Message from Interim Dean Laura Argys

Message from Interim Dean Laura Argys

Spring Celebrations

Each year the spring semester is busy not only with our ongoing teaching, research and service, but with the preparations of many of our students’ imminent graduation and a look back at our accomplishments.  CLAS has long been known for the dedication of its faculty and staff to excellence in achieving the university’s mission.  As we’ve seen in recent Dean’s notes and campus communiques, we have celebrated faculty and staff who have been with the university for more than 25 years, Drs. Brenda Allen, Pamela Laird and Steven Medema. 

The CLAS Dean’s Office is pleased to announce the recipients of this year’s awards for Excellence in Teaching, Research and Service. The nominees were all well-qualified, making the selection process particularly difficult.  Each of the award recipients in CLAS are nominated for campus-wide awards in each of these three areas.  Our staff are recognized for exemplary work by our Outstanding Staff Award.  Please join me in congratulating our colleagues on their accomplishments.


Tenure Track:

Casey Allen, Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences

Richard Allen, Department of Psychology

Lynn Bennethum, Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences

Non Tenure Track

Aimee Bernard, Department of Integrative Biology


Laurel Hartley, Department of Integrative Biology

Peter Anthamatten, Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences


Diana White, Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences

Stephen Hartnett, Department of Communication


Michael Hinke,  Facility for Advanced Spatial Techology

Please make plans to celebrate our talented students, staff and faculty by attending the Dean’s Awards Reception on Friday, May 9th, 9-11am at the Terrace Room in the Lawrence Street Center and the Commencement ceremony May 17, 9:00 am.  The CLAS graduation reception will immediately follow the commencement ceremony in Tivoli Turnhalle.

All my best,


1 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Letters from the Deans


Opportunities to Meet the Candidates for Dean

The Provost’s office has scheduled campus visits for the three finalists for the position of Dean of CLAS:

David Hassenzahl, Monday, April 14, 2014
Open Forum – 12:45-1:45 pm, Science Bldg room 1067 (large lecture hall)
CLAS Faculty – 1:50-2:45 pm, Science Bldg room 1067
CLAS Staff – 2:50-3:45 pm, Science Bldg room 1067

Pamela Jansma, Thursday, April 17 and Friday, April 18, 2014
Open Forum – Thurs, 4/17, 1:45-2:45 pm, CU Denver Bldg (aka Dravo Bldg), 1250 14th St, room 470
CLAS Staff – Thurs, 4/17, 2:45-3:40, CU Denver Bldg, room 470
CLAS Faculty – Fri, 4/18, 12:45-1:40 pm, North Classroom, room 1607

John Hutchinson, Thursday, April 24, 2014
Open Forum – 1:30-2:30 pm, Lawrence St Center (LSC), 1380 Lawrence St, Terrace Room, 2nd floor
CLAS Faculty – 2:35-3:30 pm, LSC Terrace Room, 2nd floor
CLAS Staff – 3:35-4:30 pm, LSC Terrace Room, 2nd floor

More information about the candidates can be found on the Provost’s website. CLAS Departments may extend the invitation to their students to attend the public forum lectures if they wish. Evaluation forms will be available, which you are encouraged to complete, since Provost Nairn pays attention to all the feedback he receives concerning the finalists. 

14 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: News Archive

PLEASE SIGN UP NOW: CLAS Kickball Tournament

CLAS will be competing in its first Faculty, Staff and Student kickball tournament on Saturday, April 26th from 2-7 PM at the Auraria Campus Ball Fields. If you are interested in playing on a team please contact Tracy Kohm by TOMORROW, Friday April 11, at If you'd like to cheer, score-keep or referee please let Tracy know by April 18th.  Families and friends are welcome on the cheering section as well!

35 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: News Archive

Call for Proposals: Gustave O. Arlt Award

The deadline for this year’s competition for the Gustave O. Arlt Award has been extended to May 1.  Nominations are sought from CGS member universities for a book published within the past seven years in the fields of either linguistics or philosophy.  The award of $1,000 will be presented at the 2014 CGS Annual Meeting.


1. The recipient must have received the doctorate within seven years of the award, and currently be teaching at a North American university.
2. The recipient must have taken the degree at a North American university.
3. The book being considered must have been published within seven years of the award. The book must have been written in or translated into English.
4. The book must represent an outstanding contribution to scholarship in the field.

Information on the award can be found on the CGS website. Questions should be addressed to Cheryl Flagg or 202-461-3852.

