Dr. David Cornelison

Dr. David Cornelison has been working as an educator and scientist in Arizona and Missouri universities for the last 25 years.  Since 2010, he has been the head of the Department of Physics, Astronomy and Materials Science at Missouri State University.  His research interests lie at the intersection of experimental condensed-matter physics and astrophysics, while his educational efforts have focused on outreach to the K-12 school system.   Most of all, he believes in curiosity-driven learning in the sciences and all other fields.

Peter Batemon

When we advise students at the University, many times we key in on phrases, such as “pursue your passion” or “follow your dreams”.  However, in the realities of life with college expenses on the rise, is that advice the most important to give?  Or should the search for a way to be productive and successful be the primary motivation for students today?   The big question is, “Can you do both?”  Certainly, that is possible in many fields, but nowhere more likely than in the sciences and engineering.  This week we’ll talk about a new list from Forbes.com that shows the highest paying jobs for


We talk quite a bit on the show about the public’s view of science.  The odd mixture of respect and dismissal truly strikes home when seeing the impact of medical decisions on the ones we love.  In the current case of Charlie Gard, there is a clear disconnect between the view of expert medical scientists and those who are related to the child.  Yet, the completely understandable emotional response exhibited in this case also seems to pervade the discussion of less immediate ideas, such as climate change, evolution or energy production. 

When people hear about the newest breakthroughs in physics, their imaginations can sometimes get the best of them.  So it goes when you talk about the strange world of quantum behavior.  Over the last decade and a half, experimental work has developed a theoretical idea which sprang from the fertile mind of Albert Einstein; that of quantum teleportation.  Even though Einstein didn’t use that term and, in fact, wasn’t even a supporter of the theoretical postulate, the public loves the idea and sometimes leaps to the conclusion that soon we will be able to move matter from one place to anoth


As you may know, the path of the next solar eclipse is passing over our state, and we at Missouri State University are planning a celebration. 

This week, Rebecca "Becky" A.  Baker stops by to talk with us about the events planned for the day, and some other outreach she has recently done.  We also discuss why an event like an eclipse resonates with people in ways that many scientific topics do not. 

As we get closer to the date of August 21st, we will be revisiting the subject to get the best turnout we can have, all in the name of science.

Missouri State University

Dr. Paul Durham, a Distinguished Professor of Biology at MSU, has been studying headaches for many years.  Becoming interested while still a postdoc, he brought that passion with him to MSU and has sought to better understand both the mechanisms and treatments that might mitigate their effects, especially for migraines.  He stops by Stemspots today to chat about his background and the work currently being done in his lab to find novel ways to alleviate pain.