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Natural and Physical Sciences News

    Two College Faculty Receive President’s Awards

    The College is proud to congratulate two of our outstanding faculty members on their recent awards from the President of the University of Missouri System.

    Dr. Richard Delaware, Teaching Professor in the Department of Mathematics & Statistics, received the President’s Award for Innovative Teaching. This honor “recognizes faculty who are outstanding teachers and who employ novel and innovative teaching methods to achieve success in student learning” (UM System). Dr. Delaware has been teaching at UMKC since 1984, and the Innovative Teaching Award is the latest addition to the many honors he has received during his time here. Students praise his techniques which foster collaboration and communication, enabling students to do hands-on work in class and communicate their approach with peers. Dr. Delaware’s writing intensive course, History of Mathematics, has generated award-winning student research papers and publications since 2004. You can read more about this innovative course here. In addition to the courses he teaches at UMKC, Dr. Delaware has also recorded and uploaded full course videos for College Algebra and Calculus I to YouTube, which have reached thousands of students world-wide.

    Dr. Sarah Pilgrim was awarded the President’s Award for Intercampus Collaboration, which “recognizes faculty who engage in activities that foster collaboration across two or more campuses of the University of Missouri System” (UM System). The collaborative project, Fostering Well Being, was established by Dr. Pilgrim and Dr. Virginia Ramseyer-Winter at the University of Missouri in Columbia, with contributions from faculty in Columbia’s School of Engineering and other faculty across both campuses. Drs. Pilgrim and Ramseyer-Winter also work with organizations such as Kansas City-based Youth Ambassadors and with graduate students serving as research associates at UMKC and MU. With the goal of supporting underserved youth in Missouri, the project aims to develop a phone-based app to provide critical public health information to foster families and vulnerable youth. Dr. Pilgrim joined the School of Social Work as an Assistant Professor in 2016. Her work with the Fostering Well Being project closely aligns with her research interests in adolescent trauma especially as related to foster placement.

    Congratulations to these two professors for this remarkable recognition of their important work with our students and our community.

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    Over 360 students named to College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s List for Fall 2019 semester

    Congratulations to the 361 students in UMKC’s College of Arts and Sciences named to the Dean’s List for the fall 2019 semester. The CAS Dean’s List recognizes excellent academic performance among full-time undergraduate students with a grade point average of 3.85 or higher for the term.

