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posted onFeb7, 2013

Do international collaborations make for better science, or better scientists? This was one of the key questions raised at an event I attended this week, the first “Global Research Funding Forum,” hosted jointly by International Affairs and the Office of Research and Economic Development at the University of North Texas.

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posted onFeb4, 2013

One of my referees (based at Yale) told me candidly that I should not be disappointed by a rejection, for no one he had recommended had ever been accepted. When the letter came from the College, it was in a thin envelope. My heart sank, for thin envelopes rarely contain good news. To my surprise, this one did. From the dean of visiting fellows, the letter began with the words "I am pleased to invite you...." And to my delight, the invitation was for not one, not two, but three Oxford terms -- a full academic year.

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posted onFeb4, 2013

Like all new technologies, genetic medicine brings a new set of societal questions. If DNA sequencing uncovers an untreatable genetic defect, do you want to know? It is not a hypothetical question; we are already facing this ethical dilemma for selected diseases. Because you are genetically similar to your siblings, what are the implications for them if you fit a particular disease profile? What is the appropriate ethical and economic balance between personalized health care treatment and cost, particularly if you choose a lifestyle that worsens your health, given a genetic predisposition to a disease? How do we protect individual privacy in a world of “big data” and inexpensive health monitoring devices?

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posted onFeb1, 2013

The following lecture was delivered by Alexander Somek at the Princeton Transatlantic Youth Conference on December 6, 2012, in Princeton at Rockefeller College. The event was attended by students from both the US and Europe. Professor Somek is the Charles E. Floete Chair in Law at the University of Iowa College of Law, and currently a LAPA fellow at Princeton University.

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posted onFeb1, 2013

How did competitive, witty conversations at elite salons shape Spanish histories of the Iberian kingdom of al-Andalus? In the first lecture of the European Studies Group spring lecture series, UI associate professor Denise K. Filios will analyze the traces of such oral performances in two stories about Musa b. Nusayr, the conqueror of al-Andalus.

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posted onJan31, 2013

The UI Opera Studies Forum will present a pre-opera talk on Verdi’s Rigoletto on Wednesday, Feb. 13, at 5:30 p.m. in the University Capitol Centre, Room 2520D. This event is free and open to the public.

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posted onJan29, 2013

I’ve often thought that the best destinations are those that weren’t on your list. My experience as a Fulbright Senior Lecturer in the faculty of law at Sofia University certainly falls into that category. Unlike many of my Fulbright colleagues, I didn’t begin my experience with a particular country, or even region, in mind. Instead, I focused on trying to identify an award that was seeking someone with my background and skills, with a large degree of flexibility as to where that might be. Happily, this approach led to my selection as a Fulbright scholar and an incredible experience in a place I have grown quite fond of.

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posted onJan28, 2013

Come try your hand at the ancient and beautiful art of Chinese calligraphy at a free workshop Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2013, from 7-8:30 p.m. in 1117 University Capitol Centre on the UI campus. The workshop is open to the public and no prior experience of Chinese or calligraphy is necessary to attend.

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posted onJan24, 2013

Jesse Skinner Wilkerson was a 33-year-old farmer from Hamburg, Iowa, when he was drafted to serve in the 13th Iowa Infantry, Company C. His wife, Sarahett, was pregnant with their third child and left to run the farm in his absence.

The year was 1864, and the U.S. was embroiled in a civil war that ultimately cost three-quarters of a million lives among the Union and Confederacy ranks. Wilkerson, by his reckoning, traveled over 5,000 miles to seven states during his service. Though he survived the war, he was murdered in a barroom in 1869, only four years after the war’s end.

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posted onJan24, 2013

When Lisa Thai started her freshman year at the University of Iowa last fall, she had no intentions of joining any of the sororities on campus. It was not until a friend, UI junior Vanessa Au, approached her about starting a chapter of the Asian interest sorority Delta Phi Lambda that Thai reconsidered.

Thai, Au and five other women founded the UI colony chapter of Delta Phi Lambda on Nov. 18, 2012. Au currently serves as the chapter’s president, and Thai is the vice president of records.

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posted onJan23, 2013

Ron McMullen held a phone to his ear in May 2000. The unfolding situation seemed like a plot from a Hollywood film starring the latest actions stars, but it wasn’t.

On the other line was the voice of the spokesman for George Speight, who listened to McMullen’s demands. Speight and his followers had stormed the Fijian Parliament in May and held Prime Minster Mahendra Chaudhry and most of his Cabinet hostage for 56 days, according to Radio New Zealand.In the midst of the conflict, an American journalist who had attempted to interview Speight was taken hostage.

McMullen, now a University of Iowa visiting associate professor of political science, was set on having the journalist freed.

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posted onJan22, 2013

The study of genetics has come a long way since Gregor Mendel’s groundbreaking work with pea plants in the mid-19th century. To see just how far we’ve come and where research into genetics is taking us, join WorldCanvass host Joan Kjaer and her panel of expert guests on Friday, February 15, at 5 p.m. in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber, when the topic is "Genetics and New Technologies." The program is free and open to the public.

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posted onJan18, 2013

Have fun learning Chinese with the Confucius Institute community language classes! The Confucius Institute is holding several community and family classes during the spring semester.

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posted onJan17, 2013

Exploring the rich culture and natural beauty of Cusco, Peru, was just the beginning for Macz Norton when she participated in the Spanish Language and Service Learning study abroad program last summer.

This eight-week program combines coursework in Spanish language and Peruvian culture with valuable service learning. The service projects are organized by an onsite company, ProWorld-Peru, which meets with community leaders to develop projects that are both meaningful for students and fulfill a much-needed service for the local community.

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posted onJan16, 2013

Advocates from Iowa immigrant, labor, faith, and racial justice groups will come together with members of the university community for an upcoming one-day conference, “Forging Hope: Local Alliances for Good Jobs and Racial Justice.”

The conference will be held Saturday, Feb. 9, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the University Capitol Centre (Old Capitol Mall), Room 2520D, on the University of Iowa campus.

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