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Profiles of Discovery

In recognition of the vital role research plays in the ongoing pursuit of new knowledge, Profiles of Discovery and the Discovery Video Showcase will highlight the work of faculty across the University community.

In Profiles of Discovery, attendees will hear from academic leaders whose work explores three broad themes: Research Excellence; Liberal Arts and Humanities; and Democracy and Citizenship. Designed as three, 45-minute sessions, each topic will include brief presentations by researchers, followed by a moderated panel discussion.

We welcome researchers of all levels to participate in the Discovery Video Showcase. Focusing on a spectrum of fields and focuses, the Showcase will offer a glimpse into the groundbreaking research occurring throughout the University. A selection of videos will be featured at Profiles of Discovery.

To learn more and participate, visit the video submission page.



8:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.
8:30 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.: Discovery Video Showcase and Continental Breakfast
9:00 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.: Spotlight on Research Excellence at UVA
9:45 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.: Excellence in Research and Teaching
10:30 a.m. - 11:15 a.m.: Democracy and Citizenship
Rotunda Dome Room


9:00 a.m. - 9:45 a.m.
Spotlight on Research Excellence at UVA

Through a culture of cross-disciplinary research and scholarship, UVA is constantly developing innovative research to address some of the world’s most complex problems. In this series of interdisciplinary presentations, researchers will highlight work in a variety of focuses – including astronomy, cyber physical systems, infectious diseases, neuroscience and ophthalmology – and explore the ways in which it is advancing the frontiers of human knowledge.

  • Moderator:
  • Babur B. Lateef, M.D.
  • Presenters:
  • Homa Alemzadeh – Safety and Security in Cyber-Physical Systems
    Assistant Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Jayakrishna Ambati, M.D. – 21st Century Therapies: Systematizing the Serendipity
    Dupont Guerry III Professor of Ophthalmology, Vice Chair for Research, Founding Director of Center for Advanced Vision Science
  • Jianhua “JC” Cang – The Brain: Some Assembly Required?
    Paul T. Jones Jefferson Scholars Foundation Professor of Neuroscience
  • Kelsey E. Johnson – Unsolved Mysteries in the Universe
    Professor of Astronomy, Director of the Echols Scholars Program, Director of Dark Skies, Bright Kids Program
  • William A. Petri, Jr., M.D. – Infectious Diseases: An Ounce of Prevention Worth a World of Cures
    Wade Hampton Frost Professor of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases and International Health

9:45 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Integrated Practices: Excellence in Research and Teaching

UVA faculty are revered educators and researchers. In addition to producing work that puts them at the forefront of their respective fields, they educate our students at the very highest levels. This panel invites a range of faculty, from across the University, to explore the intersection of education and scholarship – particularly as it applies to teaching their research in the classroom.

  • Moderator:
  • Talitha LeFlouria
    Lisa Smith Discovery Associate Professor in African and African-American Studies
  • Panelists:
  • A.D. Carson
    Assistant Professor of Hip-Hop, Department of Music
  • Timothy D. Cunningham
    Assistant Professor of Nursing and Drama
  • Willis Jenkins
    Professor of Religion, Ethics, and Environment and Co-Director of the Institute of Practical Ethics & Public Live
  • M. Chad Wellmon
    Professor of German Studies
  • Barbara Brown Wilson
    Assistant Professor of Urban and Environmental Planning

10:30 a.m. – 11:15 a.m.
Panel Discussion: Democracy and Citizenship

When Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and James Monroe founded the University, they understood that the new nation needed to educate citizen-leaders for the experiment in self-government to succeed. That founding ambition is as relevant today as it was then. The University’s third century requires us to address persistent challenges to our democratic institutions and practices and seize opportunities to advance our most cherished ideals. This panel will examine pathbreaking scholarship from across the University, with a focus on sustaining and renewing our democracy.

  • Moderator:
  • Melody C. Barnes
    Co-Director of Policy and Public Affairs, Democracy Initiative; Professor of Practice, the Miller Center and Distinguished Fellow, School of Law
  • Panelists:
  • Derrick P. Alridge
    Professor, Curry School of Education
  • Larry J. Sabato
    Professor, Director of the Center for Politics
  • Micah J. Schwartzman
    Joseph W. Dorn Research Professor of Law
  • Martien A. Halvorson-Taylor
    Associate Professor of Religious Studies; Co-Director, Religion, Race and Global Democracy Lab, Democracy Initiative
  • Larry D. Terry II
    Executive Director, Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service