Welcome to the first COSMIC issue of 2012. Featured in this issue are articles highlighting student research activities, distinguished faculty research, and a major conference that took place on campus. In February we look forward to resuming our successful Dean’s Seminar Series, with talks scheduled this semester in Statistics, Computer Science, and Chemistry. We also look forward to our first “College for a Day” in February; it looks like it will be a smashing success, with seventy-five students attending from a wide range of high schools. We congratulate Dr. Swamy Mruthinti, and wish him a very productive and enjoyable spring, as he spends it working on his research in India through his being awarded a Fulbright grant. Thanks for looking, and have a wonderful Spring semester!