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Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist to deliver UT commencement address Dec. 17

Toledo native and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Michael D. Sallah will return to his alma mater Sunday, Dec. 17, to deliver the keynote address during The University of Toledo’s fall commencement ceremony.

The event will begin at 10 a.m. in Savage Arena.


Sallah will address 2,067 candidates for degrees, including 118 doctoral, 523 master’s, 1,370 bachelor’s and 56 associate’s.

The ceremony is open to the public and can be viewed live at video.utoledo.edu.

Sallah’s investigative work as a reporter and editor with award-winning newspapers across the country has revealed public corruption, police abuses and government blunders, resulting in grand jury investigations, legislative reform, and the recovery of millions of taxpayer dollars.

He is a reporter on the national investigations team at USA Today/Gannett Network in Washington, D.C.

“This is where it all began for me,” Sallah said. “From the time I took my first journalism class in the fall of my freshman year, I fell in love with journalism, and UT is a big part of that. It’s part of my foundation — the professors, the values they conveyed to me about journalism, and why it’s so critical to our society, especially investigative work. I’m honored to be coming home to be the commencement speaker.”

“Journalists have an important role to inform the public about the issues that affect our lives, and Michael Sallah has embraced that responsibility uncovering many misdeeds through investigative reporting that resulted in positive change,” UT President Sharon L. Gaber said. “I look forward to him sharing with our graduates how he got his start here in Toledo and inspiring them to stay curious and serve their communities.”

Born in Toledo, Sallah is a 1977 alumnus of The University of Toledo, graduating cum laude with a bachelor of arts degree in journalism. He was named UT’s Outstanding Alumnus in the Social Sciences in 2004. Sallah also is a 1973 graduate of St. John’s Jesuit High School.

He was a reporter and national affairs writer at The Blade for more than a decade, and was the lead reporter on the 2003 project “Buried Secrets, Brutal Truths” that exposed the U.S. Army’s longest war crimes case of the Vietnam War. The series won numerous national awards, including the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting.

While investigations editor and reporter at the Miami Herald, Sallah led an inquiry into local corruption. His team’s 2006 “House of Lies” series exposed widespread fraud in Miami-Dade County public housing and earned the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Local Reporting. He was named a 2012 Pulitzer Prize finalist for his series “Neglected to Death,” which uncovered deadly conditions in Florida assisted-living facilities, led to the closing of 13 facilities, and was the impetus for a gubernatorial task force to overhaul state law.

During his two years at The Washington Post, Sallah received a Robert F. Kennedy Award for Excellence in Journalism for an investigation that exposed a predatory system of tax collection in the District of Columbia. 

He returned to the Miami Herald in 2014 and was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2016 for uncovering one of the nation’s most corrupt sting operations in a police unit that laundered $71.5 million for drug cartels, kept millions for brokering the deals, and failed to make a single significant arrest. 

Sallah is the author of the books “Tiger Force: A True Story of Men and War” and “Yankee Comandante: The Untold Story of Courage, Passion and One American’s Fight to Liberate Cuba.” He also was a consultant for the Public Broadcasting Service documentary “American Experience.”

UT’s fall commencement ceremony will recognize graduates from the colleges of Arts and Letters; Business and Innovation; Judith Herb College of Education; Engineering; Graduate Studies; Health and Human Services; Honors College; Natural Sciences and Mathematics; Nursing; and Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences; and University College.

For more information, visit utoledo.edu/commencement.

Deadline extended for new graduate programs proposals

Tuesday, May 30, is the deadline for campus community members to submit proposals for new graduate programs.

Earlier this year, the College of Graduate Studies issued a request for proposals for new graduate programs. 

“To date, we have received 10 proposals,” said Dr. Amanda C. Bryant-Friedrich, dean of the College of Graduate Studies. “We’re extending the deadline for proposals to allow those who are busy with end-of-the-year duties to participate in this process.”

Proposals will be accepted from all UT community members, including students, staff, alumni, administrators and faculty.

“As you know, the quality and prestige of graduate programs is dependent upon the availability of competitive, challenging and cutting-edge curricula that are of interest to today’s student,” Bryant-Friedrich said. “The University of Toledo has excellent offerings that attract highly qualified students from around the world, but there are some deficits in our portfolio. Please assist me in bringing new and modified programs online that utilize the existing expertise on our campus to support those in need of our instruction.”

