Category Archives: Best News Of Las Vegas

UNLV Formality Personnel, Faculty for Community Engagement Efforts

Receivers of UNLV’s new Neighborhood Engagement Awards have actually studied quality of life problems in Las Vegas’ historical Westside community, worked with numerous companies on course jobs, assisted location youth get ready for college, and more.

Provided for the very first time this year, the Community Engagement Awards were developed to honor those on school who demonstrate a commitment to neighborhood collaboration, which is one of the university’s five Leading Tier objectives. The awards particularly acknowledge community-based research, service-learning, administrative faculty/classified staff service, and student service.

” It’s amazing to have the opportunity to recognize the fantastic community engagement activities of our professors, personnel, and trainees at UNLV,” stated Sue DiBella, interim executive director of the Office of Neighborhood Engagement. “The applications we received represent a rich variety of projects and activities. They really show the breadth of cooperation between the university and its lots of neighborhood partners.”

A choice committee reviewed the 28 applications gotten for awards in the four classifications. The inaugural receivers are Christie Batson, Community-Based Research study Faculty Award; Anna Smedley-López, Service-Learning Faculty Award; Keith Rogers, the Staff Service Award; and Fall Spicer, the Student Service Award Overviews of their community engagement activities are offered below.

Office of Community Engagement Community-Based Research study Professors Award.

Christie Batson, Ph.D.– Partner Teacher, Department of Sociology

Christie Batson focuses on city and social demography and takes a look at neighborhood quality of life problems in Southern Nevada. Through a partnership with the Southern Nevada Regional Housing Authority, the Safe Village Effort, and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Authorities Department, Batson conducted an in-depth, mixed-methods research study taking a look at community lifestyle and area attachment in one of Las Vegas’ most historic communities, the Westside, which is the home of the largest neighborhood of African-American homeowners in Las Vegas. Her research job revealed important issues about public real estate policies, community financial advancement, community places of significance for residents, and relationships in between homeowners and the cops. Batson’s findings offer crucial data used by neighborhood residents, regional politicians, housing agencies, social provider, and police to enhance our understanding of social conditions that add to neighborhood resiliency.

Workplace of Community Engagement Service-Learning Award.

Anna C. Smedley-López, Ph.D.– Assistant Teacher in Residence, Department of Sociology

Anna Smedley-López leads the Department of Sociology’s Service Knowing Initiative for Community Engagement in Sociology (SLICES), a multi-semester program for trainees registered in SOC 205: Ethnic Groups in Contemporary Society. SLICES is a community-based research service-learning initiative that partners UNLV undergraduate students with Las Vegas organizations and coalitions in assistance of racial/ethnic/immigration education and equity. PIECES students work carefully with local partners to finish community-based, participatory research tasks that align straight with course learning goals. While finishing their tasks trainees gain professional abilities, increase their understanding of culturally qualified research, and find out the significance of working with the neighborhood. SLICES’ collaborative projects have consisted of topics such as legal help for asylees with the Immigrant Justice Effort, cultural and environmental conservation with the Protect Gold Butte Initiative, resources for undocu/DACAmented students with the UNLV UndocuNetwork, health equity with the Nevada Minority Health and Equity Collation, trainee belonging and success with the UNLV Crossway, and the prison pipeline with the Las Vegas chapter of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women. Neighborhood partners share in the planning, activities, data utilize, and outcomes established through the tasks. Office of Community Engagement Staff Service Award.

Keith Rogers– Deputy Executive Director, Center for Academic Enrichment and Outreach

Keith Rogers works with the UNLV Center for Academic Enrichment and Outreach (CAEO) to bridge the space between secondary education attainment and access to post-secondary programs for under-represented, low-income, and first-generation trainees in the Las Vegas valley. Through a collaboration with the Clark County School District (CCSD), Rogers led efforts to provide more than 20,000 CCSD students with academic support and services at 30 of the most affordable performing schools in the district. These schools are faced with numerous challenges, such as overcrowded class and limited ability to guide and prepare trainees for post-secondary education. The grade point averages, high school graduation rates, and college enrollment rates at these schools have increased through trainee and school involvement in CAEO programs. These programs have led numerous participating students to enroll at UNLV, resulting in a more varied UNLV student body, specifically in the STEM disciplines. These programs also led to an increase in the academic success of minority, low-income, and first-generation UNLV students by providing assistance for incoming freshmen who might be underprepared academically and economically.

Office of Neighborhood Engagement Trainee Service Award.

Fall Spicer– Graduate Student, Master’s of Business Administration

Fall Spicer volunteered to produce an outreach program between UNLV Athletics and multiple community companies, including The John C. Kish Foundation, the Clark County School District, 3 Square, the Southern Nevada Health District, the After School All-Stars, the Las Vegas Rotary Club, the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth, and Group Impact. The goal of the program was to facilitate and increase volunteerism amongst UNLV student-athletes, coaches, and personnel. She assisted arrange and establish volunteer opportunities across Southern Nevada, increasing UNLV Athletics service hours from 1,479 hours to 13,058 hours throughout 3 years. These opportunities allowed student-athletes to participate in a range of volunteer activities, consisting of combating cravings with Three Square by packing meal bags for kids, families, and the elderly; reading to, connecting with, and serving as good example to financially disadvantaged children; dealing with the Nevada Collaboration for Homeless Youth to gather and disperse toiletry items to homeless youth in shelters; and speaking out against violence and bullying in elementary schools.

Top Honors: “” Like Winning the NCAA Tournament of Jazz””.

Dave Loeb, UNLV director of jazz sudies, has a lot to extol nowadays. Under his instructions, UNLV Jazz Ensemble I recently connected for top place at the distinguished Monterey Next Generation competitors– akin to “winning the NCAA tournament of jazz.” And his program has actually won 11 Downbeat Magazine awards considering that 2010, garnered impressive evaluations for its 7 jazz CDs, and stood out at various other festivals around the nation.

