Welcome to my blog. It contains new and archived messages that I have sent to the campus. Feel free to browse!

Matthew A. Tarr PhD
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This is the list of all contributions published on this web site, in chronological order.

By Dr. Whittenburg (on 5/1/2012 @ 10:39:36, in Workshops, read 628 times)
The Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group, NIH Center for Macromolecular Modeling and Bioinformatics, is pleased to announce: "In-Residence Training at the Theoretical & Computational Biophysics Group", July 16-27, 2012, at the Beckman Institute in Urbana, Illinois. For anyone interested in learning more about MD simulations and jump starting their research this is an EXCELLENT opportunity... these are the creators of NAMD and VMD.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 5/1/2012 @ 10:26:42, in Vice President Ramblings, read 498 times)
Under the FASEB recommendations to "Promote Access to Translational Research Collaborators and Resources" there were a couple of interesting suggestions. Among them was a suggestion to establish or support seminars and workshops as well as networking opportunities (which they referred to as research "speed dating"). While many such workshops already exist the concept of speed dating seems novel. I wonder what a conference would look like if you had agencies or business/industry leaders sitting at tables and the faculty or VP Research would have 5 minutes to present joint projects.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/30/2012 @ 15:54:30, in Vice President Ramblings, read 534 times)
The Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) released their report, Engaging Basic Scientists in Translational Research: Identifying Opportunities, Overcoming Obstacles. For the next week or so I will post some of their recommendations. Under recommendations to Promote Interest, Education, and Training in Translational Science they recommend that institutions provide didactic coursework, provide opportunities and release time for basic scientists and trainees to acquire clinical experiences and facilitate training in the wide range of disciplines and skills needed.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/23/2012 @ 10:04:44, in Vice President Ramblings, read 555 times)
The Office of Research recently emailed the first issue of our new "Helpful Hints" to help faculty, staff and students seek external funding. Please check your UNO email for the first issue.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/19/2012 @ 09:30:04, in Oil Spill, read 811 times)
The Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill & Ecosystem Conference announces an open call for proposals for conference sessions. The deadline is May 10, 2012. The URL is The conference will be held in New Orleans on January 21-23, 2013.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/17/2012 @ 10:30:34, in Professional Development, read 730 times)
Below are the final two Professional Development Sessions for the Spring 2012 semester. Subcontract Process: Wednesday, April 18th, 10 am, EN 318 Research Commercialization Webinar – Structuring & Leading the Research-Intensive Company: Monday April 23rd, noon, CERM 438 Registration is recommended but not required. To register for either of these sessions, please follow this link: Professional Development Registrations. (Navigation in SharePoint is: Research, Professional Development, Professional Development Registrations.) You will need to add a new item – click New on the menu bar and then New Item. Fill in the requested information and click OK. You will receive an email stating that your registration is in process. Once approved or rejected (if the session is full) you will receive another email. If you have any questions, please contact Carol Mitton at extension 5546 or
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/12/2012 @ 12:29:08, in Vice President Ramblings, read 547 times)
University of New Orleans psychology professor Robert Laird has received a three-year $515,000 grant from the William T. Grant Foundation to study parenting new teen drivers. Laird, an associate professor of psychology, will examine how a new driver in the family changes the dynamics of parent-adolescent interactions. Car crash injuries are the leading cause of death among adolescents and the goal of the study is to understand how parents can make driving safer. Laird will recruit families from driver’s education classes. A sample of 250 racially diverse teen-parent pairs will complete self-report surveys and a series of tasks designed to elicit conversations between parents and teens. Through the lens of an important developmental milestone, Laird hopes to gain a better understanding of how autonomy and independence are negotiated by parents and adolescents. The William T. Grant Foundation supports high-quality research to improve the lives of young people.
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The New Frontiers in Astronomy and Cosmology International Grant Competition is offering opportunities for innovative research on the following topics: (I) What was the earliest state of the universe? (II) Is our universe unique or is it part of a much larger multiverse? (III) What is the origin of the complexity in the universe? (IV) Are we alone in the universe? Or, are there other life and intelligence beyond the solar system? Grants are offered for theoretical work, up to $300,000 for two years; and experimental research, up to $500,000 for two years. REQUIRED ONLINE PRE-APPLICATION FORM IS DUE APRIL 16, NOW AVAILABLE ON AT See for more details.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/9/2012 @ 12:46:16, in Vice President Ramblings, read 581 times)
UNO Researchers again met the GRAD Act metrics. Federal research in the categories defined within the GRAD Act increased from $10.6M to $10.7M (five-year rolling average) and total research increased from $17.4M to $17.7M even though the number of research/instructional faculty (FTE) dropped from 418 to 368. The percent of faculty that are either PIs or Co-PIs on grants rose from 26.3% to 28.0% during the past year.
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By Dr. Whittenburg (on 4/4/2012 @ 12:52:33, in Vice President Ramblings, read 641 times)
The University of New Orleans has achieved a milestone in titanium shipbuilding research at its National Center for Advanced Manufacturing (NCAM), located at the NASA Michoud Facility in New Orleans East. Engineers are pioneering a technique called friction stir welding, in which metal pieces are welded together without melting them, causing less damage to the materials. The longest of the welds is more than 16 feet, which is more than twice as long as the previous record for a continuous titanium friction stir weld. The titanium shipbuilding project is being financed by a three-year $4.8 million dollar grant from the Office of Naval Research. The purpose of the research is to advance the science and technology of titanium shipbuilding. Using a special robotic welding tool at NCAM, engineers produced a completed titanium panel, approximately 20-feet by 10-feet. The panel will be part of an experimental, full-scale titanium mid-ship section. Titanium alloys offer advantages over steels and aluminum alloys traditionally used in shipbuilding. They are more resistant to corrosion, have a high strength-to-weight ratio and have a high resistance to fatigue. Pingsha Dong, a professor in UNO’s School of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering and director of UNO’s Welded Structures Laboratory, says that despite these advantages, the cost of materials and the lack of robust welding and joining techniques have prevented the shipbuilding industry from realizing the potential of titanium for shipbuilding applications. The progress of UNO’s titanium shipbuilding project has earned considerable attention in the maritime media including Maritime Reporter & Engineering News and Seapower magazine.
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