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In the Headlines

SELECTED NEWS COVERAGE:
November 2014

Washington Post (November 13)

Want to boost your brain power? A new study says video games are the answer.

shooter video game screenshotRemember when you told your kids that spending too much time playing video games would make them lazy? Now there's a perfect comeback: Playing video games can actually make you smarter. Really. According to a study published this month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, playing fast-paced action video games can make someone a better learner. People who play games such as "Call of Duty" are better able to multitask, perform cognitive tasks such as rotating objects in their minds, and focus and retain information than non-players, Daphne Bavelier, a research professor in brain and cognitive sciences at both the University of Rochester and the University of Geneva, told Bloomberg News. They even have better vision, she said.

(Also reported in: CBS News, NBC News, Bloomberg News, Chicago Tribune, Newsday, Bend Bulletin, AFP Relax via Yahoo! Malaysia News, WHNT NEWS 19, WHEC-TV, WXXI, ABC 33/44 Birmingham, Columbus Business First, Daytona Business Journal, Intelihealth, Louisville Business First, The Middletown Press, The Washington Post, Huffington Post UK, China Xinhuanet China View, GlobalPost, Education News, GameSpot, Tech Times, Gizmag, Sarasota Herald-Tribune )

The New York Times (November 7)

The Stock Market Doesn’t Care About Elections

wall street signs and voting signHOW much do investors care about election outcomes? In the wake of Wednesday’s stock market rally, in which both the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index and the Dow Jones industrial average rose sharply a day after the midterm elections, pundits suggested that the answer was “quite a bit.” David M. Primo is an associate professor of political science and business administration, and Trung A. Dang is a Ph.D. candidate in political science, both at the University of Rochester.

The New York Times (November 18)

A Citizen’s Guide to Buying Political Access

holding money over a ballot box
“The dollar amount it takes to become a significant donor — where at least a staff member will talk to you if you call up the office — varies a lot across the states,” said Lynda W. Powell, a political science professor at the University of Rochester, whose study on the topic was published in her book “The Influence of Campaign Contributions in State Legislatures.” (She surveyed more than 2,982 state legislators across the 99 state legislative chambers and asked them to rate the extent that financial contributions influenced the content and passage of bills in their chamber.)

U.S. News & World Report (November 26)

Harm From Baseball Concussions May Linger, Study Finds

baseball player at batEven after they're cleared to play following a concussion, baseball players' batting skills are worse than normal, which suggests they may not be fully recovered, a new study suggests. "Although players who sustain a concussion may be symptom-free and cleared by MLB [Major League Baseball] protocol to return to play, the residual effects of concussion on the complex motor skills required for batting may still be a problem," said principal investigator Dr. Jeffrey Bazarian, an associate professor of emergency medicine at the University of Rochester in New York.

(Also reported in: Newsday )

Vox (November 9)

What aliens can teach us about global warming

painting of another plnetThere's no doubt that global warming on Earth is a human-driven trend. But what if the tendency of intelligent species to alter their planet's climate was a more common phenomenon than we think? In the vastness of the universe, it's very likely that other life forms have also evolved to an extent that they altered the atmosphere of their planets. If we looked at climate change as a predictable consequence of intelligent life — and a process that tends to follow specific patterns — we might be better equipped to figure out how to stop it. That's the idea put forth by astrophysicist Adam Frank and astrobiologist Woodruff Sullivan in an interesting new paper. "It's a change in perspective," Frank says. "What we're saying is that what our species is going through right now, from an astrobiology perspective, is probably not unique. It probably happens all the time — and we can learn from that." Photo caption: A theoretical graph showing the trajectory of a sustainable civilization (blue) and a collapsing one (red). (Michael Osadciw/University of Rochester)

(Also reported in: Daily Galaxy, Science a Gogo, Lab Manager Magazine, Space Daily, Terra Daily, Climate News Network, TruthDig, io9 )

The Wall Street Journal (November 7)

Top PE Funds and Cronuts: Everyone Wants Them, Not Everyone Gets Them

queue in front of bankThe University of Rochester, which oversees a roughly $2.1 billion long-term investment pool, said in its endowment report for the fiscal year ended June 30 that “new commitments to private equity have been reduced in recent years due to concerns about the significant capital overhang and a corresponding increase in prices being paid by private equity firms.” Tulane University has been emphasizing more discipline in private equity this year.

