Here’s what caught my eye today…

State University System

FAMU seeks presidential search firm bids
A timeline for hiring the next president at Florida A&M is beginning to come into focus. The university’s Sept. 28 deadline for accepting bids from outside search firms to guide FAMU’s presidential search committee is expected to lead to a decision in early October, Trustee Belinda Shannon informed board members during their Thursday morning meeting…

FAMU student body representatives vow ‘we will end hazing’
Tallahassee Democrat (blog)
FAMU administrators know that if they are going to succeed in changing the culture of hazing on their campus, if they are going to end an illegal practice that has been a way of life in some clubs and organizations, they are going to need genuine buy-in from the students. That buy-in was on display Thursday at the end of a town hall meeting at the Lawson Center, the first of its kind for the 2012-13 school year…

Students sign petition protesting education cuts
Florida Gulf Coast University students say they are fed up with the years of state funding cuts to education and they are taking action. Students have started a petition denouncing the $3.6 million in cuts…

University of Florida official pushing Jacksonville bioscience center
Business Journal
The University of Florida could become the driving force behind a bioscience academic research facility in Jacksonville. The initiative, first presented at a conference at the University of North Florida in 2007, made little progress in the five years since it was introduced. In recent weeks, however, the idea has surfaced again, this time with a focus from the University of Florida, the Jacksonville Civic Council, JaxChamber and Gov. Rick Scott’s life science task force.

USF Health creating its own health care system
When the University of South Florida failed to convince state politicians it needed an on-campus hospital, medical school leaders started getting creative. Now, four years and a slew of piecemeal partnerships later, USF Health is poised to launch something new: its own health care system with a network of hospitals, physicians and other health-care entities. The first significant move is a merging of operations between the university and the independent, nonprofit Lakeland Regional Medical Center. USF Health gets a teaching hospital to call its own and the 851-bed facility adds a medical residency program expected to host up to 200 USF residents a year…

UF to offer free courses in new national online experiment
Orlando Sentinel
It’s tough to get into the University of Florida. The state’s unofficial flagship school accepts only the brightest high-school graduates. By early next year, though, the school will offer several courses to anybody, anywhere, with an Internet connection.  UF has joined the growing ranks of top-tier universities that have started offering free classes known as MOOCs, or Massive Open Online Courses — a global experiment in higher education that some argue could revolutionize it…

USF welcomes ‘Today’ with tons of school spirit
Those were some of the scenes Today show viewers saw Thursday morning when the show visited the University of South Florida. USF is one of six finalists in Today’s College Challenge, which aims to find the school with the most school spirit nationwide.

USF police investigate sexual battery report
The University of South Florida Police Department is investigating a report of a sexual battery on campus. A female resident of USF’s Kappa Hall residence was sexually battered there about 6:50 p.m. Wednesday, police said…

State College System

7 Signs the Barack Obama Campaign Is a Cult
Comedy Central (blog)
Your presidential campaign may be turning into a cult if…2. College professors are administering actual loyalty oaths. A professor at Brevard Community College in Florida has been placed on leave after she allegedly forced her class to sign a pledge that read, “I pledge to vote for President Obama and Democrats up and down the ticket.”

Sinclair lands $12M grant for displaced workers (blog)
The Department of Labor has approved Sinclair as the lead college working with Austin Community College in Texas and Broward College in Florida.

Edison State forges partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters
Fox 4
Edison State College has proudly served as a community leader in Southwest Florida for 50 years, and its commitment to Charlotte County grew stronger Thursday with the announcement that the college became the first Community Partner of the Charlotte location for Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Sun Coast…

Feds Slap FSCJ With a $515000 Penalty for Mistakes in Granting 
Florida State College at Jacksonville owes the federal government a $515,000 penalty on top of millions more in errantly awarded Pell Grants. The college expects to pay $4.7 million for students who received Pell Grants or federal loans they shouldn’t have during a two-year period, according to data provided by an FSCJ spokesman Tuesday…

Hillsborough Community College wins grant for worker training
Tampa Bay Business Journal
Hillsborough Community College was awarded an $842,000 grant from the United States Department of Labor to address a critical shortage of skilled workers in the advanced manufacturing industry…

