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Troy Messina
Dr. Troy Messina
Associate Professor of Physics; Chair of Physics Department|Physics
Portrait of Dr. Troy Messina
Office Location
Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building, 439
Office Hours
  • Wednesday 2:00-4:00 pm
  • Friday 2:00-4:00 pm
Class Schedules
  • PHY 222 (Mon/Wed/Fri: 9:20-10:30 a.m., Tues: 12 – 2:50 p.m.)
  • PHY 482 (Mon/Wed/Fri: 10:40 – 11:50 a.m.)
  • PHY 222
  • PHY 482

Dr. Troy Messina grew up in suburban Dallas, Texas. Most of his childhood was in Rockwall, Texas, the smallest county of the state. He attended college and graduate school at the University of Texas at Austin (1991-2002). After completing his PhD in experimental condensed matter, Troy was a post-doctoral fellow at Princeton University and Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, where he transitioned to experimental biophysics. At Rutgers, he was a National Institutes of Health Ruth Kirschstein NRSA Post-Doctoral Fellow, fancy words for being paid by the federal government to do research in health-related areas. In 2007, he joined the faculty at Centenary College of Louisiana, where he taught physics for 7 years. He has been teaching at Berea College in since August 2014. As a professor, Troy is interested in the applications of computation to physics and helping students learn physics and express themselves through writing about physics.

Troy regularly teaches the Introductory Physics with Calculus (PHY 221/222), Modern Physics (PHY 320), Biophysics (PHY 340), and Advanced General Laboratory (PHY 341). He also rotates teaching upper level theoretical courses such as Thermal Physics (PHY 365), Quantum Mechanics (PHY 482), and Electromagnetic Theory (PHY 460). His goal in every class is to help students understand that physics is both fun and beautiful, and to demonstrate the joy it is to ask questions about the nature of our universe.

In addition to teaching and advising physics and engineering students, Troy has been the Chair of the Physics Department on and off since 2019, the Chair of the Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Advisory Committee, and has worked with students on research in condensed matter and biophysics. See for example, this paper published with two Berea College students.

In his personal life, Troy enjoys gardening, working on and riding old motorcycles, and playing drums. You are also very likely to see Troy walking his dog around Berea.

  • B.S. in Physics
  • M.A. in Physics
  • Ph.D. in Physics
Publications & Works
  • T. C. Messina, B. R. Srijanto, C. P. Collier, I. I. Kravchenko, C. I. Richards, “Gold Ion Beam Milled Zero-Mode Waveguides” 12(10), 1755, 2022.

    V. Rosa Rocha, J.-P. Cesare, and T. C. Messina, “Searching for Magnetic High Entropy Alloy Treasure in CoCrxFeNiQy”, Intermetallics 146, 107581, 2022.

    "An Introduction to Biological Modeling Using Coin Flips to Predict the Outcome of a Diffusion Activity." Butcher, G.Q., Rodriguez, J., Chirhart, S., Messina, T.C.. Bioscene, 42/1 (2016). 3-7.

    "An undergraduate laboratory activity on molecular dynamics simulations" Spitznagel, B., Pritchett, P.R., Messina, T.C., Goadrich, M., Rodriguez, J.. Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education, 44/2 (2016). 130-139.

    In Vitro Mutagenesis by Andrew R. Reeves (Editor) Call Number: 616.994 I358 2017 (Location: BC Scholarship) Publication Date: 2017 T. C. Messina, “In silico methods for analyzing mutagenesis targets”, p 199-226.