Faculty Notes


  • Sharon (Simpson) Yohn ’99
    Sharon Yohn '99

    Sharon (Simpson) Yohn ’99, assistant professor of chemistry, was appointed as a research associate with the Powdermill Nature Reserve, in Rector, Pa., associated with the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

    • Q: How did you get appointed as a research associate with the Powdermill Nature Reserve?
    • A: I was contacted by the director of the Powdermill Nature Reserve with an offer to apply.
    • Q: What kind of work do they do at the Reserve?
    • A: Every year, the group brings a group of ecology graduate students from Central and South America. They do a two-week stint at Powdermill, and come to the Raystown Field Station for one day. I teach them for a day about temperate ecology. These are graduate researchers who know tropical ecology, but a lot of ecological principles were determined in temperate areas, so it’s useful for them to learn about temperate ecology. We have lots of classes in the United States about tropical ecology where students go down there, so this is a chance for them to come up here.
    • Q: What are some benefits for you now that you are a research associate?
    • A: It gives me access to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History’s collections and libraries because the Powdermill Nature Reserve is part of that museum. So I can have access to their collections and facilities if I want to do research at the Reserve.

    —Joey DiGangi ’18, Juniata Associate for Media Relations

  • Sarah Worley ’00
    Sarah Worley

    Sarah Worley ’00, assistant professor of communication and director of community-engaged teaching and learning, received a Pennsylvania Campus Compact grant in partnership with St. Francis University to host a March 2017 conference at Juniata on community-engaged teaching and learning.

    • Q: How do you bring a conference onto Juniata’s campus?
    • A: We received a mini-grant from the Pennsylvania Campus Compact organization to host a conference in partnership with Saint Francis University. We applied for the grant by submitting a proposal to host a conference that would help to strengthen community engagement practices at our respective schools. The conference was called “Inspiring Citizenship Through Community-Engaged Learning.” Faculty, staff, students, and community partners attended.
    • Q: Why is hosting a conference important for a college or university?
    • A: It is important to bring people from other schools so that we can collaborate with others and learn from each other to strengthen and improve the implementation of community-engaged learning practices.
    • Q: How does Huntingdon benefit?
    • A: The Juniata community benefits from strong partnerships and the innovations in teaching practices that come from the partnerships and collaboration.

    —Joey DiGangi ’18, Juniata Associate for Media Relations

  • Chemistry

    Peter Baran, associate professor of chemistry, was named to the editorial board of the scientific journal Nova Biotechnologica et Chimica.

  • Politics

    Jack Barlow, Charles A. Dana Professor of Politics, spoke at the Summer Institute on the Constitution and Bill of Rights at the Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in Birmingham, Ala., in June. He also was an election-night commentator for WTAJ-TV in Altoona in November and again on Inauguration Day in January. Barlow was a panelist discussing Walter Nicgorski’s new book, Cicero’s Skepticism and His Recovery of Political Philosophy, at the Northeast Political Science Association meeting in Boston in November. He spoke to the Huntingdon Rotary Club on “The State of American Politics” in November.

  • German

    Judith Benz, associate professor of German, spoke at Penn State’s Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures Speaker Series on “The Matter of Arthur—(Why) Does Arthur Matter?” She also was an invited presenter in April at a conference hosted by the German Academic Exchange Service/DAAD at the University of Toronto: “German Studies in Dialogue: Prospects of German Language and Culture in the Sciences: Canada, USA, Germany.”

  • Physics

    Jim Borgardt, William W. Woolford Professor of Physics, gave a talk entitled, “The Efficacy of National Nuclear Forensics Libraries in Advancing a Nuclear Security Investigation” in Vienna, Austria, representing the State Department at the International Atomic Energy Agency International Conference on Nuclear Security.

  • Religion

    Donald Braxton, J. Omar Good Professor of Religion, published “The Digital Flaneur: Religion in an Information-saturated Marketplace” in an anthology on embodied technology/technologies.

