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Erinn Barcomb-Peterson
KU News Service
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University grieves death of graduate student, teaching assistant Nate Smith

Tue, 08/12/2014

LAWRENCE — The University of Kansas community is mourning the July 1 death of Nathaniel “Nate” Gene Smith, a doctoral student and teaching assistant.

Smith, of Lawrence, was nearing completion of a doctorate in the Department of Applied Behavioral Science. In addition to teaching, Smith advised and mentored students in the program. He was 38.

“On behalf of the entire KU community, I extend my sympathy to Nate Smith’s family, friends, and the colleagues and students to whom he was so dedicated,” said Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little.

Smith was a research assistant in the Life Span Institute for a project on self-instruction for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. His primary interest was in human services and staff management in programs for those with autism and intellectual and developmental disabilities.

In addition to belonging to many professional and campus organizations, Smith was a consultant for Sloan Publishing and a guest reviewer for the journal The Behavior Analyst.

“The department has lost a productive, engaging and generous scientist, scholar and colleague, whose promise marks a tragic loss to our field,” said Edward Morris, professor and chair of the Department of Applied Behavioral Science. “We extend our condolences to his family and friends, peers and mentors, and those whose lives he touched with sincerity, charity, good will and wit.”

A celebration of life will take place Sept. 6 near Smith’s hometown in Bay County, Michigan.



When looking to tackle the issue of obesity in rural America, where should we start? The answer is not what you might think. Empathy, says Christie Befort, an associate professor at KU who has just won a $10 million award from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute to investigate solutions to rural obesity. Many physicians are embarrassed talking about weight—especially in a small town where everybody knows each other, Befort says. By providing obesity treatment options in rural primary care, she plans to start a conversation, and maybe a revolution, in rural health care. For more details on Befort's efforts, check out the 2015 Chancellor's Report: http://bit.ly/1D5A5MO and her video: http://bit.ly/1C5xYZa Tags: #KUcommunities #Obesity #Health #Rural #Midwest Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute - PCORI

Whistling the night away. #exploreKU shot by saamanthathomas on insta. http://t.co/JFZcj31X8h
Explore KU: Experience a KU Men's Basketball tradition It’s explosive. It’s dramatic. It’s intimidating. It’s a KU tradition (see more at http://bit.ly/KUtraditions) simply known as the Confetti Toss. But it creates a primal eruption of fan enthusiasm at the opening of every KU men’s basketball game at Allen Fieldhouse. It starts as the visiting team is introduced on court. The KU student section is visibly bored and unimpressed. The entire section under the north basket holds up University Daily Kansans — making the point they’d rather read the newspaper than even look at the other team. They shake and rustle the student newspapers. Then the moment they were waiting for arrives — the Jayhawks enter the court. All Rock Chalk breaks loose. Newspapers, confetti and thousands of thundering voices soar into already charged atmosphere of KU’s hallowed basketball arena. The confetti hits its high point, near the banner on the north wall reading “Pay Heed, All Who Enter: Beware of the Phog.” And the confetti rains back into the stands, onto the court and into the memories of all at hand. It’s time to play.


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