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This article was originally published in the March 2005 issue of CLASnotes.

CLAS Hall of Fame Applications Due March 9

CLAS Hall of Fame applications are now available for seniors who are graduating this spring with a bachelorís degree from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Two students will be selected from each area: social and behavioral sciences; natural and mathematical sciences; and the humanities. Graduating seniors must have a minimum 2.75 GPA, and submit a resume, transcript and essay. The CLAS Student Council sponsors the Hall of Fame, and the selection process is based on scholarship, campus leadership, involvement and service to the college and university. Recipients must be certified to graduate this spring and receive a diploma at the April 30, 2005 CLAS undergraduate commencement ceremony. Visit the CLASSC website for an application. The completed application packet must be turned in to room 119 of the Academic Advising Center by 12 noon on March 9.

Asian Studies Sponsors Lecture and Film Series

The Asian Studies program is hosting a lecture and film series this spring, highlighting the current research of experts in the field. All events are free and open to the public.

March 11–“Gods and Ancestors in Early China,” by Michael Puett, 6 pm, Harn Museum of Art Auditorium

March 17–“The Emergence of the Detail in Late Colonial Korea,” by Janet Poole, 1 pm, University Auditorium’s Friends of Music Room

March 23–“Manga’s Emergence as a Popular Medium in Japan,” by Shimizu Isao, 6:30 pm, Harn Museum of Art Auditorium

March 25–“Beyond Inequality: Gender Empowerment, Poverty Alleviation and the Redefinition of Manhood,” by Fauzia Ahmed, 2:30 pm, Dauer Hall, Room 219—Ruth McQuown Room

April 16–“Coffins, Jars, and Tombs: Prehistoric Burial in East and Southeast Asia,” by John Krigbaum, Lindsay Lloyd-Smith, Kwang-Tzuu Chen and Sawang Lertrit, 9 am to 1 pm, University Auditorium’s Friends of Music Room

The film series takes place at the Hippodrome State Theatre. On March 14, Traveling Film South Asia, a series of documentary shorts, will be screened, and Woman, Sesame Oil Maker and New Year Sacrifice will be shown on March 21. Each screening starts at 7 pm.

English Alumna’s Popular Book Made into Movie

Kate DiCamilloKate DiCamillo’s (BA, English, 1987) first children’s book, Because of Winn-Dixie, was made into a movie that premiered in theaters nationwide on February 18. The 2001 book was a New York Times bestseller and received the 2001 Newberry Medal, an annual award given by the Association for Library Service to Children to the author who made the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children for that year.

Because of Winn-DixieDiCamillo also has written The Tiger Rising, a National Book Award finalist, and The Tale of Desperaux, which won the 2004 Newberry Medal.

Because of Winn-Dixie tells the story of a lonely young girl growing up in a small Florida town who adopts an orphan dog she names Winn-Dixie, after the supermarket where she found him. Actors Jeff Daniels, Cicely Tyson, Dave Matthews, Eva Marie Saint and Annasophia Robb star in the film.

Nobel Prize Winner Speaks at Physics Department Colloquium

Douglas D. OsheroffNobel Prize Winner Douglas D. Osheroff, who served as one of 13 members on the Columbia Accident Investigation Board, spoke on “Understanding the Columbia Shuttle Accident” at a physics department colloquium on February 22. Osheroff, a physics professor at Stanford University, discussed the physical and organizational causes of the February 1, 2003 space shuttle accident in which seven astronauts died.

Investigators collected 40,000 pieces of debris, and in August 2003, the board concluded that the trouble began when insulating foam from Columbia’s external fuel tank flew off during the launch, striking and cracking its orbiter’s wing. When the shuttle re-entered the atmosphere, fiery hot gases moved into the wing and the space craft burst into flames. Osheroff says NASA engineers were initially concerned about the risks the foam posed to the shuttle, but NASA management dismissed them.

Osheroff shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Physics with two colleagues from Cornell University for their discovery of superfluidity in helium-3.

CLAS Faculty Selected for UF’s Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars

Two CLAS faculty members are in the inaugural group of the University of Florida’s new Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars. Zoology Professor Doug Levey and English Professor Robert Ray are among six professors who were chosen by a faculty committee based on their innovation and commitment to teaching throughout their careers. Academy scholars will serve three years on the University Center for Excellence in Teaching’s (UCET) advisory board. During their tenure, they will assist UCET in developing campus-wide strategies to enhance UF’s academic environment. In addition, members will elect future scholars and will retain the title of Distinguished Teaching Scholar after completing their terms.

