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April Mulherin
Associate Director of Media Relations
Office: (207) 778-7081
Cell: (207) 491-0064
TDD: (207) 778-7000
april.mulherin@maine.edu

Office of Media Relations

UMF Experts List

 

UMF Community Orchestra and Community Chorus Connect to Present Winter Concert, Dec. 9

FARMINGTON, ME (December 5, 2012)—For the first time in many years, the University of Maine at Farmington Community Orchestra and Community Chorus will combine forces in their December concert, presenting an interesting and varied program of music from the first half of the twentieth century at 3 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 9, in Nordica Auditorium.

Under the direction of Trond Saeverud, the orchestra will begin the program with Aaron Copland’s spirited “El Salon Mexico” followed by Ralph Vaughan Williams’s ethereal “The Lark Ascending,” featuring Saeverud as violin soloist.  The second half of the concert culminates with both ensembles joining together to present the magnificent Requiem by Maurice Duruflé.

Aaron Copland, renowned for such iconic works as the ballets “Appalachian Spring” and “Rodeo,” and his stirring “Fanfare for the Common Man,” takes us south of the border with “El Salon Mexico,” a piece that incorporates Mexican folk music, lively dance rhythms, and the brilliant orchestration so characteristic of all of Copland’s compositions.

Vaughan Williams’s “Lark Ascending,” in contrast, evokes a serene pastorale, with the solo violin floating above a quiet accompaniment from the orchestra.  The work was inspired by George Meredith’s poem of the same name, which begins with the lines “He rises and begins to round, He drops the silver chain of sound.”

With his Requiem of 1947, the French composer Maurice Duruflé created a work in somewhat the same spirit as the better-known Requiem of his countryman Gabriel Fauré in the previous century: somber, comforting, at times angry, ultimately transcendent, moving from the terror of the “Dies irae” (days of wrath) to the glimpses of heaven in the final “In Paradisum.”  This performance of the Requiem reprises one that the UMF Chorus gave nearly twenty years ago, with many of the singers having the opportunity to sing it for a second time.

The concert is sponsored by the UMF Department of Sound, Performance and Visual Inquiry. Admission to the concert is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors, and free for children and UMF students with I.D.  For further information, contact Philip Carlsen, UMF professor of music, at carlsen@maine.edu.

More on University of Maine at Farmington

A nationally-recognized liberal arts college, UMF enjoys a nearly 150-year tradition of providing a quality academic experience combined with the personal attention and close student / faculty collaboration that helps prepare all students to be successful. Rooted in a tradition of teacher preparation, UMF offers top quality programs in the arts and sciences, teacher preparation, and pre-professional studies. UMF is located in the heart of Maine’s four-season outdoor recreational region and is a welcoming, close-knit academic community that prepares students for engaged citizenship, enriching professional careers and an enduring love of learning.

 

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UMF Creative Writing Seniors Read From Original Poetry, Fiction and Non-Fiction Work, Dec. 12

FARMINGTON, ME (December 4, 2012)—Ten UMF seniors in Maine’s only Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program will be reading from their original works in poetry, fiction and non-fiction at University of Maine at Farmington’s Creative Writing Senior Reading. This free and open-to-the-public event will take place at 7:30 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 12, in The Landing in the UMF Olsen Student Center.

Each student’s reading will draw from his/her portfolio created as a senior capstone project in UMF’s competitive creative writing program. A culmination of each student’s creative writing accomplishments during their time at UMF, portfolios consist of the student’s best writing, an artist statement and a self-assessment of their work.

Seniors that will read from their work include: Chelsea Browning-Bohannah, of Hamden, Conn.; Breanna DeLuca, of Rehoboth, Mass.; Zoe Estrin-Grele, of Putney, Vt.; Joana Hill, of Lincoln; Renald Lefebvre, of Lewiston; Connor Lofink, of Brookfield, Conn.; Katie Marshall, of Dover Foxcroft; Kelsey Moore, of Avon, Conn.; Tyler Noyes, of Farmington; and Alison Osborne, of Medway, Mass.

