College Level Outstanding Scholar 2005

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Morris Library

Y. Paul ChughY. Paul Chugh, College of Engineering.  A professor of mining and mineral resources, Chugh is nationally and internationally known for his research in rock mechanics and groun control, coal combustion byproducts management, and dust control in face areas of room-and-pillar mining.  He has published more than 90 peer-reviewed articles. Chugh earned his bachelor’s degree in 1961 from Banares Hindu University in India, and his master’s and doctoral degrees in 1968 and 1970 respectively from Pennsylvania State University.

Marcia M. CornettMarcia M. Cornett, College of Business and Administration.  The Rehn Professor of Business in finance, Cornett specializes in bank performance, bank regulation, corporate finance and investments.  A 2005 article in the Journal of Finance Literature ranked her 320 th out of a list of 5,800 authors whose articles have appeared in the field’s seven top academic journals between 1953 and 2002. Cornett earned her bachelor’s in 1978 from Knox College in Galesburg and both her master of business administration and doctoral degrees from Indiana University in 1983.

Christina M. DesaiChristina M. Desai, Library Affairs.  An assistant professor who serves as science reference librarian and head of online reference, Desai conducts research in virtual reference services (reference help via chat) and children’s literature. She earned a bachelor’s degree in 1971 from Duquesne University, a master of arts degree in 1973 from the University of Pittsburgh and a master of library and information science degree in 2000 from the University of Illinois.

Mark R. DixonMark R. Dixon, College of Education and Human Services.  Dixon’s research includes gambling, choice and self-control, verbal behavior, organizational effectiveness and computer programming for psychological research and developmental disabilities.  An associate professor in the Rehabilitation Institute, he has written 55 journal articles, five book chapters, two books and more than 200 papers.  He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee in 1993 and his master’s and doctoral degrees in 1996 and 1998 respectively from the University of Nevada, Reno.

Thomas J. JohnsonThomas J. Johnson, College of Mass Communication and Media Arts.  A full professor of journalism, Johnson conducts research in public opinion and political communication with emphasis on the role media play in presidential elections.  Recent work has focused on how people use the Internet and the effect on them of online media.  He has written one book and was co-author on a second, has published nine book chapters and 27 refereed journal articles and has presented 72 conference papers. He earned his bachelor’s in 1982 from California Polytechnic State University, his master’s in 1985 from Iowa State University and his doctorate in 1989 from the University of Washington.

Salah E.A. MohammedSalah E.A. Mohammed, College of Science.  A world leader in stochastic analysis, Mohammed, a professor of mathematics, has done pioneering research in deterministic and stochastic hereditary dynamical systems, the Malliavin calculus and its applications to partial differential equations.  The National Science Foundation has continuously funded his work since 1989.  He has published two groundbreaking research monographs, 30 research papers that appeared in his field’s top journals and has made more than 60 research presentations. Mohammed earned his bachelor’s degree in 1970 from the University of Khartoum in Sudan (Africa), his master’s in 1972 from the University of Dundee in Scotland and his doctorate in 1976 from the University of Warwick in England.

Ronald J. Pelias Ronald J. Pelias, College of Liberal Arts.  Nationally and internationally known for original work in performance studies, Pelias, a professor of speech communications, specializes in performance methodologies, performance criticism, autoethnography and performative writing.  He has written and directed 29 scripts, published 58 poems and 31 peer-reviewed journal articles, produced six book chapters and presented more than 80 conference papers.  Pelias is a two-degree graduate of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, earning his bachelor’s and master’s in 1968 and 1971 respectively.  He completed his doctorate in 1979 at the University of Illinois.

Leonard P. RybakLeonard P. Rybak, School of Medicine.  A professor of surgery, Rybak has focused on understanding why many drugs commonly used to treat other ailments can cause damage to the inner ear and cause hearing loss.  He was the University-wide outstanding scholar for 2005.  Rybak earned his bachelor’s in 1969 from the St. Louis College of Pharmacy, his medical degree in 1973 from the Medical College of Wisconsin and his doctorate in 1979 from the University of Minnesota.

Stewart P. WesselStewart P. Wessel, College of Applied Sciences and Arts.  An associate professor in the School of Architecture, Wessel’s research focuses on designing, building and exhibiting original furniture and sculpture.  He has had shows nationally and internationally. Wessel earned his bachelor’s degree in 1983 from SIUC, his master of fine arts degree in 1989 from the University of North Texas in Denton and received his architect’s license in 1998.

Bryan G. Young Bryan G. Young, College of Agricultural Sciences.  An associate professor of plant, soil and agricultural systems, Young conducts research aimed at developing weed management strategies in agronomic and horticultural crops.  He specializes in weed biology and ecology, herbicide application technology and herbicide physiology. Young earned his bachelor’s in 1994 at Michigan State University and his doctorate in 1998 at the University of Illinois.