Tucson Local Media: University Of Arizona

University Of Arizona

Monday 12/15/2014
Arts and Sciences Are Writing a New Love Story Together

Those at the UA who are advancing the medical humanities want to see the arts become more closely integrated with the STEM fields. It's picking up steam.

What are the benefits of transforming scientific data into works of art?

Could poetry help shape the ways people positively connect with the natural environment?

And what is the value of bringing conversations about literature into the medical school curriculum?

Across campus, University of Arizona students and employees are answering those questions — with tangible results — through courses, programs, workshops and publications.

Such a movement represents an effort to reconcile a perceived disconnect between fields such as science and medicine and others such as the arts and humanities. Those involved say their work is meant to expand cross-discipline collaborations, lead to more sustainable and authentic practices, and help improve how people live and connect with others and the natural world.

It's about bringing science and medicine into the liberal arts, or vice versa.

"Being exposed to scenarios and content that are different from what one typically experiences daily can help one to feel and to see things differently, allowing for appreciation of the human condition in a different light," said Ersilia Anghel, a UA College of Medicine student and editor of Harmony Magazine, said about the collaborative work she shares with her colleagues.

"We encourage people to share and to be open about the fact that having creative, reflective experiences invites a very profound and very distinct way of perceiving the world," Anghel said about the work of Harmony Magazine.

The magazine, a publication of the UA Program in Medical Humanities in the College of Medicine, is now in its 10th year. It began as an in-house publication meant to complement medical school training with submissions mostly from students, employees and patients at the Arizona Health Sciences Center.

Today, Harmony Magazine accepts submissions from across the U.S. and is disseminated nationally and internationally. Students, medical and health care professionals, patients and general community members regularly submit artwork, photography, poetry and prose. Some explore their experience as patients. Others detail the lives of medical care providers. Some even choose to share about vacations and their reactions to events.

The magazine joins numerous other examples on campus aimed at amplifying conversations about humanism, and to further integrate the sciences and humanities.

Ellen McMahon, a UA School of Art professor, develops work around the interaction between art and environmental research. McMahon regularly curates art pieces to appear on display at the UA's Bryant Bannister Tree Ring Building, which houses the University'sLaboratory for Tree-Ring Research.

Diana Liverman, a Regents' Professor in the School of Geography and Development and a Guggenheim Fellowship recipient, has argued that the arts and humanities can push people to connect with others and the natural world in ways that are important for sustainability.

UA College of Engineering students have been involved in humanitarian efforts, including designing and building water-level detectors to be used in countries in Africa.

In October, faculty hosted the "The Art of Planetary Science" exhibition, featuring more than 200 pieces of art produced by 90 artists and scientists. In response to the exhibition,Dante Lauretta, who is leading the UA's OSIRIS-REx NASA mission, wrote in a column about the unification he sees between scientific research and artistic endeavors.

"Through our work, scientists seek to understand the nature of our universe and the laws that govern its evolution," Lauretta wrote. "We strive to describe natural processes in the most precise language possible — that of mathematics. However, creating scientific knowledge also requires thought, creativity, attention to detail and imagination. It is not unlike creating art, though the methods may vary."

The School of Information: Science, Technology and Arts regularly connects faculty from fields such as computer science, linguistics, studio arts, music and education to teach courses and facilitate research projects to strengthen artificial technology capabilities, whether it be for better human-computer interactions or enhanced research capabilities. 

On the opposite side of campus is the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine, which is working to revolutionize health care through the embodiment and teaching of healing-oriented practices with attention not only to the body, but also to the mind and spirit.

Dr. Ron Grant, director of the Program in Medical Humanities and Harmony Magazine, said the growing popularity of both the magazine and the program illustrates the need to expand such initiatives.

"Medicine is about improving the human condition. Somehow, the practice of humanism in medicine got lost in the shuffle of technology and information overload," Grant said. "When you have to deal with such a large knowledge base, the humanities can get pushed aside in the interest of efficiency. But being a caring, compassionate practitioner is one of the most important things, if not the most important part, about being a medical specialist." 

Through the Program in Medical Humanities, which offers elective courses to medical students, Grant also involves his students in a reflective reading project, which involves the student with faculty members who teach creative writing.

