Campus briefs


REMINDER: Voices of the Staff accepting applications through March 31

Staff members across the University of Michigan are encouraged to help shape the future of their workplace by applying to join Voices of the Staff. Voices of the Staff is U-M’s long-standing employee-engagement program for staff from Michigan Medicine and every academic campus. It brings together 130 staff members to help drive workplace improvement for all. An example of a recent impact made by the program is the new Career Development Fund for Staff. The fund receives $200,000 annually from the Office of the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer with an initial commitment of five years. To participate, staff members must have at least one year of service, be in good standing and have supervisor support. For more information or to apply by March 31 to join Voices of the Staff.

REMINDER: Deadlines near for diversity awards nominations

Nominations are due March 31 for the James S. Jackson Distinguished Career Award for Diversity Scholarship, and April 3 for the Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Award. The James S. Jackson Award is given biennially to recognize the important scholarly contributions made by a senior faculty member to understanding diversity and addressing disparities in contemporary society. It is named for Jackson, a leading researcher into the life and health of African Americans. Recipients receive an honorarium of $10,000 and deliver a public distinguished lecture or performance. Nominations can come from U-M faculty, staff or students. The Harold R. Johnson Award is named in honor of a dean emeritus of the School of Social Work, and is given to those whose service goes above and beyond their regular duties and contributes to the development of a culturally and ethnically diverse campus community. All regular instructional and research faculty, including librarians, curators and archivists on the Ann Arbor campus, including the Medical School, are eligible for nomination. Links to nomination forms can be found online.

The Convatec Digital Learning Studio creates a 3D environment for online students. (Courtesy of Stephen M. Ross School of Business)
The Convatec Digital Learning Studio creates a 3D environment for online students. (Courtesy of Stephen M. Ross School of Business)

Ross unveils state-of-the-art extended-reality digital education studio

Students in the Online MBA and Executive Education programs at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business are benefiting from a new digital education studio that puts them in a cutting-edge virtual classroom. The Convatec Digital Learning Studio creates a 3D environment where online students become part of a fully engaged classroom community. The studio features graphics technology similar to that found in immersive video games, so that students and the professor feel that they’re truly present together in a virtual classroom. “The new studio does an amazing job of creating an engaging classroom experience, and the technology behind it is intuitive and seamless,” said Patricia Russo, managing director of Part-Time MBA programs and lecturer II of business communication at Ross. For more information about the new studio.

Study shows social media content opens doors for sustainability researchers

With more than half of the world’s population active on social media networks, user-generated data has proved to be fertile ground for social scientists who study attitudes about the environment and sustainability. But several challenges threaten the success of what’s known as social media data science. The primary concern, according to a new study from an international research team, including U-M, is limited access to data resulting from restrictive terms of service, shutdown of platforms, data manipulation, censorship and regulations. The study, published online March 17 in the journal One Earth, is the first known to evaluate the scope of environmental social media research and its potential to transform sustainability science. The 17-member research team analyzed 415 studies, published between 2011 and 2021, that examined social media content related to the environment. For more about the study.

— Compiled by Jeff Bleiler, The University Record


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