Jihoon Kim

Imagine virtually experiencing the beaches of Turks and Caicos before booking a trip to visit the destination in reality.

Interactive marketing using virtual reality (VR) might one day help you decide your next vacation destination.

That is, if Jihoon Kim has anything to say about it.

A doctoral student in the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication, Kim studies how virtual experiences have the potential to transform marketing communication.

Kim is advised by Dr. Grace Ahn, director of the Games and Virtual Environments Lab (GAVEL) in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

An interdisciplinary research facility, GAVEL takes a human-centered approach to investigate virtual … read more

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Marcus Hill

Marcus Hill, a doctoral student in the Department of Computer Science, uses complex grammar rules to predict the underlying relationships in ribonucleic acid (RNA) structures.

Yes, you read that correctly!

RNA is a biological molecule essential for all living beings. More specifically, RNA utilizes the genetic information stored in DNA to create proteins.

Under the supervision of his advisor Dr. Liming Cai, Hill is working on ways to model these RNA strands using “formal language theory.”

The theory consists of studying the syntactical structure of a language- only in this case the language is RNA.

RNA can be thought of as a language whose alphabet … read more

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Anuradhi Liyanapathiranage

Did you know that the shirt you’re wearing right now took three years of drinking water (roughly 2,700 liters) to make?

Current textile dyeing and washing processes consume massive quantities of water and release large amounts of dye into the environment. Conventional dyeing methods also involve a dye bath that contains dissolved forms of reactive dye and dye auxiliaries.

However, this method does not ensure stable fixation of the dye, with approximately 20 to 30 percent rinsing off during the washing process. Unsurprisingly, this results in large amounts of contaminated water.

Anuradhi Liyanapathiranage, a doctoral student in the Department of Textiles, … read more

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Corina Mihaela Beleaua

Which classes are most useful to pre-med students?

The likelihood is that a common science class- biology, chemistry, or anatomy- would be your first thought.

Corina Mihaela Beleaua, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Comparative Literature, would like you to consider adding a literature class to that list.

Advised by Dr. Mihai Spariosu, a Distinguished Research Professor in the Department of Comparative Literature, Beleaua’s dissertation focuses on how literature texts can increase a student’s empathy.

Among other literature classes at the University, Beleaua teaches the undergraduate class, “Literature and Medicine.”

The class’ readings include texts that address the challenges physicians face in their daily … read more

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Maite Ghazaleh Bucher

Would you be surprised to know that coral polyps- the tiny animals responsible for building reef structures- are clear? The brilliant colors you see are actually produced by tiny algae (zooxanthellae) which live inside the coral tissue.

In addition to the zooxanthellae, bacteria and viruses also live in coral and collectively form the coral microbiome.

Acting as a foundation species, healthy corals sustain entire reef ecosystems that are believed to have the highest biodiversity of any ecosystem on the planet- even more than a tropical rainforest.

Like all animals though, corals can be affected by disease.

A 2016 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow … read more

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Denzell Cross

With a projected economic growth rate of 3.5% from 2011-2016, Forbes ranks the city of Atlanta as the 10th fastest-growing city in America.

While there are many benefits associated with urbanization, it can also impose negative and detrimental influences on stream communities.

Denzell Cross, a doctoral student pursuing a Ph.D. in Integrated Conservation (ICON) at UGA, investigates these long-term impacts of urbanization on the structure and function of streams in the Atlanta metropolitan area.

Advised by Dr. Krista Capps, Cross was awarded the prestigious Ford Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship which provides three years of support for study in pursuit of a doctorate degree.

To understand the … read more

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Paige Miller

Paige Miller, a doctoral student in the IDEAS (Interdisciplinary Disease Ecology Across Scales) Program within the Odum School of Ecology, uses statistical and mathematical models to explore the ecological, evolutionary, and epidemiological processes driving infectious disease dynamics.

Advised by Odum School of Ecology professor Dr. John Drake and College of Public Health professor Dr. Chris Whalen, Miller studies how the social contact network of a population ffects the transmission of tuberculosis (Mycobacterium tuberculosis).

Also known as TB, the Tuberculosis disease is caused by a bacterium that lies dormant in approximately one quarter of the human population.

10.4 million people contracted TB in 2016, … read more

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Hunter Hickox, a May 2018 PhD Graduate in the Department of Chemistry, works at the fundamental chemical level to discover both unidentified compounds and unknown ways these compounds can form bonds

In chemistry, a compound is formed when atoms from two or more different elements form a chemical bond.

An ionic bond, for instance, involves the transfer of an electron from one atom to another. Essentially, one atom is gaining an electron while another atom is losing an electron.

Another type of bond- covalent- occurs when atoms share electrons.

In our daily lives, chemical bonds occur around us constantly. The rain (H2O) falling outside your window, the sugar (C12H22O11)in your coffee, and the carbon dioxide (CO2) you exhale are all examples of chemical bonds.

Hunter Hickox, a May 2018 PhD graduate in the Department of … read more

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Ava Thomas Wright, a doctoral candidate in philosophy, uses value theory and epistemology to study how lies undermine trust in expert sources.

Fake news and the coverage of it is a topic recently at the forefront of the minds of most Americans. What it means for a source of information to be trustworthy, and why, is an increasingly important issue.

Ava Thomas Wright, a doctoral candidate in philosophy, uses value theory and epistemology to study how lies undermine trust in expert sources.

For her dissertation research, Wright is examining whether experts have a legal “duty of veracity” when reporting their knowledge.

“The intuition that drives my dissertation is that in a civil society, authoritative sources such as experts ought to be trustworthy- or at least … read more

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Rishi Masalia, a doctoral candidate in the department of plant biology, receives the 2018 Pillar of the Community Award

Highlighting his contributions to science outreach efforts both at the University and in Athens, Rishi Masalia has been awarded the 2018 Pillar of the Community Award at the 17th annual H. Gordon and Francis S. Davis Student Organization Achievement and Recognition Awards. The award is given to an individual within the UGA community who assists others above and beyond the call of duty. Masalia was recognized for his involvement with the Athens Science Cafe and the Athens Science Observer.

Masalia serves as co-founder of the Athens Science Café, whose goal is to facilitate a connection between the Athens scientific community and … read more

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