The proposal is short and easy to complete: click here.

University Women’s Commission recognizes employees, awards scholarships to students

Five UT employees were honored last week for exceptional achievement and dedication to the campus community at the 31st annual Outstanding Women’s Award ceremony.

More than 70 attended the University Women’s Commission program, which was held Wednesday in the Savage Arena Joe Grogan Room. Dr. Amanda Bryant-Friedrich, dean of the College of Graduate Studies, gave a talk, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!” The 2015 recipient of the Alice H. Skeens Outstanding Woman Award shared her story, including her love of science, working in Europe, and how she came to UT.

Recipients of the 2017 Dr. Alice H. Skeens Outstanding Woman Award were, from left, Dr. Kasumi Yamazaki, Dr. Kaye M. Patten, Sherry Stanfa-Stanley, Dr. Nina I. McClelland and Dr. Dorothea Sawicki.

The recipients of the 2017 Dr. Alice H. Skeens Outstanding Woman Award were:

• Dr. Nina I. McClelland, dean emerita of the College of Arts and Sciences, professor emerita of chemistry, and executive in residence in the College of Business and Innovation. She served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences from 2008 to 2011. A UT alumna, she received a bachelor’s degree in biology in 1951 and a master’s degree in interdisciplinary studies in 1963. McClelland also received an honorary doctorate of science from the University. During her career, she has won numerous honors, including the 2016 Women in Conservation Award from the National Wildlife Federation for her accomplishments in protecting safe water around the world, promoting clean energy, and preserving wildlife and habitats in Ohio. In 2010, she was inducted into the Ohio Women’s Hall of Fame.

“Dr. McClelland is internationally recognized for her expertise in environmental chemistry. She was elected director at large of the American Chemical Society and served in that role for nine years. She was elected chair of the board of directors, a position she held for three years. Nina served the NSF International for 30 years, including 15 years as chair of the board of directors and executive committee, president and chief executive officer,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. McClelland is an amazing woman who has dedicated her life to using science to make this world a better place.”

• Dr. Kaye M. Patten, senior vice president for student affairs. She has been working at the University 12 years. She served as chair of the 2016 UT Community Charitable Campaign, which exceeded its goal and raised $134,568 for nearly 220 nonprofit area organizations.

“I have worked with many dedicated women in my 30 years in higher education. Dr. Kaye is in a class by herself. Through working with her, I have witnessed a level of energy, commitment, respect and advocacy for students that I had not experienced before,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Patten treats each student exactly how she would want her own son or daughter treated. I have admired and appreciated Dr. Kaye’s approach — to always be upfront with students, letting them know their responsibilities and how UT can help them achieve their goals. She understands the life-changing power of higher education, and it is clear that she wants the best for our students. If she is not attending a student event after hours or on weekends, she is representing the University in the community through the Toledo branch of Links Inc., a women’s service organization whose mission is to enrich the cultural and economic lives of African Americans. Dr. Kaye does nothing halfway — if she makes a commitment, she’s all in. To borrow from the UTC3 campaign slogan: She simply gives.”

• Dr. Dorothea Sawicki, vice provost for health affairs and university accreditation, and professor of medical microbiology and immunology. In 1977, she began her career as an assistant professor at the Medical College of Ohio. She received tenure and worked her way up to professor. She also served in several administrative roles in the College of Graduate Studies and in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences; as secretary-treasurer of the American Society for Virology since 2006; and as a member of the Journal of Virology editorial board since 1988.

“Dr. Sawicki has contributed to the University in a variety of ways for almost 40 years. She was one of the first people I met when I began at UT in 2010. At the time, I was a temporary hire helping the institution prepare for its Higher Learning Commission accreditation visit, and Thea was one of the committee co-chairs. I was immediately struck by her direct, no-nonsense approach to getting things done,” one nominator wrote. “I appreciate the historical background she is often able to provide about some obscure policy or way of doing things, and her unwavering commitment to the University. She is successful in her field and is a role model for women in science; she is extremely involved in the UT community at all levels; she maintains a positive, can-do attitude in her work; and she is active in various women’s issues.”

