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Research & Pedagogy

Icon advertising the Research and Pedagogy Colloquium Series at UMA, the University of Maine at AugustaAs part of its continuing commitment to intellectual community, the University of Maine at Augusta holds a regular Research and Pedagogy (RaP) colloquium series at which UMA faculty and staff present works in progress to their peers.  The series provides a forum for the presentation of creative work, theoretical considerations, research findings, innovations in teaching, and projects in community engagement.  Ensuing discussion promotes collaboration through the exchange of ideas and the development of relationships across colleges, programs, departments and disciplines.

The colloquium series takes place in during the noon hour in multiple locations on UMA’s multiple campuses.  The time reflects our commitment to inclusion, a traditional lunch hour for staff and the time between morning and afternoon classes for faculty and students.  When we meet, we discover that amidst the accumulated knowledge of the centuries, there are still new thoughts to be spoken out loud.


Upcoming RaP Sessions for 2016-2017:

All Cannabis is Medicinal: Understanding the Body’s Endocannabinoid System and how ‘Marijuana’ Heals.

Carey Clark, Associate Professor of Nursing
Thursday, March 9 at Noon in Katz Room 5 on the UMA Augusta campus


This presentation will focus on the use of cannabis as a healing herbal medicine. Dr. Carey S. Clark, Associate Professor of Nursing and President Elect of the American Cannabis Nurses Association, will explore the basics of the body’s endocannabinoid system and how an endocannabinoid deficiency can lead to many diseases and illnesses as the body moves out of homeostasis. Dr. Clark will explore the roots of cannabis prohibition, the latest literature around cannabis as a healing tool for specific illnesses, and the methods patients can use for cannabis ingestion.


Third Woman, Third Wheel: Gender and Translation in Natalie Clifford Barney’s Women Lovers, or The Third Woman

Prof. Chelsea Ray's translation of Natalie Clifford Barney's Women Lovers or the Third WomanChelsea Ray, Associate Professor of French and Comparative Literature
Monday, March 13 at Noon in the Katz studio (Katz 53) on the UMA Augusta campus

In this talk, Dr. Chelsea Ray will discuss the recent publication of her translation of Natalie Clifford Barney’s Women Lovers or the Third Woman. This long-lost novel recounts of passionate triangle of love and loss among three of the most daring women of belle époque Paris. In this barely disguised roman à clef, the legendary American heiress, writer, and arts patron Natalie Clifford Barney, the dashing Italian baroness Mimi Franchette, and the beautiful French courtesan turned princess Liane de Pougy share erotic liaisons that break all taboos and end in devastation as one unexpectedly becomes the “third woman.” Never before published in English, and only recently published in French, this modernist experimental work has been brought to light by Chelsea Ray’s research and translation.


Enhancing Pedagogy and Research with Pre-attentive Attributes

Assistant Professor of Computer Information Systems Matt DubeMatt Dube, Assistant Professor of Computer Information Systems
Thursday, March 16 at Noon in Katz 5 on the UMA Augusta campus

Biological adaptations triggered by survival mechanisms such as locating food and observing predators have a substantial impact on us, even in the modern day where our food is for the most part located at the grocery store and our predators are controlled for. These biological adaptations influence our acquisition of all kinds of sensed inputs, but most notably vision under the name pre-attentive attributes. In this RaP talk, we will journey into the world of the subliminal principles that guide how a student or a reader unknowingly and uncontrollably can be compelled to focus on precisely what we want them to pay attention to in our slides or manuscripts, mirroring our intended message with our conveying mechanisms. Whether a teacher, student, researcher, or public speaker, there will be something in this presentation for you.

Worming Around with Cognitive Enhancers (and Human Aging Implications)

Assistant Professor of Biology Amber HowardAmber Howard, Assistant Professor of Biology
Thursday, April 6 at Noon in Katz Room 5 on the UMA Augusta campus

Cognitive enhancing chemicals, such as psychotropic medications or herbal supplements, are often taken to treat an array of mood and perception disorders and have been used in children, adolescents, middle-aged adults, and the elder population. Many of these drugs or supplements are chronically administered for the remainder of one’s life, despite a lack of evidence concerning cognitive drugs and impact on lifespan. Some level of cognitive decline is to be expected during the natural aging process, however there is controversy regarding what differentiates dementia from normal age related decline. The work being conducted at UMA is multifaceted and uses the genetically analogous roundworm model C. elegans to assess the lifelong impact of chronic or sporadic use of selected cognitive enhancing drugs and supplements. Normal populations and neurological disease strains are used to model the human aging process and drug usage.


An Objective Mathematical Approach to the Identification of Potential Gerrymanders

Assistant Professor of Computer Information Systems Matt DubeMatt Dube, Assistant Professor of Computer Information Systems
Thursday, April 13 at Noon in Katz 5 on the UMA Augusta campus

For the past two centuries, the decennial redistricting process has produced a litany of puzzle-esque shapes that cobble together the United States House of Representatives, 1/2 of the decision making body of our republic. Over the centuries, interested parties have engaged in efforts to purposefully create these pieces in such a manner as to create advantages (or disadvantages) for candidates, parties, and/or other interests. This process has been coined gerrymandering. At the judicial level, many cases are heard every ten years that challenge the efficacy of these human-drawn lines and human-executed procedures. Many wildly shaped districts have survived in areas where the physical and political geography play no role in the decision. In this work, we develop mathematical approaches to provide objective tools to aide in court decisions about this matter, ranging from statistical modeling to discrete mathematics to spatial information science. Specifically, we explore the following topics:

  • Is the current Republican majority the byproduct of gerrymandering (intentionally or unintentionally)?
  • Does the type of redistricting commission play a role in the distribution of the delegation sent to Congress?
  • What should the effective delegation partisanship of a state look like (independent of incumbency)?
  • How can we define packing and cracking mathematically?
  • Is there a better alternative to geometric compactness for eye-balling a district’s legality?
  • Is geometric compactness even a good standard at all, namely do all geometrically compact shapes accurately reflect their local environment?
  • How could a court use this work to ensure fair play in representation?
  • Is there a “Goldilocks” approach to redistricting, where the exact extent of the district paints one picture, whereas anything radially smaller or larger presents an entirely different picture statistically?

Previous RaP Sessions in the 2016-2017 academic year:

Book Talk: Finally, A Song from Silence

Social Science Assistant Professor Kati CorlewKati Corlew, Assistant Professor of Psychology
Tuesday, September 20 at Noon in Nottage Library on the UMA Bangor campus
Thursday, September 22 at Noon in Katz Library on the UMA Augusta campus

“Finally, a Song from Silence (poetry from when I was young) contains a selection of these writings, addressing topics like identity development, depression and suicide, love and heartbreak, and gender, sex, and sexuality…”

Come join us in the libraries to listen to Professor Kati Corlew read from her new book, Finally, A Song From Silence: (poetry from when I was young). She will also be signing/selling copies.

