Quick Contact

PRESIDENT: Holger Mauch, Assistant Professor of Computer Science
local: (727) 864-8372
email: mauchh@eckerd.edu

TREASURER & SECRETARY: Nancy Smith, Associate Professor of Marine Science & Biology
local: (727) 864-8440
email: smithnf@eckerd.edu

Sigma Xi
Eckerd College
4200 54th Avenue South
St. Petersburg, FL 33711

toll-free: (800) 456-9009

Monday - Friday
8:30am - 5:00pm

Sigma Xi

American Studies

Programs & Events for 2007-08

Tuesday, November 13, 2007 at 6 PM

Fox Hall, Eckerd College


Conservation, Education, and Training Group, Chicago Zoological Society & Mote Marine Laboratory, Center for Marine Mammal and Sea Turtle Research
The Sarasota Dolphin Research Program is the world's longest-running study of wild dolphins, providing insights into the life history, natural history, social structure, ecology, and health of free ranging dolphins, as observed across multiple generations.  From our multidisciplinary, collaborative research, the identifiable long-term resident dolphins of Sarasota Baycan tell us much about their lives and how humans impact them in coastal waters they call home.

Randall Wells coordinates the Sarasota Dolphin Research Program (SDRP), the world’s longest-running wild dolphin research program.  He began studying dolphins as a high school volunteer at Mote Marine Laboratory in Sarasota, Florida in 1970. Wells received his BA in Zoology from the University of South Florida, and his MS in Zoology from the University of Florida. He went on to receive a PhD in Biology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, under Ken Norris in 1986, for work on "Structural Aspects of Dolphin Societies."  In 1987 he was awarded a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Biology at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, working with Peter Tyack.  Since 1989 he has been a Conservation Biologist with the Chicago Zoological Society in Brookfield, Illinois. In this capacity, Wells also manages Mote Marine Laboratory’s Dolphin Research Program.  Wells’ current research program uses a collaborative approach to examine the behavior, social structure, life history, ecology, health, and population biology of bottlenose dolphins along the central west coast of Florida, with studies focusing on five generations of a locally resident 150-member dolphin community.  Recent research topics include the effects of human activities on coastal dolphins, such as boat traffic, fishing activities, human feeding of wild dolphins, and environmental contaminants.  Wells has served as principal or co-principal investigator for 149 funded marine mammal research projects during 1980-2007.  In addition to bottlenose dolphin research, Wells has engaged in studies of the behavior of Hawaiian spinner dolphins, blue, gray, and humpback whales, ranging patterns of franciscana dolphins off Argentina, the effects of offshore industrial activities on bowhead whales, the impacts of boat traffic on manatees, and the reintroduction of captive and rehabilitated dolphins back into their native waters.

Thursday October 4, 2007 at 6:30 PM

Professor Emeritus, Department of Chemistry, New York University

Galbraith Auditorium, Galbraith Marine Science Laboratory, Eckerd College

At the dawn of the space age in the 1960s, only a handful of molecules were known to exist off the earth. Since those days of early robotic exploration of the moon and mars, fly-bys with spectroscopy of the outer planets, and radioastronomy of distant areas of both our own galaxy and other parts of the universe have brought forth a burst of molecular information. About 120 molecules, some new and some previously reported have been identified to date. What types of molecules are these? What varieties of molecular species have been found? Where do they occur, how did they form, and what mechanisms exist for molecular formation? Can we model and predict what other molecules may occur? How has interstellar Organic Chemistry evolved? Dr. Rhodes will address these and other related questions.

Yorke Rhodes earned the B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Delaware. His Ph.D. was from the University of Illinois. This was followed by a postdoctoral as an NIH fellow at Yale.  In 1965, he joined the Chemistry Faculty of New York University. Before he retired from NYU, he won student, alumni, and faculty awards for his teaching. He has been visiting professor at Harvard, Hunter College, Freiburg Universitat, Technische Universitat Munchen, and Universite Grenoble. He has also had research fellowships at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology.  Professor Rhodes’ research interests have included chromatographic analysis of amino acids and carbohydrates in soil samples, the mechanism of the reaction of cycloheptatriene with sulfur dioxide, salt effects on reaction rates in liquid sulfur dioxide, electrocyclic reactions, small ring chemistry, and carbocations, especially neighboring-group assisted rearrangements and relative migratory aptitudes.

