Student enjoys Internship at DreamWorks Animation

By Rich Schneider, IU Communications Specialist:

When Kung Fu Panda — one of the most successful animated franchises in the world — returns next year with a new comedy adventure, fans of DreamWorks Animation movies are likely to rush to theaters to see “Kung Fu Panda 3.”

But Mary Glumb won’t be among them. It’s not that she doesn’t think she’ll like “Kung Fu Panda 3.” It’s just that she’s already seen it — or most of it.

Mary Glumb

Mary Glumb

The sophomore computer graphics technology student in the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI began a three-month internship Sept. 14 in Glendale, Calif., at DreamWorks Animation.

Assigned to the company’s marketing department, Glumb got to watch “Kung Fu Panda 3” as part of her job.


“It wasn’t finished yet,” she said. “I was watching the movie when it reached a part where nothing was moving, and I realized ‘this scene isn’t done being made yet.'”

While the internship began just two months ago, you could say it dates back 30 years to a diner in Chicago where Glumb’s mom was working. One of the other employees was a man who went on to become an executive producer at DreamWorks Animation.

When Glumb became interested in computer graphics about three years ago, her mom reached out to her friend from that dinner. He invited Glumb and her family to come to California, tour DreamWorks Animation and meet some of the people who work there.

“When we met him at DreamWorks, we got to go up to the second floor where all the executives are, which was exciting because no one is allowed up there,” Glumb said. “He talked about what jobs they have and what it’s like to work there. Before leaving, I met with the recruiting office and talked with them about the process for applying for an internship.”

While Glumb’s family connection likely helped, it only helped her gain consideration as a would-be intern. It took three applications (and rejections) before she was accepted on her fourth try.

Glumb says she entered the computer graphics technology program thinking she wanted to do something with animated movies, reflecting a passion for art, drawing, and creating comics and storyboards.

“In high school, I took a digital design class that really started everything,” she said. “Once I took that, I realized what I wanted to do. I wanted to do something with animated movies.”

On Sept. 14, Glumb joined 19 others beginning an internship at DreamWorks. After dealing with administrative details like email accounts and computer access, the new batch of interns saw the perks like free snack and coffee booths on every floor and the “lagoon,” a canal that runs through grassy areas of the campus.

The internship has been a valuable experience, Glumb says. “I think it’s important to be in the working world, to get to talk to bosses and other co-workers. I really haven’t done that before.”

She also plans to meet and connect with as many others at DreamWorks as she can before her internship ends in December.

Before she arrived at DreamWorks, Glumb says, she was set on using her computer graphics skills to work on movies as an animator.

“Now that I’m in the marketing section, I am leaning toward marketing,” she said. “I’ve found I really enjoy it. I never thought in a million years because I had never taken an interest in it. Now that I’m actually doing it, I enjoy it. Marketing is a good fit for me.”

Amos Brown: Gone but never to be forgotten

By Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist:

Amos Brown’s passing has left a hole in the mind and soul of the city of Indianapolis.

“His intellect enabled Amos to speak with authority on a wide range of topics. He is literally irreplaceable,” said Vernon A. Williams, communication and engagement strategist in the IUPUI Office of Community Engagement. Read more…

Of pool tables, table tennis and furniture design students

By Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist

If you are looking for some custom home game furniture, perhaps you should check out Herron School of Art and Design.

It has paid off for Brunswick two years in a row.

That’s Brunswick as in air hockey, foosball, putting greens, pool tables and table tennis tables. Read more…

That new talking Barbie – not quite A.I., and childproofing is advised

By Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist:

Original Barbie

Original Barbie, picture taken at Children’s Museum 2010

My fondness for all things Barbie and a New York Times headline announcing a new talking version of the doll with the powers of artificial intelligence hooked me into writing this IUPUIntelligence post.

But my initial infatuation with the special effects of Hello Barbie dissipated as my understanding of the mechanics behind the magic grew. And then a “CSI: Cyber” episode airing days after the article sparked my security concerns.

So I am issuing this parental alert: Think twice about toy safety in this age of smartphones and Wi-Fi. A “live” Barbie might not suit younger children still learning what is real and what isn’t.

Both the original Barbara Millicent Roberts — Barbie’s full name — and the new Hello Barbie are creations by parents looking for a better girl’s toy. (I  couldn’t resist showing a few photos from my personal gallery of Barbie Pictures. Enjoy!)

Back in 1959, Barbie creator Ruth Handler wanted to give her young daughter a 3-D version of the teenage paper dolls she and her friends held dear. A creator of the ToyTalk technology that brings Hello Barbie to life was motivated by his 6-year-old daughter’s question, “Can I talk to my stuffed rabbit on Skype?”

Read more…

Faculty member becomes one of the youngest African-Americans to become a tenured professor in computer science at a research university

By Rich Schneider, IU Communication Specialist:

Count competitiveness among the qualities that distinguish James Hill, an associate professor of computer and information science at IUPUI.

It was competitiveness that helped motivate the self-described jock.

