SKIP navigation SKIP to headlines

the big picture.


Name That Current

photo by Tim Kaldahl

Preston Bradley, an eighth-grade student at Lux Middle School in Lincoln, is the 2006 winner of the 18th annual Nebraska State Geographic Bee held March 31 at UNO. He won by correctly answering the following question: "Name the cold ocean current that mixes with the warmer Gulf Stream to create fog along the coasts of New England and southeastern Canada." The answer – the Labrador Current.

history photo

Pictured above, construction booms on campus during April of 1969. In the foreground, the southeast addition of the second floor of the Eppley Administration Building with Allwine Hall under construction in the background.

This Week in Campus History

On April 2, 1993, The Gateway reported on the success of the recent UNO Conference for Romance Writers and Readers. Event organizer Mary Macchietto, a university program development specialist, had the idea for the conference following a similar event she had attended for Mystery aficionados. According to Macchietto, many fans of romantic fiction felt that they were looked down upon by the rest of the literary world, and the UNO conference studied this genre from a scholarly point of view. The conference keynote speaker was best-selling romance author Jill Marie Landis.

Date: April 2, 1993
Source: The Gateway
Compiled by University Library Archives

Jeff Bundy

Shot of a Lifetime

by Nick Schinker

It was just the first full day of a 45-day assignment when Jeff Bundy shot the photograph of a lifetime.

"Ramadi is the most dangerous city in the most dangerous country in the world, and we were embedded in a combat unit," recalls Bundy, an Omaha World-Herald photographer who was documenting stories about Nebraskans serving in Iraq. ...continue

Airline Performance Declines; Jet Blue No. 1 in AQR

For the third consecutive year, Jet Blue was the best performing airline, according to the 16th annual national Airline Quality Rating (AQR) study. However, 15 of the 16 airlines in the study, including Jet Blue, performed more poorly in 2005 than 2004.

Seventeen airlines were studied in 2005, as Independence Air joined the rankings for the first time.

The best performing airlines continue to be low-fare carriers. The study, ranking the 17 largest U.S. airlines, was announced April 3 at a news conference in Washington, D.C. Following Jet Blue in the top five of the AQR were AirTran, Independence Air, Southwest and United.

The overall airline industry performed more poorly in 2005, due largely to a significant increase in mishandled bags. Customer complaints in the airline industry were 17 percent higher in 2005 than 2004.

The AQR is a summary of month-by-month quality ratings for the largest domestic U.S. airlines operating during 2005. Co-researchers Brent Bowen, director and professor in the UNO Aviation Institute, and Dean Headley, associate professor of marketing at Wichita State University (WSU), used 15 elements important to consumers when judging the quality of airline service.

The rating is conducted annually by the UNO Aviation Institute and the W. Frank Barton School of Business at WSU. The AQR, as an industry standard, provides consumers and industry watchers a means to compare quality among airlines using objective performance-based data. It is a cooperative research project funded as part of faculty research activities at UNO and WSU.

The AQR ranked the 17 largest airlines for 2005 as follows: 1) Jet Blue; 2) AirTran; 3) Independence Air; 4) Southwest; 5) United; 6) America West; 7)Northwest; 8) Continental; 9) Alaska; 10) American; 11) ATA; 12) Delta; 13) SkyWest; 14) American Eagle; 15) US Airways; 16) Comair; and 17) Atlantic Southeast.

"At a time when the airlines got worse, they all kind of got worse at the same rate," Headley said. "For the most part, the airlines maintained their position in the rating. Only two airlines changed noticeably in the rating; Alaska dropped from No. 5 to 9, and US Air dropped from No. 12 to 15.

"Every airline performed more poorly in baggage handling," he said. "The big question is why."

Dr. Bowen said the entire industry must be concerned that this year's AQR score is the lowest in five years. "If we continue down this path, consumers will lose all confidence in the airlines' capability to perform," he noted.

Criteria included in the AQR are screened to meet two basic elements – they must be readily obtainable from published data sources for each airline, and they must be important to consumers regarding airline quality. The resulting criteria include areas such as baggage handling, customer complaints, denied boardings and on-time arrivals.

Other major industry findings in this year's research study include the following:

- Industry performance in each of the four AQR criteria was worse in 2005 compared to 2004. The criteria are on-time performance, denied boardings, mishandled baggage and consumer complaints.

- Only five of 17 airlines had an on-time percentage of more than 80 percent.

