News in brief

KU hosting disability studies conference

The conference “Community Participation by People with Disabilities: How Do We Measure Up?” will present new findings from researchers based at KU. The conference will be held Oct. 28-29 at the Sheraton Overland Park Hotel in Overland Park. It is open to the public. Registration cost is $150 or $100 for students.

The first day of the conference will focus on the scientific methods used in seven studies to measure the involvement of people with disabilities in community activities. The second day will focus on how this research can be used in everyday life to increase community participation for people with a variety of disabilities. Sessions on this day are designed for people with disabilities and their families, professionals from organizations who serve people with disabilities, advocates and policy makers.

The second day of the conference is being held in conjunction with the annual conference of the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living, a grassroots organization based in Arkansas. Participants may attend the second day only by registering through the association.

For information or to register, call 864-4095, e-mail or visit

University Theatre plans costume sale Oct. 23

University Theatre will host a costume sale on campus Oct. 23.

Held every few years, or whenever the costume storage area gets too full, the sale will be held from 9 a.m. to noon in the Murphy Hall lobby.

“We’re cleaning out our costume storage and selling more than 150 hats, masks and head wear from 50 cents to $3,” said Susan Rendall, costume shop manager. “There will be more than 350 items starting at 50 cents and going up to $40.”

Most items for sale would be in the $1 to $5 range. The sale will include costumes from the productions of “Alice in Wonderland,” “The Girl, the Grouch and the Goat” and “Pageant!”

Only cash or checks will be will accepted. Parking for those attending the sale will be available in the Allen Fieldhouse parking garage, southwest of Murphy Hall.

KU Symphony Orchestra to hold Halloween concert

The KU Symphony Orchestra will perform a Halloween concert at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 29 at the Lied Center. Preceding the concert at 6:30pm will be a community-wide costume contest in the Lied Center lobby.

The costume contest will have three categories: Youth (up to age 18), collegiate and adult. Big Jay, the Oread and Eldridge hotels and School of Music Dean Robert Walzel will judge the contest, and prizes will be given to the top winners of each category.

Additionally, the KU chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota will hold an “instrument petting zoo.” It will provide an opportunity for young concertgoers to hold and play instruments they will hear during the concert. All ages are welcome, and prizes will be provided for those who show in costume.

The costume contest and instrument petting zoo are free and open to the public. Tickets to the concert are $7 for the public and $5 for students and seniors. Tickets can be purchased through the Lied Center box office by calling 864-2787 either in advance or the evening of the event.

Sponsors for the KU Symphony Orchestra Halloween Costume Contest are the Eldridge and Oread hotels and KU Bookstores.

Applications open for 2011 Wheat State Whirlwind Tour

Applications are being accepted for faculty and staff who would like to take part in the 2011 Wheat State Whirlwind Tour. This year’s tour will hit the road May 23 and traverse Kansas over five days.

Each year, the tour visits more than 20 communities and covers nearly 1,000 miles of Kansas. The trip introduces faculty and staff, particularly those new to Kansas, to the state’s history, geography, culture and landscape. Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little reinstated the tour in 2010 and joined the participants on the bus. Don Steeples, the Dean A. McGee Distinguished Professor of Applied Geophysics and tour director, said the tour is a way for faculty and staff to learn more about Kansas and how they can give back in a fun, informal setting.

The tour is open to all faculty and unclassified staff at the Lawrence campus, Edwards Campus, medical center and School of Medicine-Wichita. Priority is given to new faculty.

The application is available online at

Deadline for applications is 5 p.m. Nov. 1. Notifications of acceptance will be made by Dec. 1.

Libraries, football team join forces for Gridiron Gifts

KU Libraries has teamed up with head football coach Turner Gill to launch a new fundraising campaign to support KU Libraries.

The new Gridiron Gifts Football Challenge is a program dedicated to raising funds for the seven libraries on the KU campus. Participants in the challenge will pledge a certain amount of money per touchdown that KU scores during the 2010 season. The contributions support the KU Libraries enrichment fund.

Gill, a supporter of the libraries, said that his entire staff encourages all football players to focus on education and that the libraries are an essential part of helping them thrive academically.

In addition to teaching hundreds of workshops and course-integrated instruction sessions each semester, library faculty teach for-credit courses aimed at improving information literacy.

The challenge includes all touchdowns scored so far, as well as any subsequent touchdowns scored through the end of the season. Last season, the Jayhawks scored 45 touchdowns.

For more information about the campaign, visit the Gridiron Gifts website.

Libraries taking part in Open Access Week

This month, KU Libraries is joining more than 700 institutions from more than 55 countries around the world in celebrating innovations in open information sharing. The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition organized the fourth annual Open Access Week, scheduled for Oct. 18-24. Open Access Week events at KU will highlight the broad range of open access efforts and issues including publishing, copyright and KU’s new open access policy.

KU Libraries’ Center for Digital Scholarship will host a series of panels exploring the practical uses and benefits of open access. The panels will feature faculty and staff members with firsthand experience working with open access. KU events include:

Events include

— “Open Access Journals: What are They and What are They Good for?” 2 p.m. Monday, Oct. 18. Panel discussion with Brian Rosenblum, scholarly digital initiatives librarian; Stuart Day, chair of the Spanish and Portuguese department; and Marc Greenberg, chair of the Slavic languages and literatures department.

— “Copyright 101 for Authors: Publication Agreements and Open Sharing.” 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 19. Presentation with Town Peterson, University Distinguished Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and senior curator at the Biodiversity Institute; Rachel Rolf, assistant general council; and Emmett.

— Encore presentation of “Copyright 101 for Authors: Publication Agreements and Open Sharing.” 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 20.

— “What Can Open Access Do for Me? Personal Perspectives of KU Faculty.” 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21. Panel discussion featuring Greenberg; Peterson; Steve Goddard, professor and curator at the Spencer Museum of Art; and Andrew Torrance, associate professor of law.

— “How to Be ‘Open:’ Practical Steps to Sharing Your Research.” 10:30 a.m. Friday, Oct. 22. Discussion with Marianne Reed, KU Libraries digital information specialist; and Emmett.

All events will be held in 455 Watson Library.

Kansas Board of Regents launches Facebook page

The Kansas Board of Regents has created a Facebook page to enhance public advocacy efforts by increasing awareness about the challenges facing public higher education in Kansas. The page will contain links to news articles and include updates throughout the 2011 state legislative session.

The page is available at

Volunteers sought for Make a Difference Day

Faculty and staff volunteers are being sought to help the community by taking part in “Make a Difference Day” Oct. 23.

Volunteers are asked to commit a few hours, usually 8:30 a.m. to noon.

Interested volunteers can contact the Roger Hill Volunteer Center at 865-5030. Projects typically last two to three hours, and participants can volunteer individually or in groups.

The Roger Hill Volunteer Center is coordinating projects with 14 agencies throughout Lawrence and Douglas County. A list of projects is available online.

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university’s programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access,, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY (for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas, medical center campuses).