• Sherry Stanfa-Stanley, director of communication and fund stewardship with the UT Foundation. She joined the University in 1992. Over the past 25 years, she has significantly enhanced the Foundation’s internal and external communications, donor relations, and stewardship efforts. A UT alumna, she received a bachelor’s degree in communication in 1983. In 2013, Stanfa-Stanley embarked on “The 52/52 Project,” a year where she challenged herself every week with a new experience. As she turned 52, she shook things up. Her adventures included suiting up as Rocksy the mascot for a UT soccer game; babysitting quadruplets; wearing pajamas in public for a day; riding with police and going on a raid with the vice squad and SWAT team; visiting a nude beach; performing as a mime outside a shopping center in Kentucky; and crashing a wedding reception — and catching the bride’s bouquet.

“All the while, Sherry blogged about her amazingly crazy year on Facebook.com/The52at52Project. The witty writer served up entertainment and enlightenment for nearly 5,000 followers. Her book, ‘Finding My Badass Self: A Year of Truths and Dares,’ will be published Aug. 15 by She Writes Press,” one nominator wrote. “Sherry likes to call herself ‘a cautionary tale,’ but she really is a role model, showing it’s never too late to change your life. Her heady heroism is inspiring.”

• Dr. Kasumi Yamazaki, assistant professor of Japanese in the Department of Foreign Languages. She started to work part time at UT in 2011. She is the social media coordinator for the Japanese Studies Program and adviser of the Calligraphy Club. She also is a translator in various community organizations local and abroad, as well as assistant coordinator for the Toledo Sister Cities International. A UT alumna, she received a bachelor of arts degree in global studies in 2009, a master of arts degree in English in 2011, and a doctoral degree in curriculum and instruction in 2015.

“Dr. Yamazaki’s contributions and achievements are numerous and balanced in research, teaching and service. She has three articles in press, and in the 2016-17 academic year, she presented or is scheduled to present eight sessions at international and national conferences,” one nominator wrote. “Dr. Yamazaki has implemented a 3D virtual world simulation game into Japanese as a foreign language classroom and designed an immersive Japanese curriculum for her students. She uses an experiential and integrative computer-assisted language learning framework, conducting classes in a 3D massive multiplayer online learning environment to enhance students’ acquisition of Japanese and cultural proficiency. With what Dr. Yamazaki calls computer-assisted learning of communication, she developed an advanced Japanese course that is based in a 3D simulation in Tokyo. Through communicative collaboration with native Japanese game-users online, she made it possible for students to acquire knowledge to function in Japan.”

Students who received $1,000 scholarships from the University Women’s Commissin were, from left, Areeba Shaw, Bianca Caniglia, Jennifer Zaurov and Jessica Angelov.

The University Women’s Commission also presented $1,000 scholarships to four students. Receiving awards based on academic achievement, support of women’s and gender issues, and campus involvement were Jessica Angelov, a senior majoring in interdisciplinary studies with a minor in entrepreneurship, family and small business; Bianca Caniglia, a senior majoring in environmental science with a minor in women’s and gender studies; Jennifer Zaurov, a junior majoring in communication with a minor in psychology; and Areeba Shaw, a sophomore majoring in media communication.

Midwest Graduate Research Symposium to be held March 25

The University of Toledo’s Graduate Student Association is accepting registration for its eighth annual Midwest Graduate Research Symposium.

The symposium will take place Saturday, March 25, in the Memorial Field House and the Thompson Student Union.

“We are very excited to host this premiere event as it brings together hundreds of graduate students from across the region and showcases student progress in a wide variety of fields,” said Jessica Sherman, Graduate Student Association vice president.

The event will feature a keynote address from the Northern Ohio’s Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate; several professional development workshops; an awards banquet; a poster show; and eight sessions of concurrent podium presentations where students will discuss their work.

“The Midwest Graduate Research Symposium is an excellent opportunity for students to network, work on professional developmental skills, and receive constructive feedback on their presentations,” Sherman said.

Registrations must be submitted by Saturday, March 4, online at https://graduatestudentassociationblog.wordpress.com. All participants will receive participation certificates and an invitation to the awards dinner following the symposium.

Several awards will be given out at the dinner, where the top three poster presentations and oral presentations will be recognized.

For more information, contact the Graduate Student Association Office at graduatestudentassociation@gmail.com.

Professional Staff Association to hold annual meeting May 25

The University of Toledo’s Professional Staff Association aims to act as a liaison between professional staff at the University and the administration.

