Featured Scholars

Researchers pushing the boundaries of their disciplines.

Devendra Agrawal, PhD

When physicians encounter a persistent problem they can’t solve, they call upon Devendra Agrawal, PhD, a professor of clinical and translational science. He currently has millions of dollars in active research grants from the National Institutes of Health, and shows no signs of slowing down.

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Amy Badura Brack, PhD

Working in a treatment center helping abuse victims early in her career didn’t intimidate Amy Badura Brack, PhD, a professor of psychology. The experience led to a career-long look at how the mind deals with trauma and how science can help it cope. Her latest research has identified a simple and concrete way to help veterans’ brains bounce back from post-traumatic stress disorder. 

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Andrew Baruth, PhD

For Andrew Baruth, PhD, assistant professor of physics, research and teaching go hand in hand. He uses his gift for both to get students engaged in solving real-world problems through projects backed by NASA and the Omaha Public Power District.

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Christopher Destache, PharmD

Chris Destache, PharmD, professor of pharmacy practice, has dedicated his career to finding novel drug-based approaches to HIV prevention. His work has been on the cutting edge of using nanotechnology to deliver multiple drugs simultaneously.

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Matthew Dilisio, MD

He has the full schedule of an orthopedic surgeon, between seeing patients and performing surgery. However, Matthew Dilisio, MD, won’t stop there; his desire to advance his field and department push him to also engage in collaborative basic sciences research. His team is currently making advances in diagnosing and treating shoulder problems.

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Heather Fryer, PhD

Heather Fryer, PhD, associate professor of history and Fr. Henry W. Casper, SJ, Professor of History, is responding to the call to figure out how to cope with climate change from a social and cultural perspective. “This is not a time to be thinking of how the world works, but time to use what we have to offer as scholars to make the world work,” she asserts.  

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Michael J. Kelly, JD

How can corporations be held accountable for their roles in genocide? Michael J. Kelly, JD, professor of law, wrote the book on how to tackle this tough legal question in court.

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Joan M. Lappe, PhD, RN, FAAN

When Joan M. Lappe, PhD, RN, FAAN, starts talking about her research, she smiles broadly and uses an unexpected word: fun. With a passion for health promotion, Lappe – Criss/Beirne professor and associate dean of research in Creighton’s College of Nursing, and professor of medicine in the University’s Osteoporosis Research Center – has studied osteoporosis since before it was well understood.

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Erika Moreno, PhD

For Erika Moreno, PhD, associate professor of political science and international relations, making sense of domestic and global politics is all in a day’s work. But it’s also a very personal endeavor.

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E. Jeffrey North, PhD

In the never-ending war against drug-resistant bacteria, Jeffrey North, PhD, assistant professor of pharmacy sciences, stands at the front lines.

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Alexander Rödlach, PhD, SVD

Alexander Rödlach, PhD, SVD, associate professor of anthropology and psychiatry, discovered the value of research in his field while serving as a missionary, immersed in an unfamiliar culture. As a medical anthropologist, his ministry has changed a bit – but it is ministry all the same.

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Holly Stessman, PhD

The key to understanding and treating autism may hide at the genetic level, according to evidence found by Holly Stessman, PhD, assistant professor of pharmacology.

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Mary Ann Vinton, PhD; Jay Leighter, PhD; John O’Keefe, PhD

A biologist, a communications scholar and a theologian/filmmaker found a shared passion for sustainability, and their partnership is growing into a multi-faceted study of Western Nebraska’s Sandhills region.

In the face of increased stress on the natural and social systems of the region, they ask, what is the long-term stability of the Sandhills? For Vinton, this question is a personal one - her family has had roots in the area for more than 125 years. 

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