RESEARCH - UIC News Center - University of Illinois at Chicago

April 8
For the community of the University of Illinois at Chicago
more on page 9
Facebook / uicnews
Twitter / uicnews
YouTube / uicmedia
Flickr / uicnews
Instagram / thisisuic
— Photo: Roberta Dupuis-Devlin
APRIL 8, 2015
send profile ideas to Gary Wisby, [email protected]
Facebook profile as important as résumé?
By Gary Wisby — [email protected]
Facebook users show their faces. How
they use the social network service reveals their personalities.
Don Kluemper, assistant professor of
management, decodes the clues.
In one study, Kluemper (rhymes with
temper) and two students looked at
Facebook profiles of 56 college students
with jobs. They looked for these “Big 5”
personality traits: Were the students conscientious — and to what degree? Were
they emotionally stable? Introverted?
Disagreeable? Open to experience?
After spending about 10 minutes
looking at each profile, including photos,
wall posts, comments, education and
hobbies, the researchers answered a series
of personality-related questions, such as
“Is this person dependable?” and “How
emotionally stable is this person?”
Six months later, they matched their
ratings against employee valuations from
each of the students’ supervisors.
Their findings show that Facebook
can be used as a reliable job-screening
tool, said Kluemper, especially since candidates have a hard time faking their
personalities in front of their friends.
They also found something else interesting. “Facebook ratings were a better
predictor of GPA than other self-ratings
and ratings on IQ tests put together,” he
News media picked up on the job
performance part of the study and before
they knew it, their work was on 1,500
media outlets. “The Chicago Tribune, the
Wall Street Journal, and it exploded from
that point,” Kluemper said.
He’s learned that employers turn to
social media to get answers about prospective employees that they’re legally
Facebook can be used as a reliable job-screening tool because candidates have a hard time faking their personalities on social
media, says Don Kluemper, assistant professor of management. — Photo: Jenny Fontaine
forbidden to ask, such as queries about
marital status or sexual orientation.
His students reported that after job
interviews, they sometimes receive
“friend” requests from their interviewers.
“It’s a very trendy recruitment source,”
he said.
Among the most useful findings of
his research is evidence of deviant behavior by employees who harm others or
steal from the company, for example.
“Incivility, a form of deviance, can be
something subtle like giving cold looks,
making others feel unwelcome, unwanted or uncomfortable,” Kluemper said.
People who are poorly treated are
more likely to quit, and may reciprocate
with deviant behavior of their own.
“Deviant workers cost companies billions of dollars a year,” he said.
Kluemper grew up in southern Indiana. He earned a bachelor’s degree in
management and a master’s in criminology, both from Indiana State University,
“Our goal is, for patients with sickle cell
disease, who now on the average don’t live
until 50 years of age, we want them to have
the same life expectancy as everyone else in
the population and not have the severe pain
episodes that they go through now.”
Victor Gordeuk, director of the Sickle Cell
Center, on the effect of state budget cuts that
would eliminate funding to the center, April 5
Fox 32 News
and a doctorate in organizational behavior from Oklahoma State University.
Over the next nine years he taught at
Oklahoma State, Louisiana State and
Northern Illinois University before
joining UIC in 2013.
Recently he was named co-director
of the Institute for Leadership Excellence and Development (ILEAD) in
the College of Business Administration.
Kluemper lives in Aurora with his
wife, Maria, a challenge course facilitator who runs team-building courses for
companies, and their sons, Nicholas, 10,
and Alexander, 8.
A 30-year martial arts enthusiast, he
participates several times a week in Seizan Ryu Kempo Jujitsu.
Professor, rate thyself:
“I am highly conscientious, highly
emotionally stable, moderately
introverted, moderately disagreeable
and moderately open to experience,”
Kluemper replied.
“Most of all, they must possess the sense
of duty, responsibility and compassion that
go with managing and leading organizations
that care for people at some of their most
vulnerable moments.”
John DeNardo, director of the health care
administration master’s degree program in
the School of Public Health and former
CEO of UI Health, on careers in health care
administration, April 5 Chicago Tribune
He added parenthetically, “However,
being high in conscientiousness and
emotional stability is socially desirable,
so even if I was low, I might report
being high.”
To clarify, do you mean you might
falsely report being high in conscientiousness and emotional stability, when
you’re actually low, just to make yourself look better?
“You get it perfectly (though I was
not implying that I am actually low in
conscientiousness or emotional stability),” Kluemper said.
“I study personality test faking. Yes,
some people fake personality tests and
falsely report being high in socially
desirable traits. So, if someone says
they are conscientious, they are either
conscientious OR not conscientious
but giving you a socially desirable answer.
“Some of my work is in developing
ways to tell the difference.”
“If we’re not all united with this, it’s only going
to show one face and it’s only going to show the
experiences of one university. It’s a statewide
issue, not just a UIC issue.”
Natalie Cruz, UIC student and president of the
UIC group Fearless Undocumented Alliance, on
the push by Illinois college students to allow
undocumented residents access to financial aid,
April 4
APRIL 8, 2015
Benefit raises money
for Pop-Up Pantry
By Nicole Cardos — [email protected]
There's a can opener in the gift bags for Monday's
Pop-Up Benefit: A Call to Action.
That's because the fundraising event, 5:30 to 7:30
p.m. in the Illinois Room of Student Center East,
benefits the Pop-Up Pantry, which provides food to
UIC students in need.
“This benefit will educate people on what is homelessness, how it looks and how do you define it,” said
Brandon Gaskew, co-founder and co-director of the
Pop-Up Pantry, vice president of the Undergraduate
Student Government and a senior in political science.
The idea for the benefit started with Gaskew and
pharmacy student Myron Laban.
Laban's group Men of Dance will put on a performance at the benefit that includes singing, rap, dance
and spoken word.
The event includes a silent auction and a showcase
of art made by UIC students on the subject of homelessness.
