David Jernigan, Boston University – Alcohol Companies Benefit from Underage Drinking

SPH Professor, David Jernigan poses for a photo on February 4, 2021 Photo by Jackie Ricciardi for Boston University How much do alcohol companies benefit from underage drinking? David Jernigan, professor in the department of health law, policy and management at Boston University School of Public Health, takes a look at the numbers. David Jernigan, PhD, is a professor in the Department of Health Law, Policy and Management at the Boston University School of Public Health. He has written more than 140 peer-reviewed journal articles, contributed chapters to seven books on alcohol issues, and has served as an advisor to the World Bank and the World Health Organization. Alcohol Companies Benefit from Underage Drinking https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-28-21-Boston-Alcohol-Companies-Benefit-from-Underage-Drinking.mp3 Alcohol is the number one illegal drug used by American young people, and every year about 3500 people under 21 die because of alcohol use. In 2019, 7 million young people had alcohol and 4.2 million reported binge drinking in the past month. My research team was curious, we asked more than 1000 young people about their consumption of alcohol by brand. We combined those data with estimates of adult alcohol consumption from national surveys to calculate the percent of alcohol drunk by youth, and how much money alcohol companies make from it. We estimated that in 2016, underage youth consumption accounted for 8.6% of the drinks consumed and 7.4% of the dollars spent on alcohol. This translates into $17.5 billion going to alcohol companies. Three accounted for nearly half of the alcohol consumed by youth, and earned billions from it: $2.2 billion for Anheuser-Busch Inbev, $1.1 billion for MillerCoors, and $2 billion for Diageo, the world's largest spirits marketer. In 2003, the National Research Council and Institute of Medicine recommended the creation of an independent fund to support underage drinking prevention, to which alcohol companies would contribute ½ of one percent of their revenues. For AB Inbev, this would have amounted to $78 million – a fraction of what the company earned from youth consumption. Yet no such fund was ever created. Our findings suggest that alcohol companies have a big conflict of interest with underage drinking prevention, and that they are profiting from and not paying for the damages their products cause for young people. The post David Jernigan, Boston University – Alcohol Companies Benefit from Underage Drinking appeared first on The Academic Minute.

David Jernigan, Boston University – Alcohol Companies Benefit from Underage Drinking

Darcie DeAngelo, University of Oklahoma – HeroRATS Who Rebuild Relations in Cambodia

Rats are more than just a nuisance. Darcie DeAngelo, assistant professor of sociocultural anthropology at the University of Oklahoma, determines how rats can be a helping hand. Dr. DeAngelo is a medical anthropologist with training in sensory ethnography. Her area of focus is on landmine detection industries in Cambodia, especially those that work with animal detection aids. She is dedicated to engaged studies and has conducted research in diverse fields from public mental health disparities to international policy. She also produces public humanities exhibitions where she troubles the boundary between art and anthropology. These pieces have been shown in a wide variety of places from academic conferences, art galleries, to experimental public-facing exhibitions. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention at Binghamton University, New York, a Wilson Center China Fellow, and is a member of the policy-scholar team at the Mansfield-Luce Asia Foundation. She is Co-Editor-in-Chief of the journal, Visual Anthropology Review. She is an incoming assistant professor of sociocultural anthropology at the University of Oklahoma. HeroRATS Who Rebuild Relations in Cambodia https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-27-21-Oklahoma-HeroRATS-Who-Rebuild-Relations-in-Cambodia.mp3 Last year a 5-year-old rat became the first rodent to receive a gold medal award for "life-saving bravery and devotion to duty." How did a rat, associated with disease, sewage, and trash, become a viral story that changed minds overnight? Born in Tanzania, Magawa, like other specially trained African giant pouched rats, detects deadly ordnances buried in Cambodia. In the minefield, a rat is connected to two deminers who walk on cleared corridors with the contaminated area between them. The deminers step down the field in unison as the rat sniffs for mines, scratching twice when she smells TNT. Then the deminers map the location and reward the animal with a delicious banana. Cambodia's millions of landmines make it the country with the highest population of amputees in the world with about 100 explosive accidents per year. After mass atrocities, states lose legitimacy. And so Cambodian villagers tend to distrust state-run operations, even landmine clearance. Demining offers real opportunities for states to rebuild legitimacy. But I heard from villagers who didn't think that their land would be returned to them when the landmines were cleared and that deminers were no different than soldiers. Here's where Magawa comes in. Rats don't fit in with the military aesthetic of demining. The image of a soldier cradling a rat in his arms undermines the kind of villainous characterization of deminers. When villagers first saw rats like Magawa, they were puzzled, but the rat humanized deminers in a way that demilitarized them. Magawa has located an impressive 39 landmines and 28 unexploded munitions in four years. That's more than 20 football fields, saving tens of thousands and, in the process, rehabilitating relations after war. The post Darcie DeAngelo, University of Oklahoma – HeroRATS Who Rebuild Relations in Cambodia appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Darcie DeAngelo, University of Oklahoma – HeroRATS Who Rebuild Relations in Cambodia

Ricardo Azziz, University at Albany – Mergers in Higher Education: The Need to Consider

Mergers are a fact of life for some institutions in higher education. Ricardo Azziz, research professor in the school of public health at the University at Albany, says mergers are not always a bad thing. Ricardo Azziz is former founding President, Georgia Regents University; former President, Georgia Health Sciences University; and co-author of 'Strategic Mergers in Higher Education', published by Johns Hopkins University Press. Mergers in Higher Education: The Need to Consider https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-26-21-Albany-Mergers-in-Higher-Education-The-need-to-consider.mp3 Higher education in the United States is in crisis, with declining enrollment, negative demographics, excess capacity, and increasing fiscal pressures – all exacerbated by a pandemic of historic proportions. While the top 200 or so universities and colleges seem to be doing well — that is not the case for the majority of the remaining 4000 or so institutions of higher education in the U.S. So, it's not surprising that the past 20 years has seen an increasing rate of institutional mergers — not only in the U.S., but also in Europe, China, Australia, and other parts of the world. Our research on mergers in higher education has led us to several observations. First, mergers in higher education have often been used as the strategy of last resort. Which unfortunately means that most of the institutions looking for a merger partner will have exhausted their enrollment, financial, political, and brand equity — with poor merger outcomes. In fact, the most common failure in mergers is the failure to consider them at all. Second, mergers should be all about student success and opportunity. Well planned mergers and acquisitions will provide added value to students far beyond any financial savings identified. Third, there are seven key elements that most successful mergers exhibit: A committed and supportive governing board. The right kind of leadership. A compelling unifying vision. An appropriate sense of urgency. A robust and redundant communication plan. Sufficient dedicated resources. A strong project management system. While having these in place does not guarantee success, not having them does increase the chance of failure. Many colleges and universities will benefit from a more regular and determined consideration of mergers, consolidations, and acquisitions in their annual strategic planning – early and before the institution is in crisis. And the decision should always be driven by what is best for their students. The post Ricardo Azziz, University at Albany – Mergers in Higher Education: The Need to Consider appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Ricardo Azziz, University at Albany – Mergers in Higher Education: The Need to Consider