    Fall 2019 Dean's List graphic

    Joseph Adams – Earth and Environmental Science BS
    Maggie Agee – Psychology BA
    Chaehyun Ahn – Pre-Pharm
    Jennifer Aktar – Pre-Law, A&S
    Kamariah Al-Amin – Languages and Literatures BA: French
    Adin Alem – Political Science BA
    Nida Ali – Psychology & Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Ahmed Al-Makhazoom – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Naomie Alnatas – Liberal Arts BLA
    Mahreen Ansari – Political Science BA
    Kathryn Antrainer – History BA
    Melissa Appelquist – Psychology BA
    Cemile Arabaci – Physics BS
    Bosten Arcand – English BA: Language and Rhetoric
    Liam Arciga – History BA
    Cristian Arechiga – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Brent Arnold – Psychology BA
    Yusof Asefi – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Lucy Bahner – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Hayden Baker – English BA: Creative Writing
    Alex Barbour – History BA
    Reagan Barr – Environmental Science BS
    Mahryn Barron – English: Creative Writing & Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Brayden Basch – English & Philosophy BA
    Brianna Bauer – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Kennedy Bauer – Pre-Dentistry, A&S
    Abigail Bavuso – Pre-Pharm
    Alexander Bearden – Geology BS
    Bailey Beauchamp – Psychology BA
    Catherine Belcher – Psychology BA
    Jillian Bell – Psychology BA
    Michelle Bell – English BA
    Samuel Bellefy – English: Creative Writing & Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    J'aime Bellingham – Psychology BA
    Jerrah Biggerstaff – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Abigail Birkner – Psychology & Chemistry BA
    Margaret Boggs – Criminal Justice and Criminology & Psychology BA
    Christopher Bown – Studio Art BA
    Jane Boyd – Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Thomas Branson – Architectural Studies
    Jeb Brantner – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Grace Brewer – History BA
    Kyle Broley – Earth and Environmental Science BS: Physical Geography
    Jameson Brown – Economics BA
    April Brown – English BA: Creative Writing
    Renee Bruch – Communication Studies BA
    Camrin Buchholz – Political Science & Economics BA
    Alexus Buckert – Political Science BA
    Mason Bur – Psychology BA
    Hayden Burnett – Psychology BA
    Kayla Burns – English BA
    William Burrus – Economics & Languages and Literatures BA: French
    Isabella Burton – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Joel Busch – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Austin Butler – Art History BA
    Kevin Buzzie – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Bailey Cairns – English BA: Language and Rhetoric
    Beulah Calixte – Criminal Justice and Criminology & Sociology BA
    Tessa Campbell – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Crystyn Campbell – Psychology BA
    Samantha Capkovic – Political Science & Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Marin Carey – Environmental Studies BA
    Cody Carmack – Psychology BA
    Rebecca Caro – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Abigail Castle – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Brianna Catching – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Adam Chanliongco – Pre-Pharm
    Sarah Chapman – English BA: Classical, Medieval, and Early Literature
    Gabrielle Chappelle – Psychology BA
    Hunyee Choi – Psychology BA
    Lacey Clark – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Jordan Clarkin – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Sarah Clough – English BA
    Cassandra Coffey-Murray – English BA: Creative Writing
    Jacob Cooley – Psychology BA
    Cameron Cooper – Pre-Pharm
    Matthew Corcoran – Liberal Arts BLA
    Brooklyn Cornett – Psychology BA
    Emily Costelow – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Lindsay Cox – Art History BA
    Kyra Crabtree – English BA: Creative Writing
    Haley Crawford – Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Rachel Crazybear – Psychology BA
    J Robert Crowley – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Skylar Crowley – Psychology BA
    Lucas Cuni-Mertz – Communication Studies: Journalism and Mass Communication & Political Science BA
    Madisen Curtin – Pre-Medicine, A&S
    Emily Daggett – Liberal Arts BLA
    Victoria Davidson – History & Languages and Literatures BA: German
    Kyler Davis – Economics BA
    Hallie Dawson – English BA
    Katie Denny – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Devon Dewey – Art History BA
    Sarah Dirks – Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Shaleana Disorbo – History BA
    Abigail Doss – Psychology BA
    Mairaed Dunda – Environmental Science BS
    Rachel Dwyer – Liberal Arts BLA
    Gina Dwyer – Psychology BA
    Jacob Eisenhauer – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Audra Elford – English BA: Creative Writing
    Elizabeth Elmendorf – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Tomas Escarpita – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Gretchen Fiebig – Psychology BA
    Matia Finley – Psychology & Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Shannon Finneran – Liberal Arts BLA
    Ashlee Fish – Architectural Studies
    Lauren Fitzpatrick – Environmental Studies BA
    Jade Flanders – Psychology BA
    Madison Flynn – Psychology BA
    Victor Folk – Economics & Mathematics and Statistics BA
    Alexandra Foster – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Kayla Fox – Psychology BA
