Education Notes: Nov. 9

November 9, 2011 


■ A dietetic entrepreneur and an education leader are the two newest inductees into the University of Kentucky School of Human Environmental Sciences Hall of Fame.

Carolyn Workman Breeding and Betty Jean Brannan were honored for their years of dedication to the betterment of their professions, local communities and the school during a recognition ceremony Oct. 28, at the Hilary J. Boone Center on UK's campus.

Breeding received both bachelor's and master's degrees at UK, then began work as a corporate dietitian for the EPI Corp., which operates a chain of nursing homes in Kentucky. After 15 years at EPI, she started Dietary Consultants. Over the years, she's added and acquired companies focusing on long-term care and dietetics, including Quality Provider Services, Breeding and Associates, and NAPA Health Care Connection. Her businesses employ 50 registered dieticians.

Brannan spent 36 years promoting the fields of home economics and family and consumer sciences as an educator and administrator. She was the first dean of the College of Home Economics at the University of Kentucky.

■ Eastern Kentucky University senior Nan Campbell, of Elizabethtown, has earned a first-place award at the National Collegiate Honors Council Conference for her poster.

Campbell claimed top honors in the Environmental Science and Green Technology category for "Assessing Pollinator Food Sources and Phenology on Eastern Kentucky University's Campus." The conference was held in Phoenix, Ariz., Oct. 19-23.

EKU's unofficial student beekeeper, Campbell has played an important role in the university's initiative to promote beekeeping as a means to reclaim surface mine sites while also contributing critical data to a NASA project dealing with the relationship between flowering plants, bees and global warming.

This summer, Campbell completed a prestigious internship with the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C., where she worked with the Victory and Heirloom specialty gardens at the National Museum of American History, Behring Center, which features the largest turf and tree area of all the Smithsonian gardens located on the National Mall.

■ The Fayette County Public Schools' Child Nutrition Office was among those invited to a recent White House reception celebrating the resurgence of the HealthierUS School Challenge. Director Michelle Coker and coordinator Marty Flynn attended the South Lawn event, hosted by first lady Michelle Obama.

A voluntary initiative established in 2004, the challenge recognizes participants in the National School Lunch Program that have created healthier environments by promoting nutrition and physical activity.

All elementaries in FCPS have met the "gold standard" menu criteria since the spring of 2008. Schools that had meal participation greater than 70 percent were recognized at the gold level and those below 70 percent participation were noted as bronze.

The challenge is a cornerstone of the first lady's "Let's Move" campaign, which urges the nation to raise a healthier generation of children. Obama's goal to double the number of enrolled schools within a year has already been surpassed; now more than 1,600 schools nationwide are certified in the U.S. Department of Agriculture program.

■ The University of Kentucky debate team took home the varsity division championship from the Vanderbilt Debate Tournament held Oct. 14-16 at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. This was the first varsity win in over a decade for UK debate. The team of Billy Woika and Charlie Cavalier beat two teams from Georgia, a team from Emory, and a team from Wayne State in elimination rounds to win the tournament. They also had a 5-1 record in the preliminary debates to place them as the third overall seed heading into the elimination rounds.

■ University of Kentucky history professor and French Revolution scholar Jeremy Popkin has been named one of six finalists for the 2011 Cundill Prize in History for his recent publication of You Are All Free: The Haitian Revolution and the Abolition of Slavery.

Popkin will compete for the world's largest nonfiction history book award, which offers the winning author a $75,000 grand prize.

Popkin's You Are All Free, released by Cambridge University Press in September 2010, provides a gripping historical account of the Haitian Revolution and the abolition of slavery in the now disaster-torn country.

The grand prize winner will be announced Nov. 13 at an awards ceremony in London.

■ The Kentucky Science Teachers Association honored Brian Radcliffe, with the University of Kentucky Tracy Farmer Institute for Sustainability and the Environment, with a Distinguished Service Award during its annual conference Nov. 4. The association honored Radcliffe for his career as a science educator.

Radcliffe has spent more than 30 years teaching K-12 students about science, most recently as a part-time program instructor with the Tracy Farmer Institute. In this position, he leads, teaches and advises K-12 students and teachers as they conduct community-based science projects.

Prior to joining the institute, he was a science teacher for Fayette County Public Schools, spending 24 of his 28 years at Bryan Station High School.

