Clocking In

News from around campus and beyond


Categories: Campus , Academic , Research


There is no GPS setting that leads us directly to happiness, but this spring UM students will learn about the myths and truths of well-lived lives so they can develop a better road map for finding joy. College of Education counseling Professor John Sommers-Flanagan and Professor Emerita Rita Sommers-Flanagan have developed a new course titled The Art and Science of Happiness, which is modeled loosely after similar classes offered at Yale and other universities while taking into account the unique challenges Montanans face.


black and white photo of student walking the hallway of the education building at UM


It’s a dichotomous situation: Montana is one of the best environments in the nation for entrepreneurs, but the state also faces a growing shortage of workers. UM’s new Tech Skills for Tomorrow Initiative brings strategic partners together to address the workforce shortages in Montana’s tech industry. Launched in October, the initiative will identify and develop programs, partnerships, pathways and pipelines. “To build the pipeline of talent that this state needs to grow, we not only need to have the right programs in place, we need to have strong partnerships with employers here in Montana and globally, as well as a diverse set of pathways for students to access learning,” says President Seth Bodnar.


AWS Vice President Michael Punke speaks at a podium as President Bodnar looks on


Grizzlies took Wall Street by storm in September when President Bodnar and a team of UM students and administrators traveled to the Big Apple for a bond sale. Morgan Stanley led the sale on behalf of the University, which resulted in the issuing of $146.8 million of taxable and tax-exempt bonds. The bonds will allow UM to usher in a new era of growth and development in support of students. In addition to refinancing substantially all of its outstanding debt, the bond issuance generated about $63 million to be invested in UM’s student-serving infrastructure.


President Seth Bodnar, UM administrators and students pose for a photo on Wall Steet in New York


Pain in the knee? You might be among the one in four people who suffer from patellofemoral pain, also known as “runner’s knee.” Now those sidelined by PFP have new guidelines for treating what ails them, thanks to UM Assistant Professor Richard Willy in UM’s School of Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences. Willy’s recommendations were published Sept. 1 as a Clinical Practice Guideline in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy. Key takeaways include: gradually increasing activities to prevent PFP; maximizing leg strength, particularly the thigh muscles; and participating in a variety of sports versus a single sport, particularly for adolescent athletes.


UM Professor Rich Willy works with a physical therapy patient in a clinic


Undergrads who know they are bound for law school are getting a jump on the competition through UM’s growing Pre-Law Program. Students who participate in the unique advising program have a 91% acceptance rate to law school ̶   a rate much higher than the national average of roughly 75%. Pre-law students work closely with Director Soazig Li Bihan to ensure they are taking the courses needed to successfully apply to law school. These curricular choices also help students succeed in law school and in the field. Nearly 100 UM students from majors across campus now participate in the Pre-Law Program.


Pre-law Director Soazig Li Bihan advises a student in her office

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