October 22, 2014

Biology Students Awarded Grant, Attend Research Meeting

Deborah O’Dell, associate professor of biology, and her research student Virginia Lyle King attended the Virginia Academy of Science Undergraduate Research Meeting on Oct. 18 at Virginia State University in Petersburg, Virginia. O’Dell assisted in judging student presentations for the VAS Undergraduate Research Grant. King presented her work with Riley Scalzo on “Cell Phone Radiation Induced Gene Expression in Human Glioblastoma Cells.”  King and Scalzo were awarded one of the $500 grants to support their work.

UMW Research Team Presents at Public Sociology Conference

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People’s Climate March, September 21, 2014

Undergraduates Beatrice Ohene-Okae (Environmental Science) and Zakaria Kronemer (Philosophy) presented their research project, “Studying Carbon Violence,” with Assistant Professor of Sociology Eric Bonds at George Mason’s annual public sociology conference, which this year was entitled “(Re)Visions of the Future: Public Sociology, Environmental Justice, and the Crisis of Climate Change.”  Beatrice and Zakaria presented some initial findings of their investigation into violence associated with global fossil fuel resource extraction.  Their work is part of a larger scholarly project, guided by Dr. Bonds, that is exploring linkages between violence, conceptualized in different ways, and the world’s largest oil, gas, and coal companies.

Rao Presents at Assessment Institute

P. Anand Rao, associate professor of Communication and director of the Speaking Intensive Program and the Speaking Center, presented at the Assessment Institute conference in Indianapolis from Oct. 19-21 on using technology to assess oral communication skills. He discussed how UMW designed and conducted an assessment of oral communication skills over the last decade and provided guidance on best practices for assessment, including tips for using online tools for speech assessment.

Lester Featured on Radio Show

Assistant Professor of Political Science Emile Lester was featured on the State of Belief radio show on Oct. 11 speaking about problematic school curricula. Listen to the show at stateofbelief.com.

Humphrey and Alum Present at Feast on Good Conference

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Shawn Humphrey (left) and Jon Pack ’95 presented at the Feast on Good Conference, Oct. 11.

Shawn Humphrey, associate professor of economics, presented at the Feast on Good Conference in Brooklyn, New York on Saturday, Oct. 11. His seminar, entitled Tribal Teaching: Rewild Your Students, was one of several presented throughout the weekend that focused on discussions about global issues. In addition, UMW Alum Jon Pack ’95 gave a talk during the conference. He co-presented with Gary Hustwit about Helvetica, The Olympic City.

Harp Concert with Grace Bauson, Oct. 24

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Grace Bauson

The University of Mary Washington will present “Around the World in 80 Minutes,” a music concert featuring harpist Grace Bauson on Friday, Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. in Pollard Recital Hall.

Bauson will guide the audience on a journey of harp music from around the world, including works inspired by Spanish guitars, Asian poetry, the vistas of Antarctica and more. The concert is free and open to the public.

A harp professor in the University of Mary Washington’s Department of Music, Bauson has performed with the American Youth Harp Ensemble in venues including Carnegie Hall, the White House, and the Kennedy Center. She has also been a featured soloist in concerto performances at the Chautauqua Music Festival and with the Kokomo and Ball State Symphony Orchestras. Her students have performed in numerous national and international tours with the American Youth Harp Ensemble.

Bauson’s instructors have included Elizabeth Richter, Judy Loman, Adelheid Blovsky-Miller and Lucile Lawrence. She holds a Doctor of Arts in Music from Ball State University.

For more information, call (540) 654-1012 or visit cas.umw.edu/music.

Aminrazavi Publishes Book

SUNY Press recently published “Sufism and American Literary Masters” edited bySufism and American Literary Masters by Mehdi Aminrazavi Mehdi Aminrazavi, professor of Philosophy and Religion.

Here is the forward by Jacob Needleman:

“This book reveals the rich, but generally unknown, influence of Sufism on nineteenth- and early twentieth-century American literature. The translation of Persian poets such as Hafiz and Sa’di into English and the ongoing popularity of Omar Khayyam offered intriguing new spiritual perspectives to some of the major American literary figures. As editor Mehdi Aminrazavi notes, these Sufi influences have often been subsumed into a notion of “Eastern,” chiefly Indian, thought and not acknowledged as having Islamic roots. This work pays considerable attention to two giants of American literature, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Walt Whitman, who found much inspiration from the Sufi ideas they encountered. Other canonical figures are also discussed, including Mark Twain, Herman Melville, Henry David Thoreau, and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, along with literary contemporaries who are lesser known today, such as Paschal Beverly Randolph, Thomas Lake Harris, and Lawrence Oliphant.”

Harris Co-Chairs Second World Urbanity Conference in Tallinn, Estonia

Steven E. Harris, associate professor in the Department of History and American Studies, co-chaired the conference, “Circulation, Translation, Transition,” which was held Oct. 10-12 at the Institute of Art History, Estonian Academy of Arts in Tallinn, Estonia. This was the second of three conferences of the Second World Urbanity project, for which Harris and Daria Bocharnikova (Harvard University) are the co-organizers. The conference in Tallinn examined the circulation of ideas and designs about urban architecture and planning throughout the Second World, as well as the fate of socialist cities after 1989/1991. Attendees also enjoyed a tour of Tallinn’s socialist past at the conclusion of the conference. In addition to co-organizing the conference, Harris presented his paper, “Soviet Airports and Second World Urbanity in the Jet Age,” which is based on his research for his current book project on the entangled histories of Aeroflot and Pan Am.

Aminrazavi Featured on the Cover of St. Joseph’s College Magazine

Medhi Aminrazavi, professor of classics, philosophy and religion on the cover of St. Joseph's College Magazine

Medhi Aminrazavi, professor of classics, philosophy and religion on the cover of St. Joseph’s College Magazine

Mehdi Aminrazavi, professor of classics, philosophy and religion, was featured on the cover of St. Joseph’s College Magazine after serving as the Khatib Chair in Comparative Religious Studies at St. Joseph College for the past year. As part of this position, Aminrazavi gave a weekly lecture series on Shi’ism in Iran with two keynote presentations.

Jen Chiang Presents at ICM, Publishes Article

Yuan-Jen Chiang, Professor of Mathematics, presented a research paper “On Exponential Harmonic Maps” at the 2014 International Congress of Mathematicians (held every 4 years) in Seoul, South Korea. This paper has been accepted by Acta Mathematica Sinica.

She also published a joint research article “Remarks of Transversally f-Biharmonic Maps” (refereed) by the Society of Balkan Geometry in Europe.