Cosponsored by WICCD (Women Invigorating the Curriculum and Celebrating Diversity)

Supreme Court Preview and Review

JimMelcherJim Melcher, Professor of Political Science, University of Maine at Farmington
Monday, September 26 at Noon in Katz Library on the UMA Augusta campus
Interactive simulcast to Eastport 105 on the UMA Bangor campus

In the spirit of Constitution Week, Professor Melcher will discuss salient cases from the 2015-2016 term of the Supreme Court, examine potentially impactful cases for the 2016-2017 term, consider developments in the relationship between the President and Senate in the Supreme Court confirmation process, and field questions from the audience.

Cases from 2015-2016 that Professor Melcher will preview:

  • Fry v. Napoleon Community Schools (special education)
  • Manuel v. Joliet (4th Amendment)
  • Moore v. Texas (death penalty)
  • Jennings v. Rodriguez (deportation hearings)
  • Trinity Lutheran Church v. Pauley (religion, Blaine amendments and playgrounds)

Cases for 2016-2017 that Professor Melcher will review:

  • Fisher v. Texas (affirmative action and college admissions)
  • Zubik v. Burwell (contraception mandates and religious objectors)
  • Whole Women’s Health v. Cole (abortion restrictions)
  • Evenwel v. Abbott (political representation)
  • Voisine v. US (domestic violence and firearms ownership)

Psychology of Climate Change

Climate Change Word CloudKati Corlew, Assistant Professor of Psychology
Monday, October 3, 10:45 – 11:45 AM
Eastport Hall 103, UMA Bangor campus

How do we THINK about climate change? facts, opinions, decisions, plans, behaviors
How do we FEEL about climate change? impacts, trauma, stress, fear, anger
… and what will we DO?


Strategies to Improve Student Participation in Online Discussions.

timsurretteTim Surrette, Assistant Professor of Education

Monday, October 17 at Noon

Eastport Hall 105, UMA Bangor campus

Interactive simulcast to Katz Library on the UMA Augusta campus

This presentation is aimed at people interested in exploring methods to improve student participation/engagement during online discussions.  The presentation will introduce participants to a collaborative discussion strategy useful to online or face-to-face teaching.  Also, attendees will be encouraged to conceptualize and then discuss best practices related to facilitating, deepening, and expanding online student discussions.

Alligators in the Parlor: Visual Technologies, Circulation, and Disruption

Assistant Professor of English Elizabeth Powers, holding a stereoscopeElizabeth Powers, Assistant Professor of English
Wednesday, October 19 at Noon in Katz Library on the UMA Augusta campus
Interactive simulcast to Eastport 105 on the UMA Bangor campus

In an age when consumption of digital media technologies pervades our life experiences, we can gain new insight by examining a media technology from the past. This presentation explores the phenomenon of stereoscopes in the Victorian parlor. Stereoscopes offered middle-class Americans new, imagistic perspectives of the world, and initiated a national discourse on the virtue and detriment of consuming visual media. Attendees will have the opportunity to use a stereoscope and reflect on connections across historical moments.

Cross-border Parental Abduction and The Problem of Domestic Violence

Assistant Professor of Justice Studies Sharon SawyerSharon Sawyer, Assistant Professor of Justice Studies
Thursday, October 27 at Noon in Katz Library on the UMA Augusta campus
Interactive simulcast to Eastport 105 on the UMA Bangor campus

Why would anyone choose to kidnap their own child and cross international borders? Although it is commonly assumed that parental abductions are mainly carried out by vindictive parents intent on using their children as pawns to do psychological harm to the “left-behind” parent, this is often not the case. Domestic violence, and the fear of it, often drives mothers over the border with their young children. Yet, all abducting parents are treated as international criminals. How is justice best served when domestic violence is an issue in an abduction case?

Archive of RaP Colloquia in the 2015-2016 Academic Year:

Faculty Panel: Research Across the Disciplines II

Wednesday, February 24 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Three of our new faculty members–Timothy Surrette, Amber Howard, and Sharon McMahon-Sawyer–will talk about their research and interdisciplinary connections.

Interdisciplinary Therapies

Wednesday, March 2 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta
Kati Corlew, Jen Mascaro, Ellen Taylor, and Tamara Hunt discuss diverse approaches to therapy including creative writing, pop culture analysis, art therapy, and more!

Disaster, Climate Change, Food, Ecology and Dystopia

Wednesday, March 9 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Kati Corlew, Sandra Haggard, Colleen Coffey, and Sarah Hentges discuss the intersections of psychology, literature, ecology, and social justice.


History, Rhetoric, and Texts

Wednesday, March 16 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Rob Kellerman, Tom McCord, and Elizabeth Powers talk about the interdisciplinary nature of texts, language, history, and culture.


Yoga: Theory, Practice, Application, and Expression

Wednesday, March 23 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Carey Clark, Nicole Caruso, Kati Corlew, and Sarah Hentges talk about their work in yoga combining nursing, holistic health care, outdoor education, community service, meditation, psychology, cultural criticism and theory, literature, teaching, and practice.


Compute This: Math, Science, Complexity and Art

Wednesday, April 6 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Lester French, Larry Whitsel, Rick Nelson, and Lynn Twitchell demonstrate the ways in which math and/or science and music are complementary, not competitive, academic disciplines.  A consideration of software engineering and complexity, jazz motifs and patterns, statistics and technology draws from a conversation between these diverse faculty members, extending outward to embrace considerations of community service.


Wham, Bang, Pow! Graphic Novels and Intersectionality

Wednesday, April 6 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta
Lisa Botshon, Peter Precourt, and Kati Corlew discuss the intersections of art, literature, culture, and more in the “wham, bang, pow!” world of graphic novels.


Examination of Interdisciplinary Disciplines

Wednesday, April 20 at Noon from Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor and Katz 40 in Augusta

Sarah Hentges discusses her interdisciplinary work in American studies and Women’s and Gender studies, including the ways in which these interdisciplinary fields encourage connections outside of academia, toward social justice.


Social Science Panel on Interdisciplinarity

Wednesday, February 3 at Noon

Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor, Katz 40 in Augusta

The Social Sciences are by nature inherently interdisciplinary, featuring strongly divergent models of human individual and collective behavior while retaining shared focus on those outcomes.  Social Science faculty Kati Corlew, Ken Elliot, Lorien Lake-Corral and Charles Waugh discuss interdisciplinarity within that context.  How can the different social sciences inform one another?  How can the social science provide insight to and development of insight from the natural sciences and humanities?

