News Items from UNC Greensboro

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Dr. Charles Egeland and undergraduate researcher Maegan Ferguson

This month, anthropologist Dr. Charles Egeland at UNC Greensboro and his collaborators published new information about the eating habits of sabertooth cats. 

His article in Nature: Scientific Reports shows that unlike previously thought, the massive felines may have cleaned absolutely everything from the carcasses of the animals they consumed.

But anthropology is the study of humans, so what does the feeding behavior of an extinct predator have to do with us? 

It has been commonly thought that our early ancestors – referred to by anthropologists as “hominins” – scavenged meat from abandoned sabertooth kills. But if the cats consumed everything, how did these hominins get their food? 

Egeland believes that our early ancestors may have driven these large cats from their kills, or that they were successful hunters in their own right. If so, hominins put themselves in competition for food with the cats and perhaps had a hand in their extinction.

This research relates to a variety of courses that Egeland teaches in the Department of Anthropology at UNCG, including an introduction to human biological anthropology, zooarchaeology, primate behavior, and forensic anthropology, as well as human evolution courses,

This past semester, he taught “Paleolithic archaeology,” which looks at the cultures of stone tool using peoples over the past two or so million years, and how they may have related to other predators such as sabertooth cats – how humans interacted with them, competed with them, or potentially contributed to their extinction.

When humans began using stone tools to acquire more meat as sustenance, their bodies grew in size. Their brains grew, and they gained more intellectual capability. 

Researchers like Egeland study the animal bones that remain at early archaeological sites to understand how these events shaped human evolution. Their work examines the distinctive marks left by animal teeth and human tools, which can reveal a great deal about the behavior of prehistoric animals and early humans. 

The campsite at Olduvai Gorge, where UNCG faculty and students do field work.

The placement of bones at archaeological sites can even reveal information about social structures of prehistoric animals and early humans.

These subjects are ripe with opportunity for undergraduate researchers, including those who receive support from the Undergraduate Research, Creativity, and Scholarship Office (URSCO).

This summer, Egeland and UNCG students will survey and collect bones at a field school site near Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where Egeland has been doing this research since 2012.

Maegan Ferguson, one of the students who will participate, will spend three weeks in Tanzania with the support of a grant from URSCO.

She values this work and the anthropology program because it combines her dual interests in history and science. In her junior year, when she was looking at colleges, she realized she could study both in an active and rigorous program at UNCG.

UNCG undergraduate researcher Maegan Ferguson

“My first semester, I took the Introduction to Biological Anthropology course with Dr. Egeland, and that course really made me fall in love with the subject. Since then, I’ve taken many of those courses and archaeology courses with Dr. Egeland – as well as with Dr. Anemone. I’ve been very focused on both the biological and behavioral evolution of humans and nonhuman primates.”

A sunrise at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania

At Olduvai Gorge, Ferguson will collect modern bones deposited around a seasonal waterhole where many animals drink and predators pursue prey. The location of the bones, and the marks preserved on them, will then be compared to fossil assemblages in order to reconstruct the lives of hominins and their habitats some two million years ago. 

She will focus on the 3D location, collection, and curation of bone specimens that have accumulated on the landscape. She’ll compare earlier fossil collections from the site with what they gather this summer, which will also allow them to compare the animal presence.

 “What I’m most looking forward to about this field school is the opportunity to do fieldwork and excavations at one of the most important sites in the study of human evolution,” says Ferguson. “Getting the opportunity to do this fieldwork at Olduvai Gorge and to be a research assistant on these projects as an undergraduate is truly amazing, and I’m so excited to see what we find there and where this research will take me in the future.”

Story by Susan Kirby-Smith, University Communications
Photography by Martin W. Kane, University Communications, and courtesy of Charles Egeland

UNCG alumna Julianna Baggott

Bestselling author Julianna Baggott 93’ MFA is a bit like a superhero who, when you’re not looking, bursts out of a phone booth in a new costume, ready for action and adventure. 

But not just once. She doesn’t complete just her mission and go back to a quiet “normal” life. A few years – or even just months – later, she’s back in action, leaping over figurative buildings in a new genre.

