News Brief

USC Dornsife News Briefs highlight faculty research studies, newly published books, awards, grants and other news showcasing faculty members’ work at USC Dornsife. All USC Dornsife faculty are eligible to submit content.
(The diverse opinions expressed in News Briefs do not necessarily represent the views of USC Dornsife administration or USC.)

Faculty Recognition

Elizabeth Durst, associate professor (teaching) of writing, has been awarded the prestigious Award for Distinguished Service by the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages (AATSEEL). The accolade recognizes Durst’s exemplary leadership as executive director of AATSEEL from 2011 through 2023, where she significantly contributed to the organization during difficult times. Her efforts include adapting to digital platforms during the COVID-19 pandemic, spearheading fundraising initiatives, and fostering discussions on current geopolitical challenges.

Faculty Recognition

Moh El-Naggar, divisional dean for the physical sciences and mathematics, Dean’s Professor of Physics and Astronomy, and professor of physics and astronomy and chemistry, and Eric Webb, professor of biological sciences and environmental studies, have been elected Fellows of the American Academy of Microbiology.

Faculty Recognition

Lydie Moudileno, Marion Frances Chevalier Professor of French and professor of French and American studies and ethnicity and comparative literature, has been bestowed the Ordre des Palmes Académiques (Order of Academic Palms). This national honor conferred by the French Republic upon eminent academics and educators acknowledges their invaluable contributions to the realms of academia, education and scientific inquiry.

Faculty Recognition

Kelly Luo, Gabilan Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy, was elected to the executive committee of the American Physical Society Forum on Early Career Scientists. The forum provides support and mentorship to post-doctoral fellows as they navigate through the early stages of their career and helps them increase inclusion and participation in the activities and decision-making of the physics community worldwide.

Faculty Recognition

Greta Panova, Gabilan Distinguished Professor of Science and Engineering and professor of mathematics, has been awarded the 2024–2025 AMS Joan and Joseph Birman Fellowship for Women Scholars. This prestigious fellowship is dedicated to exceptionally talented women in mathematics, recognizing their achievements and potential for significant future contributions to their field. The fellowship provides support and addresses underrepresentation of women at the highest levels of research in mathematics.

Faculty Recognition

Evelyn Alsultany, professor of American studies and ethnicity, received the 2023 Richard A. Yarborough Mentoring Award from the American Studies Association. The award, which honors Yarborough’s legacy as an American historian and literary critic, recognizes a scholar for their exceptional commitment and excellence in mentoring and advising other minority scholars and underrepresented faculty.

Faculty Recognition

Jessica Zu, assistant professor of religion and East Asian languages and cultures, was appointed a 2023–2024 Faculty Fellow of the Notre Dame Institute for Advanced Study for her project “Karma, Science, and a Just Society: Buddhist Philosophical Toolboxes for Post-Racial and Post-Caste Worldmaking.” The residential fellowship includes a stipend, a research allowance and subsidized housing as well as weekly work-in-progress seminars and communication skills training designed to help fellows develop work that is accessible to broad audiences.