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Marquette University College of Arts & Sciences

Inquiry: Fall 2014 e-newsletter

HELEN WAY KLINGLER COLLEGE
OF ARTS & SCIENCES

Message from the dean

Richard HolzAs we approach the holidays, we are nearing the end of a historic semester for both Marquette University and the Helen Way Klingler College of Arts and Sciences. In July, we welcomed Dr. Michael R. Lovell as our first lay president and he shared several new initiatives in his September Inaugural address.

In his largest major gift announcement since arriving at Marquette, President Lovell shared news of a planned gift to create a future Center for Advancement of the Humanities. The news came after President Lovell received a multimillion-dollar legacy commitment from an anonymous Marquette alumna and renowned research scholar. The center will bring top scholars in the humanities from around the world to Marquette to establish the university as the leading humanities institution in the Midwest.

This major gift adds to the significant momentum happening within our college. Last spring, I shared that Dr. Nancy E. Snow, professor of philosophy, received a $2.6 million grant that will fund interdisciplinary research on virtue, character and the development of the moral self. In addition, we are excited to welcome a number of new tenure-track faculty from top institutions around the world. We look forward to continuing to build off our strong foundation, and as always, we appreciate your support.

Richard C. Holz, Ph.D.
Dean

Arts and Sciences students honored with awards & recognitions

Alexis Sammarco, a senior studying criminology and law studies, was awarded a prestigious Boren Scholarship to study abroad in Jordan this semester. Boren awards are given to scholars who study in areas of the world that are critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad programs, including Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Boren Scholars represent a variety of academic backgrounds, but all are interested in studying less commonly taught languages and are funded by the National Security Education Program, which focuses on geographic areas, languages, and fields of study deemed critical to U.S. national security.

In addition, senior Brittany White, double majoring in writing intensive English and social welfare and justice, was awarded the college’s Pedro Arrupe award. This award is given to one Marquette University student each year in recognition of his or her dedication to service and leadership both in and beyond the Marquette community.

Arts and Sciences faculty receive awards

Dr. Daniel Meissner, associate professor of history, and Dr. John Su, professor of English and director of the Core of Common Studies, were named 2014 Teaching Excellence Award winners. Each year, faculty members who are held in the highest esteem by colleagues and students are honored with the award. Su has a particular interest in postcolonial literature and its value for increasing our understanding of diverse cultures and experiences to learn more about our own society. Meissner is an expert on East Asian Civilization who teaches surveys and seminars focusing on promoting cross-cultural awareness and understanding.

Dr. James Holstein was named the recipient of the Lawrence G. Haggerty Faculty Award for Research Excellence. The professor of social and cultural sciences is known for his scholarship on social problems, deviance, mental illness and family life.

Three Arts and Sciences faculty received 2014 Way Klingler Young Scholar Awards, which support promising young scholars in critical stages of their careers with awards of up to $32,000. They are as follows: Dr. Peter Staudenmaier, assistant professor of history, who studies modern German history and explores connections between nation and nature and ethnic and environmental regeneration; Dr. Qadir Timerghazin, assistant professor of chemistry, who uses computational modeling to understand the reactions of solvated electrons with organic molecules — one of the key steps in radiation damage of genetic material; Dr. Amber Wichowsky, assistant professor of political science, who researches the political, social and economic factors that shape disparities in political participation.

Dr. Sebastian Luft, associate professor of philosophy, has been selected to serve as a German Academic Exchange Service research ambassador for the 2014-15 academic year.

Chronicle feature highlights Marquettes commitment to Catholic mission, tradition

Marquette University was featured in the Oct. 13 Chronicle of Higher Education cover story, “Catholic Colleges Greet an Unchurched Generation.” The feature focuses on the university’s commitment to fulfilling its mission by “reaching into classrooms and offices to engage faculty, staff and students in shaping and continuing the college’s Catholic legacy.” For alumni who have fond memories of taking part in service learning, attending Tuesday night Mass inside the Joan of Arc Chapel or interacting with Marquette’s community of Jesuit priests, this is a must read.

Math professor receives $792,000 research grant to enhance teaching and learning

Dr. Marta Magiera, assistant professor of mathematics, statistics and computer science, received a $792,000 Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF). The award will support her research on effective ways to build a knowledge foundation in mathematics teacher preparation, specifically focusing on mathematical argumentation. The competitive five-year grant is one of the NSF’s most prestigious awards, honoring junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholar through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations.

