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2013 News Archives

Mischalgrace Diasanta, the Mary Roney Scholarship winner for 2013, is congratulated by Susan Kamei, Master of Liberal Studies (MLS) director and Jim Kincaid, chair of the MLS faculty board, who presented Diasanta with a copy of the master's thesis by Mary Roney. Photo by Erica Christianson.

MLS Program Awards Mary Roney Scholarship

July 12, 2013

Mischalgrace Diasanta of USC Dornsife Master of Liberal Studies (MLS) has received the Mary Roney Memorial Scholarship for 2013. MLS presented Diasanta, who as a MLS student wrote about the early depiction of Muslim…

International relations alumna Erica Berger ’09 was singled out by <em>Forbes</em> magazine as being one of the intellectual best of her generation, naming her one of “30 Under 30” to watch in the media category. Photo by Ashley N. Stefan.

Building a Buzz

July 10, 2013

Nothing takes the edge off a Monday morning like learning that Forbes magazine is celebrating you as a young media maven. Although the elite magazine had requested alumna Erica Berger’s photograph, she didn’t yet…

USC Dornsife graduate student Michael Tuma, seen here holding up a Mojave Desert tortoise, wants to ensure that tortoises have the space they need to thrive. Photo courtesy of Michael Tuma.

Emerging From Their Shells

July 10, 2013

The Mojave Desert tortoise can withstand as little as two inches of rain per year and temperatures in excess of 140 degrees, but human activity in their habitat has them listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.…

Students in the Maymester contemporary art course visited Jeff Koons’ <em>Gazing Ball</em> exhibition at the David Zwirner Gallery in New York City — one of many exhibits during their research trip. Photo courtesy of Art21.

Course is Work of Art

July 8, 2013

When Rocio Peña-Martinez walked into the David Zwirner Gallery in Chelsea on Manhattan’s Westside, her eyes followed the hand-blown, blue glass balls. Each ball balanced atop white plastic casts of classical…

<em>Drosophila melanogaster</em>, or fruit fly, on an apple. Fruit flies eat rotting fruit. The flies are used by Sergey Nuzhdin, professor of molecular biology, and his team to advance our understanding of whether behavior is determined by genetics or by social environment.

Lord of the Flies

July 3, 2013

A million tiny fruit flies live in the laboratory of Sergey Nuzhdin, professor of molecular biology at USC Dornsife. The flies are not (thankfully) buzzing around the room, but safely contained in small glass vials —…

Shown is a colony of Trichodesmium bacteria roughly the size of the head of a pin. David Hutchins and his team studied the nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria as well as Crocosphaera. Photo by Eric Webb.

The Ocean of Tomorrow

July 3, 2013

Climate change may be weeding out the bacteria that form the base of the ocean’s food chain, selecting certain strains for survival, according to a new USC study. In climate change, as in everything, there are winners…

Scientists show that attributing every forgetful moment to getting older can actually worsen memory problems — and reveal a surprising twist. Photo by Rhoda Baer.

Aging Stereotypes and Memory

July 2, 2013

Of the many negative stereotypes that exist about older adults, perhaps the most common is that they are forgetful, senile and prone to so-called “senior moments.” In fact, while cognitive processes do decline with…

Down in the Amazonian floodplain, the rivers ran orange with rainforest soils, containing very fine particles called colloids, as well as entire tree trunks carried off by the high flows, said USC Dornsife's Sarah Feakins, referring to her recent research trip in Peru. Photo by Sarah Feakins.

Along the River Route

July 1, 2013

The following is a first-person account of a research trip to southeastern Peru courtesy of Sarah Feakins, assistant professor of earth sciences at USC Dornsife. While most tourists travel from Cusco along the Inca trail to…

USC Dornsife alumna Lizette Salas watches her tee shot on the 16th hole during the first round of the HSBC Women's Champions at the Sentosa Golf Club on February 28, 2013 in Singapore, Southeast Asia. Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images.

On an Upswing

June 28, 2013

For Lizette Salas, it’s all about the follow through. After graduating from USC Dornsife in 2011, Salas became a professional golfer, competing on the Symetra Tour in seven tournaments. She then played in the U.S.…

Recent high school graduate David Zimmerman prepares cultures of <em>Shewanella onedensis</em> in USC Dornsife's Steven Finkel's laboratory. Zimmerman's research on the bacterium has earned him top prizes at local and international science fairs. Photo by Michelle Salzman Boston.

Fair Becomes Excellence

June 27, 2013

Recent high school graduate David Zimmerman stands at a bench in Steven Finkel’s laboratory preparing cultures of the bacterium Shewanella oneidensis — “Shewy” as he and others affectionately call…