- SkyWest had the best on-time performance for 2005, Jet Blue had the lowest denied boarding rate, AirTran had the best baggage handling rate, and Southwest Airlines had the lowest consumer complaint rate.

- The only airline to show improvement in its AQR score in 2005 was Comair, although the airline finished second-to-last in the overall rating.

- Seven airlines improved their on-time arrival performance in 2005.

- The customer complaint rate was higher for 14 of the 16 airlines rated in 2004 and 2005.

April Is National Mathematics Awareness Month

The UNO Department of Mathematics is sponsoring a variety of activities this April in conjunction with National Mathematics Awareness Month (MAM). The 2006 theme of MAM is "Mathematics and Internet Security."

The schedule of events is listed below.

Friday, April 7
"MAM at UNO"
Symposium and student poster session
8:30 to 11:30 a.m.
256 Durham Science Center (DSC)

Students from the Kerrigan research mini-grants program will present the results of their research in mathematics under the supervision of mathematics faculty members.

Friday, April 21
Problem-solving contest for high school students
1 to 3 p.m.
164 and 165 DSC

Wednesday, April 26
"T-10 division on Theoretical Biology & Biophysics"
Lecture by David Torney, Los Alamos National Laboratory
2:30 to 3:30 p.m.
255 DSC

"Since 1991, April has been the month for celebrating mathematics and its applications," said Dora Matache, assistant professor of mathematics at UNO. "We hope you will join us in the celebration of mathematics and encourage your students to attend the events."

For more information about MAM activities at UNO, visit the Web at For more information about the Kerrigan research mini-grants program, visit

SPR to Host Faculty Brown Bag Today

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (SPR) will host a faculty brown bag today, April 4, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Council Room.

The program, titled "Research Compliance," will feature faculty who represent UNO on three regulatory committees: Joe Brown and John Hill, the Institutional Review Board; Jeff French and LaReesa Wolfenbarger, the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee; and Tom Weber, the Institutional Biosafety Committee.

The panel will discuss compliance issues involving research with human subjects, vertebrate animals and biohazards. Dessert and beverages will be provided.

For more information, contact the SPR at 554.2286.

Honors Symposia of Senior Theses Today, Tomorrow

The University Honors Program will present the annual Honors Symposia of Senior Theses today and Wednesday, April 4 and 5. All interested members of the campus community are invited to attend the sessions.

The April 4 event will begin at 5 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center (MBSC) Ballroom. It will feature the work of seniors Tierney Schutte, Nathan Lab, Kari Burdick-Caves, Shang-Jun Meng, Kacie Johansen, Nesrin Elsawi, Cassandra Nespor, Meghan Posey, Frances Osugi and Megan Jones.

The April 5 event will be held in two sessions – from 10 a.m. until noon and from 1 to 3 p.m. – in the MBSC Ballroom. The 10 a.m. session will feature the work of seniors Jeffrey Chalkley, Kevin Bisanz, Edward Hamilton, Rose Fredrick, Bart Vargas, Phon Nguyen, Teri Brink, Donald Green, Blake Huseman and Chelsea Majerus.

The 1 p.m. session will feature the work of seniors Anna Mulcahy, Jason Boche, Rebecca Shively, Chad Meyer, Anne Marie Robbins, Tammi Owens, Jessica Errett and James Wingert.

For more information, contact M. Christine McIvor at 554.2696.

MTV "Real World" Personality on Campus Today

The Student Programming Organization (SPO) is bringing Landon Lueck from MTV's "Real World Philadelphia" to campus today, April 4. The event, which was originally scheduled for March 21, will begin at noon in the Milo Bail Student Center Dodge Rooms. It is free and open to the public, and refreshments will be provided.

Lueck will discuss his experiences on the reality show and also will talk about alcohol awareness.

For more information, contact Erin Cron, SPO adviser, at 554.2711.

FFFF to Feature Nora Bacon

Nora Bacon will be featured on KVNO Classical 90.7 FM's "First Friday Faculty Focus" Friday, April 7.

"First Friday Faculty Focus" is an interview series that highlights the many contributions of faculty members to UNO and the greater community, said Cheril Lee, KVNO news director.

Dr. Bacon is an associate professor of English in the UNO College of Arts and Sciences. Lee's interview with Dr. Bacon will air during the 8 a.m., noon and 4 p.m. newscasts April 7.

For more information about the interview series, contact Lee at 554.2516.

