In The News – The Citadel Today Thu, 17 Dec 2020 18:54:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 In The News – The Citadel Today 32 32 144096890 Medieval warfare catapults Citadel professor into history Sat, 26 Dec 2020 11:00:00 +0000 If he weren't such a medievalist, it would be tempting to call Citadel English professor Michael Livingston, Ph.D., a Renaissance man.]]>

If he weren’t such a medievalist, it would be tempting to call him a Renaissance man

Citadel English professor, Michael Livingston, Ph.D., covers a wide range of academic ground outside of medieval literature.

He is an award-winning historical fantasy writer who recently released his newest novel “Seaborn,” an Audible-exclusive.

He made national headlines discussing the final season of Game of Thrones.

He is a historian who published a wide-spread article claiming to have discovered the lost site of the Battle of Brunanburh.

He is a conflict analyst who regularly stars in “Contact,” a television show about the search for extraterrestrials on the Discovery and Science Channels.

Livingston’s medieval and military interests came together in another recent project of his — a book that he edited called “Medieval Warfare: A Reader.” It examines how people in the Middle Ages experienced armed conflict; the book is a collection of more than 130 primary sources that provide the voices of veterans and victims.

Michael Livingston, Ph.D.
Michael Livingston, Ph.D.

“Medieval Warfare” earned Livingston — along with Kelly DeVries, Ph.D. — their second Distinguished Book Award from the Society for Military History.

Both Livingston and DeVries also earned a Distinguished Book Award from the Society in 2017 for “The Battle of Crécy: A Casebook.” According to Livingston, they join only a handful of scholars to ever receive the award twice.

Institutionally, The Citadel’s faculty holds three of the organization’s Distinguished Book Awards; History professor David Preston, Ph.D., earned one in 2016 for “Braddock’s Defeat: The Battle of Monongahela and the Road to Revolution.”

The Society says that Distinguished Book Awards recognize the best book-length publications in English on military history copyrighted in the previous three calendar years.

As a medievalist, he is always looking to the past; but as an academic and an author, Livingston is always full-steam ahead.

Though the pandemic may affect some publication timelines, he hopes to release four books in 2021; two are historical texts, one is a Middle-English military poem and the last is “Iceborn,” the second in the Seaborn series.

Livingston is often interviewed on medieval matters due to his regular column on, a science fiction and fantasy website. He is also an award-winning writer who has published, among others, a trilogy of historical fantasy novels and multiple nonfiction books.

Positives of the Pandemic: Resiliency in Relationships Sat, 26 Dec 2020 11:00:00 +0000 “We are actively seeking out communication in a way that we’ve never done before,” said Chip Taylor, Head of Psychology at The Citadel.]]>

As seen on WCBD – Count on 2, by Danielle Hensley

Since March, the world has seen tremendous loss in all arenas of life as a result of COVID-19. In an attempt to shine some light, News 2’s Danielle Hensley is highlighting a few positive impacts the pandemic has made here in the Lowcountry in a new series called Positives of the Pandemic.

Social, familial, and romantic relationships are a core part of our society. During quarantine, that aspect was largely stripped from day-to-day routines.

By nature humans are social animals, always looking for a way to connect with others.

Being at home with a lot of time and not a lot of human interaction, many found themselves being more intentional, making new relationships, and strengthening old ones.

“I’ve actually lost people I know and loved to COVID… so it’s been really difficult,” Jenna Johnson, Goose Creek resident, shared.

People like Jenna Johnson have experienced the effects of COVID-19 in every aspect of life and have needed relationships more than ever.

“It’s almost been therapeutic to have people reach out or me reach out and have conversation by phone or by facetime,” Johnson added.

Johnson says staying in touch with friends and family has been a lifeline.

“One thing that has helped me really survive is being intentional about staying connected to my friends and family,” commented Johnson.

Relationships now forged through the screen instead of in person.

As a whole, society has been resilient in finding new ways to cope with the new normal.

“We are actively seeking out communication in a way that we’ve never done before,” said Chip Taylor, Head of Psychology at The Citadel.

Gone are the days of difficult long-distance phone calls. “Now we can zoom with people and intentionally call friends and connect with folks across the country across the world,” Taylor noted.

Despite our best efforts to cope, Taylor says isolation can cause sadness and anxiety — which is what people worldwide have experienced for nearly eight months — and it has fundamentally changed our collective sense of ‘normal.’

“Even if people try to shake a hand or give a hug at this point it’s become odd… The hard part about this pandemic is there really is no end point on this,” Taylor mentioned.

While the absence of touch is still felt this new way of communicating is a light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel.

“To me the overarching theme of positivity is resiliency. What we do is when we’re dealing with a crisis we typically find a way to find some positivity,” Taylor emphasized.

