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University Gazette


bullet UNC earns Carnegie designation for engagement
bullet Carolina First: Gift of the Month
bullet SECC campaign extended
bullet Jingle Bell Jog
bullet Chapman Hall dedication
bullet Employee Forum: Patterson re-elected forum chair after challenge
bullet Faculty Council: Panel to seek broad input on campus wellness
bullet By the numbers: Williford excels in mining data for meaning
bullet Carolina Women’s Soccer: NCAA Champions
bullet Council approves development proposal change
bullet Carolina North LAC debates future open space

bullet Get-a-Passport
bullet Cabinets to kiosks: Woodworkers’ artistry adorns campus venues
bullet Scope of out-of-state tuition hikes uncertain among BOT
bullet Gomes, Aber named as 2007-08 Keohane chairs
bullet Near-record returns grow endowment
bullet Researchers work with rural educators nationwide
bullet @ your library: Library offers mapping services to interpret data
bullet Davis is welcomed at UNC
bullet Students use wireless clickers to share feedback in classrooms

UNC earns Carnegie designation for engagement

The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has classified the University as a “community-engaged university” in recognition of continual collaborations with the community and a commitment to fostering community service among students, faculty and staff.

The classification, a new addition to the Carnegie Foundation’s approach to recognizing quality colleges and universities, “represents a significant affirmation of the importance of community engagement in the agenda of higher education,” said Alexander McCormick, director of Carnegie’s classification work.

“Carolina is honored to receive national recognition as an institution that takes the well-being and enhancement of our local, national and global communities to heart,” said Mike Smith, vice chancellor for public service and engagement. “Public service here really is a defining characteristic of this university.”

Colleges and universities across the country sought consideration for the classification by submitting documentation describing the nature and extent of their engagement with the community.

Institutions were classified into one of three categories: “curricular engagement,” which entails engaging students and faculty with the community; “outreach and partnership,” which combines the application and provision of institutional resources to mutually benefit the campus and the community, such as research and economic development; and a category that combines both aspects. Carolina was one of 62 institutions in the country that met the requirements for the combined category.

“This recognition says that community engagement is infused throughout all aspects of Carolina. It’s not just a concept of learning and teaching, but also one of research and service,” said Lynn Blanchard, director of the Carolina Center for Public Service.

Added Smith, “We will continue to work collaboratively and cohesively locally, nationally and beyond, and instill in our students the importance of civic duty to retain this classification.”

For more information, visit

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Carolina First

Gift of the Month: November

Gift:$1.2 million

Donor:Eleanor Smith Pegg

Purpose: North Carolina Botanical Garden; scholarship

The sale of land committed to the University by Eleanor Smith Pegg of Chapel Hill generated $1 million for the main exhibit hall in the North Carolina Botanical Garden’s proposed Visitor Education Center and $200,000 toward the Eleanor and Carl Pegg Scholarship Fund for students needing financial support. The late Carl Pegg was a Carolina history professor. The land, along the Haw River, was purchased by the N.C. Clean Water Management Trust Fund and the N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund. It will be saved as a natural area. The Triangle Land Conservancy helped negotiate the sale.

Goal: $2 billion

Raised: (as of Nov. 30) 96 percent/$1.93 billion

Amount of campaign complete: 87 percent

Amount raised in November: $26.7 million

Campaign runs through: Dec. 31, 2007

More information:

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SECC campaign extended

“Carolina Together: Supporting a Great Cause” is the theme of the University’s 2006 State Employees Combined Campaign — a team effort that has raised more than $600,000 to date for the 800-plus charitable organizations affiliated with the North Carolina SECC.

The campaign has been extended, with Dec. 21 the last campus collection date. “Some units have concluded their efforts,” said John N. Williams, University SECC chair and dean of the School of Dentistry in a recent e-mail to the campus, “but we want to be as supportive as possible to our colleagues who have not finished their efforts quite yet.”

For information on collection times and dates and other University SECC information, please visit

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Jingle Bell Jog

Jingle Bell Jog

Santa Claus checks his watch as he heads out with runners at the start of the Jingle Bell Jog on Dec. 8. Awards went to the following teams: most participants, The Drill Team, School of Dentistry; most spirited, Raisin’ Cane, Carolina Population Center; and most creative, the residents of Whooville, Engineering Information Services.

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Chapman Hall dedication

Chapman Hall dedication

A dedication ceremony for Max C. Chapman Jr. Hall, one of two buildings in the first phase of the Carolina Physical Science Complex, was held Nov. 18. The complex is one of the largest construction projects in the University’s history.

The nearly 130,000-foot building is named for Chapman, a 1966 undergraduate economics alumnus who is chairman of Gardner Capital Management Corp. and a legendary figure in the futures and options industry on Wall Street.

Chapman has been honored with both a Distinguished Service Medal from the General Alumni Association and a William Richardson Davie Award from the Board of Trustees. For many years, he served as chair of the UNC-Chapel Hill Foundation’s investment fund.

Chapman also has pledged a $5 million gift to the College of Arts and Sciences as part of the Carolina First Campaign to support the building.

The $205 million Carolina Physical Science Complex is supported by a combination of private funds, government grants and the Higher Education Bond Referendum.

Chapman Hall will provide classrooms and labs for the burgeoning departments of physics and astronomy, marine sciences and mathematics. Once both phases are complete in 2010, the entire complex will provide much-needed teaching and lab space for the departments of chemistry, computer science, marine sciences, mathematics, and physics and astronomy. The second phase of the project will involve the demolition of Venable Hall to make room for new facilities.

Among the special features of Chapman Hall are a rooftop observatory deck and a remote observing control room for telescopes that UNC uses in partnership with Chile and South Africa. A new fluids laboratory will be shared by marine sciences and applied mathematics. A large wave tank will allow researchers to study the behavior of water seen in hurricanes and tsunamis.

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Employee Forum News

Patterson re-elected forum chair after challenge

The Employee Forum on Dec. 6 elected Ernie Patterson to serve a second one-year term as its chair.