Since its beginning in 1992, the PSA has established a variety of committees, including a Professional Development Committee and Sick Leave Bank Committee, created and revised a staff handbook, and instituted a scholarship fund.

web PSA general meeting May 25This year’s PSA Annual Meeting is open to all UT professional staff members and will begin at noon on Wednesday, May 25, in Health Education Building Room 100.

The meeting will highlight the year in review with an introductory statement from Elissa Falcone, chair of the Professional Staff Council and manager of graduate academic affairs in the College of Graduate Studies, followed by updates from committee chairs and discussion of upcoming events.

“This year, PSA has been very active through hosting several brown-bag workshops such as ‘Office Qi Gong for Stress Management and Your Well-Being’ and ‘New Year, New You: Refreshing Your Professional Profile,’” said Kari Dilworth, member of the Professional Staff Council and UT success coach. “We have also held social events, including a football tailgate. In addition to the annual meeting, we have elections and a social event at the Mud Hens still ahead for this summer.”

Wednesday’s meeting will include a silent auction and 50/50 raffle with proceeds going toward the PSA Scholarship Fund. The meeting will begin with opportunities to socialize and lunch while bidding on silent auction items.

PSA also has partnered with Reach Out and Read, an organization working to ensure children do not grow up without books. Attendees are encouraged to bring a book to donate to the organization.

“It is a great program that supports literacy for young children and their families,” Dilworth said. “In addition, UT staff member Lori Legendre is associated with this program, which makes it even more appealing for PSA to support.”

Lunch will be provided. Parking is available in Lot 43, and there is also a shuttle available.

To register for the meeting, click here.

Smithsonian museum director and physicist to address UT graduates May 7

Leaders with a passion for diversity and science who have uplifted Americans through the arts, public service and higher education will address graduates at The University of Toledo’s spring commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 7, in Savage Arena.

During the 9:30 a.m. ceremony, former U.S. Congressman and physicist Dr. Rush D. Holt, who leads the world’s largest multidisciplinary scientific and engineering society, will speak to graduates from the colleges of Adult and Lifelong Learning, Health Sciences, Social Justice and Human Service, and the Judith Herb College of Education.

Dr. Johnnetta Cole, director of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and the first African-American female president of Spelman College, will speak at the 2 p.m. ceremony for the colleges of Business and Innovation, Communication and the Arts, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Languages, Literature and Social Sciences.

There are 2,843 candidates for degrees: 234 doctoral candidates, 727 master’s, education specialist and graduate certificate candidates, and 1,882 bachelor’s and associate’s candidates.

The ceremony will be streamed live on video.utoledo.edu.



Holt, who will receive an honorary doctor of public service degree during the morning ceremony, is the chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and executive publisher of the Science family of journals.

He served eight terms as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Jersey’s 12th Congressional District. During his time on Capitol Hill from 1999 to 2015, Holt advocated for increased federal research funding, science education and innovation. Holt made national headlines in 2011 when he defeated IBM’s supercomputer Watson in a non-televised round of “Jeopardy!”

Holt previously served as assistant director of Princeton University’s Plasma Physics Laboratory, one of the largest alternative energy research facilities in the country.



Cole, who will receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree during the afternoon ceremony, made history nearly 30 years ago as the first African-American female president of Spelman College in Atlanta. She later served as president of Bennett College for Women, making Cole the only person who has been president of both historically black colleges for women in the United States.

She also was the first woman elected to the board of Coca-Cola Enterprises. She was the first African American to serve as chair of the board of the United Way of America.

Other commencement ceremonies taking place are:

• College of Engineering — graduate commencement Thursday, May 5, at 5 p.m., and undergraduate commencement Saturday, May 7, at 3 p.m. Both ceremonies will be held in Nitschke Hall Auditorium.

• College of Nursing — Friday, May 6, at 1 p.m. in Savage Arena.

• College of Law — Sunday, May 8, at 1 p.m. in the Student Union Auditorium.

• College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences — Sunday, May 8, at 10 a.m. in Savage Arena.

• College of Medicine and Life Sciences — Friday, May 27, at 2 p.m. in the Stranahan Theater, 4645 Heatherdowns Blvd., Toledo.

