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About the College | Achievements

Please see below for recent student, alumni, faculty, and staff accomplishments:

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Daniel Abraham (performing arts) received a $7,000 award from the U.S. Department of State for the American University Chamber Singers: Collaborative Concert Tour of Russia, May 2013.

Sarah Irvine Belson (SETH) is the PI on a partnership with the City Year program to provide graduate education to a cohort of City Year participants. The City Year program includes three separate graduate programs in the School of Education, Teaching, and Health: (1) a Master of Education (MEd) program with a concentration in Educational Policy and Leadership; (2) a Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program, and (3) a Master of Arts in Special Education: Learning Disabilities (MA) Program. City Year is a non-profit organization that brings young people (most of them recent college graduates) together to complete one year of full-time community service in high-need school districts around the country.

The National Science Foundation awarded a grant of $1,884,606 to the project "From the Laboratory to the Classroom: Building Capacity for Math and Science Teaching in DC (Lab2Class)." The project is under the direction of Sarah Irvine Belson, Kiho Kim, Bianca Abrams, John P. Nolan, and Michael Keynes.

Stephen Casey (mathematics and statistics) received an award of $145,537 from the Air Force Office of Scientific Research for the three-year project "New Techniques in Time Frequency Analysis: Adaptive Band, Ultra Band and Multi-Rate Signal Processing."

David Culver (environmental science) received a $12,224 award from the University of the District of Columbia (UDC) for the project, "Biological Inventory of Seepage Springs and Vernal Pools: Small Isolated Wetlands in Parks of National Capital East (NPS)."

Terry Davidson (psychology) received $194,971 of funding for year 1 of a 3 year project totaling $637,991 from NIH for his project "Signals to Feed: Biological and Associative Mechanisms."

Terry Davidson's (psychology) $143,583 grant from NIH was transferred from Purdue University. The title of his project is "Energy Dysregulation: Behavioral and Biological Signals." 

Ali Enayat (mathematics and statistics) received a $35,000 Collaboration Grant for Mathematicians from the Simons Foundation for the five-year project "Model Theory of Foundational Systems."

Kathleen Franz (history) received an award from the Smithsonian Institution in the a mount of $18,710 for the project entitled "American Enterprise Exhibition."

David Haaga (psychology) received a $30,000 award from the Trichotillomania Learning Center for his project, "Efficacy of COMB Model of Treating Trichotillomania." 

Daniel Kerr (history) received an award for $5,105 from the National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior for "Research for the 150th Anniversary Celebration of the Emancipation and the Emancipation Proclamation."

Robert Lerman (economics) received a $96,607 award from Rutgers University for his project, "Science & Engineering Educational and Employment Pathways."

Stephen MacAvoy (environmental science) received a $25,902 award from the University of the District of Columbia for the project "District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services."

AU dance artist in residence Christopher K. Morgan (performing arts) received a fellowship award from the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation. Morgan is one of two recipients in dance to receive the $20,000 unrestricted award.

April Shelford (history) has been awarded a $21,000 fellowship at the the John Carter Brown Library to work on her project "A Caribbean Enlightenment."

Anastasia Snelling (SETH) received a $20,000 award from Aetna Foundation for the project, "Community Voices for Health - Kids Take Action."

Anastasia Snelling (SETH) testified to the DC Council Committee of the Whole and the Committee on the Environment, Public Works, and Transportation on the Implementation of the Healthy Schools Act and the District's Environmental Literacy Plan. She cited research she had done with Sarah Irvine-Belson (SETH) to measure the impact of the Healthy Schools Act.

Sue Ann Taylor (anthropology) received a $43,690 grant from the National Park Service for her project "Washington, D.C., Civil War Contraband Ethnography Study (1861-1877)."

Jonathan Tubman (psychology) received a $2,486,981 award from the National Institutes of Health for the five-year project, "Multisite School-Based Evaluation of a Brief Screener for Underage Drinking."




Education Portal named American University's Audio Technology Program as the number one among top Audio Engineering and Production schools. 

Dan Abraham's (performing arts) new Zelenka Capriccios CD is featured world wide on the front page of itunes classical as "New & Noteworthy." This is Abraham's 5th commercial CD with Bach Sinfonia. The Zelenka recording constitutes significant research that will culminate not only in one of the first period instrument recordings of these significant and virtuosic works, but also in a forthcoming critical edition and performance materials of these five major baroque works.