Faculty Panel: Research Across the Disciplines I

  • Lisa Botshon, Professor of English
  • Rosie Curtis, Lecturer in Architecture
  • James Cook, Assistant Professor of Social Science
  • Peter Milligan, Professor of Biology
  • Carey Clark, Assistant Professor of Nursing, Moderator

Wednesday, February 10 at Noon

Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor, Katz 40 in Augusta

Members of this faculty panel will discuss their answer to the question “What is Research?” from the vantage point of their own discipline, then present examples of their own current research projects.  Moderator Carey Clark will encourage movement from multidisciplinary presentation to interdisciplinary discussion.  Co-sponsored by AWSIM, the committee for Advocating Wicked Scholarship in Maine.

Humanities Panel on Interdisciplinarity

Wednesday, January 27 at Noon

Lewiston Hall 110 in Bangor, Katz 40 in Augusta

Humanities faculty Sarah Hentges, Jeff Sychterz, Kay Retzlaff, Rob Kellerman, and Ellen Taylor discuss interdisciplinarity within the fields of the humanities and instances in which the humanities reaches out to connect with disciplines outside its own bounds.

High and Low: Steel Sheds, Steel Towers and the Rise of Modernism

Detroit - Chicago comparison of two industrial buildingsAmy Hinkley, Assistant Professor of Architecture

Eric Stark, Associate Professor of Architecture

Monday, November 16, 12 Noon

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

A presentation of research regarding the development of modernism in the cities of Detroit and Chicago. This research was the result of a ten day travel experience in the Summer of 2015, and subsequent analysis work by our architecture students.  Through the study of iconic as well as vernacular architecture, students discovered how the buildings they studied were representative of their larger cultural, geographic, and historic contexts, and began to draw new formulations and understandings from their primary research.


Online Education in the Year 2030: A Look Forward

James Cook, Assistant Professor of Social Science

Thursday, October 15, 12 Noon – 1 pm

University College at Rockland

Conceptual Diagram of an Online Structure of Learning Objects (OSLO) for pedagogical innovationThe University of Maine system is experiencing a rapid shift away from in-person to online learning, yet lags behind institutions like Harvard and MIT who offer Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) via EdX and Coursera to anyone with a high-speed internet connection.  Should the University of Maine catch up by offer its own MOOCs?  In this presentation, I argue the answer is a firm no.  MOOCs are an aging transitional form of education that firmly grasp toward a past in which faculty taught in closed-off rooms, in which students resided on campuses for fixed terms, and in which learning was aggregated into forms that fit those limitations.  Instead of replicating past forms, the University of Maine should leap forward to a future unrestrained by space, time and isolation.

This colloquium invites discussion of the features of higher education that are dispensible and indispensable as we look forward to a target date of 2030 — only fifteen years away.  One prototype vision of such a future — an open, collaborative, learning structure called an OSLO — is unveiled to center this discussion.

This colloquium was recorded for broader viewing:

Assessing Information Literacy: Looking Back and Moving Forward

Comptency Standard Wordle in the shape of an AppleJodi Williams, Associate Professor of Information & Library Services
Ben Treat, Director of Library Services
Hirosuke Honda, Director of Assessment

Wednesday, October 21, 12 Noon – 1 pm

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

As part of its ongoing cycle of general education assessment, UMA assessed student information literacy skills using an online instrument called Project SAILS.  Come join us for a discussion of our results and the various ways the university is “closing the loop” to use assessment results to guide action.


How Many People Are You? Shaping Your Day for Success

Steve Moro and Jon Potter, Adjunct Faculty in Communication

Tuesday, October 27, 12 Noon

University College at Rockland
In this dynamic presentation drawn from former FBI Investigator Joe Navarro’s book What Everybody is Saying, Steve Moro and Jon Potter will analyze the “micro signals” of body language that we exhibit and explain how to recognize them in ourselves and others.

Potter and Moro will demonstrate and role play 65 of these body language markers in a brisk fashion, followed by a presidential debate question and answer period.  James Cook will play the announcer with some “softball questions.”  Presidential wannabees will include Moro, Potter, and Chip Curry. As the contenders field questions from Prof. Cook and other members of the audience, they will attempt to exhibit body language “tells” in which the body may reveal the intent of the message rather than just a talking head.

An accompanying handout will include Works Cited and descriptions of body language examples, with attributions culled from  Erving Goffman (Presentation of Self), Joan Snyder (Dynamics of Acting), Arthur Lessac (Use and Training of the Human Voice), and Uta Hagen (Respect for Acting).

Housing Discrimination in Maine: Audit Studies and the Importance of Social Research to Social Justice

Pine Tree Legal AssistanceJill Hunter, Pine Tree Legal Assistance

Wednesday, September 23, 12 Noon

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

Jill Hunter, Esq. of Pine Tree Legal Assistance will present results of fair housing audits in the state of Maine.  This research method is a variety of field experiment that helps determine whether and where discrimination on the basis of color, race, religion, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, disability, having children, or getting public aid occurs for Mainers who are trying to find a  place to live.  The role of social science research in identifying and rectifying social problems, and the opportunity to become a fair housing tester, will be discussed.


Archive of RaP Sessions for 2014-2015:


Tales for the Trustee Professorship and Sabbatical: Social Practice,  Studio Practice, the Collaborative Process and the Gift of Time.

Professor of Art Peter Precourt works on a graphic depicting the MoonPeter Precourt, Associate Professor of Art

Wednesday, February 25, 12 Noon

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

Associate Professor of Art Peter Precourt will highlight five projects made during his Trustee Professorship and Sabbatical: renovations of his Community Gallery/Personal studio space Art: Works on Main, curating events for the community in that space, ongoing studio work of  his Katrina Chronicle and two significant collaborative undertakings: the co-creation with Lisa Botshon of Let’s Talk Graphic for Maine Humanities Council and the two-person collaborative drawing/photography/re-drawing exhibition Pull with Luc Demers in Nashville Tennessee.


Let’s Talk Turkey

EPSCOR Wild Turkey Research Project at the University of Maine a AugustaPeter Milligan, Associate Professor of Biology

Wednesday, March 18, 12 Noon

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

Between 1977 and 1988 the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife successfully reintroduced 111 wild turkeys from Vermont in the towns of York and Elliot, Maine. Since then the population has been repopulated and recovered to well over 60,000 birds (Kelsey Sullivan, personal communication). Successful wildlife management depends on a working knowledge of disease epidemiology. Turkeys are susceptible to a number of infectious diseases and wild birds can carry a range of zoonotic agents that may contribute to the dissemination of pathogens that are harmful for livestock and human health.

