Baylor in the News – Aug. 27-Sept. 2, 2023

September 3, 2023
McLane Stadium at Night

Contact: Baylor University Media & Public Relations, 254-710-1961
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WACO, Texas (Sept. 3, 2023) – Baylor University researchers and faculty experts were featured in national and local media stories about sleep chronotypes that determine if you are a morning lark or night owl, how paleontological discoveries illuminate the grand history of life on Earth and a Baylor program that breaks new ground in autism treatment by focusing on sibling relationships.

Aug. 27, 2023

Forbes: Powerful Strategies To Improve Your Communication Skills

A study by Baylor psychology and neuroscience faculty is mentioned in this article on strategies to improve job performance. The study supports the idea of an individual's humility adding to their ability to effectively communicate at work and experience greater job satisfaction.

Aug. 28, 2023

Popular Mechanics: NIGHT OWL OR MORNING LARK? Take Control of Your Sleeping Habits

Sleep chronotype research by Michael Scullin, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology and neuroscience and director of the Sleep Neuroscience and Cognition Laboratory at Baylor, is featured in this article. Scullin’s research found that whether you prefer to wake up early or stay up late has less to do with personal choice and more to do with the genetics that determine your sleep “chronotype.” However, you do have the power to change your sleeping and rising habits.

EurekAlert!: Baylor biochemist unravels the secrets of a novel DNA enzyme linked to infertility and certain cancers

This article outlines recent research by Baylor chemistry professor Michael A. Trakselis, Ph.D., and his team, who found the MCM8/9 enzyme to be directly linked to ovarian insufficiency, infertility and cancers, including ovarian, testicular and colon cancers. With this new information, researchers in the Trakselis Laboratory and elsewhere have a roadmap to better understand the function of this enzyme complex and how mutations may be connected to disease. The research also was covered by Phys.Org.

Religion News Service: White Christians think too many people see racism when it’s not there, new survey finds

George Yancey, Ph.D., professor of sociology at Baylor, is quoted in this article on recent research from the Pew Research Center on White Christians' ideas on racism and discrimination. Yancey states that the issue could be based on the trend of politics shaping attitudes on race instead of religious beliefs.

Aug. 29, 2023

Outside: How Many Hours of Sleep Do You Need to Be Productive?

Baylor sleep expert Michael Scullin, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology and neuroscience and director of the Sleep Neuroscience and Cognition Laboratory, provides his expertise on how much sleep is optimal for people to be productive and suggests a technique to determine how much sleep an individual actually needs.

EurekAlert!: Magnitude of placebo response identified in drug for treatment of hot flashes

A recent study by Baylor researchers Joshua Rhodes, Ph.D. (’23) and Gary Elkins, Ph.D., professor of psychology and neuroscience and director of the Mind-Body Medicine Research Laboratory at Baylor, looks at a meta-analysis of the drug paroxetine and its efficacy in treating hot flashes in women. The study shows the benefit of the drug to be in line with placebos. It suggests more research is needed to find better options for the treatment of hot flashes in menopausal women and breast cancer survivors who are unable to take hormone therapy. This research is also covered in Med Page Today and Medical Express.

Penn State University: Arthur W. Page Center announces three calls for research proposals

The Arthur W. Page Center for Integrity in Public Communication announced three calls for research proposals as part of its annual Page/Johnson Legacy Scholar grants. The ethics training call will be led by Marlene Neill, Ph.D., associate professor of journalism, public relations and new media at Baylor, and targets three unique areas that collectively address a wide range of questions facing public communication ethics education, practice and theory.

Harvard Law School Forum: Do Corporations Retain Too Much Cash? Evidence from a Natural Experiment
Hwanki Brian Kim, Ph.D., assistant professor of finance at Baylor, contributes to this article detailing his recent research on whether corporations retain too much wealth and the effect it can have on the value of the firm.

WateReUse: How Our Newest Technology Promises to Meet Our Oldest Challenge

Baylor researchers contribute to a study supported by the National Alliance for Water Innovation to find methods that incorporate AI and machine learning (ML) to reduce energy and chemical use, improve operational support, increase treatment system uptime and improve confidence in purified water quality. 

