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Colleges and Schools Highlights

June 8th, 2012 Posted in Highlights

College of Arts and Sciences

Find out the most recent news from the UNT College of Arts and Sciences by joining us on Facebook at Facebook.com/UNTArtsSciences or by following us on Twitter at Twitter.com/UNTArtsSciences.

College of Education

Autism Center set for Fall 2012 opening

The University of North Texas is set to open an autism center this fall, providing families in the North Texas region a resource for comprehensive autism spectrum disorders treatment, research and support.

The center, founded with the help of donor and alumna Kristin Farmer, founder of Autism Comprehensive Educational Services, will provide high quality services designed and implemented by top researchers, professors and professionals in the field of special education, applied behavior analysis, early childhood intervention, speech and language pathology and other fields in autism and disabilities intervention.

“This will be a place where parents and families in the community can receive access to the top, cutting-edge interventions and treatments in autism in one location, and where researchers can conduct innovative research,” Kevin Callahan, director of the center, said.

The center will be housed within the ACES Kristin Farmer Education and Research Center building, located near the intersection of Interstate 35-E and Teasley Lane in Denton. Services are planned to include diagnostic testing and evaluation; special education for elementary-aged students with autism spectrum disorders; behavior analysis and therapy; speech and language therapy; play, music and art therapy; psychological counseling for families, parents, siblings and individuals; nutritional services; occupational and physical therapy; and social skills training.

College of Engineering

UNT engineering students showcase their projects during design day

The College of Engineering’s 2012 Design Day featured a wide spectrum of engineering and technology prototypes encompassing vehicles, food creation, power generation, pollution monitoring, and software implementations. Engineering students displayed their depth of knowledge and keenness for technological innovation with their presentations.

More than 35 teams of students participated in the event, which allows students to present the results of their senior design. Design Day 2012 was well attended by students, professors, and invited industry guests.

“I would like to congratulate and thank all our students and faculty for making Design Day a success. We had more projects on display compared to last year. In addition to visitors from industry, we had high school students and students from local community colleges. Some industry folks remarked that the projects on display were of very high quality,” said Vijay Vaidyanathan, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies and coordinator of Design Day.

The senior design courses provide students the opportunity to work in teams on challenging projects, some of which are sponsored by industry. One of the projects involved the Mean Green Machine, a 1931 Model A seen at football games and spirit events. The team led by senior Brent Elliott worked for two semesters to convert the car, which had fallen into disrepair in recent years, to an electric vehicle. The Student Activities Department brought the idea to the Department of Engineering Technology.

The Senior Design course sequence gives the students problem-solving, teamwork and presentation skills, as well as hands-on experience in working with industry. The program benefits both the students who carry these skills beyond the classroom and industry professionals who work with the seniors on their projects.

College of Information

Hang Ten with the UNT College of Information Alumni Society

Anaheim LIS invite

Join the UNT College of Information at the ISTE Conference

ISTE San Diego Invite

College of Public Affairs & Community Service

The Child Abuse Awareness Event was part of a project for the Child Welfare Policy Practices class taught by Brenda Sweeten.  In an effort to increase awareness about child abuse, on April 25, 2012 the class donned posters and signs and handed out 2,267 blue ribbons, hundreds of flyers, and about 500 bottles of water tagged with a message about child abuse awareness and prevention in a rally outside the union.  The class also pre-sold t-shirts and took donations.  They raised over $600 which is being donated to kinship families in Denton County who have taken in abused and neglected children in the custody of Child Protective Services.

PACS Faculty Awards

Congratulations to Dr. Niki Dash as the recipient of the 2012 Exemplary Online Teacher and Course Designer Award presented by the Center for Learning Enhancement, Assessment, and Redesign.

Dr. James Veteto and the Southern Seed Legacy Lab were recently featured in the Texas Gardener Magazine.

Dr. Shahla Alai-Rosales was recently selected to receive the ‘Fessor Graham Award at this year’s honors reception.

UNT Honors College

Honors College alumna, Laura Dominguez, Program Associate for the Academy for Educational Development, will be among the UNT graduates in the Washington DC area who will have the opportunity to visit with Dean Gloria Cox and other UNT alums at an Alumni event planned for October 2012 in DC. Ms. Dominguez has been in the capital city since her internship with another organization, DATA, in 2005.

Ms. Dominguez is most drawn to promoting girls’ and women’s education. Her vast experience has helped her learn a tremendous amount about not only the technical area of international education but also about project administration and government regulation. In her current position with the Academy for Educational Development, she is involved with two international education projects in the Global Education Center: 1) Malawi Education Decentralization Support Activity and 2) Southern Sudan Technical Assistance Program.

This trilingual UNT Honors College alumna credits her early volunteer work with connecting her to the wide variety of audiences in need of assistance. She published an article in the North Texas Daily about the refugees in Darfur, Sudan, through her work with the committee for International Peace (CIP) where she served as General Secretary. To highlight the issue of hunger in Darfur and in the country of Niger, she organized and participated in a 24-hour fast on the UNT campus, raising money for UNHCR, the United Nations Refugee Agency. Laura Dominguez says that she feels privileged and also fulfilled to be able to contribute to efforts to improve the lives of others on a global scale.

“When it comes to academic and personal excellence, Laura Dominguez is at the forefront of Honors College graduates, having been the only UNT student or alumna ever to win two Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarships. She has devoted her professional life to global endeavors of service above self, both at home and abroad, and  never fails to bring new distinction to herself, and therefore to the Honors College and to UNT,” according to Dr. James Duban, Director of the Office for Nationally Competitive Scholarships at UNT.

Dr. Cox and the Honors College staff would love to know where your UNT degree has taken you! Please send your contact information to Diana.Dunklau@unt.edu. Please be sure to keep in touch, especially those UNT and Honors College alumni in the DC area who would like to attend the event in October.

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