Researching rice on downtown Milwaukee rooftops

Dr. Michael Schläppi, associate professor of biological sciences, tends twelve rice paddies on his building’s rooftop and two at Alice’s Garden, a community and urban farm. In collaboration with the USDA, he has seed samples of roughly 200 rice varieties drawn from a cross-section of the rice’s gene bank. His research is featured in Edible Milwaukee, a magazine focused on the production and distribution of food in Milwaukee and the Midwest. Schläppi’s main goal is to find a species tolerant enough to grow in Wisconsin. He has partnered with Venice Williams, Director at Alice’s Garden, and local teenagers to construct the two paddies, part of the Garden’s pre-existing Fieldhands and Foodways Program speaking to African-American history. This partnership, which provides service learning opportunities for our students, acts as a catalyst for those who visit the garden to learn about a history ingrained, often not known, in our society and cuisines. Schläppi says the long-term goal is “to grow rice from around the world to actively connect local ethnicities with their ancestral cereals, many of which have not been grown in thousands of years.”

Political Science faculty highlighted key issues in Governor’s race

In the election lead up, Wisconsin was at the center of politics on both the state and national stage. Marquette political science faculty were leading the critical conversations with media across the country. Want to know how the economy impacted the election race? Not too long ago, mid-term elections were considered local news. Not so fast, says Dr. Julia Azari, assistant professor of political science, whose blog was published by Bloomberg. And as for how Wisconsin will weigh in on the national scene in the 2016 presidential race, just ask Amber Wichowsky, assistant professor of political science, who talked about Gov. Walker’s political future.

Wyatt Massey, writing intensive English major, highlights Arts and Sciences researchers at Marquette

Marquette University has launched Medium, a new social media series, where Wyatt Massey (Junior, WINE major) highlights the wide range of many Arts and Sciences faculty researchers. Read how sociology professor Dr. Alexandra Crampton seeks to understand conflict over witchcraft in Ghana or how historian Dr. Kristen Foster’s book tells a complex story of racial ideals and shifting attitudes among the founding fathers and the early republic. Closer to home, you can learn how Dr. Sheikh Ahamed, a math professor and Dr. Norah Johnson, a nursing professor, teamed up to create iPad apps to educate children with developmental disorders about what to expect in hospitals.

ROTC simulation training teaches life-saving skills

A special Army ROTC program at Marquette University teaches soldiers the skills to save lives on the battlefield. When recently interviewed by WISN-Channel 12, Shawn Goggins, ROTC instructor and Iraq and Afghanistan veteran said, “This training replicates battlefield conditions and situations. It is very important they get a solid foundation they can build from.” Marquette features Air Force, Army and Navy ROTC programs.

Experimental project led by Marquette faculty members

Clear Picture: Looking at Communities from an Art Museum is a student-curated project led by Dr. Eugenia Afinoguenova, associate professor of Spanish, and Dr. Pamela Hill, assistant professor of journalism and media studies. Using the museum as a multi-disciplinary textbook and laboratory, students from several undergraduate journalism and spanish for heritage speakers classes select the exhibits, create publicity and educational materials, write articles about the community and art and offer guided tours in English and Spanish. Works will be added to the walls throughout the year as students explore ways of constructing narratives through the selection and display of art. This exhibit has been recognized by Marquette University’s Way Klingler Teaching Enhancement Award which supports the development and implementation of innovative teaching projects.

IN THIS EDITION

Arts and Sciences students honored with awards & recognitions

Arts and Sciences faculty receive awards

Chronicle feature highlights Marquette’s commitment to Catholic mission, tradition

Math professor receives $792,000 research grant to enhance teaching and learning

 

Researching rice on downtown Milwaukee rooftops

Political Science faculty highlighted key issues in Governor’s race

Wyatt Massey, writing intensive English major, highlights Arts and Sciences researchers at Marquette

ROTC simulation training teaches life-saving skills

Experimental project led by Marquette faculty members

Marquette University
Klingler College of Arts & Sciences
Sensenbrenner Hall, 102 (dean's office) or 103 (college office)
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881

(414) 288-7059
Arts & Sciences website