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2017 Winter Commencement Challenges Graduates to Better the World

UMKC students at graduationApproximately 1,000 University of Missouri-Kansas City graduates, friends and families filled Swinney Auditorium to celebrate the culmination of years of late nights and hard work as graduates claimed their diplomas. The university held three ceremonies on Saturday, Dec. 16 and presented two honorary doctorate degrees. Continue reading

365 students named to College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s List for Spring 2018 Semester

A total of 365 students in UMKC’s College of Arts and Sciences were named to the Dean’s List for the spring 2018 semester. The CAS Dean’s List recognizes excellent academic performance among full-time undergraduate students with a grade point average of 3.85 or higher for the term.
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Addressing the Cost of Higher Education: Open Educational Resources reduce costs for students, enhance learning

Male student wearing UMKC shirt with laptopThe cost of higher education is an issue, and one the University of Missouri-Kansas City is addressing.

As part of the four-campus University of Missouri System, UMKC has had one of the lowest rates of tuition increase in the U.S. during the past decade. And despite this year’s tuition increase of 1 percent, efforts to keep the overall cost of education are continuing, and are working.

For example, in June 2017, the University of Missouri-Kansas City joined UM System in the Affordable & Open Educational Resources (A&OER) program to save students money on textbooks and other course materials. Continue reading

Architecture students compete to design building that promotes activity inside

AUP+D students, from left: Lauren Uhls, Tania Chavez and Rachel Baier. Photo by Brandon Parigo, Strategic Marketing and CommunicationsBuildings at a college typically serve a specific, inwardly-focused purpose: teaching and research. Architecture students at the University of Missouri-Kansas City were recently charged with infusing that basic functionality with a higher mission: get the broader public excited about what’s going on inside.

Second-year students in the Architectural Studies program took on that assignment this semester. The assignment called for students to design a new home for UMKC’s Department of Physics and Astronomy. The assignment was fictional, in the sense that no such new building is planned, but the students were charged with creating a functional, properly scaled building as if it were to be built. Continue reading

Fellowship Award Helps IPhD Student Broaden Vision of Life In Humanities

UMKC Interdisciplinary Ph.D. student Matt Reeves recently received a pre-doctoral fellowship award from the Humanities Without Walls consortium. The fellowship award will pay for Reeves to participate in the organization’s Alternative Academic Careers Summer Workshop. The workshop aims to help prepare doctoral students for careers both within and outside of the academy.
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Honeywell and UMKC Expand Science and Innovation Collaboration

Physics Honeywell collaborators Wrobel and LambtonStudents and faculty gain improved access to new technology

The University of Missouri-Kansas City has signed a master collaboration agreement with Honeywell Federal Manufacturing & Technologies (FM&T), creating closer collaboration on research and development of new technology to meet national security needs.

“UMKC is proud to partner with Honeywell,” said UMKC Chancellor Leo E. Morton. “The collaboration will allow us to bring UMKC and Honeywell’s research expertise together, which will not only benefit our students and faculty, but also our national security.”

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UMKC geosciences graduate student researches accuracy of weather forecasts for NASA

UMKC Geosciences graduate student Forrest Black poses for a photo with a sign welcoming people to NASA's Langley Research Center.Forrest Black isn’t a pilot, but he’s helping to make air travel safer and more efficient.

Black, a UMKC geosciences graduate student, has been interning as a research assistant at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, since the fall of 2016.

Black is researching how major weather events impact the National Airspace System (airports, navigation facilities and airspaces of the United States). He wants to develop a tool that will reconstruct the evolution of those events using weather and flight data. Continue reading

Infusing Confidence in Undergraduate Researchers

UMKC PR ClassroomEUReka Math Course Researched Kansas City Water Cutoffs

Experiences in Undergraduate Research, or EUReka classes, play a critical role in the undergraduate curriculum at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The university takes advantage of its urban location to offer numerous opportunities for students at all levels to gain hands-on research experience that also benefits neighboring communities. Continue reading

LGBTQ-Themed Student Exhibit Receives National Council on Public History Award

In 1966, the NACHO planning meeting was held in the State Hotel, visible on the left in this view near 12th and Wyandotte. Courtesy: Missouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri.A University of Missouri-Kansas City student-produced LGBTQ-themed exhibit, currently being displayed at the UMKC Miller Nichols Library, has received a Student Project Award from the National Council on Public History. The exhibit can be viewed on the third floor of UMKC Miller Nichols Library through April 8, and is available online.