85 live and 108 dead or euthanized wild turkeys were analyzed for exposure to select agricultural pathogens and infection with hemoparasites using blood samples collected between the winter 2012 and fall of 2014. Serum analysis was conducted using slide agglutination assays and Plaque Reduction Neutralization Assay. Blood smears were screened for hemoparasites using methanol fixed Giemsa stained slides. During the spring and summer of 2012, an additional 15 turkeys, 13 with overt disease, were euthanized for diagnostic examination. Skin and bone samples from 15 birds were tested for new discovered lymphoproliferative disease virus (LPDV). After confirmation of LPDV retroviral DNA in Maine wild turkeys an additional 142 samples were assayed for retroviral DNA (4 with visible lesions and 138 apparently healthy birds).

Serum tests indicated possible exposure in 8 birds to Salmonella pullorum, and in 30 birds to avian mycoplasma species. All animals tested negative for exposure to avian influenza virus. Of 78 turkeys that were examined for hemoparasites, 41 had evidence of leukocytozoon infection and 9 had haemoproteus infection and 4 contained merozoite-like bodies indicating either leukocytozoon or haemoproteus infection. PCR testing of skin, bone, or blood samples showed 125 of 157 wild turkeys tested was positive for LPDV proviral DNA. 21 domestic turkeys sampled in 2013 were negative for LPDV. Historically, LPDV was only known to occur in domestic turkeys in Europe and Israel; however, since 2009, LPDV has been identified in wild turkeys from multiple sites throughout the Eastern United States. To our knowledge this is the first report of LPDV in Maine wild turkeys.

The significance of LPDV for wild turkey populations or the risks for domestic fowl are not currently understood. It also is not known whether these recent LPDV identifications in wild turkeys represent an emerging pathogen or an endemic virus that was previously undetected.


Teaching and Living Internationally

World map with nations highlightedChelsea Ray, Assistant Professor of French and Comparative Literature

Friday, April 10, 12 Noon

University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

A faculty and student panel explores the value of  living, teaching, and studying in a different culture, with a focus on how the experience changes the way we understand our work and the way we understand ourselves.


Open Maine: Making Politics Social

James Cook, Assistant Professor of Social ScienceJames Cook, Assistant Professor of Social Science
Wednesday, April 22, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

“Every government degenerates when trusted to the rulers of the people alone. The people themselves, therefore, are its only safe depositories.” — Thomas Jefferson

For most of Maine’s history, its state politics have been officially accessible but practically unavailable.  Before the internet age, information about the legislature was kept in side rooms and libraries at the State House in Augusta, making our collective decisions available only to those who had the time and money to stalk about the stacks.

In recent decades, the website of the Maine State Legislature has taken great strides toward making information about the Pine Tree State’s legislature, our legislation and our legislators available to all.  Some roadblocks remain, however:

  • Maine legislative information isn’t easily shared through e-mail, Facebook, Twitter or other forms of social media;
  • Maine legislative information isn’t easily mixed and downloaded for analysis by academics, journalists, citizen bloggers or the curious;
  • It isn’t easy for us to engage in conversation about legislation and legislators in the same environment where raw information is made available;
  • It isn’t easy for us to create, post and share our assessments of our legislators based on transparent and verifiable standards.

This RaP colloquium presents the result of a Presidential Research Grant kick-starting Open Maine, an online civic engagement and education project to make Maine legislative politics shareable, mixable, downloadable, conversable, assessable and transparent. Presentation of the new platform and research outcomes will be followed by discussion and a brainstorm on future development.


Separating Words From Thought: Spoken and Written English, Varied Perspectives — A Roundtable Discussion

Michelle Lisi of UC VAWLTMichelle Lisi, Director of University College Virtual Academic Writing Lab and Tutoring (VAWLT) Project, with writing tutors from UMA and University College
Tuesday, November 18, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

In March of 2014, the UMA Writing Centers of Augusta and Bangor traveled to the NEWCA (Northeast Writing Center Association) Conference to host and participate in discussions of writing center pedagogy and practice. Much of the conversation focused on the discrepancy between spoken and written English, our role as tutors in supporting and encouraging the understanding of the distinction between them, and the impact of choosing one dialect over another in communicating ideas about texts and subjects. We addressed the Writing Center’s place in encouraging difference in dialect and supporting the acquisition of Edited American English (E.A.E.).Our RaP presentation this fall will return to that discussion and to our mixed response to the arguments made by NEWCA keynote speaker Verhawn Young at the outset of the conference. In particular, we’ll review and encourage dialogue about the following questions posed by the NEWCA Steering Committee: How can Writing Centers more effectively honor students’ own languages? How can Writing Centers create opportunities for students to use their own languages? Faculty expectations for college-level writing/ institutional norms and students’ needs and abilities, combined with their own individual experiences with writing, are often two opposing forces. How do tutors work to reconcile institutional values of language with students’ own languages?


The Cultural Impacts of Climate Change

Dr. Kati Corlew, Assistant Professor of Social Science
Thursday, December 4, 12 noon
Nottage Library
University of Maine at Augusta, Bangor Campus

Dr. Kati Corlew shares her work concerning Tuvalu, a low-lying island nation and a Least Developed State.  It is poised to be one of the first nation casualties of climate change as it is projected to become uninhabitable due to sea level rise in the next 50 to 100 years.  The indigenous Tuvaluan population is now faced with extreme political, economic, social, and cultural decisions and uncertainties.


Why Americans are Not Bilingual

Yarissa Ortiz-Vidal, Adjunct Professor of Spanish
Wednesday, September 17, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

The United States of America is still being referred to as a nation of second-language illiterates, as linguistically malnourished, as in essence a monolingual nation.  Approximately 82% of Americans are monolingual and only 9% of Americans who speak a second language are highly proficient.  In comparison, 50% of Europeans speak a second language fluently.  Why, despite several educational reforms in an era of globalization, is second-language instruction not a priority as it is in other nations around the world?  This presentation seeks an answer with a review of research regarding native English speakers and their exposure to second-language instruction.


To Stay Here and Die Here For My Country: Climate Change in Tuvalu

Assistant Professor of Social Science Kati CorlewDr. Kati Corlew, Assistant Professor of Social Science
Friday, October 3, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

Climate change is a global phenomenon with disparate causes and consequences. Tuvalu is a low-lying island nation in the South Pacific and a Least Developed State. It is poised to be one of the first nation casualties of climate change as it is projected to become uninhabitable due to sea level rise in the next 50 to 100 years. The indigenous Tuvaluan population is now faced with extreme political, economic, social, and cultural decisions and uncertainties. This qualitative research explored the human dimensions of climate change in Tuvalu, focusing on cultural reactions, understandings, and projections for future from a psychological perspective.


Adult Development and Higher Education:  The Unstated Curriculum

Chip Curry of University College at RocklandChip Curry, Student Services Coordinator
Wednesday, October 15, 12 noon
University College at Rockland

We all have hopes for the impact of education on students. Often these hopes go far beyond gaining knowledge and skills.  In addition to being able to demonstrate mastery of content, our hope is that our students will grow to their fullest potential.  Our hope is that over the course of four or more years our students will think differently; relate to others differently; understand themselves differently; and maybe discover a greater sense of purpose.


