Leading an Evolution

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Leading an Evolution

Coach Bill Clark Challenges the Blazers

By Cary EstesPhoto by Steve Wood

Among the items on display in the office of new UAB head football coach Bill Clark is a quote given to him by his father, longtime Alabama high-school coach Ragan Clark, who had received it from his own father: “What a man learns after he thinks he knows it all is what counts.”

Bill Clark says the quote sums up his attitude throughout his nearly 25-year coaching career. “We never arrive. We’re constantly trying to get better,” he says. “That’s the thing we’re trying to teach our guys. Keep learning. Keep evolving. Keep getting better.”

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Liquid Chemistry

Animated gif of bubbling beer and steaming coffee

The Flavorful Science Behind Beer and Coffee

By Clair McLaffertyIllustration by Jessica Huffstutler

If you’ve never heard of zymurgy, you aren’t alone. But if you’ve ever tasted a beer, you’ve experienced it: Zymurgy is the science of fermentation. For Tracy Hamilton, Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Chemistry, zymurgy is also a passion—and the topic of lectures he presents around the country for the American Chemical Society (ACS).

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The Books of Summer

Books of Summer article header

By Charles BuchananIllustrations by Ron Gamble

The firecracker-hot days of an Alabama summer provide the perfect encouragement to get lost in the cool, crisp pages of a good book. But with infinite shelves of reading material available, where do you begin? We asked faculty members in UAB’s Department of English for inspiration, and they shared a few of the titles that sparked their passion for literature.

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Electric Company

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By Charles Buchanan • Photos by Tim Jones and Steve Wood • Video by Jean-Jacques Gaudel



Adam Stermer has been thinking a lot about polyester lately—specifically, how to drape more than 5,000 square feet of it over the façade of the Alys Robinson Stephens Performing Arts Center (ASC) without destroying the structure. “The wind drag created by one sheet of this tremendous amount of fabric would tear the building apart in a mild breeze,” says Stermer, the ASC’s technical director. “So our seamstress spent a week creating eight separate panels, using our largest stage as her workshop.”

Once unfurled, the luminous white fabric will provide a bright backdrop for Light Dreams, the ASC’s nighttime celebration of Birmingham’s artistic and technological creativity. The free, public event returns for its second year on May 8, 9, and 10 with new dimensions: 3-D digital projections, virtual reality, an expanded parade, and more than double the number of glowing, smoking, misting, mesmerizing installations created by 40 local artists.

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