Christian Science Monitor (November 13)

Taylor Swift to Spotify: Blank Space or blank check?

Taylor Swift singing next to 'no Spotify' signLoving Spotify was like keeping artists in the red. And losing Spotify wasn't blue. That's according to those in Taylor Swift's camp who are calling out the music streaming service for paying out much less to artists than it claims. Borchetta's statements came a day after Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said in a blog post an artist of Swift's caliber could have expected to receive $6 million over the next year. Numbers aside, Swift has made it clear her move to pull her entire catalog from Spotify is a matter of principle. These streaming sites pay nano-pennies to musicians, John Covach, director of the Institute for Popular Music at the University of Rochester in New York and popular music historian, told the Monitor. Covach pointed to a recent blog post from a consortium of bands whose music is being streamed in which said they report royalties between $36 and $58 per month. The idea that these micro payments are going to build a meaningful model for artists compensation is just not realistic, Covach said, at least not yet.

(Also reported in: Alaska Dispatch, Christian Science Monitor )

 

The Wall Street Journal (November 21)

A Medical Device Is Sidelined, but Too Late for One Woman

'morcellation' typed over graphic of a uterusMrs. Interlichia wrote Mr. Leary an email suggesting they meet, but she became too ill. Her MRI showed two tumors were growing and several new ones had appeared. Instead, in August, her husband met Mr. Leary at a Rochester Italian restaurant. Mr. Interlichia had a beer. Mr. Leary nursed a Jack Daniel’s. Each ordered another. “We drank a bit and talked about our sad, common bond,” Mr. Interlichia, who oversees fundraising at the University of Rochester Medical Center, said a few days afterward. “We certainly share anger.” Soon their group included Mr. Leuzzi, who knew of Mrs. Interlichia’s case from support websites. “There’s a unique bond between the three of us,” Mr. Leuzzi said. “I can’t describe how terrible this ordeal has been,” he said. “There’s only a few people out there who understand that.” Late this summer, Mr. Leuzzi was busy caring for his wife, who was often doubled over in pain. Her cancer was “unexpected and tragic,” said Dr. Marit Sheffield, who evaluated Mrs. Leuzzi before surgery. Her surgeon, Uma Penmetsa, said of Mrs. Leuzzi that “she is helping physicians to rethink if, when, and how to use power morcellation, which until recently, has been standard practice.” The two doctors declined to say whether they told Mrs. Leuzzi about the morcellator and its risks. University of Rochester said its hospitals stopped using power morcellators in May. (Subscription required)

(Also reported in: Rochester Democrat and Chronicle )

CNN (November 3)

Should Americans be forced to vote?

Let's imagine a future in which Americans must vote, or face a penalty. It's April 2021. Media outlets around the country headlined major agreements between Democrats and Republicans on the long-stalled issues of tax and immigration reform. Commentators marveled at the momentous shift in American politics away from the polarization and gridlock of the previous two decades. Today, compulsory voting exists in roughly a quarter of all democracies in the world, ranging from Western Europe and Australia to Latin America and Asia. Yet few believe that it stands any chance of being adopted in the United States. Why? Our research suggests that the decision to adopt compulsory voting is largely strategic. While proponents often couch their arguments in terms of public benefits, it appears that parties around the world have been more likely to adopt it when such laws stand to favor their candidates and hurt their opponents. Gretchen Helmke is associate professor and chairwoman of the political science department at the University of Rochester. Bonnie Meguid is associate professor in the same department.

The Huffington Post (November 6)

Can't Focus? Your Office Paint Color Might Be To Blame

When it comes to workplace environments, bold might not be better. "Colors that are very saturated and not very bright -- like emerald green and sapphire blue -- generally promote an energy level that puts people into overdrive if they're trying to do thoughtful work alone or to collaborate with others. They just can't concentrate well," says Sally Augustin, PhD, an environmental psychologist and principal at Design With Science, via email. Augustin also cited a study by Andrew Elliot, a psychology professor at the University of Rochester, which found that exposure to the color red lead to distraction, worry and a reduced ability to focus on mental tasks.

