UW Highlights

As Wyoming’s only university, UW is committed to explore, create, and share knowledge. Wyoming Public Media captures the work of scholars, learners, and leaders who are committed to serving the state of Wyoming and contributing to national and international intellectual growth. You can hear some of our stories and features on these pages. They reflect the work of hundreds of individuals dedicated to the University of Wyoming vision to imagine the future and to create it.

Anna Rader

On a snowy and cold Thursday morning, the British a cappella vocal ensemble the King's Singer's warmed up the Morning Music studio. The King's Singers are on tour of festive performances across the United States. One of their stops includes a performance in Laramie at the University of Wyoming's Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall

UW Photo

The Gala Holiday Concert at the University of Wyoming on Saturday and Sunday feature performances by the Bel Canto Women’ Choir, Civic Chorus, Singing Statesmen, Symphony Orchestra and Wind Symphony. Orchestra director Michael Griffith previewed a portion of the concert with Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer.

Micah Schweizer

To end the fall semester, University of Wyoming Professor Jeff Lockwood’s Creative Nonfiction: The Short Form class recorded their final pieces for our literary series Spoken Words.

Wyoming looks to replace Dave Christensen

Dec 2, 2013
Bob Beck / WPM

The University of Wyoming is moving forward with its effort to replace football coach Dave Christensen who was fired Sunday.  U-W Athletics Director Tom Burman said at a news conference that the school is prepared  to make a competitive offer and he says the U-W Trustees and Acting President Dick McGinity are behind his efforts to drastically improve the football program.                 

“I feel good that we all know that this is an extremely important hire for the University and for me.  I need their support and I feel that I absolutely have it.” 

Rebecca Golden is a candidate for the Master of Fine Arts in creative nonfiction at the University of Wyoming. She's the author of a memoir, "Butterbabe: The True Adventures of a 40-Stone Outsider" (Random House UK) and has contributed to Salon, Nerve and the Times of London. Rebecca's current project is a collection of essays about the city of Detroit.

Wyoming fires Football Coach Dave Christensen

Dec 1, 2013

After five seasons Wyoming football coach Dave Christensen has been fired.  Christensen had 27 wins and 35 losses in his tenure and his teams were only 16 and 23 in the Mountain West Conference.  He did take Wyoming to two bowl games, winning one.  The last appearance was in 2011.

U-W Athletics Director Tom Burman said the football program“ has not achieved at the level of success we expect.” 

What if the vast stands of beetle-killed trees in the west could be turned into gasoline? A recently-announced federal project involving several University of Wyoming researchers is trying to answer that question.

Most biofuels are made of crops, like corn and sorghum, but this five-year, $10 million project will study whether dead trees might work just as well -- while avoiding competition with food sources.

The University of Wyoming has received a grant to expand the research capabilities of its King Air research airplane.

The National Science Foundation awarded the Department of Atmospheric Science $1.2 million and UW matched the grant with an additional $515,000 to develop and build an advanced remote sensing instrument.

Professor Zhien Wang is part of the team that will work with the instrumentation. He says the first project will be to study night storms, for better weather forecasting.

University of Wyoming Athletics

It’s been a rough month for the Wyoming football team, but on Saturday Brett Smith had a record setting day throwing for seven touchdowns and running for another as the Cowboys held off Hawaii 59-56 in overtime. 

“People who are around the complex just understand how hard we work and the time that everybody puts it.  When you have a performance like that as an offense, when you are playing at that high of a level, especially when you win…the feeling is indescribable.  That’s why I play the game” said Smith.

The University of Wyoming wrestling team is undefeated after its close win over Boise State last week.

The Pokes have also competed in two open tournaments this month, both times producing at least six champions.

Wyoming is currently the top ranked team in the conference.

ccwpiano.com

Pianist Chi-Chen Wu is a recitalist, chamber musician, and soloist. She teaches piano at the University of Wyoming. Here’s part of a recent recital performance, featuring the first movement of Alexander Scriabin’s third piano sonata, composed 1897-98.

trib.com

Laramie Senator Phil Nicholas says he’s sad and disappointed to see Bob Sternberg depart from his position as President of the University of Wyoming so quickly. Sternberg resigned on Thursday after less than 5 months on the job. 

www.beaumontenterprise.com

The University of Wyoming Board of Trustees announced UW President Bob Sternberg’s resignation on Thursday. The Trustees spent Thursday and Friday in meetings, but President of the Board David Bostrom sat down to talk with Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov about what comes next. Bostrom says the Trustees didn’t try to convince Dr. Sternberg to stay.

trib.com

It’s not often that a president leaves a university as quickly as Bob Sternberg, but it has happened before at UW. Phil Roberts spoke with Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden. He says there are often times that people are just not the right fit for a particular position.

For more on UW President Bob Sternberg’s resignation, click here.

Anselmo Roldan Aguilar is from Guatemala. He was a young man when the Guatemalan military attacked his town and killed more than 400 people. This was in 1982, in the midst of Guatemala’s internal armed conflict, during which thousands were massacred.

Roldan Aguilar is now president of the Association for Justice and Reconciliation, an organization seeking justice for the survivors and perpetrators. He visited the University of Wyoming to meet with students and talk about his experience and AJR’s work and stopped by the studio to talk with Wyoming Public Radio’s Irina Zhorov.