“Regardless of who you are, you deserve fundamental needs of life," Laban said. "Everyone’s entitled
to food, shelter and sleep.”
Tickets, $5 for students and $10 for others, can be
purchased at the UIC Bookstore. Those who can’t
afford tickets can bring canned goods to the event for
the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
“Homelessness is a large issue," Gaskew said. “We
should help out city-wide.”
The next Pop-Up Pantry events will be April 16
and 23, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in 604A Student Center
East. Current i-card is required.
By Christy Levy — [email protected]
participate in campus
Get educated and get involved.
safety programs.
Those are the goals of the It’s on
“We provide some
Us initiative, launched last fall as
talking points if you’re a
part of a national campaign to stop
family member talking
sexual violence on campus.
to someone you love, or
“We want to engage all members
staff member talking
of the campus community to help
to a student,” Smith said.
prevent sexual assault,” said DuJuan
Sexual violence
Smith, assistant dean of students.
should be reported to
“We’re asking everyone to make a
the UIC Police. The
personal commitment to step off
Office for Access and
the sidelines and be part of the soluEquity performs an
investigation into inciUIC’s ongoing campaign is highdents of sexual
lighted this month at events for
misconduct and the
Sexual Assault Awareness Month to
Office of the Dean of
“shatter the silence” around sexual
Students conducts
violence and start conversations on
a formal hearing if
misconduct is found,
Events include a bystander interSmith said.
vention workshop, a talk on sexual
At an April 30
harassment in the STEM fields, a
dialogue on reimagining masculinity
the campus community to “be part of the
reporters will explain
and more. View a complete list of
solution,” says DuJuan Smith.
what happens during
events on the Campus Advocacy
an investigation into
Network website, Particsexual misconduct, Smith said.
ipants can pick up a teal ribbon at any event to show
“I hope people use these events as an opportunity to
their support.
really educate themselves,” he said.
“Students, faculty and staff can take the pledge saying
The nationwide It’s on Us tagline has been modified to
they are committed to standing against sexual assault
make it unique to UIC: “It’s on us to make a difference.
on college campuses,” Smith said.
Stop sexual violence.”
Last fall, UIC launched a new website —
“We wanted to honor the national campaign, while still — where students and employthinking about UIC and our population,” Smith said.
ees can learn how to report an incident, find support and
Raising retirement age could widen disparities
By Sharon Parmet — [email protected]
Based on the overall increase in lifespan, the age to
receive full Social Security benefits should be closer to 70
— but increasing the retirement age would mean groups
with lower life expectancy would suffer, says a UIC researcher on aging.
“We’re living longer and healthier than ever before, but
the statutory age of retirement for receiving Social Security benefits doesn’t reflect that,” says S. Jay Olshansky, professor of epidemiology and lead author for a report
published in Daedalus, the journal of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
“But raising the age of retirement would further exacerbate disparities in Social Security entitlements and place
increased financial burdens on populations with lower life
When Social Security was enacted in 1935, the age of
full retirement was set at 65. Back then, a 25-year-old had
a 62.4 percent chance of living to retirement age, and a
65-year-old retiree lived, on average, for another 12.6
“If we calculated retirement age using the same ratio of
retired to working years present in 1935, the age of eligibility for full benefits today would be close to 70 years old,
and the age for early retirement would be 66.5 years old,”
Olshansky said.
Previous research has shown that level of education
and longevity are linked. In 2008, only 74.4 percent of 25
year olds who had less than a high school education survived to age 65, while 92.1 percent of their peers with a
college degree or its equivalent years of education would
do so.
The age to receive full Social Security benefits should be closer to 70, but increasing retirement age would
cause groups with lower life expectancy to suffer, says epidemiology professor S. Jay Olshansky.
Higher levels of education are associated with higher
income, access to better health care and nutrition, better
odds of survival to age 65 and longer post-retirement life
If the retirement age went up, people in population
groups with lower life expectancies would continue to pay
into Social Security the same as anyone else, while becoming even less likely than they already are to live to see retirement. Those who do reach retirement would draw
benefits for even fewer years, as compared to other groups.
From the beginning of Social Security, the age of retirement was intended to be adjusted periodically as life expectancy increased. But, Olshansky said, the few adjustments
that have been made have been “too little, too late.”
Olshansky says he and his co-authors do not recommend an adjustment in Social Security based solely on recent changes in longevity.
“Additional reforms would be needed to minimize disparities that would be worsened if the age of retirement
were increased,” he said.
APRIL 8, 2015
send information about campus news to Sonya Booth, [email protected]
‘A Matter of Life and Death’ with UIC Theatre
By Anne Brooks Ranallo — [email protected]
Original music, dance, bicycles and
pingpong — it’s all there in the season’s
final production by UIC Theatre, a play
based on the 1946 classic film “Stairway
to Heaven.”
“A Matter of Life and Death” (the
film’s alternate title) opens Friday and
runs through April 19. It is directed by
Heidi Stillman, Lookingglass Theatre
artistic director of new works. The UIC
Theatre production is the North American premiere of an adaptation by Emma
Rice and Tom Morris.
Set in World War II, the plot concerns a doomed British pilot (played by
David Niven in the film) who contacts
an American radio operator named
June (Kim Hunter) just before he’s about
to jump without a parachute. He survives
and finds himself before a celestial court of
law, which must decide whether he lives or
UIC’s production features original
music by a band made up of six theatre
students, with lyrics from the play. There’s a
big dance number, characters riding bikes
throughout the action, a magical pingpong match and a 14-foot “stairway to
“The set pieces will be manipulated to
imply setting, location and specific wartime imagery,” said stage manager Dina
Klahn. “The play bounces between the real
and surreal, and between war and love.”
UIC’s Chicago Institute for Voice Care
presents the workshop “Contemporary
Commercial Singing Styles” this weekend
with singing specialist Jeannette Lovetri
and H. Steven Sims, associate professor of
otolaryngology and specialist in voice care.
