NC STATE UNIVERSITY
SPRING/SUMMER 2004 A L O O K I N S I D E THE COLLEGE OF PHYSICAL AND MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES
Women have been making strides in
the sciences for years. A new program
at NC State seeks to help them be
even more successful.
IN THIS ISSUE New lab building dedicated 2 Statistics reunion 8 Molecular data storage 13
College leads in ﬁnding PAMS
better ways to teach 2004 Board of
There’s an evolution taking
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
place in the way science and
mathematics is taught—to Ofﬁcers
students of all ages. Connie W. Moreadith, President
For decades, the traditional W. Donald Johnson, Vice President
classroom consisted of an instruc- Anita C. Stallings, Secretary
tor dispensing knowledge to Kathryn S. Hart, Treasurer
a group of students who were George Worsley, Assistant Treasurer
expected to absorb the information.
However, research into educa- General Members
tional effectiveness has shown Charles D. Case
that this traditional classroom Roy Cromartie
doesn’t always produce optimal Eric L. Doggett
results. There is a great difference Maureen S. Droessler
in how various groups, even vari- Natalie H. English
ous individuals, process different Stephen V. Frye
types of information. Nathaniel B. Guttman
Faculty within the College are Stephen E. Howe
committed to helping students R. Lawrence Ives
achieve success. We are on the Dean Daniel Solomon speaks with prospective students and their parents at a Charles T. Joyner
leading edge of using modern student recruitment social hosted by Charlotte-area alumni at the Lowe’s Motor C. Preston Linn
technology to improve the learning Martin P. Mascianica
process. We have designed tools Mark F. Molinaro
based on the latest in Web tech- tive atmosphere, and several other in a traditional classroom. J. Allen Morgan
nology, redesigned and reorgan- universities have adopted our However, we now know how Dale A. Newton
ized curricula, and even written methods. As reported on page 15, different groups—and even indi- Glenn D. Osmond
new textbooks. a team of researchers reported in viduals—process information and Emily Mann Peck
Our Physics Department has an Science that we need more such experiences and how better to W. Michael Peirson
entire area of research devoted to programs. reach them. Thomas M. Rhodes
ﬁnding more effective ways to Recently, the College partnered By accommodating different Nancy A. Ridenhour
teach physics at the undergradu- with University Housing and the learning styles, we beneﬁt all John A. Ryals
ate level. And The Science House College of Engineering to start a students, who must enter a world John P. Sall
helps thousands of K–12 science living and learning community for in which effective citizenship Cecil O. Smith
and mathematics teachers female students of both colleges. requires an understanding of Glen Snider
enhance instruction for their The Women in Science and science. Robert R. Starbuck
students. Engineering (WISE) Program pro- Herbert R. Strickler
We also are redesigning the vides women with an environment Michael A. Thompson
learning environment itself. Our designed to help them make the Wilson R. White
SCALE-UP classroom environment most of their college experience. Meredith J. Williams
combines lectures and labs, but You’ll ﬁnd more details about Daniel L. Solomon, Dean Christian J. Wypasek
also breaks large classes into very WISE on page 4.
small groups who must work So many talented students Emeritus
together to solve problems. have been turned off to science Richard F. Cook
Women and minorities and mathematics because of a
especially excel in this collabora- difﬁculty grasping the information
A LOOK INSIDE
In this issue…
THE COLLEGE OF PHYSICAL AND MATHEMATICAL SCIENCES SPRING/SUMMER 2004
Undergraduate Science Teaching Laboratory dedicated 2
Trustees rename USTL to honor departing chancellor 2
NC State welcomes WISE women 4
First-time study to analyze air quality of animal farms 10
Penguin bones from “Land of Fire” rewrite bird evolution 11
Can dinosaur size teach us something about global warming? 11
Chemists “harness evolution in a beaker” 12
Team proves molecular data storage possible 13
Physicists make waves in naval mine detection 14
Scientists say science courses need overhaul 15
Five faculty members receive NSF CAREER Awards 5
Wertz honored with PAMS Faculty Award 6
Sall receives honorary doctorate 7
Bioinformatics Research Center holds symposium in Weir’s honor 9
Gunnoe receives Sloan Fellowship 12
Math team makes book club list 14 see page 11
Johnson wins prestigious Gates Cambridge Trust Scholarship 15
Alumni and Development news
Hemrick speaks at Emerging Issues Forum 7
9 Kimberly-Clark technology boosts molecular memory research 13
8 11 Wes Doggett honored with endowment 16
Science House challenge grant attracts donors 16
Just for fun
Walk of Discovery makes public debut 3
1 2 3 Statistics Department hosts ﬁrst-time family reunion 8
Young alumni called upon for ACC Challenge 17
On the cover: A few of the College’s many women of science: 1. Christine Hemrick, Mathematics ‘74, vice president for technology policy and consulting engineering for Cisco Systems Inc.
2. Yanli Liu, Chemistry graduate student; 3. Andrea Hernandez, senior in Mathematics and Mathematics Education; 4. Maria Gallardo-Williams, lecturer and coordinator of organic chemistry
laboratories 5. Allison Hill, Chemistry ‘04 and 2003-04 president of PAMS Student Council; 6. Eliana Asciutto, Physics doctoral graduate student; 7. Carrie Thomas, visiting assistant professor
in marine sciences; 8. Suzanne Gordon, Mathematics and Computer Science, ‘73, MS Statistics, ‘80, chief information ofﬁcer and vice president, information technology at SAS Institute
and member of the NC State Board of Trustees; 9. Jacqueline Hughes-Oliver, associate professor of statistics; 10. Celeste Sagui, assistant professor of physics; and 11. Connie Moreadith,
Statistics, ‘77, professional consultant and president of the PAMS Foundation. (Photo by Roger Winstead)
2 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Teaching Laboratory dedicated
Beneath a three-story canopy Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS). instructional facility needs for both
Trustees of light, accented by bright maple
paneling and red and white bouquets
“We had justiﬁcation for the
building, and CALS had the property,”
colleges. The research greenhouses
were demolished and replaced with
rename USTL of balloons, about 150 people said John Partridge, a former member new facilities elsewhere on campus.
celebrated the dedication of the of the Chemistry Department Board This left enough space for USTL-
to honor Undergraduate Science Teaching of Visitors and one of the original Phase One—the new building and a
Laboratory (USTL) on June 1. supporters of the facility. “We saw an large open area that has added green
departing The USTL was built at the corner opportunity to work together to space in that section of campus,
of Brooks and Yarbrough, on land beneﬁt both colleges.” providing a vital link in the All Campus
chancellor once occupied by several research The result was a two-phase Path.
greenhouses for the College of project that meets modern laboratory USTL-Phase Two is a complete
The NC State Board of renovation of the David Clark
PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD
Trustees announced July 13 that Laboratories and a 50,000-sq-ft.
the Undergraduate Science and addition that will occupy a former
Teaching Laboratory will be parking lot between Brooks Avenue
renamed the Marye Anne Fox and Dan Allen Drive. It will contain
Science Teaching Laboratory in new undergraduate biology teaching
honor of the departing chan- laboratories.
cellor and her six years of The four-story, 82,500 square-foot
service to the university. Fox USTL contains seven undergraduate
was recently named chancellor physics teaching labs, 14 undergradu-
of University of California-San ate chemistry labs, seven instrument
Diego. rooms, a physics tutorial center, a
Peaches Gunter Blank, board chemistry tutorial center, 10 faculty
chair, said, “Marye Anne Fox was ofﬁces, ﬁve classrooms and various
the driving force behind NC laboratory preparation and support
State’s continued evolution into rooms. Chemistry and physics facilities
a comprehensive community of occupy the ﬁrst, second and third
scholars nationally recognized ﬂoors.
for its excellence. We’re sad to The ground level houses the
see Marye Anne go, but we hope Horticultural Science teaching green-
the newly named Marye Anne houses, a wet lab, a Plant Pathology
Fox Science Teaching Laboratory lab, ofﬁces and support space.
will commemorate her The most stunning feature of the
dedication and service to the building is the abundance of reading
university. The building will room and open gathering space
serve as a lasting legacy of where students and faculty interact.