■ Biology professor David Westneat from the University of Kentucky's College of Arts & Sciences has received a grant from the National Science Foundation, guaranteeing 10 weeks of research to 10 undergraduate students at UK's Ecological Research Facility or Griffith Woods beginning next summer.

UK biologists, along with researchers from the College of Agriculture and the College of Education will host an annual 10-week summer program for undergraduate research on suburban ecology and invasive species.

Beginning next summer, students will be recruited from across the United States, and matched to faculty mentors who are conducting research on a wide variety of invasive species over a range of urban and rural environments.

Students can expect to study everything from house sparrows, to Japanese honeysuckle, from the backyard to the farm. Students will be exposed to the full spectrum of a research project, including the underlying ecological theory, the formulation of hypotheses, the design of experiments, the analyses of data and the write up for publication.

The NSF grant is for $300,000 from 2011-14 and will fund 10 students over 10 weeks each summer from 2012-14.

■ This fall several area students received $1,000 scholarships from the Burger King Scholars program. More than $1.4 million was awarded nationwide and throughout parts of Canada in the company's 11th year of the program.

The following area students received scholarships: Robert Richardson, Nelson County High School, Bardstown; Jacqueline Nelson, Taylor County High School, Campbellsville; Emily Rogers, Central Hardin High School, Cecilia; Eric Evans, Boyle County High School, Danville; Ty'rell Bradshaw, John Hardin High School, Elizabethtown; Lauren Humpert, Saint Henry District High School, Erlanger; Whitney Gaines, Western Hills High School, Frankfort; Danielle Harris, Scott County High School, Georgetown; Todd Pedigo, Glasgow High School, Glasgow; David Roach, Lexington Christian Academy, Lexington; Derrick Dankwa, Tates Creek High School, Lexington; Morgan Miles, Newport Central Catholic, Newport.


Anderson County High School became the first non-New York metro area school to participate in The 9/12 Generation Project, which is a 10-year youth service-learning initiative launched by the New York Says Thank You Foundation, the nation's leading direct volunteer service organization on the 9/11 anniversary.

The 9/12 Generation Project's mission is to inspire, educate, and activate 1.5 million middle and high school students in measurable volunteer service projects focused on disaster relief, community revitalization, and the arts.

Five-hundred Anderson County High School students viewed the feature length documentary film New York Says Thank You, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in April and then participated in a discussion about volunteerism, service-learning and community revitalization with New York Says Thank You staff and volunteers.

Transylvania University students in Allison Harnish's anthropology course, "Africa: Peoples and Cultures" will make community service part of their college course work. They have teamed up with International Book Project to collect books and monetary donations to send more than 3,000 books to a rural community in Zambia, a country located in southern Africa.

Harnish, who is currently a doctoral candidate in anthropology at the University of Kentucky, visited Zambia as part of her graduate studies. While there, she observed the lack of resources in Zambia's few schools, particularly in the communities of Habulungu and Nkandanzovu. "Students carried out their school day on the floor and teachers scrawled vocabulary words, math problems and homework assignments directly onto concrete walls," said Harnish.

For more information about the Lexington-based IBP, visit


■ As part of the Humana Library Lecture series, Centre College will host Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Strout at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in Weisiger Theatre on Centre's campus. Strout, author of Olive Kitteridge, Abide With Me and Amy and Isabelle, will read from her new, unpublished novel and from other works. The event is free and open to the public.

Kim Edwards, Lexington resident and New York Times bestselling author of The Memory Keeper's Daughter and The Lake of Dreams, will be the featured speaker at the annual Friends of the Eastern Kentucky University Libraries dinner on Nov. 18.

The event will begin at 6 p.m. in the Grand Reading Room of the John Grant Crabbe Main Library and will be followed by a dessert reception with the author in the Noel Studio for Academic Creativity.

The cost is $35 per person, and includes dinner and a signed copy of The Lake of Dreams. Reservations may be made through Nov. 14 by contacting Krista Rhodus at or (859) 622-1072.

■ The next lecture in Eastern Kentucky University's Chautauqua Lecture Series, "Living with Others: Challenges and Promises," will feature philosopher and law and ethics professor Martha Nussbaum.

Nussbaum, the Ernst Freund Distinguished Service Professor of Law and Ethics at the University of Chicago, will present "Not for Profit: Why Democracy Needs the Humanities" at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 10 in O'Donnell Hall, the Student Success Building auditorium. The presentation is free and open to the public.

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