Patterson, a University employee for more than 30 years, was challenged by David Brannigan, the current vice chair who was later re-elected by acclamation to that post. Because the vote for vice chair was taken by having delegates stand up, Brannigan was treated to a standing ovation, with Patterson leading the applause.

The forum also re-elected Brenda Denzler as secretary and Jane Majors as treasurer. Denzler ran unopposed, but Majors was challenged by Qun He.

Brannigan was nominated from the floor by Chuck Brink, who said Brannigan would be the “kind of progressive and proactive chair” the forum needs. Brink cited Brannigan’s role in opposing the layoffs of employees in the Dental Services Laboratories this fall as an example of Brannigan’s brand of campus activism.

Mike Hawkins spoke on behalf of Patterson, who he said he had known for more than 20 years. “You either like Ernie or you don’t like Ernie,” Hawkins said. What Hawkins said he sees in Patterson is someone who wants to help change things that are not right. Under Patterson’s leadership, Hawkins said the forum had revived its independent voice.

Patterson cited forum successes in the past year on key fronts including increasing educational opportunities, improving health care and pushing for higher pay as well as supporting the dental lab employees.

School of Dentistry Dean John Williams announced late last month that he would delay the restructuring of the laboratories from
Nov. 27 to Jan. 5 to provide more time for the affected employees to work with the school and the Office of Human Resources to receive as much information and support services available as possible.

During his second term, Patterson said he would work to develop a “bill of rights” for all non-faculty University employees. “All of us work hard and all of us deserve to be treated with respect and dignity,” Patterson said. “By working together, we can all accomplish our common goal of making UNC a better place for all employees.”

David Perry, senior associate vice chancellor of finance and administration, sought the the involvement of the Employee Forum as a conduit for staff ideas on how to proceed with the PACE initiative (President’s Advisory Committee on Efficiency and Effectiveness). UNC President Erskine Bowles’s PACE advisory group completed a final report last month, and now each UNC system campus is identifying and making plans for achieving major cost savings from efficiency and effectiveness initiatives.

“We would err if we would simply look upon PACE and the goals of PACE as simply a huge annoyance that we wish would go away,”
Perry said.

Perry said Bowles’ effort to increase efficiency within the UNC system is “intimately connected” to the ambitious plans that the University has set for itself — plans that will depend on financial requests that Bowles would forward to the Board of Governors, the governor and, ultimately, the General Assembly.

“Our ability to be credible and successful with the PACE initiative may very well be a significant factor in the way in which the proposals for budgetary expansion are considered,” Perry said.

In Dec. 4 memos to deans, directors and department heads, as well as faculty and staff leaders, Perry said UNC-Chapel Hill has been asked to identify about $14 million in PACE savings on a phased basis over five years. That total represents 5 percent of the University’s fiscal 2005 expenditures on state-appropriated funds for “enabling functions” — anything other than teaching, research or public service. The ultimate savings would be reallocated by the University Budget Committee, guided by priorities established for the entire campus, Perry wrote.

Perry will lead the campus efforts on PACE through next April. Additional reports to General Administration will continue beginning early next year, with a final action plan in place by the end of the current fiscal year.

Another new process that has completed its trial phase is Operating System 1 (OS1), which is the team cleaning approach about to be implemented in most campus locations except student residence halls.

Jim Alty, Facilities Services director, and Bill Burston, Housekeeping director, came to the forum to answer questions about the implementation and to thank forum members involved in evaluating the pilot program.

An independent report issued last month found that the OS1 method was more efficient, professional and safer for employees and building occupants than the current zone cleaning process.

Alty said a customer advisory committee with about 18 members has been formed to glean feedback on how the new system is working and can be improved.

In other business, the forum passed a resolution to authorize the use of the Staff Development Fund to pay for registration fees for work-related conferences or workshops. The forum also passed a resolution to welcome the renewal of the campus chapter of the American Association of University Professors.

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Faculty Council News

Panel to seek broad input on campus wellness

The University has wellness programs. But few people participate in them, and the people who do are already healthy — a group sometimes referred to as the worried well.

Ben Birken wants to get more University employees worried about their health, too, and ready to do something about it.

As the coordinator for the University Steering Committee for Worker Health, Safety and Wellness, a key part of his job is to help them, Birken said at the Dec. 8 meeting of Faculty Council.

The need to strengthen the wellness program on campus was identified by the Chancellor’s Task Force for a Better Workplace when it issued its final report in January of 2004. Last spring, the Faculty Welfare Committee, proposed funding a staff person to spearhead the effort and lead the steering committee, which is comprised of members with expertise in a range of areas, including the Department of Exercise and Sports Science.

Birken said his first task would be to assess existing wellness opportunities, pinpointing both their strengths and limitations, while looking at models of successful wellness programs at other universities.

In spring, there will be an employee interest survey, which will be followed up with eight focus groups, including two focus groups comprised solely of faculty members, Birken said. Birken said his report should be ready to submit to Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Bernadette Gray-Little in June.

Gray-Little, in her remarks, said that the University has no immediate plans to repeat the faculty salary equity study that was conducted in 2002. The study found no widespread basis of concern.

Gray-Little said two departments out of more than 100 revealed unexplained pay disparities that appeared to show women faculty were being paid less than they should have been. Those departments were told to review salaries and adjust them to ensure faculty salaries were commensurate with academic credentials
and experience.

But Ed Halloran, associate professor in the School of Nursing and the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) liaison to the council, cited an annual national survey of faculty salaries that is conducted by the AAUP that showed women faculty members at UNC, particularly at the higher levels, have lost ground relative to their male counterparts at UNC.
Gray-Little said she had not seen the report, but would be glad to look at it. “Salary equity is an issue that deserves our continued attention,” Gray-Little said.

