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HB 6127 Wilder Laboratory
Dartmouth College
Hanover, NH 03755
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Exploring the Future of STEM

The 2014 E.E. Just Symposium

Friday, Oct. 31st & Saturday, Nov. 1st
Dartmouth College, Oopik Auditorium (LSC 100)

The E.E. Just Symposium at Dartmouth College celebrates the spirit of scientific courage and interdisciplinary research, epitomized by E.E. Just's scientific contributions. Ernest Everett Just was the pioneering African-American scientist who graduated from Dartmouth College in 1907. The E.E. Just Symposium is a multiple day workshop that brings together a group of world-renowned scientists, technologists, Dartmouth students and Alumni to engage in discussions and collaboration on topics at the frontiers of interdisciplinary scientific topics. Special thanks to the Dean of Faculty office and the Provost for their financial support of the symposium.


John A. Johnson

Dr. John Asher Johnson received his Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from the University of Missouri-Rolla (now the Missouri University of Science and Technology), and his Masters and Ph.D. degrees in Astronomy from the University of California, Berkeley. He then held a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship in Astronomy and Astrophysics, based at the Institute for Astronomy (University of Hawai'i). After spending four years as an assistant professor of Planetary Astronomy at Caltech, he is now a Professor of Astronomy at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics.

He has been awarded the Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship, the David & Lucile Packard Fellowship, and the AAS Newton Lacy Pierce Prize for "for major contributions to understanding fundamental relationships between extrasolar planets and their parent stars." In 2013, he was named one of Astronomy Magazine's "Ten Rising Stars" in astrophysics.

His primary research focus is on the detection and characterization of planets outside our solar system, commonly known as exoplanets. His most recent work is focused on studying the properties of Earth-like planets around the galaxy's least massive stars, commonly known as red dwarfs. His notable discoveries include three of the smallest planets discovered to date, each smaller than the Earth and one the size of Mars. His statistical analysis of planets discovered around red dwarfs has revealed that there exist 1-3 Earth-like planets per star throughout the galaxy.

In addition to papers in professional journals and conferences, his work has been featured in the magazines Sky & Telescope, Astronomy, Discover and New Scientist.

Sylvester James Gates, Jr.
University of Maryland

Sylvester Jim Gates is the Toll Professor of Physics and Director of the Center for String and Particle Theory at the University of Maryland in College Park. He serves on President Obama's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. He is the recipient of the Nation Medal of Science and the Mendel Medal. He is elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, the American Philosophical Society and the National Academy of Sciences.

Michael Peskin
SLAC – Stanford University

Michael Peskin is an American theoretical physicist. He was an undergraduate at Harvard University and obtained his Ph.D. in 1978 at Cornell University studying under Kenneth Wilson. He was a Junior Fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows from 1977–1980.

He is currently a professor in the theory group at the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory. Peskin was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2000.

Peskin is known for a widely used textbook on quantum field theory, written with Daniel Schroeder, and the Peskin-Takeuchi parameter. He has authored many popular review articles. He is a noted advocate of building a future linear collider.

Ayana T. Arce
Duke University

Ayana Arce is an experimental particle physicist and an assistant professor at Duke University. She received her Ph.D. from Harvard in 2006 and became a Chamberlain Postdoctoral Fellow at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, where she started working in the ATLAS experiment, which is one of several detectors at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) at CERN. There, she concentrates on experimental techniques to identify and measure the properties of heavy unstable elementary particles such as the top quark, in order to search for unexpected interactions

Andrea A. Hayes-Jordan, MD
Dept. of Pediatric Surgery, University of Texas

Dr. Andrea Hayes-Jordan is an Associate Professor in both the Department of Pediatric Surgery at The University of Texas Medical School at Houston and in Surgical Oncology and Pediatrics at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

She completed her Pediatric Surgery Training at the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children and is board certified in general and pediatric surgery with a special interest in surgical oncology. Dr. Hayes-Jordan's research focuses novel therapies to treat childhood cancers including rhabdomysarcoma, a cancer typically of the skeletal muscles, and desmoplastic small round cell tumors, a rare and aggressive cancer found within the abdomen and pelvis.

In 2006, she became the first surgeon in North America to successfully perform a high-risk adult surgery called continuous hyperthermic peritoneal perfusion (CHPP) on a pediatric patient with tumors that had spread to the abdomen. Dr. Hayes-Jordan's clinical research program performs several CHPP surgeries each year in adults and children. In addition, Dr. Hayes-Jordan conducts basic science research in her laboratory that focuses on developing ways to prevent, treat and cure patients with pulmonary metastases of sarcomas. Her laboratory supports medical students and general surgery residents.

Professor Margaret Geller

Margaret J. Geller was a pioneer in mapping the nearby universe. Her maps provided a new view of the enormous patterns in the distribution of galaxies like the Milky Way – the largest patterns we know. Dr. Geller's long-range scientific goals are to discover what the universe looks like and to understand how it came to have the rich patterns we observe today.To put the pieces of this grand puzzle together her research projects range from the structure of our own galaxy, the Milky Way, to mapping the distribution of the mysterious, ubiquitous dark matter in the universe.

