News from around IU

Jan. 11, 2017

Outdoor warning sirens to sound more often during testing

The outdoor warning sirens in Monroe County are now being tested at noon and 7 p.m. on the first Friday of each month, instead of just once on testing day. The evening test will allow emergency management officials to better check both the primary and secondary systems.

Warning siren


When tested, the sirens are activated for 30 seconds, unlike during real scenarios when they sound for five minutes. During the tests, voice messages also can be heard on the six warning systems on the IU Bloomington campus.

The monthly tests are for the benefit of Monroe County residents and visitors as well as the IU Police Department and Monroe County dispatchers who activate the warning systems.

"Sirens may sound for different reasons in other countries and in other parts of the U.S., so we want to familiarize students, staff and faculty with our alarm systems," said Ken Long, director of IU Emergency Management and Continuity at IU Bloomington. "We also conduct a tornado drill in the spring on all IU campuses."

The outdoor warning systems are most often used to warn of tornado sightings, when a steady siren is issued. For other emergencies, which can include man-made threats such as chemical spills, an undulating siren is issued. Both are designed to alert people who are outside, not indoors, so it's important to use other means to learn of severe weather and other threats.

Receiving IU-Notify emergency alerts by text is the quickest way for IU employees and students to receive emergency information about threats to campus. Sign up online to receive alerts.

University office changes name to LGBTQ+ Culture Center

To reflect the evolving sexual and gender identities of students, IU’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Student Support Services Office has officially changed its name to the LGBTQ+ Culture Center.

The change came about as part of a process that involved input from students, faculty, staff and community partners. IU Bloomington Provost and Executive Vice President Lauren Robel approved the name change following a committee review.

The LGBTQ+ Culture Center, a program within the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs, will retain the same breadth of services and programming for students, including events, group activities, ally training, an extensive library of resources and partnerships with a wide range of campus partners. The center is located close to fellow Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural Affairs’ programs such as La Casa Latino Cultural Center and the First Nations Educational and Cultural Center.

Before the name change, a comprehensive survey was distributed to IU students, staff, faculty and community partners to gain insight into concerns and preferences. The survey was conducted by Jamie Bartzel, LGBTQ+ Culture Center office supervisor, and an IU graduate student.

IU Fleet Services streamlines in-state travel

IU Fleet Services, home of IU Motor Pool, has simplified its vehicle reservations for in-state travelers, which should make the process easier and quicker.

Trips that are solely within Indiana and have no per diem/reimbursements no longer require Trip ID/T-E numbers. To accommodate trips in Indiana, Fleet Services has activated a new in-state usage type within Fleet Commander. The switch decreases the workload for Travel Management Services and Fleet Services staff, and travelers no longer have to enter a TEM document, wait for approvals, then book a rental car in FleetCommander and run the risk of mistyping their Trip ID/TEM number or forgetting to follow up on both systems.

The change is for faculty, staff and students who travel for university business purposes using a Fleet Services rental vehicle. The new process does not change reimbursements, which are processed through Travel Management Services. For trips beyond Indiana, a T-E number will still be required.

More information about Fleet Services and vehicle rental is available online.

Check out perks available to IU Bloomington employees

Find out about deals and discounts for employees on the recently updated IU Bloomington "Employee Perks" page. Employees can take advantage of deals on a variety of services such as car rental, dining, home improvement and technology. Some of the newest information added for the 2016-17 school year includes discounted rates at the IU Tennis Center, IT training, and lodging and dining at the Fourwinds Lakeside Inn and Marina. The "Employee Perks" page is maintained by the Bloomington Professional Council.


Literary scholar Moretti to present Patten Lectures

Franco Moretti, a literary scholar and a leading proponent of digital and computational humanities scholarship, will present two Patten Lectures this month at IU Bloomington.

Moretti, who has audiences both inside and outside the humanities, is the Danily C. and Laura Louise Bell Professor in the Humanities at Stanford University. He is the founder of the Center for the Study of the Novel and founder and director of the Stanford Literary Lab.

Topics for his Patten Lectures will be:

IU scientist joins mentor, collaborator for Nobel Prize events in Sweden

Members of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences -- the organization that awards the Nobel Prize -- honored three experts in the field of molecular machines with one of the highest honors in the field of science and research during a ceremony Dec. 10 in Stockholm, Sweden.