In another matter, Faculty Chair Joseph Templeton moderated a panel discussion on distance learning at the University. Bobbi Owen, senior associate dean for undergraduate education in the College of Arts & Sciences, said of the 2,847 undergraduate degrees awarded last May, slightly more than 500 graduates had taken one on-line course that counted toward their degrees.

Currently, undergraduates can take no more than 10 on-line courses that can be counted for graduate credit, but that policy is being reviewed, Owen said.

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By the numbers:
Williford excels in mining data for meaning

Sometimes, the numbers confirm widely held opinions. Other times, the numbers may reveal hidden, even uncomfortable truths. But in all cases, University policymakers know they can count on the numbers being right — and seeing them clearly expressed in eloquent charts, graphs and tables.

Lynn Williford received her Massey Award  for crunching numbers that help make key decisions.

A big reason why is Lynn Williford, the master storyteller of those numbers, whose valued skills earned her a 2006 C. Knox Massey Award.

As assistant provost and director of Institutional Research and Assessment, Williford and her staff are called upon again and again to supply and interpret data for University decision-makers. The many people who have come to rely on her describe her as unselfish, generous with her time and talent, and extremely good at what she does.

A statistician’s story of dumb luck
The worst thing anybody can say about Williford is that she is a workaholic.

It is a charge Williford has heard enough over the years to plead guilty to without much complaint. But there are mitigating circumstances that should be considered before anyone renders too harsh a judgment against her.

The first circumstance is the way she was raised back on her father’s tobacco farm in Person County.

 “Some people I know at the University came from tobacco farming families and we all say the same thing — it was highly motivational because you wanted to do anything other than that. It fuels all kinds of ambitions to go to college.”

And even to stay.

After graduating from Carolina with a journalism degree in spring of 1978, she took a job as a receptionist for the dean of the School of Education for no better reason than to keep from going home to work in her daddy’s tobacco field that summer. “That is the honest truth,” Williford said. “I wanted to work in air conditioning.”

While doing this job, she happened to be typing an exam paper for a statistics professor when the professor happened by. When she asked him a question about what she was typing, he responding by suggesting she take the course herself.

“That course changed everything for me,” Williford said. “I marvel at the irony of this because the foundation of statistics is probability  — the laws of chance. It would have never occurred to me to take a graduate course, much less one in statistics, had I not had that chance conversation with that professor.”

She kept working at the University, serving for nearly 10 years as an academic adviser, while taking a statistics course at night until
she finished her master’ degree and then
her doctorate.

She joined the Office of Institutional Research in 1994 as a senior research associate and was named director in 2000. And for a final twist of irony, the School of Education gave her an adjunct faculty appointment — a position that enables her to teach the same graduate course in statistics for which she typed the exams so many years ago.

An indispensable, inexhaustible resource
The second circumstance driving Williford’s relentless work ethic is the unending demands of the job itself.  If she didn’t work hard, the work would bury her. As she put it, “Some of my motivation is from fear.”

The fear, she will tell you, is about letting people down who are doing all they can to make this University a better place for professors to teach, for students to study, for employees to work. It’s the kind of pressure she relishes, a pressure that she feels deep down as a privilege.

People count on her to get the numbers right, and then to assemble those numbers in a way that can sometimes tell a story better than words.

Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Bernadette Gray-Little said there are few major University projects that do not bear Williford’s imprint.

“Lynn does not push herself forward, but her work is the platform on which many of us stand,” Gray-Little said.

When the Chancellor’s Task Force for a Better Workplace and the Faculty Retention Study were pressing campus issues, she was called upon in both instances to work with individuals from across campus with diverse backgrounds and interests to help craft appropriate survey instruments.

“Her skill in helping people discern the important questions, and how to ask them, is remarkable,” said Steve Allred, associate provost for academic initiatives, who worked with Williford on both projects.

When the University needed a carefully constructed analysis to assess and address difficult gender equity issues, it turned again to Williford. “She handled the analytical and the public relations aspects of this with competence, grace and a great deal of hard work,” Gray-Little said.

When the idea emerged to create a grant program, now known as the Carolina Covenant, that would allow the neediest students to pursue their degrees without incurring debt, Williford provided the critical research.

When the Enrollment Policy Advisory Committee sought to understand the gaps in retention and graduate rates among different student populations, it was Williford who was called to lead the team investigating the complex issue.

When the University underwent re-accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Williford was the driving force behind almost everything done in preparation, said Bobbi Owen, the senior associate dean for undergraduate education who led the campus-wide effort with Williford.

Williford was responsible for compliance and led the preparation of more than 80 reports ranging from finance to student affairs to the evaluation of 4,000 instructors teaching nearly 7,500 course sections. This kind of reporting is bureaucratic, Owen said, but Williford is a master at making what seems dry to most people both accessible and understandable.

 “She is not only dedicated to the University and the minutiae of institutional research, she is a workaholic and inspires those around her to work equally hard and be equally committed,” Owen said.

A marriage made in heaven
When Williford talked to her husband about the interview she did for this story, she wondered and worried aloud how unimaginative her life might sound.

 “I live near campus because I don’t like to drive on highways, having grown up on a dirt road,” Williford wrote in a later e-mail recounting that talk.

 “I moved every bit of 60 miles from home to go to college and then never left. I had offers to take jobs in faraway places such as Raleigh and turned them down because I didn’t want to give up my basketball tickets.”

Her connection to Carolina basketball started as a baby. She was 9 months old in 1957 when Carolina won the national championship. Ever since, she takes it very personally when they lose and readily admits that her entire social life consists of attending Carolina sporting events. She drives a 14-year-old car because it is Carolina blue and nobody makes a car in that color anymore.
An unimaginative life? Perhaps, her husband told her, but at least it has been consistent as far as her love for Carolina goes. Maybe that is why he went along eight years ago when she insisted that their wedding be held at the Old Well, with the associate provost she worked for at the time presiding.

It was her first marriage so, of course, she wanted a formal ceremony, but with the entire wedding party decked out not in white but light blue.