    Cori Fricke – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Makayla Friedrich – Economics BA
    Rachael Fritz – Psychology BA
    Miranda Fritz – Psychology & Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Sarah Fuentes – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Olivia Gallo – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Prae Gamel – Pre-Medicine, A&S
    Daisy Garcia Montoya – Communication Studies: Journalism and Mass Communication & Political Science BA
    Daniel Garcia-Roman – Studio Art BA
    Shea Geran – Environmental Science BS
    Alexander Gleason – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Kylee Gomez – Criminal Justice and Criminology & Political Science BA
    Allanis Gordon – Liberal Arts BLA
    Bethany Graham – English BA: Creative Writing
    Hannah Green – Psychology BA
    Hillary Green – Political Science BA
    Emera Greenwood – Psychology BA
    Brittany Grindle – Political Science BA
    Kyle Grogan – Psychology BA
    Dominic Guillen – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Garrett Gunderson – Film and Media Arts
    Hannah Haake – Urban Planning and Design BA
    Sadho Habib – Economics BA
    Madelene Hajer – English BA
    Andrew Hall – Sociology BA: Cultural Anthropology
    Ashton Hall – Psychology & Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Garam Han – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Katherine Hanners – History BA
    Estelle Hansen – Film and Media Arts
    Alicia Harrington – Psychology BA
    Jonathan Hawley – Psychology & Philosophy BA
    Naomi Henry – Geology BS
    Griselda Hernandez – Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Jonathan Hernandez – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Amelia Hess – Psychology & Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Lauren Higgins – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Valeczia Hooks – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Marika Houser – Political Science BA
    Madeline Houx – Psychology BA
    Cierra Howe – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Colton Hrabe – Film and Media Arts
    Seth Hudson – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Ali Hufft – Political Science & Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Aleister Hughes – History BA
    Tasneem Huq – English BA
    Nursyuhada Huq – Pre-Dentistry, A&S
    Alyx Hutchins – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Marissa Iden – Political Science BA
    Jared Islas – Urban Planning & Design- BA
    Michael Jenkins – Political Science & Philosophy BA
    Cheryse Johnson – Psychology BA
    Kate Johnston – English BA
    Nikita Joshi – History & English BA: Creative Writing
    Natalie Juno – Psychology & Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Medina Kajtazovic – English BA
    Franck Kamgain – Communication Studies BA
    Kara Kanatzar – English BA: Creative Writing
    Brandon Kanoy – Political Science BA
    Alexander Keith – Psychology BA
    Hannah Kempker – Pre-Pharm
    Lukas Kenney – English BA: Creative Writing
    Zaal Khazraeinazmpour – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Tracy Khiew – Studio Art BA
    Brenna Killen – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Brittni Kilton – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    David Kirk – Studio Art BA
    Daniel Kirk – Studio Art BA
    Brenna Kiu – Urban Planning & Design- BA
    Makenzie Kleist – Sociology & Psychology BA
    Melissa Klotz – Psychology BA
    Luke Knapp – Political Science BA
    Kaitlyn Korah – Pre-Pharm
    Molly Kordonowy – History BA
    Michaela Koval – History BA
    Carolyn Kovar – History BA
    Rhyan Kubik – Psychology BA
    Anabeth Laaker – History BA
    Gabriella Lavenbarg – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Shairry Lene – Pre-Dental Hygiene, A&S
    Maria Leno – Film and Media Arts
    Emma Leonard – History BA
    Lia Lombardini – Liberal Arts BLA
    Tyler Lott – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Vincent Lowry – Studio Art BA
    Mia Lukic – Philosophy BA
    Jennifer Lyons – Liberal Arts BLA
    Leah Maass – Psychology BA
    Christina Mackenzie – Architectural Studies
    Jackson MacLellan – Political Science BA
    Brett Madsen – Studio Art BA
    Reyna Mallory – Communication Studies: Film and Media Studies & Studio Art BA
    Abbie Malm – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Julio Mares – Psychology BA
    Caroline Matz – Psychology BA
    Emily Maupin – Psychology BA
    Caleb McCain – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Keegan McCarthy – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Olivia McCune – Psychology BA
    Michael Mead – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    William Meeds – Psychology BA
    Samuel Menner – Pre-Pharm
    Amelia Milldyke Gifford – Film and Media Arts
    Kesi Milligan – Urban Studies BA: Community Development and Housing
    Caroline Moriarty – Political Science BA
    Madison Murphy – Sociology BA
    Lauren Myers – Studio Art BA
    Jason Nalley – History BA
    Alex Niner – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Ryley Nolin – Pre-Dental Hygiene, A&S
    Slater Oden – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Jacob O'Neill – Psychology BA
    Odindo Opole – Film and Media Arts
    Silvestre Ortiz-Romo – Environmental Science BS
    Kenechukwu Osude – Pre-Medicine, A&S
    Abbey Outain – English BA: Creative Writing
    Randi Owens – Earth and Environmental Science BS
    Saketh Pachalla – History BA
    Christine Park – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Shivani Patel – Psychology BA
