In the Spotlight: Feb. 20-24, 2023

Kudos to these faculty, staff, students and programs 

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  • T. Mark Montoya, associate dean for curriculum and student affairs and associate professor of ethnic studies in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, authored a book chapter that was recently published in Know That You Are Worthy: Stories from First-Generation College Graduates. The chapter speaks directly to current and future first-generation students, offering strategies for success. 
  • Montoya also co-authored a book chapter that was recently published in Strategies for Navigating Graduate School and Beyond. The chapter, “Concerns for First-Gen Political Science Graduate Students” identifies the challenges faced by first-generation political science graduate students while calling to mind assets-based approaches. 
  • Seven current NAU graduate students and recent alumni were selected as this year’s Presidential Management Fellows, supporting them in entering high level federal government research positions for two years. This is a significant achievement because it highlights NAU’s outstanding graduate student achievements on a national stage and essential non-academic career pathways for top-achieving graduate student supporting NAU’s career-ready objectives in student training. The seven recognized students are: 
    • Connor D. Crouch 
    • Iris Garthwaite 
    • Noah M. Haarmann 
    • Jaclyn P. Motyka Corbin
    • Alexis Riche 
    • Ella M. Samuel 
    • Julia M. Stuart
  • The track & field teams continued their streak of breaking records, with two school records falling in their final regular season meet. 
    • John Murphy broke the men’s weight throw record with a toss of 21.40 meters, easily winning the event. His teammate, Desmond Lott, finished in second with a personal best of 20.45 meters. Parker Bays also set a new personal record in the event, throwing for a distance of 19.16 meters and finishing fourth. 
    • Trenton Givens broke the school record in a dominant 60-meter hurdles performance, running a time of 7.76 and winning the event. His time puts him second in the Big Sky. 
    • The men’s and women’s distance medley relays each came close to breaking their respective school records. Elise Stearns, Kyairra Reigh, Maggi Congdon and Annika Reiss combined for a time of 11:17.97, putting them at second all-time in school history. Nico Young, David Dunlap, Theo Quax and Drew Bosley ran a time of 9:40.68, putting them at No. 2 all-time in school history. 
  • Cristina Thomas, assistant professor in the Department of Astronomy and Planetary Science (APS), played an integral role in NASA’s DART mission and in the world’s first-ever in-space test for planetary defense in which the tracking speed limit was broken with the James Webb Space Telescope.  
  • Mark Loeffler, associate professor of APS, is a co-investigator on a recently selected proposal to NASA’s Solar System Workings program titled: An Experimental Investigation of Space Weathering Processes on the Surface of Mercury. The proposal is $1.3 million for three years and brings about $100K to NAU. 
  • APS postdoctoral student Aurelian Stcherbinine has a new paper out encompassing a two Martian years survey of water ice clouds on Mars with Atmospheric Chemistry Suite (ACS) instrument onboard the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO). 
  • Recent APS Ph.D. alumnus Colin Chandler is the lead author on a paper presenting the discovery of activity emanating from main-belt asteroid 2015 FW412. Co-authors include APS associate professor Chad Trujillo, recent Ph.D. alumnus and current postdoctoral student Will Oldroyd, alumnus Jay Kueny and former research experiences for undergraduates student Will Burris. 
  • In April, NAZ Today will receive the First-Place award for Best Newscast produced three days a week or less at the Broadcast Education Association (BEA) Conference in Las Vegas. The BEA is the leading academic organization for broadcast faculty, including film and multimedia creators as well. Students Tori Clark, Liam Combs and recent graduate Hanna Ware were named in the award, along with the entire NAZ Today Staff. 
  • Frederick DeMicco, professor in the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management, and Elizabeth Gutt, current MBA student, were recently published in Hospitality Net. In their article, “Quiet Quitting: An Investigation Into the Reasons and Motivations Behind this Workplace Challenge: Part I”, they discussed employee engagement based on the assumption that employee engagement is positively linked to and one of the reasons behind quiet quitting. 


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