Monday, September 26, 2011

'Our Best Work: A Celebration of Innovations in Teaching and Learning'

The Office of the Provost and the Distinguished Teaching Humanist are pleased to present an opportunity to learn in an informal setting about some of the interesting innovations undertaken by your colleagues in the last year.

Our Best Work: A Celebration of Innovations in Teaching and Learning
will take place on Monday, Sept. 26, from 3 to 5 p.m. at the 1877 Club in the Harry Jack Gray Center.

All full-time and part-time faculty are welcome to attend. Feel free to join in anytime between 3 and 5 p.m., and stay for as long or as little as your schedule allows.

Each of the presenters will be at a table, with a poster and other materials, so you can move around the room at your own pace. Presenters will include recipients of the Innovations in Teaching and Learning Awards, Engaged Learning Fellowships, and Educational Technology Grants. Topics covered will include:

• Contextual Approaches to Problem Solving

• Service Learning

• International Service Learning

• Interdisciplinary Service Learning

• Problem-Based Learning

• Personal Response Systems

• Working with Primary Sources

• Computer-Based Simulations

• Teaching Structure through Sculpture

Refreshments will be served.

If you have any questions, please contact Cheryl MacMath at or 860.768.4504.

Short-Term Study Abroad Trips: Italy, Dubai, China, and Much More!

The University of Hartford will be offering short-term study abroad programs around the globe this year. Spend one to three weeks abroad over the winter, spring, or summer break with a UofH faculty member and fellow students. You can earn credit towards graduation in a variety of subjects.

These programs take you outside of the traditional classroom setting and introduce you to bustling cities and small villages overseas. Get a first-hand look into a new culture and explore fascinating international topics. What better way to discover the Italian Renaissance than in Italy, the environmental and economic impact of rapid development than in China, or business than in a city as innovative and multicultural as Dubai. There are also trips to Ghana, Japan, and St. Vincent.

Study abroad expands your world view. This is so important for future college graduates no matter what your field. It can help add value to your degree and enhance your future employment opportunities.

Application Deadlines: October 15 for winter and March 1 for summer. Space is limited so apply early! Scholarships are available.

Check out the Study Abroad Website to learn about upcoming programs, and make sure to attend the information sessions this fall to learn more!

• Dubai: International Business, IB 310 or IB 610 (3 credits)
• Ghana: Sustainable Studio Art, EXS 390 (3 credits)
• Italy: Landmarks, Legends and Dramatic Theatre of Italy, AUCW 175, AUCA 175, ENG368, ENG330 (6 credits)
• St. Vincent: Service-learning project in archeology, ES 491, AUCT (3 credits)
• China: International Business in China IB 310 or IB 610 (3 credits)
• China: Living in the Environment - Water Scarcity & Pollution in China, AUCT 120 (4 credits)
• Japan: Art and Culture in Japan, AUCA, AUCA, EXS 390 (3 credits)

Contact Sarah Reuter in the International Center, GSU 327, if you have any questions ( or 860.768.5101).

Hear what UofH study abroad alumni have to say about their experiences on our Facebook page and Blogspot!

Shetty and Hill Coauthor Paper

Devdas Shetty, professor of mechanical engineering, and Jonathan Hill, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, CETA, are coauthors of a paper, "Optical Instrumentation for Vibration Measurement and Monitoring," along with Ahad Ali of Lawrence Technological University in Michigan.

The article describes a system the authors developed that indirectly measures vibration by using a position-sensing device to measure a laser beam reflected from the device being measured. The system was developed for use with machine cutting tools and can be used to monitor the performance and wear of such devices. The article appeared in the June 2011 issue of the International Journal of Precision Engineering and Manufacturing, a well-known publication of the Korean Society for Precision Engineering.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Work-Study Job Fair Sept. 14 & 15

The Federal Work-Study Job Fair will be held in Mortensen Library on Sept. 14 and 15 from 10 a.m to 2 p.m.

Students should check their Financial Assistance Award Letter or visit the Career Services office, located in GSU 309, to determine eligibility.