The workshop is open to professional
and amateur singers, voice teachers, speech
pathologists and others. It will be held
Saturday and Sunday at the Eye and Ear
Infirmary. Cost is $95 National Voice
Foundation members, $150 nonmembers and $50 students. Register at
A free conference on science writing,
aimed at students and professional writers,
will be held April 17, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.,
in the Institute for the Humanities in Stevenson Hall.
Sessions include how to correctly use
statistics, with Robert Sloan, head of computer science, and Bill Burton, senior director of public affairs; an introduction to
science writing as a career, with local writers and authors; and innovations in science
communications with writers and producers from WBEZ’s “Curious City,” the
“Nerdette Podcast,” the Illinois Science
Council and Argonne National Laboratory.
For more information, visit
Monica Gandhi, medical director of the
HIV/AIDS clinic at San Francisco General Hospital, will present “Women Living
with HIV” April 21 at Women’s Health
UIC Theatre’s final production of the season includes original music and dance
in a retelling of the 1946 classic film “Stairway to Heaven.”
April 10, 11, 16, 17, 18
at 7:30 p.m.
April 12, 15, 19
at 2 p.m.
Other attendees
Research Day.
The free conference, 9 a.m. to 12:30
p.m. in the Thompson Room, Student
Center West, highlights new developments in women’s health and showcases
research by faculty, staff and students.
The second annual event also includes
research poster presentations and a lecture
by Leah Rubin, assistant professor of psychiatry, “When Enough is Enough: Stress
and Brain Functioning in HIV-infected
Sponsors include the colleges of Medicine and Nursing, School of Public Health
and the Chancellor’s Committee on the
Status of Women.
Register at
A town hall on the Human Resources
job analysis project, focusing on the appeals process, will be held April 21 and
April 30.
The job analysis project is a review of
positions categorized as academic professional, to determine whether they should
be converted to civil service.
The town hall will present an update by
Robert Crouch, assistant vice president for
human resources, and Ron Puskarits,
director of compensation.
Sessions will be held 10 a.m. April 21,
School of Public Health auditorium, and
10 a.m. April 30, 1-470 Daley Library.
The event, coordinated by the
Academic Professional Advisory
Committee, will be webcast at
For more information, visit uicapac.
Plans to construct the Great Lakes
Basin Railroad, a proposed privately funded rail network serving connecting to short
lines around metropolitan Chicago, will be
discussed at a presentation April 29.
“Building the Great Lakes Basin Railroad,” noon to 1:30 p.m. in Conference
Room 217 at the Student Residence Hall,
is hosted by the Urban Transportation
The 275-mile railroad would operate
between Janesville, Wisconsin, and Michigan City, Indiana, adding capacity to the
Chicago Freight Rail Hub, the largest in
the world.
Frank Patton, managing partner of the
Great Lakes Basin Railroad, LLC, will
lead the presentation.
For more information visit
UIC celebrates Earth Month in April
with Bike to Campus Week, EcoJam,
workshops and more.
Today, participate in 50-minute wellness workshops including yoga for
desk-workers and meditation and mindfulness, 10 a.m. to 1:50 p.m. in 713 Student
Center East.
The Conscious College Road Tour will
visit UIC April 13 to talk about the benefits of a conscious, sustainable lifestyle.
From April 20 to 24, 12 Chicago area
universities will compete for the title of
Bike 2 Campus Week Champion. The
April 22 EcoJam in the Quad offers free
food, live performances, activities and more.
For more information on Earth Month,
UIC Box Office
University President Bob Easter will
present “Global Food Safety: The Roles of
Agriculture, Health and Biological Sciences in the 21st Century” for UIC’s commemoration of World Health Day April
Easter, former dean of the UrbanaChampaign campus College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental
Sciences, will speak at noon in the 227
College of Medicine West.
For more information, visit globalhealth.
Sorting through your closets for spring
cleaning? Donate men’s and women’s business apparel and accessories in good condition to a clothing drive for clients of
Goldie’s Place, a nonprofit social service
organization for people who are homeless.
Collection boxes are located in 104
College of Dentistry, first floor Disability,
Health and Social Policy building, 1728
University Hall and 3343 Education,
Theatre, Music and Social Work Building.
Friday is the deadline to register for the
April 28 2015 IT Pro Forum, a day of
presentations, exhibits and networking
opportunities for campus IT professionals.
This year’s theme, “Informational
Technology’s Interchangeable Role in a
High Tech World,” will showcase collaborative IT projects at UIC.
On-site registration will be available.
For more information, visit itproforum.uic.
APRIL 8, 2015
Book recounts Cubs’
golden age on West Side
By Justin Mendoza — [email protected]
peated itself about 100 years ago. There was
The Chicago Cubs celebrated Opening
a court battle with rooftops as there still is
Day at Wrigley Field Sunday, but the team
today. It was fun to see very little is new.”
didn’t always play at the North Side ballPernot isn’t a native
Chicagoan but his love for
The last place the
the city and its baseball
Cubs played before
history began when he
Wrigley Field was the
spent a year at Elk Grove
West Side Grounds,
High School as a foreign
where UIC’s College of
exchange student. Instead
Medicine stands today.
of returning to his homeThe Cubs played in the
town of Montbeliard,
block bordered by WolFrance, Pernot enrolled at
cott Avenue, Polk,
UIC, double-majoring in
Wood and Taylor
English and political scistreets from 1893 to
ence with an internship at
1915. They appeared in
UIC News.
four World Series
“I liked Chicago and
during that time, winUIC alumnus Laurent Pernot.
learning from smart peoning titles in 1907 and
— Photo: Pascal Bailly
ple,” he said. “I got into
the Honors College. I just
The Cubs’ connechad a great time.”
tion to UIC is highlighted in the book BeAfter he finished his undergraduate
fore the Ivy: The Cubs’ Golden Age in Prestudies in 1993, Pernot returned home to
Wrigley Chicago, written by UIC graduate
serve in the French army as an interpreter.
