Welcome to @WPI

Vol. 7, No. 16; May 03, 2007

Around Campus

WPI Cheers FIRST Robotics Team

Above, Mass. Academy Director Robert A. Salvatelli, left, presents Ken Stafford, adjunct professor and director of WPI’s robotics resource center, with a special banner at the April 25 victory celebration.

The WPI community celebrated on April 25 the world champion FIRST robotics team from the Massachusetts Academy of Mathematics and Sciences at WPI and the return of the team’s robot “Goat-Dactyl” in a ceremony held in the Campus Center Odeum.

On April 14, the team walked off with the championship trophy at the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) Championship at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. The team led the threeteam championship alliance, which also included Team 177, “Bobcat Robotics,” of South Windsor (Conn.) High School, and Team 987, HIGHROLLERS,” of Cimarron-Memorial High School in Las Vegas. The victory was the climax to months of competition.

FIRST is a not-for-profit founded by Dean Kamen, a WPI alumnus and the renowned inventor of the Segway Human Transporter. In all, more than 10,000 students from 23 countries competed in the Atlanta event, which also included FIRST LEGO League and FIRST VEX Challenge world championships.

Dunsire to Speak at Commencement

Deborah Dunsire, MD,
president and CEO of
Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Cambridge, Mass.

Deborah Dunsire, MD, president and CEO of Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Cambridge, Mass., will deliver the address at WPI’s 139th Commencement exercises on May 19. In addition to Dunsire, WPI will confer honorary doctorates upon Analogic Corp. founder Bernard M. Gordon and Hayden Planetarium director Neil deGrasse Tyson. The WPI Presidential Medal will be presented to Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray.

WPI's 2007 Commencement will feature the debut of new regalia for candidates, trustees, and President Dennis Berkey. The degree candidate robes (black for bachelor's and master's degrees, crimson for PhD) will have embroidered WPI seals on the front. Undergraduates receiving honors will wear crimson or gray cords. The new trustee and presidential robes are also crimson.

President Berkey will wear a new Presidential Medallion, with the WPI seal cast in silver and the names and years of service of all 15 of WPI's presidents engraved on small silver plates that form links in the chain. Provost ad interim John Orr will carry a new Academic Mace, a 42-inch-tall staff made from fluted cherry wood topped with a circular silver pedestal on which sits, on edge, a large silver medal that has the WPI seal on both sides. The new Presidential Medallion and the Academic Mace were gifts to the university from President Berkey and his wife, Catherine.

Dunsire was named president and CEO of Millennium Pharmaceuticals in July 2005 after nearly 20 years of increasingly responsible management positions in the pharmaceutical industry. Founded in 1994, Millennium is one of the world’s leading biopharmaceutical companies in the development of drugs for cancer and inflammation.

She previously led the U.S. oncology business at Novartis, playing a critical role in the development and launch of medications used to treat several types of cancer. She was also responsible for managing the merger and significant growth of the combined Sandoz Pharmaceuticals and Ciba-Geigy oncology businesses. A graduate of the medical school of the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa, Dunsire was a practicing physician and worked as a clinical researcher earlier in her career.


“Dr. Dunsire is a distinguished physician, scientist, and corporate leader, as well as a highly sought-after public speaker,” says Berkey. “We are honored that she will be joining us for WPI’s 139th Commencement exercises, and we look forward to hearing the advice and wisdom she has to impart on our graduates as they move into the next stage of their lives.”


Awards Presented at Faculty Convocation

John Orr, provost ad interim, announced the recipients of the Trustees’ Awards that were presented at the April 24 Faculty Convocation.

Also honored at the annual convocation:

Sigma Xi Awards Honor Researchers

At a luncheon on April 12, the WPI chapter of Sigma Xi: The Scientific Research Society honored faculty and students with its annual research awards.

Outstanding Major Qualifying Project Awards

Outstanding M.S. Thesis Award

Outstanding Ph.D. Dissertation Awards

Outstanding Senior Faculty Researcher

Course Redesign Grant Recipients

The Center for Educational Development and Assessment (CEDA) and the Academic Technology Center (ATC) have announced the recipients of the first Course Redesign Grants. The selection committee consisted of three Educational Development Council members and two ATC staff members.

The recipients are Associate Professor John McNeill, electrical and computer engineering; Associate Professor Jill Rulfs, biology and biotechnology; and Lab Instructor Mike Buckholt, biology and biotechnology. McNeill will redesign two courses to improve student understanding, retention, and engagement. Rulfs and Buckholt will work to use CPS technology (clickers) to redesign the laboratory experience in two courses. The recipients will work with ATC staff as they implement and assess their course redesigns. Results will be disseminated to the community.

More information about the Course Redesign Grant program may be found at www.wpi.edu/ +Collaboratory/Programs/Redesign/.

COMPUTER TIP - Electronic File Storage

It’s springtime. That means out with the old, and in with the new. When it comes to spring cleaning your computer, here are some electronic file storage guidelines to consider:

  1. Separate personal email and files from WPI data, and store accordingly.
  2. Use your desktop computer (C: DRIVE) as a scratch space for temporary storage.
  3. Use a business network share to store WPI business-related data, such as presentations and meeting minutes.
  4. Use your individual network share (R: DRIVE) for personal, confidential data, such as performance self-appraisals.

For more information on storage and other file management techniques, register for the Helpdesk’s brown bag lunch “Electronic File Storage & Integrity” at www.wpi.edu/Regi.
While there, register to “spring” into Microsoft Office 2007 with Deb Dexter’s “Sneak Peek” workshops, too.

