UAS In Brief

MPA Professor Presents Research at International Arctic FROST in Austria

UAS MPA program professor Dr. Jim Powell served as a mentor to early scholars at the recent Arctic-FROST Annual Meeting in Vienna, Austria.  Dr. Powell presented a paper on his research on community adaptive capacity in Kenai and Juneau, Alaska.  The Arctic-FROST Project is a NSF-funded international interdisciplinary collaborative network that links together environmental and social scientists, local educators, and community members from all circumpolar countries to enable and mobilize research on sustainable Arctic development. It is specifically aimed at improving the health, human development and wellbeing of Arctic communities while conserving ecosystem structures, functions and resources under changing climate conditions. The theme of the Annual Meeting and Early Career Scholars Workshop is Arctic Sustainability in the Global Context.  Dr. Powell also presented a video he produced on local subsistence harvesters and their observations of climate change in SE Alaska.

Sitka Winter Fellows Program

The UAS Sitka Winter Fellows program is starting up. This program was developed by Rep. Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins, and is run in conjunction with the Sitka Fine Arts Camp.  It brings individuals who have recently graduated from their baccalaureate programs to act as tutors and run activities for students, much like AmeriCorps.  This year there are two people from Yale, one from Cornell, and one from Harvard.

Twitchell Receives Sealaska Heritage Institute Judson L. Brown Leadership Award

Sealaska Heritage Institute chose Lance Twitchell, UAS Assistant Professor of Alaska Native Languages, to receive the 2016 Judson L. Brown Leadership Award of $5,000.  Twitchell, whose Tlingit name is X’unei, has led a high-profile effort in the last several years to revitalize Alaska Native languages.  At UAS he has pushed to develop Haida and Tsimshian language classes, creating systemic changes in the university, our communities and organizations. In his first two years at UAS, attendance in Alaska Native language classes rose by 150 percent. He also was a key member of a team that secured passage of House Bill 216, which made Alaska one of two states in the United States to officially recognize its indigenous languages (the other is Hawaii).   This award is named after Tlingit elder Judson Brown of Haines, who was the first Alaska Native elder to be elected mayor in a town with a majority of whites.  The award comes from an endowment that was sets up by Brown’s nephew Chris McNeil and wife Mary.  In a recent press release, Rosita Worl, president of the Sealaska Heritage Institute noted, “For the first time in many, many years we are witnessing the existence of bilingual children who speak their Native language along with English.”

Geophysics Professor Researches LeConte Glacier in Petersburg

Dr. Jason Amundson, UAS Assistant Professor of Geophysics, has teamed up with four other researchers to for an impact study of the LeConte Glacier near Petersburg, focused on understanding the interaction of tidewater glaciers with the ocean, and the ocean with the glacier.  The results of the study are expected to help predict rising sea level and changes to global ocean circulation.  The 2-year fieldwork portion began in March, and will include six trips to the glacier with the next one in October.

Connecting the Dots: Harnessing Hope into Action

17 UAS students gathered on Sunday, September 18, 2016 for the first UAS Early Adopters Green Dot training. UAS was one of 50 colleges and universities around the world to participate in a day of training called Connecting the Dots: Harnessing Hope Into Action. Five students from the Sitka Campus joined 12 Juneau students for activities and engaging conversation on changing campus and classroom norms around power-based personal violence. Students spent time identifying signs of violence, learning about how to acknowledge and move past barriers, and brainstorming ways to engage others in small but important acts of intervention and outreach (Green Dots) to prevent dating and domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking (Red Dots) from happening. After six hours of training, students said they wish they had more time together. Green Dot is an evidence-based program focusing on reducing power-based personal violence on our campuses and in our communities. “UAS is implementing Green Dot as our Title IX primary prevention strategy,” said Lori Klein, Title IX Coordinator. “In addition to our early student adopters, over 65 UAS staff on the Sitka and Ketchikan campuses have received Green Dot training.” UAS will offer additional staff and faculty training this fall. The next student bystander training is scheduled for February 2017.  What’s your Green Dot? #uasgreendot #livethegreendot.

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