Volume 5 | April 4, 2018
JAMES L. GALLOGLY SELECTED AS OU'S 14TH PRESIDENT

The University of Oklahoma Board of Regents announced the selection of James L. “Jim” Gallogly as the University’s 14th president. Gallogly will succeed OU’s current president, David L. Boren, who is retiring on June 30, 2018.

"On behalf of our 10,000+ undergraduates and graduate majors, 550 full-time faculty, and 1,500 employees, the College of Arts and Sciences joins the University of Oklahoma community in thanking President Boren for his close to a quarter century of visionary leadership and in warmly welcoming James Gallogly as our 14th President. As OU’s oldest and largest college, the cornerstone of OU r University, the College of Arts and Sciences looks forward to partnering with President-Designate Gallogly beginning July 1 in this next phase of OU’s historical development as one of the nation’s great public research universities," said College of Arts and Sciences Interim Dean David Wrobel.
COLLEGE SPOTLIGHT: PROGRAMS ELEVATED TO DEPARTMENTS
Four programs in the OU College of Arts and Sciences recently were elevated from program to department status by the University Regents (pending State Regents approval) in recognition of their essential contributions to the teaching, research, and community outreach missions of the College and the University: African and African-American Studies, Film and Media Studies, Religious Studies, and Women’s and Gender Studies
The Clara Luper Department of African and African-American Studies has the vision to provide students with a broad, interdisciplinary education inclusive of a focus on Africa and the traditional areas of study of the African-American Studies / Black Studies discipline.
The Department of Film and Media Studies is designed to give students a broad understanding of film and media history, theory and criticism. The comprehensive undergraduate degree provides students with the knowledge and skills required for careers in media-related fields, film production, academics, or other jobs in the liberal arts and humanities.
The Department of Religious Studies involves the observation and examination of religion in its many expressions. By providing a greater understanding of religion in its pluralistic expressions, the program will promote a more informed citizenry. The relationship of religion to other societal, cultural and political activity means that the study of religion informs the understanding of all human activity.
The Department of Women's and Gender Studies seeks to enhance students' knowledge of gender roles and relations across cultures and history. Courses investigate the intersection of gender and such diverse phenomena as politics, religion, society, economics, war, communication, music, art, family life and popular culture.
ANNOUNCEMENTS
DEPARTMENT NAMED IN HONOR OF CIVIL RIGHTS LEADER CLARA LUPER

On March 7, President David L. Boren announced the naming of the Department of African and African American Studies in honor of longtime educator and civil rights leader Clara Luper, who made many contributions to diversity and inclusion efforts in Oklahoma. The announcement was made at the March meeting of the OU Board of Regents.

For more photos from the event check the College of Arts and Sciences Facebook page.
photo courtesy of
The Oklahoman
ALUMNI AND FACULTY CELEBRATED AT ANNUAL KALEIDOSCOPE EVENING

On March 2, more than 200 guests attended Kaleidoscope Evening to celebrate the college. Our faculty, alumni and distinguished service awards were announced. For their contributions on the local, state, national and international levels, Kevin Bales, Lisa Riggs and Marvin Williams were recognized as the 2018 Distinguished Alumni of the University of Oklahoma College of Arts and Sciences on Friday, March 2. Allyson Reneau was named the 2018 Outstanding Young Alumna. The Merrick Foundation was honored for its continued service to the university. The faculty award winners were:

Longmire Prize for Teaching
Phil Gibson, associate professor of biology

John H. and Jane M. Patten Teaching Award
Miriam Gross, associate professor of history and international and area studies

James and JoAnn Holden Faculty Award
Mariëlle Hoefnagel , associate professor of biology and microbiology and plant biology ­

Kinney-Sugg Outstanding Professor Award
Ben Holt associate professor microbiology and plant biology

Irene Rothbaum Award
Samuel Perry, assistant professor of sociology
Pictured from left to right: Frank Merrick,
Will Merrick, Kevin Bales, Lisa Riggs,
Marvin Williams, Allyson Reneau, David Wrobel
Pictured from left to right : David Wrobel,
Sam Perry, Ben Holt, Mariëlle H. Hoefnagel,
Phil Gibson
COLLEGE ENCOURAGES PARTICIPATION IN EVENTS FOR EARTH MONTH
A myriad of events are scheduled for EarthMonth@OU2018, the University of Oklahoma’s third annual celebration of Earth Month®. Typically celebrated during the month of April, and associated with Earth Day, April 22, the university highlights the importance of water by celebrating EarthMonth@OU during the 30 days between World Water Day (March 22) and Earth Day (April 22).