    Ahmad Pazhoohi – Pre-Pharm
    Riley Peek – English BA
    Josie Pennington – History BA
    Enrique Perez – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Cailyn Persinger – Pre-Pharm
    Kenny Phan – Earth and Environmental Science BS
    Kacper Piekarek – Economics BA
    Josilinia Plyman – Political Science BA
    Maggie Pool – Film and Media Arts
    Philip Potter – History BA
    Kaitlyn Powell – Film and Media Arts
    Lydia Powers – Languages and Literatures BA: French
    Aaron Price – Urban Studies BA: Urban Policy and Management
    Noah Price – Psychology BA
    Bayleigh Priddy – Psychology BA
    Bethany Pritchard – History BA
    Halena Procopio Ross – Environmental Science BS
    Monica Propst – Urban Studies BA
    Stephen Quackenbush – Architectural Studies
    Jordan Railsback – Film and Media Arts
    Angela Ramirez – Art History BA
    Carson Rau – Sociology BA
    Isabel Recker – Languages and Literatures: Spanish & Psychology BA
    Grace Reesman – Physics & Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Mary Reust – Studio Art BA
    Zoe Rickman – Film and Media Arts
    Jayla Riggins – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Karla Rincon – Psychology BA
    Erin Roth – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Ryan Rowland – History BA
    Michaela Roxas – Psychology & English BA: Creative Writing
    Guillermo Rubio – Philosophy BA
    Sagi Rudnick – Political Science & Communication Studies BA
    Anna Ryan – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Jacob Salas – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Jared Schild – Psychology & Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Jessica Scott – Criminal Justice and Criminology & Philosophy BA
    Audrey Seider – Art History BA
    Teah Sensenich – Psychology BA
    Alexandra Serafin – History BA
    Sydney Serrano – Psychology BA
    Gary Sharp – History BA
    Destinee Shehan – Psychology BA
    Mariah Shipley – Psychology BA
    Madison Sieger – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Sophie Simes – English BA
    Dawson Sims – Environmental Studies BA
    Kimberly Sims – Studio Art BA
    Adam Sisk – Communication Studies: Film and Media Studies & Languages and Literatures BA: Spanish
    Helene Slinker – Political Science BA
    Regan Smith – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Katrena Smith – Psychology BA
    Justin Smith – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Hunter Smith – Psychology BA
    Joshua Sola – Geography BS
    Grace Solomon – Political Science BA
    Paul Sorensen – English: Language and Rhetoric
    Annie Spencer – English: Classical, Medieval, and Early Literature & History BA
    Carrine Spinks – Psychology BA
    Samantha Sprouse – Psychology BA
    Nichole Stahly – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Mollie Stanek – Studio Art BA
    Gabrielle Stansell – Political Science BA
    Shea Staples – Liberal Arts BLA
    Maria Starns – History BA
    Kyleigh Steenrod – Pre-Dental Hygiene, A&S
    Lanisha Stevens – Psychology BA
    Ronnea Stiles – English BA
    McKenna Still – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Sophia Straight – English BA
    Abby Strawn – Political Science BA
    Robyn Sullins – Psychology BA
    Erica Sullivan – Psychology BA
    Julianna Swickard – Film and Media Arts
    Chandler Tarrant – Physics BS
    Ezekiel Taylor – Studio Art BA
    Lillian Taylor – Psychology BA
    Lauren Textor – English BA
    Myo Thai – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Jasmine Thai – Pre-Pharm
    Maeghan Thomas – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Scott Thompson – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Kristina Thomson – Earth and Environmental Science BS
    Aleena Tofanelli – Psychology BA
    Fatima Towakoli – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Jessica Tran – Pre-Pharm
    Uyen Tran – Studio Art BA
    Lucy Trask – Pre-Pharm
    Chloe Tremain – English BA
    Gregory Troiani – Physics BS: Astronomy
    Dashiell Tucker – Political Science BA
    Nathan Underwood – Mathematics and Statistics BS
    Kelsey Van Buskirk – Communication Studies BA: Film and Media Studies
    Cheeia Vang – Pre-Dental Hygiene, A&S
    Eisa Vasquez – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Cozette Viles – Liberal Arts BLA
    Ashley Vogel – English BA
    Sierra Voorhies – Psychology BA
    John Waggoner – Psychology BA
    Kara Walters – English BA: Creative Writing
    Jack Walton – English BA
    Jasmine Walton – Political Science BA
    Julia Weber – Psychology BA
    Madison Wellman – Studio Art BA
    Brayan Westergaard – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Samuel Westlake – Psychology BA
    Emily White – Art History BA
    Madison White – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Alexandra Whitlow – Philosophy BA
    Rowan Wiley – Political Science BA
    Jermeha Williams – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Kelly Williams – Psychology BA
    Alexa Williams – Pre-Dental Hygiene, A&S
    Abby Williams – Sociology BA
    Candace Williamson – Criminal Justice and Criminology BA
    Justin Wills – Environmental Science BS
    Jacob Wingert – Mathematics and Statistics BA
    Sophie Woycheese – Psychology BA
    Abdulrehman Yousaf – Pre-Medicine, A&S
    Ayat Youssef – Psychology BA
    Taylor Yuhas – Pre-Pharm
    Mariya-Tereza Zelenchuk – Communication Studies BA: Interpersonal and Public Communication
    Zackary Zeller – Communication Studies BA: Journalism and Mass Communication
    Samantha Zoellner – Pre-Pharm