Laurent Pernot.
“The book started as a chapter on the old He came back to UIC for graduate school
in 1997 and became associate editor of
ballpark near where UIC’s College of
UIC News, later working in media relations
Medicine is today,” he said. “It was interin the Office of Public Affairs.
esting finding out how much history re-
The Cubs played at the West Side Grounds from 1893 to 1915. The College of
Medicine stands there today. — Photo courtesy of Brian Bernardoni
He wrote an article for UIC News
about the Cubs’ connection to campus,
then a graduate paper that expanded into
his book, published in February by the
University of Illinois Press.
“It took about four or five years to turn it
into a book,” Pernot said.
After working at UIC, Pernot worked
at communications firms such as Hill &
Knowlton Strategies.
Since 2011, he’s been at the City Colleges of Chicago as executive director of
communications, vice chancellor for institutional advancement and now executive
vice chancellor. His responsibilities include
overseeing marketing, student recruitment
and external relations.
“It is very rewarding and fulfilling to
work here,” he said. “Reminiscent of UIC.”
His advice to current students on finding success after graduation: network.
“It is the best way to connect with jobs,”
he said. “Hands-on experience is a big part
of networking.”
And if you want to write a book, pick a
topic you truly enjoy.
“It was a fun and humbling process,” he
said. “Touching history is a lot of fun.”
APRIL 8, 2015
A new UIC Business lab
immerses students in the
world of high finance
By Paul Engleman — UIC Alumni magazine
From his office on the 24th floor of University Hall,
Gilbert Bassett has a breathtaking view of downtown
Chicago. More importantly, he can see the futures. And
the derivatives.
Bassett, founding director of UIC’s International Center for Futures and Derivatives, likes gazing upon the
Loop headquarters of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.
The CME Group Foundation provided initial funding to
launch the UIC center in 2007, then $1 million in 2011
to establish its centerpiece: the CME Foundation Market
Training Lab in Douglas Hall. The lab, a research center
for faculty, prepares students for the rapidly evolving
world of commodities and futures.
“Trading today is a different animal than 20 years ago,”
says Bassett, professor emeritus of finance,0 who joined
UIC in 1973. “It requires a completely different skill set.”
Not long ago, trading involved “open outcry.” Traders
down on the exchange floors shouted orders to buy and
sell while waving their arms and motioning with their
hands. To the uninitiated, the practice resembled controlled chaos. Today’s system is every bit as esoteric, but it
relies on sophisticated high-speed software and instant
access to real-time information from enormous volumes
of data.
Negotiating new systems and protocols is what the
International Center for Futures and Derivatives and its
lab are all about. The lab harnesses software and proprietary real-world data from Bloomberg Terminal, Tick
Data and others to simulate a variety of real-world trading
scenarios. Software program Xtrader, for instance, allows
students to simulate trading in futures markets, and monitor profits and losses.
“We’re taking the math off the blackboard so that students not only have an understanding of theory, but how
theory works in practice,” says John Miller, clinical assistant professor of finance who commandeers the complex
process of constructing and customizing the lab’s digital
infrastructure — a task that requires uploading state-ofthe-art software and inputting large volumes of critical
historical data.
“We’re populating the lab at the micro level,” he says.
“In addition to trades and quotes coming directly off stock
exchanges, we have a rich array of data from Bloomberg
on collateralized mortgage obligations, futures contracts,
all types of currencies — the type of data you really can’t
access anywhere else.”
Miller and colleagues have begun adapting their curricula to fully leverage the lab’s data and capabilities. Four
lab-oriented courses were introduced for the fall 2014
For Miller’s classes in Fixed Income and Futures and
Derivatives, students use the lab to learn both the mechanics and application of financial practices. The former
involves replication of analytics from Bloomberg “as a first
step toward building a financial calculator” and the latter,
“a series of Q&As pertaining to how the analytics work,”
he explains. “Financial markets need professionals who
not only understand theory, but are capable of performing
With 30 workstations, each with a computer terminal
and two monitors, Miller says students can apply what
The brain trust of UIC’s International Center for Futures and Derivatives (left to right): John Miller, clinical
assistant professor of finance; Gilbert Bassett, professor emeritus of finance; and Dale Rosenthal,
assistant professor of finance. — Photo: Jeff Dahlgren
they’re learning in an environment that simulates the
trading room at a big investment firm.
“John is a ‘been-there, done-that,’” says Bassett, explaining that Miller enjoyed success on Wall Street and with
Citadel, a Chicago-based hedge fund, before joining UIC.
“Most ‘been-there, done-thats’ still work downtown. We’re
lucky to have him.”
Both graduate and undergraduate students began
using the lab for research projects last year.
“What’s interesting is how much they’re already using it
to evaluate data independently,” says Dale Rosenthal, assistant professor of finance and another “been-there, donethat” who spent five years at a hedge fund and another
three at an investment firm. “It’s blossoming right now,
and it’s just going to get better.”
“The center provides us with a whole ecosystem —
servers, data, software — the same tools and analysis
packages you’d find at a trading firm,” he says.
The lab’s data system is supported by 20 terabytes of
storage capacity and open-source R software, used for statistical computation and graphics.
“Open-source is of huge benefit because it allows students to instantly download those programs,” Miller explains. “Statistical R, for example, will allow them to
manipulate data, create statistical models, perform estimates and plot results.”
Although students who use this program and others
like it won’t necessarily pursue careers in finance, “the
value is they’ll understand risk management and pricing
of assets,” Miller says. Futures and derivatives, he notes,
play significant roles in fields ranging from agriculture to
pharmaceuticals to energy.