Dr. Geller is broadly committed to public education in science. Her many public lectures, radio interviews, and television appearances have introduced an international audience to the idea that today we can map the universe. In July, 1990, she was awarded a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. She conducted research at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) on the nature and history of galaxy distribution, the origin and evolution of galaxies, and x-ray astronomy. She has published prolifically in these areas.

Her long-range research goals include the development of a coherent picture of the formation and evolution of clusters of galaxies, and the relationship between individual clusters and the cluster environment.

Everard Findlay

Everard Findlay is the founder and CEO of EFLLC, a New York-based global brand consultancy specializing in strategic branding solutions. His work has since emphasized the creation of cross-disciplinary collaborations which harmonize private and public sectors while fostering connectedness to a brand or territory. Findlay takes the idea of branding beyond identities and ad campaigns by engaging tastemakers such as leading scientists, innovators, artists and designers to spark a broader interest. To this end, Findlay regularly alternates between various roles such as creative director, curator or director in industries ranging from fashion to heavy industry.

Findlay founded EIME Corp in 2012 to implement concepts created by EFLLC. Through EIME, Findlay leads development consortiums through a holistic approach, creating and cultivating environments aligned with a brand strategy conducive to commerce and sustainable growth. Findlay's current projects include the branding of the Republic of Suriname and Egi province in Nigeria. He sits on the boards for GrowNYC, NeueHouse and the Dartmouth College's Center for Cosmic Origins.

Farran Briggs
Geisel School of Medicine
Dartmouth College

After graduating from Dartmouth College in 1997 with a B.A. in biology, Dr. Briggs attended graduate school at the University of California, San Diego where she studied local cortical circuitry with Dr. Ed Callaway at the Salk Institute. She received her Ph.D. in biology from UCSD in 2003. Dr. Briggs conducted her post-doctoral research at the University of California, Davis where she studied visual systems neurophysiology with Drs. Marty Usrey, Barbara Chapman, and Ron Mangun. In 2011, Dr. Briggs joined the faculty in the Physiology and Neurobiology Department of the Geisel School of Medicine as an Assistant Professor.

Salvador Almagro-Moreno
Geisel School of Medicine
Dartmouth College

Dr. Almagro-Moreno studied biology at the University of Granada and obtained his M.S. in Biotechnology and Ph.D. in microbiology from University College Cork (Ireland). Currently, he works at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth and he is the E. E. Just Postdoctoral Fellow at Dartmouth College. He is also the President of Dartmouth College Postdoctoral Association.

His major scientific interest is the "evolution of evolvability". Specifically, he is focused on the evolution and emergence of pathogenic bacteria. He investigates how environmental factors affect their pathogenic potential, how they acquire and regulate virulence genes, and what their ecological relationships are with other members of their natural environment. For cholera, he contends that by understanding its evolution and ecology, we will gain the knowledge that will allow us to forecast traits of emergent strains, predict new sources of outbreaks, and eventually design and produce affordable and safe vaccines for developing countries.


Friday, October 31st, 2014 – all sessions in Oopik Auditorium (LSC 100)

  • 6:00pm – Professor Stephon Alexander, Opening Remarks
  • 6:10pm – Jim Gates, Keynote Address: When The Cosmos Does The Wave It Does Wave Gravity
  • Saturday, November 1st, 2014 – all sessions in Oopik Auditorium (LSC 100)
  • 9:15am – President Hanlon Welcoming Remarks
  • 9:30am – Dr. Andrea Hayes-Jordan, MD Keynote Address: The Pursuit of New Scientific Discoveries on Behalf of the Hopeless
  • 10:30am – Professor John Johnson Hot on the Trail of Warm Planet Orbiting Cool Stars
  • 11:00am – Professor Michael Casey The Music of Physics:The Shroedinger Equation and the Information Dynamics of Music
  • 11:40am – 12:50pm – Lunch Break (students have lunch with their guru)
  • 1:00pm – Professor Michael Peskin Keynote Address: Beyond the Higgs Boson
  • 2:00pm – Professor Farran Briggs Attention and Neural Circuits
  • 2:30pm – Profesor Margaret Geller Miro Dali Gaudi: Space Time Gravity
  • 3:00pm – Professor Ayana Arce Dirty Secrets of the LHC
  • 3:30pm – Coffee Break
  • 3:45pm – Dr. Salvador Almagro-Moreno Infectious Disease: It's Nothing Personal
  • 4:10pm – Panel Discussion: Interdisciplinary Creativity in STEM (Panelists TBA)
  • 5:00pm – Reception outside LSC I00


Dartmouth College
Class of 1978 Life Sciences Center
Oopik Auditorium (LSC 100)
Dewey Field Rd
Hanover, NH 03755

Last Updated: 1/20/16