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In Focus: 10/23/2009

A weekly newsletter published by the Communications Office

Top News

SOUTHWESTERN CHEMISTRY PROFESSOR RECEIVES $231,950 GRANT FOR NOVEL BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH PROJECT

As part of the federal government’s economic stimulus program, the National Institutes of Health put out a call for research proposals that were “of high risk, but which would yield high benefits.”  Their goal was to inject money into research projects that could be completed in a short period of time to see whether or not they have long-term promise.

A record 20,000 proposals were submitted and only 200 – just one percent – were funded.

A Southwestern chemistry professor is among the researchers who will be working on one of these projects.

Lynn Guziec, assistant professor of chemistry, will receive $231,950 over the next two years to work with a colleague at The University of Texas at Austin on a project that could enable physicians to detect diseases earlier and more easily than current methods.

Read the rest of the story here.

BIOLOGY PROFESSORS RECEIVE AWARD FOR THEIR RESEARCH AND MENTORING

Three Southwestern biology professors have been recognized for inspiring hope – both through their genetic research that could lead to new therapies for breast cancer and through their work with the next generation of doctors and researchers.   

Maria Todd, assistant professor of biology, Maria Cuevas, associate professor of biology, and Rebecca Sheller, associate professor of biology, received the first “Inspiring Hope” award presented by the Breast Cancer Resource Centers of Texas, a nonprofit organization created by breast cancer survivors to support women who are newly diagnosed with the disease.  

The award was presented Oct. 21 during a stop of the national “Pink Heals Tour” in Georgetown. The tour is designed to raise awareness about breast cancer and features a crew of firefighters touring the country in a pink fire truck.

Read the rest of the story here.

NITLE LAUNCHES NEW WEB SITE

The National Institute for Technology in Liberal Education, which is now headquartered at Southwestern, launched a new Web site last week.

NITLE also has expanded its blogging efforts to focus on three key areas for small liberal arts colleges dealing with technology:

All three blogs can be followed from “The Daily NITLE” section of the NITLE home page or at blogs.nitle.org.

Another new initiative that can be found on the Web site are “NITLE Labs,” which house collaborative and inter-campus projects and research initiatives focused on new technologies with strategic promise for liberal education. Current projects include a collaboration with Decapod and work with Manakin, DSpace’s new interface toolkit.

For more information on how NITLE can help Southwestern faculty and staff, visit http://www.nitle.org/help/

Events

‘THE FIFTH SUN’ TO BE PRESENTED IN THE BLACK BOX THEATER OCT. 23-25

“The Fifth Sun,” an original production written, produced and directed by Southwestern students, will be presented in the Black Box Theater (also known as the Heather McGaughey Rehearsal Hall) Oct. 23-25. Friday and Saturday performances are at 8 p.m. and the Sunday performance is at 3 p.m.

“The Fifth Sun” comes from the Aztec “Legend of the Five Suns,” which states that each sun is a period of time wherein there is peace and life on earth. When a sun dies, the world is absorbed in chaos as the gods destroy the world in order to renew it. The Aztecs believed there are only five suns and that we live the era of the last sun. “The Fifth Sun” presents four characters who, facing a world plagued with death and destruction, hope for something better and wait for a new beginning.

Tickets for the play are $5 and may be purchased online at www.southwestern.edu/boxoffice or by calling the box office at 512-863-1378.

CELLIST, PIANIST TO GIVE FACULTY RECITAL OCT. 26

Cellist Hai Zheng and pianist Kiyoshi Tamagawa will give a faculty recital on Monday, Oct. 26, at 7 p.m. in the Alma Thomas Theater. The program will consist of works by Beethoven, Bloch and Prokofiev.

The performance is free and open to the public. For more information, call The Sarofim School of Fine Arts at 512-863-1504. 

LECTURE ON BARTOK AND THE MODERNIST MOVEMENT OCT. 28

  Elliott Antokoletz, a professor of musicology at The University of Texas at Austin, will present a lecture titled “Bartok and the Modernist Movement” on Wednesday, October 28, at 8 p.m. in the Alma Thomas Theater.   Antokeltz is the author of The Music of Bela Bartok: A Study of Tonality and Progression in Twentieth-Century Music, Bela Bartok, A Guide To Research, Twentieth Century Music, Musical Symbolism in the Operas of Debussy and Bartok: Trauma, Gender, and the Unfolding of the Unconscious, and is contributing editor of Bartok Perspectives: Man, Composer, and Ethnomusicologist.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, call Michael Cooper at 512-863-1843.

GUITARIST TO PRESENT GUEST RECITAL OCT. 30

Award-winning British guitarist Michael Partington will present a guest recital on Friday, Oct. 30, at 7 p.m. in the Alma Thomas Theater. The program will consist of works by Manuel Maria Ponce, Domenico Scarlatti, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Mauro Giuiani and Leo Brouwer.

Partington currently lives in Seattle, where he is director of the Guitar Program at the University of Washington.

The performance is free and open to the public. For more information, call The Sarofim School of Fine Arts at 512-863-1504.

Media Coverage

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about the solar collector installed on the roof of the Phi Delta Theta house.

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about Lynn Guziec’s $231,950 grant from the National Institutes of Health.

The Williamson County Sun ran a story about Southwestern’s $100,000 grant from the Mellon Foundation to continue the Engaged Diversity program.

Notables

Members of the Southwestern community contributed more than $1,700 worth of food to The Caring Place this fall. Economics Professor Mary Young donated $1,300 worth of ground beef from her ranch and faculty, staff and students donated $400 worth of canned food to accompany the beef.

Alisa Gaunder, associate professor of political science, presented a paper titled “From Madonnas to Assassins − The Changing Image of Female Politicians in Japan” at the Southwest Conference on Asian Studies held at UT-Austin Oct. 16-17. Gaunder also was a panelist on a roundtable discussion that analyzed the 2009 Lower House election in Japan.

Barbara Boucher Owens, associate professor of computer science, will be the keynote speaker at the 5th University Course Forum in Computer Science to be held Oct. 25-26 in Chengdu, Sichuan, China. The conference is the largest computer science educators conference in China. Owens will give a talk titled “The Role of Professional Societies in American Computing Education.” Owens will give the same talk Oct. 27 at Peking University in Beijing, China, which is the country’s most prestigious university. Owens is chair of the Association for Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group in Computer Science Education, the national organization for educators in computer science, mainly at the undergraduate level.

Earlier this month, Owens participated in the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing in Tucson, Ariz., where she represented Southwestern at the meeting of the Academic Alliance of the National Center for Women in Technology. At the Hopper conference, she also served as a member of the ACM Council on Women in Computing.

Eric Selbin, professor of political science, chaired panels on “International Relations Theory” and “Sovereignty, Culture, and the Global Pluralist Society,” and participated in a panel on “Structural-Political Change in Latin America” at the International Studies Association-South Region meeting held last week in Nashville, Tenn.