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College of Science Faculty 2017 Achievements

 Leading The Field 

Assistant chemistry professor Brandon Burnett, assistant physics professor Kristin Rabosky and physics chair Colin Inglefield worked with students who announced at the end of the first semester in Tracy Hall Science Center the success of a cutting-edge, solar-cell project. The project has acted as a catalyst for additional collaboration across various fields of study.

Zoology professor Jonathan Clark and microbiology professor Mo Sondossi published "Genetic Identification of Wolbachia from Great Salt Lake Brine Flies" in the November issue of the international journal, Symbiosis. Former zoology student, who is currently completing a combined M.D./Ph.D. at the University of Utah, co-authored the paper.

USTAR awarded physics professor John Sohl $200,000 to develop AtmoSniffer into a marketable product. Sohl and his High Altitude Reconnaissance Balloon for Outreach and Research (HARBOR) students created AtmoSniffer to measure air pollution up to 120,000 feet. NASA funded the HARBOR team to capture video images from the stratosphere and to measure the atmosphere during the Aug. 21 eclipse.  Read more...

Director of the Ott Planetarium and physics professor Stacy Palen was named as one of the 2017 Presidential Distinguished Professors.  Her work has enabled thousands of school children and other audiences to experience the universe through their visits to the planetarium. Read more...

Zoology professor John Cavitt collaborated to write "Parental cooperation in a changing climate: fluctuating environments predict shifts in care division" for the March edition of the journal Global Ecology and Biogeography.

Zoology assistant professor, Lin Xiang collaborated with two elementary schools in Ogden to develop a computer-enhanced modeling science unit teaching change and stability in ecosystems. She presented the lesson unit in the Utah Science Teachers Association (USTA) 2017 conference.


Mathematics professor George Kvernadze published "Determination of the singularity curves of a piecewise constant function of two variables by its Fourier-Jacobi coefficients" in the Proceedings of I. Vekua Institute of Applied Mathematics.

Chemistry professor J. Andreas Lippert recently completed a sabbatical in Maryland where he was a guest researcher in the Advanced Chemical Sciences Laboratory of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). 

Assistant professor of botany, Katharina Schramm, presented on biochemical adaptations in woodrats feeding on toxic juniper and chaired a session on priming and induces responses in plants at the Gordon Research Conference on Plant-Herbivore Interactions in California.

Physics professors Ron Galli and emeritus physics professor Bradley Carroll published "The Four-Ball Gyro and Motorcycle Countersteering" in the April 2017 edition of The Physics Teacher. Read more...

Zoology professor John Cavitt and former student Kristen Ellis were awarded The Waterbird Society’s Publication Award for Outstanding Contribution to Conservation for research and writing on the conservation of at-risk species or populations of waterbirds. Read more...

Jennifer Claesgens, director of the Center for Science and Mathematics Education, was awarded the 2017 YMCA Ogden Service Award for her collaboration with YMCA to bring summer science and math camps to Weber State.

Microbiology professor Craig Oberg was awarded the International Dairy Foods Association Research Award in Dairy Foods Processing at the  American Dairy Science Association Awards meeting in Pittsburgh in June.

Zoology professor Ron Meyers collaborated to publish "Is sexual dimorphism in singing behavior related to syringeal muscle composition?" in the journal The Auk. Linsey Christensen and Lisa Allred worked with Meyers for a number of years on the research. Read more...


Zoology professor Jonathan Clark presented "Genetic Studies of Invertebrate Diversity in the Great Salt Lake Ecosystem" with zoology students and coauthors Oscar Bedolla and Sabrina Haney, at the 13th International Conference on Salt Lake Research held in Ulan-Ude, Russia. The meeting is the world's premier conference on the biology, chemistry and geology of saline lakes and was attended by scientists from 15 countries.

Microbiology professor Craig Oberg and adjunct instructor Evan Call had the article "Off loading wheelchair cushion provides best case reduction in tissue deformation as indicated by MRI" published in the Journal of Tissue Viability.

Geoscience professor Carie M. Frantz established the geomicrobiology lab as a center for Great Salt Lake geomicrobiology work and resource for the international geomicrobiology community. She is working towards providing a geomicrobiology/geochemistry observatory in the Great Salt Lake.

Developmental mathematics professor and director, Kathryn Van Wagoner and education assistant professor, Sheryl Rushton collaborated to present “Higher Ground: Factors that Optimize Learning of Mathematics” at the 47th Annual Conference of the International Society for Exploring Teaching and Learning (ISETL) in Orlando, FL.

Microbiology professors Michele Culumber, Lauren Monteirth and Craig J. Oberg collaborated with other colleagues from Moseley Laboratories Inc., Vivolac Cultures Corp. and Utah State University to publish “Hot topic: Geographical distribution and strain diversity of Lactobacillus wasatchensis isolated from cheese with unwanted gas formation” in the November 2017 (Volume 100, Issue 11, Pages 8764-8767) Journal of Dairy Science. Read more...

Botany professor Bridget Hilbig was awarded the Research Catalyst Grant from iUTAH, an NSF-funded project aimed at building water sustainability in the state. 

Emeritus physics professors Ron Galli and Bradley Carroll published "An Effective Photon Momentum in a Dielectric Medium: A Relativistic Approach" on arXiv an eprint service owned and operated by Cornell University. Read more...



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