• Meet the Baylor researchers who will highlight BU’s national brand campaign

    As the calendar turns to fall, the Baylor Family will see and hear more about Illuminate: the University’s strategic plan that charts a course as the preeminent Christian research university. From the labs of Baylor Sciences Building to the borderlands in South Texas, and all around the world, Baylor professors are conducting research that is both influential and inspirational. Soon, that work will be highlighted in a brand campaign that shines a light on the ways Baylor research is forging new pathways of understanding in health, human flourishing, sciences and more.

    It’s not hard to find professors whose research is already moving Baylor towards that goal of becoming an R1/Tier 1 institution. The first phase of a new campaign, produced by award-winning Dallas-based agency Johnson + Sekin, will feature five researchers who are conducting work in all five of Illuminate’s signature academic initiatives:

    • In Health: Dr. Dwayne Simmons, the Cornelia Marschall Smith Endowed Professor and Department Chair of Biology, came to Baylor from UCLA and conducts high-level research on brain function as people age. His work particularly focuses on the cellular and molecular mechanisms associated with hearing loss in the brain and inner ear.
    • In Data Science: Dr. Cole Matson, associate professor of environmental science, conducted groundbreaking research examining how gulf killifish thrive in the Houston Ship Channel that relied in part on data science. Matson and his team sequenced the genomes of nearly 300 fish to identify how these fish adapt and thrive in an increasingly polluted environment.
    • In Materials Science: Dr. David Jack, associate professor of mechanical engineering, studies and develops lightweight, durable products for the aerospace, automobile, and railroad industries. His work has created a process to examine the structural integrity of airplanes without destroying the materials being studied.
    • In Human Flourishing, Leadership and Ethics: Dr. Sara Dolan, associate professor of psychology and neuroscience and one of 30 American Psychological Association “Citizen Psychologists,” explores a wide range of neuropsychological conditions such as substance abuse, PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury, and is developing better assessments for children facing trauma. Recently, she was honored for her findings on the importance of crisis intervention to serve the needs of first responders, such as those encountered after the deadly 2013 West, Texas, fertilizer plant explosion.
    • In Baylor in Latin America: Dr. Lori Baker, professor of anthropology and vice provost for strategic initiatives, collaboration and leadership development, whose grueling work and groundbreaking DNA analysis has identified and repatriated the remains of hundreds of immigrants who lost their lives along the U.S./Mexico border, is providing families with information and a sense of closure while ensuring the human dignity of lives lost.

    A huge thank to you to the professors who gave their time in labs, airplane hangers, fire stations and even South Texas bayous and fields to allow photographer Tadd Myers to shoot thousands of images to tell the story of their work. Be on the lookout for the new campaign this fall!

    Sic ’em, Drs. Simmons, Matson, Jack, Dolan and Baker!