Masters and Music Series Continues April 9

Innovations in Sight and Sound, the next installment in the Masters and Music series at UNO, will be held Sunday, April 9. The event will begin at 5 p.m. in the UNO Art Gallery.

The series, which is sponsored by Friends of Art, blends artistic imagery and musical composition. The April 9 installment will feature Mark Masuoka, executive director of the Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, and Tomm Roland, coordinator of percussion studies and multicultural music in the UNO Department of Music.

Masuoka will discuss cutting-edge ideas and techniques of contemporary art in today's world. Dr. Roland will echo that discussion with a performance that blends world drumming traditions, contemporary music aesthetics and electronics.

"This event will empower our understanding of the core of contemporary creativity and its relationship to innovation," said event organizer Sheri Hofschire.

The UNO Art Gallery is located on the first floor of the Weber Fine Arts Building. The presentation will be followed by a reception with the artists. Tickets are $15 per person. All proceeds will benefit the Friends of Art Scholarship Fund. Friends of Art is a support group for the UNO Department of Art and Art History.

For more information or to make a reservation, call Hofschire at 554.2402.

Communication Week April 24-27

The UNO School of Communication will celebrate Communication Week April 24-27 with a variety of events, culminating with the 51st annual Communication Awards Banquet April 27. The schedule is listed below.

Monday, April 24
- Native American Studies and Communication: Faculty Research Perspectives
Milo Bail Student Center (MBSC) Gallery Room
1 to 3 p.m.
Bruce Johansen, Teresa Lamsam and Hugh Reilly

Tuesday, April 25
- PRSSA Presentations
PR Campaigns class: "Habitat for Humanity" and "NU Organ and Donor Tissue" Presentations
MBSC Dodge Room
4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Karen Weber

PowerPoint presentations featuring teams working for Habitat for Humanity and the NU Organ Donor and Tissue program.

Wednesday, April 26
- Interpersonal Conflict Presentations
Interpersonal Conflict Class Service-Learning: "Conflict Coaching Wrap-Up" session for Boys & Girls Clubs members
MBSC Dodge Room
Shereen Bingham

Students will give presentations about their service-learning project at Boys and Girls Clubs of Omaha. The students will discuss their experiences as conflict coaches, what they learned, and what their clients at Boys and Girls Clubs learned about conflict. The event will be interactive with the Club members (ages 13-17) and will include role-playing exercises.

- Technical Communication Presentations
Capstone Course in Technical Communication Presentations
306 Arts and Sciences Hall
6:30 p.m.
Tracy Bridgeford

Nine students from Dr. Bridgeford's course will present their individual portfolios. These portfolios were written and designed for the job market and include work from the five technical communication courses. Six of nine students will be the first recipients of the Graduate Certificate in Technical Communication.

Thursday, April 27
- School of Communication Alumni Panel
MBSC Dodge Room
1 p.m.
Jeremy Lipschultz
Wendy Townley, Cox Communications
Reg Chapman, WNBC-TV
Christine Kasel, Omaha Magazine
Joan Lukas, Leslie Kline Lukas & Associates

- 51st annual Communication Awards Banquet
Scott Conference Center
6 to 9 p.m.

For more information about Communication Week, call 554.2600.

Discounts Available to "The Abduction from the Seraglio"

UNO faculty, staff and students can purchase discounted tickets to the final production of Opera Omaha's spring 2006 season, "The Abduction from the Seraglio," which runs May 3, 5 and 7 at the Orpheum Theater.

"The Abduction from the Seraglio" gets a fresh spin by a trio of rising stars – director Sam Helfrich, set designer Andromache Chalfant and costume designer Jennifer Halpern. The cast is led by Omaha native John Beasley in the speaking role of Pasha Selim.

The discount deadline is Friday, April 28, and individuals are advised to order early for best seating. For a discounted ticket order form, visit the Web at

For more information, contact Steve Grupe at 346.4398, ext. 109, or

Women of Wisdom Awards Event This Week

The Program for Women and Successful Aging (PWSA), an outreach program based at UNO, has announced the winners of its PWSA Women of Wisdom Awards. Recipients will be honored at a luncheon and community-wide program titled "Celebrate: Women of Wisdom Because Aging is a Lifetime Event" Wednesday, April 5. The keynote speaker will be Frances Mayes, the best-selling author of Under the Tuscan Sun.

"The three women we have selected have made a tremendous impact in our community and in the lives of the people they have touched," said Patricia Adams, PWSA director. The mission of the awards program is to recognize the important, and often unrecognized, contributions that senior women make each day, Adams added.

