Sabrina Vivian, a third-year ecology and environmental science major at the University of Maine, was quoted in the Maine Public Broadcasting Network report titled “UMaine students press again for fossil fuel divestment.” Vivian was one of several students in the University of Maine System group Divest Maine that met with the UMaine Trustees Investment Committee to urge the system to stop investing endowment funds in the coal, oil and natural gas industries. Vivian told the committee “people have great power and can have immense impacts on the environment.” She urged the officials to consider creating a timeline for divesting funds from the top fossil fuel companies that are currently being supported. Vivian is a member of UMaine’s Green Team, a student organization that supports sustainable and environmentally friendly efforts on campus.
Archive for the ‘Student Life’ Category
The Weekly published a feature article on University of Maine students and siblings Emily and Jared Duggan who are volunteers in UMaine’s Black Bear Mentor Program offered through the Bodwell Center for Service and Volunteerism. The Duggans are two of more than 80 UMaine students who are currently participating in the program. The Black Bear Mentors meet with local third- to eighth-grade students once a week and work with students on activities such as sports, arts and crafts, homework, board games, and community service projects.
Jon Ippolito, an associate professor of new media at the University of Maine, and Vice President for Student Life Robert Dana spoke with the Maine Public Broadcasting Network for a report about how the music industry is targeting university students in an effort to cut down on Internet piracy of copyrighted material. Ippolito said the effectiveness of the industry’s latest strategy of sending letters to college students and offering to settle for $20 per file remains to be seen. Dana said with the recent increase in letters, the university sees the situation as an opportunity to discuss ethics with students instead of punish them. Sean O’Mara, a lawyer hired by UMaine’s Student Government to provide free legal advice to undergraduate students, was also interviewed.
The University of Maine announced 261 student-athletes will be honored and recognized for their academic success at the Scholar-Athlete Recognition Ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 25, 2014 in Wells Conference Center.
At the ceremony, 195 student-athletes will be recognized as scholar-athletes for achieving a 3.0 or higher grade point average for the 2013 year and/or having a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0. Sixty-six first-year student-athletes will be honored as rising stars for earning a 3.0 GPA or higher in their first semester at UMaine.
Now in its 25th year, the awards have been presented annually since 1989 and 3,189 medallions have been awarded. This is the 10th year in a row that more than half of the university’s student-athletes have been honored. The event is sponsored by the University of Maine Foundation, University Credit Union, the M Club and the Alumni Association.
“Recognizing over half of our student-athletes as scholar-athletes is an impressive accomplishment,” says UMaine Director of Athletics Karlton Creech. “This group exemplifies what it means to be a student-athlete, excelling in both the classroom and in their sport. I congratulate them on this outstanding achievement.”
At the reception, UMaine will honor the student-athletes and also announce the annual recipients of the M Club Dean Smith Award, presented to the top male and female scholar-athlete. Team Maine will also be announced, honoring the sophomore, junior or senior from each team who has achieved the highest grade point average for the 2013 calendar year.
All scholar-athletes will receive a medallion, the color of which represents the number of years a recipient has earned the award. This year, 97 student-athletes will receive bronze medals signifying the first time they have received the award, 56 will receive silver medals signifying the second time they have won the award, and 36 will receive gold medals signifying the third time they have received the award. Four student-athletes will receive double gold medals for their fourth award.
A list of the student-athletes to be honored is available online.
The University Credit Union’s seventh annual Healthy High 5k/10k and 1-Mile Fun Run at the University of Maine, sponsored by Cadillac Mountain Sports, will be April 13.
The race, which begins at 4:20 p.m. at UMaine’s New Balance Student Recreation Center, promotes health and wellness for both the university and the community.
Early registration fees for the 5k/10k are $15; $5 for students. The 1-mile walk/run is free. Early registration deadline is 4 p.m April 9. Day-of registration fees are $20; $10 for students. Registration is available online.
Race proceeds benefit the Black Bear Exchange Food Pantry and Thrift Store. In addition, donations of used footwear will benefit Soles4Souls.
For registration information, to request a disability accommodation or for more information, call Shelby Saucier, 207.581.1423.
Every Monday afternoon Jared Duggan, an accounting major at the University of Maine, heads to Leonard Middle School in Old Town to meet one of his close friends — a sixth-grader named Matt.
When Jared arrives, the two head outside to play basketball, even though it’s winter. It’s the pair’s normal routine, regardless of the weather.
Meanwhile at the Old Town Recreation Department, Jared’s sister Emily Duggan, an elementary education major at UMaine, sits with Keely, a fifth-grader. They’re making friendship bracelets while they talk about friends and school.
This is the second year the Duggans of Buxton, Maine, have participated in UMaine’s Black Bear Mentor Program. The program is offered through the Bodwell Center for Service and Volunteerism and is run by an AmeriCorps VISTA. More than 80 UMaine students are currently participating, making the program’s 11th year the largest.
The Black Bear Mentors meet with third- to eighth-grade students once a week after school at Dr. Lewis S. Libby School in Milford, Old Town Elementary School, Leonard Middle School in Old Town and the Old Town Recreation Department. The mentors work with students on activities such as sports, arts and crafts, homework, board games and community service projects.
“I think the end goal is to try to get the students interested in pursuing education,” Jared, who is in his junior year at UMaine, says of the program. “We know what we’ve done to get to college so we can pass that on to kids to try to get them to have the same habits so they can hopefully go to college, too.”
The siblings, who live together, joined the program at the same time last year.
