University of Arizona graduate programs in management information systems, rehabilitation counseling, speech-language pathology and earth sciences retained their top-10 status in the 2017 Best Graduate Schools rankings from U.S. News & World Report. The UA’s audiology and photography programs moved into the top 10.

Included this year were first-ever rankings for doctor of nursing practice programs. Among 149 DNP programs nationally, the UA College of Nursing was ranked No. 28. The college’s master’s programs were ranked No. 30 among 259, up from No. 38.

Ten years ago, they threw their caps in the air and collected their diplomas. Some had come to the UA directly from high school, while others began as mature adults starting new careers. Many were at a point somewhere in between. For each, 2006 was the year to finish a degree and begin something new. 

It is a sound familiar to everyone in Tucson. A fire engine negotiating a busy intersection in afternoon traffic sounds its siren momentarily and suddenly, in response to it, the hills around explode with coyote howls. The howls seem to come from everywhere — from parking lots, playgrounds, backyards. For a few minutes the wave of howls rolls through the foothills, then it stops as suddenly as it erupted, the afternoon’s peace restored. 

Dynasties are built by sustained success and their greatness is measured in decades. Some require no introduction: The New York Yankees. The Rockefellers. MGM. 

The UA Lunar and Planetary Laboratory, or LPL, falls into its own category as a science dynasty. It has had a hand in nearly every interplanetary spacecraft sent from Earth. Among its accomplishments since its founding in 1960:

Rudy Molina can’t help but smile as he talks about the ongoing renovations at the Strategic Alternative Learning Techniques Center. 

For the director of the SALT Center, the expansion of the 15-year-old building could not come at a better time, as enrollment has climbed to more than 550 students in recent years and the need for updated technology has grown. 

On the west end of the UA campus students make their way to a small foundry in the School of Art. Here, they learn to make bronze and aluminum sculptures in a hands-on 3-D class.

“A lot of kids, they don’t do anything with their hands anymore, except punch buttons on their phone or computer. They don’t have tactile hand-eye coordination skills,” says Carlton Bradford ’86, associate professor of sculpture in the UA School of Art’s 3-D and extended media program. 

Timeless stories, woven into the daily trappings of Native American life, are beautifully depicted in basket weavings and rugged sandals that protected ancient feet. They are part of a collection of indigenous fiber arts to be showcased at the Arizona State Museum.

The ambitious new exhibit, tentatively titled “Woven from the Center,” requires careful preparation and is set to open in early 2017. It will present revolving elements from an inventory that surpasses 20,000 pieces, from brawny burden baskets — once strapped across the foreheads of women — to yucca-fiber plaques.  

Professors and students appear in the curving corridors of the ENR2 building to listen to a classical guitar session. The harmony wafts toward the sky. 

Jose Luis Puerta practices the same composition for an hour, wiggling his fingers after missing a tough string of notes. He takes a deep breath and smiles at strangers as they get a closer look. 

“You definitely feed off the crowd when you perform,” Puerta says. “You can tell if they are paying attention. You connect with them.”

When donors Alan ’74 and Janice Levin met Dr. Clara Curiel and learned about the UA associate professor of dermatology’s work studying and treating skin cancer, they were moved to endow a chair for excellence in cancer research.

“Alan was so impressed with her and what she was doing at the UA Cancer Center, and I felt the same,” Janice Levin says. “We hope the endowment makes a difference in finding a cure or treatment for skin cancer.”  


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