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Open Position - Assistant Professor of Engineering

Posted by Physics

Wheaton College seeks to fill a new tenure track position of assistant professor in engineering for the fall 2016 semester.

Wheaton's "3-2", or dual-degree engineering program, begun in 1969, has grown from a pre-engineering program and now includes a growing list of engineering courses in the catalog.

We are seeking candidates with an earned Ph. D. in engineering, broad knowledge of the discipline, the ability to provide skilled and motivational instruction in lower division engineering courses, and a desire to engage students' passions and interests in an active-learning environment.

Industry experience as a practicing engineer, with hands-on design and project experience, is highly valued. It is expected that the candidate will maintain a research program on campus or in collaboration with neighboring national labs or industry, preferably one in which students are involved.

Interest in the interaction of Christian faith with the practice of engineering and active mentoring of students in this area is an important component of the position.

The College is located 25 miles west of Chicago and is near two national laboratories. For more information, please visit www.wheaton.edu/physics. Wheaton College is an evangelical Christian liberal arts college whose faculty and staff affirm a Statement of Faith and adhere to lifestyle expectations. The College complies with federal and state guidelines of nondiscrimination in employment. Women and minority applicants are encouraged to apply.  Review of applications will begin Nov. 1 and continue until the position is filled. A fact sheet with more detailed information about the 3-2 program is available upon request.

Interested individuals should send a curriculum vitae and a statement of teaching philosophy and research interests to:

Dr. Darren Craig, Department Chair

501 College Avenue
Wheaton College
Wheaton, IL 60187

Applications will be mailed to promising candidates.

Emily Willson ('16) Presents Research at International Conference In Toronto

Posted by Physics
Willson ISMR

Emily Willson (’16), a physics and mathematics major at Wheaton College, has presented nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) research at the 2015 meeting of the International Society of Magnetic Resonance in Medicine (ISMRM) conference in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Emily is working with Dr. Heather M. Whitney on a project that seeks to predict the role of radiation damping in magnetization transfer (MT) measurements. The title of her poster presentation is “Initial Investigation into Effect of Radiation Damping on Magnetization Transfer Parameters Extracted From Inversion Recovery Experiments.”

“MT is a property of macromolecular systems – materials that are made up of semisolids – that can be measured by magnetic resonance experiments,” said Willson. “Measuring them is part of an effort in biomedical circles to make imaging measurements overall more quantitative, so that the actual measurement of a value can be associated with some state of a tissue, versus a qualitative comparison which points out that there are just differences that exist.”

“MT and the parameters that describe it, such as the ratio of protons in the liquid versus the semisolid state, have the potential of serving as biomarkers for certain disease states. Currently, one variation of an MT measurement serves to measure the presence of multiple sclerosis,” said Dr. Whitney. “Our research is part of a larger effort to investigate how robust these measurements are in the presence of imaging difficulties such as radiation damping, also known as RD. RD occurs when the measured signal is so strong that it induces a current in the coils that produce magnetic fields in an NMR system, which makes it more difficult to acquire quantitative information.”

Willson’s work uses a simulation of the different portions of protons that interact in magnetization transfer. She then simulates different levels of RD to see how it affects the ability to extract the MT parameters. “Emily’s work is a good example of interdisciplinary research at the undergraduate level. She is incorporating principles from physics, mathematics, computer science, and even a little chemistry. We’re excited to present her work at ISMRM, where Wheaton may be the only undergraduate institution represented there.”

Dr. Whitney given Young Alumnus Achievement Award at King University

Posted by Physics

Dr. Heather M. Whitney was given the 2014 Young Alumnus Achievement Award by her alma mater, King University >> in Bristol, Tennessee. The award is given to highlight exemplary work that reflects well on the principles of the institution.

“I am honored to receive this award from King, where I learned from many professors who had a love of the Christian liberal arts. I pass on their spirit of teaching every day to my students at Wheaton College and am proud to do so.”

Meryl Vannoy Presents Research Poster at Wheaton Undergraduate Poster Competition

Posted by Physics
meryl_poster

Meryl Vannoy (Liberal Arts Engineering / Chemical Engineering '17) presents her poster during the Wheaton College Undergraduate Poster Competition, organized by the Buswell Library. Students from all academic discipline were able to participate. Meryl presented her poster on the research that she had done over the summer at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in the Chemistry Department. Her research focused on hybrid materials (thermoplastics) and their shape change during 3D printing. Pictures from the event can be found on the library's facebook page >>.

Dr. Whitney presents at national physics teaching conference

Posted by Physics
Whitney presentes at AAPT


Dr. Heather M. Whitney was invited to speak at the 2015 Winter Meeting of the American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) conference in San Diego, CA. Her presentation, “Discourse Communities as a Framework for Writing in Physics” was prepared in collaboration with Dr. Jim Beitler of the Wheaton College Department of English.

“I was excited to share with the AAPT community the work we are doing in my classes to incorporate writing as a structure that supports the learning of physics, said Dr. Whitney. “Dr. Beitler and I worked to incorporate the principles of writing communities into the course I teach on Analytical Mechanics. Writing communities share domains of knowledge in content, rhetoric, writing method, and genre so that the writing process is more holistic and supportive of learning in many ways.”

Dr. Whitney incorporated the ideas of a discourse community, most practically through writing workshops, in PHYS341, the department’s Analytical Mechanics course. All students reported being satisfied or highly satisfied with the process, and all students reported that they believed it to be a strong support in their learning of mechanics. She looks forward to further incorporating discourse community principles in the department’s sophomore-level Modern Science Skills Laboratory.

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