A team of biologists from K-State were honored with a national publication award at the annual conference of The Wildlife Society, Oct. 15-19, in Raleigh, North Carolina.
The research team from K-State included David Haukos, leader of the Kansas Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit; Brett Sandercock, professor of biology; Andrew Gregory, 2011 doctoral graduate and assistant professor at Bowling Green State University; Lance McNew, 2010 doctoral graduate and assistant professor at Montana State University; and Virginia Winder, 2013 postdoctoral fellow and assistant professor at Benedictine College.
The team received the 2016 award for Best Article for “Factors Affecting Female Space Use in Ten Populations of Prairie Chickens” that was published in the open-access journal Ecosphere in September 2015. Photo of prairie chickens courtesy Division of Biology Facebook page.Return to top
Chemistry / English
Four faculty members at two universities in Kansas have been named recipients of the state’s most prestigious recognition for scholarly excellence: the Higuchi-KU Endowment Research Achievement Awards. The four will be recognized Dec. 13 during a ceremony at the Kansas Memorial Union.
This year’s recipients from K-State are both faculty in the College of Arts & Sciences: Christer Aakeroy, university distinguished professor of chemistry, and Philip Nel, university distinguished professor of English.
This is the 35th annual presentation of the awards, established in 1981 by Takeru Higuchi, a distinguished professor at the University of Kansas from 1967 to 1983, and his wife, Aya. The awards recognize the exceptional long-term research accomplishments of faculty at Kansas Board of Regents universities. Each award includes a citation and a $10,000 award for ongoing research efforts. The money can be used for research materials, summer salaries, fellowship matching funds, hiring research assistants or other support related to research.
Awards are given in four categories: humanities and social sciences, basic sciences, biomedical sciences and applied sciences. Each award is named for former leaders of KU Endowment who played key roles in recruiting Higuchi to KU. Their financial support of KU helped enhance university research throughout Kansas. Continue reading “College Highlights, October 2016”→
Associate Professor of Printmaking Jason Scuilla was invited to show his prints, including lo Lo Vidi (pictured at left), in an invitational group exhibition titled Grafica D’Arte Americana Contemporanea, September 9 – 23 at the Galleria Il Bisonte, Florence, Italy. The exhibition was curated by Andrew DeCaen.
Assistant Professor of Graphic Design Daniel Warner had two posters selected to appear in the Ecuador Poster Bienal. The Ecuador Poster Bienal is the principal axis of visual communication for the new continent, focusing its efforts as an academic, professional and creative event. Pictured at right is Warner’s Verfall. His poster Music Is Oxygen also received an Award of Excellence from Creative Quarterly: The Journal of Art and Design.
Assistant Professor of Ceramics Amy Santoferraro had works accepted into the group show Ceramics as Deception at the Urban Arts Space gallery in Columbus, Ohio. Pictured at left is Santoferraro’s Bubblegum.Return to top.
Alice Boyle was invited to two oral symposium presentations at the North American Ornithological Conference in Washington DC in late August and also presented three co-authored sessions with members of her K-State lab at the same meeting. The lab and K-State Biology had a major presence at this meeting—the largest ornithological conference in history.
Boyle is also spearheading a two-year, $200,000 National Science Foundation project to investigate how climate variation affects the survival, condition and reproduction of a small tropical bird, the white-ruffed manakin. The study aims to fill important information gaps that hamper our ability to predict consequences and mitigate ongoing global climate change.
Kathrin Schrick has been awarded a $321,000 grant from the National Science Foundation Genetic Mechanisms Program in the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences. The gran, titled “START Lipid/Sterol Binding Domains in Homeodomain Transcription Factors from Plants,” will enable research to investigate protein-metabolite interactions underlying changes in gene expression in plants using the model system Arabidopsis. Schrick says, “We want to understand how plants respond to internal metabolic signals during development. The regulatory proteins we study are known to affect biomass in crop plants, so elucidating the mechanisms underlying transcriptional activity is of relevance to agriculture as well as to ecological systems.” The grant will fund postdoctoral trainees, STEM outreach activities, as well as two undergraduate summer students per year to participate in the Division of Biology REU program on Ecology and Evolutionary Biology of Changing Environments. Return to top. Continue reading “College Highlights, September 2016”→
“This project represents years of collaborative research across the world,” said Kanost, who studies insect immune systems. “We wanted to provide these valuable data to scientists, and our hope is that this sequenced genome will stimulate new research in molecular studies of insects.”
