USG eClips

Adams stepping down, steps up domestic partner benefits
Amy Werner
University of Georgia President Michael Adams will end his presidency the same date soft benefits are slated to start for domestic partners of benefits-eligible employees. The letter sent by Adams to University Systems of Georgia Chancellor Hank Huckaby and the Board of Regents to secure these soft, or voluntary, benefits is two-fold. It recognized soft benefits and highlighted the absence of full health benefits for domestic partners.
Groundbreaking Ceremony to Celebrate Football Operations Center & Paulson Stadium Expansion
Mark your calendars for this Wednesday, June 5 at 11 a.m. President Brooks Keel will host a groundbreaking ceremony for the Football Operations Center and Paulson Stadium Expansion at the east end-zone of Paulson Stadium. …A $10 million privately funded project, the new Football Operations Center will house coaches’ offices, team meeting rooms, a video production suite, locker rooms, strength & conditioning space, rehabilitation center, equipment room and a football Hall of Fame within its 50,000 square feet. The center is scheduled for completion in April 2014.
930 Spring Street Project to Undergo Review
A pre-construction look at the future site of student-oriented housing.
by Martin Bugajski
A Midtown group is scheduled to review three planned projects for the area, including a 267-unit, 17-story tower at 930 Spring St. at 8th Street that will serve as housing for Georgia Tech students. The project, which is being developed by Ambling University Development Group, also includes 10,200 square feet of street-level retail along Spring Street.

UNG campus honors first continuing ed graduates
By Crystal Ledford
For University of North Georgia instructor Sandra Sullivan, photography is a special form of art. “It’s like magic,” she said. “You’re capturing that moment and you can’t ever get that moment back. “And you’re capturing it in the moment … in painting, you do it afterwards, but in photography, you’re right there in it.” Sullivan now gets to share her passion for the art with even more students at the university’s Cumming campus. The first six photography certificate recipients from the local campus were honored Wednesday night.
Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation presents Historic Preservation Awards
The Athens-Clarke Heritage Foundation recognized a host of people and organizations Monday for their work in historic preservation. The foundation, which works to increase understanding of the value of historic buildings and neighborhoods and local heritage, held its 44th Annual Historic Preservation Awards ceremony at the Morton Theatre in downtown Athens. …The awards presented at Monday’s ceremony were:
• Outstanding Rehabilitation Awards to Chris Peterson for his work at 290 Barber St.; Lorinda and Pete Crane for their work at 297 Franklin St.; Richard Hathaway and Michael Daniel for their work at The Cheney House, 490 N. Milledge Ave.; the University of Georgia Office of University Architects, the UGA Office of Sustainability and the UGA College of Environment and Design for their work at the Jackson Street Building, 285 S. Jackson St.; Chris Lloyd and John Barrett of Barrett Properties for their work at Marker 7 Coastal Grille, 1195 S. Milledge Ave.; and the UGA Office of University Architects for its work at Memorial Hall. …

Investigators link poultry contamination on farm and at processing plant
Researchers at the University of Georgia, Athens, have identified a strong link between the prevalence and load of certain food-borne pathogens on poultry farms, and later downstream at the processing plant. They report their findings in a manuscript published ahead of print in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.
UGA to host international conference on environmental contamination
UGA News Service
…Many of the world’s leading experts in the field will meet June 16-20 at the University of Georgia for the 12th International Conference on the Biogeochemistry of Trace Elements. Here, scientists from more than 50 countries will meet to share cutting-edge research about the management of sites contaminated by mining practices and other agricultural and industrial activities.
Researchers Say They Can Hack Your iPhone With A Malicious Charger
Andy Greenberg, Forbes Staff
Careful what you put between your iPhone and a power outlet: That helpful stranger’s charger may be injecting your device with more than mere electrons. At the upcoming Black Hat security conference in late July, three researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology plan to show off a proof-of-concept charger that they say can be used to invisibly install malware on a device running the latest version of Apple’s iOS. Though the researchers aren’t yet sharing the details of their work, a description of their talk posted to the conference website describes the results of the experiment as “alarming.

