Dr. Elise Amel and Dr. Britain Scott, Psychology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, are the writers of an article, “Beyond the Roots of Human Inaction: Fostering Collective Effort Toward Ecosystem Conservation,” which was published in Science Magazine’s Ecosystem Earth Special Issue on April 21.
Dr. Eric Fort, Chemistry Department, College of Arts and Sciences, is the author of a paper, “Implications of the Final Ring Closure to 10b-aza-10c-borapyrene for aryl–alkyne Ring-closing Mechanisms,” published in the Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 2017, 95, 357-362. This work included three St. Thomas undergraduate students, Joseph Jaye, Benjamin Gelinas and Grant McCormick.
Dr. Bruce Gleason, Music Department, College of Arts and Sciences, attended the final session of the Balzan Research Programme in Musicology held April 7-9 at Humboldt University in Berlin, Germany. He was a guest of Reinhard Strohm, professor emeritus at Oxford University. Winner of the 2012 Balzan prize for music, Strohm funded several conferences on the topic of “Towards a Global History of Music” over five years at various European and Middle Eastern universities, including the University of Vienna, where Gleason spoke in 2016. Strohm invited speakers from past sessions as his guests for this concluding session in Berlin. Currently, the International Balzan Prize Foundation awards four annual awards: two in literature, moral sciences and the arts, and two in the physical, mathematical and natural sciences, and medicine. Former recipients include Mother Teresa and composer Paul Hindemith. Gleason was stationed in Berlin with the 298th Army Band from 1989-91 and was pleased to return.
Dr. Mike Hollerich, Theology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, is the author of an article, “Three in One: a Letter from a Catholic University,” which was published in Commonweal Magazine.
Dr. Jerry Husak, Biology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, and Jordan Roy ’16 are the authors of a paper, “Exercise Training Reveals Trade-offs Between Endurance Performance and Immune Function, but Does Not Influence Growth, in Juvenile Lizards,” which was published in the Journal of Experimental Biology.
Dr. Shersten Johnson, Music Department, College of Arts and Sciences, will present a paper, “Music Analysis and Accessibility in the Music Theory Classroom,” at the Pedagogy Into Practice conference held June 3 at Lee University in Cleveland, Tennessee. His paper responds to an overdependence on visual means of musical representation and proposes alternate ways to engage specific music theoretical concepts through other modalities of understanding that will benefit a variety of students with differing learning styles.
Father Jan Michael Joncas, artist-in-residence and research fellow in Catholic Studies, will receive the Pax Christi Award along with David Haas ’80 and Marty Haugen ’91 from St. John’s Abbey and University on June 25.
Dr. Ray MacKenzie, English Department, College of Arts and Sciences, is the author of a new translation of Stendhal’s collection of stories and novellas called Italian Chronicles (University of Minnesota Press). The translation includes an extensive introduction and notes, as well as four stories never before translated. The publisher describes the book in these terms: “Complete with revenge, bloody daggers, poisonings and thick-walled nunneries, these collected tales reveal a great novelist working with highly dramatic subject matter to forge a vision of life lived at its most intense.”
Dr. Dalma Martinovic-Weigelt, Biology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, St. Thomas neuroscience alumnus Evan Eid ’10 and their colleagues are the authors of a research paper, “Derivation and Evaluation of Putative Adverse Outcome Pathways for the Effects of Cyclooxygenase Inhibitors on Reproductive Processes in Female Fish,” which was published in the journal Toxicological Sciences. The research in the paper demonstrates the adverse reproductive effects of commonly used medications such as ibuprofen.
N. Curtis Le May, Archbishop Ireland Memorial Library, Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity, and St. Thomas Libraries, was installed as president of the Catholic Library Association (CLA) during Mass at the annual CLA Conference held April 17-20 in St. Louis, Missouri. Le May served the association as vice president for the past two years. He also presented “The Witness of Women in the Early Church, ca 30 to 600 C.E.” at the conference for the Parish and Community Library Services session.
Dr. Odeh Muhawesh, Theology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, is the author of a paper, “Islam’s Monotheistic Adherence and the Challenge of the Trinity,” which he presented at the International Conference on Justice and Ethics held April 16 at Ferdowsi University in Mashhad, Iran. Because of current travel policies, the paper was submitted remotely. Conference organizers thought it was important to share the paper with all conference attendees who hail from many countries around the world.
Dr. Tatyana Ramirez, Graduate School of Professional Psychology, is the author of an article, “On Pedagogy of Personality Assessment: Application of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives,” which was published in the Journal of Personality Assessment, 99(2).
James Rogers, Center for Irish Studies, was the keynote speaker at the 53rd annual meeting of the American Conferences for Irish Studies (ACIS), held this year at the University of Missouri-Kansas City from March 29-April 2. Rogers discussed his research on Irish-American autobiography in an address titled “The Ethnic Fade That Never Quite Happened.” The ACIS is the largest academic organization dedicated to the study of Ireland and the Irish worldwide. Rogers’ presentation drew on his recent book, Irish-American Autobiography: The Divided Hearts of Athletes, Priests, Pilgrims and More, published by Catholic University of America Press earlier this year.
Dr. Artika Tyner, Office of the President, presented at the Page Education Foundation’s second annual Justice Alan Page Elimination of Bias Seminar, with a focus on elimination gender bias, on April 6. Her involvement helped to raise over $67,000 for the Page Education Foundation. The funds will be used to provide scholarships for Page Scholars, Minnesota students of color pursuing post-secondary education this year, through the Page Grant program.
