Alumni Profile: Caroline Maher-Boulis, Associate Professor at Lee University
Caroline Maher-Boulis got her Ph.D. in Mathematics at Florida State University in Spring 2004, under the direction of Professor Wolfgang Heil. Her first job was as Assistant Professor at Lee University, where she continues today as an Associate Professor.
Paolo Aluffi, Brennan Professor of Mathematics
After an extensive selection process, the first holder of the Marion Bradley Brennan Professorship in Mathematics has been chosen. The committee has combed through a list filled with many deserving candidates and chosen Professor Paolo Aluffi, who has served as a faculty member since 1991. Aluffi was chosen on the merits of his work as both a teacher and a researcher, and comes highly recommended by his colleagues and students.
Faculty Research: Mike Mesterton-Gibbons
Among questions of interest to biologists who study animal behavior are these: When should an animal - for example, a fiddler crab - intervene to help a neighbor having a territorial dispute with an intruder? Does eavesdropping - for example, by green swordtail fish - increase or reduce the overall frequency of aggressive behavior in a population? How widespread in nature is mutual assessment of fighting abilities? To be sure, humans do it, but what about hermit crabs or sea anenomes? And if strength is indeed being assessed, when does it pay for a threat to be a bluff?
Mariel Vazquez Alumni Profile
Mariel Vazquez, who earned her Ph.D. in math at FSU, has received a prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award for her research. She applies pure math to the biological mysteries of DNA, studying its entanglement as it packs tightly into living cells. Born and raised in Mexico City, Vazquez became fascinated with math and biology in high school. "I found pure mathematics to be absolutely beautiful but I didn't know how I could apply it to biology," Vazquez said. That changed when she became an undergraduate at the National Autono- mous University of Mexico and attended a series of talks about DNA topology - the application of knot theory to the study of DNA.
Faculty Profile: Nick Cogan
While pursuing his master's at the University of Montana, Cogan got the change to expand that conversation even more by working at the Center for Biofilm Engineering, an interdisciplinary National Science Foundation center that brought together faculty from different departments and funded grad students to work with them. The only hitch? He hadn't studied biology since high school, which didn't bother him but did manage to annoy the microbiologist he was paired with.