met in the no man’s land between the trenches. They sang carols, exchanged food and drink, played soccer and buried their dead. It’s a story of hope in humanity, says Tamara Chaplin, a U. of I. historian of modern France who co-led a special course on World War I this fall, on its 100th anniversary. We should not, however, Chaplin says, forget the context in which it happened, and what would follow. She spoke with News Bureau social sciences editor Craig Chamberlain.