What’s Lurking in our Flood Waters? Sat, 26 Dec 2020 11:00:00 +0000 A joint research project, with Dr. John Weinstein and Dr. Claudia Rocha, is analyzing microplastics and bacteria found in tidal flood waters.]]>

As seen on WCBD – Count on 2, by Megan James

Under a microscope is a dish of flood waters from Haygood street, and graduate researcher Bonnie Ertel is picking out microplastics.

“I’m looking for color, shape, and also texture.”

It’s all part of the joint research project of Dr. John Weinstein and Dr. Claudia Rocha, analyzing microplastics and bacteria that are found in our sunny day, coastal flood waters from high tides.

“Our hypothesis is that as the flood water covers the street, and then ebs down into the tidal creeks, that it could be a pathway for microplastics into the coastal waterways here in Charleston,” Bonnie Ertel, Graduate Student Researcher at The Citadel, said.

Microplastics, of course, can harm organisms living in these waterways. Harmful bacteria can as well, and it can also cause an array of health problems for people.

“DHEC looks for certain types of bacteria that indicate contamination by fecal matter,” Dr. Claudia Rocha, Professor of Biology, said.

That’s what you can see here in these petri dishes. There are fecal coliforms and enterococci, which harm both human and animal health.

“We find another bacteria that you don’t hear much about and that is vibrio,” Dr. Rocha said. “Vibrios can become a concern not just for the contamination of shellfish, but because it can cause infections.”

Understanding what microplastics and bacteria are found in our waterways is ever important as our climate continues to change.

“The seas are rising, and therefore we are seeing more flooding events here in the city of Charleston,” Dr. Rocha warned.

“It’s not gonna stop anytime soon,” Ertel said. “I think it’s important to understand the whole impact, the environmental impact, this flooding has before it’s too late…. Before it’s too late.”

At the Citadel, Meteorologist Megan James, Count on 2.

All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team announced Sat, 19 Dec 2020 13:00:00 +0000 Dr. Chip Taylor and Henry Bouton are The Citadel's newest All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team members.]]>

Two representatives from each school honored on annual teams

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – The Southern Conference named its All-Southern Conference Faculty and Staff Team on Thursday, with two representatives each from all 10 member schools being recognized by the league.

While the selections were left up to each institution’s discretion, the recipients all shared the common characteristics of demonstrated service to the institution and contributions to campus life and the local community. Faculty members selected have demonstrated strong contributions to teaching, research and/or service, while staff members are being recognized for bringing out the best in others and creating conditions for success.

The faculty and staff recipients include: The Citadel’s Dr. Chip Taylor and Henry Bouton; ETSU’s Dr. Virginia Foley and Janet Stork; Furman’s Dr. Marian Strobel and Todd Duke; Mercer’s Dr. Mahkin Thitsa and Matt Brownback; UNC Greensboro’s Dr. Jeremy Bray and Amy Collins Moore; Samford’s Dr. Celeste Hill and Paige Mathis; Chattanooga’s Dr. Christine Benz Smith and Endia Butler; VMI’s Col. Timothy Hodges and Chief Michael Marshall; Western Carolina’s Dr. Kelly R. Kelley and Courtney Gauthier; and Wofford’s Dr. Anna Catllá and Lisa Lefebvre.

Dr. Chip Taylor, The Citadel

Lloyd "Chip" Taylor, Ph.D.
Lloyd “Chip” Taylor, Ph.D., professor of Psychology, The Citadel

The Citadel’s Dr. Chip Taylor is the Head of the Department of Psychology in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. For over a decade, Taylor has served as the institution’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative. In that capacity, he has been a tireless advocate for student athletes and for student athlete well-being. Most recently, he has led the charge to establish psychology resiliency coaches to assist student-athletes and cadets on campus. In addition, over the past two years he has served on the Executive Committee for The Center for Performance, Readiness, Resiliency, and Recovery. He serves as the chapter advisor for Chi Alpha Sigma, the national honors society for student-athletes, is a member of the SoCon Executive Committee, and is a past president of the Southern Conference. In addition to his work on various committees within the SoCon and at The Citadel, Taylor was instrumental in establishing the Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Humanities and Social Sciences which will focus on exploring concepts of leadership and ethics from a research and scholarly perspective.

Henry Bouton, director of Intramural and Extramural Sports at The Citadel

Henry Bouton, The Citadel

Henry Bouton is the Director of Intramurals and Extramural Sports at The Citadel through the Department of Health and Human Performance. He schedules, organizes and carries out the day-to-day operations of more than 20 intramural sports on campus. A 1980 graduate of The Citadel, Bouton is an ambassador for The Citadel in the way he treats members, visitors and cadets, developing relationships and treating everyone with courtesy and respect while upholding The Citadel’s Core Values of Honor, Duty and Respect. Because of the work he does in the classroom and on the field of play with cadets enrolled in the Sports Officiating class, those students develop a sense of authority that comes from knowledge acquisition; they are shown how to handle their own mistakes professionally and they are given the opportunity to practice maintaining a cool head.

