Tuesday, January 27, 2015

UDC 4-Hers Treated to Advanced Screening of National Geographic's Robots 3D

by Carilyne Vance

On Friday, January 23, 2015, the Washington, DC 4-H students of Calvary Christian Academy were among the first to see and review the latest offering from National Geographic Movies: Robots 3D.  Filmed with amazing cinematography and incredible 3-D special effects, this movie takes a look at innovations made in the field of robotics and how technology will improve human productivity world-wide and across the socio-economic spectrum. The film centered on the collaboration between NASA and General Motors that looked at the possibility of integrating “humanoid” robots into everyday human lives through the use of innovative engineering and design. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

CAUSES Academics: Bachelor of Science in Nursing

As a registered nurse (RN), you apply your knowledge and skills on a daily basis. Yet, there is always a need to learn more, both in order to provide better health care to your patients and to advance your career in the workplace. In addition, hospitals and other healthcare settings are increasingly seeking and demanding nurses who have enhanced their RN experience with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

After receiving your RN, the University of the District of Columbia is the ideal place to continue on to receive your bachelor’s degree in nursing, and to develop the skills and tools to succeed in today’s modern, complex, and dynamic health care environment.

The RN to BSN program--housed in the University’s unique College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES)— is an 18-month program that offers a rigorous academic and experiential course of study, while providing a flexible schedule to meet the needs of the working professional nurse. Students in the RN to BSN program come from a wide range of backgrounds and are educated to facilitate positive nursing outcomes in a culturally diverse urban population.

The 18-month RN to BSN program consists of junior and senior levels. Students may enter the junior level of the program while completing prerequisite general education courses.

The RN to BSN nursing curriculum at UDC features a recently reinvigorated academic and experiential program of study designed to equip nurses with the knowledge, skills, and values to deliver, manage, and lead nursing care to an array of populations in a variety of settings.

Faculty Spotlight:

Dr. Pier A. Broadnax, associate professor and program director, has served as chair of the undergraduate nursing program at Howard University, an adjunct at Yale University, and as a charter member of the Mayor's Health Policy Council for the District of Columbia. She was recently appointed to a D.C. Department of Health subcommittee on healthcare delivery in the District. Broadnax holds a Ph.D. in nursing with health policy development from George Mason University, an MS in advanced adult nursing from Hampton University, and a BSN from Winston Salem University.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Catching Up with the Forest Hills Connection

Our friends at the Forest Hills Connection have graciously featured CAUSES and UDC over the last month. Catch up below:

How UDC architecture students envision Van Ness
Students from the CAUSES Department of Urban Architecture and Community Planning have been participating in the Van Ness Vision effort. Continue reading to read about their ideas and view some of their designs:
UDC students in Dixon’s class are not your typical architecture graduate students. They bring a wealth of work and life experiences to their urban design pursuits and are fortunate to have Professor Dixon as their teacher. read more

Mayor Bowser gets advice on making UDC blossom
Two of our Van Ness neighbors, Carol Stoel and David Bardin, recently advocated on behalf of UDC and CAUSES before DC's newly elected Mayor:
Stoel tells the committee she has had the opportunity recently to look closely at three degree programs in particular, and she is impressed at what she’s found. At UDC’s College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability, and Environmental Sciences, at JAZZAlive and the music programs and archives, and at the Division of Urban Architecture and Community Planning: “Thriving centers of strong intellectual and creative vitality with outstanding faculty and leadership and would fit in at many land grant universities.” read more

Friday, January 23, 2015


Here's what's been happening around CAUSES!

CSD Director Published in National Wetlands Newsletter
CNDH Healthy Cooking Course Nears End 
Seeking Visiting Nursing Professor

CSD Director Published in National Wetlands Newsletter
Congratulations to Dr. Dwane Jones, director, Center for Sustainability, on the publication of his new research article.
 “Advancing Green Infrastructure in the District: Opportunities to Enhance the Green Economy” has been published in the January/February edition of the National Wetlands Newsletter: 

Efficient and effective implementation of green infrastructure (GI) as an element of sustainability offers many opportunities to enhance the green economy. While GI has historically been an important element of stormwater management programs, recent efforts in urban areas have shifted its use to create employment and career pathways. Despite this change, many barriers and challenges must be collectively considered and collaboratively addressed to establish a green economy that is equitable, profitable, and environmentally sound. 