“Growing up, I played sports,” Hill said. “During the summer, I played baseball; when baseball was over, I played football; and when football was over, I played basketball.” He excelled in track and field: He is a three-time All-American and was ranked as the top long jumper for his age at 14. At 15 and 16, he placed among the top eight long jumpers in the U.S. When he competed in a Tennessee state high school track-and-field championship meet, he did so well in five events he could have placed third if he had entered himself as a team.

And it was that spirit of competitiveness that inspired him as he pursued a Ph.D. in computer science, which led to him becoming one of the youngest African-Americans to become a tenured professor in computer science at a research university in the United States.

Read more…

Herron artists and ArtPrize boxes: ‘Intersections’ back with ‘Minimalist Division’

By Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist:



It’s ArtPrize time, and once again IUPUI’s Herron School of Art and Design is represented among the artists whose works fuel the annual international show that offers the world’s largest purse for an art competition.

ArtPrize Seven, running through Oct. 11, is expected to draw 400,000 to 500,000 people to Grand Rapids, Mich., to view more than 1,500 pieces of art displayed at 160 venues across three square miles of the city.

Last year, Herron professor Anila Quayyum Agha made history, earning a record $300,000 by winning the 2014 ArtPrize Public Vote Grand Prize and earning a tie vote for the Juried Grand Prize.

Agha’s “Intersections” entry — a large, laser-cut wooden cube that hangs from a ceiling and is lit from inside with one lightbulb, casting intricate shadows on walls and the floor — wowed both the jury and the thousands of art lovers who submitted ballots for the $200,000 public prize. It was the first time both the public and the jury agreed on their grand prize choices.

This year, “Intersections” is back at ArtPrize 2015, albeit in a new-and-improved form: an exact replica made of steel.

Read more…

Pull out those red pens and celebrate National Punctuation Day

by Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist:

Commas save lives

Sign in IU School of Liberal Arts dean’s office.

This week marks the 11th anniversary of the day set aside as “a celebration of the lowly comma, correctly used quotation marks, and other proper uses of periods, semicolons, and the ever-mysterious ellipsis.”

Each Sept. 24 is National Punctuation Day, and this year the annual writing contest established by the day’s founder has ties to Indiana. And IUPUI has the perfect place to celebrate.

“We’re not doing an essay this year,” said Jeff Rubin, aka Punctuation Man. “We’re doing an homage to David Letterman, and we are going to have people do a Top 10 list. The question is: What are the top 10 ways proper punctuation has affected your life?”

Read more…

Nursing dean reflects on journey to IUPUI

By Rich Schneider, IU Communications Specialist:

The career of Indiana University School of Nursing Dean Robin Newhouse has been marked by purpose and serendipity, a combination that brought her to Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

“In some ways my trajectory here has been somewhat unexpected, but it is clear that it’s not,” said Newhouse, who became dean of the IU School of Nursing on July 1. “What appears to be serendipity really has been very purposeful and absolutely right.

Robin Newhouse

Robin Newhouse

She had not been thinking of leaving Maryland, where she and her husband had lived their entire lives, nor their home, which was a part of her grandfather’s farm where she and her husband, Frank, had lived since 1979. She also hadn’t thought of leaving the University of Maryland, where she had spent eight years, the last four as a professor and chair of the nursing school’s Department of Organizational Systems and Adult Health.

“It was one of those things,” Newhouse said. “I was not looking for a dean position, but a colleague I consult with asked if I would consider it. Being selected as a candidate for the job was an honor.”

When she visited the nursing school, Newhouse said she was struck by what she saw.

“The quality of the faculty and staff is very high, with world-class researchers, teachers and leaders who are well-known for their impact and scholarship,” Newhouse said. But the character of the individuals who comprise the school impressed her most of all, she said. “They are good people.”

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Book explores teen novels’ portrayals of autism to help libraries choose wisely

By Rich Schneider, IU Communications Specialist:

A new book detailing teen novels that feature characters with autism will help libraries select books that help young readers understand the disorder and foster acceptance, says one of the three authors, an associate professor at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Autism in Young Adult Novels: An Annotated Bibliography

“Autism in Young Adult Novels: An Annotated Bibliography,” co-authored by IUPUI’s Rachel Applegate and Marilyn Irwin.

“Autism in Young Adult Novels: An Annotated Bibliography” identifies novels published between 1968 and 2013 that have autism content and evaluates how the lives of characters with autism are portrayed, said Rachel Applegate, chair of the Department of Library and Information Science in the School of Informatics and Computing.

“This is a book that focuses on the autism spectrum, and there hasn’t been anything like it before,” she said

The target audience for the book is librarians who will be able to use it to select high-quality, engaging novels that positively and accurately portray autism and use those works to educate young adults about the disorder, Applegate said.

Awareness of autism has grown significantly, but teens often don’t know much about it, the authors said. With greater awareness and understanding comes greater acceptance, they said.

Read more…

Keeping the fun in family reunions

by Diane Brown, IU Communications Specialist

My family reunion is just a few days away.

Perhaps you are like me and look forward to such an occasion with a little bit of apprehension. Family get-togethers have the potential for making memories worthy of a Hallmark movie — or an episode of “Cops.”

One of the great things about working on a university campus is that you have access to outstanding professional minds who can shed practical insight on numerous life situations.

Read more…