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ASC UMAPS Colloquium Series. Inverse Heat Conduction, Cancer, Cultural Repository and Neonatal Health in Africa

Winter 2023 UMAPS fellows: Marissa Balmith (South Africa), Tesfaye Wondyifraw (Ethiopia), James Orwa (Kenya), Jean Pierre Ngendahayo (Rwanda)
Thursday, March 30, 2023
2:00-4:00 PM
1010 Weiser Hall Map
The Winter 2023 UMAPS Research Colloquium Series features the U-M African Presidential Scholars (UMAPS) fellows and their scholarly work. The talks prepared and presented by each visiting scholar are designed to promote dialogue on topics and to share their research with the larger U-M community.

Marissa Balmith (South Africa), “The Role of the estrogen receptor in breast cancer dormancy”
Marissa Balmith is a lecturer in pharmacology at the University of Pretoria, South Africa, and holds a PhD in pharmaceutical chemistry from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa. Her doctoral research focused on silico-molecular modeling and drug design on the Ebola virus, and her interest is in cancer metastasis. At Michigan, Marissa will work on a project titled “Molecular mediators of cancer metastasis,” with Max Wicha (Medical School) as her U-M host.


Tesfaye Wondyifraw (Ethiopia), “The Newly Discovered Pre-historic Rock Art Paintings along the Valley of the Blue Nile”
Tesfaye Wondyifraw is a senior lecturer in the Department of History and Heritage Management at Debre Markos University, Ethiopia. He holds an MA degree in archeology from Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia. At Michigan, he will work with Brian Stewart (Anthropology, LSA) on a project titled “An Archaeological Study of Buahit Serit: A Newly Discovered Rock Art Site in East Gojjam, Northwestern Ethiopia.” The project will explore and evaluate this site and work toward the conservation of this endangered cultural repository.


James Orwa (Kenya), “Comparison of machine learning and logistic regression as predictive models for adverse maternal outcomes of deliveries: A hospital-based retrospective study”
James Orwa is a senior instructor of biostatistics at Aga Khan University, Kenya. He received his MSc in biostatistics from Hasselt University, Belgium, and is currently enrolled in a PhD program in public health at Ghent University, Belgium. While at U-M, he will work with Akbar Waljee (Medical School) on a project relating to artificial intelligence/machine learning approaches for the identification of predictors of maternal, neonatal, and child health risks.

Jean Pierre Ngendahayo (Rwanda), “Estimation of Surface Temperatures from Nonlinear Heat Conduction Models from Quenching Applications”
Jean Pierre Ngendahayo is an assistant lecturer in applied mathematics at the University of Rwanda. He holds MA and BA degrees in mathematics and statistics from the same university, where he is also currently pursuing a PhD. His research centers around mathematical modeling and scientific computing in the areas of epidemiological modeling and so-called “inverse problems.” At U-M, he will work on a project titled “The Solution of Two Dimensional Transient Inverse Heat Conduction Problem,” with U-M host Divakar Viswanath (Mathematics, LSA).

Register in advance at
Building: Weiser Hall
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: African Studies, African Studies Center, Archaeology, Biology, Biomedical Engineering, Lecture, Medicine, Public Health, Umaps Colloquium Series
Source: Happening @ Michigan from African Studies Center, International Institute, Department of Anthropology