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UNT Insider | April 2010 Issue

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President's Note

Interim President, Phil Diebel.

Interim President
Phil Diebel

Dear Alum,

UNT’s quest to become a Tier One university now is cemented in a new strategic plan for research submitted to the state. The plan outlines how — during the next 10 years — UNT will move closer to Tier One status and achieve key benchmarks to earn funding through the state’s new program that supports emerging research universities.

UNT already excels in many disciplines, and the vision is to achieve Tier One status as a comprehensive university. We’ll continue expansion in the sciences and other research areas, while enhancing the quality of undergraduate and graduate education overall. But we continue to build on our legacy in the arts and education.

UNT is off to a good start thanks to multidisciplinary research clusters, which are supporting innovative research and attracting expert faculty. For instance, two new biology professors who are starting this fall in the Plant Signaling Cluster are internationally renowned researchers in the field of plant science with decades of experience and already-robust research funding. They will be supported by state-of-the-art laboratories housed in the new Life Sciences Complex, which is scheduled to open in June.

Progress continues on other fronts. The UNT System Board of Regents appointed Dr. V. Lane Rawlins, the former president of Washington State University and the University of Memphis, who will officially join UNT May 14 to serve as president through the upcoming academic year. You can learn more about Dr. Rawlins below.

There is now a Presidential Search Advisory Committee to seek the next long-term president. Bobby Ray, a former Board of Regents chairman and an alumnus, is leading the committee, which will be composed of a broad representation of stakeholders. The committee is expected to start interviewing candidates this fall and to make recommendations to UNT System Chancellor Lee Jackson and the Board of Regents by next February. We are confident UNT will attract a proven leader who will build on our momentum.

These are just a few of the developments taking place across campus. You can read about the university’s ongoing success in UNT’s Annual Report 2009.

It’s been my privilege to serve UNT during this transition. I know progress will continue because of the efforts of the faculty, staff, students and alumni who are helping to fulfill UNT’s long-held goals.

Best regards,
Phil Diebel
Interim President



2010-2011 Interim President, V. Lane Rawlins

V. Lane Rawlins

Moving Forward: Former Washington State president to head UNT for 2010-11 academic year

As a two-time university president and longtime administrator, Dr. V. Lane Rawlins brings a wealth of experience in leading public universities and a proven track record that will ensure UNT’s stability and continued advancement to Tier One, or National Research university, status. While president of Washington State University, Dr. Rawlins, who started his academic career at WSU, led its push to become a recognized National Research university, helping the university to substantially increase research funding and improve undergraduate education. U.S. News and World Report consistently ranks WSU among the top public research universities. After retiring from WSU after seven years as president, Dr. Rawlins served as the interim director of the William D. Ruckelshaus Center for Conflict Resolution, a regional program of WSU and the University of Washington. Dr. Rawlins, a noted scholar on labor economics and public policy, served as president of the University of Memphis for nine years prior to his tenure at WSU.

Professor Jeffry Kelber

Jeffry Kelber

New joint research center to focus on chip manufacturing

UNT has joined forces with the world's leading university-research consortium for semiconductors to create a new research center dedicated to understanding the advanced plasma processes and insulators used in manufacturing state-of-the-art semiconductor chips. The new Center for Electronic Material Processing and Integration, formed in collaboration with the Semiconductor Research Corp., will focus on ensuring that semiconductor devices continue to increase in performance while decreasing in size. Plasma processing is used throughout every stage in the manufacturing of semiconductor chips, including depositing, etching and cleaning materials. The work will build on UNT's long history of research in semiconductor processing. The center, which will be funded annually at $850,000 for three years, will be led by chemistry Regents Professor Jeffry Kelber.

