UMBC and University of Limpopo partner to grow research and exchange opportunities

On June 12, leaders from UMBC and the University of Limpopo in South Africa formalized commitments to collaborate through joint research as well as faculty and student exchanges. UMBC has steadily grown its international partnerships with universities in Germany, Japan, Portugal, Peru, and other nations around the globe. This is the first such agreement between UMBC and a university in Africa. Continue reading UMBC and University of Limpopo partner to grow research and exchange opportunities

UMBC’s Eileen Meyer explains how big data is changing astronomy research

Recent research discovered thousands of black holes near the center of the Milky Way “by digging through old, long-archived data,” writes Eileen Meyer. “Astronomers are gathering an exponentially greater amount of data every day—so much that it will take years to uncover all the hidden signals buried in the archives.” Continue reading UMBC’s Eileen Meyer explains how big data is changing astronomy research

UMBC’s Songon An discovers new molecular mechanism likely involved in cancer cell metastasis

For the first time, An and his students have determined a function of a particular signaling pathway associated with metastasis. “Looking at this metabolic switch—which pathways are in use during metastasis versus when the cell is attached—may be where our research goes in the future,” says An. Continue reading UMBC’s Songon An discovers new molecular mechanism likely involved in cancer cell metastasis

NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program honors 18 UMBC students and alumni

The large number of honorees “shows the quality of student we have here at UMBC and what they’re doing,” says Keith Harmon, director of the Meyerhoff Scholars Program. “It also shows the quality of their research experiences at UMBC, and the commitment of the faculty to mentoring these students as undergraduates.” Continue reading NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program honors 18 UMBC students and alumni

UMBC’s 40th Graduate Research Conference to focus on communication and collaboration

“GRC gives graduate students training on how to ace professional conferences in the field, and by participating, students practice how to communicate their research in an accessible way,” says Morgan Bunting, a gerontology Ph.D. student and member of the GRC planning committee. “It’s also just a wonderful way to engage the community and learn what amazing work is going on in the Graduate School.” Continue reading UMBC’s 40th Graduate Research Conference to focus on communication and collaboration

UMBC physicist Sebastian Deffner lays groundwork to better understand birth of the universe

Sebastian Deffner and co-author Anthony Bartolotta are extending thermodynamics, a fundamental pillar of physics, into uncharted territory by developing a way to describe microscopic systems with extremely high energy—just like the universe at the start of the Big Bang—for the first time. “There’s a lot we have to do next,” says Deffner. Continue reading UMBC physicist Sebastian Deffner lays groundwork to better understand birth of the universe

UMBC’s Chris Swan featured in The Atlantic for transforming vacant lots in Baltimore

While working in the city comes with challenges, Chris Swan hopes to discover a Goldilocks concoction of plants that tolerate the poor soil found in vacant lots, attract native pollinators, and reduce runoff of contaminant-laced water into the Chesapeake Bay. Continue reading UMBC’s Chris Swan featured in The Atlantic for transforming vacant lots in Baltimore

Jamshaid Shahir pursues research at the interface of math and biology through Ph.D. at UNC-Chapel Hill

“My time at UMBC has made me more resilient, learning from failure and overcoming it,” says Shahir. “I believe UMBC promotes a healthy balance between cooperation and competition that has motivated me to push myself harder, allowing me to grow as an aspiring scientist and a young adult.” Continue reading Jamshaid Shahir pursues research at the interface of math and biology through Ph.D. at UNC-Chapel Hill

Daniel Morris to pursue microbiology Ph.D. at Penn without losing sight of love for the arts

From theatre productions to HIV research, Daniel Morris has taken advantage of the breadth of opportunities UMBC offers. “Being involved with performing and social student groups helped me to appreciate the value of being a well-rounded individual,” he says. Continue reading Daniel Morris to pursue microbiology Ph.D. at Penn without losing sight of love for the arts

UMBC physicists develop cost-saving tech for detecting gravitational waves and other applications

Thomas Smith and Yanhua Shih are hoping their new research will bring about a sea change in the physics community, and encourage even the most traditional physicists that quantum interference applies in optics experiments using non-laser light. “It should change the whole picture,” says Shih. The work has implications for both fundamental physics and immediate applications. Continue reading UMBC physicists develop cost-saving tech for detecting gravitational waves and other applications

UMBC scientist opens a “new chapter for biochemistry” with $1.5 million NIH grant to study sugar metabolism

“I’m hoping that in the future many people will be working in this area of cellular biochemistry, studying many metabolic enzymes in living cells,” says Songon An, whose work is on the leading edge of “the next stage in biochemistry.” Continue reading UMBC scientist opens a “new chapter for biochemistry” with $1.5 million NIH grant to study sugar metabolism

UMBC space scientist further confirms Einstein’s theory through new solar research

To address such big ideas, “You need the solar system as your laboratory,” says Sander Goossens. NASA’s MESSENGER satellite collected data during its years orbiting Mercury that enabled the research team to answer questions about the Sun’s interior processes and our fundamental understanding of gravity. Continue reading UMBC space scientist further confirms Einstein’s theory through new solar research

UMBC’s Sebastian Deffner explains how the “quantum speed limit” may put brakes on quantum computers

People have pinned their hopes on quantum computers for the next leap forward in computing technology, “but my recent research has revealed that quantum computers will have limits of their own,” writes Sebastian Deffner, “and has suggested ways to figure out what those limits are.” Continue reading UMBC’s Sebastian Deffner explains how the “quantum speed limit” may put brakes on quantum computers

