Science Matters Summer 2018
Dean's Message

I had the opportunity to take a group of undergraduate students to Costa Rica this past spring, as part of our Global Perspectives of Science (GPS) initiative. These students got to study the water budget for a small instrumented watershed along the eastern boundary of the Children’s Eternal Rainforest. In addition to learning about the tools and techniques used in eco-hydrological research (through 66-380 Environmental Field Methods), the students completed a service learning project (through 66-470, Special Topics). 

As part of the latter experience, students surveyed residents in a small community about water resources and management and developed an education program for local high school students, who joined UWindsor students in the rainforest to measure the spatial distribution of rainfall, leaf area index, evapotranspiration and stream discharge. While working in the rainforest was an exciting and unique challenge, it was the opportunity to closely interact with the local community and to literally and figuratively translate their eco-hydrology research to them, that was most impactful. The knowledge that their time in the rainforest, has and continues to improve water security in the local community, helps provide students with a sense of purpose in their studies.

The desire to make a positive impact on the world guides much of our faculty and student research. The impact of our academic programs and research is an overarching theme in this newsletter. From the development of non-destructive testing of materials, and the use of coatings to protect materials from degradation, to the creation of conductive fabric or analyzing the quality of well water and local beaches.

These examples only illustrate a small picture of the significant research contributions being made regionally, nationally and internationally, by our faculty and students, making us a destination in science. 
Physics professor Chitra Rangan named International Day of light UN Canadian Ambassador.
Faculty Highlights

Physics professor Chitra Rangan represented Canada at the inaugural celebration of the  International Day of Light  (IDL) on May 16 at the headquarters of  the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization  (UNESCO) in Paris, France.

The global initiative provides an annual appreciation of light and the role it plays in science, culture and art, education, and sustainable development.

Student Spotlight
Lincoln Savi created 3D robo-toads to help with a research project with faculty mentors Daniel Mennill and Stéphanie Doucet.

The robo-toads are carefully modelled to the exac t shades of yellow of the Costa Rican yellow toad, to study a unique breeding event in Costa Rica with PhD student Katrina Switzer. Now Savi has turned his process into a business by creating 3D animals for research and unique gifts for biologists.
B iological sciences master's student Lincoln Savi displays his 3D-printed Neotropical Yellow Toads.
Julia Petta, official first gold medal recipient
Yucca Albano and Ahsan Muhammad
Seventy-five of this spring’s science graduates sported gold, silver, or bronze medallions at Spring convocation. Members of this graduating class are the first recipients of the LEAD Medallion Scholars Program, which was launched by the Faculty of Science to help motivate undergraduates to explore learning experiences outside of the classroom.

Recipients must demonstrate Leadership, Engagement, Application, and Discovery (LEAD) during their time as a UWindsor undergraduate.

This includes volunteering or working in on-campus and off-campus organizations, participating in undergraduate research, pursuing study abroad, or completing an internship, co-op position, or service learning course.
Science Society members show off their new medals
Science in the News
Tricia Carmichael’s research group cleared a major wearable technology hurdle by creating conductive fabric that looks and feels like real clothing.

Using a chemical process, the researchers deposit a nanometre-thick gold coating onto the fibres of ordinary fabric, so the smart electronic device can still move, be stretched and washed — while remaining conductive.
Chemistry professor Tricia Carmichael and doctoral student Yunyun Wu display samples of fabric bearing conductive coatings of gold.
Roman Maev, the Director-General of the Institute for Diagnostic Imaging Research (IDIR).
The Institute for Diagnostic Imaging Research received $5.5 million in Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada funding to help solve real-world industry problems.

The funding, through NSERC's Collaborative Research and Development (CRD) program, will help to develop technology for companies to diagnose and fix flaws in machinery on-site, and to tailor solutions to address the unique needs of a range of industrial partners.

This is the largest CRD funding package in UWindsor's history.
 A 15-year study led by Dan Mennill and his research collaborators shows that a hot climate reduces survival in tropical birds.

Researchers studied a population of rufous-and-white wrens living in the Guanacaste Conservation Area in Costa Rica by capturing birds in mist nets, giving each animal a distinctive combination of coloured leg bands, and then surveyed the population to see which birds were still alive and which had perished. Their work reveals that even animals adapted to hot climates, suffer population losses in the face of climate change.
Biology professor Dan Mennill with a rufous-and-white wren. (Photo by Dale Morris.)
Community Outreach
Climate Crusaders

Thousands of students throughout Windsor-Essex became citizen scientists as they joined t he Faculty of Science and the Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board (WECDSB) Climate Crusaders initiative.

Each eighth grader in the WECDSB was provided a rain gauge to set up and collect precipitation data in order to support a better understanding of weather trends.
Citizen Science

Researchers from the Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research (GLIER) updated the public with results from the 2017 summer citizen scientist beach water sample collection initiative.

Hundreds of people participated in the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Essex County beach project by collecting water samples used to measure harmful E.coli bacteria and to study specific pathogen genes in real-time. This citizen science project continues this summer.
Biological Sciences research associate Bre-Anne Fifield explaining, "When good cells go bad."

Soapbox Science Windsor

international project created to bring science  to the people and challenge gender stereotypes in science careers.

Audiences got rare insight into scientific research happening in Windsor, and at UWindsor, as 12 women scientists took turns standing atop three soapboxes, and for one hour, shared their research in medicine, physics, biology, computer science, psychology, and artificial intelligence.
Chatham-Kent Well Water Analysis

Earth and Environmental Sciences department head Joel Gagnon and EES students are working with Chatham-Kent to help analyze well water.

The well water, from areas surrounding Kent County wind farms, is potentially contaminated.
Earth and Environmental Sciences department head Joel Gagnon
Chemistry professor John Trant and his team explain their research for Ontario Centres of Excellence Discovery Day.
Joining the Faculty of Science at UWindsor should be exciting and not intimidating. This student finds her way to success - this could be your story.
With so many exciting new initiatives popping up at #WindsorScience, from research to unique student opportunities, it was time to collect their stories and share in a new medium. Enjoy our new YouTube channel .

The free outreach program for Windsor and Essex County secondary students is designed to engage young scientists and introduce them in activities at U Windsor. Students from the region spend a week participating in lectures, hands-on laboratory exercises and research lab tours within each department in the  Faculty of Science . Runs July 9-13, 2018.

2017-2018 Science on Tap series

The successful Science on Tap and Science Uncorked outreach series launched last summer as researches and students met with the community to educate and entertain through fun activities and mini-lectures, giving the Windsor community a glimpse into the research happening on campus.

The Faculty of Science has helped students achieve their promise since the founding of the University in 1963. The Place of Promise campaign will help us attract and empower the finest faculty, staff, and, students through new capital projects, multidisciplinary research and the student experience.

Investments in our  strategic funding priorities  will help us achieve our goals to advance the Faculty of Science to a new unprecedented level.

For more information, contact  Gemma Grey-Hall  at or 519-253-3000 ext. 3957.
Faculty of Science
University of Windsor
401 Sunset Ave.
Windsor, ON  N9 B 3P4
519-253-3000 Extension: 30 09