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Buchanan Outlines Recent UW Accomplishments

March 23, 2007 -- President Tom Buchanan today (Friday) presented to University of Wyoming trustees a report of recent major accomplishments at and gifts to UW. Among them were:

UW received a record of more than $16 million for the sale of Teton County property gifted by the late Clara Toppan. Among the gift’s beneficiaries are the UW American Heritage Center's rare books collection, the UW College of Business and the college's accounting department, and UW's Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.

Research and education collections for the life sciences scattered throughout the UW campus will be consolidated under one roof thanks to a $10 million gift that will create the Robert and Carol Berry Center for Natural History and Conservation. With state matching funds, the center will bring together the university's botany and zoology collections, the Rocky Mountain Herbarium, the Solheim Mycology Herbarium, the Wyoming Natural Diversity Database, and the Nucleic Acid Exploration Facility into a $20 million, 40,000 square-foot facility to be built on land currently occupied by the university's old power plant on Lewis Street.

Two UW departments are among the top 10 nationally in faculty research productivity, according to rankings listed in the Chronicle of Higher Education. The College of Agriculture's Department of Animal Science was ranked seventh in the agricultural sciences category, and the College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Zoology and Physiology was ranked eighth in the biological sciences category. The 2005 Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index ranks a total of 177,816 faculty members nationwide, as measured by publications, federal-grant dollars awarded, and honors and awards.

UW won the 2007 TIAA-CREF Hesburgh Award recognizing the college or university sponsoring the most effective program to enhance undergraduate teaching and student learning. The award, which includes a $25,000 cash prize, recognizes UW's Synergy Program, a learning community designed to help first-year students build relationships with peers and faculty and succeed in some of the most difficult general education courses.

Stacia Berry of Cheyenne, a junior in animal and veterinary sciences, was among 60 students nationwide listed on USA Today's 2007 All-USA College Academic Team. The program honors students who excel in a variety of ways academically and who extend their knowledge beyond the classroom, says Tracey Wong Briggs, All-USA Academic Team coordinator.

A paper by the research team led by David Fay, an associate professor in the UW Department of Molecular Biology, appeared in the journal Current Biology. The article, co-written by molecular biology junior and Rock Springs High School graduate Katherine Rogers and post-doctoral researcher SaeYoull Cho, lays important groundwork for studies that could lead to a better understanding of diseases affecting human health and fertility.

In 2006, eight small businesses in five Wyoming communities received a record $4.74 million from the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program administered by the UW vice president for research and economic development. These federal awards provide critically-needed seed capital for Wyoming's emerging technology business sector to create jobs and increase private sector economic activity by developing new products and processes.

In recognition of her significant contributions to and experience within the profession, UW Dean of Libraries Maggie Farrell was elected to the board of trustees for the Online Computer Library Centers, the world's largest library consortium. More than 41,555 libraries in 112 countries and territories around the world use OCLC services to locate, acquire, catalog, lend and preserve library materials.

UW actors Claudine Mboligikpelani Nako of Laramie, and Cheyenne Christian of Mitchell, Neb., swept the Irene Ryan Acting Scholarship competition at the recent Region VII Kennedy Center/American College Theatre Festival (KC/ACTF) and Northwest Drama Conference in Pasco, Wash. This marks the first time both Region VII winners have come from the same university. They will advance to the national KC/ACTF festival April 17-23, at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C.

UW’s women’s Nordic ski team won the United States Collegiate Ski and Snowboard Association (USCSA) nationals at Snow Mountain Ranch near Winter Park, Colo., capturing their third national title in four years. The UW men placed second.

Posted on Friday, March 23, 2007

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