Mapping the Past, Gift for Future Take Spotlight in Summer Stories


The Edith O’Donnell Arts and Technology Building will be the home of the new art history institute.

A deep look into the cultural past and a multimillion-dollar gift for the future helped shape the news at UT Dallas over the summer. So as the fall semester gets ready to begin, here are some of the stories you may have missed since spring graduation:


July 24: Philanthropist Edith O’Donnell made a contribution of $17 million to create the Edith O’Donnell Institute of Art History at the University.




Dr. Michael Kilgard, the Margaret Fonde Jonsson Professor in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, co-authored a study on how noise-induced hearing loss alters the brain’s responses to speech.

July 9: Researchers at the Center for Vital Longevity discovered that tablet computer use may help keep older adults’ minds sharp.

July 16: New research from Dr. Francesca Filbey shows that drug paraphernalia triggers the reward areas of the brain differently in dependent and nondependent marijuana users.

July 31: Neuroscientists found that prolonged exposure to loud noise alters how the brain processes speech, potentially increasing the difficulty in distinguishing speech sounds.

Aug. 4: ATEC professor Maximilian Schich helped map the cultural history of Europe and North America by reconstructing migration and mobility patterns over 2,000 years.



Dr. Fair

Dr. George Fair congratulates a camper at Kids’ University.

July 24: From paleontology and engineering to music composition and meteorology, Kids’ University gave children from local homeless shelters a glimpse of various careers and higher education. 

July 31: Twenty teenage girls got hands-on experience with nanotechnology, robots, virtual reality, forensics and space science as part of the SMART Summer College Camp. 

Aug. 4: With just a few taps on their mobile devices, students can now register for classes or pay tuition, and faculty members can access course records, thanks to Orion Mobile.



Kyle Schleigh

Kyle Schleigh

June 23: Men’s basketball player Kyle Schleigh became the first Comet chosen as the American Southwest Conference Men’s Athlete of the Year.

June 25: The University picked members of the McDermott Scholars program’s 14th class.

July 2: Addison Larson spent the summer learning Arabic in Oman, while Adam Mendonca studied Mandarin in China after both were awarded Critical Language Scholarships. 

July 18: More than 950 students were named to the spring 2014 semester dean’s list.



chris packard

Chris Packard BS’13 honored 13 of his professors with 22 bricks on Legacy Lane.

June 9: Chris Packard BS’13 celebrated his favorite professors — 13 of them — by placing 22 bricks engraved with messages of gratitude on Legacy Lane.

June 27: Thanks to a Fulbright Scholarship, Braeden Mayer BS’13 will teach English in Venezuela.

Aug. 7: Amir Rajan BS’06 needed a break, but little did he know that his sabbatical would lead him to create one of the top-selling apps on iTunes.




Dr. Rodney Andrews

June 16: Dr. Rodney Andrews has been named a Greater Texas Foundation Faculty Fellow, a grant program that will help support his project on student success in college.

June 19: Dr. Anton Malko, assistant professor of physics, and Dr. Leonidas Bleris, assistant professor of bioengineering, received awards from the National Science Foundation CAREER Program.

July 21: Dr. Terry Baughn, a senior lecturer in mechanical engineering, was named Engineer of the Year by the North Texas section of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.



June 3: Dr. George Fair, dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Studies, was appointed vice president for diversity and community engagement.

June 5: UT Dallas President David E. Daniel was named a member of the 2014-15 American Southwest Conference Executive Committee.

July 9: Bill Petitt was selected to lead the University’s athletic department.



Spring: The renowned chess team is trying to stay one move ahead of its rivals, supported by a University that has infused the game into academic and campus life.


Most-Read Summer News Center stories

  1. More than 950 Named to Dean's List for Spring 2014 Semester
  2. Study: Noise-Induced Hearing Loss Alters Brain Responses to Speech
  3. Campus to Welcome Newest McDermott Scholars This Fall
  4. Undergrad Makes Right Moves to Win U.S. Open Chess Championship
  5. ATEC Professor Leads Study Revealing Big Story of Cultural Migration

Media Contact: The Office of Media Relations, UT Dallas, (972) 883-2155, [email protected].