Wednesday, April 26

Arts And Sciences



Featured Stories

Message from Dean Richard Holz

Spring is a time for renewal, and as the semester comes to a close, I look forward with anticipation to seeing our graduates head out into the world. The culmination of their educational, service, and work experiences will enable them to engage the world with insight and wisdom. I am excited for their future and how they use their College of Arts and Sciences education to make our world a better place.

The college is at the forefront of providing a transformative Jesuit education by developing our students’ intellect to the fullest measure of their talents. The large variety of majors and minors highlights our central strength as we continually look for ways to improve our students’ educational experience. This fall we are introducing two new majors: applied physics and cognitive science. We are also adding two new accelerated degree programs in history and Spanish. Accelerated degree programs allow students to earn an undergraduate degree and a graduate degree in five years.

Our Department of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Sciences was instrumental in establishing the new Center for Cyber Security Awareness and Cyber Defense. The center aims to serve as a hub for cyber security education and research in an increasingly digital world.

As the college and university continue to implement vital changes that will benefit our students, the university has begun to implement a new Campus Master Plan. Our first major construction project is a new residence hall, which will be named for our own Rev. Robert A. Wild, S.J. It was clear that the first project needed to be student centric, and a committee of students is working closely with the university architects on the facility’s overall design.

The future of the college and university is bright. We continue to grow and establish new educational opportunities for our students — who are at the heart of our future. Thank you for your continued support.

Remembering Dr. Susanne E. Foster

The university mourned the death of Dr. Susanne E. Foster, associate dean of academic affairs in the college, and associate professor of philosophy. Services were held at Church of the Gesu. Dr. James South, an associate professor of philosophy who wrote three papers with Dr. Foster, reflected on her life during the service. Dr. Foster began her career as a faculty member at Marquette in 1992 after receiving her Ph.D. from the University of Notre Dame. Her areas of teaching and research included Aristotle, virtue ethics, environmental ethics and Native American philosophy. She is survived by her husband, Richard Foster; her children, Katherine and Arthur; her mother Christa Hill; and brother, Friedrick Hill. She will be greatly missed by everyone in the college and university.

National Science Foundation grants go to Marquette chemist and biological sciences graduate student

Dr. Jier Huang, assistant professor of chemistry, will study next-generation solar technology under a $555,000 grant awarded by the National Science Foundation. Dr. Huang will examine the use of novel materials as a catalyst to produce hydrogen from solar energy, which can then be used to power a vehicle. She is conducting research on the catalyst, which is a promising type of metal-organic framework material. Work on the project will take place in Dr. Huang’s laboratory on the Marquette campus and at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago. Dr. Huang’s funding comes from a National Science Foundation CAREER grant, the foundation’s most prestigious award in support of junior faculty. Besides Dr. Huang, three other faculty members within the college hold active CAREER awards: Dr. Marta Magiera, associate professor of mathematics, statistics and computer science; and Drs. Qadir Timerghazin and Adam Fiedler, associate professors of chemistry. In addition, David Defilippis, a first-year Ph.D. graduate student in the Department of Biological Sciences, received a prestigious three-year, $144,000 NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.

Marquette establishes cyber security center

The Center for Cyber Security Awareness and Cyber Defense was launched to serve as the university’s primary hub for cyber security education and research. It’s the only such center in the Milwaukee metropolitan area. With growing national concern about cyber security, the center will provide education, services and research opportunities to the Marquette campus and the region. Dr. Thomas Kaczmarek, director of Marquette’s Master of Science in Computing program, is the center’s first director. An expert advisory committee, composed of Marquette faculty, staff and local business professionals, will help guide curricula and center activities that enhance cyber security. The center is designed to prepare students to not only join the workforce, but to also develop professionals to defend the cyber infrastructure of the community and the nation.

The second edition of the Ethics of Big Data symposium will be held April 28. This symposium brings together researchers in philosophy and data science, and those working with healthcare information, to discuss how we should navigate the ethical challenges of new and powerful algorithmic solutions, in order to realize their greatest benefits to practitioners and to the public. Presentations will address the ethical issue of data analysis from the perspectives of philosophy, medicine and data science.

Faculty lauded

Several faculty in the college were lauded for notable achievements. Dr. Timothy McMahon, associate professor of history, was installed as president of the American Conference for Irish Studies, the largest academic organization dedicated to Irish studies in North America. Dr. Jeffrey Coleman, assistant professor of Spanish, received a six-month Career Enhancement Fellowship for Junior Faculty funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Dr. Grant Silva, assistant professor of philosophy, was named a regional faculty associate of the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies.

College hosts a variety of academic conferences

The college hosted several popular academic conferences. Dr. James South, associate professor of philosophy, and Dr. Gerry Canavan, assistant professor of English, held an academic conference on the 20th anniversary of the classic cult TV hit Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The conference featured speakers from around the United States and Canada. In March, Dr. Julia Paulk, associate professor of foreign languages and literatures, organized the first annual Marquette University Symposium on Latin American Studies and Latinx Studies, which featured talks from many of the faculty in the college, as well as Dr. Paola S. Hernández of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, as a keynote speaker. This symposium was organized to recognize and celebrate the new Latin American studies major that was launched this year. In addition, Dr. Curtis L. Carter, professor of philosophy, held a three-day conference on our campus and at the Milwaukee Public Museum on the future of aesthetics and art, including a panel of experts discussing art in Milwaukee. A three-day conference on the relationships between Muslims and Christians in America today was also held, featuring presentations by faculty members and visiting speakers. It was organized by Dr. Richard Taylor, professor of philosophy, Dr. Irfan Omar, associate professor of theology, Dr. David Twetten, associate professor of philosophy, and Dr. Phillip Naylor, professor of history. The Center for Peacemaking held a one-day interdisciplinary symposium on gospel-based, nonviolent peacemaking. It allowed for students, faculty and community members to discuss the Catholic Church’s understanding of and commitment to nonviolence.

