Around IUPUI

Lead pollution from Native Americans attributed to crushing galena for glitter paint, adornments

Kincaid MoundsView print quality image
Native Americans occupied the Kincaid Mounds settlement by Avery Lake in southern Illinois during the Mississippian period. Photo courtesy of Mike Walker, Kincaid Mounds Support Organization

Native American use of galena at Kincaid Mounds, a settlement occupied during the Mississippian period, resulted in more than 1.5 metric tons of lead pollution deposited into a small lake near the Ohio River. New data from IUPUI researchers found the lead did not originate from this southern Illinois settlement, but instead was brought to the site from other Midwest sources.

Archaeologists have long known that Native Americans used galena, a sparkly silvery mineral, for thousands of years, but this is the first time its use has been linked with clear indications of pollution and how much pollution.

Published Oct. 15 in Geology, the study represents the ongoing interdisciplinary research between first author Broxton Bird, an associate professor of geology in the School of Science, and Jeremy Wilson, associate professor of anthropology in the School of Liberal Arts. The researchers extracted sediment cores from Avery Lake to look at Native American impacts on the landscape and detect signals on how they used the land and its resources.

Justice-involved youth at risk of substance use disorders focus of $4.8 million NIH grant

An IU School of Medicine professor received $4.8 million from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to study justice-involved youth experiencing substance use disorders.

As part of the Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network, the work aims to help at-risk youth avoid drug addiction and take positive steps to improve their lives.

Awarded to Matt Aalsma, a professor of pediatrics at the medical school, the five-year grant will allow his team to continue work that is part of IU's Responding to the Addictions Crisis Grand Challenge.

Aalsma and his team have been working with caseworkers and probation departments in Indiana to implement screening for drug use at the time a youth enters the juvenile justice system -- a time when they are most motivated to make a change, according to researchers. Teens who test positive are engaged in evidence-based interventions, and parents and caretakers of the teens are provided with additional resources.

Survey: Skilled, unskilled workers needed as Indiana companies move to automate

Manufacturing View print quality image
Companies across the state report a serious shortage of skilled and unskilled laborers. Photo by Getty Images

The 2019 Indiana Manufacturing Survey, released Oct. 16 and titled "Labor Shortages Hit Home," finds companies across the state are reporting a serious shortage of skilled and unskilled laborers as they move rapidly toward smart manufacturing, known as "Industry 4.0."

Commissioned by Katz, Sapper & Miller, authored by faculty from Indiana University's Kelley School of Business at IUPUI and promoted by the Indiana Manufacturers Association, the annual survey shows that a record number of respondents expect their product markets to grow rapidly in the near future, but many are finding it difficult to attract younger generations of skilled and unskilled workers who are able to replace the wave of retiring baby boomers.

Companies indicate they are substituting capital investments in technology for labor to partially satisfy the demand for skilled workers and to remain competitive. Even with this investment, 48 percent of employers say the number of jobs continues to increase at their organizations, and nearly two-thirds expect the number of skilled jobs to increase as a result of implementing new technologies and automation.

Respondents say current shortage areas include skilled production, such as machinists, craft workers and operators; unskilled production; and supporting roles, such as engineers and planners.

Try the newest dining option at the Campus Center

Burger 305 opened at the IUPUI Campus Center on Sept. 30 as the latest student-choice dining option. Offerings are burgers, including a veggie burger; chicken choices; and sides such as french fries, onion rings and more.

It will be open until Nov. 8. Also, voting is now open to select the next dining option to replace Burger 305. Options are breakfast foods, tacos, specialty baked potatoes and a variety of grilled cheese. Voting ends Nov. 1.

Attend a conference on community-engaged research

The IUPUI Community Engaged Research Group invites students, faculty, staff and community partners from across the state to Indiana University's first systemwide Community Engaged Research One-Day Conference.

The event is both an introduction and celebration of community-engaged research along with a call to action featuring multiple speakers and panels.

The conference will take place from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nov. 8 at the Indianapolis Urban League. View a full schedule and RSVP.