Further details of events planned during this month-long celebration of environmental awareness can found on the  EarthMonth@OU2018 website .
BORENS RECEIVE SOCIAL JUSTICE AWARD FROM XENIA INSTITUTE
OU President David and OU First Lady Molly Shi Boren were honored as recipients of the Sam Matthews Social Justice Award presented by the Xenia Institute for their work towards making OU the most inclusive school in the nation. The awards banquet was sponsored by the nonprofit Xenia Institute in memory of the late Sam Matthews, who in the 1960s was the first real estate agent to sell a home in Norman to a black family. His action is honored each year with an award to an individual or group that has contributed to or magnified civil rights in the community. The Xenia Institute is a community organization that encourages community engagement and social justice through public dialogue.
OUTSTANDING COLLEGE SENIORS NAMED
The college has announced its outstanding seniors for the spring 2018 semester:

Outstanding Senior in Social Sciences
Vishal Patel, Sociology

Outstanding Senior in Natural Sciences
Nyle Almeid, Planned Program

Outstanding Senior in Humanities
Auston Stiefer, Spanish and Planned Program

Outstanding Senior in Professional Programs
Adriana Dragicevic, Health and Exercise Science

Outstanding Senior in
Multidisciplinary Studies
Kendall Hughes
THOUSANDS STRONG CAMPAIGN FAR EXCEEDS GOAL
The college recently completed a successful Thousands Strong campaign seeking support for the Emergency Scholarship Fund. With the generous support of our donors the campaign raised $X,xxx, which was 160 percent of its goal. The fund allows the college to empower students experiencing hardships so that an unexpected financial setback doesn’t prevent them from graduating on time or at all.
RESEARCH ACCOMPLISHMENTS
N OEL BRADY, KERI KORNELSON, DEBORAH MOORE-RUSSO, MILSO SAVIC (MATHEMATICS)
$93,298 - ASSOCIATION OF PUBLIC AND LAND GRANT UNIVERSITIES

OUR CALL: OU'S RESEARCH AND COMMITMENT TO ACTIVE LEARNING AND LEADERSHIP 

A National Science Foundation-funded initiative aimed at expanding the use of "active learning" techniques in introductory mathematics courses is expanding from three to 12 universities, including OU. The project, known as   SEMINAL: Student Engagement in Mathematics through an Institutional Network for Active Learning , has seen universities rework their math curricula to improve student success in early courses, particularly students from underrepresented minority groups. OU's adoption of active learning pedagogy in the MATH 1523 (Pre-Calculus) course has placed it in a small cohort nationwide. The research examines the effectiveness of undergraduate learning assistants in active-learning pre-calculus courses along with gathering instructors to create and implement active-learning tasks for Calculus I.
$15,000 - NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC SOCIETY

DISCOVERING SPECIATION PATTERNS IN LIVEBEARING FISHES OF LIMIA (TELEOSTEI: POECILIIDAE) IN CUBA AND HISPANIOLA

The Caribbean Islands are remarkable because of the high number of unique species that live in this geographic region. Interestingly, rates of the formation of new species are not the same among islands and different taxonomic groups. In one genus of live-bearing fishes more than 15 species are found on Hispaniola, whereas Cuba harbors only one species. This project will study ecological factors that influence these starkly different speciation rates in the genus, Limia. This project will combine basic research and the development of fact-based conservation strategies to protect the unique freshwater ecosystems in the Greater Antilles.    
$121,019 - NASA - HEADQUARTERS

LAND USE PATTERNS AND POLITICAL INSTABILITY AS PREDICTORS FOR THE REEMERGENCE OF MALARIA IN THE CAUCASUS

People are often surprised to learn that malaria is not actually a tropical disease. Until the 1930s it was prevalent in many northern regions, including cities in Russia and the countries of the Caucasus. A successful eradication campaign in the 1930s shifted the disease’s geography to more tropical latitudes, but there are concerns that it could move northward again due to climate change or lapses in mosquito control. In fact, two countries in the Caucasus (Armenia and Azerbaijan) experienced a widespread epidemic of malaria in the years after the collapse of the Soviet Union. This research is focused on this time period and combines geospatial analysis of satellite data with a review of historical records to determine how malaria re-appeared in the Caucasus after a 60-year absence. The goal is to use this research to improve public health prevention measures for other countries at risk of deadly mosquito borne diseases.

PSALMS OF THE MUSLIM PROPHET DAVID: ARABIC EDITION AND ENGLISH TRANSLATION

David Vishanoff , associate professor, Religious Studies, was awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship for his project “Psalms of the Muslim Prophet David: Arabic Edition and English Translation,” which will bring to light a curious and little-known alternative version of the Psalms. He was also awarded an American Council of Learned Societies Fellowship that will supplement the NEH Fellowship for his project.

