March 10th



Kennedy gives powerful presentation at Sangamon

After receiving a standing ovation upon his entrance into the Sangamon Auditorium at UIS, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. stated to the audience, “At a reception before this event I was asked what I think the biggest environmental problem facing our nation is today and I said the White House.” 

Kennedy visited UIS to give a presentation entitled “Our Environmental Destiny” on Wednesday March 3, 2004.  His is the second appearance in a lecture series, which began last year with Morris Dees, sponsored by the Office of Student Life and the students of UIS, according to Cynthia Thompson, Director of Student Life.

Kennedy is the son of Robert Kennedy and the nephew of the former President John F. Kennedy.  “I am use to being called Bobby’s son, Jack’s nephew, or Patrick’s cousin.  And in California everyone is saying ‘Oh you’re Arnold’s cousin, right?’” he said.

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Parents of convicted discuss Innocence Project case

The parents of Julie Rea Harper, a woman who many believe was wrongfully convicted of killing her 10-year-old son, answered questions about their daughter’s case during a UIS legal studies class last month.

                The UIS-based Downstate Illinois Innocence Project filed a petition for executive clemency on behalf of Rea-Harper last September, seeking a pardon based on actual innocence. UIS faculty members and legal-studies students working with the Innocence Project have provided investigative services for Rea-Harper and other individuals who have been imprisoned despite strong evidence suggesting their innocence.

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Research Advanced at UIS

Scientific research at UIS has been given a boost.  Recently, two graduate students, Tracy DiMezzo and Timothy Goode, received grants from Sigma Xi to further their studies on Illinois floodplains.

Sigma Xi is a nonprofit organization made up of roughly 75,000 scientists and engineers.  Obtaining grants from this society is extremely competitive.  The purpose of this organization is to “motivate young investigators,” said UIS Professor Michael Lemke.

DiMezzo and Goode were selected because Sigma Xi identified great potential in their work.  Between the two of them, they received over $1,500.

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