Monday February 11, 2008

6:30 PM: Wine & Cheese Reception for Sigma Xi and ASPEC

7:00 PM: Seminar 

Lewis House (Academy of Senior Professionals at Eckerd College) 


Air Force Research Laboratory Emeritus; Sigma Xi Member Since 1957, ASPEC Member Since 2007

Global climate change, driven largely by the combustion of fossil fuels and by deforestation, is a growing threat to human well-being (1). Significant harm from climate change is already occurring, and further damages are a certainty. The challenge now is to keep climate change from becoming a catastrophe. There is still a good chance of succeeding in this, and of doing so by means that create economic opportunities that are greater than the costs and that advance rather than impede other societal goals. But seizing this chance requires an immediate and major acceleration of efforts on two fronts: mitigation measures (such as reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases and black soot) to prevent the degree of climate change from becoming unmanageable; and adaptation measures (such as building dikes and adjusting agricultural practices) to reduce the harm from climate change that proves unavoidable. Increased prices of fossil fuels motive the accelerated development of wind, solar, nuclear energy sources. The intrinsic beauty of nature can motivate its conservation (2).

(1)    Executive summary, Scientific Expert Group Report, "American Scientist," May-June 2007. http://www.sigmaxi.org/programs/unseg/index.shtml

(2)     Carr, Paul H. 2006. Chapter 9 "The Beauty of Nature versus Its Utility" of "Beauty in Science and Spirit," (www.BeechRiverBooks.com/id08  Center Ossipee, NH).

Paul H. Carr, B.S., M.S., MIT; Ph.D. Physics, Brandeis U., led a branch investigating microwave ultrasonic surface acoustic waves (SAW) and superconductors at the AF Research Laboratory, Bedford, MA.  His 80 scientific papers and 10 patents have contributed to new components for radar, TV, and cell phones. He is a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and a life member of the American Physical Society. He received a grant form the John Templeton Foundation for his philosophy course "Science and Religion: Cosmos to Consciousness" at U Mass Lowell. This gave birth to his book, Beauty in Science and Spirit, described on his web page www.MirrorOfNature.org .1

Monday February 18, 2008 at 6 PM

Galbraith Auditorium, Galbraith Marine Science Laboratory 

DONALD COSTELLO, Association of Computing Machinery Distinguished Lecturer

Cryptography: From Enigma to Elliptical Curve Cryptography

The history of cryptography can be likened to a reawaking history of mathematics and computer science. The story of cryptography goes back 4000 years and some of the mathematics employed goes back as long. This talk will address the history of cryptography beginning with the Enigma used by the Germans in WWII and broken by world famous Mathematician/ Computer Scientist Alan Turing. It will continue down to today’s advanced crypto systems such as RSA, PGP and Elliptic Curve cryptography.  The lecture will point out the key role that cryptography plays in the future of e-commerce and the new products and ways of doing business that results when secure communications through cryptography is available.

Don Costello has had a mixed career splitting his time between Universities and Business. He helped start three Computer Science Departments and three University Information Technology facilities (University of Nebraska, University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh and Madison and Colorado State University). He has taught undergraduate and graduate courses and has done work in research areas of Statistical Computing, Performance Modeling, Standards for Learning Objects and Managing Intellectual Property. He is a 40-year member of the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) and is a fellow of the British Computing Society. He has lectured all over the United States as well as in England, Ireland, Austria, Germany, India and Sri Lanka. He also held a four-year Carnegie Foundation grant to investigate how IP is managed in Universities around the World.  In business career he has managed IT facilities, founded and sold two firms and consulted with over 100 firms throughout the world. His recent consulting includes five years consulting on ERP systems, SAP, as well as being a Technical Consultant on .com and e-Learning projects.  Don currently holds a position as a Senior Lecturer and NCITE scholar at the University of Nebraska and is working on the importance of standards in modeling the large systems needed to support e-learning environments.