Doug LeveyLevey has taught at UF since 1988 and teaches Avian Biology and a graduate seminar associated with the Science Partners in Inquiry-based Collaborative Education (SPICE) program, which places UF graduate students in Gainesville middle schools with large populations of disadvantaged youth to foster their interest in science and engineering. Levey was recently named a 2005 CLAS Term Professor.

Robert Ray Ray, who has taught at UF since 1978, teaches courses in film studies, contemporary criticism and intellectual history, with a particular interest in experimental critical practice. He is the former director of UF’s film and media studies program.

Other faculty chosen include: Laurence Alexander, College of Journalism and Communications; Robert Cox, College of Design, Construction and Planning; and Gail Kauwell and Michael Olexa, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

Department News

African American Studies

Stephanie Evans, who has a joint appointment with women’s studies, published a historical article in the current issue of Phi Beta Kappa’s quarterly newsletter, The Key Reporter. Her essay, “First Black Woman in PBK,” will be included in the book she is writing, titled This Right to Grow: African American Women’s Educational Attainment and Intellectual Legacy, 1850–1955.

Through historical research, Evans discovered that the first African-American woman to be inducted into Phi Beta Kappa was actually Mary Annette Anderson in 1899 at Middlebury College and not Jessie Redmon Fauset (1905, Cornell University) as originally thought. “Although the society does not track members by race,” writes Evans. “...this finding is important in re-conceptualizing the organization’s history.”

Dial Center for Written and Oral Communications

Kellie Roberts was recently awarded a Distinguished Service Award by the national forensics honorary, Delta Sigma Rho-Tau Kappa Alpha, at the organization’s national conference at Colorado College in Colorado Springs. She was presented with a Waterford Crystal bowl in honor of her outstanding service to forensics and the community. Roberts is the director of UF’s Speech and Debate Team.


At the Annual Meeting of the Florida Society of Geographers in February, two students each received a $200 best presentation award. Political science senior Josh Gellers won the undergraduate prize for his paper “Here Comes the Rain Again: Flooding and Disaster Mitigation in Peru—A Case Study from the ‘97–98 El Nino.” Gellers is a geography minor and wrote the paper for an independent study class with Peter Waylen last semester.

Amy Daniels won the graduate award for her presentation “Conservation or Conversion? An Analysis of the Effect of Palo Verde National Park on Wetland Trajectories in the Tempisque Watershed, Costa Rica.” Mike Binford and Jane Southworth were co-supervisors of Daniels’ doctoral work. She earned her PhD in interdisciplinary ecology in 2004.

Germanic and Slavic Studies

Michael Gorman (Russian) has received the 2004 Best Book in Literature and Culture Award from the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages for his book Speaking in Soviet Tongues: Language Culture and the Politics of Voice in Revolutionary Russia. In an award letter, the association’s president wrote “Gorham’s innovative book highlights the anomaly of Soviet fiction: the fact that the language and the literary works written in this language were created simultaneously...This outstanding book brings the study of linguistic practices back into the realm of literary and cultural studies and provides new venues for future scholarship.”


Eduardo Calleja, an undergraduate student, won first place in the oral presentation competition in physics at the Florida-Georgia Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (FLGSAMP) Expo 2005. Calleja gave a presentation titled “High Resolution Sound Velocity Measurements Using a Path Length Modulation Technique.” He participated in the 2002 and 2003 Summer Research Experiences for Undergraduates program and has worked with Yoonseok Lee’s research group.

FLGSAMP’s focus is to help more than 1,000 underrepresented students majoring in science, engineering, and mathematics gain bachelor’s degrees. The alliance includes 11 schools from Florida and one from Georgia.

Romance Languages and Literatures

Locus Magazine has named Libby Ginway’s book, Brazilian Science Fiction: Cultural Myths and Nationhood in the Land of the Future, to its 2004 Recommended Reading List for Non-Fiction. The magazine covers the science fiction and fantasy field, and the list is a consensus of editors and reviewers. Visit to view the list.

DiCamillo photo and Poster, Courtesy Kate DiCamillo
All Others Jane Dominguez

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