Daniel Braaten, Texas Lutheran University – What Influences Immigration Judges

What influences immigration judges in granting asylum to unaccompanied minors? Daniel Braaten, associate professor of political science at Texas Lutheran University, looks into the answers. Daniel Braaten is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Texas Lutheran University in Seguin, Texas. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2012 and his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from North Dakota State University. His research touches many areas of international relations, comparative politics, and American politics. His research had been published in Law & Policy, International Studies Review, Journal of Refugee Studies, International Journal of Refugee Law, and the Journal of Environment & Development among other outlets. He has also written for public outlets such as The Conversation, Waging Nonviolence, and the San Antonio Express News among others. Claire Nolasco Braaten obtained her Ph.D. in Criminal Justice from Sam Houston State University, her Masters in International and Economic Business Law from Kyushu University in Japan, and both her Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and her J.D. in Law from the University of the Philippines College of Law, where she was a member of the Order of the Purple Feather, the law school's honor society. She is authorized to practice law in both the State of California and the Philippines. She interned in the Japanese law firms of Minamitani and Sogo in Fukuoka, Japan and the Ohebashi law office in Osaka, Japan through the Young Leaders Program sponsored by the Japanese government for emerging leaders in the Southeast Asian region. She is currently a member of both the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and the Pi Gamma Mu Honor Society. She has published in several peer-reviewed criminal justice journals, including Deviant Behavior, Law & Society, Journal of Refugee Studies, Journal of Criminal Justice, Crime Law and Social Change, Journal of Criminal Justice Education, and Security Journal as well as law reviews such as the American Journal of Criminal Law and Criminal Law Bulletin. Dr. Nolasco was involved in several external grant projects, including a process and outcome evaluation of DWI Courts in Harris County pursuant to a grant funded by the Court Management Office of the Harris County Criminal Courts at Law and research on media access to juvenile proceedings and effects on case outcomes funded by the United States Embassy in Montenegro. What Influences Immigration Judges https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-25-21-Texas-Lutheran-What-Influences-Immigration-Judges.mp3 Through recent media reports, and corresponding policy responses by the federal government, the plight of unaccompanied minors crossing the southern border has become a source of contention in American politics. One question this brings up is, how many of these children actually receive asylum and are allowed to stay in the United States? The people who make those decisions are immigration judges. Their decisions are supposed to be based on whether these children have fears of being persecuted in their home countries and whether these fears are realistic. But our research examining the period from early October 2013 until the end of September 2017 shows that these judges were influenced by factors outside of the case. Political factors such as ideology, political party of the president who appointed them, and who was president at the time they decided the case significantly influenced whether these children were allowed to stay in the country. We ran a statistical analysis of these factors and found that immigration judges with a more liberal judicial ideology were more likely to rule in favor of granting asylum. Additionally, judges who were appointed by a Democratic attorney general were more likely to rule in favor of the minors, and finally immigration judges were less likely to grant relief during the first eight months of the Trump administration compared to the last three years of the Obama administration. Aside from political factors, immigration judges are also influenced by local contexts, such as unemployment levels, the number of uninsured children and size of Latino population in the places where they work. Political influence from the executive branch combined with local context pressures can affect how immigration judges rule. Most importantly, these influences can lead to some children not receiving asylum when they might otherwise be entitled to it. Read More: [Twitter] – Daniel Braaten [Twitter] – Claire Nolasco Braaten The post Daniel Braaten, Texas Lutheran University – What Influences Immigration Judges appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Daniel Braaten, Texas Lutheran University – What Influences Immigration Judges

Jean Ho, University of California, Irvine – Hypertension Medications Which Help Ward off Memory Loss

On University of California, Irvine Week: Warding off high blood pressure now could pay off later in life. Jean Ho, postdoctoral scholar, explains why. Jean K. Ho, Ph.D. is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Ho's research interests include: vascular contributions to Alzheimer's disease and dementia; antihypertensive medications and associations with cognition in older adults; the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) and angiotensin receptor signaling pathways; improving detection of preclinical cognitive decline through neuropsychological assessment; and accounting for practice effects in neuropsychological assessment. Hypertension Medications Which Help Ward off Memory Loss https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-22-21-UC-Irvine-Hypertension-Medications-Which-Help-Ward-Off-Memory-Loss.mp3 An estimated 91 million Americans have blood pressure that's high enough to need to be controlled with medication. That's a lot of people. In addition to the cardiovascular problems related to high blood pressure such as heart attack or stroke, having high blood pressure in middle age increases your risk of dementia later in life. We know from previous research that when hypertension is treated with medication, it can stave off dementia. But what scientists have not been able to explain is exactly which anti-hypertensive drugs have this effect. So for our meta-analysis, we collected data from 14 previous studies that were done in six countries and included more than 12,800 people over the age of 50. In all cases, the patients were taking blood pressure medication for at least 6 months, and their cognitive function was tested over a three-year period. They were tested on abilities such as learning, language and executive function. We divided the patients into two groups: those who were taking one of the medications that crosses the blood-brain barrier, and those who took a drug that stayed only in the bloodstream, and did not enter the brain directly. We looked at two popular classes of blood pressure medications, commonly known as ACE inhibitors and ARBs. We found in our large sample that those who had taken ACE-inhibitors or ARBs that cross the blood-brain barrier did better on a word list recall test after three years. That test is a strong indicator of overall memory abilities. These findings are quite promising. If a commonly prescribed medication can have an effect on someone over a relatively short period like three years, in the long run, that could change their whole trajectory of memory loss. The post Jean Ho, University of California, Irvine – Hypertension Medications Which Help Ward off Memory Loss appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Jean Ho, University of California, Irvine – Hypertension Medications Which Help Ward off Memory Loss

Joel Milam, University of California, Irvine – Follow-Up Care for Young Adult Cancer Survivors

On University of California, Irvine Week: Lifelong follow up care is critical for young cancer survivors. Joel Milam, professor of epidemiology, examines why. Joel Milam, PhD, is a professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California, Irvine's Program in Public Health. He also has an adjunct appointment at the UCI School of Medicine's Department of Hematology/Oncology. Dr. Milam's research focuses on young adult cancer survivorship, positive psychology, and HIV prevention/control. Dr. Milam's interest in cancer research led him to become the Co-Leader of the Cancer Control Program at the Chao Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, where he facilitates research to identify and reduce cancer risk, and improve quality of life throughout the cancer care trajectory. Aside from teaching at UCI, Dr. Milam is a Co-Founder & Co-Director of the Center for Young Adult Cancer Survivorship Research. The Center is an interdisciplinary collaborative, including affiliate faculty, trainees, and patient advocates at UCI and USC. The research focuses on population health, health services and systems, wellbeing, quality of life, and medical outcomes among younger cancer survivors under the age of 50. Follow-Up Care for Young Adult Cancer Survivors https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-21-21-UC-Irvine-Follow-Up-Care-for-Young-Adult-Cancer-Survivors.mp3 Treatments for childhood cancers have been increasingly successful, with a greater than 80 percent 5-year survival rate. But there are many lifelong health risks that surface in the years following treatment. As survivors age, their risk for late effects increases and could include heart problems and second cancers – and their engagement in survivorship care decreases. That's why life-long follow-up care is crucial. The research group examined factors associated with lifelong, cancer-related follow-up care. We had over 1,200 young adult survivors of all forms of pediatric cancers, come to us from the Los Angeles County cancer registry. These survivors were diagnosed throughout LA County between 1996 and 2010 and were largely in their mid-20s at the time of the survey. 54% of this population-based sample was Hispanic – an important fact because this group is under-repesented in research literature. Participants responded to a survey about their physical and mental health, insurance coverage, and healthcare they received. We found older age and Hispanic ethnicity to be associated with lower levels of cancer-related, follow-up care. These differences remained significant after adjusting for other important factors, such as health insurance and economic status. Other factors included follow-up care, including obtaining adequate insurance coverage, having a primary care physician, and obtaining a written treatment summary that can be discussed with doctors. We recommend healthcare support for young cancer survivors, including increased patient and provider education, healthcare services, and greater use of written treatment summaries to help these individuals manage the transition from pediatric to adult healthcare settings to maintain their health over their lifespans. The post Joel Milam, University of California, Irvine – Follow-Up Care for Young Adult Cancer Survivors appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Joel Milam, University of California, Irvine – Follow-Up Care for Young Adult Cancer Survivors

Brittany Morey, University of California, Irvine– The Central Role of Social Support in th...