Related articles:
Researchers: We can hack an iPhone through the charger
This Malicious Charger Can Hack Your iPhone
Why Hands-Free Phones May Be Unsafe for Drivers
Megan Gannon, News Editor
Voice-controlled texting and other hands-free tools may seem like safe options for using a cellphone while driving, but one researcher warns that the brain can’t safely manage both tasks at once. New car models increasingly feature built-in hands-free technologies, but they may not cut out the risk of distracted driving; worse, these tools may give motorists a false sense of security, said Robert Rosenberger, an assistant professor and researcher at Georgia Tech’s School of Public Policy. …Rosenberger points to studies showing that phone usage — handheld and hands-free alike — can lead to a significant drop in driving performance. One study in 2006 even found that motorists who talk on cellphones while driving are as impaired as drunk drivers.

Related article:
Georgia Tech Reseacher: Talking, Texting Habits Take Over Driving Awareness
People “go into a zone” when talking or texting on a phone, according to a Georgia Tech assistant professor.
THE HOME CARE REVOLUTION: Robots and Eldercare’s Future
If you are 55 years old, you could wake up 30 years from now to the warm, affectionate voice of your personal care robot, asking what you would like for breakfast and why you slept for only 5.8 hours last night instead of your usual 7.3.After your mattress takes your morning temperature, pulse and blood pressure readings, you might want to reach for the tablet on your bedside table and tap the touchscreen to turn up your home’s heat by a few notches before you throw back the covers. The robot can fetch your slippers. . . . At least for now, personal care robots may be less than welcome as stand-ins for human health aides. A study by the Georgia Institute of Technology last year asked older adults if they were willing to use robots in the home for daily tasks. Subjects between the ages of 65 and 93 said they were fine with the idea of robots performing household chores, but were less comfortable with their performing personal care, like bathing or dressing.
Safe gun technology business may have to relocate from Ireland
Triggersmart founders confident of US funding for technology developed in Athlone
David Raleigh
A businessman, whose company is in talks in the US to secure a multimillion dollar investment in “safe gun” technology, has said he will probably have to repatriate his business out of Ireland because of restrictions on guns here. Pat O’Shaughnessy, and his business partner Robert McNamara are “very hopeful” of signing off on a deal in line with the Biden commission’s proposals on gun control . . O’Shaughnessy said he was confident his company, TriggerSmart, will secure a major contract to license its technology to the US civilian market. TriggerSmart has developed and patented a user-unique childproof radio frequency identification (RFID) smart gun technology. . . .The technology was developed in Ireland at the Georgia Tech Research Institute in Athlone.

Ask the Expert: How to Win MBA Admission Despite a Low GPA
By Geoff Gloeckler
We get a lot of questions from potential business students in our forums, on Twitter, and via e-mail about all kinds of topics, from admissions to career services and everything in between. In the Ask the Expert feature, we take your questions and get them answered by the most qualified individuals we can find. . . . Brayn asks: “I would like to know how to offset a lower GPA to have a better chance at gaining entrance into a good B-school. I graduated with a 2.97 from a state school, simply due to the fact that I was working 50 to 60 hours a week supporting my family. Thankfully that time is over. Should I be taking business courses at a community college or an extension? Or should I just leave it as is and try to get the highest score possible on my GMATs?” To answer Brayn’s question, we reached out to Paula Wilson, director of MBA admissions at Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business.
Camp Lawton, Recently Discovered Civil War Prison Camp, Yields 600 Artifacts
By Hank Campbell
Discovery in science means something different than discovery in common terms. Local people may have seen a snake for 500 years but if it turns out to be a new species, that is a discovery. There also many Civil War-era battle and camp sites that local people know about but that archaeologists have not cataloged yet – they are not in history books and so the sites have not been officially analyzed. …Camp Lawton, a Civil War prison camp in southeast Georgia, was virtually undisturbed for nearly 150 years before it was discovered – it had to be a surprise to local residents that it was undiscovered, since they all had probably known it once held 10,000 Union prisoners, in 1864. A Georgia Southern University archeology saw the remains of the stockade walls in 2010 and now the project has gotten up to speed and they have found 600 artifacts so far.
