Big Bands, Big Name in Jazz Coming to UK

Thu, 03/27/2014 - 11:55


A selection of performances by Jeff Coffin and the Mu'tet. Video courtesy of 


LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 28, 2014) — Big band ensembles and a famous saxophonist will blast rhythm and jazz onto the University of Kentucky's campus this weekend in the 2014 Big Band Blast. The event will feature the UK Jazz Ensemble, the Bluegrass Area Jazz Ambassadors (BAJA) and the Jazz All-Stars of Central Kentucky, as well as special guest artist, saxophonist and member of the Dave Matthews Band, Jeff Coffin. The free public concert will begin at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 29, at the UK Singletary Center for the Arts Recital Hall.


Saxophonist, bandleader, composer and educator Jeff Coffin is a Grammy award-winning musician known to captivate audiences by playing two saxophones at a time. Coffin is famous for his work with Bela Fleck and the Flecktones from 1997-2010 and the Dave Matthews Band, which he joined as a member in 2009. When he is not touring with the Dave Matthews Band, he leads his own band, Jeff Coffin and the Mu'tet, performing music influenced by funk, jazz, African, New Orleans, Indian, folk, electronic, Gypsy, rock, Brazilian and more. An advocate of music education, Coffin also leads music clinics across the country.


Graduating from the University of North Texas with a music education degree, Coffin's success in music began by studying with composer and saxophonist Joe Lovano on a National Endowment for the Arts grant and playing in the esteemed One O’Clock Lab Band.


Since then, Coffin has taken the stage and the studio with a range of famed musicians including Branford Marsalis, Maceo Parker, Martina McBride, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Willie Nelson and Garth Brooks among others. Performing in concert with many ensembles, a number of Coffin's compositions have been published through the University of Northern Colorado Jazz Press as big bang arrangements.


BAJA is a popular performing ensemble affiliated with the Bluegrass Area Jazz Association, a nonprofit organization committed to the promotion of jazz education and the performance of jazz in the Bluegrass area. The group is comprised of musicians from the community, both professional and amateur, as well as students from UK Jazz Studies. This 18-piece big band, which came together in 2004, performs under the direction of Raleigh Dailey, assistant professor of jazz studies at UK.


The Jazz All-Stars of Central Kentucky (JACK) is a select honor jazz ensemble put together specifically for this concert. The group features jazz talents from around the Bluegrass.


The UK Jazz Ensemble, one of several jazz ensembles in the UK School of Music, is conducted by Miles Osland, director of UK Jazz Studies and professor of saxophone at UK since 1989. The UK Jazz Ensemble is a recipient of the Outstanding Jazz Ensemble certificate at the Annual Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival and winner of Downbeat Magazine’s DeeBee award for Best Jazz Instrumental Studio Orchestra. The ensemble has been featured with many national touring artists, including David Liebman, Tom Harrell and Mel Torme, and has performed internationally at the world's most prestigious jazz festivals in France, Switzerland and the Netherlands. The UK Jazz Ensemble has also received invitational performances to the International Association of Jazz Educators Conference and the Midwest Clinic International Band, Orchestra and Music Conference. 



MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale,

NCAA Sweet 16 Parking Impact for Campus, Surrounding Streets

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 23:53

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) ― As the University of Kentucky men’s basketball team heads into the NCAA Sweet 16, Parking and Transportation Services (PTS) is making the campus community aware of parking restrictions in place for Friday, March 28 through Sunday, March 30.


The Lexington Division of Police, in cooperation with the University of Kentucky Police Department, will be utilizing various parking areas on streets surrounding campus during the upcoming weekend. As such, parking will be partially or completely restricted in the following areas: Conn Terrace, Crescent Avenue, Elizabeth Street, State Street and University Avenue.


Parking in these areas will be restricted beginning at 5 p.m. Friday, March 28, until midnight Sunday, March 30. Any vehicles in violation of posted “No Parking” notices will be towed at the owner’s expense. The Division of Police will begin posting these notices Thursday, March 27.


Additionally, the top level of both the UK HealthCare Parking Garage (PS #8) and the Good Samaritan Hospital Parking Garage will be unavailable to general parking on Friday, March 28, and, if the basketball team advances, on Sunday, March 30. These areas will be used for police operations staging.


Finally, the South Limestone Garage (PS #5) will be unavailable for retail customer parking Friday, March 28. The facility closes at 9 p.m. Absolutely no after-hours access will be permitted.


KCH Holds 'Read To Your Baby' Party Today to Celebrate Kohl's Donation

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 23:40

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) – Kohl's Department Stores, through the Kohl's Cares® cause merchandise program, has donated $69,699 to UK HealthCare Kentucky Children’s Hospital. The donations were collected from Kohl’s stores located in the Lexington area. Kohl’s has donated more than $1,149,815 to KCH since 2001.


Kentucky Children’s Hospital is hosting a Read To Your Baby party from 5 to 6:30 p.m. today at Hallis School, 915 Murray Drive in Lexington, to celebrate the donation and to help build excitement for learning and reading for parents and preschoolers. The event is open to the public.


“The earlier you start reading to your children, the greater the effect on their language skills,” said Dr. Donna Grigsby, Chief of General Pediatrics at Kentucky Children’s Hospital. “Many different studies have shown the long-term benefits of listening to stories for babies in language development, brain development and relationship building.” This event launches the Kohl’s Read to Your Baby program, which will have events and a media campaign across Kentucky throughout the year.


Clifford the Big Red Dog, Scratch (UK Wildcats mascot) and Stitches (Kentucky Children’s Hospital mascot) will give out books and pose in pictures at the Read To Your Baby party. There will also be crafts, food, drinks, reading activities and the opportunity for each child to receive a book.


Kohl's commitment to Kentucky Children’s Hospital of Lexington is made possible through the Kohl's Cares cause merchandise program. Through this initiative, Kohl’s sells $5 books and plush toys, with 100 percent of net profit benefiting children’s health and education programs nationwide, including hospital partnerships like this one.


Landslides: A Threat in Kentucky Too

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 17:51

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — Kentucky geologists say Saturday morning's landslide in rural Snohomish County, Wa., should serve as a reminder that other parts of the country, including the Commonwealth, face similar threats.


The incident in Washington state, reported to cover about a square mile, occurred as a result of recent heavy rains that saturated the ground. Kentucky has also been affected by landslides, though most of them are not as large or devastating as the Washington state slide.