On University of California, Irvine Week: Immigrants can thrive with a strong support network. Brittany Morey, assistant professor of health, society and behavior, explores why. Brittany N. Morey, PhD, MPH, is an Assistant Professor of Public Health at University of California, Irvine. Dr. Morey's research focuses on how structural inequity shapes racial and ethnic health inequities. Much of this work focuses on how neighborhood social and physical environments contribute to health disparities, especially for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Her work also studies how U.S. immigration policies and anti-immigrant sentiments contribute to health disparities among broad populations of color. Overall, the goal of her research is to understand how society creates health inequities along the lines of race, ethnicity, nativity, and immigration status. With this understanding, we can create better policies and programs to address and undo the patterns of poor health we see today. Currently, Dr. Morey is a co-investigator on several grants funded by the National Institutes of Health. Together with collaborator and principal investigator Dr. Sunmin Lee, Dr. Morey is working on research to examine the social determinants of disparities in cancer, sleep, and overall health among Asian Americans. This work is funded by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. The Central Role of Social Support in the Health of Chinese and Korean American Immigrants https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-20-21-UC-Irvine-The-Central-Role-of-Social-Support-in-the-Health-of-Chinese-and-Korean-American-Immigrants.mp3 There is a solid body of research that has demonstrated the positive effects that a strong social support network can have on an individual's health and well-being. However, existing studies are concentrated on White communities and there is a significant gap of research on this topic for Asian Americans. As a public health researcher, my work focuses on understanding health disparities along the lines of race, ethnicity, nativity, and immigration status. For myself, along with my UC Irvine colleagues, we wanted to see if the common observation of strong social support equaling happier and healthier people held true for Chinese and Korean Americans. And if so, are there specific factors related to the immigrant experience that affect social support among immigrants from China and Korea? To start, we sent a survey to 400 Chinese and Korean American immigrants living in the Washington D.C./Baltimore area to determine their level of social support. We also asked them about their perceived health and stress levels. Like other race groups, we found that for Chinese and Korean American communities, social support positively affects our participants' self-reported well-being by lowering their levels of stress. In fact, social support stood out as one of strongest predictors of optimal health. We also found that social support was highest among Chinese and Korean Americans who identified as more westernized and those who had lower levels of immigration-related stress. Therefore, if we want to improve social support among Chinese and Korean Americans, we should focus on easing the transitions for immigrants arriving in the U.S. We hope that this study sets the groundwork for future health interventions, particularly among underserved immigrant groups, which could bolster social support to improve health in the long-term. The post Brittany Morey, University of California, Irvine– The Central Role of Social Support in the Health of Chinese and Korean American Immigrants appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Brittany Morey, University of California, Irvine– The Central Role of Social Support in th...

Amal Alachkar, University of California, Irvine – Trauma-Induced Depression

On University of California, Irvine Week: Trauma from war is a painful truth. Amal Alachkar, associate professor of teaching and pharmaceutical sciences, examines ways to help mitigate the fallout. When the peaceful uprising began in Syria during the Arab Spring, Dr. Amal Alachkar was among the academics who supported the student movement demanding dignity, freedom of speech, and justice for all Syrians. But speaking out put her research and her life in danger. Support from the international rescue agencies enabled Dr. Alachkar to join UC Irvine as a professor and after her fellowship ended, she was able to secure a full-time academic position at UC Irvine, where she has already helped to establish UC Irvine's first online master's program in Pharmacology. Trauma-Induced Depression https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-19-21-UC-Irvine-Trauma-Induced-Depression.mp3 When the 2011 peaceful uprising in Syria turned into war, my family and I were among the 13 million refugees who had to leave their homes. Through that life-changing experience, I became concerned about the long-lasting, impacts of trauma caused by wars, genocides and natural disasters not just on the current generations but also the generations to come. My current research focuses on how and when biological mechanisms lead to the trauma transmission from the parents or even grandparents to children. In our most recent study, we identified a novel biomarker for early life prediction of those at risks of the development of depression in adulthood. We also found that early pharmacological interventions with acetyl-L-carnitine supplementation produced long-lasting protection against intergenerational trauma-induced depression. Given the unique features of acetyl-L-carnitine, this natural supplement can represent an innovative and unique protective strategy, should it be administered early in life. We are studying the mechanisms of stress and depression so that healthcare professionals can prevent the psychiatric disorders rather than just intervene. The study is particularly relevant at this moment in human history, as so many pregnant women are exposed to stressful environments such as the COVID-19 pandemic. It is also timely in the awakening of the antiracism movement, as it tackles the biological mechanisms of collective transgenerational trauma of slavery, racism, and oppression. This has transforming impact on the lives of millions of people globally who suffer from depression or have the risk of developing this disabling disorder, particularly those in which the depression arose from intergenerational trauma. As scientists, we might not be able to prevent human-made wars and atrocities or some natural disasters, but we hope to mitigate their long-term deleterious effects on mental health. The post Amal Alachkar, University of California, Irvine – Trauma-Induced Depression appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Amal Alachkar, University of California, Irvine – Trauma-Induced Depression

Shane Coffield, University of California, Irvine – Climate Change Impacts on California Ecosystems

On this Student Spotlight during University of California, Irvine Week: California is in the thick of the effects of climate change. Shane Coffield, PhD Candidate in Earth System Science, explores what to do going forward. Shane Coffield is a PhD Candidate in Earth System Science at UC Irvine, studying climate change impacts on ecosystems in the Western US. Climate Change Impacts on California Ecosystems https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-18-21-UC-Irvine-Climate-Change-Impacts-on-California-Ecosystems.mp3 The impacts of climate change are becoming more obvious than ever, especially for those of us in the Western US. Just in the past few weeks we've been experiencing record-breaking heat waves, continued extreme drought, and an early and intense start to the summer wildfire season. I'm part of a group of scientists who are studying these types of climate impacts on ecosystems, and making projections into the future based on future climate scenarios. In a recent publication we've quantified something particularly concerning about climate change, which is how it may thwart our ability to fight it in the first place. That's because many climate mitigation strategies rely in part on ecosystems being able to remove some of our carbon emissions from the atmosphere. However, as temperatures rise and rainfall patterns change, those ecosystems (especially forests) might have a harder time taking up carbon in places like California. We've compared several modeling approaches and are confident that rising temperature in particular will lead to a net loss of forest carbon in California, making the State's goal of increased forest carbon more difficult to achieve. Some parts of the state, like the foothills of the Sierras and the northern coasts, are particularly vulnerable and probably shouldn't be relied upon to store more carbon in the coming decades. Some of these lands are even designated as forest carbon offset projects, where landowners are being paid with the expectation that their forests will continue taking up carbon and offsetting emissions elsewhere. Given what we've found about climate vulnerabilities of ecosystems in California, we suggest that land management strategies focus on protecting existing forest carbon – through things like forest thinning, prescribed burns, and Indigenous stewardship of land – while more emphasis is placed on reducing our carbon emissions in the first place. The post Shane Coffield, University of California, Irvine – Climate Change Impacts on California Ecosystems appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Shane Coffield, University of California, Irvine – Climate Change Impacts on California Ecosystems