The tobacco hornworm, or Manduca sexta, develops into the Carolina sphinx moth. The name Manduca comes from the Latin word for glutton because these caterpillars eat so much. Manduca sexta occurs naturally in North, Central and South America and is a known pest to gardeners: It eats the leaves of tomato plants and also can be found on pepper, eggplant and potato plants. Crops and weeds from this plant family, which includes tobacco, produce chemicals such as nicotine that deter feeding by most insects, but not Manduca sexta, which makes its physiology especially interesting to scientists. The sequenced genome can lead to improved molecular biology, physiology and neurobiology research in insects and also may help in developing future new methods for insect pest management.
Kanost has studied the tobacco hornworm for decades, and he and Gary Blissard, from the Boyce Thompson Institute at Cornell University, decided to start the collaborative project to sequence the tobacco hornworm’s genome in 2009. Kanost’s research focuses on proteins in caterpillar’s blood and how insects protect themselves against infections. Kanost and the Kansas State University research team prepared and purified the DNA of the tobacco hornworm and sent the samples to the Baylor College of Medicine Human Genome Sequencing Center in Houston, which performed the genome sequencing. The international team used a common computer system so that the researchers from around the world could analyze the gene sequences based on their areas of expertise.
Other Kansas State University researchers involved in the project included Susan Brown, university distinguished professor of biology; Rollie Clem, professor of biology; William Bryant, research assistant professor in biology; Neal Dittmer, research assistant professor of biochemistry and molecular biophysics; Subbaratnam Muthukrishnan, university distinguished professor emeritus of biochemistry and molecular biophysics; Lorena Passarelli, professor of biology; Yoonseong Park, professor of entomology; Nicolae Herndon, doctoral graduate in computer science; Jayne Christen, doctoral graduate and former postdoctoral research associate in biochemistry and molecular biophysics; and Di Wu, former postdoctoral research associate in biochemistry and molecular biophysics. The project received financial support from the National Institutes of Health (Kanost) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA (Blissard). Return to top
Walter Dodds, university distinguished professor of biology, was named an inaugural fellow of the Society for Freshwater Science.
Dodds is recognized for his contributions to freshwater science, promoting freshwater science through education and outreach and membership in the society. The society’s board of directors selected fellows for the inaugural class.
The society is an international scientific organization that promotes further understanding of freshwater ecosystems — rivers, streams, wetlands and lakes — and ecosystems at the interface between aquatic and terrestrial habitats, such as streamside vegetation. Dodds will be recognized and inducted into the inaugural class of fellows at the society’s annual meeting, June 4-9, 2017, in Raleigh, North Carolina. Return to top
Joe Sutliff Sanders, associate professor of English, published two edited collections: “The Comics of Herge: When the Lines Are Not So Clear” (UP of Mississippi, 2016) and, with colleague Michelle Ann Abate, “Good Grief! Children’s Comics, Past and Present” (Ohio State University Libraries, 2016).
Sanders also published essays in each collection: “Herge’s Occupations: How the Creator of Tintin Made a Deal with the Devil and Became a Better Cartoonist” and “How Comics Became Kids’ Stuff.” Return to top
The College of Arts and Sciences hosts a tailgate party in Cat Town prior to each home football game this season and we are extending an invitation to the entire ArtSci family to join the fun and connect with your college!
Last year, nearly 500 college alumni and friends made this the best pre-game party in Cat Town. We hope you’ll join the fun in 2016!
Cost: $25 per person
Location: Cat Town, USA, which is located at the south end of the west parking lot at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. Click for a map.
Start time: The party starts two hours prior to kickoff for each home game.
What does your $25 include?
Catered food and drinks from local favorite Cox Brothers BBQ
Pre-game visit from the K-State Marching Band
Opportunity to meet the Dean
Purple Pride to take with you, like pens, chip clips, magnets and more
The festive pre-game atmosphere of Cat Town, USA leading up to kickoff
Associate Professor of Anthropology at K-State Mike Wesch is determined to shake up traditional teaching methods and the ways faculty and students interact with and understand each other.
Wesch has been dubbed “the prophet of an education revolution” by the Kansas City Star and “the explainer” by Wired magazine. He was named an Emerging Explorer by National Geographic and has won several major awards for his work, including the US Professor of the Year Award from the Carnegie Foundation and the Wired Magazine Rave Award. His videos, which touch on issues of pedagogy and cultural understanding, have been viewed more than 20 million times, translated into 20 languages and are frequently featured at international film festivals and major academic conferences worldwide.
His latest project is a podcast, “Life101,” in which he seeks to tell the stories of college students through their own words and share their lived experiences in their own spaces. The goal? To lay bare the multifaceted, complicated, unique and ever-changing lives of modern students for a generation of faculty who are content to rely on Millennial stereotypes.