5 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: News Archive

Sign Up for Faculty Participation in Commencement

Faculty are invited to participate in the Denver Campus commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 17, 2014 on the Auraria Field at Speer and Auraria Parkway. Please take a few minutes now to register online. If needed, you can request regalia online here. If you are interested in purchasing your own regalia, contact Diane Phillips with Willsie Cap & Gown, 720-273-7729, You’ll need to order by April 4 to avoid rush charges. Last day to register online is May 1, 2014

Questions? Please contact or 303-315-5815.

18 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: News Archive

National History Day in Colorado Seeking Judges and Volunteers

National History Day in Colorado is a social studies and literacy program for middle and high school students housed in the CU Denver History Department. More than 12,000 Colorado students participate each year by researching a topic, analyzing information and creating projects.  Students can then choose to compete at regional, state and national competitions. The Colorado state contest will be held on May 3rd at CU Denver.  We expect to have 700 middle & high school students, along with their families and teachers coming from across the state to participate. Each year we depend on 200 volunteers and judges to help us run the contest and evaluate student projects.  Judging is truly fun – you evaluate students’ projects and interview them about their work.  It is inspirational to see the students’ great work and to feel their enthusiasm and excitement for their projects.  You can choose to judge middle or high school students, and  you can choose the type of projects you’d like to judge (exhibits, documentaries, websites, papers or performances).

To register to judge or volunteer go to  For more information contact

30 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: News Archive

Campaign Corner

PHILANTHROPY AT WORK: Foss Bequest to Communication

Sonja Foss, professor of communication, has committed an estate gift that will help communication scholars investigate their areas of study, attend conferences, visit archives, complete study abroad semesters, and fill key departmental operational needs. As the former chair of the department for seven years, Foss understands how opportunities such as being able to present a paper at a conference can help master’s students gain entrance to prestigious doctoral programs. Foss would like to pass on her excitement about the communication field to graduate students, and her bequest will better enable future students and professors to shape the department of communication around their own new ideas. For more information read the article here.

3 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Campaign Corner

Diversity Matters

Council on Diversity and Inclusion Interdisciplinary Exchange

Apr 22
11:00am - 12:30pm
Tivoli Multicultural Lounge

Council on Diversity and Inclusion’s Interdisciplinary Exchanges will offer monthly presentations, discussions, and working groups highlighting the research and creative work of CLAS faculty, staff, and students around diversity and inclusion. All are welcome! *Lunch Served*

Young Voices in Women’s and Gender Studies

Sarah Russo-Pearl. “Real Women, Real Beauty?”

“Real Women” taglines have taken over the Internet, intent upon breaking stereotypes about women's bodies and personalities. I explore these campaigns and their goals, arguing that health and personal identification should be the determining factors in what makes a real woman and real beauty.

Shanna Petersen. “Our Iden-Tititties”

This presentation explores the concept of the "breast" in individual identity, demonstrating its importance not only to females but also to males. If we all consider identity stemming from the breast, medical changes regarding the breast force a new identification system for both men and women.

Anna Abalos. “Half-Baked”

In this presentation I look at how baking is still geared towards women. Even though they have gained more equality, many women are still seen as just housewives. I examine baking advertisements and baking websites over time and discuss how men bake but aren't considered part of the baking audience.

Christina McHugh. “Climbing the S.T.E.M. to Reality”

In my research I investigate why women are so underrepresented in S.T.E.M fields (specifically research fields). Factors contributing to this underrepresentation include gender assumptions about S.T.E.M being a "male only" domain and mentoring that pushes women to an education role versus research. Young women avoid S.T.E.M. fields, although specialized S.T.E.M. programs geared toward young girls are helping to remove the obstacles.

For questions please contact Tracy Kohm at


32 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Diversity Matters

CLAS Spotlight

Allen and team researching strategies for military families
Allen and team researching strategies for military families

Elizabeth Allen, associate professor of psychology, and her team of researchers are working to understand how couples are handling challenges faced by military families after spouses return from deployments and how various strategies seem to work for them in both the short and long term. The Denver Post covered the project last month, focusing on how Allen’s team is conducting an online study called the Relationships Among Military Personnel (RAMP) project.

Warrior & Family Support News Newsletter
Denver Post
, Mar 21

8 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Cooney named to board
Cooney named to board

Teresa Cooney, professor and chair of sociology, has been named to the editorial board of Contemporary Perspectives in Family Research.