“Jared and I have always gotten along really well because we are the only two children in our family and because we’re so close in age. We don’t argue very often but when we do, we usually get over it pretty quickly,” Emily says, adding she and her brother also like attending UMaine hockey and basketball games together.
Emily, a UMaine sophomore, says she decided to become a mentor because she has always enjoyed working with children and wants to be a teacher. The Duggans also both worked as recreation counselors during the summer in their hometown. Jared, who was working as an RA at the time he joined the program, also decided being able to work with kids during the school year would be rewarding.
“It’s the first thing I look forward to in the week because you just go and hang out with a kid and spread your wisdom,” Jared says.
Black Bear Mentors, who come from a variety of majors, are interviewed and undergo background checks before training begins. They are paired with a student based on similar interests and mentor them in weekly 90-minute sessions for the entire academic year.
Returning mentors, such as the Duggans, have the option to mentor the same child for multiple years — if the child also wants the same mentor. Both Emily and Jared are now on the second year of mentoring the students they were originally paired with.
“When I first met Keely she was pretty shy — I’m shy, too — so we were pretty similar. But now she talks all the time and asks me for advice, which is cool,” Emily says.
She says offering advice to Keely has helped both of them open up and has helped her learn how to solve problems and give the best advice without being involved. The pair also likes to spend time doing homework, playing board games or making arts and crafts. Jared and Matt, on the other hand, spend most of their time outdoors throwing a football or playing basketball.
“Matt really likes to play sports, so everyday we go outside — even in the winter,” Jared says. “While we’re outside, we’ll play with the other kids to work on teamwork. I also push him to do homework so he can play sports for school teams.”
Jared says Matt was outgoing from the moment they met and the two bonded quickly, becoming fast friends. Since Jared has known Matt, he has become more comfortable sharing personal stories.
The Duggans, who would recommend the program to UMaine students, agree the best part of being involved in the program has been reuniting with their student for the first time after summer break and seeing the excitement on their face.
“It was like we didn’t even have the summer break. He was really excited to see me, and we picked up right where we left off. We went right back outside again. It was pretty cool to see that nothing had really changed,” Jared says.
He adds the experience was the same for all the returning mentors.
“The kids just run right to their mentors. You can tell how much they mean to the kids,” he says.
Emily says she knows Keely enjoys taking part in the program by the reactions she gets from other students when she visits.
“I imagine she tells her friends about it because when I go to Old Town Rec, they always say, ‘Oh, you’re Keely’s mentor.’ They all want a mentor,” she says.
In November, the Black Bear Mentors hosted the elementary- and middle-school students for the group’s annual scavenger hunt on the UMaine campus.
“It wasn’t a typical scavenger hunt,” Emily says. “The goal was to show them places on campus and see what they’re interested in.”
The group plans to have the students visit again to do activities such as rock climbing or touring the football field.
“I’m excited for them to come back,” Jared says. “It’s always fun when they’re on the campus.”
Since 1998, University of Maine has been organizing trips for students to provide volunteer service to others. This year, Alternative Breaks, a student-run organization, will send out eight volunteer groups. The 101 undergraduate members and nine graduate students, and faculty trip advisers will volunteer one week of their spring break to work and travel.
Volunteer activities will take place at a children’s hospital in Denver, Colo.; a national park located in Miami, Fla.; animal sanctuaries and farms located in Woodstock, N.Y., Pittsboro, N.C., Falls Church, Va. and Savannah, Tenn.; and camps and after-school programs for children in West Milford, N.J. and Washington, D.C.
During winter 2013, Alternative Breaks organized a trip working with a nonprofit in Washington, D.C., to prepare and deliver food to people with terminal illnesses.
The organization’s undergraduate site leaders selects Alternative Break locations. Two site leaders will travel to each volunteer site.
Each volunteer pays $200 in dues to Alternative Breaks. Fundraising also helps cover travel expenses.
Volunteer locations this March:
Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary (Woodstock, N.Y.)
Carolina Tiger Rescue (Pittsboro, N.C.)
Camp Vacamas (West Milford, N.J.)
Liberty Hall Livestock Rescue (Falls Church, Va.)
Horse Creek Wildlife Sanctuary and Animal Refuge (Savannah, Tenn.)
Children’s Hospital Colorado/Denver Children’s Home (Denver, Colo.)
Biscayne National Park/Monkey Jungle (Homestead/Miami, Fla.)
The Alternative House (Washington, D.C.)
More information is available online.
In honor of Black History Month, the University of Maine’s LGBT Services will host “A New Renaissance: Celebrating LGBT Poets of Color” 5:30–7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 18 in the Coe Room of the Memorial Union. Guests are invited to recite their favorite poems. A social gathering and discussion also will be held.
Fifty-six University of Maine student-athletes were named to the 2013 fall America East Honor Roll for obtaining a semester grade-point average (GPA) of 3.00 or higher.
A conference-record 708 student-athletes competed in fall sports for America East institutions, and 68 percent of all competitors garnered honor roll recognition.
Student-athletes from the UMaine women’s cross-country team took the title for most Black Bears named to the list, as 19 student-athletes qualified. Women’s soccer was next highest with 15, followed by field hockey with 13 and men’s cross-country with nine members qualifying for the honor.
Below is a full list of Maine’s honorees:
*Denotes Commissioner’s Honor Roll
The University of Maine Office of Campus Activities and Student Engagement (CASE) will host the annual UMaine Winter Carnival from Feb. 7–15. The event is open to all UMaine students. Activities will be taking place throughout campus and include late-night ice skating at the Alfond Arena, a snowman building contest, men’s and women’s basketball games, a bon fire, plays and performances. For more information, contact CASE at 207.581.1736.