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Construction begins, in 1964, to the southwest addition of the Engineering Building.

This Week in Campus History

The May 1966 issue of the University of Omaha College of Continuing Studies News announced that brief training courses for local police and firefighters were scheduled that spring. The courses were made possible through grants to the OU Department of Law Enforcement and Corrections and were under the supervision of department chair Gaylon Kuchel. Police were offered a one-week basic course and a two-week advanced course with Omaha law enforcement officers, judges and lawyers serving as faculty. A short, intensive course was developed for firefighters so those completing the course could return to their original locations and offer regional training sessions in "basic firemanship." Certificates of completion were awarded upon successful fulfillment of all course requirements.

Date: May 1966
Source: College of Continuing Studies News
Compiled by Criss Library Archives

Chuck Johanningsmeier

In His Own Words: My Fulbright Year in Leipzig

by Chuck Johanningsmeier

When I began planning my application for a Fulbright Fellowship about two years ago, I knew that teaching and living abroad for an entire year would be a great experience, ...continue

UNO Economics Among the World's Best

The Department of Economics at UNO ranks among the best economics departments in the world, according to a recent international study. 

Conducted by Tom Coupe, a researcher at the Universite Libre de Bruxelles, the study included Harvard University, the University of Chicago, the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in its list of best economics departments.  Coupe's rankings are based upon faculty members' contributions through their published research to the economics literature, including the number of times their work is cited by others.

"We have a very talented economics faculty," said Louis Pol, dean of the UNO College of Business Administration.  "They are a great resource for the community and are a source of pride for our business college."

No other college or university economics department in Nebraska is ranked.  The only economics departments in this region ranked ahead of UNO are the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Iowa, University of Colorado-Boulder, Iowa State University and the University of Missouri-Columbia.

The full study and rankings are available online at http://student.ulb.ac.be/~tcoupe/eearanking1.pdf.

For more information, call 554.3502.

"Consider This" to Explore Nebraska Meth Problem

This week on "Consider This," host Andrea McMaster and her guests will discuss the growing methamphetamine problem in Nebraska.  She will be joined by Dr. Kathleen Grant, assistant professor in the pulmonary section of the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) Department of Internal Medicine, and Dr. Tina Scott-Mordhorst, pediatrician at The Nebraska Medical Center.

The program will air tonight, May 31, on KYNE-TV (Channel 26) at 11 p.m.

A new study has determined that rural methamphetamine users are younger when they start using meth, are more likely to use intravenously, have more psychoses, smoke more cigarettes and are more likely to be alcoholic than urban methamphetamine users. The findings were reported in the April issue of the American Journal on Addictions.

The one-year study of 172 adults in Nebraska with methamphetamine abuse or dependence found that rural meth users begin using the drug more than three years earlier than urban users (21.3 years in rural areas, compared to 24.9 years in urban areas).  Rural meth users also were 22 percent more likely to inject meth (54 percent, compared to 32 percent). Injection drug use is a risk factor for hepatitis C and HIV infection, and has been linked to psychopathology. Rural meth users reported a 16 percent higher rate of meth-related psychotic disorders (e.g. paranoia, hallucinations) than urban meth users (44.8 percent vs. 28.7 percent).

In addition, rural meth users were 27 percent more likely to become alcohol dependent (72 percent, compared to 45 percent) and smoked nearly five more cigarettes a day (16.41 compared to 11.70) than urban meth users. 

The study participants were admitted to one of five substance abuse treatment centers in central and eastern Nebraska, with participants enrolled between July of 2004 and June of 2005. Three of the centers were located in Omaha, with one each in Lincoln and Grand Island, Neb.

Methamphetamine, also known as "crank," "speed" and "ice," can be smoked, snorted, swallowed or injected. It is synthetically produced in meth labs, using ingredients such as anhydrous ammonia and over-the-counter medicinal products such as ephedrine and pseudoephedrine (now regulated in Nebraska and only available in limited quantities from pharmacies).

The majority of meth labs seized by law enforcement officials have been located in rural settings. Manufacturing meth generates a pungent odor, which is more likely to go unnoticed in isolated rural settings than in the city. Amphetamine and methamphetamine are the most widely abused illicit drugs in the world after marijuana. More than 35 million people worldwide regularly use or abuse amphetamine or methamphetamine, as opposed to cocaine (15 million) and heroin (less than 10 million).

"Meth addiction progresses more rapidly than cocaine addiction, with faster succession through drug use milestones," said Dr. Grant, who also has an appointment with the VA Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System in Omaha, one of the five study sites. Other sites included Catholic Charities Campus for Hope, Omaha; Journeys, Omaha; Bryan-LGH Independence Center, Lincoln; and St. Francis Medical Center, Grand Island, Neb.

Methamphetamine is perceived to elevate mood, increase energy, suppress appetite and enhance libido. The drug can cause an abnormally fast heartbeat, sweating, loss of appetite, hallucinations, anxiety, paranoia, trouble sleeping and dizziness. Chronic use can cause numerous health problems, including dramatic weight loss, social dysfunction and poor dentition (also known as meth mouth).

"The study shows that rural meth users are more likely to inject the drug, which places them at higher risk for the infectious complications associated with IV drug use," Dr. Grant said. "The medical risks associated with greater cigarette use and alcoholism may contribute to a higher frequency of infectious diseases, chronic lung diseases and alcohol-related liver disease.

"These complex rural methamphetamine users may need more specialty care. Given the limited substance abuse, mental health and tertiary medical care available in rural communities, methamphetamine use disorders present significant challenges to the local medical providers. I hope this study will alert state and local rural communities of the need to enhance these services, especially in rural settings where treatment may be currently limited."

The research was supported by a grant from the state of Nebraska, Department of Health and

Human Services, and the Nebraska Cancer and Smoking Disease Research Program.

The program will air according to the following schedule:

Nebraska NET1 (statewide)
- Sunday, June 3
11:30 a.m. (CT)

NET2 (NET's cable network)
- Monday, June 4
1:30 p.m. (CT)

- Wednesday, June 6
8 a.m. (CT)

"Consider This" is a production of UNO Television. It also airs on the Knowledge Network of Greater Omaha. For a list of days and times, visit the Web at http://www.tknomaha.org. Archived editions of the program are available on the Web at http://www.unotv.unomaha.edu.

COS Open Lab Session Planned for Grant Writers

The next Community of Science (COS) open lab session will be held Wednesday, June 6, at 1 p.m. in Room 207 of Criss Library.

The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (SPR) hosts these monthly hour-long sessions to demonstrate the various online resources available to faculty and graduate students through COS. Reservations are not required.

For more information, contact SPR at 554.2286.

Parking Lot Maintenance Schedule Reminder

UNO parking lots will undergo regularly scheduled maintenance this month. Due to unpredictable weather conditions, the schedule is subject to change without notice, and lots will be closed as needed.

For more information, contact Walt Burr at 554.2500 or Campus Security at 554.2648.

Food Court Tables and Chairs Available

Due to the renovation of the Milo Bail Student Center Food Court, all the tables and chairs in the food court will be available as surplus items. Any department interested in these items should contact Brian Bollich (554.3923) or Sandra Walling (554.2337).

Participants Sought for UNMC Depression Study

Individuals experiencing depression are being recruited by the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) Department of Psychiatry to participate in a research study that uses marketed antidepressant medications.

Participants must be 19 to 65 years of age and in good general medical health.  All study procedures and medications will be provided.

For more information, call 354.6868 or send an e-mail to unmcprc@unmc.edu.