MAY 2017

Twenty-four graduates received University Medals during the College of Science diploma ceremony on May 12. University Medalists are students who graduate with the highest grade point averages.

We Salute the Class of 2017
LSU Awards Record Number of Degrees

Commencement 2017 marked a record breaking year for the university as LSU graduated its largest and most diverse class. The celebration began with the university's main ceremony at 8 a.m. followed by 11 diploma ceremonies including the College of Science ceremony at 5 p.m. in Maddox Fieldhouse. More than 350 undergraduate and graduate students received degrees from the college contributing to 4,163 degrees awarded by LSU this spring, which set a record of 6,562 degrees awarded during an academic year.
The ceremony speaker was College of Science alumnus and U.S. Senator for Louisiana,
Dr. Bill Cassidy.
  • Watch the full College of Science ceremony HERE.
  • Click HERE for list College of Science graduates and ceremony overview.
  • Click HERE for more information on LSU commencement.

Take a look at the photos from LSU's spring commencement (#LSUGrad)   


'I'd Like to Thank the Academy...'
Gabriela González Elected to the National Academy of Sciences

The National Academy of Sciences announced today that LSU Department of Physics & Astronomy Professor Gabriela González has been elected as a member to the academy. González is one of the 84 new members recognized for her distinguished and continuing achievements in original research. She is an experimental physicist with the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory who contributed to the detection of gravitational waves in 2015 as predicted by Albert Einstein's Theory of General Relativity. > More

Honoring Scholarship
College Hosts 2017 Arthur R. Choppin Honors Convocation
The College of Science hosted its 42nd annual Dean Arthur R. Choppin Honors Convocation at the Club at Union Square on Thursday, April 19.  More than 20 students and eight faculty were recognized during the event.
The event is held in honor of the late Arthur R. Choppin, professor of chemistry and dean of the LSU College of Chemistry and Physics.  Choppin oversaw the conversion of the basic sciences at LSU from a teacher-centered unit to one that promoted research among its faculty and students. The Honors Convocation is a befitting tribute to Choppin's legacy of scholarship and research.
The convocation is made possible by gifts made in Choppin's honor through the LSU Foundation and the scholarship fund of the Louisiana Department of the American Legion.

More News & Events: 

May 17th Declared Dr. Isiah M. Warner Day in Bunkie, Louisiana

Mayor of Bunkie, Louisiana, Mike Robertson, proclaimed May 17 Dr. Isiah M. Warner Day in honor of Bunkie native and LSU Boyd Professor Isiah Warner. Mayor Robertson delivered the proclamation to a standing room only crowd in the Bunkie City Hall Annex. Warner was also the speaker for Bunkie High School's commencement ceremony.

Steve Pollock, LSU biology instructor

LSU Biologists Create One of
Baton Rouge's Top Selling Oysters 

Husband and wife team of LSU biologists Steve Pollock and Ginger Brinninstool have adopted a new method for raising oysters that delivers a high-quality product three times faster than traditional farming. When not teaching biology classes at LSU, they are tending to 300 floating cages in Caminada Bay where they raise and harvest thousands of oysters.

Read more in the Greater Baton Rouge Business Report

  • Polymers in Art Exhibit, Louisiana Art & Science Museum, March 4-June 4
    Professor John A. Pojman of the LSU Department of Chemistry will co-curate with Elizabeth Weinstein, director of art interpretation at the Louisiana Art & Science Museum, Polymers in Art Through the Centuries to be on view March 4 - June 4, 2017 at the Louisiana Art and Science Museum (LASM). >
  • Writing Science Series  |  The Experiment Was Done Incorrectly: Voice in Scientific Writing, June 8, 1:30 p.m., 129 Himes Hall
    The Office of Research & Economic Development is hosting the first in a series of science writing presentations by its new Scientific Editor Kris Mecholsky. > More


Read more exciting posts on The Pursuit blog at lsuscienceblog.com.


Ivan Agullo

Peter Clift

Kristina Launey
James Madden
 Ward Plummer

Van Remsen
  • Peter Clift, Charles T. McCord Endowed Professor in Geology & Geophysics, has accepted the role of editor-in-chief of the academic journal  Geological Magazine , one of the oldest and best-known periodicals in the Earth Sciences.
  • Kristina Launey, research assistant professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy, is the 2017 recipient of the Marion D. "Soc" Socolofsky Award for Teaching Excellence.
    > More
  • James Madden, Patricia Hewelett Bodin Professor in the Department of Mathematics and board member for the Community School for Apprenticeship in Baton Rouge, along with the schools' principal, Baton Rouge City Councilman Lamont Cole, and school CEO Dujan Johnson, talked with Jim Engster to share how one of Baton Rouge's inner city schools is showing remarkable test scores from its students.
    > More
  • Ward Plummer, Professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy, is featured in the Bulletin for the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). Last year, Plummer was honored with the Award for International Scientific Cooperation from the CAS. He is the only physicist from the U.S. to to have ever received the award.> More
  • Van Remsen, curator of birds in the LSU Museum of Natural Science and McIlhenny Distinguished Professor of Natural Science, has been inducted as an Honorary Member into the Nuttall Ornithological Club, the first organization in North America devoted to ornithology. > More 
Nine College of Science faculty were recognized with university-wide distinguished faculty awards. Click here for a complete list of this year's winners.


