Wednesday, December 7, 2011

UM News for December 7, 2011

Learn how a UM representative helps a local coffee shop trade directly with El Salvador and celebrate with coach Robin Selvig as he prepares to coach his 1000 game on this week's edition of UM News. Broadcast journalism seniors Dustin Klemann and Emily Foster anchored today's newscast. Tara Oster produced the show, and Scott Ranf directed. UM News airs Thursday mornings at 8:25 a.m. on KPAX-TV in Missoula and KAJ-TV in Kalispell. UM News is a production of the Department of Radio-Television and the School of Journalism at the University of Montana.

UM Grad Student brings lasting global connection to Missoula

The second most traded commodity in the world will soon be taking a direct route to Missoula. UM Peace Corps Representative Dana Foster and Black Coffee Roasting Company are partnering to establish a direct trade relationship with Finca Buena Vista coffee farm in El Salvador. Unlike fair trade, the direct trade model offers quality assurance, meaning roasters have chosen what they feel is the best coffee for their consumers. The market price for coffee can change every day, but on average, roasters that buy direct pay 25% to 40% more for their beans. In simpler terms, if a pound of raw coffee beans normally costs $2.38, the price through direct trade would be $3.50 to $4 per pound. This gives the producers an opportunity to create better working conditions and increase wages. Black Coffee Roasting Company hopes to start offering directly traded coffee by spring 2012. Reporter Annemiek Wilson and photographer Bernie Riggs found out how coffee is finding a new way into our cups. Click below to see video.


Missoula Man Shares How His Life Changed After Being Hit by a Drunk Driver

Jason Burrell sustained permanent injuries after being hit by a drunk driver at just 19 years old in 1986. Burrell said he was on a motorcycle, but wasn't wearing a helmet. He sustained a closed head injury that left him unable to speak, but that hasn't stopped him from being involved in the community and helping out.

He volunteers about two times a week at Lewis and Clark Elementary and always reminds the 4th grade student to wear their helmets and stay safe.

UM News reporter Tara Oster and photographer Maegan Simmons met with Jason to learn about his life since the accident.


Culinary Arts Cook-Off

Students of the College of Technology Culinary Arts Program turned up the heat in the UC during a head-to-head cook-off competition. Five students from the culinary team vied for a spot to compete as an individual at the American Culinary Federation’s Culinary Challenge this March in Reno, Nev.
 UM News' Beth Beechie and Katie Radford sat down with chefs and students to see what it takes for students to become successful culinary artists and competitors.


Group Raises Awareness On Violence Against Women

The University of Montana’s Women’s Center partnered with Missoula Women’s for Peace gathered to speak out and raise awareness of violence against women. The gathering on Dec. 2 was to observe the annual worldwide “16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence.” Participants lit candles and walked in solidarity on Higgins Avenue to raise awareness locally. Photographer Matt DeBray and reporter Dustin Klemann followed the group to see how this group raised awareness on First Friday. video

Entertainment Management Students Get Hands-On Experience

UM's school of Business Administration started an Entertainment Management certificate program with less than 30 students. Now almost 10 years later, the program has grown to over 330 students and counting.

This semester, the students put together six concerts at Sean Kelly's Brew Pub. The Fall Freeze Fest is the group's grand finale.

The Entertainment Management Program is pushing to become a minor at the University of Montana. UM News Reporter Adrienne Ellsworth and photographer Scott Ranf found out what keeps this program running.


University of Montana students wrap gifts for the Adopt-A-Family, Adopt-A-Vet programs.

The University of Montana teams up with the Salvation Army, the Poverello Center and Valor House this holiday season for the 15th annual Adopt-A-Family and third annual Adopt-A-Veteran programs. Campus Corps team leader Shanna Ungate says participants can select families and veterans in need and help provide them with gifts, clothing, and other requested items. UM News reporter Faith Cronin and photographer Dizhi Ge chatted with some UM students who say they're happy to help the Missoula community.

