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University of Iowa News Release


Feb. 6, 2012

At A Glance

Another record-breaking year for UI Dance Marathon

University of Iowa Dance Marathon continues to top its fundraising records. When "the big event," 24 hours of nonstop dancing, drew to a close on Saturday, Feb. 4, students in the 18th annual event had raised $1,369,147.18 for the UI Children's Hospital, a 12.2 percent increase from 2011.

More than 1,500 students -- another record number -- participated in the event, which started at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 3, and was held in the Main Lounge of the Iowa Memorial Union. Working year-round to reach their individual goal, each dancer must raise $400 to attend the big event.

Along with nonstop dancing, this year's event featured live performances by bands such as Hello Ramona and Good Luck Jane, as well as other acts like the UI Breakers, line dancing lessons, and more. Nearly 1,000 family members of patients also were in attendance.

Dance Marathon is the largest student-run philanthropic organization at the UI. In the past 18 years, it has raised more than $11.2 million to support pediatric oncology programs at the UI Children's Hospital.

For more information about Dance Marathon, visit


Naked M&Ms and Matthew Broderick rank high with marketing students

Naked M&Ms and the return of Ferris Bueller (sort of) were the winners among last night's Super Bowl ads, as judged by graduate marketing students in the University of Iowa's Tippie School of Management.

More than 60 students watched and graded the ads during the game at the Hawkeye Hall of Fame. The ad they ranked as the best was for M&Ms, in which the red candy does a striptease at a party.

Ranking second was a tie between Honda CRV's "Matthew Broderick," in which the actor revisits his iconic Ferris Bueller character 25 years later, and Chevrolet's "High School Graduation," in which a new graduate thinks he's getting a new Camaro for a graduation gift from his parents and not a mini-fridge.

Finishing out the top five was a pair of ads starring babies: "Nursery," the latest ad featuring E*Trade's talking baby, and Doritos' "Slingshot Baby."

The students also ranked the M&M's ad as the ad most likely to make them purchase the product. Other ads that ranked high in this category were game-long campaigns for Doritos, Coke, Budweiser, and Hyundai.


Big Ten Network show to feature UI brain research Feb. 7

Beverly Davidson, Ph.D., an internationally recognized expert on inherited diseases and gene therapy and a leader in developing novel therapies for brain disorders, will be featured in an upcoming episode of the Big Ten Network show "Impact the World."

The show will air at 7 p.m. CT Tuesday, Feb. 7. Hosted by Dennis Haysbert, the weekly program showcases research discoveries and innovative programs from Big Ten universities that are changing lives in the United States and around the world.

Tuesday's episode will explore Davidson's work on Batten disease, an extremely rare and currently incurable brain disorder, and will also highlight the story of the VanHoutan family, who have two children with the condition.

Batten disease affects fewer than 1,000 people worldwide and is caused by a lack of an enzyme in the brain. Davidson and her team at the UI Carver College of Medicine are working to develop a new method to replace the missing enzyme in the brain.

The episode will be rebroadcast at 10 p.m. CT Thursday, Feb. 9,
10:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. CT Sunday, Feb. 12.

For more information visit the show's website at

To learn more about Davidson's work, visit


Paul's Book Club discusses William Trevor novel on www.writinguniversity.og

Paul's Book Club, a series of free discussions streamed live on the University of Iowa Writing University website,, will consider acclaimed Irish author William Trevor's novel The Story of Lucy Gault at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 14. The discussion will originate in a free event in Prairie Lights Books in downtown Iowa City.

Paul Ingram will lead the discussion of the novel, which focuses on the Gault family that leads a life of privilege in early 1920s Ireland until the threat of violence leads the parents of nine-year-old Lucy to decide to leave for England.

Lucy cannot bear the thought of leaving Lahardane, their country house, with its beautiful land and nearby beach, and a dog she has befriended. On the day before they are to leave, Lucy runs away, hoping to convince her parents to stay. Instead, she sets off a series of tragic misunderstandings that affect all of Lahardane's inhabitants for the rest of their lives.


UI Center for New Music presents Marvin Bell Celebration Feb. 19

The University of Iowa Center for New Music will present a Marvin Bell Celebration -- the poetry of Bell set to music by CNM Director David Gompper -- at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19, in the Senate Chamber of the Old Capitol on the UI campus.

Featured performers will include UI faculty members Katherine Eberle, Timothy Stalter, John Muriello, Stephen Swanson, Volkan Orhon, Daniel Moore, Christine Rutledge; guest artist Tony Arnold from SUNY-Buffalo; the CNM Ensemble; and the Kantorei.

The program includes the premiere of Five Love Songs; "You're Not Dead Yet" for vocal quartet; "Light Poem" for mezzo and harp; "Poetry for a Midsummer's Night" for tenor, double bass, and piano; Selections from "The Animals" for baritone and piano; and "An Elm We Lost" for tenor, baritone, chorus and orchestra. Get full details at

Gompper and Bell have collaborated on a UI seminar course, "Words & Music," and Gompper has been setting Bell's poems to music for many years. Bell, who was Iowa's first poet laureate, is an alumnus of the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and he is now an emeritus faculty member after 40 years of teaching. One of America's leading poets, Bell has published 17 books of poetry and has received numerous honors.


UI Rec Services offering spring break camp for elementary school age kids

This spring break, Mar. 12–16, University of Iowa Recreational Services will sponsor Chickadee Camp at the Macbride Nature Recreation Area for first through sixth graders.

The youth camp will offer opportunities to study and observe wildlife.

Professional staff will lead small group activities such as swimming, climbing, mapping, prairie and pond study, maple syruping, bird banding, eagle watching, geology, wilderness survival techniques, and more.

Registration is $195 and includes a long-sleeved camp T-shirt. Scholarships are available for children of qualifying UI faculty, staff, and students.

Call 319-335-1371 or email to see if you qualify.

Registration details and forms are available at Each camper must submit his or her own registration form, medical release, and deposit.


Photos for At A Glance items, if available, may be found at

Campus events are searchable on the UI Master Calendar:

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all UI-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation to participate in a program, please contact the sponsoring department in advance.