Chancellor's Report

February 2013

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Conductor Eduard Zilberkant leads the Fairbanks Symphony Orchestra, the University Chorus, the Jubilee Bell Choir and the Northland Youth Choir in a special holiday performance in the Davis Concert Hall. Design Alaska, a Fairbanks architectural design and engineering firm, has sponsored this annual concert for the past 11 years. Employees of the firm handed out ornaments at the close of the concert.


The Geophysical Institute shared cutting-edge science with the public in the 21st Science for Alaska lecture series. The free lectures featured research on earthquakes, sea ice, air quality and lasers, presented by scientists at the forefront of their fields.

The College of Liberal Arts’ linguistics program received $1.9 million from the U.S. Department of Education to fund a three-year project to improve K - 12 educational outcomes for Alaska Native students. The project will help faculty members, students and community members work collaboratively to integrate technology in Alaska Native language education.

Institute of Arctic Biology scientists and graduate students are studying the spread of avian influenza in ducks which overwinter in an ice-free patch of the Chena River in Fairbanks. Because the 300 or so mallards can be sampled repeatedly, researchers can get a more accurate picture of infection rates at the population level.

The Alaska King Crab Research, Rehabilitation and Biology Program received $10,000 from Santa Monica Seafood to support crab research. AKCRRAB is a partnership among Alaska Sea Grant, the UAF School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences, and industry, community and agency groups.

The Student Veterans of UAF hosted its second annual Veterans Day Memorial Roll Call. Volunteers from campus, military and civilian communities read names of the more than 6,500 service members who have been killed in action in Iraq and Afghanistan. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich came to campus to speak to participants during the ceremonies.

The fourth annual Chancellor’s Gala took place Feb. 2. Fundraising proceeds benefitted the dental assistant/dental hygiene programs at CTC and the Circle of Hope Breast Cancer Project at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital.

Cooperative Extension’s use of various distance-delivery methods allowed residents of 63 communities to attend the Alaskan Growers School. In 2012, residents of 23 communities also participated in the Alaska Master Gardener online course, and Extension also used distance delivery to teach pesticide application, certified food protection, 4-H leadership and septic system maintenance.


In Progress


Staff at the UA Museum of the North are working on remains of an umiak dated at 1,000 years old, the oldest skin boat known in the circumpolar North. The materials, from the Birnirk archaeological site near Barrow, are owned by the U.S. Navy and were housed for decades at the Harvard Peabody Museum. They were returned to the museum in 2011. The wide range of artifacts and material types in this collection will support years of important archaeological research.

The 40th Festival of Native Arts will take place on campus in the Charles Davis Concert Hall Feb. 21 - 23. This year’s theme is Unity Through Cultures. Workshops on languages, dance motions, storytelling and beading will be part of the program. Originally, the festival focused each night on a specific Alaska Native culture. Today, it has grown in its depth and focus, and now features Native dance groups from throughout the state. 


What's Next


About 400 high school skiers will compete in Fairbanks in the National Cross Country Junior Nordic Ski Championships March 11 - 16. The closing banquet and awards ceremony will take place on campus at the Student Recreation Center.

The School of Fisheries and Ocean  Sciences’ Alaska Sea Grant College Program has been sponsoring and coordinating the Lowell Wakefield Fisheries symposia since 1982 in partnership with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, NOAA National Marine Fisheries Service and North Pacific Fishery Management Council. The 28th symposium, Responses of Arctic Marine Ecosystems to Climate Change, takes place March 26 - 29 in Anchorage. 


through the lens: recent images

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Undergraduate Alyssa  Komac, left, works with IAB graduate student Teresia Schnurr in Kriya Dunlap’s West Ridge Research Building lab. Komac is an exchange student from Montana. Schnurr, a biochemistry major and Nordic skier from Buhlertal, Germany, was the Dr. Wood Scholar Athlete of the Year for 2010 - 2011. The two students are studying sled dog metabolism, researching whether exercise increases expression of a particular protein in white blood cells. The work has implications for human health as well.


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Photos, clockwise from left

Junior Marissa Atoruk drives into the lane during second-half action in the Nanooks’ game against the Colorado School of Mines in the Patty Center.

Broomball, played on the outdoor ice rink in front of the Student Recreation Center, is a popular intramural sport at UAF.

The “Naturally Inspiring” tagline beams down on campus from atop the Gruening Building on a cold November morning.

Hundreds of spectators turned out to enjoy the fireworks display from UAF’s West Ridge on New Year’s Eve. 

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