  • Biology

    Vince Buonaccorsi, professor of biology, published an introduction to eukaryotic genome analysis with four undergraduate co-authors: Dallas Hamlin ’17, Ben Fowler ’16, Cassie Wisyanski ’15, and Alex Sickler ’14 in CourseSource Vol. 4. He also published, with Jacob Malloy ’16, an article on the genomic analysis of brook trout in the journal Transactions of the American Fisheries Society. In April, he gave the keynote address on the GCAT-SEEK network at the Undergraduate Bioinformatics Conference at St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Pa.

    Douglas Glazier, professor of biology, published a paper with alumnus David Paul ’15 on body-mass scaling in a freshwater crustacean in the Journal of Experimental Biology. Matthew Powell, associate professor of geology, and Glazier published a paper on “Latitudinal Diversity Gradients of Four Major Taxa of Marine Plankton” in Paleobiology. With three British colleagues, Glazier co-authored a presentation on metabolic rates in plankton at the Aquatic Sciences Meeting of the Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography in Honolulu, Hawaii, in February.

  • International Studies

    Jonathan Burns, lecturer in international studies, was elected board member-at-large of the Pennsylvania Archaeological Council for a two-year term, and spoke on “Documenting Pennsylvania’s Frontier Forts through Landowner Stewardship: The Case of Fort Dewart” at the 2017 Pennsylvania Archaeological Council Symposium on Public Outreach—Preserving the Past with New Technology, in Harrisburg, Pa.

  • International Education

    Kati Csoman, dean of international education, participated on a Fulbright International Education Administrators Seminar to Taiwan in March 2017. Emil Nagengast, professor of politics, and Csoman, spoke on “Are We There Yet?  Navigating Approaches to Assess Student Learning in Short-Term Programs Abroad” at the Association of International Education Administrators Conference in Washington, D.C.

  • Education

    Sarah DeHaas, Martin G. Brumbaugh Professor of Education, spoke on “Me, Myself, and I: Undergraduate Perceptions of Self-reflection in Learning” at the annual Lilly Conference on College and University Teaching in May in Washington, D.C. She also co-presented, with two area attorneys, “Walking the Thin Blue Line: The Role of Law Enforcement in Student Discipline” at the 45th Annual Lehigh University Special Education Law Conference in June.

  • New Media Communication

    Luke Fragello, director of new media communication, was awarded the Joseph W. Donovan Rising Star Award from College and University Public Relations and Associated Professionals (CUPRAP) in March.

  • Integrated Media Arts

    Ryan Gibboney, instructor in integrated media arts, was named one of “Fifty to Follow” by Pennsylvania Business Central in the September 2016 issue and named as one of “36 Pennsylvania Women Making a Difference” in the October/November issue of the business newspaper. She also received the Huntingdon County Community Improvement Award, Community Spirit Category, from the Huntingdon County Chamber of Commerce and the Huntingdon County Planning Commission. She was the keynote speaker at the first annual Youth Leadership Huntingdon County graduation in April at Mount Union Area High School.

  • Mathematics

    Gerald Kruse, John and Irene Dale Professor in information technology, computer science, and math, and assistant provost, spoke on “Interpolation Techniques to Generate Closed Formulas for Series” at the Mathematical Association of America’s Allegheny Section meeting at Duquesne University in April.

  • Art

    Monika Malewska, associate professor of art, exhibited her art at “Food for Thought 2017,” a juried exhibition at Sechrest Art Gallery at High Point University in High Point, N.C., and at “Positive/Negative 32nd,” a national art exhibition at Tipton Gallery at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tenn.

