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Sciences and Mathematics

News and Events

Contact Sciences and Mathematics  

Sciences and Mathematics

Office of the Dean
College of the Sciences and Mathematics
Anderson Hall, Room 320
725 S. Church St
West Chester, PA 19383

Phone: 610-436-3521

News and Events

 CSM Spring Research Day 

CSM Research Day

Photo Credit: Erica Thompson


The College of the Sciences and Mathematics hosted a very successful CSM Spring Research Day on Friday, April 26th, with over 50 students presenting posters showcasing the research they have done with their faculty mentors. The students did such a tremendous job that the faculty judges had to make some tough decisions that resulted in quite a few ties! 

Congratulations to:

Undergraduate First Place Winners: Maggie Anabui, Zane Christmyer and Lucas Ribeiro

Undergraduate Second Place Winners: Christopher Catranis, Teresa Lee, Mark Marrone and Sarah Polohovich 

Graduate First Place Winners: Abigail Downs and Amanda Johnston

View photos of the event here: CSM 2019 Spring Research Day

CSM Spring 2019 Research Day Abstract Booklet


 CSM Student Recognition Award Ceremony and Research Reception

CSM Award Winners

Photo Credit: Erica Thompson


The College of the Sciences and Mathematics held the CSM Student Recognition Award Ceremony and Research Reception on Monday, April 22nd.

Congratulations to the many students who were recognized, including Outstanding Student Award winner Sapana Gupta. Pictured are CSM Award winners Demetrius Woodard, Ellen McCauley, Erica Knorr, Allena McCloud & Kathleen Schultz.

We are so proud of our many exceptional students!

Student Recognition Award Ceremony Slideshow

Student Recognition Award Ceremony Program


The Department of Earth and Space Sciences Fly Drones

 Earth & Space Sciences Fly Drone

Image via Daily Local News


The Department of Earth and Space Sciences students recently used drones to map a WCU South Campus hillside while they charted topographic maps. Read the Daily Local News article here.


 The Department of Anthropology & Sociology Featured in West Chester Living Magazine



The Department of Anthropology & Sociology was featured in the May edition of the West Chester Living Magazine. 

View the article here .


 Physic Professor's Publication Means Bright Things for LED Bulbs

 Dr. Brandon Mitchell


Dr. Brandon Mitchell of the Department of Physics was lead author on a paper recently published in ACS Photonics. His work, done in collaboration with scientists from Lehigh University, Osaka University and the University of Amsterdam, demonstrates the possibility of tuning commercial LEDs between bright white and more comfortable warmer colors. 

Read more at ScienceDaily.


 Sciences & Engineering Center and The Commons Groundbreaking

 WCU Groundbreaking

Photo Credit: Erica Thompson


West Chester University broke ground on the WCU Sciences & Engineering Center and The Commons, the largest building project in the University’s 148-year history and the largest single project ever constructed within the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. 

View the full article on

Click to watch the 6ABC video.


 Faculty Gives Presentations

Dr. Frank Fish


Dr. Frank Fish presented an invited seminar “Biomimetics and the development of advanced technologies from charismatic marine megafauna” to the Department of Biology of the High Point University, High Point, NC on April 12, 2019. 

Dr. Fish presented a talk "Moment of inertia influences spin-leap performance by cetaceans” at the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Marine Mammal Symposium (SEAMAMMS) at Georgetown University, Washington D.C., March 29-31, 2019.

Dr. Fish presented the invited seminar "Bio-inspiration from charismatic marine megafauna: What animals can teach us in the development of new technologies" to the Department of Integrative Biology of the University of California Berkeley on March 11, 2019.


 Faculty Elected President of PCPG

 Dr. Helmke

Dr. Martin Helmke of Earth & Space Sciences was recently elected President of the Pennsylvania Council of Professional Geologists (PCPG). PCPG is a non-profit corporation that advances the practice of geology and allied sciences and the success of its members through advocacy, education, and networking. For more information, please visit their website.


