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June



Tam accepts invitation to give a keynote lecture at the Thirteenth International Conference on Matrix Theory and Applications (MTA 2018)

06/26/2017

Tam accepts invitation to give a keynote lecture at the Thirteenth International Conference on Matrix Theory and Applications (MTA 2018)

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Department of Math and Stats reaches 120% of goal for Faculty and Staff Campaign

06/23/2017

Tam accepts invitation to give a keynote lecture at the Thirteenth International Conference on Matrix Theory and Applications (MTA 2018)

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Schneller named Fellow of the American Chemical Society

06/22/2017

Stewart Schneller, professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and former dean of the College of Sciences and Mathematics, was selected as a 2017 Fellow of the American Chemical Society. The prestigious honor recognizes outstanding achievements in and contributions to science, the profession, and the American Chemical Society. “Needless to say, I am honored by this recognition that also acknowledges those who have been part of my career: undergraduate and graduate students, postdoctoral research associates, my professional, faculty and administrative colleagues and my family,” said Schneller. Schneller was recognized by the Charlotte, North Carolina, American Chemical Society section in 2002 with the Stone Award, given annually to a chemist in the Southeast who has “excelled in research, development of the next generation of scientists, public outreach, mentoring, innovative educational efforts, and public outreach. He has also held numerous positions in the Division of Medicinal of Chemistry of the American Chemical Society. 

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Scientists in the Halanych lab make breakthrough discovery on the evolution of the innate immune system

06/22/2017

The laboratory of Kenneth Halanych, the Schneller Endowed Chair in the Department of Biological Sciences, has made a discovery that could have widespread implications for how scientists study the function of the human immune system. Led by doctoral student Michael Tassia, the team discovered that humans and their closest invertebrate relatives share core components in their immune systems. “Humans belong to a group called ‘Deuterostomes’ that include vertebrate animals as well as invertebrate animals like sea stars, sea urchins, sea squirts, and acorn worms,” said Tassia. “All of these groups had gill slits, much like fish, early in their history,” added Halanych. Tassia and the team in the Halanych lab studied genetic datasets of more than 40 different deuterostome species including human, vase tunicate (Ciona intestinalis), Florida lancelet (Branchiostoma floridae), purple urchin (Strongylocentrotus purpuratus), and an acorn worm from the northwest Atlantic Ocean (Saccoglossus kowalevskii). The research showed evidence that humans and other deuterostomes share a common evolutionary history of their innate immune systems.

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From economist to biologist, how one COSAM alumnus made a transformation toward conservation

06/22/2017

Mincy Moffett came to terms with a tough reality when he was in his late twenties. He had an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of the South, or “Sewanee,” an MBA from Georgia State University, and a job with upward mobility at Georgia Federal Savings and Loan in downtown Atlanta, but he was miserable. “I had a career that I hated and two degrees that I didn’t want to use anymore, so I thought, ‘Man, I’ve got to make a change,’” said Moffett. Moffett decided to take a break and head north to Washington, D.C. He stayed with his brother for a month, which was time Moffett used to evaluate his career options. “I had always been an environmentalist at heart, and there were a lot of environmental groups in D.C.,” said Moffett. “I thought, ‘I have this business background, and even environmental groups have a business side—they have to earn money, they have an administrative function that needs to be handled.’ I decided to try to market myself to any environmental group that would consider me.”

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COSAM Distinguished Alumna honored by LaGrange College

06/22/2017

Nancy Mitchell Morris, chemistry ’64, received the Distinguished Service Alumni Award given by LaGrange College in Georgia. Morris graduated from LaGrange College in 1960 before receiving her master’s degree at Auburn. Morris was presented the award at LaGrange College’s spring commencement. The annual award recognizes outstanding alumni who continue to serve and support LaGrange College.

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Alumni Spotlight: Dr. Jenny Oakes Sobera, biomedical sciences ’94

06/22/2017

Dr. Jenny Oakes Sobera, biomedical sciences ’94, is a dermatologist and founder of Village Dermatology in Mountain Brook. She recently returned to Auburn to speak to COSAM’s chapter of the national pre-med honor society, Alpha Epsilon Delta.

