Archive for September 9th, 2015

De Silva awarded supercomputer time for research

Channa De Silva, assistant professor of bioinorganic chemistry, was awarded 50,000 hours of supercomputing time worth $2,500 from the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment for his project titled “Density Functional Theory (DFT) Studies of Europium Beta-diketonate Complexes with Dipyridophenazine Ligand Derivatives for Enhanced Photoluminescence.”

XSEDE is a virtual organization funded by the National Science Foundation.

De Silva will involve his students in researching the development of highly luminescent materials for use in applications such as organic light emitting diodes (LEDs), biomedical imaging, sensor devices and laser technology.

“This grant provides us with a high performance super-computing facility where we can remotely carry out memory intensive calculations to investigate the optical properties of europium metal-based luminescent agents,” De Silva said. “Our undergraduate and graduate students will have the training to use the state-of-the-art computational chemistry tools in order to solve a modern chemical problem. Our current research will strengthen the computational chemistry research at WCU and develop computational chemistry skills of our students.”

More information about the organization can be found at, and about the award at

Career research presented at conference in China

Yang Fan, WCU associate professor of project management, recently presented a paper at the Fifth International Conference on Information Systems Management and Evaluation hosted by Xi’an University of Technology in Shaanxi, China.

The conference theme was “IS Management and IS Engineering in the Era of Big Data.” Fan’s paper, “Do Project Managers Have Organizational Career Paths? A Study of the Current State of Career Development for IT Project Managers,” was accepted through a double-blind selection process. Co-authors were Michael Thomas, associate professor of project management and Yishi Wang from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Woldeyohannes, two students co-author paper for Journal of Optics

Mesfin Woldeyohannes, associate professor of physics, co-authored a research paper with his students Ighodalo “Igor” Idehenre and Tyler Hardin that was published in the July edition of the Journal of Optics.

Mesfin Woldeyohannes

Mesfin Woldeyohannes

“Coherent Control of Cooperative Spontaneous Emission from Two Identical Three-Level Atoms in a Photonic Crystal” can be found online at

Woldeyohannes said that Hardin contributed work in numerical solutions, and Idenhenre was involved in derivations of analytic solutions and initial manuscript preparation. Idenhenre is now a doctoral student in electro optics at the University of Dayton.

Kossick presents to international audience

Mark A. Kossick, professor of nursing and graduate anesthesia simulation coordinator at WCU’s Biltmore Park instructional site, was the featured speaker at a conference held in Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sept. 6.

His presentation consisted of a comprehensive eight-hour seminar on electrocardiography.  Seminar attendees included anesthesiologists, hospitalists, nurse anesthetists and advanced practice critical care nurses, with some participants attending from Germany and Canada.  The meeting was sponsored by A. Webb Roberts Center for Continuing Medical Education of Baylor Health Care System in Dallas and Northwest Anesthesia Seminars in Pasco, Washington.

Hillon’s research in management consulting wins award at conference

A paper by Yue Cai Hillon, associate professor of management, and co-authors won a top award for English submissions at an international conference in Lyon, France, in June.

The theme of the International Conference and Doctoral Seminar on Research Methods was “sharing research methods across a variety of countries and cultures” and the international format included presentations in English, French and Spanish.

With co-authors Mark E. Hillon of the Lafayette Institute and Geraldine Kisiel of AK Research and Training, Hillon presented a research paper entitled “A Discursive Approach to Research in Management Consulting (Part I).”

While in Lyon for the conference, Hillon also taught a graduate seminar at Jean Moulin University, attended a professional development workshop and outlined a strategy book project with her French colleagues. For more information, contact Hillon at

WCU Study Abroad Fair will be Sept. 15 at the University Center

Western Carolina University’s ninth Annual Study Abroad Fair will take place Tuesday, Sept. 15.

The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the A.K. Hinds University Center Grand Room. Representatives from various countries will be on hand to give an overview of study abroad opportunities for WCU students. In addition to receiving information about study abroad programs, students can learn about internship and service learning opportunities.

Students also can receive information about WCU faculty-led trips overseas for credit. There will be about 30 tables hosted by various institutions and international students from WCU. Each year, WCU sends about 200 students to countries around the world, including Japan, Chile and France, to study abroad and participate in faculty-led programs.

