October 2019 | View in browser
It was a wonderful Homecoming celebration this year, and I hope those of you who were able to attend enjoyed visiting old friends and making new ones.
While there, among the 2019 Homecoming Awardees, I was delighted to see these dedicated CASB alumni and faculty recognized for their contributions:
- Dr. Janet Kavandi, MS Chem’82, received the Alumni Achievement Award. A veteran astronaut, Kavandi is senior vice president for Sierra Nevada Corp.’s space systems business area.
- Nicole Galloway, Econ’04, Math’04, received the Distinguished Young Alumni Award. Galloway is the current Missouri state auditor and a 2020 candidate for Missouri governor.
- Dixie Finley, Psyc’68, received the Robert V. Wolf Alumni Service Award. A retired school counselor for Rolla Public Schools, Finley is S&T’s first graduate in psychological science.
- Dr. Steve Liu, assistant professor of finance in business and information technology at S&T, received the Class of ’42 Excellence in Teaching Award.
Also at Homecoming, we held our fall meeting with the Dean’s Leadership Council, whose members once again demonstrated their commitment to S&T by hosting a career advising panel for students and making a substantial donation to the campus’s food pantry.
The S&T difference: experiential learning
As many of you know, student design teams are an important benefit and differentiator of an S&T education. On Oct. 9, CASB co-sponsored a new initiative with the Kummer Student Design Center to help inspire more of its majors to join a design team. Representatives from almost 20 teams hosted a CASB Open House to welcome students majoring in science, social science, business, and the humanities, to encourage them to participate in a design teams, and to explain how design teams benefit students from a wide variety of academic majors.
On a warm Saturday in September, biological sciences chair Dr. Dave Duvernell and the students in his ichthyology class spent a day in the field with Robert Hrabik, head ichthyologist for the state of Missouri (recently retired) and author of the upcoming third edition of The Fishes of Missouri. Hrabik led the class on a full-day excursion in remote habitats in the Bootheel region of Missouri, where students had the opportunity to identify 41 species of fish.
Dr. Marco Cavaglia, professor of astrophysics and an expert in gravitational wave studies, hosted an open house last month to display the research lab and student experiences he leads through S&T’s involvement in the worldwide LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory) Scientific Collaboration (LSC). In the lab, students can observe live-streamed data from the LIGO observatories to study colliding black holes and smashing neutron stars.
Connecting humanities with technology
CASB recently kicked off a fundraising initiative for the Collaboratory, a state-of-the-art research communication hub that will provide students the space and resources they need to combine their knowledge of humanities with new technologies to create and share knowledge in a digital age. The new 1,150-foot space will be housed in the Humanities and Social Sciences Building. Learn how to help
$2 million supercomputer award
At the initiative of Dr. Richard Dawes, professor of chemistry, S&T recently received nearly $2 million to purchase and install a new supercomputer. S&T’s new system will be the base of a multi-institution initiative to advance the usage of computational research and education across the state of Missouri. Dr. Thomas Vojta, Curators’ Distinguished Professor and chair of physics, is principal investigator for the project.
Dr. Steve Roberts continues to serve as S&T’s interim provost, performing an integral role in helping Chancellor Mo Dehghani acclimate to our campus since his arrival in August. In my current role as interim vice provost and dean of the college, I’m grateful every day that I can come to work in an environment full of opportunities to help students achieve their dreams and faculty accomplish their goals. It’s a genuine delight to be part of such a vibrant, exciting, and talented organization.
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