Read the article.

Chef T's Haitian Chicken
CNDH Healthy Cooking Course Nears End 
Chef T of the CAUSES Center for Nutrition, Diet and Health is nearing the end of his six-week cooking course, in partnership with Washington Parks & People's Healthy Living Center at Riverside in DC's Ward 7. The final class is on Feb. 7, but stay tuned for future offerings.  

UDC Urban Agriculture Director Featured as Food Summit Speaker

Our own Che' Axum was one of the featured speakers at the Jan. 21-22 Food Summit, organized by Food Tank. The two-day event, which was hosted at George Washington University, brought together more than 75 leaders across all sectors of the food industry, including: researchers, farmers, chefs, policy makers, government officials, students, journalists and food advocates. Topics of focus ranged from urban agriculture policy to preventing food loss/food waste to workers in the food system. Ward 3 Councilmember, Mary Cheh, delivered the keynote address. Cheh has been a staunch proponent for urban agriculture in the District.

Ahead of the event, Food Tank spoke with Axum as part of their "Five Questions" series:
Food Tank: How are you contributing to building a better food system?

Che Axum: The College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences at the University of the District of Columbia (CAUSES) is on a mission to make the residents of D.C. healthier, more food secure and economically empowered.
Continue readingVisit www.FoodTank.com for more information.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Architecture students attend NOMA Conference

UDC Architecture Professor Kathy Dixon recently sponsored a delegation of UDC Urban Architecture and Community Development students to attend the 2014 National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) Conference in Philadelphia. Field trips are always fun, but she explains what made this one special:
UDC students with the Mayor of Philadelphia

"It was my last conference as national president of NOMA, so I thought it would be important to have some of our UDC students attend."

For this reason, Prof. Dixon's company, K. Dixon Architecture, sponsored four students to attend the conference. 

Under her two-year administration, NOMA entered into new alliances that will help the organization grow.  This includes partnerships with: Kaplan Architectural Education, Association of College Schools of Architecture, an MOU with US Green Building Council and a renewed MOU with the American Institute of Architects. 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

More CAUSES Workshops, Certificates and Trainings Announced!

It's a new year and we have new learning opportunities! In addition to our regular academic offerings (in Architecture & Community Planning, Environmental Science, Health Education, Nursing and Nutrition & Dietetics), CAUSES has just released the schedule of workshops, trainings, and certification courses for the first quarter of 2015. Learn more about our offerings in:

Student Opportunities

RISEUP Summer Internship Program
Students, are you interested in environmental sustainability? Apply to Wayne State University's 2015 RISEUP Summer Internship Program! Research Internships for a Sustainable Environment with Undergraduate Participation, or RISEUP, is a 12-week paid summer internship program sponsored by WSU's Center for Peace and Conflict Studies. The program is dedicated to empowering creative thinkers with the tools and methods through which to impact tomorrow's environment. Students majoring in all areas of the creative arts, physical sciences, and social science are encouraged to apply for the summer 2015 program by February 1. Visit www.riseup.med.wayne.edu to download the application, and email riseup@wayne.edu for more information.

Department of Energy Environmental Justice Conference
The Department of Energy wants students and faculty to attend their upcoming Environmental Justice Conference and Training Program March 11-13 in Washington, D.C., in hopes of engaging new generation of environmentally-conscious citizensThis year's theme is climate change/climate justice.The event has brought together hundreds of like-minded individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds to discuss their perspectives on environmental justice. Attendees include US congressmen, federal and local government officials, civil society and grassroots organizations, academia, and the interested public at large. Registration for the conference is free for all students, community organizations, and government employees/ Contact Zach Dubel at (850) 566-1147 for more information. 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Institute of Gerontology Seniors Volunteer for MLK Day of Service

On Friday, Jan. 16, senior volunteers from the UDC CAUSES Institute of Gerontology helped to package and deliver food to 100 residents of Regency House as part of the MLK Day of Service. Regency House is a senior public housing apartment building located in Northwest D.C.

