Exploring ‘purpose’

Vice President Joe Biden will speak at the University of Utah on Dec. 13 at noon in Kingsbury Hall, 1395 Presidents Circle. Tickets will be free to U students with their UCard and will be available at the Kingsbury Hall ticket office beginning Dec. 4 at 10 a.m. Tickets for community members will be limited to two tickets per person and will cost $10. They will be available online and at the ticket office beginning Dec. 7 at 10 a.m. The 47th vice president’s appearance is sponsored by the University of Utah MUSE Project (My U Signature Experience), a university presidential initiative that works to enrich undergraduate education across the U.

A brief 15-minute Q&A session will follow the keynote address, and guests may submit questions prior to the event at muse.utah.edu/biden. Questions must be submitted by Dec. 7.

Each year, MUSE chooses a theme and centerpiece text as the basis for its educational work. “Purpose” is the 2018-19 theme, and the accompanying book is Vice President Biden’s 2017 memoir, “Promise Me, Dad,” a New York Times No. 1 Bestseller that chronicles the last year of his son Beau’s struggle with a malignant brain tumor that took his life in 2015. MUSE will host a series of lunchtime lectures, book discussion groups and other activities designed to facilitate reflection and encourage undergraduate students to find purpose in their educational journeys.

Through a generous grant from the O.C. Tanner Company, MUSE will provide 1,000 copies of Vice President Biden’s book free of charge to U students and other members of the university community. The books will be available beginning Dec. 7 at the MUSE office in the Sill Center, 195 South Central Campus Drive.

“Vice President Biden’s memoir is in many respects an example of wisdom literature,” said Mark Matheson, director of MUSE and English professor. “This was a genre that flourished in the ancient Near East, and it was a means of imparting perspective and hope to readers. In this kind of literature, a person of rich experience—often involving great trials and suffering—reflects on these challenges and offers a kind of personal testament to the continuing value of life. In ‘Promise Me, Dad,’ Vice President Biden tells the story of how he draws on family, faith and the ideals of the nation to endure loss and to affirm life in the face of great pain. Our students struggle with many similar challenges, and we think they’ll benefit from learning about the resilience exemplified by the former vice president and his family. We’re confident that Vice President Biden will inspire U students to continue—even in times of hardship—to build their own lives and to lift up the lives of others.”

This isn’t Vice President Biden’s first time on the University of Utah campus. In February 2016, he visited the Huntsman Cancer Institute as part of the former White House administration’s launch of the “Cancer Moonshot” initiative, an effort to increase the rate of progress toward curing cancer. Several HCI investigators serve on working groups for the initiative, and HCI CEO Mary Beckerle serves on the initiative’s Blue Ribbon Panel, a working group of leading cancer researchers that provides advice on the vision, scientific goals and implementation of the initiative. Beckerle will introduce Vice President Biden at the keynote event on Dec. 13.

“We’re delighted to cooperate with the Huntsman Cancer Institute to bring Vice President Biden to campus,” said MUSE Program Manager Libby Henriksen. “Purpose is an important institutional theme, and we’re pleased that two of the U’s significant missions—health sciences and undergraduate education—are coming together in support of this event.”

While the event is free to students and open to the public, tickets are required, and space is limited. Seating will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis, and a ticket does not guarantee admission. All ticket holders must be in their seats by 11:45 a.m. Doors open at 11 a.m., and guests are encouraged to arrive early. The event will not be live streamed, and a book signing will not be available. For inquiries, contact MUSE at muse@muse.utah.edu.

About Vice President Joe Biden

Official portrait of Vice President Joe Biden in his West Wing Office at the White House, Jan. 10, 2013. (Official White House Photo by David Lienemann)
This official White House photograph is being made available only for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photograph. The photograph may not be manipulated in any way and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products, promotions that in any way suggests approval or endorsement of the President, the First Family, or the White House.

Joseph Robinette Biden, Jr., represented Delaware for 36 years in the U.S. Senate before becoming the 47th vice president of the United States. He was born Nov. 20, 1942, in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the first of four siblings. In 1953, the Biden family moved from Pennsylvania to Claymont, Delaware. He graduated from the University of Delaware and Syracuse Law School and served on the New Castle County Council.

Then, at age 29, he became one of the youngest people ever elected to the United States Senate. Just weeks after the election, tragedy struck the Biden family when then Senator-elect Biden’s wife, Neilia, and their one-year-old daughter, Naomi, died, and his two sons were injured in an auto accident. Vice President Biden was sworn into the U.S. Senate at his sons’ hospital bedside and began commuting to Washington every day by train, a practice he maintained throughout his career in the Senate.

In 1977, Vice President Biden married Jill Jacobs. Jill Biden, who holds a Doctorate in Education, is a life-long educator and currently teaches at a community college in northern Virginia. The vice president’s son, Beau, was Delaware’s attorney general from 2007-2015 and a Major in the 261st Signal Brigade of the Delaware National Guard. He was deployed to Iraq in 2008-2009. Beau passed away in 2015 after battling brain cancer with the same integrity, courage and strength he demonstrated every day of his life. The vice president’s second son, Hunter, is an attorney who manages a private equity firm in Washington, D.C. His daughter Ashley is a social worker and executive director of the Delaware Center for Justice. Vice President Biden has five grandchildren: Naomi, Finnegan, Roberta Mabel (“Maisy”), Natalie and Robert Hunter.

