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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 VP Celeste Branham Named Fulbright Scholar

F. Celeste Branham, University of Maine at Farmington vice president for student and community RP123-074services, has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright Scholarship for study in Germany this fall. As reported in the Morning Sentinel, Branham is one of only 20 higher education administrators in the United States selected to participate in the joint German-American Fulbright program. Branham will spend the first half of the program in Berlin studying internships, an important part of their higher education experience. Following her work in Berlin, Branham will travel to different Universities throughout Germany, ending her study in Strasbourg, France. “I know this exceptional program of study will inform the work we do in UMF’s Partnership for Civic Advancement and will be directly beneficial to our students,” said Branham.

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UMF Launches New Mobile-Optimized Website

FARMINGTON, ME (June 27, 2013)—More and more people use mobile devices to access the internet, and the University of Maine at Farmington has launched a new website that helps optimize that experience.

RP123-076The new website, still located at www.umf.maine.edu , was launched on June 10, 2013, and provides not only a new look, but also an improved user experience, regardless of how people access the web. The new responsive design allows the viewers’ browser to determine how the page is displayed making it easily viewed with desktops, smart phones and any type of mobile device.

Redesigned with a contemporary style, the new UMF website is easier to read and navigate. The updated content is clear, concise and straightforward and speaks to a wide range of audiences, including prospective students, their families, alumni, the campus community and the general public. Additionally, a new full-screen format fills the entire browser window with accessible content that is viewable at any screen resolution.

“Other than a personal visit to campus, a college’s website is often the best opportunity members of the public have to learn about everything a college has to offer,” said Kelly Dodge, UMF vice president of university advancement. “UMF has a long history of providing excellence in public higher education, and we wanted to make sure that the information about our programs, faculty and student services is easy to navigate and equally accessible to everyone.”

The effort was led by UMF marketing staff that developed the structure, design, content and navigation along with UMF information technology staff that provided technical expertise throughout the process. The development of the new site also took into account input from several external focus groups, UMF students, faculty and staff and independent web analytics.

Working in consultation with the University, Aptuitiv, a Farmington-based website design and development business that has served a broad-based clientele since 2004, provided the technical execution of the new website.  www.aptuitiv.com  Much of their work was spent designing and building the mobile experience of the website, developing the code for the new website and optimizing the images.

Websites the size and scope of UMF’s are continually evolving. Over the next several months, UMF will be making adjustments to the new site and looking at some possible new features for the next phase of the process.

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/2013/06/RP123-076.jpg

Photo Credit: UMF photo

UMF Vice President Named Fulbright Scholar

RP123-074FARMINGTON, ME (June 20, 2013)—F. Celeste Branham, University of Maine at Farmington vice president for student and community services, has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright Scholarship for study in Germany this fall. Branham is one of only 20 higher education administrators in the United States selected to participate in the joint German-American Fulbright program.

“We are delighted that Celeste has received this great honor. She enjoys the highest respect at UMF, not just for her strong intellect and deep knowledge of higher education, but also for her extraordinary character,” said Kathryn A. Foster, UMF president. “We expect that she will make the most of this unique opportunity and bring back new understandings and approaches that will greatly benefit UMF, particularly our blossoming Partnership for Civic Advancement.”

According to the Fulbright Commission, the 2013 Fulbright Seminars for U.S. Administrators in International Education are “designed to introduce participants to the society, culture and higher education systems in France, Germany, United Kingdom, India, Japan or Korea through campus visits, meetings with foreign colleagues and government officials, attendance at cultural events and briefings on education. Participants gain new perspective on the need to internationalize U.S. campuses and insight into how it can be done.”

Branham will spend the first half of the program in Berlin, followed by travel to different Universities throughout Germany, and ending her study in Strasbourg, France.

“I am truly honored to be named a Fulbright scholar and delighted to be able to study in a focused way the German higher education apprenticeship program,” said Branham. “I know this exceptional program of study will inform the work we do in UMF’s Partnership for Civic Advancement and will be directly beneficial to our students.”

The Partnership for Civic Advancement is a center that collaborates with regional businesses and organizations to provide “real-world” learning opportunities for students that complement their course of study at UMF, and at the same time meet priority needs and strategic community development goals in Farmington and beyond.

For the last 8 years, Branham has overseen 12 student affairs areas at UMF concerned with the welfare and success of students and has been a member of the University’s leadership team. Branham is director of the UMF Partnership for Civic Advancement. She is also currently President of the Western Maine Community Action Board of Directors and a gubernatorial appointee to the Maine Commission for Community Service.

Branham earned a bachelor’s degree from University of Southern Maine, a master’s degree from the University of Massachusetts in public administration and has since received certifications for leadership studies at the Harvard JFK School of Government and higher education management at the Harvard School of Education.

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2013/06/RP123-074.jpg

Photo Credit: UMF photo

UMF President Foster Shares Her Thoughts on TideSmart Portland Radio Talk Show

Foster on TideSmart ShowKate Foster, 14th president of the University of Maine at Farmington, introduces herself and shares some reflections on her first year at UMF with host Steve Woods on the TideSmart Talk radio show on WLOB-1310 AM.

