Faculty Notes Dec. 5, 2011

Cristina Vischer Bruns, Ph.D., adjunct faculty, Department of English, Wilkinson College, offers a defense of the value of literature and suggests ways in which the problematic relationship between personal and academic reading may be overcome in her new book, Why Literature?, published by Continuum.

Douglas Dechow, Ph.D., MSLIS, Leatherby Libraries, Anna Leahy, Ph.D., associate professor of English, Wilkinson College, and Jana Remy, associate director of instructional technology, presented on historical research and new media in The Past Tense series at the Huntington Library. Their November talk becomes part of the Making History Podcast and the Huntington Library’s iTunesU.

Hesham El-Askary, Ph.D., associate professor, Earth System Science and Remote Sensing and Director Hazards, Schmid College of Science and Technology, has co-authored a paper titled “Aerosol Climatology over Nile Delta based on MODIS, MISR and OMI satellite data,” which was published in the Atmospheric Chemistry And Physics, a journal with impact factor 5.309 ranked number 1 in the world in the meteorology and atmospheric sciences discipline according to the ISI web of Knowledge. The authors presented a detailed analysis of the optical and microphysical aerosol properties, based on satellite data. Monthly mean values of Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) aerosol optical depth (AOD) at 550 nm were examined for the 10-year period from 2000–2009. All of the results show that the air quality in Cairo and the Nile delta region is subject to a complex mixture of air pollution types, especially in the fall season, when biomass burning contributes to a background of urban pollution and desert dust. In this paper the authors argued that the main contributing factor to the black cloud pollution is the biomass burning of agricultural waste during the fall season. Our climatological results may provide a new approach to investigate the impact of air pollution episodes on regional climate systems.

Full citation: Marey, H. S., Gille, J. C., El-Askary, H. M., Shalaby, E. A., and El-Raey, M. E.: Aerosol Climatology over Nile Delta based on MODIS, MISR and OMI satellite data, Atmos. Chem. Phys., 11, 10637-10648, 2011.

Karen Gallagher, Ph.D., visiting assistant professor of German, Department of Languages, Wilkinson College, Douglas Dechow, Ph.D., MSLIS, Leatherby Libraries, and Anna Leahy, Ph.D., associate professor of English, Wilkinson College, recently published “Freedom Without Walls: One Model for Interdisciplinarity on Campus” in Die Unterrichtspraxis/Teaching German, 44: 134–139. The article offers practical advice for interdisciplinary projects. It also provides a strategy for German programs to become more visible and valued in the university system. Freedom Without Walls at Chapman University is a case study of a project that situated the German program within an institution’s larger goals. When building a project, the scholars argue that German programs should look first to existing expertise, interests, and resources on their campus. Fostering connections with the institution’s mission and vision is also essential. With funding from the German government to U.S. universities, Freedom Without Walls encompassed events in art, poetry, film, communications, and other disciplines as well as an academic symposium, gala and a team in the 5K run/walk. To view this article, use the journal finder on the Leatherby Libraries homepage.

Christopher S. Kim, Ph.D., associate professor, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Schmid College of Science and Technology, recently returned from the 14th annual Chinese-American Kavli Frontiers of Science symposium held on Nov. 5-7 in Shenzhen, China, and co-sponsored by the US National Academy of Sciences (NAS) and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. http://www.nasonline.org/programs/kavli-frontiers-of-science/about.html

The Academy’s Kavli Frontiers of Science symposia bring together outstanding young scientists to discuss exciting advances and opportunities in a broad range of disciplines. U.S. symposium participants are selected from among recipients of prestigious fellowships, awards, and other honors, as well as from nominations by NAS members and other participants. In addition to learning about research at the frontiers of fields other than their own, the program is intended to create a network of connections that can be maintained as participants advance in their careers. Since its inception, 136 program “alumni” have been elected to the NAS and eight have won Nobel Prizes.

Dr. Kim attended a wide variety of academic sessions on topics ranging from environmental nanomaterials to collisions in the solar system and autonomous intelligent systems, and gave a poster presentation on his work with using iron oxyhydroxide nanoparticles for remediation of metal-contaminated waters.

Anna Leahy, Ph.D., associate professor of English, Wilkinson College, was a Walter E. Dakin Fellow in Poetry at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference this past summer. Her creative nonfiction essay “Strange Attraction: John Wayne and Me” appeared in the spring issue of The Southern Review, and another essay has been taken by The Pinch. Her poems “Through the Panhandle” and “The Nuclear Age” appear online at Zócalo Public Square, and “A Rational Choice Theory” and “An Experiment of Violence” were republished online in issue #46 of ArLiJo. She also has an essay review entitled “The Future of Literary Citizenship” at Fiction Writers Review.

A paper by Tibor Machan, Ph.D., professor and holder of the R.C. Hoiles Chair in Business Ethics and Free Enterprise at the Argyros School of Business and Economics, titled “Drug Prohibition is Both Wrong and Unworkable,” will appear in Think, Spring 2012, published by Cambridge University Press for The Royal Institute of Philosophy (UK).

Anup Prasad, Ph.D., assistant professor, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Schmid College of Science and Technology, made an oral presentation at World Climate Research Program (WCRP) Open Science Conference, Oct. 24-28, 2011 in Denver, Colo. The presentation, entitled “Impact of dust storms and anthropogenic emissions on the Indo-Gangetic Basin and melting of Himalayan Glaciers” analyzed multi-sensor dust and gaseous chemistry data over the Indian subcontinent and its impact over the melting of major Himalayan glaciers across the Himalayan range.

Dr. Prasad was also invited for “Early Career Scientist Assembly (ECSA) Workshop on Regional Climate Issues in Developing Countries,” an Advanced Study Program (ASP) at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), Mesa Lab in Boulder, Colo., Oct. 19 and 22. The ECSA and ASP invited more than 35 early career scientists from about 20 countries to Boulder, to attend a 2½-day workshop prior the WCRP Open Science Conference in October 2011. The theme of the workshop was regional climate and climate impacts with breakout sessions for discussion. Dr Prasad made a presentation on his recent work based on the remote sensing observations from CALIPSO, MODIS and OMI AURA observations showing the long-range transport of desert dust and its mixing with local anthropogenic pollutants over the Indian sub-continent before reaching the Himalaya-Tibet snow and glacier cover regions.

Dr Prasad attended a conference “Third Santa Fe Conference on Global and Regional Climate Change” at Santa Fe, N.M., Oct. 30 to Nov. 4. He presented the recent work performed by the working group of NIFA/USDA/NSF Grant lead by the Professor Kafatos, Dean, Schmid College of Science and Technology. The title of the poster presentation is “Multi-Model Simulations and satellite observations for Assessing Impacts of Climate Variability on the Agro-ecosystems in California and Southwestern United States.” Three different meteorological models RAMS, WRF, and OLAM, utilizing the Cluster Computing and MODIS Direct Broadcast facility at Schmid College of Science, are producing high resolution historical and forecast runs of meteorological conditions over South West USA. The dynamic ecosystem model and crop yield models will eventually utilize model outputs to assess historical conditions and forecast regional changes with respect to crop yield of major crops of California and surrounding states.

Dawn Bonker

Dawn Bonker

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