Baggott is a nationally bestselling author of 21 novels, including several named “Notable Book of the Year” by the New York Times. One of those is “Pure,” the first in a dystopian thriller trilogy that has been translated into 15 languages. Baggott published many short stories in literary journals and also her debut novel, “Girl Talk,” with Simon and Schuster not long after graduating from UNC Greensboro’s MFA in Creative Writing Program.

In the midst of her career as a fiction writer, Baggott also wrote and published four books of poetry through Louisiana State University Press and Southern Illinois University Press.

Her third and fourth word-weaving alter egos have their own pen names: Bridget Asher, publishing through Random House, and N.E. Bode, who wrote the celebrated children’s series “The Anybodies,” published by Harper Collins.

And now, Baggott appears from the phone booth a fifth time as her work comes to life on the screen. 

She currently has 17 projects in development for film and television, including writing and producing contracts with Paramount, Disney, Warner Brothers, and Iron Ocean, actress Jessica Biel’s production company.

Next week, BCDF Pictures is taking a screenplay to Cannes that’s based on a novel by Baggott and a fellow UNCG MFA alum, Steve Almond: “Which  Brings Me to You,” which will star Lucy Hale.

Simultaneously, Baggott’s story “Welcome to Oxhead” is in development with Paramount and recently, Netflix won a six-way bidding war for “Backwards,” a story by Baggott and her son Finneas Scott that will be directed by Shawn Levy. Paramount Pictures has also just snagged “Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit,” a horror story by Baggott.

But wait – just when you’d thought she’d done everything, Baggott emerges again, as a professor at the College of Motion Picture Arts at Florida State University, where she’s taught screenwriters and young directors for the past 10 years.

How did she get here, a bestselling novelist, short story writer, poet, film producer, and professor?

 Her story as a professional writer has, at its roots, UNCG.

While enrolled in the graduate Creative Writing Program at UNCG, she served as one of the student editors for The Greensboro Review, which she calls “a crash course in becoming the audience and writing for editors.” She also fondly remembers seeing distinguished visiting writers read, like Lewis Norton, and working with MFA Creative Writing Program and media studies faculty.

What did you learn by serving as one of the fiction editors for the Greensboro Review?

 Reading stories, sometimes you see it in the first sentence – it’s crafted in a certain way and you go, “Okay, this person knows story. They know how to enter.” I would say 90% of the decisions you have to make in a short story are done in the first paragraph there, the structural things, point of view. And voice is so important. So, reading submissions really opened up something for me; it created a hole in my stomach. Why am I not being fed? What do I need to be fed, as a reader? So, reading submissions is all of this consumption with no satisfaction, but very occasionally you get one and you say, “Oh, my gosh: finally.” 

And it’s so exciting when one comes across that is so good. It made me very hungry for a satisfying meal. I learned how to write for an editor who sees a blinding amount of material all the time, and it made it clear how I wanted to stand out in that crowd. But also made it clear how subjective the process is. I was sitting with a friend of mine at the Greensboro Review office, and we were both reading submissions, and she groaned while reading the story.

I said, “What’s so terrible about that story?”

 And she told me the plot, and then I said, “I’ll read it when you’re done. Because that sounds weird and good.”

 She said, “You can read it right now,” and she threw it at me.

It was a story we eventually printed – I fell in love with it. It was by a writer named Laurie Foos, who’s gone on to write a number of books, and who I adore for her very, very unusual imagination. So, if my friend hadn’t hated it enough to groan, it never would have gotten published by somebody who loved it, enough to publish it.  That kind of thing was a huge relief for me going forward. Rejection just means somebody didn’t groan loudly enough to get somebody else’s attention. It is so subjective. And once you realize that, it’s about writing enough work and getting enough out there so it finds the right people.

What was it like working with UNCG faculty?

I remember working with Fred (Chappell), and  he could be a defender of work. Sometimes, if you felt something was getting roughed up in workshop, he knew how to handle that. One time, I went in after I’d given him what I’d written over the summer, and he started talking about it, honestly. Not bad criticism –  nice things –  and he talked about the things that needed work. There was nothing wrong with the criticism, but I ]burst into tears – \because I had so much at stake. And I think it might have been the nice things that he said that made me burst into tears. Anyway, he pushed the tissue box over, because he had tissues on hand for  criers. He very gently pushed the tissue box and let me continue to cry. I didn’t want to miss out on the meeting, and he knew, and he kept talking. He was very generous in that moment, and I write him letters all the time. I don’t send them, but I write Fred letters all the time. Sometimes I’ll see them scribbled in the back of a book, like, oh – there’s a “Dear Fred” letter. It’s a very strange habit, but he helps me an awful lot, not knowing that he helps me.

