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Title: CLAS notes the monthly news publication of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: University of Florida -- College of Arts and Sciences
Publisher: College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville Fla
Creation Date: August 2001
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Table of Contents
    Main
        Page 1
    Around the college
        Page 2
        Page 3
    CLAS awards
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
    Grants
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
Full Text

August 2001





CLA S notes
Vol. 15 The University of Florida College of Liberal Arts and Sciences No. 8













Around the College .................................. 2
The Dean's Musings ............................... 3
CLAS Awards .............................................. 4
A Letter From Abroad ............................. 5
Becom ing Dean ......................................... 6
Euqu iity in Academia ................................... 8
quit Ron Akers
Academ ia: New Associate Dean ..............................11
W here Are Faculty Senate ....................... .......... 11
W om en in, R Renovations................................................ 12
Chem istr y Future Gator.......................................... 13
(page 8 B- Grants ................. ............................ 14
Physicist Wins DOE Award ...................15
Sunny Days/DarkTimes ........................16










Around the College



DEPARTMENT NEWS
Astronomy
Joanna Levine, a PhD student, was recently awarded a 2001-02 Zonta
International Amelia Earhart Fellowship. The scholarship is one of 35
international fellowships awarded to outstanding women in aerospace-
related science and engineering graduate programs this year.
The $6000 fellowship will allow Levine, who works with
Professor Elizabeth Lada, to pursue her research on the impact of close
binary stars on planet formation. For her doctoral research Levine
is studying the properties of binary systems in "young" star clusters
(roughly 1 million years old) and the effects these systems have on pro-
toplanetary disks. Levine will also continue to conduct field research at
telescope sites in Arizona, Chile, and Hawaii.

Botany
In May, the Guardian Weekly published a commentary by David A.
Jones titled "Science's lingua franca." Jones was responding to an arti-
cle by Robert Phillipson, "English, yes, but equality first," and remark-
ing on the impact of English as the international language of science.

Chemistry
Jens Oddershede was installed as Rektor (president) of the University
of Southern Denmark on June 21. Oddershede is a courtesy professor
in UF's Department of Chemistry and an adjunct professor with the
Quantum Theory Project. He is also codirector of the University of
Southern Denmark/University of Florida student exchange program.

Geology
Michael Perfit attended the European Union of Geosciences meeting
in Strasbourg, France in April. He presented three papers at the meet-
ing that dealt with research he and his students Matt Smith, John
Chadwick and Scott Kutza have been doing on ocean floor volcanism
in the eastern Pacific Ocean. Perfit was also an invited speaker at the
Geodynamics Seminar Series on Plume-Ridge Interactions at the Woods
Hole Oceanographic Institution in April. He presented a lecture on
recent geochemical research he and Chadwick have completed on Axial
Seamount, an active hotspot on the Juan de Fuca Ridge off of the coast
of Oregon.

Germanic and Slavic Studies
Hal H. Rennert gave a talk at the Europa-Union as part of Europe-
Week in Backnang, Germany on May 9. His presentation was titled
"From Weimar to Paris: Wilhelm Hausenstein's Contribution to French-
German Reconciliation after 1945."


page 2


Manfred Diehl was one of 30 participants selected from a national
competition to attend the American Psychological Association's
Advanced Training Institute (ATI) in Longitudinal Methods, Modeling,
and Measurement in Contemporary Psychological Research. The ATI
provided training in state-of-the-art methods for modeling longitudi-
nal data including growth curve analysis, time series modeling, and
dynamic structural equation modeling. The ATI was held in June at the
University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Franz R. Epting and Larry Severy each were recently elected to serve
as president of a division of the American Psychological Association.
Epting will serve the Humanistic Psychology Division and Severy
the Population and Environmental Psychology Division. Beginning in
August, each will serve a year as president-elect, followed by a year as
president.

Doctoral student Katherine White won a National Research Service
Award (NRSA) from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
The award is a predoctoral research fellowship for White's dissertation
studies. Her project is titled "Phonological Priming of Preexisting and
New Associations."

Romance Languages and Literatures
Geraldine Nichols recently presented her paper, "Apples, Oranges
and Rewards in the Multilingual Department," at the Association
of Departments of Foreign Languages Summer Seminar East at
Middlebury College. She was also a workshop leader for the new
chairs' sessions at the seminar.

Written and Oral Communication
Ed Kellerman presented a paper titled "Understanding Recent Court
Cases on Affirmative Action and their Effect on Higher Education
Policy" at the American Educational Research Association's annual
conference held in Seattle in April. The paper addressed recent court
decisions banning racial preferences in affirmative action programs, and
how Texas, California, Florida, and Georgia have responded with pro-
grams to ensure a diverse student body.






The Department of History
conducted a summer institute
for secondary school world his-
tory teachers from June 25-29 as
part of a nationally coordinated
set of seventeen such institutes
sponsored by the World History
Association and the College
Board, with funding from the
National Endowment for the
Humanities. Sixteen teachers
attended the institute, fifteen of
whom were from Florida. The UF
faculty consisted of Hunt Davis,
director and Murdo MacLeod,
lead instructor. Alan Rushing of
Duval County Schools was the
pedagogy instructor. The focus
was on the AP World History
course, which will be offered for
the first time in the 2001-2002
school year.
CLASnotes August 2001













Dean's Office Staff
Carol Binello returned to the CLAS dean's office
in June after a one-year leave of absence. Carol will
resume her duties as the
dean's administrative assis-
tant, which include organiz-
ing CLAS functions, main-
taining college programs,
and collecting and analyzing
data related to CLAS. During
the last year, Carol was with
her family in North Carolina,
and she worked as a special
education teacher for middle
school kids.

Laura Griffis, CLAS pub-
lications coordinator, is leaving the dean's office in
August to attend graduate school at the New School
University in New York City. Laura has been at UF since
last summer and has managed the CLAS publications
unit. She will pursue a MS
in urban policy analysis and
management and has received
a two-year graduate fellow-
ship through the Peace Corps
Fellows Program. Laura was
a Peace Corps volunteer
in Africa for several years
before moving to Gainesville
and working in CLAS. Dean
Neil Sullivan says, "Laura
has helped bring a new tone
to CLASnotes and other col-
lege publications with wider
and more probing coverage of college life, highlighting
especially the work of our students and staff in addition
to faculty members. Her emphasis on human-interest
stories and the accomplishments of those who make true
differences in the lives of others has set a new standard
for CLAS publications. We will miss her as a member of
our college team and wish her every success in the Big
Apple. "

NEH/DRP Summer Stipends
The Division of Research Programs (DRP) of the
National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is
accepting nominations for its 2002 Summer Stipend
awards. Interested faculty should contact the Division
of Sponsored Research's program information office,
392-4804, for details. Applications are available on the
NEH website ships. html> and should be submitted to the Campus
Research Awards Committee, 223 Grinter Hall by 4:30
pm, September 5. Final nominated applications are due
at the NEH on October 1.


Acknowledgment: In the article titled "Seeking Zora,"
which was written by Irma McClaurin and appeared in the
April 2001 issue of CLASnotes, the correspondence between
Zora Neale Hurston and Langston Hughes was used with
the kind permission of the Estate of Zora Neale Hurston.


Information Technology:

A Tool for ALL Disciplines
o one would question the value of the tremendous surge in advanc-
ing the capabilities in all areas of research and instruction, which has
been generated by modern computer technology and internet network-
ing. Once the exclusive tool of the mathematical and physical scientists,
information technology (IT) has enabled major advances in biology,
genomics and bioinformatics,the social sciences, library services, and the
humanities.The use of digital methods to preserve and analyze ancient
texts, and to study linguistics and the processes of learning, are just some
of the exciting new frontiers that advanced technology has opened and
expanded.
It is important to keep in mind, however, that IT should be seen as a
tool to enable research and teaching,and to serve our academic mis-
sion-not the other way around.We should use IT in all its forms to
advance learning and teaching, to help provide access to rare and costly
resources (large telescopes, international data banks, deep earth explo-
ration activities),and to take the classroom to such varied locations as
remote archaeological digs or to see government in action around the
world.
What we need to avoid is the gold-rush mentality, namely to invest in
a costly type of resource simply because one of our competitors has one
and therefore we think we should have one too.We need to focus on and
set our academic goals in research, distance education and outreach pro-
grams,and select what technology is best suited to achieve those goals.
The development of our technology should above all be driven from the
ground up and not from IT down.

Neil Sullivan









In Memory

Dr. Larry McEdward
1955-2001

Zoology Professor Larry
McEdward passed away on
July 2 in Montana. A memori-
al service will be held at 3:00
pm on Saturday, August 18
at the Unitarian Universalist
Fellowship in Gainesville.
McEdward had been an
associate professor of zoology
at UF for the last 12 years, r
and his research focused on
marine larval biology He won Larry McEdward in northern Puget Sound with
a UF teaching award and was Pycnopodia helianthoides or sunflower starfish (1999).
a member of numerous pro-
fessional organizations.
Survivors include his wife, Deborah, and his two daughters, Maris and Lari.
Instead of flowers, his family requests that donations be made to the Marine Science
Fund, Friday Harbor Labs, 620 University Road, Friday Harbor, WA 98250.


Read CLASnotes online at


CLASnotes August 2001


page 3










CLAS Awards


Clogg Scholarship Winners
Political Science PhD candidates Ryan Bakker and
Emilia Gioreva each received a Clogg Scholarship to
support their study at the Inter-University Consortium
For Political and Social Research (ICPSR) Summer
Program in Quantitative Methods. The program offers a
comprehensive, integrated series of studies in research
design, statistics, data analysis, and social methodology
for eight weeks at the University of Michigan. The Clogg
Scholarship is a highly competitive award, which was
given to nine advanced graduate students this year in
PhD programs across the country.
Bakker's research focuses on the European Union,
specifically the European Parliament and the role of
political parties in European integration. Prior to attend-
ing the summer program, Gioreva was conducting field
research in Ecuador for her dissertation on the problems
of peasant communities in Southwest Ecuador.
Political Science Professor Jeff Gill has taught at
the ICPSR summer program for the last two years, and
Melanie Wakeman, a doctoral candidate in sociology,
was also selected to participate in the program this sum-
mer.



Student Competes on Millionaire Show
History doctoral student Jason Parker won $125,000 on
an episode of "Who Wants to be a Millionaire?" that
aired in June. Parker, who competed in four rounds of
"Jeopardy" in 1999, was stumped when Regis Philbin
asked him the origin of the word "Nintendo." Having
already used his three lifelines, Parker chose not to risk
his earnings with a guess. He walked with his $125,000
check, of which he will net about 60 percent. He says he
will use the money to pay bills and plan for his 2-year-
old daughter's education.


AIM Program Nationally Recognized
Several Academic Advising Center advisors recently received national recognition
for their work with the AIM advising program. The National Academic Advising
Association (NACADA) has awarded the program a certificate of merit for being an
outstanding institutional advising program. The AAC advisors who work with the AIM
program are Shekela Joiner, Kathy Rex, Reggie Tolbert, and LaCusia Washington.
The Achievement In Mainstreaming (AIM) program's mission is to assist at-
risk students with their transition into a higher education institution. AIM provides a
structured curriculum, academic advising, and additional support services designed to
improve students' successes during their time at UE AIM students agree to participate
in mandatory advising, and advisors discuss students' progress, performance, personal
concerns, and university resources in individual counseling sessions. At the end of each
semester, the AIM advisors review the students' progress and encourage them to reflect
on their career goals.
AIM Director Dana Peterson says the award honoring the advising part of the
AIM program is well deserved. "Since NACADA is the leading association for aca-
demic advisors in the US, this recognition is a great honor indeed. It is just further
proof of what those of us who work with the CLAS academic advising team already
know: that Kathy, LaCusia, Reggie, and Shekela are truly dedicated, student-centered
advisors who extend their efforts far beyond our wildest expectations."
The AIM advisors will be honored at the special awards presentation and recep-
tion being held during the annual NACADA conference in Ottawa, Ontario in October.


Student Scholarship Awards in Aging
The Center for Gerontological Studies, the Institute on Aging, and Leighton E. Cluff, MD are
sponsoring student scholarship awards for research on older adults and the aging process.
Awards: For best paper in the graduate/ Topics: Research studies, scholarly
professional category ($1200) and under- reviews or essays related to late life,
graduate category ($600). aging and/or older citizens.
Eligibility: Undergraduate, graduate or Submission: By September 17, 2001. For
professional students enrolled at UE further information visit edu/stuaward.htm> or contact Robin West
at 392-2116; .


Baha'i Award Winners
Three CLAS professors recently received the Baha'i Award for
Excellence in Education. (Pictured left to right) G. Zohorah Simmons
(Religion), Debra King (English),and Paul McLoughlin II (Academic
Advising Center) were honored at a ceremony in April.The award
recognizes faculty who have had an impact on students' lives through
their creative teaching. Students nominate teachers in grades K-20,
and the Nur Baha'i Center of Gainesville recognizes the winners at an
annual ceremony in which the students speak about their professors.
This year 20 local teachers received the honor.