“I put on my wedding gown up in my own office and just walked across the street and got married,” Williford said. “After we were declared husband and wife, a group of students from the Carolina Pep Band played ‘Hark the Sound’ and the Carolina fight song while the guests clapped.”

It all seemed natural to her, me, although some guests found it a little odd. Closet Duke fans, no doubt.

Amazed by her good fortune
The University is a big, complex place, too big for any one person to see it whole, and from points of view outside of their own narrow experience.

Williford, though, may be the exception.

Her work, she believes, allows her to better understand the experience of others, allows her to gauge why faculty members choose to stay or leave, or why some students graduate and others don’t, or why some employees are satisfied with their jobs and others are not.

If she need be reminded why she stays at her job, Williford turns to the poster she keeps in her office. “The poster is of a tobacco field, looking down the rows in a way that make them seem to go on forever,” Williford said.

The poster reminds her of her dad, who worked two or three jobs to support his wife, his two daughters and son. They all worked the tobacco fields together, then in the curing barn where the leaves were tied on sticks to cure.

 “Sometimes, I ask myself, ‘Which is better?’ This job may be a little cleaner, but it is all hard work.”

At the end of the e-mail, she came up with a more circumspect answer to that same question.

“The more I think about it, the more I am just so amazed at my good fortune,” Williford said. “I have had the opportunity to be a student, a staff member and a faculty member (sort of) here. I get to observe some of the greatest minds at work as well as some of the most dedicated people who work so hard to make this place what it is.

“I get to hear the fears and concerns of the Carolina students and to celebrate their achievements.

“I’ve gotten to be a tiny part of so many projects that are really making a difference. It is so easy to get caught up in this work and forget to go home, which I realize I’ve done once again, looking at the clock.”

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Carolina Women’s Soccer: NCAA Champions

Carolina Women's Soccer

Tar Heel women soccer players Ariel Harris, Casey Nogueira and Yael Averbuch celebrate after an exciting 2-1 victory Dec. 3 over Notre Dame at SAS Soccer Park in Cary. The victory secured Carolina’s 18th NCAA championship and concluded a magical season with 27 successive wins after a season-opening 1-0 double overtime loss at Texas A & M. That mark tied the school record for victories in a season and returned the NCAA title the team has won 18 times in the past 25 years to Chapel Hill for the first time since 2003. The Tar Heels improved to 18-3 in the NCAA championship games under Coach Anson Dorrance’s leadership.

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Council approves development proposal change

The Chapel Hill Town Council on Dec. 4 approved the development plan modification for the main campus that University officials had submitted last summer.

Council, however, deferred action on a proposed expansion of the Carolina Inn that had been added to the modification request. The council also approved a special-use permit for the park-and-ride lot at the Chapel Hill Bible Church. The lot will reserve 241 badly needed spaces in eastern Chapel Hill for UNC users.

The plan will add 1.2 million square feet of building space beyond the previously approved 6 million square feet.

The development plan, which is based on the campus master plan, is the planning instrument by which the town oversees campus construction. The plan operates under a special zoning classification that the University sought in tandem from the town.

Since the development plan was approved in 2001, such modifications have also been endorsed in summer 2003 and in March 2004.

The latest modification includes several parking projects, including a three-level addition to the existing Craige deck on Manning Drive that will shift 890 spaces and the 710-space Bell Tower parking deck. Three new research buildings for genome sciences will surround the Bell Tower deck. A pedestrian bridge across South Road will also be a part of the Bell Tower development. A new two-level parking deck on Skipper Bowles Drive also was approved that will add 230 parking spaces and feature tennis courts on the top level connected to the new Rams Village apartments for students.

Other projects include:

bullet A new 180,000 square-foot medical office building on North Medical Drive.

bullet A new 200,000 square-foot building for the School of Dentistry.

bullet A new building for the Department of Psychology.

bullet A new 125,000 square-foot building for the School of Information and Library Sciences.

bullet UNC Imaging Center building connected to the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

bullet A three-building office and storage complex for the Grounds Department.

bullet An 8,804-seat addition and improvements at Kenan Stadium.

bullet Renovation of Boshamer Stadium.

bullet A 12,000 square-foot addition to the George Watts Hill Alumni Center.

When the University seeks a modification to the plan, it asks the town to approve in one fell swoop the general characteristics of a list of new projects before they are designed. Funding is pending for many of the newly approved projects. The General Assembly appropriated planning funds for the genome sciences building last year.

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Carolina North LAC debates future open space

Perpetuity. It’s a word that’s been tossed back and forth a lot lately by members of the Carolina North Leadership Advisory Committee.

Some in the group want the University to commit to keeping 75 percent of the land at Carolina North in its natural state in perpetuity — or forever. Some repeated that desire at the most recent meeting on Nov. 30.

University officials have declined to make such a commitment, bound by a word that sounds strikingly similar to perpetuity but means something starkly different.


Future generations will live with the consequences of the decisions that will be made today about the future of Carolina North.

One thing University Trustee Roger Perry said he and other trustees refuse to do today is to tie the hands of future leaders 50 years from now.

University trustees have argued that it is not possible legally to bind future boards to such a commitment, and even it they could, it would not be wise to do so.

Fifty years is the span of time that University planners say it will take to complete five phases envisioned in a previous draft concept plan. Within those 50 years, Perry said, University officials might accept making a commitment to restricting development on the 250-acre footprint already identified.

Perry identified four types of land within the roughly 1,000-acre site located about a mile north of main campus on the western edge of Martin Luther King Boulevard.

There is the footprint of 250 acres on which development could take place, in phases, over the next 50 years.

There is environmentally sensitive land within watersheds and elsewhere that everyone agrees must be preserved indefinitely.

The third subset of land is buffer zones at the edge of Carolina North designed to protect adjoining neighborhoods. This land, too, should remain untouched forever.

The fourth category is the rest of the land outside of the other three.

“There is never, ever going to be a willingness on the part of the University to put that land in perpetual open space,” Perry said.

