University of Connecticut

Image of the week


Oak tree across from Horsebarn Hill arena.

CAHNR in the news

newsprintSelect the bolded names below to access recent media coverage of CAHNR people, places and programs.

Bangalore Mirror. 7-10-15. Mentioned that the fat in egg yolks helped to reduce LDL cholesterol levels, according to a UConn egg study.

WVIT-30 (video). 7-16-15. Broadcast a story on the mile-a-minute vine in which Senior Cooperative Extension Educator Donna Ellis discussed the invasive plant.

The Baltimore Sun.  7-20-15. Called the Korey Stringer Institute “a leader in heatstroke treatment for athletes and the military.”

WFSB-TV3. 7-20-15. Quoted Donna Ellis, a senior cooperative extension educator, about the dangers of touching the hogweed plant, which has invaded parts of Connecticut. (more…)

Historical Image of the week: Gulley Hall, then and now.

Gulley Hall (1908) And Greenhouse, Connecticut State College

Ivy covered three story brick building with lamp post and sidewalk in front. Greenhouse beyond building. Photo by Jerauld A. Manter, 1938. From the Dodd center collection.

Gulley Hall (1908), UConn, Storrs

Photo by Kevin Noonan, 2015.

AHS Honors Scholar receives prestigious national scholarship

 Irini Agaraj working in the lab.

Irini Agaraj working in the lab.

A spring 2015 CAHNR graduate is the 2015 recipient of the prestigious Association of Genetic Technologists’ Foundation for Genetic Technology Barbara J. Kaplan Scholarship. An Honors Scholar with a 3.9 GPA, Irini Agaraj recently completed her BS degree in the Department of Allied Health Sciences’ Diagnostic Genetic Sciences (DGS) program in cytogenetics.

“I feel extremely honored to receive this scholarship,” Agaraj says. “It is a wonderful recognition.”

The competitive national award is based on outstanding scholastic performance, volunteer work, initiative and potential to contribute to the profession.

“Working with Irini as a student and an honors advisee was never considered ‘work,’ but rather an enjoyable conversation,” says Judy Brown, assistant professor in residence and director of the department’s master’s program in health care genetics. “Irini is articulate, has a great sense of humor and above is all kind and respectful.”

“Over the past 24 years as program director of the DGS program, I have graduated over 500 students in cytogenetics and molecular diagnostics, and we’ve had some really amazing students,” says Martha Keagle. “Irini is in the top three. She is an outstanding student. Just stellar.”

Agaraj recently completed a six-month clinical internship at New York Presbyterian Hospital at Columbia University Medical Center that included peripheral blood, prenatal, cancer, and FISH cytogenetic rotations, in addition to a research project focusing on the efficacy of OncoScan for the detection of chromosomal abnormalities in glioma samples. The project compared methods of genetic testing of oncology specimens.


Tools for Healthy Living offers 4-H’ers opportunity to explore principles of a healthy home

4-H'ers show their enthusiasm during a lesson about clutter

4-H’ers show their enthusiasm during a lesson about clutter

Tools for Healthy Living, a curriculum about healthy homes and food safety, has been accepted as a national peer-reviewed curriculum by the National 4-H Council. The curriculum, designed for students in grades four through six who are in after-school 4-H programs, was developed by UConn Extension as part of a five-year Sustainable Community Project grant from USDA’s CYFAR (Children, Youth, and Families at Risk) program.

To implement this curriculum, a trained facilitator helps students explore the principles of a healthy home and learn how they can help to make their own homes and their communities healthier. According to federal housing, environmental, and public health authorities, a healthy home is clean, dry, safe, in good repair, with fresh air, and free of pests and dangerous chemicals.

In addition to explaining the principles of a healthy home, the curriculum introduces students to the following environmental health and food safety topics:

  • Lead poisoning
  • Asthma triggers
  • Mold and moisture
  • Pests and pesticides
  • Smoking
  • Clutter
  • Bacteria in food
  • Food safety and food temperature
  • Food safety and cleanliness

Students also learn how to act as advocates for a healthy home.

For more information about the “Tools for Healthy Living” curriculum contact Sharon Gray (

By Joan Bothell