Ken McLeod, Binghamton University – Stay Warm to Stay Healthy

On Binghamton University Week: Going back to the office can be challenging. Ken McLeod, Professor of Systems Science, explores. Dr. McLeod received his Ph.D. from MIT in the field of biomedical engineering. Following a post-doctoral fellowship in Anatomy and Cell Biology at Tufts University he became a Professor of Orthopaedics at Stony Brook University where he co-founded the Musculo-Skeletal Research Labs as well as the Graduate Program in Biomedical Engineering. In 2002 he was recruited to Binghamton University as Founding Chairman of the Department of Bioengineering. He holds over 25 patents in the healthcare field and is a founder of more than a dozen healthcare ventures. Stay Warm to Stay Healthy https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-15-21-Binghamton-Stay-Warm-to-Stay-Healthy.mp3 With the majority of Americans now vaccinated against COVID-19, many who have been worked from home over the past year or so are now heading back into the office. Adjusting to new routines is challenging, but it can also affect our health and wellness. As a biomedical engineer, I study how physical factors influence human health. This includes electromagnetic fields, gravitational forces, and thermal effects. My colleagues and I have shown that living, or working, in too cool an environment, for extended time periods, can result in depressed core body temperature. Low core body temperatures affect how fast you can burn calories and so commonly leads to weight gain. As importantly, low core body temperature prevents your immune system from functionally efficiently, putting you at much greater risk of succumbing to a cold, flu, or other infection. This is why changing your physical environment can substantially alter the way your body works – and impact both your health and fitness. If you're gaining weight and aren't sure why, or regularly catching colds or the flu, check the thermostat where you live or work. Most offices tend to be kept near 70 F, a reasonable temperature if you are quite active in your job, but not so reasonable if you are sitting all day in front of a computer. There is a good reason why so many of your co-workers are always complaining about being cold. But it's not just uncomfortable; it's not healthy. The "correct" room temperature is where you are comfortable: not too hot, not too cold. That's generally between 72 F and 81 F at moderate humidity, but may range as low as 65 F or as high as 85 F. If you don't have control over the thermostat, thanks to new technologies you still have a variety of options besides wearing a coat all day. But however you achieve it, do your best to stay comfortably warm in your workplace. The post Ken McLeod, Binghamton University – Stay Warm to Stay Healthy appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Ken McLeod, Binghamton University – Stay Warm to Stay Healthy

Wille Eggleston, Binghamton University – Reducing Opioid Overdose Deaths

William Eggleston, Clinical Assistant Professor for Pharmacy Practice, School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, Thursday, August 3, 2017. On Binghamton University Week: We already have the tools to fight the opioid crisis. Wille Eggleston, assistant professor of pharmacy practice, says we just need to use them better to reduce deaths. Dr. Eggleston is currently an assistant professor and director of the Opioid Research Center for Central New York at the Binghamton University School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. His research focuses on finding strategies that expand access to life saving resources and reduce the harms of opioid use. Reducing Opioid Overdose Deaths https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-14-21-Binghamton-Reducing-Opioid-Overdose-Deaths.mp3 More than 130 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which also notes that the number of overdose deaths involving opioids — including prescription opioids, heroin and illicitly manufactured fentanyl — more than doubled from 2010 to 2019. We have found that by increasing access to resources that reduce opioid harms, like the overdose antidote naloxone and the evidence-based medication buprenorphine, we can decrease the number of overdose deaths. That's why we are working to expand the use of naloxone — a nasal spray designed to rapidly reverse an opioid overdose — and increase public awareness of its benefits. We know there are a lot of people in the U.S. who use opioids every day, and some of those people are at higher risk for unintentional overdose. The idea behind harm reduction is – we have an antidote that reverses overdose and prevents death – we need to make sure people have access to it before something bad happens, not after. So I'm studying things like which type of training should we give to members of the community? What is the best way to distribute naloxone? Can naloxone training change perceptions and reduce stigma? A big part of education is making people aware of what are the things that increase the risk of an overdose and the consequences of not treating an overdose right away. I try to highlight these risks so people can better understand why access to naloxone is so important. If we can change perceptions and reduce stigma, I think that is a major first-step toward getting people access to naloxone, buprenorphine, or whatever other resources they need. The post Wille Eggleston, Binghamton University – Reducing Opioid Overdose Deaths appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Wille Eggleston, Binghamton University – Reducing Opioid Overdose Deaths

Amber Simpson, Binghamton University – Fostering Failure in STEM

On Binghamton University Week: Failure can be an important learning tool. Amber Simpson, assistant professor in the department of teaching, learning and educational leadership, examines failure in STEM fields. Amber Simpson is an Assistant Professor of Mathematics Education at Binghamton University. She received her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction in Mathematics Education from Clemson University in 2015. Her central research focus is to increase the number of historically marginalized individuals entering and persisting in pathways toward STEM advanced degrees and careers, including technicians and other middle-skills workers, as well as supporting learners of all ages to reach their potential as STEM citizens. This is accomplished through three lines of research: (1) examine individual's identity(ies) in one or more STEM disciplines, (2) understanding and advocating for out-of-school learning environments and activities to support the mathematical learning and developmental practices of youth and adolescents and (3) investigating family engagement in and interactions around STEM-related activities. In addition, Dr. Simpson often offers service-learning courses to involve undergraduate students in the development and implementation of STEM-related making and tinkering programs with youth and/or families. These opportunities have served as a form of professional growth as an informal educator and an informal teacher educator. Fostering Failure in STEM https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-13-21-Binghamton-Fostering-Failure-in-STEM.mp3 Encouraging youth to experiment — and fail — through STEM projects in an informal learning space is a powerful experience. We've seen this process and the learning that results from it play out over and over in a variety of settings. Science, technology, engineering and math present a landscape abundant with opportunities to theorize, experiment, fail and then start the process again, especially as these fields increasingly shape the world around us, both in professional spaces and everyday life. Makerspaces — collaborative workspaces where people work together on projects using both high-, low-, and no-tech tools — have become increasingly popular in recent years. Right now, we are working to improve makerspace learning for youths and help them find productive support during moments of failure. To do this, I often work with undergraduate students to develop and implement making workshops and programs within the community. We've worked with a local library to develop a project in which we spent one night a week helping youths make remote controls using Makey Makey invention kits that provide hands-on lessons on circuitry and conductivity — and then built video games using an online program that introduced basic coding. It's shifting undergraduate students own mindset about failure and what education can look like, But it takes time. It's really hard for them to start to wrap their heads around the idea that school could actually be like this. In addition, we are finding that if you can allow youth to express interest in STEM early, and maintain and foster that through the home environment, they're more likely to enter a STEM field, which is crucial. The post Amber Simpson, Binghamton University – Fostering Failure in STEM appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Amber Simpson, Binghamton University – Fostering Failure in STEM

