Newton, GA, United States
Newton, GA, United States

Valdosta State University, also referred to as VSU, or Valdosta State, is an American public university and is one of the three regional universities in the University System of Georgia. Valdosta State is located on a 168-acre campus at the heart of the city of Valdosta. VSU serves over 13,000 undergraduate and graduate students representing 157 Georgia counties, all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa and Washington, D.C. and hosts over 300 international students from 76 countries. VSU also offers classes at Moody Air Force Base north of Valdosta in Lowndes County, and Kings Bay Naval Base in Camden County.Degree levels offered at Valdosta State include: Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's, Education Specialist, and Doctoral. The university comprises the colleges of Arts and science, Business Administration, Education, Arts, and Nursing. The Graduate School also includes the Divisions of Social Work and Library Science.VSU is also home to the six-week residential Governor's Honors Program during the summer for academically and artistically oriented Georgia high school students. Wikipedia.


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Roy K.,Valdosta State University
SIGCSE'12 - Proceedings of the 43rd ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education | Year: 2012

Google's App Inventor for Android (AIA) is the newest visual "blocks" programming language designed to introduce students to programming through creation of mobile applications (apps). AIA opens up the world of mobile apps to novice programmers. Success stories of using AIA to introduce college students to programming exist. We used AIA in computing summer camps for high school students that we offer at our university. This paper is an experience report about using AIA in our camps. We provide a detailed description of designing our camps with AIA including the process of selecting and setting-up an Android device and instructional materials that we developed and made available to everyone. We evaluated our camps through surveys to determine the effects on the students. We found that there was mostly a slight increase in the favorable disposition towards computing. We also share our successes with using AIA and what still needs improvement for wider use. © 2012 ACM.


Patent
Valdosta State University | Date: 2014-11-13

Many types of artificial reefs have been deployed in the worlds oceans, bays and estuaries. These range from sinking ships to dispersing old building debris. In most approaches, the material placed in the marine environment lacks any nutrients needed for growth or concern regarding proper chemical conditions necessary to start and sustain life. In this discovery, concrete is made from both inorganic and organic components. The inorganic components are selected to include species that will be used to create a receptive surface to start and sustain life. Moreover, other conditions such as pH, chemical toxicity, nutrient levels and biodegradability are considered in the formulation. Additionally, there is an organic component that is part of the concentration mixture which provides trace nutrients and serves to weaken the structures so it will biodegrade over time. The biodegradable concrete slowly releases small quantities of resources (over months and years) providing a steady flux of essential nutrients.


Patent
University System Of Georgia and Valdosta State University | Date: 2012-03-12

Methods for utilizing copper ions to bind to and help transport medicinal agents that contain a nitrogen atom or atoms are disclosed. The copper ion or ions serve as a delivery platform for a known pharmaceutical agent. The copper ions may be used to impact the polarity of the medicinal agents so they perform more efficiently in a physiological environment. The copper ions may also improve the efficacy of the drug by impacting their stability.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: | Award Amount: 50.00K | Year: 2014

Artificial reefs serve a useful purpose to promote the growth of sessile marine organisms such as bacteria, algae, corals, and bryozoans as well as providing a habitat and food source for species such as fish, crabs, lobsters, and some marine invertebrates. This project applies the EPAs 12 Principles of Green Technology to a cellulose based surface that is coated in nutrients to promote the rapid growth of marine microbes, the base of the marine food chain. This rapid growth, which begins days after being submerged, starts the food chain. The mineral based substrate attached to the cellulose based material is denser than water to allow the entire structure to sink; both the cellulose and mineral based materials will degrade leaving behind nucleation sites for microbes, corals, invertebrate collections, and more. The reef is constructed entirely from biodegradable materials and production costs are economical.

The proposed approach combines cellulose with silicates and nutrients (CeNS) to provide a surface for marine life to nucleate and grow. This approach was developed in the PIs lab over the past decade raising marine bacteria that produced marine natural products. The team intends to build on the preliminary results involving carbonate based organisms (i.e. oysters, coral), a place for larvae to grow (i.e. fish, shrimp and octopus), and to provide a food source and shelter for schools of fish. This team has started testing its green technology approach in the Florida panhandle and the Florida Keys. While the use of wood as a growth and shelter medium for marine life has been practiced since ancient times, the use of a nutrient mix with cellulose to selectively encourage and accelerate certain species is unique.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Continuing grant | Program: | Phase: Physiolg Mechansms&Biomechancs | Award Amount: 420.08K | Year: 2014

