Archive for 2005

Engineering Students to Compete in Bridge-breaking Tuesday

Monday, December 12th, 2005

Contact: Joe Carr at (207) 581-3571
Karen Horton, School of Engineering Technology, (207) 581-2340

ORONO — Freshman in UMaine’s College of Engineering will get a chance to put their skills to the test on Tuesday Dec. 13, when they compete in the School of Engineering Technology’s fifth annual File Folder Bridge Competition.

Scheduled to begin at 11 a.m.. in the basement of Boardman Hall, the contest pits student against student in a test to see whose two-foot-long bridge can support the most weight. Crafted entirely of glued-together paper tubes made of file folder stock, the bridges are the manifestation of a broad range of skills that their student creators acquired in Prof. Karen Horton’s Mechanical Engineering Technology class. As the weight on the bridges increases, so will the suspense as each bridge is tested to the point of failure.

Requiring hours of mathematical analysis, design, and fabrication to complete, each bridge represents an important hands-on learning sequence that culminates in a few moments of engineered endurance. The competition provides the students with an opportunity to see their thoughts and ideas put to the test in a three-dimensional setting, helping them to make the connection between theory and practice.

Dec. 8 Concert Commemorates Music of Famous Composer

Wednesday, December 7th, 2005

Contact: Karen Cole, 581-4704; George Manlove, 581-3756

ORONO — The melody for the first piece to be performed Thursday, Dec. 8 at the University of Maine in a concert commemorating the life and works of composer Iosif Andriasov came to him in a dream 50 years ago.

Originally a piece for flute and piano, Andriasov rearranged it several times to suit different performance scenarios, one for flute and string orchestra and another for viola and piano, this titled “Musical Sketch for Viola and Piano, Opus 4A.

UMaine music professor Anatole Wieck will perform the piece and other music by Andriasov when he performs with several friends, including Andriasov’s son, pianist Arshak Andriasov, and violinist-violist and former student of Andriasov, Victor Romasevich. Wieck, an accomplished violinist and violist who has performed and taught throughout North and South America and Europe, also studied with Andriasov after Wieck graduated from Julliard School of Music in New York City in the 1970s.

The evening begins at 7:30 p.m. in Minsky Recital Hall in the Class of 1944 Hall. Admission is $6 and students with a MaineCard are admitted at no cost.

Andriasov was a respected, award-winning composer, humanist and philosopher who lived from 1933 to 2000. In the 1960s, celebrated composer Dmitri Shostakovich said that Andriasov not only maintained his sense of harmony, but had added a new quality to harmony at a time “when the entire world lost a sense of harmony.”

Wieck, who considers Andriasov a genius, says the music for the program “is lofty and spiritual and will have an uplifting effect on the audience.”

Works to be played in ensembles consisting of piano and violin or viola, or both, include “Musical Sketch for Viola and Piano, Op. 4A,” “Concertino for Trumpet and Orchestra, Op. 14,” “Meditation for Viola and Piano, Op. 30E,” “Concertino for Clarinet and Symphony Orchestra, Op. 27,” “The Fallow-Deer” for Tenor and Piano, Op. 9,” “Sorrow in My Melody” for Tenor and Piano, Op. 11,” “Apple Tree” for Tenor and Piano, Op. 13,” “The Street Song” for Bass and Piano, Op. 10,” “Ave Maria,” “Duet for Soprano and Tenor with Piano,” “Passacaglia for Trumpet, Trombone and Organ, Op. 22B” and “To The Mother-Earth,” Op. 25.”

Following the concert, Andriasov’s widow, Marta Andriasova, will answer questions from the audience.

Marta Andriasova is a musicologist, teacher, music producer and founder and owner of the IMMA Publishing Company. She was born in Moscow and graduated from the Moscow Conservatory with honors, studying musicology. She was married to Iosif Andriasov for 37 years. Until 1978, Andriasova formerly taught at the Moscow Conservatory. Her research was published by the “Muzyka Press” and Moscow Conservatory Publications. She was not re-elected to teach at the conservatory for publicly refusing to attribute Iosif Andriasov’s philosophical ideas to Leonid Brezhnev, General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

Performer Victor Romasevich was born in Minsk, Belarus. Following his emigration to the United States in 1977, he became a violin and viola pupil of Iosif Andriasov. He was a winner of the Gina Bachauer Prize at the 1985 J.S. Bach International Competition, and from 1996 to 2003 was the concertmaster of the California Symphony Orchestra. He has performed as violinist, violist and keyboard player in various chamber music and SF Symphony concerts during the last 15 years.