$1,421,601 - U.S. DEPT. OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES, NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH

OPTIMIZATION OF EFFLUX AVOIDANCE AND INHIBITION FOR ANTIBIOTIC DEVELOPMENT

This multi-disciplinary international project addresses a current critical challenge in the discovery and development of antibiotics. Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a human pathogen responsible for a variety of infectious diseases, is notorious for its antibiotic resistance. A handful of clinical antibiotics used against this pathogen are beginning to fail due to the emergence of strains resistant to multiple drugs. New antibiotics are needed to address this growing threat. This project responds to this challenge and proposes the development of a new technology for optimization of antibiotics that will be effective against this pathogen. The proposed approach combines cutting edge technologies in experimental analyses of drug accumulation, computer simulations, synthetic chemistry and machine learning analyses.
FACULTY RECOGNITION
JEANETTE DAVIDSON HONORED BY DIVERSE: ISSUES IN HIGHER EDUCATION
In honor of Women’s History Month,  Diverse  published its seventh annual special report recognizing the contributions of women to higher education.  Jeanette Davidson , professor of African and African-American Studies, was one of 25 women highlighted for making a difference in society by tackling some of higher education’s toughest challenges, exhibiting extraordinary leadership skills and making a difference in their respective communities. Davidson has taught at OU for 20 years and was director of African and African American Studies for 15 years. She has published extensively in the areas of Black Studies, and on race and competency in social work practice and education.  Currently, she is writing a book,  Black Lives in Scotland: Telling Our Stories,  and is also working on the second edition of her textbook,  African American Studies.
JIZHONG ZHOU ELECTED AS FELLOW
Jizhong Zhou , George Lynn Cross Research Professor and a Presidential Professor in the Department of Microbiology and Plant Biology and director for the Institute for Environmental Genomics, has been elected as a 2018 Fellow of the Ecological Society of America for outstanding accomplishments in environmental genomics and microbial ecology. Zhou and other ESA fellows will be recognized during the society’s annual meeting in New Orleans, Aug. 5-10.
IN THE NEWS
INSIDE-OUT PROGRAM ELIMINATES BARRIERS
Assistant Professor of Sociology John Carl, who coordinates the Inside-Out program at OU was featured in Sooner Magazine. Anne Barajas Harp's piece focuses on the 15 OU students who take a course
alongside incarcerated women at the Mabel Bassett Correctional Facility each spring. The program started at OU under David Ross Boyd Professor Emeritus of Sociology Susan Sharp nearly a decade ago; today, OU is among 100 partners worldwide to offer Inside-Out.
NATURAL PRODUCTS DISCOVERY GROUP RESEARCHING FUNGI
The research of the OU NPDG and its Citizen Science Soil Collection Program were the focus of Chip Minty's story in Sooner Magazine. Robert Cichewicz (pictured), regents' professor of chemistry and biochemistry is leading the group examining new strains of microscopic organisms that could lead to life-changing medical breakthroughs.

The fascinating kingdom of fungi is on display in Science Museum Oklahoma’s smART Space galleries in an exhibition developed in partnership with the University of Oklahoma’s Natural Products Discovery Group.  Decomposition: Discovering the Beauty and Magnificence of Fungi   opened Dec. 26 and runs through Aug. 12. In development since early 2017, the exhibition explores the uses, benefits and beauty of fungi through numerous fungal samples, live decomposition displays and a journey into the research of the OU NPDG and its Citizen Science Soil Collection Program.

This exhibit was the focus of a piece by The Oklahoman.
HUMANITIES COURSE GARNERS NATIONAL ATTENTION FOR RIGOR
OU's LTRS 3803 803 Fate and the Individual in European Literature, course taught by Kyle Harper, Wilfred McClay and David Anderson was featured by Chronicle for Higher Education. The article examines the future of the humanities and why students enroll. 
David Anderson
Kyle Harper
Wilfred McClay
DEADLINES
AND FEATURED EVENTS

CONVOCATION DETAILS SET
The College of Arts and Sciences will hold its Spring Convocation ceremony at 9 a.m., Saturday, May 12, at the Lloyd Noble Center.Tthe ceremony start time has changed to begin at 9 a.m. Graduates and faculty are to arrive by 8 a.m. The ceremony will last approximately 90 minutes.


April 6
10:30 a.m. - Room 132 Ellison Hall - CAS Discussion Series: presentations on “text analysis in humanities, social and natural science” by Kun Lu (Library and information Studies) and Ben Keppel (History),  Jill Irvine (International and Area Studies) and Christian Grant (Computer Sciences)

April 16
5:30 p.m. - Professor of Mathematics Moon Duchin from Tufts University will hold a public lecture on "Political Geometry: Mathematical Interventions in Gerrymandering." This event will be held in the Dick Bell Courtroom, OU College of Law, 300 Timberdell Road.

April 16
6 p.m. - Hillary Potter, an associate professor of ethnic studies a the University of Colorado will hold a public lecture on the "Women of Ferguson." The event will be held in the Mary Eddy and Fred Jones Auditorium in the Fred Jones Museum of Art, 555 Elm Ave.

April 20
Copies of progress-towards-tenure letters due to the dean's office

April 20
Post-tenure review dossiers due to dean's office

April 23-27
The University of Oklahoma Staff Week is a weeklong celebration, designated by the Regents, President Boren and The City of Norman, honoring university staff for their many contributions both on and off campus. For updates and the schedule of events visit the OU Staff Week website .

April 25
CASFAM Staff meeting, 9 a.m., Dale Hall Tower Community Room, Ninth Floor

April 26
Chairs and Directors meeting, 9 a.m., Dale Hall Tower Community Room, Ninth Floor