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UF Political Science Professor Receives NEH Fellowship

Professor of Political Science Leslie Elin Anderson has received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities for her book project, Democratic Enclaves in Times of Trouble: The Politics of Resistance in Nicaragua.

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UF Alumnus and Esteemed Historian Alfred Cave Receives Distinguished Alumnus Award

Alfred Cave

Historian Alfred A. Cave was selected to receive UF's Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2015, and he now has the physical award on his mantle. Aimee Green of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Office of Advancement traveled to Toledo, Ohio, to present the award to Cave on October 5, 2016. Cave says that the award means more to him than any of the awards he's received from other local institutions.

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UF History and African Studies Professor Receives Book Award from American Historical Association

Nancy Rose Hunt, UF professor of history and African studies, has received the Martin A. Klein Award honoring the best histories of Africa.

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UF Professor of Anthropology Honored by World Archaeological Congress

archaeological excavation

Prof. Peter Schmidt was honored by the World Archaeological Congress (WAC) and selected to give the Peter Ucko Memorial Lecture on August 30.

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Island Archaeology: UF Archaeologist Bill Marquardt Receives Lifetime Achievement Award originally published by UF College of Liberal Arts and Sciences on Exposure

UF Professor of Chemistry George Christou Receives Acclaim for Teaching and Research

Meet the Iron Man of UF
George Christou
Christou Receives Prestigious Honors and Appointments

The American Chemical Society has just announced their 2016 Fellows, and UF Drago Chair of Chemistry George Christou is on the esteemed list. The ACS has named 57 chemists who have made significant contributions in their field in the July 18 issue of Chemical & Engineering News. Christou is one of only two Florida chemists named as a fellow.

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Christou was also selected to 2014’s and 2015’s Highly Cited Researchers list, which includes only 200 chemists from around the world. Christou says he is very proud to be one of them, since they represent the top 1% based on citations and thus scientific influence/impact.

Christou has also been appointed to the Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars, an honorary organization of exceptional professors and the advisory board to the Provost’s Office. The Academy offers policy guidance to encourage academic excellence through the confluence of teaching and research. Indeed, Christou was also UF’s Teacher-Scholar of the Year for 2015–2016.

Christou Receives Nyholm Prize in Inorganic Chemistry

If you thought electronics couldn’t get any smaller or more powerful, you might be surprised to learn that physics research at UF is contributing to yet more advancements in nanotechnology. UF chemistry professor George Christou has received acclaim for his discovery of single-molecule magnets and metal-oxo clusters—microscopic, long-lasting substances with applications to medical, computing, and industrial technologies. The United Kingdom’s Royal Society of Chemistry awarded Christou the 2016 Nyholm Prize for Inorganic Chemistry for his pioneering work.

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UF Professor of Chemistry Brent Sumerlin Receives IUPAC Young Scientist Award

Sumerlin Builds "Smart" Drugs

Many people have experienced unpleasant side effects from medications—or just don’t like needles. One step to improving drug delivery for patients is to build smart proteins that can be released into the body as slowly and specifically as needed. Prof. Brent Sumerlin is doing just that, and has received the prestigious Hanwha-Total IUPAC Young Scientist Award for his work.

Polymer chemistry is the study and synthesis of macromolecules, which can be composed of thousands of atoms; the most commonly known examples are protein (an organic polymer) and plastic (an inorganic polymer). Sumerlin focuses on improving protein compounds that are used for vaccines and drugs, so that they can respond to the body’s feedback or be delivered without injection. He is also building self-healing polymers, such as plastic or cement that can retain their integrity despite damage.

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Research and Publications

UF Anthropology Professor Examines Health Effects of Racist Discrimination

Study researchers developed a novel measure of unfair treatment to study the effects of discrimination on health, particularly with respect to racial disparities in complex diseases, which are illnesses resulting from both genetic and environmental factors. They used the measure to investigate hypertension, which is more prevalent in African Americans, and found that discrimination interacts with certain genetic variants to alter blood pressure.

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Feet to the Fire: UF’s Burton Singer Explores the Unexpected Benefits of Environmental Impact

For 16 years, the Emerging Pathogens Institute's Burton Singer has tracked a little-known undercurrent of environmental regulation. Although many scientists and activists are rightfully concerned about the effects of corporate development in vulnerable areas, such development has an important benefit: required environmental impact assessments (EIAs). In the latest of a series of papers tracking EIAs, Singer and six other authors discuss the healthcare infrastructure that emerged from selected oil pipeline, mining, and hydropower projects.

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UF Professor of Biology Co-Authors Study on Dengue Vaccination Plans

Derek Cummings

Researchers at the University of Florida and other institutions have studied the outcomes of the dengue vaccine and found that in some regions without high incidence of dengue fever, implementing it would prove ineffective and could worsen symptoms for sufferers. The research was published on Sept. 2, 2016 in the journal Science.

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UF Political Science Professors Have Featured Role in US Election Coverage

McDonald and Smith

UF political science professors Daniel A. Smith and Michael McDonald have been featured as voting experts in nearly 60 news outlets — international, national, and regional — during the 2016 presidential campaign. Quoted directly or indirectly on a weekly, and recently daily, basis, the two have become a UF tag-team on all things Election 2016.

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UF Astronomers Discover New Type of Solar System

artist rendering of close binary system

Everything we know about the formation of solar systems might be wrong, says professor Jian Ge and postdoc Bo Ma of UF Astronomy. They've discovered the first binary–binary, or two massive companions around one star in a close binary system — one so-called giant planet (12 times the mass of Jupiter called MARVELS-7a) and one brown dwarf, or failed star with 57 times the mass of Jupiter, called MARVELS-7b. The findings were published October in The Astronomical Journal.