With that type of momentum, we spoke with Loeb about the program, the win, and how you can hear this exceptional talent during the upcoming UNLV Spring Jazz Festival, May 1-3.

Exactly what is the significance of the Monterey win?.

The Monterey Next Generation Jazz Festival is considered amongst the most highly regarded and competitive jazz education celebrations in the world. In order to complete in this festival, each university needs to send a representative recording that is identified with just a number– so it is a blind audition amongst much of the top university jazz groups worldwide.

In the college huge band division, just six of the leading groups are picked. The judges at this celebration are world-class jazz artists and educators. We have been honored to have actually been invited to compete at this festival for 8 consecutive years and formerly have actually connected for second and 3rd place. Nevertheless, this year we connected for first place with a stellar group from Philadelphia, the University of the Arts Z band.

As a result, both of our groups have actually been welcomed and will carry out in September at the Monterey Jazz Celebration, in addition to other recognized jazz artists including Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Dee Bridgewater, and many others. This Monterey win plainly places the UNLV Jazz Ensemble in the leading tier of university jazz programs on the planet.

What music was carried out and why was it selected?.

The music was thoroughly picked in order to make the best discussion for our group and demonstrate the ability to perform in numerous designs, tempos, and with distinct interpretations.We opened with a Duke Ellington composition, “Johnny Come Recently,” set up by a former student and present instructor, Julian Tanaka.

Our second piece,” Rail Trails,” made up by jazz trumpeter Clay Jenkins, was likewise set up by Julian Tanaka. We chose a traditional Thad Jones’ sluggish blues piece” Generally Yours “for our third tune, and closed our set with an original trainee arrangement of “Love For Sale” by graduate assistant and tenor saxophonist Michael Spicer.

There were time restrictions during the competition. How do you teach your trainees to carry out so well under that type of pressure?.

Each group should carry out no greater than Thirty Minutes, consisting of the time to go into and set up and to leave the phase. My colleague Nathan Tanouye, and I rehearsed with the group with the actual time restrictions to make sure that the students had the ability to effectively perform under these conditions.

How will this win assistance students’ professions down the road?.

This opportunity might open numerous doors for our students in their respective musical professions. The world-class judges that heard the exceptional musicianship that our trainee musicians regularly produce have currently called some of our students about hiring them to potentially perform in groups with them. In addition, the contacts our trainees will make at the Monterey Jazz Festival could serve to broaden their work possibilities for the rest of their lives.

Exactly what does this win mean for you personally?.

The group from Philadelphia that we connected with, the University of the Arts Z band, was named after a trainer at that institution called Bill Zaccagni. Expense was a buddy of mine in the Philadelphia location when we were young, up-and-coming artists. He died a couple of years ago, and the dean of the school, Marc Dicciani, renamed the band in Bill’s honor.

Marc hired me to become pianist, conductor, and arranger for the Tony Acclaimed entertainer, Ben Vereen, when I was still a trainee at the Eastman School of Music and finishing my masters degree. Ben Vereen encouraged me to move to Los Angeles a couple of years later, and I took pleasure in a successful profession there as a studio pianist, conductor, arranger, and author for PBS documentaries. Fourteen years earlier, I moved here to Las Vegas to end up being the director of Jazz Studies at UNLV. So, I would’ve never ever been here at UNLV, if it hadn’t been for these connections from the Philadelphia location.

This win likewise is extremely significant because we have actually received 11 Downbeat Publication Student Music Awards because 2010, 7 impressive evaluations for our CDs from Jazz Times Publication, as well as other significant awards. Nevertheless, winning the Monterey Next Generation Jazz Celebration is a huge honor because we were playing in a live efficiency setting amongst some of the leading university groups on the planet, and to get this acknowledgment is an extraordinary accomplishment.

Explain the approaching May performances..

UNLV Jazz Studies will provide our yearly Spring Jazz Festival in the Black Box Theatre May 1-3. Each night the performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and will feature a lot of the outstanding ensembles and combos from our award-winning jazz research studies program.

The Latin Jazz Ensemble, directed by Uli Geissendoerfer, has won four Downbeat Publication Trainee Music Awards in the past 4 years, including Finest Latin Group in the undergraduate category. The Contemporary Jazz Ensemble, directed by Julian Tanaka, will perform on May 1. On May 2, UNLV Jazz Ensemble II, directed by Adam Schroeder, the UNLV Faculty Jazz Combination, and UNLV Jazz Ensemble I, all will carry out. The concert is dedicated to just recently passed Vincent Falcone, previous pianist and conductor for Frank Sinatra, and Walt Blanton, jazz trumpet artist, author, and previous UNLV professor.

The UNLV Jazz Singing Ensemble, directed by Janet Tyler and including Gary Fowler and Ira Hill, the UNLV Jazz Guitar Ensemble, directed by Jake Langley, and UNLV Jazz Ensemble III, directed by college student Michael Spicer, will perform May 3.

Tell somebody who might be daunted by jazz or brand-new to jazz why they need to go to..

Anyone who might be daunted by jazz or who is brand-new to jazz should go to these concerts due to the fact that it will provide the chance to experience distinct interaction among jazz trainees who are developing music spontaneously and in the moment.

We hear you have another brand-new album in the works..

Our new Jazz Research studies CD, “Rail Trails/Latin Journey Three,” will include remarkable music from UNLV Jazz Ensemble I, the Joe Williams Jazz Combination, the UNLV Latin Jazz Ensemble, the Formality Combos, and other groups, in a collection CD that represents the absolute best work from our gifted trainees from the 2016-17 academic year. It will be out in September. In the meantime, the CD that was released the end of in 2015 is still for sale and can be acquired at the totally free May 10 at Flamingo Library Concert. [You can also get a copy by emailing Dave Loeb or calling the music office at 702-895-3332.