"I really enjoy UDC's Gerontology program, which has a lot to offer. The job is not always easy, but we do it." 

Ms. Shirley Pettus is part of the Commodity Food Program, which provides nutritious food on a monthly basis to eligible participants. Sponsored by the DC Department on Aging, the income-based Commodity Supplemental Food Program (CSFP), DC residents over the age of 60 are eligible to receive monthly deliveries of packaged foods and bottled beverages. This month's delivery included low-sodium canned vegetables, whole wheat pasta, stone-ground grits and orange juice.

"Your coming here today means a lot to me because I'm a volunteer with Gerontology and serve on the Advisory Board, and having you all come to honor Dr. King's birthday is absolutely wonderful,"commented Shirley Pettus, who organized the day's delivery operations on behalf of Regency House.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

UDC Student Dietetic Association Offers Free Health Screenings at Health Expo

The UDC Student Dietetic Association recently participated in the 2015 NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo. The expo represents the largest health and fitness event in the Washington, D.C. area. The free event garners more than 10,000 visitors annually. SDA has exhibited at the event for 10 years, offering free health screenings and nutritional information.

"This event is open to the entire District of Columbia, and therefore represents an opportunity for us meet with District residents who may not be aware of our Nutrition and Dietetics program. It definitely also helps to put UDC on the map," explains Dr. Prema Ganganna.

"People don't know we exist; that we are out there," explains Jason Drawhorn, president of the UDC Student Dietetic Association, of the importance of participating in such events. 

"With the state of health in our country, we cannot separate nutrition from healthcare," stated Drawhorn. "Nutrition is preventative. We are about preventing illness before it happens; and once it does happen, reducing the deleterious effects of disease. So it's important for us to be out here, especially in this community which is so affected by nutritionally-related disease."

Several food deserts exist within Washington, D.C. Residents of food deserts often are supplied by inexpensive fast food venues, resulting in food related health issues including obesity, hypertension and diabetes. According to the Washington Post, 37.4 percent of the District’s households with children are unable to afford food, a rate among the highest in the country. These households are food insecure, which means cutting meals and not having enough to eat on a daily basis. 

"In 5-10 years, one out of every two people in the nation will be diagnosed with diabetes. That's scary," says Kemi Adelola, a graduate student in Nutrition and Dietetics.

"If you formed a country with the number of people with diabetes, it would be the third largest country in the world," Drawhorn chimes in.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Public Notice: Upcoming Accreditation Review Visit by ACEN


The University of the District of Columbia Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program wishes to announce that it will host a site review for continuing accreditation of its RN to BSN Program by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).

You are invited to meet the site visit team and share your comments about the program in person at a meeting scheduled at:
3:15 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. on January 27, 2015 at The University of the
District of Columbia, 4200 Connecticut Avenue N.W. Washington,
D.C. 20008, Building 44-Room 307-C.

Written comments are also welcome and should be submitted directly to:

Marsal P. Stoll, Chief Executive Officer
Accreditation Commission for Nursing Education in Nursing
3343 Peachtree Road NE, Suite 850
Atlanta, Georgia 30326

All written comments should be received by ACEN by January 21, 2015.

Register for Urban Ag and Stormwater Management Workshop - Jan. 23 and Feb. 26

For the first time in recorded history, in 2008, more people began living in urban areas than rural. Simultaneously, many studies show that the millennial generation and other consumers prefer to live in urban environments with access to local foods. This movement has created a dilemma where more people in urban areas rely on a declining farm population. It has also created an increased interest in urban agriculture. Register here.

Associated with the rise in the popularity of urban agriculture 
there is a need to mitigate the impacts of urban stormwater runoff. This workshop will highlight the University of the District of Columbia's Sustainability Program, which in part, aims to integrate urban agriculture and urban stormwater management. The workshop will highlight green infrastructure, low impact development, federal, state, non-profit and for profit partnerships, and a unique partnership with the DC Housing Authority. It will also include an evaluation of economics and social impacts.
Copyright: District Dept. of the Environment
Participants will engage in a design charette for an integrated urban agriculture/urban storm water project in DC. 