The Kentucky Geological Survey (KGS) at the University of Kentucky is compiling a landslide inventory database to better document the distribution and geologic context of Kentucky’s landslides.


“The purpose of the database is to provide users easy access to landslide information, raise awareness of landslide causes, and avoid property damage or injury,” says Matt Crawford, who maintains the database at KGS. “Landslides are more likely to occur in areas of existing slides, because the rocks and soil are already weakened, although the style and rate of movement may be different.”

Knowing landslide locations and their relationship to geologic properties (bedding, mineral composition, porosity, slope, thickness, strength, etc.) can mitigate potential problems associated with construction of roads, foundations, and bridges, and contribute to overall practical hillslope development.

“Landslide” is a broad term referring to the downslope movement of rock, soil, or both under the influence of gravity. The type of material in a landslide and its style of movement influences decisions needed for hazard mitigation and risk reduction. The majority of landslides in Kentucky occur within colluvial soils or along the soil-bedrock contact. Colluvial soils are formed by weathering and erosion of rock and soil accompanied by downslope movement by gravity. When disturbed or loaded, by heavy rainfall saturating a slope, for example, these soils are susceptible to landslides.

The Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area and Eastern Kentucky are particularly susceptible to landslides. These areas have steep slopes, easily weathered rock types, and locally thick, weak soils. When combined with several triggers such as intense rainfall, water-level change, or modification of slopes by humans, landslides can occur. Crawford and others at KGS have visited multiple landslide sites to assess them and help local governments with long-term solutions.

Local governments and regional planning agencies have requested his help with assessing damaging incidents in Lawrence and Boyd Counties, where homeowners have been forced to move out after sudden movement of the ground undermined their homes. Crawford has monitored a landslide in rural Boyd County, where a home has been abandoned. He used soil sampling and instruments to determine groundwater levels, the speed of the ground movement, and the depth and shape of the sliding groundmass at the site.

In addition to the landslide inventory and site assessments, a study correlating highway maintenance-cost data for landslides and rockfalls to geologic units has been recently completed by another KGS researcher. Seven years of Kentucky Transportation Cabinet data were analyzed to determine the geologic and geographic context of slides and falls that cost $37.4 million in repairs. Bethany Overfield found that not all geologic units have an equal likelihood for these hazards. According to Overfield, repair-cost analysis highlighted geologic units that were the most costly to maintain and most frequently repaired. This analysis provides transportation engineers and planners with a predictive tool for better assessing future roadway construction and budgets.

KGS has resources available to help people find out more about landslides in this region. Information, photos, and a KGS fact sheet are available at


The KGS landslide database was used to create an online landslide information map that shows locations of known landslides and areas susceptible to landslides in a geologic and geomorphic context. It can be seen at


KGS partnered with the geological surveys of Indiana and Ohio, as well as the University of Cincinnati geology department, to produce a detailed pamphlet about the region’s landslide conditions. Duke Energy provided funding to print “Landslides and Your Property” in 2013. Folded, ready-to-use paper copies are available from the KGS Public Information Center on the UK campus for $4 each. They may be ordered by calling 859-257-3896 or toll-free at 1-877-778-7827 and asking for publication 17740. A low-resolution version of the publication can also be viewed at




MEDIA CONTACT: Keith Hautala, 859-323-2396;

UK Orchestra Premieres New Pasatieri Work on Circle of Life, Showcases Concerto Contest Winner

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 16:51

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — Alumna Catherine Clarke Nardolillo takes the Singletary Center stage this Friday in a University of Kentucky Symphony Orchestra concert very personal to her. Wife of conductor John Nardolillo, she will perform the world premiere of a work written for their daughter, while nine months pregnant with the couple's second.


In addition, the concert will showcase the talents of one of UK School of Music's own, junior Ingang Han, winner of the UK Symphony Orchestra Concerto Competition, playing music by Sergei Prokofiev, as well as a performance of Maurice Ravel’s “Bolero.” The concert, which is free and open to the public, will begin at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 28, in the Singletary Center for the Arts Concert Hall.


Catherine will perform with the orchestra, the Lexington Singers Children’s Choir and the Danville Children’s Choir in a world premiere of composer Thomas Pasatieri's Symphony No. 2. The music follows life from its first stirrings as an embryo through experiences of love, loss, anger, beauty, art, and eventually death capturing the pain and joy one goes through in life.


"Symphony No. 2 is about life, the beginnings of life, the end of life, the life force, energy and sickness," the composer said.


In addition to celebrating life, the concert will also showcase up-and-coming talent with the solo performance of Ingang Han, winner of the UK Symphony Orchestra's Concerto Competition.


The competition presents a prestigious opportunity for UK music students to perform a solo concerto with the orchestra. Artistic excellence is the primary criterion, but students must also be full time music majors and prepare the entire concerto. A panel of judges composed of artists from outside UK reviews excerpts performed by each contestant and selects the top four to return and play their entire concerto. From these finalists, one to three winners are chosen to perform with the orchestra in the Concerto Competition concert.


Ingang Han, a music performance major from South Korea, will play the violin solo from Sergei Prokofiev’s Concert No. 1 in D Major for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 19. He will be backed by the UK Symphony Orchestra.


Previously, Han was named the winner of the Lewis Scholarship at UK, a prize winner of the Seoul National Symphony Orchestra Competition, and a finalist in the Utah Symphony Concerto Competition and the Eastern Music Festival Competition.


Founded in 1918, the UK Symphony Orchestra is regarded as one of the nation’s best college orchestras. The 100-member all-student orchestra presents more than 50 concerts each year including classical, chamber and education concerts. The group is made up of undergraduate and graduate students from across the United States, Asia, South America and Europe. The orchestra regularly performs with world-renowned concert artists including Itzhak Perlman, Sarah Chang, Gil Shaham, Mark O’Connor, Lynn Harrell, Marvin Hamlisch, Denyce Graves, Lang, Ronan Tynan and Arlo Guthrie. The orchestra performs in the concert hall at the Singletary Center for the Arts and on tour, including concerts at Carnegie Hall in New York in 2007 and 2010, and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. in 2009.