Marye Anne’s commitment to The main entrance opens into a
NC State.” spectacular, three-story atrium with
Board member Wendell comfortable furnishings on each level.
Murphy added, “This is the It’s obvious that the new sur-
least we could do to honor roundings are having a positive
Chancellor Fox. She had more impact on the students. Both tutorial
to do with the passing of the centers stay full with students, who
higher education bond refer- also make much use of the atrium’s
endum than anyone else. It’s gathering spaces.
important for NC State to “The students love it,” said Susan
thank her in this way.” Hendrickson, chemistry instructor. “It’s
bright. It’s cheerful. They can work in
the tutorial center, and if they have
In this view from the second ﬂoor elevator lobby, one can see the bright gathering
spaces on each level of the USTL’s three-story atrium. The doorways on the ﬁrst ﬂoor
questions, our ofﬁces are conveniently
behind the dedication ceremony’s podium lead to the Physics tutorial center. The located on the same ﬂoor.”
doorways to the left on the mezzanine level are Chemistry faculty ofﬁces. The windows All laboratories are ﬁlled with natu-
on the wall to the right let natural light into laboratories on all three ﬂoors. ral light, either from exterior windows,
PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD
or windows overlooking the atrium. Throughout the process, a small
“Our student survey scores group of tenacious faculty and volun-
improved this semester, yet we are teers continued to push the USTL to
not teaching differently,” said the forefront of construction projects.
Dr. Maria Gallardo-Williams. “We Chancellor Marye Anne Fox said in
think that’s just a sign of how the her dedication ceremony comments,
building itself is positively inﬂuencing “Perhaps the most impressive thing
the learning experience.” about this building is that it was
Of course, this was just what a championed by a group of faculty
team of faculty, university volunteers and volunteers who worked diligently
and campus architects had in mind to ensure that it was built.”
when they designed the USTL. A plaque was then unveiled and
“You must teach science in facili- greeted by a round of enthusiastic
ties that are as close as possible to applause. It reads:
facilities students will ﬁnd in the real
world,” said Ken Hanck, chemistry pro- In deep appreciation for the tireless
fessor and USTL construction project efforts of the following individuals,
leader. “The USTL is speciﬁcally whose leadership and vision made
designed for laboratory education.” this facility possible
Until the USTL, all undergraduate Raymond E. Fornes
laboratories were taught in Withers, a Kenneth W. Hanck
65-year-old building that was never Robert W. Morrison, Jr.
intended to serve 5,000 students Robert A. Osteryoung
each semester. John J. Partridge
Even though the reasons for Jerry L. Whitten
replacing Withers were obvious to
faculty and friends of the College, it Chancellor Fox then dedicated
was not at the top of the university the building, “as a gateway through
or state legislature’s priority list. which our students will enter the
When the voters of North Carolina world of scientiﬁc discovery, and in
approved the construction bond recognition of the dedicated faculty,
referendum in 2000, it made money staff and friends who have fought so Ceremony guests chat in a physics laboratory displaying visualization technologies.
available for many such projects long and so hard to make this dream Several labs were on tour after the ceremony.
across all UNC system campuses. a reality.”
Walk of Discovery makes public debut
The Walk of Discovery was dedi- Dean Daniel Solomon invited the
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
cated June 1 in conjunction with the crowd to browse the sidewalk for
Undergraduate Science Teaching familiar names.
Laboratory (USTL) building dedication The College is developing an
ceremony. online grid diagram to assist alumni
A commemorative stone has been and friends in locating their brick on
installed in the brick sidewalk just the walkway, and the Web address
outside of the building’s main will be announced in the next issue
entrance. of Scope.
Dedication ceremony attendees To permanently etch your name
who had purchased a laser-engraved into NC State history, see the Walk of
brick were identiﬁed with a Walk of Discovery information inside the
Discovery logo on their name badges. back cover. Proceeds beneﬁt scholar-
During his ceremony comments, ships in the College.
4 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
NC State welcomes WISE women
PHOTO COURTESY OF WISE PROGRAM
NC State is among a growing
number of universities that have
introduced a living and learning
community specially designed to help
female students achieve success in
science, engineering and technology.
The Women in Science and
Engineering (WISE) Program is based
on effective national models and
customized to ﬁt NC State’s unique
academic environment. The WISE
program allows female students pur-
suing degrees in science and engi-
neering the opportunity to network
with each other, along with female
faculty, alumni and other role models,
throughout the university setting.
Why is such a program necessary?
“Research shows that female
students do best in supportive, col- WISE Program members get to know each other while participating in a team-building
laborative learning environments,” exercise during the Summer Bridge program.
said Dr. Jo-Ann Cohen, associate
dean for academic affairs in PAMS. become successful professionals. WISE has ﬁnished its ﬁrst year and
“In the interest of ﬁnding ways to “The WISE Village offers a variety students gave very positive feedback
help all students achieve their per- of beneﬁts for ﬁrst-year female about the program.
sonal best, it was obvious that our students. In addition to living on the “My mentor is not only there to
campus needed this type of program, same ﬂoor in Lee Hall, participants help me with my academics, but she
which elsewhere has dramatically are also provided with upper-class also takes time out of her busy
reduced the number of women mentors, who live on the ﬂoor with schedule to visit with me often, and
transferring out of the sciences. them,” said Cohen. “This gives them on many occasions we eat together,”
This is important because society around-the-clock access to more said Lenovia McCoy, a freshman
needs more scientists, Cohen said. senior students who can help them Chemistry major. “She’s like a big
with their studies and serve as sister to me.”
valuable role models.” Along with colleagues across
There is also a special library on campus, Cohen led efforts to
“More women than ever are the WISE ﬂoor that offers reference establish the program. WISE is
materials and other books. sponsored by University Housing,
pursuing careers in the sciences, The program also includes guided and the colleges of Physical and
study programs, cultural trips, com- Mathematical Sciences (PAMS),
and we need them to succeed.” munity service opportunities, dinners Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS),
with female professors, industry Engineering (COE) and Natural
— Jo-Ann Cohen visits, supplemental instruction and Resources (CNR).
seminars. The ﬁrst student participants were
A special speaker series introduces majors of PAMS and COE, but the
“More women than ever are the students to PAMS alumni and program will expand this fall to
pursuing careers in the sciences, and other female role models who can include students from CALS and CNR.
we need them to succeed,” she said. give them a glimpse into the real “We already know this program
The heart of the program is the world. These speakers have included has made a difference for the
WISE Village, an environment in Suzanne Gordon, chief information students enrolled in it,” Cohen said.
which future mathematicians, stat- ofﬁcer and vice president for infor- “And we’re already ﬁnding that WISE
isticians, scientists and engineers mation technology at SAS Institute, is also attractive to potential
can engage in focused inquiry and Christine Hemrick, vice president students, who do want to make
within their disciplines and develop for technology policy and consulting the most of their college experience
the skills and talents necessary to engineering for Cisco Systems Inc. and educational investment.”
