"CNU Interdisciplinary Studies Major Matthew Rutherford's Work Exhibited at Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art"

(Newport News, Va.) - Matthew Rutherford, Christopher Newport University senior and Interdisciplinary Studies major, will have his work displayed during the upcoming juried exhibition New Waves 2013, at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA). Rutherford's piece - a product of software he designed and programmed - creates an abstract visual portrait of a person based on their traits and characteristics.

"My major is composed of concentrations in Computer Science and Fine Art, so it made sense to do a project with both in mind. The inspiration came from two of my professors, Dr. Anton Siochi, Associate Professor of Physics, Computer Science and Engineering, and Professor Alan Skees, Lecturer in Fine Art. Dr. Siochi introduced me to the art-programming language used to create the software, and Professor Skees worked closely with me on the class project."

Dr. Edward Brash, Chair of CNU’s Department of Physics, Computer Science and Engineering notes "Matthew's work is a shining example of the power of a liberal arts education. The interdisciplinary major at CNU is a perfect vehicle to allow students to bring together their analytical and creative skills in a synergistic way, and Matthew's project exemplifies our desire to stimulate meaningful and productive intellectual inquiry brilliantly."

MOCA will present New Waves 2013 from Jan. 25 - Apr. 28. This exciting exhibition demonstrates the diversity of materials and approaches that are used in contemporary art today. For more information regarding this release, contact Dr. Brash at edward.brash@cnu.edu. For information regarding the exhibit, please visit www.virginiamoca.org.


(Newport News, Va.) - Christopher Newport University physics majors Chris (William) Colvin and Nicholas McMahon have been awarded funding to participate in the Conference Experience for Undergraduates (CEU) Program at the 2011 fall meeting of the Division of Nuclear Physics of the American Physical Society. The award decision was based on the high quality of Colvin’s and McMahon’s research abstracts and their personal contributions to the efforts of the CNU Nuclear Physics research group, as judged by the CEU review committee members.

The American Physics Society strives to be the leading voice for physics and a source of information for the advancement of physics and for the benefit of humanity. “Chris and Nicholas are currently doing research with our group at Jefferson Lab,” says Dr. Fatiha Benmokhtar, assistant professor of physics. “Chris has worked on testing a new type of particle detector known as a Gas Electron Multiplier (GEM). This is a brand-new technology in the U.S. for a new generation of particle detectors. Chris learned the techniques involved in testing the GEM from a former CNU student (Craig Plazony) and worked closely with other scientists at the lab. CNU is one of only a handful of universities in the U.S. working on these new detectors.”

Dr. Benmokhtar continues “Nicholas’ work was on the analysis of data associated with a cryogenic helium target being used in a series of high-profile experiments at Jefferson Lab. I am a spokesperson for one of the experiments that aims to study the behavior of a proton-neutron pair inside the helium nucleus. In particular, knowing the density of the helium target is crucial if one wants to get an accurate number of the detected particles, and this is what Nicholas has worked on. As such, his work is absolutely critical to the success of these experiments. His efforts were amazing, especially since he was a freshman during this past summer when he did the analysis.”

For more information contact Dr.Benmokhtar at fatiha.benmokhtar@cnu.edu.


Nancy Nasser, a Christopher Newport University senior computer science major has been named the recipient of a scholarship sponsored by the National Science Foundation to attend the 2011 Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing.

“I am deeply honored and grateful to receive this scholarship. Attending this conference is a great opportunity that will provide me with a foundation of knowledge and will open doors that I can use to achieve my career goals. I look forward to make the best out of it and meet many iconic and famous people in the computer industry.

I would also like to extend my gratitude to my professors who have encouraged me in applying to research workshops and conferences. I believe that attending this conference will serve as an exceptional experience for me.”

The Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing is a series of conferences designed to bring the research and career interests of women in computing to the forefront. Presenters are leaders in their respective fields, representing industrial, academic and government communities.
Leading researchers present their current work, while special sessions focus on the role of women in today’s technology fields, including computer science, information technology, research and engineering. Nasser was selected from a competitive pool of over 1,100 applicants.

For more information regarding this release, please contact Dr. Edward Brash, Department  Chair, Physics, Computer Science and Engineering at brash@pcs.cnu.edu


ACM is an educational and scientific society uniting the world’s computing educators, researchers and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources and address the field’s challenges. ACM strengthens the profession’s collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for life-long learning, career development, and professional networking.  For more information please contact Gerald McAlister, 2013-14 Chapter President, gerald.mcalister.10@cnu.edu


IEEE is the world’s largest professional association dedicated to advancing technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity. IEEE and its members inspire a global community through IEEE's highly cited publications, conferences, technology standards, and professional and educational activities.  For more information please contact Jackson Sardello, Chapter President, jackson.sardello.11@cnu.edu


The purpose of the SPS is the advancement and diffusion of knowledge of physics, the encouragement of interest in physics throughout the academic and local communities, and the introduction of students to the professional community.  For more information on this organization please contact Megan Talley, Chapter President, megan.talley.09@cnu.edu