Vice President Biden served as a senator from Delaware for 36 years, Chairman or Ranking Member of the Senate Judiciary Committee for 17 years, and Chairman or Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for 12 years before becoming the 47th vice president of the United States. In that role, he continued his leadership on important issues facing the nation and represented America abroad, traveling over 1.2 million miles to more than 50 countries. Vice President Biden convened sessions of the President’s Cabinet, led interagency efforts and worked with Congress on a number of issues. In the final year of the administration, Vice President Biden led the Cancer Moonshot, an international effort to end cancer as we know it.

Since leaving the White House in January 2017, Vice President Biden has continued his legacy of expanding opportunity for all, both in the United States and abroad, with the creation of the Biden Foundation, the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement at the University of Pennsylvania, the Biden Cancer Initiative, and the Biden Institute at the University of Delaware. Through these nonprofit organizations, Vice President Biden and Dr. Biden are developing programs designed to advance smart policies, convene experts and world leaders on the issues they care most about, and impact the national debate about how America can continue to lead in the 21st century. In addition, Vice President Biden formed a political action committee, “American Possibilities,” which will allow him to continue to support Democratic candidates and causes across the country.

Two ‘blitz kids’ honored

The year was 1944. The nation was in the throes of the war, Bing Crosby’s “Don’t Fence Me In” was at the top of the charts and the U’s basketball team—led by coach Vadal Peterson—went to Madison Square Garden to play against Dartmouth in the U’s first NCAA tournament game.

They weren’t expected to win. In fact, the only reason they were playing in this game was because the Arkansas team, which had been set to play against Dartmouth, was involved in a car accident and couldn’t go. So the NCAA sent Utah.

“No one thought we would win,” explains Wat Misaka, one of the Utes’ team members. “We had our return train tickets ready to come back that night. Everyone was stunned that we actually beat Dartmouth. It was an extraordinary moment for sure.”

Long story short, not only did Utah take the NCAA title, a few days later the team went on to play the NIT winning team, St. John’s, and beat them as well! The Utes were on a tear. They came to be known as the “Blitz Kids.” The game at Madison Square Garden, in which the little-known team from Utah surprised the college basketball world, is described as the NCAA’s “original Cinderella Story.”

A few years pass. Some of the Ute players had gone off to war…and some had returned from war. And then, in 1947, matched against University of Kentucky, Utah took the NIT Championship. The Blitz Kids were still in business.

Both Arnie Ferrin and Misaka went on to play in the NBA; Misaka was drafted by the NY Knicks (then the Knickerbockers). He was the first person of color to play in what we now know as the NBA and he was drafted in 1947, the same year that Jackie Robinson joined the Brooklyn Dodgers Team.

Ferrin was the only four-time All American at Utah. He went on to play for the Minneapolis Lakers in 1949. He served as the Utes’ athletic director from 1976 to 1985.

On Saturday, Dec. 1 at the Utah vs. Tulsa men’s basketball game in the Huntsman Center, the library honored Ferrin and Misaka for their contributions of personal papers, scrapbooks and photographs to Special Collections. University of Utah Athletics also honored these two Blitz Kids with Lifetime Achievement awards.

Read more about the Blitz Kids’ story in the 2012 issue of Continuum.

Enjoy this gallery of historic basketball images.


Faculty & Staff Appreciation Night

On Thursday, Dec. 6, the University Campus Store and University Credit Union will host its annual Faculty and Staff Appreciation Night, showing gratitude and support for the university community by offering 30 percent off staff and faculty purchases all day, from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Bring your friends and family to the main Campus Store starting at 5 p.m. for refreshments, prizes and a fun photo booth. This event is a great opportunity to get your holiday shopping started with new Utes apparel, toys, games, gifts and more at great prices.

The night’s events from 5-7 p.m. will include:

  • 30 percent discount on total purchases
  • Light refreshments will be served (while supplies last).
  • A photo booth with Santa that includes a free print for you and all of your friends
  • Enter-to-win prizes, including an Apple Watch
  • Free gift-wrapping from 5-7 p.m.
  • Free parking in Campus Store pay lot with coupon code “HOLIDAY18”

To receive your discount at any location on Dec. 6, please show your valid UCard or most recent pay stub at the register upon purchase.

The Campus Store thanks you for your continued support and for all that you do for the University of Utah. We look forward to seeing you and your family on this special night.

The University Campus Store is located at 270 South 1500 East. Activities, prizes and refreshments will be held at this location, but the discount is offered at all the Campus Store locations on Dec. 6. For more information on Faculty and Staff Appreciation Night, please call 801-581-4693.

Note that the 30 percent discount is offered at all Campus Store locations, during regular store hours on Dec. 6, 2018, for faculty and staff who present a valid UCard. Discount excludes electronics, textbooks, services and cannot be combined with other discounts. No purchase necessary to be eligible to win prizes. Discount excludes electronics, textbooks, services and cannot be combined with other discounts. No purchase necessary to be eligible to win prizes.

What drove Africa’s megaherbivores to extinction?

