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Division of Natural and Social Sciences

Natural and Social Sciences Research Colloquia

Jodi CooleyNext Presentation:

MONDAY, FEB. 17, 2020

Speaker Jodi Cooley from the Super Cryogenic Dark Matter Search (SuperCDMS)
4-5 p.m., DSC 163

Only a small fraction of the universe is made from ordinary, visible matter. A much larger portion remains dark, its existence known to us only by its interactions through gravity. The first evidence of this dark matter originates from studies of celestial bodies in the late 1920s and early 1930s. Since that time, astrophysicists and astronomers have determined that it constitutes the bulk of matter in our universe. Despite this fact, the composition still remains unknown. In this talk, Professor Jodi Cooley will discuss the history of dark matter research and how scientists are trying to uncover the properties of this evasive matter. 


See the colloquia topics that took place earlier this academic year

Anna Manis

MONDAY, NOV. 18, 2019

Speaker Anna Manis from the Medical College of Wisconsin 
4-5 p.m., DSC 163

Anna Manis, a graduate student at the Medical College of Wisconsin, presented on her research into links between epilepsy and cardiorespiratory function. Patients with uncontrolled epilepsy at high risk for Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP), presumably die due to cardiorespiratory failure associated with repeated seizures. Kir genes have been linked to seizure disorders in humans. We previously established that a knockout rat model of Kcnj16 (gene encoding Kir5.1) on a Dahl salt sensitive background, as well as an audiogenic reflex epilepsy phenotype. We tested the hypothesis that repeated audiogenic seizures would acutely and chronically alter breathing in SSKcnj16-/- but not control SS rats.

Monday, Nov. 11, 2019

Prof. Arryn Robbins

Eye Tracking in Engineering Psychology by Professor Arryn Robbins 
4:05 p.m., DSC 163

Arryn Robbins, assistant professor of psychology and postdoctoral fellow, will give a presentation on Eye Tracking in Engineering Psychology. She will speak at 4:05 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 11 in the Sladek Distinguished Science Forum (DSC 163). All are invited to attend. Light refreshments will be served before the seminar.

Engineering psychology (also known as human factors) is an applied field of psychology that aims to improve user experiences with everyday products and technology used at home and in the workplace. Eye tracking is a research tool that is increasingly used in engineering psychology research. This talk will provide an overview of how eye tracking is used by engineering psychologists to advise on issues of safety, design, and usability with products and devices. 

Amy Sorge '20

MONDAY, NOV. 4, 2019

Research Experiences for Undergraduates Poster Presentations
4-5:30 p.m., Straz Atrium

Students from across the Division of Natural and Social Sciences will present posters on the work they completed as part of a research or internship experience during the summer of 2019. Projects in biology, chemistry, environmental science, mathematics, neuroscience, physics, and sociology will be featured. Come find out about these students’ exciting summer experiences and learn about how you can get into one of these programs! Application windows for these programs are opening soon.

Monday, Oct. 7, 2019

Professor Catherine LauMacroeconomics and the Impact of Tariffs on Trade
Prof. Catherine Lau, Carthage College
4:05 p.m., DSC 163

How do tariffs impact an economy? Macroeconomics focuses on measuring factors that affect an entire economy and also examines policies that can promote growth and dampen volatility. This presentation will highlight the current status of those factors and the fiscal and monetary policies used to keep these factors within desired ranges, in an effort to keep the economy on an even keel. We will then discuss historical and current trade policy, the desired outcome from different policies versus actual outcomes. This is a constantly evolving topic without definitive answers, but should provide the audience with an understanding of the complexity and interrelatedness of the global economy. It is intended for a general audience; no prior knowledge of economics needed.

Monday, Sept. 30, 2019

Huisken LabReal-time development biology with a modular, shareable light sheet microscope
Jan Huisken, Morgridgide Institute
4:30 p.m.. DSC 163

Cutting edge microscopy drives new discoveries. Biologists mostly rely on commercial microscopes, which are often outdated and not well-tailored to the individual experiment’s requirements. An example is light sheet microscopy, which allows biologist to obtain 3D images with high speed and minimal phototoxicity. Unfortunately, only physics and engineering labs are able to custom design such an instrument to enable demanding biological applications. We have addressed this issue by developing the Flamingo (, a modular, shareable light sheet microscope suited to a new model of scientific collaboration. Each microscope is customized for a given application, equipped to travel from lab to lab and to provide widespread access to advanced microscopy.

Monday, Sept. 9, 2019

2019 NSS SURE students2019 Natural and Social Sciences Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) Poster Presentations
2019 NSS SURE participants
4 p.m., Straz Atrium

Summer research students across the division of Natural and Social Sciences will present the work they completed this summer. Projects range from analyzing the convergence of mathematical series, to studying lightning in thunderstorms, to investigating how physiological responses differ according to different personality traits. Projects in Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Mathematics, Neuroscience, and Physics will be featured. Come find out about these students’ exciting summer experiences!

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

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    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

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    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

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    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

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    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

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    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …