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UNT briefs

Students, faculty to perform at opera gala

Students and faculty in UNT’s award-winning opera program will be featured performers at the annual gala concert for the Center for Contemporary Opera in New York, the leading proponent of new opera in the U.S.

The performance at 8 p.m. March 15 at New York’s National Arts Club will include selections from operas Again, Dead Man Walking, Moby Dick and Three Decembers by Heggie, who served as the artist in residence at the UNT Institute for the Advancement of the Arts for the 2010-11 academic year. Students and faculty also will perform scenes from William Mayer’s opera A Death in the Family and an aria from Anthony Davis’ Amistad.

Opera students who will perform at the gala are Maria Bellanca of Olean, N.Y.; Christian Bester of Pretoria, South Africa; Shaun Brown of Brisbane, Australia; Sergio Cepeda of Fort Worth; Emily Hueske of Tolland, Conn.; Lara Wasserman of Iowa City, Iowa; and Jennifer Youngs of Overland Park, Kan.

Stephen Dubberly serves as music director and conductor of UNT Opera, and Paula Homer is stage director and producer.

The event’s host will be Elliott Forrest of WQXR-FM. Tickets are $50 for the gala and reception, and are available at  or by calling 800-838-3006.


Speakers to discuss women’s history

On Thursday, UNT will hold two free lectures about women’s roles and rights in history in observation of Women’s History Month in March.

Laura Bier, history professor at Georgia Tech University, will discuss “Women in Egypt’s Three Revolutions: The Forces of History and the Prospects for the Future” at 4:30 p.m. in Room 80 of UNT’s Business Leadership Building, 1307 W. Highland St. Her lecture is being presented by the UNT Department of History and UNT’s Contemporary Arab and Muslim Cultural Studies Institute.

At 7 p.m., Laura Roskos, president of the U.S. Section of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom and a member since 1991, will discuss “Human Rights, Women’s Rights: The Path to Sustainable Peace.” Her speech will take place in the Golden Eagle Suite of the University Union, located one block west of Welch and West Prairie streets at 1155 Union Circle. The speech is being sponsored by the UNT Women’s Studies Program, the UNT Peace Studies Program and the Castleberry Peace Institute at UNT.

For more information on Bier’s lecture, call 940-565-2288. For more information on Roskos’ lecture, call 940-565-2098 or e-mail .


Thursday Night Music offered at Square space

During the next two months, the UNT College of Music and Institute for the Advancement of the Arts will be presenting “Thursday Night Music,” an eclectic series of musical performances.

Performers include UNT students, faculty members, alumni and invited guests. They will perform jazz, classical and other genres. A detailed list of performers is available at .

The free performances will be from 7 to 9 p.m. every Thursday in March and April at UNT on the Square, 109 N. Elm St.

For more information, contact Herbert Holl, director of the Institute for the Advancement of the Arts, at 940-369-8257 or; or John Murphy, chairman of UNT’s Division of Jazz Studies, at 940-565-4344 or


Students to represent UNT in debate tourney

Four UNT students have qualified for participation in the 2012 National Debate Tournament, the most prestigious tournament in competitive policy debate for U.S. college and university students. At least one two-student team from UNT’s Debate Squad has represented the university at the tournament 27 times during the past 30 years.

This year’s National Debate Tournament will be held March 29 through April 2 at Emory University in Atlanta.

UNT Debate Squad members Colin Quinn, a junior communication studies major from Glenview, Ill., and Amy Schade, a sophomore biology major from Grapevine, qualified for the tournament by placing eighth at the District III Debate Tournament, which is open to college and university debate programs in Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri and Oklahoma, as well as Texas.

Two other UNT Debate Squad members will represent UNT at this year’s National Debate Tournament. Brian Kersch, a junior communications studies major from Austin, and Shelby Prior, a junior political science major from Grapevine, qualified by placing 10th at the District III tournament.

The topic for the National Debate Tournament, and all NDT- and CEDA-sanctioned tournaments this year, is whether or not the U.S. government should substantially increase its democracy assistance for one or more of the following war-torn countries: Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen. Students must debate both the pro and the con sides.

UNT was one of only two colleges and universities in District III to have more than one team of students in this year’s National Debate Tournament.


UNT awarded grant by trucking group

The Trucking Industry Defense Association recently awarded UNT with one of four Endowment Fund Grants in the amount of $5,000. The grant will help fund the university’s Logistics and Supply Chain Management program and Mechanical and Energy Engineering program. Both programs help prepare students for careers in trucking and conduct research relevant to the industry.

In its application for the 2011 grant, UNT expressed plans to apply the funds toward senior projects and professional competitions. For students studying logistics, the grant will allow a team of students to compete in a national logistics case competition in Denver. Students in the engineering program will place the grant towards the “MEE Senior Design Project Fund,” which will help support a number of student capstone projects.

Other recipients of the association’s 2011 Endowment Fund Grant were the University of Memphis, the University of Central Arkansas and Cuyahoga Community College in Ohio.