Dr. Virginia Foley, ETSU

Dr. Virginia Foley is a professor in ETSU’s Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis and serves as program coordinator for the Administrative Endorsement master’s and doctoral programs. She has served the university in a number of leadership positions including President of the Faculty Senate and the faculty Trustee on the ETSU Board of Trustees. She serves the university on numerous committees, including the Academic Portfolio Review committee and the Institutional Review Board and is a mentor to other faculty. Her work takes her into the area schools, where she helps principals develop their leadership and professional skills. Foley has been part of the Graduate School Thesis and Dissertation Bootcamp program and can often be seen helping students from other programs in addition to working with her own students. She goes above and beyond to build community with the doctoral students in her program. Even though her program is online, her students choose to come to Johnson City throughout their program to meet with Foley and she hosts them for meals at her home. She regularly attends their events, from the Bluegrass exhibitions and music department concerts to theatre performances and sporting events.

Janet Stork, ETSU

ETSU’s Janet Stork is the Event and Project Coordinator for the College of Public Health. An ardent supporter of ETSU athletics, she has organized the College’s tailgating efforts for every football game, as well as an annual Family Day for faculty and staff and their families to attend a women’s basketball game. At the tailgating event, Stork has several posters created that show every College of Public Health student that is on a sports team, in the marching band, or is a member of the cheerleading, dance or spirit squad. Stork conceptualized and now organizes the College’s Pinning and Hooding ceremony each semester, as well as the annual Student Awards ceremony. Stork came to ETSU in April 2010 to serve as the Executive Aide in the Office of the Dean in the College of Public Health before transitioning in 2018 to her current position. In her role, she also serves as the coordinator for the Tennessee Institute of Public Health. Stork has twice earned a College of Public Health Outstanding Support Staff Award (2012, 2018) and earned individual Dean’s Recognition for Outstanding Contribution in 2011 and 2019 and group honors four times.

Dr. Marian Strobel, Furman

Dr. Marian Strobel is the William Montgomery Burnett Professor in History at Furman. The Chair of the History Department from 1999-2010, she has served on a myriad of committees at Furman and has been the recipient of the Meritorious Teaching Award and the Maiden Invitation Award for excellence in the classroom. She has also been an active participant in the First Year Seminar program and was a member of the original task force that implemented that project. Currently a Shi Sustainability Fellow, Strobel studies the history of women’s higher education and American politics after World War II, as well as African-American history. She has presented her research in sessions at such prestigious venues as the annual conferences of the Organization of American Historians, the Southern Historical Association, and the American Historical Association. She has also been a member of special teaching-based and has been part of Furman faculty foreign study trips to Canada, Jamaica, Cuba and Mexico. During numerous May terms since 2014, Strobel has co-directed a study away class on “War and Remembrance” that commemorates the centenary of World War I and travels to England, France and Belgium.

Todd Duke, Furman

Todd Duke, a member of the Furman community since 1997 and Furman’s Heller Service Corp Staff Member of the Year selection for the 2018-19 school year, serves as associate athletics director of facilities and game operations, with direct oversight and management responsibilities for all scheduled events involving Timmons Arena and athletic facilities. Before becoming a member of the Furman athletic department in 2013, he served as business manager and director of operations for Timmons Arena (1997-04) and later associate director with university conference and event services. In addition to his Furman work duties, he has served as faculty advisor to Furman’s chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes since 2015.

Dr. Mahkin Thitsa, Mercer

Dr. Mahkin Thitsa is an Associate Professor in the Mercer University School of Engineering, having joined the faculty in 2013 after serving as a Research Assistant Professor at Old Dominion, her alma mater. Her research interests include nonlinear systems and control theory, model-free control and data-driven control strategies. She has successfully applied control methods to photonic devices, unmanned aerial vehicles and traffic flow networks. As the director of the Cyber-physical Systems and Control Laboratory at Mercer University School of Engineering, she has mentored a large number of undergraduate students, including four who have been selected to receive a prestigious Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship. She has published numerous journal articles and conference proceedings with her undergraduate researchers as co-authors.

Matt Brownback, Mercer

Mercer’s Assistant Athletic Director for Student-Athlete Support Services, Matt Brownback joined the Bears’ athletic staff in 2013 as a graduate assistant coach for the men’s basketball program before being hired in 2015 as an Academic Coordinator of Student-Athletes. In 2016, he was promoted to Director of Student-Athlete Support Services before being promoted to his current position in 2019. His work, offering advising as well as coordinating all aspects of their academic support, serves to provide a positive experience for Mercer’s student-athletes as they negotiate their academic and athletic paths. He and his team have also played a large role in Mercer winning the SoCon’s Barrett-Bonner Award for placing the largest percentage of student-athletes on the conference academic honor roll. Mercer has earned the award each year since joining the Southern Conference.