As Cheshire Bridge debate roils, a project advances for improving West End near new Falcons stadium
Posted in David Pendered
. . . Atlanta is rebuilding the streetscape of Joseph E. Lowery Boulevard in West End so it will be as attractive as this segment, in front of the Sky Lofts condo complex, shown in this photo taken in November 2010. Credit: David Pendered . . . West End was not specifically identified in the city’s legislation to provide $200 million in funding. But West End is the logical southern terminus of Atlanta’s urban core, according to a study conducted by Georgia Tech students under the guidance of Mike Dobbins, a Georgia Tech professor of practice and former Atlanta planning commissioner.
Where’s the Evidence?
By John F. Ebersole
As widely reported, five massive open online courses have been deemed worthy of an academic credit recommendation by the American Council on Education. The announcement by ACE has been greeted with equal parts acclaim and concern. Many see this step as a new day for increased access and reduced cost for those working toward a degree. Content costing thousands of dollars on campus may now be available for free and in the comfort of one’s own home. Others, especially in academe, continue to express concern about the nature of MOOCs and their ability to produce learning.
We’re All to Blame for MOOCs
By Patrick J. Deneen
Innovation cheerleaders and flat-worlders like Thomas Friedman and Clay Shirky are very excited, for they have seen the future of academe, and it consists of MOOCs. They happily envision open and affordable online access to dynamic, learned professors—the kind once available only to students paying tens of thousands of dollars in tuition at places like Harvard and Stanford. MOOCs will democratize education, they say, creating a more equal and consumer-friendly world. Faculty members, meanwhile, watch these developments with nervousness and fear. In the rapidly rising popularity of MOOCs, they see the beginning of the end of higher education as they have known it.
Unexpected Issues in Online Education Deal
A pilot partnership between San Jose State University and Udacity, the Silicon Valley-based ed tech company, revealed some hidden costs of online education, The Oakland Tribune reports. . . .”It turned out some of the low-income teens didn’t have computers and high-speed Internet connections at home that the online course required. . . .The final results aren’t in yet, but the experiment exposed some challenges to the promise of a low-cost online education. And it showed there is still a divide between technology-driven educators and the low-income, first-generation college hopefuls they are trying to reach.” Udacity just signed a major deal with the Georgia Institute of Technology to offer a low-cost professional master’s degree courses to 10,000 students at once.
Coursera and the NCAA
By John Lombardi
The latest initiative in the large-scale online educational market, reported in all major media outlets, involves the expansion of the Coursera online platform to encompass large public university systems. While much has been made of the opportunity this initiative provides for inexpensive undergraduate education delivered to large audiences, the contract between Coursera and the University of Kentucky System offers an interesting conceptual parallel to the expansion of college sports made possible by the NCAA.

Education News
Area schools to benefit from AP training grants
By B.J. Williams Editor
ATLANTA – Five school systems in the north Georgia area will share in grant money from the Gouizeta Foundation of Atlanta to boost participation in Advanced Placement, or AP, classes. The $2.6 million will help the selected school districts to enhance their pipeline of students who are ready to take the more rigorous AP classes, thus increasing the opportunity for those students to exempt college level classes.
Loans Back in the Spotlight
By Libby A. Nelson
WASHINGTON — When President Obama made a speech from the Rose Garden on Friday about student loans, it seemed like history was repeating itself. The same thing happened at this time last year: with weeks to go before a scheduled increase in the student loan interest rate, the issue turns into a high-profile political fight. As Obama acknowledged: “If this sounds like déjà vu all over again, that’s because it is.”
Rally Planned to Fight Higher Interest Rates on College Loans
By Caralee Adams
As the political debate heats up over student-loan interest rates, advocacy groups are organizing to voice concern over college affordability on June 5, which has been declared “Student Debt Day 2013.” A coalition including Campus Progress, Rock the Vote, US PIRG, and Young Invincibles and the American Federation of Teachers are rallying members to leverage Congress to keep interest rates on student loans from doubling July 1, a move that groups maintain will cost the average student borrower an additional $1,000 per loan. Unless lawmakers act by July 1, interest rates on subsidized Stafford loans, available to those demonstrating financial need, will double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent.
