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Latest Faculty Accomplishments

Submit scholarly news—publications, paper presentations and professional awards and service (appointment to boards, etc.)—to Janet Smith in Public Affairs at smithjl@jmu.edu or 568-8008. Or use our online form.

 

GRANTS (awarded January 2014)

Dr. L. Adriana Banu (Assistant Professor, Physics and Astronomy) received $10,000 from The Jeffress Memorial Trust to study the experimentally unknown cross section of the 22Mg (alpha,p) 25AI reaction at astrophysical relevant energies by measuring the time-inverse reaction 25AI (p,alpha) 22Mg in inverse kinematics.

Dr. Timothy A. Bloss (Assistant Professor, Biology) received $10,000 from The Jeffress Memorial Trust to characterize the role of the nascent polypeptide-associated complex (NAC) as a chaperone to gain insights into how the loss of the NAC may lead to inappropriate cell death and contribute to diseases related to these deaths, particularly neurodegeneration.

Michael C. Carpenter (Assistant Athletics Director for Tickets and Customer Relations, Ticket Office) received $50,000 from the Colonial Athletic Association to fund CAA basketball enhancements.

Dr. Beth A. Eck (Head, Sociology and Anthropology; Associate Professor, Sociology) received three grants from Carmeuse Lime and Stone – $57,801 for the Wesley Merritt Cavalry Camp project to conduct additional testing and to continue with research and a project report; $6,518 for the Nieswander and Calvary Merritt sites to continue with research and a project report; and $13,871 to create a manuscript which will summarize the historical archaeological research conducted at the Northern Reserve, Middle Woods and Middle Marsh Run parcels of land owned by Carmeuse Lime and Stone in Frederick County, Va.

Dr. Reid N. Harris (Professor, Biology) and Molly C. Bletz (Graduate Assistant, Biology) received $5,002 from the Chester Zoo for “Mitigating the potential extinction crisis of Malagasy frog communities from chytridiomycosis: Selection of probiotics that inhibit Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis.” The project plans to implement probiotic conservation strategies to mitigate chytridiomycosis in Malagasy amphibians.

Susan F. Lamb (Business Manager, WMRA-FM) received $6,006 from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting for a fiscal year 2013 community service grant for public radio.

Dr. Christy L. Ludlow (Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders) received $80,602 from the National Institutes of Health for the “Dystonia Coalition: Validity and Reliability of Diagnostic Methods and Measures of Spasmodic Dysphonia – Year 5.” The project will develop and validate tools to diagnose spasmodic dysphonia, measure severity and determine the impact of SD on disability and quality of life via a multicenter clinical study. Ludlow also received $1,000 from Purdue University for evaluation of the SpeechVive device effects on speech functioning in patients with Parkinson’s disease.

Dr. Stacey L. Pavelko (Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders) received $6,354 from the Virginia Department of Education for Evidence-Bases Practices in Assessment. The grant will help to respond to the need to make clinicians aware of current research with respect to standardized assessments and teach clinicians to use current research to guide choices in standardized assessments.

Dr. Giovanna Scarel (Assistant Professor, Physics and Astronomy) received $10,000 from The Jeffress Memorial trust for “Role of polarization of broadband infrared radiation in the heat recovery mechanism involved in the excitation of radiative polaritons in thin oxide films.” The project aims to understand the interaction between polarized and non-polarized infrared radiation with a device called bi-junction power generator.

Dr. Steven J. Whitmeyer (Associate Professor, Geology and Environmental Science) received $9,998 from the Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy for support of geologic mapping and stratigraphic analyses of the northeastern quarter of the Rileyville 7.5’ Quadrangle, Virginia, in support of the DGMR I-81 Project.

Dr. Nathan T. Wright (Assistant Professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry) received $10,000 from The Jeffress Memorial Trust for “Structural Characterization of protein domains important for Obscurin-Titin interactions in muscle cells.” The project will use high-resolution structural techniques to explore the molecular and biophysical basis of the obscuring-titin interactions.