Today, Africa has five species of massive, plant-eating mammals, the so-called megaherbivores: Elephants, hippos, giraffes and white and black rhinos. Millions of years ago, however, there was a much greater diversity. When and why these species disappeared has long been a mystery for archaeologists and paleontologists, despite the tool-using and meat-eating human ancestors getting most of the blame.

A new study, led by J. Tyler Faith of the Natural History Museum of Utah and the Department of Anthropology at the U, disputes a long-held view that our earliest tool-bearing ancestors contributed to the demise of large mammals in Africa over the last several million years. Instead, the researchers argue that long-term environmental change drove the extinctions, mainly in the form of grassland expansion likely caused by falling atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

Read the full press release here.

Video based on:

Tyler Faith, John Rowan, Andrew Du, Paul L. Koch. 2018. Plio-Pleistocene decline of African megaherbivores: No evidence for ancient hominin impacts. Science. Nov. 23, 2018. (DOI: 10.1126/science.aau2728)

**Banner image: Artist Heinrich Harder’s illustration of an extinct species of Moeritherium, an ancient ancestor to modern-day elephants. He completed the illustrations in the early 1900s. Credit: Heinrich Harder.


Big ideas

The top three ideas in the University of Utah’s American Dream Ideas Challenge aim to boost Utahns’ income by cutting transportation costs, leveraging unused storage space and revitalizing an economically depressed region of the state.

The three finalists announced on Thursday, Nov. 29, are:

  • Neighbor, an early stage tech company, allows Utahns with unused storage space to make money by renting that space to people with storage needs; renters save money over costs of traditional self-storage.
  • Mobility as a Service (MaaS), a collaboration between the Utah Transit Authority, Utah Department of Transportation and Salt Lake City, focuses on decreasing transportation costs by enabling households with multiple cars to get by with one less vehicle through seamless access to alternative transportation services.
  • Utah Coal Country Strike Team, led by the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, aims to help Carbon and Emery counties, hard-hit by the steady decline in coal production since 2001, prosper by seeding a “Silicon Slopes East” hub in Price, revitalizing housing stock, promoting tourism and creating targeted economic incentives to spur development.

“These teams clearly emerged as the top three given their innovation, interdisciplinary and collaborative team composition and their potential to meet the challenge goal,” said Courtney McBeth, project director of the American Dream Ideas Challenge.

Each team will receive $30,000 to use in refining its proposal and preparing to present the idea at the national round of the competition on Jan. 29, 2019, in Phoenix. The Utah teams will be presenting alongside proposals from The Ohio State University, Arizona State University and the University of Wisconsin-Madison for up to $1 million in funding from Schmidt Futures.

Schmidt Futures selected the four public universities in April 2018 as anchor institutions in the Alliance for the American Dream, an initiative aimed at boosting the country’s shrinking middle class by providing access to capital and markets for ideas with the potential to aid distressed communities locally.

Schmidt Futures asked the anchor institutions to seek, develop and refine ideas with the potential to increase net income by 10 percent for 10,000 middle-class households in their communities by the end of 2020.

The U’s American Dream Ideas Challenge received 152 proposals from across Utah. In October, a university committee whittled the entries to 10 finalists. The American Dream community advisory board, led by U President Ruth Watkins and Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox, selected the top three ideas earlier this month.

“An incredible amount of creativity and hard work went into each proposal, illustrating how deeply Utahns care about their communities and about helping one another succeed,” Watkins said. “We are so pleased to contribute to a project we believe can make a lasting, positive difference in our state, benefiting thousands of Utahns.”

Cox said the three finalists do not target just one demographic group or type of household and have the potential to benefit the entire state.

“The cross-representation of industries from each of the teams shows the dynamic nature of Utah’s economy, and how multifaceted solutions exists to solve real-world problems,” Cox said. “I encourage all of us to keep creating, keep thinking, keep working on ideas that will bring more prosperity to us all.”

Three reasons to earn an MBA

For University of Utah employees, there has never been a better time to earn an MBA, and advancing your career through a graduate degree no longer means putting your job on hold. Our graduates see an immediate return on their investment in an MBA and are able to not just meet but exceed their career goals. Many of our graduates see an increase in their salary before graduation and are promoted during the program.

The David Eccles School of Business’s part-time MBA programs—Professional, Online and Executive MBA—are designed to fit professional work schedules while providing curriculum taught by world-class faculty. Here are three reason to earn an MBA in your own backyard:

  1. Tuition reduction benefits

For U employees, earning an MBA is less expensive than ever. Those who have worked full time (.75 FTE or greater) for more than six months are eligible for a tuition reduction of one half of the graduate rate. Employees and children of employees are also eligible for tuition benefits if certain qualifications are met. The U’s MBA Online program, for example, is already the least expensive top 10-ranked online MBA, costing an average of 30 percent less than other comparably ranked programs. Add in the employee tuition reduction and U employees are able to earn an MBA at a fraction of the average cost—all while accelerating their careers.

  1. Top-ranked and highest accreditation

U employees not only see a benefit from a reduction in tuition but are also able to obtain an MBA from one of the top-ranked programs in the country. This year, the Princeton Review ranked the U’s MBA Online program No. 10 in the U.S. In Bloomberg Businessweek rankings, the Full-Time MBA program jumped 20 spots to No. 36 in the country. Similarly, both the Professional MBA and Executive MBA programs are ranked No. 1 in Utah. Employees can earn an MBA knowing they are learning from top faculty in a highly recognized program.