These goals for students are not new.  For a century or more colleges have sought to build young men (and later young women) often valuing character development over content knowledge.   What is new is that in many places, like right here in Rockland, students are not primarily arriving at the tail-end of adolescents but rather are showing up in all stages of adulthood.

This RaP seeks to explore what student development might look like for adult learners. In particular I’m hoping we can engage in a discussion of how we support adult students to succeed academically and to grow and develop to their greatest potential.


Women and Fitness in American Culture

Sarah Hentges, Assistant Professor of American Studies
Tuesday, October 28, 12 noon
Eastport Hall 124

University of Maine at Augusta Bangor Campus

Dr. Hentges will talk about the ways in which we can understand women and fitness from a variety of interdisciplinary lenses, and the ways in which the experiences of women and fitness represent the larger context of “American Fitness.”


The Price of Complacency and the Strength of Will

John G. Shattuck, Adjunct Professor of Mental Health and Human Services
Wednesday, November 5, 12 noon
University College at Rockland

This RaP reviews how in the 1970s persistent allegations of abuse at the Governor Baxter School for the Deaf to Governor Brennan and Commissioners of Education resulted in an investigation by the Attorney General’s office and the termination of the school’s Superintendent, Principal and Head Teacher.  John Shattuck will tell the story of how 5 courageous men from Maine’s Deaf Community gained the attention of the Governor and the Legislative Branch to provide $17.5 million in compensation to those who suffered as children at the State administered school for the Deaf.


Teaching and Living Internationally

Thursday, November 6, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

In the RaP panel “Teaching and Living Internationally,” Tom Giordano, Ellen Taylor, Lisa Botshon, Mary Lewis Davitt, and Chelsea Ray will discuss their teaching in an international context.  Zaid Dajani, an international student, will discuss his experiences at UMA.

Dr. Tom Giordano teaches the 400 level International Business course which is a requirement of all Business Management majors. In the course students research a country’s business and political environments, its customs and business practices, among other factors that affect conducting  business in that country. The research concludes with students presenting a business plan on how to start a new business in that country. In addition, guest speakers with significant international business experience talk with students about the challenges and opportunities associated with conducting business outside of the US.

Dr. Ellen Taylor is a professor of English and Women and Gender Studies at UMA.  She has taught three integrated courses which involved travel with students, twice to Nicaragua and more recently to Cuba.  She has also brought students to Guatemala as part of a Latin American Literature course.    Dr. Taylor will talk about traveling as an intellectual and emotional education, building academic community, and creating more global citizens.

Dr. Mary Louis Davitt is a professor of Justice Studies.  She will discuss her teaching at the Azov Regional Institute in Berdyansk, Ukraine as a Fulbright fellow.  She will also touch upon the current situation in Ukraine.

Dr. Lisa Botshon is a professor of English and will present on UMA-University of Ljubljana connections via 3 Fulbrights, 3 visiting professors, and 3 collaborative classes since 2009.

Chelsea Ray is a professor of French and Comparative Literature.  She teaches French language courses, as well as a course on Franco-American culture.  Dr. Ray will moderate the panel and briefly talk about her recent work with the community, including an innovative project connecting UMA to the local elementary schools (Maine French Heritage Language Program) .

Archive of RaP Sessions for 2013-2014:

Sci-Fi Live: From William Gibson to Ray Kurzweil

Mojca Krevel, Professor of English, University of Ljubljana
Wednesday, March 26, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

»We live, indisputably, in a science fiction world«.

James Gunn. Alternate Worlds: The Illustrated History of Science Fiction (1975) — Quoted in Landon, Brooks. Science Fiction After 1900: From the Steam Man to the Stars (New York: Routledge, 2002): 5

Semantic network describing the structure of ideas for the talk of Prof. Mojca Krevel of the University of LjubljanaI got the idea for the topic of this talk a few months ago when, while randomly flipping through channels, my attention was caught by the familiar phantasmagoria of flickering trajectories of brain-computer interfacing and pulsing images of neurons firing to computer-generated data. What initially looked like a yet unseen documentary on the 1980s cyberpunk movement, was, in fact, a film version of Ray Kurzweil’s 2005 best-selling The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Technology. The resemblance between Kurzweil’s vision of the future and the worlds of literary cyberpunk, especially those envisioned in William Gibson’s Sprawl trilogy, seemed uncanny.

The thing is, Kurzweil’s predictions for the future fundamentally rely on the actual developments and developmental trends in 1990s and 2000s technology and science. Kurzweil is, after all, an award-winning inventor, mathematician, and one of the leading experts on computer and artificial intelligence. William Gibson, on the other hand, is a full-time sci-fi writer with a BA in English, who provided the blueprint for what were to become the trademarks of the 1980s cyberpunk writing: computers, computerized environments and artificial intelligence. But while fuelling digital fantasies of thousands of computer geeks, Gibson wrote most of his Sprawl trilogy on a typewriter and consciously avoided using the internet well into the 1990s.

In my talk I will focus on two things.  First I will present the extent to which Kurzweil’s informed and well-founded projections coincide with the invented concepts and motifs in Gibson’s 1980s Sprawl trilogy. I will then consider the correspondence from the perspective of the hitherto established mechanisms governing the functioning and the structure of the postmodern epoch. Relying primarily on the concepts and terminology developed by Jean Baudrillard I will show that the high degree of correspondence is far from uncanny; it is practically inevitable given the popularity of Gibson’s trilogy. The explanation will also make clear why the criticism and controversies surrounding the accuracy and feasibility of Kurzweil’s predictions are ultimately irrelevant to the topic at hand.


We Can Get There From Here: Designing Online Interaction

Mina Matthews and B.J. Kitchin, University College E-Learning Specialists
Wednesday, April 9, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

In this active hour, Matthews and Kitchin focus on designing web-friendly online courses to boost our marketing appeal and simultaneously engage students. Three interaction patterns using technologies available within our system (Blackboard and Google Apps) are identified. The structure includes a hands-on component where faculty can follow along on their own laptops or computers (tablets not recommended) to perform a few basic design patterns that are personally relevant to them.


Women and Fitness in American Culture

Assistant Professor of American Studies Sarah Hentges
Thursday, April 10, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Bangor Campus Eastport Hall 124

Dr. Hentges will share some of her critical and creative explorations of American fitness, focused on making connections between fitness and gender, specifically in regard to the cultural depictions of fitness for women.


