Assistant professor of chemistry Jesús Velázquez has received a $100,000 Cottrell Scholar Award for his leadership in research and education. He is one of 25 scholars throughout the U.S. given the award in 2020, and the first UC Davis professor recognized with the award.
The International EPR (ESR) Society has named Dave Britt, distinguished professor of chemistry, a 2020 IES Fellow. A world-renowned expert in the field of electron-spin resonance (ESR) and electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy, Britt holds the Winston Ko Professorship in Science Leadership in the UC Davis College of Letters and Science.
Caustics are patterns that emerge from the reflection of light rays from surfaces — such as the glitter of sunlight on wavelets in the UC Davis Arboretum. The mathematics that explains caustics is called contact geometry. That’s the speciality of Roger Casals Gutierrez, assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics. Casals was recently awarded both a Sloan Research Fellowship and a NSF CAREER award to support his work.
Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Ralph J. Hexter named historian Ari Kelman, an associate dean of the UC Davis College of Letters and Science, to serve as the college’s interim dean starting March 21, 2020. Kelman has agreed to serve until the campus identifies a permanent successor to Elizabeth Spiller, who steps down March 20 to become executive vice chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Four associate professors in the College of Letters and Science recently were named Chancellor’s Fellows for excellence in their research, creative work, teaching and service. The college's newest Chancellor's Fellows include an expert on immigrant family well-being, an artist/author, a political theorist and an archaeologist.
Ralph J. Hexter, provost and executive vice chancellor since 2011, and acting and then interim chancellor for 15 months in 2016–17, will leave his administrative post at the end of the 2019–20 academic year after almost 10 years in Mrak Hall.
Elizabeth Spiller, who as dean led the successful reorganization and financial restructuring of the UC Davis College of Letters and Science, has been tapped as the next executive vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.
Calling her an “institutional cornerstone,” the Middle East Studies Association of North America recently presented its annual Jere L. Bacharach Service Award to Distinguished Professor Suad Joseph. The award recognizes outstanding service to the association and the profession, and is named after the University of Washington historian who received the honor in 2004.
Three faculty members of the College of Letters and Science are among the 10 UC Davis faculty elected to the 2019 class of fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications. The new fellows are Jiming Jiang, professor of statistics; Thomas C.M. Lee, professor of statistics; and Sarah Stewart, professor of earth and planetary sciences.
With the United States taking its place as a global power after World War I, scholars began exploring questions that would develop into a discipline known as American studies in the 1930s. Over the next several decades, American studies programs were created across the United States, including in 1969 at UC Davis. The program, a department in the College of Letters and Science since 2016, is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. It is the only Department of American Studies in the University of California system.