Briefly Noted

Don Stacks Receives Lifetime Achievement Award


Michael J. Palenchar, chair of the NCA PRIDE Awards Committee, left, and Don Stacks, recipient of the 2014 PRIDE Contribution to Public Relations Education Award

UM News

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (November 26, 2014)—Don Stacks, a professor of public relations and a leader in public relations research and education, received the 2014 PRIDE Contribution to Public Relations Education Award from the National Communication Association’s Public Relations Division last week. He was nominated for the lifetime achievement award by five of his doctoral students.

As they wrote in their nomination letter, “Few have done more to advance research as a major tenant of public relations education than Dr. Stacks. His Primer of Public Relations Research text, now in its 2nd edition, is considered the standard in public relations research education around the world. Moreover, he has (co-)authored and edited more than 30 books, most of which are being used as textbooks educating young public relations professionals around the world.”

Stacks, who was inducted into the PR News Measurement Hall of Fame in 2012, chairs the Commission on Public Relations Measurement and Evaluation, which promotes the standards and best practices for research, measurement, and evaluation among both academics and professionals. He is also editor of Communication Research Reports and a research fellow at the Institute for Public Relations.

From 1996 until recently, he directed UM’s public relations program, helping move it from a relatively unknown program into the top tier at both undergraduate and graduate levels. He also initiated and continues to direct the first International Public Relations Research Conference, which, now in its 18th year, is the world’s largest non-academic research conference.

As attested by the current and former students who nominated Stacks for the PRIDE award, his third, he is also an unparalleled advisor and mentor.

“It is staggering how the efforts of one person can truly make a difference in shaping our understanding of the role of research in public relations discipline, especially among his many students who graduated to be leaders in the professional world,” Ph.D. candidate Zongchao Cathy Li wrote, along with Melissa Dodd, an assistant professor at the  University of Central Florida,
 Rita Linjuan Men, an assistant professor at Southern Methodist University, and UM doctoral students Yi Grace Ji and Zifei (Fay) Chen.

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College of Engineering Distinguished Speaker Series: ‘Energy and Power Electronics’

Dr. Fred C. Lee, University Distinguished Professor, Bradley Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech and member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, will present “Energy and Power Electronics”  from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Monday December 1 at the McArthur Engineering Annex Building, room MEA 202. He will describe significant developments and trends in power electronics and highlight some challenges and opportunities. For more information, please contact Maria Aldana at 305-284-3391 or maldana@miami.edu.

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Call for Applications and Nominations for 2015 Faculty Learning Community

The Office of the Provost is accepting applications and nominations for the 2015 Faculty Learning Community (FLC). The topic of the FLC will be Information, Communication, and Technology (ICT) Literacy. The FLC program was the focus of the University’s Quality Enhancement Plan, part of the SACS accreditation process. FLCs give faculty members from all disciplines the knowledge, skills, and pedagogical support to improve their teaching and enhance the learning environment.

The University regards FLC membership as an acknowledgment of excellent, innovative, and effective teaching. It is open to all full-time University faculty who are engaged in undergraduate teaching. Those selected will be FLC Fellows. They will have a one-course teaching reduction in the fall 2015 semester and receive a $1,500 research and educational fund to support their FLC work. FLC Fellows will meet during the spring 2015 and fall 2015 semesters, participate in weekly discussions, workshops, and a virtual community, and be expected to teach and incorporate ICT literacy concepts into an existing or new course and assess ICT learning outcomes.

For a full program description and application form, please visit http://www.miami.edu/flcThe deadline for receipt of applications is Monday, December 22, in 240 Ashe.

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President Shalala Gets Key to the City and a Day in Her Honor

UM and city of Coral Gables officials tout fruitful partnership at annual Development Agreement meeting, as President Donna E. Shalala is honored for her distinguished service.

By Robert C. Jones Jr.
UM News

Mayor Jim Cason presents President Shalala with a key to the city and a proclamation making Wednesday, November 19, 2014 President Donna E. Shalala Day in Coral Gables.

Mayor Jim Cason presents President Shalala with a key to the city and a proclamation making Wednesday, November 19, 2014 President Donna E. Shalala Day in Coral Gables.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (November 19, 2014) – Featuring updates on major infrastructure projects that improve the quality of life for students and residents, the annual Development Agreement meeting between the University of Miami and city of Coral Gables  typically yields few surprises for high-ranking officials in attendance.

But at the fourth annual meeting, held at the Coral Gables Country Club on Wednesday, November 19, one of the agenda items caught UM President Donna E. Shalala by surprise: The day would be named in her honor in the City Beautiful.

“Coral Gables will always be your home,” Mayor Jim Cason told Shalala, as city commissioners and UM administrators looked on.

Last September, Shalala announced her decision to step down as president at the end of the 2014-15 academic year, and Wednesday’s proclamation honored her many accomplishments over the past 13 years as UM’s fifth president. Cason also presented Shalala with a key to the city.

The special honor was just one of the many highlights of an hour-long meeting during which Coral Gables and UM officials exchanged information on projects and initiatives affecting their respective areas—from streetscape improvements along Miracle Mile and a planned mixed-use development downtown to a pedestrian overpass at U.S. 1 and Mariposa Court and the new Lennar Foundation Medical Center on the University’s Coral Gables campus.

These meetings are required as part of the 20-year Development Agreement. Reached by UM and Coral Gables in 2010, the accord guides the University’s growth and extends cultural, athletic, and academic programming to the city’s residents.


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$2 Million Gift Will Advance Research at UHealth Sports Performance and Wellness Institute

By Robert C. Jones Jr.
UM News

A guest at the UHealth Sports Performance and Wellness Institute exposition tries on a pair of high-tech goggles designed for the early and accurate detection of concussions.

A guest at the UHealth Sports Performance and Wellness Institute exposition tries on a pair of high-tech goggles designed for the early and accurate detection of concussions.

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (November 14, 2014) – Call it a preemptive strike—a biomechanical analysis designed to prevent ligament and cartilage tears. That’s the basis of a School of Education and Human Development study conducted on members of the University of Miami women’s and men’s basketball teams that attached electrodes to players’ knees, ankles, and hip flexors, resulting in a 3-D computerized  readout of their movements.

“We looked at certain high-risk movements, and identified those players who would be at greater risk for injury,” explained Christopher Kuenze, assistant professor of kinesiology and sport sciences, who spearheaded the research. With the data, coaches and athletic trainers have integrated what Kuenze called “pre-rehabilitation” techniques into the practice sessions of their players, in effect, ensuring that serious injuries on the court won’t occur. Read the full story

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