Note: If you cannot see images below, right-click on the "show images" button above.Medical Education Group Touts Sophie Davis Model
Three Chemistry Professors Awarded $4.76 Million
Three CCNY chemistry professors, all investigators affiliated with the CUNY Institute for Macromolecular Assemblies (MMA), have been awarded four separate multi-year research grants from the federal government totaling $4.76 million. Dr. Ranajeet Ghose, Associate Professor of Chemistry, received $1,661,554 over five years from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and $991,984 over five years from the National Science Foundation (NSF). Dr. Kevin Ryan, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, received a four-year $1,053,700 grant from NIH and Dr. Ruth Stark, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry and Director of CUNY MMA, received $997,168 over five years from NSF. Macromolecular assemblies are three-dimensional structures that enable plant and animal cells to perform the functions necessary to sustain life. CUNY MMA, which is based at CCNY, aims to understand these complex processes at the molecular level and build on research and education programs throughout CUNY to address fundamental and applied questions at this frontier of life sciences research. More on this story.
President Williams Receives Langston Hughes Medal
CCNY President Dr. Gregory H. Williams, an award-winning author, received the College’s Langston Hughes Medal at a special ceremony in The Great Hall, March 10. The Medal is presented to stellar writers whose work gives voice to the many cultures rooted in the African heritage, and celebrates their distinguished contribution to arts and letters. President Williams was honored for his achievement in writing his autobiographical best seller, “Life on the Color Line: The True Story of a White Boy Who Discovered He Was Black.” Previous recipients include: James Baldwin, Alice Walker, Ralph Ellison, Chinua Achebe, Toni Morrison and Nobel Laureate Wole Soyinka. Dr. Fred Reynolds, Dean of Humanities and the Arts, made the presentation before the Second Annual City College of New York President’s Lecture. The speaker this year was world-renowned philosopher, scholar and author Kwame Anthony Appiah. “Mine wasn’t an easy life by any means, and it was not an easy story to tell. But it is my life. It made me who I am,” President Williams said. “And I wouldn’t trade the opportunity to share my story for anything. This recognition – the Langston Hughes Medal – means more to me than I can say.”
CCNY Adjunct Arturo O’Farrill Wins Grammy
Arturo O’Farrill, creator of the famed Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra and an Adjunct in the City College Music Department, won the 2009 Grammy Award for Best Latin Jazz Album at the 51st annual awards ceremony February 8 in Los Angeles. Mr. O’Farrill and his ensemble were honored for “Song for Chico” (Zoho Records). His debut album with the Orchestra, “Una Noche Inolvidable,” earned a Grammy nomination in 2006. “The Grammy Award represents further opportunity to create music and make art and there’s no greater prize for an artist,” Mr. O’Farrill said. This is the latest honor the Mexican-born, pianist, composer and educator has received. He was awarded the Latin Jazz USA Outstanding Achievement Award for 2003. Mr. Farrill created the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra for Jazz at Lincoln Center in 2002. Earlier in his career, he played piano with the Carla Bley Big Band and later performed with such legends as Dizzy Gillespie, Freddy Cole, Wynton Marsalis and Harry Belafonte. Mr. Farrill received part of his education at CCNY. His wife, Alison Deane, a classical pianist, is an Associate Professor in the College’s Music Department.
Neville Parker Honored for East Harlem Environmental Work
Dr. Neville A. Parker, Herbert G. Kayser Professor of Civil Engineering in The Grove School of Engineering, was honored for his work addressing environmental justice issues in East Harlem at a February 20 Black History Month commemoration hosted by U.S. Rep. José E. Serrano and State Sen. José M. Serrano. Rep. Serrano presented a Congressional Record Tribute to Professor Parker and Sen. Serrano read a State Senate proclamation. In addition, City Council Member Maria del Carmen Arroyo presented a Council Citation. Professor Parker has been involved with Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer’s “Go Green: East Harlem” initiative since its inception in 2006, serving on the Public Health and Asthma and, later, the Transportation Committees. The asthma rate for children in East Harlem is four times the national average, and many in the community believe there is a connection to the area’s traffic congestion and large number of bus depots. The CUNY Institute for Transportation Systems, which Professor Parker directs, is currently developing a dynamic traffic assignment model for East Harlem that will analyze and assess the environmental impact and development of responses to various planning and operating strategies. The anticipated outcomes will mitigate traffic congestion and improve air quality. “We want to deliver enhanced information that can drive the policy-making process and, if successful, be replicated in other Manhattan neighborhoods,” Professor Parker said.