For more information, visit utoledo.edu/commencement.

Open forums slated for graduate studies dean candidates

Three finalists have been selected from the internal search for a new dean for the College of Graduate Studies.

They are:

• Dr. Laurie Dinnebeil, Distinguished University Professor and chair of the Department of Early Childhood and Special Education in the Judith Herb College of Education;

• Dr. Amanda Bryant-Friedrich, associate professor of medicinal and biological chemistry, associate professor of chemistry, and director of international pharmaceutical sciences graduate student retention and recruitment in the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences; and

• Dr. Patrick Lawrence, professor and chair of geography and planning in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences.

The UT campus community is invited to meet the candidates at open forums.

Listed by date, the open forums will be:

• Friday, April 29 — Dinnebeil from 9 to 9:45 a.m. in Health Education Building Room 105 on Health Science Campus and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. in Student Union Room 2592 on Main Campus.

• Monday, May 2 — Lawrence from 9 to 9:45 a.m. in Health Education Building Room 105 on Health Science Campus and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. in Student Union Room 2582 on Main Campus.

• Thursday, May 5 — Bryant-Friedrich from 9 to 9:45 a.m. in Health Education Building Room 105 on Health Science Campus and from 11 to 11:45 a.m. in Student Union Room 2582 on Main Campus.

Curriculum vitaes are available for each candidate at utoledo.edu/offices/provost/search-dean-graduate.

“We are looking for someone to lead our graduate and professional programs to become even more nationally distinguished and highly ranked,” Dr. William Messer, vice president for research and chair of the search committee, said. “The next dean also will be charged with continuing and growing UT’s emphasis on graduate student research.”

The University has 128 master’s degree programs and 40 doctoral programs in 12 colleges. In addition to those degrees, the University offers professional doctorates and master’s degrees, as well as a variety of certificates in health care, business and personal enrichment areas.

University Women’s Commission honors employees, awards scholarships to students

Seven University employees were recognized last week for excellence and dedication to the campus community at the 30th annual Outstanding Women’s Award ceremony.

More than 80 attended the University Women’s Commission program, which was held Thursday in the Savage Arena Joe Grogan Room. Dr. Patsy Komuniecki, vice provost for graduate studies and dean of the College of Graduate Studies, spoke at the event.

Recipients of the the Dr. Alice Skeens Outstanding Woman Award were, from left, Nicole Porter, Dr. Barbara Schneider, Sara Clark, Nadine Hoffmann, Betty Jean Sullivan and Dr. Deepa Mukundan.

Recipients of the the Dr. Alice Skeens Outstanding Woman Award were, from left, Nicole Porter, Dr. Barbara Schneider, Sara Clark, Nadine Hoffmann, Betty Jean Sullivan and Dr. Deepa Mukundan.

The recipients of the Dr. Alice Skeens Outstanding Woman Award were:

Sara Clark, director of global engagement and the American Language Institute. She has worked at the University eight years. She received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from UT in 2004 and 2007, respectively.

“Sara is totally involved on campus. She goes to most every campus event with dozens of international students. She also teaches two UT evening courses on service learning. Sara is an adviser to the UT Student Explorers, which involves both domestic and foreign students in many exciting trips and activities throughout the region,” a nominator wrote. “She performs her job with a combination of positive energy, absolute integrity, and a powerful can-do attitude. I am so grateful to have such a devoted and talented woman here as our leader.” “Sara helped create the American Language Institute Student Council and went to great lengths to make certain that our women students were well-represented. They gain excellent leadership skills,” another noted. “Sara is both respectable and respected. I am very impressed by Sara’s devotion to her students and to the entire University.”

• Nadine Hoffmann, an assistant to the undergraduate dean in the Office of Undergraduate Studies in the College of Engineering. Previously, she worked for two deans in the College of Law, but spent most of her tenure at the former UT Community and Technical College. Hoffmann received associate’s and bachelor’s degrees from UT in 1994 and 2007, respectively.

“Nadine is a critical person in our office, and she excels in customer service. She is the first voice people hear when they call our office and the first face they see when they enter our office. Each day, our office has between one and 20 prospective students visit for a presentation and a tour. Ms. Hoffmann takes time to personally greet and speak with each family. She helps answer their initial questions, calms their nerves, and welcomes them to the College of Engineering. Her positive aura is a blessing for these prospective students and gives our college a friendly face,” a nominator wrote. “She also is actively involved in her church, Cedar Creek. She has taught Bible study and volunteers at the soup kitchen weekly.”