 The head of my thesis committee was Lee’s Zacharias, and she was excellent on story and on character. And she was really encouraging about my work, early on, really went to bat for me. I also I worked with Anthony Fragola in screenwriting for a year, a very generous teacher, and he put up with me.

How did you decide to focus on your work for television, and how have you done that especially during the past two years?

 I said to myself, “Well, that’s where the energy is and I should meet them. What if it was my job to write a story a week?” The old sci fi writers – that’s how they made their bread and butter. They actually made money writing stories. I said to myself, “Try to do it with an eye towards film and television.”

 But if it’s a literary story that shows up that week – the literary story is my job. I put myself on a very aggressive regimen during COVID, too. I think part of it was a coping mechanism. And, I’ve always had this – I think it came from when I had kids, and no one expected me as a mother to be writing. I loved that I felt very incognito and that when nobody was looking, I would come to life, like it was a disguise  – motherhood was a disguise. When nobody was looking, I would be writing, and I had this secret life. So, I think during COVID I just felt like “Nobody’s looking, and I’m just gonna write really hard.” 

And I never thought of myself as a novelist then. I was always more of a short story writer in terms of …maybe “metabolism” might be the right word. I’m a sprinter. I taught myself how to write novels, and worked in that kind of marathon space for a long time. 

What’s it like having your work adapted for film?

It’s very much a Buddhist process. I really let go. One of the things that comes up again and again is: Do you want to be the screenwriter? Do you want to adapt? I have written a lot of features and pilots, and I have tons of samples. But right now, my mission is so clear: I’m enjoying writing intellectual property, coming up with big ideas and writing them in a very intimate way. And I feel that’s my job. I don’t want to be in a writers’ room at this point.

I’m a producer on most of the projects that I have now, but it’s not a hands-on producer role. I won’t be on set, and that’s by design. Because first of all, I love collaboration. I’ve come to really love the work that screenwriters do – incredible adaptations that I’ve read over the years. I really admire them, and I enjoy seeing somebody else get in there and muck around in my world. I could see a possibility that one day, I will say, “No, I have to be the writer on this.” But if I say ‘yes’ to that, I know that is saying ‘no’ to other things. And I really am enjoying the process right now of doing original work. This is my path. It is writing the work, and then letting it go into the world. And then sitting down and writing the next one, and then letting that one go into the world.

What is the most important thing you do as a writer?

My main job, as a writer, is to protect my relationship with the page. That takes a lot of thoughtfulness and intention for a lot of different reasons. At times in my life I’ve been a full-time professor, and I have four kids, and a marriage … and those things are very, very important to me, all those relationships, but also the relationship with the page is one that’s very much alive and requires my attention.

 I am not one of those people who particularly cares what I’m writing in a way. I mean, it will always be me. In a lot of ways, most of my career has been trying to figure out ways to not be me, and to write different genres, and that’s part of protecting my relationship. And one of the things is that if I feel like I’m writing “me” again, being “me-ish” about it, I get bored. So, being a cross-genre  writer has been part of that, to keep myself healthy, and wanting to keep writing. It’s about energy, it’s about criticism, it’s about rejection, it’s about people being weird to writers.

I’m like Cal Ripken, I guess. He’s a baseball player who had a long career and he played all different positions. His job was: Just don’t take me off the field. And that’s the way I think about my relationship with the page. Or, it’s like Michael Caine. Some actors go at it like “No, I want to do this role, because it’s my art,” but Michael Caine is more like, “No, I’m an actor; I take the job.” So, yes, we saw him in “Jaws III,” but we also saw him win an Academy Award for “The Cider House Rules.” 

I’ve also come to terms with the fact that no matter how commercial or how much I’m writing to a market or to an audience, it’s still going to be me. And I’m still going to be an artist doing it. I’ve stopped worrying “Is this art?” or “Is this commercial?” For me, there’s always going to be both things present in anything I do. Because I’m always thinking about audience – I am obsessed with the reader. I want them to keep turning pages. I want to have a conversation with them. I’m never going to just do it for myself, art for art’s sake. And then when I’m trying to be commercial, and trying to write something that, very specifically, could reach a broader audience, I’m still going to do it in my own artsy way, no matter how much I try to be commercial. I don’t have to worry about being an artist because I am one.

