News from The Ohio State University College of Arts and Sciences
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Featured Blog

Each week we would like to feature a new blog post from our ASC community — please send links to your posts to

Nicholas Breyfogle: Environment–Water–History

RussiaAugust 2013 marked the start of a challenging far-flung adventure. Nicholas Breyfogle, associate professor, history, chronicles his trek through Russia’s Solovetskie Islands.



Jeffrey Sachs to Give COMPAS Keynote Address 

Jeffrey SachsThe Provost’s Discovery Themes Lecturer Program and COMPAS present Jeffrey D. Sachs, director of The Earth Institute, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development at Columbia University and special advisor to United Nations Secretary-General, Friday, April 4, at 3 p.m. for a panel discussion on “The Age of Sustainable Development.” Free and open to all. No RSVP required.

James Shapiro Lecture Honors Shakespeare’s 450th Birthday

James ShapiroInternationally known Shakespeare scholar, author and Columbia University Professor James Shapiro will present Shakespeare’s 450th Birthday Lecture, “Shakespeare in America,” Friday, April 4, 5 p.m., Ohio Union’s U.S. Bank Conference Theater. His discussion will explore research from his new bookto be released the day before the event—Shakespeare in America: An Anthology from the Revolution to Now. The lecture is free and open to all.

Landmark Experiment Reveals Diamond Wire Holds Promise for Faster Computing

Chris HammelChris Hammel, professor, physics and director of the NSF-funded Center for Emergent Materials, is lead investigator on a landmark study searching for ways to make computers faster. His group demonstrated that information can flow through a diamond wire—passed along by a magnetic effect called “spin”—better than most metals previously used. One day, spin may be used to transmit data in computer circuits, making computers faster and more powerful. 


Arts and Sciences Researchers Part of Two New BETHA-Funded Projects

The Battelle Engineering, Technology and Human Affairs (BETHA) Endowment supports projects examining complex relationships science and technology have on society and cultural issues. Joan Herbers; EEOB, is PI on a project creating an intellectual hub to study social, ethical, legal and educational challenges of science and technology. ASC co-investigators are Jill Bystydzienski; WGSS; Mark Shanda, theatre and arts and humanities dean; Samantha Howe; EEOB; and Peter Hahn, history. Bryan Mark, geography and Byrd Polar Research Center (BPRC) is PI on developing a Maymester course for students to design and build a device to collect geo- and time-tagged temperature data deployed on moving vehicles and database to store and assimilate collected data. ASC co-investigators are Jason Cervenec, BPRC; and James DeGrand, geography.



BDM Researchers Assess “Economic Value”

Ellen Peters, professor of psychology and director of Ohio State’s Behavioral Decision Making (BDM) Initiative, and Dan Schley, graduate fellow and GTA in psychology, are authors of a new study on symbolic-number mappings, published in Psychological Science. Schley is the first American to win the De Finetti Prize from the European Association for Decision Making for this paper.

Moore to Testify Before Congressional Subcommittee

Richard Moore, executive director of the Environmental Sciences Network at Ohio State, presented testimony before the U.S. House of Representatives' Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment yesterday (3/25) during a hearing on “The Role of Trading in Achieving Water Quality Objectives.” Moore has been involved in developing and studying grassroots water quality trading systems for over a decade.


ASC Students Recognized by Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program

Tyler Friesen, mathematics, conducting research with Sergei Chmutov’s Knots and Graphs Working Group, has been named a 2014 Goldwater Scholar; and Jason Ford, chemistry, conducting research with Anne McCoy’s Physical and Theoretical Chemistry Group, has received an Honorable Mention. Engineering students Katrin Daehn, materials science engineering, and Joseph Gauthier, chemical engineering, also have been named Goldwater Scholars. The Goldwater is the most prestigious national award for undergraduate researchers in science, math and engineering.

Koritha Mitchell Receives Congressional Recognition

Koritha MitchellKoritha Mitchell, associate professor, English, was honored and surprised with a Certificate of Congressional Recognition following her invited lecture on March 14 at the Library of Congress. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee presented the honor to Mitchell, who admits to being literally speechless. C-Span's Book TV recorded Mitchell's lecture, which focused on her book Living with Lynching: African American Lynching Plays, Performance and Citizenship. It airs Sunday, March 30, at 11 p.m. 

Marching Band Honored

The Ohio State University Marching Band was recognized in February by Marching Band alumnus and Congressman Patrick J. Tiberi during the Second Session of the U.S. House of Representatives. Tiberi recognized the band for its innovation and use of technology during the 2012 and 2013 football seasons.