    Jack Troy, professor emeritus of art, was one of four U.S. ceramic artists honored at “Clay Gulgong” in Gulgong, Australia. He also was interviewed for a two-part article in Yarrobil, an Australian ceramics magazine. He taught a salt glazing workshop at Sugar Maples Center for Creative Arts in Maplecrest, N.Y., sponsored by the Catskill Mountain Foundation in July. Troy’s “Porcelain Jar” won First Prize and the Attorneys’ Award at the Strictly Functional Ceramics national exhibition in Lancaster, Pa. Other Troy artworks were displayed at Feats of Six Hands, at Sordoni Gallery at Wilkes College in Wilkes Barre, Pa., and, After All These Years, at the University Art Gallery at Eastern Michigan University, in Ypsilanti, Mich. He was also one of 30 U.S. potters selected to participate in the 42nd Annual Ceramics Exhibition at the Art School at Old Church in Demarest, N.J. in December.

  • Environmental Science

    George Merovich, assistant professor of environmental science, presented a half-day workshop at the 2017 Joint Technical Meeting of the Pennsylvania and West Virginia Chapters of the American Fisheries Society in February at the California University of Pennsylvania, in California, Pa. Merovich was recertified as a certified fisheries professional in April.

  • Geology

    Matt Powell, associate professor of geology, Norris Muth, associate professor of biology, and Katie Jeffress ’17, of Corpus Christi, Texas, received a TreeVitalize grant to plant 250 trees around Huntingdon for the town’s 250th anniversary.

  • Accounting

    Randy Rosenberger, professor of accounting, business, and economics, published “The Irrational Fear Predator: A Hidden Terrorist” in the Huffington Post.

  • History

    Belle Tuten, W. Newton and Hazel A. Long Professor of History, published “The Necessitas Naturae and Monastic Hygiene,” in Bodily and Spiritual Hygiene in Medieval and Early Modern Literature: Explorations of Textual Presentations of Filth and Water, which is part of the series, Fundamentals of Medieval and Early Modern Culture 19. She presented “Correcting the ‘Incorrect’ Breast in Medieval Medicine” at the Southern Association for the History of Medicine and Science in Myrtle Beach in March, and “Jihad and Hijab: What I Wish American Christians Knew about Islam” will appear in the journal The Fourth R, edited by Robert Miller, Rosenberger Professor of Religion.

  • Advancement and Marketing

    Gabriel Welsch, vice president of advancement and marketing, was elected president of College and University Public Relations and Associated Professionals (CUPRAP) at the group’s March 2017 annual meeting for a two-year term. Welsch has served on the board of directors since 2011, and previously served as vice president (2015-2017) and treasurer (2013-2015).


  • Environmental Science
    George Merovich

    George Merovich, assistant professor of environmental science, with students Ryan Heisler ’18 and Logan Stenger ’18, presented a paper on smallmouth bass health in the upper Juniata River watershed at the 11th Annual Susquehanna River Symposium at Bucknell University in November.

    • Q: Do you plan on continuing your research?
    • A: Yes. We need to know what’s going on in the waters first, and I’m glad we’re doing that. I have plans of continuing this on in the spring.
    • Q: What was it like having students assist you with your research?
    • A: They’re great. I actually started recruiting them in my class. They stood out to me in my fish management class last spring. I expressed interest to them, and they were on board. I was glad I hired them—they did a great job.

    —Joey DiGangi ’18, Juniata Associate for Media Relations

    Roy Nagle, director of environmental health and safety, published with a co-author an article on the reproductive ecology of map turtles in the Juniata River in Herpetological Conservation and Biology.

  • Physics

    Jim Borgardt, Woolford Professor of Physics, presented the talk, “Results from the Galaxy Serpent Web-based Table Top Exercise Utilizing the Concept of Nuclear Forensics Libraries” at the International Conference on Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry in April in Budapest, Hungary. Borgardt presented “The Nuclear Security Summits: Prospects for Abolition” at Council on Christian Approaches to Defense and Disarmament in Bratislava, Slovakia, in August.

    Yu Gu, assistant professor of physics, transferred funding from a Research Corporation for Science Advancement Cottrell College Scholars Award to Juniata. The grant will fund summer research students and well as major equipment purchases.