  1. Work-compatible program options

The U offers three MBA formats for working professionals. Evening, weekend and online formats allow you to balance work and life commitments while taking your career to the next level. Through the MBA Flex Option, students can take core and elective courses both on campus after work or online to accommodate work schedules. Additionally, for those looking for a shorter program option, the David Eccles School of Business provides non-degreed business and professional development Executive Education classes. These open enrollment classes, custom programs and certificate programs allow you to build leadership and business skills in a wide variety of areas, with over 25 on-campus and online courses.

10 tips for managing finals week

The University of Utah Counseling Center has increased medication services, expanded appointments to 6 p.m. on Tuesday/Wednesday and hired two additional counselors, all thanks to the efforts of student leaders and a new $4 Mental Health Fee.

Claudia Reyes and Jack D. Haden, the two new counselors, share some of their tips for taking care of your mental health at the end of the semester—and beyond.

For more tips and support, be sure to click here and follow the Counseling Center on Instagram @uofucounseling.

Manage stress in these 10 ways:

Progressive Muscle Relaxation

PMR is a mindfulness exercise where you tighten a muscle group—like your shoulders—for 5-10 seconds and then relax that tension away. Do this with slow, even breaths and progress down your body. For some people, visualizing the stress “flowing out” of their body helps them relax even more. PMR can help alleviate insomnia, stress and anxiety.

Getting outside

This can work wonders, even if you’re out for just a few minutes. Being outside on the grass, on a bench in the shade of a tree or even being bundled up watching the snow fall during a storm, it’s all beneficial. Being outside can increase your happiness, reduce inflammation, increase energy (you can’t help but feel alive), improve memory (also your attention span) and, oh yeah, relieve stress.

Talk nicely to yourself

Pay attention to how you talk to yourself (i.e., talk to yourself as you would a friend). If you find yourself saying negative things about yourself in your mind, try this simple trick: Say those same things out loud. Chances are when you hear them, you’ll notice just how irrational they are.

Do something creative

Draw, write, paint, dance, knit—anything that gets your creative mind working can help reduce stress and increase self-confidence.

Listen to a podcast

Here are a few of our favorite podcasts and podcasters on mindfulness, self-care and mental health: Tara Brach, “Conversation with Alanis Morissette,” “Mental Illness Happy Hour,” “Invisibilia” and the “TED Radio Hour.” For storytelling, you might like “The Moth,” “Myths & Legends,” “Fictional” and “Tanis and Rabbits.” These podcasts are geared toward audiences that are interested in LGBTQ+ topics: “Nancy,” “Gender Rebels” and “How to be a Girl.”

Follow mental health pages on social media

Add some positivity and mental health tips and reminders to your daily scroll. A few of our favorites on Facebook are: University of Utah Counseling Center (of course!), Power of Positivity and Melanin and Therapy. For Instagram, follow: @uofucounseling, @journey_to_wellness, @gottmaninstitute.


Adults need seven to nine hours of sleep per night. Not getting enough sleep can impact your mood and ability to concentrate.

Organize and develop a game plan

Use a planner or calendar to sort out exam dates, assignments or other important tasks (e.g., grocery shopping, club meetings, yoga class) that you need to make time for.  The act of writing it down—and color coding, if you’re so inclined—will make it feel more doable and may reduce anxiety.

Move your body

Exercising releases feel-good endorphins and can help quiet an overactive mind.

Stay fueled/hydrated

Make time to eat at least three meals a day and carry snacks with you throughout the day to keep your mind and body fueled. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water.

Jack D. Haden, LCSW

Since I was young, I’ve had a deep passion for stories and people.  I hold the belief that all of us have a story to tell, but are often dissuaded from sharing it due to external and internal messages to withhold it. I’ve worked with a variety of groups including those on the autism spectrum, the LGBTQIA+ community and the geriatric population. Throughout my time as a clinician, I’ve repeatedly been amazed at the tales of resilience and bravery my clients have shared with me. As a therapist, I consider it a privilege to companion others, to find and share their stories and enjoy sitting with students as they navigate the challenges and joys of discovering who they are. I work from a feminist-multicultural standpoint, but have an integrative approach to my work with clients that include acceptance and commitment therapy, existential inquiry and cognitive behavioral work, with mindfulness practice sprinkled throughout.

On a personal level, I am a self-described “introvert supreme.” I find joy and rejuvenation in one-on-one dialogues with close friends, as well as in activities like yoga, writing and cuddling with my three cats while listening to a podcast. I’d be remiss if I didn’t have a book readily at hand—no matter where I find myself—and probably spend far too much money and time scouring the shelves of my local independent booksellers. As a kid who grew up playing piano competitively, music has a soft spot in my heart. I have a wide variety of musical interests ranging from classic punk to gypsy jazz to avant-garde rock and am always open to finding new and exciting artists. Last, but certainly not least, connecting with others who share a passion for social justice, as well as sarcastic irreverence, over a good cup of coffee is something I value greatly.