Five faculty members receive
NSF CAREER Awards
PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
Any college would be delighted
when one faculty member is selected
to receive a National Science
Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career
Development Award (CAREER).
However, ﬁve members of the PAMS
faculty earned this prestigious honor
this year—and by coincidence, one in
“The odds of getting ﬁve in a sin-
gle year are pretty low, and receiving
one in each department is amazing,”
said Dean Daniel Solomon. “But it
speaks very well of the dedication of
these young faculty members, and
the belief the NSF has in the direc- Subhashis Ghosal Maria Oliver-Hoyo Celeste Sagui
tion and quality of their research.”
NSF established the CAREER
Award program in 1995 to help the with graduate student support, and develops highly interactive in areas such as robotics, geometric
most promising scientists and engi- equipment, supplies and other instructional modules, among other modeling, computer vision and ﬂuid
neers early in their careers to develop resources as he develops extensions projects. dynamics. Szanto’s project seeks
simultaneously their contributions of the existing theory as well as com- to combine both symbolic and
and commitment to research and to putation techniques and software for Celeste Sagui numerical methods to improve
education. implementing his procedures. This is A ﬁve-year, $400,000 grant was the reliability and efﬁciency of the
The PAMS recipients are: the ﬁrst NSF CAREER Award received awarded to Dr. Celeste Sagui, assis- computations involved in solving
in the Statistics Department. tant professor of physics, for her these systems.
Subhashis Ghosal research in the ﬁeld of computa- The award extends the scope of
Dr. Subhashis Ghosal, assistant Maria Oliver-Hoyo tional biophysics designed to a previous three-year, $153,000 NSF
professor of statistics, received a Dr. Maria Oliver-Hoyo, assistant improve understanding of protein research grant Szanto received
ﬁve-year $400,000 grant for further professor of chemistry, received a solvation and protein/nucleotide in 2003. This is the ﬁrst CAREER
research into non-parametric ﬁve-year, $552,900 grant. recognition. Award received in the Mathematics
Bayesian procedures, an area in Her research team designs This research builds on method- Department.
which he has contributed signiﬁ- chemistry experiments for physically ological advances made by Sagui and
cantly to recent breakthroughs. challenged students, ﬁnds innovative her colleagues aimed at improving Yang Zhang
The award will provide Ghosal approaches to chemistry instruction, the treatment of delicate long-range Dr. Yang Zhang, assistant
electrostatic interactions between professor of marine, earth and
biomolecules. This effort is part of a atmospheric sciences, received a
$3 million, NSF-funded grant to ﬁve-year, $578,105 grant. Her
develop new multiscale methods for research interests include air
large-scale biomolecular simulations. pollution modeling and forecasting,
Sagui leads the Triangle-area team atmospheric chemistry and transport,
conducting the research. chemistry and dynamics of aerosols
and clouds, sensitivity and uncer-
Agnes Szanto tainty analysis, and the interactions
Dr. Agnes Szanto, assistant among atmospheric chemistry,
professor of mathematics, received a meteorology, climate change and
$440,000 ﬁve-year grant. Over- health effects.
constrained systems occur frequently
Agnes Szanto Yang Zhang
6 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Wertz honored with
PAMS Faculty Award
Dennis Wertz knew something was tive operation and intellectual life ted to ﬁnding a better way to teach.
up when Chemistry Department Head of a department within the College. The result is greater student
Bruce Novak told him he must attend Wertz was nominated by the comprehension and success. The tra-
the spring PAMS Faculty Meeting. Chemistry Department for spear- ditional disparity in student success
But he was completely surprised heading an effort to dramatically based on math skills has all but
redesign the way chemistry is taught disappeared, student performance
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
at NC State and beyond. has improved, and students are better
The traditional approach involves prepared to pursue multiple directions
as much algebra as it does chemistry with subsequent chemistry courses.
“Having spoken to competing
publishers and participated in
several national chemistry education
functions, I have frequently heard
the ‘Wertz text’ used as a new
standard by which other concepts-
based chemistry texts are judged.”
— James D. Martin
and many students leave such a These are signiﬁcant achieve-
course without fully understanding ments considering that more than
the processes themselves. As a result, 80 percent of NC State students take
student performance seems to be at least one chemistry course.
determined more by math skills than “This bold approach toward a
a comprehension of chemistry. concepts-based curricular reform in
As reported in the Fall 2002 issue chemistry has been duly noted at the
of Scope, the new approach is to start national level,” said James D. Martin,
students off with a one-semester con- professor of chemistry, in a
cepts course, followed by either nomination letter.
organic chemistry or a semester “Having spoken to competing
Dennis Wertz when he was honored with the pres- emphasizing the quantitative prob- publishers and participated in several
tigious PAMS Faculty Career lem-solving associated with the con- national chemistry education
Achievement Award, a distinction cepts taught in the ﬁrst semester. functions, I have frequently heard the
only periodically bestowed upon a Included in the effort are two new ‘Wertz text’ used as a new standard
deserving faculty member through textbooks, innovative Web-based by which other concepts-based chem-
peer nominations. teaching tools, and new computer istry texts are judged,” Martin said.
Established in 1999, the PAMS animations that effectively illustrate Recognizing curriculum reform as
Faculty Award recognizes a faculty chemical processes at the molecular an ongoing process, Wertz continues
member who has made accomplish- level. to chair a committee looking into
ments over many years that The work included a team of both revising the chemistry curriculum at
contribute signiﬁcantly to the effec- research and teaching faculty commit- NC State.
Hemrick speaks at Emerging Issues Forum
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
Christine Hemrick, PAMS 2003 public and private sectors. educational institutions to bring
Distinguished Alumna, was a speaker The 2004 forum focused on global up-to-date technical skills training to
at the 2004 Emerging Issues Forum, trade, the merging of old and new the populations in least-developed
held on campus in February. Hemrick, industries, regional solutions to eco- nations and some adjacent countries.
(Mathematics, ‘73) is vice president nomic development, and reducing Now four years old, the company’s
for technology policy and consulting inequality in North Carolina. programs include 42 nations, 148
engineering at Cisco Systems in Palo Hemrick’s presentation was part institutions and more than 5,600
Alto, California. of the discussion “Bridging New students. A focused effort to include
The Institute for Emerging Issues Divides in the Global Economy,” gender as a priority in all its inter-
is a “think and do” tank committed to a topic that meshed well with national development initiatives
helping government, business, and Hemrick’s leadership in Cisco has resulted in a 32 percent female
nonproﬁts make sense of the future. Systems’ corporate initiatives toward enrollment in least developed
Through its prestigious forum, now promoting effective public- and nations—35 percent in Africa.
in its 19th year, the Institute private-sector partnerships to For more on the Institute for
identiﬁes emerging trends in North positively inﬂuence economic Emerging Issues and to review
Carolina, sharpens public debate on development. presentations from this year’s forum,
their impact, proposes strategic Cisco works with international visit www.ncsu.edu/iei/index.
