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  • October 18th, 2021


THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA ANNOUNCES FREE APP WEEK, OCT. 18-22 – The University of Alabama is waiving application fees for domestic and international prospective students from Monday, Oct. 18, through Friday, Oct. 22. During Free App Week, UA aims to empower prospective students by removing financial barriers that might keep them from applying. For more information, visit the Free App Week website for undergraduates, or the Graduate School’s Free App Week website. To arrange an interview, contact Shane Dorrill, UA Strategic Communications, at

2021 HOMECOMING PARADE TIME ANNOUNCED – The University of Alabama’s homecoming parade will be at 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 23, followed by the Alabama vs. Tennessee football game, which kicks off at 6 p.m. The traditional pep rally and bonfire will be at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 22, on the Quad. This year’s theme is “Together We Rise.” For more information, contact Caroline Gazzara-McKenzie, UA Strategic Communications, at

DESPITE LINGERING PANDEMIC, STATE BUSINESSES REMAIN OPTIMISTIC – While not as confident in the economic outlook as they were earlier this year, state business leaders remain optimistic in growth through year’s end, according to the latest quarterly survey by The University of Alabama. The UA Center for Business and Economic Research’s latest Alabama Business Confidence Index, taken in the first half of September, showed business leaders are moderately confident for improving economic conditions in Alabama but are on the fence about the direction of the United States’ economy. For more information, contact Adam Jones, UA Strategic Communications, at

UA RESEARCHERS CREATING DIGITAL EXHIBITION OF BIRMINGHAM ARTIST’S WORK – Using cutting-edge imaging technology and digital curation, a project involving The University of Alabama will allow the work and stories of a well-regarded Southern artist to be preserved digitally for future generations. The mapping and digital documentation of artist Joe Minter’s work will be the first large-scale application of this sophisticated technology to record and preserve an art installation. Minter, a found-object artist in Birmingham, tells the story of his life, and a cultural movement, in a collection he calls “African Village in America” built on nearly 1 acre around his home in Birmingham, Alabama. For more information, contact Adam Jones, UA Strategic Communications, at

UA TO HOLD FALL 2021 COMMENCEMENT – The University of Alabama will hold fall commencement ceremonies Dec. 10 and 11 at Coleman Coliseum on the UA campus. More than 1,700 candidates are expected to be in attendance for the three ceremonies. The ceremonies will follow a modified model UA used to facilitate safe and successful commencement exercises in the past. Tickets will not be required for guests and there is no limit to the number of guests a graduate can invite. For more information, visit UA’s commencement website or contact  Caroline Gazzara-McKenzie, UA Strategic Communications, at

HAUNTING AT THE MUSEUM RETURNS WITH EXPANDED SCHEDULE  – The Alabama Museum of Natural History and the Gorgas House Museum, both on the UA campus, will hold the Halloween tradition Haunting at the Museum Oct. 25-29. At the Gorgas House, visitors can learn about the spooky and even macabre stories associated with the house, while at the Museum of Natural History, visitors can see 25 gravestones indicating extinct mussels from Alabama. For more information, contact Rebecca Johnson, UA Museums, at

BATS: DANGEROUS, BLIND BLOOD-SUCKERS OR HELPFUL, BIOLOGICAL PEST CONTROL? – As Halloween approaches, so do stories of vampire bats. But most bats aren’t looking for human blood, according to Dr. John Abbott, chief curator and director of the Department of Museum Research and Collections at The University of Alabama. Bats are found all over the world, but only two types that range in the tropics are blood-feeders. Abbott said this rumor has unfortunately caused bats to gain a bad reputation when they’re really one of the most helpful mammals in existence. To schedule an interview, contact Abbott at

UA RISE CENTER HOSTS BUY FOR RISE FUNDRAISER – UA’s RISE Center will host its annual BUY for RISE fundraiser Oct. 29 and 30 and will feature numerous bargains from dozens of local retailers on everything from clothing to home décor. The fundraiser kicks off with a preview party Oct. 29 where attendees will have an opportunity to purchase items at significant discounts — 75% off the lowest marked prices. The event will take place at RISE Center, located at 600 Johnny Stallings Drive, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. The general admission sale Oct. 30 from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m. is free and items are discounted 90%. For more information, contact Bryant Welbourne, UA Strategic Communications, at


WHAT DOES FDA AUTHORIZATION OF E-CIGARETTE MEAN FOR TOBACCO INDUSTRY? – “The authorization by the Food and Drug Administration of cigarette maker Reynolds American’s Vuse Solo e-cigarette is a win-win for the company, which can now cite the FDA’s description of Vuse as an ‘innovative and potentially less harmful alternative to traditional tobacco products,’ even as it continues to promote cigarette brands like Newport, Camel and Winston,” said Dr. Alan Blum, director of UA’s Center for the Study of Tobacco and Society. “Any potential benefit to public health from Vuse is unclear, however, because it is more likely to be taken up by teenagers and others who have never smoked than by people trying to stop smoking. Moreover, the success rate of smoking cessation by using alternative forms of nicotine is not that good. Even if switching to e-cigarettes may help some people stop smoking, by far the least expensive and most proven method of smoking cessation is going cold turkey. But nobody makes any money off that.” To schedule an interview with Blum, contact him 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.