Research indicates that practices such as reflective thinking, storytelling and journaling can help people to identify areas within themselves and in their lives that require improvement. Such practices also are known to improve self-awareness and to help with understanding new concepts and ideas.

"People who have improved self-awareness and a strong reflective capacity are better practitioners," said Grant, who has a degree in creative writing and has taught creative nonfiction.

In addition to Harmony Magazine, the program hosts Art Aloud, a monthly spoken-word gathering, and movie nights. The program also has a speaker series and has invited authors, poets, artists, health correspondents, film producers and others to speak about the intersection of medicine, the arts and humanism.

"In medical school, you learn facts, often logical and linear. With the arts, you learn to step back, appreciate and observe before attempting to modulate space, encouraging the use of a different part of your brain," Anghel said.

In the absence of major curricular changes, efforts to engage people in authentic conversations about humanism and self-reflection are essential, she said.

"We can learn to be present and calm, taking a different approach to the practice of contemporary medicine," Anghel said. "This allows more peace in interactions. The patient feels cared for and comforted, and the practitioner is not overrun. It becomes a more fluid experience."

Posted in University of arizona on Monday, December 15, 2014 1:39 pm. Comments (0)

Thursday 12/11/2014
More hardware for UA's Wright

University of Arizona sophomore linebacker Scooby Wright III was given the Rotary Lombardi Award in Houston on Wednesday, presented annually to the nation’s most outstanding defensive lineman or linebacker. The selection committee is made up of Division I head coaches, media personnel and former winners and finalists of the Rotary Lombardi Award. He also won the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Trophy in Charlotte, N.C. on Monday.

Wright joined fellow finalists Vic Beasley of Clemson, Joey Bosa of Ohio State and Hau’oli Kikaha of Washington for events in Houston on Tuesday and Wednesday. Wright attended a welcome dinner at the Houston Aquarium on Tuesday and was honored at the awards dinner at the Bayou Music Center on Wednesday. Members of the Wright family were in attendance to celebrate his award.

Also on Wednesday, the sophomore was named a CBSSports.com First-Team All-American, his first such citation of the 2014 seasom. He joined Washington’s Shaq Thompson and Kikaha as the third linebacker on the first-team. Wright was also named the CBS Sports Defensive Player of the Year.

Through 13 games, Wright has 153 total tackles, 28.0 tackles for a loss, 14.0 sacks and six forced fumbles, all team highs. The Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year and a first-team all-conference selection, Wright ranks in the top five among FBS players for total tackles, tackles for loss, sacks and forced fumbles. He’s the only FBS player to rank in the top 25 of each of those categories. Further, Wright is vying to become the first player since 1999 to finish the season ranked in the top five for tackles, tackles for loss and sacks.

Wright will travel to Orlando, Fla. for the ESPN College Football Awards show on Thursday for the presentation of the Chuck Bednarik Award.

The Wildcats’ VIZIO Fiesta Bowl game with Boise State will be played Wed., Dec. 31, at 2 p.m. MT and will air on ESPN. For continued coverage of Arizona football, follow the team on Facebook at facebook.com/ArizonaFootball and on Twitter @ArizonaFBall.

Story Courtesy UA Athletics

Posted in University of arizona, Sports, Uawildcats on Thursday, December 11, 2014 10:34 am. Updated: 10:37 am. | Tags: Arizona Football , Arizona Wildcats , Scooby Wright Comments (0)

Wednesday 12/10/2014
S.H.I.E.L.D half season finale delivers

On Tuesday we got the fall finale of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and we got more questions than answers. Some characters are dead, others “dead” and a few more transformed.

I have to admit, my initial viewing left me thinking “that was cool, but…” I like the episode, but felt we lacked the answers we were waiting for. Then I did a little research.

Confession time, I grew up a comic book geek. I can recite trivia and continuity from about 1975-1996, but after graduating from college the hobby priced me out. I would keep tabs, mostly by picking up occasional graphic novels or flipping through magazines, but I was no longer a diehard. That is why I missed a few of the big reveals in the finale.