The Wall Street Journal (November 5)

On B-School Test, Americans Fail to Measure Up - WSJ - WSJ

New waves of Indians and Chinese are taking Americas business-school entrance exam, and thats causing a big problem for Americas prospective M.B.A.s. Asia-Pacific students have shown a mastery of the quantitative portion of the four-part Graduate Management Admission Test. That has skewed mean test scores upward, and vexed U.S. students, whose results are looking increasingly poor in comparison. In response, admissions officers at U.S. schools are seeking new ways of measurement, to make U.S. students look better. The GMAT, administered by the Graduate Management Admission Council, is typically required to apply to M.B.A. programs, along with undergraduate transcripts, essay responses and letters of recommendation. Students at top programs like Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business have mean GMAT rankings around the 96th percentile. Percentile rankings are calculated using a raw score—for the quantitative section, typically between 0 and 51. In 2004, a raw score of 48 in the quantitative section yielded a ranking in the 86th percentile, according to GMAC; today, that same score would land the test-taker in the 74th percentile. The University of Rochester's Simon Business School began accepting the GRE as well as GMAT for its M.B.A. applicants three years ago.

Rochester Business Journal (October 31)

New chief details URMC plans

Slated to take over as University of Rochester Medical Center, CEO in January, Mark Taubman M.D. will head the largest division of UR—the region’s largest employer. Taubman already serves as dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry. The sprawling medical complex is one of the nation’s leading research institutions and provides much of the health care in the greater Rochester area and a broad swath of the Finger Lakes region. It also employs some two-thirds of UR’s approximately 25,000-employee workforce. In an arrangement previously untried at UR, Taubman plans to stay at the helm of School of Medicine and Dentistry after he steps into the CEO slot. In an exclusive interview with the Rochester Business Journal last week, Taubman extensively discussed his plans and the challenges he expects in the coming year and beyond. Having served a nine-month stint as acting URMC CEO five years ago, while also continuing to serve as the medical center’s chief of medicine, Taubman said he has no illusions about the crush of responsibility that awaits him—a weight he already feels.

Korea Joongang Daily (November 20)

Invisibility lens creator to talk about his work

A Korean-American physicist made headlines in late September when he proved that Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak can exist in the real world. Joseph Choi, a doctorate student at the University of Rochester in New York who created the cloaking lens, will be in Korea on Thursday to tell his behind-the-research story at the Tech Plus Forum 2014 at Konkuk University. In a recent email interview with the JoongAng Ilbo, Choi gave a sneak peek into “Rochester’s cloak,” which he jointly developed with his academic adviser Prof. John Howell. In addition to Choi, scientists and technology experts including U.S.-based physiologist Robert Root-Bernstein and Huawei Korea’s Chief Technology Officer Jack Guo will speak at the forum, hosted by the JoongAng Ilbo, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and the Korea Institute for the Advancement of Technology. The forum will focus on high technology in daily life.

(Also reported in: Phys.Org, Tech Fragments )

Rochester Business Journal (November 7)

School looks to expand repertoire

Jamal Rossi sees a bright future for the Eastman School of Music. The school's dean was honored late last month at an investiture ceremony, taking the opportunity to honor the schools past while also looking forward to its future. Rossi described a future with new programs that stretch across disciplines, a major development project and a push to make the school more affordable. While he acknowledged challenges for the Eastman School, such as a changing music world of fewer orchestras and fewer public school teaching positions, Rossi said the school remains well equipped to turn out musicians who can navigate and succeed in this new landscape. I am convinced that the core values on which this school was built will remain the keys for educating future generations of musicians - musicians who can best meet the challenges of yet-unknown obstacles, and musicians who will take best advantage of unanticipated opportunities, Rossi told those in attendance.

WHAM TV ABC 13 Rochester (November 18)

Giving to Golisano: Team Ali-gaiters

When it comes to the new Golisano Children's Hospital, you could say it's being built by the people, for the people... like the Klube family of Bloomfield. They are working to pay for a patient room on the 7th floor. They describe themselves as an average, working family with busy kids - two of which they say would not be here without Golisano Children's Hospital. Jackie Klube recounted the birth of her daughter Ali. "She was born with a congenital heart defect... at 3 days old we found out she had Tetrology of the Fallot and we were told that she would need open heart surgery." Fast-forward twelve years and Ali Klube is now a cross country runner at Bloomfield Middle School. But Jackie remembered the rocky start, saying "when we walked out of the hospital, we thought oh my gosh, they just saved our little girl's life and what they did was just amazing". That's when the Klubes became dedicated to giving back to Golisano Children's Hospital. Their first fundraiser was to walk in the Hospital's Stroll for Strong Kids, taking on a team name that has stuck: "Team Ali-gaiters". Every year since their first walk, Team Ali-gaiters has hosted a clam bake. It's both a hospital fundraiser and a time to honor pediatric patients - in honor of and in memory of. All the fundraising efforts of Team Ali-gaiters is now going toward a pediatric room in the new Golisano Children's Hospital. At $100,000, it's their biggest goal yet. The plaque that will mark this "funded by Team Ali-gaiters" will likely be small. But Jackie says it sends this big message: "I just want to let other families know that we have been there and even though our situation might be different than other children's, we have a basic understanding of what it's like to have a child in the hospital going through a difficult time."