Dr. Jeremy Bray, UNCG

Dr. Jeremy Bray is the Jefferson-Pilot Excellence Professor of Economics and Interim Head of the Department of Economics in the Bryan School of Business and Economics at UNCG. Since joining UNCG in 2013, he has fostered transdisciplinary health and wellness research within the Bryan School and across the university through his leadership and mentoring of faculty and students. Bray conducts research on the economics of health behaviors and has served as principal investigator or co-investigator on numerous economic evaluations funded by federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. His publications have been referenced thousands of times by other researchers and have had a profound impact on public health by supporting the resource allocation decisions of federal, state and local policymakers, as well as employers, both nationally and internationally.

Amy Collins Moore, UNCG

Amy Moore is the Business Officer and Executive Assistant to the Dean in UNCG’s College of Visual and Performing Arts. In addition to these duties, she is the Affirmative Action Officer and manages Human Resource Management at the Dean’s level, which includes faculty and staff searches and personnel paperwork for faculty, staff and students. On staff at her alma mater since 2003, Moore serves on the Staff Senate and is currently on the Personal and Professional Development Committee and has been the Secretary and served on the Staff Recognition Committee in the past. She previously worked as the Executive Director for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Central and Western North Carolina, Chapter Director for Operation Smile, and President of the Greensboro Jaycees. As a wife and mom to three daughters, she spends her free time as a Girl Scout Co-Leader and a member of the Greensboro’s Woman’s Club and is active in her daughters’ school PTSAs.

Dr. Celeste Hill, Samford

Dr. Celeste Hill is an associate professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Science, also serving as the faculty advisor of Samford’s student chapter of the National Council on Family Relations (SUNCFR) and as an advisor for underclassman. Hill, who holds four degrees from the University of Alabama, including a Ph.D. in educational psychology, currently teaches Infant and Child Development, Gerontology and the Family, and Family Life Interaction. Hill’s areas of interest include experiential education, online learning and development during late adulthood. Prior to becoming a full-time faculty member at Samford, Hill, who became certified as an online instructor and as a national peer reviewer for Quality Matters, earned the Stephen Shank Recognition for significant contribution to learner success at Capella University for the 2012 and 2013 academic years.

Paige Mathis, Samford

Paige Mathis serves as Samford’s Assistant Director of Athletics for Academics. In her eighth season, Mathis oversees the Academic Enhancement Program for Student-Athletes and is the primary academic counselor for the Bulldogs’ football program. Prior to her current role, Mathis served as the academic counselor for six sports and a tutor coordinator at Samford. Her passion for athletic academic service stems from her commitment to assisting student-athletes succeed not only on the field or court, but also in the classroom.

Dr. Christine Benz Smith, Chattanooga

Dr. Christine Benz Smith has been at Chattanooga in several capacities since 2001 and currently serves as the Director of the School of Nursing and the Chief Health Affairs Officer. Smith, who holds the rank of UC Foundation Associate Professor, is a member of the UT System COVID-19 Task Force, the UTC COVID-19 Campus Support Team, Emergency Operations Command, the Facilities Use Committee, and the Implementation Task Force and served on the Fall 2020 Task Force chairing the Campus Safety and Risk Management subcommittee. She has been awarded the Carolyn and Roger G. Brown Community Engagement Award, the UT System President’s Connect Award, the Outstanding Research and Creative Achievement Award for the College of Health, Education and Professional Studies, the Dean Stinnett Award for the College of Health Education and Professional Studies, and the Girls’ Inc. Unbought and Unbossed Award, and was named one of the ETSU College of Nursing Top 60 Alums. She also earned the Boys and Girls Club of Chattanooga Keystone Award and the Dedicated to Youth Service Award. She is an American Lung Association Woman of Distinction.

Endia Butler, Chattanooga

Endia Butler is the Student Employment Coordinator for the Financial Aid Office at Chattanooga. She is responsible for Federal Work Study, Academic Service and Job Location and Development. Butler is passionate about partnering with other departments on campus to create programs that focus on the career and personal development of underrepresented students. In 2020, Butler and Dr. Lisa Piazza, Director of the Office for Undergraduate Research and Creative Endeavor, created the Undergraduate Research Training Opportunity Program Scholars, a program that provides students an opportunity to learn research methodology and work as a research assistant under a faculty mentor. Butler teaches one of the First Year Experience courses and is an active volunteer in the First-Generation Program at UTC. She received the Chancellor’s Blue Ribbon Award in April 2020 for the impact she has had on one of her first-generation mentees. Butler earned her undergraduate and master’s degrees at UTC and was selected to participate in the inaugural class of the GOLD (Graduates of the Last Decade) Leadership Academy.

