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UMaine’s Cullenberg Earns Top America East Honor

A University of Maine 2014 graduate has been named the first America East Man of the Year.

Kelton Cullenberg, a kinesiology/exercise science major from Chesterville, Maine, edged out finalists Jeff Turner of the University of New Hampshire and Luke Apfeld of the University of Vermont to claim the prestigious award that recognizes the male senior student-athlete at his respective school who best exemplifies a commitment to service, leadership, athletics and academics during his collegiate career.

“It is an incredible honor,” says Cullenberg, who graduated from Mt. Blue High School in Farmington, Maine. “The other competitors represent the best their school has to offer. I never would have dreamed of getting this award.”

To qualify for the award, student-athletes had to maintain a 2.5 cumulative grade-point average, receive their undergraduate degree prior to the summer 2014 term and complete intercollegiate eligibility in their primary sport by the end of the 2014 spring season.

A cross country/track and field athlete, Cullenberg achieved a 3.92 GPA. The senior distance runner captained three teams, earned all-conference honors six times and won the 2014 M Club Dean Smith Award.

He earned distinction by earning spots on the America East All-Academic Team, the Commissioner’s Honors Roll and Dean’s List. He also was a Presidential Scholar and garnered a 4.0 GPA four times during his undergraduate career.

In 2013, Cullenberg received the College of Education Dean’s Award and was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. At the 2014 Scholar-Athlete Award recognition, he was presented a gold medallion as a three-time scholar-athlete.

Cullenberg was named University of Maine Athlete of the Week and America East Athlete of the Week multiple times during his career. He was also selected to All-Conference teams in cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field.

He placed second at the 2013 America East Cross Country Championships. At the 2013 Northeast Region meet, he was selected to the All-Region team and qualified for the NCAA Championships.

Cullenberg was the first UMaine male runner since 1979 to compete in the NCAA Cross Country Championship. His personal best in the 3,000-meters is 8:24 and he is second on the university’s all-time list, running the 5,000-meters in 14:25. He finished second at the 2014 America East Indoor Track and Field Championships in the 5,000-meter run.

Originally an engineering major, Cullenberg decided to attend UMaine because it offered a Division I sports program and it was close to home.

“A lot of my friends were leaning me toward engineering, but after the first few weeks I realized it wasn’t what I wanted to do,” he says. “The kinesiology classes were much more geared toward my interests.”

A runner since youth, Cullenberg cites his parents as major motivators in his academic and extracurricular pursuits.

“My parents influenced me because they were runners, too. They were also teachers at my high school, so academics were always a big deal,” he says. “They didn’t push [running] on me, it was just something I grew to love.”

Cullenberg was not present at the awards ceremony at Bretton Woods in Carroll, New Hampshire. Instead, he was traveling to the Hypo2 High Performance Sport Center in Flagstaff, Arizona, to start an eight-week internship working and training with a variety of athletes.

“It [the award] is a nice icing on the cake,” Cullenberg says. “It is all a very humbling experience.”

A business administration minor, Cullenberg hopes to operate his own performance center that offers physical therapy and exercise training. He says this long-time dream was cultivated during his time at UMaine.

“UMaine was a good fit for me,” he says. “I was taking a couple business classes, then figured I might as well turn it into a minor. [Academically], the school was at a level where I knew I could do well, not only in sports, but in the classroom.”

Contact: Margaret Nagle, 207.581.374

Target Technology Incubator Tenant Featured in Press Herald Report on Startup

The Portland Press Herald published an article on a startup founded by two former University of Maine hockey coaches Dan Kerluke and David Alexander, along with Tim Westbaker, a computer programmer and UMaine alumnus. The trio created Double Blue Sports Analytics to create an iPad app that allows hockey goalies and goaltending coaches to easily capture performance data and analytics. The startup is the first to market with such a goalie-specific data analytics product, but already has plans to tap into the much broader global market for sports science and training, the article states. The company is a tenant of the Target Technology Incubator, an Orono facility that was developed by UMaine and the Bangor Target Area Development Corporation to provide an environment for business development and commercialization activities for innovation-based startups. Kerluke told the Press Herald he met Westbaker through Jesse Moriarity, coordinator of UMaine’s Foster Center for Student Innovation. Kerluke calls Moriarity the company’s “guardian angel.”

UMaine Researchers Find Lakes Rebounding More Rapidly From Acid Rain Effects

Lakes in New England and the Adirondack Mountains are recovering from the effects of acid rain more rapidly now than they did in the 1980s and 1990s, according to a study led by a former University of Maine researcher.

Acid rain — which contains higher than normal amounts of nitric and sulfuric acid and is harmful to lakes, streams, fish, plants and trees — occurs when sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide in the atmosphere mix with water and oxygen.

In the United States, about two-thirds of sulfur dioxide and one-quarter of nitrogen oxide result from burning fossil fuels, including coal, says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Sulfate concentration in rain and snow dropped 40 percent in the 2000s and sulfate concentration in lakes in the Northeast declined at a greater rate from 2002 to 2010 than during the 1980s or 1990s, says Kristin Strock, a former doctoral student at UMaine, now an assistant professor at Dickinson College in Pennsylvania.