What makes you feel accomplished as a writer?

There’s a lot of days in writing a novel when you can feel pretty competent, and roll up your sleeves, and know the job you have to do. Those days are great – when you’ve already made 90% of the decisions and you kind of know the ending, and your job is to wake up and land somewhere in the middle and be writing or rewriting this scene or that scene. Those are great days, because you’re just you’re just a worker and it’s just craft.

In writing short stories, there are very few days like that, because I write pretty quickly.

Figuring out what the story is – that’s a very restless period for me, where I do a lot of pacing and a lot of false starts, and I can be very frustrated, and I can’t find my way in. There are a lot of those kinds of days and then in writing endings, I’m just gripping, trying to hold on to get to the end.

With stories, there are very few days that are about the middle, because the process just flips so fast. There are very few days where I feel like I know what I’m doing.  But, again, I like the puzzle of them, the challenge of each one, because each one brings you back to ground zero, where you’ve got nothing  and you’ve got to build. Starting from scratch over and over again is very demanding. You have nothing and from nothing, you have to make something.

Story and interview by Susan Kirby-Smith, University Communications

clock tower, sunrise

Whether researchers with timely insights or students with outstanding stories, members of the UNCG community appear in print, web and broadcast media every day. Here is a sampling of UNCG-related stories in the news and media over the week.

  • Dr. S. Cem Bahadir, an assistant professor of marketing in the Bryan School, was featured as an expert in a story by Retail Dive on the future of Reebok after the brand was bought by Authentic Brands Group. The article.
  • Dr. Warren Milteer, an assistant professor of history, was featured in the Statesville Record & Landmark newspaper as an upcoming speaker at Thursday’s Iredell Museum lecture series, where he’ll present “Freedom in the Days of Slavery: The Story of North Carolina’s Free People of Color.” The story.
  • UNCG alumna Yahira Robinson ’22 was the subject of a profile feature story broadcast on WFMY-2 TV news. Robinson’s success story of being a first-generation college student was also picked up by other CBS affiliates, including WTSP-10 in Tampa, Fla. The feature.
  • UNCG alumna Hannah Buntin ’21, an RN at Kernersville Medical Center, was featured in a story about National Nurses Week broadcast by WXII-12 TV news. The story.
  • Dr. Omar Ali, a professor of history and Dean of Lloyd International Honors College, was featured in the Greensboro News & Record for hosting a discussion with Honors College Faculty Fellow Dr. Virginia Summey ’17, biographer of history-making judge Elreta Melton Alexander at the Greensboro History Museum. The article.
Banner on campus reading "Find your legacy here"

Every spring, UNC Greensboro confers the Gladys Strawn Bullard Award upon those who show commendable initiative and perseverance in their leadership and service roles. The University congratulates the faculty member, student, and staff member who were recognized this year for their countless hours serving their coworkers, classmates, and community.

Dr. Shelly Brown-Jeffy, Department of Sociology

The associate professor of sociology is one of the first to welcome new students to UNCG during SOAR. She provides faculty with mentorship and workshops, and she contributes to many committees and organizations. The College of Arts and Sciences faculty nominated her for the award.

They praise her eagerness to volunteer and extend opportunities to more faculty and students. Sociology Department Head Dr. David Kauzlarich says, “Dr. Brown-Jeffy is widely known around the University as a mover, shaker, collaborator, tireless volunteer, and committed contributor to many facets of University work and school life.”

The groups she works with include the Conference on African American & African Diasporic Cultures & Experience (CACE) and the Harriet Elliot Lecture Series Steering Committee. She also advises the Neo-Black Society students, chairs the Faculty Senate P&T and EDI Steering Committee, and served on the Research Excellence Awards Committee.

Dr. Cerise Glenn, associate professor of communication studies, says Dr. Brown-Jeffy shines when she works with students, as demonstrated by the way she helps them come up with ideas for African American and African Diaspora Studies and CACE, and how she supports their presentations with enthusiasm. “Our students look to her for an example of professionalism in our field as she inspires their confidence and development.”