The UK Symphony Orchestra also collaborates yearly with UK Opera Theatre and has recently presented "Porgy and Bess," "La Bohème," "Die Fledermaus," "Carmen," "La Traviata" and "Madama Butterfly." Over the last three years, they have also begun an active outreach program bringing classical music to all corners of the commonwealth. To date, they have performed for more than 10,000 students as part of this new initiative. In addition to live performances, UK's orchestra is one of the only collegiate orchestra programs to record for with Naxos, the world’s largest classical music label.


The UK School of Music at the UK College of Fine Arts has garnered a national reputation for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, composition, and theory and music history.




MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale,


"Big Blue Family" VIDEO: Jim and Lydia Wims Help UK Students Succeed

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 14:43


Video Produced by UK Public Relations and Marketing.  To view captions for this video, push play and click on the CC icon in the bottom right hand corner of the screen.  If using a mobile device, click the "thought bubble" icon in the same area.


LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — University life holds a special place in the hearts of Jim and Lydia Wims. 


As first-generation college students, both were heavily involved in residence life at Kent State University, where they met and eventually married. 


They began raising their kids while working at Lincoln University in Missouri.  Today, they both work on the University of Kentucky campus serving students in two unique roles.  Jim serves as the associate vice president for student affairs while Lydia is the director of student support services.


Watch the video above to hear their "Big Blue Family" story and discover why working on the same campus helps their relationship as well as the students they they have devoted their lives to. 


This video feature is part of a special new series produced by UKNow focusing on families who help make up the University of Kentucky community. There are many couples, brothers and sisters, mothers and sons and fathers and daughters who serve at UK in various fields.   The idea is to show how UK is part of so many families’ lives and how so many families are focused on helping the university succeed each and every day. 


Since the "Big Blue Family" series is now a monthly feature on UKNow, we invite you to submit future ideas.  If you know of a family who you think should be featured, please email us.  Who knows?  We might just choose your suggestion for our next feature!  




VIDEO CONTACTS:  Amy Jones, 859-257-1754, ext. 257, OR Kody Kiser,


CI Professor To Receive Renowned Award From The BEA

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 14:24

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — Douglas A. Boyd, a professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Kentucky College of Communication and Information, will receive the 2014 Broadcast Education Association’s (BEA) Distinguished Education Service Award (DESA) Sunday, April 6, at the BEA's annual convention in Las Vegas.


Boyd is not only a professor of communication, he also teaches in the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce. He has held multiple administrative positions since his arrival at UK in 1987, including dean of the College of Communication and Information Studies (currently named College of Communication and Information), associate provost for international affairs, and chief of staff in the Office of the President.


Current dean of the College of Communication and Information and long time associate of Boyd, Dan O’Hair shares his thoughts about the presentation of the DESA to Boyd.


“This is one of the most prestigious awards in higher education, and it is most fitting that Professor Boyd is this year’s recipient. Doug epitomizes excellence in education whether in the classroom, on doctoral student committees, or in advancing policy issues that raise the bar in media and communication education,” O’Hair said. “He is one of the best-known and most respected educators in our profession. We are privileged to have him as our UK colleague.”


The award goes to an individual who has made a significant impact on electronic media education in the U.S. Throughout his professional career, Boyd has done just that, finding great success in many areas of the industry and producing work that spans international boundaries.


He has been a commercial broadcaster, an employee of the U.S. Department of Defense in Saudi Arabia, an employee and consultant at the Voice of America, and worked at the British Broadcasting Corporation’s Office of International Broadcasting and Research in London. Boyd has also written multiple books regarding broadcast media in other countries and in total has produced more than 60 refereed academic publications.


To learn more about the Broadcast Education Association, visit its website at


For more information about the UK College of Communication and Information, please visit our website at




MEDIA CONTACT: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or

Morgan Freeman Event at UK to Benefit Dentistry Scholarship

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 14:03

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — The University of Kentucky College of Dentistry is bringing Academy Award winning actor, director, and producer Morgan Freeman to the Singletary Center for the Arts for "A Conversation with Morgan Freeman" in an interview style presentation at 7 p.m. Monday, April 14. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Drs. Nero and Biggerstaff Diversity Scholarship Endowment at the UK College of Dentistry.


Freeman will discuss several of his movies, including "Lean on Me," "Amistad," "The Shawshank Redemption," and "Driving Miss Daisy." A reception will follow for anyone who donates $1,000 or more to the Nero/Biggerstaff Diversity Scholarship fund. Freeman will greet people and offer photos to be made with him and autographs for those who are interested.


“The College of Dentistry is extremely grateful to Mr. Freeman for this generous gift of his time and talent to benefit this important scholarship fund," said Sharon Turner, dean of the College of Dentistry. "The subject matter of many of Mr. Freeman’s films provides rich material for an open dialogue on diversity in the United States, and there is no better place for such a dialogue than on the campus of a great university. I would also very much like to acknowledge the hard work of a dedicated group of alumni, led by Dr. Carol Bolton and Dr. Carrie Brown, to get this scholarship created so as to continuously enrich our diversity at the college.”


Dr. Benjamin W. Nero ('67) was the first African-American student at the College of Dentistry. With more than 40 years as a practicing orthodontist, he has accomplished much since his humble beginnings in Greenwood, Miss. Upon graduation, he completed a three-year residency in orthodontics at Albert Einstein Hospital in Philadelphia and took over the practice of the first African-American orthodontist in Philadelphia. Throughout his career, he has maintained an active interest in furthering diversity in dentistry.


Dr. Joseph Biggerstaff was the first African-American faculty member at the UK College of Dentistry. A native of Richmond, Ky., and the son of a dentist, his impressive work led to grants and recognition for the college, eventually resulting in his appointment as chair of the Division of Orthodontics. His commitment to diversity in dental education continues today and is reflected in the number of students from underrepresented groups who represent the UK College of Dentistry in Kentucky and beyond.                   


Established in 2010, the scholarship is open to all qualified College of Dentistry students and awarded in accordance with UK's interest in diversity. Consideration is given, but not limited to dental students who contribute to educational diversity.


Tickets to the event are $50 and can be purchased online at, or by calling the Singletary Center for the Arts Ticket Office at 859-257-4929.  



MEDIA CONTACT: Ann Blackford at 859-323-6442 or

Gaines Fellowship Awarded to 12 UK Scholars

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 13:29

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2014) — The University of Kentucky Gaines Center for the Humanities has chosen 12 outstanding undergraduates as new scholars for the university's Gaines Fellowship Program for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 academic years. Gaines Fellowships are given in recognition of outstanding academic performance, demonstrated ability to conduct independent research, an interest in public issues and a desire to enhance understanding of the human condition through the humanities.