We knew Sky (Chloe Bennett) had a secret and we were pretty sure it involved the blue alien from last season, but now it appears we know a lot more. Her father Cal (Kyle MacLachlan) referred to her as “Daisy” and a quick google search reveled that she is a character named Daisy Johnson who is a superhero called Quake, who happens to work for S.H.I.E.L.D. in the comics. Didn’t know that? Don’t worry, neither did I and I have about 30 boxes of comics taking up closet space in my guest bedroom and my father’s house. Over the past 10-15 years  S.H.I.E.L.D. has become more important in the Marvel Universe (duh, just look at the Avengers and the latest Captain America movie), and apparently Quake is important.

The one thing I did get, and got a few episodes ago, is that MacLachlan is essentially the comic character Mr. Hyde, though I doubt he will ever be called that.

We also know, (thanks google) that the mist that emits from the crystals is something called “Terrigen Mist” and that is what gives the Inhumans their powers? Who are the Inhumans? Humans that were genetically altered by the alien race the Kree (blue aliens) thousands of years ago. The Inhumans are slated for a Marvel movie in 2018.

Didn’t get that from the episode? Don’t worry, they only hinted at it. I am sure it will be more explained next March when the show resumes. That’s right, the show will go on hiatus until March, but until then ABC will run Agent Carter, a precursor to S.H.I.E.L.D. set in the 1940’s and incorporating characters from the first Captain American movie.

It was an up and down half season for the show. The  S.H.I.E.L.D. on the run storyline had its moments, but also plenty of frustrations. A lot of the new characters really worked, I was fond of Adrianne Palicki’s Bobbi “Mockingbird” Morse and Nick Blood’s Lance Hunter and especially any time Patton Oswalt appeared as one of the many Koenig’s. However, Fitz’s (Iain De Caestecker) brain damage and unresolved feelings for Simmons (Elizabeth Henstridge) should have been resolved long ago.

All told the show has found its legs and it is nice to see that Marvel Studios is actually letting the show exist in the Marvel Universe, as opposed to the first half season where it seemed like everything was off limits.

Other Revelations and Cliffhangers:

It seems as if Tripp (B.J. Britt) is dead. He was hit by shards of the Obelisk, turned to stone and crumbled away.

Like Skye, Raina (Ruth Negga) was hit by the Terrigen Mist and transformed into something, we just don’t know what.

Dr. Whitehall (Reed Diamond) is “dead.”  Agent Coulson shot him and he was declared dead, but what major villain dies from a single gunshot wound, especially a viallain who has reversed the aging process. I doubt we’ve seen the last of Whitehall (or Diamond who is seemingly trying to appear on every television show).

Other than that, Mac is still possessed, everyone else on the team is trapped in the rapidly collapsing temple and Ward has been shot and is on the run with Agent 33, who has been brainwashed by Whitehall and her programming is failing now that she believes he is dead.                                                                                                            

Posted in University of arizona, Livenup, Screening on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 11:27 pm. Updated: 2:49 am. | Tags: Abc Television , Agents Of Shield Comments (0)

Cats get a glimpse of the future in blowout

It was obvious pretty early on that Arizona was vastly superior to Utah Valley on Tuesday night’s 87-56 win. The Wildcats won by 29 points and midway through the second half had doubled up the Wolverines 64-32. The lopsided nature of the game allowed Arizona to showcase their entire freshman class and it gave us glimpse of a bright future.

Stanley Johnson had another great game, but he’s the present not the future. Unless something surprising happens, he will not live in Tucson by June. Next year at this time he will be cutting a seven-figure paycheck.

Jonson had a strong game, shooting 5-7 from the field, and making all four of his shots inside the arc. He also grabbed seven rebounds, had three assists and three steals. The only negatives are 3-7 free throw shooting and three turnovers.

Dusan Ristic not only had the best game of his career, but was the game’s MVP. The freshman big man scored 14 points, one less than Johnson, but did so on 5-6 shooting, showcasing some really nice moves in the paint. He should be earning more playing time and may be a little ahead of starter Kaleb Tarczewski in terms of offense, though Tarczewski is a better rebounder, defender and eats up space in the paint.

“His offense is ahead of his defense, scoring comes easier to him,” said Arizona Head Coach Sean Miller

Ristic did have his best rebounding night of his career, grabbing seven rebounds, including four on the offensive end. He also had two blocks.

“The coaching staff and all the players help me everyday and I’m just glad to have those people around me,” Ristic said. “I think I improved my defensive game and my body. I wasn’t ready for college basketball but after four or five months, I’m getting better every day.”

