Welcome to @WPI

Vol. 1, No. 18 May 18, 2000

Around Campus

Baccalaureate and Commencement

Baccalaureate for members of the Class of 2000 and their families will be held tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. in Alden Memorial. WPI's 132nd Commencement will take place on Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m. on the Quadrangle (rain location: Harrington Auditorium-admission by ticket only). C. Michael Armh3, chairman and CEO of AT&T, will be the speaker.

Summer Hours

The summer work schedule for full-time staff will be in effect from Tuesday, May 30, through Friday, Aug. 18. During this period, the normal 37.5 hour workweek is shortened to 35 hours with no reduction in pay. For most offices and departments this means the workday will be 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Division and department heads may arrange flexible work schedules, particularly in offices that need to be open before 8 a.m. or after 4 p.m. In such cases, offices should inform Human Resources in writing so this can be communicated to Campus Police, Payroll, Plant Services and the main switchboard. Time cards for all full-time hourly paid, nonunion personnel working 37.5 hours should reflect 35 hours during this period. Time cards for personnel working 40 hours should reflect 37.5. In each case, biweekly employees will be paid for the full workweek.

Welcome Alumni

WPI alumni will be on campus for Reunion June 2-4. Here are some highlights of the weekend:


Alumni golf tournament; bus trip to Nashoba Valley Winery or Worcester Art Museum; shopping at the Christmas Tree Shop; musical performance; 50th Reunion reception; 50-Year Associates reception and dinner.


WPI Trivial Pursuit breakfast; President's annual address; Reunion parade; luncheon and awards ceremony; young alumni barbecue; architectural walking tour; Y2K Race; class banquets.


Jazz brunch

Gordon Library E-Term Hours

Gordon Library will be open during E Term on the following schedule: Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday, closed; Sunday, 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Summer Job Openings

Summer positions are now open to dependent children (16 years of age or older) of WPI faculty and staff. A list of positions and contacts is located at http://www.wpi.edu/Admin/HR/Jobs/students.html. If your children are interested in one of these jobs, they should call or e-mail the contact person listed. Dependent children may not work in the same office as their parent. If you have questions regarding summer job opportunities, call Human Resources at ext. 5470.

Human Resources Deadlines

Staff time sheets are due by noon on the Friday before the pay date. Noted below are the scheduled Human Resources and Payroll Office deadlines:

Thursday, May 18 - Monthly payroll authorizations
(Monthly payroll paid Wednesday, May 31)
Thursday, May 18 - Biweekly student payroll authorizations
(Student payroll paid Thursday, May 25)
Thursday, May 25 - Biweekly staff payroll authorizations and Flexcomp claim forms
(Staff payroll Wednesday, May 31)

All forms submitted to Human Resources and Payroll must be complete and have all of the appropriate approvals in order to be processed. Forms submitted after these dates will be processed in the following payroll.

Employment Opportunities


Assistant Director


Laboratory Research Technician
Lab Instructor


Tenure-track positions




Tenure-track faculty position
Faculty positions


Postdoctoral Research Assistant
Multiple fall 2000 faculty positions
Postdoctoral Fellow


UNIX System Administrator
PC LAN Server Administrator


Administrative Secretary III


Tenure-track faculty position


Program Manager


Assistant Director of Planned Giving
Part-time Grant Writer
Administrative Secretary IV
Gift Recording Coordinator/Biographical Records Assistant


Tenure-track faculty positions
Professor of Practice


Faculty position
Part-time Administrative Secretary II


Web Programmer
Archives/Special Collections Librarian


Part-time Administrative Secretary III


Administrative Secretary IV


Distance Learning Program Manager
Instructional Designer and Manager, Faculty Support Services
Web Developer


Program Manager/Adjunct Assistant Professor
Operations and Exchange Program Liaison


Two Tenure Track Assistant Professors


Administrative Assistant


Actuarial Program Coordinator
Graduate Internship/Research Assistantship, Applied Mathematics
Faculty positions


Department Head
Computer Operations Manager
Manager of Robotics Laboratory


Assistant Athletic Trainer
Part-time Bowling Alley Manager
Administrative Secretary




Office and Program Assistant


Administrative Secretary III


Adjunct, Assistant or Associate Professor
Part-time Instructor

For more information about these positions, visit the Human Resource Web site at http://www.wpi.edu/Admin/HR/Jobs/.

WPI's Human Resources Office encourages current employees to refer qualified individuals to apply for jobs at WPI. For each person you refer who is hired and who successfully completes six months of active service, you will receive a $500 bonus. The Employee Referral Bonus Program applies to all permanent nonfaculty, exempt and nonexempt positions posted on or after Sept. 1, 1999.