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    Do Supermassive Black Holes have a Super Effect on Galaxy Shape?

    Prof. Dan McIntosh has followed Astronomy Magazine since the early 1980s when his Grandpa Bill and Grandma Tressie McIntosh gave him an annual subscription. Just recently, Prof. McIntosh published the answer to an "Ask Astro" question. Ask Astro answers reader questions about the science and hobby of astronomy in every issue of the magazine so it is especially gratifying for Prof. McIntosh to have the opportunity to provide an answer as a professional astronomer.

    The reader asked, "Since a great number of galaxies are spiral in shape and there is a black hole in the middle of them, is the shape of the galaxy influenced by the “sucking” power of the black hole, like water spiraling into the drain of the bathtub?" Prof. McIntosh provides the answer.

    Orbits of starts near Sat. A*

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    Dr. Syed E. Hasan attends MEDGEO 2019

    Dr. Hasan SyedDr. Syed E. Hasan, professor emeritus of geology, Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri-Kansas City, attended the 8th international conference–MEDGEO 2019–held at Guiyang, Guizhou Province, China, August 12-15, 2019. The conference was hosted by the Institute of Geochemistry, Chinese Academy of Sciences and the International Medical Geology Association. Dr. Hasan gave a keynote lecture titled “Health impacts of waste management and medical geology”. He also conducted a one-day short course on Medical Geology that was attended by over 50 people representing several countries

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    Physics Graduate Student Excels: Kameswara Mantha is a researcher, mentor, scientist extraordinaire

    Kameswara ManthaExceptional is just one word to describe Kameswara Mantha, doctoral student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Department of Physics and Astronomy.

    He is one of five individuals who are vying to be the first physics doctoral graduate at UMKC specializing in astrophysics. He’s making a name for himself through his dedication to physics research, scholarship and mentorship.

    Pure determination and talent brought Mantha to where he is. While physics is Mantha’s passion, the path to a career in the field hasn’t been easy. Owing to the very limited opportunities to pursue physics degrees in his native India, Mantha earned a bachelor’s degree in electronics and communication engineering instead. In order to apply for graduate schools, “I self-taught to take the physics GRE,” Mantha said, and applied to top graduate schools in the United States. However, he was denied admissions by several institutes due to a lack of the right undergraduate degree.

    So, armed with an engineering degree, Mantha joined the UMKC School of Computing and Engineering as a master’s student in August 2014. One day before the scheduled UMKC engineering student orientation, he learned about the UMKC Physics and Astronomy program, which stoked his hopes to pursue astrophysics. In a desperate search for an opportunity, Mantha pondered, “I’m going to try one last time” before approaching Professor Daniel McIntosh in the UMKC Physics and Astronomy Department.

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    Dr. Rebecca Egli (UMKC History BA '08) receives Postdoctoral Fellowship at Linda Hall Library

    Congratulations to Dr. Rebecca (Mowry) Egli on receiving a post-doctoral Residential Fellowship at Linda Hall Library. During her two-month stay, she will conduct research for her current project, "Seeds of Misfortune: Food, Crop Diversity, and the Simplification of American Nature," a history of America’s plant explorers that examines the impact of plant introduction and breeding on agricultural biodiversity and innovation.

    Rebecca Egli FullRebecca grew up in Kansas City and received her Bachelor of Arts degree from UMKC's History Department in 2008. She earned a Master of Arts degree in history from King’s College London in 2010 and a doctorate in history from the University of California, Davis in 2018.