Christine Hemrick responses, and stimulates action by development partners and
Sall receives honorary doctorate
One of the College’s most enthu-
PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD
siastic, long-time friends received an
honorary doctor of sciences degree
at NC State’s December 2003
The honor was bestowed on
John P. Sall, co-founder and execu-
tive vice president of SAS Institute,
the world’s largest privately held
software company. SAS grew from
research efforts in the Statistics
Sall designed, developed and
documented many of SAS Institute’s
earliest analytical procedures while
still a graduate student in Statistics.
“John and his wife, Ginger, have
been important supporters of NC
State and the College through the
years,” said Dean Daniel Solomon.
“Their insight and perspective are
invaluable to us, and their friendship
is deeply appreciated. We are very
proud that the university chose to Chancellor Marye Anne Fox with John and Ginger Sall at the Fall 2003 Commencement.
recognize John with an honorary
doctorate.” Sall has supervised the start-up of the JMP product team. Sall also is degree from Beloit College, a
Sall is in his third term of service a number of SAS initiatives. He also responsible for the SAS InSchool master’s degree from Northern
on the PAMS Foundation Board of was principal designer and developer division. Illinois University, and studied
Directors, and is co-chair of a of JMP, a graphically oriented statis- He was elected Fellow of the graduate-level statistics at NC State.
fundraising advisory committee for tical package developed originally for American Statistical Association in
the College. Macintosh computers, and now leads 1998. He earned his bachelor’s
8 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Statistics Department hosts ﬁrst-tim
More than 60 people attended a department. A former department said. “Do you remember when Ron
Statistics Department reunion lunch- head, Solomon retold the familiar Gallant bought two wrecked Mercury
eon this spring to renew old acquain- story of a chance discussion on a Cougars, cut them in half and welded
tances and celebrate their time at train in 1940 between Frank Porter the two good halves together? Do
NC State. Graham, president of what you remember when a lady from the
By the thunder of voices in the is now the UNC System, and Glamour Girls Bridge Club called up
lobby of the University Club, it was W.F. Calendar of the U.S. Department Oscar Wesler and told him the girls
clear that they had a lot of catching of Agriculture that resulted in the had been dealt four perfect bridge
up to do. They greeted each other establishment of the department. hands and wanted to know the
with warm smiles and hugs. They Larry Nelson, Stu Hunter and Al probability of that? It made the
Faculty/Staff shared personal news and asked
about old friends. Eruptions of laugh-
Finkner took turns to reminisce at the
Stu Hunter, former president of
Notables ter followed a good joke, a funny
story, or a reminder of an amusing
“We were fortunate to have out-
standing beginnings, and continuing
the American Statistical Association,
recalled fondly the old “Patterson
Chris Gorman (Chemistry)— event “back then.” outstanding leadership,” said Nelson, Hall Open” golf tournament.
Alumni Outstanding Research Although it was a gathering of assistant dean for international pro- “One year I won a prize for the
Award current and retired faculty and staff, grams, College of Agriculture and Life best poker hand,” he laughed. “I had
Bruce Novak (Chemistry)— spouses of former faculty, and other Sciences. He shared memories of ﬁve thirteens.” Coincidentally, the
Fellow of the International friends of the department, the mood department founder Gertrude Cox reunion marked Hunter’s 50th
Union of Pure and Applied was more like what one would expect and the “family” environment started anniversary of receiving his Ph.D.
Chemistry at a family reunion. by faculty in the department’s earli- Al Finkner had words of praise for
Al Riordan (MEAS)—Alumni The Department exhibited a collec- est years. He then entertained the the organizers of the event, which
Distinguished Undergraduate tion of photos and other memorabilia crowd with a humorous “do you was the ﬁrst such gathering since the
Professor in a special display, which attracted a remember when” list. department’s 50th anniversary event
Dave Aspnes (Physics)— crowd throughout the event. “Do you remember when Clark in 1991.
President, American Vacuum After a brief social, the group Cockerham and Bob Monroe caught “This department is made up of
Society gathered for a luncheon, which fea- ample ﬁsh to feed the whole depart- scientists who work hard all the time.
John Hubisz (Physics)— tured a presentation by Dean Daniel ment at the annual beach trip after It’s made up of family. Families have
Alumni Outstanding Extension Solomon on the founding of the many years of trying in vain?” Nelson reunions and I think it’s important
and Outreach Award that our family have a reunion like
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
John Rowe (Physics)—Fellow this,” said Al Finkner. Finkner himself
of the American Association for was key to the event’s success, hav-
the Advancement of Science ing provided advice and counsel, and
Bruce Sherwood (Physics)— helped in generating the guest list.
Fellow of the American Physical A microphone was passed around
Society the room and various participants
Marie Davidian (Statistics)— shared their own personal stories
President, Eastern North about their experiences in the
American Region of the department.
International Biometric Society Harvey Gold discussed how
Ryan Boyles (State Climate Gertrude Cox inﬂuenced and inspired
Ofﬁce)—Alumni Outstanding Curly Lucas to create the biomathe-
Extension and Outreach Award matics program. Vi Rigney recalled
serving refreshments to graduate
students studying in her home.
B.B. Bhattacharyya recalled how a
chance meeting led to an impromptu
offer to join the department.
Department Head Sastry Pantula
thanked the reunion team for organ-
izing the event and the group spent a
few last minutes together posing for
a group photograph.
Photos and a complete video of
the event are available on the
Marc Genton and Yanyuan Ma look on as Jeanne Freeman Williams discusses an item on Department of Statistics’ Web site at:
the Statistics Department’s reunion display. In 1946, Williams became the department’s www.stat.ncsu.edu/gallery/.
second master’s degree recipient, and the ﬁrst female recipient.
me “family” reunion
PHOTO BY BECKY KIRKLAND
Front Row: Joyce Cockerham, Lillian Hunter, Jeanne Williams, Vi Rigney, Elaine Wakely, Vicki Gerig, Sandy Donaghy, Joy Smith, Barbara Wasik, Sastry Pantula, Charles Smith. Second Row: Peter
Bloomﬁeld, Diana Bloomﬁeld, Tommie Bennett, Bill Stines, Dorie Monroe, Yanyuan Ma, Dan Solomon, Jacquelin Dietz, Mary Ellen Harris, Faye Childers, Selma McEntire, Peg Giesbrecht, Sheila
Goodman. Third Row: Carolyn Chromy, Chuck Proctor, John Koop, Stu Hunter, Dudley Wallace, B.B. Bhattacharyya, Joanne Wallace, Joyce Poole, Bruce Weir, Joe Childers, Janice Gaddy, Charles
Quesenberry. Fourth Row: Jeff Thompson, Jim Chromy, Shirley Gold, Harvey Gold, Betty Finkner, Dorothy Hader, Elaine Mason, Bob Mason, Helen Rufﬁn, Tom Gerig, Len Stefanski, Bill Swallow,
Janie Rawlings, Herb Kirk, Larry Nelson. Fifth Row: Pam Linnerud, A.C. Linnerud, Jane Lucas, Bob Lucas, Marc Genton, John Wasik, Francis Giesbrecht, Al Finkner, Bob Steel, John Monahan, Roger
Berger, Cavell Brownie, Don Ridgeway, John Rawlings, Tom Johnson, Major Goodman.
