Faculty Notes, May 16, 2013

Jocelyn Buckner, Ph.D., assistant professor, Department of Theatre, presented the paper The History of America is the History of Private Property: The Politics of Home, Humor, Hate, and History in Clybourne Park and A Raisin in the Sun, and served as panel chair for Staging the Nation: Three Centuries of Constructing National Identity in ‘American’ Drama and Performance at the Comparative Drama Conference held in Baltimore. Professor Buckner also published a double book review of Second Skin: Josephine Baker & the Modern Surface by Anne Anlin Cheng and A Dangerous Woman: the Life, Loves, and Scandals of Adah Isaacs Menken, 1835-1868, America’s Original Superstar by Michael and Barbara Foster in the peer-reviewed journal Theatre Survey 54.2 (May 2013).

Donald Guy, assistant professor, Department of Theatre, recently served as the lighting designer and lighting director for Masters of Illusion – Live!, which was staged in the 2,900-seat Mabee Center in Tulsa, Okla.; the 2,000-seat Cowan Performing Arts Center in Tyler, Texas; the 1,750-seat showroom at Winnavegas Casino in Sloan, Iowa; and the 3,500-seat Casper Events Center in Casper, Wyo. Masters of Illusion – Live! is currently the world’s largest touring magic and illusion show, with a cast and crew of more than 25.

Alicia Guy, associate professor, Department of Dance, served as judge at the Miss Dance Drill Team USA/International Pageant at the Bren Events Center in Irvine. Guy also taught a master class in contemporary jazz for the American College Dance Festival Association conference in Los Angeles. Her piece Changes was performed in the informal concert by dance majors Chris Babcock ’14, Allison Burke ’14, Joe Chantry ’14, and Rachel Leitson ’14. She is also a board member for the Baja Region and served as a peer reviewer for the conference.

Nubar Hovsepian, Ph.D., associate professor, Department of Political Science, Wilkinson College, was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award from The Graduate Center City University of New York.  Each year CUNY presents this special award to one of its graduates from the Political Science Program. In addition to accepting the award, Hovsepian gave a talk titled Edward W. Said: The Politics of an Oppositional Intellectual at the awards event.

Wenshan Jia, Ph.D., professor, Department of Communication Studies, Wilkinson College, shares The William B. Gudykunst Outstanding Book Award by International Academy for Intercultural Research, as a contributing author with the chapter Ethnic conflicts in China in D. Landis & R. A. Roberts (Eds.) Handbook of Ethnic Conflict:  International Perspectives (pp. 177-198), an International Academy for Intercultural Research book published by Springer, 2012.

Jason Keller, Ph.D., assistant professor, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Schmid College of Science and Technology, recently published a paper titled Solid-phase organic matter reduction regulates decomposition in a bog soil in the journal Ecosphere.  Kimberly Takagi, Ph.D., ’05 and a previous post-doc in Keller’s lab is a co-author on this manuscript.  This work demonstrates, for the first time, that the novel microbial process of “breathing” organic matter in place of oxygen dominates decomposition and suppresses the production of methane in a wetland soil.  A copy can be found here – http://www.esajournals.org/doi/pdf/10.1890/ES12-00382.1.

Ali Nayeri, Ph.D., assistant professor, School of Computational Sciences, Schmid College of Science and Technology, was invited by the mayor of Pasadena to speak on May 20 in honor of Norooz, the Iranian New Year, which falls on the vernal equinox. At the occasion, Nayeri received several resolutions from local elected officials; including Congresswoman Judy Chu, State Senator Carol Liu and the City of Pasadena.

Ramesh P. Singh, Ph.D., professor, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Schmid College of Science and Technology, was invited to give a talk in a session titled Health and Wellbeing organized by Professor Chunxiang Cao (Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, China) during 35the International Symposium on Remote Sensing of Environment  (ISRSE35) held in Beijing on April 22-26.  Singh also chaired a session on Atmospheric Pollution and Atmospheric Remote Sensing. ISRSE is held biennially at international locations. The next symposium will be held in Europe in 2015. He was also invited by the China Earthquake Network Center (CENC) in Beijing where he give an April 25 talk titled Satellite Remote Sensing in Understanding Earthquake processes.

Pilar M. Valenzuela, Ph.D., associate professor, Department of Languages, Wilkinson College, was an invited speaker at the IV International Conference of Linguistic and Literary Studies in the Amazon. The event took place at the Federal University of Pará, in Belem, Brazil, April 23-26. Valenzuela’s presentation focused on the challenges that linguists face when describing little-studied languages, particularly those that belong to the Panoan family. Currently there are some 30 Panoan languages spoken by approximately 50,000 people in the bordering regions of Peru, Brazil and Bolivia.

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