Nebraska in the national news: June 2018

· 7 min read

Nebraska in the national news: June 2018

Articles on the potential consequences of nuclear warfare and the effects of tariffs on the newspaper industry were among 25 national news stories featuring University of Nebraska–Lincoln faculty and students in June.

Gizmodo published a story June 13 in response to a recent study suggesting that no nation should possess more than 100 nuclear warheads. The researchers — Michigan Technological University’s Joshua Pearce and Tennessee State University’s David Denkenberger — argued that that was the maximum number that could be deployed without producing blowback against the aggressor nation but that would still ensure nuclear deterrence.

However, the article also referenced a 2017 study by Nebraska’s Adam Liska and colleagues, showing that even limited nuclear strikes are likely to trigger local and global climate effects.

“The most sensitive parameter in these calculations is the size of the bombs, which range from about 25 kt to 5,000 kt based on today’s arsenals,” said Liska, associate professor of biological systems engineering, and agronomy and horticulture. “The larger bombs are the ones that really count today.”

Uchechukwu Jarrett, assistant professor of practice in economics at Nebraska, was quoted in a June 22 Washington Post article on tariffs hurting the newspaper industry.

Tariffs on Canadian uncoated groundwood paper have led to an increase in the cost of newsprint, the second-biggest operating expense for most newspapers. Tariffs on aluminum have also hurt commercial press operations that use aluminum plates to print newspapers.

“This is one company that has a problem with their own revenue stream. If you’re having a rational argument, it would be plusses and minuses,” Jarrett said. “If we do this to save one company, what are the losses? We lose a whole bunch of community newspapers.”

The story appeared in more than a dozen other media outlets across the country.

Other coverage:

Rupal Mehta, political science, was quoted in a June 1 Washington Post article on North Korea and its hacking capabilities. Mehta said that even if the country agrees to nuclear disarmament, it is likely to continue its cyberattacks against the United States and its allies.

Calla Kessler, a recent Nebraska graduate and photo intern at The Washington Post, was featured in a June 1 article. Kessler, who earned a Bachelor of Journalism in May, was named the 2018 Eyes of History Student Still Photographer of the Year by the White House News Photographers Association.

The university’s College of Education and Human Sciences has signed a five-year partnership agreement with Lincoln’s Malone Community Center to collaborate with resources and programming. The Lincoln Journal Star ran an article on the partnership June 2. An Associated Press version of the story was picked up by more than 20 other media outlets across the country.

Eric Thompson, economics, and director of the Bureau of Business Research at Nebraska, was interviewed for a June 3 Omaha World-Herald article on the hiring challenges associated with Omaha’s low unemployment rate. The story was picked up by the Fremont Tribune, York News-Times and more than a dozen other media outlets nationwide.

Thompson was also quoted in a June 14 NBC News article on the United States having more open jobs than available workers.

The Lincoln Journal Star ran an article June 5 on the university’s goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The university has maintained the smallest carbon footprint among Big Ten Conference institutions but has not yet publicly announced its emission-reduction goals. The story later appeared in the Fremont Tribune, Norfolk Daily News and more than 25 other media outlets across the country.

The university’s Midwest Roadside Safety Facility conducted a test of a bullnose guardrail June 5 by crashing a half-ton pickup into it at 63 mph. NASCAR Xfinity Series driver Michael Annett, members of the media and others watched the successful test. Stories on the driver’s visit and crash test appeared in the Lincoln Journal Star, 18 other Nebraska media outlets and more than 35 others nationwide

Sunseo Omega 3, a South Korean agricultural company, has located its U.S. headquarters at Nebraska Innovation Campus. ran an article on the announcement June 5.

Adam Thimmesch, law, was interviewed for a June 5 article on a new federal cap on the state and local taxes (SALT) deduction.

Max Perry Mueller, classics and religious studies, was interviewed for a June 5 RadioWest segment on race and Mormonism. He discussed Joseph Smith and the early church’s complicated views on race.

Mueller also wrote a June 6 article for Inside Higher Education about dealing with academic rejection. Whenever he faces a rejection, he buys a plant and later donates it to organizations such as Community Crops and the Arbor Day Foundation.

The Nebraska economy is expected to expand, thanks to growth in manufacturing, construction and service industries, according to the latest three-year forecast report from the Bureau of Business Research and the Nebraska Business Forecast Council. Articles on the report appeared in the Columbus Telegram, 13 other Nebraska media outlets and more than two dozen others nationwide.

A Tennessee woman owns a vial of what she believes is moon dust. She recently sued NASA for her right to keep it. In a June 18 Mashable article, Frans von der Dunk, law, said the Outer Space Treaty of 1967 allows NASA, on behalf of the United States, to claim ownership over moon rocks and small quantities of materials brought back by Apollo astronauts.

An Italian researcher has called for more efficient wastewater treatment and for people to avoid illicit drugs after finding that European eels are vulnerable to drugs and metabolites that have found their way into surface waters worldwide. Daniel Snow, director of the Water Sciences Laboratory at Nebraska, was quoted in a June 20 National Geographic story on the research.

Yufeng Ge, biological systems engineering, doctoral student Suresh Thapa and colleagues have devised a more efficient and accurate way to scan the structural properties of plants. ran an article on the technique June 20. ran an article June 20 on the world-premiere production of “The Fishermen” July 19-28 at HOME in Manchester, England. The play is based on the acclaimed 2015 book by Chigozie Obioma, English.

Loukia Sarroub, teaching, learning and teacher education, was featured in a June 22 article in The Weekly Standard. The article described child marriages among the Yemeni-American community in Dearborn, Michigan. Sarroub’s book, “All American Yemeni Girls: Being Muslim in a Public School,” was mentioned in the article.

Caroline Chaboo, University of Nebraska State Museum, was interviewed for a June 23 National Geographic article on insects that shield themselves from predators. She described how golden tortoise beetle larvae use a “fecal shield” and gather in a defensive circle, “like a heard of bison in a ring,” to ward off attackers.

Yiqi Yang, textiles, merchandising and fashion design, has received grant support from the Nebraska Environmental Trust to continue his research converting poultry feathers and waste garments into commercially viable textiles. Feedstuffs ran an article on the research June 25.

Jill O’Donnell will become the first director of the Clayton Yeutter Institute of International Trade and Finance at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln on July 1. Articles on O’Donnell appeared in KRVN, seven other Nebraska media outlets and more than 20 others nationwide.

A 2012 Nebraska study was mentioned in a June 28 Money article on seemingly random things that can ruin job interviews. The study found that narcissists tend to perform much better than others in job interviews because they’re comfortable with self-promotion.

A Nebraska research team has received a $132,663 grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust for a project to transform manure and red cedar mulch from waste to worth. Feedstuffs ran an article on the project June 29.

Meredith Martin, psychology, co-authored a new study showing that good relationships between siblings can help them cope with conflicts between their parents. HealthDay published an article on the study June 29. The story also appeared in U.S. News and World Reports, United Press International and more than 70 other media outlets across the country.

Faculty, administration, student and staff appearances in the national media are logged at
 If you have additions to this list, contact Sean Hagewood at or 402-472-8514. If you have suggestions for national news stories, contact Leslie Reed at or 402-472-2059.

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