Fall 2007 - Spring 2008 Dept News

General News

Natural History Museum Logo 
The Natural History Museum and Visitor's Center at the Gray Fossil Site opened officially to the public on August 31, 2007. The museum had roughly 5000 visitors during its first weekend. 

Faculty Activities

Dr. Frank Hagelberg 
Dr. Frank Hagelberg started as a new faculty member in Physics this fall. He received his Ph.D. in Physics from Bonn Germany, and came to ETSU from a previous faculty position at Jackson State University in Mississippi.

Dr. Arpita Nandi 
Dr. Arpita Nandistarted as a new faculty member in Geology this fall. She received her Ph.D. in Geology from Kent State University this last year.

Brian Espino  Brian Espinostarted a position as a lecturer in Physics this fall. Brian obtained his masters in Physics from Kansas State University this last year. His bachelors degree is from the University of Central Florida.


  • Drs. Blaine Schubert and Steve Wallace gave presentations at the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology conference, held in Austin Texas from Oct 17-21, 2007.


  • Dr. Arpita Nandi presented a paper at the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists general meeting held in Los Angeles, CA from September 24-29, 2007. The title of her paper is `Ultimate Bearing Resistance Calculation in Weak, Fractured Rock Mass'.


  • An article on Dr. Beverly Smith's research on interacting galaxies appeared in the 2008 ETSU Explorations Magazine.


  • Dr. Mark Girouxwon the 2008 College of Arts and Sciences Award for Teaching.

    Student and Alumni News


  • Physics Majors Jonathon and James Qualls graduated with Bachelor of Science degrees in Physics on August 14, 2007. They both also had a minor in Mathematics.


  • ETSU graduate Sean Mathews (Physics Major, class of 2006) started graduate school in Medical Physics at the University of Kentucky this fall.


  • ETSU graduate Amanda Moffett (Physics Major, class of 2006) started graduate school in Astronomy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill this fall.


  • ETSU graduate David Simpson (Physics Major, class of 2007) started graduate school in Physics at Penn State this fall.


  • ETSU graduate Kristin Stone (Physics Major, class of 2005) started graduate school in Mathematics at ETSU this fall.


  • In Fall 2007, ETSU graduate Mike Houchins (Physics Major, class of 2001) started a new job as a Field Service Engineer for Bioptigen, a firm that makes optical tomography equipment. He received a Masters degree in Material Science from Clemson University in 2006.

    The Society for Physics Students display on sunspots for the Fall 2007 Homecoming Event. From left to right: Sharon Gray, Alfred Hopkins, Sabrina Hurlock, Ryan Deskins, and Scott Price.


  • Geology major Robyn (Nikki) Gibson graduated in December 2007 as Honors-in-Discipline in Geology. She is the first person to graduate from the new revised Geology program from ETSU, and the first to be Honors-in-Discipline in Geology.


  • In January 2008, ETSU graduate Daniel Hall (Physics major, Class of 2003) started a new job as a System Engineer for Lockheed Martin in Chantilly Virginia.


  • Physics major alumnus Moises Serrano (Class of 2005) was in the Johnson City Press on March 13, 2008. Moises is currently a graduate student in the Biomedical program at ETSU.


  • Four physics majors presented research projects at the Appalachian Student Research Forum/ETSU Undergraduate Student Research Symposium, held at ETSU in April 2008. These include:
    • Sharon Gray: Talk on "H-alpha Study of Beta Lyrae"(Advisor: Dr. Richard Ignace)
    • Sabrina Hurlock: Poster on "The Effects of Galaxy Interactions on Star Formation and Morphology"(Advisor: Dr. Beverly Smith)
    • Chris Carver: Talk on "Computer-Generated Models of Collding Galaxies"(Advisor: Dr. Beverly Smith)
    • Ryen Lapham: Talk on "Permutations and Recursions: A Recursion Formula for the Kendall Mann Number, a Sequence of Balanced Permutations" (Advisor: Dr. Anant Godbole, Math Dept)


  • Physics majors Sabrina Hurlock and Coral Franklin were accepted into the Honors-in-Discipline program in Physics in Spring 2008.


  • Ryan Deskins
    Physics major Ryan Deskins won the `Outstanding Senior in Physics' award for 2008. He graduated in May 2008 as a Physics Honors-in-Discipline student. His honors thesis, which he presented on May 1, 2008, was titled `Functionalizing Metallofullerenes: A Look at the Regional Control Induced by SC3N@C78 on an attached CH2Molecule'. His honors thesis advisor was Dr. Frank Hagelberg. Ryan will be starting graduate school in Physics in Fall 2008 at Florida State University.


  • Physics major Tommy Byrd also graduated May 2008. He will be starting graduate school in Physics in the Fall at Clemson University.


  • Physics major alumnus Wyatt DesOrmeaux (Class of 1993) is a graduate student in Math at ETSU. In May 2008 he received an award for Excellence in Teaching by a graduate teaching assistant.

    Department students
    A collection of department students and faculty in April 2008. Seated, left to right: Gary Henson and Mark Giroux. Standing, left to right: Rico Ignace, Don Luttermoser, Mark Hancock, Frank Hagelberg, Sharon Gray, Sabrina Hurlock, Scott Price, and Wes Erbsen.



Last updated 6/13/08 by B. J. Smith