Jennifer Wegmann, Binghamton University – Stress-Enhancing Mindset

On Binghamton University Week: Stress is an everyday fact of life. Jennifer Wegmann, lecturer in Health and Wellness studies department, explores how to fight back. Dr. Jennifer Wegmann is a lecturer in the Decker School of Nursing, Department of Health and Wellness Studies at Binghamton University. She teaches various classes, including Stress Management, Contemporary Health Issues, and Women's Wellness. She was just awarded the prestigious Chancellor's Awarded for Excellence in Teaching, and in 2012, Princeton Review named Wegmann one of the top 300 professors in the country. Wegmann's current research focuses on the influence stress mindset has on relationships between personality, stress appraisal, and college student well-being. She is passionate about increasing awareness as it relates to healthy living. Her audiobook Resilience: How to Master Stress, Reduce Anxiety, and Live Well, works to help listeners develop a new, informed mindset about stress. After two decades of teaching and research, she has seen first-hand how people struggle with stress in their lives. She has made it her mission to help individuals manage their stressors effectively and use their stress to be more productive and healthier. Stress-Enhancing Mindset https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-12-21-Binghamton-Stress-Enhancing-Mindset.mp3 It's no secret that stress can impact you negatively, but what if you could use stress to your advantage? Not only do I teach students how to cope with stressors and avoid creating unwanted stress but just as importantly I teach how to utilize stress in a positive way. We teach our classes with a stress-is-enhancing mindset focus. We're taking a different approach to stress because we all know the horrible things that stress can do; though, research also shows that stress can be positive and there are benefits to it. My teachings differ from other stress-management techniques since we don't focus on stopping stress, but teach students to use stress to their advantage and manage stress in a way that makes them more productive. This creates what we call resilience. It's not a traditional stress-management course in that we're not focusing on eliminating stress or reducing stress through techniques like yoga, But, we cultivate resilience through thinking about the ways we cope and how we can change our mindset. Through student cooperation, we have shown that students could inspire change over the course of a semester, and then had the empirical evidence to back the hypothesis up. By looking at this evidence we have developed a list of tips for mastering stress that anyone could benefit from. These include.... Adopt a new mindset Take physical action Manage your time and Use your resources When you change your attitude about stress, you have the opportunity to change the outcomes of the stress in your life. You can be happier, healthier and more productive; not in spite of your stress but through your stress. You can be the captain of your own ship. The post Jennifer Wegmann, Binghamton University – Stress-Enhancing Mindset appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Jennifer Wegmann, Binghamton University – Stress-Enhancing Mindset

Guy German, Binghamton University – What UV is What You Get: Understanding How The Sun Dam...

On Binghamton University Week: A dose of Vitamin D sounds great after spending so much time indoors. Guy German, associate professor of biomedical engineering, reminds us to take care of our skin in the sun. Dr. Guy German received his combined Bachelors and Masters degree in Astrophysics from the University of Edinburgh, UK, in 1999, a Masters degree in Aerospace Dynamics, with a specialisation in Aerodynamics, from Cranfield University, UK, in 2001, and his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Edinburgh in 2009. Between 2001 and 2003, Dr. German worked as as an aerodynamicist & trans-national task leader of blended wing aircraft aerodynamic design at Airbus. Between 2003 and 2006, he worked as a senior engineering consultant for I.D.E.A.S Ltd. in Glasgow, UK. Dr. German completed his postdoctoral training in the department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science at Yale University with Dr. Eric Dufresne between 2009 and 2012. In 2013, he joined the faculty at Binghamton University as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering. His research focuses on understanding and controlling the mechanics and function of soft biological tissues; in particular tissue barriers. Current projects funded both by cosmetic industry grants and an National Science Foundation CAREER award explore the mechanopathology of bacterial skin infections, and the impact of environmental conditions, ageing, cosmetic products, and UV photodamage on the composition, structure, and integrity of human skin. Recently, he has received NSF funding to explore how ultraviolet radiation can kill COVID-19 and disinfect critical personal protection masks and gowns for reuse by medical staff. Dr. German has courtesy appointments in Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences and the Materials Science and Engineering Program. In 2019, he was promoted to Associate Professor. Currently he is the director of graduate studies for the department. What UV is What You Get: Understanding How The Sun Damages Your Skin https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-11-21-Binghamton-What-UV-Is-What-You-Get-Understanding-How-the-Sun-Damages-Your-Skin.mp3 Human skin is the body's first line of protection, and we need it. Skin acts as a physical, chemical, and microbial barrier. It also helps regulate temperature and enables mechanoreception: the ability to sense touch. My research explores how aging, ultraviolet light from the Sun, and bacteria weaken skin, cause wrinkles and increase the risk of skin rupture. The results will provide a better understanding of the biomechanical aging process, the onset of skin diseases that are caused by bacteria in the skin microbiome, and new approaches to cosmetic and drug based transdermal delivery. For example, even if you did your best to prevent it, chances are you will suffer from some kind of sunburn this summer. Covering yourself in sunscreen and limiting your time outdoors can protect only so much. So we wanted to know, what kind of ultraviolet radiation is the worst for skin? And how exactly does the sun damage it? What we found was that UV weakens the bonds between cells in the stratum corneum – the outermost layer of skin. These bonds help the cells to remain cohesive. That's why sunburn leads to skin peeling. This damage relates directly to the amount of UV absorbed by the skin. My research highlights that Sun overexposure not only can cause skin cancers, it also can mechanically degrade your skin, resulting in skin damage, increased likelihood of infection, and premature signs of ageing. The most important takeaway for now is that skin protection is important, no matter what season of the year it is: We're trying to push the message to use sun protection not just to prevent skin cancer, but also to prevent photoaging. The post Guy German, Binghamton University – What UV is What You Get: Understanding How The Sun Damages Your Skin appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Guy German, Binghamton University – What UV is What You Get: Understanding How The Sun Dam...

Michael Kurtz, Lycoming College – Weekend Feeding Programs Can Boost Children's Educational Outcomes

It's hard to learn on an empty stomach. Michael Kurtz, associate professor of economics at Lycoming College, examines one way to rectify this for disadvantaged children. Michael Kurtz's primary research interest is in education economics. Specifically, he studies how to measure teaching effectiveness and how those measures can be used to their full potential without overstating the inference gained. His research on education intersects with health economics with his work on understanding how weekend nutrition affects scholastic outcomes such as test scores, absences and behavioral incidents. Weekend Feeding Programs Can Boost Children's Educational Outcomes https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-08-21-Lycoming-Weekend-Feeding-Programs-Can-Boost-Childrens-Educational-Outcomes-1.mp3 Weekend feeding or "BackPack" programs that provide food to children have grown dramatically in recent years, but their impacts on educational outcomes have not been studied. My team and I have new research that provides the first evidence of the effects of weekend feeding programs on academic performance in the form of increased end of grade test scores. Our study combined administrative student data on test scores and absences in Northwest North Carolina elementary schools with primary data gathered from a foodbank about the number of participating children. We observed how economically disadvantaged students performed on end of grade tests, both before and after the BackPack program was introduced to a school. After controlling for student and school characteristics known to impact test scores, such as the student to teacher ratio, we compared the economically disadvantaged students to non-disadvantaged students in the same school and to disadvantaged students who attended schools that did not get the benefit of the Backpack program. Specifically, we measured the impact in standard deviations and found a sizable .09 increase in reading scores for economically disadvantaged students at BackPack schools and suggestive evidence of similar beneficial effect for math scores. This magnitude is comparable to those found for other nutritional interventions like expansion of school breakfast programs. These effects are large enough to substantially reduce the performance gap experienced by economically disadvantaged students and appear strongest for the younger primary school students, around third grade, and weaker performing students. This study provides strong evidence that expansion of these programs could be a cost-effective way to not only reduce childhood food insecurity but also improve scholastic outcomes for the neediest students. The post Michael Kurtz, Lycoming College – Weekend Feeding Programs Can Boost Children's Educational Outcomes appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Michael Kurtz, Lycoming College – Weekend Feeding Programs Can Boost Children's Educational Outcomes