Col. Timothy Hodges, VMI

Colonel Tim Hodges, who currently serves as Professor and Head of Physics and Astronomy as well as Faculty Athletics Representative for VMI Athletics, has served the Institute as a distinguished member of the VMI faculty in a teaching career that spans nearly four decades. His teaching interests are in the areas of solid mechanics, dynamics and finite element analysis. After graduating from VMI in 1980, Hodges began his teaching career on post and was instrumental in the development of VMI’s mechanical engineering program. He went on to earn a Ph. D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Virginia and continued to make a lasting impact in the Mechanical Engineering Department, where he served in many roles including department head and head of the engineering division. Hodges has received numerous awards throughout his tenure, including the Thomas Jefferson Teaching Award, the VMI Distinguished Teaching Award, the VMI Institute Achievement Medal (twice), and the Charles S. Luck, Jr. ’20 Institute Professorship. He has taught over 25 courses during his tenure and has served on numerous VMI committees and service initiatives supporting both cadet and faculty development.

Chief Michael Marshall, VMI

Chief Michael Marshall has served the last 14 years as Police Chief for the Virginia Military Institute. The 32-year public safety professional has served in and led many areas in various departments, including Patrol, Investigations, Internal Affairs, Special Operations & Dignitary Security, Emergency Preparedness and Recruiting & Training. Marshall established and administers VMI’s Game Day Safety and Security Protocols. He provides key leadership in the overall strategic direction of Central Dispatch and the overall combined locality shared agreement in supporting and improving these services. Marshall leads the important safety and security implementation to support VIP visitors to Post. During his tenure, many national and international dignitaries have been welcomed, including a U.S. President, U.S. Vice President, Secretary of State, Secretary of the Army, Secretary of Defense, and the Governor of Virginia multiple times.

Dr. Kelly R. Kelley, Western Carolina

Since 2010, Dr. Kelly R. Kelley she has served as the University Participant Program Coordinator, Consultant, and now Director. Kelley is also an Associate Professor of Inclusive/Special Education. She has published 33 book chapters and articles and presented at more than 165 conferences. Her research interests include secondary transition, independent living, and inclusive postsecondary opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. The two-time graduate of Western Carolina, who also holds a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, recently wrote a book called Teaching, Including, and Supporting College Students with Intellectual Disabilities.

Courtney Gauthier, Western Carolina

Courtney Gauthier has served as the Associate Director of Career Integrated Learning with the Center for Career and Professional Development at Western Carolina since 2017. She has worked in the field of career development since 2006, working with career centers at both public and private institutions. Gauthier works with students to make meaning of their college experiences and helps them select majors, explore interests, identify and reach goals, and develop competitive application materials to launch successfully into their next steps. She collaborates with faculty and staff to develop workshops targeted to the needs of their students and their curriculum and is passionate about bringing career development conversations into classrooms and student meetings across campus.

Dr. Anna Catllá, Wofford

Dr. Anne Catllá is an Associate Professor of Mathematics, Coordinator of the Applied Mathematics Concentration, and Director of the Center for Innovation and Learning at Wofford, where she has been teaching since 2008. Catllá’s classes and research interests center on the application of mathematics to a variety of fields. Recently, her research has focused on social justice and looking at how districts are drawn using techniques to detect possibly gerrymandered congressional districts. In her classroom and in her work directing the Center for Innovation and Learning, Catllá seeks to create inclusive spaces that give all learners the opportunity to grow in their understanding of a topic of study and to apply that understanding to other aspects of their educational and professional lives. Catllá was the recipient of the 2014 Roger Milliken Award for the Excellence in Teaching of Science.

Lisa Lefebvre, Wofford

Lisa Lefebvre is the director of employee wellness and medical services at Wofford. Before coming to Wofford, she worked as a nurse at AnMed, Duke University Medical Center, Spartanburg Regional Hospital, The American Red Cross, and Converse College. Lefebvre has always been a strong advocate for health and wellness on campus. Over the past nearly 10 years, she has worked with students, faculty and staff to increase fitness and wellness on campus, to stop smoking, and to increase access and availability of immunizations. Most recently, has been an important leader in the College’s COVID response team.

Letters to the Editor: Trees offer many benefits beyond helping with storm water Sat, 19 Dec 2020 11:00:00 +0000 Scott Curtis, Ph.D., is the director of The Citadel's Lt. Col. James B. Near, Jr., USAF, ’77 Center for Climate Studies.]]>

As seen in The Post and Courier

I very much enjoyed reading the Dec. 13 Post and Courier article “Amid a flooding crisis, thirsty tree coverage shrinks.”

Norm Levine of the Lowcountry Hazards Center at the College of Charleston provides convincing evidence of the loss of trees in the Charleston area and their effects on storm water management.

Trees also have an important benefit for the ecosystem, providing habitat and food sources for animals, but I would like to highlight other weather and climate benefits for healthy forests in the Lowcountry.

First, trees act as wind breaks for storms and hurricanes. According to a 2019 Coastwatch article, many structures were spared after Hurricane Floyd hit North Carolina because large trees surrounded homes.

Trees also provide important shade, lowering temperatures in the summer by 20 degrees or more, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The supply of moisture to the atmosphere (evapotranspiration) also is a cooling effect on the air surrounding the trees.

