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Honors & Other Things
April 28, 2009, Volume 55, No. 31

Winners of the 2009 Award for Interdisciplinary Innovation

Interim Provost Vince Price and GAPSA Chair Andrew Rennekamp are pleased to announce the team and individual graduate and professional student recipients of the 2009 GAPSA-Provost Award for Interdisciplinary Innovation. 

In spring 2005, a partnership between GAPSA and the Office of the Provost led to the creation of the Award for Interdisciplinary Innovation summer research fellowship program.  The program enables graduate and professional students to engage in a project of their own design to explore, research, and act on critical societal issues.  Students were selected based on the quality of their application and funding status. This year seven applicant teams or individuals will receive a $2,000 monthly fellowship from June through August for this work.  This funding will be awarded to the Project Leader in each instance but can be dispersed among project team members, if needed.

The GAPSA-Provost Award for Interdisciplinary Innovation encourages the collaboration of student scholars from different University departments and/or schools and is jointly funded by both GAPSA and the Office of the Provost.

Interim Provost Vince Price commented, “We are proud that Penn’s graduate students place such a high value on interdisciplinary work.  These projects show the wide range of their interests, their commitment to innovative ideas, and their determination to make a real difference around the world.”

GAPSA Chair Andrew Rennekamp added, “GAPSA is pleased to be able to co-sponsor a seventh award this year in addition to the six which have been given out annually. This additional funding has been graciously allocated by the GAPSA Research Student Council, and demonstrates GAPSA’s on-going commitment to the funding of academic endeavors around campus and our advocacy for increased funding for our research students.”

The winning teams and individuals must submit a report at the end of the summer and participate in a poster session in the fall at the Graduate Student Center.  The poster session will provide a venue for fellows to present their work, receive feedback from the larger Penn academic community, and encourage future interdisciplinary collaborations.

Awards Recipients

Project Leader: Ryan Burg (PhD Student, Legal Studies and Business Ethics, Wharton); Project Member: Rachel Margolis (PhD Student, Demography, Arts & Sciences); Project Title: The Sexual Organization of Risk: Sexual Health and Risks through the College Life Course

Project Leader: Jack Higgins (MGA Student, The Fels Institute, Arts & Sciences); Project: The Penn Public Policy Challenge

Project Leader: Nagatomi Hirayama (PhD Student, History, Arts & Sciences); Project Member: Le Han (PhD Student, Communication, Annenberg); Project Title: History, Citizenship, and Media Control: A linear comparative study of Chinese state-led nationalism

Project Leader: Manisha Joshi (PhD Student, Social Welfare, Social Policy & Practice); Project Title: Attitudes towards wife-beating among women in Tajikistan: An empirical investigation using Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey 2005

Project Leader: Kelly Kroehle (PhD Student, Social Policy & Practice); Project Title: Irreconcilable Differences? An Examination of the Presence of Queer Theory in Social Work Practices

Project Leader: Andrew McPherson (PhD Student, Music, Arts & Sciences); Project Title: The Magnetic Resonator Piano: Electronic Augmentation of an Acoustic Musical Instrument

Project Leader: Huiquan Zhou (PhD Student, Social Welfare, Social Policy & Practice); Project Member: Xinyuan Shang (EdD Student, Graduate School of Education); Project Title: Exploring the Experiences of Volunteer Teachers in Rural China

Friars Senior Society Awards

The following recipients received awards from the Friars Senior Society at their Annual Spring Dinner:

2009 Honorary Friar Award: Philadelphia Mayor, the Honorable Michael A. Nutter, C’79

2009 Friar of the Year Award: David Montgomery, C’68, WG’70 and Michael Stiles, C’67

2009 Faculty Award: Mary Summers, senior fellow, Fox Leadership Program and lecturer, department of political science

Peter K. Riley Award for Outstanding Freshman Male Athlete in 2009: Jake Levin, C’12, varsity soccer player

Elizabeth R. Burdick Award for Outstanding Underclass Female Athlete in 2009: Erin Brennan, W’12, women’s varsity lacrosse

ISC’s MAGPI Lemonade Stand Award

ISC’s MAGPI (Mid-Atlantic Gigapop in Philadelphia for Internet 2) sponsored the Alex’s Virtual Lemonade Stand Project for the fourth consecutive year. MAGPI has received the Top 100 Lemonade Stand Award twice, once in 2007 and again in 2008.  During the past three years, the MAGPI event has raised more than $61,500 for the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. The two-week project, which this year ran from March 23 to April 3, worked with kids from kindergarten through high school as they host lemonade stands to raise money for pediatric cancer research.  Thirty-eight schools across the U.S. and one school in Taiwan participated this year.  Schools collaborated with each other through a blog, a special kick off videoconference spirit rally, and a closing project collage videoconference event all sponsored by MAGPI, Lower Merion School District, and Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.  Each day each school reported its sales totals through the MAGPI website.  For more information on the ISC/MAGPI-sponsored Alex’s Virtual Lemonade Stand, visit www.magpi.net/programs/alexslemonade.html.

Weigle Information Commons Seltzer Family Digital Media Awards 2009

Thanks to the generosity of Penn Libraries Overseer Jeff Seltzer, W’78, and his wife Annie, the University of Pennsylvania Libraries is proud to announce the five students who have received 2009 Seltzer Family Digital Media Awards: Jacob Finkel, Daniella Mak,  Sheyla Medina, Molly Mitchell and Daniel Urgelles. Each student will have exclusive use of $1,000 of technology for one year. Proposed technology items include videocameras, audio recorders and multimedia software.