Bioinformatics Research Center
holds symposium in Weir’s honor
PHOTO BY BECKY KIRKLAND
The Bioinformatics Research celebrate the enduring friendships
Center (BRC) recently organized a generated within his wide circle of
symposium on Statistical and associates,” said Dean Daniel
Population Genetics in honor of Solomon.
Dr. Bruce Weir, founding BRC director, More than 120 speakers and partic-
William Neal Reynolds Professor of ipants came from across the nation
Statistics and Genetics, and director and from as far away as New Zealand
of the Summer Institute in Statistical and China. Dr. Zhao-Bang Zeng of the
Genetics. BRC opened the symposium with a
Recognizing Weir for his enduring presentation on Weir’s contributions
and continuing contributions to the to statistical and population genetics.
ﬁeld of bioinformatics, the symposium He was followed by John Buckleton,
featured speakers who were either ESR Forensic, New Zealand, who
Weir’s colleagues, collaborators or discussed Weir’s contributions to
former students, and internationally forensic science.
renowned scientists. The symposium featured a series
“The symposium was an opportu- of presentations on a wide range of
nity to address the state of research in topics, representing the richness,
Bruce Weir and Zhao-Bang Zeng pause for a photo during the symposium’s statistical genetics, to honor Bruce’s depth and mystery of the ﬁeld Weir
evening festivities. far-reaching contributions, and to has pioneered.
10 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
First-time study to analyze air
quality of animal farms
Atmospheric scientists will soon a regulated substance called ﬁne par- Dr. John C. Fountain, head of the
help clear the air around the complex ticulate matter, or PMﬁne. That’s Department of Marine, Earth and
issue of large animal farms and their what we’ll be studying.” Atmospheric Sciences and co-
effects on their neighbors. The team will work directly with principal investigator for the study,
The U.S. Department of the NC Environmental Management said that the three-year project
Agriculture (USDA) awarded a grant Commission, which is responsible for has research, extension and
of nearly $500,000 to a team led by implementing regulations to protect education goals.
Dr. Viney Aneja, a professor in the air quality. “This is a multi-institutional,
Department of Marine, Earth and
Atmospheric Sciences, to study
ammonia and hydrogen sulﬁde
emissions from NC animal farms—the “In addition to our scientiﬁc ﬁndings,
ﬁrst USDA grant program to investi-
gate air-quality issues associated
which may help modify regulations
with animal-feeding operations. and policies, we’ll also use the research
USDA Undersecretary Rodney J.
Brown presented the grant to Aneja for new undergraduate and graduate
and his NC State colleagues at the
Environmental Protection Agency
courses in agricultural air quality and
(EPA) ofﬁces in Research Triangle the transport, dispersion and diffusion
Park. The grant is part of $5.1 million
in competitive grants being awarded of air pollutants.
to 11 institutions to study air- and
water-quality issues. — John C. Fountain
The award builds on NC State’s
efforts to make animal-feeding
operations both environmentally “Using on-site chemical and physi- multidisciplinary team of air-quality,
responsible and economically viable. cal measuring devices, we’ll quantify agricultural and environmental
According to Aneja, project princi- the atmospheric sources and sinks of scientists,” Fountain said. “In addition
pal investigator, previous studies of ammonia, ammonium, hydrogen sul- to our scientiﬁc ﬁndings, which may
the contained animal feeding opera- ﬁde and PMﬁne compounds,” Aneja help modify regulations and policies,
tions (CAFOs) have focused on soil said. “Our ﬁndings will be incorpo- we’ll also use the research for new
and water contamination. rated into a comprehensive regional undergraduate and graduate courses
“The levels of ammonia and air-quality model, and we’ll dissemi- in agricultural air quality and the
hydrogen sulﬁde linked to CAFOs nate our results to agribusiness, transport, dispersion and diffusion of
air pollutants. Short-course versions
Gas will be offered to stakeholder com-
Air masses munities, as well.”
NC State plays a leading role in the
Local or long-distance
state’s ongoing efforts to make CAFOs
matter Changes in both proﬁtable and “green.” NC State
chemical/physical forms Indirect received a $15 million grant in 2000
SOURCES OF TRACE GASES
Anthropogenic sources Natural sources particle Air/water to coordinate the identiﬁcation and
deposition gas exchange development of better technologies for
hog-waste treatment—an agreement
involving the state and Smithﬁeld
Foods—and another $2.5 million from
a similar agreement with Premium
Direct deposition Standard Farms.
Surface waterbody In addition, the Air Quality
*Indirect deposition is direct deposition to land followed by runoff or seepage
through groundwater to a surface waterbody. Research Group, headed by Aneja,
has conducted related research
Viney Aneja uses this diagram to don’t, by themselves, violate current regulators and concerned citizens, funded by the EPA, the NC
illustrate atmospheric emissions,
EPA standards, so scientiﬁc scrutiny through local meetings, workshops, Department of Environment and
transport, transformation and
deposition of trace gases. has been elsewhere,” he said. “But we fact sheets, news articles and Web Natural Resources and other state
believe these gases combine to form sites.” and federal agencies.
Penguin bones from “Land of Fire”
rewrite bird evolution
Fossilized bones found in Tierra and a leg and dates to the Eocene America during a comparatively climates, and slowly adapted as their
del Fuego, Argentina, are likely those epoch of Earth’s history—about warm period in Earth’s history,” said habitats grew icier.
of the earliest known South 40 million years ago—sometimes Clarke, “coincident with the begin- Clarke says that a larger, more
American penguin, which probably called the “early age of mammals.” ning of, or just before, a major global comprehensive study of the penguin
lived 20 million years earlier than The fossilized bones are sufﬁciently cooling trend that occurred in the family tree is necessary before the
scientists had supposed. The new different from known penguin mid-Eocene. All other South full story of early penguins in the
ﬁnd doubles the known fossil record anatomy to rewrite the story of American penguin fossils date to Land of Fire can be told. But she’s
of penguins in South America. penguin evolution. long after that ‘icehouse’ phase conﬁdent that the discovery will help
That’s the conclusion of Dr. Julia A. Tierra del Fuego, or “Land of Fire,” began, and after the Antarctic icecap clarify the timing and pattern of
Clarke, assistant professor in the is the southernmost portion of the is inferred to be present.” penguin diversiﬁcation.
Department of Marine, Earth and South American continent. The new ﬁnd may tell a radically “This is the ﬁrst vertebrate from
Atmospheric Sciences and her Argentinean geologist Eduardo B. different story from previous that distant epoch ever found in
Argentinean colleagues, who pub- Olivero’s team discovered the fossils discoveries about penguins and their Tierra del Fuego,” she says. “As
lished their ﬁndings in the December at Punta Torcida on Tierra del Fuego’s prehistoric travels. Despite the popu- modest as these fossilized bones are,
2003 issue of the journal Novitates Atlantic coast in 1999, and Olivero lar association of penguins with cold they’ll tell us a great deal about the
of the American Museum of Natural asked Clarke to help identify the polar regions, said Clarke, species of morphological evolution of penguins
History. bones. the birds live near the equator as and the travels of these birds some
According to Clarke, the specimen “This early part of the penguin well. The earliest penguins, then, 40 million years ago on a very
consists of parts of a pelvic girdle lineage must have arrived in South might have developed in warmer different planet Earth.”
Can dinosaur size teach
us something about global
Scientists have often wondered lumbering prey for their carnivorous
how and why dinosaurs grew to be so cousins. Does that explain the
large. The answer is probably a lot of massive size of the dinosaurs?
hot air, according to doctoral student It might, but Decherd prefers to
Sara Decherd of the Department of focus on the plant-growth
Marine, Earth and Atmospheric aspects of her research.
