Charger Union design elements reflect UAH's traditions, values

Charger Union

It turns out UAH is a lot more than just "the rocket school." At least that's what Merrilee Hertlein, Senior Associate at Mackey Mitchell Architects, found out when she was tasked with branding the campus' new $25 million Charger Union.

"We thought we'd be doing a lot of rockets and solar systems - those kinds of things," says Hertlein. "But from the students we heard, 'Yes, that's our history. But that's not what defines us.' So we had two days of focus group meetings where we spoke with different groups about what makes UAH special."

The answer? Lots of things! In fact, she says, all you have to do is look around the Charger Union and you'll see plenty of design elements that reflect the traditions and values that the university and its students hold dear.



Winners of UAH’s first Project Candy Land competition crowned


On Saturday, Jan. 11, school-age kids and parents from North Alabama gathered in the Engineering Building at The University of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH) for the first-ever Project Candy Land competition. The goal? To build a 3-D structure made out of 100% edible candy materials using the principles of science and engineering.

The contest was conceptualized and planned by two area students, Anish and Niam Abeysiriwardena, with Dr. Krishnan Chittur, professor of chemical and materials engineering at UAH, serving as the event's faculty advisor.

Ultimately, 18 aspiring young engineers rose to the challenge, presenting their creations to a panel of judges, who awarded points for stability, creativity, detail, density, and presentation. Among them were six seniors from UAH's Department of Chemical & Materials Engineering (Bryan Call, Alaine Dempsey, Ragan Haymon, Vivian Nguyen, Jonathon Savoy, and Jennifer Thomas), four professional engineers from General Electric (David Pepper, Orbin Dempsey, John Kent, and Dot Hall), and chemical engineer and Huntsville newcomer Solveig Irvine.


Breathing New Life into the Nursing Building

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When the Nursing Building was first erected on the campus of UAH in 1976, it was a state-of-the-art edifice with a contemporary look and enviable banks of floor to ceiling windows.

And some four decades later, its distinctive exterior still holds up. But its interior, says Dr. C. Fay Raines, Dean of the College of Nursing, falls further behind in meeting the needs of the university's nursing faculty and students with every passing year.

"Enrollment was expected to be 250 students when the building was constructed," says Dr. Raines. "And now we're up 1,079! So we're out of space at this point."


UAH American Shakespeare Tour 2014 to premier Othello


For the first time, William Shakespeare's Othello, will be performed on the campus of UAH on Friday, Feb. 7, by the American Shakespeare Center (ASC).

The ASC will also perform two other Shakespeare plays, 1 Henry IV and The Merry Wives of Windsor. All performances and lectures will be presented in the UAH University Center Exhibit Hall beginning at 7 p.m. University faculty members, Dr. Jeffrey Nelson, Dr. Daniel Schenker and Dr. Jerry Mebane, will present a free pre-show lecture at 6 p.m., each night.

"The American Shakespeare Center is a nationally-renowned company, known for their use of Renaissance stage conventions: fast-paced dialogue, minimalist sets, and especially 'universal lighting' - where not only does the audience see the actors, but the actors can see the audience (allowing for interaction) and audience members can see one another (creating a shared experience)," said Dr. Jeffrey Nelson, associate professor of English at UAH. "Even in the tragedies, the ASC finds the moments of humor created by Shakespeare and thus creates a wonderful tension."


UAH to host third annual student leadership conference


Nationally recognized motivational speaker and conference trainer Tracy Knofla (pronounced K-naw-flaw) will be the keynote presenter at the third annual UAH Student Leadership Conference, on Saturday, Jan. 25.

The conference "Explore the Possibilities," is free for all participants, including those from surrounding universities and colleges. All conference events will be held in the Shelby Center for Science and Technology. The UAH Student Life Office sponsors the annual event.

Knofla's presentation will be from 11:15 a.m., to noon. She will host a question and answer session immediately after her talk. Additional conference offerings include workshops, lectures and a special track of presentations specifically for members of the UAH fraternity and sorority community.


UAH receives the Arbor Day Foundation’s Tree Campus USA certification


Thanks to the efforts of Robert Redmon, director of Grounds Management at UAH, and Haley Hix, director of the Chargers for Sustainability, UAH is now officially a Tree Campus USA®. The certification will be officially recognized with a tree planting ceremony at 10:30 a.m. on the greenway on UAH's first annual Arbor Day, Feb. 27 th.

"Trees are literally the backbone of the UAH landscape - they are the memories of our past and the framework for the future of those who will come after us," says Redmon, a tree enthusiast whose initiatives over the last 27 years include diversifying the number of tree species on campus and implementing a water-saving fertigation plan. "So this recognition from the Arbor Day Foundation is very rewarding. It is something that UAH deserves, and with it, we can continue to protect, preserve, and promote our campus' urban forest for future generations of students."


UAH named to U.S. News & World Report’s 2014 ranking of Best Online Graduate Computer Information Technology Programs

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UAH placed 21st on U.S. News & World Report's 2014 ranking of Best Online Graduate Computer Information Technology (CIT) Programs.

"Computer Information Technology is a broad area and we are honored to be included among the best universities in the United States," says Dr. David Berkowitz, dean of UAH's School of Graduate Studies. "We have a proud tradition of being a technology-based campus, and we are pleased to recognized as a leader as we continue to build on that tradition by providing value to our students and the community."

A large portion of the university's CIT curriculum falls under the purview of the College of Engineering, which offers classes not only in engineering management and systems engineering, but also in other emerging areas in the fields of computer engineering, civil engineering, and aerospace systems engineering.


UAH MLK observance featuring civil rights pioneer C. T. Vivian


Distinguished minister, author and civil rights pioneer, Dr. C. T. Vivian will be the special guest for UAH's annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Commemoration Program on Thursday, Jan. 16.

The program will begin at 4 p.m., in the University Center Exhibit Hall. The event is free and open to the public. The Office of Multicultural Affairs, in conjunction with the Office of Diversity, sponsors the annual program.

Cordy Tindell "C. T." Vivian was a leader and organizer in the Civil Rights Movement, and a confidant and friend to the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Vivian participated in Freedom Rides and sit-ins across the country. He also helped establish numerous civil rights organizations, including the National Anti-Klan Network, Vision, and the Center for Democratic Renewal.


"Discovering Alabama" adventurer Doug Phillips headlines OLLI at UAH speakers series


The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI ) at UAH is celebrating 20 years of service through learning, leadership and community service with a speakers series. OLLI is offered through the Division of Professional and Continuing Studies.

Dr. Doug Phillips, creator, host, and executive producer of "Discovering Alabama" an Emmy Award-winning PBS show, will lead an OLLI seminar on Tuesday, Jan. 21, at 1:30 p.m., in the Wilson Hall Auditorium. OLLI membership is $15 per year and non-members are invited to join. For more information, please call 256.824.6183 or visit:


UAH’s Online Nursing Programs ranked in top 10 by U.S. News & World Report

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The University of Alabama in Huntsville's online nursing programs were named to U.S. News & World Report's 2014 ranking of Best Online Programs. The graduate program placed 6th while the undergraduate program placed 7th, up from the 13th and 21st spots, respectively, in last year's ranking .

"Our online programs provide accessible education opportunities for all of our nursing students, so we are very pleased with the high ranking they received," says Dr. C. Fay Raines, dean of UAH's College of Nursing. "They are the result of the high quality programs provided by our faculty and the excellent outcomes for our students and graduates."