Graduates of the distinctive UMF creative writing program go on to graduate school or work as editors, journalists, filmmakers, educators, published authors and in the fields of graphic design, marketing and many others. The senior reading is sponsored by the UMF Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program.

More Information on the UMF Creative Writing Program

As the only Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program in the state of Maine and one of only three in all of New England, the UMF program invites students to work with faculty, who are practicing writers, in workshop-style classes to discover and develop their writing strengths in the genres of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. Small classes, an emphasis on individual conferencing, and the development of a writing portfolio allow students to see themselves as artists and refine their writing under the guidance of accomplished and published faculty mentors. Students can pursue internships to gain real-world writing and publishing experience by working on campus with The Beloit Poetry Journal, a distinguished poetry publication since 1950; or Alice James Books, an award-winning poetry publishing house.

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Media Contact: Pat O’Donnell, UMF professor of English, at 207-778-7419, or podonnel@maine.edu

UMF President Foster Welcomes the Community to President’s Open House, Dec. 14

FARMINGTON, ME (December 3, 2012)—Kathryn A. Foster, University of Maine at Farmington president, is pleased to welcome the community to the “President’s Open House” on Friday, Dec. 14, from 4-7 p.m., at the UMF President’s House at 104 Lake Ave., Farmington.

Foster looks forward to the seasonal event and creating new opportunities to broaden and enrich the University’s connection with the community. “UMF and the greater Farmington community share a long, rich history of partnership and collaboration,” said Foster. “I am honored to be in a position where we can build on that together and am excited about welcoming the community to campus during this festive time of year.”

The event marks the first public use of the UMF President’s House since its acquisition by the University in 2000. The 1950’s building was recently renovated to make it reception-ready, ADA accessible according to the Americans with Disabilities Act and to bring it into compliance with state and federal rules and regulations regarding building safety.

Holiday refreshments, generously provided by an anonymous donor, will be served.

More on University of Maine at Farmington

A nationally-recognized liberal arts college, UMF enjoys a nearly 150-year tradition of providing a quality academic experience combined with the personal attention and close student / faculty collaboration that helps prepare all students to be successful. Rooted in a tradition of teacher preparation, UMF offers top quality programs in the arts and sciences, teacher preparation, and pre-professional studies. UMF is located in the heart of Maine’s four-season outdoor recreational region and is a welcoming, close-knit academic community that prepares students for engaged citizenship, enriching professional careers and an enduring love of learning.

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UMF Announces Craig Larrabee to Help Lead 150th Anniversary Celebration

Craig Larrabee and Kathryn A. Foster

Left to right: Craig Larrabee, president and CEO of Jobs for Maine’s Graduates, and Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president, co-chairs of UMF 150th Anniversary committee.

FARMINGTON, ME (November 30, 2012)—Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president, is pleased to announce the appointment of Craig Larrabee—UMF alumnus and president and CEO of Jobs for Maine’s Graduates—as the new co-chair of the committee to oversee the upcoming yearlong celebration of the University of Maine at Farmington’s 150th anniversary. UMF received its charter establishing it as the first center for public higher education in Maine on October 9, 1863, and is planning to kick off the commemorative series of events in fall 2013.

“We are so excited to have Craig join us in this leadership role for what is going to be a spectacular year of celebration, remembrance and promise for UMF,” said Foster. “Craig has a talent for bringing the best people and ideas together and we are proud to have his support in this historic effort.”

A graduate of the UMF class of 1992, Larrabee has served for 20 years with JMG—a statewide, private, nonprofit program that provides drop-out prevention and school-to-work transition services for at-risk youth. Larrabee joined JMG in 1993 and was named director of operations in 1999, executive vice president in 2002, and president and CEO in 2005. Under his leadership, JMG seeks to make learning “relevant, rigorous and rooted in strong relationships” in schools across Maine where it helps 95 percent of its students graduate from high school.