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UF Professor of Geology Andrea Dutton Explains What Killed the Dinosaurs

University of Florida geochemist Andrea Dutton and colleagues at the University of Michigan have utilized a new technique of analysis to reconstruct Antarctic ocean temperatures that support the idea that the combined impacts of volcanic eruptions and an asteroid impact brought about one of Earth’s biggest mass extinctions 66 million years ago.

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UF Professor of Chemistry Wei David Wei Sets a Gold Standard

Wei's team makes breakthrough in nanotechnology, published in Nature Materials
Wei David Wei

University of Florida researchers are once again setting a gold standard in scientific innovation—this time literally. A team led by Associate Professor of Chemistry David Wei has made a breakthrough in nanotechnology by discovering that gold may be used in crystals grown by light to create nanoparticles. This technology has major implications for industrial catalysis and cancer treatment and could improve the function of pharmaceuticals, medical equipment and solar panels.

Nanoparticles can be grown in crystal formations with special use of light, in a process called plasmon-driven synthesis. However, scientists have had limited control unless they used silver, but silver limits the uses for medical technology. Wei’s team is the first to successfully use gold, which works well within the human body, with this process.

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Old teeth, new stories by University of Florida on Exposure

Gravitational waves detected 100 years after Einstein’s prediction

LIGO opens new window on the universe with observation of gravitational waves from colliding black holes

For the first time, scientists have observed ripples in the fabric of spacetime called gravitational waves, arriving at the earth from a cataclysmic event in the distant universe. This confirms a major prediction of Albert Einstein’s 1915 general theory of relativity and opens an unprecedented new window onto the cosmos.

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Major Funding

UF Professor of Geography Receives NSF Grant to Study Agricultural Shifts and Deforestation in Mexico

Prof. Robert Walker and the Department of Geography and Center for Latin American Studies have received a major award from the National Science Foundation to study shifting agricultural practices in a globalized Mexico and their impact on deforestation.

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UF Professor of Film Studies Explores the Feminization of Labor

Barbara Mennel
UF's Barbara Mennel Awarded Prestigious German Fellowship to Study Women and Work in Film

The feminization of labor in the 21st century has been captured in film but not necessarily in scholarship. Film studies professor Barbara Mennel seeks to fill that void with a new book project, Women and Work in Contemporary European Cinema. Mennel, who holds a joint appointment in the Department of English and the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, has been awarded a Marie Skłodowaska-Curie FCFP Senior Fellowship for her research project, which promises to result in the first book-length study on women in contemporary European film.

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Professor of History Luise White Awarded National Humanities Center Fellowship

painting of Rhodesian soldiers
New work focuses on intricacies of the Rhodesian War.

In her latest full-length book project, Luise White, professor of history at the University of Florida, explores the troubled lives of white soldiers fighting to preserve rule by the white minority in Rhodesia. The book, Fighting and Writing: The Rhodesian Army at War and Post-war, has won White a fellowship with the National Humanities Center, and represents one of the few historical studies of Rhodesia (modern-day Zimbabwe). White’s project combines oral history with archival research to tell the complicated story of Rhodesia, an unrecognized African state that emerged after its neighbor, the former British colony Zambia, gained independence.

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Two CLAS Scholars Receive Frost Scholarship to Study at Oxford

UF Honors students are awarded prestigious scholarships.

Two UF students have received the Frost Scholarship, which funds an intensive master’s-level course for graduating seniors in the State University System of Florida to study at the University of Oxford. The scholarship covers 100 percent of tuition and academic fees and includes a grant for living costs. Out of 10 students selected from the state of Florida, Nicholas Pasternack and Daniel Aldridge will represent UF to study immunology and neuroscience, respectively.

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A Chemical Bond

UF alum Joseph Hernandez shows $10 million worth of appreciation.

A son of Cuban immigrants with three University of Florida degrees has invested $10 million in his alma mater to enhance UF’s chemistry department so future chemists and other alumni will be better positioned to explore solutions to society¬ís greatest challenges.

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UF Professor of English Pamela K. Gilbert Named 2016 Guggenheim Fellow

Pamela Gilbert

Pamela K. Gilbert, the Albert Brick Professor in the Department of English, has been awarded a 2016 Guggenheim Fellowship for a new book project, Victorian Skin: Surface, Subjectivity, Affect.

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The Center for European Studies Receives NEH Grant to Work with Veterans

photo of war torn city

The Center for European Studies (CES) received a large grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities entitled Dialogues on the Experience of War (DEW). DEW supports the study and discussion of important humanities sources about war in the belief that these sources can help U.S. military veterans and others to think more deeply about the issues raised by war and military service.

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UF Alum Headed to China after Receiving Gates Cambridge Scholarship

Yevgen Sautin

Yevgen Sautin, who works for the U.S. Bank in Washington, D.C., as a strategic risk analyst, is the recipient of a prestigious 2016 Gates Cambridge Scholarship. The prize was bestowed this year to only 35 applicants from a pool of more than 800.

Awarded for superior academic excellence, leadership potential and commitment to improving the lives of others, it will take Sautin to China, where he will spend three years working toward a Ph.D. in modern Chinese history.

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UF Professor Co-Producing PBS Documentary That Explores Hidden History of Nazi Hunter and Entebbe Hostage Michel Cojot

Slated for public release in 2017, Cojot explores the complexity of Jewish identity in post-war Europe. This is clearly an important project and a very timely one, says Jack Kugelmass, Director of the UF Center for Jewish Studies. At once poignant and packed with adventure, the story zooms on difficult questions and issues that call our attention today. It documents a critical moment in the history of French Jews, the third largest population of Jews in the world, notes Zachmann, We are very excited about the project.

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