• Dr. Deepa Mukundan, associate professor of pediatrics. She completed her residency at MCO in 2003 and returned to UT as an assistant professor in 2006. Mukundan was promoted to associate professor in 2013 and was named associate student clerkship director in pediatrics in 2014. She helped establish the UT International Traveler’s Clinic in the Ruppert Health Center in 2014.

“Dr. Mukundan is very active in supporting women’s and children’s health-care needs in our community. She is bringing awareness to families regarding the need for vaccination against meningitis in Ohio,” one nominator wrote. “She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and a member of the section on International Child Health, Infectious Diseases and Epidemiology. She also is a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society of America, Global Health Council, American Society of Microbiology, International Society for Infectious Diseases, Emerging Infections Network, and International Society of Travel Medicine. She also is involved with MDJunior as a global medical-mentor for mission trips to Honduras with high school and middle school students.”

• Nicole Porter, professor of law. She joined the College of Law faculty in 2007. She served as associate dean for academic affairs from 2010 to 2012.

“Professor Porter served on the University’s Sexual Harassment Task Force and was one of the principal drafters of the new UT Sexual Harassment Policy, promulgated in 2011,” one nominator wrote. “Professor Porter conceived and developed a junior faculty orientation for new College of Law faculty members. Even more significant has been the informal mentorship she has provided to junior faculty members, in particular persons of color and female faculty members.” Another noted, “As a scholar, Professor Portman is exemplary. Her research has consistently attracted national attention. And many of her articles have focused squarely on women’s issues, including ‘Women, Unions and Negotiation,’ ‘Sex Plus Age Discrimination: Protecting Older Women Workers,’ ‘Debunking the Market Myth in Pay Discrimination Cases,’ ‘Finding a Fix for the FMLA: A New Perspective, a New Solution,’ and ‘The Caregiver Conundrum Redux: The Entrenchment of Structural Norms.’ All of her work is widely read, cited and influential.”

• Dr. Barbara Schneider, senior associate dean in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences, and associate professor of English. She joined the faculty as assistant professor and director of composition in 2000 and received tenure and was promoted to associate professor and appointed director of the UT Writing Center in 2006. Five years later, Schneider was named associate dean of the College of Innovative Learning and in 2012 became associate dean in the College of Languages, Literature and Social Sciences, where she was promoted to senior associate dean in 2013.

“Despite her daunting duties as senior associate dean, Dr. Schneider teaches every semester for the Department of English and in fall 2016 will teach a class for the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies,” one nominator wrote. “She is creative and tireless in her efforts to support every college initiative and to promote and support students. Whatever the task, she works quietly and efficiently behind the scenes, never seeking credit or functioning in self-serving ways, and always maintaining a positive attitude and good humor.”

Betty Jean Sullivan, custodial worker in Gillham Hall. She joined the UT staff in 1991 and has worked in Memorial Field House, Carlson Library, Wolfe Hall and Gillham Hall. In 2014, Sullivan received the University’s Shining Star Award.

“Ms. Sullivan is highly deserving of this award as she exemplifies the work of women as foundational to family life and community life, and as the often invisible, or at least ignored, work that is essential to maintaining an institution like The University of Toledo as a healthy, thriving institution,” a nominator wrote. After her husband was diagnosed with cancer, she cared for him at home for two years until he passed, according to a nomination. Then she took on more responsibility at the Paradise Baptist Church, which was founded by her husband. “Since the church was a small community of low-income people in Toledo, she took two things she loves and combined them together, spiritual and physical food. The corner of Tecumseh and Detroit became a place where people could stop by and get some good soul food and receive a message of hope and love.”



• Dr. Mary Beth Wroblewski, assistant professor of pediatrics, pediatric clerkship director, and assistant dean for student affairs in the College of Medicine and Life Sciences. She received a bachelor of science degree in pharmaceutical science from UT in 1998 and a doctor of medicine degree from MCO in 2005. She completed post-graduate training at UT and served as chief resident her final year. Wroblewski has received many awards, including the Dean’s Award for Teaching Excellence.

