News from UMass Lowell for the Week of April 11, 2011


April 11, 2011: This a notice of upcoming events, photo opportunities and story ideas at UMass Lowell, compiled by the Office of Public Affairs, 978-934-3224. For more stories about UMass Lowell, visit and click on “UML in the News.”  Please note that contact names below are for the media and are not for publication.

Sources of the week: UMass Lowell experts are available for interviews on international women’s issues, antiterrorism and nanotechnology.

Nanotech Conference Explores Journey From Lab to Commercialization
When:         Tuesday, April 12, 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

What:          The nanotech industry faces unique challenges as nano-engineered products move from the laboratory to the marketplace, with an impact on everything from the way medical conditions are diagnosed and treated to how security threats are detected on the battlefield. This conference, “The Next Small Step for Mankind –Nanotechnology’s Journey to Commercialization,” will bring together top researchers, industry executives, legal and venture capital professionals and government leaders to explore those challenges and discuss potential solutions. Speakers will include Lt. Gov. Timothy P. Murray, state Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Gregory Bialecki and UMass Lowell Chancellor Marty Meehan. The event will be hosted by UMass Lowell’s Nanomanufacturing Center of Excellence and Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing, Day Pitney LLP and Bluewater Consulting.

Where:      UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center, 50 Warren St., Lowell

Contacts for media: Renae Lias Claffey, 978-934-3233,, Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


Middle East Expert Delivers Talk on Domestic Terrorism 
When:        Tuesday, April 12, 3:30 to 5 p.m.
What:         University lecturer Gregory Aftandilian will deliver a special talk on radicalization and domestic terrorism. Aftandilian, an associate with UMass Lowell’s Middle East Center for Peace, Development and Culture, has worked as a Middle East analyst at the Defense Intelligence Agency and the State Department and served as a foreign policy adviser on Capitol Hill. He is a consultant on a counterterrorism project funded by the Office of Naval Research.  

Where:       O’Leary Library, UML South, 61 Wilder St., Lowell

Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


Award-Winning Author Marilyn Chin to Read Her Poetry
When:         Wednesday, April 13, 3 p.m.

What:          Marilyn Chin, a widely-acclaimed poet, novelist and social activist, will read a selection of her poetry as part of UMass Lowell’s celebration of National Poetry Month. Chin has won numerous awards for her work, including two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Stegner Fellowship, the PEN/Josephine Miles Award, four Pushcart Prizes and a Fulbright Fellowship.  She has taught workshops all over the world and currently co-directs the MFA program at San Diego State University. 
Where:        O’Leary Library, UML South, 61 Wilder St., Lowell

Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


University Prof. Reflects on Scientific Research, Volunteering in Haiti
When:         Wednesday, April 13 at 4 p.m.

What:          Imagine using high-frequency microwaves that “see through” clothing to reveal hidden weapons or explosives; a portable radar system that allows soldiers in the field to tell whether an activity is friendly or hostile; and a safe, non-invasive technique for detecting different types of human skin cancers. These are just some of the things being done with submillimeter-wave (also known as terahertz) imaging as well as millimeter-wave and microwave imaging that University Professor Robert Giles, chairman of the Physics and Applied Physics Department, will highlight when he delivers the University Professor Lecture, “Terahertz Imaging Technologies: Investigating the Applications.” In his talk, Giles will also discuss his work in promoting science education in Haiti, complete with photos from his visit to Port-au-Prince in January, a year after the devastating earthquake. The lecture is free and open to the public. Giles was named UMass Lowell’s University Professor last May. It is the most esteemed title bestowed on a faculty member, recognizing an individual who has consistently demonstrated exemplary teaching, internationally significant research and extraordinary service to the UMass Lowell community.

Where:       Alumni Hall, University Avenue, UML North, Lowell

Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


Czech Folk Dance Groups to Perform
When:         Thursday, April 14, 7:30 p.m.

What:          Two Czech folk dance groups, Motak and Dvorana, will perform “From Southern Bohemia to Mexico,” as part of the Music on the Merrimack series. The performance, a joint project between the two dance groups, aims to familiarize the audience with folk dances of different nations and cultures.  It is free and open to the public.

Where:       Durgin Concert Hall, UML South, 35 Wilder St., Lowell

Contacts for media:  Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


‘Green Monster’ to Compete in Concrete Canoe Race
When:         Saturday, April 16. Canoe exhibition is from 8:45 to 9:30 a.m.; canoe races are from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
What:          UMass Lowell’s student-designed and built concrete canoe, dubbed “The Green Monster,” will compete in an annual contest organized by the New England student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers and hosted by the University of Rhode Island. The UMass Lowell team will try to outrace other teams from universities across the northeastern United States and Canada. The Green Monster, which was molded from a specially formulated lightweight concrete mix and reinforced with fiberglass mesh, measures 20 feet long and weighs 182 pounds. The competition features five races — men’s endurance, women’s endurance, men’s sprints, women’s sprints and coed sprints.

Where:        Burlingame State Park, Route 1, Charlestown, R.I.
Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


Student Cooks Face Off in Iron Chef Competition
When:        Tuesday, April 19 and Wednesday, April 20, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.

What:         The UMass Lowell Iron Chef Competition is back for its second year. Teams of up to five students will face off in the preliminary rounds, showing off their culinary artistry and vying for the chance to compete for the grand title on April 26.
Where:       UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center, 50 Warren St., Lowell 

Contacts for media: Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209, or Jill Gambon, 978-934-3297,


Groundbreaking Planned for $40 Million Classroom Building    

When:        Thursday, April 21, 2 p.m.
What:         A new, $40 million classroom facility is on the rise on UMass Lowell’s South Campus. A groundbreaking ceremony will mark the start of construction of the Health and Social Sciences Building, which will provide a home for three of the university’s most popular majors:  psychology, nursing and criminal justice and criminology. The building is the first major construction on South Campus since O’Leary Library and McGauvran Student Union were built in 1976. Funding was provided through the Commonwealth’s Higher Education Bond Bill, passed in 2008. The Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM), the state’s real estate and construction arm, is managing the project. Among those joining Chancellor Marty Meehan and other UMass officials will be Massachusetts Education Secretary Paul Reville, DCAM Commissioner Carole Cornelison, elected officials and students. 

Where:        Coburn Hall lawn, UML South, corner of Broadway and Wilder streets, Lowell

Contacts for media:  Renae Lias Claffey, 978-934-3233, or Christine Gillette, 978-934-2209,


For more information, contact or 978-934-3224