Hajoe Moderegger Wins Creative Capital Award
Hajoe Moderegger, Assistant Professor of Electronic Design & Multimedia, was one of 61 recipients nationwide of the Creative Capital 2009 Emerging Field Award. Creative Capital is an art philanthropy organization that has been supporting artists’ development since 1999. Professor Moderegger, along with wife, Franziska Lamprech, was recognized in the Emerging Fields category. They collaborated under the name “eteam” to produce Open Source Grabeland. Open Source Grabeland entailed transforming the environment of two plots of land, one in Nevada and the other in eastern Germany. Both locations lacked access to convenient or natural water sources. By initiating the project simultaneously at two locations, the artists are setting up a collaborative system that will be compiled visually through YouTube and Facebook. Professor Moderegger has been a member of CCNY’s Art Department since 2002. He currently teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in interactive design and is senior thesis advisor for the B.F.A. in Electronic Design & Multimedia program.
Dan Rather to Present Rudin Lecture April 2
Broadcast journalism icon Dan Rather, will present the Spring 2009 Samuel Rudin Distinguished Visiting Scholar Lecture. His topic will be “Democracy and the 24-Hour News Cycle.” The lecture, which is free and open to the public, will take place in The Great Hall at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, April 2. A reception will follow the speech. Mr. Rather was anchor and managing editor of “CBS Evening News” from 1981 to 2005, the longest anyone has held the position. During his 43-year career at CBS, he also served as anchor of the documentary series “CBS Reports,” and the weekend edition of “CBS Evening News.” He was the network’s White House correspondent for the Johnson, Nixon, and Ford administrations and has interviewed every U.S. President from Dwight D. Eisenhower to George W. Bush. Among his many journalistic coups were two exclusive interviews with Saddam Hussein in 1990 and 2003. As a correspondent for “60 Minutes II” in 2004, he broke the biggest story of the year – the prisoner abuse at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib. Currently, Mr. Rather is anchor and managing editor of HDNet’s “Dan Rather Reports,” which focuses on international reporting and investigative journalism. (Photo credit: John Filo) More on this story.
Paul Auster To Deliver Mumford Lecture March 12
Novelist, screenwriter and man of letters Paul Auster will deliver the Sixth Annual Lewis Mumford Lecture on Urbanism 6 p.m. Thursday, March 12, in The Great Hall of Shepard Hall. His topic is “City of Words.” The lecture, which is presented by the Graduate Program in Urban Design in CCNY’s School of Architecture, Urban Design & Landscape Architecture, is free and open to the public. “Paul Auster is the quintessential urban novelist. His novels are about different ways of reading the city and different ways in which urban spaces can be characterized,” said Michael Sorkin, Distinguished Professor and Director of the Graduate Urban Design Program at CCNY, who organizes the lecture series. Professor Sorkin noted that Mr. Auster’s novels are “amazing popular among architects. There is something in his writing that speaks to the way architects formulate space.” Mr. Auster is the author of 15 novels, five screenplays and published essays, memoirs and autobiographies. He has edited several collections and translated works into English, as well. The “Times Literary Supplement” called him “one of America’s most spectacularly inventive writers.” (Photo credit: David Shankbone) More on this story.
CCNY Grad Student Picked for Argonne Lab Fellowship
Kalu Chibueze Uga, ’08, a first-year graduate student pursuing a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering in The Grove School of Engineering, has been awarded a prestigious summer research fellowship at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory. The fellowship is with Argonne’s Mathematics and Computer Science Division. Mr. Uga, a native of Nigeria now living in New York who was the mechanical engineering department’s class valedictorian last year, intends to use the fellowship to work on novel Spectral Element Discontinuous Galerkin Lattice Boltzmann method for computational fluid dynamics. He hopes the new methods he develops will enable him to get understanding of convective heat transfer studies he is conducting under the direction of his mentor, Dr. Taehun Lee, Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering. Professor Lee described him as a “very bright, very persistent student. Kalu has great attention to detail, and that really matters in computational mathematics.”
Freshman Ayodele Oti Attends Harvard Conference
With a fresh wave of public service interest sweeping the nation, courtesy of the new Obama Administration, Ayodele Oti’s trip to Harvard for a public policy conference was more than timely. Ms. Oti, a freshman in the Macaulay Honors College at CCNY, was among 48 participants nationwide in the Harvard Kennedy Public Policy and Leadership Conference, February 19 - 22, sponsored by the John F. Kennedy School of Government. An International Studies major, Ms. Oti was selected for her strong academic record, commitment to public service and outstanding potential for growth and leadership. “It was very intense with a lot of panel discussions and workshops, and I really learned a lot about how public service benefits a lot of people,” she said. Of particular interest, Ms. Oti added, were presentations by Massachusetts State Rep. Linda Dorcena Ferry and former U.S. Ambassadors Sichan Siv and R. Nicholas Burns, who recounted how public service shaped their careers. Ms. Oti’s public service focus is international development. Born in Tallahassee, Fla., to a Nigerian father and American mother, she hopes to work in Africa and Latin America.