The 2006 award winners are as follows:

- Gloria Leiferman. Leiferman, an Omaha Immanuel Nursing School graduate, is a retired pediatric nurse. But she has not retired from child care. A foster mother for the past 27 years, Leiferman welcomed her 203rd baby in October 2005. She often cares for children with disabilities – including babies born addicted to drugs – for Catholic Charities, Nebraska Health and Human Services, and the Child Saving Institute. She also is serving her 20th year as a volunteer on the Nebraska Foster Care Review Board, where she makes recommendations for the future care of foster children.

- Katie Mills. At the age of 44, Mills, who had four children to raise alone, graduated from UNO through the teacher corps program. For the next 24 years, she taught first and second graders at Miller Park and Belle Ryan, where her many home visits enabled parents to be a significant part of the educational process. Since retirement, Mills has been an active volunteer in Omaha, serving meals on wheels with the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging, helping adults learn to read through the American Literacy Council, rocking babies at the University of Nebraska Medical Center and driving visually impaired persons to their monthly meetings.

- Martha Parker. Parker has served her family, her church and her community. She helped her husband establish and grow the Antioch Church of God in Christ, even maintaining it herself during her husband's illness. Parker has taken homeless men, women and children into her home. She has helped to reform prostitutes, drug addicts and abused individuals. A leader as well as a listener, she serves as the Church of God in Christ Supervisor of Women for the state of Nebraska, where she organizes various women's ministries. She is currently establishing a program for seniors at the church.

In addition to the Women of Wisdom presentation, the PWSA also will award the Shirley Waskel Award for the Advancement of Women, which honors a prominent senior woman. Evelyn Zysman will receive this honor for her lifelong commitment to civil rights and women's rights.

Zysman, who turned 95 last year, is still well, sharp, independent and engaged in the world. She was an undergraduate at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and received her master's degree in social work in the 1930s. She helped launch Omaha's first Head Start program in the 1960s. Zysman remains committed to her work through the Social Justice Committee at Temple Israel.

The luncheon event will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Central, 3321 S. 72nd Street. It is open to the public, and the doors open at 11 a.m. Tickets are $40 a person and $35 for seniors over age 60.

For more information, contact Jennifer Maasen at 554.4897 or

OLLAS, LWV to Host U.S. Senate Candidate Forum April 13

The Office of Latino/Latin American Studies (OLLAS) at UNO and the League of Women Voters of Greater Omaha have partnered to host a U.S. Senate Candidate Forum Thursday, April 13. The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. at El Museo Latino, 4701 S. 25th St. It is free and open to the public.

Senate candidates David Kramer, Pete Ricketts and Don Stenberg and incumbent Sen. Ben Nelson have been invited to participate. The forum will be moderated by Jonathan Benjamin-Alvarado, assistant director of OLLAS and associate professor of political science at UNO. Spanish interpretation will be provided.

The forum is designed to allow the candidates to present their respective positions on a number of current issues, particularly those important to Nebraska's burgeoning population of Latino voters and to South Omaha residents in general, Dr. Benjamin-Alvarado said.

For more information, contact Lucy Garza, OLLAS project coordinator, at 554.3835 or at

Retirement Planning Series Continues April 14

Human Resources at UNO will continue its retirement planning education series this April with two pre-retirement planning educational seminars. All interested faculty and staff are invited to attend.

The seminar details are highlighted below.

Friday, April 14
10 to 11 a.m.
Milo Bail Student Center (MBSC) Gallery Room

This seminar will focus on the retirement planning needs and questions of employees who are planning to retire within the next 10 years.

Friday, April 28
10 to 11 a.m.
MBSC Gallery Room

This seminar will focus on helping employees plan for the emotional and social aspects of retirement. Marlene Schneider, a counselor in the UNO Faculty/Employee Assistance Program, will lead the program.

For more information, contact Esther Scarpello at 554.3660.

Public and Nonprofit Job Fair April 19

Career Exploration and Outreach will host a Public and Nonprofit Job Fair Wednesday, April 19. The event will be held from 10:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Ballroom. Representatives from local and national organizations will be available to discuss employment and volunteer opportunities with students and alumni.

For more information about the fair and other services offered by Career Exploration and Outreach, call 554.3672, or stop by 211 Eppley Administration Building.