CLASnotes August 2001


page 4










A Letter


From Abroad


Last year, Newman Nahas, who graduated with
his bachelor's degree in English in May 2000,
became UF's first Rhodes Scholar in over 20
years.The prestigious Rhodes scholarships, cre-
ated in 1902 by the will of Cecil Rhodes, a British
philanthropist and colonial pioneer, are the
oldest international study awards available to
American students. We first introduced Nahas in
the March 2000 issue of CLASnotes. He has been
at Oxford University since last October and
recently wrote a letter to a friend describing his
experiences over the last year.The following is
an excerpt from that letter.


have been studying the
history and doctrine of
the Christian tradition,
primarily as it is found
in the east. By "east,"
I mean such regions as
Asia Minor, Syria and
Mesopotamia. While
western (Latin) expres-
sions of Christianity have
rightly received thorough
attention from scholars,
the same is not true of
their eastern counter-
parts-despite the fact
that Christianity had its
origins in the Near East.
For example, a good deal
of Christian literature
that was composed in a
certain Aramaic dialect
known as Syriac remains
untranslated and unstud-
ied. (I should mention
that Aramaic is the pri-
mary language that Jesus
spoke.)
I am cherishing the
opportunity to work under
one of the world's great-
est Syriac scholars, S.P
Brock, and to study this
ancient language and its
exciting literary corpus.
My hope is to contribute
to a more comprehensive
understanding of the his-
tory of Christianity, one
that is indeed more sensi-
tive to the contributions of
the Christian East.
I am also work-

CLASnotes August 2001


ing with one of the
world's foremost experts
on the Greek-speak-
ing Christianity of the
Byzantine Empire,
K.T. Ware. While not
as understudied as
Syriac Christianity,
the Christianity of the
Byzantine world neverthe-
less suffers from having
long been interpreted
through Western catego-
ries of thought that are
not indigenous to it. The
nuances of its history have
been distorted to fit the
conceptual cookie cutter
of the western historian.
Dr. Ware has done a great
deal to counteract this
trend.
Overall, my experi-
ence here has been sur-
real. I still feel as though
I've just arrived (and that
is not just because I still
haven't fully unpacked!).
I have met some incred-
ible people, off of whose
friendship and enthusiasm
I constantly feed. All in
all, my enchantment with
Oxford has not worn off.
I still walk around gazing
happily at the beautiful
buildings, and I continue
to find great delight in the
inexhaustible resources of
the Bodlian library.
I realize, how-
ever, that every place can


become commonplace.
And Oxford is no excep-
tion. The Stoics were on
to something. You mustn't
rely too heavily on exter-
nals for your inner con-
tentment. Contentment is
a property that must flow
from something more fun-
damental. One such more
fundamental thing that my
supervisors have taught
me, more indirectly than
formally but which I shall
never forget, and which
I think has made my trip
worthwhile, is the impor-
tance of "wonder." For the
first time in my life, I feel
as though I really under-
stand what Plato meant
when, in the Theaetetus,
he wrote, "The beginning
of philosophy is to feel a
sense of wonder." Life is
boring without wonder;


there is no discovery, no
joy without wonder.
The true scholar must
not learn to see through
things, to explain them
away-but rather, to
delight in them, to render
them near. The ideas and
especially the persons I
have encountered here
at Oxford have indeed
evoked this sense of
wonder. But what this
experience has also taught
me is that Oxford has no
monopoly on wonder. The
Desert Monks of 4th-cen-
tury Egypt were right in
teaching that "If you can't
find peace and joy in your
small monastic cell, you
won't find it anywhere."
I don't know when
I'll return to the US. I
will surely visit next
Christmas. Otherwise,


I know that I'll be in
England for at least two
years, if not more.
I spent two weeks
of my spring break in
Russia, thanks to the
Rhodes Trust, and visited
historic Russian Orthodox
monasteries, churches
and pilgrimage sites. I am
planning to make a similar
trip this summer to Greece
and Syria. The Rhodes
Scholarship gives us the
option to continue for a
Doctor of Philosophy after
we finish our initial two-
year degree, which I hope
to do. I also hope to spend
a year or so in the Middle
East pursuing some
research ideas. I am in no
hurry. I am rather enjoying
my time here.
-Newman Nahas


page 5













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How do you understand your role as dean of the college?
The dean sets, ultimately, the tone, the level and the standards of
inquiry for the college. Universities throughout the world are changing
rapidly in terms of curriculum, the ways that they reach out to the com-
munity outside the university, as well as how they train and teach their
students about the pursuit of knowledge. The levels of excellence that
a particular unit can aspire to in all of these areas must be defined and
promoted by the leadership inside that unit, and it is the dean's job to
make sure those goals are both well defined and achievable on a work-
able time scale.


What are some of the goals that you hope to accomplish as dean?
My primary goal is to change the national perception of our college into
an institution that ranks in the top 10 of all public institutions in the
country. In some areas of the college we are almost at that level, and
other areas have great potential. We have put outstanding faculty and
programs in place, now we have to build them to a level of excellence
where they compete with other top institutions.
My strategy is to choose particular areas where UF can be unique,
build on those strengths, and rise to international eminence. We have
done that in our current collaboration with Spain to build the Gran


CLASnotes August 2001


page 6





















Telescopio Canaris and, to a cer-
tain degree, with the environmen-
tal sciences and the new Land
Use and Environmental Change
Institute. I am also impressed
with the analytical aspects of bio-
infomatics where a number of our
programs have drawn interest in
the last few years. There are par-
ticular elements of the humanities
that have real strength and nation-
al eminence, and we need to
focus on those and raise them to a
higher level of national visibility.
The goal for the nascent Center
for the Humanities is to build a
new mode of inquiry focusing on
the intersection of the humanities
in the public sphere. The center
will draw great scholars, human-
ists, poets, and philosophers
who will provide a catalyst for
expanding our programs to a new
level.
It is very important in all
areas of intellectual pursuit-
whether it be in the sciences,
social sciences, or humanities-
that we have a flow of scholars
into the university to give students
and faculty members the opportu-
nity to interact with the most cre-
ative and accomplished individu-
als in their fields. Therefore, we
need to find ways to build all of
our programs so that they attract
international leaders in a wide
variety of fields.

What are the biggest
challenges that are facing
CLAS at this time?
We must realize that in order to
move forward, we have to gener-
ate the drive and the financial
resources ourselves. The time
when research initiatives and


scholarly endeavors could depend
on state support has passed. We
must seek out resources and sup-
port from the private sector, from
research foundations, and from
philanthropic foundations that
support new initiatives. Being
awarded such support is a mark of
achievement in and of itself. If we
are able to compete with top insti-
tutions and if we are perceived as
one of the best, we will be able to
draw support from these founda-
tions.