Arshak Andriasov was born in 1980 in New York City and began to play piano at the age of three. By age six, he entered the Lucy Moses School of Music, began composing at 14 and studied with his father, Iosif Andriasov, and other gifted music instructors and composers. Arshak Andriasov also studied piano, ear training, solefege, harmony, theory and form analysis, as well as piano, orchestration, polyphony and conducting.

Since coming to the United States in 1979, Marta Andriasova has written many works, including “The Six Concerti Armonici are returned to their genuine author, the great Italian composer-violinist Pietro Locatelli.” Andriasova writes extensively on the music of her late husband. She is in the International Who’s Who in Music and Musicians’ Directory, Cambridge, England, and has won numerous awards, including the Fellowship from the Italian Government for Music Research, Milan, Italy.

Calendar Makes Perfect Gift for Gardeners

Tuesday, December 6th, 2005

Contact: Lois Berg Stack, (207) 581-2949 or (800) 870-7270

ORONO, Me. –The 2006 North Country Garden

Calendar is hot off the press, just in time for holiday giving. Developed

every year by Extension specialists from the University of Maine, the

University of Vermont, and the University of New Hampshire, this

beautifully illustrated wall calendar contains daily garden-related tips

specifically timed for New England. The 2006 edition includes information

about using water to attract wildlife, protecting plants from deer, using

native trees and shrubs, and watching wildlife. There is also information

about how to access Extension publications, soil testing labs and plant

diagnostic services.

To order the 2006 North County Garden Calendar, send a check or money

order payable to University of Maine Cooperative Extension to Garden

Calendar, UMaine Extension, 495 College Avenue, Orono, ME 04473. Calendars

are only $6 each for 1

Maine Tree Club Accepting New Members

Tuesday, December 6th, 2005

Contact: Amy Witt, Horticulturist
University of Maine Cooperative Extension
PO Box 9300, Portland, ME 04104
Tel. 780-4205 or 1-800-287-11471

PORTLAND, Me. — They attract tourists by the thousands, provide the foundation for the state economy, and deliver constant inspiration to area artists and poets. Trees are at the root of Maine’s identity. Now, Maine citizens and visitors have a chance to learn more about the habits and the needs of trees. They can join the Maine Tree Club, an educational project of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, the Maine Forest Service and the Pine Tree State Arboretum.

The club is designed for people of all ages to learn about trees. Participants will be equipped with the skills to recognize 50 different types of trees over the next two years. Every month, participants will receive mailings that highlight two species of Maine trees. At least four outings are scheduled around the state in 2006 to get people into the woods for hands-on learning and enjoyment. These outings, guided by experts, are planned for the mountains, coastal regions and other parts of Maine.

“As a kid, I learned a bit about trees, but there is so much more to know,” says UMaine Cooperative Extension Educator Richard Brzozowski of Cumberland County. “Trees are a magnificent part of nature! UMaine Cooperative Extension presents the Maine Tree Club so that anyone, from kids to grandparents, can learn how to identify trees and understand their importance.”

In addition to the 24 monthly mailings and the outings, participants will receive a hand lens for a close-up look at tree parts and pieces, an attractive notebook, a pocket guide to Maine trees, and several practical guides related to tree growth and care. Much of what people will learn as members of the Maine Tree Club can be easily applied in their own yard and community. The annual registration fee for involvement in the Maine Tree Club is $15 per person, $25 per couple, $30 per family and $60 per group (plus the costs of the hand lens). A limited number of Maine Tree Club Scholarships are available for those in need.