The lab supports the center’s broader mission as “a
global source for scholarship, collaboration, quality education, and cutting-edge, innovative research on futures, derivatives and financial markets,” Bassett says.
The center sponsors the International Symposium on
Financial Engineering and Risk Management, an annual
conference in China, with UIC’s U.S./Asian Executive
Development Program, which has graduated thousands of
MBA students from mainland China. “We may be better
known in Shanghai than we are in Palatine,” Bassett says.
The center launched R/Finance in 2009. The two-day
event on campus focuses on Statistical R, the premier,
open-source software system for statistical computation
and graphics, used to manage financial risk and construct
portfolios. Besides attracting high-profile sponsors such
as Google, Lemnica and Revolution Analytics, R/Finance
has become an international event that draws some 300
researchers from business and academia.
Kassie Davis, executive director of the CME Group
Foundation, says the organization views its financial support of UIC not as a donation, but as an investment.
“We see education as the engine of economic development,” she says. “Our mission is to enhance economic opportunity by supporting academic initiatives and activities
that promote research, teaching and learning in financial
markets, futures and derivatives.
“UIC is a trusted, long-term grant partner, one with
whom we invest to achieve our mutual goals. It also is an
important institution that enables many low-income students to achieve college success. We look forward to continuing our support of the university.”
To Bassett, that means a bright future in futures, and
another reason to sit back and enjoy the view.
APRIL 8, 2015
Researchers create tiny robotic germ to test humidity
By Jeanne Galatzer-Levy — [email protected]
It’s a far cry from Robocop. But UIC researchers have
engineered a new nanobot — basically a robotic germ
— that could be used as a humidity sensor to prevent
food spoilage or keep space travelers safe.
Called NERD, for Nano-Electro-Robotic Device, it’s
an electromechanical device on a bacterial spore.
“We’ve taken a spore from a bacteria, and put graphene quantum dots on its surface — and then attached
two electrodes on either side of the spore,” said Vikas
Berry, associate professor of chemical engineering and
principal investigator on the study.
“Then we change the humidity around the spore,”
he said.
When the humidity drops, the spore shrinks as water
is pushed out. As it shrinks, the quantum dots come
closer together, increasing their conductivity, as measured by the electrodes.
“We get a very clean response — a very sharp change
the moment we change humidity,” Berry said. The
response was 10 times faster, he said, than a sensor made
with the most advanced man-made water-absorbing
There was also better sensitivity in extreme lowpressure, low-humidity situations. “We can go all the
way down to a vacuum and see a response,” Berry said.
The device could be useful in applications where
humidity must be kept low, for example, to prevent corrosion or food spoilage. “It’s also important in space
applications, where any change in humidity could signal
a leak,” he said.
Currently available sensors increase in sensitivity as
humidity rises, Berry said. NERD’s sensitivity is actually
The Nano-Electro-Robotic Device (NERD) can be used as a humidity sensor to prevent food spoilage and
detect leaks in space applications, researchers say. — Illustration: Megan Strand
higher at low humidity.
“This is a fascinating device,” Berry said. “Here we have a
biological entity. We’ve made the sensor on the surface of
these spores, with the spore a very active complement to
this device. The biological complement is actually working
towards responding to stimuli and providing information.”
The report is online at Scientific Reports, a Nature open
access journal.
T. S. Sreeprasad and Phong Nguyen of UIC were lead
co-authors on the study. Sreeprasad, a postdoctoral fellow,
is now at Rice University in Houston. Ahmed
Alshogeathri, Luke Hibbeler, Fabian Martinez and Nolan
McNeiland, undergraduate students from Kansas State
University, were also co-authors on the paper.
Send information about campus events to Christy Levy, [email protected]
APRIL 8, 2015
Retrospective on center¹s 10 years at UIC
with personal tributes, video/slideshow and
refreshments. Welcome for new director
Mark Martell and performance by Ashley
3–5 p.m. / Conference Rooms B&C, SSB
House of Cards: Rebuilding
The Uncanny Valley
Roberta Feldman, professor emerita of architecture, opens an exhibition she curated with
the National Public Housing Museum that
features photos and videos on Chicagoans
struggling with eviction, foreclosure and homelessness, and the organizations that assist them.
MFA thesis exhibition featuring work by
students Curt Miller, Ellen Nagel and John
Szczepaniak on display at Gallery 400.
Reception, 5–8 p.m. April 10; artists’ talks,
5 p.m. April 10
Hours: Tues.–Fri. 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sat. noon–6 p.m.
6:25–9 p.m.
Art Works Projects, 625 N. Kingsbury St.
Gallery 400, ADH
Photo: Maren Wickwire
Black Lives Matter
Lecture Series
Immigrant Inclusion
in the Safety Net
Social Justice as Professional
Reading and conversation
with poet Claudia Rankine, author of “Citizen,”
winner of 2014 National
Book Critics Circle Award
Alexandra Filindra, assistant professor of political science, and Meghan Condon, Loyola University, present research on policies that target
immigrants. Sponsored by the Institute for the
Humanities Immigration Working Group
Paul Brandt-Rauf, dean of the School of
Public Health. University of Common Sense
series sponsored by UIC Energy Initiative,
Office of Sustainability and Environmental
and Occupational Health Sciences
Noon–2 p.m. / 613 SCE
Noon–2 p.m. / lower level, SH
4 p.m. / 1001 SPHPI
APRIL 10–12,
A Matter of Life and
UIC Theatre’s production is
the North American premiere of the classic film,
originally released under the
title “Stairway to Heaven.”
Directed by Heidi Stillman
of the Lookingglass Theatre
7:30 p.m. April 10, 11, 16,
17 and 18
2 p.m. April 12, 15 and 19
UIC Theatre, ETMSW
Call to Action
All-Faculty Concert
Cultural showcase raises money for
UIC’s Pop-Up Pantry. Guest speakers on homelessness and food insecurity, spoken word, performances
5:30–7:30 p.m.
