From spring allergies and novel research into mental health management to economic predictions and student innovation, the month of April was hopping with news.
Media outlets close to campus and around the world called on UNLV experts to help explain the impact of Las Vegas’ inaugural hosting of the NFL draft on the city’s legacy, the future of mining, and marriage surname traditions. They highlighted student success as we celebrated a Ph.D. student’s anthropological discovery, an undergraduate who earned a highly coveted academic honor, and a student team whose invention could help change the region’s post-pandemic landscape. Other headlines helped inform the greater public of a campus wide smoking ban and an initiative to help alleviate problem gambling.
Read about these nuggets and others in the latest edition of Newsmakers.
Nevada’s economy will continue its recovery and expand through 2022 but it is not so certain for 2023, according to the latest economic outlook report released by UNLV’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER).That’s in contrast to the national economy, which currently is experiencing a significant structural adjustment toward a new normal in the midst of COVID-era impacts, the war in Ukraine, and related disruptions to the supply chain and trade. Stephen Miller, director of research for CBER, and Andrew Woods, director of CBER, explained the impact of inflation on the economy during an annual presentation that was keynoted by Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco president Mary Daly.
As Las Vegas continues to evolve into a powerhouse sports town, UNLV experts are frequently called upon to lend context on local, national, and global sports business news. In April, media outlets tapped several university experts to offer insights on women’s place in the sports world, a possible Major League Baseball move to Southern Nevada, and the NFL’s changing relationship with Las Vegas as the draft rolled into town.
- New York Times: Sports Research and Innovation Initiative co-director Nancy Lough on ways the 50-year-old Title IX law changed Congress, campuses, and sports
- New York Times: History professor Michael Green and International Gaming Institute executive director Bo Bernhard on Las Vegas hosting the NFL draft
- City Cast Las Vegas: Economist Bill Robinson on the pros and cons of Major League Baseball's Oakland A's moving to Las Vegas
- Las Vegas Review-Journal (twice): Hospitality professor Amanda Belarmino on the tourism impact of the NFL draft
- 8 News Now: Economist Stephen Miller on the economic impact of the NAB convention and NFL Draft in Las Vegas
UNLV Students Shine
An innovative student design for automated and self-watering microgreen gardens took the $25,000 top prize at the inaugural President’s Innovation Challenge. The competition — hosted by UNLV’s Office of the President, Graduate College, Office of Economic Development, Black Fire Innovation, and the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development — called on interdisciplinary student teams to come up with actionable ideas to deliver new business, new industry, or even entirely new sectors to our local economy.KTNV: ABC 13, Las Vegas Review Journal, KNPR, Las Vegas Sun (twice)
UNLV junior Kelsey Elizabeth Matthews, a social work major and Honors College student, was one of just 58 students nationwide to be awarded the prestigious Harry S. Truman Scholarship for 2022. Inspired by obstacles during her own childhood, Matthews plans to use the $30,000 award to pursue a law degree with a joint master’s in either social work or public policy. She hopes to become an attorney and advocate for social justice, legislative change, and public interest, and eventually run for public office.KLAS-TV: 8 News Now, KSNV-TV: News 3
Diana Simpson, a Ph.D. candidate and part-time instructor in the archaeology department, was called on by multiple media outlets to discuss her findings after analyzing the skull of a prehistoric man with a hole in his forehead. She presented her research at the annual meeting of the American Association of Biological Anthropologists.The New York Post, Science News, Extreme Tech, Techno Trenz, Slash Gear, The U.S. Sun, The Guild of Science, Ordo News, Syfy
On Aug. 15, prior to the start of the fall semester, UNLV will join approximately 2,000 universities across the country that have become smoke-free campuses. The initiative, led by UNLV’s School of Public Health, will prohibit all forms of smoking, tobacco use, marijuana use, and unregulated nicotine products by students, faculty, staff and visitors on all UNLV properties.Associated Press, KLAS-TV: 8 News Now, The Las Vegas Review-Journal, KTNV-TV: ABC 13, KVVU-TV: Fox 5, Las Vegas Patch
The International Gaming Institute is teaming up with the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians to create a responsible gaming initiative. The program — led by Alan Feldman, a distinguished fellow at the International Gaming Institute — will provide training, education, research, and integration at casinos.The Las Vegas Review-Journal, The Nevada Independent, Indian Gaming, Gambling News, CDC Gaming Reports, Focus GN, Casino.org, Yogonet, GGB News
- Multiple outlets sought Brookings Mountain West graduate student researcher Mary Blankenship’s thoughts about the impact of billionaire Elon Musk’s Twitter purchase on social media misinformation and free speech: Global News, Al Araby, KTNV-TV: ABC 13, Verve Times, Q107, ABC News 15, WPTV News 5, KOAA News 5, ABC News 10. She was also featured in an Expresso Portugal Q&A regarding her research into Russian propaganda.
- KLAS-TV: 8 News Now highlighted a discovery by Stephen Rowland, professor emeritus of geology, and recent graduate student researcher Lauren Parry of a mammoth fossil that provides the first-ever proof of animals in the Amargosa Valley during the Ice Age.
- Fashion historian Deirdre Clemente offered comments to the Wall Street Journal about the history of the varsity jacket, Yahoo! News about the safety of corsets, and the History News Network about Ralph Lauren’s HBCU tribute line.
- Asma Tahir, supervisor of the School of Public Health’s Pollen Monitoring program, explained to KNPR and City Cast Las Vegas why people are facing allergies in Nevada.
- Simon Jowitt, professor in economic geology, discussed the important use of magnets and how that applies to mining in The Las Vegas Review-Journal and El Tiempo. He also spoke to BBC about the future of mining.
- More than 40 outlets picked up a Scripps National report featuring political science chair David Damore discussing the power of America’s growing population of independent voters.
- The Guardian, Wedd TV, and Republika included psychology professor Rachael Robnett’s research on wedding traditions surrounding surnames as part of a report about David Beckham’s son assuming his new wife’s maiden name.
- Anthony Cabot, a distinguished fellow of Gaming Law, shared his expertise with WalletHub on the country’s most gambling-addicted states. The report was also picked up by The Uken Report.
- Mental health management was a hot topic this month. Graduate student researcher April Contreras joined neuroscientists and psychology professors Dustin Hines and Rochelle Hines on KNPR to discuss their study of psychedelic drugs for possible use in mental health treatment. Anthropologist Alyssa Crittenden also spoke to Wondrium Daily about the historic use of psilocybin, the ingredient in “magic” mushrooms, to alleviate depression symptoms.
- Brenna Renn, professor of psychology, told Care.com about ways you can be supportive of older loved ones when they are struggling financially.
- Several professors spoke to media about ways the BA.2 subvariant surge may affect the U.S. School of Public Health professor Brian Labus was quoted by Heathline and Yahoo! News, and Voice of America interviewed Kerkorian School of Medicine dean Marc J. Kahn and professor Evelyn Montalvo Stanton.
- Fox News featured Troesch Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation executive director Leith Martin’s insights on the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on gig workers.
- Alissa Cooley, managing attorney at the UNLV Immigration Clinic, explained to The Nevada Current, KSNV-TV: News 3, and The National Desk that the Title 42 should be lifted due to other restrictions that were already lifted.