March 11, 2004
WPI Celebrates Women's History Month
March is National Women's History Month, and this year's theme is "Women Inspiring Hope and Possibility." To celebrate, WPI's Office of Diversity and Women's Programs will be hosting several events during the next few weeks. Here's a schedule:
- March 15, 16, 17 and 18, Movie Marathon: Whale Rider, Real Women Have Curves, Bend It Like Beckham, Rabbit-Proof Fence, recent movies that feature strong women overcoming cultural challenges. Prizes will be given to those who pre-register and attend one or more films (while supplies last). Pre-registration at CEDTA. All showings at 8 p. m. in Olin 107, with discussion following.
- March 16: "Where in the World are the WPI Women of 1988?" What are the alumnae of that class doing with their lives, and what lessons can they offer today's students? Sue Sontgerath '88, project coordinator in WPI's Office of Diversity and Women's Programs, presents responses from her classmates to an in-depth survey on their careers, perceptions of industry, and reflections on WPI. Campus Center, Mid-Century Room, 6 p.m.
- March 17: "How to Have a Job AND a Life," a talk by Ellen Bravo, director of 9to5, National Association of Working Women, a grassroots organization founded in 1973 to strengthen women's ability to win economic justice. A 1997 recipient of a Ms. Foundation "Women of Vision" award, she is co-author of The Job/Family Challenge: A 9to5 Guide. Campus Center, Odeum, 7 p.m.
- March 23: GLBT Pride Dinner. Share dinner and entertainment with WPI's Gay/Straight Alliance, BiLaGA. Magdalen Hsu-Li will headline with a discussion on diversity and her smooth lyrics. Sponsored by: BiLaGA, Diversity and Women's Programs, Residential Services, and Healthy Alternatives. $5, Campus Center, Odeum, 6 p.m.
- March 24: "Forgotten Women and Their Unforgettable Ideas," the stories of the "hidden" women behind familiar products, discoveries and innovations by Ethlie Ann Vare, co-author of Mother of Invention: From the Bra to the Bomb and Patently Female: From AZT to TV Dinners. Olin Hall, Room 107, 4 p.m.
For more, see the Office of Diversity web site.
Destination ImagiNation Comes to WPI
More than 5,000 people will gather at WPI on Saturday, March 20, for the state finals of Destination ImagiNation (formerly Odyssey of the Mind), the international creative problem-solving competition. The day begins at 8:30 a.m. with opening ceremonies in Harrington Auditorium and ends at about 6 p.m. with a parade and awards presentation. About 150 teams of students, all regional tournament winners, will vie for prizes. The event is free and open to the public. For more, call Barbara Mann at 978-462-0472.
The WPI Business Women's Exchange will host a luncheon at noon on Thursday, March 18, in the Campus Center, Odeum A. Al DeLuca from Flor-Als Florists will assemble one or two spring arrangements, to be given as the attendance prize. The menu includes assorted rolls, roast pork loin, pan gravy, vegetable, potato, ice cream with crème de menthe topping, coffee and tea. Payment ($8.50) should be sent to Judy Shute in Diversity and Women's Programs by March 15. Checks should be made payable to WPI.
Basketball Teams Finish Big
WPI's basketball teams finished their 2004 seasons in spectacular fashion. The women's team, having concluded its regular season with a 15-10 record, won a berth in the NEWMAC (New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference ) tournament. On Feb. 24, the team, seeded No. 4, defeated No. 5 seed, Babson, 57-46 in Harrington Auditorium. WPI went on to lose its semifinals match-up against Springfield College, and on March 3 fell in an ECAC Division III quarterfinal game to Eastern Connecticut State University.
With its 19-6 record, the men's basketball team became the NEWMAC regular-season co-champion and earned the No. 1 seed (and automatic semifinalist status) in the NEWMAC tourney (which also made WPI the tournament host). Like the women's team, the men fell to Springfield College in the semifinals round. WPI was victorious in its first game of the ECAC Division III tournament (also played in Harrington Auditorium), besting Curry College 79-52. It was the team's 20th win, which tied the school record.
Next up for WPI, No. 2 seed in the tourney, was No. 6 seed Western Connecticut State. Playing in Harrington Auditorium on Saturday, March 6, WPI lost a 68-54 to end its remarkable season.
Campus map update
If you know of changes that need to be made to the current campus map, contact Bonnie McCrea (firstname.lastname@example.org, ext. 5306) by Wednesday, March 17. A revised map will be available by March 19 on the WPI Web site. Printing Services in Boynton Hall (ext. 5571) will print multiple copies for a fee.
Carney To Step Down in Fall
John (Jack) Carney, WPI's provost and vice president for academic affairs for nearly eight years, recently announced that he will resign from his position this fall. "This position has proved to be one of the most stimulating and satisfying of my academic career," he said in an announcement to the campus community. "I am proud of the advances we have made during this time. However, I have long felt that high-level administrators are most effective when their length of service in one position is limited to a seven- to ten-year range."
Carney said by announcing his resignation now, he will be able to assist more effectively with the search for a new WPI president. Candidates for that position will know "that the critical position of provost will be an open strategic opportunity for the new leader of WPI.
"I have great affection for this institution and will do everything in my power to help attract the best candidate," he said. "WPI is a great university because it is composed of exceptional people. The close ties that I have formed with my colleagues and associates at WPI have been enriching and rewarding."
