Major Arun L. Chittur is an Assistant Professor of Aerospace Studies and the Operations Flight Commander for Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps (AFROTC) Detachment 645 at The Ohio State University. He leads unit training and student operations and is part of a six-person team who lead, train, and mentor students as prospective Air Force officers. He teaches a national security affairs seminar (autumn) and an active duty preparatory course (spring).
Major Chittur graduated from Ohio State in 2008 with degrees in aviation and political science and entered the Air Force as a nuclear operations officer. He has served in various intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) crew, training, and evaluation positions, in addition to deploying as missile crew and mission lead in support of two worldwide command exercises and completing 6,000 hours of strategic alert missions. He has completed master’s degrees in international administration and creative writing and has been teaching military officers and officer trainees since 2014. Today he works to close the gap between the civilian and military experiences and studies international conflict, deterrence methodology, and education that enables better decision-making.
Dr. Seth Faith
Dr. Seth A. Faith is the Strategic Alliance Officer for the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI), Co-director for the Center of Microbiome Sciences, and Principal Investigator in Biosecurity at The Ohio State University (OSU). He leads external engagement activities with government, industry and foundations for advancing research and education for the IDI and OSU Office of Research. Dr. Faith previously held positions as assistant professor at North Carolina State University (NCSU) in the Chancellor’s Faculty excellence program and as research leader in Biosecurity at Battelle Memorial Institute, a non-profit contract research organization. In both roles, Dr. Faith led industry and US government sponsored (e.g., US Departments of Defense, Justice, and Homeland Security) interdisciplinary research with major scientific accomplishments. Notably, Dr. Faith directed research resulting in the first demonstration of the use of next-generation sequencing (NGS) and bioinformatics to perform forensic DNA analysis compatible with the U.S. National DNA Database (NDIS) and the first Cloud-based bioinformatics system for forensic genotyping. Presently, Dr. Faith serves in advisory roles for committees that oversee the standards of forensic science in the US, including The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Scientific Working Group on DNA Analysis and Methods (SWGDAM), the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC), and the American Academy of Forensic Sciences (AAFS) Standards Board (ASB). His continued leadership in these areas is helping to define the next-generation of protocols used in forensic science and biosecurity laboratories.
Dr. Faith was trained in molecular biology/virology at Northeast Ohio Medical University and he received specialized biodefense and biosafety training as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Regional Biocontainment Laboratory. He is a self-taught bioinformatician and genetic data hacker, who has a passion for STEM education, raising awareness of professional science careers and promoting opportunities for minorities in science.