  • Mathematics

    Kristin Camenga, assistant professor of mathematics, was asked to join Pro Mathematica Arte Council for a three-year period. The board advises handling the U.S. operations of the study abroad programs Budapest Semesters in mathematics and Budapest Semesters in Mathematics Education.

  • Chemistry

    Daniel R. Dries, assistant professor of chemistry, with four co-authors, published a paper on teaching biomolecular visualization in August in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education. He also published an article on how loss of a protein, Nicastrin, can result in schizophrenia and hypomyelination. Dries’ 16 co-authors included Jennifer Arbella ’13.

    Richard Hark, Foster Chair of Chemistry, gave the keynote talk at the Pennsylvania Junior Science and Humanities Symposium, “Analysis of Pigments and other Materials Found in Cultural Heritage Objects” in March and spoke on the same topic at Albright College in February. Hark spoke about pigment analysis at the International Geological Congress in South Africa. Hark and Jennifer Streb ’93, associate professor of art history, attended the Summer Teacher’s Institute for Technical Art History at Yale in July.

  • Business

    Ann Echols, associate professor of business, made a presentation on predicting success in business statistics courses at the annual conference of the Northeastern Association of Business, Economics, and Technology in State College, Pa. in October.

    Wei-Chung Wang, associate professor of business, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Shih Hsin University in Taipei, Taiwan in October.

  • History

    David Hsiung, Knox Professor of History, published the chapter “Environmental History and the War of Independence: Saltpeter and the Continental Army’s Shortage of Gunpowder,” in the book The American Revolution Reborn, published by the University of Pennsylvania press.

  • Athletics

    Caroline Gillich, head coach for field hockey was inducted into Lock Haven University’s Sports Hall of Fame in December.

  • Biology

    Douglas Glazier, professor of biology, lectured on “Clash of the Titans: Competing Influences of Newton and Darwin in Biology” at the University of Florida, in Gainesville, Fla., in November. Glazier, with co-authors, published a paper on excretion rates in aquatic animals in the journal Limnology and Oceanography.

    Christopher Grant, assistant research professor of biology, published a paper on the effects of fracking on Pennsylvania streams in the journal Ecotoxicology with three co-authors from the Class of 2016: Allison Lutz, Aaron Kulig, and Mitchell Stanton.

  • Library

    Jacob Gordon, reference and instruction librarian, published “In the Flesh? Anthropodermic Bibliopegy Verification and Its Implications,” about human-skin-bound books, in RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage.

  • Mathematics

    Kim Roth, professor of mathematics, spoke on “Reviewing Precalculus in Calculus: Integrated vs. Beginning of Course” at Mathfest, sponsored by the Mathematical Association of America, in Columbus, Ohio in August. She also earned a master’s degree in applied statistics from Penn State University in Fall 2016.

    • Q: Why did you decide to pursue a master’s in applied statistics?
    • A: Like a lot of mathematicians, because I have a Ph.D. in mathematics, I was very theoretically trained. I know a lot about the pure mathematics, but not so much about applications. I had never taken a statistics course as an undergraduate before I taught it. I felt like I need some help figuring out how to learn that because I can do the theory, but the applications are harder for me. I took a couple courses, most of which were on things I wanted to do with students, and they did help with going into depth at the introductory level, and I did some projects with students based on stuff I had learned. I enjoyed it so much that I thought I’d earn the credential.
    • Q: What kind of projects do you do with students?
    • A: I do a lot of work with students in bio labs. I share students with biologist Gina Lamendella. Most of the projects are statistical analyses of genomics information for bacteria. Currently, I have someone who is working on the gut microbiome and micobiomes. We did some work on that in the summer, and we will do some more work this spring.
      We did some time-series analysis that’s trying to predict things that happen over time for a company in China. One of my students had done an internship there over the summer and then came back and we did this project in her senior spring.
    • Q: What was it like going back to school to earn your master’s in applied statistics?
    • A: I’ve taken one online class a summer, with the exception of the summer of 2010, since 2008. I also took a few more over my sabbatical. I really enjoy it and I learn a lot from the classes.