For more information, contact the Office of International Programs and Services at 828-227-7494.

‘English on the Ides’ discussion series continues Sunday

The “English on the Ides” discussion series sponsored by Western Carolina University’s Department of English and City Lights Bookstore in Sylva will continue Sunday, Sept. 13, with a talk revolving around Maya book arts.

Cal_MayanBook_verticalPaul Worley, WCU assistant professor of English, will address the topic “Maya Book Arts on Exhibit at the WCU Fine Art Museum.” All events in the “English on the Ides” series are held at 1 p.m. Sundays at the bookstore.

WCU’s Fine Art Museum will unveil a new exhibit Thursday, Sept. 17, that focuses on the contemporary book arts in the Maya area. “As a lead-in to the exhibit, I will provide background on the Maya, a brief overview of Maya literatures, and speak about the vitality of Maya communities right here in North Carolina,” Worley said.

Upcoming programs will include Laura Wright, associate professor and head of the English department, discussing her book “The Vegan Studies Project” on Oct. 11, and English professor Annette Debo presenting “Poets are Lyric Historians: The Necessary Past for African-American Poets” on Oct. 25.

For more information about the series, contact Worley at or the bookstore at

WCU employees recognized for service

A number of Western Carolina University employees are celebrating milestones in their service to the university, as measured in five-year increments. Each one was awarded a certificate during Employee Appreciation Day activities Thursday, Sept. 3.

Five Years – Fred J. Bauknecht, Michael Andrew Braun, Michael John Clare, James Reuben Clift, Stefanie Leigh Conley, Patricia D. Deitz, Craig A. Fowler, Patrick J. Gardner, Marie-Line Germain, Geoff R. Goehle, Todd Carleton Herman, Gregory Scott Hodges, Christopher Willis Holcombe, Cynthia Caravelis Hughes, Natalie Rochelle Kosnik, Mark A. Kossick, Daniel T. Lee, Seth J. McCormick, Suzan Alden Melvin, Jason N. Ottie, Jon Kevin Passow, Katie McDowell Peek, Eddie Joe Pettway, Mark Stephen Ray, Mark Rhea, Hoyte Brown Roberson, Glenna Louise Rowe, Katrina P. Royar, Robert Emerson Ryder, Roya Qualls Scales, Ellen Sigler, Elizabeth Caveny Snyder, Kathleen A. Stenger, Hugh Ryan Taylor, Trina D. Taylor, Elizabeth Heather Thompson Rainey, Maltiben Turnbull, Jamie C. Vaske, John C. Wagaman, Emily Suzanne Walker, Timothy Charles Watson, Meredith Curcio Whitfield and Edward William Wright.

Ten Years – Ann Dora Adams, Christopher J. Ammons, Terri E. Armfield, Louis J. Barozzini, Russell Binkley, Beverly C. Bryson, Michael J Burnett, Chad D. Burton, Robert Bruce Carton, Kimberly L. Cherry-Beck, Andrew Craig Denson, Laura E. DeWald, Matthew J. Ellsworth, Stephen James English, Shirley M. Finegan, Janet C. Ford, George D. Ford, Ann Hallyburton, Georgia Hambrecht, Danielle Angel Haney, Russell P. Harris, David H. Heisler, Brandy Cody Henning, Phyllis Jean Hoffman, Daniel K. Hooker, Betty Green Hopkins, Beth Huber, Larry E. Hunter, Jane R. Livingstone, Deborah Davis Loyer, Alexander S. Macaulay, Lann Alvin Malesky, Jill Ann Manners, Elizabeth Anne McDonough, Elisabeth Chaney Craver Moore, Randall Keith Parris, Ernestine M. Plemmons, Rita Gaynelle Prince, David Hugh Rathbone, Richard Quintin Ritter, Reginald L. Rogers, Mary Josephine Rompf, Arthur L. Salido, Barbara L. Schade, Emily Alanna Sharpe, Susan Marie Skibbe, Roxane G. Stiles, Wesley L. Stone, David Strahan, Richard Tichich, Jonathan Dean Wade, Cheryl Waters-Tormey, Joshua G. Whitmore, Dolores Willey, Ami Nikkole Williams, James Cale Wilson and Mesfin Arega Woldeyohannes.