A Matter of Federal Significance
By Allie Grasgreen
WASHINGTON — Politicians, celebrities and public policy experts were in abundance here Monday at a White House Conference on Mental Health called by President Obama, but there weren’t many — if any — students.
That is despite not only the fact that portions of the conference focused on how to best address mental health issues at schools and universities, but also that speakers throughout the day argued that the student voice is critical to this dialogue.

Related article:
Obama Presses for Mental-Health Care for Students, Cutting Its Stigma
Today’s College Students Can Face Serious Money Issues Through Bank Products
by Eleanor Lee Yates
As a freshman at Clark Atlanta University, Tyler Joshua Green discovered it didn’t take long to wipe out his weekly budget. “So many costs arise when you’re a college student, like eating out at different places,” he says. The religion major from Indianapolis became budget-savvy pretty quickly. Though he has a debit card, Green prefers to use cash for his walking around money. He ticks off a couple of his saving strategies: “I don’t go into the grocery store when I’m hungry. I don’t get a cart; I use a basket.” Though Green learned to budget early in his college career, many students have more of a challenge, in part because of easy access to banking services. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recently opened an investigation examining whether students genuinely benefit from some of the banking and financial services marketed to them through their colleges.
Hispanic-Serving Institution Tally Increases 14.5 Percent
by Ronald Roach
U.S. colleges and universities meeting the definition of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) jumped from 311 schools in 2010-11 to 356 in 2011-12, according to data recently published by the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities and the Excelencia in Education organizations. Officials say the 14.5 percent jump for HSIs, non-profit, degree-granting higher education institutions with 25 percent or higher Latino full-time equivalent (FTE) undergraduate enrollment, is the largest ever single-year nominal increase.
Undocumented Students in Gray Area for College Admissions
It’s been nearly a year since the Obama administration gave leniency for some children who immigrated to the United States illegally. Known as DACA – deferred action for childhood arrivals – the measure gives these young people some protection even though they aren’t citizens or legal residents. Nearly 2 million people are eligible for the DACA program. This is the first year DACA students are applying for colleges, but their uncertain legal status can be a problem.
Educators Find Federal Views on Student Visas ‘Surprising and Frustrating’
By Karin Fischer
St. Louis
While the annual conference of Nafsa: Association of International Educators, which concluded on Friday, was in large measure a celebration of global higher education, there was a dark cloud, centered on student visas. Whether poison provisions in pending immigration legislation, recent guidelines that could complicate recruitment to English-language or pathways programs, or continuing scrutiny of foreign students in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing, student-visa-related issues remain contentious. More than a half-dozen sessions on visa issues during the conference attracted hundreds of attendees—apiece.
Fighting Too Many Fires
By Kevin Kiley
When Rutgers University hired Robert Barchi as its new president last fall, the experienced university leader and accomplished neurosurgeon was hailed as just the man to oversee a complicated merger and strategic planning process that would transform Rutgers – which for many years has struggled to crack the upper echelons of universities – into a research powerhouse. The first year was supposed to be the most challenging, culminating in the official July 1 merger of Rutgers with the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, a separate educational institution with four campuses, eight academic units, a staff of more than 12,000 and about 8,000 graduate and professional students. And this year has proven quite challenging for Barchi, though not for the reasons many expected.
UF faces mountain of maintenance needs
By Jeff Schweers
Staff writer
From cranky basement water chillers to leaky rooftops, from disintegrating electrical cables to erupting steam lines, the University of Florida campus is a city with aging infrastructure in dire need of repair. Without money to fix big-ticket items, UF must put these repairs on its deferred maintenance list. That list totals about $45 million, said Curtis Reynolds, vice president for Business Affairs and Economic Development. That’s going to make it all the more difficult to decide which projects will get financed with the $16.7 million the Legislature has appropriated for UF’s critical maintenance needs — in other words, the systems at UF that are projected to fail within a year unless they get immediate attention.
