Grawemeyer Award prize could be reduced in size

The University of Louisville Board of Trustees authorized the university to reduce the monetary prize of the Grawemeyer Awards.  The awards are given for great ideas in five fields: music composition, world order, education, religion and psychology. The board approved a recommendation to cut the 2011 prizes in half, should the value of the prize fund not increase in the near future.
The present monetary prize is set at $200,000 per award, but the endowment fund has run a deficit in recent years, and the university is looking for ways to reduce the costs of the awards program.
Speaking to the U of L Board of Trustees, Provost Shirley Willihnganz suggested several possible remedies.  The board authorized U of L to limit the purse to no less than $100,000, but no more than $200,000.  The actual award amount would not be released to the public, but would be based on the amount in the fund.  Willihnganz likened this to the Nobel Prizes, whose award amounts are not announced and are based on market conditions.
Alternatively, the prizes could be suspended for a year, allowing the fund’s balance to recover.  Willihnganz said U of L would possibly host a symposium of past winners during that off year.
The Grawemeyer Awards were started in 1984 by H. Charles Grawemeyer, with an initial endowment of $9 million.  Nominations for the awards are reviewed by international and local panels.
Willihnganz said that no decisions had been made about the future of the awards, but that the Board of Trustees’ recommendation gave the university “flexibility to do what we need to do.”

PEACC to hold presentation of The Vagina Monolgues

From Feb. 11 to 13, the group known as Prevention, Education and Advocacy on Campus and in the Community will sponsor a production of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues.” It will be held in the University of Louisville Playhouse. The show will feature performances by students, faculty, staff and community members. The show will begin at 7 p.m. each night. Tickets are $10 for the general public and $8 with a current student ID. All proceeds will go to benefit the PEACC organization, as well as victims of the violence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Speed’s KPPC receives $9 million in stimulus funds

On Monday, Feb. 8, Governor Steve Beshear announced the Kentucky Pollution Prevention Center, based in the J.B. Speed School of Engineering, has received $9 million from the U.S. Department of Energy, from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  The KPPC’s Kentucky Energy Efficiency Program for Schools is designed to reduce the energy consumption of public schools.  Under Kentucky Law, every Kentucky school district must enroll in KEEPS, in an effort to reduce energy costs.