Many fish feed by using their jaws to scissor away pieces of flesh and often generate movements with their rigid body skeletons to remove the piece. The poorly understood hagfish can also effectively accomplish this task despite lacking jaws or even a spine. Hagfish rely on complex arrangements of soft muscle and connective tissues to coordinate forceful and dynamic movements of 1) a unique toothplate that can shear off large chunks of food, and 2) flexible bodies with loose skins that can be tied into knots. Body knots are pressed against the surface of the carcass so that hagfish can gain leverage to support toothplate function. This study attempts to describe principles of function associated with generation of force and precision movements using soft tissue mechanisms. In addition, this research will provide training for four undergraduates and one Master of Science student and initiate national and international collaborations. The PIs and their students will work with three local public aquaria to develop exhibits that showcase unique hagfish biomechanics and behaviors. Finally, hagfish body models and simulations may result in the development of practical applications, such as safety ropes with dynamic knotting capabilities and bio-inspiration for deformable material mechanisms.

This project encompasses a three-part analysis. First, the biomechanical analysis of toothplate movement will begin with a morphological analysis based on dissections and two- & three-dimensional X-ray imaging. Resulting postulates of how forces are produced and transmitted will be tested using analyses of high-speed video and muscle activity recordings during feeding bouts. Second, the morphology and material properties of the loose hagfish skin are likely very important to body knot manipulations. Skin morphology will be described using histological reconstructions and material properties will be measured using biaxial tensile tests. These data may then be used as input into a simplified model of the hagfish body, based on a flexible rope model of a sheath/core design, upon which to simulate knot formation and slippage. Third, in order to assess the contribution of body knotting behavior to hagfish bite strength, a custom underwater force platform, to which food will be tethered, will record the magnitude and direction of shearing and body knot reaction forces. Results from the studies will be disseminated through publication in peer-reviewed journals and at scientific meetings.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: BIOLOGICAL RESEARCH COLLECTION | Award Amount: 176.92K | Year: 2015

In the number of vascular plant species, Georgia ranks seventh among the states. Much of this biodiversity resides in the fire-dependent longleaf pine-wiregrass communities and associated seepage slopes and pitcher-plant bogs, sand hills, barrier islands, Carolina bays, tupelo swamps, mesic slopes with Appalachian affinities, and blackland prairies of the Coastal Plain. Georgia is the fourth most rapidly growing state in the U.S. and the fastest in the Southeast, and its native plants and ecosystems are threatened by land development and invasive exotic plants. A collection of more than 70,000 museum-quality specimens, the Valdosta State University Herbarium has major strength and focus on plant diversity of the Georgia Coastal Plain. It is the primary resource for scientific research about plants of this region. The online availability of digital photographs and the data from biological collections greatly increases access to specimens and the potential for using these biodiversity resources in diverse ways, including the assessment of the ecological and conservation status of species and ecosystems, and changing trends in populations of plant species, related to climate change, habitat degradation, and the introduction of exotic species. The virtual access enabled by this project will promote knowledge, use, and recognition of the valuable biodiversity data in the Valdosta State University Herbarium.

This project will enhance infrastructure of the Valdosta State University Herbarium through the installation of a high-density storage system that will increase its specimen holding capacity by about 30%. The new compactor system will provide secure and safe storage of this irreplaceable biodiversity resource and will sustain its growth for the next 15 years. This project will provide funds to mount and digitize 5,000 specimens and provide precise geographical coordinates for nearly 15,000 specimen records, making vitally important specimens and their associated digital photographs and data available to the community of biodiversity researchers and others online. This project will also secure and revitalize the extensive and currently dormant Vanderbilt University Teaching Collections by bringing them to Valdosta State University where they will be used to train future generations of students and biodiversity researchers. The specialized learning promoted through the direct involvement of undergraduate students in curating and digitizing biological collections and in biodiversity research will bring new perspectives on potential careers in science. Students will present their work at scientific meetings, and opportunities provided through this project will enable the participation of under-represented groups. Outreach programs targeting young people at an impressionable age, their teachers, and others will bring issues of biological collections and biodiversity before a large and diverse audience through herbarium tours, informal presentations, and a summer workshop for teachers. All data resulting from this project will be posted online (http://herb.valdosta.edu/) and shared with iDigBio (https://www.idigbio.org/), ensuring accessibility to researchers and educators. Additional information is available at http://ww2.valdosta.edu/~rcarter/HERB/Herbindex.htm.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: I-Corps | Award Amount: 50.00K | Year: 2015

Tuberculosis is an infectious disease that has infected approximately one third of the planets human population. The current pharmaceutical regiment used to treat the disease is a series of front line antibiotics. The microbe responsible for this malady, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is building up a resistance to these drugs. These drug resistance strains of bacterium are emerging around the world. The pharmaceutical industry can produce the front line drugs economically on a large scale, so having to develop new drugs and new production methods would prove costly and likely result in an immunity situation again. Rather than attempting to discover new antibiotics, the proposed technology is focused on not only delivering known antibiotics to the bacterium more efficiently, but also hiding the drug from being recognized by the bodys immune system.

