CoAS Welcomes New Faculty

By Jacob Harte
Photos by Imani Nia Rutledge

Dr. Brent Luvaas, Assistant Professor, Department of Culture and Communication

October 1, 2009 — Brent LuvaasDr. Brent Luvaas received his B.A. in anthropology with a minor in Southeast Asian studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz and then went on to get his Ph.D. in socio-cultural anthropology from the University of California, Los Angeles. His dissertation fieldwork funded by Fulbright-Hays and the University of California Pacific Rim Research Program on independent music, fashion, and zine production in Indonesia and the ways in which Indonesians are precisely making use of new media technologies to rework conventional notions of what it means to be young, modern and Indonesian. Dr. Luvaas is currently working on a book about the Indonesian indie scene and soon will be launching a new research project on Indonesia’s Internet culture. Dr. Luvaas plans to work collaboratively with colleagues across disciplines on critical issues related to media and identity in the Digital Age.

Dr. Bo Dong, Assistant Professor, Department of Mathematics

Dr. Bo DongDr. Bo Dong received her B.S. in mathematics from the University of Science and Technology of China in 2002 and her Ph.D in mathematics from the University of Minnesota in 2007. Dr. Dong began her career at Brown University as a Prager Assistant Professor in the Division of Applied Mathematics. As a new faculty member, Dr. Dong hopes to achieve excellence in both teaching and research and “share the beauty of Mathematics” with her students.

Dr. Kevin Shuford, Assistant Professor, Department of Chemistry

Kevin ShufordDr. Kevin Shuford received a B.S. in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in 1998 and his Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Florida in 2003. Before coming to Drexel, Dr. Shuford was a Postdoctoral Associate in the Chemistry Department at Northwestern University from 2003 to 2006 and from 2006 to 2009 he was a staff member in the Chemical Sciences Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Dr. Shuford’s research interests include electrical energy storage, nanophotonics, chemical/biological sensors, classical dynamics, quantum dynamics and method development of continuum electrodynamics. When asked what he hopes to accomplish at Drexel, Dr. Shuford replied, “I aspire to provide quality education to students and produce internationally recognized research.”

Dr. Mimi Sheller, Professor, Department of Culture and Communication

Mimi ShellerDr. Mimi Sheller joined the Department of Culture of Communication as a Professor, as well as Director of the new Center for Mobilities Research and Policy. Dr. Sheller received her B.A. in history and literature from Harvard University in 1988 (summa cum laude) and received her Ph.D. in sociology and historical studies from the New School for Social Research in 1997. She held a post-doctoral fellowship at the Center for African and Afro-American Studies at the University of Michigan, and has served as Chair for the Society for Caribbean Studies in the United Kingdom. Her interdisciplinary work encompasses history, sociology, cultural geography, anthropology, culture and communication. Dr. Sheller hopes to make Drexel “a leading United States center of excellence” in the newly emerging interdisciplinary field of mobilities. Mobilities research entails interdisciplinary study of the infrastructures, flows, and policies that create the contexts for contemporary mobility (and immobility), including attention to mobility rights, mobility justice, and the new social inequalities being produced by the uneven distribution of “mobility capital.”

Dr. Jeffery Twiss, Professor and Department Head of Biology

Jeffery TwissThe College of Arts and Sciences welcomes newly appointed Biology Department Head, Dr. Jeffery Twiss. Dr. Twiss received a B.A. in chemistry from the College of Charleston, a liberal arts school in South Carolina, after which he completed his medical scientist training program (M.D., Ph.D.) at the Medical University of South Carolina. From Charleston, Dr. Twiss went on to Stanford University where he completed his residency, clinical fellowship in Anatomic Pathology and Neuropathology, and post-doctoral fellowship in Neurobiology. Dr. Twiss’s research interests in neurobiology focus on mechanisms of nerve regeneration, specifically post-transcriptional mechanisms, and how protein levels and functions are regulated in subcellular domains. The long-term ambition for Dr. Twiss’s work is to find ways to improve recovery after injury of the brain and spinal cord. As the new Department Head, Dr. Twiss anticipates the completion of the Integrated Science Building, which will afford “tremendous opportunities to advance the Biology Department…and bring new opportunities to our students for direct involvement in cutting edge research programs.”

Jacob Harte graduated in June of 2010 with a B.A. in English.

Imani Nia Rutledge graduated in June of 2011 with a M.P.H. in Public Health, concentrating on Community Health and Prevention.