Sciences. “My work is focused on
Decherd studies the ecology of understanding the ecol-
the Cretaceous period, about 160 ogy of the Cretaceous
million years ago, when Earth’s period, adding our data
atmosphere contained more oxygen to environmental and
and more carbon dioxide and was, in climatic models, and
her words, “a hothouse.” perhaps gaining some
She believes, and is working to insight into current con-
demonstrate, that this richer atmos- cerns about greenhouse
phere helped plants grow bigger and gases and global warming,”
faster. With lots of food, herbivorous she said.
dinosaurs thrived—and became
12 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Chemists “harness evolution
in a beaker”
Scientists at North Carolina State
COURTESY OF EATON/FELDHEIM
University have discovered that RNA
can be used to create tiny, novel,
Dr. Bruce Eaton, professor of
chemistry, Dr. Daniel Feldheim,
associate professor of chemistry,
and doctoral student Lina Gugliotti
used a new technique to coax spe-
ciﬁc sequences of lab-manufactured
ribonucleic acid to catalyze the syn-
thesis of an inorganic material—in
this case palladium—into hexago-
nally-shaped particles less than a
millionth of a meter in size.
Particles like these cannot be
easily produced by other known
methods, the researchers say. The This is a transmission electron micrograph image of palladium particles formed in the
presence of an RNA pool.
research could speed the discovery of
new materials for many applications,
including electronic devices and fuel “The method exploits the ability of The researchers have applied for a
cells. The research appeared in the RNA to evolve in response to selec- provisional methods patent on the
April 16 issue of Science. tion pressures,” Feldheim said. “In this technique used to form the inorganic
The NC State researchers found case we forced RNA sequences to particles. Future work will center on
that these particle formations evolve until they were capable of explaining how the process works
occurred rapidly, usually within one organizing palladium atoms into and creating particles with other
minute. They also discovered that hexagonally shaped palladium inorganic materials.
only very small amounts of metal— nanoparticles that cannot be formed Research funding came from NC
and even smaller amounts of RNA— in the absence of RNA.” State and the David and Lucile
were required for particle growth. “This research shows RNA as a Packard Foundation. Much of the
Eaton and Feldheim say the ‘smart’ catalyst because it can be DNA sequencing work on the project
technique allows them to “harness replicated,” Eaton said. “Most other was accomplished in the university’s
evolution in a beaker.” catalysts can’t be replicated.” Genome Research Lab.
Gunnoe receives Sloan Fellowship
PHOTO BY CYNTHIA WERTZ
Dr. T. Brent Gunnoe, assistant pro- toward the development of new
fessor of chemistry, has been chosen catalytic technologies with improved
as an Alfred P. Sloan research fellow efﬁciency.
by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The research efforts could result in
The two-year, $40,000 fellowship the development of catalyst systems
was awarded to Gunnoe to support that allow the preparation of new
his research on the study of inor- materials as well as the potential to
ganic and organometallic complexes. improve routes for the preparation of
Chemical synthesis is a large-scale existing materials by reducing energy
venture that requires signiﬁcant consumption and chemical waste.
energy and material resources and The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
produces substantial waste. awards fellowships to young scien-
Research efforts in the Gunnoe tists and economists based upon
group are directed toward under- their promise to contribute to the
standing fundamental interactions of advancement of knowledge.
transition metal systems with organic
compounds including application
T. Brent Gunnoe
Team proves molecular data storage possible
In the ongoing quest to create beyond the limits of traditional which involve high temperatures and molecules—with speciﬁc electronic
computing devices that are both semiconductors—have been working up to one trillion operational cycles. properties to an electroactive surface,
incredibly small and incredibly pow- to use molecules for information But scientists at NC State and storing information in the form of
erful, scientists—envisioning a future storage and processing. University of California-Riverside the molecules’ positive charges.
Until now, researchers were have demonstrated that molecular After a series of tests, the scien-
skeptical that such molecular devices memories are indeed both durable tists found that the resulting
ILLUSTRATION BY TROY BARBER / CAROL M. HIGHSMITH PHOTOGRAPHY, INC.
could survive the rigors of real-world and practical—a ﬁnding that could molecular memories were “extremely
manufacturing and use, spur development of the technology. robust” and offered clear advantages
The scientists’ results were over traditional semiconductor-
described in the Nov. 28 issue of the based technology.
journal Science. Dr. Jonathan S. In addition, their testing showed
Lindsey, Glaxo that such molecule-based infor-
Distinguished mation-storage devices meet the
University Professor of processing and operating challenges
Chemistry at NC State required for use in electronic devices.
and one of the paper’s In particular, the molecules are stable
authors, said the team was under extremes of temperature
faced with a very basic (400°C) and large numbers of read-
problem. write cycles (1 trillion).
“If molecular materials That demonstrated stability indi-
can’t compete against semi- cates that these molecular structures
conductor materials under the can be adapted to current semicon-
rigorous conditions of the real ductor fabrication technology and
world,” he said, “then trying to operated under conditions required
implement them in electronic for a practical device.
devices would be pointless. By establishing the practicality of
Because our goal is to develop molecular memories, says Lindsey,
molecule-based memory the ﬁndings should help eliminate
devices, we ﬁrst had to doubts about the role of organic
test their durability and materials in electronic devices.
stability.” “There is a perception that organic
The team attached molecules are fragile,” Lindsey said.
porphyrins—disk- “The critical question has been
shaped organic whether, given the high tempera-
tures and other stresses of produc-
tion and use, any molecule-based
This illustration, prepared by NC State design student devices could meet functionality
Troy Barber, represents the immense amount of information standards. I believe our research has
researchers believe could be stored in a memory cube system using laid this question to rest, and
molecular data storage technology. The current contents of the Library
demonstrated that appropriately
of Congress could be stored in 50 to 100 1-cm cubes. Carol M. Highsmith
Photography, Inc. provided the photograph portion of the illustration.
chosen molecules can readily
function in practical devices.”
That knowledge, he said, should
speed development of molecule-
based electronics, which promise
Kimberly-Clark technology boosts smaller, faster and far more powerful
computers and other applications.
molecular memory research The UC-Riverside team is led
by Professor David F. Bocian
Dr. Jonathan S. Lindsey and his records, research samples and tech- Clark technology signiﬁcantly The research was funded by
graduate students will beneﬁt from nical assistance, along with $200,000 improves the synthetic process, ZettaCore Inc. and the Defense
technology and patents recently in funding to support development creating possibilities for commercial Advanced Research Projects Agency
donated by Kimberly-Clark of the donated technology. applications. (DARPA) Moletronics Program.
Worldwide Inc. Porphyrins are naturally occurring Lindsey described the donated
The company’s gift includes por- compounds, such as heme and technology as “a signiﬁcant
phyrin synthesis technology and a chlorophyll. The porphyrin derivatives contribution to our ongoing study
related patent. The gift comes with used in information storage are pre- of compounds for molecular
Kimberly-Clark’s internal research pared synthetically. The Kimberly- information storage.”