Why Americans are Not Bilingual

Yarissa Ortiz-Vidal, Adjunct Professor of Spanish
Monday, March 3, 12 noon
University College at Rockland

The United States of America is still being referred to as a nation of second-language illiterates, as linguistically malnourished, as in essence a monolingual nation.  Approximately 82% of Americans are monolingual and only 9% of Americans who speak a second language are highly proficient.  In comparison, 50% of Europeans speak a second language fluently.  Why, despite several educational reforms in an era of globalization, is second-language instruction not a priority as it is in other nations around the world?  This presentation seeks an answer with a review of research regarding native English speakers and their exposure to second-language instruction.


The State of Academic Integrity at UMA

Laura Rodas, Coordinator of Community Standards and Mediation
Wednesday, February 12, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Katz Library

UMA Conduct Officer Laura Rodas speaking on Academic Integrity on 2/12/14Academic honesty in higher education is of the utmost importance. During February 12th’s RaP session, discussion will focus on UMA’s Academic Integrity Code and procedures the responsibilities of faculty members, students, and the Office of the Dean of Students; and how to make a complaint.

Special attention paid to delineation of academic sanctions vs. disciplinary sanctions, repeat violations, and examples of challenging Academic Integrity matters. Q & A to follow.



Poetry, the Iraq War, and the Legacy of Trauma

Jeff Sychterz, Assistant Professor of English
Tuesday, February 11, 12 noon
University of Maine at Augusta Bangor Campus Eastport Hall 124

On Tuesday, February 11th, Jeff Sychterz, an Assistant Professor of English at UMA Bangor, will present his most recent research on Iraq War Poetry. Since 2003, America has experienced a poetic output not seen since the Vietnam War, and much of this poetry has been written in response to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. While most of the war poems are strictly political in nature, both pro- and anti-war, in the recent years there has been a rapidly growing cadre of poets writing about their wartime experiences. This group includes Iraqi expatriates, American combat veterans, and the mothers, sisters and wives of these soldiers. This historically diverse group provides us with important insights that had been ignored in previous wars. In particular, this most recent war poetry forces us, as never before, to confront the legacy of trauma and its effects not only upon the war zone survivor, but also upon those that he (and she) comes home to. Dr. Sychterz will share some of these poems and will discuss how poetry both represents and is itself shaped by the trauma of war.


Orientalism: West Meets the Middle East

David Farmer, Adjunct Professor of Art

Wednesday, November 13, 12 noon, University College at Rockland

In the 19th century, Western artists, writers, scholars and (eventually) tourists rediscovered what they called the Orient — Ottoman Turkey, Egypt, North Africa and the Holy Land. It was an opportunity to explore a region characterized by very different cultures, religion and history. Artists played a major role in defining Western attitudes toward the Middle East, and our current complex relationship with the region makes historical background seem especially relevant.


Six Great Ideas in Computer Science

Mark Goodridge, Adjunct Professor of Computer Science
Wednesday, November 13, 12 noon
Katz Library
University of Maine at Augusta

As computer technology developed in the 20th century a series of discoveries, spread across the fields of physics, logic, and philosophy, made by computer science pioneers both famous and unknown, became the foundations of the digital technology revolution. These ideas are both easy to explain and generally unknown. It is my opinion that adult who regularly uses computer technology would find an appreciation of these ideas both interesting and beneficial.

For example: Two Italian programmers discovered that all computer instructions can be expressed in one of three simple ways. This has profound implications for solving many problems. Why is it that we can predict with high confidence that two years from now our computing devices will be twice as powerful, but our cars won’t? What do hardware engineers mean when they say “If forests were designed the way computers are, one woodpecker would cut down every tree”? Why are software engineers able to sort problems into three categories. One is the category of problems that computers should be able to solve. The second is the category of problems that computers may be able to solve eventually. The third is the category of problems that computers will never be able to solve, and they can use computers to prove it.


Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies: What’s in a Name?

WGS faculty members Sarah Hentges, Kay Retzlaff, and Jeff Sychterz
Tuesday, November 19, 12 noon, 124 Eastport Hall

Faculty: Women’s studies recently changed its name and mission to Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Why the change? What does this new name mean for WGS teachers, students, and minors? What kinds of classes will be offered as a part of this new program? What is WGS and what is its importance in our educations and in our lives?

Students: How can you be a WGS minor? What kinds of classes are offered? How do you become a WGS minor? Why minor in WGS?


“She Blinded Me with Science! The Case for Information Literacy in Our Classrooms”

Assistant Professor of Information and Library Services Vincent Livoti
Thursday, October 17, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Katz Library

Information Literacy is a pillar of critical thought. While the phrase “critical thinking” currently has substantial buzz across the academy, many educators continue to struggle with ways to both distill and instill this perspective in an information-age of passive reception. Given the ubiquitous nature of multimedia for so-called digital natives, it is increasingly cleat that many of the essential skills for success in both our physical and on-line classrooms have converged. Like all literacies, information literacy is a set of skills and perceptual frames that can be identified, demonstrated and applied. Drawing from the trials and errors of teaching online, this talk will provide a set of practical, accessible and even entertaining approaches for integrating critical thinking tools into our diverse learning environments.


Roundtable Discussion: Putting Ideas into Action — Civic Engagement

Val Marsh, Coordinator of Civic Engagement
Tuesday, October 22, 12 noon, 124 Eastport Hall

Faculty: What kinds of civic engagement assignments do you assign students? What information do you need to help you figure out how to include civic engagement in your classroom? What are the challenges of civic engagement? What are the rewards? Bring examples to share with colleagues!

Students: What kinds of opportunities have you had for civic engagement in and out of the classroom?


“Roundtable Discussion: Distance Education: The Challenges and Triumphs”

B.J. Kitchin, eLearning Specialist II
Wednesday, September 25, 12 noon
138 Eastport Hall, UMA Bangor Campus

Faculty: How do you approach your online or compressed video or ITV courses? What have you done in the classroom that you think really works? What are some of the challenges you face teaching online or through other distance technologies? How do you organize your courses? What kinds of assignments do students do? Bring examples to share with colleagues!

Students: What challenges do you face in online or compressed video or ITV classes? What could your professors do better? How can professors, or UMA more generally, support your learning through distance technologies?


“Showtime! Using Drama, Speech, and Debate in the Workplace”

Adjunct Professors Steve Moro and Jon Potter
Wednesday, September 25, Noon to 1 pm
University College at Rockland

Steve Moro and Jon Potter making a presentationWe know that technology is an ever-changing force in our lives, as teachers, and as students. However, despite technology’s allure, there are other powerful forces in our lives. Showtime!, by paying attention to what we already know and have, presents practical strategies for recharging the amazing forces that are within us all. We all hold immense power. We can sculpt others’ opinions, focus their thinking, call forth positive emotional connections with ideas, and provide rock-solid factual foundations for all of these. So — Welcome to Showtime! In a brief hour, we hope to re-awaken those personal communication skills we need for success in our ever-changing world.