'Village Market Express' to Open in Dana on Tuesday

By Caitlin Terry '10, '12
Looking for a place to grab a light meal or snack between classes? Starting Tuesday, Sept. 13, students, faculty, and staff will have a new dining option, conveniently located between the Mali I and Mali II lecture halls in the lobby of Dana Hall.

The new retail dining location, to be known as the “Village Market Express,” will be a small-scale version of the Village Market (located in Konover). The Village Market Express will offer a variety of grab ‘n go items, including Rachel’s salads and sandwiches, fruit, parfaits, assorted breakfast items, healthy snacks, coffee and other beverages. Customers will be able to get a complete breakfast, lunch or dinner at the new facility.

The Village Market Express will be open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A grand opening celebration is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 22.

Crosbie Publishes Book on New York Architects

Michael J. Crosbie, associate professor and chair of the Department of Architecture, CETA, recently published a book on New York architects. New York Dozen: Gen X Architects, published by Images Publishing Group, explores how young architects in New York are finding new ways to practice, experimenting with cutting-edge materials, and expressing changing values in their work.

Crosbie profiles the work of 12 firms making a name in the city that never sleeps – the latest of a new generation of practitioners that are being challenged by a new economy. Crosbie presented a lecture on the book and signed copies at a special pre-release book talk event at the New York Center for Architecture in Manhattan in June, sponsored by the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects and Oculus magazine.


Shertukde Teaching Course at Yale This Semester

Hemchandra Shertukde, professor of electrical and computer engineering, CETA, has been invited to teach a course at Yale University this fall.

The electrical engineering course on electronic circuits covers models for active devices; single-ended and differential amplifiers; current sources and active loads; operational amplifiers; feedback; design of analog circuits for particular functions and specifications, in actual applications wherever possible, using design-oriented methods. It includes a team-oriented design project for real-world applications, such as a high-power stereo amplifier design.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Engineering Student Takes His Capstone Design Project to Kenya to Help Rural Farmers

Alex Schettino decided for his mechanical engineering capstone design project to take on the challenge of improving agricultural productivity in Western Kenya where food security is a problem faced by many rural farmers.  After discussing the issue with Dr. Bernard den Ouden (Philosophy Professor) and Dr. David Pines (Civil Engineering Professor) who had traveled to the region in summer 2009, Alex used his creativity in designing a mechanical thresher that used appropriate and affordable materials in Western Kenya.

With funding from friends of the College of Engineering, Technology & Architecture, Alex and Dr. David Pines traveled to Kenya in July 2011 to fabricate, test, and demonstrate the thresher for harvesting amaranth grain.  The stage was set for a very successful trip by Dr. Marcia Hughes (Center for Social Research Assistant Director, University of Hartford) and Marene Ferguson (Hartford Art School Student) who coordinated the building of the thresher at a local polytechnic school during their trip to Kenya in June 2011.  Also, the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute (KARI) partnered with Alex in coordinating demonstrations of the thresher at three farms growing amaranth grain. 

The construction of the thresher was successful and it was time to head to the fields to test out the thresher and get feedback from the farmers on what they like and on potential improvements to the design.


Many of the farmers, both men and women, tested the thresher.  Feedback was very positive!!

Tests were then done to compare the mechanical thresher that Alex designed to the traditional method of threshing with flails.  It was no contest, the rural farmers comments were “machine thresher is much easier and takes less energy,” “product is much cleaner with no rocks or sand,” and “good amount of seeds from amaranth harvested using machine.”
Weighting the Amaranth

Traditional Method of Threshing

Clean grain from Machine Thresher

Much Work Remains to Clean Grain

There is still much work ahead of the University of Hartford team to bring the thresher to market.  We continue to work with KARI in providing outreach to the community and helping us create a market where the local artisans sell the affordable thresher to rural farmers who use it to increase their productivity.  A win-win situation all around and a sustainable solution to solving the food security problem facing rural farmers in Western Kenya and a model that can be replicated in East Africa and beyond!