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Friday, Aug. 28, 2015
Friday, Aug. 28, 2015
A new academic year begins!
"As we begin a new academic year together, I thank you for your contributions to our safe and welcoming campus, your dedication to educational excellence, your continued support of student success and your ongoing commitment to an atmosphere where diverse ideas are exchanged, valued and respected.
"I look forward to more initiatives in the year ahead, brought to life through the collaboration and teamwork which characterize Bloomsburg University. Please accept my sincere thanks for all that you do and my best wishes for a productive and fulfilling year ahead."
— President David L. Soltz
Safeguarding athletes’ brains
One of the hot-button topics in athletics today, at the youth, high school, collegiate and professional levels, is the matter of concussions and their affect on the brain. How quickly an athlete returns to competition is unique to each individual. But to accurately know when an athlete is healthy enough to return to competition requires a baseline starting point.
That’s where Bloomsburg University’s new Institute for Concussion Research and Service comes into play. The institute is a collaboration between interdisciplinary faculty and students working to better understand concussions. Under the direction of Joseph Hazzard, assistant professor of exercise science, the institute has two main goals: to give medical professionals a better understanding of concussions, symptoms and their outcomes, and to provide a service to the medical community that will assist them in making better “return-to-play” decisions.
“Our two-part testing system is unique to Bloomsburg University,” said Hazzard. “We have a special virtual reality system from Head Rehab Inc. that will test memory, reaction time and balance. We also have a clinical balance assessment instrument from Natus/Neurocom with components based in assessment of three systems: the visual, vestibular or inner ear, and somatosensory or neuromuscular feedback.
“An athlete would need to return to baseline on both of these tests before being allowed to safely return to competition. Having the baseline data on each of the athletes at the start will be how they will be measured.”
Chemistry assistant professor, mentor earn ACS recognition
A Bloomsburg University faculty member and his Florida State University adviser have won the Nobel Laureate Signature Award for Graduate Education in Chemistry for their work studying the little-known element californium. Florida State Gregory R. Choppin Professor Thomas Albrecht-Schmitt and his former graduate student Matthew Polinski, now an assistant professor of chemistry at BU, received the award from the American Chemical Society (ACS) in recognition of Polinski’s doctoral dissertation research under Albrecht-Schmitt’s supervision. That thesis work became a major part of a paper Albrecht-Schmitt authored in Nature Chemistry — with Polinski as a co-author — on the element californium.
Californium is a man-made, radioactive element known as Cf on the Periodic Table of Elements. It is also part of what’s called the actinide series, a part of the periodic table where all of the elements are radioactive. It is a wildly unstable element, but Albrecht-Schmitt’s team was able to show that it had very unusual chemistry, marking the beginning of a new type of chemistry not previously observed. They also found it was extremely resistant to radiation damage, which could further research on how to develop materials for storing radioactive elements.
Polinski’s work was a key part of that discovery.
New software tool helps syncs up Husky Life
HuskySync, powered by OrgSync, is the the main source of communication for all clubs and organizations. Sign in, browse organizations you are a member of or would like to join, and simply click to join. It’s that easy to stay informed about what’s going on with your clubs and organizations!
Not a member of a club and organization, but still want to know what’s going on around campus — HuskySync can help you with that! Everyone on campus is a member of the Husky Life at BU portal, which is where all non-club and organization communication will appear.
“Husky Sync is a great program to use!," says Natasha Moskowitz, vice president of Chi Theta Pi. "Chi Theta Pi will be using it to keep all our members updated with new information. The master calendar is great for scheduling our weekly chapter meetings and keeping track of who is attending. The mass messaging feature is a good way to keep everyone in the loop about what’s going on. You can also make polls that make voting a lot easier, have discussions, and share pictures or videos. We know this will make management of other activities and events with other chapters easier.“
Update on PHEAA Grants status
As we enter a new academic year without an approved state budget, we are aware of the effects this delay will have on students at Bloomsburg University and other universities across the commonwealth, both public and private. The outcome of this impasse that may most affect Bloomsburg University students and their families is that the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) cannot currently provide grants for the 2015-16 academic year.
If you are one of the 2,620 Bloomsburg University students due to receive a PHEAA state grant, this pending postponement of state grant awards may affect your student bill for the fall semester. I assure you, Bloomsburg University students will not be penalized or prevented from registering for the fall 2015 semester because of the budget impasse. PHEAA state grants previously awarded to students will be considered as credit toward the fall 2015 semester billing as it relates to both tuition and textbooks until PHEAA makes the final award determination. The remaining balance, however, must be paid through other grants, loans, family contributions and other sources of funding. The university will not place late fees or holds on accounts due to the funds not being disbursed.
Again, please be assured that this budget impasse will not adversely affect students’ ability to attend Bloomsburg University this fall. If you have questions or concerns about how this might affect you, please contact BU’s Financial Aid Office, 570-389-4279, or email Amanda Kishbaugh, interim director of Financial Aid, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- — Sincerely, President David L. Soltz