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Six professors named as AAAS Fellows

USF received the sixth highest number of fellows named by the American Association for Advancement of Science (AAAS) in November, just after Duke University and Pennsylvania State University.

AAAS is an international scientific society that aims to advance science, engineering and innovation throughout the world. Fellows are nominated based on peer recommendations.

USF has a total of 52 AAAS Fellows, with the addition of the six from this year: College of Engineering professor Venkat R. Bhethanabotla; College of Marine Science professors Kendra Daly, Jacqueline Dixon and Steven A. Murawski; School of Geosciences professor Timothy H. Dixon; and USF Health professor Dennis Kyle.

“This is one of those awards that is recognized by the highest level of academics as a significant award,” Senior Vice President for USF’s Research, Innovation & Economic Development and previously named AAAS Fellow Paul Sanberg said.

According to USF News, Daly was nominated for his advancements on Antarctic marine food webs and ecosystem dynamics in ice-covered seas.

“It is a tremendous honor, and AAAS is one of the largest science organizations in the world … it provides a voice for important, ongoing issues globally, so I’m very excited to be a part of it,” she said.

Timothy said, “It’s definitely nice to get recognized like this.”

Timothy H. Dixon was nominated to the AAAS for distinguished contributions to the field of space geodesy, and Jacqueline Dixon was nominated for distinguished contributions to the fields of marine science and geology, according to USF News.

 “It’s definitely nice to get recognized like this,” Timothy said.

Sanberg explained the impact these nominations have on students.

“When [the professors] are Fellows of AAAS, the students know that these people have reached a pinnacle of their careers, and they have a lot of inside knowledge. They're up to date on current knowledge in their respective fields,” Sanberg said. 

According to, “thousands of leading scientists, engineers, educators, policymakers, and journalists gather[ed] together to discuss recent developments in science and technology.”