Sahar Milani, St. Lawrence University – Promoting Innovation through Policy

How much should we invest in innovation in companies? Sahar Milani, associate professor of economics at St. Lawrence University, examines this question. Dr. Sahar Milani is an Associate Professor of Economics at St. Lawrence University. She completed her Ph.D. in economics at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Before beginning graduate work in economics, she earned a master's degree in management science at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee and a bachelor's degree in finance at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Her research interests include the economics of innovation, environmental economics, and macroeconomics. Promoting Innovation through Policy https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-07-21-St.-Lawrence-Promoting-Innovation-through-Policy.mp3 Effective environmental policies and intellectual property laws can facilitate technological advances. Technology in part drives economic growth, but nations tend to underinvest in innovation. Firms that develop new technologies create benefits for others while incurring all of the costs. So, without policy intervention, there is a lack of incentive to invent. Stringent environmental policies encourage industries to produce pollution control devices to help comply with regulations at a lower cost. Countries must strike a balance between regulatory costs and benefits. Pollution intensive industries may relocate to another country to simply avoid regulatory costs. In a cross-country study, I found that industries with investments in buildings and structures innovate more when faced with environmental regulations because the alternative, relocation, becomes more expensive. Scientists in different countries can collaborate to create higher quality inventions while sharing costs. In a global patent study, I found that countries with similar market-based environmental policies, such as carbon taxes, are more likely to collaborate on renewable energy patents. My research suggests that flexible environmental policy coordination is important for encouraging energy research. Inventing a new technology is both expensive and uncertain, making it difficult to obtain financing. Patent laws help guarantee that inventors will be able to profit from their inventions, providing a positive signal to banks and future creditors. I found that patent protection raises R&D in high-patent industries where countries have more limited equity and credit markets. Essentially, my work indicates that innovation happens more often in nations and industries that are encouraged by national policies. The post Sahar Milani, St. Lawrence University – Promoting Innovation through Policy appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Sahar Milani, St. Lawrence University – Promoting Innovation through Policy

Charlotte Alexander, Georgia State University – Sorry (Not Sorry) Decoding #MeToo Defenses

The #MeToo Movement has made a dent, but there is still work to do in our culture. Charlotte Alexander, associate professor of legal analytics at Georgia State University, delves into what the next steps should be. Charlotte S. Alexander is an associate professor of legal analytics at Georgia State University's Robinson College of Business and director of its Legal Analytics Lab, which is a joint initiative with the Robinson College of Business the university's College of Law. Alexander is a recipient of the Distinguished Early Career Faculty Award from the Academy of Legal Studies in Business in 2016 and was also named to the Fastcase 50 list of Legal Innovators. Prior to her academic career, Alexander worked as an employment lawyer and represented women facing discrimination and harassment on the job. Sorry (Not Sorry) Decoding #MeToo Defenses https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-06-21-Georgia-State-Sorry-Not-Sorry-Decoding-MeToo-Defenses.mp3 Harassment scandals continue to make headline news since the #MeToo movement picked up steam in 2017 with a tweet from Alyssa Milano. My research looks at sexual harassment in the workplace and assesses the #MeToo movement's progress in holding individual perpetrators to account and in achieving structural change. My team used text analysis to study 219 statements made by public figures accused of sexual harassment, including Michael Bloomberg and Harvey Weinstein in the wake of the #MeToo movement. Key findings include the fact that statements contain more angry defenses and denials than admissions, and apologies appear in only one-third of statements. Additionally, public statements tend to contain more anger, defensiveness and denial than admissions. And many statements rely on defenses such as "times have changed," "just joking" and "I grew up in the '60s and '70s" in lieu of taking accountability. I conclude that although the movement has made progress, there is still a need for structural change to overcome the normalization of sexual harassment in the workplace. My analysis revealed a lack of understanding of what counts as workplace sexual harassment under the law; to move forward, organizations and society at large must work toward communal definitions of acceptable workplace conduct. It also has implications for employers' training programs, reporting and compliant procedures, and hiring and retention policies. Further, we must be aware that the more power a person wields in the workplace, the more difficult it may be to step outside one's own position and empathize with victims. The future of the #MeToo movement depends on systemic change: If we don't change the system that has produced, nurtured and validated bad actors' behavior, it will continue to reproduce and recreate bad actors. The post Charlotte Alexander, Georgia State University – Sorry (Not Sorry) Decoding #MeToo Defenses appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Charlotte Alexander, Georgia State University – Sorry (Not Sorry) Decoding #MeToo Defenses

Mike Piero, Cuyahoga Community College – Studying Video Games as Culture

Video games are ingrained in our culture. Today on The Academic Minute: Mike Piero, professor of English at Cuyahoga Community College, examines how to study them in a cultural fashion. Mike Piero, Ph.D. is a Professor of English at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, OH, where is specializes in game studies, postmodernist studies, critical theory, and J.M. Coetzee studies. He is co-editor of Being Dragonborn: Critical Essay on The Elder Scrolls V:Skyrim (McFarland, 2021) and has published recently in Eludamos: Journal for Computer Game Culture, The Popular Culture Studies Journal, MediaTropes, Transnational Literature, and in various edited collections. He teaches courses in writing, game studies, British literature, and the humanities. He can be reached at www.mikepiero.org. Studying Video Games as Culture https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-05-21-Cuyahoga-CC-Studying-Video-Games-as-Culture.mp3 From arcades to esports arenas, LAN parties to online play, video games have arguably become the dominant entertainment medium of the twenty-first century. And for the past 30 years at least, a variety of academic disciplines ranging from English, communications, and the humanities to computer science, economics, and game design have been studying this new medium and how players interact with games and with each other. One area of games studies that I'm actively involved in is one that studies video games as complex cultural artifacts. In other words, we analyze games through various methods and interpretive lenses as communicating powerful norms, ideologies, and values through the combination of games' narratives, images, mechanics, industrial influences, interfaces, sounds, and material peripherals. It's, indeed, a rich landscape of study. Part of my ongoing research in game studies, for example, involves studying how repetitions of video game timespace call back to older forms of media—literature and film, especially—and encode specific dominant norms that are often racist, heteronormative, misogynistic, ableist, or otherwise not inclusive of the diverse array of people who make up the international gaming community. In this way, my research directs scholars and students alike to "read" games like texts. Players become 'player-readers' who make meaning of games as they play in critical ways. These critical gaming literacies are increasingly important given the reach that video games now have in global cultures. The post Mike Piero, Cuyahoga Community College – Studying Video Games as Culture appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Mike Piero, Cuyahoga Community College – Studying Video Games as Culture

