ASU Biodesign Institute invites families to 'spring training' with science


February 25, 2015

Arizona’s super stars of science will be on hand to introduce children and their families to the world of biology, physics, engineering, math and chemistry as Arizona State University’s Biodesign Institute opens its doors for its annual Night of the Open Door from 4 to 9 p.m., Feb. 28.

Night of the Open Door is an state-wide celebration of science, sponsored by the Arizona SciTech Festival. scientist leads a chemistry demonstration Download Full Image

Hands-on activities, games and prizes will be the order of the evening as guests receive “science trading cards” featuring some of Biodesign’s leading scientists and engage in more than 30 activities, including:

• donning a space suit, designing an experiment and sending it into space
• making slime and using a smartphone to see how proteins behave in the slime
• playing a motion-sensitive video game designed by student researchers to role-play saving the planet from pollution
• watching how plants can make glow-in-the-dark leaves similar to the way they produce disease-fighting proteins for therapies and vaccines, like Biodesign scientists did to make a serum used to fight Ebola
• observing 3-D printing in action
• learning how to clean water using bacteria to remove uranium, nitrates and other contaminants
• measuring fake whale poop to learn what it can tell us about Moby’s stress levels

“Our Biodesign employees truly enjoy this opportunity to show their work,” said Raymond DuBois, Biodesign executive director. “If last year’s event is any indication, we expect to welcome about 2,000 children and their families into our building for the day. My hope is that they become entranced by the magic of science and decide to join the next generation of people who will work to make our world a better place.”

The Biodesign Institute is home to some 500 scientists, students and others who work on tough societal problems, including studying the cause, diagnosis and treatment of nearly 100 diseases.

Parking is free for this event. The Biodesign Institute at ASU is located at 727 E. Tyler St., on ASU's Tempe campus. Major cross streets are Rural Road and University Drive, southwest of the light rail stop at Rural. For maps or information, visit https://opendoor.asu.edu.

Follow the evening’s activities on Twitter and Facebook, using #BiodesignOpenDoor and #OpenDoor.

Julie Kurth

Manager, marketing and communications, Biodesign Institute

480-727-9386

ASU charts path for instructional faculty pay, promotions


February 25, 2015

Arizona State University has established new university-wide guidance for more than 1,200 instructors, lecturers, clinical faculty and faculty associates. The new directions provide a clear path for security and advancement for lecturers and clinical faculty members, and establishes salary minimums for all fixed-term faculty members.

“We want to tell people that, if you’re an excellent teacher, you have a career here,” said University Provost Robert E. Page Jr. “We’re reaffirming our commitment to the value of performance.” Download Full Image

The guidelines, developed over the past 12 months, identify the titles and requirements for achieving each rank, such as advancing from lecturer to senior lecturer. Promotions must be linked to excellence in teaching, followed by institutional needs and the availability of funds. Criteria for advancement include an expectation of five years of excellent teaching performance at the entry rank of lecturer or clinical assistant professor before moving up.

The new guidelines outline how instructional faculty with substantial experience and sustained records of teaching excellence may be eligible for renewable or multiple-year contracts instead of the year-to-year contracts generally given to entry rank instructors.

“Without a doubt, we have some of the best teachers in the nation within the ranks of our fixed-term instructional faculty,” Page said. “We want to establish fairness and transparency through a common set of rewards and expectations so that these outstanding teachers may pursue careers boosting the success of our students.”

Page established new, university-wide salary minimums in January that raised the pay for many instructional faculty members. The minimum pay for entry rank will range from $36,000 to $45,000. The minimums take full effect in August 2016. The new guidelines also require that an instructional faculty member receiving a promotion receives the greater of either a $3,000 raise or an increase to the minimum salary for the next rank.

The changes in criteria and paychecks come after the great recession disrupted the university’s ability to hire and retain faculty who work on fixed contracts. ASU’s recovery from that downturn through renewed hiring of instructional faculty members has varied by college and department. The new policies will provide consistency and professional continuity through a common platform of expectations for the years to come.

Click here for full details on the guidelines for hiring and advancing instructional faculty.