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Natural Sciences & Mathematics

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News Archive


Congratulations to Professor Emeritus Donald Stedman, Chemistry & Biochemistry, who received the Haagen-Smit Clean Air Award, which recognizes Dr. Stedman’s work on auto and truck emissions

The award, notes Andrei Kutateladze, dean of DU’s Division of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, is one of the most prestigious “in the field of sustainability, clean air and climate change.” This award is named for Arie J. Haagen-Smit, a former biochemistry professor at the California Institute of Technology and the first chairman of the CARB. Known to many as the father of air pollution control, Haagen-Smit conducted research that demonstrated that California’s smog and ozone problems mostly resulted from previously unknown photochemistry. For more about Don Stedman's award and work, please click here.

Faculty present diverse research at first Founders Forum. Dr. Phil Danielson highlights forensic science.

"This is going to revolutionize crime fighting": In his presentation about forensic science, biology professor Phil Danielson opened by talking about the cases of Timothy Masters and Clarence Moses-EL, two Colorado men released from prison after new forensic evidence showed they did not commit the crimes of which they were convicted. “Not only were their convictions based on incomplete or inaccurate science,” he said, “but the actual perpetrators remained free and continued to commit crimes.” Danielson talked about the difficulties forensic scientists face — specifically unreliable DNA results from bullet casings and potential false positives in body-fluid analysis — and the work that he and his students are doing to develop better crime-scene technology. A project funded by the U.S. Army, he said, will greatly improve the reliability of rape kits, and will extend the time necessary to collect fluid samples from two or three days to eight. Using human genome sequencing technology, Danielson said, he and his students also are adapting existing DNA sensor technology to create mobile crime scene analysis that by 2017 will allow investigators to obtain DNA results from 70 percent of bullet casings as opposed to nearly zero percent today. “This is going to revolutionize crime fighting,” he said. “If we had this technology years ago, there’s a good chance the jury could never have reached a conviction [in the Clarence Moses-EL trial].”

Science ruled at the DPS Science Fair hosted at DU on Jan. 30!

The Dean's Office just wanted to thank those who helped make the Denver Public School science fair a success. There were over 380 posters and 1000 people who attended the science fair at Gates Fieldhouse. The families loved being on a college campus and said it made the event seem more official. We will be looking into hosting it again next year but wanted to thank those involved this year.

Thank you to our Faculty: Jack Kinnamon, Barbekka Hurtt, Keith Miller, Nancy Sasaki, and Michelle Moran-Taylor.

Thank you to our Graduate Students: Nathan Duval, Jennyfer Mitchell, Brent Horowitz, Emily Wilkinson, Whitley Lehto, Ginelle Rahman, Chris Aretz.

Also a huge thanks to the Society of Physics Student and the Chemistry Student Organization for hosting tables with activities to keep the little ones engaged while waiting for results. These tables had more folks at them then they could handle and they did a fabulous job.

Thank you all for giving your time and your expertise, you made a difference in a young scientist's world!  See pictures here.

Congratulations to Elizabeth Barnes, PhD candidate, Biological Sciences as the winner of the Distinguished Graduate Community Leader Award!

The Graduate Student Government selects two graduate students to receive the Distinguished Graduate Community Leader Award (DGCLA) each month. These students display exemplary leadership skills and are actively engaged with the community (whether here on campus or outside of DU). They demonstrate excellent work ethic as well as dedication to their research and role as a graduate student. Finally, they also exhibit good character, hard work and inclusivity. DGCLA winners are selected through a peer-nomination process. To nominate a colleague, email with a 250-500 word statement describing why the nominee deserves to be an DGCLA winner. We will interview the winners and publish feature stories on the DU website and an email blast. We will also celebrate the award winners at different events throughout the school year.

You want to know more about Elizabeth Barnes please click here.

2015/16 NSM Dean's Doctoral Fellows


  • Lan Chen, Biological Sciences
  • Maya Hunt, Physics & Astronomy
  • Sean Morgan, Physics & Astronomy

The Dean's Fellowship was established in 2010 and has been funding doctoral students from all of our disciplines, domestic and international. The students are nominated by their departments. This fellowship funds students for one year. 

  • AY14-15:Andrew Fullard, Physics & Astronomy;Bulat Khaliullin, Chemistry & Biochemistry;Hui Miao, Biological Sciences
  • AY13-14: Dmitry Kuznetsov, Chemistry & Biochemistry; Yi Xie, Biological Sciences
  • AY12-13: Jixiao Li, Jiangye Miao, Chemistry & Biochemistry; Manisha Shrestha, Physics
  • AY11-12: Sarah McCall, Geography & the Environment; Jared Burde, Timothy Vanderleest, Physics & Astronomy
  • AY10-11: Amir Siraj, Geography & the Environment; Gabriel Enrique Girón, Mathematics; Zhelin Yu, Chemistry & Biochemistry;
2014-15 NSM Graduate Student Awards. Congratulations!
  • Excellence in Teaching Award: Stephen Moss, Chemistry & Biochemistry
  • Excellence in Research Award: Laurel Cepero, Biological Sciences
  • Excellence in Service Award: Mollie Doerner, Geography & the Environment
DU's Society of Physics Students awarded Blake Lilly Prize for Outstanding Physics Outreach
2015 NSM Faculty & Staff Awards were announced on December 10th. Congratulations!
  • Excellence in Research Faculty Award: Phil Danielson, Biological Sciences
  • Excellence in Teaching Faculty Award: Verl Mururgaverl, Chemistry & Biochemistry
  • Outstanding Faculty Service Award: Rebecca Powell, Geography & the Environment
  • Outstanding Junior Faculty Award: Mark Siemens, Physics & Astronomy
  • Outstanding Staff Service Award: Barbara Stephen



  • NSM's Annual Spring Luncheon and Graduate Student Awards Ceremony: Wednesday, May 25, 12 p.m. on the lawn between Boettcher Center and Olin Hall. Featuring Bennett's BBQ. Faculty, staff and students invited.

For more upcoming events, please check the following links: