News

Beginning Jan. 22 (2018) Wilder Services for Aging will teach a mild exercise class designed to reduce the risk of falls by improving muscle strength, flexibility and mobility from practicing coordinated movements in a slow, circular, flowing motion.

The workshop will run for 24 sessions, from 10:30 to 11:30am every Monday and Wednesday at Wilder, 650 Marshall Ave, St. Paul. It is free but a donation of $60 is suggested. No prior experience is necessary. Please register by Tuesday, Jan 16.

Publication date:
Apr 7 2018

Despite a major snowstorm blanketing the Twin Cities the day before, dozens of retirees participated in the “Meaning in Retirement” workshop following the UMRA luncheon on January 23, 2018. The topic was a first for UMRA and it soon became clear that it struck a chord among those attending. 

Publication date:
Feb 5 2018

Want to be a part of keeping UMRA thriving? The UMRA Nominating Committee is asking for names this month for officers and Board members for 2018-19. Think about nominating someone (including yourself) for one of these positions.

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

UMRA members who braved unplowed streets and parking challenges were treated to a fine presentation at our January luncheon by Vancouver native and U of M doctoral candidate Jessica Finlay, whose academic work is focused on human geography and social gerontology. 

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

A panel of UMRA members, led by Cares Committee chair Ron Anderson, shared stories about their individual journeys into retirement and what it is that gives them a sense of meaning and purpose in their lives. The answer, in the words of one: “Enjoy life, do good, and try to add value.” 

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

New UMRA interest group, Finance and Legal Group (FLG), will meet February 21 for a workshop on identity security.

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

“Just thumbing through this book is enough to scare you.” See what UMRA Book Club members say about it. 

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

Join the book club members for a discussion of The Home Place, led by Judy Helgen. Members meet on third Fridays.  Contact Pat Tollefson (p-toll@umn.edu) to learn about a change of location for the February meeting.

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

The Photo Club’s February 13 meeting will feature “snow and ice” pictures. Each attendee is asked to submit their favorite snow and ice pictures. 

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

Join fellow UMRA members on February 15 for a ramen and sake pairing dinner at 5 p.m. in the Campus Club Bar. The menu features a delicious three-course meal, each course paired with a different sake.

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

If you're looking for ways to use some of those special skills you developed during your career, or to follow a special interest, URVC offers a mix of opportunities this month. Judge a middle school debate tournament, become a tutor/mentor for a young person, scan documents for a digital archive, usher at the Rarig Center theaters, or help pack or distribute fresh produce at a major food warehouse.  

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

For UMRA members who would like to get together for more than luncheons each month. ideas abound,. Special interest groups are a way of meeting with like-minded friends and new friends with similar interests.  

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

Our February workshop will feature two experts in fall prevention from the University of Minnesota School of Nursing, Drs. Jean Wyman and Siobhan McMahon, discussing common myths about falls and what can be done to reduce the risk of falling as one ages. They will also connect us with an opportunity to volunteer for a fall-prevention study at the U of M. 

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018

Our February luncheon speaker, Emily Baxter, is the executive director of a media-based advocacy organization that seeks to be a catalyst for conversations about crime, privilege, punishment, and second chances. And it’s her thesis that we are all criminals, although most of us don’t get caught

Publication date:
Feb 2 2018
Geospatial mapping of UMRA membership

UMRA had 646 members in December 2017.  With help from U-Spatial we mapped the location of those members across the Twin Cities, where most of our members live. People may find this useful for setting up car pools.  Using the Member Search you can find other members by city, state and zip.   View the enlarged Map.

Publication date:
Jan 30 2018

Join UMRA friends in exploring St. Paul from skyway views. A free, two-hour tour on Sunday, January 21, 2-4 p.m., features the sky bridge photo art show “Speaking of Home,” which portrays 58 recent immigrants to Minnesota. View the nearly completed Minnesota Wild hockey training center in the old Macy’s building; learn about skyways, and much more. Stay for a reception in a condo on the 23rd floor. This tour is limited to 35 persons.

Publication date:
Jan 5 2018

Due to longer life expectancy, many of us could live for 10 to 30 years after retiring, which means we could live through several major changes in interests, activities, and identities in later life. This workshop, led by UMRA Cares Committee Chair Ron Anderson, is designed to help guide our thinking about assessing and reassessing the primary meaning and purpose in our lives. 

Publication date:
Jan 5 2018

Participants in UMRA’s November workshop learned about the challenges of caregiving among older adults and the variety of services offered for adult caregivers by the Wilder Foundation in St. Paul, including Tai Ji Quan, a specially designed balance training regimen.

Publication date:
Jan 5 2018

The February book will be The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man’s Love Affair with Nature by J. Drew Lanham, with discussion led by Judy Helgen.

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

UMRA Book Club members share their November discussion of Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance. 

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

Many elderly people risk falling and breaking a hip as a result of poor balance. If you are at least 70 years old and not involved in a physical activity/exercise program, you are invited to participate in the new Ready–Steady program, offered by the School of Nursing. Help find the best ways to avoid accidental falls through strength-building and balance exercises. Compensation provided.

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

“Tax Planning in Uncertain Times” was the topic for the first meeting of the new special interest group, Financial and Legal Issues (FLG), led by Andy Whitman in December. Members learned about end-of-year possible tax actions and set out a schedule of speakers and topics for the coming year.

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

News you can use: Parking discount coupons are one of UMRA’s best membership benefits. If your supply is running low, here’s how to send for more!

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

UMRA November audience laughed as Steve Sack, award-winning cartoonist with the Star Tribune, talked about his 36-year career in visual commentary on politics, society, and the world.

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

Ten applications were submitted by the December deadline for the 2018 Professional Development Grants for Retirees program. The approved proposals will be announced in March. 

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

The Power of Meaning: Crafting a Life that Matters, by Emily Esfahani Smith, explains a growing new movement within psychological research that is fundamentally reshaping our understanding of the good life. It’s a very readable book for academics and non-academics alike.  

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

As the Cares Committee has been exploring alternative transportation options, they have encountered some successes and some frustrations. They invite readers to share their experiences and recommendations with others. 

Publication date:
Jan 4 2018

2017-2018 PDGR Abstracts

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT GRANT AWARDS CYCLE 9 in 2016-2017 for 2017-2018

In February, 2017, a committee of retirees, appointed by Frances Lawrenz, Associate Vice President of Research, reviewed and recommended 14 of the 21 application for Professional Development Grants for Retirees. In March,  Allen Levine, Interim Vice President for Research, announced the recipients for the 2016-2017 Professional Development Grant for Retirees.  Of the awards, one was from the Duluth Campus and the others were from the Twin Cities Campus..  They represent the fields of Medicine, Law, History and Art History, Education, Architecture, Mining, Indian Studies, and Statistics.

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT GRANT ABSTRACTS CYCLE 9 2017-2018

Frederick Asher, Professor Emeritus, Department of Art History, CLA, University of Minnesota-TC, India and the World: The Visual Culture of Indian Ocean Trade to 1500.  Support requested to conduct the final research in Indonesia, the Gulf, and Zanzibar for a book on the visual culture of the Indian Ocean trade prior to 1500, the first every book on this trade.  Research on other port areas of the Indian Ocean has been completed.  Indian Ocean trade was an exchange that sent Indian ivories to Pompeii and a fully constructed Indian temple to coastal China, Chinese ceramics to Southeast Asia, India, the Gulf, and east Africa, and extended Indian religions and writing systems across Southeast Asia and Islam across the entire Indian Ocean.  

Betty Cooke, Lecturer, Department of Curriculum and Instruction, CEHD, University of Minnesota-TC, Parent-Child Interaction Video Update: The Reflective Dialogue Parent Education Design.  A grant was awarded to plan an update of the Reflective Dialogue Parent Education Design, a research-based approach to parent education.  The printed handbook and DVDs were designed in the mid-1990’s to strengthen the quality of parent-child interaction.  New culturally relevant parent-child scenes and new technology will make this approach more useful for parent education, professional development and continued research. 

Charles Fairhurst, T.W. Bennett Professor Emeritus of Mining Engineering and Rock Mechanics, Department of Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering, CSE, University of Minnesota-TC, Video: Why Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering?  A one-hour technical video will be prepared in collaboration with an IT professional and distributed to an international audience of engineers.  The video will outline the current state of the art of Rock Mechanics and Rock Engineering. The International Society of Rock Mechanics requested this video, part of a series prepared by leading international experts.  It will describe the special role of numerical modeling as a tool to inform design in rock engineering and will emphasize UMN contributions to this field

Alan Lathrop, Curator, Manuscripts Division, University Libraries, University of Minnesota-TC, Emmanuel L. Masqueray: A French Architect in Minnesota.  This is a proposed book-length study of the life and career of Emmanuel Louis Masqueray (1861-1917), a prominent architect who designed the Cathedral in St. Paul and the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis.  He was a French-born architect who migrated to New York in 1887, worked for a succession of prominent NY architects, and was employed as chief designer at the World’s Fair in St. Louis.  He designed 112 structures in less than a decade, including four cathedrals and 39 parish churches in six states and Canada.  Funds will be used for travel, research, and reproduction of materials for the proposed book.

Carol Miller, Morse Distinguished Teaching Professor and Associate Professor Emeritus of American Studies and American Indian Studies, CLA, University of Minnesota-TC, Founding Mothers of Contemporary American Indian Literature.  Funds to conduct research at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Collection were granted for a critical study focusing on five American Indian women authors: Sarah Winnemucca (Paiute), Zitkala Sa (Dakota), S. Alice Callahan (Muscogee), Mourning Dove (Okanogan), and Ellen Cara Deloria (Dakota).  These authors stand as the progenitors of the rich and important canon of contemporary American Indian literature.  This study intends to examine these writers’ defenses of Native interests and values over a period of history that included removal, boarding school, military subjugation, allotment, threats to sovereignty, and predictions of vanishing that threatened every aspect of Native American cultural viability.