Archive of 2012-2013 RaP Sessions:

 “French in Maine: A Community-Based Approach”

Assistant Professor of French and Comparative Literature Chelsea Ray
Tuesday, April 23, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Katz Library

Chelsea Ray, Assistant Professor of French and Comparative Literature at UMA, will present on her current work building support for the French language on campus and the creation of the French minor.  The French minor was recently updated, so she will touch upon these changes and how she hopes to build more support for this academic discipline on campus.  She will also talk about her use of the online platform iLrn in her beginning French classes, as well as the integration of native speakers, both from the community as well as from the University of Western Brittany in France.

In addition, Chelsea will discuss a new community-based initiative for UMA students, who can serve as apprentices in the MaineFrench Heritage Language Program.  She will discuss the program and its goals for revitalizing efforts to renew interest in French language learning in Maine. The goal of the program is to bridge the gap between generations, celebrate Maine’s rich cultural Franco-American heritage
and French as it is spoken in Maine, enhance student aspirations, and demonstrate that learning languages is a key to the world.  Finally, she will touch upon how the curriculum development she is engaged with at the elementary level informs her work in the university language classroom.


“Presidential Mini-Grant Research: a Student Symposium”

Assistant Professor of Mental Health and Human Services Terry Adams
Wednesday, April 10, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Katz Library

During this RAP session Dr. Terry Adams will be briefly be discussing the work that has gone into four research projects funded by Presidential Mini-Grants. Dr. Adams will start the presentation by briefly discussing the research in general followed by student researchers who will discuss each project for roughly 5 minutes each. Students will discuss the research questions, methodology and results so far. The presentation will conclude with a presentation of the research team’s website and a chance for questions and answers.


“Alcohol, War, and Automobiles: Constructing Masculinity and Navigating Power in Mad Men”

Assistant Professor of English Jeff Sychterz and Adjunct Instructor of Interpersonal Communications Wes Colbath
Monday, April 15, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall 124

Please join Jeff Sychterz and Wes Colbath for a presentation and discussion about the TV Show Mad Men. Colbath’s work focuses around the role of automobiles and “sex, privacy, and relations of power.” Dr. Sychterz’s work focuses on alcohol and its relationship to post war masculinity. Through both of these lenses we can develop a better understanding of popular culture research and the role of television in helping to shape our expectations related to power and masculinity. A Mad Men inspired lunch (minus the cocktails) will be provided.


The Psychoneuroimmunology of Mind-Body Healing”

Assistant Professor of Nursing Carey Clark
Thursday, March 14, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Katz Library

What do neuroplasticity, epigenetics, and mind modulation have to do with the stress response, your health, and your illness propensity? How are the endocrine system, nervous system, and immune system inter-connected in such a way that emotions are expressed in our body and reflected by our health status? This presentation will focus on the science of the psychophysiologic stress response as it affects the nervous system, and clarify how self care and holistic modalities decrease the nervous system’s sympathetic response, while increasing the nervous system’s parasymphathetic response to facilitate body-mind healing. The use of mind-body approaches may reduce or eliminate the need for many medications and facilitate lasting changes in brain physiology that protect us from future illness and discomfort. The participants will also have an opportunity to experience a relaxation exercise to facilitate their understanding of the mind-body healing process.


“Optimism, Pessimism and Locus of Control: How Do They Affect Your Academics?”

Professor of Psychology Charlie Grunder
Thursday, March 28, Noon to 1 pm
University College at Rockland, Room 403

Professor Charles Grunder of the University of Maine at AugustaPsychologists study optimism versus pessimism and internal versus external locus of control to predict how individuals respond to stressful events. How can this framework help predict who succeeds in school? Professor of Psychology Charles Grunder explores this question in regard to student performance and concludes that prior GPA matters less than attributional style in predicting good grades, the precursor to graduation and career success.


“Mouths and Minds Wide Open: The State of Maine & Oral Cancer”

Assistant Professor of Dental Health Danielle Furgeson and Clinical Teacher Nancy Foster
Monday, March 4, Noon to 1 pm
University of Maine at Augusta, Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall Room 124

Oral cancer is on the rise in Maine and faculty at UMA are finding out more about this problem through their research. The difference between what you think you might know about oral cancer and actual trends might surprise you; oral cancer is on the rise in populations of young people, women and non-smokers. Faculty from the UMA Dental Health program share the results of their ongoing research.


“Housing Discrimination and Fair Housing Tests in Maine”

Elyse Apantaku, Pine Tree Legal Foundation
Monday, February 4, Noon to 1 pm
University College at Rockland, Room 403

Elyse Apantaku of Pine Tree Legal FoundationUnder Maine and federal law, a landlord cannot refuse to rent to you, and a housing seller cannot treat you differently, because of your race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, sexual orientation, disability, welfare status or minor children. But regardless of the law, housing discrimination continues. Elyse Apantaku of Pine Tree Legal Assistance presents a colloquium in which she describes the historical context of fair housing law and current efforts to measure whether, when and why housing discrimination occurs. A presentation of results from prior housing audits will lead to discussion regarding the practicalities of carrying out a fair housing test and how a university community can support this effort.


“Should Caffeine Be Limited to Adults Only?”

Assistant Professor of Mental Health and Human Services Kim Lane
Monday, February 4, Noon to 1 pm
UMA Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall Events Room 124

America does run on caffeine. 90% of Americans consume caffeine each day. Most of us do not know how much is too much. What are the signs of caffeine intoxication? How much caffeine is in a Java Monster, a Red Bull, a Starbucks coffee, a nasal spray, a chip, etc? The energy craze is here, but at what cost to the consumer? Americans are sleeping less, eating more, working harder, and playing less. Please join Professor Kim Lane in looking at why we have become so obsessed with taking a substance to maintain a certain energy level.


“Science Denial, a Threatening Social Phenomenon: Reality and Response”

Adjunct Professor Philip Gerard

Thursday, January 31, Noon to 1 pm

University College at Rockland, Room 403

Recent years have seen an increase in an anti-science mentality, in some cases a full-fledged rejection of science as one of the ways of knowing about the world. This rejection crosses classes and social strata on issues ranging from public health (childhood vaccination, nutrition, health care), to educational policy (intelligent design), to critical environmental issues (climate change, species loss).

Drawing on more than two decades of experience as an educator and conservation biologist, University College at Rockland Adjunct Professor Philip Gerard will share his understanding of and perspective on the roots of this change. Professor Gerard’s presentation is relevant to any members of the community impacted by science and its applications in society.


“A 15th-Century Life of St. Cuthbert: or, Why Read Medieval Saints’ Lives?”