On the other hand, he added, it did not seem out of the question for the University to agree to a conservation easement of 50 or 60 years.

Perry’s comment drew this appreciative response from Chapel Hill Town Council Member Cam Hill: “For the purpose of most of the people in this room, 60 years is in perpetuity.”

The issue surfaced again during a discussion about building heights and the general consensus that had emerged that taller buildings, especially in the interior of the property away from surrounding neighborhoods, would put more square footage of buildings on fewer acres to preserve more open space.

Perry, a successful Chapel Hill developer, said taller buildings may be the answer for research and academic buildings, but questioned whether people would want to live in high-rises.

Right now, Perry said, there simply are not many folks who would choose to live in them.

The University long has pursued plans for mixed-use development at Carolina North that would include academic, research, housing, retail and open spaces.

The committee, which has been meeting since last March, is on track to conclude its work earlier than expected, helped in part by a marathon six-hour meeting set for Dec. 16. If all goes as planned, the final meeting will take place on Jan. 18, more than a month ahead of the deadline that Chancellor James Moeser set when he appointed the group earlier this year.

Among the issues yet to be explored are a set of principles related to public schools, fiscal equity and a joint report on housing that is being prepared by Carolina North Executive Director Jack Evans and Carrboro Mayor Mark Chilton.

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Graduate student Andy Pennock (right) has his picture taken at the Get-a-Passport Drive, held Nov. 15 and 16 during International Education Week. State Department officials were on campus with passport applications, and passport photos were taken as a one-stop shopping service to apply for or renew passports.

Among other events that week, Carol Bellamy, former director of UNICEF, spoke on “Global Poverty: Reflections on Millennium Development Goals,” and the University Center for International Studies staged its sixth annual international photography contest and exhibit.

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Cabinets to kiosks: Woodworkers’ artistry adorns campus venues

The University has exclusive access to a skilled group of craftsmen. ‘Craftsmen’ actually might not adequately describe these workers; they are accomplished artisans — and artists — whose work is displayed in buildings throughout the campus, including the homes of the UNC president and Carolina’s chancellor.

Terry Tripp
Cabinetmaker Terry Tripp uses a planer to smooth a piece of wood in the Carpentry Shop.

Bobby Jones, Alan Moran and Terry Tripp are cabinetmakers from Facilities Services’ Carpentry Shop who build the highest quality woodwork for the entire Carolina community. While ‘cabinetmaker’ might be their working job title and their expertise can be seen in the cabinets they build, their work is not limited to cabinets. They are skilled in designing and constructing desks, furniture, cubicles, vanities, display cases, furnishings for entire lobbies and reception areas, benches, windows, shutters, kiosks — even bridges — and much more. In short, if a project involves wood, they can handle it, whether it requires a table saw, jig saw or a chainsaw.

One of the most impressive skills displayed by this group is the ability to replicate existing works. They can build exact matches to furnishings and woodwork, oftentimes just by looking at a photograph. There is a rich history at Carolina that can be seen in the architecture of the campus’ buildings, and these artisans can capture and duplicate these detailed, intricate historic and antique designs in works such as doors, decorative moldings and antique furniture. How they actually produce this woodwork is a history lesson as well. None of the equipment they use is computerized; they work with their hands, using both modern and old fashioned tools that require a great deal of skill and manual dexterity which can only be gained through years of experience. It may not be as simple as hitting ‘enter’ on a keyboard, but the time and care they put into their work shows in the quality of their final product.

The Carpentry Shop also takes on smaller projects that an outside contractor would never even consider, such as making picture frames, plaques, recycling bins and easels. They also repair office furnishings that have been obtained from surplus. They are able to provide the finished product much quicker — and cheaper — than outside contractors as well; they’re frequently called upon in an emergency when a department needs quality work fast. The lead-time for contractors can be up to two to three months.

When it comes to quality, there is no comparison between their furnishings and the mass-produced, pre-fabricated office furniture from commercial stores. There’s also no comparison in the quality of overall service they provide to their customers. Often, UNC employees will make do with the equipment and furniture that they inherit in their office. Jones, Moran and Tripp, however, make sure Carolina employees don’t just have furnishings that “will work,” they make sure their customers have exactly what is needed to do their jobs. They are dedicated to their customers and will meet with them one-on-one, talking and listening, sketching out designs and working collaboratively to ensure employees are completely satisfied. Academic departments call on them for podiums, lecterns and media centers for their classrooms while researchers rely on them to provide a place to safely store years of notes, findings and life-saving research.

All this may seem like a large order for three employees, but they have pride in and a passion for their work, not to mention nearly 100 years of experience among them. In fact, they have earned such a reputation for excellence that others not associated with UNC have sought out their services. They were recently contacted by Duke University about providing their woodworking expertise, but as employees of a state university, they can only ply their craft for state government agencies.

As work spaces get more and more cluttered, remember that quality cabinetry and craftsmanship is at your disposal; and Facilities Services’ Carpentry Shop is only a call or a click away.

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Scope of out-of-state tuition hikes uncertain among BOT

Out-of-state undergraduate tuition now stands at $19,681, about $4,000 below the average for other top public universities.

Under a “bold stroke” proposal that Chancellor James Moeser floated before University trustees last month, that $4,000 gap would be closed in one fell swoop with incoming freshmen next year — who would pay the increase with the guarantee they would not face another campus-based increase provided they graduate in four years.

“Our students are asking for predictability,” Moeser said. “This provides that.”

In regard to his proposal, Moeser told trustees, “I want you to think about it. That’s all I’m asking you to do today because it’s an intriguing idea.”

Moeser offered the idea in the midst of a Nov. 16 discussion about possible tuition increases that will resume next month when the University Board of Trustees will likely decide on its own proposal to forward to the UNC Board of Governors for consideration.

Along with Moeser’s trial balloon proposal, trustees will weigh Moeser’s official recommendation that mirrors that of the Tuition and Fee Advisory Task Forced co-chaired by Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Bernadette Gray-Little and Student Body President James Allred.