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COSAM supporter honored by Medical Association of the State of Alabama

06/22/2017

Dr. Richard M. Freeman has received the 2017 Ira L. Myers Service Award from the Medical Association of the State of Alabama. The Ira L. Myers Service Award is presented to members of the Medical Association who have served the medical profession faithfully and meritoriously during their lifetime. This award recognizes the work and efforts of Freeman in the medical profession and especially highlights the numerous contributions he has made to the Auburn-Opelika community.

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Krystyna Kuperberg joins the scientific committee of the conference "Dynamics, Equations and Applications" (DEA 2019)

06/20/2017

Krystyna Kuperberg joins the scientific committee of the conference 'Dynamics, Equations and Applications' (DEA 2019) celebrating the 100th anniversary of AGH University of Science and Technology.

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Merchant and Whitt accept AU lecturer positions

06/19/2017

Merchant and Whitt accept AU lecturer positions and will begin this fall.

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Register now for the 2017 COSAM Dean’s Scholarship Golf Classic

06/08/2017

Registration is now open for the 2017 COSAM Dean’s Scholarship Golf Classic, an annual event benefitting scholarships for COSAM students. Since its inception, the Golf Classic has awarded more than 50 scholarships. The 22nd Golf Classic will be held at Robert Trent Jones Grand National in Opelika on Friday, September 15. The event is open to COSAM alumni and friends, and includes lunch, dinner, player gift packs and a silent auction.

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COSAM benefactor’s fund for excellence awards Department of Biological Sciences students

06/08/2017

The Meredith Ann Birchfield Endowed Fund for Excellence in the College of Sciences and Mathematics’ Museum of Natural History has recognized two graduate students in the Department of Biological Sciences for their efforts conducting fieldwork with museum curators. Each award comes with a stipend for research support and travel to expand the museum’s taxon representation. The award will allow Randy Klabacka to conduct fieldwork in Thailand and return with specimens and DNA samples of flying lizards of the genus Draco of Southeast Asia. The museum currently has no specimens from the family or region.

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Bezdek reappointed as C. Harry Knowles Endowed Professor

06/08/2017

Andras Bezdek, professor in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, has been reappointed as the C. Harry Knowles Endowed Professor for Research Leadership in Mathematics Instruction for a five-year term. Bezdek, whose research area is geometry, has been with the Department of Mathematics and Statistics for more than 25 years. He holds several degrees from Eötvös University in Budapest, Ohio State University and the Hungarian Academy of Sciences. COSAM Alumnus C. Harry Knowles, physics, ’51, established the professorship to honor a full-time, tenured faculty member in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics who maintains a strong commitment to research and outreach initiatives.

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Meet the COSAM Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs Student Ambassadors

06/08/2017

The COSAM Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs Student Ambassadors Program is an inaugural group of students dedicated to carrying out COSAM and the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs’ mission of creating a diverse STEM workforce. The student ambassadors will serve the Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs by hosting official events and acting as student liaisons to various communities and units that the office and college serve. The group will create signature events to promote inclusiveness within STEM fields and will serve as advocates for diversity within COSAM and the Auburn community.

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Town Creek Watershed Project improves water quality for downstream neighbors

06/08/2017

Auburn University’s Garden of Memory is not just a garden. Located across the street from the President’s House and the Davis Arboretum, the Garden of Memory is also an ecologically important resource because within it are the headwaters for the Town Creek watershed. “Headwaters” is a term used to refer to the upstream areas of a watershed. Water from the Garden of Memory travels to the Davis Arboretum and then leaves campus, flowing to Town Creek, on to Chewacla Creek, and into Chewacla State Park, about 4 miles away. Eventually, the water flows from Chewacla State Park to the Tallapoosa River. Thus, the ecological impact of the wetland in the Garden of Memory also affects places hundreds of miles away. During the reconstruction of the Garden of Memory in 2016, through the collaborative efforts of multiple campus units, departments, and colleges, including the College of Sciences and Mathematics and the Davis Arboretum, a team worked to design and implement an improved wetland and floodplain enhancement in the Garden of Memory’s Town Creek watershed.

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