The Student Project Award is given to an outstanding public history student venture initiated as academic coursework and implemented and recognized beyond the classroom for its contribution to the field of public history. “Making History: Kansas City and the Rise of Gay Rights” was submitted by UMKC students Taylor C. Bye, Kathryn B. Carpenter, Samantha Hollingsworth, Leah Palmer (now an alumna), Kevin Ploth and Jennifer Tufts. Continue reading

Mentors Researching Mentorship

Mentor Jennifer Lundgren and mentee Frances BozsikDynamic duo in psychology deeply understands the benefits

With a student-to-faculty ratio resembling a small private college, UMKC makes mentorship a central part of the student experience. Though more than 16,000 students are enrolled, the 14:1 student-to-faculty ratio is unusually small for such a large university.

The result: UMKC has many mentorship success stories.

Meet Jennifer Lundgren, associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and professor in the Department of Psychology; and Frances Bozsik, who is working to complete a Clinical Health Psychology PhD in 2020. Continue reading

More than She Imagined: Q&A With Studio Art Graduate Heather Burton

Q&A with Heather Burton, who landed a career before graduationHeather Burton, an Olathe, Kansas, native, graduated with her Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art in December 2017. Before graduating though, she’d already landed a job. Check out Heather’s story in this Q&A:

How was your graduation day?

It was overwhelming to me. It’s the day you work so hard for since you’re 5. I kept worrying about my cap falling off, and of course it did as I walked up to receive my diploma. Continue reading

Over 360 students named to CAS Dean’s List for Fall 2017

CAS Dean's List Fall 2017A total of 369 students in the UMKC College of Arts and Sciences were named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2017 semester. The CAS Dean’s List recognizes excellent academic performance among full-time undergraduate students with a grade point average of 3.85 or higher for the term. Continue reading

Rapping With the Mayor: Royce “Sauce” Handy wants to make a difference through hip hop

Royce “Sauce” Handy“College in general has made me question who I am and what I can do. My specific program has made me realize that I can do something to change my community, to bring resources and to put all this knowledge to work. I’m inspired by knowing that I can use all this experience to navigate the future for my community.” Continue reading

Students Chime in on Hot Topic Discussion: Urban Planning Seniors Present Comprehensive Study on Affordable Housing in Kansas City

Spring-2018-Senior-StudioAffordable housing has been a hot topic in the Kansas City community for decades, and more recently due to new downtown housing developments and the continued revitalization of Troost Avenue. As city officials develop new housing policies, students from the University of Missouri-Kansas City have played a significant role in the community conversation.

A group of seven urban planning undergraduates spent the spring semester researching the city’s housing affordability issues as part of their final project in professor Stephanie Frank’s planning and design studio class. Seniors Sean Thomas, Dave McCumber, Billie Hufford, Thomas Kimmel, Taylor Vande Velde, Rawya Alrammah and Alexander Gilbertson put together a comprehensive planning study on housing affordability in Kansas City. Each student researched and wrote one chapter in the study. They recently sat down to discuss the background and recommendations included in their study. Continue reading

Take a Journey to the Andean Cosmovision with UMKC Theatre

UMKC Theatre’s next graduate student production, “The Storytelling Project,” has something for every theatre fan – drama, intrigue, music, dance, comedy and originality.

The Storytelling Project” is a devised theatrical show featuring the UMKC second year MFA actors, MFA designers and undergraduate production staff. Continue reading

The Beast is Portrayed by Theatre’s Scott Fagan

Theatre's Scoott Fagan is the BeastTheatre in the Park, White Theatre invite you to be their guests

An enchanting fairy tale requires a beautiful girl, a prince with a castle, a villain, a crisis and a happy ending. “Beauty and the Beast” has it all plus a hideous ogre. Kids will love it, and adults will be amazed.

