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UT Arlington faculty offer expertise on 10th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

Thursday, August 11, 2011

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Media Contact: Kristin Sullivan

ARLINGTON - On Sept. 11, global attention will turn to the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that targeted New York City and Washington D.C. and changed the world. The University of Texas at Arlington is home to researchers who are examining the long-lasting impact of that day, providing support for veterans returning from war and developing innovative technologies to increase Homeland Security.

The UT Arlington Office of Media Relations has compiled a list of faculty experts who may comment on related issues and stories. Please call 817-272-2761 or email to connect with the following experts.

Veteran-focused research

Mario Romero-Ortega, associate professor of bioengineering. Romero-Ortega has received $2.2 million from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Defense Department’s research and development arm – to develop an electrical array that will lead to better mobility, and even feeling, in prosthetic limbs. The issue is of paramount importance to the military as more troops survive significant injuries that damage nerve tissue.

Veterans’ issues

Alexa Smith-Osborne, assistant professor of social work, and director of the Student Veterans Project. The Student Veterans Project offers free services to veterans who are undergraduates or thinking of returning to school. The project acts as a “personal trainer” to help veterans enter or re-enter the education system. The need for such a program has increased dramatically with veteran enrollment up more than 157 percent since Fall 2008.

James Campbell Quick, professor of management and the John & Judy Goolsby Distinguished Professor for the Goolsby Leadership Academy. Quick’s expertise is in recognizing, coping with and preventing stress. As a retired Air Force colonel, Quick brought this expertise to bear as well in his military service. He serves on the Psychological Health External Advisory Subcommittee of the Defense Health Board. The board serves an external advisory body for research and operation policy regarding psychological health with a focus on prevention, recognition, clinical management and treatment of psychological and mental health issues among military service members and their families.

Criminal Justice ethics

Alex del Carmen, professor and chairman of criminology and criminal justice. Del Carmen’s research addresses terrorism and racial profiling, specifically the perception of Muslims after 9/11 and the effects of terrorism on the homeland. He has also led his criminology students in discussions about the Patriot Act. Del Carmen also wrote a short narrative on terrorism and presented his paper at the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

9/11 in film and literature

Michael Brittain, senior PhD candidate in English. Brittain is teaching a class on representations of 9/11 in film and literature. Students study six novels and other works that revolve around 9/11. They look at short films from various directors (for example: Sean Penn) and from various countries that reflect on that day. They also look at music that came out of that time period, such as Bruce Springsteen’s “The Rising.” They also look at poetry and essays. The objective is to make students aware that this literature exists. Brittain said the subject area has become its own genre, one students should analyze for its variety of artistic representations.


Brent Sasley, assistant professor of political science. Sasley is an expert in Middle East politics and changes in Iraq and Afghanistan following the reigns of Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden.


Jared Kenworthy, assistant professor of psychology, and Patricia Lyons, PhD candidate in psychology, are experts in the psychology behind some U.S. residents’ negative attitudes toward Arab-Americans post-Sept. 11.

Health and homeland security

Susan Cherry, clinical instructor of nursing, has played an active role in changing the way medical personnel prepare for a terrorist attack. She was director of emergency preparedness at USMD Hospital-Arlington from 2003 to 2009 and a voting member of the DFW Hospital Council. As the lead instructor for community health nursing, a course all nursing students must pass their senior year, she has incorporated a twice-yearly disaster simulation into the course that lets students demonstrate knowledge and skills they would need in a terrorist attack.

Samir Iqbal, assistant professor of electrical engineering. Iqbal works on biological agent detection. He uses nanotechnology to detect biological changes in people, luggage, containers, etc., technology with Homeland Security applications.

Harry Stephanou, professor of electrical engineering and director of Automation Research & Robotics Institute at UT Arlington. His research is in micro- and nano-robots, robotics, micro- and nano-tools.


Sanjal Das, professor of computer science and engineering and founding director of UT Arlington’s Center for Research in Wireless Mobility and Networking (CReWMaN). Das’ research interests include mobile computing, wireless networks and protocols, pervasive computing, cyber security, wireless multimedia, wireless Internet and 3G wireless systems.

Mohan Kumar, professor of computer science and engineering. Kumar’s research is in unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and sensor detection systems (mainly remote). His work mainly deals with acquiring information from several UAVs at once.

Atilla Dogan, professors of mechanical and aerospace engineering, and Brian Huff, industrial and manufacturing systems engineering. They are working with the Arlington Police Department to develop unmanned aerial vehicles to monitor surroundings on the ground. The partnership is hoping to secure state funding.

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