Milestones, money and other matters
$3.2 million grant for education, new Knight chair for J-school, and recognition for Dyche preservation project
A $3.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education will fund a KU Center for Research on Learning project that enables students with learning disabilities to have more say in their educational goals and to help them transition from high school to college or work. The five-year grant supports “Possible Selves and Self-Determination: Improving Transition Outcomes for High School Students with Disabilities.” Michael Hock, PhD’98, director of the center, is the principal investigator on the grant, which is administered through KU’s Life Span Institute.
Stephen Wolgast joins the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications this fall as the Knight Chair in Audience and Community Engagement for News. As a news design editor at The New York Times from 2000 to ’09, Wolgast was part of the Pulitzer Prize winning team that covered the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks. For 10 years he taught news reporting, photojournalism, copy editing and convergence at Kansas State University. At KU he will teach writing and ethics and help students envision creative ways to connect and engage with readers.
A $1.4 million grant from the National Science Foundation will support a KU project to help incarcerated women develop technology skills in preparation for careers after they are released from prison. Hyunjin Seo, associate professor of digital media, leads a multi-disciplinary team that will build science, technology, engineering and math skills in weekly classes at public libraries and through online tutorials and virtual meetups. The project, “Technology Education for Women in Transition: Broadening Participation Through Innovations,” will run three years.
The Dyche Hall Grotesques Renewal Project, undertaken with private funding by the KU Biodiversity Institute and Natural History Museum, has been honored by the Lawrence Preservation Alliance. The awards recognize “local residents or groups that have performed preservation work that improves a structure, promotes preservation concepts or sets the stage for future preservation efforts.” A team that includes master stone carvers Karl and Laura Ramberg, f’81, and KU architecture professors Amy, a’03, and Keith Van de Riet, a’04, is leading the effort to replace the iconic but badly eroded figures that have stood sentinel over Dyche Hall for more than 100 years.
Linda Kehres will succeed Jim Peters, assoc., as director of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute beginning Sept. 30. Kehres comes to KU after four years as executive director of Let’s Help, which was recognized as Topeka’s Nonprofit of Distinction under her leadership. KU’s is one of 120 Osher Institutes across the United States; it offers classes and events for lifelong learners, with a particular focus on people age 50 and older. Peters retires after leading the institute for eight years.
Tarik Khatib, c’92, former chief of the Lawrence Police Department, joined KU’s Public Management Center this summer as manager of the Law Enforcement Leadership Academy. He will oversee the program’s 300-hour Command School, the 40-hour Supervisor School and a two-day introduction/foundation to leadership course.