The Best of the Best

Eight distinguished members of the University's academic community were recognized at the annual Faculty Honors Convocation April 25. They are:

Yoo Jeong Kim, a graduate student in chemical engineering, received the Teaching Assistant of the Year Award.

Daniel Bailey, a master's degree candidate in computer science, and Dan Grecu, a Ph.D. candidate in computer science, received Sigma Xi Graduate Research Awards.

William R. Moser, professor of chemical engineering and a member of the faculty for the past 19 years, was recognized on the eve of his retirement for "contributing immeasurably to the teaching, research and service abilities of the department." (James S. Demetry, professor of electrical and computer engineering, and J.J. Malone, professor of mathematical sciences, retired earlier this year; both joined the faculty in 1971.)

Karen M. McNamara, assistant professor of chemical engineering, received the Romeo L. Moruzzi Young Faculty Award.

David S. Adams, associate professor of biology and biotechnology, received the Trustees' Award for Outstanding Advising.

Pamela J. Weathers, professor of biology and biotechnology, was honored with the Trustees' Award for Outstanding Research and Creative Scholarship.

Stephen J. Weininger, professor of chemistry, received the Trustees' Award for Outstanding Teaching.

Whitmal Named Satin Fellow

Nathananiel A. Whitmal III, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, is the Joseph Samuel Satin Distinguished Fellow for 2000-01. President Parrish, in announcing the award, noted that Whitmal has demonstrated commitment and ability in both teaching and research to his department and to the University. Department Head John Orr said the endowed award recognizes initial accomplishments and promise of future success in teaching and research and carries substantial financial support.

Three Honored at SFPE Conference

Nicholas Dembsey, assistant professor of fire protection engineering, Robert Fitzgerald, professor of fire protection engineering and civil and environmental engineering, and David Lucht, director of the Center for Firesafety Studies, were honored at the 50th anniversary national conference of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers in Denver May 14.

As noted in a previous @WPI, Fitzgerald was elected to the status of Fellow in the SFPE. Dembsey received the SFPE Hats Off Award in recognition of his volunteer efforts in support of the development of the SFPE Engineering Practice Guide on Skin Burn Hazards. The guide will assist fire protection engineers in performing analyses and designs. Christopher Wieczorek '98 helped prepare the guide while a graduate student at WPI. Lucht received the SFPE President's Award for his longtime dedication to and support of fire protection engineering.

Honoring Longtime Employees

WPI congratulates employees who celebrated a service anniversary during the 1999-2000 academic year and thanks them for their dedicated service and continued support. The following faculty and staff were honored at the annual long-service awards dinner May 11:

40 years: Severin J. Ritchie II;

35 years: Diana J. Johnson;

30 years: Theodore C. Crusberg, Dennis M. Foley, Leon S. Graubard, Stephen J. Hebert, Allen H. Hoffman, Marie Mercure;

25 years: Robert A. D'Andrea, Patrick P. Dunn, Alexander E. Emanuel, Peggy Isaacson, Harold E. Lindberg, Jr., E. Malcolm Parkinson, James W. Pavlik, Joan M. Shanahan;

20 years: Jonathan R. Barnett, Richard A. Burns, Michael J. Curley, David Cyganski, Colleen M. Lewis, David A. Lucht, Denise R. Rodino, Paul S. Tarmasewicz, Glen E. Whitcomb;

15 years: David S. Adams, Padmanabhan K. Aravind, Joseph W. Auger, Lee A. Becker, Joanne L. Beller, Jeannette R. Dailida, George R. Desmarais, Sharon A. Donahue, Aline T. Dubois, Ann Garvin, Daniel G. Gibson III, Hossein Hakim, Pauline E. Lavallee, Lorraine B. Marchand, Elenore M. McGourty, Paula Moravek, Dianne M. Moreau, Jacqueline M. Norsigian, Penny J. Rock, Joan M. Stevenson, John D. Stoever and Sandra B. Williams.

Mass Academy Graduation

Thirty-eight seniors graduated from the Massachusetts Academy of Mathematics and Science at a May 12 ceremony in Alden Memorial. Senator Robert Antonioni, chair of the Massachusetts Senate Education Committee, was the guest speaker. Student speakers were William Smith Durgin and Eric William Ursprung.
Here are the graduates and the colleges they will attend:

