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Faculty

Professors Demystify Eclipse for Merced Skygazers

As the frenzy surrounding the Aug. 21 solar eclipse begins to peak, physics Professor Wil van Breugel is using the opportunity to give Merced stargazers a crash course in the science and history of these astronomical curiosities.

“It’s important for people to fully appreciate the science,” van Breugel said. “This is an opportunity to try to explain things more fundamentally.”

Political Scientists, Students to Examine United Nations’ Inner Workings

Considering that the United States spends about $3.3 billion on United Nations-related activity each year, including peacekeeping — and President Donald Trump has proposed a 40 percent cut in that spending — this seems like a good time for U.S. policy makers to have a clear understanding of how the U.N. works and how to navigate its politics to get desired outcomes.

Campus Welcomes New Dean of Natural Sciences

Elizabeth (Betsy) Dumont joins UC Merced today as the newest dean of the School of Natural Sciences. She’s the third dean in the school’s history and the second woman to serve in this capacity, after Founding Dean Maria Pallavicini.

Dumont arrives from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where for the past three years she served as vice provost for academic affairs and director of the Interdepartmental Graduate Programs in Life Sciences. She joined the UMass faculty in 2001.

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