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Cynthia Young, Ph.D. Founding Dean, College of Science, Clemson University, Clemson SC Cynthia Young, Ph.D.
Founding Dean

As an interdisciplinary scholar, Young developed mathematical models governing atmospheric effects in laser communication channels. In 2001, she was selected by the Office of Naval Research for the Young Investigator Award and, in 2007, she was selected as a fellow of the International Society of Optics and Photonics (SPIE). The author of more than 70 books and publications, Young has secured continuous federal funding exceeding $5 million since 1999. 

Previously, she served as the vice provost for Faculty Excellence and UCF Global at the University of Central Florida, where she led university-wide initiatives to strengthen, recruit and retain exceptional and diverse faculty and internationalize the university. Young joined UCF as an assistant professor of mathematics in 1997 and is a co-founder of UCF’s EXCEL program, created to increase students’ success in their first two years in STEM disciplines. Since its inception 10 years ago, the program has helped improve STEM majors’ graduation rates by 40 percent. Young served in several other leadership roles at UCF, including the NCAA faculty athletics representative, and associate dean for research in the College of Sciences.

Here are highlights from Young’s two years of service as vice provost at UCF:

    • Helped grow the university’s faculty by 200 tenured and tenure-track positions across all colleges;
    • Created a Targeted Opportunity Program to support faculty recruitment initiatives in inclusive excellence, academic partner hires and preeminent scholars;
    • Launched strategic initiatives and partnerships focused on comprehensive internationalization that have increased UCF students studying abroad by 30 percent;
    • Recruited five National Academy of Engineering members to UCF in partnership with the College of Engineering and Computer Science.

“I am honored to lead the new college in its ascension to a world class College of Science that is both locally relevant and globally impactful in its quest to expand our knowledge of the natural world,” Young said. “To do that within the context of a 21st century land-grant University focused on improving lives and livelihoods of the citizens of South Carolina and beyond is a spectacular challenge.”

Brian Dominy, Associate Dean for Research, Clemson University, Clemson SC Brian Dominy
Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs


Dominy is associate professor in the department of chemistry. He earned his B.S. from Carnegie Mellon University in the biological sciences/computer science track with a minor in chemistry, and his Ph.D. from the Scripps Research Institute. He worked as an NIH postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University and joined the faculty of Clemson University in 2005. He has developed computational models of biological molecules with emphasis on improved statistical mechanical methods and applications in drug design, among others. Dominy’s research has been supported by collaborative and individual grants through the NIH and NSF. In 2010, he received a National Science Foundation CAREER award to support his educational and research efforts toward understanding the physical and chemical principles underlying biomolecular evolution. He has served as undergraduate program director in chemistry, as well as served on the chemistry department’s Assessment Committee, the CES Curriculum Committee, the CES Global Engagement Committee, the University Undergraduate Curriculum Committee and the University Assessment Committee.

Lesly Temesvari, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Clemson University, Clemson SC Lesly A. Temesvari
Interim Associate Dean for Research


Temesvari is an an Alumni Distinguished Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences. She received her B.S. in microbiology and immunology from McGill University (Montreal, Canada) and her Ph.D. in biological sciences from the University of Windsor (Windsor, Canada). After post-doctoral work at the LSU Health Sciences Center, she joined Clemson’s faculty in 1999. She is a founding member of the Eukaryotic Pathogens Innovation Center (EPIC). Her research focuses on characterizing virulence in the dysentery-causing human parasite, Entamoeba histolytica. Temesvari is the principal investigator on three National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants, and she has previously received grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA). In addition, Temesvari has served on numerous review panels at the NIH and NSF. In 2010, she held the Fulbright Chair in Research Methodology at the University of Siena in Siena, Italy.

College of Science Staff

Sharetta Bufford, Student Services Coordinator, Clemson University, Clemson SC Sharetta Bufford
Student Services Coordinator II


Bufford works in student services as an academic adviser and recruiter for the College of Science. She has been in student services for more than six years, recently leaving her role as a financial aid counselor and satisfactory academic progress (SAP) coordinator. As a first-generation college student, Bufford earned her Bachelor of Arts in both political science and sociology from Winthrop University in 2010, and she earned her master of education in higher education administration degree from Columbia College in 2015. Also in 2015, she became a Certified Personal Financial Manager (CPFM). With her high energy and passion for student success, Bufford prides herself in collaborating with others in order to help students achieve their goals.

Stephanie Evans, Director of Student Services, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Stephanie Evans
Director of Student Services


Evans plans, designs, creates and directs recruiting and advising programs that meet the college’s long-term enrollment goals. She has been involved with advising since 2005 and most recently served as lead adviser for Clemson's department of biological sciences. She earned her bachelor of industrial and systems engineering degree from Auburn University in 1998.

Hannah Halusker Hannah Halusker, Public Information Coordinator, College of Science, Clemson University
Public Information Coordinator


Halusker graduated from Clemson University in 2017 with a bachelor of science degree in genetics and a minor in biochemistry. In college, she participated in a variety of research opportunities spanning the fields of genetics, biochemistry and primatology, studying organisms such as corn, the parasite Trypanosoma brucei and a small New World monkey called a golden lion tamarin. Her interest in science communication was realized in her undergraduate studies when she wrote for and designed a student-run magazine about popular topics in science, and when she led a K–12 research collaboration that promotes science to economically disadvantaged, minority youth. Halusker’s role as public information coordinator for the College of Science has her writing every day about the vast range of scientific research happening at Clemson University.