The class will be hosted Jan. 23, 2015,  9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. at: 

The University of the District of Columbia
David A. Clarke School of Law
4340 Connecticut Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20008
Building 52, Room 505

The course fee is $50. Please bring a check to the class made out to the University of the District of Columbia. In the memo line, please write Urban Stormwater Management Workshop. Please sign-up here to reserve your spot! If you are unable to make this workshop, the course will be repeated Feb. 26, 2015!

UDC is located at the Van Ness/UDC metro stop on the red line. If you decide to drive, you can park in the UDC parking garage located on Van Ness St. NW. The rate for 4 hours is $12.

For more information, contact Dr. Kamran Zendehdel.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Upcoming Stormwater Training Events at UDC

Rethinking Swale & Filter Strip Design
March 2, 2015 - 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
University of the District of Columbia (meeting room TBA)
4200 Connecticut Avenue, Washington, DC 20008
Workshop Website

SPONSORED BY: University of the District of Columbia, Center for Sustainable Development, CAUSES, and NC State University Stormwater Engineering Group

CONTINUING EDUCATION: 6 Professional Development Hours are available for professional engineers and land surveyors. 6 CEUs are pending approval from the American Society of Landscape Architects. 5.25 credit hours are approved by the American Planning Association for AICP members.

DESCRIPTION: Swales and filter strips are an important, but often overlooked, part of stormwater management and Low Impact Development. Being simple to construct, however, does not translate into minimal benefits. Swales "out-punch their weight" with respect to removal of certain pollutants. Recent research has led to new design guidance for swales that allows engineers and other designers to customize swale design to specific water quality goals, while still conveying needed flows. By making relatively simple adjustments to swale cross-section, length and grass height, swales can be very effective. This workshop will review the most innovative designs for swales. Design for urban areas will be emphasized. Additionally, a new swale concept, the regenerative stormwater conveyance (RSC), which is a step pool conveyance system incorporating specially-designed media focused on nutrient removal, will be discussed. Recent research on these systems has shown potential hydrologic and water quality improvements.

As part of this workshop, attendees will need to bring a laptop, as a simple swale design model (SwaleMod) will be distributed and demonstrated. Please bring a PC laptop; this will not work on a Mac running Windows.

REGISTRATION FEE: $175 Early Bird; $225 Regular (includes lunch, refreshments and workshop materials)
For more information and to REGISTER ONLINE, please visit our website at:


Innovative Rainwater Harvesting
March 3, 2015 - 8:30am - 5pm
University of the District of Columbia (meeting room TBA)
4200 Connecticut Avenue, Washington, DC 20008

Click here to visit the Workshop Website. 

SPONSORED BY: University of the District of Columbia, Center for Sustainable Development, CAUSES, and NC State University Stormwater Engineering Group

CONTINUING EDUCATION: Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors earn 7 PDHs for the successful completion of the workshop. 7 CEUs are pending approval by the American Society of Landscape Architects. Planners and others may appeal to their respective board to obtain credit.

DESCRIPTION: Rainwater harvesting (RWH) systems are extremely useful practices for supplementing and replacing potable water resources; however, if designed appropriately, these systems can also be used to meet stormwater management goals. This workshop describes the different types of RWH systems and presents innovative design modifications for increasing the stormwater management benefits of these systems. These modifications include passive and active release mechanisms, excess irrigation and water usage adjustments. The NCSU Rainwater Harvester Model will be demonstrated and participants will learn how to use the new version of the model to design systems and estimate stormwater management benefits.

REGISTRATION FEE: $150 Early Bird; $200 Regular (includes lunch, refreshments and workshop materials)

For more information and to REGISTER ONLINE, please go to:
http://www.bae.ncsu.edu/stormwater/training/waterharvesting.html or contact Dr. Dwane Jones

Training Coordinators: 
Cathy Smith / Chrissie Shepard
NC State University Dept. of Biological & Agricultural Engineering 
(919) 515-6780 / (919) 513-2192