Gaines Fellowships are awarded for the tenure of a student's junior and senior years, or for the last two years of a five-year program; students in all disciplines and with any intended profession are given equal consideration.


UK's 12 new Gaines Fellows are:

· Phillip Barnett, of Louisa, Ky., majoring in communication;

· Kevin Bloomfield, of Lexington, majoring in architecture;

· Jonathan Elliott, of Kentwood, Mich., majoring in economics and mathematics;

· Kyeong Ran Jang, of Lexington, majoring in biology;

· Jordan Keeton, of Flatwoods, Ky., majoring in economics and finance;

· Trevor McNary, of Lexington, majoring in economics and international studies;

· Jacob Mattingly, of Louisville, Ky., majoring in chemistry and philosophy;

· Shannon Newberry, of Paducah, Ky., majoring in architecture;

· Stephen Parsons, of Lexington, majoring in computer science and international studies;

· Jonathan Sarfin, of Louisville, majoring in psychology and English;

· Sarah Wagner, of Louisville, majoring in architecture and English; and

· Kalin Wilson, of Olive Hill, Ky., majoring in biology.


All Gaines Fellows are required to take a specially designed, four-credit hour per semester seminar in the humanities during both semesters of their junior year. In addition, each junior fellow must complete a jury project planning and optionally carrying out an improvement for a local community. In the senior year, each fellow must complete a major independent study project of six to 15 credit hours. At the conclusion of this project, a thesis paper must be submitted and defended in front of a thesis committee of three university faculty members and the director of the Gaines Center.


In addition to the course requirements, Gaines Fellows enjoy a rich program of field trips, lectures, and other activities designed to widen and deepen their educational experience.


For the students, being chosen as a Gaines Fellow is a tremendous honor and recognizes their dedication to academics. "I'm honored to be selected to join this long line of incredibly intelligent and accomplished fellows," said Trevor McNary. "I'm so excited that I am a small part of this amazing tradition."


Founded in 1984 by a generous gift from John and Joan Gaines, the Gaines Center for the Humanities functions as a laboratory for imaginative and innovative education on UK's campus. Part of the Academy of Undergraduate Excellence within the Division of Undergraduate Education, the center is devoted to cultivating an appreciation of the humanities in its students and faculty. The center embraces varied paths of knowledge and particularly strives to integrate creative work with traditional academic learning.




MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale,


Boxes and Walls: A Multicultural Exhibit of Oppression Through Time

Wed, 03/26/2014 - 11:10

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 27, 2013) — Tearing down the walls of diversity is a task that requires one to think outside of the box. 'Boxes and Walls' is hosted by CATalyst, which has teamed up with six other organizations to build a multicultural museum for students to explore.


The exhibits are designed to personalize the struggle of tearing down these walls of oppression and to educate attendees on the impact of this persecution over time.

Keeping with this year's theme, "Oppression through Time," participating organizations are building their exhibits to reflect the impact of oppression on historically oppressed groups.


Alexis Asamoah, president of the African Student Association, says that she hopes their exhibit will take attendees back in time.


“We would like students to understand the effects of colonization through an interactive experience they may not be able to have anywhere else. When students come into our room, we would hope that they would feel as if they are being transported to a different time period,” Asamoah said.


The goal is to highlight that oppression wears many masks, but underlying similarities can unite efforts toward inclusion against the common enemy of discrimination. The hope is that attendees leave with a better understanding and desire to take part in making our community a safer and fairer place for all students.


“Boxes & Walls is all about getting students to walk in the shoes of students who may have experiences that are widely different from their own.  Through these different experiences, we gain insight into the realities of the world we live in, and we learn more about ourselves,” said Robert Cardom, CATalyst advisor and Boxes & Walls coordinator.


The six participating organizations that are working together to make this event possible are: NAACP, African Student Association, Latino Student Association, Sexperts, UK Center for Community Outreach, and the International Student Council.  In addition, UK partners include Residence Life, Office of Student Involvement, and the Office of Institutional Diversity. It is a unique experience that allows students to study and celebrate the diversity of their campus.


This year's experience will take place from 4-7 p.m. April 7-9, in the Center for Student Involvement, located in the Student Center. Tickets are required for each tour departure time and are available online at Tour groups are capped to 15 guests at a time, and tours begin every half-hour.


Boxes & Walls started at UK in 2010.  Since then, CATalyst has managed to carry the torch, with the help of students from a range of partnering organizations. Each year, more than 200 participants go through the Boxes & Walls experience.


To learn more about this event, please contact Robert Cardom, by email at or by phone, 859-257-6780 or visit the Office of Student Involvement in Room 203 of the Student Center.


Lexington, UK Officials Urge Fans to Celebrate Safely During Upcoming NCAA Tournament Games

Tue, 03/25/2014 - 18:24

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2014) ― As the University of Kentucky Wildcats head into the NCAA Sweet 16 match-up Friday, March 28, fans are being encouraged to enjoy the game, but also to celebrate safely and respect their neighbors.


To that end, Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and UK President Eli Capilouto today announced a joint city/UK initiative during and after this weekend's games to help ensure safety and coordinated enforcement efforts.


"This is an exciting time for our men’s and women’s teams, the university and the Big Blue Nation," Capilouto said. "But our celebration can be quickly tarnished by a few people choosing to act recklessly. We all must be vigilant and take care of one another to responsibly support our teams’ success. Our safety plan – in partnership with the city -- is a reminder of our expectations for everyone in celebrating and the consequences if those few people don't uphold those expectations."


“Let’s cheer. Let’s celebrate. Let’s respect neighbors. Let’s be safe,” Mayor Jim Gray said.


UK Vice President for Student Affairs Robert Mock reminds UK students that, as in past years, "if they engage in dangerous or criminal behavior, not only will they be subject to criminal charges, but also may face penalties from the university through the Student Code of Conduct judicial process."


UK and Lexington public safety officials are working together to protect citizens and property this weekend.  UK Police will be working closely with the Lexington Fire and Police Departments in the campus area to facilitate a safe celebration.


“We are expecting a great game and good behavior from all UK Basketball fans this weekend,” Lexington Police Chief Ronnie Bastin said. “We’re doing our part to make sure traffic flows well, the streets are safe and everyone can enjoy a good time. We ask citizens to do their part by: being responsible, respectful and choosing not to drink and drive. If there are enforcement or safety issues, we’re prepared to handle them."