 Spotlight on Research Awardees

Teresa Donze-Reiner     Jessica Sullivan-Brown

Dr. Teresa Donze-Reiner and Dr. Jessica Sullivan-Brown of the Department of Biology were recognized for their outstanding contribution to research on at the Spotlight on Research event held at the WCU Foundation. The Provost, Deputy Provost and State Senator Andy Dinnamin recognized Dr. Donze-Reiner for her research on switchgrass and Dr. Sullivan-Brown for her acquisition of a confocal microscope from the National Science Foundation.


 Faculty Receive National Geographic Explorers Grant

Image of WCU Magazine article

Dr. Heather Wholey of the Department of Anthropology and Sociology and Dr. Daria Nikitina of the Department of Earth and Space Sciences are featured in the most recent WCU Magazine. The professors were recently awarded a two-year, $30,000 National Geographic Explorers Grant. The funding will enable Dr. Wholey and Dr. Nikitina to expand their current research in the Delaware Bay area. The article can be read in full here.


 Local Hack Day at WCU

First place winners Brandon Fonticoba and Christopher Falco

Local Hack Day was a great success! Organized by the Computer Science Club and the Women in Computer Science Club, the event had nearly 150 registrations, with hackers between the ages of 11 to 30+ from 30 different schools. Activities were spread throughout the day, from Mario Cart tournaments to mastering the art of cup stacking. There were seminars by past and present West Chester University academics on a variety of topics. WCU's Local Hack Day represented 5% of global submissions in a 7,000+ person global-hackathon. The projects presented were outstanding, making it especially difficult to decide a winner. WCU's Brandon Fonticoba & Christopher Falco (pictured) took first place with Lemmie Run. Photos from the event can be found here.


 Faculty in the News

Dr. Pagan


The Daily Local News recently featured an article on Dr. Oné Pagán, Department of Biology, and his new book, Strange Survivors, in which Dr. Pagán writes about the survival mechanisms of several different creatures. The Daily Local News article, "Small Talk: Worms: Great for fishing, and the environment too," can be found here:

Dr. Pagán was also interviewed by the Utah Public Radio show UnDisciplined:


  Dr. Radha Pyati Receives Environmental Award of Merit



Dr. Radha Pyati, Dean of the College of the Sciences and Mathematics, was recently presented with an Environmental Award of Merit for her significant impact to the community as a scientist, educator and advocate.

In Dr. Pyati’s prior position as Chair of the Chemistry Department of the University of North Florida (UNF) and Director of the UNF Environmental Center, Dr. Pyati also assumed responsibility for the annual State of the River Report for the Lower St. Johns River Basin. In addition to all of the local community and media presentations made about the report, under her leadership the report also received international attention from the United Nations with the integration of aspects of the report included in a United Nations World Water Development Report – the first time a US river was included in a world water report. Under Dr. Pyati’s leadership, the UNF Environmental Center was expanded and the effort to have UNF join the American College and University Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), which is a public commitment by universities to become carbon neutral, was successful. Outside of the contributions she made while at UNF, Dr. Pyati has been a strong advocate for the importance of science in public policy, as well as many social issues.

For further reading, see the following news items regarding the release of the State of the River Report for the Lower St. Johns River Basin:


 Faculty Awarded a Major Research Instrumentation Grant



Dr. Jessica Sullivan-Brown (Biology) and Dr. Shawn Pfeil (Physics), along with two faculty members at Penn State Brandywine, were recently awarded a Major Research Instrumentation grant (MRI) from the NSF for an Olympus IXPlore SpinSR Confocal Microscopy System with TIRF capabilities. This imaging system will be housed in the Center for Microanalysis and Imaging Research and Training (CMIRT) facility at West Chester University and will enable researchers to perform cutting-edge research, provide transformative undergraduate research experiences and strengthen our already strong STEM pipeline. Examples of research projects include (1) studying how folic acid, an essential vitamin, affects embryonic development and (2) single-molecule biophysical studies on the folding of a novel nucleic acid structural motif in the presence and absence of molecular crowding. Acquisition of this microscope will expand teaching and outreach opportunities and ensure that the affordable high quality education offered at WCU prepares students for successful careers in the sciences.

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