Alexis Pogorelskin, Associate Professor Emeritus, Department of History, CLA, University of Minnesota-Duluth, Duluth and Hollywood: The Career of Sidney Buchman.  Funds will be used to develop a video documentary on the connection between Duluth and the movie industry with a focus on the career of Sidney Buchman, born and raised in Duluth, and his extraordinary contributions to script writing.  His Oscar winning productions include Holiday (1938), Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941), Talk of the Town (1942), and The Group (1966).  His political heritage framed this work.  Buchman’s defiance of the House Un-American Activities Committee forced him into exile in France but made him a symbol of political courage.  This documentary will argue for Duluth’s contribution and the significance of this region to American popular culture through Sidney Buchman.

Wayne Potratz, Professor Emeritus, Department of Art, CLA, University of Minnesota-TC, Lead a Workshop and Lecture at Festival of High Temperatures: Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Art and Design in Wroclaw, Poland.  Funds will be used to participate in a Polish fire arts festival, Festival of High Temperatures, at Eugeniusz Geppert Academy of Art and Design, Wroclaw, Poland.  He will be leading a workshop on alternative methods of mold making for iron casting and giving a lecture at the festival. This is an opportunity to collaborate with Eastern European artists and expand his creative practice.

Jonathan Ravdin, M.D., Nesbitt Professor Emeritus, Department of Medicine, Medical School, University of Minnesota-TC, Enhanced Clinical Data Management for the Youth and AIDS Projects by Implementation of New Health Information Technology.  This planning grant provides initial support for the transfer of data on HIV-infected youth and their families that were collected in an Xcel data base since 1991.  This grant is insufficient to implement new health information technology but it could augment other sources of funding.  The Youth and AIDS Projects provide case management to improve the survival of youth people with HIV and prevent secondary spread of HIV to their partners and children.  New analytic tools are needed to store and organize data to improve case management, grant submission, and faculty productivity. 

Gerald Rinehart, Vice Provost and Dean of Students, Office for Student Affairs, University of Minnesota-TC, Review and Summary of Historical Documents Pertaining to Religious Organizations, Activities and Issues on UMN Twin Cities Campus, 1947-present.  This grant is for planning the analysis of 60 years of historical documents tracing the evolving perspectives of spirituality in student life, the role of religious leaders in campus controversies, the development of policies and organizations on the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus.  Planning will involve the University Archives, their documented materials, and the assessment of new records.

Marjorie Savage, Professional and Administrative Staff, Outreach and Research, Department of Family Social Science, University of Minnesota-TC, Frances Andrews: A Social Biography of Progressivism.  Funds will support research for a social biography of Frances Andrews, a social activist in the first half of the 20th century.  Andrews advocated for safe birth control, environmental preservation and voting rights.  Her life illustrates how Minnesota women reached across societal and cultural boundaries to effect change with reformists from across the Upper Midwest.  Search of primary sources will include archives in northern Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan communities where Andrews lived or frequently visited.

Kathryn Sedo, Professor Emerita of Clinical Instruction and Senior Attorney, Law School, University of Minnesota-TC, Attend Two American Bar Association Meetings for Low-Income Taxpayer and Pro Bono Update to Maintain Mastery as a Community Volunteer.  A nationally recognized expert in substantive tax law for low-income individuals and tax procedures, and former director of the Tax Clinic at the Law School, Sedo plans to maintain her mastery by attending American Bar Association Section of Taxation meetings.  She uses her expertise by volunteering her services and being a resource to various legal aid and non-profit organizations in the Twin Cities. The meetings are in Washington, D.C. and Austin, Texas.

William Sudderth, Professor Emeritus of Statistics, School of Statistics, CLA, University of Minnesota-TC, Present at Conference on Simplifying Strategies in Stochastic Games, Erice, Italy.  Sudderth plans to present research that is about finding comparably simple strategies for more general stochastic games and discussing it with leading European game theorists at the conference in Italy. The mathematical theory of stochastic games is used to model situations in which two or more individuals engage in a competition that requires them to make a series of decisions in the face of uncertainty.  Good strategies are often complicated and difficult to implement.  His co-authors of a publication on simplifying strategies will be at the conference.

Elaine Tarone, Distinguished Teaching Professor Emerita, Center for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition, CLA, University of Minnesota-TC, Shifts of Accuracy, Complexity and Fluency in Constructed Dialogue by Adult Second Language Learners.  Funding supports expanding research on second language acquisition, drawing on Bakhtinian sociocultural theory.  Tarone and a colleague plan to gather more data documenting adult English learners’ shifts in accuracy, complexity and fluency when they replicate the speech of others in language play.  They plan to present their findings at a conference and submit a paper for publication.

Kyla Wahlstrom, Research Associate, Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy and Development, CEHD, University of Minnesota-TC, School Start Time Research: Further Discovery, Dissemination and Policy Implications. Funding will be used to complete research on the school start time using car crash findings from high schools.  She has one year of crash data but will gather data from subsequent years to determine longitudinally if the findings are consistent with those from Year 1.  Findings will be presented at two national conferences.  This work is a continuation of the research that she has conducted for the past 20 years.

Friday, April 7, 2017 - 1:15pm
Publication date: 
April 7, 2017