9 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Cronin talks tumbleweed
Cronin talks tumbleweed

Westword asked Greg Cronin, associate professor in integrative biology, to explain why the area around Colorado Springs has been besieged by tumbleweeds this spring, and his answers educate on drought effects and invasive species dynamics.
Tumbleweed invasion has its roots in fire, drought
, Mar 28

10 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Guzik serving on NSF panel
Guzik serving on NSF panel

Associate professor of sociology Keith Guzik is serving on a Grant Review Panel for the Law and Social Sciences (LSS) Program of the National Science Foundation this month.

9 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Hasinoff explains app and tech impact for parents
Hasinoff explains app and tech impact for parents

WhatsApp  uses data to send text messages, pictures and videos, and got a lot of attention after it was purchased by Facebook for $19 Billion last month. “There’s lots of apps that do this but WhatsApp has just become very popular very fast,” Amy Hasinoff, an assistant professor in communication, explained to Fox 31, stressing that while technology changes parents need to stay focused on the content of their children’s communications rather than the delivery systems.

WhatsApp and other mobile messaging apps parents should know about
Fox 31
, Apr 2

12 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Min has a bright future ahead

Stella Min, a double major in sociology and economics, has been selected as a Honors Program Participant for this year’s annual meeting of the American Sociological Association in San Francisco.  Min will also be presiding over a research round-table at the annual conference. Perhaps most importantly, Min has accepted an offer of admission to the Sociology PhD program at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. She has been awarded a 5-year pre-doctoral training grant from the Carolina Population Center that will fund her graduate training.

12 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Otanez presents  in Costa Rica and California
Otanez presents in Costa Rica and California

On March 27, assistant professor in anthropology Marty Otañez gave an invited conference presentation at the Human Rights and Child Labor in the Global Tobacco Leaf Industry’s 4th Latin American and Caribbean Conference on Tobacco or Health in San Jose, Costa Rica that included a screening of his video Are Alternative Livelihoods Possible? The experiences of small farmers in Argentina. In addition, on April 7th he co-presented (with Donica Snyder of Florence Crittenton High School) Speaking a Transpersonal Language: Reproductive health and justice imagery in digital storytelling as a therapeutic and policy-influential process at YTH [Youth + Tech + Health] Live, in San Francisco, California.

11 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Scandlyn new book on PTSD excerpted
Scandlyn new book on PTSD excerpted

Jean Scandlyn, research professor in anthropology, had an op-ed piece appear in the Denver Post with her co-author Sarah Hautzinger (anthropology and feminist and gender studies at Colorado College) excerpted from their book Beyond Post-Traumatic Stress: Homefront Struggles with the Wars on Terror from Left Coast Press.

OPINION: A better way for us to deal with PTSD
Denver Post
, Mar 22

9 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Tomback receives prestigious fellowship
Tomback receives prestigious fellowship

Diana Tomback, professor and associate chair of integrative biology, is the recipient of a Charles Bullard fellowship in Forest Research from Harvard University. Tomback will be spending the spring semester and summer of 2015 based in the Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology collaborating with a colleague at Harvard, and then two months working at Harvard Forest in Petersham, MA, collaborating with another colleague.  The fellowship will provide Tomback with the opportunity to write research synthesis and policy papers in collaboration with colleagues, as well as interact with other members of the Harvard University faculty. Tomback is grateful for the support of Chair John Swallow and Interim Dean Laura Argys for making this possible. 

8 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

Wiley grant will bring staged reading to campus
Wiley grant will bring staged reading to campus

Cate Wiley, associate professor of English, received a grant from the Puffin Foundation in New Jersey, toward a production of her new play, Sheltered, which is based on stories by homeless women in Denver. The grant will help fund a staged reading of the play later this spring.

8 Views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Spotlight Archive

University Events

Student Success!

Apr 15
Tivoli 320A/B

The CU Denver Student Government Association defines a successful student as more than someone with good grades.  The positive impact that a student has on their peers and the achievements that make the CU Denver community stronger define success.  SGA invites you to nominate any and all students that fit this description for the Student Success event.  All nominated students will have the opportunity to win fantastic giveaway prizes.  Please help us embrace the positive performances of successful students at the University of Colorado Denver.  

Email for a nomination form.

4 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Student Life Events

CU at The Rockies

Apr 18
Coors Field

Join us in celebrating the start of the new season and the opening of the Coors Field rooftop!  

