- Stem Cells and Nanofibers Stimulating Nerve Research
(Space Daily, November 9, 2012)
Michigan researchers report success in developing polymer nanofiber technologies for understanding how nerves form, why they don’t reconnect after injury, and what can be done to prevent or slow damage. Using polymer nanofibers thinner than human hairs as scaffolds, the scientists coaxed a particular type of brain cell to wrap around nanofibers that mimic the shape and size of nerves found in the body. While they haven’t yet created fully functioning “nerves in a dish,” the researchers believe their work offers a new way to study nerves and test treatment possibilities.
- U- M Cancer Center Receives $29-million Grant
(Ann Arbor Journal, November 2, 2012)
The University of Michigan’s Comprehensive Cancer Center has been awarded a grant totaling nearly $29 million from the National Cancer Institute. The grant will help fund $100 million worth of continuous research being conducted at the facility throughout the next five years. The funding will support 13 basic, clinical, and prevention/control programs, including cancer stem cell research and cancer genetics. It also provides support for 18 core shared research services and clinical trial operations. The U-M cancer center receives more money from the NCI than any other university cancer institute in the country.
- Survey: Fuel Economy in New Cars Hits Highest Level Since ’07
(The Detroit News, November 5, 2012)
Fuel economy of new vehicles purchased in October hit its highest level since at least 2007, reports the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute. The average fuel economy based on window-sticker value of new vehicles sold in the U.S. in October was 24.1 mpg—the highest level yet, and up 4.0 mpg from October 2007, the first month of monitoring. This 20 percent improvement in fuel economy corresponds to a 17 percent reduction in fuel consumption.
- Researchers to Lead Food Security Study
(Ann Arbor.com, November 7, 2012)
Researchers in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment are leading a five-year, $4-million study of disparities in access to healthful food across the state of Michigan. They plan to interview residents and study data in small to mid-sized cities to better understand factors affecting so-called food security. The federally funded work also will look at how urban agriculture can get to people in those communities. Other universities involved are University of Michigan-Flint, Michigan State University, University of Wisconsin, Lake Superior State University, and Grand Valley State University.
- Athletes Sign Social Media Policy in Bid to Avoid Controversy as Twitter Incidents Multiply
(Ann Abor.com, October 29, 2012)
Michigan’s recent decision to set a formal policy and have students sign an agreement regarding the use of Twitter follows a national trend of colleges tightening their grip on student athletes’ social media practices. Some colleges force athletes to allow school officials access to their private accounts (such as Utah State University), ban players from using a long list of words on Twitter (such as University of Kentucky), or forbid students from using Twitter altogether. Many schools have hired third-party companies to monitor athletes’ posts around the clock. Michigan does not go that far, but the athletics department does bring in communications specialists to teach players social media dos and don’ts.
- Does the Fed Favor Republican Presidents?
(The Atlantic, October 28, 2012)
Central banks are independent from politics, but are central bankers? In other words, does the Fed do more to juice the economy when one party controls the White House than the other? That’s the question University of Michigan professor William Clark asks, and his answer is a statistically significant, though qualified, yes—the conservative folks who tend to run central banks seem to prefer conservative politicians.
- Construction Roundup: 6 New Multimillion Dollar University of Michigan Projects to Watch
(Ann Arbor.com, November 13, 2012)
Six multimillion dollar building expansion and renovation projects are slated to begin on the U-M campus. The projects will cost a combined $69.4 million and are expected to provide an average of 137 construction jobs, according to U-M estimates. The proposed projects will take place in the School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, the William L. Clements Library, the North Campus Research Center, the Michigan Stadium, and the College of Pharmacy. In addition, the University plans to replace the Central Campus area utility network.
- Mary Sue Coleman Counted among Most Popular University Presidents
(Huffington Post, October 10, 2012)
Glassdoor.com. asked university employees nationwide the following question: Do you approve of the way your CEO (president/chancellor, in this case) is leading the company? The result puts four of the top 10 sharing the No. 1 slot with a 100 percent approval rating, although Stanford’s John L. Hennessy also had an employer rating of 4.0 and “very satisfied.” Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman scored 94 percent and ranks sixth out of 10. The ratings are based on institutions with at least 20 approved company reviews, and at least 20 president/chancellor approval ratings between Sept. 10, 2011, and Sept. 9, 2012.