Senior Maribeth White Interns at CNN International
As the financial crisis continues to wreak havoc around the world, City College senior Maribeth White is helping CNN International bring the story to millions of viewers. Ms. White, a dual Management and Administration/International Studies major who graduates this May, is interning at the global cable network through April. The Brooklyn resident is a researcher for business news anchor Maggie Lake and also works on “Quest Means Business,” hosted from London by Richard Quest; “World Business Today,” and other business-related shows. “It’s a totally fascinating experience being there and being part of history in the making as the world goes through this economic turmoil,” Ms. White said. “A lot of research goes into all the stories we do. Two to three hours of work will go into a two to three-minute segment.” She applied for and was awarded the four-month internship, based on academic excellence, to fulfill an International Studies major requirement. Ms. White is one of 45 interns at CNN’s New York bureau, and the only one not attending an elite private institution. Her CNN experience has inspired Ms. White to consider a career in broadcast journalism.
Professor Gelb Says Women Still Lag in U.S. Politics
Despite the high-profile candidacies of Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin in the 2008 election, female representation in U.S politics lags way behind Nordic countries, which have made the fastest progress in recent years. This is one of the findings in “Women and Politics around the World: A Comparative History and Survey,” written by City College political scientist Dr. Joyce Gelb, ’62, and Dr. Marian Palley of the University of Delaware. The 668-page, two-volume provides an exhaustive examination of the progress women have made in achieving political equality. “The U.S. numbers in general did not change much as a result of Clinton’s and Palin’s significant candidacies - still 16% in the national government,” notes Dr. Gelb, a Professor of Political Science. The Nordic nations, in comparison, have double the women’s representation of North America and the rest of Europe. “We can learn from parliamentary systems, which do have political parties and national laws that mandate higher representation for women. At the present rate, we won’t achieve parity for men and women in the Congress until perhaps 2063,” Dr. Gelb concludes. “Women and Politics around the World” is her seventh book.
Professor Agrawal Chairs Workshop on Bridge Blasts
If Minnesota’s ill-fated I-35 bridge was designed to withstand the effects of a blast, it probably would not have collapsed into the Mississippi River, maintains Dr. Anil Agrawal, Associate Professor of Civil Engineering in the Grove School of Engineering. Professor Agrawal recently organized a workshop for more than 80 transportation engineers representing federal, state and local agencies academia and consulting companies on “Safety and Behavior of Bridges Subjected to Blast in a Multi-Hazard Environment.” It was held February 18 – 19 at Baruch College’s Newman Conference Center. Because of increased terrorism risk and concerns about exploding tanker trucks, engineers are looking for ways to protect bridges from blasts, Professor Agrawal says. In the process, they are also protecting them from other hazards, such as earthquake and fire. “If a bridge can be made safe in a blast, it is likely to be safe in all hazards because a blast does the greatest damage,” he explains. Current research thrusts in this area include defining the threat, designing bridges to withstand the threat, advanced simulation and modeling techniques, new blast-resistant materials and explosive detection. Using computer simulations, researchers can find weak spots in bridge design that can be rectified through reinforcement during construction, he adds. “You figure out the worst case scenario and design for it.”
Professor Lee’s Theory Could Aid Israeli Mariculture
Dr. John J. Lee, CCNY Distinguished Professor of Biology, is currently testing a hypothesis that aims to promote the growth of nontoxic algae as a food for shellfish and bottom-feeding finfish. He believes polyculture systems can be manipulated by using trace elements to prevent the growth of toxic “red tide” algae. Professor Lee maintains that encouraging growth of safe algae will balance an all-on-land polyculture system that would use waste water from raising fish to grow shell fish and other marine products in a “green” environment. He is investigating the hypothesis at the National Center for Mariculture (NCM) in Eilat, Israel, where he has worked as a volunteer scientist every winter break for the past 21 years. Dr. Lee’s hypothesis, if successful, could make it economically viable to replenish the Dead Sea, which has been receding for some time. If the political climate permits, water from the Red Sea could be transferred to the Dead Sea. The aqueduct linking the two bodies could also supply water to marine polyculture farms could produce food and provide sustainable economic activity. With in the past year, NCM has been placed within the Volcani Agriculture Research Organization and has taken on the mission of “painting the deserts blue” with mariculture.
Professor John Develops Molecular Gel for Drug Delivery
Long, complex molecules known as polymers exhibit well established drug delivery mechanisms. However, because of their size they sometimes produce toxic particles when they degrade. CCNY Associate Professor of Chemistry George John and colleagues have developed a way to pre-program the release of a drug without relying on polymers. The method involves attaching a water resistant fatty acid molecule to a water-loving drug molecule to convert them into an amphiphile upon a self-assembling process that results in a soft gel. For the research the pain killer acetaminophen was used. The presence of a cancerous tumor or inflammation in the body produces an excess amount of specific enzymes. When the molecular gel is inserted into such sites, the enzymes caus the gel to degrade and release the drug, Professor John explained. Because fatty acids are already present in the body, no harmful byproducts should be released from the drug. Indeed, tests conducted in laboratories at Harvard University-MIT Division of Health Science and Technology confirmed no toxicity associated with the molecular gels when they degrade and release the drug, he noted. The findings were published in the January issue of the journal Biomaterials.
