Ariz. universities collaborate to grow algae from wastewater

March 10, 2014

Arizona universities are working together to turn the state’s waste to gold – or at least renewable fuel. As part of an Arizona Board of Regents-funded project, students and researchers from Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona are collaborating to grow algae using wastewater. The algae can then be harvested to create fuel, feed and food products.

The collaboration is designed to advance the application of algae in Arizona as an industry to produce valuable products and remediate wastewater, and to educate and develop a workforce to support the industry. The goal is to maximize Arizona’s resources. student pouring growth media into algae-filled column Download Full Image

On March 7, the public was invited to learn about the ongoing projects at each university. The University of Arizona will host a public forum to present student work and projects, which range from aquaculture to the study of algal DNA and the use of saline waters to grow algae. Contact for more information.

This event follows the initial public presentation held at NAU on November 2, 2013, which introduced the variety of projects that Arizona university students are focusing on to advance Arizona’s algaculture.

“It was a great first meeting,” says Terry Baxter, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at NAU. “The students not only gave wonderful presentations about their work in a public setting, but they have become much more aware of how important it is to work together across the three institutions.” In addition to informing the public, these meetings also allow researchers from each of the public institutions to share information, generate and discuss new ideas, and develop new approaches that can ultimately advance the work that is being done in Arizona.

Arizona serves as an ideal location for algae research, with expansive non-arable land suitable for algae farms and more than 330 sunny days per year to encourage algae growth through photosynthesis. More than 40 algae-related enterprises are located throughout the state, including industries stemming from university research.

The project is funded by the Arizona Board of Regents Technology and Research Initiative Fund.

To learn more about the ASU Arizona Center for Algae Technology and Innovation, visit

For more information about the NAU algae program, contact Terry Baxter, at

To learn more about the UA algae research, contact Kim Ogden, at or Randy Ryan, at

Play examines multifaceted stories of the women of Juárez

March 10, 2014

“Women of Ciudad Juárez” will be performed at 7:30 p.m., March 29 and March 31 at ASU’s West campus. The play uses the theater as a space to examine, reflect on and speak about the femicides taking place in Juárez, Mexico.

This production by Troublemaker Theatre/Teatro Travieso is the English-language debut of the text. The play’s author, Cristina Michaus, has written a new introduction in the program for this production. actress on stage performing in the play "Women of Ciudad Juarez" Download Full Image

Also scheduled on March 31 are an opportunity to meet the director and cast, as well as a brown bag discussion on the topic of theater and agency.

“This play offers a voice and a space for the countless female victims whose murders have been reduced to contested numbers and a gross display of injustice,” said Claudia Villegas-Silva, assistant professor of Latin American studies in ASU’s New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, the core college on the West campus.

“Showing multiple female perspectives of life in Juárez, from mothers and daughters to factory workers and prostitutes, the production speaks out against all forms of violence against the female body and psyche,” Villegas-Silva said. “In this staging of the show, four actresses take on the roles of the women, their families and the officials investigating the murders.”

The production is recommended for mature audiences only.

The four performers are visiting artists from The College of Wooster. The production is directed and translated by Jimmy A. Noriega, founder of Troublemaker Theatre/Teatro Travieso.

Michaus, a Mexican actress, originally wrote and performed “Mujeres de Ciudad Juárez” as a one-woman show in 2002. The production ran for more than six months in Mexico City, and toured to other theaters throughout Mexico for several years.

In 2011, Noriega directed the play for sold-out audiences at Cornell University. It was also presented at an international theater festival in Quito, Ecuador.

The March 29 and 31 performances of “Women of Ciudad Juárez” will be held in Second Stage West, lower level of the University Center Building at 4701 W. Thunderbird Road in Phoenix. Admission is $5. Tickets may be purchased online by visiting and searching “Arizona State University.”

Visitor parking on the West campus is free for the March 29 performance; it costs $2 per hour for the March 31 performance.

The March 31 free brown bag talk on theater and agency will be held from noon to 1 p.m., in room 132 of Fine Arts Center (FAC) on ASU’s Tempe campus.

Then, from 4 to 5:30 p.m., March 31, ASU’s Committee for Campus Inclusion is hosting a free reception, to be attended by the director and cast, in the Delph Courtyard of the University Center Building on the West campus. The reception also serves to celebrate Cesar Chavez Day.

In addition to New College’s School of Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies and the Committee for Campus Inclusion, sponsors of the ASU visit by Troublemaker Theatre/Teatro Travieso include Chasqui: Revista de Lieratura Latinoamericana; ASU’s M.A. program in Social Justice and Human Rights; the School of Social Transformation; Hispanic Heritage Month Committee; School of International Letters and Cultures; Latin American Studies Foundation; and Theatre and Performance of the Americas.