Carissa Wyant, Theology Department, College of Arts and Sciences, has been awarded a chance to participate in the National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute. She plans to use what she learns through the workshop in teaching two of her classes: World Religions, and The Theology of Justice and Peace. The NEH Summer Institute is for college and university teachers on the themes of world religions and world religions discourse: challenges of teaching the religions of the world. The program consists of a four-week workshop on the problems of teaching a broad survey course intended to introduce students to the major religious traditions of the world, while taking into account major scholarly critiques of that enterprise that have raised fundamental questions about the basic definitions and categories educators employ in the critical study of religion.
Students from the Chemistry Department, College of Arts and Sciences, gave presentations on their research at the 30th annual Winchell Undergraduate Research Symposium sponsored by the Minnesota Academy of Science and held April 22 at Macalester College in St. Paul. Students who gave talks were Grant Larson on “Discovery of a Novel Mechanism for Opening a Cyclopropyl Ring” and Tyler Ogorek on “Synthesis of Novel Oxazolidinone Antimicrobials” (students of Dr. J. Thomas Ippoliti); and Kiersten Idzorek on “Solid-State Chemistry of Dimers of a Sterically Hindered Benzonitrile Oxide” (student of Dr. William Ojala). Posters were presented by Tony Schaefer on “Computational Study of Phase-Transfer Catalysis” (student of Dr. Joshua Layfield); and by Ryan Johnson on “Solid-State Nitrile Oxide Dimerization: Crystal Structures of 2,3-Dichlorobenzonitrile Oxide and its Solution Dimer,” Maria Neuzil, “Solid-State Studies of Benzonitrile Oxides and Their Dimers: Crystal Structure of a 1,2,4-Oxadiazole,” and Michael Stodolka, “Solid-State Structures and Reactivity of Halogenated Benzonitrile Oxides: Crystal Structure of bis(3-Chlorophenyl)furoxan” (students of Ojala).
Twenty-two students and one faculty member from the Chemistry Department, College of Arts and Sciences, presented their research at the 253rd American Chemical Society National Meeting and Exposition, held April 2-6 in San Francisco. Student presenters, their projects and their research advisers were: Brady Anderson, “Environmental Photochemistry of the Polycyclic Musks Tonalide and Galaxolide,” Maddie Hankard, “Environmental Photochemistry of Dienogest: Photolysis, Regeneration, and Product Bioactivity” and Jessie O’Brien, “Aqueous Photolysis of the Steroid Gestrinone in the Presence of Sodium Azide” (students of Dr. Kristine Wammer); Evan Keil, Josiah Bardwell, Timon Higgins and Ogorek, “Synthesis of Novel Oxazolidinone Antibacterials,” Taylor Lesmeister, “Synthesis of Oxazolidinones Containing Tricyclic Fused Rings” and Larson, “Discovery of a Novel Mechanism for Cyclopropyl Ring Opening”; and Landon Crippes, “Synthesis of Novel Blood Sugar Lowering Compounds” (at the Chem Demo Exchange) (students of Ippoliti); Idzorek, “Solid-State Chemistry of Dimers of a Sterically Hindered Benzonitrile Oxide,” Neuzil, “Solid-State Studies of Benzonitrile Oxides and their Dimers: Crystal Structure of a 1,2,4-Oxadiazole,” Stodolka, “Solid State Dimerization of Nitrile Oxides: 3-Chlorobenzonitrile Oxide” and Samantha Whitcomb, “Solid-State Chemistry of Dimers of Reactive Nitrile Oxides” (students of Ojala); Sydney Steger, “Synthesis of Imidazole, Triazole, and Benzimidazole Salts” (student of Dr. Marites Guino-o); Evan Kalb, “G-Quadruplex Specific Ligands Attenuate Supramolecular G-DNA Assembly” (student of Dr. Thomas Marsh); Anna Folska, “Lipid Membrane Interaction Thermodynamics of Cell-Penetrating Peptides,” Hannah Ganzel, “Binding Affinity of Polycation-Coated Au Nanoparticles to Gram Positive Bacterial Cell Walls,” Francesca Ippoliti, “Acid-Labile Oleoyl-PEG Orthoester Micelles for Controlled Drug Delivery” (students of Dr. Lisa Prevette); Jill Kolasinski, “Identification of Non-Ribosomal Peptide Synthetase (NRPS) Enzymes to Find Naturally Occurring Secondary Metabolites” and Bridget McGivern, “Investigating the Diversity of Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Cultures Derived from Activated Sludge Bacterial Communities Following Exposure to Low Doses of Triclosan” (students of Dr. Justin Donato); and Kristen Berger, “Novel Route to Acridines” (student of Fort). Students Crippes and Steger demonstrated how to make a “bouncy ball” using chemistry at the Chem Demo Exchange as part of the Chemical Education Division. Faculty member Ippoliti (with student co-author Larson) presented a talk titled, “Proton-Activated Reactions of Cyclopropylamine.”
On April 29, the Geography Department, College of Arts and Sciences, and the Environmental Studies program hosted the 13th annual Minnesota Undergraduate Geography Symposium. The symposium was conceived in 2005 to fill the need to showcase local or broad-discipline undergraduate research in geography. This year, there were 86 participants from five Midwest colleges. Thirty-one St. Thomas students presented their original research to their colleagues.