July 18, 2007 edition



Massey Award winner Kirk Pelland has nurtured Carolina's grounds for 25 years. At times it's been like waging war on the elements.

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Carolina North

Plans for Carolina North are still on the drawing board, but they have been whittled down from three to one. That plan — the “East-West” draft conceptual plan — will be presented  to the University Board of Trustees next week.

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The goal of PACE is simple enough. It’s about streamlining administrative functions to free up money to support the University’s core academic priorities: teaching, research and public service.

The steps needed to reach that goal extend what we already do at Carolina, said Dwayne Pinkney, assistant vice chancellor for finance and administration. “It’s about trying to do our jobs smarter,” Pinkney said. “That’s really a matter of course for our campus as we have looked for ways to do business as effectively and efficiently as possible.”

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When Chris Payne hired on in fall 2000 to serve as Carolina’s director of student housing, he found himself on the cusp of what would become the most prodigious and sweeping period of campus construction in University history.

That November, voters approved higher education bonds that helped fuel much of the growth, and University officials put much thought into the design, location and function of the new buildings. That thinking was captured in a new master plan approved the following spring. The plan, among other things, called for a transformation of south campus that would make it as fully hospitable and service-friendly to students as it was already to hospital patients.

One cornerstone of that transformation, Payne said, now stands at the corner of Manning Drive and Ridge Road in the form of the Student and Academic Services Buildings, or SASB. When the two-building complex opens this fall, it will provide an array of vital student and academic services, officially 15 in all, in a total of 116,000 square feet.

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The University Steering Committee for Worker Health, Safety and Wellness has begun distributing an Employee General Interest Survey to a random sample of
employees. The survey is part of a yearlong assessment of campuswide worksite wellness needs, opportunities, resources and interests.

“It is important that the survey reflect the opinions of every segment of the campus, and every response is extremely valuable. We want to obtain a high response rate, so we’re asking every employee who receives a survey to take a few minutes to complete it,” said Ben Birken, steering committee coordinator.

At the end of the survey, respondents will have an option to enter a drawing to win a prize.

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Faculty/Staff News & Notes

bullet Yopp to lead summer school
bullet Robbins hired to boost service and engagement
bullet Long-time child development advocate dies
bullet Freeman chosen as Facilities Services interim director
bullet DuBose receives award from International Energy Group
bullet Decorations & Distinctions
bullet Campus Awards

Yopp to lead summer school

Jan Johnson Yopp, senior associate dean and Walter Spearman professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, has been appointed dean of the Summer School beginning January 2008.


A faculty member in the journalism school since 1977, Yopp teaches news writing and reporting and serves as faculty adviser to the Carolina Association of Black Journalists. She became the school’s associate dean in 1999 and has served as senior associate dean since 2005.

Prior to joining the faculty, she was a reporter and assistant city editor for The Raleigh Times. She co-authored the texts “Reaching Audiences: A Guide to Media Writing,” published in a fourth edition in 2006, and “Introduction to News Reporting: A Beginning Journalist’s Guide” in 2004.

In appointing Yopp to the Summer School position, administrators looked for someone who could carry on the work of long-time dean James L. Murphy, said Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Bernadette Gray-Little. Murphy will retire from the University in January.

“Dean Murphy’s leadership has been an excellent example of how summer schools can be run. He has brought a unique combination of skills as a manager and an ability to develop new ways of thinking about Summer School operations,” Gray-Little said.  “We were looking for someone who could bring that combination of skills — thinking of new ways of configuring summer school but also paying attention to the many details involved in managing Summer School smoothly. We believe that Professor Yopp has these skills and she will continue the excellent tradition that Dean Murphy started.”

The Summer School, established in 1877, offers classes in some 45 departments or curricula. Usually, around 8,500 students attend the first five-week summer session and 5,500 attend the second session. Summer School students typically represent nearly all of North Carolina’s 100 counties and around 48 states and 60 foreign countries or U.S. territories.

In addition, the new three-week Maymester program provided an opportunity for students to engage in concentrated study both on and off campus. Nearly 300 students enrolled in the pilot program, which  offered 20 specially designed courses during the May 15-to-June 1 session.

