KU News: KU Audio-Reader celebrating 50 years

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KU Audio-Reader celebrating 50 years
LAWRENCE — Audio-Reader, based at the University of Kansas, has two upcoming events to commemorate its first broadcast Oct. 11, 1971. The service, which provides access to information for individuals who are visually impaired or print-disabled, plans an open house from 10 a.m. to noon Monday, Oct. 11, at its KU location as well as a celebration Nov. 5 at Abe and Jake’s Landing. Tickets are now available for the Nov. 5 celebration.

KU Law graduates outperform statewide bar pass rates in Kansas, Missouri
LAWRENCE – University of Kansas School of Law graduates who took the Kansas and Missouri bar exams for the first time in July 2021 passed at rates well above the state averages, according to the Board of Law Examiners for each state. In Missouri, KU Law’s 100% pass rate was 16.8% above the Missouri average of 83.2% for first-time test takers. In Kansas, KU Law’s 98.2% pass rate was 19.3% above the Kansas average of 78.9% for first-time test takers.

KU will observe Ombuds Day with public conversation with Chuck Howard
LAWRENCE – The fourth annual Ombuds Day will feature a public conversation with Chuck Howard, the executive director of the International Ombuds Association, at the University of Kansas. Howard will present “Managing Conflict and Resolution on Campus – the role of the University Ombuds Office” during a question-and-answer event that begins at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14.

Lori Hasselman named Native American student success coordinator
LAWRENCE — The University Academic Support Centers has announced that Lori Hasselman (Delaware/Shawnee Tribes of Oklahoma) has been named as the Native American student success coordinator at the University of Kansas. This position will coordinate the Haskell/KU Exchange Program and foster academic success and belonging for Native American students by providing culturally relevant coaching.

Garden City native selected as 2021-22 Dwight D Eisenhower/Clifford Roberts Graduate Fellow
LAWRENCE — Alyssa Cole, current Chancellor’s Doctoral Fellow and doctoral candidate in history at the University of Kansas, has won a competitive Dwight D. Eisenhower/Clifford Roberts Graduate Fellowship from the Eisenhower Institute at Gettysburg College. A native of Garden City, Cole will use the $10,000 to complete her dissertation on “Professionalization of Black Medicine: Kansas City, 1900,” which focuses on Black physicians and communities in Kansas City in the early 20th century whose work contributed to the development of the Black medical profession in the Midwest.

Full stories below.

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Contact: Beth McKenzie, Audio-Reader, 785-864-4600, [email protected]
KU Audio-Reader celebrating 50 years

LAWRENCE — On Oct. 11, 1971, Audio-Reader’s first broadcast went on the air from the University of Kansas. For the next 50 years, Audio-Reader has provided access to information and the arts to anyone who has difficulty reading standard printed materials due to vision loss, physical or learning disability, mobility challenges and age.

Hundreds of Audio-Reader volunteers read thousands of publications, including local and regional newspapers, books, magazines and special-interest materials to individuals who are blind, visually impaired or print-disabled across Kansas, western Missouri and beyond. Since its inception, Audio-Reader has made its content available through closed-circuit radios, smart speakers, smartphone apps, over the phone and online. Its multifaceted delivery options came at a crucial time for listeners.

“The year 2020 was one of Audio-Reader’s busiest years as local information was essential, from knowing community COVID risk levels and regulations to knowing when and how to access health care and get groceries,” said Dan Skinner, director of Audio-Reader and Kansas Public Radio. “Additionally, Audio-Reader experienced a surge in listeners seeking the companionship of volunteers reading the daily broadcast. Isolation and loneliness were particularly challenging for many listeners throughout the pandemic and found Audio-Reader to be a trusted voice available 24/7.”

To honor Audio-Reader’s legacy, Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly proclaimed the week of Oct. 11 to be “Audio-Reader Week.” Audio-Reader will kick off its 50th anniversary with an open house from 10 a.m. to noon Monday, Oct. 11, in the Audio-Reader parking lot, 1120 W 11th St. Coffee, doughnuts, prizes and Audio-Reader swag will be available. Special interviews will be conducted with listeners and supporters to be broadcast live on Audio-Reader’s airwaves.

During the open house, tickets can be purchased for Audio-Reader’s 50th Anniversary Celebration, which will take place from 7 to 10 p.m. Nov. 5 at Abe & Jake’s Landing. This celebration will feature guest speakers, live music, hors d’oeuvres from Maceli’s catering and a silent auction featuring a specially curated selection of vinyl records and vintage audio equipment. Details and online registration can be found at reader.ku.edu/audioreader50years.

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Contact: Margaret Hair, School of Law, 785-864-9205, [email protected], @kulawschool
KU Law graduates outperform statewide bar pass rates in Kansas, Missouri

LAWRENCE – University of Kansas School of Law graduates who took the Kansas and Missouri bar exams for the first time in July 2021 passed at rates well above the state averages.

