The latest post on the Portland Press Herald blog, “The Franco-American blog: News and notes from Maine’s French culture,” focused on the upcoming University of Maine spring symposium, “In and Out of Place: Finding Home in Franco America.” UMaine’s Franco-American Centre and Franco American Studies program will host the series of free events April 25–26 on the Orono campus. The symposium is sponsored by the UMaine Humanities Initiative and le Ministère des Relations internationales, Francophonie et Commerce extérieur du Québec, and will feature readings from acclaimed writers, panel discussions by scholars from New England and Canada, and a screening of the film “Le grand Jack (Jack Kerouac’s Road: A Franco-American Odyssey)” directed by Herménégilde Chiasson.
Research and outreach efforts being done at the University of Maine to learn more about the devastating effects of the emerald ash borer were mentioned in a Morning Sentinel article about how the Asian beetles are threatening the livelihood of Maine’s American Indian basket makers by destroying ash trees, which are needed to create the traditional baskets. The basket makers are part of an anti-borer coalition that includes university researchers, entomologists and forestry officials. For the last several years, the faculty at UMaine’s Senator George J. Mitchell Center and Maine’s Sustainability Solutions Initiative have hosted an annual symposium about the invasive pests. Last year, the event drew 65 people from a variety of state and federal agencies, entomologists and Wabanakis. The article also stated UMaine researchers have begun mapping existing ash and collecting and preserving ash seeds that could be replanted after a potential wave of devastation.
The BDN and AP reported on UMaine’s selection for the Princeton Review’s annual list of “green colleges.” This is UMaine’s fifth consecutive year on the list, which totaled 332 colleges in the United States and Canada. The Princeton Review cited UMaine’s composting and recycling initiatives, programs to reduce the number of vehicles on campus, and sustainable energy research opportunities for students and faculty as reasons for its inclusion. The Sun Journal and Portland Press Herald carried the AP report.
The Associated Press reported Maine’s Legislature approved roughly $50 million in bond proposals as it wrapped up for the session. One of the six approved bond proposals includes borrowing $8 million to renovate and improve a University of Maine Cooperative Extension lab that assists farmers and foresters and identifies pests, as well as plant and animal diseases. WABI (Channel 5) and seattlepi.com also carried the AP report.
WABI (Channel 5) reported the Black Bear Food Guild, a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program that is organized and managed by students in the University of Maine’s Sustainable Agriculture program, is offering CSA shares for the season. The guild is selling full ($475), half ($300) and quarter ($175) shares. Shareholders can pick up fresh produce each week from mid-June to October at the university’s Rogers Farm.
The Bangor Daily News reported the New Balance Field House will be closed May 12 for about 16 weeks to complete the exterior improvements as part of the $15 million renovation project that includes Memorial Gym. The facility’s exterior renovations include replacing approximately 22,000 square feet of insulated wall system and installing 5,200 square feet of windows. All renovations and construction are scheduled be completed as early as September.
WVII (Channel 7) spoke with John Jemison, a soil and water quality specialist with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, and two members of the Black Bear Food Guild for a report about Maine’s high commitment to local foods. Jemison said people want to know what’s in their food and how it’s grown, and he has seen a lot of that interest in Maine. UMaine students and Black Bear Food Guild members Laura Goldshein and Lindy Morgan spoke about their work within the guild. The Black Bear Food Guild is a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program that is organized and managed by sustainable agriculture students and offers CSA shares to community members in an effort to increase accessibility to fresh, seasonal produce.
WVII (Channel 7) reported the University of Maine was one of a few organizations to gather at the Brewer Community School to educate the students about healthy living during the school’s fifth annual health fair. The event included hands-on activities that covered topics such as bullying, fire safety and nutrition.
The Korea Times spoke with Carol Mandzik, manager of Business Graduate Programs and Executive Education and Internship Programs at the University of Maine, about what educational programs the university offers to international students. “At UMaine, students can double-major within or outside their primary discipline of study, and also choose a concentration, a minor or even opt into the five-year MBA program,” Mandzik said, adding students can save time and money by choosing a double-major or getting a jumpstart on their MBA.
Crisanne Blackie, the University of Maine’s health and legal professions career specialist, spoke to the Portland Press Herald for an article about a report that states Maine is likely to suffer a shortage of medical professionals unless the industry boosts student enrollment at health care-related schools and recruits more workers from outside Maine. The report was published by the Maine Department of Labor’s Center for Workforce Research and Information. Blackie said UMaine is trying to maintain an adequate number of doctors in the state by taking part in the Maine Track Program. The program is a partnership among Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, Maine Medical Center in Portland and Maine colleges and universities that allows pre-med students in Maine to compete for fast-tracked enrollment at Tufts University’s medical school.