Also during the 2000s, nitrate concentration in rain and snow declined by more than 50 percent and its concentration in lakes also declined, Strock found.

The Clean Air Act enacted in the U.S. in 1970 has been modified several times, including amendments implemented in 1994 that regulated emissions, especially from coal-burning power plants. The Clean Air Interstate Rule issued in 2005 by the EPA sought to reduce sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides by 70 percent. Total emissions of sulfur and nitrogen in the U.S decreased by 51 and 43 percent, respectively, between 2000 and 2010, Strock says, which was twice the rate of decline for both in the 1990s.

Strock and the research team analyzed data collected since 1991 at 31 sites in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and southern New York and 43 sites in the Adirondack Mountains of New York.

The research team included Sarah Nelson, assistant research professor with the Senator George J. Mitchell Center and cooperating assistant research professor in Watershed Biogeochemistry in the UMaine School of Forest Resources; Jasmine Saros, associate director of the Climate Change Institute at UMaine and professor in UMaine’s School of Biology & Ecology; Jeffrey Kahl, then-director of environmental and energy strategies at James Sewall Company; and William McDowell of the Department of Natural Resources and the Environment at the University of New Hampshire.

“Data collection for over two decades in this study is part of the EPA-LTM network, which also includes over 30 years of research and monitoring at 16 remote lakes in Maine, and over 25 years at the Bear Brook Watershed in Maine,” Nelson says.

“These long-term monitoring data allow us to observe patterns like changes related to climate, as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of environmental regulations like the Clean Air Act. The new findings reported here underscore the importance of such long-term monitoring, which can often be difficult to keep funded.”

While results reveal a recent acceleration in recovery, the researchers say continued observation is necessary due to variability of results. In New England, Strock says variability might be due to the effect of human development, including road salt, on lakes.

A number of other factors can affect watersheds and interact with acid rain, say the researchers, including depletion of calcium in forest soils, long-term increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide, long-term changes in air temperature, and changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme wet and dry seasons.

The study, “Decadal Trends Reveal Recent Acceleration in the Rate of Recovery from Acidification in the Northeastern U.S.” was published online in March on the Environmental Science & Technology website.

Contact: Beth Staples, 207.581.3777

Ryu Mitsuhashi: The Power of Music

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When Ryu Mitsuhashi was a toddler, her grandfather advocated that music be part of her life.

Her grandfather, an elementary school teacher and Japanese prisoner of war in Russia during World War II, believed music had the power to bring people together in harmony and peace.

Mitsuhashi’s parents heeded the advice. When Mitsuhashi was 3, she and her mother learned — via the Suzuki Method — to play violin in her hometown of Tokyo.

Mitsuhashi, a 2013 University of Maine graduate, was a fast learner. When she was 9, her family moved to Westchester, New York and at age 10 she was accepted into The Juilliard Pre-College Division — “a program for students of elementary through high school age who exhibit the talent, potential, and accomplishment to pursue a career in music” — in New York City.

When Mitsuhashi and her family returned to Japan a couple of years later, she toured Europe with the Tokyo Junior Philharmonic.

For much of her 23 years of life, Mitsuhashi has been spreading goodwill through her music. She has shared her talents in concerts broadcast on network TV as well as on stages around the world, at UMaine, with the Bangor Symphony Orchestra and in area retirement homes.

Mitsuhashi, who has played solo violin concertos with the University of Maine Orchestra, recently returned from a tour of Croatia and Slovenia with a professional orchestra — Orkester Camerata Austriaca — from Linz, Austria. On the tour, she performed a solo of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 in D Major.

She credits Anatole Wieck, who teaches violin and viola and conducts the University of Maine Chamber Orchestra, with helping her relax on stage.

While she worries she might forget the music or that a violin string could break, she says Wieck encourages her “to enjoy what she’s doing and to give pleasure to other people by enjoying to play.”

And she says she’s thrilled and energized when concertgoers tell her that they have been entertained by her performance.

While she’s used to living in New York and Tokyo, with populations of 8 and 13 million respectively, Mitsuhashi says she has not been homesick in Orono.

Initially, though, she was “light sick.” Mitsuhashi says in Tokyo she was used to 24-7 bright lights and big-city action. Here, “everything closed at 9 p.m. and it was dark.”

Soon, she’ll again be amid the lights and action as she’s returning this summer to Japan for a monthlong visit. In addition to spending time with family and friends, she’ll play in two concerts.

Since graduating from UMaine with a bachelor of music degree in performance in 2013, Mitsuhashi has been taking part in Optional Practical Training — working in her field of study, which includes teaching music at Bangor Montessori and providing private music lessons.

This fall, Mitsuhashi plans to begin pursuing a master of music degree in performance at UMaine.

