In the Spotlight: March 26, 2021

Kudos to these faculty, staff and programs

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  • Northern Arizona University was featured by on its list of The Best Master’s In Communication Degree Programs. The list was determined based on an assessment of 171 accredited colleges and universities in the nation, which were evaluated on curriculum quality, graduation rate, reputation and post-graduate employment. NAU also was ranked No. 2 on’s list of The Best Logistics Degree Programs. There were 158 universities and colleges assessed and 280 education programs compared.
  • Peter Friederici, director of the Sustainable Communities program and professor in the School of Communication, published the article, “In Germany, the energy transition continues” in a special issue of The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. The article analyzes Germany’s greenhouse gas emission levels since Chancellor Angela Merkel announced the country would reduce its emissions by 40 percent by 2020.
  • Frederick DeMicco, executive director of the School of Hotel and Restaurant Management (HRM), and HRM advisory board member Hans Schatz co-authored the article, “Hotel and Hospitality R&D Innovations to Health(care): Hospitality Bridging Healthcare (H2H)” published with Hospitality Net. The article looks at hotel and hospitality innovations for healthcare and what must be taken into consideration when bringing all three together.
  • Assistant professor of occupational therapy Heather Williamson received two one-year grants worth $50,000 each from the Arizona Developmental Disabilities Planning Council. Her projects are titled, “Developing online learning modules for primary care physicians about shared decision-making with women with IDD” and “Bridging the employment gap for adults with IDD through technology-enabled employment.”
  • Michael Smith, head coach and director of track and field and cross country, was awarded the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Mountain Regions Cross Country Coach of the Year and the National Men’s Cross Country Coach of the Year awards. Smith has now earned four consecutive Chick Hislop Awards (awarded to the Men’s Mountain Region Coach of the Year), and this is the ninth time an NAU coach has earned this award.
  • Abe Springer, professor in the School of Earth and Sustainability, co-authored the article, “Cave and karst of the Grand Canyon World Heritage Site” published in Zeitschrift für Geomorphologie. The article was featured on the Kentucky Geological Survey webpage and describes the knowledge base about the cave system at Grand Canyon National Park.
  • The Faculty Senate Executive Committee and the Faculty Senate Council for Non-Tenure Track (NTT) Faculty Issues featured four NTT faculty for an Inaugural NTT Spotlight. Leah Mundell, lecturer of anthropology; Hesam Moghaddam, associate chair for undergraduate programs and lecturer of mechanical engineering; Anita Antoninka, assistant research professor of forestry; and Becky Pratt-Sturges, lecturer of comparative cultural studies, were recognized for their professional dedication, significant teaching, research and service contributions to the university. Their profiles can be viewed on the Faculty Senate webpage.
  • Associate professor of anthropology Lisa Hardy, recent master’s graduate Kayla Morales and Mundell co-authored the article, “Living in opposition: How women in the United States cope in spite of mistrust of federal leadership during the pandemic of COVID-19” published in the Journal of Community Psychology. The article centers on the collaborative international research investigating sociocultural responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Professor of forestry Tom Kolb co-authored the article, “Representativeness of Eddy-Covariance flux footprints for areas surrounding AmeriFlux sites” published in Agricultural and Forest Meteorology. The study looks at spatial representativeness of flux tower data.
  • Professor of forestry Carol Chambers was the invited plenary speaker for both the Nebraska Chapter and the Virginia Chapter of The Wildlife Society Meeting this spring. The presentation was titled, “The Importance of Diversity” and discussed diversity, equity and inclusion in wildlife management.
  • Paul Lenze, senior lecturer of politics and international affairs participated in a roundtable titled “Biden in the Middle East: a new era of foreign policy?” The discussion was held with former advisors to the George W. Bush and Barack Obama Administrations at the University of Quebec-Montreal.
  • Bruce Hungate, director of the Center for Ecosystem Science and Society and Regents’ professor of ecosystem science, co-authored “A trade-off between plant and soil carbon storage under elevated CO2,” published in Nature. The authors explored the relationship between plant growth and soil carbon. The results revealed a gap in current climate change modeling.