The Low and high of a New Market

Recreational marijuana, with its stereotypes of stoned, easy-going fun, would appear a natural suitable for a destination city that touts its escapist brand. But it has taken the lion’s share of two decades for the state to progress from legalizing medical marijuana to actually dispensing it to legislating its leisure use. Now that Nevada voters gave tally approval to allowing locals to possess as much as an ounce of pot, UNLV graduates, students, and researchers all are playing a part in the maturation of this young industry.

First, a little history.

Cannabis was legal in the United States up until 1913, when California prohibited it. Other states followed over the next twenty years. The drug ended up being illegal under federal law with the 1937 Cannabis Tax Act and is currently classified as a “Schedule I” controlled compound, which indicates the drug has actually been deemed to have no medical use and a danger of “possibly serious mental or physical reliance.”

But states, starting with Oregon, have been legalizing cannabis given that the 1970s; California started legislating its medical use in 1996. According to Governing Magazine, 26 states and the District of Columbia now have some type of legalized marijuana. Colorado and Washington citizens legalized recreational marijuana in 2012; Alaska and Oregon followed 2 years later on. This previous November, 4 more states– California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Nevada– voted to legalize recreational cannabis.

The two significant chemical compounds, or cannabinoids, found in cannabis are the psychoactive compound Tetrahydrocannabinol and the nonpsychoactive compound cannabidiol, the latter of which has numerous possible health applications, consisting of providing relief from discomfort, without making people feel high.

Inning accordance with a 2015 research study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, there was moderate-quality proof to support using cannabinoids for the treatment of persistent pain and spasticity however “low-quality proof suggesting that cannabinoids were related to enhancements in queasiness and vomiting due to chemotherapy, weight gain in HIV infection, sleep disorders, and Tourette’s syndrome.”

Medical marijuana in Nevada in fact dates to 2000– when 65 percent of Nevada citizens approved a tally concern enabling patients with medical conditions to get 2.5 ounce of cannabis every 2 weeks. But it took more than a decade for the state to build its regulatory structure to in fact permit dispensaries to start to sell it lawfully.

Julie Monteiro, ’99 BS Kinesiology, invested almost 20 years as a signed up nurse before she ended up being a transform to the health advantages of medical cannabis in 2010. After establishing degenerative disc disease and being associated with 2 automobile mishaps, she experienced serious chronic pain that was cannot respond to traditional pharmaceuticals. So she examined becoming a marijuana client herself.

She was surprised to find that there “was no dispensary, no safe access, no safe item” readily available to her. Though she had actually never been involved in politics, she and other nurses assisted spearhead efforts to prod the Nevada Legislature to action. Monteiro also went on to found and modify Cannabis Nurses Magazine to link physician to evidence-based research and education tools.

” I never visualized this for my career,” she said, “but as a member of the medical community, it’s annoying when our laws have not reached the science yet.”

In June 2013, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed Senate Expense 374, which established regulations for medical marijuana companies, including cultivation, production, dispensaries, and laboratories. Throughout the 10-day filing duration for applications in August 2014, the state received 519 applications; that November, according to the state, “372 provisional certificates were granted: 182 for cultivation; 118 for production; 55 for dispensaries; 17 for independent screening labs.” The first organisations, a cultivator and a lab, opened in March 2015 followed by the first dispensary in August 2015.

Getting in the video game wasn’t cheap. The state needed dispensaries to have $250,000 in liquid properties to get approved for a facility. Inning accordance with Riana Durrett, ’08 JD, executive director of the Nevada Dispensary Association, that was meant to prevent those dealing with monetary challenges from selling on the black market. “As an outcome, dispensaries are owned or backed by a great deal of individuals who have achieved success in other organisations,” she stated.

Under the Boyd School of Law grad’s management, the dispensary association, founded to establish and promote best practices, has actually grown to represent more than 80 percent of dispensaries statewide. The association represents all 3 phases of the market– growing, production, and distribution– and Durrett has been a constant figure at the Nevada Legislature as legislators refine laws for the fledgling market.

Likewise on the NDA’s board is Ben Sillitoe, ’03 BS Financing, who constructed his profession in the mortgage market. When medical cannabis was getting off the ground in 2014, he saw a chance to be in on the ground floor of a brand-new industry that included considerable social change. An old buddy presented him to an orthopedic cosmetic surgeon interested in the medical applications of cannabis. The 3 looked for a license and opened Sanctuary Medical Cannabis in December 2015. At that point there were less than 10 dispensaries statewide. “That was a good number for what the marketplace would bear,” Sillitoe stated.

Today there are 48 dispensaries throughout the state. The dispensaries differ in look. Some look like pharmacies, others look like an Apple shop, still others appear like a hobby shop. They sell a variety of items, from flowers and edibles to tinctures, transdermal patches, and vape pens.

But the gold rush on medical marijuana– even with Nevada’s reciprocity laws, which allows cardholders in other states to buy marijuana here– hasn’t yet taken place.

” Companies are not making sufficient money to justify the amount of cash they have actually invested, if they’re even generating income at all,” Sillitoe says. “The marketplace is simply too small.”

Of Nevada’s 26,500 cardholders, nearly 19,000 remain in Southern Nevada, according to Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health. That’s quite a bit except the 100,000 cardholders that policymakers initially forecasted.

” For 44 dispensaries down here, it’s a number’s game. It’s simply not enough,” Sillitoe said.