University of Montana Jewish Student Union Celebrates Hanukkah Early

The University of Montana's Jewish student union known as Hillel has about twenty members.
Reporter Katherine Kettering and photographer Emily Foster found out how this small, but strong Jewish community keeps their holiday traditions alive during Christmas. 


Robin Selvig Gears Up For His 1000th Career Game As Head Coach

Robin Selvig will reach his 1000th game as head coach of the Lady Griz basketball team at Thursday's game versus Cal State Bakerfield. UM News reporter Stephanie Hansen and photographer Brad Peers went to the Adam's Center to get an inside look at what inspires this coach to have reached such a rare milestone. Selvig has won 762 of 999 games, giving him a 76% win rate over his career. The NCAA says only about half a dozen Division I Women's basketball coaches have ever reached 1,000 games in their career.


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

UM News for November 30, 2011

Find out how the University of Montana students living near the northside railroad tracks deal with coal dust from passing trains and learn when UM police officers decide to use tasers on this week's edition of UM News. Broadcast journalism seniors Beth Beechie and Dustin Klemann anchored today's newscast. Katherine Kettering produced the show; and Dizhi Ge directed. UM News airs Thursday mornings at 8:25 a.m. on KPAX-TV in Missoula and KAJ-TV in Kalispell. UM News is a production of the Department of Radio-Television and the School of Journalism at the University of Montana.

Peers Reaching Out About Drunk Driving

Peers Reaching Out, or PROs at the University of Montana works to educate students about various health and safety issues including the dangers of drunk driving.
According to their data, 1825 college students die each year from alcohol related injuries. They say the majority of those are due to car crashes.
UM News reporter Tara Oster and photographer Bernie Riggs talked with the PROs to see how they educate students about this issue.


An Increase In Coal Train Traffic Gives Residents A Cause For Concern

Residents aren't the only ones who have staked their claims to their homes. Coal dust has nestled its way into their homes as a permanent, but unwelcome roommate. UM News reporter Stephanie Hansen and photographer Scott Ranf found out how coal is currently affecting students who live near the tracks. Arch Coal contributes 16 percent of America's annual coal, making them the second largest coal producer in the U.S. BNSF and Montana Rail link.  would be shipping the coal. 

Taser Usage Comes To The Forefront In Missoula

The recent tasing of University of Montana football players and two more tasings by Missoula police over the weekend have raised questions about the use of the device. Police officers at the UM's Office of Public Safety and the Missoula Police Department use tasers to protect the public. Reporter Emily Foster and photographer Brad Peers found out when officers can legally use them and just how painful their sting feels.


UM Student Helps Special Olympians Stay in Shape

Special Olympics athletes are gearing up to compete with the help of a UM student. Athletes train twice a week at the Missoula YMCA in preparation for the Montana games in March. UM News reporter Annemiek Wilson and photographer Maegan Simmons found out how one UM student is helping special olympians.

Montana landowners fight back against the Mountain Pine Beetle.

Montana land owner, Karole Lee, says it's important that land owners remember that they the stewards of the land. Lee owns five and a half acres in the Clancy area and says she strives to maintain the trees on her property; because healthier trees are less likely to be infested by mountain pine beetles. Lee advises other land owners to keep their trees well watered, as well as to remove the smaller weaker trees to enable the larger healthier ones to grow. UM doctoral student and pine beetle expert, Ryan Bracewell, says it's important that land owners can identify the trees on their land, and how susceptible they are to pine beetle infestation. Reporter and photographer Faith Cronin and photographer Scott Ranf dug a little deeper to find out what methods land owners can rely on to get rid of pine beetle infestations. To learn more about the mountain pine beetle you can watch Part I of this two part story or visit the Forest Service website.