Adam Hunter, Student Services Coordinator II, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Adam Hunter
Student Services Coordinator II


Hunter is a third-generation Clemson graduate preceded by his father (1979) and grandfather (1956). He completed a bachelor of science in psychology degree in 2007 and earned a master of education degree in counselor education in 2009. Hunter has worked in higher education for nine years. He has served Clemson University in a variety of areas including University Housing, orientation, Campus Recreation, Bridge to Clemson program, Staff Senate and most recently in the College of Business Academic Advising Center.

Sarah JaeschkeImage of Sarah Jaeschke, Pre-Award Support Center Manager
Pre-Award Support Center Manager


Jaeschke works in grant support services managing pre-award activities for the College of Science. She has worked in sponsored programs for 10 years serving in both pre-award and post-award roles. She earned bachelor’s degrees in sociology and political science from Christopher Newport University in 2005, and a master’s degree in higher education administration from Old Dominion University in 2008. She is a member of NCURA, SRA International and NORDP, and is a Certified Research Administrator (CRA).

Melody Land, Administrative Coordinator to the Dean, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Melody Land
Administrative Coordinator
to the Associate Dean for Research


Land serves as administrative coordinator to the associate dean for research in the College of Science and provides support for the research administration functions of the college. She has served the majority of her many years of service at Clemson University within the university’s research division.

Pete Martin Pete Martin, Online Media Coordinator, College of Science, Clemson University
Online Media Coordinator


Martin joined Clemson in June 2017 as the online media coordinator for the College of Science. Since joining Clemson, he has started the process of updating and expanding the college’s website, designed print materials for the “Eclipse Over Clemson” event, taken photographs and written a story about how to photograph the eclipse. Previously, Martin was custom publications editor for The Greenville News, where he was responsible for a team that produced non-daily and supplemental content for the newspaper, as well as two monthly magazines. He wrote a weekly wine-focused column for the newspaper, and wrote and photographed special features. He has also been a consultant to newspapers and commercial printers on writing, design, photography and technology. Martin has won awards from the South Carolina Press Association and the Parent Media Association for writing and design. He is a member of Professional Photographers of America.

Jim Melvin, Public Information Director for the College of Science, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Jim Melvin
Public Information Director


Melvin joined Clemson in January 2015 as a media specialist for Public Service and Agriculture and the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences. He became PID for the College of Science in February 2017. During his first year at Clemson, he won a gold medal in the national Association of Communications Excellence (ACE) contest in the category “Writing for the Web.” In 2016, he won another gold medal in the ACE contest in “Writing for a Magazine” and a silver medal in “Writing for the Web.” Earlier in his career, Melvin totaled more than 30 national and state awards as a journalist for the Tampa Bay Times, Charlotte Observer and The Greenville News. He has extensive experience covering science-related topics. As a journalist, he wrote about everything from the future of the human race to erupting volcanoes. He is also the author of six published novels. At Clemson, he has written dozens of stories that have focused on the university’s globally recognized research, including diabetes, autism, obesity, genomics, astronomy and Big Data. Melvin is a member of the National Association of Science Writers and ACE. He welcomes requests from the media.

Jessica G. Owens, Health Professions Adviser, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Jessica G. Owens
Health Professions Adviser


Owens directs Health Professions Advising at Clemson, collaborating with offices across campus to provide resources for students who are considering going to medical, dental, pharmacy, physician assistant, physical therapy or occupational therapy school. She earned her psychology degree from Clemson in 2011 before completing a master of science in higher education degree at Florida State University in 2013. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in educational leadership, which is bringing fresh perspective to her work with students.

Maria Petrakos Maria Petrakos, Grants Coordinator II at Clemson University
Grants Coordinator II


Petrakos has a master’s degree in nonprofit management from the University of Central Florida and received her bachelor’s degree in studio art from Rollins College. She has extensive experience in the nonprofit sector, including program management, leadership development and proposal writing. Petrakos was presented with the Young Alumni Achievement Award from Rollins College in 2017 for her work in the nonprofit sector in the Central Florida community.

Julie Tovey, Director of Development, College of Science, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Julie Tovey
Director of Development


Tovey joined Clemson in August 2017, and has many years of nonprofit development and communications experience. Tovey earned a bachelor of arts degree from Purdue University, and is working on her master’s degree in public administration. Her strengths lie in planning, collaboration and capacity building, and she is excited to be a part of Team SCIENCE.

Debbie Wright, Administrative Coordinator to the Dean, Clemson University, Clemson SC

Debbie H. Wright
Administrative Coordinator to the
Associate Dean of Academic Affairs


Wright serves as administrative support for the associate dean of academic affairs in the College of Science. She coordinates and supports various committees within the college. Wright brings to the College of Science extensive knowledge and experience from her many years of working at Clemson University.

Contact Us


College of Science
112 Long Hall
Clemson, SC 29634
Phone: 864-656-3015