Clare Boothe Luce Professor to give talk at Fairfield University


Image: Sharon ReckingerOn Wednesday, March 28 at 4:30 p.m., there will be a symposium welcoming Shanon Reckinger, Ph.D., Fairfield University's Clare Boothe Luce Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, an event that speaks to the vibrant community of women scientists and engineers at Fairfield. Free and open to the public, the event will take place in Bellarmine Hall.

Dr. Reckinger, a promising young scholar who has done research at the Los Alamos National Research Lab in New Mexico, joined the Fairfield faculty last summer at a time when the need for more young people studying and carving out careers in the sciences and engineering - especially women - has become more urgent in the United States. In a talk based on her doctoral thesis, "Adaptive Wavelet-Based Ocean Circulation Modeling," Dr. Reckinger will discuss how ocean modeling is a crucial component in understanding climate. She considers an integrated approach for modeling common ocean phenomena, such as tsunamis and boundary currents. A University of Colorado, Boulder graduate, her prior research includes work at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Switzerland.

"I want all young people to know that they really can do whatever their hearts desire," Dr. Reckinger said of what she hopes to accomplish at Fairfield. "It is something you hear all the time, but it is so true.  Since I am in the field of engineering, I do want all underrepresented groups to be encouraged to join, and to then be warmly welcomed into the sciences."

The Henry Luce Foundation's Clare Boothe Luce Program awarded Fairfield a $404,439 grant to create the professorship for a woman engineer/scholar. The professorship is in the discipline of mechanical engineering - the largest department within the growing School of Engineering.

"The establishing of the Clare Boothe Luce Professor underscores that a female scholar in engineering is very important to the University, and we envision Dr. Reckinger growing professionally here while mentoring and inspiring students," said Jack Beal, Ph.D., dean of the School of Engineering, which is co-sponsoring the symposium with the Fairfield chapter of Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society.

Dr. Reckinger, who teaches both undergraduates and graduate students, works in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) disciplines with engineering faculty and colleagues in the College of Arts & Sciences. For more information, visit http://www.fairfield.edu/press/pr_index.html?id=3154.

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 6, 2012

Vol. 44, No. 221