That makes the passage of recreational usage important to those currently in the industry, Sillitoe said. Many are positive that it will produce a brand-new specific niche in the tourist market. Colorado, for one, has definitely gained from establishing a recreational pot economy. A 2016 study by the Denver-based Marijuana Policy Group points out that in 2015, legal marijuana in Colorado developed 18,005 tasks, $996 million in sales, and $2.39 billion in financial effect. Demand there is projected to increase 11.3 percent each year through 2020.

Nevada’s Department of Tax is charged with establishing rules and regulations governing leisure cannabis, and local jurisdictions are forming their own jobs forces to study how to accommodate these brand-new companies. Under the Concern 2 tally initiative, the state has till January 2018 to finish its regulatory regime. A law presented this year by Democratic State Sen. Tick Segerblom would enable leisure sales to start July 1 under a set of short-lived policies.

The possibility of financial development from a brand-new market along with the growing social approval of cannabis has actually also influenced the state’s quick schedule.

Seth Floyd, ’10 JD, a principal with The Urban Law practice, notes that a person of the factors legislators are moving quick is to attend to a loophole that permits state locals to grow up to six cannabis plants in the house as long as they’re not within 25 miles of a leisure dispensary. “That creates a chance for a black market,” he stated.

Closing that loophole likewise will enable existing dispensaries– which will get first fracture at momentary recreational licenses– to broaden markets. Duevall Dorset, a UNLV journalism graduate student, helped found the university’s chapter of Trainees for Reasonable Drug Policy, states dispensaries are biding their time up until recreational cannabis gets off the ground. “The industry is a small baby. It cannot consume any meat right now. (But) wait a couple years– it’ll begin growing and growing more powerful.”

” Nevada is not going to get all the information right on the first try– no one does,” stated John Hudak, Elder Fellow at the Brookings Organization and a specialist on marijuana policy. “Passing reform is the primary step in a truly long journey.”

As a going to fellow in UNLV’s Brookings Mountain West, Hudak has taught policy courses on marijuana on campus and is an advisor to state lawmakers. He keeps in mind that lawmakers generally think twice to be viewed as boosters of recreational cannabis, but more are happening. “It’s hard to find an elected official who will call legalization favorable,” he stated. “But you will typically discover these officials say, ‘This has actually worked out much better than I anticipated. There have actually been fewer problems.'”

Nevada lawmakers have actually traveled to other states to study exactly what has worked finest. “They do not want a carbon copy of exactly what took place elsewhere,” says attorney Carlos Blumberg, ’95 BS Political Science, a founding member of the dispensary association. “They want to make this the gold standard in how you manage it and offer it.”

Pot Policy

As the state of Nevada prepares to present policies managing leisure cannabis, here are some essential concerns to watch on:

Social Clubs

Marijuana has developed a cottage tourism industry in Denver. If Las Vegas wants to complete, it will have think about following the Mile High City’s recent transfer to permit pot usage in bars or other establishments.

The video gaming market has actually steered clear of supporting legal marijuana, for fear of distressing federal regulators. However areas like Downtown Las Vegas appear well poised to be epicenters of a new casual pot intake scene– if the state will allow it. State Sen. Tick Segerblom has introduced a costs to make it possible for regional jurisdictions to create guidelines for so-called “social clubs,” which are basically pot lounges.

” People go to Las Vegas to do things they ordinarily wouldn’t do in the house. It’s called Sin City for a factor,” said John Hudak, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Organization and a national specialist on marijuana regulation. “Since it’s such a flourishing tourism economy, domestic and worldwide, I believe the potential for this is significant. A much larger city such as Los Angeles will sell more, however per capita, Las Vegas need to be big.”

Patient Securities

When medical cannabis was initially controlled, clients had to get approval from their doctors to use. The state notes numerous appropriate reasons, such as AIDS and cancer. Advocates wish to make certain medical patients don’t get lost in the potential stampede to accommodate leisure tourists. For one, they would like the state to make licenses for cardholders much easier to obtain and less invasive, excusing cardholders from having to renew their license every year. They also desire lower taxes for medical usage. Julie Monteiro, a nurse and client advocate, wants patients to be able to cultivate their own flowers to fulfill their own specific health needs. She also is promoting for defenses for board-licensed medical practitioners. Without more specific protections, physicians or nurses who provide education on medical cannabis or utilize the products as patients themselves could risk losing their licenses.


This isn’t an easy problem, Hudak notes. It involves tax rates, the number of licenses are awarded, and how many plants the state enables producers to develop. “If rates are too expensive people will not shift away from the black market. There will be fewer incentives for businesses to get into this space,” he stated. On the other hand, “you do not wish to be the state that authorizes a flood of cannabis.”

Marijuana was extremely pricey in the early days of leisure sales in Colorado and Washington. People bought it as a novelty product, but it wasn’t sustainable. How Nevada handles the marketplace “might suggest life or death for the industry,” Hudak said.

Public Safety

The number of people evaluating positive for cannabis while owning has actually increased in Colorado, Hudak stated, and coroners have increased testing for marijuana in deadly crashes. So resulting uptick might be a result of merely searching for it more. Or it might be reality. At any rate, traffic deaths in Colorado have declined considering that legalization.

The driving limit in Nevada is 2 nanograms of cannabis per milliliter of blood. But identifying exactly what counts as intoxication is far more art than science at this moment. “You might have a positive result for someone who hasn’t smoked in days,” stated Ben Sillitoe, board member of the Nevada Dispensary Association. “Blood metabolite levels cannot really identify problems … Everybody acknowledges that (establishing intoxication) really is a difficulty.”

Federal Politics

While President Donald Trump has indicated he does not wish to touch medical marijuana programs, new U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has actually talked tougher than his predecessors about recreational use. Attorney Seth Floyd contends the Trump administration might claim the states are acting unconstitutionally– breaking the Supremacy Stipulation– however this may show difficult politically for an administration that has actually trumpeted states’ rights on other concerns.

