Dance Student Receives Two Fulbright Awards
Ahalya Satkunaratnam, a student of Assistant Professor Priya Srinivasan of the dance department, has been awarded two Fulbright awards from the U.S. Department of Education for 2006-07.

Satkunaratnam, a Ph.D. candidate in dance history and theory, received a Fulbright Award and a Fulbright-Hayes Doctoral Dissertation Research Award for her work on Bharata Natyam dance practices in Sri Lanka, which examines the interrelationship of war, identity and cultural production.

A native of Malaysia who was raised in Canada and the United States, Sakunaratnam has choreographed dance works for several performance artists and is a co-founder and dancer with Jaggery, an eclectic dance duo in San Francisco.

Hanson Chosen as Top Physicist
Gail Hanson, a distinguished professor of physics, is one of 40 physicists profiled in the recently published book “Out of the Shadows: Contributions of Twentieth-Century Women to Physics,” edited by Nina Byers and Gary Williams.

Hanson, who is the only woman to have won the American Physical Society’s W. K. H. Panofsky Prize in experimental particle physics, discovered the phenomenon called “jets” in elementary particle interactions. The discovery resulted in establishing quarks as one of the basic building blocks of matter. It also led to the theory of fundamental particles and their interactions called the Standard Model.

More recently, Hanson, along with a few other UCR physicists, has been involved in designing and building the Compact Muon Solenoid experiment at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) in Geneva, Switzerland.

“We are concentrating on searches for the origin of electroweak symmetry breaking and for new physics,” Hanson said.

CAREER Award Presented to Zandi
Roya Zandi, an assistant professor of physics who joined UCR in January 2006, is a recipient of the National Science Foundation’s CAREER award, a prestigious honor recognizing the early career development activities of scholars most likely to become the academic leaders of the 21st century.

At UCR, Zandi researches viral self-assembly and how external influences shape their geometry, which has potential applications in bionanotechnology and the drug industry. Her studies have shown that viruses' spherical shells acquire structures that minimize their total energy, and thus are stable and the best bet for self-preservation.

CAREER awardees are chosen on the basis of creative, career-development plans that integrate research and education. The award includes a $400,000 stipend.

Top Title for Teens
UCR Associate Professor of Creative Writing Chris Abani’s book, “Becoming Abigail,” has been selected as one of the best works published for teenagers in 2006 by the New York Public Library.

The title will be listed in the library’s publication “Books for the Teen Age 2007.” This publication highlights works that are best suited for readers ages 12 to 18. It is available to schools and public libraries internationally.

Extension’s Director of Education Honored
The California Association for the Gifted (CAG) awarded Sue Teele, director of Education at UCR Extension, with the CAG Distinguished Service Award this month at the 45th Annual CAG Conference in Santa Clara.

CAG Distinguished Service Award recipients are chosen based on commitment to gifted children, and service to CAG and other organizations for gifted learners. Teele, one of 10 recipients this year, represents the Joshua Tree Region, which encompasses Riverside, San Bernardino and Inyo counties.

Since 1980, Teele has served as administrator for more than 900 courses, inservices, credentials and certificate annual programs, and oversees Extension programs approved by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.

She also serves as administrator for 25 UCR certificate programs, including the Gifted and Talented Education Certificate.