    Exploring intersections between agriculture, science, and the environment, her dissertation, "The World of Our Dreams: Agricultural Explorers and the Promise of American Science," looks at federal scientists in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, exploring developments in plant biology and the ecological consequences of importing non-native plants into the United States.

    We are so proud to have Dr. Egli conducting research again in Kansas City!

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    365 students named to College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s List for Spring 2018 Semester

    A total of 365 students in UMKC’s College of Arts and Sciences were named to the Dean’s List for the spring 2018 semester. The CAS Dean’s List recognizes excellent academic performance among full-time undergraduate students with a grade point average of 3.85 or higher for the term.

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    Addressing the Cost of Higher Education: Open Educational Resources reduce costs for students, enhance learning

    Male student wearing UMKC shirt with laptopThe cost of higher education is an issue, and one the University of Missouri-Kansas City is addressing.

    As part of the four-campus University of Missouri System, UMKC has had one of the lowest rates of tuition increase in the U.S. during the past decade. And despite this year’s tuition increase of 1 percent, efforts to keep the overall cost of education are continuing, and are working.

    For example, in June 2017, the University of Missouri-Kansas City joined UM System in the Affordable & Open Educational Resources (A&OER) program to save students money on textbooks and other course materials.

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    Kansas City Philanthropist and Children's Health Advocate Receives Honorary Doctorate, Gives Commencement Address

    David Westbrook gives the commencement address during Spring 2018 College of Arts and Sciences Commencement CeremoniesUnhindered by juvenile glaucoma that took his sight at age 17, David Westbrook (B.A. ’71) has proven that vision has nothing to do with one’s ability to see. He founded Corporate Communications Group, a communications and public relations firm he sold before taking his talent and dedication to longtime client Children’s Mercy.

    Westbrook attributes his lifetime of success to his parents and to the University of Missouri-Kansas City. His alma mater awarded him with an honorary doctorate at the 2018 College of Arts and Sciences commencement ceremony, and he gave the address to the graduating class at Swinney Recreation Center on campus.

    “This is not a defining moment, this is a moment of celebration,” said Westbrook, who holds bachelor’s degrees in English and psychology from UMKC. “Defining moments are with your professors and your friends.”

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    VFW puts more “ease” into UMKC’s At Ease Zone

    Lynn Roth, III, Nick Lopez and Ethan Alexander pose for a photo on the new couch in the UMKC At Ease ZoneThe National Headquarters of the Veterans of Foreign Wars has put a little more “ease” into the UMKC At Ease Zone. The VFW recently presented student veterans with a much-desired couch for the space, along with a new coffee maker and a networked printer.

    The UMKC At Ease Zone, located on the second floor of Cherry Hall on UMKC’s Volker Campus, supports UMKC student veterans as they transition into community and campus life. The At Ease Zone is a collaboration between the College of Arts and Sciences’ School of Social Work and the UMKC Dean of Students.

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    UMKC Galaxy Evolution Group Assists with Planned Observations with Next Great Space Observatory

    UMKC Galaxy Evolution GroupThe James Webb Space Telescope, the scientific successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, is scheduled to launch in the spring of 2020. It is expected to make history as the largest astronomical observatory ever sent into space, and University of Missouri-Kansas City scientists and students will be among those getting the earliest access to it.

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    Over 360 students named to CAS Dean’s List for Fall 2017

    CAS Dean's List Fall 2017A total of 369 students in the UMKC College of Arts and Sciences were named to the Dean’s List for the Fall 2017 semester. The CAS Dean’s List recognizes excellent academic performance among full-time undergraduate students with a grade point average of 3.85 or higher for the term.

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    Chemistry Department Celebrates First Phase of Renovated Lab Space

    Beakers and Chemistry equipmentOfficials from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and McCarthy Building Companies recently gathered to commemorate the completion of the first phase of a $21.5 million project to renovate and modernize 75,000 square feet of laboratory space in the Spencer Chemistry and Biological Sciences buildings on the UMKC Volker Campus.

