Miriam Garcia

Miriam E. Garcia is a senior majoring in Geophysics with a physics and math minor at the University of Texas at El Paso. Last summer she participated in the first of four summer internships in Boulder, Colorado. She worked for RESESS (Research Experience in Solid Earth Science for Students). The internship was conducted partnering with the University of Colorado at Boulder. Miriam's mentors were Walter Szeliga and Dr. Roger Bilham of the University Colorado. The project focused on modeling the 1931 Mach Earthquake in western Pakistan using vertical deformation data. Coulomb software was applied to model the seismic activity. Three possible subsurface geometries were model but failed to prove the correct fault characteristics. Future works consists of integrating other earthquakes in the 1930's and analyze the connections with the Mach Earthquake to fit a better fault model to the area. Next summer she plans to use GPS data to monitor volcanoes in Hawaii.

Currently, Miriam is conducting research for the Pathways Research Experience for undergraduates Program. Her project focuses on Cinder Cone Morphology in the Potrillo Volcanic Field located in Southern New Mexico with mentor Dr. Elizabeth Anthony. Miriam plans to go to graduate school and specialize in either volcanology or seismology in relation to plate tectonic mechanisms. After graduate school she intends to continue doing research for government hazard programs. Miriam's main goal is to educate people that live close to an active area about the dangers that are present. She is also excited to become a geophysicist, not only for research but to travel and meet knowledgeable individuals along the way. Besides research, Miriam enjoys playing soccer, hiking, and donating to the needy.


Hugo Rodriguez

Hugo Rodriguez is an El Paso, TX native and a senior student majoring in Geophysics at the University of Texas at El Paso. This past summer, Hugo interned at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City as a part of the National Science Foundation's Research Experience for Undergraduates program.

Hugo's summer research was to study and gain data from meteorites of some of the earliest material to come together during the formation of our solar system. Research work included using a scanning electron microscope, an electron microprobe, petrographic microscope and various computer programs. As a part of the internship, he also traveled to the Argonne National Laboratory to assist in using the Advanced Photon Source beam to get tomographic imagery of an assortment of meteorites and a NASA Stardust sample. Hugo worked under Dr. Denton Ebel of the Earth and Planetary Science Division in the Museum.


Nancy Rivera

Nancy is a Masters student in Environmental Science studying remote sensing of dust storms. Her advisor is Dr. Thomas Gill, Associate Professor of Geology and Environmental Science and Engineering. During the past summer, Nancy interned for the fourth time with SOARS, Significant Opportunities in Atmospheric Research and Science, in Boulder, Colorado.

Her internship included completing her masters thesis, investigating the meteorological conditions associated with dust events in northern Mexico. Her project mentor, Dr. Jennifer Hand of Colorado State University, supervised her in the two-year research project on dust storms.

Nancy's research will ultimately increase prediction capabilities for major dust events. Her research has global implications and already attracted the interest of scientists in Australia and Europe.

Nancy received a travel scholarship to travel to Guelph, Canada to present her findings at The Sixth International Conference of Aeolian Research.

Nancy's research will ultimately increase prediction capabilities on major dust events. This research has global implications.

Nancy received a travel scholarship to travel to Guelph, Canada to present her findings at The Sixth International Conference of Aeolian Research.


PhD Candidates Invited to NSF Workshop

Eva, Jaime, and Luqman have all been invited to the prestigious "Preparing for an Academic Careers in the Geosciences" NSF funded workshop at Stanford University in San Francisco, California. The three main goals of the workshop are for participants to become more effective teachers, stronger candidates for academic jobs, and better prepared for a quick start to teaching and research in the next stage of their career, and the conference is limited to outstanding Ph.D. and Post Doc students.

All three are interested in careers in academia and research, and they will provide a summary of the workshop to their fellow colleagues at UTEP. All three UTEP students were born and educated in other countries: Eva is from Austria, Jaime from Colombia, and Luqman from Nigeria. Eva worked on a project with Dr. Randy Keller in Austria, who invited her to join UTEP for her doctoral work. Jaime decided to come to UTEP because of the earthquake related research conducted by Dr. Diane Doser, and Luqman chose UTEP for many reasons including the faculty, local geology, and El Paso culture, all which he needed for a new chosen field of study and experiences.


Adrian Flores

Adrian was born and raised in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and commutes daily to UTEP where he is a senior majoring in Physics.

During the summer of 2005, he interned at Howard University in Washington, DC, in conjunction with NOAA/NASA. He was part of the NOAA Center for Atmospheric Sciences (NCAS) research group headed by Drs. Verne Morris and Everette Joseph. The research group monitored atmospheric pollutants in Baltimore, Maryland, and Washington, DC, metro areas using the Multi-Filter Radiometer (MFR) machine in Beltsville, Maryland, located between the two cities.

The machine detects scattering particles in the atmosphere via solar radiation. Specifically, the group monitored the levels of ozone, vapor and aerosols. They produced a website that gave daily updates on the air quality of the area.