Professor Grant Takes ‘Color of Justice’ on the Road
Keith Lee Grant, Associate Professor of Theater, is directing the national tour of “The Color of Justice,” a drama about Thurgood Marshall and the landmark 1954 Supreme Court ruling in Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education. Marshall, who later became the first African American Supreme Court Justice, represented plaintiff Linda Brown in the case, which led to school desegregation. Professor Grant, who is currently on sabbatical, directed the original production in 2007, as well. A few changes have been made in the new production. “On several occasions the cast and I employed improvisations to explore emotional moments and relationships that are not fully realized in the script” he said. In addition to teaching at CCNY, Professor Grant, a member of the Theater Department since 2002, is the founder of the Harlem Repertory Theater (HRT), which is based in CCNY’S Aaron Davis Hall. The HRT just received a grant from the Yip Harburg Foundation to produce five shows this fall: “Flahooley,” which will also be off Broadway, “The Wizard of Oz,” “The Wiz” and two other productions. “My accomplishments with the HRT would not have been possible if I was not an Associate Professor at CCNY. I am, therefore, grateful to be a member of the CCNY community.”
Alma Mater Honors Former CCNY COO Lois Cronholm
Dr. Lois S. Cronholm, CCNY Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer from 2001 to 2007, was inducted into the University of Louisville’s College of Arts and Sciences’ Hall of Honor February 17. Dr. Cronholm holds a B.A. and Ph.D. in biology from that institution. The Hall of Honor was established during the school’s 2007 centennial and recognizes for people who have made significant and lasting contributions to the college, university, local community and society. Dr. Cronholm spent more than 30 years in higher education administration. In addition to her leadership role at CCNY, she served as Dean of the Colleges of Arts & Sciences at both University of Louisville and Temple University in Philadelphia and as Interim President of Baruch College. Prior to CCNY, Dr. Cronholm was Executive Director of the Center for Jewish History in New York City. Her professional and community organization activities include stints as President of the Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Chair of a National Commission on Recruitment Ethics and board member of the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union and the Louisville-Jefferson County Human Relations Commission.
Former Architecture Dean Max Bond Dies at 73
J. Max Bond Jr., a prominent African-American architect who served as Dean of CCNY’s School of Architecture and Environmental Studies from 1985 to 1992, has died. He was 73. “Max was a most remarkable man,” said Alan J. Feigenberg, CCNY Professor of Architecture, who was also Dean Bond’s student at Columbia University in the 1960s. “he made the school of architecture a warm, exciting and alive environment. His door was always open and welcoming to students, faculty and staff alike.” Added Professor Lance Jay Brown: “Max was unusual in his profound appreciation of the issues of diversity and culture. He was both a champion for the African-American community in our city, our nation, and in our profession and a champion for the value of cultural conditions and traditions globally.” Dean Bond, who earned Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from Harvard University in the 1950s, broke into architecture at a time when it was an almost all-white profession. After working in France and Ghana, he established the firm Bond Ryder & Associates in 1970. At the time of his death, he was working on the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center.
From the President
Shortly after I became President of CCNY in August 2001, Dr. Reza Khanbilvardi, a Professor of Civil Engineering, introduced himself and told me about a new center he was establishing with a large grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Known as CREST (Cooperative Remote Sensing Science and Technology Center), it is a consortium of nine institutions stretching from New York to Puerto Rico, with CCNY as the lead institution. CREST has become a national center for excellence in remote sensing; addressing issues of national and global importance such as climate change and global warming. Its presence here has brought many benefits to the College, its students and faculty.
CREST has enabled us to train students, overwhelmingly from underrepresented groups, to use remote sensing technology and techniques to study a wide range of issues impacting our environment and climate. It has assembled a broad-based research team engaged in all aspects of furthering remote sensing technology and techniques.
In addition, its recently installed satellite earth observation system, which collects and analyzes data from both geo-stationary and polar orbiting satellites, makes City College one of a select few U.S. academic institutions that receives and processes data directly from all major federal government weather and environmental monitoring satellites.
The CREST presence has helped us establish innovative academic programs such as our B.S. in Earth Systems Science and Environmental Engineering. It has also aided the recruiting top environmental engineers to our faculty such as Dr. William Rossow and Dr. Charles Vörösmarty.
This week, CREST is hosting a site evaluation team sent by NOAA. I think they will like what they see and hear.
Gregory H. Williams
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