WPI Inaugurates 14th President, Plans Major Symposium on Sept. 20

Contact: WPI Media Relations, 508-831-5616

WORCESTER, Mass. WPI's 14th president, Edward A. Parrish, will be formally inaugurated on Friday, Sept. 20, in Harrington Auditorium. Ceremonies begin at 10 a.m. Claire L. Gaudiani, president of Connecticut College, will be the keynote speaker. Parrish, who joined WPI in the fall of 1995 as president and professor of electrical and computer engineering, will deliver an address titled "Making a Difference." A luncheon for members of the WPI community and invited guests will follow at noon on the Quadrangle.

The day will also feature a major symposium, "The New Liberal Education for the Age of Technology," at 2 p.m. in Alden Memorial. In addition to Parrish, the panelists include Eleanor Baum, dean of the School of Engineering at The Cooper Union; Douglas Bowman, director of electronics and information technology at Lockheed Martin; Frederick Hutchinson, president of the University of Maine; David Kettler, executive director of science and technology at BellSouth; Mark M. Little, vice president, Power Generation Engineering, GE Power Systems; and George Peterson, executive director of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). Joseph Hinchey, chairman of the Union College Board of Trustees, will serve as moderator.

"The symposium will address the future direction of technological education as we move into the 21st century, with special emphasis placed on discussion of how best to prepare our graduates for careers in a rapidly changing workplace," says Donald N. Zwiep, mechanical engineering professor and department head emeritus.

The inauguration of President Parrish marks another milestone in WPI's distinguished history. The university's last inauguration was held on Charter Day, May 10, 1996, when Jon C. Strauss became president. About 1,800 employees, students, alumni and college and corporate administrators and executives are expected to attend the investiture and the symposium, planned to coincide with Homecoming Weekend and the annual President's Advisory Committee reception and dinner.