Fifteen Years – Christy Ashe, Martin N. Brow, Connie Shular Bryson, Elizabeth Jane Buchanan, Catherine W. Carter, Tatum Beck Conley, Donald W. Connelly, Eva N. Cook, Roy Kevin Cope, Kristen Lee Crosson, Colby Tanner Deitz, Jan Beegle Finnegan, Kevan Delany Frazier, Angela Johnson Grube, Danny P. Grube, Bobby R. Hensley, Ernest W Jamison, Jason M. Lavigne, Edward Lawson, Kristy W. Maddy, Sharon McLaurin, Justin Menickelli, Steven F. Pinner, Deborah L. Tarmann and James H. Ullmer.

Twenty Years – Nancy S. Brendell, Dale R. Buchanan, Rita K. Dills, Ferman Allen Fortner, Thomas Gray Frazier, Timothy M. Grindstaff, Cathy Lauren Grist, Kathy M. Jaqua, Elizabeth H. Jones, Norman Leroy Kauffman, Monty V. Kirkpatrick, William R. Kwochka, Karen Yundt Lunnen, Nancy W. Phillips, Martin A. Ramsey, Donna Lorraine Reynolds, Sabine Jos Rundle, Jeffrey Bryan Smith, John Michael Stewart, Dina J. Towey, Vickey Mcdaniel Wade and Linda N. Woody.

Twenty-Five Years – Josie Bewsey, Lisa Arlene Bloom, Timothy S. Chapman, Russell Clark Crisp, Gillian D. Ellern, Rosemarie B. Greenwood, Mary Jean Ronan Herzog, John Casey Hurley, David Mark McCord, James Morse McLachlan, William Frederick Moore, Cynthia Renee Parker, Robert Strauss, Doyle Darwin Thomas, Roger Floyd Turk and P. Bradley Ulrich.

Thirty Years – Timothy V. Carstens, Johnnie A. Clark, William L. Clarke, Renee P. Corbin, Laura Yvonne Hooper, Lisa Bryson Hoyle, Jon C. Jicha, Cecil Don Livingston, Douglas Steve McClure, Gregory B. Plemmons, Dona R. Potts, David A. Shapiro and John T. West.

Thirty-Five Years – C. Dale Carpenter and Mario A. Gaetano.

Forty-Five Years – Burton B. Fox.

Holocaust speaker to present at WCU on Sept. 17

Waitman Wade Beorn, director of the Virginia Holocaust Museum, will deliver a public lecture at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, in the A.K. Hinds University Center theater on the campus of Western Carolina University.

Waitman Wade Beorn

Waitman Wade Beorn

Beorn’s lecture is titled “A Deadly Hybrid: The Janowska Camp and the Holocaust in Ukraine.”

Formerly Louis and Francis Blumkin Professor of Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Nebraska-Omaha, Beorn won the Thomas J. Wilson Memorial prize in 2014 from Harvard University Press for his book “Marching into Darkness,” an examination of the regular German soldiers who perpetrated Nazi war crimes.

The lecture is free and open to the public. For more information, call 828-227-3908.

To learn more about Beorn and the museum, visit

By Keith Brenton

Good reviews greet latest novel by WCU’s Ron Rash

Ron Rash is on tour.

The author and WCU Parris Distinguished Professor of Appalachian Culture is on the road in support of his latest novel, “Above the Waterfall,” published by Harper Collins. It is receiving positive reviews – some absolutely glowing – and plenty of them.

WCU again ranked among best in South by US News & World Report

Western Carolina University once again is ranked among the best universities in the South in two categories in the 2016 edition of the U.S. News & World Report “Best Colleges” guidebook released Wednesday, Sept. 9.

WCU community puts boots on the ground to help put shoes on villagers’ feet

Western Carolina University’s Center for Service Learning and campus organizers have announced initiatives to raise awareness and provide resources ― especially new shoes ― for the village of Ndava, located in Burundi, Africa.

University Marketing unveiling new business card, letterhead design

University Marketing is debuting new business cards and letterhead for campus this month, moving away from the climb lines and introducing a bolder, more modern design.

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Commencement 2017
Commencement 2017


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