Claudia Reyes, LCSW

I am a licensed clinical social worker with a bachelor’s degree in social work with a minor in Chicana/o studies and a Master of Social Work, both from the University of Utah. I believe that everyone is the expert of their own experience and that my role in therapy is to help facilitate growth towards client directed goals. I practice therapy from a feminist multicultural foundation with integrated methods from cognitive behavioral therapy, solution focused therapy and motivational interviewing. To me, being a feminist multicultural practitioner allows me to acknowledge power differential in the therapeutic relationship and also being aware that social/political/cultural factors can be a source of empowerment and at the same time may be barriers to healing. I feel quite privileged to be joining the team at the University of Utah Counseling Center and have worked with students the past five years of my career with students from different walks of life at the elementary and secondary levels. I am passionate about education because higher education has been my own way out of poverty and did not come without challenges. I am a first-generation, Latina college graduate and at times throughout my educational career, I have identified as an out of state traditional student, a transfer student from a different university and a non-traditional student single parent. Through navigating these challenges, I was able to find resources and support through different centers and offices on campus that supported in ways that I was able to complete both of my degrees here at the U and I work daily to be a source of support for students that I have the privilege of serving.


U reaches $515 million in research funding
Two professors honored as 2018 AAAS Fellows
In memoriam: Professor Thomas A. Kursar
WIH Ambassador opportunity
Phishing attempt targets U students
uNID-based account archiving
Last-minute gifts and stocking stuffers
Send personal packages home, please
Customized holiday gifts by Print & Mail Services
U holiday cards by Print & Mail Services
Authentic World War I uniforms on display

reaches $515 million in research funding

Dear Colleagues,

As you may have heard, we achieved a remarkable milestone in our research growth and activities during FY 2018 thanks to your exceptional efforts.

We reached $515 million in research funding—a new high in the U’s academic history and an indication of our upward trajectory as a model public university. Our production of scholarly works—from published books to journal articles and citations—also is reaching new heights.

The U’s innovations are made possible by talented researchers and faculty, graduate and undergraduate students and staff who continue to drive excellence across campus. You are lifting our reputation across the country and around the world. You are making a difference, whether it’s searching for a cure for cancer, developing game-changing technologies or gaining a new understanding of society’s grand challenges.

These achievements speak directly to the dedication and quality of our research community. Congratulations to all of you and thank you for your many contributions to an excellent year in research. Go Utah!


Ruth V. Watkins
President of the University of Utah
Andrew S. Weyrich
Vice President for Research
Daniel A. Reed
Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
Michael L. Good
Senior Vice President for Health Sciences

Two U professors honored as 2018 AAAS Fellows

University of Utah professors Shelley Minteer and Glenn Prestwich are among the 416 newly-elected Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a Fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers.

Minteer, of the department of chemistry, was elected for “fundamental and applied contributions to electrochemistry, including electrocatalytic cascades and natural and artificial metabolons for biofuel cells.”

Prestwich, of the department of medicinal chemistry, was elected for “entrepreneurial uses of chemistry to solve biological problems, including insect pest control, lipids in cell signaling, and hyaluronan materials for regenerative medicine and inflammation.”

Read more about Minteer, Prestwich and the AAAS Fellows program here.

In Memoriam: Professor Thomas A. Kursar

Professor of biology Thomas A. Kursar passed away peacefully at home on Nov. 18, 2018, from pancreatic cancer. He was 69 years old. In 1982, he and his wife, distinguished professor of biology Phyllis Coley, joined what is now the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Utah where they established a joint lab that became renowned for its foundational contributions to our understanding of rainforest ecology.

Tom’s research on water use by tropical plants fundamentally changed the way we think about how plants respond to the stress of too little water, or too much. Working together, Tom and Lissy made important contributions to solving why the tropical rainforests are so diverse. Tom’s commitment to conservation led him to use this knowledge of plant chemicals to design a bioprospecting program in Panama which is today run by Panamanians and links the search for novel pharmaceuticals with job creation, research development, education and preservation of forests.

Tom’s bravery in the face of his disease may be his last great contribution to science. On learning of his diagnosis on Feb 14, 2017, he had a Whipple procedure and seven kinds of chemotherapy and then volunteered for three different experimental treatments at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. His extraordinary oncologist said that Tom’s generosity has advanced the treatment of pancreatic cancer. A full obituary can be found here.

WIH Ambassador Opportunity

If you have a passion for living well, and you are excited to get others involved on the journey to a healthier lifestyle, then we are looking for you. As the new academic year opens, we would like to introduce the Wellness and Integrative Health (WIH) Ambassadors at University of Utah Health. Through this program, we want to encourage and equip employees like you to serve as ambassadors of wellness to your fellow colleagues.

Not only will you make progress toward your own wellness, but you will also make a positive change throughout your team and office setting. We want to enable you to make wellness an all-day, every-day habit.

Your role will include quarterly meetings at HSEB, lasting 60-90 minutes, plus whatever additional time you will need to communicate with those in your department. Please be sure to discuss this time commitment with your supervisor before participating.

Please confirm your participation as a WIH Ambassador via email to Sarah Schlaefke, sarah.schlaefke@hsc.utah.edu no later than Friday, Nov. 30. The next WIH Ambassador meeting is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 10, 2018 at 8 a.m., HSEB Alumni Hall (HSEB 2120). Once you email Sarah, a meeting invitation will be coming soon, but please secure that time on your calendars right away.