Commencement Set for May 5

Commencement for May graduates will be held Friday, May 5, at Omaha Civic Auditorium, 1804 Capitol Ave., at 2 p.m. Faculty members are asked to assemble no later than 1:30 p.m. in the Exhibition Hall.

Faculty who plan to attend the ceremony are asked to order their academic regalia from the UNO Bookstore (554.2336) by April 21.

Fidelity Representative on Campus April 20

Fidelity representative Chad Anderson will be on campus for individual counseling sessions Thursday, April 20, from 1 to 5 p.m. He will be attending the UNO Benefits Fair that morning.

To schedule an appointment with Anderson, call 1-800-642-7131.

21st Annual Diet Pepsi/UNO Women's Walk April 22

The UNO Department of Athletics invites all students, faculty and staff to participate in the nation's largest walk of its kind – the 21st annual Diet Pepsi/UNO Women's Walk – Saturday, April 22. The event will be held at Sapp Fieldhouse rain or shine. The doors will open at 9 a.m., and the 30-minute walk begins at 10 a.m.

All money raised through this event directly benefits female student-athletes via the UNO Athletics Scholarship Program. The theme of the 2006 walk is "The Beginning of a New Generation."

To register as a walker, visit the Web at

The walk concludes with a continental breakfast provided by First National Bank, followed by the awards ceremony. If you are unable to walk but would like to make a donation, contact the UNO Women's Walk Office at 554.2533.


School of HPER Honors Faculty
The UNO School of Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) held its eighth annual appreciation and awards luncheon March 27 to honor part-time and joint appointment faculty. Each year, the school selects a member of the part-time faculty and a member of the joint appointment faculty for the Excellence in Teaching Award. The 2006 recipients are Caroline Olson, part-time faculty, and Chad Kinart, joint appointment faculty. Both recipients received a plaque signifying this honor.

Olson teaches Health Concepts of Sexual Development. Olson said she believes everyone in this country should have access to adequate, affordable and competent healthcare regardless of race, age, income, sexual orientation or geographical location. As a 2004-05 member of the UNO School of HPER Graduate Program Committee, Olson is no newcomer to student representation and constructive advocacy. She was the 2004-05 vice president of Eta Sigma Gamma and is currently serving as the 2005-06 president of this health honorary. She also serves on the Dean's Advisory Council and recently was nominated and accepted to "Who's Who in American Colleges and Universities." Olson was recently elected by her peers to be the student representative for the UNO/University of Nebraska Medical Center Master of Public Health Graduate Program Committee, where she will serve a one-year term.

In her spare time, she volunteers with the Nebraska Aids Project, doing street outreach, teaching "HIV 101" at community centers and conducting free HIV testing. Olson traveled to Detroit this winter with "Unite for Sight" to conduct eye screenings in the downtown Detroit area. She also conducted eye screenings during the "Opening Eyes" project with the Lions Club during the Special Olympics.

Olson achieved her bachelor's degree in continuing education in 2004 from UNO, and will graduate with her Master of Public Health/Community Education in August 2006. She is a graduate assistant in the health education program, where she teaches and assists in research. Prior to her commitment to UNO, she was a U.S. Air Force medical technician where she served four years. After the Air Force, Olson worked as a civilian obstetrical technician at Offutt Air Force Base for 10 years. Eventually she would like to work in a maternal/child health program for disadvantaged women or HIV community education.

Kinart has taught Topics of Sports Medicine and Orthopedic and Medical aspects in Athletic Training. He was hired as an assistant athletic trainer for UNO in the fall of 2000. He provides primary coverage to UNO student athletes for men's and women's basketball, women's volleyball, women's cross country, women's track and field, baseball, and swimming and diving. Since the summer of 2000, Kinart also has been a part of the medical staff for ESPN Sports Medicine, providing primary care for professional athletes during many large, multi-day events.

In his classroom, Kinart said he believes the act of teaching can be as simple as giving a student some practical advice on a topic or as complex as a guest lecture on a specific theme. "I feel my greatest strength in teaching is the numerous and varied practical experiences that have been a part of my early career," Kinart said. "I use these experiences to teach from them as a basis for increased understanding or awareness in my classes." He said he feels teaching is important and cherishes the opportunity every day to impart information to others.

Kinart received his bachelor of science in health and human performance from Iowa State University, where he also completed his athletic training education. He received his master of science in exercise science from UNO.

Have you done something noteworthy in your profession? E-mail "People" items to "People" appears in the Tuesday edition of eNotes.