In the Spotlight: Jan. 13, 2012

Kudos to these faculty, staff and students

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  • Fredricka L. Stoller, English professor, recently had the second edition of her co-edited volume published by Alta Book Center Publishers. A Handbook for Language Program Administrators presents an accurate picture of the challenges faced by language program administrators in different contexts. It offers administrators problem-solving suggestions, strategies and guidelines.
  • Matthew Alan Bowker, a researcher for the Soil Ecology Lab in the School of Earth Sciences and Environmental Sustainability, and Rebecca Lynn Mau, a graduate student in biology, coauthored with dozens of researchers an article in the journal Science. The article, “Plant Species Richness and Ecosystem Multifunctionality in Global Drylands,” suggests that the preservation of plant biodiversity is crucial to buffer negative effects of climate change and desertification in drylands.
  • Karen Renner, English lecturer, and Donelle Ruwe, associate professor of English, presented research at the international meeting of the Modern Language Association in Seattle last week. Renner’s paper, “Sensationalism in Temperance Literature,” discussed the way in which authors of antebellum American literature participated in the temperance movement. Ruwe’s paper, “The Mother Attitudes: Ann Taylor’s My Mother, Lady Emma Hamilton, and the Rise of Sentimental Children’s Poetry,” looked at the reception history across the 19th century of a popular British Romantic era poem.
  • A new book with ties to NAU reveals the “human side” of ecological restoration. Dave Egan, editor at NAU’s Ecological Restoration Institute, and Yeon-Su Kim, associate professor with the School of Forestry, are among several authors from around the world who contributed to Human Dimensions of Ecological Restoration: Integrating Science, Nature, and Culture. Egan also served as an editor for the book.  The 26-chapter interdisciplinary study of the human aspects of ecological restoration works from the premise that the success of ecological restoration projects will depend more on public involvement, especially as projects become larger.
  • Zsuzsanna Gulacsi, associate professor of art history and religious studies, recently delivered a series of four lectures to the École Pratique Des Hautes Etudes at the Sorbonne in Paris. Gulacsi’s lectures covered her publications and ongoing research, titled “Contextualized Studies in the History of Manichaean Art Across the Asian Continent.” The focus of her research included Jesus iconography, pictorial witnesses to the early gospel harmony known as the Diatessaron, West and Central Asian codicology and didactic arts used as illustrations of oral instructions in Asian religions.
  • Six NAU students recently were selected for the spring semester to receive a Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship, a program administered by the U.S. Department of State. This is the greatest number of NAU students chosen to receive the award in a single semester. Here are the selected undergraduate students, their major and the country in which they will study:
    • Justin Bigelow, secondary education, Estonia
    • Christine Brunson, social work, South Africa
    • Magali Chavez, international studies, Japan
    • Michael Martinez, communication studies, Italy
    • Heather Plaza, modern languages, France
    • Sean Poole, biomedical science, United Kingdom
  • NAU Relay for Life has been named winner of the Office of Student Life’s Rodney A. Mather Award. The award recognizes outstanding civic and university projects performed by recognized student organizations during an academic year. During the 2010-2011 academic year, more than 1,000 students participated in Relay for Life events to raise over $56,000 for the American Cancer Society. Participants also celebrated people who have battled cancer and remembered loved ones lost.
  • Paintings by John Cornelius are on display in the Student Union Gallery located on the second floor of the University Union. Cornelius works as a painter for Capital Assets and also is a third-year art student taking classes for enrichment. “Regardless of reality, perception is always stronger than fact. I feel that impressionism is the way we really see things,” he said. “I like to show color, emotion and spontaneity.”