Phishing attempt targets U students

Recently, University Information Technology received a number of reports about a suspicious message sent to University of Utah students. The message, from a fraudulent person claiming to be an alum in search of a personal assistant, is a phishing attempt:

I contacted your school admin at University of Utah; I graduated from there. I explained that I was looking for an Administrative/Personal Assistant and your contact was sent to me, they said you are an honest person. This job is flexible so you can perform the tasks during your spare time outside of school and the position is extremely rewarding. Get back to me ASAP via my email … if you are interested.
Mrs Tracy Walter“

Please note that no University of Utah “school admin” has released student contact information to the sender. The sender has used public Campus Directory information to target students.

If you receive(d) this message, or receive something similar in the future, do not select any links, open any attachments, or respond to the sender. Please report the message to the Information Security Office (visit the UIT help article “Phishing” for instructions) and then delete it.

Students and employees can manage their public Campus Directory contact information via the Campus Information Services (CIS) portal. Please visit the UIT help article “Updating the online campus directory” for instructions.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the UIT Help Desk at helpdesk@utah.edu or 801-581-4000, option 1.

uNID-based Account Archiving

In order to streamline centrally administered uNID-based account management and reduce risk for the University of Utah, starting Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, and monthly thereafter, the Identity Access and Management team will archive the accounts of inactive users who meet all the following criteria:
  • Not a current employee/student/affiliate, and
  • Account has existed for at least 18 months, and
  • User has not logged in for at least 18 months, and
  • Password not changed in at least 18 months

In addition, accounts of university affiliates who are “current,” meet all the above selection criteria, and have no end date will be selected for archiving. If/when an archived user returns to the U and needs his/her account re-activated, an automatic process running twice per day will move the account out of archived status.

What won’t be affected as part of this project (out of scope):

  1. UMail account access and UMail forwarding capability for inactive users
  2. Accounts for systems managed locally (e.g., department, college and business unit-specific accounts)
  3. Access changes on termination
  4. Access changes on org moves

The U’s Strategic Information Technology Committee approved this project and process. Currently, there are a total of ~400,000 inactive personal accounts, ~172,000 of which have never been used and ~270,000 of which meet all of the above criteria. A university-wide awareness campaign has begun and individuals with inactive accounts will be contacted directly prior to the archive date and given instructions to keep their accounts active if desired.

If you have any questions, please contact the UIT Help Desk at helpdesk@utah.edu or 801-581-4000.

UIT Help article: Archived uNID-based accounts.

Last-minute Gifts and Stocking Stuffers

It’s not too late to get those gifts and stocking stuffers you need to put under the tree this holiday season! Toyland at the University Campus Store has stocked their shelves with fun toys, stuffed animals, games, gadgets and more, making your holiday shopping easier than ever this year.

Whether you need to get a perfect gift for your favorite niece, or that brother-in-law you never know what to get, or your grandkids that you always spoil, let the Campus Store help you find something for everyone. Stop by the Campus Store today and get your holiday shopping done, so you can enjoy the most wonderful time of the year with no stressful last-minute lists. Open Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-6 p.m. or Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Send personal packages home, please

As the holiday season approaches and use of mail services increases, University Print & Mail Services would like to remind campus that personal correspondence, packages (e.g. Amazon shipments, etc.) and other deliveries should not be sent to campus addresses but rather, to home addresses. There are several ways to keep your home packages safe, including using smart package lockers, lockboxes or convenience store deliveries. You may also utilize Amazon key service, signature-required deliveries or request delivery alerts. More permanent solutions may include security camera installations or coordinating with neighbors to secure packages.

Because of changes with UPS and FedEx rerouting packages through The United States Postal Service (USPS), the volume of packages distributed through campus mail has increased significantly, making prompt deliveries more difficult. Pursuant to University Policy 3-162, “use of the Campus Mail system is available only to recognized university organizations for official University purposes and is not intended for personal use.” Accordingly, faculty and staff should refrain from using the campus mail system for receiving or sending personal mail and understand that if they do so, the university is not liable for the contents of those parcels.

Questions or concerns may be directed to Juan Sosa at 801-580-7792 or juan.sosa@utah.edu. Thank you for your cooperation, University Print & Mail Services enjoys serving the campus community and appreciates your ongoing support.

Customized Holiday Gifts by University Print & Mail Services

In need of holiday gifts or giveaways for those special people on your list this year? Let University Print & Mail Services help you design and customize one-of-a-kind gifts for your department or personal use.

From water bottles to umbrellas, blankets to tote bags, if you can think of it, Print & Mail can create it and make it your own by adding text, logos or other specific designs. Most items have a minimum order count of approximately 100 pieces. Also, items typically take five weeks for production and delivery, so order now to ensure your gifts arrive in time for the holidays. For more information or a custom quote, please contact Roger King at 801-581-3947 or roger.king@utah.edu.

University Print & Mail Services is an official licensee of the University of Utah and is therefore legally permitted to use and reproduce university-owned trademarks and logos. By supporting official licensees like Print & Mail, you are assured to receive quality products while also supporting student scholarships, athletic programs and other university initiatives.