“Dr. Wroblewski oversees pediatric education for 350 third- and fourth-year medical students each year. She listens to the medical students and works diligently to lead them to solutions that work for them and gets them back on track. She does this with a great deal of humility, compassion and humor,” one nominator wrote. “Her most recent involvement in the community is her pediatric clinic at Toledo Public Schools. She also is very involved with the recent epidemic of babies addicted to methadone. She also is an active supporter of women’s issues and is very involved educating parents on the health care of children as well as the importance of vaccinating children.”

Students receiving scholarships from the University Women’s Commission were Ashley Daniels, left, and Ashley Jemerson. Batool Mehdi also received a scholarship, but she was unable to attend the event.

Students receiving scholarships from the University Women’s Commission were Ashley Daniels, left, and Ashley Jemerson. Batool Mehdi also received a scholarship, but she was unable to attend the event.

The University Women’s Commission also presented $1,000 scholarships to three students. Receiving awards based on academic achievement, support of women’s and gender issues, and campus and community involvement were Ashley Jemerson, a senior majoring in criminal justice and minoring in forensic science investigation; Batool Mehdi, a senior majoring in biology and minoring in chemistry; and Ashley Daniels, a senior majoring in early childhood education.

Hundreds of Midwest grad students to gather, present research at UT April 9

Graduate students from across the Midwest will come together at The University of Toledo to present their research Saturday, April 9, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Memorial Field House and Student Union.

The Midwest Graduate Research Symposium, which originated at UT seven years ago, invites graduate students from all disciplines to share their research and vie for several awards.

PowerPoint PresentationMore than 130 students have already registered to present, and nearly 70 universities have been invited to the event, which is sponsored and put on annually by the UT Graduate Student Association.

“We have had incredible growth in the past seven years,” said Jessica Sherman, communications officer for the Graduate Student Association. “Our attendance has increased each year, and we hope 2016 will continue that trend and be our biggest symposium to date.”

The keynote speaker this year will be Dr. Ronald Delph from Eastern Michigan University. His presentation, “Four Decades of European Travel With Homer, Henry Adams and Virgil,” was chosen in the hopes that it would resonate with all graduate students in attendance regardless of their research interests, according to Sherman.

This year, both oral and poster presenters will have the opportunity to win a first-, second- or third-place plaque and certificate to commemorate their achievements. Other awards include the Association of Women in Science Award, a $100 prize that will go to the top presenting woman in a STEM field, and the Sigma Xi UT Chapter Award.

All participants are invited to the awards dinner following the symposium.

In addition to the chance to present research and win recognition, the symposium provides a number of opportunities for professional development and networking, including a business lunch, an awards ceremony and dinner, a lunchtime grant writing panel, and more.

The Graduate Student Association is still seeking judges and volunteers for the event. All judges and volunteers will be provided lunch and dinner, and volunteers will be granted an automatic six-month active Graduate Student Association membership.

For more information or to volunteer for the event, click here.

Register for Midwest Graduate Research Symposium by Feb. 28

The University of Toledo’s Graduate Student Association is accepting registrations for its sixth annual Midwest Graduate Research Symposium.

The symposium will be held Saturday, March 21, in the Memorial Field House and the Student Union on UT’s Main Campus.

“This is a great opportunity for graduate students to not only showcase their research, but to see research being done by other students across the nation,” said Jennifer Solanics, UT graduate assistant in the Office of Equity, Diversity and Community Engagement.

The event will feature research presentations, networking, and the chance to foster intercollegiate friendships and collaborations.

“This event gives students the chance to meet and network with individuals they may not have met,” Solanics said. “The relationships formed will have a positive impact on the participants for years to come.”

Post-baccalaureate students from every discipline are invited to register for the opportunity to present their research at the event. Undergraduate students are encouraged to register for a select number of available spots.

Registrations must be submitted by Saturday, Feb. 28. Participants will be notified of acceptance by Saturday, March 14.

All participants will receive a certificate and an invitation to the awards dinner following the symposium.

The top three poster presentations and oral presentations will be announced at the dinner, and the winners will each receive a plaque and a certificate. Additionally, the Association for Women in Science award will be given to the top woman with a STEM field presentation along with a $100 prize.

To register, click here.

For more information, contact the Graduate Student Association Office at graduatestudentassociation@gmail.com or 419.482.8383.