Request a free informational brochure by calling the University of Maine Cooperative Extension at 1-800-287-1471, emailing, or visiting the Maine Tree Club website at

UMaine December 2005 calendar

Tuesday, December 6th, 2005

Contact: None

Dec. 6

Motherhood, Politics and the Environment, 12:15 p.m.-1:30 p.m., Memorial Union, with Winona LaDuke, program director of Honor the Earth and member of the Mississippi band of Anishinaabeg, part of the Women in the Curriculum and Women’s Studies Program Lunch Series

Scottish Christmas, 7 p.m., MCA, featuring fiddler Bonnie Rideout (admission)

Howard B. Schonberger Peace and Social Justice Memorial Lecture, 7:30 p.m., “Indigenous Holy Lands and Sustainability in North America” with Winona LaDuke, Devino Auditorium, D.P. Corbett Building.

Dec. 7
Kwanzaa, 10 a.m.-12 p.m., MCA/Hudson Museum, a Hudson Museum cultural celebration of a traditional African American holiday

Sea Vegetables Celebration at the Marketplace, Memorial Union, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Menu items including Nori-Stuffed Manicotti, Norikopita, Roasted Vegetable and Nori Wrap for those who stop by

Dec. 8

Tourism Stakeholders Envision a Sustainable Tourism Path: Strengthening Maine’s No. 1 Industry Though the Blaine House Conference Recommendations, 11 a.m., 204 Nutting Hall with Elizabeth Munding, candidate for master’s degree in forestry

Show Me an Angel (Investor), 12-2 p.m., Target Technology Center, Bennoch Road, Orono, with Mark Waite, sponsored by Target Technology Incubator and Eaton Peabody (admission)

Poetry Reading by David Kress, 4:30p.m., part of the New Writing Series, Soderberg Auditorium, Jenness Hall.

Dec. 9

In The Road, an art exhibition of work by emerging artists from the University of Maine senior capstone class, opens Dec. 9 at UMaine’s Carnegie Hall. Show will include a variety of mediums from painting, sculpture, photography, installation pieces, interior design as well as furniture design. Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Opening reception Dec. 16, 5-7 p.m.

Dec. 10

11th Annual Maine Indian Basketmakers Sale and Demonstration, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Hudson Museum, featuring more than 30 Maine Indian basketmakers, traditional foods, storytelling, music and children’s workshops

Dec. 11

Kayak Rolling, 8 a.m.-5 p.m., Memorial Gym: Get a jump on the spring paddling season by learning to roll your kayak from our excellent instructors. (admission)

Yuletide Concert, 2 p.m., MCA, part of the School of Performing Arts season. (admission)

Dec. 15

Dance Showcase, 7:30 p.m., Class of 1944 Hall, part of the School of Performing Arts season (admission)

Go Blue Friday
Classes end for final exams (Dec. 19-23) and winter break

Dec. 18

The Full Monty, 7 p.m., MCA, musical comedy, part of the Maine Center for the Arts season (admission)

Ongoing events

Season of Light, Jordan Planetarium, 7 p.m., Dec. 2-23

Melonie Bennett, Gorham Maine photographer, University of Maine Museum of Art, Bangor, Oct. 21-Jan. 14, Hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

No Two Alike: African-American Improvisations on a Traditional Patchwork Pattern, a University of Maine Museum of Art exhibit, Bangor, Oct. 21-Jan. 14

In The Road, an art exhibition of work by emerging artists from the University of Maine senior capstone class, Dec. 9-Feb. 3, UMaine Carnegie Hall. Hours: 9 a.m.-4 p.m.

Building a Better Bangor: UMaine and City of Bangor Put Put Federal Funds to Work Advancing Downtown Revival

Friday, December 2nd, 2005

Contact: David Munson at (207) 581-3777; Kathryn Hunt at (207) 581- 1553; Joe Carr at (207) 581-3571; Rod McKay (City of Bangor) (207) 992-4240

ORONO — They are the inescapable questions that plague nearly every downtown district in Maine: How does a city make its youth feel welcome downtown while avoiding conflicts with downtown businesses and residents? How does a community provide enough affordable housing to meet the needs of its elderly and lower income residents? How do the people of a community build and maintain the level of connectedness that fosters a vital and dynamic downtown?

These questions, in various forms, have been on the lips of legislators, activists, and everyday citizens in Bangor for decades, and, with the help of a battery of newly funded and far-reaching community programs, some of the answers may soon be forthcoming.

