News

2017

Dean Pat Okker

Pat Okker was named dean of the College of Arts & Science, effective immediately.

(Photo by Stephanie Atkinson)

COLUMBIA, Mo. – University of Missouri Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Garnett S. Stokes announced today that Patricia Okker, professor of English and interim dean of the College of Arts and Science, has been named dean of the College of Arts and Science, effective immediately.

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The College of Arts and Science Student Council honored two professors and an academic adviser with Chalk Awards for the fall 2017 semester. The student council solicits nominations from students for their favorite instructors and advisers, and the council’s executive committee makes the final selections. The student council will present plaques to the latest Chalk Award winners during its Trivia Night contest in Stotler Lounge in Memorial Union Nov. 16.

Cartwright and Kerr

MU Chancellor Alexander Cartwright congratulates Lt. Col. Gary Kerr, the department head of the MU Army ROTC program, during the announcement of new Mizzou ROTC scholarships at Crowder Hall.

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Today, University of Missouri Chancellor Alexander Cartwright and Lt. Col. Gary Kerr, professor of military science and leadership and department head for the University Army ROTC, announced a new Mizzou ROTC Scholarship that will expand higher education access and affordability at MU.

Ben Julius

Graduate student Ben Julius harvests corn as part of his research to uncover genes that control sugar transport in plants.

For corn geneticists like Ben Julius, fall means one thing: harvest time. Although the hard, dry ears of corn that Julius picks are not meant for consumption, he hopes one of these ears holds the secret to the mouthwatering sweet corn Missourians look forward to each summer.

ROTC cadets Emily Campbell and Nicole Futch (standing).

ROTC cadet Emily Campbell gets an assist from cadet Nicole Futch during training exercises.

When most Missourians think of the Missouri National Guard, they picture guard members filling sandbags or helping transport affected citizens during the floods of 1993, but the organization’s role has expanded since 9/11. Guard members now continually serve around the world, though the state mission remains key, including responding to emergencies such as the Mississippi River flooding of June 2008 and the January 2009 ice storms across much of southern Missouri.

Associate Professor Soren Larsen

Larsen is working to understand the sometimes antagonistic ways in which groups communicate—battles that also are transforming government, communities and politics within those groups.

COLUMBIA, Mo. – “Place-based identity” is the idea that people form a sense of place and establish connections to a geographical area. Often, place-based struggles arise when that sense of home is threatened by development or undermined by non-local actors.

Assistant Teaching Professor Joseph Erb

Assistant Teaching Professor Joseph Erb has invited a variety of indigenous artists, filmmakers, leaders, academics, and people who deal with tribal sovereignty to campus to celebrate the contributions and achievements of indigenous people.

Assistant Teaching Professor Joseph Erb likes to ask his students, “Whose land are we on?” In the three semesters Erb has been with the College of Arts and Science’s digital storytelling program, he says not a single student has answered correctly.

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MU Chancellor Alexander Cartwright and Provost Garnett Stokes recognized members of the faculty who have served the university for 25 years and announced a number of awards during a gala at the Reynolds Alumni Center Oct. 24. Four faculty members were named Curators’ Professors, the university’s highest and most prestigious rank, including three from the College of Arts and Science:

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The University of Missouri Board of Curators has named three professors in the College of Arts and Science as Curators' Professors, the university’s highest and most prestigious rank. These professorships acknowledge outstanding scholars with established reputations from the entire University of Missouri system. The three professors were recognized by Chancellor Alexander Cartwright Tuesday evening at a reception at the Reynolds Alumni Center.

Professor Bruce Bartholow

Prof. Bruce Bartholow and his colleagues at the University of Colorado wondered whether pairing beer brands with logos from their universities would increase students’ brain responses to those brands, and whether the magnitude of these brain responses might predict students’ alcohol use.

Marketers and advertisers routinely try to affiliate their products with U.S. colleges and universities. For instance, cellular network providers strike deals that allow them to become the “official wireless carrier” of some university or other.

Haley Horstman

Haley Horstman examined how men also have to cope with their partner’s miscarriage and how married couples can use communicated perspective-taking to cope.

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Anywhere from 10 to 25 percent of clinically recognized pregnancies end in loss, according to the American Pregnancy Association, making miscarriage a socially significant health issue. Often, women experience profound grief, guilt and depression straining a committed relationship. A recent University of Missouri study examined how men also have to cope with their partner’s miscarriage and how married couples can use “communicated perspective-taking” to cope.

