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College of Arts and Sciences


Marine science grad dives deep in submersible that first explored Titanic

Hunting ocean fungi rather than ocean liner wreckage, Julianne McHenry came up with sea floor samples key in ongoing research project.

What if you could recharge a battery 250,000 times? South Carolina chemist works to lengthen battery life.

In a world racing towards renewable energy, batteries are the linchpin. Yet, their ability to recharge is a looming hurdle. Enter Morgan Stefik, leading a charge at USC's Carolina Institute for Battery Innovation.

For alumna Emma Jackson, every week is a shark week

Emma Jackson, who earned her degree from USC in marine science, is pursuing her passion for elasmobranchs: the family that includes sharks, rays and sawfish.

USC ranked one of top patent-producing universities in the world

USC is the top patent-producing university in the state and among the leaders in the SEC.

Psychology Ph.D. students tap bartenders, musicians to help address opioid misuse

The opioid epidemic has been on the rise in South Carolina for more than a decade. Statewide, more than 2,200 people died from unintentional overdose in 2022. Now, two University of South Carolina graduate students have recruited a new group of professionals to help offset the epidemic: Columbia's local bartenders.

Student body vice president advocates for good mental health

Courtney Tkacs is committed to fostering a safe community for students on campus while prioritizing mental health activism.

The Impact of the Mellon Foundation Grant on Women's and Gender Studies at USC

The University of South Carolina's Department of Women's and Gender Studies has been awarded a $100,000 grant by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation through its "Affirming Multivocal Humanities" initiative, which, according to its website, strives to “further address the continuing need for nuanced scholarship on the breadth of the human experience through race, ethnic, gender and sexuality studies."

Teaching Award Spotlight: Amanda Murphy, Department of Statistics

When it's time to sign up for classes, statistics students at the University of South Carolina eagerly advise, "Make sure you get into Murphy's class!" This enthusiastic endorsement highlights Amanda Murphy's dedication and engaging teaching methods, which have earned her the 2024 Professional Track Teaching Award from the College of Arts and Sciences.

Teaching Award Spotlight: Joshua Meyer-Gutbrod, Department of Political Science

Since joining the College of Arts and Sciences in 2020, Joshua Meyer-Gutbrod has revolutionized the experience for political science students. He created a semester-long Senate simulation class, enabling students to practice politics by role-playing as senators.

Arts and Sciences boasts trio of MIRA winners

Earning the Maximizing Investigators' Research Award is a rare accomplishment. The MIRA is a prestigious honor bestowed annually by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, part of the National Institutes of Health, and only those researchers at the cutting edge of their field are considered.

USC's Edsel Peña, incoming statistics department chair, elected IMS Fellow

Edsel Peña has reached a high point in his nearly 40-year career. The professor in USC's Department of Statistics has been named a fellow of the Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS), one of the biggest honors for a statistician. In addition, Peña has received an award from the Philippine-American Academy of Science and Engineering.

Honors College alumna finds success in higher education

Honors College alumna Kimberly Rogers recently completed her first year as a college president — an impressive achievement for anyone, especially a first-generation university graduate. She took the first steps on that path in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where she discovered a passion that would lead her far.

Student body President Patton Byars leads campus into future

Student body President Patton Byars is a generational Gamecock dedicated to creating long-term improvements at the University of South Carolina and is focusing on enhancing campus safety and the four-year student experience.

USC biologist revives historic moth and butterfly collection

What started as a hobby taking photos of butterflies at a community garden gave Allie Fletcher a jumpstart to a future in ecology research. Now, she's helping build one of the largest single-site insect databases in the country, while discovering and identifying species never documented in South Carolina.

Archaeologists uncover new evidence for prehistoric comet

At dig sites in South Carolina, Maryland and New Jersey, shock-fractured quartz hints at a violent cosmic impact almost 13,000 years ago.

Support and passion bring Honors College alumna into the 'ocean twilight zone'

Honors College alumna Kayla Gardner’s passion for protecting the ocean and teaching others to do the same led her to pursue a career in marine science. Unlike many young people who are drawn to dolphins, turtles or sharks, much smaller creatures sparked Gardner’s interest.

2-time James Beard Book Award finalist rescues food staples of yesteryear

Carolina Distinguished Professor David Shields is a finalist for the 2024 James Beard Book Award for his book The Ark of Taste: Delicious and Distinctive Foods that Define the United States.

Public history alumna helps developers preserve historic buildings

Historic preservation consultant Janie Campbell, 2016 public history, has made a career of going into opportunities with low expectations and coming out of them realizing they were exactly what she needed at the time.

Cyber policy and ethics students shine in global competition

A team of University of South Carolina students had to solve an international crisis as part of a competition called Cyber 9/12 Strategy Challenge. The situation was fictional, but their solution to the problem had to be based on real-world policy dealing with technology that crosses borders. The experience gave them a taste of what their future careers may be like.

Unique experiences make graduating Cocky's time as mascot worth it

When Tramont Miles first read the email, he thought someone was pulling an April Fools' prank on him. It was April 1, 2022 and the email was telling him he was selected for one of the most undercover jobs at South Carolina.

2010 international studies graduate runs wine school in Colorado

Kellie Martin can still remember the moment when she changed her mind about wine. She was in college, sitting in a French café with a friend and overwhelmed by the expansive menu and wine list. Her friend stepped in, offering to order wine for them.

Supporting 'democracy' is hard for many who feel government and the economy are failing them

A recent survey shows that a substantial portion of people across countries feel unrepresented by their governments and are dissatisfied with how their democracy is functioning. Political science professor Matthew Wilson writes for The Conversation about this pattern of "democratic backsliding."

Here's to the class of 2024!

Hear from members of the College of Arts and Sciences' graduating class as they share their best memories, advice and hopes for the future.

Senior Spotlight: How Katie McBride discovered a love for chemistry

As a premedical student, Katie McBride found support and a path to success through chemist Natalia Shustova's research group. From a tough start with chemistry, McBride became one of the department's top students and was honored with the university's Outstanding Senior Award.

Double honor: USC historian lands Guggenheim Fellowship, Rome Prize

Carol Harrison is headed to Rome for the upcoming school year thanks to two major fellowships supporting her research on the First Vatican Council (1869-1870). A professor in USC’s Department of History, Harrison recently won both the Guggenheim Fellowship — one of the world’s most prestigious grants for scholars — and the Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome.

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