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April 16, 2021

Shabnam Akhtari of the Math department wins 2021-22 Ruth I. Michler Memorial Prize

photo of Shabnam Akhtari

The prize is awarded by prize by The Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) and Cornell University.

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April 7, 2021

Physics student is melting the glass ceiling

Nicole Wales

Student Nicole Wales mapped her own brain using an MRI scan and learning code, so she could research the physics of melting glass.

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Spring Oregon Quarterly showcases UO strength in science

poster photo for Science Showcase

Scientific discovery is a cornerstone of the UO mission as well as the College of Arts and Sciences, and its various forms take center stage in the latest Oregon Quarterly.

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UO lab advances research on memory formation and recall

Kuhl Lab

The research comes from the Kuhl lab in the UO Institute of Neuroscience.

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COVID-19 makes existing family stress worse, study finds

poster for COVID-19 family study

The study comes from UO psychologist Phil Fisher’s team at the Center for Translational Neuroscience.

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The Center for the Study of Women in Society has received 2021-22 funding awards totaling $108,000

poster of Center for Women Studies

The awards are for scholarship, research and creative work on women and gender, the center’s largest funding year in well over a decade.

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March 24, 2021

CAS Alumnus Spotlight: Jesse Nett

Jesse Nett

Jesse Nett earned his degree in Geography from UO and now he’s the Regional Cartographer for the USDA Forest Service in Colorado.

Jesse Nett graduated from the University of Oregon in 2010 with a degree in Geography, specializing in geographic techniques such as cartography, remote sensing and mobile data collection. Nett came to the UO after 10 years of working in another industry. He was ready for a change, and cartography at the UO was calling his name. Now, he’s the Regional Cartographer for the Rocky Mountain Region at the USDA Forest Service. After popping into a career fair in the EMU, Nett was hired at the USDA Forest Service, and he attributes his success in cartography thus far to the opportunities he had while at the UO.

“I think my tenure at the InfoGraphics lab was instrumental in me landing my position at the Forest Service,” Nett said. “There’s really only one cartography course that I took, with Jim Meacham, and through that class, I got to apply and learn new skills and software while I was working at the lab. That gave me the competitive advantage to get the position I have today.”

The InfoGraphics Lab is a cartography and geospatial technologies facility that’s housed in the department of geography. The lab has worked with the university, the local community, and the state of Oregon, and Nett said their work on the Atlas of Oregon was one of the reasons he had his eye on the geography department at UO. Both undergraduate and graduate students can work on lab projects that equip students with crucial cartographic experience needed to enter the competitive field of cartography.

The work Nett is doing right now at the Forest Service draws from skills he learned through his time at the lab. Nett recently worked on the Shoshone National Forest visitor map, where he handled the production, printing, and distribution, both digital and hard copies, for the visitor map program. Thanks to the experience he had with the software and the opportunity to do production cartography on the Atlas of Yellowstone in the InfoGraphics lab, Nett had the necessary skills to jump right into his cartographic work for the USDA Forest Service before he even graduated.

“I never realized that I could get a job doing mapping for my entire career. It’s not something you can take a career skills test for,” Nett said. “But I love the art and the science of the discipline. I learned the necessary skills working with the UO faculty, the lab, and actually doing production cartography there at the UO.

Nett is currently based in Colorado, and in addition to his position as Regional Cartographer, he’s also the Regional Geographic Names Advisor for the area. He works with the State Names Authority to rename culturally insensitive features. Through community outreach, working with the tribes, and working directly with the states and forests, Nett said they are able to improve the naming process at both the state and federal levels.

Nett said his involvement with the non-traditional student union, the North American Cartographic Information Society, and the Association of Geographers gave him distinctive resources to draw on at UO that helped him launch his career. For current and prospective cartographers at the UO, Nett suggests specializing. “Now, Geographic Information Services (GIS) is a common skillset. So specializing—finding those connections, expanding your skills, focusing on the programming, analysis, or the cartographic side—is really important,” he said. Simply knowing the GIS application will not make students as competitive as it did when the software was relatively new, Nett adds.

“The InfoGraphics Lab is a unique resource at the UO, and it’s what makes the geography department as competitive as it is,” Nett said. “I can’t speak highly enough of the program and the faculty. Everyone is dialed into the community and willing to help. It’s that cohort at the UO that’s always been strong, and I value those relationships. I’m a proud duck.”

By Victoria Sanchez, University Communications



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Carol Paty is helping NASA Plan Next Generation of Planetary Missions

Carol Paty

Carol Paty contributes to NASA’s exploration path, studying the impossible and invisible.

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UO Chemist Christopher H. Hendon, also known as Dr. Coffee, has been named a Cottrell Scholar by the Research Corporation for Science Advancement! Congratulations!