Michael Ramin Alavian of Paxton (College of the Holy Cross); Cona Anwer of Shrewsbury (Tufts University); Karen Andrea Buch of Westborough (Tufts University); Sarah Chang of Westborough (Tufts University); Luke Chapman of Whitinsville (University of Massachusetts); Peter Cooper Jr. of Charlton (WPI); Jillian Crocker of Worcester (University of Richmond); Meera Datta of Worcester (WPI); Dana DelDotto of Shrewsbury (WPI); Patrick Dingle of Charlton (Cornell University); William Durgin of Holden (Vanderbilt University); David Feinzeig of Worcester (WPI); Rebecca Ford of West Boylston (Baylor University); Adam Hastings of Worcester (Tulane University) Daniel Howard of Douglas (Duke University); David Howland of Charlton; Alexander Kozlov of Worcester (Cornell University); Matthew Lashmit of Marlborough (WPI); Ananda Leininger of Westminister (MIT); Jonathan Levine of Worcester (Princeton University); Tzu-Fan Ling of Westborough (Cornell University); Jennifer Neal of Sutton (College of the Holy Cross); Nicholas Neisingh of Sterling (Queens University); Eduado Paredes of Shrewsbury (WPI); Winfield Peterson of Natick (WPI); Sabreena Punwani of Milford (Simmons College); Preethi Ravichandran of Framingham (RPI); Jocelyn Ross of Worcester (Hamilton College); Kristin Russell of Oxford (Arizona State University); Eric St. Onge of Worcester (RPI); Martha Stone of Rochdale (Brandeis University); Daniel Thiffault of Hopedale (WPI); Kristin Tuiskula of Fitchburg (University of Massachusetts); Eric Ursprung of Princeton (Bates College); Steven Webb of Charlton (WPI); Zachary Wyatt of West Boylston (Stanford University); Yea-Wen Yang of Westborough (Carnegie Mellon University); and Jeffrey Young of Shrewsbury (Boston University).

Crimson and Gray Award Winners

The following 15 students recently received Crimson and Gray Awards, which recognize dedication, commitment and unselfishness in the enrichment of student life at WPI:

Lauren Collazo-Davila; Carla Corrado; Katie Gagnon; Justin Greenough; Ali Durlov Khan; Aaron Lopez; Andrew Meier; Ben Nawrath; Brindha Radhakrishnan; Monica Ortiz Serrano; Pallavi Singh; Sarah Snow; Melanie Tetreault; Lauren Wojtkun and Ziji Wu.

Welcome the Newcomers

The following individuals have joined the WPI administration or staff in recent weeks:

Joshua Brandt, senior UNIX systems administrator, College Computer Center;

Sue Ann Canty, administrative secretary IV, computer science;

Martha DeMare, administrative secretary I, physical education;

Kimberly Lavallee, assistant business manager, Continuing Studies Metrowest; and

Deborah Pelley, office operations computer support, College Computer Center.

Science and Policy Studies News

The Systems Dynamics Club in the Social Science and Policy Studies Department had a successful year, organizing help sessions for system dynamics courses, arranging a lecture by founder of system dynamics Jay Forrester, and running simulation games on campus. The club's 20 members plan to develop a Web site.
High Performance Systems Inc. in Hanover, N. H., recently donated I-Think computer software programs for the department's computer labs. Students and faculty will use these programs for teaching and research.
The System Dynamics Policy Council held its annual meeting at WPI March 29. Attendees included the society president and officers for several countries.

WPI In the News

Denise Nicolettiwas an invited call-in guest on an installment of the John Merrow Report on National Public Radio, a program recorded in October and recently rebroadcast. The topic was "Girls and Technology." To listen to the program or read a transcript, visit: http://www.pbs.org/merrow/tmr_radio/girltech/index.html
WPI was one of four universities mentioned in an article in the March/April issue of Die Casting Engineer (the other three are Ohio State University, Colorado School of Mines and Case Western Reserve University). The schools formed the academic component of the North American Die Casting Association Surface Engineering Task Group, established in 1992 to address the technical challenges of the discipline.

Roger Gottlieb, professor of philosophy, wrote a review titled "Niches, Cultures, Dwellings," in the April Boston Book Review.

Senior Maureen Upton was profiled as a "Whiz Kid" in the April 17 issue of Mass High Tech. Her project advisor, Sean Kohles, assistant professor of biomedical engineering, contributed to the article.

The May 4 online edition of The Chronicle of Higher Education featured the story, "Worcester Polytechnic Creates an Unusual Online Music Archive" (http://chronicle.com/free/2000/05/2000050401t.htm), which included interviews with

Louis Curran, professor of music, and WPI senior Thomas Hall, who put recordings online for use in music classes. As it did a few months ago with a piece on short sabbaticals, the Chronicle used an innovative idea at WPI as the starting point for a larger story, drawing on other colleges and universities for a broader perspective.

Comments by Ben Thompson, manager of administrative systems, were part of a May 5 story in the Telegram & Gazette on the infamous Love Bug computer virus. A lengthy feature, "A World of Difference: More College Students Opt to Study Abroad," in the May 7 Sunday Telegram, praised WPI's global projects program. It featured interviews with Natalie Mello, director of global operations, and senior David Schwalb.

