People News

Sara Van Cor ’18 AC, Aminata Ka ’18, Samantha Linder ’18, Nhi Van ’18 and Leah Jeon ’17 presented research earlier this summer at the annual Boston Bacterial Meeting at Harvard University on the ability of E. coli bacteria to survive in the gastrointestinal tract. Their studies were conducted in the “Biochemical Research Using Advanced Techniques” course taught this past spring by Christine White-Ziegler, professor of biological sciences, and Lou Ann Bierwert, instructor in biological sciences. The students’ findings “support the idea that environmental factors play an important role in regulating genes that enhance bacterial fitness,” White-Ziegler said, “providing insight and knowledge about the most direct therapeutic targets” against E. coli.

Madison Leet ’18

Madison Leet ’18 was selected for the Amgen Foundation’s prestigious Amgen Scholars Program, which supports hands-on summer research opportunities for undergraduates at institutions and labs in the United States, Europe and Japan. Leet, who is majoring in psychology at Smith, is conducting research at Harvard University.

Imogen Moxhay ’20 is the recipient of a Louis W. Cabot Academic and Community Leadership Scholarship from the Island Institute, which supports sustainability of Maine’s island and coastal communities.

Joseph Bacal, applications administrator in Information Technology Services, received a recognition award last month from the Collaborative Liberal Arts Moodle Project for his work supporting the use of Moodle and WordPress at Smith.

Patricia Cahn, assistant professor of mathematics and statistics, has been awarded a five-year $42,000 grant from the Simons Foundation for “Topics in Low-Dimensional Topology,” a project that will use the theory of knots to study the classification of three- and four-dimensional spaces.

Andrew Cox, director of dining services.

Andrew Cox, director of dining services, is a new member of the Advisory Council for Farm to Institution New England. The council is the governing body for the six-state network of nonprofit, public and private organizations working to transform the region’s food system.

Lisa Mangiamele, assistant professor of biological sciences, has been awarded a $279,600 grant from the National Science Foundation for “RUI: Collaborative Research: Neuroendocrine basis of gestural display evolution,” a project in collaboration with Wake Forest University and the Vienna Zoo that focuses on how testosterone acts on leg muscles and spinal cord neurons in a unique foot-waving frog species from Borneo.

Digital scholarship librarian Miriam Neptune was a panelist for “You Can’t Stay Neutral on a Moving Train: Making Critical Librarianship Tangible Through Library Programs and Exhibits,” a program at the American Library Association’s annual conference in June. Neptune spoke about recent exhibits at Smith, including the Black Unicorn Project installation, a spring collaboration among the Smith Libraries, student organizations and Bekezela Mguni, the college’s 2017 activist-in-residence.

Miles Ott, assistant professor of statistical and data sciences, has been awarded a $33,211 grant from the National Institutes of Health for a project in collaboration with Brown University, “Reducing hazardous alcohol use in social networks using targets intervention.”

Steve Waksman, Sylvia Dlugasch Bauman Professor of Music, spoke last month on “Sounding Pyschedelic: The Stage and the Studio in ’60s Rock,” at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Waksman’s talk focused on how live concerts, music festivals and recording studios influenced some of the most iconic rock artists of the 1960s.

Danielle Opatovsky ’16 was the winner among the women and sixth overall in this year’s Firecracker 8K Run in Southampton, N.Y. Opatovsky majored in environmental science and policy and philosophy at Smith.

Candice Salyers M.F.A. ’03 has received a postdoctoral fellowship from the American Association of University Women. Salyers, who earned her master’s degree in dance at Smith, will be developing a book about feminist choreography.

Laurie Mendoza ’82

Laurie Mendoza ’82 has been named to’s list of Top Counseling Blogs of 2017 for The School Counseling Files. Mendoza, who majored in psychology at Smith and is a longtime elementary school counselor in Massachusetts, was praised for the “strength and creativity of the content and resources” provided on her blog.