Finally, trees take up carbon dioxide (a greenhouse gas) and store carbon more effectively than grass, thus they serve as a way to mitigate climate change.

The benefits of forests in the Lowcountry show a need for strategic planning for growth in the Charleston area so we can all be safe from future water, wind, and temperature threats.

Director, Lt. Col. James B. Near, Jr., USAF, ’77 Center for Climate Studies
The Citadel
Moultrie Street

For more information about The Citadel’s Center for Climate Studies or any of these projects, please contact the director, Dr. Scott Curtis by emailing

Charleston County’s Dawson confirmed by US Senate to be new SC federal judge Thu, 17 Dec 2020 14:34:38 +0000 Dawson, 50, a 1991 graduate of The Citadel and 1997 graduate of the University of South Carolina Law School, will be the only African American male judge on the state’s federal bench. ]]>

As seen in The Charlotte Observer
By John Monk

Longtime Charleston County general counsel Joseph Dawson III was confirmed Wednesday by the U.S. Senate on a 56-39 vote as South Carolina’s newest federal judge.

Dawson, 50, a 1991 graduate of The Citadel and 1997 graduate of the University of South Carolina Law School, will be the only African American male judge on the state’s federal bench. He still will have to be formally sworn in.

Federal judges, who oversee federal civil and criminal hearings and trials, are lifetime appointments.

Dawson will likely take a significant pay cut to become a federal judge. In 2019, he was paid $421,357 by Charleston County, according to an article in The Charleston Post & Courier. As a district court judge, he will make approximately $216,000 a year.

It sometimes takes many months for a judicial candidate’s vetting to take place and his or her nomination to go through first the Senate Judiciary Committee and then the U.S. Senate.

Remembering longtime Democratic Party leader, veteran and Citadel professor, Don Fowler Wed, 16 Dec 2020 23:27:16 +0000 Professor Don Fowler, The CitadelProfessor Don Fowler, The CitadelDon Fowler, a man known for his leadership of and contributions to the Democratic Party, but especially for his for generosity of time and wisdom, passed away this week at the age of 85.]]> Professor Don Fowler, The CitadelProfessor Don Fowler, The Citadel

Don Fowler, a man known for his leadership of and contributions to the Democratic Party, but especially for his for generosity of time, energy and wisdom, passed away this week at the age of 85. According to The Post & Courier he had been battling leukemia.

Fowler, a Spartanburg native, was most widely known for his positions of prominence within the Democratic Party. But many of Fowler’s political achievements were born after he served as an active duty officer in the U.S. Army, and while he served as a reservist. Fowler retired from the Army after 30 years of service in 1987. In addition, Fowler was a lifetime member of the National Association of Advancement of Colored people.

In the political realm, Fowler was Chair of the South Carolina Democratic Party from 1971- 1980, then became CEO of the Democratic National Convention in 1995 when President Bill Clinton successfully ran for a second term, followed by serving as Chair of the Democratic National Committee in 1995 and 1996. President Clinton tweeted a remembrance about Fowler today:

At The Citadel, and for much of his life at the University of South Carolina where he began teaching in 1964, he was Professor Fowler, political scientist.

“Don played major roles in The Citadel’s affairs over the last decade,” said Winfred “Bo” Moore, Ph.D., professor Emeritus, former Dean for The Citadel School of Humanities and Social Sciences. “From 2008-2012 he served as John C. West Professor of American Government and from 2012-2019 as a Distinguished Adjunct Professor in the Department of Political Science. The many courses he taught (and the personal mentorship he provided) on various aspects of American politics and government enabled our students to learn from a national leader in those fields.”

Fowler was known to frequently drive back forth to Charleston from his home in Columbia, making his work with The Citadel possible. He once remarked to this writer that his wife Carol had generously logged plenty of hours “ferrying him from Columbia to Charleston and back.”

Fowler definitely made his mark at the Military College of South Carolina.

“Additionally, from 2008-2020, Don served as a member of the Advisory Board of the School of Humanities & Social Sciences.

Thanks to him, we were able to bring to campus nationally prominent speakers who shared with our students a broad range of perspectives on national affairs. The list of those speakers included Janet Napolitano (then Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security); Frank Fahrenkopf (former Chairman of the Republican National Committee and Co-Chair of the Commission on Presidential Debates), Mike McCurry (former White House Press Secretary), Tom Cole (Deputy Minority Whip of the House Republican Caucus), James Clyburn (Majority Whip of the House Democratic Caucus), Beth Fouhy (Senior Politics Editor, NBC News), Jonathan Martin (National Political Correspondent, New York Times), and  James Roosevelt (grandson of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and co-chair of the Rules and Bylaws Committee of the Democratic National Committee).

In these (and many other) ways, Don graciously–and effectively–advocated on behalf of The Citadel and made it much easier for us successfully to pursue opportunities that likely would not otherwise have been available to us. His contributions to the advancement of our academic community are many. And he will be sorely missed by all who fortunate enough to have him as friend.