Aug. 30, 2023

Baptist News Global: Baptists Scholars International Roundtable gathers to discuss global mission

Joao Chaves, Ph.D., assistant professor of the history of religion in the Américas and co-director of the Baptist Scholars International Roundtable (BSIR) at Baylor, and Doug Weaver, Ph.D., department chair in the department of religion and Barbara Jo Beard Driskell Professor of Historical Studies, join other members of the BSIR in Oxford, England, to discuss Baptist global missions.

Scientific American: Paleontology Is Far More Than New Fossil Discoveries

Elizabeth Petsios, Ph.D., assistant professor of geosciences at Baylor, is an author in this analysis and editorial article celebrating the vast contributions of paleontologists and the unique view of history and climate they can provide.

The Dallas Morning News: Once in a very blue moon

Baylor Emeritus Professor of Journalism Robert Darden writes about immersing yourself, and all of your senses, in the quiet majesty of the blue supermoon of August.

FOX West Texas: Vestiges sculpture exhibit to be displayed at Angelo State's Mayer Museum

Works of artist Robbie Barber, M.F.A., professor of art in sculpture and 3D design at Baylor, will be on display at the Mayer Museum, Angelo State University, starting Sept. 1.  “Vestiges” will present Barber’s sculptures celebrating rural America through a “strong visual character of this country's vernacular.”

U.S. News & World Report: 20 Fun College Campuses for Tailgating

Baylor University is listed among 20 colleges that host vibrant tailgating traditions for football games. The unique pregame experience of sailgating, pulling boats up to the Baylor Basin to participate in tailgating, is highlighted.

Aug. 31, 2023

Waco Tribune-Herald: Short film showcase offers a peek into Waco's past

AUDIO: A showcase of films and videos from Baylor University’s Texas Collection will be screened as part of the Texas Collection Centennial Lecture Series. The event is co-sponsored by Historic Waco and the McLennan County Historical Commission.

Belief Net: Almost All Top-25 Worships Songs Are Linked to 5 Megachurches

Shannan Baker, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow in music and digital humanities at Baylor’s Dunn Center for Christian Music Studies, was part of the research team that recently determined that almost every worship song that reached the top 25 music charts from 2010 to 2020 was popularized or co-written by one of five megachurches. 

KWBU-FM (NPR/Waco): Business Review - The Role of Emotions in Information Security

AUDIO: More and more companies are asking employees to take an active role in information security. A.J. Burns, D.B.A., assistant professor of information systems at Baylor, discusses the role of our emotions and what companies can do to boost engagement in security.

Sept. 1, 2023

Baylor Connections: Kevin Villegas

AUDIO: In his role as Dean of Intercultural Engagement and Division of Student Life Initiatives, Kevin Villegas works with students and colleagues to create a more vibrant, inclusive, and supportive campus environment. In this Baylor Connections, Dr. Villegas examines those efforts, provides insights from his work with students and shares how this work is an expression of the Baylor University mission.

Texas Standard: Baylor program breaks new ground in autism treatment by focusing on sibling relationships

AUDIO: An innovative program focused on sibling caregivers for individuals with autism has been launched by Jessica Akers, Ph.D., assistant professor of educational psychology at Baylor. The Sibling SUCCESS program helps strengthen sibling bonds and teaches essential caretaking skills.  Akers draws on her own experience caring for her autistic brother and says that siblings can have a unique perspective and closer bond with their autistic siblings. 

Finding Genius Podcast: Examining The Historical Significance Of Religion In The American South With Robert Elder

AUDIO: Robert Elder, Ph.D., associate professor of history at Baylor, shares his expertise on the history of culture and religion in the American South in this podcast.

Waco Tribune-Herald: Getting to Baylor football opener Saturday no hassle compared to recent years

As Baylor opens the 2023 football season, the widening of I-35 through Waco is in the rearview mirror while Baylor’s Game Day traditions will return, including Touchdown Alley, Tailgating and Sailgating on the Brazos and the Bear Walk.


Baylor's Office of Media and Public Relations (M&PR) supports the University's Illuminate strategic plan as a top Christian research university by focusing on faculty research and expert opinions, innovative teaching, major awards and recognition, and community involvement. Through its media training workshops, the Baylor M&PR team develops faculty experts to effectively communicate the impact of their research or speak as subject-matter experts into national trends and conversations with media outlets, through Hot Topics and on the Baylor Connections podcast. Our faculty expert directory is available on the M&PR website.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.