Are you expecting that
the change in the system
of governance is going to
affect your job?
Yes, it will. First of all, there are
going to be a number of new
endeavors that we want to under-
take and programs that we want to
build. Rather than having to seek
approval from the state university
system to develop these initia-
tives, it will now be to our own
local board of trustees that we go
to seek approval.
Second, I think there could
be a vast improvement in the
morale of our faculty and stu-
dents. Their confidence in their
ability to develop a new path for
the university could dramatically
increase. With a new degree of
independence, we will be given
the opportunity to develop our
own intellectual identity. I think
faculty and students will respond
to this opportunity for leadership
and the invitation to strive for
excellence. Our alumni and sup-
porters will also respond because
this is a chance for UF to develop
its own mark.
The change of governance


will give us the opportunity to be independent, to choose the areas in
which we want to be bold, and to actually make significant changes to
programs that we want to develop. This independence also provides a
challenge: it means that we will have to be creative and resourceful to
find the funds and support to achieve our goals.

How would you describe your style of leadership?
I like to work with people on an equal basis, whether they are staff,
faculty or students. I strive to encourage people who work with me on
projects to feel like they are part of a team and all have an equal say. I
do not think you can succeed by imposing ideas on others. You have to
try to bring people to collective decisions and proceed forward as a unit
so that everyone is on board with the major projects that you want to
accomplish. At the end of the day, the thing that counts is what the best
ideas are, not just who had them.

What is your five-year vision for CLAS?
There is no doubt that UF is changing. The changes will sometimes
appear to be occurring very slowly, and on other occasions they will
appear to be occurring quite rapidly. If we seize these moments of
change, make the right choices, and put tremendous energy into devel-
oping our strengths, the college will move forward significantly.
I think in five to ten years time, UF will be more international in
character. It will become an intellectual watering hole for the southeast
in a way that we have not seen before. Our position with respect to
other intellectual centers in the US will change. Research and scholarly
activity will develop in areas that reflect how our college is unique and
where we are leading the world in certain fields. Naturally, our pro-
grams will then increasingly attract world-renowned scholars. I think
you will see the whole character of the university change.





"You have to try to bring people to col-

lective decisions and proceed forward

as a unit so that everyone is on board

with the major projects that you want

to accomplish. At the end of the day,

the thing that counts is what the best

ideas are, notjust who had them."


CLASnotes August 2001


page 7















Equity in Academia:


Where Are Women in Chemistry?


Although women have

made significant contribu-

tions to the sciences over

the last few decades, they

still have earned only 25%

of all PhDs in science during

the last 30 years, and today

fewer than 10% of full pro-

fessors in the sciences are

women.1 Female scientists

face problems in academia

that are unique to women,

and, even though more

women than ever before are

entering graduate programs

in chemistry, academia is

losing many of them to

industry.


recent survey conducted by Chemical and Engineering News of the top 50
universities in chemistry (departments identified by the National Science
foundation as having spent the most money on chemical research in 1998)
found that overall women hold 10% of tenure-track positions in chemistry. Females
account for only 6% of full professors, 21% of associate professors, and 18% of assis-
tant professors. At UF, four out of 46 tenure-track positions in chemistry, or 9%, are
held by women. Rutgers University topped the list with 26% and Arizona State and
SUNY Buffalo rounded out the bottom with 3%.2


The road to a career in academia
has changed over the years. Analytical
Chemistry Professor Vanecia Young has
taught at UF since 1984 and has seen
many changes take place in the hiring
process for new faculty. "When I applied
for my first academic position at Texas
A&M in 1978, I had about eight pub-
lications listed on my resume. Today,
that number is considered low. Most
candidates have completed a post doc
and might have 20 or 30 research articles
already published when they apply for
junior faculty positions. We are expecting
people to do more in order to get here."
Even if a chemistry department
actively recruits females and other
minorities, the applicant pool does not
always support the department's efforts.
Chemistry Chair David Richardson
explains, "This is an area where we are
working diligently but not as success-
fully as I would like. We ran five searches
over the last year, and overall the pool
of applicants had very few females.
However, in each search, the committees
were instructed to actively encourage
female applicants and focus carefully on
the cases of those females that did apply.
Despite the low proportion of females in
the applications received, it is my hope
that we interview female candidates for
every position." Richardson says one
idea for encouraging more women to
apply for positions at UF is to invite more


junior and senior female chemists from
other institutions to participate in various
seminar programs here, so they will have
increased visibility outside of the search
process.
One of the possible reasons for a
low female applicant pool involves what
scientists often call the "two-body prob-
lem." A survey compiled by the America
Chemical Society (ACS) last year found
that 24% of female academic chemists
are married to or partnered with a fel-
low chemist, and another 20% are mar-
ried to or partnered with a non-chemist
scientist.3 Three of the four tenure-track
female faculty in chemistry at UF are
married to a fellow scientist. Valeria
Kleiman joined the chemistry department
in January of this year, and her husband,
Adrian Roitberg, is also on the faculty.
She says her husband's job offer played
an important role in her decision to come
to UF "Adrian and I are fairly unique
because we have never lived apart. We've
chosen to make this a priority for us, and
fortunately it has worked. But it is not
this way for everyone."
Finding the balance between work-
ing and starting a family is another issue
many women face at an early point in
their careers. Universities, however, tend
to be slower than private industries in
establishing family-friendly practices
such as shared jobs, extended maternity
leaves, and on-site childcare facilities.1


CLASnotes August 2001


page 8

























According to the ACS survey, far more women than men
work part-time because of family responsibilities; 28.5%
of female academic chemists reported taking at least a
6-month hiatus, compared to 11% of academic men. The
reasons for these breaks in employment differed greatly
for women and men: 58% of women, compared to only
1.4% of men, reported childcare or maternity or pater-
nity leave as their reason for taking time off.3
Because there is a demand to produce research and
publish widely during the first five years of a professor-
ship, women who want to have children must plan care-
fully. Kleiman says, "I decided to have my child during
the end of my PhD work because I did not want to wait
until after I got a position and then had to work towards
tenure." Lisa McElwee-White, an organic chemistry
professor and CLAS associate dean, had her first child
while still on the faculty at Stanford University. "If you
go straight through your course work, get a PhD when
you're 26 or 27, do postdoc work for another two to
three years, obtain a position at a university and work
for four or five years to get tenure, then, by the time
you're able to start a family, you could easily be 35
years old, the age of which pregnancy risks increase."
Even though many universities have a policy that
allows a junior professor to take time off during the first
few years or her or his appointment and basically stop
the tenure clock for a brief period, the general consensus
is that departments do not look favorably upon a profes-
sor who opts for the delay. Several faculty members at
UF and around the country suggest changing the system
so that the first years of a professorship are somewhat
easier on new faculty. Instead of assigning new faculty
several large classes or labs, for instance, a university
could allow more time for research and also delay the
tenure process in same cases. Young supports these
suggestions, but says there is another school of thought
some faculty may choose to maintain. "It's the mentality
of 'We made it through, why can't you?' They feel new
faculty should have to face the same hardships they did
and not be given any breaks."
The freedom to do research and to work with
fresh young minds underline the main reasons chem-
ists say they choose to work in a university setting.
Anna Brajter-Toth, who in 1983 became the first female
professor in the chemistry department, comments, "In