U Holiday Cards by Print & Mail Services

Get a head start on the holiday season by ordering your greeting cards from University Print & Mail Services. Conveniently place your order online and choose from 24 designs, enhanced by your personalized message. Campus orders are typically completed in five business days and can be picked up or delivered to your office for free.

For help with these mailing services, reach out to your customer service representative who will guide you through your options.

In addition to holiday card designs, University Print & Mail offers several other styles for fall, along with other special occasion cards such as birthday cards, thank you cards, custom-design cards and personalized stationery.

Both personal and office orders are welcome. Visit us online to view designs and place your order.


The Fort Douglas Military Museum presents an exhibit of authentic World War I uniforms, weaponry and equipment. Generously on loan from A. Gustaf Bryngelson, a collector of World War I memorabilia, the display includes uniforms and items from not only the U.S. but also from many of the combatant nations. The exhibit runs through Jan. 4, 2019.

For more information, click here.


Campus Events

Monday, Dec. 3, 2018 | 3-5 p.m.
College of Law, Moot Courtroom, 6th floor

The next meeting of the Academic Senate is Monday, Dec. 3, 2018, from 3-5 p.m. The following items will be discussed, among others:
  • U of U Athletics Compliance Report
  • Campus shuttle service update, e-scooters and skateboarder safety
  • Consolidation of the Kinesiology and Health Promotion & Education Programs

The meeting will be in the Moot Courtroom (6th floor) of the College of Law. Meetings are open to the public. The agenda will be posted here approximately one week before.

Stress Buster Week
Monday, Dec 3-Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018
J. Willard Marriott Library

As finals week approaches, let the library, ASUU and the Counseling Center help you de-stress.

Find the full schedule here.

Tuesday, Dec. 4, 2018 | 11 a.m.-1 p.m.
Eccles Health Sciences Library

Take a break from the stress of the end of the semester by coming to the library and decompress with a pup.

Therapy Animals of Utah will be coming by Dec. 4, and bringing some of their furriest friends to help us all through testing.

The dogs (and dog-loving librarians) will be hanging out in the portrait gallery on the main level of the library.

For more information, visit our blog or call 801-581-5534.

Write a letter, change a life
Tuesday, Dec. 4-Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 | 12-2 p.m.

Various locations

For the fourth year, the Tanner Center for Human Rights is joining Amnesty International’s “Write for Rights” campaign in support of 10 women or groups threatened for their advocacy work.

Students, faculty and staff are invited to stop by the center’s tables at the following locations and times to learn more and write a letter in support of one woman or group.

  • Dec. 4, 12-2 p.m., S.J. Quinney College of Law
  • Dec. 5, 12-2 p.m., Hinckley Institute of Politics
  • Dec. 6, 12-2 p.m., Eccles Health Sciences Library

“Site Lines” Artists Gallery Talks
Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018 | 1–3 p.m.
Utah Museum of Fine Arts (UMFA)

Hear from U faculty artists as you explore their creations in “Site Lines: Recent Work by University of Utah Art Faculty.” “Site Lines”, closing Jan. 6, 2019, is a lively gathering of more than forty works in a wide variety of mediums from more than 25 campus creators and teachers.

Featured artists at Wednesday night’s gallery talk include:

  • Simon Blundell
  • Lewis Joseph Crawford
  • John Owen Erickson
  • Kelsey Harrison
  • Marnie Powers-Torrey
  • Amy Elise Thompson
  • Emily Tipps

“Site Lines” is sponsored by the U’s Arts Pass program. Additional support provided by the Department of Art and Art History.

Faculty & Staff Appreciation Night
Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 | 7:30 a.m.-7 p.m.
University Campus Store

On Thursday, Dec. 6, the University Campus Store and University Credit Union will host its annual Faculty and Staff Appreciation Night, showing gratitude and support for the university community by offering 30 percent off purchases all day, from 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Join your friends and family at the Campus Store for Starbucks refreshments, amazing prizes, including an Apple Watch and more. We will have Santa there to take pictures with your friends and family, in a professional photo booth. Plus, get your holiday shopping done early with new Utah outerwear and apparel, toys, games, gift items and more at a great discount. You can also enjoy the added benefit of getting your purchases gift wrapped for free. We hope to see you there.

Discount offered at all Campus Store locations, during regular store hours on Dec. 6, 2018, for faculty and staff who present a valid UCard. Discount excludes electronics, textbooks, services and cannot be combined with other discounts. No purchase necessary to be eligible to win prizes.

Collaborating on Air Quality: From Pollution to Solution
Wednesday, Dec. 6, 2018 | 1-5 p.m.
College of Law, 6th floor

Air quality continues to be a critical issue in the Salt Lake Valley. Why do long-term, comprehensive solutions remain elusive? The upcoming Dialogue on Collaboration, “Collaborating on Air Quality: From Pollution to Solution,” will explore these questions and how collaborative approaches can help the region continue to make progress on our air quality concerns.

Invited guest speakers:

  • Thom Carter, executive director, UCAIR
  • Kerry Kelly, assistant professor of Chemical Engineering, University of Utah
  • Alan Matheson, executive director, Utah Department of Environmental Quality
  • Vicki Bennett, sustainability department director, Salt Lake City Corporation
  • Teri New ell, deputy director, Utah Department of Transportation

The Dialogue is co-hosted by the Environmental Dispute Resolution Program, part of the Wallace Stegner Center at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, and The Langdon Group. This event is free and open to the public and refreshments will be served. Free parking will be available at the Rice-Eccles Stadium the afternoon of December 6. We encourage you to take public transportation to our events. Email Katherine Daly with additional questions: katherine.daly@law.utah.edu.