In addition to his work with JMG, Larrabee is a member of the Juvenile Justice Implementation Council, the Department of Labor’s Maine Jobs Council and chairs the Youth Transitions Committee of that Council. In 2010, he received the UMF Alumni Achievement Award, an accolade that honors a graduate who has achieved distinction in his/her field, and therefore honor to the University. He is also currently a member of the UMF Alumni Council.

Looking forward to UMF’s sesquicentennial celebration, Larrabee is appreciative of the opportunity to give back to his alma mater. “It’s a true honor to be involved with this significant milestone for UMF,” said Larrabee. “It’s going to be an exciting year.”

More on University of Maine at Farmington

A nationally-recognized liberal arts college, UMF enjoys a nearly 150-year tradition of providing a quality academic experience combined with the personal attention and close student / faculty collaboration that helps prepare all students to be successful. Rooted in a tradition of teacher preparation, UMF offers top quality programs in the arts and sciences, teacher preparation, and pre-professional studies. UMF is located in the heart of Maine’s four-season outdoor recreational region and is a welcoming, close-knit academic community that prepares students for engaged citizenship, enriching professional careers and an enduring love of learning.

 

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2012/11/RP123-025.jpg

Photo Credit: UMF photo

UMF President Foster Connects with Community

UMF_President_Kate_Foster_4198On a recent visit to the neighboring Oxford Hills community, Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president, had the opportunity to see firsthand the strong relationships that exist between UMF and the region. She toured the Oxford Hills School District, which employs 70 teachers who graduated from UMF, and also touted how UMF can be a resource for students with many professional interests. As reported in the Advertiser Democrat, Foster is anxious to build new connections between the University and Maine communities and sees where UMF programs can, “help prepare students to better Maine’s future.”

Advertiser Democrat

University of Maine at Farmington Creates Financial Literacy Program to Help Students Manage Debt

FARMINGTON, ME (November 15, 2012)—While investing in a college education brings a lifetime of benefits, including an increase in earning power and a decrease in the likelihood of experiencing unemployment—according to the U.S. Department of Labor—it still presents the real possibility of many students having to take out loans for the first time in their lives, for which many are ill-prepared. That is why the University of Maine at Farmington has created the UMF Campaign for Financial Literacy, a new financial literacy outreach program—by students, for students—to help educate students and recent graduates on how to take control of their financial futures.

“It’s important for today’s student to understand how to invest in their education and their future in a responsible and balanced way,” said Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president. “We are very excited about UMF’s new financial literacy program and how it provides students with the knowledge, tools and support that can help them make informed, common-sense decisions about their finances.”

The UMF Campaign for Financial Literacy program was created through the office of financial aid to provide students with personalized money management strategies, financial education resources and debt management guidance that they can use as a foundation to make good financial decisions. The pilot program was developed, in large part, by recent graduate and financial aid counselor Michael Angelides, of Columbia, Conn., in his current position and while a student intern in the office of financial aid.

Working with Ronald Milliken, UMF director of financial aid, Angelides observed that students needed an easy, peer-to-peer, systematic approach to financial management. One that would make it easier for students to understand how to control the amount of debt they were accumulating, how to maximize the amount of money they were saving, and how to be prepared for the repayment phase of their loans after graduation.

“By working one-on-one with students we are able to provide a customized approach that helps students understand their own personal financial picture,” said Angelides. “Our goal is to provide a holistic approach to personal money management from the moment they become students at UMF right through their graduation and loan repayment process.”

The program employs six trained student interns to reach out to students and graduates one-on-one at educational workshops, online and at open-to-the-public sessions. These peer financial assistants are prepared for their work with the program by following the curriculum set out by Angelides’ work with the office of financial aid. They study debt management and default prevention strategies in addition to becoming familiar with various loan programs, lenders and repayment plans available to students.

In addition, training is supported on an ongoing basis by UMF faculty, staff and alumni and collaborative workshops and free financial education resources provided by Mary Dyer, financial education specialist with the Finance Authority of Maine.

“UMF is fairly unique in Maine to have a peer-to-peer program that educates college students on money and debt management,” said Dyer. “Peer-based financial education programs have proven to be very effective in empowering students to make the kind of good decisions that can put them in a better financial position upon graduation. UMF has taken a very innovative approach and we are looking forward to continuing our work with them on their program.”