Chemistry Professor Valeria Kleiman (left) and graduate student Evrim Atas assemble instru-
ments for their laser research.

academia, I am able to explore the new ideas I develop, and working with students
also contributes to my desire to stay in this environment. They are constantly question-
ing concepts in science, and by teaching them, I am learning new ways to think about
my own research." Valeria Kleiman agrees, "The main reason I chose academia is
because of the presence of students and the constant challenges they present me with.
I think I could run the same experiments here and in a national research lab, but at UF
I have students around whose questions are one of the main sources of my intellectual
growth."
Independent research and teaching, however, sometimes do not serve as strong
enough incentives for graduates with advanced degrees to remain in academia. Junior
faculty positions at research universities are typically filled from the ranks of postdoc-
toral associates. The majority of UF's graduate students are choosing not to apply for
these positions. "Industry continues to be the principal employer of our graduates,"
remarks Richardson. "I have also seen many of our graduate students go to primarily
undergraduate institutions to teach, but relatively few end up in research universities.
-See Equity in Academia, page 10


On the Cover: Chemistry graduate student Keisha-Gay Hylton checks her experiment's solvent as it dries over molecular sieves.


CLASnotes August 2001


page 9








Equity in Academia,
continued from page 9


This is the norm for virtually all
chemistry departments."
Even though admissions of
females to the graduate program
in chemistry at UF have ranged
from 42 50% of all admissions
over the last three years, Kathryn
Williams, an associate scholar in
chemistry who teaches lecture
courses and supervises undergrad-
uate labs, says women need more
encouragement if they are going
to pursue a career in academia.
"We need our female professors
to serve as mentors for the female
graduate students, and we must
encourage those graduate students
to give female undergrads practi-
cal advice and empowerment to
continue in chemistry." Kleiman
agrees, "The only way we're
going to get more women in aca-
demia is to encourage them to
pursue science at much younger
ages. It starts with teaching
young girls in grade school basic
scientific concepts to spark their
interest. Then we have to continue
encouraging them at the under-
graduate, graduate, postdoc, and
faculty levels so they will start the
cycle again."
McElwee-White points out
that when she was in graduate
school, industry was viewed as
the safe route to take, while a
career in academia had a more
cutthroat reputation. "Even


Lisa McElwee-White's research group. From left to right: Lisa McElwee-White, Betsy Smith, Ben Brooks, Keisha-Gay Hylton,
Corey Anthony (top), Maggie Zhang (bottom),Ying Yang and Gilbert Matare. Not pictured: Ilicia Shugarman and Daniel Serra.


though things are changing and industry isn't as stable as it used to be,
the majority of students in my research group over the last five years
have chosen to go into industry. While there might not be the same
level of research freedom, sometimes there are better salary benefits and
working environments in business. So the problem is not necessarily
the lack of women earning advanced degrees in chemistry, but convinc-
ing them to stay in academia." Keisha-Gay Hylton, a graduate student
in McElwee-White's group, says even though she enjoys lab work,
she is leaning towards a position in the pharmaceutical industry. "I
like the university setting, and I'm grateful for the opportunity to learn
from Lisa and other faculty who are working on cutting edge research.
Eventually, however, I want to leave the laboratory and go into a diver-
sified area such as management, administration, or patent law. I think
there are more opportunities there for advancement in those areas."
Many studies and statistics show that the tenure system, abolition
of mandatory retirement, and cost-cutting measures at universities have
made it difficult for women and minorities to reach leadership positions
in academia. However, many faculty believe that once universities make
a commitment to change, significant advances are possible. And while


I1 Bln in th Eqaion


* Women science PhDs are more likely than their male
counterparts to come from liberal arts institutions.

* A study by Wellesley College found that the oppor-
tunity to conduct research was a significant factor in
a woman's decision to remain with a science major.
However, studies conducted by the University of
Florida and Carnegie Mellon found that women
tend to enter scientific fields with a focus on helping
people, rather than pure research.

* Women constitute 45% of the workforce in the US,
but hold just 12% of science and engineering jobs in
business and industry.


* African American women earn proportionally more
science and engineering undergraduate degrees than
African American men. The same is true for Latinas and
Native American women compared to their male peers,
but does not hold true for white and Asian women.

* Among science, math and engineering faculty,
women tend to teach at more junior levels than
men and are less likely to be tenured. The salary gap
between male and female faculty increases with age.

* Contrary to the popular perception that women sci-
entists leave academia because of demands at home,
most remain continuously employed after completing
their training.


Facts from "Balancing the Equation: Where are Women and Girls in Science and Technology? "a report released in July by
the National Council for Research on Women (NCRW). The University of Florida's Center for Women's Studies and Gender
Research was recently invited to join the NCRW and contributed to the report.


statistics and reports often focus
on the disadvantages women face
in science, McElwee-White main-
tains there is at least one distinct
advantage. "When a group of
chemists are together at a confer-
ence, and a female voice asks a
question, everyone in the room
turns around to see who is speak-
ing. Also, when you publish a
paper, and your name is obviously
the only female author, people
remember it."
Perhaps Anita Borg, founder
of the Institute for Women and
Technology at the Xerox Palo
Alto Research Center captures
the essence of why equity is
important. "There are a lot of very
sane people who are beginning to
understand that if technology and
science are going to go forward
with wild creativity, we need the
brilliance of more than a nar-
row group of people. We need
women-all kinds of women."1
-Allyson A. Beutke


1. Balancing the Equation: Where
are Women and Girls in Science,
Engineering, and Technology?, a report
from the National Council for Research
on Women, July 2001.
2. Chemical and Engineering News, Vol.
79, No. 30 (September 25, 2000).
3. Women Chemists 2000, a report from
the American Chemical Society, August
2000.