TideSmart Radio Talk Show

UMF Faculty Member and Maine Author Andrew Barton Receives 2013 Maine Literary Award

FARMINGTON, ME (June 12, 2013)—Andrew M. Barton, University of Maine at Farmington professorAndrew Barton of biology, researcher and Maine author, was recently named a 2013 Maine Literary Award winner by the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance.

Barton’s 2012 work “The Changing Nature of the Maine Woods,” in collaboration with Alan S. White and Charles V. Cogbill, was awarded the John N. Cole Award for Maine-Themed Nonfiction.  A detailed but accessible introduction to the forests of Maine, the book assesses key ecological forces in the past, present and future and explores how and why Maine forests differ across the state.

According to the MWPA, 110 books were entered into the 2013 competition in 11 categories. In addition, 60 manuscripts were submitted into the award’s Short Works Competition and more than 50 Maine students submitted work to the Youth Competition.

Book-The Changing Nature of the Maine WoodsA long-time faculty member at UMF, Barton teaches biology with an emphasis on forest ecology, conservation and environmental science. In addition to his role as a faculty member and researcher, he also serves as faculty coordinator for the University’s Sustainable Campus Coalition—a collaborative group of campus and community members that promotes environmental sustainability.

The 2013 Maine Literary Awards competition was supported by Down East magazine, the John N. Cole family, Just Write Books, Longfellow Books, Maine Authors Publishing & Cooperative, Maine Poets Society, North40Creative and the University of Southern Maine Bookstore.

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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Media Contact:  Andrew Barton, UMF professor of biology, at 207-778-7397, or barton@maine.edu
EDITOR’S NOTE: Photos can be found at:

http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2013/06/RP123-073A.jpg

http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2013/06/RP123-073B.jpg
Photo Credit: Submitted photos

Innovative Hybrid Master’s Program Graduates First Class

Fifteen early-childhood educators from across Maine were the first graduates to recently receive their master’s degrees RP123-072newsfrom University of Maine at Farmington’s innovative new hybrid online Master of Science in Education – Early Childhood degree program, according to an article in the Daily Bulldog. The hybrid online program not only provides educators with the flexibility of online learning for about 70 percent of the time, but also brings students together about 30 percent of the time for face-to-face learning. This blended model gives educators in the field the flexibility they need when working full time while also helping to build a close network of professional colleagues. “The early childhood educators in this first graduating class come from towns all over Maine,” said Katherine Yardley, UMF associate provost and dean of education. “The program was designed especially for those working professionals around the state who are interested in the next stage of their education but need the flexibility that a hybrid online delivery can offer.”

Daily Bulldog

Innovative New UMF Hybrid Online Master’s Program Graduates First Class

FARMINGTON, ME (June 4, 2013)—Fifteen early-childhood educators from across Maine were the first RP123-072graduates to recently receive their master’s degrees from University of Maine at Farmington’s innovative new hybrid online Master of Science in Education – Early Childhood degree program.

The UMF program was created to help educators working in the field have access to a quality graduate educational opportunity while still offering them the flexibility that an online program can provide. It is the only master’s program in early-childhood education offered solely by a Maine institution. Seventy percent of the UMF program is offered online.

“The early childhood educators in this first graduating class come from towns all over Maine,” said Katherine Yardley, UMF associate provost and dean of education. “The program was designed especially for those working professionals around the state who are interested in the next stage of their education but need the flexibility that a hybrid online delivery can offer.”

The hybrid online program not only provides educators with the flexibility of online learning, but also brings students together about 30 percent of the time for face-to-face learning. This blended model gives educators in the field the flexibility they need when working fulltime while also helping to build a close network of professional colleagues.

Sarah Gray, recent graduate of the program from Fryeburg, received her bachelor’s degree from UMF and was excited to hear they were offering a flexible master’s program. “I was thrilled to find out that UMF’s master’s program was going to be a hybrid program. I love teaching, but also wanted to get my masters. I didn’t think it was going to be possible unless I took time off from teaching until I learned about this program at UMF.”

UMF’s Early Childhood master’s degree program was developed specifically to contribute to the professional growth of those educators who work with children ages birth through 8. The program can be completed in two to four years, with courses being offered during summer, fall and spring terms.

This postgraduate degree is especially valuable to educators who aspire to a variety of early childhood leadership roles such as adult educators in higher education, trainers, classroom teachers, program administrators, policy advocates and curriculum specialists.

Early childhood professionals interested in the program can learn more at http://masters.umf.maine.edu/ms-ed-in-early-childhood/. Applications for UMF’s Master of Science in Education – Early Childhood degree program and Master of Science in Education – Educational Leadership degree program are available online and will be reviewed on an ongoing basis.

