Gross research on flipped classrooms featured in New York Times op ed
An opinion piece in the New York Times references a new study by David Gross, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, which found that students in a “flipped” science class scored 12 percent higher on tests than those in a traditional classroom setting. A flipped class is where most content is delivered outside of class and classroom time is used for discussion and interactive learning. The study was published in Life Sciences Education.
Mangan program connecting immigrant populations with healthy food featured in Research Next
Research Next has featured a new program that helps low income and immigrant populations connect with healthy food. The Stockbridge School is partnering with the UMass Extension Nutrition Education Program and Department of Nutrition in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences, and community organizations to run the program, which is led in part by Frank Mangan ’86, ’91G, ’98PhD, extension professor at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture.
Ice cream created in Nugen's Food Science class now for sale
The Boston Globe reported that a new ice cream flavor created by UMass Amherst food science students is being made and sold by Maple Valley Creamery in Hadley. Cherry Bomb ice cream was invented by students in assistant professor Sam Nugen’s class during a competition last spring. Half of the dairy’s sales are being donated to the food science program for future product development.
Parsegian, Hopkins, and Podgornik unveil Gecko Hamaker, new computational and modeling software
Adrian Parsegian, Physics, doctoral student Jaime Hopkins and adjunct professor Rudolf Podgornik and colleagues unveiled Gecko Hamaker, a new computational and modeling software tool plus an open science database to aid those who design nano-scale materials, as reported in the cover story in Langmuir. News release
Whitbourne comments on humble-bragging for Shape
Susan Whitbourne, Psychological and Brain Sciences, offered insights into self-promotion and the pitfalls of humble-bragging. Shape
Warner column in The Conversation examines sustainability science programs
A column by Benjamin Warner, Geosciences, examines the rise of sustainability science programs and explains how they serve to address complex, real-world problems with interdisciplinary science in a way that involves the people most affected by the issues. The Conversation
Averill studying the decline of bees that pollinate cranberry crops
Anne Averill, Environmental Conservation, is examining bumblebee colony growth in pesticide-free unmanaged conservation sites versus managed bogs, with the UMass Cranberry Station. Wicked Local Plymouth
Whitbourne tells Gizmodo that selfies are about a survival instinct
Susan K. Whitbourne, Psychological and Brain Sciences, says the instinct to take a selfie at time of danger is more than just narcissism, it's related to survival instincts. Gizmodo
Pusparini publishes Sumatran rhinoceros research
Wulan Pusparini, Environmental Conservation doctoral student who also works for the Wildlife Conservation Society, has published research in PLOS ONE about Sumatran rhinoceros in Indonesia recommending that wildlife conservation managers consolidate the small population, provide strong protection for the animals, determine the percent of breeding females remaining and “recognize the cost of doing nothing.” Yahoonews.com, Science Newsline, news release
Randhir and Ekness create continent-wide, multi-factor analysis of climate and land cover effects on watersheds
Watershed scientist Timothy Randhir, Environmental Conservation, and doctoral student Paul Ekness have created the first continent-wide, multi-factor analysis of climate and land cover effects on watersheds in the United States, as reported in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences. news release
Hoque co-PI on 3-year, $1 million NSF grant on energy efficiency
Simi Hoque, Environmental Conservation, and colleagues has been awarded a three-year, $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation’s Partnerships for Innovation: Building Innovation Capacity program. Prashant Shenoy, Computer Science, and David Irwin, Electrical and Computer Engineering, are also part of the team. Republican, news release
Kopera interviewed on the history of Connecticut River Watershed
A feature story in the Daily Hampshire Gazette on the history of the Connecticut River watershed includes comments by Joseph P. Kopera, Geosciences, and associate state geologist.
UMass Amherst rises to 29th among public universities, according to US News
UMass Amherst continued its ascent among the nation’s best public universities, moving up to No. 29 in the 2016 Best Colleges guide released today by U.S. News & World Report. The university also advanced one slot to No. 75 in the Best National Universities category, which consists of 280 public, private and for-profit institutions.The rankings continue the impressive progress made by the Commonwealth’s flagship campus, which was 40th in the Public National Universities and No. 91 among National Universities lists just two years ago.
CNS annual State of the College 2015 includes strategic plan preview
Dean Steve Goodwin presented an overview of the new CNS strategic plan to a packed house in the Student Union Ballroom at the annual CNS State of the College. The start of the new academic year was announced with the introductions of old and new faces including the CNS faculty and staff award winners, a new department head and a new chair, and new faculty, staff, and administrators. The three CNS Goldwater Scholars were also honored. Goodwin emphasized that quality education and research continue to be the primary goals of the college, and there are many upcoming opportunities to accomplish them.
Margaret Ann Riley, Biology, says the way to fight antibiotic-resistant superbugs is to look at nature to see what has evolved to kill off specific microbes. Laboratory Equipment
Clements says bad weather is the major threat to pick-your-own apple season
Jon M. Clements, UMass Extension, says the major threat to the pick-your-own apple season in the region will be bad weather, hurricanes, hail or even just a rainy weekend. Milford Daily News
Turfscience and management featured in Boston.com story about weird majors
A feature story on Boston.com on 10 weird college majors includes UMass Amherst’s turfgrass science and management offered by the Stockbridge School of Agriculture.
Three CNS faculty members awarded Sustainability Curriculum Initiative grants
The UMass Amherst Libraries has awarded 10 Sustainability Curriculum Initiative grants of $1,000 to faculty members and their liaison librarian partners including three from CNS: Ho-Sung Kim, building and construction technology; Elsa Petit, Stockbridge School of Agriculture; and Evan Ross, CNS lecturer. News release
Whitbourne interviewed by HuffPost about people-pleasing
Susan K. Whitbourne, Psychological and Brain Sciences, was interviewed by the Huffington Post about the reasons some people go out of their way to please others.
Lopes Named CNS Associate Dean for Operations and Graduate Programs
John Lopes, most recently the microbiology department head, has been named associate dean for operations and graduate programs for the College of Natural Sciences (CNS), effective Sept. 1. Lopes will oversee the CNS budget and extensive facilities. He will also have responsibility for CNS graduate programs, graduate student development, and liaising with the Graduate School. Lopes became head of the microbiology department in 2007, when he came to UMass Amherst. His research focuses on the transcriptional regulation of phospholipid biosynthesis in yeast and how phospholipid biosynthesis is coordinated with other biological processes.
Elephants Without Borders featured in Research Next; Chase wins San Diego Zoo award
Elephants Without Borders, a nonprofit founded by Mike Chase ’07 PhD, a former student of Curtice Griffin, Environmental Conservation, who also does research for the organization, is profiled in Research Next. Chase is also a recent recipient of the San Diego Zoo Global’s 2015 Conservation Medal for Conservation in Action for providing data on the status of elephants and other wildlife, identifying cross-border corridors, and discovering new migration routes. The award recognizes world leaders in conservation who share San Diego Zoo Global’s vision to end extinction.
Brigham-Grette addressed GLACIER, an international summit on arctic cooperation, resilience
In her role as chair of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences’ Polar Research Board, Julie Brigham-Grette, Geosciences, gave one of the few invited scientific talks at the international Summit Conference on Global Leadership in the Arctic: Cooperation, Innovation, Engagement and Resilience (GLACIER), organized by Secretary of State John Kerry. President Barack Obama addressed the GLACIER summit at the end of the day. News release
Crosby developing hydrogel-fabric composite, as featured in Chemistry World
Alfred J. Crosby, Polymer Science and Engineering, is part of a research team that is developing a hydrogel-fabric composite that is both soft and strong and can hold three times the weight of the fabric alone. Chemistry World