Illinois Room, SCE
Tickets: $5 for students;
$10 for others
Contemporary concert,
led by José Oliver Riojas,
features the funky, visceral compositions of
Jacob TV and UIC’s
Marc Mellits
1–1:50 p.m.
APRIL 8, 2015
Want to contribute a story? Email Christy Levy, [email protected]
[email protected]
I’ve never been much of an athlete, but I played the
part Thursday.
The event? The Student Research Forum. The arena?
Academia. The skill? Speaking proficiently and repeatedly
about a year’s worth of research to judges and curious people passing by.
Nearly 300 students were at the UIC Forum Thursday,
fighting for the No. 1 spot in their academic category.
Being an English major, I was grouped with humanities
and social sciences. The title of my project was “Representations of Feminism on the Small Screen: From ‘Sex and
the City’ to ‘Girls.’”
Pregame lasted between 11 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., when
my peers and I made our way to the Forum to sign in and
hang our posters. I warmed up by anxiously practicing my
Then it started. At 1 p.m., the judges began to roll in.
The first few minutes were dreamlike for me; I couldn’t
imagine myself speaking calmly to a judge. Yes, I was nervous, but even more so, I was excited to speak about the
research I’ve done this past year, and the great points I’ve
found on the two series.
The first judge came by, followed by two more. I quickly gave my speech and forgot to mention a few aspects of
my research. Thankfully, the judges asked enough questions to help me recount the information I missed.
By halftime I was in the zone, pointing out key aspects
of my project. I made an effort to look people in the eye
and be proud of my work.
The final quarter was the last judging period. Just when
I thought I was done, a final judge came by. Worn out by
explaining, I thought I’d lost my enthusiasm — until I
realized: this could be one of the last times I’ll be presenting, let alone researching, an academic topic. I persevered
and made the final speech as impactful as possible.
I don’t know for sure, but I assume my peers felt the
same way that day. Some were graduate students, already
thinking about their careers. Others, like me, are about to
finish our first round of higher education. Although I kept
imagining the nostalgia I’ll feel for this day and event in
the future, I told myself to be in the moment and proud of
my work.
The day ended at 5 p.m. when awards for the top three
in each category were handed out. Not everyone earned
awards, but we all won the opportunity to present the
work we’ve accomplished.
Nicole Cardos presents her work at the Student Research Forum. “I persevered and made the final
speech as impactful as possible,” says Cardos, a senior in English. — Photo: Joshua Clark
First: Vishal Varma, pathology, bioengineering
and nephrology
Faculty adviser Michael J. Walsh
Second: Amanda Robinson, museum and
exhibition studies
Faculty adviser Therese Quinn
Third: Modhi AlSobeihy, computer science
Faculty adviser Lenore Zuck
First: Thao Pham, biopharmaceutical sciences
Faculty adviser Debra Tonetti
Second: Rand Akasheh, kinesiology and nutrition
Faculty adviser Giamila Fantuzzi
Third: Sandra Gomez-Peres, kinesiology
and nutrition
Faculty adviser Carol Braunschweig
Mallery Lutey, anthropology,
Faculty adviser Sloan Williams
Michael Perlman, mathematics, statistics
and computer science
Faculty adviser Kevin Tucker
Zubair Vhora, biological sciences
Faculty adviser Randal Dull
First: Navika Shukla, biochemistry and molecular
genetics, faculty adviser Karen Colley
Second: Kevin Li, physical therapy, faculty adviser
Mark Grabiner
Third: Ralph Griffiths, kinesiology and nutrition,
faculty adviser Karrie Hamstra-Wright
Rhiday Pandy, psychology,
faculty adviser Eric Leshikar
Second: Olivia Santiago, psychology,
faculty adviser Omar Jamil
Third: Laura Cuevas, psychology,
faculty adviser Michael Ragozzino
Palak Patel, Spanish
Faculty adviser Diana Gonzalez-Cameron
APRIL 8, 2015
$1M gift to update pharmacy lab
By Sam Hostettler — [email protected]
Sudoku Puzzler by Ian Riensche,
Use logic and process of elimination to fill in the blank cells using the numbers 1
through 9. Each number can appear only once in each row, column and 3x3 block.
Find the answer to this week’s puzzle online at
A donation to the College of Pharmacy will improve the compound laboratory,
which has been almost unchanged since the building was constructed in 1953.
A $1 million donation to the College of
Pharmacy will turn its old compound laboratory into something new.
The Foglia Family Foundation provided
the gift to renovate the college’s aging
laboratory, where students learn how to develop and test combinations of active
pharmaceuticals and delivery systems for
new formulations so that the ingredients
are effective, stable, easy to use and
acceptable to patients.
Construction is expected to begin in
summer 2016.
The existing 7,000-square-foot lab
is almost unchanged since the pharmacy
building was built in 1953. The compounding lab has “required decades of effort
and creativity to overcome its shortcomings,” said College of Pharmacy dean Jerry
“We are extremely appreciative of the
Foglia family’s gift, as it will not only allow
us to bring the lab up to date, but it lays
the groundwork for generations of new
pharmacists,” he said.
Besides extensive infrastructure work,
plans include compounding stations for 50
students, modular elements to encourage
collaboration between students and faculty,
and a complete overhaul of technology,
including videoconferencing and digital
recording for pharmacy students on the
Rockford campus.
Vince Foglia, co-founder of Sage Products and head of the foundation named for
his family, has worked with UIC faculty
since 1971. Since he started Sage Products,
a health and personal care company in
Cary, Foglia has collaborated with pharmacy professors Angel Arambulo and Fred
Siegel and former faculty member and
UIC alumnus Dennis West.
“Now the Foglia name will formally be a
part of our college forever,” Bauman said.
UIC Police emergency: 312-355-5555
Nonemergency: TDD: 312-996-2830
Visit the UIC Police crime map
and the Chicago Police CLEAR Map
Theft: 4
Assault: 1
Battery: 1
Public indecency: 1
Harassment by electronic means: 1
Criminal damage
April 4: A man was arrested for public
indecency at 12:16 a.m. at 1421 S. Morgan St.
UIC News Staff
Published on Wednesdays during the academic year (monthly during summer) by the Office
of Public and Government Affairs of the University of Illinois at Chicago.
601 S. Morgan St. - 1320 University Hall (MC 288) - Chicago, IL 60607-7113
— Puzzle: Vana Povrzenic
Hidden in this week’s puzzle are 11 sports in which our
athletes compete. Do you know all of UIC’s sports?
Editorial:. . . . . . . . . . (312) 996-7758
Advertising: . . . . . . . (312) 996-3456
Fax: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . (312) 413-7607
Editorial Associates
S. K. Vemmer. . . . . . . [email protected]
Nicole Cardos . . . . . . [email protected]
Sonya Booth . . . . . . . [email protected]
Associate Editor
Christy Levy. . . . . . . . [email protected]
Assistant Editor
Gary Wisby. . . . . . . . . [email protected]
Visual Communications & Design
Anna Dworzecka . . . . [email protected]
Associate Graphic Designer
Megan Strand . . . . . . [email protected]
Advertising Coordinator
Samella Wright . . . . . [email protected]
Editorial Interns
Justin Mendoza, Matthew Pozo
Student Photography Contributors
Timothy Nguyen, Joseph Horejs
Advertising/Marketing Intern
Vana Povrzenic, Emily Waas
Senior Director for Public Affairs
Bill Burton. . . . . . . . . [email protected]
Photography, UIC Photo Services
Roberta Dupuis-Devlin & Joshua Clark
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . [email protected]
APRIL 8, 2015
Fixing spinal problems around the world
By Sharon Parmet — [email protected]
A trip to Uganda with a volunteer
medical team that treated children with
spinal conditions changed Kris Siemionow’s life.
It was 2007 and Siemionow was a
Kris Siemionow
— Photo: Joshua Clark
surgical resident at the Cleveland Clinic.
“That was my first trip with a medical
mission, and I just became addicted,” said
Siemionow, now chief of spine surgery at
UI Health.
The eventual result: a nonprofit
group, Global Spine Outreach
(, founded in 2013
by Siemionow, 1996 College of Medicine
graduate Tony Rinella and Washington
University spine surgeon Lawrence
Lenke. The organization’s mission is to
surgically treat patients around the world
who have complex spinal problems and
train local spine surgeons on the advanced
techniques needed for complex cases,
including severe scoliosis, or curvature of
the spine.
The volunteer surgeons and health specialists worked with other organizations in
Cali, Colombia, before founding Global
Spine Outreach. The organization recently
expanded its work to Siemionow’s hometown of Poznan, Poland.
They just returned from Dega Hospital
in Poznan, where they evaluated and
Siemionow (left) discusses plans with fellow surgeons to help a patient with
a complex spinal deformity through Global Spine Outreach.
treated children and adults with spinal deformities caused by fractures, scoliosis, congenital defects and other conditions.
“The surgeries we performed involved
correction of severe spinal deformities by
removing the malformed bones and placing
spinal implants to maintain those corrections,” Siemionow said.
“Local spine surgeons often don’t have
access to new technologies and therefore
have less experience with using these implants in the setting of advanced spinal de-
formities. Our team helped local
surgeons gain experience in these kinds
of advanced surgeries.”
Siemionow’s team provides the surgical expertise and equipment, including
technology that allows surgeons to
monitor neurological function in realtime during surgery.
Siemionow plans to visit Poland
twice a year through Global Spine Outreach and expand the organization’s
work to Mexico and North Africa.
Fighting health disparities across the globe
By Sharon Parmet — [email protected]
Max Brito has strong connections to
his homeland, the Dominican Republic.
These connections, from work in HIV
prevention to exchange programs in medical education, are supported in part by
the Urban Global Health initiative, which
fights health disparities worldwide.
The annual benefit to help the initiative will be held Friday at the Willis Tower’s Metropolitan Club. Tickets are $150
to $200 and available online at
As associate professor of medicine and
vice chair for urban global health in the
department of medicine, Brito takes medical students and UI Health residents to
the Dominican Republic for two weeks
every year as part of a course in tropical
“The goals are to expose students to
how medicine is practiced in resourcepoor settings, and to give them a chance
to learn about tropical infectious diseases that are relatively uncommon in the
United States,” Brito said.
In return, Dominican medical residents — 30 so far — come to UI Health
for two-month rotations.
Brito recently completed a public
health project that circumcised 454 men in the
Dominican Republic to
help prevent the spread
of HIV, modeled on research in Kenya by Robert Bailey, professor of
UIC is working to
establish a clinic in the
Dominican Republic for
the treatment of tropical
diseases and sexually
transmitted infections.
“The clinic will be
multidisciplinary, and
will welcome faculty and
students from other UIC
colleges who will bring
their own perspectives to
addressing clinical problems affecting poor Dominicans,” Brito said.
In addition to the
benefit Friday, donations
to the Urban Global
Health initiative can be
made online at
Max Brito, with medical residents enrolled in the Dominican Republic tropical infectious disease
elective, at Robert Reid Cabral Hospital in Santo Domingo. – Photo courtesy of Max Brito
APRIL 8, 2015
By Mike Laninga — [email protected]
The Flames remain in first place in the Horizon
League after the team (13-11-1, 9-3 Horizon League)
split its home doubleheader with Wright State (20-9,
8-3 Horizon League) Saturday afternoon at Curtis
Granderson Stadium.
UIC begins a three-game series at Milwaukee Friday,
with other games set for Saturday and Sunday.