CLASnotes August 2001


page 10










Ron Akers


New Associate Dean


Ronald L. Akers, professor of sociology and criminol-
ogy and a 1998-2001 UFRF Professor, is the new
associate dean for faculty affairs. Akers is replac-
ing Joe Glover, who is now associate provost for
Academic Affairs in Tigert.
"We are all very pleased and most fortunate to
have Ron Akers join our ranks of associate deans,"
says Dean Sullivan. "Ron's dedication to the uni-
versity and its faculty, students and staff,as well as
his insistence on high standards in all our areas of
activity will be a tremendous asset to the college."
Akers earned his PhD in sociology from the
University of Kentucky in 1966 and joined the UF
faculty in 1980. He served as director of the Center
for Studies in Criminology and Law from 1994-2001,
chair of the Department of Sociology from 1980-85,
and graduate coordinator in sociology from 1988-
92. Over the years he has been a member or chair
of many committees and task forces in the college
and university, including chair of the College Tenure
and Promotion Committee and president pro-tem
of the CLAS Assembly.
Akers is a leading criminological theorist, best
known as one of the original authors and the prin-
cipal proponent of social learning theory in the
sociology of crime and deviance. His research over
the past three decades has focused on developing
and testing that theoretical perspective. His numer-
ous publications include Drugs, Alcohol and Society
(1992), Social Learning and Social Structure: A General
Theory of Crime and Deviance (1998), and over 75
chapters and articles in major criminology and soci-
ologyjournals.


am grateful to Dean
Neil Sullivan for the
opportunity to serve in
my new position as associ-
ate dean for faculty affairs
in CLAS. I also want
to thank the many col-
leagues who have directly
expressed best wishes and
support.
The position carries
with it responsibilities in
the areas of tenure and
promotion, faculty salaries
and raises, enrollment
management, working with
chairs and directors, faculty
and student grievances,
and other areas related to
faculty. My goal is to sup-
port and facilitate CLAS
departments, centers, and
programs to do the best
they are able with the
available resources in each
of these areas. These are
important and challenging
duties, and I am committed
to doing the very best and
fairest job I can in carrying
them out. At times I will
have to be hard-headed in
making difficult decisions,
but I will strive never to be
hard-hearted.
As many of you know,
I have been in the college


,

*;hI;

for a great many years, and
I have seen the remarkable
strides that, collectively, we
have made. I want to do all
I can to continue that prog-
ress. We are now entering a
very crucial time in the life
of the college and the uni-
versity. The restructuring
of the overall governance
of the state universities and
the way this will be car-
ried out at UF, other recent
legislative and gubernato-
rial initiatives that directly
affect the functioning of the
university, new and tighter
budgetary constraints, and


other changes of historic
proportions mean that great
challenges await us not
only in the immediate
future, but in the long term
as well. I hope I am able
to play a positive role in
the way CLAS meets these
challenges and finds oppor-
tunities in them. Given the
centrality and importance
of CLAS in the university,
how we respond will go a
long way toward determin-
ing how the whole univer-
sity responds.
-Ron Akers


Faculty Senate

Thirty two CLAS faculty members are currently serving two-year terms on the UF Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate is the legislative body of the
university and provides a forum for the exchange of ideas between the administration and faculty.-The university constitution assigns legislative
power to the senate on matters that involve more than one college or school, and on matters of general university interest. These issues include the
educational policies of the university, the creation and abolition of new degree programs, criteria for faculty appointment, promotion and tenure,
recommendations of candidates for honorary degrees, the university calendar, and academic regulations affecting students. The next meeting of the
Faculty Senate will be Thursday, September 6 from 3-5 pm in the Reitz Union, room 282.


Elected for the Term 2000-2002


Elected for the Term 2001-2003


Beverly Brechner, Mathematics
H. Jane Brockmann, Zoology
Ira Clark, English
David Drake, Mathematics
Richard Hiers, Religion
Gary Ihas, Physics
Patricia Kricos, Communication
Sciences and Disorders


Terry Mills, Sociology
Ranjini Natarajan, Statistics
Hal Rennert, Germanic
and Slavic Studies
John Sommerville, History
Grant Thrall, Geography
Robert Wagman, Classics
Dennis Wright, Chemistry


Nora Alter, Germanic
and Slavic Studies
Tom Auxter, Philosophy
Cynthia Chennault, Romance
Languages and Literatures
Walter Cunningham, Psychology
Kim Emery, English
John Eyler, Chemistry
Pamela Gilbert, English
Anthony LaGreca, Sociology


Robert McMahon, History
Paul Mueller, Geological Sciences
Gerald Murra i-... ...
John Oliver, Astronomy
Milagros Pena, Sociology
Jon Reiskind, Zoology
Connie Shehan, Sociology
Sam Trickey, Physics
Bernard W i i; _.. Physics


CLASnotes August 2001


page 11








Renovations


Classic architecture revived


Above: The grand entry to Keene-Flint Hall awaits the final
touches. Below: Anderson Hall's main stairwell is refinished and
brought up to modern safety codes.


Above:When Anderson Hall opened in 1906 it was known as Language Hall. It originally
housed classroom space and offices for history, languages, classics, and mathematics. Now that
renovations are complete, it has eight classrooms and is the new home of the political science
and religion departments.


Right: Until recently, the conference facil-
ity in 215 Dauer was a storage area. It
now sports a 20-person conference table,
and will soon have a state-of-the-art pro-
jection system with a multiregion DVD/
VCR player capable of playing foreign
language material.


CLASnotes August 2001


page 12



































Above: Moving-in day. Members of the history department settle into their new offices in
Keene-Flint Hall.


North entrance to Keene-Flint Hall: Built in 1910 as the Science Hall, this historic structure's reno-
vation began in 1999, thanks to a gift from Ken and Janet Keene. It now houses the history
department and 11 classrooms.


Future Gator

Subject: Hello
Date: Friday, May 11, 2001
To: webadmin@aa.ufl.edu

Dear Sir or Madam:
Hi. My name is Danielle Jones, and I
live in Athens, Georgia. I'm 13 years
old and in the seventh grade. Although
I am still in middle school, I am very
interested in UF. This is a "big mis-
take" according to my family since they
are all bulldog fans. I want to go to
UF when I graduate and study psychol-
ogy. I came to this website for a class
assignment, and I wanted to find out as
much as I could about psychology and the
school. I didn't find too much because
of the wide range of things to look
through. So I decided to email you to
see if I could possibly get some infor-
mation about psychology. That is, if
it's possible.

Thank you so very much, and Go Gators!!

Danielle Jones

<-><-><-><-><-><-><-><-><-><-><-><-><->

Subject: Re: Hello
Date: Friday, May 18, 2001
From: Grove Advise Account grove.ufl.edu>

Danielle,
Thank you for your interest in psychol-
ogy at the University of Florida. As a
Gator fan who has attended many a Gator
Bowl game between Georgia and Florida, I
can well understand your parents' point
of view.

