During this challenging year, we worked hard to build learning experiences and connections in a virtual environment. New courses, such as the general education course Hidden Figures to Gamergate: Race and Gender in STEM, were built for this new world. Other classic courses were rebuilt. And after a fall of careful separation, this spring we returned to limited in-person instruction and voluntary field trips.
Throughout it all, our scientific work continued in homes, in the lab and in the field. We have designed new concentrations in environmental science that allow students to tailor their expertise to the issues, problems and careers they want to pursue.
New work toward sustainable environments by students and faculty is being fueled by major grants, including: Sujith Ravi's NSF CAREER grant to study the role of photovoltaics on the foodenergy-water nexus; Bojeong Kim's NSF award to investigate how impurities in manganese oxides affect their interaction with the environment; and Atsuhiro Muto's NSF-supported work to understand how substrates affect Antarctic ice shelves, which has earned him tenure and promotion.
Thanks to our alumni and friends whose support has contributed to the department's growth. Our heartfelt condolences to those who left us in this difficult year. Please visit, join a seminar or thesis defense via Zoom, meet current students and faculty and see how we are growing.
Nicholas C. Davatzes
Associate Professor and Chair