Chris Hendon

Hendon was selected for the proposal “Inorganic Defects in Metal-Organic Frameworks.”

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March 12, 2021

Science of Mind: Neuroscience at the University of Oregon


A longstanding area of research excellence and a popular new major, neuroscience takes center stage at the University of Oregon.

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Women’s History Month 2021

poster of Women's History Month

Celebrating Women’s history month and the incredible work by women across the UO.

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MSI reopens to the public with ‘Marvel’-ous exhibit

Ben Saunders

UO professor and director of comic studies Ben Saunders’s Marvel Universe exhibit reopens in Chicago.

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Earthquake early warning now available to Oregon public

seismograph quake shutterstock

UO researchers helped develop and rollout new technology for ShakeAlert, an earthquake alert system.

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UO researcher lands two NSF grants to boost seismic modeling

photo of Erickson

UO computer scientist Brittany Erickson has earned two NSF grants, both of which involve building high-performance code for seismic modeling that will be available to the greater scientific community.

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March 5, 2021

Play reading traces the history of race relations in America

Photos of video production

University Theatre will present a play reading of Dominic Taylor’s “Personal History.”

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UO biologist chosen for Sloan Research Fellowship

UO Biologist

UO biologist Stilianos Louca plans to explore how microbial life has evolved over billions of years.

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Mars rover safe from lightning strikes, new UO research finds

Mars Rover photo

UO researcher and volcanologist Josef Dufek’s research is discussed.

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Unlikely fossil dug up in Bhimbetka ties together evolution of modern life in India, Australia

Fossil photo

UO earth scientist Greg Retallack’s research is discussed.

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February 12, 2021

CAS Alumnus spotlight: Bennet Voorhees

picture of Bennet Voorhees

Bennet Voorhees double majored in Chinese and Economics, and now he’s using both as a data scientist.

“When I got to campus, I immediately knew I was in the right place,” said Bennet Voorhees. “The UO has one of the best Mandarin programs in the country.” Voorhees, UO class of ’09, originally came to the University of Oregon to study Mandarin Chinese, but after taking a course in economics, he found his second calling. Not only did his love for language learning flourish, but it also crossed-over into a rich career in economics.

During his time at the UO, Voorhees received multiple scholarships to study abroad in Shanghai and then Beijing, one of which was funded by the Chinese Flagship Program through the East Asian Languages and Literatures department. These opportunities to be immersed in the language, accompanied by his continued language studies at UO after his return, fast-tracked his Chinese language skills. Because of his training here at UO, Voorhees was able to complete his graduate studies in China through John’s Hopkins University.

“I don’t think that any other school could have prepared me to study in China for my graduate studies in the way that the UO did,” Voorhees said. “I just don’t think it would be possible anywhere else.”

Voorhees carried his love for language learning over into his career as a data scientist, and now, he has the opportunity to use both skills in conjunction for the next step in his career. “I only started learning Chinese at the UO, and I was able to become fluent and finish my graduate studies in Chinese,” Voorhees said. “And now, 10 years after graduation, my company is sending me to China to do workforce analytics on our companies’ labor force.”

As a data science lead for Merck, Voorhees uses the skills he learned through his economics major, combined with his fluency in Mandarin Chinese, to help make predictions for his companies’ workforce. For the past five years, he’s been diving into people analytics, which is the data science or analytics for human resources. He helps companies make decisions around talent through using a variety of data sources.

Voorhees also teaches introduction to data science at the New York University School of Professional Studies, in their human capital management department. And Voorhees attributes a lot of his success to the UO economics department. Through the honors program at UO, Voorhees was able to get hands-on experience working with the city of Eugene, where he helped develop a revenue forecasting model for both Eugene and Springfield to use for the year to come. Voorhees said this is very similar to what he does today.

“The econ program really prepared me for my career as a data science lead. It taught me a lot about systems and how people behave and react in those systems,” Voorhees said. “I fell in love with the power of those tools because you can use them to explain reactions and make predictions, and that really planted the economics seed for me.”

For Voorhees, the liberal arts education that the College of Arts and Sciences offered him set him on the path for where he is today and gave him the resources he needed to achieve his goals. “Econ and Chinese are hard majors. I think when you’re young, you hear that and it’s intimidating, but don’t let that hold you back. The university has resources to help you succeed, and if you put in the work, the UO takes care of you,” Voorhees said. “I really do believe that.

– By Victoria Sanchez, University Communications

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UO professor investigates on of Oregon’s top volcanic threats

photo of Volcano

Josef Dufek is working to identify hazard forecasting for the Three Sister’s Volcanic Complex.

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Study shows pollen records can measure ecosystem health

photo of Pollen Records

Postdoctoral researcher Thomas Brussel in the department of geography shows the link between pollen records and ecosystem benefits.