    “Renovating and expanding UMKC’s primary biology and chemistry teaching laboratories enhances our ability to offer outstanding research and academic degree programs in modern sciences at both the undergraduate and graduate level,” said Robert Simmons, UMKC associate vice chancellor of administration. “Modernizing outdated buildings benefits students, faculty and the community, while addressing functionality, enrollment capacity and deferred maintenance needs.”

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    2017 Winter Commencement Challenges Graduates to Better the World

    UMKC students at graduationApproximately 1,000 University of Missouri-Kansas City graduates, friends and families filled Swinney Auditorium to celebrate the culmination of years of late nights and hard work as graduates claimed their diplomas. The university held three ceremonies on Saturday, Dec. 16 and presented two honorary doctorate degrees.

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    UMKC to Present Honorary Doctorates to Outstanding Kansas City-Based Authors

    Dean Wayne Vaught speaks to a faculty member at UMKC commencement in 2016Celebrated Kansas City-based non-fiction authors David Von Drehle and Candice Millard will be honored with honorary doctorates at mid-year commencement ceremonies Dec. 16 at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

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    Colliding Neutron Stars Produce Gold, Silver and Platinum

    A conversation with Mark Brodwin, assistant professor in the University of Missouri-Kansas City Department of Physics and Astronomy

    Scientists recently witnessed the spectacle of colliding neutron stars. What are they?

    Brodwin: When a very massive star runs out of fuel to burn, it explodes in a huge supernova leaving behind a neutron star or, if the star is very massive, a black hole. A neutron star is a very compact ball of neutrons with the extreme density of an atomic nucleus. A typical neutron star has a mass twice that of our sun, but a size about that of Overland Park. It’s so dense that a teaspoon would weigh about as much as Mount Everest!

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    Kathleen Kilway to Receive STEMMy Award

    Dr. Kathleen Kilway shows students objects in a chemistry lab.Kathleen Kilway, Ph.D., Curator’s teaching professor and chair, UMKC Chemistry Department, will be recognized for her professional and technical excellence by the Kansas City Central Exchange with a STEMMy Award.

    The award will be presented by Central Exchange on Sept. 21 at the 4th Annual Stemmy Awards Luncheon at the Arvest Bank Theatre in downtown Kansas City.

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    CAS presents inaugural Royall Professorships

    Normal Royall Distinguished Professor AwardThe UMKC College of Arts and Sciences presented the inaugural Norman Royall Professorships to four faculty members during the College’s 2017 Fall Reception and Awards Ceremony. The Royall Professorship is the highest honor bestowed by the College.

    “As the highest recognition in the College, the Royall Professorship will reward faculty committed to research and/or teaching excellence, creativity and interdisciplinarity,” said Dean Wayne Vaught during the presentation.

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    Leaders in Learning: a celebration of faculty achievement

    University of Missouri-Kansas City faculty who received endowed professorships, promotions, tenure and other awards of distinction were recognized in 2017 with the Leaders in Learning celebration, an evening of dinner and jazz at Pierson Auditorium.

    A video tribute included praise for UMKC faculty from students as well as Kansas City Mayor Sly James.

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    Dark? Cold? Here's what to expect with Monday's solar eclipse

    Sky already looks different

    We all know Monday’s eclipse [August 21, 2017] will be a rare sight, and one you should view with safety-approved glasses.

    But if you want to be the smartest person at your eclipse watch party, there’s more you should know.

    Professor Mark Brodwin“It gets dark, and it gets cold, and the wind picks up, and the birds freak out, and you can see stars,” said Mark Brodwin, a UMKC astronomy and astrophysics professor.

    “It’s a very surreal and emotional experience, I’ve read. I can’t wait to experience it myself,” Brodwin said.

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    Astronomer shares pro tip for finding the best place to watch the eclipse

    From astronomers to outdoor enthusiasts, astrophysicists to laymen — many are giddy about the coming totality of a solar eclipse.

    2017 Solar eclipse path in MissouriBut where to watch it unfold is a question facing eclipse hunters as the Aug. 21 event approaches.

    Daniel McIntosh, a distinguished professor of astronomy and physics at UMKC, has diligently plotted out where he’ll observe the eclipse, and he shared a pro tip that he himself is using to pick out a location: find a hill with a view to the west.

    “So you can see the western horizon,” he said. “You’ll see the shadow as it comes toward you.”