For additional information on UMF’s master’s programs, please send your inquiries to umfmasters@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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Media contacts: Katherine Yardley, UMF associate provost and dean of education, at 207-778-7154, or kyardley@maine.edu

 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Photo can be found at http://inside.umf.maine.edu/files/2013/06/RP123-072.jpg

Photo Credit: UMF photo

Photo Caption: Fifteen early-childhood educators from across Maine were the first graduates to recently receive their master’s degrees from University of Maine at Farmington’s innovative new hybrid online Master of Science in Education – Early Childhood degree program.

UMF Announces Appointment of New Vice President of University Advancement

RP123-071FARMINGTON, ME (May 28, 2013)—University of Maine at Farmington President Kathryn A. Foster is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Kelly L. Dodge, an accomplished professional with 15 years of fundraising and advancement experience, as the University’s new vice president for university advancement.

The office of university advancement communicates, advocates and builds capacity for UMF’s distinct mission with its many valued constituencies, including the University’s more than 14,000 alumni.

“We are so happy to welcome Kelly to this new and important position for the campus,” said Foster. “He is a proven leader in the field of university advancement, and we are delighted and fortunate to have him bring his knowledge and experience to UMF.”

Dodge, who started his position with UMF on May 13, most recently worked as the dean of institutional advancement with Maine Central Institute, in Pittsfield, where he oversaw the School’s fundraising and alumni affairs operations. Prior to that, he worked more than 10 years at Colby College through successively responsible positions including director of annual giving and major gift officer. Previous to his time at Colby, he spent 15 years in product and strategic marketing in various industries.

“I am so honored to join the UMF community,” said Dodge. “I look forward to working closely with my campus colleagues and the University’s many alumni, friends and community partners. UMF is an outstanding academic institution, and I am excited about helping it continue to grow and succeed.”

While at UMF, Dodge will lead the University’s new advancement division that includes development and fundraising, alumni relations, and external affairs, including marketing and media relations. A member of the President’s Council, he will create and oversee a comprehensive development plan aligned with University goals that will help guide UMF into the future.

Dodge received his B.A. from Colby College and is a member of the Council for Advancement and Support for Education.

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/2013/05/RP123-071.jpg
Photo Credit: UMF photo

UMF Partnership for Civic Advancement Awarded Regional Grant

FARMINGTON, ME (May 24, 2013)—The University of Maine at Farmington’s Partnership for Civic Advancement was recently awarded a $5,000 grant from the Franklin County Fund and the Western Mountains Fund of the Maine Community Foundation.

Launched last spring, the Partnership was developed to strengthen and expand university-community relations through the creation of experiential learning opportunities for students that serve regional needs and priorities, improve student learning outcomes, and through the sharing of University resources and expertise advance sustainable development and steward quality of place in rural western Maine.

Celeste Branham, UMF vice president for student and community services, stated that the grant from the Franklin County Fund and the Western Mountains Fund of the Maine Community Foundation, in addition to providing much needed resources to continue moving the Partnership forward during its critical implementation years, is particularly valued and appreciated because of the support it demonstrates from our regional community for the Partnership’s purpose and efforts to date.

Branham noted that the Partnership’s first year was highly successful by several metrics and very encouraging for its growth in the coming years. Over the course of just three academic semesters, the Partnership has established 39 new community partnerships and, in collaboration with those partners, developed 56 internship opportunities representing community-based work in the arts, marketing, computer technology, political science, government, environmental planning and policy, resource conservation, outdoor recreation, business and government, for example.

Planned through an extensive two-year collaborative process with representatives from the regional community and the campus, the Partnership will include the full range of engagement types when fully implemented, including: internships, undergraduate research, service learning, volunteerism and leadership education and training.

UMF is phasing in program components and growing the program incrementally to make sure that strong organizational systems, as well as external and internal capacities, are developed to support the Partnership’s work effectively over the long-term.

During its initial year of implementation, the Partnership focused on establishing organizational systems and on building a robust internship program. For the upcoming year, the Partnership plans to expand its internship program and initiate efforts to implement the undergraduate research and leadership education and training components of its program.

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Media Contact: Celeste Branham, UMF vice president for student and community services, at 207-778-7087 or cbranham@maine.edu

UMF President Foster Celebrates First Commencement Ceremony

KateThe University of Maine at Farmington awarded 456 diplomas at its 2013 Commencement Ceremony on Saturday, May 18, with new UMF President Kathryn A. Foster presiding. Foster, faculty, administrators and dignitaries led the graduates in a traditional procession to the festive sounds of bagpipes to open the ceremony. According to an article in the Kennebec Journal, William Wegman—pioneering video artist, conceptualist, photographer, painter and writer—delivered the keynote address to UMF graduates and their families, the UMF community and honored guests. The University awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters to Wegman along with Barbara W. Woodlee, recently-retired president of Kennebec Valley Community College and UMF alumna. “I’m thrilled to be a part of this time-honored tradition at UMF,” said Foster. “This is not only a day to celebrate the outstanding work and academic achievements of our students over the course of their time at UMF, but also a time to look ahead to the opportunities that higher education make possible.”

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