Ivy Broder (economics) has been named the 2012 winner of the University's Milton and Sonia Greenberg Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Award for her online Economics of World Regions course, offered each spring, reaching out to Study Abroad students scattered all around the world, and her paper evaluating this experience presented at the AEA's National Conference on Teaching Economics and Research in Economic Education last summer.

A team from American University won the preliminary round of the College Fed Challenge competition held November 1 and the Fifth District championship in Richmond on November 13. The team included economics students Ayesha Cooray, Peter Blankenship, and Zachary Smith and was coached by professor Evan Kraft (economics). The team will compete in the finals to be held on November 27 at the Board of Governors of the Fed in Washington.

Evan Berry (philosophy and religion) was named a Global Ethics Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs Fellow. Fellows enable their students to interact with other students and educators around the world and meet annually to exchange ideas for research, teaching, and public engagement.

Lauren Curtis (MS chemistry 09), combines her passions for chemistry and dog training to teach scientific concepts. Her most recent chemistry video went viral and received more than 570,000 views in less than a week.

Melanie George (performing arts) has been appointed to the adjudicating panel for the 2012 Metro DC Dance Awards. The awards are facilitated by Dance Metro DC, the region's dance service organization and are comparable to New York's Bessie awards.

Dan Kalman (mathematics) received the Trevor Evans Award from Mathematical Association of America at 2012 MAA MathFest in Madison, Wisconsin, along with Nathan Carter for their article “Harvey Plotter and the Circle of Irrationality,” Math Horizons, vol. 19:2 (2011), p. 10-13.

Tatehona J. Kelly (BA, history) won the Hurston/Wright Award for College Writers for her novel excerpt Whispers to My Soul. In addition to being a history major Kelly is a creative writing student.

Alan Kraut (history) was voted in as President-Elect of the Organization of American Historians for 2012.

Adrea Lawrence's (SETH) book, Lessons From an Indian Day School, received honorable mention for the outstanding book award from the History of Education Society.

Heather McDonald's (literature) essay "How to Fix Everything" (Creative Nonfiction, spring 2011) was named a notable essay for Best American Essays 2012. Kermit Moyer's (emeritus, literature) essay "A Stranger to Himself" (Washingtonian, August 2011) was also picked for the same honor.

Mark Oxman (art, emeritus) was commissioned to sculpt a bust of Elizabeth Joye Roe, the concert pianist, Steinway Artist, and Soros Fellow.

Kristen Pearlstein (anthropology graduate student) received a Wenner-Gren Dissertation Fieldwork Grant. She is a student in biological anthropology.

Tate Strickland (art) received a 2013 IxDA Interaction Award in the "Connecting" category for his work as lead designer on on the mobile app and strategy for Obama's 2012 reelection campaign (iPhone and Android).

Ximena Varela (arts management) has been appointed to the Editorial Board of the newly formed American Journal of Arts Management.  

The American Association of University Women (AAUW) awarded a 2012–13 American Fellowship to Katharina Vester (history). The fellowship will allow Vester to finish her first monograph, A Taste of Power: Food and the Making ofAmericans.



Naomi S. Baron (world languages & cultures) is author of a chapter on “The Impact of Electronically-Mediated Communication on Language Standards and Style” that has just appeared in The Oxford Handbook of the History of English (edited by Terttu Nevalainen and Elizabeth Closs Traugott).

Arnold Danielson (BA '62) just published A Traveler's History of the Cote d'Azur (Sweet Dreams Publishing of MA, 2012).

In Maragaret Rossiter's book, Women Scientists in America: Forging a New World Since 1972, Mary Gray (mathematics and statistics) is featured as a founding member of the Association for Women in Mathematics, and for her expert testimony for Senator Edward Kennedy’s 1979–1980 “women in science” bill, which established an advisory committee on women and minorities for the National Science Foundation. The book also mentions that Gray secured modest corporate funding to profide speakers targeted tenth-grade girls in order to help them acquire the requisite skills for advanced work in science and engineering.

Consuelo Hernandez (WLC) has published “Razones poéticas.” Veinte veces luna es poesía. Ed. Rei Berroa. Santo Domingo: Editorial Búho, 2012. 133, 156; and “Polifonía sobre rieles.” Premios del Tren: Antonio Machado. Madrid: Fundación de Ferrocarriles Españoles, 2012. 117-128

Alena Israli's (WLC) book, What You Always Wanted to Know about Russian Grammar (*But Were Afraid to Ask), was published by Slavica Publishers.