If you'd like, you may send us your
address and I will try to mail out some
material to you including a nice poster
from our department. You are obviously a
very mature student, one thinking ahead
to the future. I too knew by your age
that I wanted to go into the field of
psychology, and I found it difficult to
get material that gave me a clear idea
of what it was all about. I will be able
to answer your questions better if you
tell me if you want to know more about
the field of psychology in general, or
about the specific opportunities to study
psychology at UF.

Please email me back, and I'll try to
provide more information by email as
well as sending something to you. You
and your parents are welcome to visit
if you wish, and we will arrange a tour
of our department. Doing this during
football season might not be the best
time for this, however! Please give my
regards to your parents.

Best wishes,

Dr. Keith Berg
Undergraduate Coordinator
Department of Psychology


CLASnotes August 2001


page 13










G ra nt s through the Division of Sponsored Research


Investigator


Dept. Agency


May 2001 ................................. ....................... Total: $,748,447
Corporate............ $300,398


Lieberman, L.
Katritzky, A.
Katritzky, A.
Katritzky, A.
Katritzky, A.
Katritzky, A.
McElwee-White, L.
Reynolds,J.
Richards, N.


Award Title


FI Clinical Practice Assn
Multiple Companies
Multiple Companies
Multiple Companies
Nippon Soda Company
Upjohn Company
AM Chemical Society
Agfa-Gevaert
Ixion Biotechnology


12,954
3,197
1,090
1,341
145,602
38,182
10,000
86,032
2,000


Center for research on women's health.
Software research support.
Miles compound contract.
Miles compound contract.
Collaborative work in heterocyclic chemistry.
Upjohn service contract.
American chemical society division of organic chemistry fund.
Dioxythiophene polymers: new routes and new materials.
Miscellaneous donors account.


Federal..............$1,309,055


Kolokolova, L.
Gustafson, B.
Lebo,G.
Sarajedini,V.
Benner,S.
Benner,S.
Duran, R.
Scott, M.
Reynolds,J.
Tanner, D.
Henretta,J.
Alladi, K.
Klauder,J.
Mitselmakher,G.
Reitze, D.
Reitze, D.
Tanner, D.
Sabin,J.

Tanner, D.
Devine, D.
Vollmer,T.
Vanhaaren, F.
Carter, R.
Hutson, A.

Miscellaneous.
Dermott, S.
Brenner M.
Hodell, D.
Golant, S.
Mueller, P.
Emmel,T.
Guillette, L.
Larkin, I.


AST NASA


NASA
NASA
NASA
NIH
NSF


89,334 Complex silicate grains with sublimating mantles.


8,000
22,470
39,690
308,548
74,650


CHE US Army


GERON NIH
MAT NSF
PHY NSF
PHY NSF


Spanish version of website.
Illuminating the galactic dark matter.
Grand challenge.
Non-standard base pairs as biomedical research tools.
The US-France REU site in chemistry.


113,705 Electrochromic adaptive infrared camouflage.


31,717
36,361
34,438
101,000


PHY NSF

PHY NSF

PHY US Army
PSY NIH
PSY NIH

STA DOE
STA NIH


........$738,994
AST Miscellaneous Donors
GEO S FL Water Mgmt Dist

GEO FI Housing Finance Corp
GEO UF Foundation
ZOO Miscellaneous Donors
ZOO FL Fish &Wildlife Consrv


Health and retirement study.
Some problems in the theory of partitions and q-series.
Affine quantum gravity.
Application of newly-developed high-precision measurement techniques.


113,700 Methods & instrumentation for high precision characterization of LIGO
optical components.
92,403 Theoretical treatment of environmental effects on spectra and chemical reac-
tivity.
56,515 Electrochromic adaptive infrared camouflage.
84,854 Self-injurious behavior: identification of molecular markers.
90,352 Laboratory evaluations of a common behavioral treatment.

7,458 Creation of an educational data warehouse for assessing student gains.
3,860 Mitochondrial encephalomyopathies and mental retardation.


3,760 University of Florida-Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm fellowship.
79,050 Investigation Of long-term Stability And Phosphorus Accretion By An
Aquatic System.
9,700 Statewide rental market study.
2,000 Allocation for personnel & miscellaneous expenses.
19,500 Unrestricted donation.
24,984 Establishing comprehensive monitoring of reproductive endocrine health in
the endangered Florida manatee.


June 2001 ................ .......
Corporate............$598,280
Oliver-Smith,A. ANT Intermediate Tech Dev Group
Harrison,W. CHE Leco Corporation
Katritzky,A. CHE Merck and Company Inc
Mitselmakher,G. PHY Fermilab 5
Korytov, A.
Mitselmakher,G. PHY Fermilab
Korytov, A.

Federal .............$3,410,496
Mulligan, C. ANT NIH
Boinski,S. ANT NSF
Oliver-Smith, A. ANT EPA


Lada, E.
Angerhofer, A.

Benner,S.
page 14


AST NSF
CHE NSF

CHE NASA


13,000
51,600
27,517
02,649


Year 2: ENSO disaster risk management in Latin America.
Microsecond pulsed glow discharge phase V.
Merck and Company custom synthesis agreement.
US CMS endcap MUON research project-FY 2001.


3,514 US CMS endcap MUON research project-FY 2001.


94,958 Genotype: phenotype associations in alcoholism and alcohol-related disorders.
67,599 Ecological bases of social behavior in capuchins: a three-way comparative study.
9,550 Incorporating local knowledge and natural resource usage into South Florida
ecosystem restoration.
61,401 Investigation of the formation and evolution of stars in young embedded clusters.
47,000 Consortium for the acquisition of a w-band electron magnetic resonance
spectrometer.
48,851 Darwin chemistry (astrobiology).
CLASnotes August 2001


................ ...,.............. Totak: $4,053,667


1


1










Physicist Wins DOE Award


arin Acosta, assistant professor of
physics, received an Outstanding
Junior Investigator Award from
the US Department of Energy. Only five
to ten such awards are given each year,
making it a special honor.
Acosta's area of research is high-
energy particle physics, and the title of
his proposal is "Search for Fundamental
Scalar Particles at Hadron Colliders."
The grant will allow Acosta and his
research group to conduct searches for
new physics using the Collider Detector
at Fermilab experiment (CDF) in Chicago
and the Compact Muon Solenoid experi-
ment (CMS) at the European Center for
Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva,


CHE NIH
CHE US DOE
CHE NSF

CHE NSF
CHE US Army

CHE DOH
CHE NASA

CHE NSF

CHE NASA

CRI US DOJ/NIJ


Binford,M. GEO
Gholz, H.
Dranishnikov,A. MAT
Avery, P. PHY
Yelton,J.
Avery, P. PHY
Yelton,J.
Field, R. PHY
Hebard,A. PHY
Maslov, D.
Konigsberg,J. PHY
Mitselmakher,G.
Mitselmakher,G. PHY
Korytov, A.
Mitselmakher,G. PHY
Reitze, D.
Ramond,P. PHY
Sikivie, P.
Spector,A. PSY
Geran, L.
Casella,G. STA
Shuster,J. STA


Switzerland. Acosta will use the award
to support graduate and postdoctoral stu-
dents who are working on his research
program involving the CDF and CMS
experiments.
Acosta remarks on the enormity of
the CMS experiment, for which his group
is developing hardware; "'Compact' is a
misnomer. The experiment will be five
stories tall, weigh over 12,000 tons, and
contain enough steel to build the Eiffel
Tower. The magnet for CMS will be the
largest ever built, and the energy stored
in it is the same as the kinetic energy of a
747 in flight! It's ironic that to look at the
smallest things in nature we need the big-
gest machines."