    —Joey DiGangi ’18, Juniata Associate for Media Relations

  • Philosophy

    Wade Roberts, associate professor of philosophy, recently published the article “Technocracy and Organization: Utopia and the Question of Value-Pluralism” in Selected Conference Proceedings of University of Northern Georgia Humanities conference on Utopia in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

  • Art History

    Jennifer Streb ’93, associate professor of art history, and Emma Campbell ’16 spoke on “Interdisciplinary Collaboration in an Academic Art Museum” for a panel at the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums Conference in October in Wilmington, Del.

  • Spanish

    Henry Thurston-Griswold, professor of Spanish, published “El indiscreto encanto del desencanto: el narrador equívoco de El dueño del secreto” (The Indiscrete Charm of Disenchantment: The Unreliable Narrator of Spanish Novelist Antonio Muñoz Molina’s Novella The Secret Keeper,” in Hispanic Journal.

  • Psychology

    Kathryn Westcott, professor of psychology, Philip Dunwoody, professor of psychology, and Mark McKellop, professor of psychology, conducted a symposium on American Psychological Association learning outcomes at the association’s annual meeting in Denver, Colo., in August. At the same conference, Westcott, McKellop, and student Shayna Yeates ’15 presented a paper on using introductory psychology courses in a general education assessment.

  • Art
    Monika Malewska

    Monika Malewska, associate professor of art, was a Visiting Fellow Artist and presented “From Chardin’s Rabbit to Edward Bernay’s Bacon and Eggs: Representation of Bacon and Other Not-So Still-Lifes in Monika Malewska’s Work” at the Institute for American Universities, Resident Summer Fellow Program in June in Aix-en-Provence, France. Malewska also exhibited a painting at “Social Justice: It Happens to One, It Happens to All” at Saint Mary’s College of California in Moraga, Calif., and in the show “Synesthetica” in the Parallel Space Manifest Gallery, in Cincinnati, Ohio.

    • Q: Can you tell us about the Institute for American Universities?
    • A: IAU College was founded as the Institute for American Universities in Aix-en-Provence, France in 1957 by academics and former diplomats. It provides international educational opportunities for U.S. students interested in studying abroad. Students can study in a number of disciplines such as social sciences, humanities, and visual arts during fall, spring, and summer semesters. The IAU College hosts a Resident Fellows program for scholars and artists with the intention of enhancing the IAU academic curriculum through lectures and on-campus interactions with the students and academic staff. The IAU College also incorporated the Marchutz School of Fine Arts in 1966. The program offers a vibrant studio art curriculum for students interested in studying visual art (painting, drawing, photography, and art history) in the beautiful setting of Provence.
    • Q: What kind of work did you do in the Resident Summer Fellow Program?
    • A: I had an opportunity to spend time researching and gathering visual information on aspects of the regional cuisine of Provence. I am planning to use my photographs and sketches as source material for my larger painting compositions this summer. I also completed two watercolor food compositions that I started working on during my IAU fellowship.
      I participated in a painting and drawing seminar class every Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. that focused on the work and techniques of painters such as Cezanne and Van Gogh and explored the relationship between text and image. The seminar included two field trips to Arles and a fieldtrip following the “Cezanne Route” in Aix-en Provence. I participated in the Fellow Lecture series and attended an introductory level French class. The IAU College’s unique geographic and cultural location provided me with valuable visual resources and the opportunity to grow as an artist.
      Finally, I was able to explore the possibility of short-term, faculty-led programs for Juniata students as well as semester and year-long study abroad options. Having the opportunity to see the studio art facilities and talk with IAU administrative staff and faculty enabled me to envision collaboration opportunities and possible educational programs that might be suited for Juniata students. In short, this was a very productive and educational experience with potential long-term positive outcomes for Juniata.

    —Joey DiGangi ’18, Juniata Associate for Media Relations