Externship Bound
College of Science Students Selected
for MD Anderson Externship

Three College of Science students will experience life as a physician as participants in the MD Anderson Cancer Center Summer Externship Program for Undergraduate Students. The students will spend a month at the research center shadowing physicians.

  Dr. Erich Sturgis, a MD Anderson physician and 1985 graduate of LSU's biochemistry program, worked with College of Science Dean Cynthia Peterson to make this opportunity available to LSU students interested in pursuing a medical career.
"This experience gives them a real appreciation for what academic medicine is like at a major center, a flavor of what training after medical school (residency and fellowship) would be like, an inside look at taking care of cancer patients and what a rewarding experience it can be,"  Sturgis said.
College of Science students  selected for the externship this summer are:
  • Ainsley Mann, biological sciences major from Orchard Park, New York
  • Michael Rockwell, biological sciences major from Mandeville, Louisiana
  • Ann Stolzle, biological sciences major from Baton Rouge, Louisiana

More Stellar Students:
  • Five LSU students receive NSF Graduate Research Fellowships > More
  • Six students awarded scholarships in health physics by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission > More

Chemistry Alumna Takes Her Passion for Beauty and Science to New Levels

LSU graduate Rolanda Wilkerson, principal scientist and senior manager of scientific communications in beauty care at Proctor & Gamble, is one of the scientists behind Pantene's new Gold series haircare line. The Baker, Louisiana native has always had a passion for science and beauty, and in her role at Pantene she can express her passions for both. Wilkerson earned her bachelor's of science degree in chemistry from Southern University and A&M College and her PhD in chemistry from LSU.
> More

LSU Graduate
Elected to the National Academy
of Sciences

David Sibley, 1985 PhD graduate from LSU's Department of Zoology and Physiology, was elected into the National Academy of Sciences. He is currently a professor of molecular microbiology at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. While at LSU, he worked
Honoring a Legacy
Remembering Dr. Charles E. Coates

After much planning and anticipation, members of the Department of Chemistry, the Department of Physics & Astronomy, the Cain Department of Chemical Engineering and the LSU Graduate School gathered with the family of Dean Charles E. Coates (1886-1939) for a special celebration on Thursday, March 16.

The event was inspired by the donation of Coates' restored plantation desk to the Department of Chemistry.  At 8 a.m., family members gathered with LSU administrators for a light breakfast and to see the desk in its new location, the current Chair's Office in 232 Choppin Hall.  The official portrait of Dean Coates has been retrieved from the LSU Archives and now hangs on the office wall opposite his desk.   > More

A New Class

In March, the College of Science inducted four new members into the Hall of Distinction. 
Click each photo below to watch the Hall of Distinction honoree videos.

Jeff Hanor
Professor Emeritus
Department of Geology & Geophysics

Neil Kestner
Professor Emeritus
Department of Chemistry

Don Kniffen
LSU Alumnus and NASA Scientist
Saundra McGuire
Director Emeritus, LSU Center for Academic Success, and Retired Professor of Chemistry

Support Research  
and Scholarship
at LSU

Join the LSU College of Science 
Dean's Circle

The Dean's Circle (DC) is a loyal group of alumni and friends who share a passion for advancing research and scholarship at LSU. Our DC provides the working capital needed to fund pursuits of the college including scholarships for first-year students, student organizations and educational travel expenses, faculty recruitment and recognition activities, and development initiatives that build alumni and community relations.

Dean's Circle membership recognizes the generosity of alumni and friends who make annual gifts of $1,000 or more to the Science Development Fund. For a gift of $250, alumni who have graduated within the last ten years may also become members.
To join by mail, make your check payable to "LSU Foundation-Science Dean's Circle" and mail your check to:  LSU Foundation,  3838 West Lakeshore Drive,  Baton Rouge, LA  70808.
To join online, go to www.lsufoundation.org/givetoscience

New Dean's Circle Members

The College of Science welcomes the newest members to the Dean's Circle. Thank you for your contribution to the teaching and research activities in the college:
  • Dr. Ifeyinwa C. Ifeanyi,  April 2017
  • Dr. Jeanne H. and Mr. Gerald M. Spedale, April 2017
  • Mr. John T. Moore, May 2017
  • Dr. and Mrs. John C. Stovall Jr., April 2017

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