Dr.Gary Zank

Dr. Gary Zank – The Smartest Person in Alabama?

Dr. Gary Zank, of the University of Alabama in Huntsville’s Center for Space Plasma and Aeronomic Research, was recently featured in AL.com as possibly the smartest person in Alabama. An interview by Lee Roop highlighted Dr. Zank’s extraordinary accomplishments in the field of space physics.


Congratulations to Dr. Gary Zank of the Center for Space Plasma and Aeronomic Research at the University of Alabama in Huntsville

Dr. Gary Zank of the University of Alabama in Huntsville has been newly elected as a National Academy of Sciences member.

AU NASA award

University of Alabama Engineering Students Win NASA Contest

A team of University of Alabama students earned the top prize at the NASA Robotic Mining Competition at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. This is the second straight year that Alabama Astrobotics has taken the top prize and this is the only team to have won the NASA contest in consecutive years.

Junpeng Guo

Congratulations to Dr. Junpeng Guo for the Distinguished Research Award

Dr. Junpeng Guo was awarded the Distinguished Research Award during the faculty awards ceremony for the University of Alabama in Huntsville.

Chris Lawson

Dr. Christopher Lawson Named Vice-Chair for the Coalition of EPSCoR States

Dr. Christopher Lawson

Dr. Christopher Lawson

The EPSCoR/IDeA Foundation/Coalition is an organization that organizes national EPSCoR activities and lobbies on its behalf to the U.S. Congress. The Foundation is the non-lobbying arm, and the Coalition includes lobbying activities. More details are available here.

Dr. Lawson has been on the EPSCoR / IDeA Coalition Board of the Directors since 2010. He has been very active in Coalition activities in support of EPSCoR generally and Alabama EPSCoR specifically.

The previous Vice-Chair, Bill Gern, VP for Research at the University of Wyoming will take over as Chair from Tom McCoy, who is is leaving EPSCoR (he is the new VP for Research at Univ. North Texas).

As Vice Chair of the Coalition, Dr. Lawon will have increased influence and ability to lobby on behalf of Alabama EPSCoR.

UAH hires new VP of Research with background in cyber security, military

The University of Alabama in Huntsville has hired a new vice president for research who has an extensive background in cyber security and is a retired Army colonel.

Rayford Vaughn joins the UAH administration after serving as associate vice president for research at Mississippi State University since 2010.

During his career at Mississippi State, which began in 1997, Vaughn founded and directed the Critical Infrastructure Protection Center. According to UAH, the center was under sponsorship from the Department of Homeland Security as an outreach effort to operators of the nation’s critical infrastructure. The center supports training activities and research, which is primarily focused in the area of industrial control system security.

Visit the AL blog to read more.


UAB named to national list of 50 Advancing Women in STEM

The University of Alabama at Birmingham has been named one of 50 Colleges Advancing Women in STEM by The College Database, a leading not-for-profit resource for college-related data and rankings.

stem_ranking_sUAB earned distinction for its suite of programs in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) with a high level of female enrollment and an impressive yearly female graduation rate.

“UAB’s STEM programs are consistently recognized for excellence, and we are honored that our commitment to fostering participation from outstanding female students and graduates has received this recognition,” said UAB Provost Linda Lucas, Ph.D., who is an engineer. “Encouraging women in these vital areas will remain a priority for us.”

Thousands of colleges and universities were researched for the final list.

“It’s vital that women are encouraged to participate in strong STEM programs like the University of Alabama at Birmingham offers to narrow the gender gap in these traditionally male arenas, academically and professionally,” said Sarah Durkin, managing director of The College Database. “As job opportunities shift in this direction, The College Database wants to recognize the colleges and universities advocating for women’s educational advancement in STEM.”

Visit UAB News to read more.

UAB becomes largest cancer study enrollment site in the U.S.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham community came out in full force to support the Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3), becoming the largest single-site enrollment location in the United States with 1,209 participants. This surpasses the previous record set in Albany, N.Y., where 1,200 people enrolled at one site.

“We’re thrilled to break this national record,” said Edward Partridge, M.D., director of the Comprehensive Cancer Center and past-president of the American Cancer Society. “I’m so proud of the UAB community for showing up and answering the call.”

Partridge had set a goal for UAB to break the single-site recruitment record with at least 1,201 participants. Partridge explained that going beyond that number is exciting, “but I am even more excited at the prospect of what this historic study is going to reveal to us about our understanding of cancer.”

Visit UAB News to read more.

Alabama STEM education initiative gets worldwide attention

MONTGOMERY, Alabama — Six-year-old Blake examines three small wheat seeds under a magnifying glass and then documents what he has observed. He pinches together a piece of paper towel until it fits into a straw. The student deposits his seeds in the straw and the teacher places the straws in cups.

The class discusses whether the seed could grow without soil. It is determined that plants need air, water, and sun to grow. The teacher places the straws in water in the windows and the class will observe them during the next few weeks and record their findings.

Visit Made in Alabama to read more.