Creator of MOOCulous Receives 2014 Crestron Summum Bonum Award

Jim FowlerJim Fowler, assistant professor, mathematics, who created and taught the Calculus One massive open online course (MOOC), received the 2014 Crestron Summum Bonum Award for Excellence in Teaching at Ohio State’s annual Innovate conference March 26. The award, presented by the president of Crestron Electronics during the “Steal My Idea” component of the conference, recognizes the impact of Fowler’s innovative work on thousands of students across the world.


Astronomy Researcher Honored by Two Indian Universities

Sultana NaharSultana Nahar, research scientist, astronomy, recently was recognized by two major Indian universities for her work as a scientist and as a role model. She was awarded a trophy for "promotion as an advocate and model of Muslim women scientists," during a celebration of International Women's Day, at Aligarh Muslim University. Nahar also received a Kashmiri symbolic Samovar from the University of Kashmir for her contributions to science. 


Remembering… Beth Ray

Beth RayBeth Ray, 67, former academic counselor and assistant dean for Ohio State University's arts and sciences academic advising, died March 21 in Corvallis, Oregon, after a long battle with lung cancer. Ray moved to Corvallis with her husband, Ed Ray, professor of economics and Ohio State University provost, who was named Oregon State University's 14th president in 2003. Ray was an alumna of Ohio State's Moritz College of Law. A celebration of Ray's life is tentatively scheduled for June 2 on the Oregon State University campus.


LASER Lecture

The Latino & Latin American Space for Enrichment and Research (LASER) hosts Randy Ontiveros, Wednesday, March 26, 4:30 p.m., Ohio Union. He will present, "The Chicano Movement, Then and Now: Reflecting on Art and Politics in Contemporary America." Ontiveros is a professor at the University of Maryland where he writes and teaches in the areas of contemporary American literature and Chicano/Latino literary and cultural studies.

Molecular Genetics Graduate Students Present the 38th Annual Waller Lectures 

Peggy Lemaux, cooperative extension specialist, University of California-Berkeley, will deliver the 38th Annual Waller lectures, April 3 and 4. Public lecture, April 3, “Feast, Famine and the Future of Food," 355 Jennings, 4 p.m. April 4 technical lecture, "From Basic to Applied Research: How Modifying Expression of Thioredoxin in Cereals Led to Unexpected Improvements in Grain Properties - So, Where Are They?," 4:10 p.m., 001 Jennings.

Inaugural Behavioral Decision Making (BDM) Research Forum 

Ohio State's Behavioral Decision Making (BDM) Initiative hosts its first research forum highlighting areas of decision research, Friday April 11, 2:30-6 p.m., 0035 Psychology. Keynote speaker: Psychology Professor Laura Scherer, University of Missouri. Following Scherer's presentation, arts and sciences graduate students involved in BDM research will present their work. 


Linguistics Summer Camps—Application Deadline: May 30

The Department of Linguistics’ week-long summer language program for high school and pre-college students, the Summer Linguistics Institute for Youth Scholars (SLIYS), runs July 6-11; and July 13-18. The cost of a week-long session is $695, covering instruction, materials, housing and meals. Contact: Julia McGory.


Poster Research Forum for STEM Students with Diversabilities 

Monday, March 31, Ohio Union Performance Hall, 12-3 p.m., sponsored by Battelle Memorial Institute ABLE Alliance and Office of Student Life Disability Services.


Small Research Grants for Faculty and Graduate Students—Deadline: April 15

The BDM Initiative welcomes applications for small grants for faculty and graduate students. Tuesday, April 15, is the next deadline. The goal of these competitive grants is to foster new BDM research activity and collaboration.

Staff Professional Development Grants—Application Deadline: April 25

College of Arts and Sciences staff members are encouraged to apply for professional development funding through an ASC Staff Professional Development Grant.


Summer 2014 ASC Staff Book Circle—Registration Deadline: May 9

Arts and Sciences staff members are invited to participate in this summer’s ASC staff book circle. Members read the 2014 Buckeye Book Community selection, The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls, and meet twice during July at a brown bag lunch. Questions: Ann Rottersman.