Voter registration rally thrills MDC campus (registration)
What seemed like a flash mob was part of a major voter registration effort, organized by the college administration. Several hundred students from MDC’s eight campuses came together to highlight the importance of voting in November’s national election…

Independent Colleges and Universities

Interactive history of native Americans on view in Crisp-Ellert Art Museum
St. Augustine Record
With the help of Harrell Fletcher, Associate Professor and the Founder of the Art and Social Practice Master of Fine Art Program at Portland State University, Flagler College has created an interactive exhibit that allows visitors to view artifacts, sip native drinks and cruise amongst actual sites of an entirely different culture that lived along the cobblestone streets…

Museum hopes to curate new volunteers
Florida Today
The event will include refreshments provided by Florida Institute of Technology, with which the museum merged last year, as well as a short program by volunteers about the institution…

Fans gather early for Romney waiting to hear him speak at UM
Palm Beach Post
Romney appeared during a “Meet the Candidates” segment on the Univision network, which was taped at the University of Miami and was to be broadcast later in the evening nationwide in Spanish.

A day after rival, Obama speaking at University of Miami
Palm Beach Post
President Barack Obama salutes as he arrives in Miami where he will participate in a Meet the Candidates forum held by Univision at the University of Miami, Thursday, Sept. 20, 2012.

Yip Yap: Noted and Quoted FLHE voices from Around the State

Tilley: Apple’s iOS 6 brings Sandman to your phone
Florida Today
…On Wedbesday, Apple released iOS 6, a free upgrade to the iPhone operating system. Among its many new capabilities is a do-not-disturb feature that does the equivalent of hanging a door sign and calling the front desk. It can be turned on manually or scheduled for recurring times, such as at night. When it’s on, a little moon icon is shown at the top of the phone… Scott Tilley is a professor of software engineering in the Department of Computer Sciences at Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne.

Guantanamo Detainees: The ‘Other’ Victims of 9/11
David Frakt of the Barry University Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law says that the continuing military detention of persons who have been cleared for release is an unjustifiable consequence of the political aspects of the war on terror…

Chipola College Introduces New Athletic Director
WTVY, Dothan
Dr. Steve Givens has been named Athletic Director at Chipola College

Life of Victor Ostrowidzki celebrated
Historic City News
The life of Victor Ostrowidzki will be honored in a special ceremony being held at Flagler College; where the veteran journalist, who served as a White House reporter during the Reagan administration, was director of the Forum on Government and Public …

Fraternity Uses Long iPhone Lines to Raise Money
NBC 6 Miami
No one likes waiting in long lines, especially when the new iPhone is coming out. But one fraternity at Florida Atlantic University is jumping in to help fight juvenile diabetes. “So tonight were going to be standing in line for the iPhone 5 and we’re going to be selling our spots in line and raising money for JDRF which is Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, said Eric Marmer, a Delta Tau Delta member…

Raymond McAllister, FAU ocean engineering pioneer, dies
Raymond F. McAllister, a pioneering educator who co-founded Florida Atlantic University‘s respected ocean engineering department, died Monday at his home in Lighthouse Point of natural causes. He was 89…

UFC 152: Tickets till not sold out. A troubling sign for the UFC?
Toronto Star
“The factor affecting demand is the quality of the main event matchup,” says Steven Salaga, a sports economist at the Florida Institute of Technology

Median Household Income Drops Even More in South Florida
The region’s job cuts helped lower median income and South Florida’s widening income gap — few high earners at the top and a growing number of workers earning low wages — contributed to the dropping median household income, said Jorge Salazar-Carrillo, an economics professor who directs the Center of Economic Research at Florida International University

Is Ringling Museum Grounds Appropriate For Presidential Campaign Rally?
Patch readers wanted to know this week whether the public museum operated by the Florida State University system was appropriate to host the Gov. Mitt Romney rally on Thursday afternoon. The Ringling Museum’s spokesman Scott Gardiner told Patch the campaign event was OK within the museum’s and Florida State University policies…”Ringling is not hosting or sponsoring the Mitt Romney event,” Gardiner continued. “The Ringling Museum is being rented through a business transaction at fair market value.”

