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For the Record

University community reports recent presentations, publications, honors

For the Record provides information about recent professional activities and honors of University of Delaware faculty, staff, students and alumni.

Recent presentations, publications and honors include the following:


Susan Conaty-Buck, assistant professor of nursing, presented a podium presentation entitled “Building Competence in Artificial Intelligence: Preparing Nursing Students for Practice in the Age of Intelligence" at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Doctoral Conference, held Jan. 31, 2020, in Naples, Florida. Her presentation explained the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in healthcare as complex computer algorithms designed to perform tasks in an automated fashion to accomplish work normally done by a human, including problem-solving and learning. She explained when researchers, clinicians and scientists inject data into computers, newly built algorithms can review, interpret and even suggest solutions to complex healthcare problems. Her presentation to nursing graduate educators encouraged them to prepare students to use AI wisely, noting education should include knowledge of when AI would improve patient outcomes, increase care quality, and decrease costs; knowing how to perform risk assessment when AI is used for patient care, and ensuring AI users are trained in ethical use of technology and patient privacy. Most importantly, she encouraged educators to encourage students to balance innovation with human-centered care delivery to ensure the art of caring is not overshadowed by technology.

In addition, at the American Association of Colleges of Nursing Faculty Practice Conference, held Jan. 29, 2020, in Naples, Florida, Susan Conaty-Buck presented a poster on work developed with colleague Jennifer Graber, assistant professor of nursing entitled, “Engaging Nurse Practitioner Student Learners through a Novel Integrated Team-Based Simulation Experience.” Nurse practitioners frequently provide care for patients with complex healthcare needs. Few published simulations allow advanced practice nurse practitioner graduate students to practice addressing the needs of complex patients presenting with chronic illness, pain and mental illness using a team-based practice approach while in their graduate program. Leading vendors of simulation software at the conference took notice of the work by Conaty-Buck and Graber, noting that this type of simulation is not currently available but needed.  

The Delaware Geological Survey was well represented at the Delaware Wetlands Conference, held Jan. 29-30, 2020, at the Chase Center in Wilmington, Delaware. From the Survey, John Callahan, associate scientist, presented “Total Water Levels, Storm Surge and Inundation Frequency Along Delaware’s Coasts”; Daniel L. Warner, GIS analyst, presented “Vulnerability of Stored Soil Carbon in Delaware’s Coastal Wetlands”; and Thomas E. McKenna, scientist and associate professor of geological sciences, presented “Flow Paths for Flooding on the Back-barrier of Slaughter Beach, Delaware.” Presenting a poster on “LiDAR Vertical Bias Assessment and Digital Elevation Model Correction of Tidal Salt Marshes in Delaware” were Catherine Medlock, graduate student in the Department of Earth Sciences, with McKenna, Callahan and Warner. Medlock won the Delaware Wetlands Conference 2020 student poster competition, which is now named the Dr. Christopher Sommerfield Memorial Award.


Katie GiffordHira RashidMary Joan McDuffie, and Erin Knight, researchers at the Center of Community Research and Service, in conjunction with Ann Bell of the Department of Sociology, authored a paper published in the January 2020 issue of the Maternal and Child Health Journal, entitled “Power of Mom”: A Mixed Methods Investigation of Mothers’ Influence on Women’s Contraceptive Attitudes and Behaviors.”

Doctoral student Jianyu Xu and Prof. Mary P. Watson, both in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, are the authors of an article published Jan. 31 in the journal Science. "Stitching Two Chiral Centers with One Catalyst: A single catalyst joins alkyl groups with control over stereochemistry of both fragments" appears in the organic chemistry perspectives section. Xu and Watson explain the significance of research published in the same issue of the journal by a team led by Haohua Huo of the California Institute of Technology. At UD, Watson's research group focuses on the discovery of new methods for organic synthesis, using transition metal catalysts.  


The book “Islam and Good Governance: A Political Philosophy of Ihsan” by Muqtedar Khan, professor in the Department of Political Science and International Relations, has been selected as part of BookAuthority’s 100 Best Political Philosophy Books of All Time. Khan’s work — an exploration of Islamic political philosophy based on the concept of Ihsan, which means “to do beautiful things” — was reviewed by a BookAuthority panel of 40 distinguished scholars and experts prior to receiving the recognition. BookAuthority uses proprietary technology to identify and rate the best nonfiction books, using dozens of different signals, including public mentions, recommendations, ratings, sentiment, popularity and sales history. Its rankings and suggestions include book recommendations from domain experts such as Elon Musk, Warren Buffett, Sheryl Sandberg and David Allen.

The National Foundation for Eye Research (NFER) has selected Salil A. Lachke, Alumni Distinguished Early Career Professor of Biology, as the recipient of the 2020 NFER Cataract Research Award. This international award recognizes promising lens researchers who have conducted significant scientific work. Lachke, who is associate professor and associate chair in the Department of Biological Sciences, conducts genetic research related to organ development and disease, especially in the eye. His innovative research has won many awards, and he is a Gerard J. Mangone Scholar and a Pew Scholar in the Biomedical Sciences.

An interview with Tatyana Polenova, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, which aired on the Scientists' Channel in October, has won SelectScience's Drug Discovery and Development's Video of the Year Award. In the video, "Studying the structural biology and biophysics of HIV with NMR," Polenova discusses the use of solid-state NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) spectroscopy in her work looking at the molecular structure of viruses with atomic resolution. “This is an honor, and I hope that this video may inspire young scientists to pursue research in the fields of structural biology, HIV research and NMR spectroscopy," Polenova said.


To submit information for inclusion in For the Record, write to ocm@udel.edu and include “For the Record” in the subject line.

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