Alexander Myers

Graduate student Alexander Myers uses a glove box to safely handle chemicals while conducting research. A glove box is a sealed box filled with an inert gas such as nitrogen gas. A lot of the compounds Myers works with are air and water sensitive, so he uses the glove box to prevent chemical reactions with air and water.

A fourth-year graduate student in the Department of Chemistry hopes his research eventually will lead to solutions for dealing with nuclear waste. Alexander Myers has been working with Associate Professor Justin Walensky in exploring the fundamentals of actinide chemistry. Actinides comprise the very bottom row of the periodic table, and all of the elements on the bottom row are radioactive.

Mazza and Daykin

Fourth-year physics doctoral candidate Alessandro Mazza (left) works on an ultra-high vacuum called X3B2 with physics graduate student Alexander Daykin in Prof. Paul Miceli's lab.

“For more than 50 years, Moore's Law has reigned supreme. The observation that the number of transistors on a computer chip doubles roughly every two years has set the pace for our modern digital revolution—making smartphones, personal computers and current supercomputers possible. But Moore's Law is slowing.

Braudis, Sager, Okker, Stealey

Scott Braudis, Joel Sager, Arts and Science Interim Dean Pat Okker, and SVS Director Jo Stealey pose in front of one of Stealey’s works, Book: Chapter One – Home at Last during the official launch of the new School of Visual Studies Sept. 27 at the Sager Braudis Galley in downtown Columbia.

The College of Arts and Science’s new School of Visual Studies (SVS) was officially launched Sept. 27 during the school’s inaugural event at Sager Braudis Gallery in downtown Columbia. MU Provost Garnett Stokes, Arts and Science Interim Dean Pat Okker, and SVS Director Jo Stealey each spoke at the ceremony, which featured an exhibit of artistic works by faculty and students in the new school.

MU history professor John Wigger

John Wigger’s new book, PTL: The Rise and Fall of Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker’s Evangelical Empire, chronicles the incredible success and humiliating downfall of America’s first Christian talk show hosts, and considers the couple’s impact on religion in America today.

MU history professor John Wigger says if someone developed a television series based on the rise and fall of televangelist Jim Bakker and his wife, Tammy Faye, audiences would have a tough time believing the story because it seems so ludicrous. A pair of small-time faith healers parlays a puppet show into a multimillion-dollar media empire, builds a Christian theme park at the height of their success, and then watches it all blow up.

cadet band 1896

The Cadet Band on the steps of Jesse Hall, Savitar, University of Missouri, 1896

Music at MU Pre-1917

Arianna Soldati

Arianna Soldati, a doctoral student in volcanology in the Department of Geological Sciences, is taking science to rural Missouri.

 

Earlier this year, Arianna Soldati was stuck in the Syracuse airport filled with grumpy and flustered passengers during a long flight delay. Luckily, she had a bag full of volcanic rocks. Soldati took the opportunity to lighten the mood and entertain her fellow travelers by teaching them about her passion — volcanoes.

jesse hall

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Enrollment at the University of Missouri rose slightly higher than expected in fourth-week census numbers released today while the campus continued to log near-record retention rates. Total enrollment is 30,870.

MU welcomed 4,134 freshman this fall—up from the 4,009 expected based on preliminary numbers released in May. That’s more first-year students, including more Missourians, than any other university in the state.

Associate Professor Rabia Gregory

Associate Professor Rabia Gregory recently received a $30,000 grant from the Wabash Center for Teaching and Learning in Theology & Religion to develop a more reflective approach to teaching about religious diversity on campus and across the state.

Rabia Gregory, an associate professor of religious studies at MU, says certain things come up in the classroom during the first couple weeks of the semester so often as to be predictable. The department teaches about religion from a secular perspective, but Gregory says that is a perspective that few students are exposed to before leaving home for college.

Mizzou North

The University of Missouri Museum of Anthropology will reopen to the public and begin normal operations on Saturday, Sept. 16.  Museum hours will be Tuesday-Friday 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., 12 – 4 p.m. on the weekends, and closed Mondays. The public is invited to a small event on Friday, Sept. 15 at 5:30 p.m. to mark the museum’s reopening.

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