President Laurie Leshin has been named to the Worcester Business Journal’s "The Power 50," its annual list of the most powerful people in the Central Massachusetts business community. The WBJ writes “When we seek to create this list every year, we focus on the people who use their positions to have an outsized influence on the business community. We want to tell the story of a changing region and economy through the people creating that change.” The annual list section also includes a brief article on each nominee; here is a link to President Leshin’s page.
Yan Wang, professor of mechanical engineering, was interviewed for the Forbes article. Noted as an academic working on the problem of recycling li-ion batteries, Wang says “Battery Resourcers (a company he founded) has developed a process for recovering cathode materials like cobalt, as well as aluminum, copper, plastics, graphite, methanol and other chemicals used in the recycling process.”
Newsweek interviewed professor Albert Simeoni, fire protection engineering, for this article. “You can start a wildfire with a spark that can grow out of control in less than 30 seconds,” Simeoni said, adding that while you can start a wildfire in other ways, such as with a simple cigarette or match, “here you have matches or a lighter on steroids.”
The Worcester Business Journal interviewed Rob Krueger, associate professor of social science & policy studies, about why the city of Worcester seems to no longer construct skyscrapers. Towers are often built for two main reasons, Krueger noted: land values are high, or a builder or owner wants to spend the money.
The Telegram & Gazette reported on associate professor Adrienne Hall-Phillips of the Foisie Business School being a key player in getting the first Central Massachusetts chapter of The Links, Incorporated, a historic international association of black women. Arts & Humanities Dean Jean King is also a photographed in the article.
CNBC’s Nightly Business Report interviewed vice president for information technology Patricia Patria for a story about bitcoin mining on campuses.
Bloomberg Business News radio interviewed Stephen Flavin, vice president of academic and corporate engagement, and MassEcon board chair. Asked about Amazon’s future HQ2, Flavin said, “It’s all about creating the talent and supporting the jobs, and WPI is clearly positioned to contribute to that; we’ve been a strong partner of Amazon and Amazon robotics for many years.” (Fast forward to 50:45.)
WBUR reported on research by Marsha Rolle, associate professor of biomedical engineering, spoke to WBUR about her work to develop self-assembling human blood vessels that exhibit the symptoms of common cardiovascular conditions. The engineered blood vessels may give scientists a better way to test the effectiveness of new medications.
Andrew B. Palumbo, WPI dean of admissions and financial aid, was quoted in this article about the University of Chicago’s decision to adopt a test-optional admissions policy.The Chronicle noted that, since 2008 when WPI adopted its test optional policy, "other universities considering the same move have sought insights from WPI."
Emmanuel Agu, associate professor of computer science, was interviewed by the BBC regarding his smartphone app that uses machine learning algorithms to analyze a user’s walking pattern to detect alcohol impairment. Uber is seeking to develop an app to allow drivers to gauge passenger’s sobriety.
WTOP radio in Washington, D.C., aired a segment featuring Erkan Tüzel, associate professor of physics, biomedical engineering, and computer science, discussing a sperm-sorting device that could improve IVF success. The segment also appears on the National Academy of Engineering web site.
This article featured the WPI graduation story of David D’Antonio who, in 1980, was a few classes short of earning a computer science degree when he ran out of money and dropped out. “Thirty-eight years later, the Arlington resident received his long-awaited diploma as well as praise from WPI president Laurie Leshin, who noted his ‘special amount of perseverance’ in her speech honoring the 981 undergraduates at the commencement ceremony on May 12.
The74Million, an online news site focused on education in the U.S., an op-ed by Neil Heffernan, professor of computer science and director of Learning Sciences and Technologies.
The announcement of a $12 million dollar unrestricted gift to WPI by an anonymous donor was reported by the Telegram & Gazette.
In this article about colleges giving less weight to SAT scores and GPAs, The Atlantic described WPI as ‘proactively coming up with different frameworks’ for its admission process. “We’re not trying to find some formula that takes 11,000 applicants and lines them up from No. 1 to No. 11,000,” said Andrew Palumbo, dean of admissions and financial aid. “We are trying to find the best fit.”
USA Today’s roundup of notable commencement speakers included comments by WPI undergraduate commencement speaker Margot Lee Shetterly.
Michael Ahern, director of corporate and professional education, spoke to Worcester News Tonight about protecting online data, amid recent ransomware attacks.
Calling it “a remarkable year at WPI,” this Telegram & Gazette editorial highlighted the university’s inventions and other accomplishments. The T&G referred to “an expanding focus on innovation and entrepreneurship that has been part of the college’s DNA going back to its founding but which is reaching a new level under President Laurie Leshin.” Todd Keiller, director of WPI’s Office of Intellectual Property and Innovation, told the newspaper that Leshin supports “a cycle of innovation and entrepreneurship,” benefiting both WPI and the community.
The Association of American Colleges & Universities news page featured an op-ed highlighting WPI’s project-based learning, saying of student project presentations that, “The students were engaging, dynamic, articulate, and polished, and it was clear they had all had an impact and were impacted in return. The projects were amazing examples of integrative learning to be held up and celebrated.”
WBZ-TV profiled research in which a team of researchers from WPI and Stanford University developed a sperm sorting device that could improve IVF Success. The device uses an “obstacle course” to sort and select faster and healthier sperm cells.