UMF students interested in learning more can sign up for a one-on-one informational meeting, come to an on-campus presentation, or visit finaidumf.wordpress.com. An online presentation entitled “Budgeting as a college student” has been created by the UMF Campaign for Financial Literacy and is available on their website and on the innovative white board website Prezi.com, where the UMF program has been featured on the site’s homepage and currently has more than 49,000 views.

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UMF Grad Named Maine Occupational Therapist of the Year

Michelle MichaudMichelle Michaud, UMF 2005 graduate and occupational therapist for the Auburn School Department, was just named Maine’s Occupational Therapist of the Year according to an article in the Sun Journal. Michaud works with many young children in the Fairview and Walton schools who are in need of early intervention, fine motor and handwriting skills. Her husband, Jesse, a 2006 UMF graduate, was named Maine’s Occupational Therapist of the Year in 2011.

Sun Journal

UMF Visiting Writers Series Presents Reading by Susan Conley, Maine Author and Co-Founder of The Telling Room—Nov. 15

FARMINGTON, ME (November 9, 2012)—The University of Maine at Farmington Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program is proud to present Maine author Susan Conley as the next writer in the 2012-13 Visiting Writers Series. Conley will read from her work at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 15, in The Landing in the UMF Olsen Student Center. This event is free and open to the public and will be followed by a signing by the author.Susan Conley

A native of Maine, Conley is a non-fiction writer, novelist and poet. Her recent nonfiction book, “The Foremost Good Fortune,” is her debut memoir in which she writes about her and her family’s two-year experience living in a high-rise apartment in Beijing. Their lives change in Beijing with many daunting experiences including when Conley learns she has breast cancer. Peggy Orenstein of the New York Times Magazine calls “The Foremost Good Fortune” “a treasure…one that explores the meaning of our lives, the meaning of motherhood, the meaning of partnership.”

The Daily Beast and Livestrong.org published excerpts from the book. It was picked as a Top Ten Pick for February by O, The Oprah Magazine, and it was chosen to be “Book of the Week” in early March by Slate Magazine. Her other writings have been published in The Paris Review, The Harvard Review, The Massachusetts Review, The Gettysburg Review, The North American Review, Ploughshares as well as others. She is currently finishing writing a fiction novel.

Conley received her B.A. from Middlebury College and her M.F.A. in creative writing from San Diego State University. She taught poetry and literature at Emerson College, but eventually moved back to Portland, Maine where she co-founded and served as the executive director of The Telling Room—a nonprofit creative writing center for students ages 6-18.

More Information on the UMF Creative Writing Program

As the only Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program in the state of Maine and one of only three in all of New England, the UMF program invites students to work with faculty, who are practicing writers, in workshop-style classes to discover and develop their writing strengths in the genres of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction. Small classes, an emphasis on individual conferencing, and the development of a writing portfolio allow students to see themselves as artists and refine their writing under the guidance of accomplished and published faculty mentors. Students can pursue internships to gain real-world writing and publishing experience by working on campus with The Beloit Poetry Journal, a distinguished poetry publication since 1950; or Alice James Books, an award-winning poetry publishing house.

 

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Media Contact: Jeffrey Thomson, UMF associate professor of creative writing, at 207-778-7454, or jeffrey.thomson@maine.edu.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2012/11/RP123-023.jpg

Photo Credit: Submitted photo

UMF Brings Tour of Two-Story Globe to Geographers and Students with Regional Geography Conference

RP123-022

Geographers, educators and students tour Earth, inside and out, at UMF hosted geography conference.

FARMINGTON, ME (November 5, 2012)—More than 80 geographers and their students from across New England and Quebec recently gathered at the University of Maine at Farmington—and literally brought the world with them. Participants convened at UMF for the annual New England–St. Lawrence Valley Geographical Society Conference that included hands-on geography lessons with “Earth View,” a 22-foot inflatable globe; the regional World Geography Bowl competition; an academic paper and poster session and a discussion on sustainability science.