Meanwhile cannabis stays under the most limited classification of the Controlled Substances Act, consequently badly limiting peer-reviewed university research study into the medical claims.

With a Degree Comes Self-confidence

John Guedry, business Alumnus of the Year, states his degree opened doors for changing the neighborhood

People| Apr 25, 2017|By

Brian Sodoma John Guedry, 2017 Lee Service School Alumnus of the Year. (R. Marsh Starks/UNLV Creative Services)

Editor’s Note:

The UNLV Alumni Association will celebrate the achievements of graduates at its annual reception and awards ceremony April 26. For a complete list of honorees and event information, visit the alumni awards website.

John Guedry, ’82 BS-BA Business Administration, Guedry joined Bank of Nevada in 2011 and presently acts as its CEO. He was formerly CEO and President of Service Bank of Nevada and later functioned as a handling partner for CB Richard Ellis Commercial Realty Solutions. He is the instant previous chairman of the Las Vegas Metro Chamber Board of Trustees.

Why I’m a proud graduate of UNLV …

As the middle child of a single mom who stressed the significance of education, completing my bachelor’s degree in service management verified for me, at a young age, that I might attain any objective I set. My degree from UNLV’s company college instilled in me a confidence that I formerly did not possess. It enabled me to start a profession in banking and finance that has actually led to many personal and expert successes in my 35-year profession.

I have often questioned where I would be today had I not finished my undergraduate education at UNLV. I think my profession as a banking executive would not have taken place, which means I would not have actually had the ability to work with my spouse, Debbie, to deal with obstacles related to public education. I also would not have had the ability to serve on lots of humanitarian boards. My UNLV degree prepared me for many chances in life and opened doors in Las Vegas that enabled me to make a distinction in my house city. Education is that a person property nobody can ever take from you. I’m glad for the education the many fine UNLV teachers supplied me; I am happy to be a Rebel!

Development Career: Nevada'' s Marijuana Industry

Douglas Duncan, ’11 BS and ’15 PhD Chemistry, has a concise answer when asked how he discovered himself working in the marijuana market. “It was really difficult to discover a task in Vegas with a science degree– very tough,” he says. “So it was either vacate state or remain here and try and discover a special location of chemistry. That unique area occurred to accompany the medical market taking off out here.”

Duncan and fellow alumnus Israel Alvarado, ’15 PhD Microbiology, landed with Ace Analytical, a marijuana screening lab established in 2015. It is among a handful of labs in the state screening to make sure the items dispensed are safe.

They explain their work as a bridge in between pharmaceutical screening and food testing. Marijuana is a naturally growing plant, like food, but testing depends on sticking to really stringent requirements on contamination and microbial development, similar to the pharmaceutical industry. “Like any other food market– or any type of producing industry– you need quality control,” Alvarado stated. “People who are taking this plant as a medicine might be cancer survivors or someone who is extremely ill.”

With such stakes, Alvarado does not ignore his function in an industry that is easily buffooned. Untried cannabis might consist of coliform bacteria, which like e. coli can result in major health issues– or molds, which can be really potent toxins in small concentrations.

“Nobody desires an AIDS client with immune deficiency getting microbial growth in their marijuana, cigarette smoking it, and getting pneumonia,” says Duncan. “That could be a death sentence for a few of these people.”

So Ace gets and tests samples from growers or extractors. The laboratory tests for mycotoxins, pesticides, solvents, and heavy metals such as lead and cadmium. Alvarado specializes in bacteria. Utilizing a baseball card-like petri movie, he suspends samples in an option to grow any germs or mold living in the sample. The quantity of growth helps determine whether the germs is concentrated enough to be harmful. He likewise uses hereditary sequences from germs or mold to determine them.

Duncan, meanwhile, tests for pesticides. There’s a substantial variety. Some cultivators are pesticide totally free; others are not. He as soon as checked a sample that had more than 10 times the state limit for pesticides, making him grateful for his lab safety equipment. “I definitely wouldn’t desire anyone consuming it,” he states. “The only way to genuinely secure clients is through the work of independent laboratories like ours.”

When samples return with hazardous levels, the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health is informed. Authorities observe as the growers damage the whole lot, so there is little margin for error in the lab tests.

When the items show problems, lab researchers likewise assist cultivators discover organisms that are triggering problem. They use onsite environmental swabbing and keeping track of to recognize potential sources of contamination: water, soil, and typical surface areas.

Alvarado’s doctoral work at UNLV concentrated on spore-producing germs (think anthrax). He states he “lucked out” finding his task through a lab mate. “I wished to continue doing research; I just didn’t understand exactly what was offered,” he said. “As a scientist, you always search for the next challenge.”

Now that Nevada voters opened the door for recreational marijuana, Alvarado anticipates career development. He hopes the state continues economic advancement efforts to expand the chances for scientists who want to stay in Nevada.

When it comes to Duncan, the operate in the lab is exciting since there are a lot of unknowns in the young market. “Things that a great deal of scientists consider given– requirements and approaches– we are at the leading edge for developing.”

It’s an industry he as soon as held strong opinions against. “I come from a household of drug dealers and addicts,” he said. “I had a lot of unfavorable understandings of cannabis as a ‘gateway drug,’ but then I started checking out the science– the science changed my mind on everything.”

He wants to see policy changes to enable labs to expand their work into research and advancement. Under existing law, the laboratories can not separately grow plants big enough for the lab to study technique development in the industry products. Possibly the biggest obstacle is one at the really root of this brand-new profession: the continuous risk of a federal crackdown, or as Duncan calls it, “the hammer over our heads.”