The United Stated Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently awarded nearly $400,000 in grant monies to the University of Maine for the establishment of the UMaine-Bangor Community Outreach Partnership Center (UMB-COPC), a collection of people and programs aimed at fostering a positive environment for all in Bangor’s downtown neighborhoods.  This grant was supported by the city council of the City of Bangor, and the city will provide substantial in-kind support throughout life of the program.

“We’re very fortunate. This is one of the bigger grant programs in HUD, and one of the most competitive,” said Kathryn Hunt of the University of Maine’s Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center. “We’ve been awarded $396,281 to be distributed over three years, which will fund a broad range of projects in downtown Bangor.”

Leading the project since its inception nearly two years ago, Hunt has attended scores of meetings and fielded hundreds of phone calls, establishing goals and setting up lines of communication between the university and the more than 20 different downtown organizations that will be involved in UMB-COPC projects. Distributed over a three-year period, the federal funds will be used to support three main initiatives.

Through work skills training, life-planning, and educational guidance, the Community Inclusion Project is intended to help homeless teens reconnect with school, work and community in positive ways. In addition, through facilitated dialogues involving disenfranchised, disconnected young adults, downtown residents and downtown business owners, the project will focus on creating an atmosphere downtown that is welcoming to all residents and visitors.

UMB-COPC will also take an active role in the development of the Salvation Army’s Powerhouse Teen Center. From providing engineering expertise for the renovation of the center’s future location to assisting Salvation Army staff with fundraising and development, UMaine students and faculty will assist the Salvation Army in achieving the project’s full potential. Through a partnership with the Bangor Daily News, the Bangor Public Library, the Powerhouse Teen Center, and the UMaine Department of Communication and Journalism, UMB-COPC funds will also help to jumpstart a community newsletter for and about Bangor’s downtown created by the young adults that live there.

Some of Bangor’s housing issues will be addressed through the UMB-COPC project as well. In an attempt to help downtown neighborhoods better serve the area’s elderly and special needs residents, program participants will conduct a needs assessment with regard to housing and special services, leading up to the establishment of recommendations and the development of informational workshops that will help residents in need find and maintain decent, affordable housing.

At the heart of many of the UMB-COPC initiatives is service learning: UMaine students applying their skills “in the field” for the benefit of the community. From building assessments carried out by undergrads in engineering to fine arts programs led by student instructors, the project promises to strengthen the University of Maine’s connection to the city of Bangor while providing students with opportunities in their fields of study that can’t be duplicated in the classroom. A truly interdisciplinary endeavor, the UMB-COPC project will combine the enthusiasm of dozens of UMaine students with the expertise of 27 faculty members representing all six of the university’s colleges.

According to Bangor City Manager, Ed Barrett, “This cooperative venture between the City and the University will allow both organizations to focus their efforts to build upon the progress that has been made in recreating downtown Bangor and will work closely with groups and organizations with an interest in our downtown. It will expose students to real life issues and problems, challenge their creativity, and further strengthen the growing relationship between the university and the city.”

By creating new avenues of communication between the university and the larger community, the project will allow residents of Bangor and other Maine communities to access university resources more easily than ever before. Hunt hopes that, by streamlining the process through which students and faculty connect to the community, the UMB-COPC project will provide many more opportunities for communication and cooperation between the university and the cities and towns of Maine.

“We will essentially be creating a new front door to the university that will help people reach into the university more effectively,” said Hunt. “It will help the community access information and services. It will help the faculty integrate service learning into their programs. It’s really exciting.”

CONTACTS: Kathryn Hunt, Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center, 581-1553; Rod McKay, Director of Community and Economic Development, City of Bangor, 992-4240.

Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center Publication Wins Education Award

Friday, December 2nd, 2005

Contact: Kathryn Hunt, 581-1553; George Manlove, 581-3756

ORONO – The Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center at UMaine is to receive the 2006 Maine Merit Award from the New England Board of Higher Education for Maine Policy Review, the center’s policy-analysis journal published three times yearly.

Founded in 1991, Maine Policy Review “provides relevant, in-depth analyses of state and regional policy issues for decision-makers at all levels of government and interested Maine citizens,” says Kathryn Hunt, editor for the last 11 years.