The option favored by most task force members — and the one Moeser endorsed by recommending it to trustees before their meeting, calls for tuition increases of $250 for resident undergraduates and $500 for all other students on campus. Further, it calls for requiring all students to pay the increase, including graduate and professional students subject to paying school-based increases as well.

Two task force members who did not agree are trustees Karol Mason and John Ellison who will cast their votes again when the board makes its final decision next month.

In January of 2004, trustees adopted a philosophy for tuition increases that set the goal of reaching the 75th percentile among national peer institutions for out-of-state undergraduate students, while keeping tuition for in-state undergraduates within the bottom quartile of national peers.

The trustees’ philosophy to keep in-state tuition low is consistent with the University’s historical stance and with a new system-wide policy the UNC Board of Governors approved this fall that sets a 6.5 percent cap for in-state undergraduate tuition and fee increases on its 16 campuses over the next four years.
At Carolina, the cap for next year comes out to $305. The task force recommendation falls slightly below it, with proposed increases of $250 in tuition and $50.48 in student fees subject to the restriction.

The other bedrock policy that has been in place since campus-based tuition increases have been allowed is to hold low-income students harmless by setting aside 35 percent to 40 percent of additional revenues for need-based aid.

For the current academic year, in-state undergraduate tuition rose by $250, while out-of-state undergraduates paid an additional $1,100.

Moeser, before making his $4,000 proposal, said he sensed that the consensus among trustees had a similar increase for out-of-state students in mind.

Moeser said he understood and supported the trustees’ push to reach the 75th percentile, yet he said he shared the concerns that Allred and students have expressed that out-of-state students not begin to feel as if they were here only to serve as cash cows. Out-of-state students come here to get a quality education, but their presence here enhances the quality of education for everybody, he said.

Everyone agrees on the goal, he said, which is to generate revenues needed to improve faculty salaries so that they are truly competitive with national peers. Moeser said the proposal was his attempt to offer “an alternative to get to the same point with a different path.”

That path has been a long and arduous one, with an end goal that is a moving target. As Carolina moves aggressively to raise its faculty salaries, competing institutions are not sitting still in the salaries they offer their faculties.

The task force recommendation that Moeser initially backed would generate about $6.5 million for faculty salaries, graduate stipends and need-based financial aid. But that calculation is based on requiring all students to pay the campus-based increase — a recommendation that a majority of trustees appear not to support.

Gray-Little, in making the case for a true campuswide increase, has argued that it was the original model used after UNC campuses were authorized to set campus-based hikes and use the revenue for campus priorities.

Since the 2000-01 academic year, campus-based tuition has generated more than
$24.6 million for targeted faculty salaries and compensation, including benefits.

Trustee Paul Fulton, who co-chairs the Carolina First steering committee, said the campaign expects to move past the $2 billion mark by March and that faculty support has been a major campaign priority.

Similarly, the state legislature awarded generous average increases of 6 percent to faculty members within the UNC system. The trustees, in turn, must be willing to do their part — even when what they have to do isn’t easy, he said.

“I don’t know how I in good faith can go to the legislature and donor base (for continued support) when we are not making tough decisions that are consistent with our state’s philosophy” of low in-state tuition, Fulton said.

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Gomes, Aber named as 2007-08 Keohane chairs

The University welcomes two distinguished professors next year as part of an ongoing collaboration between Carolina and Duke University.

Harvard professor Peter Gomes, who delivered the 2005 commencement address at Carolina, and New York University professor J. Lawrence Aber, a child development specialist, will teach jointly at the universities as recipients of the Nannerl O. Keohane Distinguished Visiting Professorship.

Provosts at UNC and Duke selected Gomes and Aber in consultation with an advisory committee of faculty from each university. Recipients, who spend about six months at each university, receive up to $50,000 for travel, research and related expenses. They are responsible for contributing to the teaching mission and undergraduate curriculum at both universities, delivering at least one major public lecture and promoting collaboration and the enhancement of intellectual life.

Gomes will teach at UNC in spring 2008, Aber in Fall 2007. The yearlong professorship was created in 2004 to honor former Duke president Keohane’s contributions toward advancing collaboration between the two universities.

“It is wonderful to welcome Dr. Gomes back to Chapel Hill and to introduce Dr. Aber to the leading academic institutions in the Tar Heel state,” said Steve Allred, executive associate provost. “Both men have distinguished themselves in their fields, and they will be fine additions to the longstanding history of collaboration between Carolina
and Duke.”

Gomes has been Plummer professor of Christian morals and Pusey minister in the Memorial Church of Harvard University since 1974. He is recognized as one of the nation’s most distinguished preachers and has been profiled in CBS’ “60 Minutes” program and The New Yorker, among other national
media outlets.

Aber is professor of applied psychology and public policy at New York University. His research examines the influence of violence and poverty in families and communities as it relates to child development.

Half of the $3 million needed to create the professorship bearing Keohane’s name was pledged as a challenge by Carolina graduate Julian Robertson and his wife Josie of New York, who also funded the Robertson Scholars Program, a joint merit-based scholarship program at Carolina and Duke. The William R. Kenan Jr. Charitable Trust provided the remaining $1.5 million. The trust has been among Carolina’s most generous benefactors and also has supported the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke.

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Near-record returns grow endowment

The UNC-Chapel Hill Foundation Investment Fund reached $1.48 billion in fiscal 2006, after recording a 19.2 percent net investment return, the third highest in the past 20 years.

Jon King, president and chief executive officer of UNC Management Co. Inc., which manages the fund, presented the investment results the November meeting of the University Board of Trustees.

“What this return means to UNC, and to the state, is that the University has a very solid foundation from which to support new and existing programs and to build for the future,” King said. The investment fund makes up a majority of UNC’s overall endowment.

According to an independent survey of 149 colleges and universities, UNC’s investment return rate was first among public universities and in the top 6 percent overall. Only returns in fiscal 2000 (27.3 percent) and 1999 (19.7 percent) outperformed this year’s, King said.