Marrow Drive on Campus

Cheryl Cowan said her life's been an emotional roller coaster ever since she found out her dad was diagnosed with cancer in 2009. He went into remission but found out he needed a bone marrow transplant.The family had his only brother tested, but he wasn't a match. According to, seven out of ten patients won't find a match among family members.
Two months ago, the Cowans got a phone call that changed their lives. Nurses told the family that Tim Cowan was going to have a "second birthday." They found a perfect match for his marrow transplant.
UM Pharmacy students are working to raise awareness about the need for bone marrow donors by putting on a marrow drive on December 8th in the UC. UM News' Beth Beechie and Matt DeBray sat down with the Cowans to see how finding a match can change lives.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

UM News for November 16, 2011

Find out how the University of Montana students teach us about pine beetles and how Missoula's homeless community shows off their creativity on this week's edition of UM News. Broadcast journalism seniors Tara Oster and Annemiek Wilson anchored today's newscast. Stephanie Hansen produced the show; and Bernie Riggs directed. UM News airs Thursday mornings at 8:25 a.m. on KPAX-TV in Missoula and KAJ-TV in Kalispell. UM News is a production of the Department of Radio-Television and the School of Journalism at the University of Montana.


Montana Campus Compact applies for Campus Corps funding through 2015

Montana Campus Compact aims to refund its Campus Corpsprogram, an Americorps service group, here at the University of Montana.

Currently, Campus Corps has funding through August of 2012.The MTCC reapplies for this funding every three years. However, funding forAmericorps is in jeopardy due to a proposal from the US House ofRepresentatives to cut Americorps funding all together.

Executive Director at MTCC, Dean McGovern, said the groupwill keep planning as if it will receive all funding. MTCC will know if itsgrant request was successful this May.

In the meantime, there is another service group on campusthat has funding through 2014.
Compact Service Corps is another student service group thatstrives to serve the Missoula community. However, instead of stipends that ahandful of students obtain through Campus Corps, Compact Service studentsreceive work study if they qualify. Compact Service Corps students also receiveeducation awards, like Campus Corps students, but do not have to volunteer asmany hours for these awards.

McGovern said both programs are sound assets to theuniversity. He said he hopes to keep them around to serve the Missoulacommunity for years.

Graduating in Four Years

Senior Katelyn Carlson plans on taking a Wintersession course this January. Carlson said she's taking the class in order to graduate in four years. According to a study by the University of Montana, the class of 2009 had about one thousand students. 38.4 percent of those student graduated in four years or less. On average, it took the class of 2009 about five years to graduate with a bachelor's degree. UM News' Beth Beechie sat down with Carlson to see why graduating in four years is so important to her.

Missoula Police Break Down the Process of a DUI

According to data from the Montana Department of Transportation, there were 7,351 injury crashes in the state of Montana in 2009. Of those incidents, 1,319 or 17.9 percent involved alcohol. Two-hundred and two crashes were fatal. of those, 86 or 42.6 percent were alcohol related.
The numbers don't differ too much in Missoula County. In 2009, out of 922 injury crashes, 147 or 15.9 percent were alcohol related. Out of the 13 fatal crashes of that year, 7 or 53.8 percent involved alcohol.

Montana DOT data shows underage drivers are involved in alcohol or drug related crashes in 6.7 percent of all drug or alcohol related crashes. That's compared to 10.5 percent of the entire population of drivers; no matter their age.

As of the 2008 data, the results for fatal crashes was much different. In alcohol related crashes involving an underage driver, 42.4 percent of those were fatal. Montana DOT says the rate for the entire population of drivers, no matter their age is 40.4 percent.

UM News reporter Tara Oster and reporter/photographer Maegan Simmons went on a ride with Missoula Police to see how they work to decrease the number of DUIs and how they ultimately hope to decrease the number of alcohol related car-accident fatalities.