Careerwise, she dreams of being a musician with Cirque du Soleil. The Montreal-based company’s shows are celebrated for their “dramatic mix of circus arts and street entertainment.”

Mitsuhashi says that recently she also has been considering following in her father’s footsteps and becoming a surgeon.

UMaine Lobster Shell Research Focus of Working Waterfront Article

The Working Waterfront carried an article about two University of Maine-based research projects involving lobster shells.

The article featured UMaine food science graduate Beth Fulton and associate professor of food science Denise Skonberg who determined that pigment from lobster shells rich in carotenoid can be extracted and used for coloring in food for farm-raised salmon. The lobster shell pigment could be a natural alternative to synthetic carotenoids. While Fulton’s grant money is depleted, the article reported that she hopes another researcher will advance the project.

The article also included an update on a project first covered in 2011 when UMaine graduate Carin Poeschel Orr hit on the idea of a golf ball made of lobster shells that could legally be hit from cruise ship decks. Orr shared the idea with Robert Bayer, executive director of the University of Maine Lobster Institute, and Bayer consulted with others, including David Neivandt, director of UMaine’s Graduate School of Biomedical Science and Engineering. The article reported that Neivandt said the biodegradable lobster shell golf ball is patented and ready to be marketed.

UMaine Business Challenge Featured in Boothbay Register Article

The Boothbay Register mentioned the UMaine Business Challenge in an article about the Boothbay-based Above and Beyond Scheduling winning second place in the contest. The UMaine Business Challenge was founded in 2011 by a group of 2010 UMaine graduates who wanted to give back to their alma mater while creating more opportunities for student entrepreneurs. Above and Beyond Scheduling is a new business venture by Juliette and Ronald Cohen that will act as an in-between service for patients and caregivers using a network of certified nurses, aides and specialists. The Cohens won $1,000 and consulting services provided by Cary Weston of Sutherland Weston Marketing Communications. “This win means a lot to both of us,” Juliette Cohen said. “Now we can use our resources in other ways, and we won’t be stretched so thin at the beginning.”

Francis Crowe Society Induction Ceremonies May 10

University of Maine graduates and distinguished engineers will be inducted into the Francis Crowe Society during two ceremonies on Saturday, May 10.

The College of Engineering will host a ceremony from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Collins Center for the Arts, and the School of Engineering Technology will host a ceremony from 10 a.m. to noon at the D.P. Corbett Business Building.

The College of Engineering’s distinguished engineers to be inducted are:

The School of Engineering Technology’s distinguished engineers to be inducted are:

The Francis Crowe Society recognizes UMaine engineering graduates and others who have made considerable contributions to the engineering profession. The society is named in honor of Francis Trenholm Crowe, who earned a degree in civil engineering from UMaine in 1905 and was chief engineer of the Hoover Dam. Crowe also was involved in the construction of 18 other major dams in the United States, facilitating farming in a number of areas.

More information about the Francis Crowe Society is online.

Cosgrove Inducted into Maine Sports Hall of Fame, Media Report

The Associated Press, Morning Sentinel, Bangor Daily News and WLBZ (Channel 2) covered the Maine Sports Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Jack Cosgrove, head coach of the University of Maine football team, was one of nine people to be inducted into the Maine Sports Hall of Fame at its 39th annual awards banquet. Other inductees included Joseph L. Ferris, who pitched for UMaine in the 1964 College World Series, and Edward J. Flaherty, an All-American performer at UMaine in 1975. WABI (Channel 5) and The Washington Times carried the AP report.

WABI Attends ‘Making it in Maine’ Business Conference, Networking Event

WABI (Channel 5) covered the University of Maine Alumni Association’s Black Bear Business Conference “Making it in Maine: Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technology in the 21st Century.” The conference aimed to bring Maine’s small-business owners and entrepreneurs together with UMaine faculty, economic development staff, business students and successful Maine business leaders to share ideas, strategies and techniques that promote growth. UMaine student Daniel Kaepplinger, who helped organize the event said he thinks a lot of future business deals and partnerships will result from the event. “There’s a lot of learning that’s going on here today. A lot of business cards that are going to be traded,” he said. UMaine student Chuck Hastings said organizing and attending the event was a great learning experience.

‘Making it in Maine’ Business Conference, Networking Event Advanced by BDN

The Bangor Daily News reported on the University of Maine Alumni Association’s half-day conference designed to bring Maine’s small-business owners and entrepreneurs together with UMaine faculty, economic development staff, business students and successful Maine business leaders to share ideas, strategies and techniques that promote growth. The Black Bear Business Conference “Making it in Maine: Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technology in the 21st Century” takes place Friday, April 25 at the Buchanan Alumni House on the UMaine campus. Susan Mullaney, UMaine Alumni Association director of communications, said the conference will allow alumni who are interested in opening a small business or patenting a product the opportunity to connect with the people and services who can help them move forward. She added the goal of the conference is to pull resources and expertise from various UMaine programs that can help Mainers bring small-business ideas to fruition.


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UMaine News
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
207.581.1110
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