Willow Belden

Converse County is seeing an increasing amount of energy development, and some residents worry that air quality could suffer as a result. The Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality and researchers from the University of Wyoming are now monitoring air quality in the area.

On the whole, they’ve found that the air is pretty clean. But they’ve also documented times when pollution levels have spiked. Wyoming Public Radio’s Willow Belden reports.

One of classical music’s most famous pieces is not normally performed the way the composer conceived it. But next week (Nov. 19-24), the University of Wyoming is staging Carmina Burana the way Carl Orff intended—with dancers and actors alongside the orchestra and chorale. That’s 150 performers onstage at once. Wyoming Public Radio’s Micah Schweizer spoke with UW dance professor and choreographer Lawrence Jackson.

Willow Belden

University of Wyoming President Bob Sternberg has resigned, after less than five months in office.

He said in a statement that “as wonderful as the University of Wyoming is, it may not be the best fit for me as president.”

Sternberg had come under fire from members of the campus community after several deans and other top officials were replaced.

University of Wyoming President Bob Sternberg has resigned. The decision was announced in a press conference this evening. The Board of Trustees says the decision was Sternberg’s – that he was not asked to resign.

Sternberg had come under fire from members of the campus community, who were upset about the departures of several deans and other top officials.

Anna Rader

Ben Markley is a composer and jazz pianist. He is also a visiting Assistant Professor of Music for the University of Wyoming Music Department. Scott Turpen is a saxophonist and Professor at the University of Wyoming Music Department, teaching Jazz Studies. "And The Wind Came" was written and composed by Ben Markley.

The President of the University of Wyoming, Bob Sternberg, says he understands that the turnover of several administrators is unsettling, but says that most of the resignations have been coincidence.  Sternberg says he was directly involved in the resignations of Provost Myron Allen and Education Dean Kay Persichitte, but other administrator resigned on their own. 

It’s been a rough week for UW President Bob Sternberg.  He’s been taken to task by several UW faculty on University list serves over his handling of a number of issues, but people have expressed the most concern over the turnover of some U-W administrators. 

Most recently the dismissal of the College of Education Dean and the resignation of the Law School Dean.  Sternberg gives Bob Beck his perspective on the controversy.

The Linden String Quartet is a rising star in the chamber music world. The quartet has won first prize in five major competitions and recently completed a residency at Yale University. On Friday, November 8, the Linden performs at the University of Wyoming. Violinist Sarah McElravy spoke with Wyoming Public Media’s Micah Schweizer about the quartet's blossoming career.

University of Wyoming College of Law students delivered an open letter Monday to UW President Bob Sternberg demanding more transparency about their dean’s resignation. College of Law Dean Stephen Easton’s resignation is the latest in a series of departures from the University's top ranks. Since July, five deans have been replaced along with several provosts.

University of Wyoming Defensive-Line coach, Jamar Cain, has been promoted to Defensive Coordinator after this week’s firing of former coordinator, Chris Tormey.

The Pokes defense has been underwhelming this year. Ranked number 105 in total defense out of 123 teams in the NCAA, UW has given up over 50 points a game during the last two weeks.

Head Coach Dave Christensen says that firing Tormey was hard, but gives his team the best chance to win going forward.

www.uwyo.edu

Land grant institutions, like the University of Wyoming, were designed to provide a practical education. In a recent editorial, UW’s president makes the case that the humanities and fine arts are also part of that practical education.

Since becoming UW’s president earlier this year, Sternberg says he’s heard lots of conversation about engineering, agriculture, and business, but not so much about the humanities. As a psychologist, much of Sternberg’s work has focused on creativity.

Anna Rader

Nicole Riner is a recitalist, clinician, and freelance flutist. She teaches at the University of Wyoming. Composer Katherine Hoover, who wrote ‘Winter Spirits’, is known for evoking Native American flute sounds in her flute pieces.

Rebecca Martinez

In such an arid state as Wyoming, water is precious. Last year, the University of Wyoming created the Wyoming Center for Hydrology and Geophysics, combining field experts and state-of-the art technology to better understand where water goes in after it falls from the sky, since much of it ends up in snowpack or underground.

There isn’t too much information available about that, but it’s important to state and local water managers, who need to know just how much water they have to work with. Rebecca Martinez reports.

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Stephanie Joyce

Many retired people take up a hobby -- knitting, bird watching, bingo. But two Laramie retirees have decided to spend their days in pursuit of a decidedly less mainstream pastime: solving the energy challenges of our time. Wyoming Public Radio’s Stephanie Joyce has the story.

STEPHANIE JOYCE: It’s a sunny fall day, and Dave Earnshaw is standing outside the central energy plant at the University of Wyoming, staring out over the empty field that sits next to it.

Chelsea Biondolillo

Wyoming might not be the first choice for grape growers and aspiring vinters, but a group in Sheridan is working to change that. Professors, graduate and undergraduate students at UW and Sheridan College are using advanced techniques to identify traits in different grape varieties that make them well suited to Wyoming. Wyoming Public Radio’s Chelsea Biondolillo reports.

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