Annual PRINT appreciation and Open House
Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 | 4-8 p.m.
Book Arts Studio, Level 4

Come help the Book Arts Program celebrate 2018 and look forward to 2019! With a variety of printing plates and type locked-up on the presses, guest printers (that’s you) are invited to print a free letterpress card. Additional cards are three for $10.

Enjoy light refreshments and shop for some printed goods for those on your holiday list. We hope to see you there.

Free and open to the public—just drop by.

More info here.

Therapy Dogs
Thursday, Dec. 6, 2018 | 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
J. Willard Marriott Library, Level 3 entrance

De-stress with some wonderful dogs from Intermountain Therapy Animals.

Friday, Dec. 7, 2018 | 3:30-6:30 p.m.
EAE Master Games Studio, Building 72, second floor

EAE Play is an annual event hosted by the U’s Entertainment Arts & Engineering video game development program, which will showcase and allow for play testing of student games under production.

EAE Play will be held on Dec. 7, 2018, from 3:30-6:30 p.m. at the EAE Master Games Studio, Building 72, 332 S. 1400 East, second floor, formerly the home of the law library. The event is free and open to the public. Free parking will be available in the lot just east of the building, which can be entered from 400 South, just east of University Street.

Now through Friday, Dec. 7, 2018 | During library hours

Main and upper levels, Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library

The Eccles Health Sciences Library (EHSL) is now featuring the Layers of Medicine exhibit of art created by medical school students enrolled in the Layers of Medicine course which addresses the human elements of healthcare and medical training that are “layered” on top of scientific knowledge and clinical skills. Stop by during library hours (perhaps on your way to or from a class/meeting in HSEB) to see this amazing collection of artistic interpretations of the human side of medicine in which burnout,  death, disability, gender, ethics, the art of giving and receiving medical care and much more are explored through art and artistic expression. The library’s main and upper levels will be home to this interactive and engaging display of student work until Dec. 7. Experience the loss of a patient and the solitary suffering of chronic pain patients. Witness the communal metamorphosis of medical students from strangers to family and from students to doctors. Contemplate the messy and unclear lines that dictate what is acceptable in “gallows humor” and who is “worthy or unworthy in medicine.” Consider how homelessness and other external factors interact with how someone accesses health care or one’s ability to make healthy lifestyle choices. Appreciate those who become knowledge—the cadavers.

Course directors, Gretchen Case and Karly Pippitt, emphasize the role ethics, humanities, communication, and gender play in giving and receiving medical care. The art project is assigned to the medical students to provide them an opportunity to personally and creatively explore the unique relationships and challenges of practicing medicine. The course directors’ hopes are that students start to think differently about health care, and express their talents and creativity in alternative ways.

EHSL is also pleased to feature student artwork in two locations—upper level, west entrance and main level, near the treadmill desks and the elevator. Here you will find featured student art from previous Layers of Medicine exhibits.

Make a point to come by to appreciate and explore these collections. Dare to be inspired, to question your assumptions, to think differently about health care, and to dive deeply into the challenges and rewards of the human interactions of the practice of medicine.

Dec. 10-21, 2018
Eccles Student Life Center

Stay active during the winter interim with PEAK. This shortened session is a great way to try something new. Registration is available here.

Book Club: “The Woman Who Smashed Codes” (Biography)
Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018 | 2 p.m.
1705F, Faculty Center, J. Willard Marriott Library

In 1916, a young Quaker schoolteacher and poetry scholar named Elizebeth Smith was hired by an eccentric tycoon to find the secret messages he believed were embedded in Shakespeare’s plays. She soon learned to apply her skills to an exciting new venture: codebreaking—the solving of secret messages without knowledge of the key.

Click here for more information.

Jan. 9-April 23, 2019

PEAK fitness classes are available to all full and part-time employees of the University of Utah, including:
  • University of Utah Health Employees
  • Employees at Primary Children’s Hospital & Clinics
  • University affiliates in Research Park
  • Members of the University of Utah Alumni Association
  • Family members and partners of employees
  • Alumni association members

PEAK Health and Fitness offer a wide variety of classes including boot camp, circuit training, core training, indoor cycling, mat Pilates, stretch and strengthen, total body fitness, weight training and yoga.

Registration is available here.


How to create a cancer care package

You don’t have to make a grand gesture to help someone facing cancer. Small things can make a big impact.


Heating pads are big burn-risks to the elderly and geriatric populations. Brad Wiggins, nurse manager at University of Utah Health Burn Center, talks about why these two populations, specifically, are most susceptible to second-degree burns, the types of injuries he has seen from heating pads and their treatments.

Listen to the full story here.


Some doctors will want to take blood or urine tests at your yearly checkup for a number of reasons. Dr. Tom Miller talks to Dr. Jerry Hussong, a pathologist who often processes those tests, about their value. Learn how to prepare for these types of tests and whether it’s worth it to continue getting them even if you feel perfectly healthy.

Click here to listen to the full story.

For more expert health news and information, click here.