Publications and Presentations

Biology and Biotechnology

Olsen, D. P., D. Phu, L. J. M. Libby, J. A. Cormier,
K. M. Montez, E. F. Ryder, and S. M. Politz,
“Chemosensory Control of Surface Antigen Switching
in the Nematode Caenorhabditis elegans,Genes,
Brain, and Behavior
”, vol. 6, pp. 240-252, 2007.

Chemical Engineering

Camesano, T. A., Y. Liu (*), and M. Datta (#),
“Measuring Bacterial Adhesion at Environmental
Interfaces With Single-cell and Single-molecule
Techniques,” Advances in Water Resources, vol. 30,
pp. 1470-1491, 2007.

*WPI graduate student
# WPI undergraduate alumnus

Humanities and Arts

Forgeng, J. L., “’Arms and the Man’: Evolution and
Meanings in the Age of Armor,” Allentown Art
Museum, April 11, 2007.

Forgeng, J. L., “Martial Arts of the Medieval Knight,”
Carol P. Dorian ’79 Memorial Lecture in Art History,
Lafayette College, April 10, 2007.

Forgeng, J. L., “Knights in Shining Armor: Image and
Reality 1450-1650,” Gallery Talk, Allentown Art
Museum at Lafayette College, April 10, 2007.
Forgeng, J. L.,Daily Life in Stuart England,
Greenwood Press, 2007.

Ljungquist, K. P., J. P. Hanlan, and R. G. Obien,
The History of Woodbury and Company, Peter Lang
Publishers, New York, 2007.

Recent Grants

Biomedical Engineering

Gaudette, Glenn, for “The Use of Veritas as a Cardiac Patch,” from Synovis Life Technologies, $36,767

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Mallick, Rajib, for “Analysis of Pavement Response Data for Non-Destructive Testing to Improve Pavement Design, to Improve Future Designs, and Reduce Costs,” from the Maine Department of Transportation, $26,358

Computer Science

Heffernan, Neil, with George Heineman and Murali Mani as co-principal investigators, for “Making Longitudinal Web-Based Assessments Give Cognitively Diagnostic Reports to Teachers, Parents, and Students While Employing Mastery Learning,” from the Department of Education, $1,992,306


Tulu, Bengisu, for “Freeze Frame Extension,” from Claremont Graduate University, $2,560

Lynn Worobey Named Goldwater Scholar

Lynn Worobey, a junior majoring in biomedical engineering, has been named a 2007-08 Goldwater Scholar by the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation. This is the seventh straight year that at least one WPI student has won the prestigious scholarship. Charles “Chuck” Gammal III ‘08 received an honorable mention.

Worobey joins senior Sanjayan “Sunny” Manivannan as a Goldwater Scholar. In all, 10 WPI undergraduates have been named Goldwater Scholars since 2002. The one-year undergraduate scholarship covers the cost of tuition, fees, books, room, and board up to a maximum of $7,500.

Worobey, of Westerly, R.I., received one of 317 scholarships awarded this year to U.S. sophomores and juniors by the Goldwater Foundation. After graduation from WPI, she plans to pursue a career in biomechanics, developing prosthetics and other devices to aid those with disabilities.

During her years at WPI, Worobey has conducted research in biomedical engineering on campus and as part of a National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates program at the University of Rochester in New York. She is working with Australia’s National Science Agency in Melbourne to develop a framework for adapting hands-on science education programs for students with special needs.

Gammal, from Westboro, Mass., is a double major in electrical and computer engineering and mechanical engineering who plans a career in bioinstrumentation research. He has worked several summers at Teradyne Inc. of North Reading, Mass., and conducted research at WPI on the transformation of undergraduate engineering education, and at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester, Mass., on precision medical instruments.

Through May 25

Exhibit: Student art competition, themed “Water,” is sponsored by Gordon Library and Humanities and Arts Department • Gordon Library’s Gladwin Art Gallery, second floor

Thursday, May 3

Residence halls close

Monday, May 7

Awards: Electrical Computer Engineering Graduate Research Poster Presentation Day and Awards Dinner • Higgins House, 6pm

Tuesday, May 8

Workshop: Office of Research
Administration sponsors
“Fundamentals of Sponsored Programs:
Focus on WPI Academic and Administrative Staff” (Part 2, Strategies for Process and Compliance Success) • Campus Center, Taylor Room, 2pm
Forum: WPI Venture Forum presents “Sell the Solution, Not the Technology” • Campus Center,
Odeum, 6pm

Wednesday, May 9

Discussion: Tech Old Timers sponsors “The Serengeti and Corporate America — Some Parallels,” by Professor Helen Vassallo • Campus Center, Odeum, 9:45am
Lecture: Women Authors’ Evening, a fund-raiser for YWCA Daybreak (domestic violence resources), featuring authors Anita Shreve, Kris Halloway, and others; cost is $25 • Campus Center,
Odeum, 5:30pm

Friday, May 18

Bacalaureate, Alden Memorial,

Saturday, May 19

Commencement, 11am

Wednesday, May 30

Alumni: Annual Giving Office sponsors an Alumni Phonothon to call alumni to help raise money for WPI’s Annual Fund, which supports the areas of greatest need on campus including financial aid, faculty teaching, research, and library services; dinner and refreshments provided • Higgins
House, 6pm

Monday, June 11

Conference: WPI’s fourth U.SAfrica Business Conference through June 15 • Campus Center,
Odeum, 5pm

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Last modified: February 07, 2008 08:21:25