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Faculty and Staff

Dr. Akhtar Mahmood, Professor of Physics

Dr. Mahmood is both a Physicist and a Computer Scientist. He obtained his Ph.D. in Physics from the State University of New York at Albany in 1998. His B.Sc. degree is in Computer Science.

Dr. Mahmood serves as the Director of the Bellarmine-STEM Program and also as the Director of the Eureka Learning Community. He is the ELC Academic Advisor of the Physics majors and is the undergraduate research mentor of all the physics majors. He manages Bellarmine University’s Supercomputer that is linked to the Open Science Grid (OSG). From 2009 - 2012 he served as the President of the Kentucky Association of Physics Teachers (KAPT) and from 2009 - 2013, he served as the Physics and Astronomy Section Chair of the Kentucky Academy of Science (KAS). He is currently serving on the Kentucky Academy of Science’s Committee on Science Education.

Dr. Mahmood teaches a wide variety of both lower and upper level Physics courses. He also teaches the Introduction to Astronomy and Explorations of the Universe courses for non-science majors. His research interests are in high energy physics, astrophysics, and grid computing. He specializes in “Big Data” research. Dr. Mahmood studies the constituents of the early universe, when it was less than a micro-second old, using a particle accelerator (an atom-smasher). He is a member of the world-renowned ATLAS collaboration, a research team at CERN that recently announced the discovery of the famous Higgs boson (the subatomic particle that gives mass to everything in the universe). The discovery of the Higgs boson was hailed as the 2012 Breakthrough of the Year and is regarded as one of the major scientific discoveries of this century! Dr. Mahmood is currently pursuing the search for new types of subatomic particles using petabyte-scale experimental data from the ATLAS experiment. Several Physics undergraduate students are currently working with Dr. Mahmood on this research project in high energy physics. In collaboration with the Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL), along with his students, he also conducted research work (funded by NASA) with the SIM-Lite project, a future NASA mission aimed at searching for extra-solar Earth-like planets in the milky way galaxy.

Before joining Bellarmine University, Dr. Mahmood conducted his research work at the CESR (Cornell Electron Storage Ring) accelerator facility, located at Cornell University and at SLAC (Stanford Linear Accelerator Center) located at Stanford University. In the late 1990s, his research work at CESR led to the discovery of eight new subatomic particles, known as Charmed Baryons. Since 1995, he has co-authored numerous peer-reviewed publications in the field of high energy physics, and has received over $2.0 million in research funding. At Bellarmine University, since 2010, he has received five external grants totaling over $1.1 million from NSF and NASA.

Contact Information: Room 209B, Pasteur Hall; Phone: 502.272.7599; Email: amahmood@bellarmine.edu

Dr. Joseph Sinski, Professor of Chemistry

Dr. Sinksi is an Analytical Chemist. He obtained his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from the University of Montana in 1995. He is also the ELC Academic Advisor of the Chemistry majors, and serves an undergraduate research mentor for Chemistry students. He is the Campus Chemical Hygiene Officer & Academic Safety Officer, and a member of the Institutional Review Board (IRB). He also serves as Bellarmine University’s Undergraduate Research Week Organizer. Dr. Sinski conducts his research in both Analytical and Environmental Chemistry. Since 1999, he has published a number of research articles along with Chemistry students. Currently he teaches General Chemistry and upper level Analytical and Instrumental Analysis, but has also in the past taught Environmental Chemistry, Organic Chemistry and offerings for health science and non science majors.

Contact Information: Room 254A, Pasteur Hall; Phone: 502.272.8219; Email: jsinski@bellarmine.edu

Dr. Ryan Therkelsen, Assistant Professor of Mathematics

Dr. Therkelsen obtained his Ph.D. in Mathematics from North Carolina State University in 2010. He serves as the ELC Academic Advisor of the Mathematics majors. He teaches Pre-Calculus, Mathematics for Liberal Arts, Calculus II, Business Calculus, and Linear Algebra. Dr. Therkelsen research interest is in algebra. He currently studies order properties of algebraic monoids (generalizations of matrices). He has also done research work in coding and design theory. Math majors in the ELC are encouraged to contact Dr. Therkelsen for independent study and/or research projects in mathematics, to learn about topics not typically covered in the mathematics degree program.

Contact Information: Room 006E, Pasteur Hall; Phone: 502.272.8327; Email: rtherkelsen@bellarmine.edu

Dr. Muzaffar Ali, Professor of Computer Science

Dr. Ali obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is the Chair of the Computer Science Department. He serves as the ELC Academic Advisor of the Computer Science and the Computer Engineering majors. He teaches Programming in C++/Java, Logic Design, Digital Systems Design, Computer Architecture, among others.

 

Contact Information: Room 006J, Pasteur Hall; Phone: 502.272.8410; Email: mali@bellarmine.edu

 

Leslie Maxie-Ashford, Associate Dean of Students/Director of Housing and Residence Life

Leslie Maxie-Ashford has a M.Ed. and a BA degree from the University of Louisville. She is in charge of all the residence halls on-campus.

Contact Information: Residence Life Office, Petrik Hall; Phone: 502.272.7273; Email: lmaxie-ashford@bellarmine.edu; Hours: Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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