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Wilkes Student Innovation Prize winner shares his idea for a sustainable future
Nicholas Witham received first place in the Wilkes Student Innovation Prize competition earlier this year for his idea to use textile engineering methods to create a renewable energy generator—based on technology used for artificial muscles. In this episode of U Rising, Nick describes his winning idea as well as his efforts to create prosthetic limbs that affordable and accessible.
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Unraveling anxiety and OCD with Nobel Laureate Mario Capecchi
A pandemic, social media, climate change—these are just some of the factors behind a dramatic rise in anxiety and depression in recent years. Now, in this conversation with host Julie Kiefer, Nobel Laureate Mario Capecchi shares exciting new research in mice that may shed light on mechanisms that control anxiety and obsessive-compulsive behaviors and lead to better treatments.
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Verse meets vision: A poet takes charge at the University of Utah's American West Center
Paisley Rekdal is an acclaimed poet with a new—and she admits—surprising title: Director of the American West Center at the University of Utah. In this episode, Rekdal shares with host Chris Nelson why she was attracted to the role and how she hopes to use the sensitivities of a poet to expand its community engagement and take the center in new directions.
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HBCU Partnership Program is broadening academic and cultural perspectives
Rodney Cohen joined the University of Utah just over a year ago as the inaugural manager of the HBCU Partnership Program—and he is among the first in the nation to hold such a position. In this episode of U Rising, host Chris Nelson talks with Rodney about the program, how it came about, who its partners are and how the program is benefiting students, businesses and communities both in Utah and in other states.
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The Utah Bionic Leg: Empowering people to walk, climb and do so much more
U Researcher Tommaso Lenzi says the technology behind current prosthetic devices is decades old. That’s why he and his collaborators are so excited about the Utah Bionic Leg, which uses motors and sensors to power movement just like muscles do. U Rising Host Julie Kiefer talks with Lenzi, an associate professor in the U’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and director of the HGN Lab for Bionic Engineering, about this new prosthetic, which someday could benefit millions of people who experience amputations below or above the knee.
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U’s Veterans Support Center gets top rating. Here’s what the center does
The University of Utah’s Veterans Support Center recently achieved designation as a military friendly school. What does that mean, for veterans and for the U? And just how does the center help student veterans succeed?
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Here’s what we know about how demographics of autism spectrum disorder in Utah are changing—and why
One in 40 Utah children who are 8-years-old have been identified with autism spectrum disorder. For the first time, a new analysis led by U researchers found that among Utah children in this age group, the rates were equal in white children and children from historically underserved populations.
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New campus in Herriman is a first for the U
In a first for the university, the U has partnered with Salt Lake Community College on a shared campus in Herriman, which will open this month.
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Welcome to U Rising!
At the University of Utah, we have a saying: Imagine, then do. On the new U Rising podcast, you’ll hear stories from our faculty, staff and students that bring those words to life. We'll share inspiring, innovative and impactful initiatives that are benefiting our community and the world.
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About U Rising

At the University of Utah, we have a saying: Imagine, then do. On U Rising, you’ll hear stories from our faculty, staff and students that bring those words to life. We'll share inspiring, innovative and impactful initiatives that are benefitting our community and the world.

            Chris Nelson

           Julie Kiefer

U Rising is hosted by Chris Nelson and Julie Kiefer.

Chris, who has more than 26 years of experience in higher education and academic health care, is the chief university relations officer and secretary to the university.

Julie, who has a Ph.D. in biochemistry, is the associate director of science communications at University of Utah Health and has 15 years of experience in science communication.

The podcast is produced by Brooke Adams, national media strategist, with technical assistance from Robert J. Nelson media studios librarian at the Marriott Library.

Our original album art was created by Dave Meikle, a professional landscape artist and art director for University Marketing & Communications. Elisabet Curbelo González, assistant professor of electroacoustic music & music theory in the School of Music, created the original soundtrack. Her music has been performed worldwide and includes pieces for ensemble and solo instruments, voice, choir, acoustic and electroacoustic music, music for dance, installation work and music audiovisual media.