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Students whip up a quarantine cookbook to stay connected

photo of Cookbook

Professor of Political Science Alison Gash and students’ create cookbook that brings awareness to food insecurity.

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January 13, 2021

UO team finds Weddell seals make unheard-of sounds

Weddell Seal

UO team led by biologist Paul Cziko found that Weddell seals produce sounds at frequencies that are inaudible to humans.

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Econ Student’s Curiosity Helps Answer a Burning Question

Mathew Dodier story

Economics student and Ronald E. McNair Scholar Matthew Dodier examines the effect of wildfire smoke on respiratory health.

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Study Finds obstacles for women and minorities in chemistry

Chemistry story

A study co-authored by UO chemistry professor Geraldine Richmond found that insufficient interactions with advisers and peers, along with financial problems, are derailing career aspirations of women and minority groups pursing graduate degrees in the nation’s highest-funded chemistry programs.

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December 18, 2020

Two faculty members earn sought-after NSF Career Awards

Physicist Tien-Tien Yu and biochemist Scott Hansen were named recipients of the NSF’s Career Awards, which fund research and education activities for five consecutive years.

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Study finds that by age 3 kinds prefer nature’s fractal patterns

Kelly Robles, doctoral student in psychology at the UO, lead the new study.

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Chronicles of Cherokee Resilience Earn U of O Professor Literary Award

The Modern Language Association has awarded Kirby Brown an honorable mention for Stoking the Fire: Nationhood in Cherokee Writing 1907-1970 for the MLA prize for Studies in Native American Literatures, Cultures and Languages.

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December 4, 2020

U.S. Clean Air Act has been a lifesaver for birds

Eric Zhao, assistant professor of economics, is part of the research team that found the improved air quality and reduced ozone pollution that followed the 1970 passage of the U.S. Clean Air Act and later amendments have saved the lives of 1.5 billion birds across the continent.

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November 18, 2020

Native American Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month

In celebrating 2020 Native American Heritage Month, Around the O has created a collection of stories spotlighting individuals across the university.

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June 11, 2020

Law Enforcement Collaboration with Media

Carol Stabile writes about the history of “law and order” TV programming that ignores the perspective of the policed.

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May 20, 2020

How to Make Bilingual Signs More Inclusive

Sociolinguist Devin Grammon presented recommendations to the City of Eugene.

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February 22, 2020

Pulido Named Collins Chair

Laura Pulido, professor of Geography and Indigenous, Race and Ethnic Studies, has been recognized for her scholarship and leadership.

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November 21, 2019

Ernesto Martinez Wins HBO Award and Licensing Agreement

La Serenata (“The Serenade”) has won the inaugural “HBO Latino/ Official Latino Short Film Competition.” (more…)

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October 23, 2019

One Deer’s Journey

Epic migration of 242 miles—from southwest Wyoming to eastern Idaho—revealed in new maps and documentation from UO Infographics team.

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The Toxic Masculinity of the Trump Administration

Philosophy professor Bonnie Mann, in aTimes op-ed, responds to Congressional testimony of Marie Yovanovitch.

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Congressional Testimony

Geographer Peter Walker says attacks by militias on federal employees have unintended effects, creating community sympathy for those workers.  (more…)

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September 19, 2019

Remembering a Brother

Creative writing instructor Brian Trapp memorializes his severely disabled brother in this moving Kenyon Review essay. (more…)

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August 26, 2019

New Book: Surviving Genocide

WaPo features historian Jeffrey Ostler’s new book, which explores how expanding American democracy hurt Native Americans. (more…)

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August 22, 2019

Courtney Thorsson Reflects on Toni Morrison’s Legacy

Thorrson, associate professor of English, is currently writing a book about Morrison in the 1970s. (more…)

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July 16, 2019

Men Often Use Homophobic Tweets to Protect Masculinity

Sociologist CJ Pascoe found that “no homo” conveyed positive emotional expressions like friendship. (more…)

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In The Wake of Hurricane Maria

Alaí Reyes-Santos transformed her Race, Ethics, Justice course into an opportunity for her students to take part in a humanitarian intervention. (more…)

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April 10, 2019

2019 Faculty Research Awards

15 CAS faculty—from classics to cinema studies to psychology and biology—have been honored. (more…)

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February 5, 2019

Forgotten Forerunners

History prof Leslie Alexander interviewed by Mo Rocca on CBS Sunday Morning re: civil rights pioneer Elizabeth Jennings. (more…)

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February 4, 2019

Latino/a Experience through Album Cover Art: 1940-90

“Visual Clave,” co-curated by anthro/folklore prof Phil Scher, at Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art through 4/21.  (more…)

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