14 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Physicists make waves in
naval mine detection
Since 1776, when naval mines suppresses the response from the signals were never recognized.”
were invented, navies have feared the seaﬂoor itself, making the underwater Using time-reversal to ﬁnd buried
stealthy and relatively simple terrain “transparent.” mines requires only one transceiver,
weapons, which can disable or destroy Dr. David M. Pierson, while a doc- although more can be used, and the
warships and paralyze vital shipping. toral student in physics at NC State, method isn’t limited by the composi-
Navies worldwide employ a host of demonstrated the new approach in tion of the ocean ﬂoor.
mine-detection techniques, most of research he conducted with Dr. David “Previous methods incorporated
them complicated, expensive, and far E. Aspnes, Distinguished University lots of complex modeling of the
from perfect. So a simpler, more Professor of Physics, in late 2003. The seaﬂoor and the ocean environment,”
effective method for detecting these project was supported by a grant from Pierson said, “and required sophisti-
mines, developed by a physicist at NC the Ofﬁce of Naval Research. Pierson cated software and hardware sys-
State, could make big waves. has since joined the Applied Physics tems. My time-reversal technique
Unlike current mine-detection Laboratory of Johns Hopkins University not only simpliﬁes the needed equip-
techniques, the patented methodol- in Baltimore, where his work is sup- ment, but also can be implemented
ogy ﬁnds objects buried in the ocean ported in part by the U.S. Navy. using existing sonar equipment,
ﬂoor without the use of complex, According to Aspnes, the young with minor software changes. More
unreliable modeling and without the physicist’s research is a breakthrough. elaborate analyses of echoes are also
usual arrays of sonar transmitters and “Time-reversal is a technique made possible.”
receivers. Instead, the method records that has been used before in various The NC State discovery should
the return echo of a sonar trans- contexts, including optics and please naval mine-detection experts,
ceiver’s “ping,” then time-reverses and acoustics, but before David’s work who now use everything from dolphins
transmits that signal. The following the advantages of time reversal for to divers to sophisticated computer
echo clearly shows buried objects, and isolating targets in back-scattered modeling and elaborate sonar arrays.
Math team makes book club list
It may not be the New York Times the Center for Research in Scientiﬁc “Modeling and Imaging Techniques
best seller list, but selection of a Computation (CRSC) made signiﬁcant with Potential for Application in
mathematics-based book by contributions to Bioterrorism: Bioterrorism.” The chapter focuses
Scientiﬁc American for its book club Mathematical Modeling Applications on fundamental aspects of modeling
list is both a rare achievement and a in Homeland Security, edited by in the presence of uncertainty of
professional honor. H.Thomas Banks and Carlos Castillo- potential chemical, biological and
Four researchers associated with Chavez. Published in November 2003, radiological agents that may pose
it was selected for the Scientiﬁc serious threats to populations. The
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
American Book Club this spring. chapter also covers electromagnetic
It is the ﬁrst book published by the interrogation for detection of hidden
Society for Industrial and Applied substances in the context of surveil-
Mathematics (SIAM) in the organiza- lance technologies for biodefense.
tion’s 51-year history to be chosen “Scientiﬁc American ordered 450
for this distinction. copies, which is extraordinary for an
In addition to editing the book, advanced, mathematically oriented
Banks, Director of the CRSC, teamed book,” Banks said. The book was pub-
with two of his former graduate lished in the SIAM series “Frontiers
students and a postdoctoral student in in Applied Mathematics” for which
writing a chapter. The group included Banks also serves as editor-in-chief.
David Bortz, assistant professor of According to SIAM, “Scientiﬁc
mathematics at the University of American Book Club sees a lot of
Michigan; Gabriella Pinter, a former manuscripts and invests heavily to
postdoctoral student now an assistant promote the titles to a broad scien-
professor of mathematics at the tiﬁc market. This is an honor and a
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee; mark of prestige that the book has
and Laura Potter, a research scientist been chosen for inclusion in the
at GlaxoSmithKline in Research club’s offerings.”
H. Thomas Banks and Laura Potter display copies of Bioterrorism: Mathematical
Triangle Park. The 250-page book is available
Modeling Applications in Homeland Security.
The team collaborated on Chapter 6, at www.siam.org.
Scientists say science courses need overhaul
Introductory college science The views were expressed in a small groups and take an active role reduced by a factor of four.
courses—traditionally composed of Policy Forum paper published in the in class learn more and get better The general public also beneﬁts
impersonal “transmission-of-infor- April 23 edition of Science. The paper grades. Beichner has used this from SCALE-UP efforts, Beichner
mation” lectures and “cookbook” lab referred speciﬁcally to Beichner’s method in his classes since 1997, says. “Our scientists and engineers
sessions—need to be completely SCALE-UP design—or Student- and has found that the overall fail- are learning problem-solving tech-
overhauled. Centered Activities for Large ure rates are one-half of what they niques, and picking up critical think-
That’s the recommendation of Enrollment Undergraduate are in traditional classes. For women, ing and team-building skills. This
Dr. Robert Beichner, professor of Programs—as one example of the failure rate is one-ﬁfth that of means that our graduates will
physics at NC State, and a team of inquiry-based learning that can their male peers in regular classes, be better prepared to solve the
university researchers and administra- serve as a model for reinvigorating while minority failure rates are problems facing all of us.”
tors pressing for changes in the way scientiﬁc teaching and learning.
PHOTO BY SALLY RAMEY
science is taught at the college level. SCALE-UP was featured in the fall
Eschewing traditional, more pas- 2002 issue of Scope.
sive class formats, the researchers In place of traditional approaches,
call for institutions of higher the SCALE-UP method combines lec-
learning to implement inquiry-based, ture and lab components to create a
problem-solving, and active-learning new classroom paradigm in NC State
strategies in introductory science physics and chemistry classes. It
courses. That means requiring stu- divides large classes of about 100
dents to “develop hypotheses, design students into groups of nine stu-
and conduct experiments, collect dents at a table. Each table is split
and interpret data, and write about into teams of three students, and
the results,” the team says. each three-member group has its
Revolutionary courses utilizing own laptop computer for problem
these new methods have been imple- solving and research.
mented and assessed at a handful of These student teams collectively
institutions of higher learning across develop solutions to problems posed
the United States, including NC State, by a roving instructor. Thought-pro-
and have proven to spark student voking problems are based on real-
interest in science, help students— world quandaries, forcing students
especially women and underrepre- to collaborate and think critically. In Dr. Robert Beichner leads a physics SCALE-UP class, which requires a combination of
sented minorities—learn more and get this classroom, students interact technologies. He wears a wireless microphone headset, allowing him to mingle among
the students, yet still be heard by everyone. The projector on the desk broadcasts the
better grades, and lead students to with physical phenomena every day.
image from his desk to screens on both ends of the classroom, allowing an excellent
enroll in advanced science courses, Research has shown that view from all seats. The student tables are equipped with laptop computers connected
the scientists say. students who work collaboratively in to Web-based instruction tools.