In Missouri, 100% of KU Law graduates who took the Missouri bar exam for the first time in July passed, according to results released by the Missouri Board of Law Examiners. KU Law’s 100% pass rate was 16.8% above the Missouri average of 83.2% for first-time test takers.

In Kansas, 98.2% of KU Law first-time test takers passed the Kansas bar exam in July, placing the school 19.3% above the Kansas average. The state’s overall first-time pass rate was 78.9%, according to information shared with KU Law administrators by the Kansas Board of Law Examiners.

“We are proud of our recent graduates, who completed law school at a uniquely challenging time and achieved outstanding results on the bar exams in Kansas and Missouri,” said Stephen Mazza, dean and professor of law.

“Our students build a solid foundation in the classroom, where they have access to faculty who are nationally recognized for their scholarship and are outstanding teachers,” Mazza said. “Students practice skills in clinics, simulation courses and field placements. Those experiences prepare them to succeed on the bar exam and start their legal careers.”

Bar passage outcome reports generated by the American Bar Association from previous years are available on the KU Law website. A full report for the 2021 calendar year will be published by Feb. 15, 2022.

KU Law’s Free Bar Prep Program offers all students a post-graduation Themis Bar Review course that includes a simulated bar exam, a Multistate Professional Responsibility Exam prep course, a first-year diagnostic exam and access to an on-site bar exam instructor. KU Law graduates who took the bar exam in July 2021 were in the first class to participate in all three years of the Free Bar Prep Program.

Alumni gifts support the bar prep program, making it possible for KU Law to be one of a few law schools nationally to offer a post-graduation bar review course at no cost to students.

“The law school’s bar prep program is funded by generous alumni, many of whom experienced the difficulty of paying for a post-graduation course,” Mazza said. “They understand the importance of easing a graduate’s transition from law student to licensed attorney.”

Employment for KU Law graduates has exceeded 90% for the past seven years. Overall employment for KU Law graduates in 2020, the most recent reporting year, was 93.1%, according to data reported to the ABA.

Heather Spielmaker, assistant dean for career services at KU Law, said the Free Bar Prep Program helps set students up for success finding legal jobs. Early employment numbers for the Class of 2021 are encouraging, Spielmaker said. Class of 2021 employment will be reported to the ABA in March.

“The Class of 2021 is already headed toward breaking employment records for KU Law, with graduates landing full-time, long-term legal jobs, jobs at graduation and judicial clerkships at impressive rates,” Spielmaker said. “We will be excited to report those numbers when they become official this spring.”

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Contact: Evan Riggs, Office of the Provost, 785-864-1085, [email protected], @KUProvost
KU will observe Ombuds Day with public conversation with Chuck Howard

LAWRENCE – The fourth annual Ombuds Day will feature a public conversation with Chuck Howard, the executive director of the International Ombuds Association, at the University of Kansas. The event will run from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 14, and is co-sponsored by the KU Ombuds Office and the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging.

The conversation with Howard is titled “Managing Conflict and Resolution on Campus – the role of the University Ombuds Office.” The informal question-and-answer-style chat features Ada Emmett, KU acting ombuds, and D.A. Graham, current interim vice provost for diversity, equity, inclusion & belonging and former KU ombuds.

“We want to celebrate Ombuds Day to bring people’s attention to the ombuds field and our colleagues globally, while also sharing more about what the KU Ombuds Office offers to the entire KU community locally,” Emmett said. “The mission of the KU Ombuds Office is to provide a space for an off-the-record conversation about situations that a person might be facing and explore their options in a way that ensures all members of the university community receive fair and equitable treatment.”

Ombuds are found in many organizations, including universities, government agencies, health care institutions, corporations, financial institutions, for-profit and nonprofit organizations, the media and international organizations.

The event is available to attend in-person in the Alderson Room at the Kansas Union. A livestream is available to view, but free registration is required.

“Ombuds Day also gives us the opportunity to bring a leader in the ombuds field to our campus to exchange ideas about their experience helping universities shape, develop and maximize their Ombuds Offices,” Emmett said.

Howard is the executive director of the International Ombudsman Association. As noted on the IAO website, he was a partner and general counsel of the law firm of Shipman & Goodwin LLP, resident in its Hartford, Connecticut, office. For almost 30 years, Howard represented ombuds offices at major corporations, universities, research facilities and other organizations throughout the United States as independent counsel. He is the author of “The Organizational Ombudsman: Origins, Roles, and Operations – A Legal Guide,” published by the American Bar Association in January 2020, and he is a frequent presenter and writer on ombuds issues.

An in-person conversation with Howard has been scheduled for senior administrators at KU along with the ombuds team on Wednesday afternoon. The objective is to learn more about ombuds efforts and consider how the ombuds teams’ collective roles as conflict management partners can further support change and improvement in the university community.

The Ombuds Office assists students, staff and faculty on the Lawrence and Edwards campuses and adheres to the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics.

The ABA has designated the second Thursday of October as Ombuds Day to coincide with Conflict Resolution Month and Mediation Week.

