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Vivian Incera Named Chairperson, Efrain Ferrer Professor of Physics at Western Illinois University

January 11, 2005

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MACOMB, IL - - A professional teaching and research couple from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Fredonia have been hired into the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) at Western Illinois University, announced CAS Dean Inessa Levi.

Vivian Incera (pronounced In Sarah) has been named chair of Western’s physics department, effective July 1. Efrain Ferrer (pronounced E frain Fairer) will join the physics department as a professor, effective Aug. 18.

The couple earned their bachelor’s degrees in physics from Havana University in Cuba - - Ferrer in 1974 and Incera in 1976. They completed their Ph.D.s in physics at P.N. Lebedev Physical Institute in Moscow, USSR in 1988.

Their research and teaching assignments have taken them to universities and renowned scientific institutes in Cuba, Finland, Spain, Italy and Switzerland as well as a two-year assignment at Florida International University (1991-93). Incera and Ferrer have been at SUNY at Fredonia since 1993 and have held adjunct faculty status at SUNY at Buffalo since 2001. Throughout their careers they have received nearly $500,000 in research grants through such organizations as the National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S.-Spain Joint Commission for Scientific and Technological Cooperation and the U.S. Department of Energy.

“I am delighted that Drs. Incera and Ferrer will join Western Illinois University. They will be an outstanding addition to our physics department,” said Levi. “They bring great academic credentials, experience and true dedication to teaching and research; and they are strong advocates and supporters of student research and internationalization of curriculum. Dr. Incera is a natural leader, and she will move the physics department toward fulfilling its highest potential as a vital contributor toward achievement of our University’s mission.”

Incera presented SUNY-Fredonia’s 2003 Kasling Memorial Lecture, “From Havana to Fredonia: Our Long and Winding Road of Scientific Collaboration,” and has been an invited speaker at professional conferences and civic organizations.

Incera and Ferrer, both fluent in Russian and Spanish, have collaborated on nearly 60 professional publications and have traveled worldwide to participate in some 40 conferences and invited seminars. They are members of the American Physical Society and the National Society of Hispanic Physicists.

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