WEST AKRON — Project GRAD Akron will host the Third Annual Snacks & Educational Fun With Santa event Dec. 1 from 9 a.m. to noon at Perkins Middle School, 630 Mull Ave. The event is free and open to Buchtel cluster elementary students and their families. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Activities will include holiday craft-making, storytelling and reading, educational games and informational booths providing community resources for parents. New this year will be the sixth-grade orientation for current fifth-grade students and their parents. The orientation will take place from 9 to 10 a.m. in the auditorium. Snacks will be served. Santa Claus will arrive at 9:30 a.m., and children may get their picture taken with him. For more information, call Laurie Curfman at (330) 761-3055 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
KENT — Kent State University (KSU) alumnus Ilan Alon will present “The Evolving Socio-Economic and Political Landscape of International Business in China” Dec. 3 at 7 p.m. in the Governance Chambers of the KSU Student Center as part of the Fiedler-BorgWarner Speaker Series. His presentation will focus on critical economic, social and political changes that affect business in China, an emerging economic superpower, and highlight how these changes affect the human condition and the atmosphere for investors, consumers, entrepreneurs and laborers. Alon received a Ph.D. from KSU in 1998 and has since taught Chinese master of business administration programs at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Fundan University and China Europe International Business School. He also has published 20 books and 80 peer-reviewed articles. Alon established the Rollins China Center at Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla., in 2005 and serves as the Distinguished Petters Chair of International Business and executive director. The center hosts international conferences, seminars and visiting scholars to increase “global citizenship and responsible leadership through educational and cross-cultural exchanges between China and the United States,” according to the Web site. Alon is the 2007 visiting scholar at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. For more information, call (330) 672-1104.
DOWNTOWN AKRON — The University of Akron recently announced financial gifts totaling $32.4 million have been recorded for fiscal year 2006-07, which surpasses the previous record of $27.4 million for 2000-01. The 2006-07 amount is an increase of 28 percent from the $25.2 million recorded for the previous fiscal year. An average of $23 million for the recent five-year period is an increase of 41 percent over the previous five-year period.
DOWNTOWN AKRON — The University of Akron Research Foundation (UARF) has received the University Economic Development Association’s 2007 Award of Excellence in Technology Commercialization for its contribution to higher education and regional economic growth. UARF, a UA-affiliated nonprofit organization that commercializes research at UA, bridges gaps between industry and UA, facilitating the transfer of technology to private companies. It also provides intellectual property, commercialization and enterprise creation support to UA faculty, staff and students, and other Northeast Ohio groups. UARF’s efforts have led to substantial increases in both research funding and licensing revenue, according to UA officials.