"We want the UK and Lexington communities to know that safety is our top priority," UK Police Chief Joe Monroe said.  "We appreciate fans wanting to celebrate safely and respectfully, however, we are prepared to take action if celebrations turn into dangerous or criminal acts."


Elements of the City/UK safety plan include:


  • The Lexington Division of Fire is moving its command post close to campus and calling in additional firefighters. 
  • The city Division of Code Enforcement has delivered about 200 door hangers in the neighborhoods near campus. The door hangers provide information concerning trash and combustibles. Code Enforcement personnel will be working in the area during and after the game. 
  • UK Police will be using the new security system installed on campus last year that includes nearly 400 cameras deployed at key locations throughout campus.  The cameras are expected to provide extra surveillance, which will benefit investigations in the event of any criminal behavior on campus. 
  • If anyone sees anything out of the ordinary on campus, they should call UK Police at 859-257-1616.


MEDIA CONTACT:  Kathy Johnson, 859-257-3155 or Jay Blanton, 859-257-6605


What's Next: Capturing the World in Three Dimensions

Tue, 03/25/2014 - 17:20


LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 26, 2014) — A picture may be worth 1,000 words, but a high-definition 3D image could be worth a whole lot more. 


Ruigang Yang, associate professor in the University of Kentucky Department of Computer Science, is working to develop new ways to capture the world around us in three dimensions. His research is in 3D reconstruction, modeling and visualization. 


Yang's work is focused on creating systems to capture visual data in three dimensions as well as understand the content inside of the data. Yang says that, just as color photography superseded black-and-white, 3D imaging will one day create new capablities that are unattainable with today's two-dimensional imaging technology. 


From his beginnings working on "telepresence" applications for remote collaboration, Yang developed new sensors and algorithms for 3D imaging. Then, setting his sights on a larger scale than the office environment, Yang turned his attention to creating real-time 3D images from vehicle-mounted video sources. 

This type of research has many applications, for example, in creating three-dimensional street views (like Google Street View, but in 3D) or even enabling consumers to create their own avatars with a cellphone.

Yang's work is featured in the above video, produced by UK's Center for Visualization and Virtual Environments (the Vis Center) as part of its "What's Next" series. It may also be viewed at "Reveal," the official website for UK Research Media, at   MEDIA CONTACT:  Keith Hautala, 859-323-2396;

"see tomorrow." Town Halls Continue This Afternoon

Tue, 03/25/2014 - 16:12

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 26, 2014) — The second event in a series of Strategic Plan Town Halls will take place from 4-5 p.m. today in the Room 234 of the UK BioPharm Complex. Town Hall events represent opportunities to learn about, engage with and provide feedback for "see tomorrow." The University of Kentucky Strategic Plan.


The Town Hall, which will focus on trends in higher education, is designed to facilitate a robust discussion about these trends as the university develops its next Strategic Plan.  Susan Carvalho, UK Associate Provost for Internationalization will facilitate the discussion.


Feedback will be compiled and shared with the Strategic Planning Committee.


 The current trends that the strategic plan working groups have identified include:

1.    Changing Finances and Sustainability of Funding Sources

2.    Redefining the Purpose of Public Higher Education

3.    Greater Accountability

4.    Increased Use of Technology

5.    Increased Internationalization

6.    Changing Undergraduate Population and Curriculum

7.    Challenges in Graduate Education:  Ph.D., Master’s, and Professional Degrees

8.    Changes in Research Funding

9.    The Changing Professoriate


"To have a discussion about the trends that are shaping the future of higher education as well as the University of Kentucky represents an important starting point for developing our Strategic Plan," said UK Provost Christine Riordan. "President Capilouto and I believe that, to develop a plan for our future, we need to fully understand the context of where we are now."




MEDIA CONTACT: Sarah Geegan, (859) 257-5365Call: (859) 257-5365;

College of Education Studies SWAT Team's Physical Demands

Tue, 03/25/2014 - 12:26

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 26, 2014) — The sound of gunfire would briefly halt conversation as Mark Abel, an associate professor in the University of Kentucky College of Education's Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion, and his students discussed the progress of their research. They were on-site at a firing range and practice course to work with members of a special weapons and tactics team (commonly known as "SWAT").


On this December day, clouds of breath could be seen in the frosty air as SWAT team members moved through obstacles to simulate high-risk scenarios. They paused on the course only to fire weapons at targets and drag heavily weighted mock-victims to safety.


A college professor since 2006, Abel's job after high school was as a firefighter. He has combined that passion with his academic career to provide research and service to firefighters, campus police officers, and urban SWAT units.


"Tactical personnel place themselves in harm's way to protect our families," Abel said. "Collaborating with these groups to enhance their safety provides me with an opportunity to give back to them."


Tactical gear designed to protect them can be a constraint to the men and women on a SWAT team, who move efficiently and with precision.  That's why Abel's current study is looking at the effect of load carriage (tactical gear) on lower back stress and tactical performance (work efficiency and shooting accuracy). The study will determine which fitness characteristics are associated with a change in work performance due to the gear.


Abel's research allows graduate students working with him to enter the world of some of safety and law enforcement officials’ most skilled operations. Students positioned around the perimeter of the SWAT course used stopwatches to clock their movements. Others were charged with collecting blood samples and body measurements from subjects.


Master's students Jason Keeler and Matt Thomas are the primary investigators for two projects with the SWAT team.  They were positioned on a perch overlooking the practice course.


"This position allowed me a birds-eye view of the firing range and all tasks involved in the obstacle course," Thomas said. "It was important that I clearly see the officers during the entirety of the course in order to accurately time each task."


The "obstacle course" is referred to as a Simulated Tactical Test (STT).


"It includes many of the possible movements and scenarios that a SWAT officer could encounter in a typical call-out such as scaling a wall, firing a rifle from a kneeling position behind cover, crawling under an obstacle, or dragging a fellow officer or civilian out of harm's way," Thomas said.


By precisely identifying how the equipment affects the SWAT operators, the research team will provide recommendations for exercise programs to better prepare for the demands of the equipment and job. Plus, they can provide suggestions on how to move more efficiently or use alternative equipment to reduce lower back stress.


