Thomas Parisi

STEM Café tackles mysterious Higgs boson

STEM Cafe logo: Feed your mind!
Northern Illinois University physics professor Dhiman Chakraborty is preparing to reprise his popular talk on the mysterious Higgs boson for the DeKalb community. For decades, the Higgs boson was the holy grail of particle physics. Its detection confirms the existence of the Higgs field, which permeates the universe and gives particles mass. Without the Higgs boson…

NIU prof helps shed light on primate longevity

Mitch Irwin and Karen Samond observe a lemur in Madagascar.
What won’t Mitch Irwin do in the name of science? Irwin, a Northern Illinois University anthropologist, went to great lengths to collect data in Madagascar for a fascinating new study that sheds light on why primates live long lives. An international team of scientists working with primates in zoos, sanctuaries and in the wild examined daily energy…

NIU is NEH strong

A boy flees Paris during the Battle of France. The photograph is the work of Theresa Bonney and published in her “Europe’s Children, 1939-1943” book of photographs.
Northern Illinois University faculty members have been named as recipients of three highly competitive funding awards from the National Endowment for the Humanities. NIU received more grants in this latest award cycle than any other Illinois institution. NEH grants went to: Heide Fehrenbach, a Board of Trustees Professor of history, who received a $50,400 Fellowship for University…

NEH awards grant to Anthropology Museum

An armored vest from the Tana Toraja people of Sulawesi, Indonesia, is one of the featured items in the "Rarely Seen Southeast Asia" exhibit on display through May 15 at the NIU Anthropology Museum.
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has awarded a Preservation Assistance grant to the NIU Anthropology Museum. Grant funds will support conservation training for museum staff, supplies to improve textile storage, and environmental monitoring kits. These competitive NEH grants are awarded after a rigorous peer-review process. The Textile Storage and Environmental Monitoring project, supported by this…

3 tips to help with your New Year’s resolution

Photo of feet on a scale
Got a New Year’s resolution in mind? NIU Psychology Professor Amanda Durik offers three motivational science-based tips that could help you accomplish your goals. Durik blogs on the topic this week on the Psychology Today website. (NIU psychology professors are regular contributors to the site.) She says accumulating research in the science of motivation suggests that…

App-y Holidays

John Barnes
The NIU Department of Computer Science has issued its first certificate of study in mobile device programming, one of the most exciting new areas in the field of computing. NIU faculty partnered with Lextech Global Services to offer the series of courses teaching students how to write apps for the iPhone, Android, Windows Phone and other…

Grants boost NIU chemist’s work to help CSIs

Professor Oliver Hofstetter
NIU Chemistry and Biochemistry professor Oliver Hofstetter will continue his collaboration with Australian universities and police departments, developing antibodies for use in the visualization of latent fingerprints. Professor Hofstetter and his colleagues received about $330,000 in grants – $240,000 from the Australian Research Council and another for $90,000 from the Defence Science & Technology Organisation, a…

Xiao named interim associate dean for research

Zhili Xiao
Zhili Xiao, an NIU Board of Trustees Professor of physics, has accepted an appointment as interim associate dean for research and graduate studies. Xiao is stepping into a role that was filled by Lesley Rigg, who is now serving as interim vice president for research and graduate studies. Xiao’s appointment begins in January and will conclude…

NIU launches Accelerated Law Degree program

Photo of a gavel resting on law books
Northern Illinois University is now offering a new academic program that will put some undergraduates on the fast track to earn a law degree. The six-year Accelerated Law Degree program will enable designated political science majors to shave a year’s worth of time and expense off the typical seven years needed to earn both bachelor’s and…

Barbe noted for advancing teaching of German

Katharina Barbe receives her Certificate of Merit from Christoph Veldhues, director of Language Programs North America for the Goethe-Institut.
The American Association of Teachers of German is recognizing Katharina Barbe, an associate professor of German and chair of the Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures at Northern Illinois University, for her many contributions. In late November, Barbe was presented with the AATG/Goethe-Institut Certificate of Merit during the AATG annual meeting in Orlando, Fla. The certificate is…