Eric Lohr's (history) book Russian Citizenship: From Empire to Soviet Union (Harvard University Press, 2012) is also available in ebook format.

David Pike's (literature) book, Canadian Cinema since the 1980s: at the Heart of the World, was just published.

Chris Tudda (PhD history '02) recently published A Cold War Turning Point: Nixon and China 1969-1972 (LSU Press, 2012).

Vivian Vasquez' (SETH) sixth book, Perspectives and Provocations in Early Childhood Education has just been published by Information Age Publishing. Her co-authored book Technology and Critical Literacy in Early Childhood Education has just been published in Kindle format.

Jon D. Wisman (economics) and Aaron Pacitti published “What Could the Wealth Gained by The Richest Americans Since 1979 Have Paid For?” in ThinkProgress and “It’s the Inequality, Stupid,” in the Huffington Post.

Josette A. Wisman (world languages and cultures, emerita) published a chapter entitled "Christine de Pizan" in Marion Ann Taylor, ed. Handbook of Women Biblical Interpreters. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2012


Terry Davidson (psychology) spoke recently at the American Psychological Association meeting about the effects of high-sugar, high-fat foods on the function of the brain's hippocampus, the area of the brain that is important for memory.

Max Paul Friedman (history) presented “Simulacrobama and the Neoliberal Crisis: The Collapse of American Exceptionalism” at the Paris meeting of the Association for Cultural Studies sponsored by UNESCO.


Naomi Baron (WLC) was quoted in the Washington Post about the language we use to talk about storms like Hurricane Sandy.

In a Philadelphia Inquirer online op-ed, professor emerita of economics Barbara Bergmann discussed the misconceptions about the possibility of Social Security running out of money.

British electronic news source, Sky News, interviewed Robert Blecker (economics) on the subject of Mitt Romney's business experience and its relevance to the presidency, the election campaign, and economic policy making the morning after the first debate.

Russia Beyond the Headlines pubilshed an in-depth feature about the Initiative for Russian Culture and the "Dostoyevsky's Russia" study trip led by Anton Fedyashin (history).

Max Paul Friedman (history) was interviewed on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s “Late Night Live” about his forthcoming book Rethinking Anti-Americanism: The History of an Exceptional Concept in American Foreign Relations (Cambridge University Press, 2012).

Matthew Hartings (chemistry) commented in the New York Times on the importance of research being done by Paul Chirk at Princeton to develop catalysts that allow inexpensive materials to function as precious metals commonly used in manufacturing as a way to protect valuable natural resources.

Laura Juliano (psychology) was quoted in Experience Life Magazine on the addictive effects of caffeine.

USA Today talked to psychology professor Laura Juliano about the FDA’s investigation into 5-hour Energy and alleged caffeine-related deaths.

Robert Lerman (economics) spoke about apprenticeships on the NPR program "Tell Me More" on December 11.

Robert Lerman (economics) spoke on NPR about the increasing willingness to discuss apprenticeships as a viable career alternative to costly college degrees for students.

Robert Lerman (economics) was quoted in a CNN Money article about why the jobs recovery favors young people. 

Robert Lehrman (economics) was quoted in the Greeley (NC) Tribune about the disconnect between work and education and the possible impact on the future of higher education.

The Washington Post interviewed history professor Peter Kuznick and director Oilver Stone about their recent collaboration on the book and television series The Untold History of the United States. Kuznick and Stone also discussed the project in-studio on MSNBC’s Morning Joe.

Peter Kuznick (history) did a TV interview with Okinawa's Ryuku Asahi Broadcasting on the history of the conflict over stationing U.S. troops in Okinawa and the latest developments surrounding the rape of the young woman by two U.S. troops.

A New York Times Magazine feature described history professor Peter Kuznick’s influence on The Untold History of the United States, a New York Times bestselling book and Showtime series, on which he collaborated with director Oliver Stone. The Associated Press, and Harper’s also wrote about Kuznick’s recent work. More than 250 outlets, including ABC News Online, Charlotte Observer, and The Fresno Bee republished the AP article.

BackStory on NPR interviewed Katharina Vester (history) for the episode “Beach Bodies: A History of the American Physique” on dieting in the 19th century (aired in early August and now a podcast)

Jon D. Wisman (economics) was interviewed by the radio program BusinessMatters on the topic "The Price of Inequality."