“Beauty and the Beast” is co-produced by The Theatre in the Park and the Jewish Community Center. The two organizations share the expense of costumes, props and sets and use the same cast and director in both theaters. Continue reading

Thin is In? Think Again: UMKC doctoral student’s research is gaining international attention

Frances Bozsik, a UMKC doctoral psychology student, researched the perception of the ideal female figure, which is gaining worldwide coverage. Photo by Brandon Parigo, Strategic Marketing and CommunicationsA UMKC doctoral student’s research on what constitutes the ideal female figure is earning media coverage around the globe.

“It’s really exciting,” said Frances Bozsik, who is on track to complete a Clinical Health Psychology Ph.D. in 2020. “The study reflects the trend people are noticing that fitness and nutrition – vs. thinness – is the ideal.” Continue reading

Transit-Driven Thinking: Nichols Student Prize contestants inspired by streetcar expansion

Photo by Brandon Parigo, Division of Strategic Marketing and Communications

Kansas City’s new streetcar is already driving development activity along its route. So with an election to decide on an extension plan in the offing, it’s only natural to imagine what changes in the city’s urban environment could follow. Continue reading

Two CAS Alumni Receive Fulbright Awards

Fulbright US Student Program logoTwo College of Arts and Sciences alumni have been awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Program Award to continue their research and scholarship. Sydney Harvey, who received her Bachelors of Arts in Philosophy and Film from UMKC in 2016, will study in the United Kingdom; and Marc Reyes, who received his Master of Arts in History from UMKC in 2014, will study in India.

Since 1946, the Fulbright Program has given more than 380,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, professionals and scientists the opportunity to study, teach, conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns. Continue reading

UMKC + Helix Announce 2016 Bud Prize Scholarship Winners

Bud Prize AwardThe UMKC Department of Architecture, Urban Planning + Design teams up with Helix each fall semester for the Bud Prize – a design competition and scholarship grant awarded to students attending UMKC. The annual scholarship was created in honor of the late Bud Persons, who was a Senior Interior Architect with Helix when he unexpectedly passed away in 2002. The award recognizes the his vibrant life and work by promoting the study and knowledge of architecture and design. Continue reading

UMKC Students Present at Sigma Tau Delta International Convention

Members from Sigma Tau Delta, Sigma Kappa Delta, and National English Honors Society gathered from around the world to present their original academic and creative writing pieces at the 2019 Sigma Tau Delta International Convention held March 27-30, 2019, in St. Louis, Missouri. The international convention served as a networking and educational event for undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, and alumni. In addition to attending academic and creative writing panels, convention-goers had several opportunities to attend career development panels such as “From Surviving to Thriving,” “Day Jobs for English Majors” and “Humanities Skills in the Workplace.” The keynote speakers for this year’s convention were authors Nnedi Okora for and Tess Taylor. Among the 700 presenters in attendance, three UMKC students presented their original work at this year’s annual convention.

Representing UMKC’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta were secretary and junior Kara Walters, president and senior Rhiannon Minster, vice president and M.A. student Brynn Fitzsimmons, and member and M.F.A. student Chris Arnone.

Rhiannon, Brynn and Chris participated in a round table discussion called “Building a Better Genre Story.” Brynn presented her piece “Used-to Musician” on the panel “Creative Non-Fiction: Becoming Who We Are.” Chris Arnone presented two pieces: “On Both Sides” on the panel “Fiction: The Americans,” and “August 2018” on the panel “Poetic Responses to the Common Reader.” The 2019 Sigma Tau Delta Common Reader was Work & Days by Tess Taylor.

Next year’s Sigma Tau Delta International Convention will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada, March 25-28, 2020, and will feature author Terry Tempest Williams as the keynote speaker.

This article was contributed by English major Kara Walters.