In her position as dean, Yopp said that she hoped to find other innovative ways to serve students’ academic needs, much as the new Maymester program was created as part of the University’s Quality Enhancement Plan.

“I look forward to working with the outstanding Summer School staff to continue Jim Murphy’s legacy and build on the many contributions he has made,” she said. “This fall, I will have the opportunity to spend some time with Dean Murphy and the staff to learn more about the job and to ensure a smooth transition.

“Although my academic career, spanning almost 30 years, has been in the journalism school, I have served on many University-wide committees and worked with faculty throughout the College of Arts and Sciences and other academic units. I believe those experiences and those connections will serve me well in meeting any challenges in this new role as dean of the Summer School.” Yopp will continue to serve as senior associate dean of the journalism school through the end of this year.

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Robbins hired to boost service and engagement

Telling the story of public outreach at Carolina will become a little easier now that Laila V. Robbins is on board as the new assistant vice chancellor for public service and engagement. Robbins began work on June 27 and Mike Smith couldn’t be happier.


“I see Laila’s role as being a full partner with me in advancing public service and engagement at Carolina,” said Smith, vice chancellor for public service and engagement and dean of the School of Government. “We will work together on our campus’s involvement with UNC Tomorrow, in which Laila will play an extensive role, and our response to the Board of Governors.”

UNC Tomorrow is an initiative by the UNC system to determine what the 16 campuses can do to best meet the needs of the people of North Carolina in the next two decades.

“Laila brings to the position a diverse background and extensive experience in many areas, including working with legislators on policy issues. She also understands what our faculty members need and has great translational skills in knowing what our constituents need,” Smith said.

With more than 10 years’ experience in government relations, communications, policy development and coalition building, Robbins has worked extensively with issues in higher education, ranging from state and federal regulatory issues to information technology policy funding. She came to Carolina from SAS Institute in Cary, where she developed strategies and programs to increase the usage of SAS analytical software in the academic community.

For the previous six years, she served as a communications and policy consultant, working extensively with UNC General Administration to research and analyze issues such as the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act and information technology policy funding. She also has been assistant director for federal relations of the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges and government
relations director for the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.

At Carolina, she will work with people across campus to help connect the knowledge and expertise of the University’s faculty and staff to the needs of the state — and beyond.

“It’s a multi-prong effort,” Robbins said. “I want to help increase the support and visibility for the University’s existing projects, to tell the stories of the many wonderful things that people here are doing for the state. At the same time, I will talk with people around the state and listen to their needs. My goal is to find ways to connect the two.”

In this capacity, she will be instrumental in helping Carolina respond to the charge of the UNC Tomorrow commission.

“I have a passion for making a difference,” she said. “If I can help promote and facilitate the University’s work in this regard, I will feel extremely rewarded.”

Robbins has a bachelor of arts degree in history and a masters of arts in public administration degree, both from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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Long-time child development advocate dies

Pascal “Pat” Trohanis, senior scientist at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and long-term director of the National Early Childhood Technical Assistance Center (NECTAC), died June 23 after a long battle with cancer. He was 64.

A tireless advocate for young children with disabilities and their families, Trohanis joined the FPG institute in 1972 and became director of NECTAC’s predecessor in 1987. As director, Trohanis worked to ensure that young children with disabilities could participate in community life with dignity and respect.

NECTAC serves as the U.S. Office of Special Education Program’s national resource aiding states in implementing the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. The center works to ensure that children with disabilities, from birth through age 5, and their families receive high-quality, culturally appropriate and family-centered support and services.

“FPG has lost one of its important early leaders with the passing of Pat Trohanis. To many people in special education he was the face of FPG as he carried our message across the country and around the world,” said James Gallagher, senior scientist emeritus and former director of the child development institute. “We will remember Pat with a smile and with great gratitude for what he has accomplished for all of us and for the children with special needs to whom he gave so many years.”