The journal is available on-line at It is overseen by a board of 23 members representing private, nonprofit and government sector organizations, policymakers, and citizens across the state. It is published jointly by the Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center at UMaine and Margaret Chase Smith Library in Skowhegan.

The next issue, due out in December, will feature articles on healthcare, tax reform, teacher certification in Maine, forest ownership trends, and community development.

The New England Board of Higher Education was formed in 1955 to promote greater educational opportunities and services for the residents of New England. It works across the six New England states to: engage and assist leaders in the assessment, development, and implementation of sound education practices and policies of regional significance.

An awards ceremony is scheduled for Feb. 24 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston.

UMaine Researchers Release Impact Study Regarding Proposed LNG Facility

Friday, December 2nd, 2005

Contact: David Munson at (207) 581-3777; Todd Gabe at (207) 581-3307

Please note: The full study is available on-line at:

ORONO — Researchers from the University of Maine’s Department of Resource Economics and Policy and the Margaret Chase Smith Center for Public Policy have released their findings regarding the projected fiscal and economic impacts of a proposed $400 million liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility in Washington County. Downeast LNG hopes to build the LNG import terminal in the town of Robbinston.

UMaine researchers Todd Gabe, Jonathan Rubin, Charles Morris, and Lisa Bragg were contracted by Downeast LNG to conduct the study, which focuses on both the long and short-term effects of the proposed facility, considering such factors as employment, wages, and tax impacts at both the state and local levels. The study was conducted during the late summer and fall of this year.

The study found that the proposed project would substantially increase the local tax base, lowering current tax rates for the Town of Robbinston by approximately 69 percent. According to Gabe, an Associate Professor of Resource Economics and Policy, the projected decrease in taxes takes into account not only the proposed facility’s contribution to the town’s tax base, but the increases in county taxes and reductions in state education contributions that would affect the town as well.

“During the three year construction phase, the project would create 1,053 jobs per year statewide according to our model. These jobs would provide $42.9 million annually in wages and benefits,” said Gabe. “Of that, there would be approximately 375 jobs in Washington County, which would result in $15.3 million per year in income.”

After the construction phase is completed, the study determined that operations of the facility would create 253 jobs statewide, amounting to $10.7 million per year in wages and benefits. A projected 187 of those jobs would be in Washington County.

Students Restore Family’s Tractor for UMaine Museum

Friday, December 2nd, 2005

Contact: George Manlove at (207) 581-3751

If farm equipment could talk, a 1944 John Deere tractor donated to the University of Maine and restored by students might have family stories to tell that would be suitable for a Currier & Ives lithograph.

Retired math teacher Worth Noyes of Orrington, age 100, bought the green and yellow, twin-piston tractor in 1951 to use on his 20-acre farm on the River Road. He taught his four children to drive it as soon as they could stay on the contoured metal seat.

“We started driving it when we were seven or eight,” recalls Melanie Noyes, who now is 45 and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in social work from UMaine. “Mum would have a fit. I remember trying to get it started. That flywheel was pretty rugged.”

“Mum,” is 87-year-old Sarah Noyes, who says she was never quite comfortable on the machine, in spite of Worth’s attempts to get her on it now and then.

Five members of the Noyes family – Melanie, Worth, Sarah, son Michael Noyes, 52, and grandson Chris Noyes, 19 – were at the Page Farm and Home Museum on the UMaine campus Nov. 29 to see the restored tractor. It was a part of their family for 50 years before Worth donated it to UMaine, from which he received a forestry degree 76 years ago.

The family used the old John Deere to plow the farm for crops that included potatoes, assorted vegetables and, of course, green peas, which Worth planted early in the season on a high patch of ground so he could present fresh peas to his wife for the traditional Fourth of July salmon and peas meal.

Worth Noyes, who worked days as head of math program in the Bangor school system and taught math at Bangor High, didn’t farm all 20 acres, says son Michael. But his three gardens were “just big enough to keep me weeding all summer,” Michael recalls. Worth grew plenty more vegetables than the family needed. He donated the surplus to children’s homes and nursing homes in the area, Sarah says.