Joe Cobbs, Northern Kentucky University – The Rage and Riches of Rivalry

Rivalries are important for the business of sports. Joe Cobbs, professor of sports business and event management at Northern Kentucky University, determines why some teams bring out fans' passion, but others do not. Dr. Cobbs studies interorganizational collaboration and competition in major spectator sports. His research focused on corporate sponsorship in Formula One (F1) racing was recognized in 2015 and 2017 by the American Marketing Association as Papers of the Year. In 2013, he co-founded the Know Rivalry Project with Dr. David Tyler at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The project emphasizes faculty-student-professional collaboration to survey, interview, and otherwise measure sport fan feelings and behaviors toward their favorite team's opponents. The project website, www.KnowRivalry.com, displays fan survey results for teams across the United States and Canada, and the survey data collection now includes sport leagues in Europe, Asia, and Australia. Dr. Cobbs has a B.S. in marketing and finance from Miami (OH) University, an M.A. in sport management from The Ohio State University, and a Ph.D. in management from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. The Rage and Riches of Rivalry https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/10-04-21-Northern-Kentucky-The-Rage-and-Riches-of-Rivalry.mp3 "Yan-kees Suck!.... Yan-kees Suck! ... Yan-kees Suck!" If you have ever attended a Red Sox baseball game at Fenway Park you have probably heard this chant from Boston fans... even when the Red Sox's opponent is...say, the Tampa Bay Rays and NOT the New York Yankees. Why do some opponents—such as the Yankees—produce such a rage in fans, while others—such as the Rays—are practically ignored? Understanding the ingredients to rivalry is important because rivals' animosity often translates to peak attention in the form of high ticket sales and broadcast viewership—adding to the riches of the sport's investors. This anti-social yet pro-demand dichotomy of rivalry creates a dilemma. We don't want fighting in the bleachers, but we love the drama. Ongoing research from the Know Rivalry Project has begun to illuminate a resolution by dissecting the 3 categories of ingredients that commonly result in fans' perception of rivalry: the conditions of conflict, strong similarities, and deep differences. When perceptions of intergroup rivalry are driven by the conflict condition of competitive parity or strong similarity in values, rivalry can act in a prosocial nature resulting in respect for the opponent. However, when perceptions of rivalry are driven by the deep differences of disparate values or discrimination by authorities, rivalry often perpetuates antisocial outcomes such as prejudice toward rival fans, which is further exacerbated when your perceived rival fails to reciprocate your recognition of the rivalry. So the next time you see a baseball game involving the Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays, keep in mind that the Yankees are also present, if only in the minds of Boston and Tampa Bay fans. The post Joe Cobbs, Northern Kentucky University – The Rage and Riches of Rivalry appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Joe Cobbs, Northern Kentucky University – The Rage and Riches of Rivalry

Catherine Golden, Skidmore College – The Victorian Age Beyond Masterpiece Theater

The Victorian Age has a standard portrayal on TV. Catherine Golden, professor of English at Skidmore College, delves into the myths and realities. Catherine J. Golden is professor of English and the Tisch Chair in Arts and Letters at Skidmore College. She is author of Serials to Graphic Novels: The Evolution of the Victorian Illustrated Book (2017), Posting It: The Victorian Revolution in Letter Writing (2009), and Images of the Woman Reader in Victorian British and American Fiction (2003). She is editor or coeditor of five additional books on topics ranging from Charlotte Perkins Gilman to Victorian illustration, literature, and culture and a regular contributor to Illustration Magazine, a British arts journal, and The Victorian Web. The Victorian Age Beyond Masterpiece Theater https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/10-01-21-Skidmore-The-Victorian-Age-Beyond-Masterpiece-Theater.mp3 "The Victorians are still with us," notes historian A. N. Wilson in 2002. Queen Victoria has entered modern media through the PBS miniseries Victoria and recent films including Victoria and Abdul. Bridgerton and Autumn de Wilde's Emma with colorblind casting and modern music revive the Regency period but are often mistakenly called Victorian. So what exactly does "Victorian" mean? The term refers to the reign of Queen Victoria, 1837 to 1901. But to many scholars, the "Victorian" age begins with the expansive Reform Act of 1832 and lasts until the onset of WWI. Dualities, extremes, and contradictions characterize the term "Victorian" and the era. We cherish antiquated notions of Victorians as sin-obsessed, dignified, and tight-laced, but Queen Victoria oversaw a vastly changing nation. An agrarian England increasingly became urban and industrial. Population and literacy soared as did prosperity, reforms, self-help, and science. With industrialization came poverty, starvation, and child labor. In this era of Jack the Ripper, we find epidemic disease, imperialism, and lots of dirt. "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"—as Dickens famously notes in A Tale of Two Cities. Thackeray also captures the Victorian paradox in The Roundabout Papers, writing: "We are of the time of chivalry . . . We are of the age of steam." We imagine genteel Victorian ladies in parlors with lace curtains sipping tea from hand-painted china teacups. But these same Victorians invented the postage stamp, the train, the telegraph, and the telephone. "Victorian" means the beginning of the modern world. The post Catherine Golden, Skidmore College – The Victorian Age Beyond Masterpiece Theater appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Catherine Golden, Skidmore College – The Victorian Age Beyond Masterpiece Theater

Frank Dukes, University of Virginia – Transformation at James Madison's Montpelier

Change is coming to many historical institutions as we grapple with our nation's past. Frank Dukes, distinguished institute fellow and lecturer at the University of Virginia, explores one such transformation. Frank Dukes, Ph.D. is a mediator and facilitator with the Institute for Engagement & Negotiation at the University of Virginia. He has mediated numerous collaborative change processes, including negotiations involving communities impacted by the 2014 Duke Energy coal ash release and work with Appalachian communities undergoing economic transition. He founded University & Community Action for Racial Equity (UCARE) to address UVA's legacy of slavery and white supremacy, leads IEN's "Transforming Community Spaces" project helping communities transform problematic spaces, led community engagement as a member of the design team for UVA's Memorial to Enslaved Laborers, and was a member of Charlottesville's Commission on Race, Memorials and Public Spaces determining the fate of the City's Confederate statues. He was awarded the 2016 John C. Casteen III Diversity-Equity-Inclusion Award for the University of Virginia, and the 2012 Sharon M. Pickett Award for Environmental Conflict Resolution. He has served as chair of UVA's Women's Center Advisory Board and is currently chair of the Board of the anti-hate group Not In Our Town. Transformation at James Madison's Montpelier https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/09-30-21-Virginia-Transformation-at-James-Madisons-Montpelier.mp3 On June 18, 2021, the day before Juneteenth, a less heralded but related event took place involving Montpelier, the former home of James Madison and some 300+ enslaved individuals. The Montpelier Foundation board, the Montpelier Descendants Committee, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, who own the property managed by the Foundation, issued a press release about a Board vote, quote: "... based on a proposal from the Descendants, to approve bylaws to establish equality with the Montpelier Descendants Committee in the governance of James Madison's Montpelier, the home of the fourth president and 'Father of the Constitution.'" end quote This agreement was reached with mediation support from myself and Selena Cozart. Our role included confidential interviews and virtual meetings with key parties; facilitation of multiple meetings of a Board Working Group; and a hybrid in-person and virtual facilitated session with the Montpelier board, senior Montpelier staff, and members of the Montpelier Descendants Committee. This last session was key in building new relationships, breaking down barriers of understanding, and laying the groundwork for the successful vote to share power. This agreement is already serving as a model – and a wake-up call – for other institutions associated with slavery. This will mark the first time that the descendants of those enslaved on a former plantation will assume shared power and authority in determining how that institution represents its story – what they are calling "Whole Truth History." As the chair of the Descendants Committee, James French, noted, the enslaved African-American population outnumbered the white Madison family by more than 10 to 1, meaning that James Madison himself was raised within an African-American community setting. The stories that Montpelier will be telling will now be more complicated, more intriguing, more authentic, and more revealing of the real history of this nation. The post Frank Dukes, University of Virginia – Transformation at James Madison's Montpelier appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Frank Dukes, University of Virginia – Transformation at James Madison's Montpelier