WHEC TV NBC 10 Rochester (November 17)

"Our Work is But Begun"

Did you know tuition to the University of Rochester was just $30 a year in 1852 or that Susan B. Anthony convinced the Board of Trustees to admit women in 1900? These are just some of the important facts you'll learn while reading the new book just released called Our Work is But Begun -- a history of the University of Rochester. University Archivist Melissa Mead and University Vice President Paul Burgett joined us on News10NBC at noon to talk about the book. Press play on the video player.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 18)

UR Professor Esther Conwell remembered as a trailblazer

The pedestrian struck and killed in Brighton on Sunday was a longtime chemistry professor at the University of Rochester who was considered a pioneer among women scientists. Although Ms. Conwell no longer taught chemistry courses at the university, she had still worked regularly on campus and was considered a mentor by many, according to university officials. Considered a pioneer in the field of semiconductor research that ultimately revolutionized modern computers, Ms. Conwell in 2002 was recognized as one of Discover magazine's Top 50 Women of Science and in 2010 was awarded the National Medal of Science by President Barack Obama. "Esther Conwell's death is a tragic loss for the world of science, as well as for the University community," University President Joel Seligman said in a news release. "Professor Conwell's many scientific contributions and her pioneering role as a leading woman in science made her a source of pride for our entire University of Rochester community. She was a deeply inspiring scientist for young women pursuing careers in science."

(Also reported in: WXXI, Daily Messenger, Time Warner Cable News, 13WHAM-TV, WROC-TV, WHEC-TV, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle )

Poets & Quants (October 30)

November’s Essential Business MOOCs

Looking to launch a business? Consider the first part of the University of Rochester’s “Technology Commercialization: Setting Up Your Idea Filtering System,” designed to help would-be entrepreneurs avoid the pitfalls inherent to startups requiring longer incubation. If you’re drawn to social enterprise, take a look at “Financial Sustainability: The Numbers Side of the Enterprise,” where you’ll learn the accounting side of scaling your operation. And if you’re wondering if you should even start a business, check out Jeroen van den Hoven’s “Responsible Innovation,” which explores the disruptive side of progress – and how entrepreneurs can ease the worst effects of innovation.

ESPN (October 31)

Brawl In The Concert Hall

For Eastman School of Music professor James VanDemark, the similarities between boxing and music don't just end there. An internationally renowned double bass soloist, VanDemark took up boxing five years ago and saw immediate benefits to his performance.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 12)

CrossFit conundrum

CrossFit and other power fitness programs promise quick results in a short period of time - " perfect for people who struggle to maintain a work/life balance, let alone time for workouts. Biggest Loser contestants have jumped on board, along with celebrity trainers, miltary and police academies and more than 10,000 gyms in the United States. People say it has turned around their workout attitudes and even lives. The U.S. Army found significant improvements in physical fitness for soldiers doing CrossFit. But doctors and physical therapists are now telling people to step back and think before joining the crowd. They point to their patient lists when asked why. Recent studies published by the University of Rochester in the Orthopaedic Journal of Sports Medicine found that 20 percent of 386 CrossFit participants surveyed sustained injuries in the last year, primarily of the shoulder, lower back or knees. Ohio State University researchers, in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, found that 16 percent of CrossFit participants dropped out due to "overuse or injury."

WXXI (November 19)

Connections: George H. W. Bush's New Biography Written By Curt Smith

Curt Smith, the author, lecturer, and former presidential speechwriter, is our guest this hour to talk about his new biography on President George H. W. Bush. Smith was a speechwriter for the 41st President of the United States. Curt Smith is here. He's the author of a new book on George H.W. Bush. The book is called George H.W. Bush: Character at the Core. The book is out now. Curt is a senior lecturer of English at the University of Rochester. He's written 16 books and was a speechwriter for, among other people, George H.W. Bush.

