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Student Profiles - Nicole Hofmann
Return to classroom puts student at top of class

“It’s a pleasure!” says Nicole Hofmann, a senior computer science major who lives in Binghamton. “I really enjoy it. I needed to go out into the real world to see how it works. It opens your eyes and you grow in the process. When you go back to school after being in the work force, you have a newfound appreciation for what you’re learning.”
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In the News

September 2008

Binghamton University was highlighted in the “green college spotlight” featured in the journal Earthfirst on September 22. The spotlight reflected a recent study, conducted by the Princeton Review, which named the University as one of 11 colleges in the U.S. that received the highest score on the ‘green rating’ system. Chuan-Jian Zhong, professor of chemistry, was also mentioned for leading a research project that aims to lower the cost of manufacturing fuel cells.

Guangwen Zhou, assistant professor of mechanical engineering, was featured in Innovations Report (Germany) for his research on how and why metals suffer corrosion when under stress.  “This fundamental research can improve our understanding of metal oxidation on a nonometer scale. This is increasingly critical as the dimensions of devices continue to shrink to nanoscale,” said Zhou.

Seshu Desu, Dean of Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, was featured in Innovations Reports (Germany) on September 22 for his research on solar energy. Desu stated, “We’re attacking both sides of the problem: We want an integrated system that can generate power with solar cells and store that power more efficiently and at a lower cost.

Sandra Starke, Vice Provost of Enrollment Management, was featured in numerous publications in September including The Wall Street Journal, The Arizona Republic, The Post Bulletin (Rochester), and the Star Telegram (Fort Worth) for her contribution to the debate over college admissions staff using Facebook as a determinant of acceptance. Unlike many enrollment officials, Starke tells her staff to ignore Facebook when analyzing applicants. “At this age, the students are still experimenting…It’s a time for them to learn. It’s important for them to grow. We need to be careful how we might use Facebook,” said Starke

Martin J. Murray, professor of sociology, was featured on AzoBuild.com (Australia) on September 16 regarding his new book, Taming the Disorderly City: The Spatial Landscape of Johannesburg after Apartheid. He examines the struggle between urban poor, urban planning, and real estate capitalism. “The enormous differentiation between rich and poor was still there. Those who lived well continued their lives as if nothing had changed,” stated Murray.

Lisa M. Savage,
associate professor of psychology, was featured in numerous publications in September including Pharma Business Week, Health and Medicine Week, and Drug Law Weekly regarding research findings on amnesia. The report stated, “Diencephalic amnesia manifests itself through a host of neurological and memory impairments. A commonly employed animal model of diencephalic amnesia, pyrithiamine-induced thiamine deficiency, results in brain lesions and impairments…”

Seshu Desu, dean of the Watson School, was featured in Intech Magazine on September 26 for his research on the design and restructuring of solar cells. He is working on creating autonomous power systems based on flexible thin-film solar cells. Desu stated, “We’re attacking both sides of the problem: We want an integrated system that can generate power with solar cells and store that power more efficiently at a lower cost.”

Nina Versaggi, director of the Public Archaeology Facility, was featured in the The Star-Gazette on September 23 in an article discussing the addition of Newton Battlefield to the national park system. “We hope to make a richer interpretation of the battle itself based on the Native American perspective, the British perspective and also enhance the American forces’ perspective,” said Versaggi

C. Michael Mercincavage, executive director of Strategic Partnership for Industrial Resurgence (SPIR), was featured in The Press and Sun-Bulletin on September 21 regarding the work of SPIR in upstate New York. Mercincavage stated that SPIR works with 25 companies, primarily in hardware and software development, to work on upgrading and introducing new technology to enhance product development and testing.
In addition, students get hands-on experience in the industrial setting that often leads to full time jobs.  

David Sloan Wilson, professor of biological sciences, co-authored an article featured in the September issue of American Scientist magazine and RedOrbit.com about his research on group selection. Evolution “for the Good of the Group” discusses how the process known as group selection was once widely accepted, only to be widely discredited by the scientific community. Wilson offers a more discriminating assessment of group selection and its relation to evolutionary thought. “There’s no question that natural selection acts on individual organisms: Those with favorable traits are more likely to pass along their genes to the next generation. But perhaps similar processes could operate at other levels of the biological hierarchy,” said Wilson.

Ali A Mazrui, director of the Institute of Global Cultural Studies, wrote an article for The Independent (Johannesburg) on the impact of race and history on the public perceptions of presidential candidate Barack Obama. Mazrui stated, “President Barack Obama may be the final fulfillment of upward mobility. Will he be the ultimate brain gain for Africa? The answer is in the womb of a history which has yet to unfold.”

Daniel J. Henderson, associate professor of economics, was featured in Education Week, regarding his study on whether giving students extra homework is beneficial. He concluded that extra homework was the most effective among either very strong or very weak students. However, it does not seem to benefit the average student. Henderson stated “Teachers should consider quality over quantity when it comes to homework assignments.”

Doral Homentcovschi, research professor of mechanical engineering, was featured in Science Letter on September 2 regarding his data on mathematics. Homentcovschi’s latest study, “Influence of viscosity on the scattering of an air pressure wave by a rigid body: a regular boundary integral formulation,” was published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society.

David Hacker, associate professor of history, discussed the findings of a recent U.S. Census report regarding birth rates in The Greenville News (SC) on September 2. In response to why the number of women ages 40 to 44 who remain childless has doubled in a generation, Hacker says, “a lot of it is delayed marriage and women getting started a little bit later in life.” The report also found that the highest fertility levels occurred among women with a graduate or professional degree.
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Last Updated: 6/22/10