Dr. Dana Dunn, professor of sociology, is particularly grateful for Dr. Brown-Jeffy’s work with the ADVANCE grant planning group. “This project brought a substantial sum to the University to support the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women faculty of color. The best practices developed as part of this project, when institutionalized, also serve to support all faculty, making UNCG a preferred academic workplace.”

Alexis Cox, Bryan School of Business and Economics

John Ceneviva, lecturer in the Department of Management, says, “I only write letters of recommendation for students I would hire into a competitive environment. Alexis exceeds that evaluation.”

The Bryan School of Business and Economics student, Lloyd Honors College member, and mother of three helped lay the groundwork for other students to succeed. Cox started a management consulting club and recruited more than a dozen student members to engage with consulting firms in the community. She offered economics tutoring through Student Support Services, catalogued volunteer opportunities, and connected students with service projects.

Prior to enrolling at UNCG, Cox was squadron leader for a motor transport battalion with the U.S. Army. She volunteered for the Making It Happen food bank and assisted with the Montgomery County homeless point-in-time count. Cox hopes to become a consultant for nonprofit organizations after graduation.

Ceneviva says what impressed him the most about Cox was her leadership. “It’s a complex skill that requires the ability to clearly articulate a goal and then engender the respect and trust in others to help accomplish that goal. I clearly saw that in her role as a Team Leader in my class.”

Dr. Jason Pierce, assistant professor of management, served as her club’s faculty advisor. He says, “Wherever life takes her, Alexis contributes well beyond the scope of her responsibilities.”

Rachel Agner, Contracts and Grants Accounting

Agner joined the Contract and Grant Accounting (CGA) office as a grant specialist in 2010. She was promoted to associate director in 2012, and her ideas and initiative have improved the efficiency and workflow for all her coworkers.

Director William Walters says Agner brings an enthusiastic and positive attitude to work each day. “She is comfortable sharing her ideas and providing helpful feedback, while also questioning the status quo and offering new solutions.”

Sponsored awards to the University doubled to $50 million in the last five years. Agner ensured that the staff could manage the added work while maintaining a high level of meeting deadlines, reporting requirements, and customer service. In 2017, she created an online filing system, moving away from the old paper-based files for grants and projects. These readily available electronic files became essential when the office moved to a hybrid work model during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.

Jim Baulding says that while working with CGA, “Many times I witnessed her providing assistance to one of her employees who was trying to better understand and resolve a problem related to a specific contract or grant, even though she was very busy trying to get her work done in a timely basis.”

Dr. Valera Francis, director of the Office of Sponsored Programs, praises the meticulous work that Agner does to forge strong relationships with UNCG’s extramural sponsors. “CGA can be characterized as high-intensity, deadline-driven, and detail-oriented. Not one to be intimidated by this type of office environment, Rachel consistently works beyond the typical workday to make sure all that needs to be done is done at the end of the day.”

UNCG sign behind flowers

The University Ombuds Search Committee recently held interviews with semi-finalists for the position. After thoughtful discussions, a finalist has been selected to visit campus on Monday, May 23.

A virtual open forum will be held from 3-4 p.m. The candidate will provide brief remarks followed by a question and answer session. Information about other potential finalists is still to be determined.

The finalist’s name, CV, itinerary, and the Zoom link to join the open forum will be made available two days before the campus visit. A video recording of the forum and survey information will also be posted afterward. All information can be accessed here.

UNCG faculty and staff can participate by attending the candidate open forum and providing important feedback by completing the survey afterward.

Thank you in advance for your participation.

Crowd gathers for outdoor movie at LeBauer Park in 2018

What is summer break without an outdoor movie night? UNC Greensboro’s Spartan Cinema is being held on June 10 this year.

The University will screen “The Mitchells vs. the Machines” at LeBauer Park in Greensboro. The film will begin at sundown, 8:30, but show up early to get a spot on the lawn.

UNCG departments and programs have this opportunity to engage with parents and families in the Greensboro community. They are invited to share material at a table and tent or present short performances to promote their work from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. They are also encouraged to bring games and fun family activities for everyone to enjoy.

Contact Denise Sherron (dysherro@uncg.edu) to participate.

Asian and Pacific Islander Caucus (APIC)
Michelle Hu, Jennifer Leung, Ting Wang

As the UNC System Asian and Pacific Islander Caucus (APIC) celebrates its first anniversary this month, leaders of UNC Greensboro’s chapter of the Caucus also reflect on their heritage in honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month.  