(Also reported in: WHAM 1180 AM )

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 11)

Woman to Watch: Jane Possee

In 1975, when Jane Possee signed on to coach the University of Rochester's women's basketball and field hockey teams, the state of women's sports was quite different than it is today. From the outset, Possee was determined to effect change. "When I started, there were very few (athletic) opportunities for women in the spring, other than tennis," says Possee, now an athletic administrator. "So I started a women's lacrosse team, which meant that I was coaching three different team sports." The differences between women's and men's teams at UR were significant: two different programs, two different gyms, two different levels of team travel, accommodations and budget. It was three years after the Title IX anti-discrimination act was passed, and Possee seized the chance to advocate for women's sports. Possee played a major role in opening up new opportunities for the university's female athletes, such as daily practice schedules, use of the alumni gym and full-time coaches. Today, Possee is the UR's associate director for recreation. She has won numerous awards for her efforts, including the 2014 Susan B. Anthony Lifetime Achievement Award from UR, Rochester's Press-Radio Club's Jean Giambrone Service Award, and the Katherine Ley Award from the Eastern College Athletic Conference - the highest award the ECAC presents to a female athletics administrator.

Rochester Business Journal (November 11)

Simon School climbs in ranking of MBA programs

The full-time MBA program at the University of Rochester's Simon Business School is on the rise. The program was one of the leading movers on the Bloomberg Businessweek ranking of the top full-time MBA programs. The Simon Schools full-time MBA program is ranked 38th, a jump of 12 places from 50th in 2012. There is still more room to grow, Dean Andrew Ainslie said.

WXXI (November 21)

Connections: Healthy Friday - Poverty Related Illness

Western New Yorkers living in poverty are at a higher risk for many chronic and life-threatening illnesses. High rates of miscarriage, infant mortality, toxic stress, asthma, and diabetes disproportionately affect the most vulnerable among us. The new federal health care law makes some attempts to equalize access to medical services. We’ll look at whether there has been progress and what steps we should to improve the health of the least fortunate Americans with our panel: Dr. Matt Devine, Highland Family Medicine Dr. Lorinda Parks, Jordan Health Candice A. Lucas, URMC Center for Community Health

WXXI (November 10)

UR's Endowment Grows to More than $2 Billion

The University of Rochester's endowment has exceeded 2 billion dollars in long-term investments for the first time. President Joel Seligman credits increases in the stock market for much of the growth, as well as the university's on-going capital campaign. The university president explains the funds help the college finance the best and brightest.

WXXI (November 5)

URMC Developing Map of Microscopic Lung Structures

A new project at the University of Rochester Medical Center will have lung researchers breathing easier. URMC has launched a 5-year effort to develop the Human Lung Molecular Atlas Program, or LungMAP. Doctor Gloria Pryhuber, professor of Pediatrics and Environmental Medicine, explains the project will give researchers a better understanding of the development and functioning of the lungs on a microscopic level.

Rochester City Newspaper (November 12)

Researchers rattle the tin cup

For much of the last century, the US was unquestionably the world's economic leader — and not by accident. The economic engine was powered by the resolve of government leaders, particularly after World War II, to invest in research and development. Most basic scientific research, roughly 55 percent, is conducted at a core group of the nation's leading universities. But years of static funding — due to budget pressures, a shift to investing in private research, and other reasons — in some areas of research and a clear decline in others have many local and national researchers and university leaders worried. "Every major research university is totally dependent on federal funding," says Rob Clark, the University of Rochester's senior vice president for research. "That's the key issue. We've had a decline in US commitment to research funding compared to surges everywhere around the world, particularly in Southeast Asia. We're really fighting at the core for our competitiveness and innovation." Clark and Stephen Dewhurst, vice dean for research at the UR's School of Medicine and Dentistry, say that if the trend continues, the country's position as the global leader in R&D and biotech is threatened.

