Dr. James Walters has been elected President of the West Virginias Academy of Science. Dr. Walters, Assistant Professor of Biology at Bluefield State College, was chosen by the Academy at its 94th annual meeting, March 30, 2019 at West Liberty University. His two-year term as WVAS President officially begins on July 1, 2019. The WVAS annual meeting and conference attracted more than 300 attendees--faculty, undergraduate students, and graduate students from West Virginia institutions of higher education.
Dr. Walters will bring the WVAS conference to Bluefield in 2021. “We will partner with local high schools to promote participation in the Junior Academy of Science,” he said.
At this year’s WVAS conference, Dr. Walters, Dr. Tesfaye Belay (BSC Associate Professor of Biology), and Dr. Young Kim (BSC Associate Professor of Chemistry) were joined by 11 BSC students, who presented and discussed research they are currently conducting at Bluefield State College. “Our student contingent was one of the largest groups from any of the colleges and universities in West Virginia,” Dr. Walters noted. “Our students and faculty are conducting research in fields including microbiology, immunology, and medical chemistry.”
The BSC faculty members direct laboratories and advise students who conduct research under their tutelage. “The research presentations benefit our students by helping them learn and strengthen their understanding of scientific methods, professionalism, and the ‘culture of science’—writing papers and presentations,” Dr. Walters said.
The BSC students can submit their written summaries of their research to the “Proceedings of the West Virginia Academy of Science,” an original, peer-reviewed journal.