UM Graduate students get hands on with Mountain Pine Beetles

UM Graduate students share research about the Mountain Pine Beetle with local landowners and concerned citizens. Beetle Expert and UM Doctoral Student, Ryan Bracewell, explains the impact the pine beetles have on our ecosystem.  Trip participants met at the Montana Natural History Center and took a bus up to the Lubrecht Experimental Forest owned by the University of Montana.  Photographer Scott Ranf and reporter Faith Cronin rode up with other beetle enthusiasts and experts to learn a little more about the little bug that's causing huge problems.  For more general information about the Mountain Pine Bark Beetle click here. and be sure to stay tuned to part 2 with our developing story.

Missoula homeless express their voice through new magazine

The Poverello Center is known for its work with the homeless. A new project gives the homeless in Missoula a chance to express themselves through poetry, essays, and drawings. "30 Days In" is the new literary magazine that can be purchased at the Poverello Center. UM News photographer Dizhi Ge and reporter Dustin Klemann met one man who's drawing ability is getting some exposure as a contributor to the new magazine.

UM Student Combines Career Passions With Real Life Experience

UM students can find many ways to bring their education into the real world. Reporter Annemiek Wilson and photographer Matt DeBray found out how one student juggles school, work, and volunteer fire fighting in Frenchtown. Click below to see video. video

University Of Montana Students Scale Walls For Exercise

Some University of Montana students scale 16-foot tall walls at Freestone Climbing Gym to stay in shape. Reporter Emily Foster found out how the sport of climbing offers a unique challenge for adventurous athletes.


Rutting Season is Here Look Out for Missoula Deer

Flying snow, dropping temperatures and dark skies before dinner can put anyone in a rut. Deer across Montana have a different outlook on the changing season. Rut is the breeding season for deer. Wildlife Biology PhD Student, Sonja Christensen, says Missoula area deer are at the peak of their rutting season. Christensen advises people to be aware of more aggressive behavior from deer over the next few weeks. Reporter Katherine Kettering found out what cautions people should take around deer this time of year. Check out the video below to learn more.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

UM News for November 9, 2011

Find out how the University of Montana remembers veterans and gets in the spirit of giving on this week's edition of UM News. Broadcast journalism seniors Katherine Kettering and Emily Foster anchored today's newscast. Annemiek Wilson produced the show and Maegan Simmons directed. UM News airs Thursday mornings at 8:25 a.m. on KPAX-TV in Missoula and KAJ-TV in Kalispell. UM News is a production of the Department of Radio-Television and the School of Journalism at the University of Montana.

UM Students Learn at Game Check Stations

University of Montana Wildlife Biology students have been working together with Fish Wildlife and Parks to man game check stations for over a decade. Students are taught by the biologists at each check station how to properly age wild game and the students assist FWP in obtaining data used to assess game population in Montana. UM News Reporter Stephanie Hansen and photographer Matt DeBray went to the check station near Bonner to see what the students were learning first hand.

Media Arts program features variety

The School of Media Arts at the University of Montana began their first annual Movie Fest. Students of the program entered in different projects ranging from animation and motion design to narrative and experimental. They demonstrate that you don't need to be in Hollywood to make high-quality material. UM News photographer Bernie Riggs and reporter Dustin Klemann got their popcorn ready for a look inside the program making projects possible on the silver screen.

Day of Dialogue

The Day of Dialogue drew hundreds of students to all sorts of talks and performances on campus. The Student Involvement Network and other volunteers worked for months to get the day underway. Coordinators of the day said a day like Day of Dialogue aims for students to hear different opinions but also embrace other ways to show diversity. UM News' Beth Beechie and Brad Peers were there to see all different types of diversity.

Returning solider tries to adjust the transition

Sergeant Seth Phillips,a medic in the Army National Guard, attended the unveiling of the Grateful Nation Fallen Solider Memorial at the University of Montana. The memorialremembers 42 Montanans who died fighting for freedom. Hundreds turned out tohonor the memorial. Phillips says it is important for returning soldiers tomake the transition from combat back to civilian life. UM News reporter KatherineKettering and photographer Dizhi Ge found out how Phillips is making the transition. Click video to seemore.