Time Warner Cable News (November 11)

University of Rochester Opens Up Veteran and Military Family Services Office

The University of Rochester officially opened its new Veteran and Military Family Services Office on Tuesday. For U.S. Navy veteran Matt Legere, after spending six years in the military and then venturing on to Rochester Institute of Technology and the University of Rochester, he knows what it’s like to feel alone on campus without an office like this. “It was one of those things where I did my undergrad and I felt kind of isolated, that I was just trying to learn a lot of the things on my own and go through the motions of navigating the GI Bill and the complexities of the VA and responses and everything,” Legere said. “It was very complicated.” Now with the opening of the office, he’s hoping no other fellow comrades will have to navigate that difficult path by themselves. The office will provide veterans with a starting point for their education.

(Also reported in: Time Warner Cable News )

13WHAM-TV (November 10)

Saving East High

In many chemistry experiments, you try to find out whether two elements work well together. A similar test is underway at East High School. The University of Rochester is getting ready to take over the school. It's part of a relatively new state initiative that allows universities to become the superintendent of failing schools: a pairing called an Educational Partnership Organization, or EPO. The University of Rochester will submit a plan to the state by Dec. 1, but the school has already entrenched itself at East. "They are listening to students and teachers and parents and, overall, they are going to get it done and do good change," said Joycelyn Rivas, an East High student.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 9)

YellowJackets holding benefit concert

From schoolchildren in Africa to a national television audience on NBC’s The Sing Off, Abhishek Sharma has performed in some memorable performances as part of the University of Rochester’s male a cappella group The YellowJackets. There is one recent audience of one, though, that will stay with him forever. “We sang for a woman named Rose in hospice at the Isaiah House in Rochester,” Sharma says. “With music, we tried to make her last moments here as phenomenal as possible. She passed away the next day.” The performance for Rose was part of The YellowJackets’ newest philanthropic project: to bring music and medicine together, creating opportunities for musicians to perform for patients in healthcare institutions across Rochester.

(Also reported in: Webster Post )

WXXI PBS News (November 10)

Coming up on Connections: Tuesday, November 11th

Second hour: Marking 25 years since the Berlin Wall fell It's 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall. University of Rochester professor Randy Stone joins me in studio; he was there many times, including just a few months after it fell. Stone will talk about why the wall was built in 1961, why Communism collapsed, the subsequent deal regarding German reunification, and should (and shouldn't) claim credit for the end of Communism.

WXXI PBS News (October 31)

Connections: Dying with Dignity

Listen Listening... / Dying with dignity. Dying with dignity: 29-year-old Brittany Maynard moved to Oregon so she could end her life on her own terms. She has incurable brain cancer. She's become a kind of spokesperson about the right to die with dignity. Will other states follow Oregon? Only three other states allow similar actions, and New York is not one of them. We discuss this with our guests: Dr. Timothy Quill, University of Rochester Medical Center Barbara Mancini, who was featured on a recent 60 Minutes report; she was arrested when her elderly father chose to end his life with pills at home.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 11)

UR conference to address disabilities, technology

How far is too far when it comes to technological enhancements for people's bodies and minds? Does the answer change for the disabled? And who gets to decide? A first-of-its-kind symposium Friday at the University of Rochester will focus on those sorts of questions, drawing experts in disability studies across a variety of disciplines. Academics from the fields of education, health care, media and human resources will discuss their work toward the goal of fostering a comprehensive view of the nature of disability and normalcy, particularly in the face of medical advances that promise to 'repair' those with disabilities.

Time Warner Cable News (November 5)

Two Sweethearts, Stronger Than Ever

A couple who met when they both experienced heart trouble will soon officially announce their love for one another at the place they first met - Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester. Three years ago, fate and a history of broken hearts brought them to Strong. Danny had heart trouble since the early 90s, and before that, Esther was on the list for a heart transplant. Danny also needed a transplant. While recovering, a mutual friend delivered a message that got the ball rolling. Their doctors then began to see a change, which really couldn't be explained by medicine alone. The couple now lives together. They're not getting married, but will gather at the hospital chapel for a promise ceremony.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 6)

An artist's view: Humpherys on Rachmaninoff

Tonight and Saturday, Eastman School of Music Professor Douglas Humpherys will appear as a guest pianist with the RPO, performing Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 1 at Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre. We asked RPO Marketing Intern Matthew Langford to interview Humpherys about the Russian composer and his famous first concerto. Humpherys is professor and chair of the piano department at the Eastman and the founder/director of the biannual Eastman Young Artists International Piano Competition, among many other accolades. He has also traveled to Russia multiple times, both as a soloist and also as an adjudicator for the Rachmaninoff International Young Artists’ Piano Competition in Novgorod, Russia.