Worth’s old John Deere became a legendary gauge for locals monitoring the annual evolution of spring, as Worth would begin plowing the wet ground as early as possible, customarily getting it stuck in the mud for a few days before the ground dried enough to move the tractor forward to continue its work.

“Everyone used to say down there that it was a sign of spring” to see Worth’s tractor mired in mud, Sarah says. “The farm was under water in the spring but it was beautiful in the summer.”

Worth, who turns 101 in February, used the family tractor well into his 90s, until it broke down and he couldn’t find a replacement part. Finally, in 2001, he decided to donate it to the university. That’s when Kenneth “Ben” Dresser, a lecturer and laboratory coordinator in the Department of Forestry, recruited students to help begin the restoration of the Noyes’ John Deere in the Perkins Hall shop.

Over the next four years, three different students worked under Dresser’s supervision to fix up the 61-year-old tractor, repaint it and get it running again as part of their agricultural engineering capstone projects. It now sits in the Page Farm and Home Museum’s collection of antiques from early rural life in Maine.

“It looks twice as large as I thought it would be,” said a pleased Worth Noyes when he the restored tractor Nov. 30.

The Noyes family has been well invested in the University of Maine. Several family members in addition to Worth and Melanie Noyes graduated from UMaine. A second daughter, Mollie Noyes of Belfast has a BA in education from UMaine, and Sarah, who spent 28 years as the director of public health nursing for the city of Bangor, attended UMaine for a summer before enrolling at Boston University. Grandson Chris, who finished his freshman year studying financial economics at UMaine, interrupted his college education this fall to serve in the U.S. Marine Corp. He expects to ship out to Iraq in March. The Noyes family has a third daughter, Jennifer Noyes, who lives in Albuquerque, N.M.

UMaine Researcher Using $615,155 Grant to Fight Flu Virus

Wednesday, November 30th, 2005

Contact: Sam Hess, 581-1036; George Manlove, 581-3756

View a UMaine Feature of the story here.

ORONO — A University of Maine researcher recently has been approved for a five-year $615,155 grant from the National Institutes of Health to try to find a way human cells might reject invasions by influenza, HIV and Ebola, among other viruses.

Assistant professor of physics and astronomy Sam Hess, whose work prior to joining the faculty at UMaine included biomedical research at the NIH, has received a “career award” to study how viruses penetrate cellular membranes and what might be done to block infection.

Hess is doing the research under the guidance of UMaine physics professor R. Dean Astumian and former colleague Joshua Zimmerberg at the NIH. Using laser-scanning fluorescence microscopes in Bennett Hall, Hess is studying how cholesterol and lipids play a role in assisting viral proteins to bond to the surface of cells, penetrate and infect them.

He specifically is looking at hemagglutinin, the protein from influenza virus that opens a hole, or fusion pore, in the membranes of host cells and allows the virus to enter and infect the cell. If he can determine, by watching protein grouping patterns under a microscope, how that happens, Hess believes he or other scientists will be able to figure out how to interrupt the process.

The title of an article Hess co-authored and which is the basis for the research is “Quantitative Electron Microscopy and Fluorescence Spectroscopy of the Membrane Distribution of Influenza Hemagglutinin,” which appeared in the June issue of The Journal of Cell Biology.

Rafts are controversial protein and lipid clusters that are thought to be used by cells for many biological functions. Rafts also contain high concentrations of cholesterol and saturated lipids. Removal of cholesterol from membranes appears to have inhibitory effects on hemagglutinin.

Many researchers currently are studying viruses, particularly in view of new mutant forms of common viruses, like influenza, and less common but potentially catastrophic viruses like Asian bird flu, Ebola, SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) and HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus), Hess says. “But we’re doing something that hasn’t been done, I think, which is using these lasers and spectroscopy to see what’s going on in a virus,” he says. “If we can find out why influenza needs cholesterol, it may be the same reason HIV needs cholesterol, or some other virus.”

An Orono resident originally from Stillwater, Hess has taught physics and conducted biomedical research at UMaine for about a year and a half. The grant will be used to upgrade research equipment at UMaine and provide staffing necessary for Hess to continue his cell membrane and virus research.