Parker Jackson-Cartwright logged the most minutes of any Wildcat. The diminutive point guard has rare quickness and plays beyond his 5-9(ish) frame. Jackson-Cartwright was 3-4 from the field for seven points and had three assists to one turnover. Better yet, his defense is getting better and better.

“Parker has tremendous poise and command of the game and he’s a floor general for such a young player,” said Miller. “He’s played in some tough games, three away from McKale and off the bench.”

On at least eight other teams in the Pac-12 Craig Victor would be a rotation player, if not a starter. At Arizona he needs a blowout to log more than three minutes a game. From his 12 minutes you could see what the Wildcat coaches saw in him and what they want from him in the future. The 6-8 power forward was a perfect 2-2 from the field and added two blocks. 


Posted in University of arizona, Sports, Uawildcats on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 12:51 pm. Updated: 1:16 pm. | Tags: Arizona Wildcats , Arizona Basketball , Dusan Ristic , Parker Jackson-cartwright , Craig Victor Comments (0)

Friday 11/14/2014
UA Eller College To Share Economic Outlook for 2015-2016

University of Arizona economists forecast what’s ahead for Tucson and nation at luncheon on December 12 at the Westin La Paloma Resort

TUCSON, Ariz. – Nov. 14, 2014 – The University of Arizona Eller College of Management will host its annual Economic Outlook Forecast Luncheon on Fri., Dec. 12 from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Westin La Paloma Resort, 3800 East Sunrise, in Tucson. Presenters George W. Hammond, director and research professor at Eller’s Economic and Business Research Center, and Anthony Chan, Chase chief economist, will share their predictions for 2015 and 2016 regarding job growth, the housing sector, the stock market, interest rates and more.

Hammond said this is a must-attend event for C-level executives, business owners, financial managers, entrepreneurs, community leaders and anyone interested in Arizona’s economic health. “We stumbled a lot at the start of 2014, but the U.S. economy is back on track and growing again. However, the economy remains well below potential, which leaves a large segment of the population without adequate employment opportunities,” he said. “This is putting downward pressure on wage and income growth.  In contrast, the stock market posted strong results in 2013 and is still rising.”

While economic growth in Arizona and Tucson will be a main focus for Hammond, Chan will address the outlook for the global economy and financial markets.

“Moving forward, Arizona has an opportunity to shine, but our large metro areas, like Tucson and Phoenix, must work together to foster gains in educational attainment and workforce development, which will be key drivers of long-run growth in Arizona,” Hammond said.

Tickets are $80 per person if purchased before Nov. 25 or $85 per person thereafter. Reservations are requested by December 11. To reserve tickets, visit www.eller.arizona.edu/outlook. For more information, contact outlook@eller.arizona.edu or call (520) 621-0053.

Posted in Blogs, University of arizona, Ventureout on Friday, November 14, 2014 3:47 pm. | Tags: Ua Eller College , University Of Arizona , Westin La Paloma Resort , Economic Outlook , Luncheon , Dec. 12 Comments (0)

Wednesday 11/12/2014
UA Humanities Seminars

Four UA professors have received the 2014 Humanities Seminars Program Superior Teaching Awards.  Now entering its 31st year, the program, which is designed for adult learners, has served 15,000 people in the greater Tucson area.  This year’s awards bring to $239,000 the total payments to University of Arizona faculty members from the Humanities Seminars Endowment for Superior Teaching.

This year’s winners include Professor Meg Lota Brown for teaching “Milton and Revolution.”  Dr. Brown is Professor of English and Faculty Director in the Graduate College. She has received nearly every UA major teaching award, as well as recognition for her research, service, and leadership.

Professor Emeritus Peter E. Medine was recognized for his course, “The History Plays of Shakespeare’s Second Tetralogy.”  He has taught 12 courses for the Humanities Seminars and is the recipient of several Humanities Seminars Superior Teaching Awards.  His principal research interests center on English literature of the Early Modern period.    

“Roman Archaeology:  Myth and Reality” was the topic for Regents Professor David Soren’s course.  In addition to his many national and international awards, Dr. Soren was a founder of and the first Director of the Humanities Seminars Program.  He works in many fields including archaeology, classics, and art history.