UNC’s investment fund, a diversified portfolio, is positioned for growth and includes a significant allocation to non-traditional assets including international equity, private equity and private energy related investments. The allocation to these asset classes, combined with excellent performance generated by the fund’s investment managers, were key to the fund’s growth, King said. The fund outperformed its primary benchmark, the Strategic Investment Policy Portfolio (SIPP), which returned 14.1 percent for the year.

“We had the wind at our back,” said King, who began his role at UNC Management Co. Inc. in January 2005, after growing Dartmouth College’s endowment to almost $2.5 billion. “We were over-allocated to the asset classes that did well, under-allocated to the classes that didn’t do well, and our investment managers turned in very strong performances.

“UNC’s fund tends to do better in years when non-traditional asset classes outperform traditional U.S. stocks and bonds, as was the case in the most recent fiscal year,” he said.

The 2006 results set the three-year return — 16.9 percent — at its highest mark in 20 years. The five-year return hit 10.6 percent, placing the one-, three- and five-year returns above the SIPP benchmark for each of these periods. The growth also places UNC’s endowment in the top 15 percent of all colleges and universities for the past one-, three-, and five-year periods.

Increasing the University’s overall endowment is a major objective of the Carolina First Campaign, a multi-year private fund-raising effort with a goal of $2 billion by December 2007. The campaign has received gifts and pledges of more than $1.9 billion.

The campaign has nearly reached its $800 million target to support the endowment.

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Researchers work with rural educators nationwide

School of Education researchers involved in federally funded collaborations with rural schools have learned that teachers there are the projects’ best friends.

FPG Development Institute
Marnie Ginsberg performs a targeted reading intervention with Rachel Quade at FPG Child Development Institute.

The teachers’ understanding of their students’ families and communities has proven indispensable, say School of Education professors involved with the projects — all conducted by the National Research Center on Rural Education Support in the school.

“Many of our teachers are extremely experienced,” said Lynne Vernon-Feagans, William C. Friday distinguished professor of education and a center co-director. “They live in these areas. They know the families. You often don’t have that in an urban area.”

The U.S. Department of Education established the center in 2004 with a $10 million, five-year grant to the school. Researchers from UNC’s Center for Developmental Science, School of Social Work, Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and psychology and sociology departments also are involved.

The grant funded three projects, on children’s transitions into kindergarten and first grade; use of distance learning in rural schools; and students’ transitions into early adolescence.

Since then, researchers have worked with rural educators nationwide to add more studies, said Tom Farmer, center director and a former UNC School of Education faculty member, who left recently for Pennsylvania State University.

The additional research looks at the following topics in rural schools: teacher retention and administrative turnover; special education needs and services; and the preparation of rural adolescents for transition from high school to adulthood. 

Center partners in these projects include the Rural Schools and Community Trust, the University of Oklahoma, Stephen F. Austin University, the Southwest Regional Educational Laboratory and Penn State.   

The researchers recognize that many rural school districts lack the resources of wealthy urban and suburban districts. The national research center aims to level the achievement playing field nationwide — starting from when students enter kindergarten.

Vernon-Feagans and her researchers began by asking teachers about the challenges they face. “They all have kids at the bottom of the class who don’t seem to be learning,” she said

Research shows that such children benefit most from individual attention, but how could teachers find the time? They all brainstormed. “We problem-solve with the teachers,” said Vernon-Feagans. “We don’t tell them what to do.”

Creating learning stations where the other children could work independently for a time and briefly turning classes over to teaching assistants were among the answers.

“If a teacher works one-on-one with a child for 15 minutes a day, four times a week, for two months or so, that child can make enormous progress,” Vernon-Feagans said. “Teachers come to like these children better through this process, and the children come to like them.”

 Her group and the teachers develop simple strategies and inexpensive materials for this tutoring, including free resources teachers can download from the Internet.

So far, the project is at work in just a few school districts, but the work is always hardest at first. Vernon-Feagans expects lessons learned in these districts will make for easier start-ups later, so that the project could be in as many as 20 states by 2009.

Wallace Hannum, UNC associate professor of educational psychology, directs the center’s project on distance learning for secondary education and professional development for teachers in rural schools.

Often, the schools cannot offer comprehensive curricula because of problems finding and retaining teachers for all subjects — especially advanced math and science, he said.

The School of Education’s LEARN North Carolina program offers more than 50 advanced placement and other courses online to all schools statewide. Now, LEARN collaborates with Hannum by offering courses to the schools he is studying.

 Last year, Hannum finished a national survey on distance learning in rural schools, with responses from 394 of a random sample of 415 districts. Among the findings: 68 percent use distance learning to offer courses they can’t offer otherwise. Next, Hannum will look at how to improve the effectiveness of such courses.

Kim Dadisman, co-director of intervention research at the UNC Center for Developmental Science, directs the national center’s project on transition to early adolescence. The project now operates in two areas of the country, with school districts nationwide to be added in the years to come, Dadisman said.

Before working with a district, researchers gather data on the community and its schools. Then, they work with teachers in grades five through seven.

The researchers ask teachers to describe the most important issues in their classes and communities. Then, researchers and teachers collaborate to develop training for teachers in managing these issues, using four focuses:

bullet Academic engagement, or ways to get students actively involved in learning;

bullet School social dynamics, or peer networks, how teachers can recognize them and use that awareness to develop positive behavior;

bullet Helping parents understand their children’s changing needs as they grow into adolescence; and

bullet Competence enhancement/behavior management.

Research findings figure in the training, conducted before school starts in the fall; some districts offer continuing education credits for participation. Researchers then consult throughout the school year with the teachers, in face-to-face meetings, videoconferences and online.

“This is a time developmentally when students are acquiring new skills, new peers and new social roles,” Dadisman said. “It is a prime time for teachers to guide these students as they are coming into new social roles.”

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At Your Library

Library offers mapping services to interpret data

Everything happens somewhere.