March 27

Chemical and Structural Biology RFG Student Seminars; 11:30 a.m., 0111 Parks Hall

CURA Roundtable: Lynnette Cook of Community Research Partners; 1 p.m., 1080 Derby Hall

How to Write a Winning NSF CAREER Proposal Webinar; 2 p.m., 1080 Physics Research Building

Psychology Colloquia: Margaret Clark, Yale University; 4 p.m., 035 Psychology Building

2014 Carolyn Engel Luebeck Lecture; 4 p.m., Rosa M. Ailabouni Room, Ohio Union

Imperial Lives: St. Epiphanius of Salamis and Religious Anxieties; 4:30 p.m., 165 Thompson Library

Bourguignon Lecture in Art and Anthropology; 7 p.m., 1153 Smith Lab

The Soul of the Humanities; 7:30 p.m., 165 Thompson Library


March 27-30

37th Annual Ohio State Jazz Festival; Weigel Auditorium


March 28

Form/Huber Colloquium: Emily Erikson; 12:30 p.m., 248 Townshend Hall

AAAS Distinguished Lecture Series: Jesse W. Shipley; 1:30 p.m., 165 Thompson Library

Comparison as Method: Katherine Hayles; 2:30 p.m., 070/090 18th Avenue Library

Cooperation, Capital, and Italian States: AD 1100-1550 - Michael Martuccio; 3 p.m., 168 Dulles Hall

Economics Seminar: Juuso Toikka, MIT; 3:30 p.m., 437 Arps Hall

Big Cities, Migration, and Food in Late Antiquity; 4 p.m., 168 Dulles Hall


Through March 29

Slavic and East European Languages and Cultures 50th Anniversary Celebration


March 31

School of Communication Colloquium; 11:30 p.m., 106 Journalism Building

Anthropology Brown Bag Talk: John Soderberg, University of Minnesota; 12 p.m., 4012 Smith Laboratory

Building MOMENTUM in STEM RESEARCH: A Poster Research Forum for STEM Students with Diversabilities; 12 p.m., Performance Hall, Ohio Union

Getting a Digital Life: Self-Presentation in Online Environments; 1 p.m., 451 Hagerty Hall

Nelson Mandela: His Life, Times, and Legacy; 1:30 p.m., MLK Jr. Lounge, Hale Hall

Economics Seminar: Janquin Fan, University of Washington; 3:30 p.m., 437 Arps Hall

Literacy in Translation: Issues of Translation in Teaching; 4:30 p.m., George Wells Knight House, 104 E. 15th Ave.


April 1

Yiddish Radio: Geoff Algar: Back In the USSR: Froyn, No Foolin'; 10:30 a.m., online

The Relational Context of Radicalization: The Case of Jewish Settler Contention before and after the Gaza Pullout; 12 p.m., Mershon Center for International Security Studies

Institute for Population Research Seminar: Cristian Pop Eleches, Columbia University; 12:30 p.m., 038 Townshend Hall

The Wherry lecture: Data Visualization at the New York Times; 3 p.m., 170 18th Avenue Building

Economics Seminar: Russell Cooper, Pennsylvania State University; 3:30 p.m., 437 Arps Hall

Arts and Humanities Inaugural Lecture: Judy Tzu-Chun Wu; 5 p.m., Faculty Club Grand Lounge


April 2

The Warrior State: Pakistan in the Contemporary World; 12 p.m., Mershon Center for International Security Studies

Barnett Center Meet and Greet; 3 p.m., Barnett Center, 131 Sullivant Hall

Department of Design Spring Exhibition Reception; 6 p.m., Urban Arts Space, 50 W. Town St.


Through April 3

Department of Design Spring Exhibition; Urban Arts Space, 50 W. Town St.

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March 26, 2014

Ann Hamilton to Receive Highest Formal Recognition of Artistic Merit

The American Academy of Arts and Letters announced March 20 that it will induct nine new members into the 250-person organization in mid-May, including internationally recognized artist Ann Hamilton, professor, Department of Art, and Distinguished University Professor. Election is considered the highest formal recognition of artistic merit in the United States.


Chris Hammel, professor, physics, and director, Center for Emergent Materials, on diamonds in computers, Business Standard, March 24, and Nature Nanotechnology, March 23

Brad Bushman, professor, communication, on how violent video games with black characters fuel racism, The Root, March 23

Geoffrey Parker, professor, history, “Lessons from the Little Ice Age,” New York Times, March 22, and BBC, March 21

Todd Nesbit, senior lecturer, economics, on cigarette smuggling, KJZZ Radio, March 21, 2014

Isaac Weiner, assistant professor, comparative studies, “Then and Now," Christian Century magazine, March 19

Ken Rinaldo, professor, art, on “Fusiform Polyphony,” Wired, March 13, 2014


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