Alumni Profile: Mike Kirby
While journeying through his career, Kirby says that his favorite part was the experience of teaching and mentoring PhD students at Cambridge in England while on sabbatical. There he recognized a difference in PhD students, saying, "what distinguishes a PhD student is that they can learn anything on their own, but it's interesting to see a PhD student go back to undergrad material with new understanding."
Mariel Vazquez Alumni Profile
Mariel Vazquez, who earned her Ph.D. in math at FSU, has received a prestigious National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award for her research. She applies pure math to the biological mysteries of DNA, studying its entanglement as it packs tightly into living cells. Born and raised in Mexico City, Vazquez became fascinated with math and biology in high school. "I found pure mathematics to be absolutely beautiful but I didn't know how I could apply it to biology," Vazquez said. That changed when she became an undergraduate at the National Autono- mous University of Mexico and attended a series of talks about DNA topology - the application of knot theory to the study of DNA.
Paolo Aluffi, Brennan Professor of Mathematics
After an extensive selection process, the first holder of the Marion Bradley Brennan Professorship in Mathematics has been chosen. The committee has combed through a list filled with many deserving candidates and chosen Professor Paolo Aluffi, who has served as a faculty member since 1991. Aluffi was chosen on the merits of his work as both a teacher and a researcher, and comes highly recommended by his colleagues and students.
Alumni Profile: Kim Ruane, Professor at Tufts University
Kim Ruane's path to FSU was an unusual one. Her undergraduate degree was from Kennesaw State University in north Georgia and it just so happened that a professor there, Chris Schaufele, had gone to graduate school with DeWitt Sumners, a professor at FSU. These two were responsible for Kim's decision to attend FSU for graduate school.
Faculty Profile: Nick Cogan
While pursuing his master's at the University of Montana, Cogan got the change to expand that conversation even more by working at the Center for Biofilm Engineering, an interdisciplinary National Science Foundation center that brought together faculty from different departments and funded grad students to work with them. The only hitch? He hadn't studied biology since high school, which didn't bother him but did manage to annoy the microbiologist he was paired with.