From Bedrock Mapping to “Little Nemo in Slumberland”: Allegheny Students and Faculty Present Their Work

April 3, 2013 — Faculty and students at Allegheny College have recently authored works or participated in professional activities in a broad range of disciplines.

Senior Jocelyn Levis and sophomore Jamie Moran are the two members of one of the 60 undergraduate research teams selected to meet with legislators on Capitol Hill and present their work at the 17th annual Posters on the Hill event sponsored by the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR). More than 800 student applications were received for the opportunity to connect with policymakers and help members of Congress understand the importance of undergraduate research by talking directly with the students whom these programs impact. Both students have been working for the last year on a regional bedrock mapping project with Associate Professor of Geology Rachel O’Brien. The results of the mapping project have important implications for the mapping and protection of freshwater aquifer systems in northwestern Pennsylvania.

Assistant Professor of Global Health and Development Liz Olson presented her paper “Critical learning for whom? Reconsidering the importance of place in an era of globalization” as a discussion piece at the culmination of a two-part panel on Critical Learning in Critical Spaces at the Dimensions of Political Ecology conference in Lexington, Kentucky. The two-part panel that Professor Olson led and co-organized with Visiting Assistant Professor of Environmental Science Shaunna Barnhart showcased the work of three Allegheny students: Senior Shannon Wade presented portions of her senior project titled “To Frack or Not to Frack: Performance as a Tool for Environmental Activism at Allegheny College.” Junior Max Lindquist presented critical reflections on some of his study-away experiences in his paper titled “Place-based Pedagogy: A Student’s Perspective.” Senior Brian Anderson also presented portions of his senior project in his paper titled “Allegheny College Students in the Context of Community Development.” These three students were part of the two-part panel that included graduate students and practicing anthropologists and geographers from around the world.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Environmental Science Shaunna Barnhart presented her work titled “Challenging Land Application of Biosolids/Sewage Sludge” as part of the Appalachian Contours panel at the 2013 Dimensions of Political Ecology Conference at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, held March 1-2. She also published an article, “Individual Energy Choices,” in the recently released Climate Change: An Encyclopedia of Science and History.

Professor of Environmental Science Richard Bowden was co-author on a paper, “Root stress and nitrogen deposition: consequences and research priorities,” published in New Phytologist. The work, based on long-term experiments examining acid rain impacts on forest ecosystems, examines mechanisms that govern responses by tree roots to acidic inputs, thus controlling forest nutrient cycling and productivity.

At the Mid-America Theatre Conference in St. Louis in March, Associate Professor of Theatre Mark Cosdon presented “Fabricated Myths: Little Nemo in Slumberland and Producers Klaw and Erlanger.” As president of the American Theatre and Drama Society, Professor Cosdon hosted a reading at the Drama Book Shop in Times Square in New York City. He served as a respondent at the American Theatre and Drama Society’s Works-in-Progress Conference in Pittsburgh. He was a consultant on the seventh edition of the Bedford Introduction to Drama. As a member of the editorial board for the “Theatre in the Americas” Series, he reviewed two manuscripts for Southern Illinois University Press.

Provost Linda DeMeritt, ACE Fellow Lisa Henderson, and Chaplain Jane Ellen Nickell presented “A Gateway to Community, Cultures, and Careers” at the second national conference of the Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE), which met in Indianapolis March 14-16. The presentation described the proposed Allegheny Gateway and the opportunities it presents for vocational exploration. NetVUE is a network of 183 member schools, administered by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) with support from the Lilly Endowment.

Visiting Assistant Professor Cheryl Hatch and JR Ancheta presented “Generations of War: From Africa to Afghanistan” at the “Documents of War: the ethics and challenges of visual storytelling” conference at Allegheny College, March 8-9. Professor Hatch showed her photographs from a decade covering conflict in the Middle East and Africa. Professor Hatch’s former student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Ancheta showed images from their long-term project documenting soldiers with the 1/25 Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Fort Wainwright, Alaska, including an embed with the brigade’s 1st Battalion 5th Infantry Regiment in the Horn of Panjawai’i in southern Kandahar Province, Afghanistan, in the winter of 2011-2012. Professor Hatch’s work can be viewed at

Creek Connections Project Manager Wendy Kedzierski was a presenter on a National Wildlife Webinar on their Ranger Rick Geocache Trails on March 5.

Professor of Religious Studies Carl Olson’s essay “Technology, Violence, and Non-Violence: A Gandhian Type of Response” appears in Classical and Contemporary Issues in Indian Studies: Essays in Honour of Trichur S. Rukmani, edited by P. Pratap Kumar and Jonathan Duquette (New Delhi: DK Printword, 2013): 360-377. The book represents a Festschrift for a distinguished Indian scholar. Professor Olson has also signed a contract with Routledge Publishing in London to produce a textbook for a college-level course that is tentatively titled Religious Ways of Experiencing: A Narrative Approach.

Professor of Art George Roland had a work of computational art accepted for exhibition in the 102nd Associated Artists of Pittsburgh Annual Exhibition, April 21–June 23, to be held in the Heinz Galleries of the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. This year’s exhibition was selected by David Norr, chief curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland.

Allegheny College’s LITS team hosted GLCA-IT 2013, the annual meeting of computing professionals from GLCA schools, March 18-20. This year’s theme was collaboration, and 39 technologists gathered for two days of formal and informal sessions related to supporting technology at a liberal arts college. Several Allegheny community members facilitated conference sessions: “Adventures in Introducing Project Management/Process Improvement,” Christine Rick; “Building Collaboration Across Communities: Perspectives from the Front,” Amelia Carr and Helen McCullough; “Collaborative Support for Effective Administrative Decisions,” P. Todd Fox and Jason Ramsey; “Implementing a Print Management System,” James Fadden, Fernando Hernandez, and Jodi Millin. Discussion sessions to open and close the conference were facilitated by Rick Holmgren. James Fadden, Michael Hurley, Helen McCullough, Rich Metzger, Jason Ramsey, and Christine Rick served as the conference planning committee.