He worries that an altering political climate could leave him without a job. “That frightens us. It likewise makes it hard to bring in great talent.” Scientists have to be cognizant of whether their market experience will freeze them out of future jobs in the federal public sector, particularly those that need security clearances.

Still, the reality is the market in Nevada is most likely to grow, and it will require the behind-the-scenes quality control work of scientists to make sure it prospers. “The cannabis industry can be a fantastic asset to take a few of the UNLV graduates and keep them in the economy,” Duncan states. “That’s the best way we can recoup the expense of our (state’s higher education) financial investment– by keeping our graduates in the community.”

Neuroscience, Art Come Together in Barrick Museum Display

Artists and researchers both know that collaboration is crucial to their work. So when UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art Interim Director Alisha Kerlin satisfied Rochelle and Dustin Hines, 2 neuroscience teachers from the department of psychology, they understood that this was a possibility for severe interdisciplinary cross-pollination.

Kerlin interviewed the professors about the paintings of Julie Oppermann, an American artist whose optically deceptive paintings are currently on view at the museum. Oppermann had one biographical information that made her especially interesting– she received a master’s degree in neuroscience prior to she ended up being a painter.

I observed that Julie Oppermann’s paintings are physically difficult to take in. At certain seeing ranges, I feel destabilized from the eyeballs down. I’ve heard students say that the work makes them nauseous.

Rochelle: I definitely felt the destabilization and lightheadedness. From one angle I was certain there was depth to the work, but as I altered my perspective I was shocked to see that it was an illusion. The neuroscience of understanding entered your mind. I thought of how the eye and brain extract and separate color and form/motion (black and white) details to process it initially. Eventually, the brain is then tasked with stitching this info back together to create our visual reality. Our experience of a visual impression in Oppermann essentially emerges from a harshness in this latter process of understanding.

Does it amaze you to discover that she has a master’s in neuroscience from UC Berkley?

Dustin: Not. It makes me really delighted to hear this! It is clear that she comprehends this separation between color and form/motion vision, and has actually taken advantage of features that will develop these results. In neuroscience, we call the form/motion vision processing system the dorsal stream (“where” system), and the color vision processing system the forward stream (“what” system).

Rochelle: The dorsal stream offers us with vision for action and governs our ability to react rapidly to visual scenarios, and visually direct the motions we make. The dorsal stream processing is unconscious. In contrast, the forward stream provides us with visual truth, and supplies us with a rich and detailed perception of the world, which is a conscious procedure. Illusions take advantage of our unconscious system, and utilize it to feed information into our mindful system.

I strongly think that a person can benefit from seeing art in person. What you see in print or on a screen will not provide you the complete experience, particularly in Oppermann’s case. Dustin: The reason they are most effective in person returns to what Rochelle stated about changing her perspective. Having the ability to move around the work and take different perspectives enables more details for our visual system, exposing the “trick” and enabling the illusion to be appreciated by our mindful system.

What would you say to someone (perhaps a researcher, or a non-art major) who generally would not wander into the museum trying to find abstract painting?

Rochelle: We are starting to value the crossways between arts and sciences a growing number of, and in teaching it works to make use of the arts to assist relay hard ideas about visual and auditory perception. This enables a trainee to have an experience, then consider exactly what their own brain may have done to process or develop that experience. I frequently find myself talking about the visual charm of data that we collect in the laboratory. A Nobel Prize-winning microscopist, Santiago Ramón y Cajal, was in truth an artist, and his drawings of brain cells that he saw through the microscope have been a significant contribution to neuroscience. Oppermann’s work is also a great example of how arts and sciences can sustain one another.

It’s effective that these paintings are still images but develop an active action in the viewer’s body. These are visceral artworks that are certainly not static.

Dustin: Absolutely. She skillfully taps into the juxtaposition of luminance and contrast borders in cautious mix with equiluminace that can produce the impression of motion or depth. Movement detection happens to be a crucial system for our survival, perhaps more so in an evolutionary sense, since discovering the motion of our bodies in space or the motion of animals and objects in our instructions helps ensure our security. Ultimately, our nerve system integrates not only the drawn out elements of visual scenes, however all types of sensory, homeostatic, rewarding, determined, and emotional info to create our total experience.

Visual art can powerfully stimulate emotional responses, such as joy or elation. I enjoy hearing how people react to artworks, and there is naturally no ideal way to respond. The variety of reactions have been from the feeling puzzled to feeling satisfaction.

Rochelle: Processing the world around us, including our visual world, is hardwired to produce sensations of pleasure in the brain. The pleasure-producing reward system is believed to exist to promote behaviors that improve our survival.

Dustin: Understanding the visual world use the benefit system since making sense of exactly what is going on around us enhances our opportunities of success. Visual stimuli, and specifically illusions, develop preliminary confusion for our brain, however having the ability to deal with the confusion by recognizing features triggers enjoyment centers of the brain. Acknowledgment of patterns, or subject matter, and so on, can be extremely pleasing due to the fact that it helps us to comprehend how to act.

New Face: Sheetal Survase

Sheetal Survase switched careers to become a scholastic advisor. Now with UNLV’s Academic Success Center, she says she find fulfillment in helping trainees find the paths to their futures.


One of the reasons I wanted to sign up with UNLV was since of its strong commitment to enhancing the cultural and economic health and wellbeing of Las Vegas. In its function as a forward-thinking college institution, an employer, a strong community advancement partner, an event place, and so on, UNLV has actually connected and benefited a big regional neighborhood made up of individuals from all strolls of life.

What about UNLV strikes you as various from other places you have worked?.

It’s bigger than most organizations at which I have actually worked. I am taking pleasure in learning more about the university’s various departments and units, their various roles, and how they all interact to deliver on a common objective. Likewise, it’s interesting to be working for UNLV as it approaches Leading Tier status.