Keeler has likely discovered a field of work he will continue to study. He has been accepted into the College of Education's Ph.D. program and will work with Abel. Eventually, he would like to begin his career at an institution that will allow him to continue his research and teach students.


"I have a belief that keeping your head in research will help you become a better teacher, and I hope that is what I’m able to do," he said. "After starting down this road, I have found myself loving the work more and more. If I help provide some information that can help prevent an injury, I would feel fantastic about my work."



MEDIA CONTACT:  Jenny Wells, 859-257-5343,

Ellen Goodman Launches Inequality Conference

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 17:42

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2014) — An appearance by Ellen Goodman, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, author, speaker and commentator, on March 27 kicks off the two-day Conference on Political and Economic Inequality, hosted by the University of Kentucky Department of History in the College of Arts and Sciences.


Ron Formisano, UK’s William T. Bryan Professor of History and organizer of the conference, said he was inspired to create the conference because “inequality is a major issue in the world today.


“But (inequality) is of particular importance in the U.S. because the U.S. — and this may surprise many — ranks very low among democratic and economically developed countries on the degree of equality and equality of opportunity and mobility, when compared to other advanced countries,” Formisano said.


Goodman will address “Inequality: Working Moms, Designated Daughters, and the Risks of Caregiving” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 27, in Memorial Hall, UK campus. The campus and Lexington communities are invited to the free event.


Dean Baker of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, Judge Kathy Stein and union official Mike Matuszak are among the speakers at a full day of events on Friday, March 28.


Goodman has been a chronicler of social change in America, especially the woman’s movement and its effect on our public and private lives, for many years. When her syndicated column appeared in more than 300 newspapers, she was the most widely syndicated progressive columnist in the country. She has written about the challenges of bioethics as well as those of parenting in an era when mothers and fathers have become the counter-culture — the people who counter the Britney and Xbox culture. Her tools in her work, she has said, are “skepticism, the perspective that we call humor and, I guess, something in the DNA that says ‘hey, wait a minute.’”


She has published six books collecting her columns as well as “Turning Points” (1979) and “I Know Just What You Mean: The Power of Friendship in Women’s Lives” (2000), with close friend Pat O’Brien. In 2010, Goodman took her work about social issues to the grassroots level. Along with colleagues from the media, clergy and medicine, Goodman co-founded The Conversation Project. This group seeks to influence how Americans talk about death, by making dying easier to discuss. The Conversation Project encourages people to begin this conversation early, and often, so that loved ones know one’s final wishes.  


Friday’s events begin at 9:30 a.m. in the Worsham Theater in the UK Student Center. The schedule and brief biographies of the presenters follow:


9:30-10:15 a.m.: Ron Eller, UK: Inequality in Appalachia (with attention to racial issues)

10:15-10:30 a.m.: Comment: Jamie Lucke, Lexington Herald Leader

10:30-11:15 a.m.: Bruce Laurie, University of Massachusetts, The Decline of Unions and the Rise of Inequality

11:15-11:30 a.m.: Comment: Mike Matuszak, former secretary-treasurer of Local 227 United Food and Commercial Workers of America

Noon-1:30 p.m.: break

1:30-2:15 p.m.: David Courtwright, University of North Florida: The Culture War and the Rise of Inequality

2:15-2:30 p.m.: Comment: Hon. Kathy Stein, Family Court Judge

3:15-4 p.m.: Dean Baker, Center for Economic and Policy Research: Inequality, Causes, Consequences

4-4:30 p.m.: Q & A and Remarks by participants


Ronald D. Eller is Distinguished Professor of History at UK. He has written and taught about the Appalachian region for 40 years, and his recent book “Uneven Ground: Appalachia Since 1945” won prizes from two historical associations.


Jamie Lucke is an editorial writer for the Lexington Herald-Leader who focuses on education, the environment, public health, and local and state issues; winner in 2013 of a prestigious award from the Society of Professional Journalists.


Bruce Laurie is Professor of History Emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. His books include “Artisans Into Workers: Labor in Nineteenth-Century America.” Although Laurie retired in 2008, he is still teaching.


Mike Matuszak is a former Teamster, labor educator at UK, and secretary-treasurer of Local 227 United Food and Commercial Workers of America and consultant for the union in contract negotiations.


David Courtwright is Presidential Professor in the Department of History at the University of North Florida. He has written about social and legal history, medicine, drug use, and drug policy in the U.S. and in world history, and recently published “No Right Turn: Conservative Politics in a Liberal America.” He is currently working on a book about pleasure, vice, capitalism and addiction.


Kathy Stein, an attorney, served in the Kentucky House from 1997 to 2008 and the State Senate from 2008 to 2013 where she championed progressive causes such as women’s rights. In 2013 Governor Steve Beshear appointed her to the Fayette Circuit Court. She has been active in some three dozen local, state and regional organizations.


Dean Baker is an economist and co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. He is the author of “Taking Economics Seriously, Plunder and Blunder: The Rise and Fall of the Bubble Economy,” and other books, including “The End of  Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive,” and recently “The Benefits of Full Employment: A Better Bargain for Working People” (co-authored with Jared Bernstein, former economic advisor to Vice President Joe Biden). He appears frequently on TV and radio programs, including CNN, CBS News, PBS NewsHour, and National Public Radio, and writes a weekly column for the Guardian Unlimited, the Huffington Post and TruthOut. 

Pilot Funding Program Supports Innovation, Community Engagement, and Research Infrastructure

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 16:45

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2014) — Translational research — the process of moving a laboratory discovery into clinical applications — is a long and complex process requiring diverse expertise, ranging from basic science and regulatory affairs to participant recruitment and rclinical application. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), it can take more than a decade for a lab discovery to result in a new treatment, medical device, or prevention method. Yet, despite extensive training for basic scientists and clinicians in their specific fields, few researchers have the training, experience, and resources to successfully initiate and complete the "bench to bedside" process of translational studies.


Enter the Pilot Funding Program of the UK Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS).  Established in 2006, the Pilot Program provides funding and multidisciplinary research support for preliminary and proof-of-concept studies in translational science.  The program received a significant boost in 2011 when the CCTS earned a $20 million Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) from the NIH. The CTSA program aims to improve human health by transforming research and training environments to enhance the efficiency and quality of clinical and translational research, and the Pilot Program is one of the primary methods through which the CCTS achieves this goal.  It provides far more than funding — awardees receive guidance and mentorship from protocol development to project evaluation. And the evolution of an integrated, multidisciplinary Pilot Program — involving not just CCTS but other UK centers and academic medical institutions — has enhanced research collaborations and infrastructure at UK and beyond.