Dr. Roshna E. Wunderlich (Associate Professor, Biology) received $10,000 from The Jeffress Memorial Trust for “Ontogeny of locomotion in leaping primates.” The project will focus on the fitness throughout the life cycle in order to examine life history evolution in primates.

Dr. Grace A. Wyngaard (Professor, Biology) and Dr. Brian Walton (Associate Professor, Mathematics and Statistics) received $365,517 from the National Institutes of Health for “Transposable elements and genome size divergence between germline and soma.” The project will aim to understand how chromatin diminution, the programmed excision of DNA from the genome of somatic cells, acts as a mechanism of genome defense against transposable elements.

 

HONORS

Dr. David H. Bernstein (Professor, Computer Science) was one of two JMU faculty, the other being Dr. Steven J. Whitmeyer (Associate Professor, Geology and Environmental Science), to be honored as a finalist for the 2014 Outstanding Faculty Awards presented annually by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. Coming from a corporate background, Bernstein has successfully integrated his research and business experience into the classroom, advocating for students to complete “real world” assignments and have hands-on experience. Bernstein’s area of expertise has been focused on computational models and algorithms related to transportation, with a specialty in the area of navigation and information systems. He wrote the first and only textbook on digital multimedia that is appropriate for students in computer science and software engineering programs, “The Design and Implementation of Multimedia Software.” SCHEV announced the finalists in January 2014.

Gregory Werner (Head Coach, Strength and Conditioning, Intercollegiate Athletics) has been added to the National Strength and Conditioning Association registry of distinguished coaches. The registry is a list of coaching professionals who demonstrate a higher level of improving sport performance and safety and have 20-plus years of strength and conditioning coaching experience. The NSCA is a nonprofit educational association dedicated to developing and presenting the most advanced information regarding strength training and conditioning, injury prevention and research findings.

Dr. Steven J. Whitmeyer (Associate Professor, Geology and Environmental Science) was one of two JMU faculty, the other being Dr. David H. Bernstein (Professor, Computer Science), to be honored as a finalist for the 2014 Outstanding Faculty Awards presented annually by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia. Whitmeyer, a recognized leader in geoscience field education, is an advocate for student research projects and field work. He is the director of the JMU Geology Field Course in Ireland and has mentored many students in research projects and theses. Whitmeyer has integrated Google Earth-based visualizations, exercises and learning modules into all facets of his teaching, including developing a mapping game for students to remotely collaborate in a virtual field environment. SCHEV announced their finalists in January 2014.

 

PUBLICATIONS

Dr. Chenqgi “John” Guo (Assistant Professor, Computer Information Systems and Business Analytics) and J.P. Shim (Georgia State University), Sasha Dekleva (DuPaul University) and Aaron M. French (The University of New Mexico, Albuquerque) published an article, “Social Networking and Social Media in the United States, South Korea, and China” in the journal Communications of the Association for Information Systems. The article summarizes a panel of four experts on social media, including Guo, which not only examined the status quo of social networking but also predicted the future of some of those networks. The article is on the list of “Most Popular Papers” for CAIS, a prominent journal that fosters the free flow of ideas within the IS community, with an emphasis on originality, importance and cogency of ideas.

Dr. Douglas R. Harrison (Associate Professor, English; Assistant Director, Center for Faculty Innovation) published a book chapter, “Grace to Catch a Falling Soul: Country, Gospel, and Evangelical Populism in the Music of Dottie Rambo” in the scholarly book “Walking the Line: Country Music Lyricists and American Culture.” The book was published by Lexington Press in November 2013.

 

SERVICE

Dr. Eric Pyle (Professor, Geology and Environmental Science) has been elected to serve on the Board of Directors of the National Science Teachers Association as the director of the Preservice Teacher Preparation Division. The NSTA is the largest organization in the world committed to promoting excellence and innovation in science teaching and learning for all. NSTA’s current membership of 55,000 includes science teachers, science supervisors, administrators, scientists, business and industry representatives and others involved in and committed to science education.


 

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