Professor Emeritus Richard Hanson has taught eight courses in the Humanities Seminars Program.  This award is for teaching “Gotta Sing! Gotta Dance!” He created the nationally known Musical Theatre Program in the School of Theatre, Film & Television.

Posted in University of arizona, News, Pima pinal on Wednesday, November 12, 2014 4:00 am. | Tags: University Of Arizona , Ua Humanities Seminar Comments (0)

Tuesday 11/04/2014
What's Up UA? - Hiring Interns? Top 8 Tips for Companies

Companies relying on student interns must adhere to eight core best practices, incentives and goals, said Eileen McGarry, the executive director of Career Services at the UA.

McGarry shared her insights during the STEM Internship Business Forum held on campuslast week. As McGarry explained:

1. Company leaders must buy in to the internship program. Upper-level support is crucial to a program's success.

2. Supervisor-level personnel must be engaged in the internship program.

3. Assignments to interns must be authentic. Interns must work on projects in which they are able to help solve real-world problems.

4. Interns must receive regular feedback to ensure that they are learning and growing.

5. Companies should adopt a cohort model where possible. It is important that a culture of teamwork is emphasized and that interns feel part of a "culture of inclusion."

6. Interns should be paid for their work and be tasked with working on projects with real-world applications.

7. Accountability must be expected and emphasized.

8. Interns should be trained toward transferring their skills into full-time work in the field.

During the forum, UA President Ann Weaver Hart and Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, along with representatives from the UA STEM Learning Center announced a new process that will make it easier for businesses to connect with STEM interns. With life scientists, engineers, social science technicians and mathematical scientists being among the STEM positions expected to have the highest demand in southern Arizona through 2020, as reported by UA STEM Learning Center researchers, the UA is increasing support for the STEM fields.

"At Career Services, we are at the front door for talent positions," said McGarry, who urged area businesses to connect with the UA and its partners to identify interns. "There is a whole lot going on on our campus. We will help you get started on this process."

Learn more about UA's STEM initiative by reading "With Seed Planted, STEM Internships Can Grow."

Posted in University of arizona on Tuesday, November 4, 2014 3:05 pm. Comments (0)

Wednesday 10/15/2014
What's Up UA? - Close Encounter 'One in a Million'

Faster than a speeding bullet comes the comet Siding Spring, which will have the attention of UA scientists as it passes Mars on Oct. 19.

University of Arizona scientists have their eyes on Mars for the fly-by of comet Siding Spring, which will pass the red planet on Oct. 19, closer than any comet has ever zoomed past the Earth in recorded history.

"We expect Mars to be bathed in the comet's coma, the gas and dust clouds that make for their famous tails," said Roger Yelle, a professor of planetary science in the UA's Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, who is on the science team of NASA's MAVEN spacecraft, which went into orbit at Mars on Sept. 21.

"The probability of an encounter like this is one in a million."

MAVEN — short for NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission — is the latest addition to an armada of seven spacecraft currently studying Mars, either observing from high above or roving and digging on the surface.

During the comet fly-by, NASA has programmed its orbiters to take measurements and images, then "duck and cover" behind the planet, just in case.

"It only takes a half-a-millimeter-size particle traveling at 56 kilometers per second to injure one of these spacecraft," said Don Yeomans, manager of NASA'sNear Earth Object Program Office.

Yelle and his colleagues anxiously await the arrival of the city-block-size chunk of ice, rock and dust on its first-ever journey toward the sun. Unlike so-called short period comets whose journey around the sun takes them into the inner parts of the solar system every few years or decades, Siding Spring is a long period comet, visiting the solar system for the first time from the far reaches of space.

The comet originated in the Oort Cloud, a vast region of space surrounding the solar system speckled with billions of far-and-few-between comets, some of which embark on journeys that bring them back into our system of planets from which they originated billions of years ago during the early evolution of the solar system.

"Those comets are especially interesting because they are pristine," Yelle explained. "Comets are leftovers from the birth of the solar system, but unlike short-period comets, which have been altered by the sun's heat and solar wind, Siding Spring has been in deep freeze, in deep space, for billions of years."

Alfred McEwen, a professor in the UA Department of Planetary Sciences, leads the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment, known as HiRISE, on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, or MRO.