Winfred “Bo” Moore, Ph.D., professor Emeritus, former Dean for The Citadel School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Fowler is survived by his wife Carol (who also led the S.C. Democratic Party from 2007 to 2011 and is currently a National Commiteewoman, her photo on the party’s website next to Don’s), and their adult children, Donnie and Cissy.

Read more about Don Fowler and his career

The Post & Courier
Former DNC, SC Democratic Party chairman Don Fowler dies at 85

The State Newspaper
Longtime SC Democratic Party icon and professor Don Fowler has died

Associated Press
Former DNC leader, mainstay of SC politics Don Fowler dies

The Citadel Department of Athletics Announces Partnership with Roper St. Francis Healthcare Tue, 15 Dec 2020 19:06:35 +0000 Graphic showing Roper St. Francis Logo and Citadel Athletics logoGraphic showing Roper St. Francis Logo and Citadel Athletics logoRoper St. Francis Healthcare will be listed as one of The Citadel athletics department's first cornerstone partners and coined as the official healthcare provider fpr Bulldog athletics.]]> Graphic showing Roper St. Francis Logo and Citadel Athletics logoGraphic showing Roper St. Francis Logo and Citadel Athletics logo

As seen on

The Citadel Department of Athletics announced an extended partnership with Roper St. Francis Healthcare to make them the official health care provider for Bulldog athletics.
Under the agreement, the healthcare system will be listed as one of The Citadel athletics department’s first cornerstone partners and coined as the official healthcare provider for Bulldog athletics.
“Roper St. Francis has been a long-standing partner with The Citadel athletics and have developed strong relationships with our Sports Medicine Department over the years,” said Mike Capaccio, The Citadel director of athletics. “This partnership will help us to increase the quality of care provided for every cadet-athlete that comes to The Citadel. We would like to thank Craig Self and his team for the collaboration on this partnership and we are excited for the future.”

Through the partnership, The Citadel athletics department will work to more fully integrate Roper St. Francis Healthcare into its campus operations.
“As the Lowcountry’s only private, not-for-profit healthcare system with a specific focus on advancing community health, Roper St. Francis Healthcare deeply values its long-term partnership with The Citadel,” said Craig Self, vice president & chief strategy and business development officer of Roper St. Francis Healthcare. “We are excited to expand our official healthcare partnership with The Citadel in support of Bulldog athletics and look forward to continuing to collaborate with The Citadel Sports Medicine Department team as it provides health services to both The Citadel student athletes and the South Carolina Corps of Cadets.”
Roper St. Francis Healthcare cares for more Lowcountry families than any other healthcare provider in our area. Anchored by Roper Hospital, Bon Secours St. Francis Hospital, Roper St. Francis Mount Pleasant Hospital, and Roper St. Francis Berkeley Hospital, our 657-bed health system includes more than 100 facilities and doctors’ offices conveniently located throughout our region. We are Charleston’s only private, not-for-profit hospital system with a specific focus on community outreach, and our mission is “healing all people with compassion, faith and excellence.”

What to Do With a Mechanical Engineering Degree Fri, 11 Dec 2020 11:00:00 +0000 Lt. Col. Robert Rabb, the Mechanical Engineering department head, describes the profession as "one of the broadest engineering disciplines."]]>

As seen in U.S. News & World Report, by Ilana Kowarski

Understanding how and why machines work isn’t necessarily intuitive. Some devices that seem simple on the surface, such as conveyor belts, actually rely on intricate technology and precise handiwork.

A mechanical engineering degree teaches someone how to build contraptions with moving parts, ranging from little objects like watches to enormous vehicles like space shuttles. Robot building teams often include mechanical engineers, and medical device manufacturing also involves mechanical engineering.

“It really is pretty hard to think of something that exists in the world that a mechanical engineer hasn’t had a hand in designing,” says Robert Hurlston, chief engineer and co-founder with Fidelis Engineering Associates, a Michigan-based engineering consultancy.

Hurlston, who has a doctorate in nuclear engineering, says the distinction between mechanical engineering and other areas of engineering is that it tends to focus on moving objects like cars and planes as opposed to stationary objects like bridges and buildings.

Eric Johnson, director of innovation with Bright Machines – a company that designs technology for the manufacturing industry – says that mechanical engineering was out-of-fashion for a long time due to an increased emphasis on other areas of engineering like software engineering and electrical engineering. But he suggests that it is now “cool again.”

Johnson notes that powerful emerging technologies like solar panels, electric cars and reusable rockets could not possibly be designed and produced without the labor of mechanical engineers.

Allen Robinson, head of the mechanical engineering department at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, notes that “the emergence of data science” has increased the number and variety of job options for mechanical engineers. They can now combine “machine learning” with engineering to address a wide range of formidable technical problems, “from water desalination to gene expression,” says Robinson, who has a doctorate in mechanical engineering.