Where did you grow up and what was that like?

I invested the majority of my childhood in Colombo, Sri Lanka. It was great– the food, people, and culture have me hoping I get to move back there in retirement! School and extra-curriculars were strict organisation, so I might not have admitted to enjoying it as much then.

What is your existing task title?

I am a scholastic advisor at the Academic Success Center. I deal with trainees who are exploring majors and assist them with browsing through their general education curriculum, link them to other school resources, and support them as they develop plans that will take them from where they are now to where they want to be.

What inspired you to get into your field?

It arised from an intentional profession change decision-making process. I was looking for a role where I might use previous experience and ability, continue to serve others in a significant method, as well as support my individual and professional advancement. My previous experiences of working with youth within community-based programs and eager interest in higher education inspired me to pursue a profession in academic advising.

Tell us about a time in your life when you have actually been bold.

Some might consider following through with my choice to change careers as daring. Stepping out of a career, specifically one that I had been operating in for a long time was hard. After deliberate soul-searching, research, getting in touch with individuals, and finally overcoming my fear of the unidentified, I ended up being undaunted in my decision for a modification and discovered an exciting brand-new career in advising.

Complete this sentence, “If I could not operate in my present field, I would like to …”.

I would likely have actually continued working for community-based youth advancement programs. At the same time, I may have likewise discovered myself dealing with alternative courses to a career in recommending!

What is something people would be surprised to find out about you?

I am afraid of swimming in the sea and have done so perhaps two times in life. This is surprising to many people due to the fact that I grew up on an island and invested a great deal of time at the beach, and also because I was also on my high school swim team!

Inform us about somebody you admire and why?

For many factors, I greatly appreciate my moms and dads. My daddy lives life with the passion and energy of a 25-year-old. In doing so, he influences me to always be brave, take threats, and follow my enthusiasms. My mother is someone who has experienced misfortune throughout the course of her life, yet she seldom let any difficulty affect her spirit, and never ever once turned to cynicism for comfort. Through her example, I continue to learn crucial lessons in durability, humility, and generosity.

Any suggestions for success?

Recognize that true success can not be accomplished alone. Engage with and gain from people around you. Look for to form positive, encouraging, and genuine relationships that will help influence and sustain you as you chase after your dreams.

Pastimes or hobbies?

Spending time outdoors with my human and fur family when the weather condition permits it.

Inform us about an object in your workplace that has significance for you and why.

My magnetic white boards, which has on display the important things most important to me in life– my family, my relationships, and my canines! They are pointers of the great journey I have actually been on, exactly what brought me here– and they likewise function as my motivation for the future. I want to keep the board continuously progressing and add to it more stories of personal growth and adventure.

Overtaking a Postdoc

Former UNLV posdoctoral scholar Miesha Marzell credits her fellowship for helping her career as a professor.

Research| Apr 21, 2017|By

Vaneh Darakjian Miesha Marzell is now an assistant professor of social work at Binghamton University.

Landing a tenure-track position can be difficult for new Ph.D. graduates. However finishing a postdoctoral fellowship can assist smooth the transition from student to teacher.

Miesha Marzell came to UNLV as a biobehavioral health postdoc from Pennsylvania State University. Her work with psychology teacher Brad Donohue from 2013-14 set her profession path as a teacher.

“You actually require a bridge before you enter into a tenure-track professors position, and UNLV was a huge factor in my next steps as a scientist and faculty member,” Marzell stated.

At the time Marzell was completing her postdoc, Donohue was leading a National Institute on Drug Abuse program called Evaluation of Family Behavior modification for Substance Abuse in Collegiate Athletes.

“The chance to deal with Dr. Donohue, and his deal with drug abuse and interventions, were exactly what attracted me to UNLV,” Marzell said. “I had not done intervention work prior to concerning his lab. Discovering how to perform a family-based intervention was terrific experience for me.”

After completing her fellowship at UNLV, Marzell accepted an assistant teacher position in the department of community and behavioral health at the University of Iowa’s College of Public Health. She just recently took on a position as an assistant professor of social work at Binghamton University in New York, operating in its College of Community and Public Affairs.

“The appeal of a postdoc is it permits you the area to explore, get mentorship from your advisor, deal with different projects, and do your research,” she said.

Marzell’s research study interests remain in the origin and avoidance of high-risk compound use and the enhancement of psychological health amongst racial/ethnic minority youth, university student, and athletic populations.

“I’m a huge fan of postdocs,” she said. “I would not be where I am if I didn’t have postdoctoral experience. It truly offered me a structure where, when I stepped into a teacher position, I had the ability to remove.”

From Top to Bottom and Back Again

For the past 16 years, Stephen M. Miller has had a front-row seat aboard Las Vegas’ high-speed financial roller rollercoaster, one that’s featured more weaves than a Hitchcock flick. It’s a seat for which most financial lovers would have paid leading dollar, however one Miller nearly skipped. “Both my partner and I were a bit worried about relocating to Las Vegas,” said Miller, who like numerous an outsider equated Las Vegas with The Strip prior to moving here in 2001 from the University of Connecticut. Now director of UNLV’s Center for Service and Economic Advancement, Miller has actually observed our economy from the heights of enormous prosperity to the depths of a Great Recession to a healing that has homeowners feeling both enthusiastic and nervous.

When I arrived in Las Vegas, we were just beginning the housing bubble. By 2005– which was sort of the peak time– homebuilders were offering possible purchasers a lottery ticket that stated, “OK, if we draw your number, you can purchase our house.”

As an economic expert, that doesn’t make a great deal of sense. If that holds true, why don’t you raise the price so you don’t have an excess demand for your item? If I was truly smart, that would’ve been the signal that, “This is not sustainable.”