"This is the first time the nucleus of a long-period comet can actually be resolved by a telescope, either in space or on the ground," McEwen said. "Planning a spacecraft mission to these types of comets is nearly impossible because there is typically only about a year's notice between discovery and passage into the inner solar system."

Because comets such as Siding Spring are difficult to study, scientists know very little about them.

"We want to know the shape of its nucleus, rotation period, its brightness, and hopefully observe the inner coma for jets and outbursts," McEwen said.

All previously resolved comet nuclei are nearly black on their surfaces, despite being rich in ices. A key unanswered question is whether comets are formed black, become black from exposure to galactic cosmic rays, or are blackened over frequent visits to the inner solar system.

In hopes of lifting some of Siding Spring's secrets, the UA-led HiRISE camera team will interrupt its daily routine of photographing the Martian surface.

"We will roll the spacecraft and point HiRISE at the approaching comet," McEwen said. "The tricky part is to predict where the camera has to look, because the comet will be close and traveling fast. Photographing the comet's nucleus at its closest approach is like trying to photograph a speeding bullet while riding a roller coaster."

"Over the past month the comet has been observed to fade in brightness compared to standard comet models, but we should still get a good look at the nucleus even if the coma is not very active."

Comet Siding Spring first appeared on images taken by the UA's Catalina Sky Survey but was not identified as an Oort Cloud comet until independent discovery observations were made approximately four weeks later, by Robert McNaught at the Siding Spring Survey. The survey was one of three telescopes operated by CSS — and the only full-time asteroid survey in the Southern Hemisphere.

On Oct. 19, Siding Spring will race past Mars within 88,000 miles, less than a third of the Earth-moon distance, closer than any comet has ever passed the Earth in recorded history. Traveling at 35 miles per second, the comet — less than half a mile in diameter — would shoot over Los Angeles and out into the Pacific Ocean only one minute after it appeared over Manhattan.

Siding Spring will never get close to the Earth, Yelle said.

"After its pass by the orbit of Mars, it will go back to the Oort Cloud and not come back for many millions of years, if ever," he said.

Scientists are not sure of what to expect when Siding Spring zooms by Mars. What is certain, though, is that there is no chance of an impact.

"Earlier on, there was some concern the dust trail could endanger the spacecraft, but that no longer seem to be a possibility," Yelle said. "Nevertheless, we are taking mitigation strategies to be cautious. When the comet is coming, we'll be hiding on the other side of Mars, and when it goes by, we'll turn the MAVEN spacecraft so that the least sensitive surfaces are pointing to the comet and can't damage instruments.

"After about an hour, we'll come out of hiding. MAVEN will be observing the comet for about three days before and two days after the fly-by."

In contrast, MRO will observe the comet during its closest pass to Mars, although the orbiter will be hiding behind Mars when the dust trail will pass, if it extends that far. 

Over eons, Mars has been losing its atmosphere to space, and MAVEN is a mission designed to study the physical and chemical aspects of that process.

"The atmosphere escape process happens from the upper parts of the atmosphere, close to the region that will be perturbed by the coma of the comet, mostly by water molecules," Yelle said. "They will hit the Martian atmosphere about 250 kilometers above the surface and heat it through their impact momentum, which will in turn tell us about the escape process. We will also study the comet itself — for example, ions that stream from its coma."

Posted in University of arizona on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 3:41 pm. | Tags: Mars , University Of Arizona , Space , Comments (0)

Monday 10/13/2014
What's Up UA? - Austin Hill: The Comeback Kid

If you were to look at the Arizona football record books in the receiving category, you would see senior Austin Hill’s name all in almost every category. In just two and a half years, he has the seventh-most receiving yards in a career (1,983 yards), the fifth-most receptions in a season (81 in 2012), the third-most receiving yards in a season (1,364 in 2012), tied for the most touchdowns in a season (11 in 2012), tied for eighth in career receiving touchdowns (16), tied for the third-most receptions in a single game (11 against Stanford in 2012), has the highest average gain per reception with a minimum of 10 receptions in a game (25.9 yards against USC in 2012) and has the second-most receiving yards in a game (259 against USC in 2012).

It is safe to say that Hill is one of the best receivers to ever put on an Arizona uniform. In his freshman season, he played in 10 games while starting one. He caught 21 passes for 311 yards and two touchdowns. Hill blew up his sophomore year catching 81 passes for 1,364 yards and 11 touchdowns. He also averaged 104.9 yards per game and 16.8 yards per catch. He finished that year as a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award, given to the best wide receiver in the country.