"We are here to break research silos and to help our basic scientists, clinicians, and communities work together because there's no other way to truly advance science if different types of expertise don't collaborate. That's our mission," said Elodie Elayi, pilot program coordinator and director of research development at the CCTS.


The CCTS pilot program includes several different funding streams to support community engagement, drug development, high impact studies, novel methodologies, junior faculty, disease-specific research, and collaborative research. Priority areas include development of enabling technologies, new therapies, diagnostics, and novel cross-disciplinary collaborative programs that address the health and health care needs of the people of Appalachia.


The varied funding streams support diverse areas of research from investigators with varying levels of research experience. 


"For junior investigators it provides them an opportunity to launch their research program," said Tom Curry, director of the pilot program.  "For established investigators it provides them an avenue to explore new areas of investigation, to potentially generate findings for a high risk/high reward study which may not have a platform for funding through the normal channels, or to forge new collaborations to expand their research programs."


Regardless of the type of award, pilot investigators benefit from a robust support infrastructure designed to ensure that their study is successful. A multidisciplinary intake meeting with directors of relevant CCTS core services (such as biomedical informatics, participant recruitment, clinical services, or community engagement) serves as an immediate opportunity get expert feedback on protocols and budgets, anticipate challenges, and connect with needed resources.


"We don't just give money, but we also support investigators to overcome any issues," said Elayi. "We start the process on a positive note to be sure that everything is in place for the project to work."


Pilot investigators also have a face-to-face progress meeting halfway through their project to ensure that everything is on track and address any problems.


"When we first started doing this, we didn't have the face-to-face progress meeting, and we'd find out nine months in that there were problems," Elayi said.


The success of the CCTS Pilot Program led other UK centers, as well as outside institutions like Marshall University, to integrate their pilot programs with the CCTS pilot infrastructure. CCTS now operates a consolidated model that matches funds and manages the pilot programs of the Markey Cancer Center, Barnstable Brown Kentucky Diabetes and Obesity Center, Sanders-Brown Center on Aging, and Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center. A single request for applications is issued, and advertising of pilot opportunities is consolidated on the CCTS website. Then, a standing committee of 15 NIH-funded experts representing various departments/colleges reviews the proposals, providing NIH-format review and constructive feedback to applicants. This integrated approach leverages funding to increase the number of awards and enhances the overall research structure at UK and beyond by facilitating efficiency, standardization, transparency and collaboration.



And there's a significant return on investment: Since 2006, $2.2 million has been invested in the 90 studies supported by the pilot program, and 12 of the pilot projects subsequently received NIH awards that brought an additional $14 million in research funding to UK.


To further support innovative, community-engaged research, CCTS is currently reviewing applications for community-academic partnership stimulation, in conjunction with the Appalachian Translational Research Network (ATRN). The program will provide $100,000 over two years to a pilot project (to be announced in April) that develops or strengthens sustainable, joint partnerships between academic researchers and community stakeholders for translational research regarding health disparities in Appalachian Kentucky, Ohio, and West Virginia.


"This is the first time we've put out a call for proposals specifically for sustainable partnership," said Curry.  "The idea is that the infrastructure that will come out of the project will stay in place after the funding period."


It's also the first pilot funding opportunity from CCTS to require that projects have a community advisory board and that responsibility for the study is shared between the academic and community partners.


"So many projects fail because there's no penetration into the community. Collaboration is key," Elayi said.


Experts from partnering institutions — West Virginia University, Morehead State University, Ohio University — and community partners will form the review committee for this particular funding award.


 "Because of the diverse academic and community expertise, the reviews provided for by the committee can really help to mentor those investigators to improve the quality of project and have real impact in a community" said Curry. 


While only one project will be funded, Curry sees this funding opportunity as a building block for future collaborations as well.


"We'll fund a single project, but hopefully we'll have started a conversation between UK and community partners that will lead to other things," he said.


This ripple effect of the Pilot Program — across UK, other academic medical institutions, and communities — is perhaps its most profound hallmark, as it enhances the overall research enterprise and process to advance medical discoveries and improve lives.


"We've touched a lot of people's lives, and hopefully they can act as a catalyst within their departments and universities," Curry said.




MEDIA CONTACT: Mallory Powell,


UK Trumpet Studio Takes Honors at National Competition

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 15:40

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2014) — Students from the University of Kentucky Trumpet Studio won several honors at the 2014 National Trumpet Competition (NTC), held March 20-23, in Mechanicsburg, Pa.


The UK Trumpet Quintet took second prize in the highly competitive ensemble division. More than 60 ensembles from around the U.S. submitted recordings. Thirty of these ensembles were selected for competition in the live, semifinal round in Mechanicsburg. The UK ensemble competed in the live semifinal on March 20 and was selected as one of six ensembles to advance to the final round on March 22, where the ensemble members were selected as the second prize winners.


The quintet is comprised of pre-mechanical engineering sophomore Aaron Brewer, of Madisonville, Ky.; music performance freshman Drew Burke, of Pikeville, Ky; music performance freshman Caden Holmes, of Madisonville; music education sophomore Conner Kinmon, of Williamstown, Ky., and music performance senior Jared Wallis, of Talala, Okla.


In addition to his honor with the quintet, Wallis advanced to the semifinal division of the solo competition performing "Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra" by Charles Chaynes. The graduate solo division also saw a UK alumnus, Eric Millard, awarded third prize.


The UK Trumpet Studio studies under the direction of Jason Dovel, assistant professor of trumpet, himself a former NTC prize winner.


The UK School of Music at the UK College of Fine Arts has garnered a national reputation for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, composition, and theory and music history.

Fates of Future Doctors Revealed as Medical School Culminates With UK Match Day

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 15:34




LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 25, 2014) — Some University of Kentucky medical students pumped their fists while others unleashed tears of relief. Some took the opportunity to thank professors, parents, spouses and friends. A few pulled baseball caps out of bags as if they were selected in the NBA draft. And one bold student danced his way to the podium, taking a "selfie" with his camera phone upon arrival.


The fourth-year medical students who were matched with a residency program last week accepted the news in different ways. Dr. Chipper Griffith senior associate dean for medical education, said on this anticipated day, most students relate to a feeling of being overwhelmed — with appreciation, with satisfaction and with excitement for the future.


