UA Preview

  • April 12th, 2021


LIFE-SIZE ELEPHANT STATUE INSTALLED OUTSIDE BRYANT-DENNY STADIUM Tuska, a 19-foot tall, seven-ton bronze elephant statue, was recently given to UA by the Westervelt Company and will be installed at the southeast corner of University Boulevard and Wallace Wade Avenue in front of Bryant-Denny Stadium April 12. Tuska was sculpted by English artist Terry Matthews and has resided at the NorthRiver Yacht Club since September 2000. The Tuska Plaza project included new landscaping, a large pedestal for Tuska to stand on, sidewalks surrounding the statue and lighting elements for nighttime viewing. For more information, contact Bryant Welbourne, UA Strategic Communications, at 

BAMA BLITZ TO BOOST UA PASSION PROJECTS; SET FOR APRIL 12-15Bama Blitz, The University of Alabama’s annual online fundraising event, will begin at noon April 12 and end at 11:59 p.m. April 15. Alumni, faculty, staff, students and supporters of UA can help build tomorrow’s legends by giving to one of several unique and impactful passion projects. In 2020, Bama Blitz raised more than $2.15 million. For more information, contact Deidre Stalanlker, UA Strategic Communications, at

CCS SEEKS TO FUND NEW MILITARY SCHOLARSHIP THROUGH BAMA BLITZAs part of Bama Blitz, UA’s College of Continuing Studies is seeking funding to endow a new scholarship for active duty and veteran military service members and their dependents. If enough funding is raised, the scholarship will be made available to any active duty and veteran military service members and their dependents that are enrolled in online programs through the college. For more information, contact Jamon Smith, UA Strategic Communications, at

CCN STUDENT BALANCE RELIEF FUND FEATURED IN BAMA BLITZTo ensure financial constraints don’t delay or prevent future health care heroes from earning their degrees, the Capstone College of Nursing established a new program to assist nursing students. The CCN Student Balance Relief Fund will provide financial aid to nursing students with small balances on their accounts to allow them to continue their education and earn a degree. The fund is CCN’s passion project for this year’s Bama Blitz. For more information, contact Bryant Welbourne, UA Strategic Communications, at 

BAND TO APPEAR IN ICONIC HOLIDAY TRADITION WITH BAMA BLITZ SUPPORTThe University of Alabama’s Million Dollar Band is set to perform in the 2021 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this fall. To make the trip possible, the College of Arts and Sciences is asking for the public’s help in raising funds, through the annual Bama Blitz campaign, that would alleviate costs for the band’s 400 members to travel to, and participate in, the event. For more information, contact Shane Dorrill, UA Strategic Communications, at

STATE BUSINESS LEADERS EXPECTING ECONOMIC GROWTHIn the latest quarterly survey by researchers at The University of Alabama, business leaders in the state are feeling more encouraged about the economy than they have since the global pandemic began. The UA Center for Business and Economic Research’s most recent Alabama Business Confidence Index shows that local business leaders have strong expectations for economic growth in the second quarter of 2021.For more information, contact Adam Jones, UA Strategic Communications, at

RISE CENTER TO HOLD GOLF, TENNIS FUNDRAISERS UA’s RISE Center will hold the RISE Tournament of Champions April 22-23 at NorthRiver Yacht Club and a women’s doubles tennis tournament April 22 at the PARA Tuscaloosa Tennis Center, both benefiting therapeutic services provided by RISE. The RISE Tournament of Champions is a four-person scramble, handicaps required, with morning or afternoon tee times both days. Registration for the golf tournament starts at $2,750 for a four-person team. New to RISE’s fundraising efforts is a women’s doubles tennis tournament. The cost per team is $150. For more information, contact Tabby Brown, UA College of Human Environmental Sciences, at 

NEARLY A THIRD OF MOBILE BAY MARSHES GONE SINCE 1980S, STUDY FINDS About half a football field of marshes on the edges of Mobile Bay vanished annually over the past 35 years, according to a study by researchers at The University of Alabama. The study of satellite and aerial images from 1984 to 2019 showed a loss of about 30 percent of saltwater marshes, critical for the health of oceans. The project is the first to apply analyzation of satellite images through computer modeling to quantify not only the change in marshes, but to show how land along the bay changed through time, providing detailed, annual information that fine-tuned models with the ability to show how future actions should influence marsh and wetland habitat. For more information, contact Adam Jones, UA Strategic Communications, at


EVEN WITH RECENT FUNDING CHANGES, ALABAMA HAS INFRASTRUCTURE NEEDS – Legislative foresight by Alabama lawmakers in enacting the Rebuild Alabama Act reformulated the gas tax and addressed both the contribution of the infrastructure serving electric vehicles, and ensured that local governments could expand and participate in improving their road networks. The act helped funding for infrastructure needs weather the pandemic, so far, but needs remain, said Steven Polunsky, director of the Alabama Transportation Policy Research Center. “Even in normal times, taking into account technological advances and shifts in commuting patterns,  the economic and societal needs for resilient transportation infrastructure far exceed the ability to provide, and that’s before considering new pressures from the rapid expansion of e-commerce, supply chain shortages, extreme weather events, and equity issues,” he said. For more information, contact Steve Polunsky at

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The University of Alabama, part of The University of Alabama System, is the state’s flagship university. UA shapes a better world through its teaching, research and service. With a global reputation for excellence, UA provides an inclusive, forward-thinking environment and nearly 200 degree programs on a beautiful, student-centered campus. A leader in cutting-edge research, UA advances discovery, creative inquiry and knowledge through more than 30 research centers. As the state’s largest higher education institution, UA drives economic growth in Alabama and beyond.