Hill was poised to become a top receiver in the game his junior year, until he tore his ACL in spring practice. 

“I thought that I had lost everything,” Hill said. “I didn’t know what to do or how to react to the situation. I took a day where I didn’t really talk to anyone.”

Hill immediately began his rehab so he could get to full strength as fast as possible. For anyone who has ever torn their ACL, coming back from that injury is a long, grueling process that takes a lot of patience and hard work. 

“The rehab process was rough because it was the same thing every day for a couple months at a time,” Hill said. “Some days you had to take off to get rest, but I would feel good so I didn’t really want to. Then there were some days where I had to rehab and I felt horrible and I couldn’t take a break. It’s frustrating to be an athlete and then have to become non-athletic and learn to do everything again on one leg. It’s hard, physically and mentally.”

The strength staff Arizona is known as one of the best in the country. Strength coaches Chris Allen and Parker Whiteman pushed Hill to his limits to make sure that when he did come back, he would be better than he was before he got hurt.

“The strength staff, especially Parker (Whiteman) and Chris (Allen), really helped me,” Hill said. “I wouldn’t have been able to do it without the strength and medical staffs at my side every day. I was able to really feel that they had my back and they would help me. They pushed me past my limit, and I think that helped me a lot.”

Hill’s fellow receivers DaVonte’ Neal and Cayleb Jones also made the rehab process easier on him. Neal and Jones redshirted the season per transfer rules.

“I always had a lot of time to talk to them on the sideline,” Hill said. “I was able to watch games and see what we were doing and I was able to become good friends with them because we had a lot more time to talk.”

As the year went on, Hill became more motivated every day. He wanted to play right away, but he knew he was a long way away, and that was his motivation.

“Every day was motivation for me,” Hill said. “I got a little more upset every day, especially the days I wasn’t able to rehab. It motivated me because I didn’t want to feel this way anymore and I wanted to get to 100 percent as fast as possible.”

He wanted to play in the AdvoCare V100 Bowl, so Hill was constantly being pushed by everyone to work as hard as he could and to never give in to the pain and frustration. The thought of giving up never crossed his mind because nobody would allow that.

“My goal was to be able to play in the bowl game,” Hill said. “If I wasn’t able to do that, I wanted to run out of the tunnel with the team. Neither of those were able to happen, but I never gave up on myself and neither did anyone else. Even if I wanted to give up, it would’ve been rough for me.”

After the 2013 season ended, Hill had a choice. He could enter the NFL Draft and have a very good chance at being selected, or return for his senior season and finish what he started. He decided to come back, and seems content with his decision.

When spring practice began in 2014, Hill began to participate more than he ever did. He was able to practice with the team and play in the spring game.

“It was during the spring when I felt that I was back,” Hill said. “I was running routes and everything was clicking. Even though I played with my brace on, that was the first time I felt like I was back. When my brace came off is when I felt that I was almost where I wanted to be and I was getting comfortable with my knee.”

Finally, fall practice began, and Hill was more than excited to start. Normally, players aren’t thrilled about having to go through fall camp, but Hill was just happy to be there because he wasn’t able to participate the year before.

“It felt good to be back with the team,” Hill said. “I don’t think anyone loves camp, but I had love for it for the first couple of days. I missed it because last year I had to watch everyone. I was happy because I could finally be with everyone again and run around with them instead of standing on the sideline.”

It is hard not to think about, but Hill tries to focus on the present and the future instead of thinking about how far he has come in the last year and a half.

“I try not to think about the past,” Hill said. “I try to stay in the present and think about what I can do in the future. When I get down on myself or something isn’t happening the way I want it to, my parents will remind me that last year you couldn’t even walk and that I should be happy that I can play because a lot of people aren’t able to come back from this injury.”

So far, Hill has picked up right where he left off. Through four games, he has 15 catches for 263 yards and three touchdowns. He is averaging 17.5 yards per catch, the highest of his career so far.

“Austin is a really smart guy,” head coach Rich Rodriguez said. “I know this year is really important to him because he wants to finish off his career right. He has great ball skills, but better than anything he has a great feel for the game.”