Elizabeth Oldmixon


Claudia Howard Queen

Claudia Howard Queen

UNT faculty earn Fulbright awards

Two UNT faculty members recently earned Fulbright honors that will allow them to take their expertise abroad. Elizabeth Oldmixon, associate professor of political science, received a Fulbright Scholar grant to teach in Ireland for the fall 2010 semester, and Claudia Howard Queen, assistant professor of music for dance, was selected for a Fulbright Specialists grant at the Taipei National University of the Arts in Taiwan. This is Queen's second Fulbright award. She will teach a two-week summer workshop designed to help students, professional composers and dance musicians learn to create music designed to fit the needs of choreography. Dr. Oldmixon, a former American Political Science Association Congressional Fellow, will teach religion and U.S. politics at University College Cork. She also will conduct research on the influence of the Catholic Church on policymaking in Ireland.

Student researchers earn prestigious scholarships

Three students in UNT’s Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science were named 2010 Barry M. Goldwater Scholars more than any other public university in Texas — while Marsha Sowell, a student in the Honors College and the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program, earned a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. This year's Goldwater Scholars, Anupria Gangal, Katheryn Shi and Kathy Wang, were recognized for their groundbreaking research with wide-ranging applications in the medicinal and technology fields. Goldwater scholarships are considered to be among the country's most prestigious awarded to students planning careers in mathematics, science and engineering. Sowell, a senior political science major who researches human rights topics, will use the NSF fellowship to pursue her master's and doctoral degrees in political science with an emphasis in international relations.

Rendering of Business Leadership Building

D. Jack Davis

Faculty Focus: D. Jack Davis

D. Jack Davis, a professor and the founding dean of what is now the College of Visual Arts and Design, received the Distinguished Service Within the Profession Award from the National Art Education Association. The honor recognizes his outstanding achievement, contribution and service in the field of art education. Dr. Davis, a longtime art professor and administrator, also serves as director of the university's North Texas Institute for Educators on the Visual Arts, which is involved in preparing arts leaders. Dr. Davis is a life member and Distinguished Fellow of the association. In 2005, he was named National Art Educator of the Year by the association.

Eagle Ambassador giving a tour

UNT Traditions: International Week

UNT just celebrated its 34th annual International Week, which honors the rich mix of cultures that make up the UNT community and our commitment to providing an internationally focused educational experience that exposes the campus community to global perspectives. About 7 percent of UNT students come from outside the United States and we have a growing international population of nearly 2,500 international students who represent more than 136 countries and visiting scholars and faculty from more than 50 countries. UNT also has study abroad programs in more than 35 nations that allow students to immerse themselves in other cultures. With the support of the city of Denton and many community organizations, International Week puts the world on display through markets, cultural and food festivals, performances, lectures and more.

Emerald Eagle Scholars in South America

Featured Link: The North Texan

Read the latest issue of The North Texan, the quarterly magazine for alumni and friends, to get university highlights about our ongoing success and learn how alumni are making a difference in the world. And don’t forget to keep us up to date on your life after graduation through Class Notes. You can fill out the online form, send an e-mail to northtexan@unt.edu or fax us at 940-369-8763. You also can mail us at:
The North Texan, University Relations, Communications and Marketing
1155 Union Circle #311070 Denton, Texas 76203

North Texas Alumni logo

UNT Alumni Association

Alumni and friends will have their own special gathering place at the new football stadium, thanks to the planned UNT Alumni Association pavilion located at the northeast entrance. The 1,900-square-foot alumni pavilion will include space for 150 sports fans to enjoy big-screen TVs and a full kitchen along with stunning views of the stadium from a 1,000-square-foot outdoor deck. The alumni pavilion also will provide the alumni association with a place to hold activities beyond gameday. To help play a part in the project or to learn more about the alumni association, visit www.untalumni.com or contact the alumni association at alumni@unt.edu or at 940-565-2834 or 800-868-1153.

April 2010

At a Glance

Moving Forward: Former Washington State president to head UNT for the 2010-11 academic year

New joint research center to focus on chip manufacturing

UNT faculty earn Fulbright awards

Student researchers earn prestigious scholarships

Faculty Focus:
D. Jack Davis

UNT Traditions:
International Week

Featured Link:
The North Texan

UNT Alumni Association


Dance professor Shelley Cushman earned the 2010 University Dance Educator of the Year award from the National Dance Association.

The UNT logistics team won the National Logistics Challenge for the third consecutive year.


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