Here is an overview of the numerous career options for someone who earns a mechanical engineering degree.

Jobs for People With Mechanical Engineering Degrees

The problem-solving approach and clear communication style that mechanical engineering students are taught are valuable skills, Johnson says, noting that mechanical engineers are typically excellent at analyzing and explaining complicated issues.

Because of their ability to understand and clarify difficult concepts and identify solutions to challenges, mechanical engineers are often recruited by management consulting firms, Johnson says. Mechanical engineers can also become outstanding project managers or business executives, he explains.

Joe Heaney, president of Lotus Biosecurity – a company that develops sanitation technology solutions for businesses operating in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic – notes that individuals with mechanical engineering degrees are well-suited for technical sales positions that involve explaining and customizing a technology firm’s products for prospective clients.

Mechanical engineers are also involved with research and development at many scientific laboratories, according to Heaney, who earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins University.

“Traditionally, mechanical engineering graduates have often gone into manufacturing, helping to design many of the home products and appliances that we use on a daily basis,” Bala Balachandran, chair of the mechanical engineering department at the University of Maryland’s A. James Clark School of Engineering, wrote in an email.

“With the emergence of advanced technologies, the door is now open for mechanical engineers to become involved in nanotech – for instance, in designing medicines and devices that work at a very tiny scale,” says Balachandran, who has a doctorate in engineering mechanics.

Marie Buharin, a hiring manager in the medical device industry, says she routinely hires mechanical engineers.

“We hire many mechanical engineers in the medical device industry,” says Buharin, who is also the founder of Modernesse, a website that provides career development advice. “It is one of the most commonly found majors among many departments within medical device companies.”

Lt. Col. Robert Rabb, department head and assistant dean for assessment at The Citadel – a military college in South Carolina – describes mechanical engineering as “one of the broadest engineering disciplines.”

Rabb – who has bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in mechanical engineering – notes that mechanical engineers can work on ambitious government building projects and often advance quickly into project leadership roles.

Mechanical engineers typically work with their hands, Rabb says. “Mechanical engineers are not at a desk all the time. We have to design, develop, build, and test. This requires us to see and touch something besides a computer.”

These are some examples of jobs where a mechanical engineering credential is valuable, according to experts.

  • Aerospace engineer.
  • Automotive engineer.
  • Biomedical engineer.
  • Business executive.
  • Construction engineer.
  • Entrepreneur.
  • Intellectual property attorney.
  • Manufacturing engineer.
  • Management consultant.
  • Mechanical engineer.
  • Patent lawyer.
  • Production engineer.
  • Project lead.
  • Project manager.
  • Petroleum engineer.
  • Process engineer.
  • Product designer.
  • Quality engineer.
  • Sales engineer.
  • Structural engineer.
  • Technology specialist.
  • Thermal engineer.

Employment Prospects Within Mechanical Engineering

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary among U.S. mechanical engineers in May 2019 was $88,430. It is possible to enter the profession with only a bachelor’s degree.

Someone who is considering a mechanical engineering education but who may feel unready for college may want to pursue a trade industrial apprenticeship, says Brian Keating, director of the Joint Apprenticeship & Training Fund for the United Service Workers Union Local 355 chapter in New York.

Keating notes that alumni of building trade apprenticeship programs sometimes go on to become mechanical engineers.

Experts note that it is often beneficial for mechanical engineers to seek supplemental education in computer science or business, but also suggest that such additional training is optional.

“A mechanical engineering degree affords the individual a virtual Swiss Army knife of skill sets,” Keith F. Noe, a partner with Lando & Anastasi, LLP, a Boston-based intellectual property law firm, wrote in an email.

Noe, who has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, says that the skills cultivated via a degree in this field are applicable to a wide array of industries and work assignments.

“A mechanical engineer has opportunities to work in the automotive, heating and cooling, manufacturing and aeronautic industries, to name a few,” he explains. “Projects can be revolutionary or evolutionary.”

Some mechanical engineering projects involve designing new products while others focus on either cost reduction, quality improvement or both.

“To use a sports analogy, a Mechanical Engineer is the utility player of the engineering world,” Tony Sanger, a senior vice president at the Turner & Townsend multinational consulting firm, wrote in an email. “The opportunities are endless.”

The Economic Impact of Climate Change Wed, 09 Dec 2020 17:14:55 +0000 From South Carolina Public Radio, by Mike Switzer 2020’s hurricane season has been one of the most prolific in history, suggesting to most climate experts that global warming is accelerating. ]]>

From South Carolina Public Radio, by Mike Switzer

2020’s hurricane season has been one of the most prolific in history, suggesting to most climate experts that global warming is accelerating.  And the economic effects could be significant for coastal states like ours.  Which is one reason why our next guest’s university has opened a climate research center.

Mike Switzer interviews Scott Curtis, director of the Center for Climate Studies at The Citadel in Charleston, SC.