UIC had 12 hits, including three doubles and a triple,
en route to a 7-4 comeback victory in game one. UIC
starter Ian Lewandowski (3-2) earned his third win
while Trevor Lane and Ryan Hinchley provided three
innings of scoreless relief.
Lewandowski lasted six innings and allowed four runs
on seven hits. He walked four and struck out one batter.
Carl Sugihara and Jeff Boehm led the Flames with
two RBIs. Sugihara, Cody Bohanek, Mickey McDonald
and Alex Lee all had two hits for UIC.
Wright State jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning on two hits. The Raiders added three more runs on
three hits in the fourth to take a 4-0 advantage.
The Flames tallied five hits and tied the score at 4-4
in the bottom half of the inning. Bohanek singled on a
bunt and advanced to third on Tyler Detmer’s fifth double of the season. Boehm drove in both runners with his
first triple and McDonald brought him home with a single up the middle. Lee drove in McDonald with a twoout double down the right field line, his sixth double of
the season.
Gabe Dwyer’s leadoff single in the fifth inning turned
into the winning run. Sugihara’s seventh double of the
season advanced Dwyer to third and Bohanek walked to
load the bases. Dwyer scored on Detmer’s fielder’s choice
to give UIC a 5-4 lead.
UIC’s two-run sixth inning featured four more hits.
Conor Philbin and Lee singled before two strike-outs
brought Sugihara to the plate. Sugihara brought both
runners home with a single to right field.
Lane relieved Lewandowski in the seventh inning
and tossed two scoreless innings. Hinchley took over for
Lane and earned his third save of the season.
Jack Andersen (3-3) got the starting nod for the
Flames in the second game and
allowed seven runs on 11 hits over
four innings. He struck out three
and walked one batter.
Noah Masa relieved Andersen
and tossed two scoreless innings.
He allowed one hit and walked a
batter in his sixth appearance of
the season.
Lane was nearly spotless in relief of Masa as he only allowed
one hit over three scoreless innings.
He struck out three Raiders and
threw 26 strikes in 34 overall
Detmer led the Flames with
three RBIs while Bohanek, Philbin and Lee also drove in runs.
Philbin had three hits while Bohanek and Lee tallied two hits
apiece. UIC totaled 14 hits in
game two and 26 hits during the
The first two innings featured
11 hits and seven runs between the
two squads. The Raiders had five
hits and three runs in the first inning before the Flames responded
with six hits and four runs in the
bottom half. A highlight of UIC’s
half was Detmer’s three-run home
run, his second of the season.
UIC took a 5-3 advantage in
Tyler Detmer led the Flames with three RBIs in the second game of a
the third with a two-out rally.
doubleheader versus Wright State Saturday. — Photo: Steve Woltmann
McDonald singled and stole second before Philbin drove him
home with a single up the middle.
through the left side.
The Raiders tied the contest with two runs and two
WSU took a 7-6 lead with two more runs and three
hits in the top of the fourth before the Flames regained
hits in the fifth inning. UIC put two runners on base in
the lead in the bottom half. Dwyer led off with a groundthe fifth, three in the sixth, one in the seventh and two in
rule double and was brought home by Bohanek’s single
the eighth but could not push across another run.
Softball sweeps series at Detroit
By Laura White — [email protected]
The softball team (13-14, 4-2 Horizon League) secured
the series sweep by defeating Detroit (2-28, 0-6 Horizon
League) in a doubleheader at Buysse Ballpark. The Flames
picked up a 7-2 victory in game one before taking out the
Titans, 11-6, in game two.
UIC out-hit Detroit by a combined margin of 20 to 14.
The Flames tallied seven doubles, one triple and two home
Tiana Mack-Miller led the Flames with four hits and
Kaleigh Nagle, Eleni Polites and Paige Peterson contributed three each. Mack-Miller also had six RBI.
The Flames head to Northwestern today for a 4 p.m.
game, then travel to Valparaiso for a three-game series Friday and Saturday.
UIC came back from a 1-0 deficit against Detroit in
the first game to score six runs in the sixth for the win.
The Flames had seven walks and six hits, with MackMiller adding two doubles to increase her season total
to 10.
Bridget Boyle pitched her fourth complete game of the
season and earned her fourth win. The thrower struck out
seven, a season high, while allowing five hits and two runs.
In the top of the fourth, as Erica Hampton ripped her
first homer of the season over the fence in right center.
The Flames broke away in the sixth with six runs. With
the bases loaded and no outs, Savannah Soppet entered to
pinch-hit and singled, scoring one. Dana Capocci picked
up the eventual game-winning RBI as she was in to
pinch-hit and hit a sacrifice fly. After Taylor Cairns
walked to load the bases again, Polites and Mack-Miller
hit back-to-back two-RBI doubles for the final runs of
the inning.
UIC went back and forth with Detroit in the second
game of the doubleheader before the Flames pulled out
the win with a season-high 11 runs and 14 hits. Five players had multi-hit outings, led by Nagle with a career-best
three hit performance.
Elaine Heflin received the start and went five innings
to receive the win while striking out six batters.
Boyle pitched the final two innings for her second save
of the season after holding Detroit to one hit and no runs.
The Flames grabbed a 1-0 lead and the Titans responded with a run in the bottom of the second and
the third.
In the fourth, UIC went up 3-2 after Mack-Miller hit
a two-RBI single with two outs and the bases loaded, but
Detroit came back to tie the score at 3-3 in the bottom
of the inning.
The Flames reclaimed the lead in the fifth by scoring
five runs with five hits. With two outs, Peterson scored
on a wild pitch, then Cairns and Mack-Miller hit a twoRBI double and two-RBI single.
Three runs came across the plate for the Titans in the
bottom of the fifth.
Amanda Mener led off the sixth by blasting her first
career home run over the fence in right center to give
UIC a 9-6 advantage.
Two more scored in the seventh as Nagle hit an RBI
triple, the first of her career, and Peterson had an RBI
double, her second of the game.