As part of the conference, faculty and students from Bridgewater State University led more than 200 students and educators from local schools and UMF faculty through a series of lessons and exercises with “Earth View’ to be able to “see the world in its entirety.” The two-story-tall inflatable globe’s outside is a hand-painted large-scale map of the Earth’s surface, while the interior—which participants can enter and experience first-hand—reveals tectonic plate boundaries and ocean spreading centers. “Earth View” was unveiled by Bridgewater State University in 2008 as a traveling teaching tool that could help teach students about plate tectonics, global cultures, biogeography, political geography and climate change.

Six teams competed in the World Geography Bowl with Clark University from Worcester, Mass., taking first place and Salem State University, from Salem, Mass., taking second. 30 student and faculty papers and poster sessions were presented throughout the day.

In the Emery Community Arts Center Performance Space at UMF, Robert Kates, a geographer, independent scholar and co-convener of the Initiative on Science and Technology for Sustainability, reflected on a long career as a geographer.  Kates and Matthew McCourt, UMF associate professor of geography, engaged in a wide ranging discussion about the sustainability science and the role of academics in forming public policy.

Cathleen McAnneny, UMF professor of geography, who has worked with NESTVAL in many capacities for 18 years, was recognized with the organization’s Distinguished Service Award. “I am thrilled to receive this award and equally pleased to be able to help bring eye-opening educational opportunities like this to our local community,” said McAnneny. “It isn’t every day students can take a tour of the Earth, inside and out, to better understand the science of how our planet works.”

Margaret Chernosky, a teacher from Bangor High School who teaches geography, advanced placement geography and GIS was recognized by UMF as a Friend of Geography.  Noted as a national leader in high school GIS education, Chernosky has created materials that have been used in nationwide curricula. Her students have created maps that appear on the Esri community atlas website and their projects have won several awards from Maine GIS user groups.

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Media Contact: Cathleen McAnneny, UMF professor of geography, 207-778-7443, or mcanneny@maine.edu
EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2012/11/RP123-022.jpg

Photo Credit: Submitted photo

UMF Names Pete Lefresne as Interim Sports Information Director

FARMINGTON, ME (November 1, 2012)—University of Maine at Farmington Director of Athletics, Fitness and Recreation Julie Davis is pleased to announce that Peter Lefresne has been named as the interim UMF sports information director. Lefresne comes to the university from Juniata College in Pennsylvania where he served for five years as an assistant athletic director, sports information director and public relations contact.Peter Lefresne

“We are very excited to have Pete join the UMF athletics team,” said Davis. “He brings years of experience and knowledge in promoting NCAA Division III athletics in concert with the mission of University. During his 20-year career, he has worked throughout the communications field and brings an in-depth understanding of promoting university athletics through traditional, print, web and social media. We look forward to how Pete’s skills and ideas will continue to help showcase the quality of a UMF education and our remarkable athletics programs.”

At Juniata, Lefresne cultivated close working relationships with local, regional and national media outlets and helped develop media strategies to increase public awareness of University athletics programs. He also helped implement a number of new initiatives, including a redesign of the school’s athletics logo and the development of a new athletics website. Prior to his work at Juniata, Lefresne worked in sports information at the University of Maine, Old Dominion University and Virginia Military Institute.

A priority for Lefresne at UMF will be continuing to build on the University’s use of new technology for sports information.  He is also looking forward to interacting with student athletes and communicating who they are and what they are involved in beyond their athletics interests. “The really neat thing about Division III is that it encourages student-athletes to take full advantage of everything available to them in their college experience,” said Lefresne. “It’s a lot of fun to tell the stories of young men and women who have a range of academic and personal interests and for whom athletics is but one part of their own UMF experience.”

Originally from Ottawa, Ontario, Lefresne received his BA from Old Dominion University in Virginia.

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For more information, please contact UMF Director of Athletics, Fitness & Recreation Julie Davis at 207-778-7264, or jadavis@maine.edu.


EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2012/11/RP123-020.jpg
Photo Credit: UMF photo