Buff briefs | Live free this weekend




Live free this weekend

The University of Colorado at Boulder’s student-run Oasis group and CU’s counseling and psychological services department are hosting the second annual Live Free Weekend: 96-Hour Sobriety Challenge Sept. 23-27.

The event challenges the CU-Boulder community — students, faculty and staff — to 96 hours of abstinence from alcohol and recreational drugs. Activities are being provided throughout the weekend to demonstrate how substance-abuse-free lifestyles can be fun, engaging and rewarding.

“It has been really exciting to see students challenge each other and come together as a community to prove that college students are about more than beer pong,” said Corey Wiggins, health and safety director of CU Student Government.

Among the events is the “Clear Heart, Clear Mind” gathering, hosted by the Center for Multicultural Affairs and CU Student Government, where attendees will learn about the various philanthropic and community service groups on campus. The event will be held from noon to 2 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 24, in the fifth-floor lounge of the University Memorial Center. Free frozen yogurt will be served.

Also on Friday, a kickball match with freshman athletes will take place at Folsom Field from 4 to 5:30 p.m. There will be free pizza and soda along with Buffs tickets and gear giveaways.

On Saturday, Sept. 25, volunteers are invited to participate in building approximately 400 feet of multiuse trail at the Betasso Preserve west of Boulder. Transportation and food will be provided. Registration is required, and details can be found at www.colorado.edu/vrc/GIVEADAY.htm.

To sign the pledge and see a complete list of events, visit www.colorado.edu/livefreeweekend.

Campus re-accredited

CU-Boulder has been re-accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, or NCA.

NCA accreditation is a process that universities undergo every 10 years to ensure specified standards are met and to demonstrate the quality of the infrastructure that supports academic programs, research and other activities. The University of Colorado has been accredited by the NCA since 1913 and was officially notified of continuing accreditation status on Aug. 18.

“With its ambitious plans, its effective leaders, and its productive faculty and staff, the university is poised to become an even greater asset for the state of Colorado and the nation,” the site team stated in the report.

This year’s accreditation was without stipulation or follow-up, and is the result of more than two years of preparatory work by the university. The NCA’s site team visited the campus Feb. 22-24.

The site team’s report, the notice of accreditation, and all materials prepared by CU-Boulder for the review are available online at www.colorado.edu/accreditation.

CU lands $6.7 million for sun mission

A team from the University of Colorado at Boulder has been awarded $6.7 million from NASA to design, develop and test instruments for the fastest space probe ever built, one that will orbit 22 times closer to the sun than Earth and well inside the orbit of Mercury, to better understand how the sun ticks.

The small-car-sized satellite known as Solar Probe Plus is slated for launch in 2018. The probe will take five years to reach its closest orbit of the sun — zipping to within four million miles of it — in a region that has never been visited by a spacecraft. The satellite will be equipped with a high-tech heat shield to protect it from the searing 2,550-degree temperatures.

At its closest point to the sun, the spacecraft will be traveling at 400,000 miles per hour — more than 100 miles per second.

The CU team will design and test key components of the electrical and magnetic field instruments, including the spacecraft’s antennas and the onboard signal and data processing hardware.

For more information on the Solar Probe Plus mission visit http://solarprobe.gsfc.nasa.gov.

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