Rochester City Newspaper (November 5)

The Rochester Polish Film Festival 2014 Preview

The Rochester Polish Film Festival returns for its 17th annual chapter this week, offering a program of interesting, thought-provoking films that make up the best of what contemporary Polish cinema has to offer. The Festival officially started Saturday, November 1, and Sunday, November 2, with screenings of two classic Polish films; this week begins the screenings of more recent films, and the brunt of the festival. In two years of covering the film festival (sponsored by the University of Rochester's Skalny Center for Polish and Central European Studies) it's quickly become a festival I eagerly look forward to. Each year, the festival consistently brings Rochester a lineup of films that are challenging, entertaining, and characteristic of Poland's vibrant film community.

(Also reported in: Fox Rochester )

Rochester City Newspaper (November 5)

OPERA | Eastman Opera Theatre presents Albert Herring

Beginning Thursday, November 6, the Eastman Opera Theatre will present "Albert Herring," a comedic opera about an innocent young British man who sets out to lose his virginity immediately after being crowned May King. Written by famed writer Benjamin Britten, "Albert Herring" is a witty satire of British small-town attitudes that explores themes of societal marginalization. Assistant Professor of Opera at Eastman, and Stage Director for the production Stephen Carr notes that one of the most distinctive elements of Albert Herring is its "tight character development," bringing a realism to the characters that audiences will immediately connect with. "Albert Herring" features two alternating casts of lead roles, with Steven Humes and Nathaniel McEwan starring as the titular character. "Albert Herring" will run Thursday, November 6, through Sunday, November 9, at Kilbourn Hall, Eastman School of Music, 26 Gibbs Street. 7:30 p.m. on Thursday through Saturday; and 2 p.m. on Sunday.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 2)

Joanna Scott finds novel in family history

Joanna Scott set out to write a family biography. But two years of researching her great-grandfather's mysterious disappearance led her to more questions than answers, a possible new twig on her family tree and, ultimately, to last month's release of her new novel, De Potter's Grand Tour. The book is the 11th for Scott, who has been an English professor at the University of Rochester since 1988. Her work has drawn critical acclaim, and she was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for The Manikin in 1997. "Through my research in preparing to write the book, I came in contact with a man in Belgium who shares the name De Potter, and he's become part of our family," says Joanna Scott. "We call him 'Cousin Nic.' My brother just went to visit him, and he wants us to do a DNA test." De Potter's Grand Tour (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $26) includes photographs of her great-grandfather's, Armand De Potter, trips and his collection of Egyptian artifacts, now on display at the Brooklyn Museum. On Jan. 9, 2015, many of the images will be part of a special exhibit in Rare Books and Special Collections in Rush Rhees Library at University of Rochester.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (October 31)

MAG presents exhibit of Golden Books illustrations

Ask someone about their childhood memories, and many will mention reading books and the stories that unfolded on their pages. Memorial Art Gallery through Jan. 4 is hosting "Golden Legacy," featuring 64 years of the Golden Book series by some of America's leading illustrators in the 20th century. Among the illustrations on exhibit is Two Little Gardeners, drawn by Gertrude Elliot and the first Golden Book of Marie Via, MAG's director of exhibitions.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 25)

Area women’s basketball overview

The University of Rochester usually rules the roost known as local Division III women’s basketball. Nine NCAA Tournament appearances and three Final Fours speak to that. But not last year. Injuries left the Yellowjackets at 12-13, their first losing season since they went 6-19 in Jim Scheible’s first season as coach in 1999-2000. UR figures to be improved, but so do St. John Fisher and Geneseo in what figures to be a highly competitive race to be the top team in the Rochester area. Here’s a look at local college women’s basketball for 2014-15: Hope at UR: Three starters return, led by senior guard Ally Zywicki (12.7 ppg, 104 assists). Senior Breanna Madrazo earned all-UAA honors in 2012-13 after averaging 8.4 points but missed last season with an injury. Keep an eye on freshman post players Alexandra Leslie and Mary Kronenwetter, who combined for 29 points in a season-opening win at Oneonta. (Related stories reported by Rochester Democrat & Chronicle 11-26-14, Oneonta Daily Star)

(Also reported in: Democrat & Chronicle, Oneonta Daily Star )

WTOP 103.5 FM (DC) (November 24)