Legoland Now Available for Rent
The Ledger
The move makes sense, said Suzan Bunn, an instructor with the Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida. Bunn, who has 30 years of experience in events and sales, said all of the established theme parks in Central Florida host corporate events. “It’s really common, especially during the offseason, for attractions to do these kinds of things,” Bunn said. “It helps them fill in those slow periods of time when they don’t have people coming to the park. They can fill in other business in that time period and obviously make revenue.”

At UF, Cain says he’d be leading Obama if he were nominee
Gainesville Sun
The Herminator put on a show Thursday at the University of Florida. Former Republican presidential contender Herman Cain gave a rousing speech before a crowd of more than 300 at UF as part of his “College Truth Tour.” A rock band opened the event and Cain closed his speech by singing “Believe in Yourself” from the movie “The Wiz.”

University of Florida’s Black grads to celebrate milestone
Florida Courier
Virgil D. Hawkins was denied admission to the University of Florida in 1949, solely on the basis of race. With the help of civil rights leaders and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, he waged a determined, nine-year legal battle against Florida to undo the state’s Jim Crow segregation in higher education…

Patients at teaching hospitals don’t fare worse with trainee doctors, research 
Medical Xpress
(Medical Xpress)—A University of Florida physician and colleagues have “mythbusted” a notion long held in medical circles: patients at teaching hospitals fare worse in July when new medical graduates start their residency training and older residents take on more responsibilities. A large national study revealed no such “July phenomenon” or “July effect”—at least not in the field of neurosurgery. “If anything goes wrong in July, then everyone’s quick to say ‘Do you see? It’s because of the July effect’—but we saw no evidence for that,’ said senior author Dr. Brian Hoh, the William Merz associate professor of neurological surgery at the UF College of Medicine. “This study will raise thoughts and ideas about how we can improve training for residents and improve safety for patients.”

Gainesville singer now knockin’ on fame’s door
Gainesville singer now knockin’ on fame’s door. David “Benji” Kuriakose, who has longtime Gainesville ties, created quite a buzz this week after the former University of Florida student’s strong performance on NBC’s “The Voice.”…

UNF Students launch social networking site
First Coast News
Everyone in technology thinks they have the next big thing, but two University of North Florida Seniors might be right. They launched Open Leaf, an academic social networking site at the beginning of the school year. “I think one time we programmed for like 27 hours straight. Just lots of coffee,” said Co-Founder Eric Nopanen.

Sleep apnea in pregnancy may harm mom, baby (blog)
There is a need for better ways to screen and treat sleep apnea in pregnancy, said study researcher Dr. Judette Louis, an assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of South Florida.

Romney campaign zeroes in on Florida
Washington Times
“It is still just nip and tuck,” said Susan McManus, a political-science professor at the University of South Florida. Ms. McManus said that she thinks Democrats could be “breathing a little easier” given the bounce Mr. Obama received from his party’s convention — but also said Mr. Obama’s hopes could hinge on turning out young voters, who polls suggest are not as excited about voting as they were in 2008.

Campaigns vie for local votes, bucks
Individual donations are an important gauge of a candidate’s electability but don’t necessarily signal the outcome of Election Day, said Seth McKee, a professor of political science at the University of South Florida‘s St. Petersburg campus.

Releases and Web Stories

Paul Ryan plans campaign stops in Florida
Sacramento Bee
MIAMI — Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan will be campaigning in Florida over the weekend. Ryan will attend a rally Saturday morning at the Versailles restaurant in Miami’s Little Havana neighborhood. Later that day, Ryan will attend a town hall at the University of Central Florida in Orlando…

University of Florida joins in national voter registration day festivities
University of Florida
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — On Tuesday, thousands of voters will celebrate the inauguration of a new holiday — National Voter Registration Day — in a massive effort to register voters in all 50 states before Election Day. The University of Florida’s Bob Graham Center for Public Service will join the nationwide festivities hosting “Swing the State: Voter Registration Roundup” from noon to 5 p.m. in Pugh Hall…