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Don’t miss new episodes of “When Experts Attack!,”
a KU News Service podcast hosted by Kansas Public Radio.

https://kansaspublicradio.org/when-experts-attack
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Contact: Melissa Peterson, University Academic Support Centers, 785-864-7267, [email protected]
Lori Hasselman named Native American student success coordinator

LAWRENCE — The University Academic Support Centers has announced that Lori Hasselman (Delaware/Shawnee Tribes of Oklahoma) has been named as the Native American student success coordinator at the University of Kansas.

This position will coordinate the Haskell/KU Exchange Program and foster academic success and belonging for Native American students by providing culturally relevant coaching. The creation of this role, which reports to Melissa Peterson, director of tribal relations, is part of a larger investment in diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging at KU by Barbara Bichelmeyer, provost and executive vice chancellor.

“Lori brings a wealth of experience, having attended and worked at both Haskell Indian Nations University and the University of Kansas,” Peterson said. “Her passion to ensure the success of Native college students will help build the Haskell/KU Exchange Program and lead KU in supporting our Haskell students and our KU Native students.”

Hasselman holds a master’s degree in higher education administration from KU and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Haskell. In her previous role as a retention specialist for Haskell TRIO Student Support Services, she maintained a connection with her tribal community and to the broad spectrum of Indigenous networks, which will allow her to leverage resources and design programming that is holistic and culturally relevant.

“I am so excited and grateful for this unique opportunity to support students in the Haskell/KU Exchange program as well as Native students at KU,” Hasselman said. “As a graduate of both institutions, I hope to bring a student perspective to the responsibilities of this position in creating more visibility and enhancing Native student representation in support of these important KU initiatives.”

University Academic Support Centers, a unit within the division of Academic Success, is committed to ensuring successful educational experiences for all Native American students by providing support to improve recruitment, retention, graduation and community outreach while also celebrating students’ identities, cultural representation and academic success on KU’s campus and beyond.

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Contact: Nicole Reiz, Graduate Studies, [email protected]
Garden City native selected as 2021-22 Dwight D Eisenhower/Clifford Roberts Graduate Fellow

LAWRENCE – Alyssa Cole, current Chancellor’s Doctoral Fellow and doctoral candidate in history at the University of Kansas, has won a competitive Dwight D. Eisenhower/Clifford Roberts Graduate Fellowship from the Eisenhower Institute at Gettysburg College.

The fellowship is awarded to doctoral students from select institutions who are pursuing topics on the role of government in a free society, public service, public policy and an improved understanding of the U.S. role in world affairs. The $10,000 award will support Cole in the completion of her dissertation, “Professionalization of Black Medicine: Kansas City, 1900,” which focuses on Black physicians and communities in Kansas City in the early 20th century whose work contributed to the development of the Black medical profession in the Midwest.

Cole’s research examines the movement of African American physicians into Kansas City at the turn of the 20th century and their work in founding hospitals dedicated to the care of Black populations in the area – as many hospitals were segregated at the time – and the ways the surrounding communities supported what she has termed the Kansas City Black Hospital Movement.

“Cole’s research gives us the rich history of Black medical care during the Jim Crow years in metro Kansas City. Gathering fugitive sources, she tells the stories of institutions and leaders, but also of grassroots organizing by the communities served,” said David Roediger, professor of history and American studies and Cole’s dissertation co-adviser along with Shawn Alexander, professor of African and African-American studies. “Attentive to gender within the dramas she captures, Cole situates matters in the terrible history of segregation but also shows how resilience and healing confronted oppression.”

“Black communities, women’s clubs and other philanthropists in the Kansas City area all played a role in supporting the development of the hospitals and the movement of Black physicians to Kansas City,” Cole said. “This support also included the funding and development of training schools for nurses that Black women could attend.”

Katie Batza, associate professor in women, gender & sexuality studies, who studies LGBTQ medical activism and infrastructure in the final decades of the 20th century, said that “Cole’s research adds an exciting new piece to the larger historical study of the ways marginalized communities responded to the physical and emotional harms imposed upon them by systems of oppression.”

In her application for the fellowship, Cole connected the importance of community in her research to her recent experience as a community involvement coordinator for the Region 7 Environmental Protection Agency in the Kansas City area. “Much of my work centered on meeting with communities, listening to their questions and concerns, relaying these back to my agency and connecting communities to governmental information, programs and resources — especially communities affected by events such as chemical spills and accidents.”

Cole noted that foundational to her work as a coordinator was understanding how to foster trust between these affected communities and the federal government, as well as the EPA office.

Cole credited much of her success as a pathways intern and coordinator to the skills she has developed as a graduate student. She noted how well her communication, leadership and research skills translated to her work with the agency, not only in her interactions with communities in Region 7, but also in her work publishing news features for the Region 7 Office of Public Affairs.

Originally from Garden City, Cole earned a bachelor’s degree in history with a minor in African and African-American studies from KU and was a McNair Scholar. She expects to complete her doctorate at KU in 2022 and is exploring careers in public service and academia.

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http://www.news.ku.edu

Erinn Barcomb-Peterson, director of news and media relations, [email protected]

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