In 1989, Trohanis was honored with the Mary McEvoy Service to the Field Award from the Division for Early Childhood, part of the Council for Exceptional Children. The division works to enhance the development of young children who have, or are at risk for, developmental delays and disabilities.

Born in Cincinnati, Ohio, Trohanis received his bachelor’s degree at Northwestern University, a master’s degree at Bridgeport University and a Ph.D. in educational technology from the University of Maryland.

Gifts in Trohanis’ memory may be made to the St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church Building Fund, P.O. Box 1149, Durham, NC 27702-1149.

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Freeman chosen as Facilities Services interim director

Mike Freeman has been named acting director of the Facilities Services Division. In this role, he will oversee the operations of Building Maintenance, Housekeeping, Grounds Services, Design and Renovations and Mail Services, among other departments.


Freeman brings to the position 21 years of University service. For the past five years, he has been director of Auxiliary Services, overseeing the One Card office, Printing Services, all campus laundry services, Carolina Catering, and campus dining and vending services.

Freeman will be at the helm of Facilities Services until the new assistant vice chancellor for facilities services is named. He will then resume his position leading Auxiliary Services full time.

“I’m honored to be chosen to lead Facilities Services through this period of transition,” said Freeman. “I’m confident that students, faculty and staff will continue to receive the quality services that they’ve come to expect from both Facilities Services and Auxiliary Services employees.”

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DuBose receives award from International Energy Group

Aside from the gray hair, Ray DuBose may not look much like Cal Ripken, but his long record of reliable service bears a close resemblance.


Ripken, the former iron man of major league baseball, came to be known as much for his string of consecutive games played as for his hitting or fielding prowess.

Likewise DuBose, in his professional field, can always be counted on to contribute. When the International District Energy Association (IDEA) held its first campus conference at Princeton 20 years ago, DuBose, director of Energy Services at Carolina, was one of the 33 people in attendance. And DuBose has been to each and every conference since.

That long record of service is one reason why IDEA honored DuBose with its 20/20 Vision Award and why IDEA President Robert P. Thornton drew the comparison to Ripken during the June 19 award ceremony in Scottsdale, Ariz., during IDEA’s 98th Annual Conference and Trade Show.

Thornton said the award recognized not only DuBose’s participation in all 20 IDEA campus energy conferences held through 2007, but also – just as importantly – his leadership, when as chair of the association he helped spearhead the transition to self-performing management in 2000.

“Today the association’s vitality is strong, and its future is bright,” Thornton said. “Much of that is due to Ray’s steady and calm leadership and guidance through a major change in our operations. It was definitely the right move, and we’re grateful for the role he played. Ray’s dedicated participation in the organization through the past two decades shows his commitment not just to the association, but to the industry.”

DuBose, in addition to managing operations of the University’s campus utilities systems, is leading the University’s energy planning for Carolina North where the University is seeking to utilize 100 percent alternative energy sources in its energy production.

“I am deeply honored to be have been recognized over a long history with working with peers all around the word in a common cause,” he said.

That cause is energy efficiency.

DuBose is also an active member of the Chancellor’s Sustainability Advisory Committee and the Higher Education Committee of the American Council on Renewable Energy. He has been a registered professional engineer in North Carolina since 1977.

The 900-member IDEA was founded in 1909 and comprises district heating and cooling executives, managers, engineers, consultants and equipment suppliers from 22 countries. Its core mission is to support the growth and utilization of district energy as a means to conserve fuel and increase energy efficiency to improve the global environment. For more on IDEA, go to www.districtenergy.org.

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Decorations & Distinctions

Frederick P. Brooks
Kenan professor of computer science and founder of UNC’s computer science department, Brooks recently was one of four 2007 recipients awarded the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Centennial Medal from Harvard University.

The medal honors contributions to society deemed to have emerged from a graduate education at Harvard. Brooks earned his doctorate in applied mathematics (computer science) from Harvard in 1956.

His principal research is on virtual reality: real-time, three-dimensional computer graphics. Brooks’ work has helped biochemists solve the structure of complex molecules and enabled architects to virtually walk through structures still being designed.