Each May is designated as a time to commemorate the achievements and contributions of people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent in the United States and provides the opportunity for all Americans to learn about and embrace AAPI history and culture.

Following the Atlanta shootings in March 2021, former UNCG Professor and Faculty Senate Chair Dr. Anthony Chow felt he could no longer remain silent about the racism and discrimination people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent face in their daily lives. With the goals of promoting awareness, providing education, and offering support, Dr. Chow began APIC with the hope of uniting API faculty and staff across the UNC University System. What started with 20 members has grown to over 300 in just one year, with UNCG being the largest and one of the most active chapters of the organization.

Heritage Is Who You Are

Jennifer Leung, associate budget director and co-chair of the APIC UNCG Chapter, is first-generation Asian-American. Her parents emigrated from Hong Kong to help run her grandfather’s Chinese restaurant right here in Greensboro. 

“Growing up in the U.S., I looked different, ate different foods, used chopsticks at home. I was raised with this duality and wondered where I fit in. I wasn’t ‘American’ enough and I wasn’t ‘Asian’ enough,” Leung recalls.

After losing both her parents within the past few years, Leung has reflected back on the sacrifices they made to build a life in the U.S. “Heritage is knowing your background and where you came from,” she explains. “It’s also about the food!”

Ting Wang, assistant professor in UNCG’s sociology department and fellow co-chair, agrees that heritage is a part of who you are. “Heritage is in our blood, but we have to intentionally cultivate it. A person’s identity is both visible and invisible. It’s created by how people view you and how you view yourself,” she says.

Wang was born in China and identifies as Chinese. She feels strongly connected to her last name, a piece of her identity that felt disjointed when she took her ex-husband’s last name. “After my divorce, I really wanted my maiden name back. Now that I do, I feel more coherent both inside and out,” she says. “I’m very happy to be me again.”

Wang adds that how her children identify is equally important: “I want them to have pride in their heritage as Chinese-American.”

Dr. Michelle Hu, lecturer in UNCG’s chemistry department and vice chair and secretary of APIC, echoes that sentiment. “I’m Asian, but my daughter is Asian-American,” she says, “so I need to use my voice to make her feel proud to be Asian-American. I feel like people from other races are not aware of our culture, so we need to educate others more on AAPI cultures.”

Education Is Paramount

Hu believes education is the most important avenue to supporting the API community and fighting for racial justice. She describes herself as someone unlikely to speak loudly, but her advocacy efforts are focused on making a difference in smaller ways. 

“I helped UNCG students establish the Asian Students Association and now serve as the faculty advisor. The student leaders will be giving lectures on API culture each month here on campus,” says Hu. “And I learned that the children at my daughter’s daycare aren’t learning anything about API history and culture [during AAPI Heritage Month], so I plan to volunteer to speak to them about Asian culture.”

Wang agrees that education is extremely important, though she focuses her advocacy efforts on research. “I just applied for a grant from the Department of Justice. My research would focus on ‘Anti-Asian Hate Crime,’ studying Chinese restaurants and how they’ve been affected since the pandemic began,” she explains.

While Hu and Wang work to educate others about Asian history and culture, they believe that the way people will truly understand and empathize with the API community is to simply “make new friends.”

“The best way to learn about a culture is to talk to people with different backgrounds and learn about their lives and perspectives. Be open-minded and ask questions; that’s how you learn where they’re coming from and why they’re doing what they’re doing,” says Hu.

Wang adds, “Entertain yourself with some Asian culture, such as cartoons or movies. There are a lot of options available.”

And for those of API descent, Leung encourages them to “reach out to your community and Asian peers. Share stories and ask questions. Join organizations, like PAVE NC, to access resources. We’re hoping to develop APIC into one of those resources for people.”

Uniting the Community 

While Covid and budgetary constraints have made it difficult for APIC members to get together in person, Wang says they look forward to the future: “We have plans to increase engagement and interaction with members moving forward.” 

If you’d like to get involved with UNCG’s chapter of APIC, please contact Ting Wang at t_wang5@uncg.edu

Story by AMBCopy, LLC

Greensboro Bound 2022 authors

We all know Greensboro is a “lit” town. 

You can’t walk down the sidewalk without bumping into a local poet or novelist, many of them UNCG alumni and faculty.