The proposed technology is focused on drug delivery associated with antibiotics for tuberculosis. Over the past forty years little work has been done in terms of developing new antibiotics. This team?s approach uses between one and three components that accelerates some biological action, such as the cells metabolism or a proteins task. As the activity of the cell increases, the teams theorem is that the antibiotic can go undetected by the bodys immune system and have a more efficient uptake once its normal physiological processes are accelerated. Most drugs, such as antibiotics or cancer drugs have a mechanism of action that serve a singular mission, to stop some part of the cell from functioning. This research team has developed a delivery system for first and second line antibiotics used in the treatment of tuberculosis. It has been demonstrated to improve the efficacy of antibiotics such as capreomycin, amikacin, isoniazid and rifampici1-4.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: | Award Amount: 199.34K | Year: 2011

Georgias flora is ranked seventh nationally in species richness. The herbaria at University of Georgia [GA] and Valdosta State University [VSC] comprise 324,500 plant specimens, representing 84% of collections housed in Georgia. This funding fosters a formal GA−VSC partnership to produce an on-line state Atlas linked to specimen images and data. VSC infrastructure will also be enhanced with additional storage and processing of valuable rare specimens. The project will initiate a state-wide herbarium consortium, providing a model for most effective data mobilization as other collections are incorporated into the system. The network will provide global access to these collections, ensuring their relevance.

This project will promote learning through employment of graduate and undergraduate students and an innovative GA--VSC graduate student exchange program. Educational activities include herbarium tours to view work in progress, a teacher workshop, and creation of a herbarium at a non-profit organization promoting trees in urban Atlanta. All activities will endorse under-represented groups via student support. The user-friendly, Web-based GA--VSC Atlas will provide global access to floristic data. The database of maps, images, and label information has many practical applications for society at large, such as recognizing endangered or poisonous species ranges and plant communities requiring management.


Grant
Agency: NSF | Branch: Standard Grant | Program: | Phase: ROBERT NOYCE SCHOLARSHIP PGM | Award Amount: 1.15M | Year: 2012

Valdosta State University is providing 20 scholarships to academically talented but financially needy science majors who commit to teaching at high-needs school districts including Valdosta City School (VCS) system. The program assists worthy students in obtaining teaching certification though a post-baccalaureate program designed to prepare future teachers for high-needs school districts in Georgia. In part, the project manifests this by reducing professional isolation through collaborative learning, enhanced mentoring and involvement in professional science education societies, and by enhancing STEM and pedagogy content competencies by providing enhanced information dissemination, content delivery, field experiences at VCS, and by including an induction budget for new scholars entering the teaching profession. The project also provides professional development opportunities including a summer research project internship where mentors from the discipline and master high school teachers collaborate with pre-service teachers to provide guidance and support through the induction period. The project also addresses the challenge of attracting and retaining highly qualified teachers in a geographic region where recruiting new teachers has been difficult. The programs intentional design of integrating research with educational experiences enables new STEM teachers to adopt similar models in their own classrooms, infusing education with the excitement of discovery and sparking their students interest in STEM.


Patent
Valdosta State University | Date: 2015-08-03

Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is increasing worldwide creating a global threat. Tuberculosis (TB), caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium tuberculosis, is a bacterial infectious disease that results in over one million deaths annually. The discovery outlined here involves a tablet composition for patient administration and subsequently a new paradigm in drug delivery vehicles in vivo and in vitro and is applied to existing TB antibiotics in order to increase their efficacy. The drug delivery system is a three component complex that is administered with the TB antibiotic or a combination of TB antibiotics. The components are a saccharide or saccharides, a transition metal ion or a combination of metal ions that can bind a nitrogen and/or oxygen atom(s), and a water soluble polymer capable of aggregating and enclosing the other constituents. The three component molecular delivery approach has demonstrated ability to overcome M. tuberculosis bacterial resistance to an existing antibiotic.

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