47,230 PETR imaging of hypoxic tissue with EF1 and EF5.
59,441 Operations funding for the material research collaborative access team.
26,206 Biocatlaytic conversion of aromatic waste into useful compounds amaryllida-
ceae alkaloids and oligo inositols.
141,649 Ultratrace chemical analysis with nanotubule membranes fundamental studies.
25,017 Electrochromic adaptive infrared camouflage.


173,945
52,972

138,678

22,000

37,847

33,333

31,186
273,667


NASA

NSF
US DOE

US DOE

US DOE
NSF

US DOE

US DOE

NSF

US DOE


NIH


Miscellaneous........ $44,891
Bernard, H. ANT Am Heart Assoc
Gravlee, C.
Bowes,G. BOT Multiple Sponsors
Katritzky,A. CHE Multiple Companies
Katritzky,A. CHE Multiple Companies
Katritzky,A. CHE Multiple Companies
Katritzky,A. CHE Multiple Companies
Hollinger, R. SOC Multiple Sources
CLASnotes August 2001


Synthesis and characterization of asparagine synthetase inhibitors.
The features of self assembling organic bilayers important to the formation of
inorganic materials.
Supramolecular assembly at interfaces: coordinate covalent networks and
polygons at the air/water interface.
High performance mass spectrometry with a miniature ion trapfor biological
and environmental monitoring.
Gender, workand urban violence: estimating the direct and indirect linkages
between the economic transformation.
Land-use and land-cover change: decadal-scale dynamics of land ownership
land management and carbon storage patterns.
Asymptotic topology of metric spaces.
Task B: research in theoretical and experimental elementary particle physics.


35,850 Task S: computer acquisition for research in theoretical and experimental high
energy physics.
23,543 Task F: CDF/phenomenology.
94,256 Luttinger-liquid phase induced by ultraquantum high magnetic fields.

182,608 Task H: experimental research in collider physics at CDF.

441,623 Task G: experimental research in collider physics at CMS.

560,856 Detection of gravitational waves:advanced research and development for LIGO.

352,325 Task A: research in theoretical elementary particle physics.

23,643 The psychophysics of salt taste transduction pathways.

75,600 Implementation of accurate methods for practical inference.
27,662 Minimal Residual Disease (MRD) in childhood clymphoblastic leukemia.


17,000 Skin color, social status and blood pressure in Southeast Puerto Rico.


4,093
1,250
6,552
2,727
2,269
11,000


Miscellaneous donors, unrestricted donation.
Software research support.
Miles compound contract.
Miles compound contract.
Miles compound contract.
Security research project.


page 15


Dolbier,W.
Duran, R.
Hudlicky,T.

Martin, C.
Reynolds,J.
Tanner, D.
Richards, N.
Talham,D.

Talham,D.

Yost, R.

Parker, K.








Sunny Days Were Dark Times for the Ancient Maya


Global climate change is the subject of
much debate. One issue that remains
hotly contested is the role humans have played
in recent climate shifts. To address this ques-
tion satisfactorily, we must know the mag-
nitude of natural temperature and moisture
variations over the last 10,000 years, prior
to the period when human activities, such as
widespread deforestation and fossil fuel com-
bustion, would have affected global climate
patterns. Instrumental climate records extend
back in time only about a century, so we rely
on "paleoclimate" information in natural
archives such as tree rings, peat bogs, glacial
ice, marine deposits, and lake sediments.
In a recent article in the journal Science
(27 April 2001, v. 292), Peter DeMenocal
reviewed four case studies of past cultures
whose demise was linked to abrupt but
persistent climate change (Akkadians of
Mesopotomia, Classic Maya of Mesoamerica,
Moche of coastal Peru, and Tiwanaku of the
Bolivian-Peruvian altiplano). His coverage of
the Maya and Tiwanaku regions summarizes
recent paleoclimate work conducted by UF
investigators in the departments of geological


sciences (David Hodell, Jason Curtis, Mark
Brenner) and geography (Michael Binford).
In 1995, Hodell, Curtis and Brenner
published a paleoclimate record from Lake
Chichancanab on the Yucatan Peninsula
that showed an intense, protracted drought
occurred in the 9th century AD and coincided
with the Classic Maya collapse (Nature, v.
375). Hodell, Curtis and Brenner returned to
Lake Chichancanab in May 2000 and collected
new cores while being filmed for a BBC pro-
duction on drought and Maya prehistory (as
part of the BBC series "Ancient Apocalypse,"
scheduled to air in the near future).
These new cores showed that the devas-
tating drought of the ninth century AD was
only one in a series of drought episodes on the
Yucatan Peninsula during the last 2,600 years.
In another recent issue of Science (18 May
2001, v. 292), this research team points out
that these dry events occur about every 208
years and coincide with episodes of greater
solar output that have been shown previously
to have a periodicity of 206 years. This sug-
gests that the roughly bicentennial droughts
that occur in the Maya lowlands are controlled


partly by changes in solar intensity.
In a similar study, Binford and colleagues
reconstructed changes in the level of Lake
Titicaca from a suite of lake sediment cores
taken from the southern basin (Binford et al.,
1997, Quaternary Research, v. 47). A lake
level decline of about 16 meters provided
evidence of dramatic moisture reduction in the
basin, which occurred around 1150 AD. This
drought is thought to have been responsible for
the cessation of Tiwanaku raised-field agricul-
ture and the consequent population decline in
the region.
The research of the UF team is part of an
interdisciplinary effort to study the complex
relations among climate, environment, and
humans, which is the mission of UF's newly
established Land Use and Environmental
Change Institute (LUECI). By studying past
cultural adaptations to climate and environ-
mental change, researchers hope to gain valu-
able perspective on the possible responses of
modern societies to present and future environ-
mental change.
-Mark Brenner and Dave Hodell


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CLASnotes is published monthly by the College
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CLASnotes August 2001


page 16