Faculty Promotions and Tenure Awards
The Board of Trustees announced the promotion and/or tenure of the following members of the faculty, effective July 1:
Tenured and Promoted
- Mark L. Claypool, to associate professor of computer science
- Huong N. Higgins, to associate professor of management
- Germano S. Iannacchione, to associate professor of physics
- Christopher J. Larsen, to associate professor of mathematical sciences
- Rajib B. Mallick, to associate professor of civil and environmental engineering
- Carolina Ruiz, to associate professor of computer science
- Suzanne L. Weekes, to associate professor of mathematical sciences
- Padmanabham K. Aravind, to full professor of physics
- Edward (Ted) A. Clancy, to associate professor of electrical and computer engineering
- Louis Curran, to full professor of music in humanities and arts
- Marcus Sarkis, to associate professor of mathematics
- Zhikun Hou, to full professor of mechanical engineering
Quitadamo Receives Schwieger Award
Arthur Quitadamo, retired senior vice president of Shawmut Bank, recently received the Albert J. Schwieger Award from WPI's School of Industrial Management at its annual banquet. The award, established in 1975, recognizes a SIM graduate who has demonstrated sound management principles and integrity in his or her executive position.
Report From the Cabinet
Feb. 17, 2004, Meeting Summary
Graduate Enrollment: Jeanne Gosselin, director of graduate studies and enrollment, reviewed the status of graduate student full-time applications, which are down about 30 percent. New visa requirements are severely impacting applications from international students, especially those from India and China; other universities are experiencing even larger declines. Roughly 80 percent of full-time WPI graduate students are international, and half of them pay tuition. The other half is supported by fellowships and research and teaching assistantships. Part-time student credit hours are also down, as a result of employers curtailing this benefit. The revenue shortfall for the current year is projected to be about $800,000 less than budget, with a correction already having been made during the fall for $500,000 of that amount. Since the reduction in enrollment is expected to continue, it will also have a significant negative impact on next year.
Bill Durgin stressed the national impact on science and engineering education and research resulting from these consequences of the Patriot Act. He expected a national debate to occur soon as the consequences of the reduction in the number of science and engineering students coming to the United States for education and, eventually, for jobs are recognized broadly. WPI must work hard to recruit, especially among our own students. Part-time graduate course work may pick up soon as the economy improves and companies realize supporting professional development is crucial for attracting and keeping their best employees. WPI needs to plan now strategically for the kinds of new programs that will be in demand.
FY 04 and FY 05 Budget: Judi Trainor reviewed the latest projection of year-end results for FY 04. A deficit is being projected, but it is not atypical for this point in the fiscal year and should be manageable if tight control is exerted over spending. The budget for FY 05 was still under review and was expected to be balanced when presented to the Board of Trustees at the end of February. Discussion then centered on long-term issues and the need for new ways of enhancing revenue by repositioning WPI for the future.
Publications and Presentations
Chemistry and Biochemistry
- B.M. O'Hara, "Solving a 'Cold Case'", Forensic Science Column (L.H. Berka, editor), NEACT Journal, Vol. 22, No. 2, 20-25, Winter-Spring, 2004.
Humanities and Arts
- Menides, Laura Jehn, Three poems: The Girl in the Swing, Liebfraumilch 1, and Liebfraumilch 2, in Sahara: A Journal of New England Poetry, Winter 2003, pp. 1-2.
Social Science and Policy Studies
- Wilkes, John, "The SAT as a Technology That Filters the University Student Body," presented at the 19th annual National Association for Science, Technology and Society meetings, Baltimore, Md., Feb. 19-21.
- Wilkes, John, "Are Civilian Space Agencies More Innovative than Military Labs?," presented at the 19th annual National Association for Science, Technology and Society meetings, Baltimore, Md., Feb. 19-21.
- Wilkes, John, leader of roundtable discussion on Jared Diamond's text "Guns, Germs and Steel" as the basis for a college level STS course, at the 19th annual National Association for Science, Technology and Society meetings, Baltimore, Md., Feb. 19-21.
Did You Know?
According to the March 5 Telegram & Gazette, the Worcester Historical Commission recently approved a resolution that described Institute Park, the green and blue oasis just across the street from the WPI campus, as "a site of significant historical importance." It took the vote, the T&G noted, at the request of a local parks advocate who would like to see the park listed on the state or national register of historic places.
The park was created in 1887 when Stephen Salisbury III gave a 25-acre tract to the city. In 1912, it was enlarged with a gift of another 6.4 acres from the Worcester Art Museum.
Salisbury was the son of Stephen Salisbury II, a successful merchant who was one of WPI's founders. He gave the land that became the Institute's campus, served as the first chairman of the Board of Trustees, and supported the school generously throughout its early years. His son followed in his footsteps, both as a generous supporter of WPI and, from 1895 to 1905, as Trustees chairman.
In giving Worcester land to establish a park, the younger Salisbury made it clear that the recreation area was a tribute to the institution he and his father had help build. "The conditions of this gift are that this area shall be called Institute Park," he wrote to the city leaders, "in recognition of the usefulness of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute to the material interests of the city and the county...
WPI recently made a major commitment to the park's future by helping fund a master plan that will be the first step in restoring the park to its original glory.
Last modified: June 22, 2010 15:08:35