Johnson wins prestigious Gates
Cambridge Trust Scholarship
David R. Johnson of Greenville, S.C., their applications in cryptology and and the 2001 Meritorious Winner in
a 2003 graduate of NC State, has been computing. He plans to obtain his the COMAP Math Modeling Contest.
awarded a 2004 Gates Cambridge doctorate in mathematics. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and
Trust Scholarship. He is one of only 31 He graduated summa cum laude the Golden Chain Honor Society.
recipients of the prestigious award with a bachelor’s degree in mathe- Johnson is one of only four NC
and one of only two chosen this year matics and a minor in physics. Both a State students to ever receive the
from North Carolina. John T. Caldwell Alumni Scholar and scholarship. Established in 2000 by the
He will use the annual $32,000 a Robert C. Byrd Scholar, Johnson Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation,
merit scholarship to pursue a certi- earned many honors while at NC the Gates Cambridge Trust hopes to
ﬁcate of advanced mathematics at State, including the 2003 Physical and create a network of future leaders
Cambridge University—a master’s Mathematical Sciences Graduating from around the world who will bring
course of study that will allow him to Senior Award for Scholarly new vision and commitment to
focus on number theory, particularly Achievement, the 2002 Levine- effecting change and addressing
the study of large prime numbers and Anderson Award for Mathematics, global problems.
PHOTO BY ROGER WINSTEAD
16 SPRING / SUMMER 2004 scope
Student Wes Doggett honored with endowment
Notables Retired physics professor Wesley curiosity and provide encouragement are those who participated in the
James Lamb, a doctoral O. Doggett was recently honored for thousands of children.” ceremony: David Haase, director of
student in Marine, Earth and with an endowment established in Doggett recalled fond memories The Science House; Jo-Ann Cohen,
Atmospheric Sciences was his name that will support The of spending time in his father’s lab at associate dean for academic affairs;
featured on an episode of Science House, and its K-12 science NC State, and building things in his Stephen Jones, vice chancellor
Turner South Broadcasting’s and mathematics outreach mission. back yard. for extension and engagement;
series “The Natural South.” He and his wife, Leonor, attended a “Dad was always great at explain- Wes Doggett, professor emeritus
The episode, “Dinosaurs Gone recent ceremony where their son, Eric ing everything in a correct but com- of physics; Leonor Doggett; Eric
South” explored the amazing, (Physics, ‘81), signed documents prehensible fashion, and we did a lot Doggett; Anita Stallings, executive
enormous creatures that establishing the endowment. of hands-on tinkering. Fortunately, director of development and college
roamed and swam through the “I remember how my dad encour- my unauthorized modiﬁcations to relations; Daniel Solomon, dean;
southern United States millions aged my curiosity and inﬂuenced my my rocket engines did not burn the Terry Wood, vice chancellor for
of years ago. interest in science,” Doggett said. house down, and I recovered fully university advancement and Chris
Nancy Ridenhour (Statistics, “Through this endowment, The from the burns,” he joked. Gould, department head, Physics.
‘73) was elected to the national Science House can nurture that same Shown in the photograph above
board of directors for the
Lily Jeng (Chemistry, ‘05) and
Laura Wingler (Chemistry, ’06)
Science House challenge You’ve
both received the prestigious
Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship
grant attracts donors got mail!
for the 2005 academic year.
Everyone loves a chance to double depends on competitive grants for Alumni have given positive
their money, and in fundraising, most of its funding. feedback about PAMS Focus,
there’s no exception. “Endowment funds are necessary the College’s periodic e-mail
Due to the generosity of an to provide ongoing funding to ﬁll news bulletin.
anonymous donor, anyone making a the gaps between grant cycles, and PAMS Focus is distributed
contribution toward endowment for to ensure that The Science House every several weeks to alumni
The Science House before Dec. 31, continues to fulﬁll its mission,” said and friends, keeping them up-
2004, will have their contribution Anita Stallings, executive director to-date on the latest news.
matched. of development and college relations. Items are short and include
This “challenge grant” is designed Donors whose employers offer Web links for those who want
to encourage donors to consider sup- charitable matching gifts can use both additional details.
porting The Science House, a proven their company program and the chal- PAMS Focus doesn’t include
outreach program dedicated to the lenge grant to quadruple their gift. graphics that can clog up
enhancement of K-12 science and For more information, contact one’s e-mail box.
mathematics education. Despite its Stallings at 919-515-3462, or see To receive PAMS Focus,
achievements and position as a “How to make a gift” on the opposite send an e-mail to
national model, The Science House page. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young How to
alumni make a gift
called Many alumni remember how
upon difﬁcult it was to manage the expense
of higher education and want to ﬁnd
a way to help today’s students achieve
for ACC their dreams.
The PAMS Foundation provides
Challenge many ways to support students,
faculty and programs of the
College. Whether you want to con-
tribute to an existing scholarship,
The annual giving ofﬁces of each support a departmental enhance-
Atlantic Coast Conference univer- ment fund, make a memorial gift,
sity have teamed up to launch a
friendly competition to test the
Add your name to the or consider more signiﬁcant
support, our staff is available to
loyalty of their young alumni.
Called the ACC Challenge, the
competition invites alumni who have
Walk of Discovery help you explore the options.
To support existing funds
graduated since 1995 to express their To contribute to a scholarship,
school spirit by giving to the annual Now that the ﬁrst installation of If you would like us to install a fellowship or other fund, simply mail
fund at their alma mater. engraved bricks has been placed in brick in the Walk of Discovery in your a check to the NC State Physical &
While there is no minimum gift the Walk of Discovery, visitors to name, or in honor of a loved one, Mathematical Sciences Foundation,
required, the ACC schools will track campus can see the names perma- contact the PAMS Development Campus Box 8201, Raleigh, NC,
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Alumni can keep up with the Located near the entrance of the mail or fax an order form to you. We Foundation and write the name of the
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To make a gift, call (800)258- features laser-engraved bricks Bricks must be engraved in lots of matches for charitable donations,
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fund. Remember to designate your students and friends. Each has orders for the next lot. You will be gift form with your contribution.
gift to PAMS. contributed $100 to support PAMS notiﬁed when your lot has been There are many funds not
scholarship funds in exchange for an installed. mentioned in this issue of Scope,
engraved brick. and several have speciﬁc designated
uses. If you would like information
on our various funds to help you
Send us your news! We want to hear from alumni, students, faculty and staff members, decide the best ﬁt for your support,
please give us a call at 919-515-3462.
and other supporters of the College. Awards, accomplishments, career changes—Let us hear from you!
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NAME EMPLOYER If you have questions about gift
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Clip and mail to: NC State College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, Box 8201, Raleigh NC 27695–8201 919-515-3462 or by e-mail at
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A work of ﬁne art?
Actually, it’s a photograph of
a new liquid crystalline material
developed by Dr. James D. Martin
and his team of undergraduate
and graduate students in the
Department of Chemistry.
Most liquid crystals, like those
in a digital watch or calculator,
are based on organic molecules.
However, at NC State, we have
developed the ability to control
the structure of inorganic materi-
als in the crystalline, glass and
This results in the creation of
new liquid crystalline materials
with the highest known metal
content. The high metal content
is important because it enables us
to produce materials with unique
optical, magnetic and electronic
The liquid crystals in this
image are the circular and fan-
shaped objects on the black
background. The photograph is
entitled, “The Visitors,” by James
scope College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences
North Carolina State University
Campus Box 8201
Raleigh, North Carolina 27695–8201
The College of Physical and PERMIT NO. 2353
Mathematical Sciences is made up of
internationally recognized departments:
Molecular & Structural Biochemistry
Marine, Earth & Atmospheric Sciences
Scope is published by
the College twice per year
Dean Daniel Solomon
Editor Anita Stallings
Writer Sally Ramey
Contributing Writers Paul Mueller,
11,000 copies of this public document were
printed at a cost of $6,265.00 or 56¢ per copy.