News

A series of planting pots containing Mars-like soil
How scientifically accurate is 'The Martian'? Ask W&M’s budding astrobotanists

Jon Kay, a visiting assistant professor of geology at William & Mary, is using the hypothetical situation Matt Damon’s character finds himself in — being stranded on Mars and forced to grow his own food — as a real research question for students in his new COLL 150 class Science and Science Fiction.

A MERS coronavirus shows its namesake crown-like structure under the microscope.
A coronavirus Q&A with a virologist

Kurt Williamson is a virologist, an associate professor in William & Mary’s Department of Biology who specializes in the study of viruses. He offers some scientific context for the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.

Molly Mitchell
VIMS scientist wins national Early Career Leadership Award

Molly Mitchell of William & Mary’s Virginia Institute of Marine Science has earned an Early Career Leadership Award from the US CLIVAR Program for her efforts to develop and share sea-level forecasts and other planning tools with coastal risk managers and emergency responders in Virginia and the mid-Atlantic region.

A student spoons soil samples taken around campus
William & Mary’s freshman phage lab goes viral for the 12th straight year

A new lab of select William & Mary freshmen takes on the study of bacteriophages each fall. It’s a program supported by the Science Education Alliance of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute called the Phage Hunters Advancing Genomic and Evolutionary Science (SEA-PHAGES) project.

Headshot of Lizabeth Allison, Chancellor Professor of Biology at William & Mary
Allison wins Ruth Kirschstein Diversity in Science Award

Lizabeth Allison, Chancellor Professor of Biology at William & Mary, has been awarded the Ruth Kirschstein Diversity in Science Award by the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

Gail smiles at the camera from an archaeological dig site
Gail Williams Wertz ’66, M.A. ’19 digs into new career

Gail is currently a full-time graduate student in anthropology and archaeology at William & Mary, returning to her alma mater after an almost 50-year career in biomedical research.

A photo from June of 2018 shows the Newton Trees growing outside Small Hall doing well, even producing apples.
Sad news: The Newton Trees are gone

William & Mary’s Isaac Newton apple trees no longer stand outside Small Hall. The trees likely succumbed to a bacterial disease known as fire blight.

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Plumeri Awards honor excellence

On Friday, May 3, the university honored the 2019 recipients for their outstanding achievements in teaching, research and service to the William & Mary community.

Grace Solini and Hana Warner
Two W&M juniors awarded Goldwater Scholarship

William & Mary’s legacy of success with the Goldwater Scholarship Program continues in 2019 as two students have been named to the exclusive list of undergraduate scholars. Hana Warner ’20 and Grace Solini ‘20 are among just 496 undergraduate students nationwide to be named Goldwater Scholars in 2019.

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W&M's annual Raft Debate set for March 14

The 2019 Raft Debate, a much beloved William & Mary tradition, will be held at the Sadler Center in Chesapeake ABC, on March 14 at 6:30 p.m.

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GMOs not main culprit in monarch butterfly decline

Jack Boyle, a post-doctorate Mellon Fellow at W&M, is lead author on a paper that shows GMOs are not the main culprit for the decline of the monarch butterfly, a finding that goes against claims made by scientists and activists for decades.

Spider silk square
Unraveling another secret of spider silk — it’s a cable!

A strand of spider silk is five times stronger than a steel cable of the same weight, said Hannes Schniepp of the Department of Applied Science at William & Mary. His lab has been unraveling the secrets behind the strength of the brown recluse spider.

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W&M iGEM team decodes the signals of cells

The William & Mary iGEM team is preparing to compete in the world’s largest synthetic biology competition for the fifth year in a row. The students have spent the past six months finding a multidisciplinary approach to cracking the code for how cells interpret signals.