It’s also a place where internationally known writers come to share their work with the community alongside distinguished local writers. Each May, you can catch an array of them at one of the state’s fastest growing and most resilient literary festivals.

Greensboro Bound, founded in 2017, returns to the city this week as an in-person event, after two years as a virtual festival. Readings and panels are planned for various venues in downtown, such as the Greensboro Cultural Center, International Civil Rights Center, and Scuppernong Books and also several locations on UNC Greensboro’s campus. 

All events are free and open to the public. Pre-registration is requested to assist in planning.

As in the past, UNCG faculty and alumni are playing key roles in many events as readers, speakers, and hosts. See a selection of UNCG-related events below:

An Evening with Amor Towles
Thursday, May 19, UNCG Elliott University Center and virtually, 7 p.m.
Keynote event hosted by UNCG Libraries and moderated by UNCG creative writing professor Xhenet Aliu
* In-person event is sold out; for information about the virtual event, contact library.events@uncg.edu

A Musical Thriller: Brendan Slocumb and Tona Brown in Conversation.
Friday, May 20, 5 p.m. UNCG School of Music Tew Recital Hall
hosted by UNCG School of Music professor Dr. Rebecca MacLeod

Hell of a State: North Carolina’s Literary Fire with Jason Mott and UNCG creative writing professor Holly Goddard Jones. Hosted by Ed Southern. With opening music by alumnus Colin Cutler. Sponsored by Well-Spring Retirement Community.
May 20, 7 p.m., Van Dyke Performance Space, Greensboro Cultural Center

Whatever Wholeness Means: Poetry in an Age of Separation with Crystal Simone Smith, UNCG poetry professor Stuart Dischell, and Kay Ulanday Barrett. Hosted by Michael Gaspeny.
Saturday, May 21, 11 a.m., Scuppernong Books

Lost Mothers: Memoirs of Longing with Elisheba Haqq and Megan Culhane Galbraith. Hosted by UNCG professor emeritus Lee Zacharias
Saturday, May 21, 12 p.m., Stephen D. Hyers Theater, Greensboro Cultural Center

The Truth about Disability: What We Don’t Talk About with Emily Maloney, Kay Ulanday Barrett, and UNCG alumnus James Tate Hill
Saturday, May 21, 2 p.m., Stephen D. Hyers Theater, Greensboro Cultural Center

Fred Chappell: I Am One of You Forever documentary presentation with an introduction by UNCG alumna Ruth Dickey. Film created by UNCG media studies professor Dr. Michael Frierson about UNCG Professor Emeritus and former NC Poet Laureate Fred Chappell
Sunday, May 22, 12 p.m., Van Dyke Performance Space, Greensboro Cultural Center

Journalism and Activism with Tessie Castillo, UNCG professor Dr. Tara T. Green, and Lynden Harris. Hosted by alumnus Joe Killian. Sponsored by PEN America.
Sunday, May 22, 2:30 p.m., International Civil Rights Center & Museum

Just Bring Yourself: A Conversation with Ann Hood and Julia Ridley Smith hosted by alumna Molly Sentell Haile
Sunday, May 22, 4 p.m., Van Dyke Performance Space, Greensboro Cultural Center

To learn more about the festival and authors, visit the Greensboro Bound website.

Compiled by Susan Kirby-Smith, University Communications

Players compete in 2019 UNCG Employee Field Day at Kaplan Center

HealthyUNCG and UNCG Staff Senate are excited to announce the return of Employee Field Day on Wednesday, May 18, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Foust Park. In the event of inclement weather, it will be moved to the Kaplan Center for Wellness.

RSVP and learn more about the game and event schedule here.

Employee Field Day is an event specially designed exclusively for UNCG employees. Come for a day of play to relieve stress, build morale, encourage camaraderie, and promote fun. Come as an individual player, as part of a team, or as a spectator and cheerleader.

There are food, prizes, and fun for everyone. Participants are encouraged to wear blue and gold and snag a picture with our beloved Spiro.

Employee Field Day is a free event, sponsored by HealthyUNCG and Staff Senate, but donations are encouraged for Moss St. Partnership School. UNCG Staff Senate will be collecting non-perishable food items for summer meal packets for its students. Donations can be dropped off at the check-in table on the day of the event.