Joining those scientists for a week of scientific talks, formal events and intellectual stimulation were dozens of close collaborators, colleagues and friends. Among them was Amar Flood, a professor in the Indiana University Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Chemistry. Flood attended the activities with his wife and children at the invitation of J. Fraser Stoddart, one of the 2016 Nobel Laureates and a mentor to Flood during his time as a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California at Los Angeles.

IU School of Global and International Studies dean appointed to U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council

President Barack Obama has appointed Lee Feinstein, dean of the IU School of Global and International Studies, to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council.

The U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council is the governing board of trustees for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, the nation’s official memorial to the Holocaust. The museum’s work on genocide and related crimes against humanity is conducted by the Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide and guided by its Committee on Conscience, on which Feinstein also serves.

Online degree programs offered by IU highly ranked by U.S. News and World Report

Online degree programs at IU, particularly those in business, education and nursing, were again ranked among the best in the nation in the 2017 edition of U.S. News and World Report's Best Online Education Program rankings.

Two programs at IU's Kelley School of Business ranked at the top of more than 200 graduate business offerings nationwide. The Kelley Direct online MBA program was ranked third, and Kelley's Master of Science program is again No. 1.

The IU School of Nursing at IUPUI made one of the biggest jumps in U.S. News' rankings of more than 140 online nursing programs, moving more than 20 spots, from 42nd in 2016 to 21st this year. That follows another rise in the rankings from 49th to 42nd a year ago.

The IU School of Education continues to be ranked 22nd for the second straight year. IU Online, the largest provider of online bachelor's degrees to Indiana residents, was ranked 51st.

Geologist named to National Academy of Science methane panel

Maria Mastalerz, a senior scientist with the Indiana Geological Survey and an adjunct associate professor of geological sciences at IU Bloomington, has been named to the National Academy of Science’s Committee on Anthropogenic Methane Emissions in the United States.

The committee will examine approaches to measuring, monitoring, presenting and developing inventories of human-caused emissions of methane to the atmosphere. After assessing the current scientific knowledge, the committee will evaluate approaches used to measure and monitor methane emissions and make recommendations on best methods for developing inventories.

"I am honored to have been chosen to serve on the methane committee," Mastalerz said. "After carbon dioxide, methane is the second most prevalent greenhouse gas emitted in the United States, and so this study is timely and much needed."

Mastalerz’s area of expertise is coal geology, organic petrology and the geochemistry of hydrocarbon source rocks. She has conducted research on coal and kerogen in sedimentary basins of Poland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United States. Her current projects include characterization of Indiana Basin coals, an investigation of coalbed methane potential and CO2 sorption into organic-matter-rich formations, and oil and gas shale characterization.

IU School of Public Health-Bloomington receives grant to study Alzheimer’s disease

IU professor and chair of the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics the IU School of Public Health-Bloomington Ka He -- in partnership with University of Southern California’s Jiu-Chiuan Chen -- recently received a $4 million National Institutes of Health grant to investigate environmental determinants and mechanistic pathways leading to the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias in older women.

He is the principal investigator at IU Bloomington; his group will create a dietary pattern and define the Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurogenerative Delay-- or MIND -- dietary pattern. In addition, He’s team will examine how the dietary pattern relates to geographic disparities in Alzheimer’s disease risk.

"In the newest epidemiological data, we’re seeing that diet may affect a person’s probability of developing Alzheimer’s," He said. "By completing this study, we will work to better understand geographic disparities in Alzheimer’s disease and generate new knowledge about healthy diets that may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s later in life."

Londergan elected fellow to the American Physical Society

IU professor J. Timothy Londergan has been elected as a fellow in the Division of Nuclear Physics of the American Physical Society, the pre-eminent organization of physicists in the United States. 

An emeritus professor in the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Physics, Londergan was honored for his “work on approximate parton of symmetries, such as charge and flavor symmetry, and for models of the scattering behavior of quarks and hadrons.”

A former Rhodes Scholar, Londergan holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Rochester and a Ph.D. from Oxford University. He served as chair of the IU Bloomington Department of Physics from 1990 to 1997 and director of the Herman B Wells Scholars Program from 2003 to 2013. He also served three terms as a director of the IU Nuclear Theory Center.

A complete list of the 2016 fellows is available in the November issue of APS News

IU Auditorium's Katie Spohr selected for emerging leadership institute

The Association of Performing Arts Presenters Emerging Leadership Institute has announced its 2017 class of participants, which includes Katie Spohr, special events and booking manager at IU Auditorium.

The institute is an intensive two and a half-day seminar that develops critical leadership skills for emerging performing arts professionals. Approximately 25 participants are selected each year.

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