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Members of the University of Omaha Women's Athletic Association congregate on the steps of Joslyn Hall during the fall of 1937.

This Week in Campus History

The Dec. 10, 1971, The Gateway reported that the Catholic, Lutheran, and United Protestant Campus Ministries were to hold a weekend retreat Jan. 7-9. Those who attended would participate in exercises that focused on building community, introspection and making decisions within everyday life. Although the majority of retreat attendees would be university students, the event would be open to the public, as well. The location of the retreat was the O' Donnell Center near Hummel Park in Omaha and it was sponsored by the University Religious Center.

Date: Dec. 10, 1971
Source: The Gateway
Compiled by University Library Archives

James Peters

Australian Finches Aid UNO Professor's Research

by Deb Derrick

When it comes to studying human behavior, Rosemary Strasser gets a little help from her feathered friends. Colorful Australian Finches are helping Dr. Strasser - an assistant professor of psychology at UNO, who holds a courtesy appointment in biology - understand why we behave the way we do. ...continue

CBA Announces New Research Tool

The UNO College of Business Administration (CBA) has created a research tool that is changing the way academic researchers around the world collect data for studies in accounting, finance, corporate governance and management issues. DirectEDGAR, an SEC filing search tool invented by UNO Assistant Professor of Mathematics Burch Kealey to help his own studies, is increasingly being seen as valuable by other researchers trying to conduct research with data from company filings made through the Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) EDGAR service.

"What we have developed is probably the most efficient and effective way for academic researchers to collect data from the Security and Exchange Commission's filings," Dr. Kealey said. "What used to take hours and hours now can be done in seconds. It increases productivity and eliminates time-consuming drudgery."

The technology involved with DirectEDGAR was developed by Dr. Kealey, who teaches and conducts research in the UNO accounting department. The software organizes the collection of SEC filings for more than 6,000 companies traded on the major U.S. exchanges. The filing collections are updated quarterly and indexed using ISYS Search Software. It is a system for academics designed by academics, he said.

Dr. Kealey initially displayed his tool at a meeting of academic researchers in Chicago more than a year ago. At that time, he was surprised with the interest that researchers from other schools displayed in the technology. In Chicago, Dr. Kealey was approached by The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania about licensing DirectEDGAR for use by their faculty.

"Wharton Research Data Services is a unit of The Wharton School that has been on the leading edge of developing technology solutions to make it easier for academic researchers to get access to unique data sets needed in academic research," Dr. Kealey said. "Their initial interest was particularly gratifying because they have the most active and technologically advanced research data support group. Their technology is used by government agencies like the SEC and the Federal Reserve and more than 100 of the most highly regarded academic research schools around the country."

Michael Boldin, director of Research Services for Wharton Research Data Services, said that DirectEDGAR goes beyond simple SEC document searching and document retrieval. "It is the only product we found that could integrate fast, free-form searching across selected SEC forms and filings with a screening of companies using the SEC's CIK identification system, and then create either a list or archive of qualifying documents," he said. "By taking advantage of a vast array of public information in the SEC's EDGARsystem, DirectEDGAR allows our faculty to quickly and efficiently build customized data extracts."

Dr. Kealey said that DirectEDGAR only recently became possible because of significant advances in search technology. DirectEDGAR relies on the ability to use special filtering technology built into a search engine licensed from ISYS Search Software.

"As one of the technological backbones to DirectEDGAR, ISYS is pleased to see the success Kealey has experienced with the product," said Dave Haucke, vice president of global marketing for ISYS Search Software. "ISYS continually strives to provide a flexible, effective search solution, as evidenced with Kealey's creation of DirectEDGAR. The product is a real-life example of the value search technology can provide." ISYS was recently nominated for a KMWorld® Promise award for their work with Kealey.

DirectEDGAR has already been adopted by The Wharton School of the University of Pensylvania, The Belk College of Business at the University of North Carolina and California State University at Fullerton. In addition, Dr. Kealey said that two schools in New Zealand, and one in the United Kingdom, are finalizing their purchase arrangements. Currently, more than 20 universities around the country are evaluating DirectEDGAR for purchase.

"Universities and colleges all over the world study SEC filings because the U.S. markets are considered a key engine of worldwide economic growth," Dr. Kealey said. "DirectEDGAR overcomes the problem of dealing with a tremendous flood of information that has to be processed and managed for academic studies that can involve data collection from the filings of thousands of companies."

Lou Pol, dean of the CBA, also stresses the importance of the research tool. "Early on in this project, we thought that the work being done by Dr. Kealey was groundbreaking, and now other individuals and institutions are beginning to realize the vast potential of his product," he said.

For more information, call 554.3502.

Retirement Reception for Claude Thompson Dec. 13

After 17 years of service to UNO, Claude Thompson of the Office of Institutional Research will be retiring the end of December.

A retirement reception for Thompson will be held Wednesday, Dec. 13, from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Chancellor's Room. For more information, contact Jenny Liu at 554.3260 or

SAC to Meet This Morning

The Staff Advisory Council (SAC) will meet today, Dec. 12, at 9 a.m. in the Milo Bail Student Center Council Room. All faculty and staff are invited to attend.

For more information, contact Jennifer Forbes-Baily, SAC president, at 554.3419 or

Monardo to Host Bookreading Dec. 15

Anna Monardo, chair of the UNO Writer's Workshop, will read from her novel Falling In Love With Natassia (Doubleday, June 2006) Friday, Dec. 15, at Reading Grounds Bookstore/Coffeehouse (40th and Farnam streets).