Sigma Xi Chapter Members

Ackley, Jeffrey W. (Biology)
Adams, Max D.
Arnold, William S. (Marine Ecology, Mollusc Biology)
Ayres, Paul S. (Metallurgical Engineering)
Baker, Victoria J. (Anthropology)
Beckner, John (Botany)
Borck, Hayley (Computer Science)
Bradley, William Guy (Physiology, Molecular Biology)
Brooker, Hampton R. (Physics)
Brunk, William E.  (Astrophysics)
Burroughs, Henry B. (Computer Science)
Carney, Ashford S. (Marine Biology)
Carr, Misty R. (Biology)
Chapin, Kenneth J. (Biology) 
Ciaccio, Leonard Louis (Chemistry)
Clarke, Courtney E. (Biology)
Class, Jay B. (Polymer Science)
Coffey, Elise C. (Marine Biology)
Cohen, Jonathan H. (Vision Physiology) 
Collins, Nichole M. (Biology)
Cooper, Raymond D.
Corty, Claude (Chemical Engineering)
Corey, Brian E. (Astrophysics, Geophysics)
Croxford, Mark A.
Darby, Catie A. (Biology)
Drechsel, Jessie A (Marine Biology)
Eckes, Maxi J. (Marine Ecology)
Ferguson, John C. (Molecular Biology, Physiology)
Gaskill, Teresa R. (Botany)
Gilbert, Melissa L. (Geology)
Gould, Ashley Rose (Geophysics)
Gowans, Shannon E. (Marine Biology, Marine Mammalogy)
Greenhow, Danielle R. (Marine Biology)
Hanes, Sheila D. (Botany, Ecology)
Hart, Kristen M. (Ecology)
Helm, Rebecca R. (Biology)
Heupel, Christina M. (Biology)
Hollweg, Terill A. (Geology, Marine Chemistry)
Hoover, Kelli J. (Marine Chemistry)
Hudson, Reggie L. (Physical Chemistry, Astrochemistry)
Kalapaca, Henry P. (Nuclear Physics)
Kennedy, Emily M. (Social Sciences)
Kreider, Henry R.
Kyte, Brian G. (Chemistry)
Mauch, Holger (Computer Science)
McGlamery, Merrill H.
McNesky, Justin B (Social Sciences)
Meigs-Friend, Gaia (Environmental Studies)
Mezey, Eugene J. (Inorganic Chemistry, Chemical Engineering)
Michelsohn, Moses J. (Biology)
Mitchell, Kristen Ann (Marine Biology)
Muller, Jennifer K. (Toxicology, Marine Biology)
Nosach, Courtney R. (Marine Biology)
Odell, Jessica L. (Biology)
Olson, Grant L. (Marine Ecology)
Ormsby, Alison A. (Environmental Education)
Randle, Noura J. (Marine geology)
Reichert, Emily J. (Biology)
Richards, Travis M. (Marine Biology)
Rinker, Bruce H. (Forest Ecology) 
Roberts, Gina M. (Biochemistry)
Ross, Ira F.
Santee, Amy L. (Anthropology)
Schmidt, Kimberly E. (Marine Biology)
Schwing, Patrick T. (Physical & Earth Sciences)
Simard, Peter, A. (Marine Mammalogy))
Smith, Nancy F. (Marine Ecology, Marine Parasitology)
Soli, Alan L. (Chemistry)
Sunderman, Stephanie (Marine Biology)
Thornton, Bridget L. (Marine Biology)
Voss, Joshua D. (Coral Reef Ecology)
Walsh, James A. (Organic Chemistry, Physical Chemistry)
Warner, Megan C. (Biology)
Westman, Jack C. (Child Psychiatry)
Wetzel, Laura R. (Marine Geophysics)
Wilcox, Christie L.  (Marine Ecology)
Yeager, Lauren A. (Ecology)