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    UMKC geosciences graduate student researches accuracy of weather forecasts for NASA

    UMKC Geosciences graduate student Forrest Black poses for a photo with a sign welcoming people to NASA's Langley Research Center.Forrest Black isn’t a pilot, but he’s helping to make air travel safer and more efficient.

    Black, a UMKC geosciences graduate student, has been interning as a research assistant at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, since the fall of 2016.

    Black is researching how major weather events impact the National Airspace System (airports, navigation facilities and airspaces of the United States). He wants to develop a tool that will reconstruct the evolution of those events using weather and flight data.

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    Infusing Confidence in Undergraduate Researchers

    UMKC PR ClassroomEUReka Math Course Researched Kansas City Water Cutoffs

    Experiences in Undergraduate Research, or EUReka classes, play a critical role in the undergraduate curriculum at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. The university takes advantage of its urban location to offer numerous opportunities for students at all levels to gain hands-on research experience that also benefits neighboring communities.

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    UMKC Physics and Astronomy Professor, Mark Brodwin, is a Consultant on the Stars

    KCREP Constellations imageHow can actors become knowledgeable on complex subjects for their plays? They consult with a college professor, of course.

    Mark Brodwin, Ph.D., professor in the UMKC Department of Physics and Astronomy, recently collaborated with the Kansas City Repertory Theatre on their current play, Constellations.

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    Honeywell and UMKC Expand Science and Innovation Collaboration

    Physics Honeywell collaborators Wrobel and LambtonStudents and faculty gain improved access to new technology

    The University of Missouri-Kansas City has signed a master collaboration agreement with Honeywell Federal Manufacturing & Technologies (FM&T), creating closer collaboration on research and development of new technology to meet national security needs.

    “UMKC is proud to partner with Honeywell,” said UMKC Chancellor Leo E. Morton. “The collaboration will allow us to bring UMKC and Honeywell’s research expertise together, which will not only benefit our students and faculty, but also our national security.”

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    ALMA telescope to unlock mysteries of giant galaxy...

    Phoenix Cluster impression by B. SaxtonTeam used ALMA telescope to unlock mysteries of giant galaxy at the center of Phoenix Cluster

    A team of astronomers including Mark Brodwin, assistant professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, have discovered a surprising connection between a supermassive black hole and the galaxy in which it resides.

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    Chemistry professor publishes book on black titanium dioxide

    Xiaobo ChenBlack TiO2 Nanomaterials for Energy Applications. The book, published through World Scientific Publishing, aims to present the recent progress on the research of black TiO2 nanomaterials and how they can be used in a number of clean energy applications.

    The book includes a theoretical analysis of TiO2 research, and provides a comprehensive review of the subject for students, researchers and practitioners in catalytic science, materials science, nanotechnology, green technology and chemistry.

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    UMKC Geosciences Graduate Student Interns at NASA

    Forrest Black, a Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Geosciences, spent this past fall semester interning at NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.

    As an intern, Black helped develop a tool that can ingest standard weather data and flight trajectory data for analyzing the impact of weather on aviation operations. He will stay in Virginia to work on this project throughout the spring 2017 semester.

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    $300,000 NSF Grant for Climate Research

    Prof. SunAssistant Professor of Geosciences Fengpeng Sun Ph.D. was recently awarded a $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation. As the principal investigator, Sun will work as an independent researcher on a three-year project, “High-resolution Climate Change Projections in Missouri.”

    Sun’s funded project is part of NSF’s Missouri Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) program, “Missouri Transect: Plants, Climate and Community”, headed by Prof. John Walker at MU in Columbia. Missouri Transect is a five-year effort to build infrastructure, knowledge and collaborations in research and education across Missouri. As an established climate scientist, Sun brings to the Missouri Transect added expertise in the design of high-resolution regional climate modeling.

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    UMKC professor recognized by NASA for work on galaxies

    Mark Brodwin, UMKC Physics and Astronomy Professor A UMKC professor has been recognized for his work studying galaxies.

    Mark Brodwin, associate professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, won a NASA Group Achievement Award from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

    Brodwin was one of six recognized for groundbreaking research as part of the Massive and Distant Clusters of WISE (Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer) Survey team, called MaDCoWS, for short.

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