UMBC physicists’ finding has potential to springboard quantum computing to major advances

The new finding “is attacking the bugaboo of this whole class of possible quantum computers,” says Jason Kestner. And yet, like so much in science, the finding “is something we stumbled across almost by accident,” says Michael Wolfe ’17. Continue reading UMBC physicists’ finding has potential to springboard quantum computing to major advances

UMBC launches program to prep students for biotech careers in partnership with Montgomery College and The Universities at Shady Grove

“As the biotechnology industry translates basic research from ‘bench to bedside,’ it needs a well-trained workforce,” says Dean Bill LaCourse. “The TLST program is designed from the ground up to meet that need through a flexible and interdisciplinary approach with intensive industry-inspired laboratory skills training.” Continue reading UMBC launches program to prep students for biotech careers in partnership with Montgomery College and The Universities at Shady Grove

UMBC a founding partner in coalition to increase transparency on life science career prospects

UMBC is among nine U.S. research universities and a major cancer institute that just announced plans to give would-be life scientists clear, standardized data on graduate school admissions, education and training opportunities, and career prospects. Continue reading UMBC a founding partner in coalition to increase transparency on life science career prospects

UMBC students take flight to study weather, pollution in multi-institution initiative

Handling in-flight challenges on the spot showed the students “how the science gets done in real life,” Brian Carroll says. The flight experience met the initiative’s goal to provide experiential learning opportunities to expand students’ perspectives. Continue reading UMBC students take flight to study weather, pollution in multi-institution initiative

UMBC biologists discuss human health applications of studying plants’ circadian rhythms in The Conversation

Improper circadian clock function has already been linked to illnesses from diabetes to depression in humans. Plant science could grow our understanding. “As researchers continue to untangle more about how these clocks work—including how they influence interactions between hosts and their invading pathogens and pests—new forms of specially-timed precision medicine could be on the horizon,” write Lu and Wiratan. Continue reading UMBC biologists discuss human health applications of studying plants’ circadian rhythms in The Conversation

Undergraduate Research Symposium award winners embody success of UMBC STEM BUILD program

“The BUILD participants at URS exemplify the objectives of the program,” says Laura Ott. “By participating in the BUILD program, they’re helping us explore novel strategies to increase participation in undergraduate research for all students.” Continue reading Undergraduate Research Symposium award winners embody success of UMBC STEM BUILD program

20th Undergraduate Research Symposium shines a light on students’ diverse contributions to science

On October 14, more than 300 students from across the East Coast descended on campus to share their research with each other, participate in workshops, and learn about UMBC. The event celebrated the diversity among young scientists and the potential for their work to have a positive impact on the world. Continue reading 20th Undergraduate Research Symposium shines a light on students’ diverse contributions to science

UMBC scientists measure plant productivity from space, with applications from farming to forest conservation

“We’re laying the groundwork for developing ways of monitoring vegetation,” says Fred Huemmrich. His and Petya Campbell’s new research uses images captured by instruments on the international space station to reveal global photosynthesis rates in unprecedented detail. Continue reading UMBC scientists measure plant productivity from space, with applications from farming to forest conservation

GRIT-X talks showcase experiences of outstanding faculty and alumni “from outer space to inner space”

Nine distinguished faculty and alumni shared their stories at GRIT-X, a TED talk-style event during UMBC’s Homecoming that took listeners “from outer space to inner space, from a makerspace to the classroom, from black holes in the universe to a pacemaker for the brain.” Continue reading GRIT-X talks showcase experiences of outstanding faculty and alumni “from outer space to inner space”

UMBC’s comprehensive partnership with Lakeland School boosts math performance

“This is not your average partnership,” Carly Haskins, Lakeland math teacher, shared with The Baltimore Sun in a feature story that appeared on the front page. “This is my 16th year teaching, and I’ve never seen anything where the schools are so connected in so many ways.” Continue reading UMBC’s comprehensive partnership with Lakeland School boosts math performance

UMBC participates in national study on Ph.D. career pathways at pivotal moment for new grads

“The assumption that the Ph.D. is primarily a pathway to the professoriate is just not the case,” says Janet Rutledge, dean of the Graduate School. “We’re hoping that by being part of this study, we will determine the best ways to focus our time and our resources to most effectively guide our students.” Continue reading UMBC participates in national study on Ph.D. career pathways at pivotal moment for new grads

UMBC researchers win USDA grants to improve safety and efficiency of fish farming industry

Yonathan Zohar, professor and chair of marine biotechnology, explains that the two UMBC teams’ research “makes the point of how you can use advanced approaches and strategies of biotechnology to open some of the major bottlenecks in the aquaculture industry.” Continue reading UMBC researchers win USDA grants to improve safety and efficiency of fish farming industry

UMBC marine biologist Colleen Burge works to save world’s oysters from deadly herpes virus

“It may only be a matter of time until [deadly strains of the herpes virus] reach U.S. coastal bays,” Colleen Burge writes. That means finding a way to prevent massive oyster die-offs, which have already happened in other parts of the world, is important to save the species—and Burge is on the task. Continue reading UMBC marine biologist Colleen Burge works to save world’s oysters from deadly herpes virus

UMBC to build on success in shrinking carbon footprint through updated Climate Action Plan

“Although UMBC has made significant progress in reducing its carbon footprint, it is clear that our carbon neutrality goals need to be more aggressive,” says Lenn Caron. A new climate action plan will define those goals with input from students, faculty, and staff. Continue reading UMBC to build on success in shrinking carbon footprint through updated Climate Action Plan