Graduate Students in West Bohemian University in the Czech Republic

Jakub Cerveny and Martin Lazar were graduate students West Bohemian University in the Czech Republic, when Dr. Pavel Solin contacted them to help him solve a problem. Both students were intrigued by the problem and joined UTEP as graduate students in applied mathematics.

Essentially, the problem was how to safely bring down old orbiting satellites. Their work involves accurate computer simulation of electromaganetic tethers, which are devices used for accelerating or decelerating satellites without expending propellant (the energy used is electricity coming from solar cells). The electric current in the tether interacts with the magnetic field of the Earth which induces a force at each point of the tether. This force accelerates or decelerates the satellite (depending on the direction of the current), which may be useful eg. for destroying an old satellite by taking it to a lower orbit where it burns in the atmosphere.


Abril Ramirez

Abril Ramirez was born in Juarez, Mexico, came to the United States with her family in 2001, and graduated from Eastwood High School in 2004. She started at UTEP in the Fall of 2004 and is now a Sophomore Chemistry major with a Biology minor. She is a UTEP Merit Scholar and has received numerous other awards and scholarships including Xerox-GIA, SWAHAP, and Dean's List.

She is a member of the Medical Professions Organization and the Early Medical School Admissions Program with UTMB Galveston where she plans to pursue an M.D. Ph.D. Degree. Through MPO, Abril has participated in many community service activities including serving as a translator for a group of physicians and medical school students from Texas Tech in Juarez. She also was with the group who built a home for a family in Juarez over the most recent winter break. She is a member of Women in Science and Engineering (WISE) and a Teaching Assistant in the Biology Department.


Hugo Rodriguez

Hugo was born and raised in El Paso, Texas and choose UTEP because of its strong geology department. Hugo is in the Pathways Program, a program that offers undergraduates the opportunity to conduct research. He works under the direction of Drs. Randy Keller and Diane Doser.

Currently, he is studying aspects of earthquakes; specifically, he is studying the relationship between the increased activity in shallow earthquakes in south central Alaska and the reduction in glacier volume and has discovered some interesting patterns.


Israel Martínez

Israel was born and raised in Mexico City, Mexico. He obtained a bachelor's degree in engineering and physics from the Universidad de Autónama de Ciudad Juárez . Dr. Jorge Lopez, Chair of the Department of Physics, invited Israel to UTEP to pursue a Masters degree.

Israel's Masters Thesis, under the direction of Dr. Murat Durandurdu, involves using computer simulations to study-pressure-induced phase transitions in semiconductors.


Miriam Garcia

Miriam was born and raised in El Paso, Texas and choose UTEP because of its strong geology department. Miriam is in the Pathways Research Experience for Undergraduates Program, a program that offers undergraduates the opportunity to conduct research. She works under the direction of Dr. Elizabeth Y. Anthony.

Currently, she is studying aspects of volcanoes, specifically using a volcano's historic activity to predict future eruptions.


Ernesto Nakayasu

Ernesto was born in Votorantim, SP, Brazil, and grew up in a farm in a small town called Piedade (60 miles from Sao Paulo City). His contact with the farm raised his interested in Biological Sciences. In 1999, he joined the University of Sao Paulo, and he graduated in Biology (2003). During this time he acquired a good laboratory experience working with characterization of proteins and peptides involved in arthropod immune response. In 2003, he participated in two of Brazil's pioneer proteomic and mass spectrometry groups, led by Drs. Sirlei Daffre and Igor Almeida, at the Department of Parasitology, University of Sao Paulo. In the following year he had a 2-month training in proteomics at one of most prestigious European proteomic facilities, directed by Prof. Michael Ferguson at the Welcome Trust Biocentre, University of Dundee, Scotland, UK.


Karina Castillo

Karina Castillo started doing research in her freshman year at EL Paso Community College in addition to being a chemistry and mathematics tutor. She did her first research project at UTEP during the summer of 2002 under the grant of the program "Bridges to the Future". In this program she studied the Salt Cedar plant that desalinizes salt water. In the summer of 2003 she started a research project in catalysis under the direction of Dr. Myriam Perez De la Rosa then a Ph.D. student, now a postdoctoral at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Laboratory in the research group of Dr. Chianelli's. In the summer of 2004 she expanded her research skills through a summer internship at the University of Houston under the direction of Dr. Allan Jacobson. Her math skills and grades allowed her to become part of the MARC program in Fall 2004. Since then she has been doing research under the direction of Dr. Chianelli. She presented her research in a poster entitled "Synthesis and Characterization of MoS2 intercalated with 1,2,3,4, tetrahydroquinoline in search of cleaner fuels" at the SACNAS meeting held in Denver Colorado. There were 40 posters competing for the chemistry award and she brought 1st prize for chemistry home to UTEP. Karina did part of her research as a member of the UTEP synchrotron "Gateway Program" funded by DOE. We congratulate Karina and wish her success in future her future endeavors.