Marquette Democracy Project debuts with series of successful lectures, events

The Marquette Democracy Project launched this spring as a forum for human rights activists to share their experiences with Marquette students. The speeches by four international activists from Mexico, Uganda, Bahrain and Egypt filled lecture halls and were well received by students looking to learn more about international activism. These individuals came to campus to lecture, teach classes, and tell their stories to student journalists and videographers. The lecturers this semester were Fray Tómas of Mexico, Clare Bayarugaba of Uganda, Maryam Al-Khawaja of Bahrain and Wael Ghonim of Egypt. The project’s co-directors are Dr. Barrett McCormick, professor of political science, and Dr. Jessica Rich, assistant professor of political science.

Faculty experts continue to make news

The presidential race, pollution in Wisconsin waterways and even a new species of geckos. Those were among the topics our faculty experts discussed in media interviews recently.

The presidential campaign prompted dozens of media requests for our outstanding political science faculty. Dr. Julia Azari spent election night at the offices of where she was a regular contributor, giving commentary in real time. Dr. Risa Brooks wrote two analyses in the Washington Post on President Donald Trump’s relationship with the U.S. military, while Dr. Paul Nolette was quoted both nationally and locally on the election. Dr. Philip Rocco, the author of 2016’s The Obamacare Wars, was a popular choice for reporters to gain insight on the Affordable Care Act, and Dr. Susan Giaimo was interviewed on House Speaker Paul Ryan’s role in managing divisions within the Republican Party.

Our political experts weren’t the only professors contacted by the media for expert opinions. Dr. Christopher Stockdale, associate professor of physics, did television interviews to teach viewers about a popular lunar eclipse, and was the source for a Women’s Day magazine’s article on the physics of sledding. Dr. Krassimira Hristova, associate professor of biological sciences, discussed the research she is overseeing on the pollution of Kewaunee County, Wis., waterways; an important topic in northeastern Wisconsin. Dr. Laura Matthew, associate professor of history, discussed her project to revitalize an Aztec language known as “Nahuatl.” Dr. Anthony Gamble, assistant professor of biological sciences, commented on the possible discovery of a new species of gecko. Dr. Louise Cainkar, associate professor of social and cultural sciences, discussed the effects on Muslim Americans after President Trump’s executive order related to immigration, and the Center for Peacemaking’s Peace Works program was profiled in several media outlets. 

Psychology matches all clinical internship candidates and debuts a new speaker series

The Department of Psychology kept its perfect record intact this year, matching all of its predoctoral internship candidates with clinical internship positions. It’s the fifth consecutive year the department has matched 100 percent of its candidates, while the national average is about 80 percent. The clinical internship is the last step in the training of students seeking a Ph.D. in clinical psychology. Interns spend a year receiving intensive supervised experience doing clinical work and research at medical centers, universities, and other health care institutions across the United States. “Our students consistently match at some of the most highly respected sites in the country, which puts them in an excellent position to launch their careers,” said Dr. John Grych, chair of the psychology department. Meanwhile, the department launched the Dr. Mary Anne Siderits Speaker Series. The first two experts were Drs. Diane Ehrensaft, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of California-San Francisco, and Christia Spears Brown, professor of psychology at the University of Kentucky. 

Women’s Army ROTC basketball team wins national championship

While both the Marquette men’s and women’s basketball teams earned berths in the prestigious NCAA tournament, the Marquette Army ROTC women’s basketball team also had a championship season. The team, which comprises players of different sports backgrounds and skill levels, won the “Flyin’ Irish Basketball Tournament at the University of Notre Dame – competing against other ROTC teams for a national title. The team beat Ohio State for the championship on the court at Purcell Pavilion, and they left South Bend with a large gold ball trophy in hand. With no seniors on this year’s team, they hope to compete for the title again next year. “I thought this team was special right away,” said Capt. Michael Imdieke, head coach.

Seven distinguished alums receiving awards this week

Seven Arts and Sciences alumni were honored this week. Timothy Kochis Arts '68, is our Distinguished Alumnus of the Year; Jay Doherty, Arts '75, received our Professional Achievement Award; Dr. Louis Faillace, Arts '54, Med '57, is A Person for Others; and our Young Alumnus of the Year is Colleen Kujawa Boraca, Arts '99.

Three college alumni were honored with all-university national awards. Dr. Henry K.H. Kwan, Arts '71, was honored as the university’s Alumnus of the Year; Dr. Richardo Fernandez, Arts '62, was honored as the university’s Professional Achievement awardee; and Elizabeth Villarreal Lang, Arts '03, received the Spirit of Marquette Award.

These individuals have made incredible contributions to make a difference in our world and represent Marquette’s values of excellence, faith, service and leadership.


Trouble viewing this email?