Your daily dose of news, notes and links from around Kansas University.
• KU’s Class of 2011 has decided on a senior class gift. Each May during commencement, every graduating class has a unique banner that is carried down the hill as graduates march toward Memorial Stadium.
The banners are kept, but they’re all stored away. This year’s senior class hopes to create a public display for the banners on the fifth and sixth floors of the Kansas Union.
The display will feature images of all the surviving banners (about 120 of them) and will display the banner of each year’s most recent graduating class.
Here’s a list of a few recent previous and notable class gifts. They include scholarships, a flagpole outside Strong Hall and a bench and landscaping near Potter Lake.
A few more prominent gifts include the bronze Jayhawk statue outside Strong Hall (thanks to the Class of 1956), and the Class of 1959’s $1,700 to create the HOPE Award for KU teachers.
• If the Washington Post can be believed, then college students (and other millennials) are watching their television shows in large doses.
And they may not even be watching them on television.
The trend is called “binge-watching,” as one Syracuse University professor put it. It involves watching a particular television series in big chunks at a time, usually on Hulu, iTunes or amazon.com.
And this means old shows are having a resurgence as new generations discover them online.
The Syracuse professor told the Post many of his students don’t even have TV sets, but “they’re still watching a whole lot of television. ... They’ll hear from a friend about some show from 10 years ago, and they’ll plow through every season of it: box sets, Netflix, online.”
If you’ll excuse me, I have an episode of “Six Feet Under” I have to go watch ...
• KU has released the list of approved faculty sabbaticals for the 2011-12 academic year.
As with the 2010-11 list I referenced in a previous Heard on the Hill post, the projects are quite varied and interesting.
As usual, we’ve got the interesting trips, like Mary Alice L’Heureux, professor of architecture, who will be spending the year in Tartu, Estonia, where she plans to “teach town planning history and theory courses at Tallinn University of Technology in Estonia and write the introduction to and complete the last chapter of a manuscript-in-progress on Estonia.”
We’ve got people doing things I couldn’t possibly begin to comprehend, like David Nualart, professor of mathematics, who will be using the spring semester to “conduct research on topics related with the fractional Brownian motion, rough path analysis, and the application of Malliavin Calculus to derive rates of convergence in the central limit theorem.”
And there’s a lot of stuff that seems simple, but probably isn’t. Alison Gabriele, assistant professor of linguistics, will “build on previous research that investigates how second language learners establish connections between form and meaning.”
• No sabbaticals are on the horizon for me here at Heard on the Hill World Headquarters. We keep on churning every day. Keep sending your tips to firstname.lastname@example.org.