Quick Takes: Spring 2011

UW alum Jake Wood ’05 received a shout-out from First Lady Michelle Obama in September. The president’s wife was highlighting the work of America’s military veterans in a speech to the Clinton Global Initiative, and she named Wood, a former marine, and his organization, Team Rubicon, which provides relief to areas hit by natural disasters. Team Rubicon had been aiding earthquake victims in Haiti. In January 2011, Team Rubicon returned to Haiti to deliver cholera medicine.

Want to keep up on all things UW? There’s an app for that. In December, UW–Madison released Mobile UW, a free iPhone application that enables users to keep up on UW news, events, and athletics, as well as providing a map and bus schedule. Mobile UW can be downloaded at the online Apple App Store.

The UW is aiming to aid business development in Wisconsin with the launch of a second research park on Madison’s west side. University Research Park 2, which may begin construction in 2012, will cover 270 acres with facilities that could support as many as 10,000 workers. University Research Park 1, which opened in 1984, currently houses 126 companies with 3,500 employees.

After more than five years of construction, the IceCube Neutrino Observatory was completed in Antarctica in December. The UW coordinated the building of the project, which placed 5,160 optical sensors deep in the Antarctic ice.

A biomass boiler will no longer be part of the UW’s Charter Street Heating Plant, as Wisconsin’s Department of Administration scrapped plans to include biomass at the facility. Instead, the Charter Street plant will use only natural gas-fueled boilers. Administration Secretary Mike Huebsch argues that the biomass boiler would have cost $100 million.

Stem cell pioneer Jamie Thomson was named co-recipient of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine. Thomson is the director of regenerative biology at the UW’s Morgridge Institute for Research. He shares the prize with Shinya Yamanaka, who is a stem cell investigator at the Gladstone Institute of Cardiovascular Disease at the University of California-San Francisco and professor at Kyoto University in Japan.

UW provost Paul DeLuca will help gauge the cancer risk of living near a nuclear power plant. DeLuca, a former professor in the medical school, was appointed to a study committee for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Published in the Spring 2011 issue

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