Coeur d'Alene Newsletter - August-September 2019
From the desk of Charles Buck
What a summer! We have been very busy at U of I Coeur d’Alene, but we’ve still found some time to enjoy our beautiful weather and surroundings.
President Green’s visit to Coeur d’Alene was a summer highlight. Around 80 faculty, staff, community partners and alumni were on hand to meet the university’s 19th president at the beautiful new DeArmond College and University Center in late July. There was a great sense of energy, optimism and excitement for a fresh start and positive things ahead.
Speaking of the DeArmond building, I hope you will take the opportunity to stop in and have a look around. It’s located on the North Idaho College campus, across from the Fort Grounds Grill, and is co-owned by NIC, Lewis-Clark State College and U of I. Our Assistant Director of Admissions Becky Byers and new Student Support Specialist Helena Harned are based here. The building allows for collaborative, one-stop services for current and prospective students from each institution. There are several large classrooms along with innovative prep and team meeting spaces. This will become a new hub for students and a welcoming doorway to higher education for all of our community members.
While the impact of our center grows, we also remember a founding father of U of I Coeur d’Alene, who we lost this summer. Former Dean Jack Dawson passed away after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. Jack was a visionary leader who orchestrated the creation of the Coeur d’Alene center. He continued to visit the center regularly and will be sorely missed.
On a brighter note, U of I Coeur d’Alene center faculty members Rich Reardon and Julie Beeston received an exciting new grant from Avista Utilities to evaluate the effectiveness of energy savings mobile apps. This collaboration is prime example of U of I research excellence with faculty from different disciplines training their collective expertise on an intriguing problem. I think it involves playing some video games too! Look for an update on that project later in the school year.
Thanks for reading and be sure to send along any suggestions or questions.
Dig’nIT Season 7 Success
Nearly 120 digital innovators from age 8 to 18 contributed to a standout summer of Dig’nIT camps and internships. Eight local tech companies fostered invaluable on-the-job learning for our high school interns, as seen in this video. Campers explored coding, fire science and more at the Harbor Center. A special feature of this Dig’nIT season was the addition of two camps at the Boys & Girls Clubs in Coeur d’Alene and Post Falls. Thanks to the Coeur d’Alene Tribe, TDS and our intern host companies for ongoing support of the Dig’nIT program.
Inspire Idaho recognized for excellence
The free app development program championed by U of I Coeur d’Alene is a finalist in the University Economic Development Association’s 2019 Awards of Excellence program. Inspire Idaho, which launched last year and has over 200 active participants statewide, is among three finalists in the talent category. Charles Buck will present Inspire Idaho at the UEDA Annual Summit at the end of September, just after launching the Sandpoint cohort which will be the 13th team of learners in Idaho.
TRiO/ETS summer highlight
A team of five students from Kootenai County’s Educational Talent Search (ETS) landed honors at NASA's Apollo 50 Challenge in Moscow. The students created a lunar module replica and used a drone to land it on a map of the moon’s surface. With a modified Lego Mindstorms robot, they explored the lunar surface and successfully returned a rock sample, earning them second place in the statewide competition.
The Great Idaho STEM Together
An educational conference organized by our local Idaho Regional Mathematics Center team drew hundreds of teachers to Coeur d’Alene just ahead of the new school year. The Great Idaho STEM Together provided 80 educational sessions and field trips at no cost to educators. The opportunity was made possible thanks to the math center, U of I Coeur d'Alene Idaho STEM Action Center CDA Schools, Idaho Science Teachers Association and the Idaho Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
2019 Super Scholarship Raffle
The annual $25,000 super scholarship raffle deadline is quickly approaching. Only one-thousand tickets are sold and the winnings must be used at one of five Idaho higher education institutions, including U of I. Raffle details are available through the Post Falls Chamber. A winner will be selected Sept. 26.
Area alumni in the news
It’s hard to keep up with all the fantastic work Vandals are doing in North Idaho, but a few highlights worth sharing include the Post Falls entrepreneurs featured on KREM, the new superintendent at Sandpoint schools, and a former Dig’nIT intern turned lead game programmer whose skills are shaping education across the state.
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