Associate Professor of English Robert Kellerman

Wednesday, February 13, Noon to 1 pm

University of Maine at Augusta, Katz Library

Saints’ lives were among the most popular, well known, and oddest texts of the European Middle Ages. Filled with fantastic events and miracles alongside the standard biography of the saint in question, they combine local history, pop culture, theology, and Church doctrine into a form of biography that was, and remains, immensely popular. This presentation will explore what saint’s lives were and why they are essential to “reading” the Middle Ages through the medium of one saint’s life: a metrical version of the Life of St. Cuthbert, printed in the mid-15th century.

St. Cuthbert was one of the earliest English saints (late 7th century), as well as monk and abbot of Lindisfarne. Retold over the centuries, his life accumulated a wealth of material so that when it took its 15th century form, it combined biography with fairy tale, miracles with a political history of Northumbrian Church—in short, a mishmash of everything the poet could lay his hands on about Cuthbert. We’ll explore why it took such a form, and why the form apparently did not concern medieval readers much, an issue that informs how medieval readers read texts as well as how we modern readers read them.




“From Shebeens to the Governorship: How the Irish ‘Made It’ in Belfast, Maine”

Associate Professor of English Kay Retzlaff

Tuesday, November 13, Noon to 1 pm

UMA Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall Room 124

Born in Ireland, Bridget Haugh McCabe died under mysterious circumstances in Belfast, Maine, on January 4, 1861. Her death brought attention to an entrepreneurial enclave of Irish immigrants cooperating with some Yankee locals who were operating an illegal liquor trade in the heart of the city. This thriving “shebeen” ran afoul of the local authorities, themselves descended from Irish immigrants. This interconnection between the old, established “lace curtain” Irish and the “bog” Irish of mid-nineteenth century Belfast illustrates the diversity of the Irish presence in Maine and disproves a number of assertions made by Irish American scholars about the Irish in America.


“Matters in Maine: Measuring Individual Health, Well-Being, and Life Satisfaction.”

Assistant Professor of Social Science Catherine Turcotte

Wednesday, November 14, Noon to 1 pm

UMA Augusta Campus, Katz Library

While the ongoing (and many claim, deepening) economic crisis has been chronicled extensively on a national and global level, less examination has been undertaken on the welfare of residents in our local communities. Many individuals in central Maine are facing increasing challenges in obtaining and maintaining adequate housing, employment, heating, medical and dental care, and nutrition, for example, with close to one-third of Maine residents classified as poor or near-poor.

Using surveys and semi-structured interviews, residents of Augusta, Bangor, and surrounding communities were asked by students in selected Social Problems courses at UMA to assess their living standards across six domains, including self-reported life satisfaction. This presentation will introduce this ongoing project and present preliminary findings from qualitative and quantitative data. Results thus far indicate that many residents experience difficulty in acquiring adequate dental care and residential heat and encounter extended periods of unemployment. Moreover, lower levels of overall life satisfaction were found among individuals reporting more challenges to their well-being.


“Nurses’ Experiences of the Practice of the Peerspirit Circle Model from a Gadamerian Philosophical Hermeneutic Perspective”

Assistant Professor of Nursing Kristen Lombard

Thursday, October 11, Noon to 1 pm

UMA Augusta Campus, Katz Library

In a culture that has values technology, the bottom line and polar opposites, it is a challenge is to find a basis for non-hierarchical, face-to-face human interaction. How can we re-learn the human instinct to connect despite our anxieties about authenticity, confidence and fear itself?

Assistant Professor of Nursing Kristen Lombard presents her qualitative research on the viability of a collaborative “peerspirit” model in nursing with broader implications for the way we inhabit our home and work lives.


“Wild Blue Yonder: How Bangor, Maine, Decided to Reinvent a Neighborhood, an Air Base, and its Downtown.”

Lecturer in Liberal Studies Tom McCord

Tuesday, October 16, Noon to 1 pm

UMA Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall Room 124

Abstract: A convergence of opportunities, trends, money, and leadership in the early nineteen sixties convinced civic leaders in Bangor, Maine, to embark on three strikingly different urban renewal projects. While two were superficially successful, the third project, a fifty-acre clearing of the city’s downtown, dramatically failed in its primary objective: It failed to stimulate retail growth, which meant that increased property tax revenues did not materialize. The presentation argues that all three urban renewal projects were highly contingent on private choices, not public incentives, and that Bangor was most successful when locally controlled decision-making coincided with private enterprise.


“Culturally-Appropriate Care: What The Youth are Saying.”

Adjunct Professor Kathleen Fox

Thursday, October 18, Noon to 1 pm

University College at Rockland

A discussion of the results of a study of mental health needs among Mohawk young adults of New York State. Findings are that youth prefer their own traditions to current “Evidence Based Treatment”, which they find to be stigmatizing and irrelevant.


“Carol Dweck’s Mindsets: A Workshop for Faculty and Students on Expanding our Potential.”

Associate Professor of Mathematics Christine LeGore

Wednesday, October 3, Noon to 1 pm

University College at Rockland

In her book Mindset, Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck passionately espouses the importance of believing in a “growth mindset” in teaching and learning. After a brief presentation, we will consider the impact of positive and negative messages on our mindsets and how faculty and students might incorporate Dweck’s insights into our daily practices.

People who wish to attend this workshop might benefit from perusing Dweck’s highly informative website ( and will have an opportunity to take a related assessment quiz.


“American Fitness from Jane Fonda to Wii Fit: Critical and Creative Explorations of Women, Exercise, and Transformation”

Assistant Professor of American Studies Sarah Hentges

Tuesday, September 25, Noon to 1 pm

UMA Bangor Campus, Eastport Hall Room 124

Dr. Hentges will share some of her critical and creative explorations of American fitness, focused on making connections between food (the UMA colloquium theme for this academic year) and fitness.  Beyond the obvious connections of food as fuel, food and fitness share some interesting dimensions that tell us much about American culture, economics, and politics.


“Publics and Places: An Architecture of Democracy.”

Associate Professor of Philosophy Greg Fahy

Wednesday, April 11, Noon to 1 pm

Katz Library, Augusta Campus


UMA Dean Greg FahyThis paper argues that there is a strong connection between the design of built environments in America and the quality of democratic practice that occurs within these environments. It begins by discussing the self-identification of publics as crucial for democratic practice, and argues that there is an inherently spatial component to public self-identification. In particular, suburban built environments solicit strong tendencies to withdraw into private spaces and avoid social engagement in response to social conflict. This limits the potential for any publics to self-identify and to define their interests. The paper concludes by discussing two characteristics of built environments that solicit democratic practice: axial rings that enable strangers to traverse neighborhoods and convex spaces around bunched building entrances that encourage public transactions.


rapsessionatkatzlibraryThe Deep RaP Archive:

The Research And Pedagogy program is made possible by the support of the Faculty Senate and the Office of the Provost.  If you are interested in giving a presentation at a future RAP session, please contact:

University of Maine at Augusta