"It's one of the exciting days of your life," Griffith said of Match Day. "The reason I'm in academics is I like teaching, and I like the relationships — I like sharing this joy with students."


Every year, outgoing medical students participate in a process of interviewing and being matched at their first job — a three- to seven-year residency program. Students rank their top choices, and interested residency programs rank the students, too. Based on a computer algorithm taking into account both rankings, students are matched with a residency program. On Match Day, students have the option to open the letter revealing their "match" on stage before an audience of family members, fellow students and instructors.


Students pegged their residency location on a poster board map after they announced their location on-stage. Match programs ranged from University of California-Berkeley to New York University to the Mayo Clinic. A total of 109 UK medical students were matched, and one-third of those students will stay at the University of Kentucky.


A residency match made in heaven 


Matching bath towels and champagne glasses are typical items on the wish lists of newlywed couples. University of Kentucky medical student Laura McGill Blum and Evan Blum, a medical student at Indiana University, hoped for matching residency programs just five months after tying the knot.


The couple met during their undergraduate senior year at IU. After keeping up a long-distance relationship through four years of medical school in different states, they married in October 2013. During UK's Match Day ceremony at Keeneland's Keene Barn March 21, the pair approached the stage hand-in-hand and simultaneously tore open envelopes that determined their futures.


It wasn't a perfect match — but close enough for Laura, who will be completing a residency in orthopedic surgery at the University of Michigan. Evan was matched at a nearby program in emergency medicine.


"He was much cooler than I was," Laura Blum, who is originally from Fort Wayne, Ind., said of the lead-up to Match Day. She decided she wanted to become an orthopedic surgeon after she had two knee surgeries in high school and followed the doctor who performed those surgeries during an internship program.


The couple agreed that knowing where they'll begin their respective medical careers is a relief. Practicing the marital necessity of compromise, the two have resolved to split the distance when they find a home together.


"We wouldn't wish this on anyone," Evan Blum said. "But from here on out, it will be a lot easier."


Kentuckian bound for neurology program at the Mayo Clinic 


Swapping out his everyday glasses for a pair of shades, UK student Derek Stitt coolly confronted his fate in medicine to the theme song of the movie "Men in Black."


Though his approach to the podium was light-hearted, his words before revealing his residency match were heartfelt. The Mt. Olive, Ky., native thanked his grandmother, who predicted he'd become a doctor when he was a boy. She recently pulled through a high-risk aortic valve replacement surgery to see her grandson fulfill that destiny.


Stitt received a resounding cheer from his fellow students when he revealed his match pursuing neurology at the prestigious Mayo Clinic — his first-choice program. He became interested in attending medical school at the University of Kentucky in the fourth grade. Later, when his uncle passed away of Lou Gehrig's disease while Stitt was in high school, he decided he'd dedicate his career to clinical neurology.


"Kentucky will always be my home; it was great to get my foundational training here in Kentucky," Stitt said. "Now I'm looking forward to branching out and spending my life somewhere else for four years."


Seven-year journey to medical profession begins and ends at UK 


Nontraditional medical student Joey Calder worked at the YMCA before realizing medicine was his true calling. He started the long process of medical school seven years ago and said the journey has been a "roller coaster ride."


Calder, who carried his youngest daughter on stage to announce his residency match at the University of Kentucky, will be entering a combined internal medicine and pediatrics program. He interviewed at five residency programs, but said he had to take his family into account through the matching process. 


"Having a family it's been a bit of a challenge, at times trying to juggle both," Calder said. "However, such is life — we learn to balance medicine and family as we go through this process."


At this point in his life, Calder said he couldn't imagine being in any other profession. 



MEDIA CONTACT: Elizabeth Adams,; Allison Perry,

Lexington Mayor's Speech on Campus Today Canceled

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 11:42

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 24, 2014) – This afternoon’s speech by Lexington Mayor Jim Gray is canceled due to a scheduling conflict.


Mayor Gray was scheduled to speak at the W.T. Young Library Auditorium at 4 p.m. this afternoon as part of the “see tomorrow.” speaker series. The series is designed to highlight different aspects of the strategic plan, which is under development. Mayor Gray was to speak about town-gown relations between the university and the community.


The speaker series, which will resume in April, is sponsored by the UK Senate Council and the Office of the Provost. Mayor Gray's speech will be rescheduled.


UK Music Therapy Program Selected as Finalist for the LIVESTRONG Community Impact Project

Mon, 03/24/2014 - 09:57

LEXINGTON, Ky. (March 24, 2014) — Your vote could help improve integrative cancer care here at UK HealthCare — the University of Kentucky Music Therapy Program is currently a finalist in competition for a major music therapy grant through the LIVESTRONG Community Impact Project.


The grant is awarded through the Jeffrey Frank Wacks Music Therapy Program, one of the longest-running programs of its kind in the country and a key component of the Morristown Medical Center's Carol G. Simon Cancer Center in New Jersey. The program's overarching goal is to facilitate relaxation, decrease anxiety and stress, enhance wellness, improve pain management, and provide comfort and support for cancer patients and their caregivers. The LIVESTRONG Foundation has partnered with Morristown Medical Center to replicate this program across the U.S., offering 13 grants of $15,600, along with a year of paid consulting services to awarded sites.


The grant pays for a board-certified music therapist and consulting services to provide clinical services on an inpatient and outpatient basis for cancer patients. Adult and pediatric patients at the University of Kentucky Markey Cancer Center and Kentucky Children's Hospital would benefit from these services. Music therapy is proven to reduce stress and pain levels associated with illness and hospitalization. For many patients, the simple act of listening to music provides a therapeutic release, promoting healing and overall well-being.


“Music therapy can have a significant impact on the quality of life of cancer patients, and this grant will allow us to provide much needed services for Markey Cancer patients and their families," said Lori Gooding, director of the UK Music Therapy Program. "Because music is such an important part of Kentucky culture, I cannot think of a better way to provide support for our patients as they move through their cancer treatment.”


Voting begins at 11 a.m. EST Monday, March 24, and ends at 6 p.m. EST Friday, April 11, and voters may cast up to three votes — via email, Facebook, and/or Twitter. To cast your vote, visit



For a transcript of this video, click here.



MEDIA CONTACT: Allison Perry, (859) 323-2399 or