For University Library employee Amanda Henley, that means everything can be placed onto maps.

Henley is the geographic information systems, or GIS, librarian at Davis Library. She provides training and consulting for use of the library’s four GIS-ready computers and three printers.

GIS is a way to make maps using computers. Custom maps are created from layers of spatial data (such as roads, rivers or county boundaries). Those features are paired with attributes, such as county names or population information. So, county boundaries could be combined with population data to make a map with populations by county. Or road maps could be paired with air pollution data.

“The location and attributes of map features are compared to perform complex analyses,” Henley said. “This would be very difficult using traditional methods.”

Henley, who received her master’s degree in geography from UNC, said students from a number of disciplines have used the library computers and her consulting services to complete projects.

Dilys Bowman, a doctoral student in the geography department, has used the GIS services provided by the library. Henley, she said, has been a helpful resource.

“She has gone to bat to make data easier to use, and also to ask for data when we don’t have it, and the need is potentially greater than one individual’s,” Bowman said.

A GIS map is only as good as the data that goes into making, Henley said, so she is constantly on the lookout for new or more comprehensive data sources.

Henley also collaborates with other campus groups that provide GIS services, including the Odum Institute for Research in Social Sciences and Information Technology Services.

“I think we’re very fortunate to have her,” Bowman said.

GIS is useful for a number of topics. Public health students might use maps to look for trends in diseases when combined with census data. Planning students can use the technology to analyze population sprawl and transportation trends. Environmental science students might look at land cover change over time, or the impact of urbanization on water quality.

The advantage of computer mapping over the more traditional paper method, Henley said, is the ability to make calculations and changes. Symbology can be altered, and databases can be added or updated.

In addition to providing consulting for GIS users at the library, Henley also has taught several short training classes at the Odum Institute, and designed web pages and online tutorials — complete with animated demonstrations and step-by-step instructions. Henley has also worked with ITS to facilitate access to commercial GIS courses available online to UNC students and employees.

Much of her time, she said, is spent helping people find and format data for accurate mapping.

Davis Library’s four GIS computers are available any time the library is open, and the printers are available any time the reference desk is staffed. A large format plotter, used solely for printing maps made using GIS, is available for use by appointment only.

With myriad uses and modern capabilities, GIS offers students researching topics that interest them a way to put data into a tangible format. For Henley, the allure of GIS started with an interest in resource management and has grown to include the wide span of work she does today. “I really enjoy this job because there is so much variety,” she said. “I get to see bits and pieces of different kinds of projects all the time.”

For more information about the library’s GIS services, call Henley (962-1151) or e-mail or refer to

@yourlibrary highlights library services, collections, events and news of special interest to faculty and staff. Questions about this feature and requests for future topics may be sent to Judy Panitch (, director of library communications. The website for the UNC-Chapel Hill Libraries is This month’s column was written by Margaret Hair.

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Davis is welcomed at UNC

Butch Davis


The University introduced Butch Davis as the new football coach during a Nov. 27 news conference. Since arriving, Davis has been introducing himself to Carolina fans, appearing during halftime of recent men’s and women’s basketball games. Davis is a 32-year coaching veteran with stints at the University of Miami, where he turned around a program hit with NCAA sanctions, and the Cleveland Browns. UNC leaders have emphasized his commitment to graduating players and helping develop their character.



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Students use wireless clickers to share feedback in classrooms

It’s not “Who Wants to be a Millionaire,” but it’s close. Response systems similar to ones used to poll studio audiences are now being used in classrooms at Carolina.

Wireless Clickers
Michael Masterson uses his wireless response system on a quiz during Debra Murray’s class.

Commonly known as “clickers,” these hand-held wireless devices are used in academic settings to gauge students’ comprehension, provoke discussion and facilitate class participation and peer feedback.

Instructors using clickers are finding them to be a thoughtful and periodic way during a 50- or 75-minute class to keep students engaged. Even in very large classes, all students can participate equally.

Debbie Murray, a lecturer in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science, has been using the clickers for three semesters.

“I teach the course entitled ‘Personal Health,’ she said, “and because the course is designed around applying concepts of health and wellness to each individual’s personal lifestyle, there needs to be strong interaction between instructor and student. I teach classes with 70 to 85 students and the clickers really help students participate in a meaningful way.”

One of the biggest benefits is immediacy. According to Murray, clickers offer the option to poll and almost instantly display a graph of results. Those results often surprise students and foster discussion and class participation, especially since the clicker offers an anonymous mode.

“The opportunity to answer sensitive questions anonymously is very important because my class addresses topics such as being sexually responsible and the use and abuse of alcohol and drugs,” said Murray.

Murray also uses clickers for quizzes, test preparation and a daily class participation grade.

“The feedback I get from students is very positive,” she said.

According to sales figures provided by Student Stores, at least a dozen instructors ordered clickers last semester and more than 900 students purchased them. The devices are often marketed by textbook publishers, and, in addition to the cost of the device itself, some publishers also require additional fees for device registration.

In response to the growing use of these devices, Information Technology Services (ITS)Teaching and Learning is evaluating several response systems and plans to announce a recommended standard by Feb. 1 in time for textbook orders to be placed for the next summer and fall.

“The market is in flux at the moment with a number of available products,” said Bob Henshaw, project coordinator for academic outreach. “It’s really a pocketbook issue for the students. If we can recommend a standard, then it will help prevent students from having to purchase and keep up with multiple devices.”

A recommended standard provides leverage to negotiate favorable pricing for students and instructors and will facilitate technical and pedagogical support for instructors interested in using response systems, added Henshaw.

“Because these are wireless systems, Teaching and Learning is consulting with the Networking division to gauge each product’s compatibility with campus WiFi and other devices using radio-frequency transmission,” said Suzanne Cadwell, academic outreach consultant, who is also working on the project.

Cadwell and Henshaw are gathering information from instructors who use clicker systems for feedback on what features the instructors find important and how the systems are used in classes.

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