Campus briefs


Nominations sought for staff representative on police oversight panel

Nominations for the union staff representative position on the university’s Police Department Oversight Committee are open through April 6. Nominations are open for staff members in the AFSCME, HOA, IUOE, MNA/UMPNC, Skilled Trades, and UPAMM unions. The Police Department Oversight Committee considers grievances against any police officer or the U-M Police Department. It reports its findings and recommendations to the executive director of the Division of Public Safety and Security. The six-member committee includes two student members, two faculty members (one Senate faculty and one non-Senate faculty), and two staff members (one union and one non-union representative), who are nominated and elected by their peers to serve two-year terms. University Human Resources is conducting this election May 1-14. Members of the AFSCME, HOA, IUOE, MNA/UMPNC, Skilled Trades, and UPAMM unions may nominate themselves or another union staff member to serve on the committee for a two-year term beginning in June. Nominations will be accepted through April 6 at More information on the Police Department Oversight Committee is available at

Campus Memorial to honor students who died in the past year

Friends, family members and campus partners are invited to attend a memorial program to honor the lives and accomplishments of student members of the U-M community who have died during this past year. The Campus Memorial is scheduled for 2 p.m. April 10 in the Hussey Room of the Michigan League. A light reception will follow on the League’s second-floor concourse. The Michigan experience has been forever impacted by the companionship and contributions of those being honored, and the end of the academic year is a fitting time to offer remembrances and commemorations. Ten students will be remembered this year. The Campus Memorial is sponsored by the Division of Student Life and the Association of Religious Counselors.

UM-Flint now featuring 14 gender-inclusive restrooms throughout campus

In a continuing effort to extend its commitment to diversity, equality and inclusion, UM-Flint has unveiled more than a dozen gender-inclusive restrooms and an inclusive locker room thanks to advocacy by its students, faculty and staff. “Having restrooms that are inclusive and offer menstrual products in those restrooms are concrete ways we can show our campus is inclusive in practice and that we take the concerns of our students seriously,” said Samara Hough, director of UM-Flint’s Center for Gender and Sexuality. The restrooms are located in French Hall, UM-Flint Theatre, Murchie Science Building, Northbank Center, Recreation Center (with gender-inclusive locker room), Riverfront Conference Center and University Center. “We want to ensure that all students on our campus are able to study and live authentically without judgment regardless of their gender identity,” Hough said. Read more about gender inclusivity at UM-Flint.

MBGNA collections get new life as recycled materials, biofuels

Researchers and staff from the University of Michigan, Eastern Michigan University, Duke University, and 374Water recently won a grant to turn Matthaei Botanical Gardens’ trash into treasure. The team received $200,000 to fund research on how to convert lawn, garden, and food waste from Matthaei Botanical Gardens into valuable products as well as heat and energy for the gardens’ facilities. The project was funded as part of the Graham Sustainability Institute’s Carbon Neutrality Acceleration Program. The project is led by Margaret Wooldridge, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor; Walter J. Weber Jr. Professor of Sustainable Energy, Environmental and Earth Systems Engineering; and professor of mechanical engineering and of aerospace engineering in the College of Engineering. It aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by preventing organic waste from going to landfills, where it then rots and emits greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane. Wooldridge’s team plans to upcycle that waste into useful products like acetone, packaging fibers, fertilizers, biofuels or heat for Matthaei’s facilities. Read more about this project at

Build on community strengths to prevent suicide in rural Alaska, research says

While suicide is a dire public health problem in rural Alaska, building on the strength of Alaska Natives’ family ties and the value they place on providing safe environments for young people may be more effective for preventing deaths than emphasizing the risks firearms pose in the home. New research led by Lisa Wexler, a community-based participatory researcher based at the School of Social Work and the Research Center for Group Dynamics at the Institute for Social Research, said the basic approach of U-M’s Family Safety Net project uses motivational interviewing to connect with adult family members and offer them resources like ammo boxes, gun safes and locks, along with tailored text reminders to keep loved ones safe by locking and unloading home firearms and storing ammo separately. Read more about this research.

Compiled by James Iseler, The University Record


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