The event will begin at 7:30 p.m. and will feature choreography and dance by UNO student and Moving Company member Kyan Unstad, with UNO music department student J.B. Ferguson on African drum.

For more information, call 554.2960.

Library Hours Announced for Holiday Break and 2007

Criss Library announces the following changes in its operating hours during the upcoming holiday break and January 2007:

- Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 16-17

- Monday through Friday, Dec. 18-22
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

- Saturday through Sunday, Dec. 23-31
University closed (holiday break)

- Monday, Jan. 1
Closed (New Year's Day holiday)

- Tuesday through Friday, Jan. 2-5
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

- Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 6-7

- Monday, Jan. 15
Closed (Martin Luther King Day holiday)

Regular hours resume Monday, Jan. 8, according to the following schedule:

- Monday through Thursday
7 a.m. to midnight

- Friday
7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

- Saturday
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

- Sunday
Noon to midnight

For more information, contact the library's Circulation Desk at 544.3206.

UNO Bookstore "Book Buy Back" Under Way

The "book buy back" event in the UNO Bookstore continues through Friday, Dec. 15. Individuals must have a current university ID to participate. 

Bookstore hours during the book buy back period are as follows: 

Monday through Thursday
7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.


7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more information, contact Jacinda Brooks at 554.2360.

Holiday Sale Continues at UNO Bookstore

The annual holiday sale in the UNO Bookstore is going on now through Friday, Dec. 15.

Those who purchase one apparel item at regular price will receive their second item for half price. In addition, the UNO Bookstore also is offering 20 percent off the regular price of its selection of bestselling hardbound, paperback, children's and holiday books.

For more information, contact Jacinda Brooks at 554.2360.

Faculty Senate to Meet Dec. 13

The UNO Faculty Senate will hold its regular monthly meeting Wednesday, Dec. 13, in the Milo Bail Student Center (MBSC) Dodge Rooms. The meeting will begin at 2:15 p.m. All interested parties are invited.

For more information, contact Jim Shaw, Faculty Senate president (554.2225), or Sue Bishop, Faculty Senate coordinator (554.3598).

December FEAP Schedule Announced

The Faculty/Staff Employee Assistance Program (FEAP) provides short-term counseling, assessment and referral services for faculty, staff, their spouses or significant others, and family members. FEAP offices are located in 206 Eppley Administration Building.

The December schedule is as follows:

- Dec. 21

8 a.m. to noon

- Dec. 14 and 19

12:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Appointments are free and available by calling 554.3120 (UNO) or 559.5175 (UNMC).

Mileage Reimbursement Rate Announced

Effective with travel occurring on or after Jan. 1, 2007, all mileage reimbursements for approved travel by personal automobile will be at the rate of 48 and one-half cents ($.485) per mile. This rate should also be used when reimbursing visiting personnel or students for their travel.

All mileage from Jan. 1, 2006 through Dec. 31, 2006, should be reimbursed at the rate of 44 and one-half cents ($.445) per mile.

For more information, contact UNO Accounting Services at 554.2320.


- Jeremy Lipschultz, communication, guest lectured Nov. 21 at the University of Nebraska College of Law. He spoke about Federal Communications Commission regulations.

- Michael Sherer, communication, is now listed in the Iowa Arts Council Artists Directory (

- Rodie Receives NACTA Teaching Fellow Award
Steven Rodie, an associate professor in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Department of Agronomy/Horticulture, received a North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture (NACTA) Teaching Fellow Award at the organization's annual conference, which was held at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, in June. The theme for the conference was "Making Connections Across the Curriculum."

The purpose of the annual conference is to provide for professional advancement of faculty engaged in classroom teaching. Participants have the opportunity to share teaching methods, philosophies and styles of instruction.

"The best part of the award was the letters from students submitted for the nomination," Rodie said. "The award comes from my peers, but the notion of students saying that I am making a difference was the most gratifying part of the whole experience."

In addition to his position at UNL, Rodie has a courtesy appointment in the UNO Department of Biology. He coordinates the UNL College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Program at UNO, and also teaches and advises students in horticulture and landscape design. His primary extension program focus is the development of landscape design training for the green industry, as well as design awareness and education for the general public.

"A significant number of the students I work with transfer after their sophomore year, so I don't always see them graduate," he said. "The (nomination) letters from students I had 10 years ago, who have graduated and moved on, meant as much to me as the award."

Rodie is presently an elected member of the Board of Trustees, American Society of Landscape Architects and is an appointed professional member to the Nebraska State Board of Landscape Architects. He is a registered Landscape Architect in Nebraska, Kansas and California.

NACTA is a professional society that focuses on promoting, recognizing and rewarding excellence in teaching agriculture and related areas at the post secondary level. Members of NACTA are from two-year and four-year colleges, public and private, and have a common bond of teaching agriculture and related subjects. Through the use of competitive awards, NACTA annually recognizes outstanding teaching and publication.

For more information, contact Marilyn Parker, NACTA secretary/treasurer, at or 208.436.0692.

- UNO PRSSA Chapter, Maverick Mojo Receive Honors at PRSA Gala
The UNO chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) garnered three awards Dec. 7 at the annual Gala and Awards Ceremony, while the Maverick Mojo External Communications Campaign by Ervin and Smith was recognized for Best of Show. The event, held by the Nebraska Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), recognized the winners of the organization's Paper Anvil Award competition.

The UNO PRSSA chapter received the following awards in the student categories:

- PR Explosion Newsletter (Award of Merit)

Communications Program
- National Organ Donor Awareness Campaign Media Kit (Award of Merit)
- Habitat for Humanity PR Plan (Award of Merit)

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