The senior has high hopes for his last year as a Wildcat as he wants play in a Rose Bowl and possibly farther.

“I want the team to be the best we can be,” Hill said. “I want to do anything that will help, even if that’s better blocking, and I don’t always have to catch the ball. My biggest goal is to do the best I can for the team and get us to a Rose Bowl.”

Hill has worked extremely hard for the past year and a half to get to this point.

“It’s definitely been worth it for me,” Hill said. “Being able to put on pads and run around with my teammates has made it worth it. It reminds me that I’m lucky to have been able to come back. As far as I can tell, I am moving in the right direction.”


Posted in University of arizona on Monday, October 13, 2014 2:00 pm. Updated: 2:07 pm. | Tags: University Of Arizona , Austin Hill , Comeback Kid , Wildcats Comments (0)

Monday 10/06/2014
What's Up UA? - Health, Wellness Practices Highlighted by Chinese Culture Festival

The recent Chinese Culture Festival, organized by the Confucius Institute at the University of Arizona, featured lectures and workshops on acupuncture and food therapy by clinicians and researchers from Beijing University of Chinese Medicine and Henan University of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

The lecture series was attended by Andrew Comrie, the UA's senior vice president and provost; Iman Hakim, dean of the Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health; and Weiheng Chen from the consulate general of the People’s Republic of China in Los Angeles.

The third annual festival opened with Confucius Institute Day at the Tucson Chinese Cultural Center, which attracted more than 1,000 K-12 students and their parents, along with community members.

During the festival, faculty from the UA Department of East Asian Studies presented lectures on Confucius, Chinese public time-telling and Yellow River civilizations. An “Evening With Chinese Music” concert at Crowder Hall concluded the festival, with performances by Chinese musicians, the UA Purple Bamboo Ensemble and the Tucson Sino Choir.

The National Committee on U.S.-China Relations, in collaboration with the Carter Center, will conduct the eighth annual "China Town Hall: Local Connections, National Reflections" program. A live webcast and Q&A with former U.S. President Jimmy Carter will take place at 4 p.m. Oct. 16 in Chavez 111, to be followed at 5 by a lecture by Rian Thum, author of "The Sacred Routes of Uyghur History."

Posted in University of arizona on Monday, October 6, 2014 9:41 am. | Tags: University Of Arizona , Health , Wellness , Chinese Culture Festival , Comments (0)

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Monday 10/13/2014

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Monday 10/06/2014

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Thursday 10/02/2014

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Thursday 09/11/2014

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Tuesday 09/09/2014

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Thursday 09/04/2014

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Tuesday 09/02/2014

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Thursday 08/28/2014

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Monday 08/25/2014

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Thursday 08/21/2014

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Tuesday 08/19/2014

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Friday 08/15/2014

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Wednesday 08/13/2014

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Monday 08/11/2014

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Monday 06/09/2014

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Thursday 06/05/2014

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Tuesday 06/03/2014

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Friday 05/30/2014

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Thursday 05/29/2014

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Tuesday 05/27/2014

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Friday 05/23/2014

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Wednesday 05/21/2014

What's Up UA? - Scientists Discover Genetic Basis of Pest Resistance to Biotech Cotton

Monday 05/19/2014

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Thursday 05/15/2014

What's Up UA? - Earning a UA Degree, in a Grandfather’s Memory

Tuesday 05/13/2014

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Thursday 05/08/2014

What's Up UA? - University of Arizona to Offer Nation’s First Bachelor of Arts in Law

Monday 05/05/2014

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Wednesday 04/30/2014

What's Up UA? - Scientists at the UA Make Critical End-Stage Liver Disease Discovery

Friday 04/25/2014

What's Up UA? - A Century-Long Track Record of Serving Arizona and Benefiting the State's Economy

Wednesday 04/23/2014

What's Up UA? - UA Opens Nation’s First Resource Center for Student Vets Studying Health Care UA Wildcat Instant Decision Days at PCC campuses April 29-May 2

Monday 04/21/2014

What's Up UA? - UA Scientists to Begin Construction on NASA Spacecraft that will Visit Asteroid in 2018

Thursday 04/10/2014

What's Up UA? - Spring Fling Celebrates 40th Anniversary With Return to UA Mall

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