Wildfire Archaeology and the Burning American West

Sapiens Originally Posted: September 9, 2020 As I type, the American West is ablaze with more than 100 devastating wildfires. Many of these are record-setting in both size and intensity. Several, including one in my home state of Colorado, have been so intense they’ve created their own thunderstorms. Science shows that wildfires have been getting more destructive over the last several decades. The question is: Why? Are they getting worse due to climate change? Or is it due to human encroachment on once remote forests? Or, counterintuitive as it may seem, are federal wildfire suppression policies to blame? In the U.S., forest fire management policies date back to the 1880s, shortly after Yellowstone National Park was established in 1872. After a roughly 50-year period in which some [...]

By | 2020-09-10T10:26:14-07:00 September 10th, 2020|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Faculty News|Comments Off on Wildfire Archaeology and the Burning American West

SMU COVID-19 Dashboard

SMU News SMU has a new COVID-19 dashboard. Please use this to stay informed about quarantine numbers and isolation capacity levels. https://blog.smu.edu/coronavirus-covid-19/cases/  

Welcome Back!

There’s no doubt that the pandemic has changed how we live, learn, work and teach. We’ve been working hard across campus to welcome our new and continuing Mustangs this fall! Take a look at how we’re taking health and safety to heart as we continue to provide the high-quality academic and campus experiences that make up the signature SMU education. READ MORE

When SMU anthropologist Maryann Cairns joined an environmental research team dedicated to keeping Costa Rican beaches safe from wastewater, no one anticipated the research would help monitor COVID-19

Mirage News Originally Posted: July 30, 2020 At the end of last year, scientists from USF and Southern Methodist University (SMU) wrapped up an intense two-year field season on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica with colleagues at the Costa Rican Water and Sewage Authority’s Water Laboratory. With more than 5,000 beach surveys, 500 behavioral observations and 80 interviews to digest, and water quality data to crunch, it was time to celebrate this phase of their NSF-funded coastal health study called MERA, which included several trainings by the USF team to help their colleagues get up to speed on a suite of environmental monitoring techniques. It was December 2019, a time when working side-by-side was a fine thing to do and facial expressions – like [...]

By | 2020-08-17T13:42:56-07:00 August 17th, 2020|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences|Comments Off on When SMU anthropologist Maryann Cairns joined an environmental research team dedicated to keeping Costa Rican beaches safe from wastewater, no one anticipated the research would help monitor COVID-19

Were humans living in a Mexican cave during the last ice age?

Science Magazine Originally Posted: July 22, 2020 In Science magazine, SMU archeologist David Meltzer questions if stone tools found in a Mexico cave indicate that humans were there 26,000 years ago, more than 10,000 years before any other known human occupation in the region. At first glance, Chiquihuite Cave in Mexico’s Zacatecas state is an unlikely place to find signs of early humans, let alone evidence that might change the story of the peopling of the Americas. It sits a daunting 1000 meters above a valley, overlooking a desert landscape in the mountains north of Zacatecas. Getting there requires a 4- or 5-hour uphill scramble over a moonscape of jagged boulders. But in the soil below the cave’s floor, a team led by archaeologist Ciprian [...]

By | 2020-08-10T07:27:35-07:00 August 10th, 2020|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences|Comments Off on Were humans living in a Mexican cave during the last ice age?

The professor and the dancer: How an unlikely duo is guiding the reopening of two local cultural institutions

The Dallas Morning News Originally Posted: July 31, 2020 Dr. Eric Bing, a global health expert, and Khris Beeson, an SMU graduate in dance, may make an unlikely duo. But together they are helping Dallas Theater and SMU Meadows create plans for safe performances in the face of the coronavirus. READ MORE

By | 2020-07-31T08:49:26-07:00 August 7th, 2020|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences|Comments Off on The professor and the dancer: How an unlikely duo is guiding the reopening of two local cultural institutions

What will fall look like?

SMU NEWS Originally Posted: July 30, 2020 We intend to be open in fall 2020. Learn more below. Plans unfolding for SMU's fall semester 2020 will be guided by science, common-sense expectations, and the traditional Mustang spirit Get the big picture here Working in conjunction with local health and public policy officials, SMU has developed a comprehensive plan to enhance the safety of everyone on campus and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Learn more: Maintaining a Healthy Campus At SMU, we intend to rise to the challenge of the fall 2020 academic semester in a way that embraces both the outstanding personalized education that is our hallmark, and our community’s health and safety. As we adapt, we will work to ensure that students have the [...]

After battling impostor syndrome, a young Dallas scientist encourages more women to enter science Perot Museum paleontologist Myria Perez says failure is a part of the scientific process.

Dallas News Originally Posted: July 16, 2020 Myria Perez had no trouble finding her passions, however, she needed an extra hand along the way. When a mentor at SMU connected her with “Sea Monsters Unearthed: Life in Angola’s Ancient Seas,” those passions were connected with purpose. READ MORE

By | 2020-07-27T10:01:54-07:00 July 27th, 2020|Anthropology, Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, Dedman College Research, Earth Sciences, Faculty News|Comments Off on After battling impostor syndrome, a young Dallas scientist encourages more women to enter science Perot Museum paleontologist Myria Perez says failure is a part of the scientific process.

Keeping Our Campus Healthy and Clean During COVID-19

SMU News Originally Posted: July 22, 2020 Mustangs and families, Guess what? We’re a little more than a month away from welcoming you back to the Hilltop for the fall semester. As you prepare to start or resume your studies, we want to give you a good idea of what our campus will look like in light of COVID-19. Starting today, you’ll receive this newsletter once a week. It will include the latest campus updates, resources and frequently asked questions. Each newsletter will also highlight one specific topic that you’ll want to learn more about before coming to campus. This week’s topic is: In maintaining a healthy campus, what exactly do we mean by enhanced cleaning protocols? This newsletter will echo information you’ll see in a [...]

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