Discounted tickets are available for $10 to CU Denver students and include a pizza party before the game.  Only 2 tickets per student ID (second ticket does not require a student ID). Tickets on sale NOW in Tivoli 303.

6 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Student Life Events

The New "Old" Rising Stars

Apr 19
Springhill Suites by Marriot, Auraria Campus

A presentation on new fossil hominid discoveries from South Africa and their implications for understanding human origins, by Professor Lee Berger of Witts University, South Africa. For more information contact Charles Musiba.

6 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Student Life Events

Diversity Conversations in the Classroom: A Seminar

Apr 25
Tivoli 320A

Facilitator:  Lee Mun Wah (renowned documentary filmmaker, master diversity trainer, Asian folk-teller, and educator)

During this interactive seminar, participants will share with each other through films, small group interactions, role plays, and personal stories.  They will learn:

 *   To notice the impact and intent of our communications

 *   Ways to respond compassionately and openly about diversity issues

 *   How to listen mindfully and with awareness

 *   How personal stories can affect our perceptions and attitudes

 *   Ways to create a sense of community through dialogue and stories

 *   How to work with conflict and hurt when diversity issues are involved

All faculty (including graduate teaching assistants) are invited to attend.  Please rsvp to< by 5:00 pm on April 18, 2014.

For more information, contact<

For information about Lee Mun Wah:

Sponsored by the University of Colorado | Anschutz Medical Campus Office of Diversity and Inclusion

4 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: Student Life Events

CLAS Events

Cafe Pedagogique Denver

Apr 15
SI 4127

Café Pédagogique is an informal meeting for conversation surrounding teaching and learning. In the Café Ped, people come together in a friendly and relaxed environment and hear informal presentations on interesting educational topics, each led by someone who cares (loves, hates) deeply about it.  After each presentation there are 15-20 minutes or so of questions and answers and general discussion.  

For more information, please contact Doris Kimbrough ( or Bud Talbot (

8 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: CLAS Events

The Syrian Dilemma: A Debate on What to Do

Apr 16
Science Building 1067

Now entering its fourth year, the civil war in Syria has become a catastrophe. Millions of Syrians are internally displaced; millions more have fled the carnage for refugee camps in Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, and Jordan, destabilizing the region; the death toll approaches genocidal levels; entire cities have been turned into rubble; and charges of war crimes, terrorism, and chemical weapons usage continue to abound. Should the U.S. intervene? Should the U.N. levy sanctions? In an age of globalization, what responsibilities transcend national borders?

Featuring Nader Hashemi, Director of the University of Denver Center for Middle East Studies; Danny Postel, Associate Director of the University of Denver Center for Middle East Studies; and Betcy Jose,
CU Denver Department of Political Science.

3 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: CLAS Events

RTP Workshop

May 2
1:00 - 3:00 pm
NC 3523

Faculty undergoing RTP review this coming academic year, and Chairs who would like to know more about the process, are invited to a RTP workshop.  The workshop will go through what the structure and content of the dossier and supplemental binders should be to make the best case for review.  Discussion will include what personnel documents are necessary for the dossier and where they may be located,  best practices in writing the summary statements for the teaching, research and service sections of the dossier, and questions will be answered. The workshop will last at least 2 hours.

For more information contact John W. Wyckoff, Associate Dean Faculty and Staff Affairs, Phone: 303-556-2590 or

30 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: CLAS Events

Philosophy Department's Speaker Series

Apr 22
5:00 pm - 7:00pm
Tivoli 320

Honi Haber Memorial Lecture: "The Eugenic Structure of Mass Incarceration" by Lisa Guenther (Vanderbilt)

For more information contact the CU Denver Philosophy Department (303) 556-4868.

62 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: CLAS Events

Dean's Award Reception

May 9
9:00 am - 11:00 am
Lawrence Street Center, Terrace Room, 2nd Floor 

The annual Dean’s Awards Reception recognizes the winners of the following CLAS awards:
Outstanding Undergraduate Student Awards
Outstanding Graduate Student Awards
Outstanding Faculty Awards
Outstanding Staff Award

Light refreshments will be served. For more information contact Karen Fennell at 303-556-2624.

7 views | Issue: April 10, 2014 | Archive: CLAS Events

April 10, 2014



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The CLAS Deans' Notes is a bi-weekly newsletter for college faculty and staff.

Tracy Kohm 303.556.6663