5 items to donate for a charitable tax deduction

It's that warm and fuzzy time of year when you may be thinking of donating to charity. After all, you're a good person. It's the right thing to do. And sure, there's also a little matter of getting a tax deduction. Of course, it's hardly a little matter if you donate a lot. When you donate to a charity and take a tax deduction, your taxable income is lowered, which translates into fewer taxes to pay. This is assuming you've picked a charity the Internal Revenue Service recognizes. After all, there are plenty of outfits that claim to be do-gooder nonprofits. If you have any doubt that a charity is IRS- approved, you can go to irs.gov/eo and look it up using the "EO Select Check" tool. "It pays to donate reasonably big-ticket items if you can," says George Cook, an executive professor at the Simon School of Business at the University of Rochester in New York. "For example, a complete bedroom set can get you up to a $1,000 write-off. Complete dining room sets may get you up to $90. Computers, copiers, televisions and refrigerators in working order might get you $250. Working washing machines can be up to $150." And just as charities will do with cars, "many charitable organizations will come to your residence and pick up heavy-duty, bulky items, such as furniture. Just call and schedule a pickup, and they will haul it away," Cook says.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 2)

License plate data is big business

Privately owned license-plate imaging systems are popping up around Rochester and upstate New York in parking lots, shopping malls and, soon, on at least a few parts of the New York state Thruway. And in fact, mass collection of license-plate images is just one of many ways in which business and government entities legally compile data on individuals. The difference in this case is they do it not by sifting through social-media posts or mining financial records, but by driving down the street. Many private-sector camera operators, like parking companies, say they do not know the names and addresses behind the plates they scan. Others, like universities, say they discard the records almost immediately. The University of Rochester will begin use of LPRs for parking control early next year, mostly on the River Campus, spokeswoman Sara Miller said.

WHEC-TV © 11/05/2014 (November 5)

Absentee ballot counting begins in race for the 25th Congressional District, Rep. Slaughter picks up additional votes

Political Analyst Curt Smith says, "On a local level, on a state level, on a national level, it is stunning." Smith says no one expected Assini to even come close to beating Slaughter -- who he describes as a Monroe County institution and a national political icon. "It's an astonishing, astonishing, heroic, gallant, almost mythic race on behalf of Assini," says Smith.

(Also reported in: WROC-TV )

NPR (November 11)

Are You Important?

ADAM FRANK What if there were a science that could help you understand why high school was (for so many of us) so horrible? What if there were a science that laid bare the dynamics of cliques, "in" crowds and outsiders with the mathematical precision of a moon shot? Well, there pretty much is such a science — and, as the age of "big data" rises, this new field called network science is opening vistas on everything from high school social webs to the spread of deadly diseases. There are many, many questions network science can answer. But to get a sense of how it all works, let's start with one that haunts most of humanity at one time or another: "Am I important?"

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (October 30)

Young scientists present work

Members of East High School’s Science STARS (Students Tackling Authentic and Relevant Science) club presented the results of their investigations Thursday during an event at the school. The students worked with prospective science teachers from the University of Rochester Warner School of Education. Projects included measuring bacteria around the school and determining the impact of music on attention span and emotional well-being.

(Also reported in: Time Warner Cable News )

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (November 14)

Job seekers having trouble with online applications

To scientists, a black hole is a region in outer space with such a strong gravitational force that nothing can escape, not even light. To the members of the August Group, a networking organization for professionals seeking new jobs, it's the place where online job applications go. "We call it the black hole because everything goes in and nothing comes out," said John Adams, a member of the August Group and co-founder of Always Be Connecting Power Networking Group. It's partly due to software used to gather applications that filters out applications based on keywords and critieria used to narrow the field of candidates to the most qualified applicants. The University of Rochester is notorious for it's "black hole" application system, Adams said. "The way you get around the UR is you apply online and then you try to figure out who the hiring manager is and send them an email directly. The hiring manager is more likely to see it from the direct email than from the black hole system," Adams said.

Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (October 30)

Steven Salaita to speak at University of Rochester

A professor who has been at the center of an academic freedom controversy will be part of a program at the University of Rochester Thursday evening. The event, "Digital Means, Political Ends, and Academic Freedom in the New Gilded Age: A Conversation with Steven Salaita," will be held in the Hawkins-Carlson Room of UR's Rush Rhees Library at the college's River Campus.