I have no idea that I thought our economy was in hazard. Of course, I was brand-new to the scene, however the majority of people thought Las Vegas was unsusceptible to economic crises. We ‘d had recessions prior to, however they didn’t have much of an effect on our economy.

The new characteristic of this recession existed was a financial crisis set off by the housing market and mortgage-backed securities. There weren’t many individuals who knew that when the housing market collapsed and mortgage-backed securities ended up being harmful that it would spread to other parts of the monetary market, which it did.

In the next 5 years, I believe the probability is pretty good that we’ll have another economic crisis. The question becomes “How severe will it be?” God prohibited it’ll be connected to another financial crisis. More likely it will be simply a run-of-the-mill recession.

My issue for millennials is this may be the generation that doesn’t live as well as their moms and dads did.

I think if we asked our new administration in Washington, D.C., they ‘d state, “Oh, we’ve got the solution. We’re going to grow financially at 3, 4, 5 percent.” Well, perhaps for a year or so. However it’s going to be tough to sustain. We have this group of retired people coming out of the employment market who are going to put a stress on our federal budget through Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security.

Eventually, Washington, D.C., is going to need to resolve that concern. They cannot keep kicking the can down the roadway.

Nevada’s greatest untapped financial source is most likely our population. However we face one problem: The level of education of our manpower is not competitive at the moment.

One way to get a much better informed workforce is to employ people from outside Nevada. Another way is to train them internally. It’s much better if we might train them internally.

UNLV is going to play a huge role in our economic future, definitely as the UNLV Medical School comes online this year. That possibly could have a big economic effect because we have a shortage of medical professionals. I know I needed to go from state when I had a medical problem, and just today my good friend went to California for surgery.

There’s been discussion for a long period of time about diversifying our economy. I have a good friend who says, “It’ll never happen. This is Vegas, baby, and that’s the way it’s going to be.”

Definitely the guv and his workplace of financial development are attempting to diversify the economy. And they might take some criticism for giving away these tax abatements to lure business to relocate here. The problem is every state is doing this; if we don’t complete, we’re going to lose.

For the majority of cities, a brand-new arena would most likely be financially neutral– it has some favorable advantages however likewise some negatives. Las Vegas is special due to the fact that we do have a lot of large events and tourism is still our significant driver. So if the new arena draws those 50 events they’re speaking about, it probably pushes the stadium into a positive for the regional economy.

I said there’s a concern about Las Vegas’ lack of an informed labor force, but we actually have some great trainees who come out of UNLV that I would set up and match versus students anywhere.

I always tell my students if you stay awake, you can discover something every day.

Prospective in Time of Crisis

In 2009, when the property odds were stacked against him and the product he established was deemed worthless, Chip Johnson searched in the mirror. He looked around and paid attention to the stories of damaged people losing wealth and hope. He did his share of soul browsing, too. There were lessons to be learned. Less debt, more money would be the new typical. However even with all the heartache, when he looked out his office window, he saw a city that was down but not out.

The founder of Property Solutions Group in Las Vegas relocated to the valley at the age of 5 when his father took a job as a carpenter at the Nevada Test Website. He saw the city’s rise, welcomed it, and couldn’t wait to make his living in property. Like many others, Johnson, ’71 BS Company Administration, prospered handsomely.

” Realty is an industry I’ve always thought in. It resembles air and water. You have to have it. And at the end you’re buried in it. It’s something that has real value,” he stated.

When the real estate market cratered, Johnson needed to tap into the ephemeral– past UNLV friendships and his undeviating belief in Southern Nevada– to find his way back to success.

Losing It and Getting It Back.

As a UNLV student in the late 1960s, Johnson earned money photographing homes and properties for the several listing service (MLS) book. Thrifty and ambitious, he soon started investing. One site was throughout the street from today’s Carnival Hotel-Casino in North Las Vegas. It had a studio apartment complex that he later on tore it down to construct a retail structure.

” In a town of about 100,000 individuals, I had my specific niche. … It assisted me to type of develop a scope and understanding of property,” he stated.

With the Great Economic crisis’s realty collapse, Johnson faced his hardest life obstacles. Long time banking buddies now sat across the table for heated negotiations. He even lost some of his early holdings, consisting of that parcel near the Fiesta.

” It was the first time in my life I seemed like whatever I had actually was thrown away,” he remembered. “It was our inmost dissatisfaction. … We ended up returning a variety of things to the bank. … But we got it all behind us. There were no difficult feelings.”

Johnson persevered by relying on past investment clients, some of whom were long time friends from his days at UNLV.” I took notice of the favorable. I started knocking on doors of past financiers and stated, ‘If you only have 10 dollars, give me a dollar,'” he remembered. “Essentially, we headed out and bought up the market again when it was absolutely at the bottom.”

Now, the long time property professional views that down time as an opportunity of a lifetime. “I was very fortunate in many ways,” he said. “Despite the fact that realty gave me a whipping at one point, it ended up taking care of me once again.”

Those relationships that assisted him through crisis were supported by decades of UNLV alumni event participation.

He credits the late Fred Albrecht, a longtime administrator who produced UNLV’s alumni relations program, as essential to keeping him associated with the university. “He was constantly such a champion of the university … It’s one of the greatest decisions I have actually made, to be involved with that group,” Johnson said.

He belongs to UNLV Foundation Board of Trustees and chairs its realty committee. He likewise acts as president of the Commercial Development and Management Corp., which oversees UNLV’s Harry Reid Research study and Innovation Park in addition to all university realty assets.

He and his other half, Helen, commissioned the bronze “Hey Reb!” statue in front of the Richard Tam Alumni Center, and they were the drivers behind the Jerry Tarkanian statue outside the Thomas & & Mack Center.