On May 8, the T&G reported on WPI's music programs in a front-page story titled "WPI Music Program Grows by Going Past College Walls." It included interviews with Louis Curran, Thomas Hall, Doug Weeks, Rich Falco and Fred Bianchi. The Business section that day noted that Nikos Gatsonis is the new director of the Aerospace Engineering Program. A lengthy story and a picture of Gatsonis also appeared in the April 13 Newton Tab. Also on May 8, T&G columnist Jim Dempsey wrote about A. Atwater Kent, a member of the WPI Class of 1900.

Fred Bianchi, associate professor and director of computer music, was featured prominently in a May 11 New York Times story titled "Digitally Sampled Sounds Are Filling Out Some Orchestra Pits." The story, about a stage production that uses digital orchestra instruments, also debated whether virtual instruments enhance or replace live music.

To read the latest WPI news releases, go to http://www.wpi.edu/News/Releases/.

Cabinet Meeting Summary

Summaries of Cabinet Meetings are available online to members of the WPI Community on the Cabinet website.



Wednesday, June 7, 1 and 6 p.m., "IT Career 2000 Information Session," MetroWest Campus, 225 Turnpike Road (Rte 9 West) Southborough. For more information, call 800-974-9717.

Thursday, June 8, 1 and 6 p.m., "IT Career 2000 Information Session," Waltham Campus, 60 Hickory Drive. For more information, call 800-974-9717.

Publications & Presentations


Fontanella, Lee. Served as sole judge of the 1999 Visual Arts category for the State of Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters. He presented a report at the awards dinner in Jackson, Miss., April 28.


Brown, David C., and Ilan Berker, "Modeling Conflicts Between Agents in a Design Context", in Computational Conflicts, (Eds.) H. J. Müller & R. Dieng, Springer Verlag, 2000, pp. 144-164.


Zhu, Joe, co-cluster chairperson, "Data Envelopment Analysis Cluster," INFORMS National Meeting at Salt Lake City, May 7-10.

___, session chairperson, "Applications of DEA", invited session for INFORMS National Meeting, Salt Lake City, May 7-10.

____, presented "Allocative Efficiency in DEA", at INFORMS National Meeting at Salt Lake City, May 7-10.

____, presented "Service applications of DEA", at INFORMS National Meeting, Salt Lake City, May 7-10.


Burnham, N. A., "Small is Beautiful, Small is Different, Small is Elegant," presented at the Chemistry Department Seminar, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, May 10, along with four hours of lectures given to the graduate class on Scanning Probe Microscopy, May 8 -9.

Recent Grants

The following is a list of new research grants received by WPI in April. Principal investigators are listed first. The Office of Research Administration provides information about these awards.

Gatsonis, N.A., "Mathematical and Computational Issues in Advanced Gas and Plasma Microthrusters," $49,662 from the Department of Defense, Air Force.

Hermanson, J.C., Alexandrou, A., and Pederson, P.C., "Stability and Heat Transfer Characteristics of Condensate Films in Reduced Gravity," $43,086 from NASA.

Pahlavan, K., "Hardware Platform for Real-Time Wireless Channel Simulation for Modern Telecommunication and Geolocation Military Applications," $195,000 from the Department of Defense, Army.

Ray, M.H., "Recommended Guidelines for Curbs and Curb-Barrier Combinations," $300,000 from the National Academy of Sciences.

Sarkis, M., "CAREER: Multi-Level Multi-Material Problem Solver Environment with Semisolid Material Applications and Education," $125,000 from the National Science Foundation."

Sullivan, J.M., "Development of a Graphical User Interface for Medical Imaging of Brain Tissues," $11,898 from the University of Massachusetts, Worcester.

Zeng, Z.A.

, "Managing Information Flows in Global Supply Chains; A Bilateral Study," $4,600 from Apics Educational & Research Foundation.

Worth Noting

Which two U.S. presidents have been speakers at WPI Commencements? (Here's a hint: neither was president at the time). The answer is Woodrow Wilson and Franklin D. Roosevelt, whose terms of office encompassed the two world wars of the 20th century.

Wilson spoke at WPI in 1890, the year he became professor of law and politics at Princeton University. He would go on to become president of Princeton and publish a five-volume work on American history before entering politics. He was elected governor of New Jersey. Two years later he won the Democratic nomination for the presidency and went on to defeat William Taft and Theodore Roosevelt. World War I erupted midway through his first term and ended a year into his second term.

Roosevelt came to campus in 1919 when he was assistant secretary of the Navy. As a New York State senator, he supported the presidential candidacy of Wilson at the national convention; in return, Wilson gave him the federal post. Roosevelt would later serve as governor of New York before making a run for the presidency, which he won in 1932. His four terms in office ended with his death in 1945, just before the Allied victory in Europe near the end of World War II.

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