Gregory J. Gangi
Academic adviser in environmental sciences, research assistant professor and associate director of the Institute for the Environment, Gangi has received a 2007 certificate of merit from the National
Academic Advising Association. He was recognized in the faculty academic
advising category.

The National Academic Advising Association promotes and supports quality academic advising in higher education to enhance students’ educational

Gorham “Hap” Kindem
A documentary film by communication studies professor Kindem recently won the Best American Documentary Award at the 2007 Swansea Bay Film Festival in Wales.

“Pushing the Limits: Ski for Light USA” focuses on inspiring Paralympians and American skiers with disabilities. Also at the international festival, Kindem’s music video, “Talk Straight,” was nominated for Best Public/Community Service Video.

Proceeds from “Talk Straight” help support Carolina for Kibera, a nonprofit organization that operates a youth soccer league and other programs in Kibera, East Africa’s largest slum. The group is part of UNC’s Center for Global Initiatives.

Another Kindem film, also about Paralympians, won the International Documentary Short Award at the Beverly Hills Hi-Def Film Festival in December. “Pushing the Limits: Norway’s Ridderrenn” focuses on Norwegian and Danish Paralympic skiing champions.

Stephen Charles
Curriculum facilitator in the Medical Sciences Teaching Lab in the School of Medicine, Charles has been selected to participate in the Advanced Placement (AP) Program Reading by the CollegeBoard.

The AP Reading is a unique forum in which academic dialogue between secondary school and college educators is fostered and strongly encouraged. “The Reading draws upon the talents of some of the finest teachers and professors that the world has to offer,” said Trevor Packer, executive
director of the program.

Dick Gordon
“Ahmed’s Diary,” a series of audio diaries from Iraq that airs as part of “The Story” with Dick Gordon, originating on North Carolina Public Radio-WUNC, won a gold medal at the New York Festivals 2007 International Radio Broadcasting Awards. “Ahmed’s Diary” simultaneously captured a silver medal in the festivals’ United Nations Department of Public Information Awards. More than 20 nations were represented in the competition, in which “Ahmed’s Diary” took top honors in the category of ongoing long-form news coverage.

Paul Kapp
Campus historic preservation manager in Facilities Planning, Kapp helped the University win a Campus Heritage grant from the Getty Foundation for $100,000 to develop a heritage preservation master plan.

The plan will address preservation issues related to McCorkle Place, Polk Place, Kenan Stadium Woods and Forest Theatre. One of 15 awarded nationwide, the grant also will be used to help fund labels for the most distinctive trees on the historic campus as well as an educational seminar on Carolina’s historic landscape.

Rachel Willis
Associate professor of American Studies, Willis was recently named by Campus Compact as a finalist for the Thomas Ehrlich Faculty Award for Service-Learning. The Ehrlich Award recognizes exemplary leadership in advancing the civic learning of students, including public scholarship, building campus commitment to service-learning and civic engagement, and fostering genuine, democratic community partnerships.

In February, North Carolina Campus Compact awarded Willis the 2007 Robert L. Sigmon Award recognizing her for significant contributions toward furthering the practice of service-learning in North Carolina.

This is the 13th year that Campus Compact has honored outstanding faculty through this award which draws a distinguished group of nominees from campuses across the United States. Willis will participate on a panel of the 2007 Ehrlich finalists during the annual meeting of the Association of American Colleges and Universities in January 2008.

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Campus Awards

Amy Hart
Janet Hoernke
Al Jeter
Tammy Jorgenson
Stephanie Lloyd

Hart, accountant in Financial Planning and Budgets, Hoernke, processing assistant in Risk Management Services, Jeter, surplus property officer in Asset Management, Jorgenson, check disbursement supervisor in Disbursement Services, and Lloyd, finance training coordinator in Financial Services, were recognized May 24 with 2006-07 Extra Mile Awards for their commitment to serving the campus community through exceptional customer service.

Associate Vice Chancellor for Finance Roger Patterson presented each with a certificate of recognition, a $100 gift certificate and one day of paid annual leave.  The recipients were recognized during the Finance Division’s 2007 employee appreciation event, a catered lunch at Umstead Park.

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