Khalil Ramadi, NYU Abu Dhabi – Zapping the Gut

A new option for treatment could be on the way for your hospital stay. Khalil Ramadi, assistant professor of bioengineering at NYU Abu Dhabi, discusses. Prof. Khalil Ramadi is an Assistant Professor of Bioengineering and Director of the Laboratory for Advanced Neuroengineering and Translational Medicine at New York University (NYU) Abu Dhabi. His work focuses on developing new tools and technologies for treatment a variety of neurologic, endocrine, and immune disorders. For this work, Prof. Ramadi has been named a TED junior fellow and MIT Technology Review Innovator Under 35 (MENA), and received multiple honors including the NIH F32 Ruth Kirschstein Postdoctoral Fellowship, BMES Career Development Award, and a NASA Aeronautics Scholarship. He holds a Ph.D. in Biomedical Engineering and Medical Physics from MIT, a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from MIT, and B.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Bioengineering from the Pennsylvania State University. Zapping the Gut https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/09-29-21-NYU-Abu-Dhabi-Zapping-the-Gut.mp3 If you walk into a hospital today, chances are you will most likely walk out with medications or have a procedure like surgery. These two toolkits are the workhorses of medicine. My lab seeks to develop a third toolkit that is less invasive than surgery and with fewer side-effects than medicine. We develop electronic pills for neuromodulation. For many years, neuromodulation has been used to treat various disorders of the nervous system. The nervous system is a complex set of circuits. Disorders usually occur because one node in these circuits is malfunctioning. Neuromodulation techniques involved poking wires into heads and limbs and zapping with magnetic or electrical pulses. This approach was much like trying to fix a pipe leak by renovating the entire building. A new therapy we are developing could treat neurologic disorders with an electronic pill. These pills contain micro-devices that deliver bionudges, or little bursts of electrical stimuli, to the gut. The gut has the second largest number of neurons after our brain. Our electronic pills can be designed to reside in the gut for days to weeks, delivering bionudges to neurons. By stimulating various points with bionudges of different shape and strength, we can control appetite, influence digestion, regulate hormones, and potentially even control emotions. Picture a pill that does not have drugs or chemicals in it. Instead, there are electronics and microdevices that deliver bursts of energy. It can treat Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, diabetes, or obesity without any chronic drugs and completely noninvasively. No side-effects, no drill, no surgery, no hospital stay. Read More: https://www.khalilramadi.com/ https://www.ramadilab.com/ [TED] – Electronic Pills That Could Transform How We Treat Disease The post Khalil Ramadi, NYU Abu Dhabi – Zapping the Gut appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Khalil Ramadi, NYU Abu Dhabi – Zapping the Gut

Allison BrckaLorenz, Indiana University Bloomington – Motivating Teaching Excellence and S...

What contributes to a motivated teaching environment in higher education? Allison BrckaLorenz, associate research scientist at Indiana University Bloomington, explores her findings. Allison BrckaLorenz, Ph.D. is the director of the College + University Teaching Environments, project manager for the Faculty Survey of Student Engagement, and a research analyst for the National Survey of Student Engagement. In her work at the Center for Postsecondary Research, she helps people use data to make improvements on their campuses, uses data to highlight the experiences of traditionally marginalized subpopulations, and provides professional development opportunities and mentoring to graduate students. Her research interests focus on the teaching and learning of college students and the accompanying issues faced by faculty, the socialization of graduate students, and the experiences of small and understudied populations. Motivating Teaching Excellence and Supporting Diverse Faculty https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/09-28-21-Indiana-Motivating-Teaching-Excellence-and-Supporting-Diverse-Faculty.mp3 Despite its potential as a place for transformative change, inequities and discrimination are built into the systems and structures of higher education. Whether it is the growing vulnerability of contingent faculty, managing cultural taxation for faculty of color, or facing gender bias in course evaluations, there are systemic issues that prevent faculty from doing their best work as educators. Environmental or diversity studies are often done locally or in response to a specific issue, obscuring what we know about these issues as a field. A better understanding of faculty needs for teaching can help institutions and the field of higher education dismantle these systems that prevent or demotivate faculty from delivering high-quality education. I hope my new project, the College + University Teaching Environments model, can help with that. Guided by the literature on faculty climates and cultures, this model covers five key aspects that contribute to a positive and motivational teaching environment: faculty perceptions of institutional support for diversity, teaching processes and policies, teaching values and support from colleagues, access to teaching resources, and feelings of respect, belonging, and motivation. In the fall 2021 semester, we will survey faculty and other instructional staff across the country to assist institutions in finding actionable ways to improve faculty teaching environments. The data can also identify groups of faculty who may be experiencing inequitable treatment. In the 2020 pilot, faculty responded to the survey as they prepared for teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic. This data gave institutions opportunities to better support their faculty in uncertain times. Ultimately, I hope that this project helps institutions support their faculty in ways they may not have thought of before, both as educators and as human beings. Read More: College + University Teaching Environment Survey The post Allison BrckaLorenz, Indiana University Bloomington – Motivating Teaching Excellence and Supporting Diverse Faculty appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Allison BrckaLorenz, Indiana University Bloomington – Motivating Teaching Excellence and S...

Amy Lueck, Santa Clara University – English Professors Study More Than Books

English professors don't always have their nose in a book. Amy Lueck, associate professor of rhetoric and composition at Santa Clara University, explains. Amy J. Lueck is Associate Professor of English at Santa Clara University, where her research and teaching focus on histories of rhetorical instruction and practice, women's rhetorics, feminist historiography, and digital public memory. Her book, A Shared History: Writing in the High School, College, and University, 1856-1886 (SIU Press 2020), brings together several of these research threads, interrogating the ostensible high school-college divide and the role it has played in shaping writing instruction in the U.S. Her more recent research attends increasingly to the rhetorics and politics of space, including virtual space, in history and remembrance. English Professors Study More Than Books https://academicminute.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/09-27-21-Santa-Clara-English-Professors-Study-More-than-Books.mp3 People are often surprised to hear that, as an English professor, I don't study literature. Instead, I study a range of everyday texts and genres. Even more specifically (and perhaps surprisingly), I study places–the ways they are experienced and lived, represented discursively, and remembered. This hasn't always been what I do; my first book was on rhetorical education in the nineteenth century and the relationship between high schools and colleges then and into the present. But I realized later that that book was also always about a place: it was about the site of the school, how it is itself conceptualized, experienced, and remembered. My research now is focused on other sites of rhetoric and remembrance, including San Jose's famous Winchester Mystery House and my own university's campus, which is also the ancient Native Ohlone village site of Thamien. In both cases, I examine the ways the sites have been discursively and materially constructed as sites of history that subtly (and not-so-subtly) exclude and marginalize some populations. I ask: how do signs celebrating the Spanish mission on our campus also serve to erase the Native history of the village of Thamien, and perpetuate the ongoing erasure of BIPOC experiences in our classrooms today? How might an emphasis on mystery—on haunting and ghosts and the supposed insanity of a woman like Sarah Winchester—serve to undermine counterstories of women's historical agency, and their ongoing struggles for equal representation in the US? Academic research can help us to see everyday sites through different lenses. Rhetorical work like mine can also show how studying a subject like "English" entails attention to a much more diverse array of research topics and texts than just the "Literary Greats." The whole world is a text, and rhetoric and public memory research helps remind us that all of us play a role in writing it. Read More: [Southern Illinois University Press] – A Shared History Official Website of the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe of the San Francisco Bay Area Virtual Walking Tour Winchester Mystery House The post Amy Lueck, Santa Clara University – English Professors Study More Than Books appeared first on The Academic Minute.

Amy Lueck, Santa Clara University – English Professors Study More Than Books