‘Does Science Need a Global Language?’
By Serena Golden
Whether or not science needs a global language — which, Scott L. Montgomery believes, it does — like it or not, it already has one: English. So Montgomery argues in his new book, Does Science Need a Global Language? English and the Future of Research (University of Chicago Press). Montgomery, who is an affiliate faculty member in the Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington, lays out a host of data in support of his claim that English has more and more become the language of scientific communication and publication — and that it is likely to remain so for quite some time to come.
Rise of ‘Altmetrics’ Revives Questions About How to Measure Impact of Research
By Jennifer Howard
Steven B. Roberts’s 103-page tenure package features the usual long-as-your-arm list of peer-reviewed publications. But Mr. Roberts, an assistant professor at the University of Washington who studies the effects of environmental change on shellfish, chose to add something less typical to his dossier: evidence of his research’s impact online. …Adding altmetrics to CVs and dossiers may not be common yet. But interest in altmetrics is growing fast, as scholars begin to realize that it’s possible to track and share evidence of online impact, and publishers and new start-up companies rush to develop altmetric services to help them document that impact.
Industrialist and Science Academy Create $250,000 Prize for Young Researchers
The Blavatnik Family Foundation, headed by the businessman and philanthropist Len Blavatnik, and the New York Academy of Sciences will announce on Monday a new program that will award cash prizes of $250,000 each to faculty-rank scientists age 42 and younger each year, The New York Times reported. The awards are the largest unrestricted cash prizes of their kind, the newspaper said. Mr. Blavatnik, who founded Access Industries, an international industrial group, said he had long dreamed of creating something like a Nobel Prize for young scientists.
Device From Israeli Start-Up Gives the Visually Impaired a Way to Read
JERUSALEM — Liat Negrin, an Israeli who has been visually impaired since childhood, walked into a grocery store here recently, picked up a can of vegetables and easily read its label using a simple and unobtrusive camera attached to her glasses. Ms. Negrin, who has coloboma, a birth defect that perforates a structure of the eye and afflicts about 1 in 10,000 people, is an employee at OrCam, an Israeli start-up that has developed a camera-based system intended to give the visually impaired the ability to both “read” easily and move freely.
Texas leaders to discuss research universities’ future
By Jennifer R. Lloyd, Staff Writer
As nations like China and Brazil flow funds to their universities, Texas higher education leaders will meet in Dallas today to strategize ways to keep the nation’s competitive edge in churning out economy-building ideas and products. “A lot of that innovation begins at our universities,” said University of Texas System Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa. Cigarroa will draw business and education honchos from across the state to discuss recommendations from a national report on how to help the country’s elite schools stay on top in ways that benefit public health, economic vibrancy and national security.
Promising New Cancer Drugs Empower the Body’s Own Defense System
CHICAGO — The early success of a new class of cancer drugs, revealed in test results released here over the last several days, has raised hope among the world’s top cancer specialists that they may be on the verge of an important milestone in the fight against the disease. The excitement has spread to Wall Street. Shares of Merck and Bristol-Myers Squibb, which are developing such drugs, rose more than 3 percent on Monday after data from their studies was presented over the weekend at the meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
Obama Plans to Take Action Against Patent-Holding Firms
WASHINGTON—The White House on Tuesday plans to announce a set of executive actions President Barack Obama will take that are aimed at reining in certain patent-holding firms, known as “patent trolls” to their detractors, amid concerns that the firms are abusing the patent system and disrupting competition. Mr. Obama’s actions, which include measures he wants Congress to consider, are intended to target firms that have forced technology companies, financial institutions and others into costly litigation to protect their products. These patent-holding firms amass portfolios of patents more to pursue licensing fees than to build new products.
Appeals Panel Upholds Patent Loss for U. of Minnesota
A federal appeals court on Monday upheld a lower court’s decision siding with a medical corporation in a patent fight with the University of Minnesota over ownership of medical devices for fixing heart defects.