This is the second year that the Seltzer Family Digital Media Awards have supported specific student projects. The awards are managed with the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships (CURF).  The five funded projects are:

Under the guidance of Dr. Alvin Felzenberg, adjunct faculty at the Annenberg School for Communication, Jacob Finkel, C’12, will continue work on a documentary film exploring the career and accomplishments of former Senator Harris Wofford (D-PA). Mr. Finkel will begin post-production on the documentary, which includes interviews with Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, Gen. Colin Powell and former President George H.W. Bush, and discusses Sen. Wofford’s friendship with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., his role as President Kennedy’s Civil Rights Advisor, and his advocacy for National Service, among other topics.

Under the guidance of Dr. Michael Katz, professor of history, Daniella Mak, C’10, will interview members of the Angolan American community. She will explore the psychosocial shifts in “home” and “citizenship” for refugees, migrant workers and asylum seekers. Growing from her personal interest in cultural identity issues and her experiences in Angola in 2008, this project will draw connections across immigrant communities.

Under the guidance of Dr. Timothy Powell, research specialist at the University Museum, Sheyla Medina, C’10, will explore the intersection of traditional and western medicine and its contemporary use within the Leech Lake Ojibwe Indian reservation in Minnesota. She will use video and audio to collect interviews with traditional healers and community members.

Molly Mitchell, C’11, will create a video documentary on art and urban social change, the subject of which is the work of Urban Mourning, a Philadelphia based non-profit organization. Focusing largely on the mission of the organization and the experience of the children involved, she will take a critical look at the role of art as intervention and healing in the urban space  (faculty advisor pending).

Daniel Urgelles, C/W’11, will use video and photography to capture the experiences of the fellows in the YouthBank program for disadvantaged youth in Lagos, Nigeria. By recording the testimonies of these young Nigerians as they learn how to start and run their own businesses, he hopes to demonstrate the success of these microfinance endeavors and better understand the social aspects of international development for his independent research in that field. He is in the Huntsman Program in International Studies & Business (faculty advisor pending).

The Award Committee consists of Inge Herman (executive director, Huntsman Program in International Studies & Business), John MacDermott (director for instructional technology, SAS Computing), Dr. Kristen Stromberg Childers (assistant professor of history) and Anu Vedantham (director, Weigle Information Commons, Penn Libraries).

—Anu Vedantham, Director Weigle Information Commons

Professor Adkins: Rome Prize

Terry Adkins, professor of fine arts in the School of Design, has been awarded the Rome Prize in visual arts by the American Academy in Rome. Professor Adkins, an artist and musician, will spend a year studying the arts or humanities at the American Academy in Rome. His project, “Flumen Orationis,” Latin for “River of Speech,” will highlight African influence in Rome. Professor Adkins plans to use drawings, sculpture, performative gestures and video to tell their stories. The Rome Prize is awarded to 15 artists and 15 scholars through a national competition.

Dr. Aguirre: ARVO Fellow

Dr. Gustavo D. Aguirre, professor of medical genetics and ophthalmology in the School of Veterinary Medicine, has been named a Distinguished Fellow by the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO). The ARVO fellows will be officially inducted at the association’s annual meeting in May.

ARVO Fellows are recognized for accomplishments, leadership and contributions to the advancement of vision research and the prevention and cure of disorders of the visual system worldwide, as well as their service as role models and mentors. Dr. Aguirre’s research focuses on identifying the genetic causes of inherited blindness and identifying the mechanisms linking mutation to disease and developing treatments.

Dr. Barker: Prize in Surgery & Immunology

Dr. Clyde Barker, Donald Guthrie Professor of Surgery in the School of Medicine, was honored with the Thomas E. Starzl Prize in Surgery & Immunology at the University of Pittsburgh on April 1. The prize is awarded to individuals who have made significant contributions to the fields of organ transplantation and immunology. Dr. Barker launched the clinical transplantation program at the University of Pennsylvania in 1966, when he performed the first kidney transplant in the Philadelphia area. Under his leadership, the clinical transplant program flourished into one of the largest and most successful transplant programs in the country.

Ms. Dragulescu: Behrman Family Scholarship

Florentina Dragulescu, C’12, has been awarded the Behrman Family Scholarship. She will hold this distinction until graduation. The Behrman Family Scholarship Fund for a Young Writer is made possible through the generosity of Grant Behrman (WG’77) on behalf of his family. The purpose of the fund is to provide financial support to an undergraduate student who is a member of the Kelly Writers House community and/or involved in Writers House projects and programs.

Ms. Dragulescu, born and raised in Romania, is a member of the KWH staff, an active member of the “hub” or Planning Committee and of several writing and editorial groups. She’s already published an award-winning book of poetry in Romania as well as founding a student run magazine at her high school. Her English-language poem “People on the Subway” appeared in the fall 2008 issue of Kedma, Penn’s journal on Jewish thought, culture and Israel, and she is involved with The F-Word: A Collection of Feminist Voices.

Dr. Ghazvinian: Carnegie Scholar

Dr. John Ghazvinian, a senior fellow and lecturer in Penn’s Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing, has been named a 2009 Carnegie Scholar. As a Carnegie Scholar, Dr. Ghazvinian will work on a book entitled Children of the Revolution: Iran and America from the Mayflower to the Mullahs, an account of America’s relationship with Iran beginning in the early 1600s. His research will draw on archival material in the U.S. and Iran, including periodicals, newspapers and other sources.

Dr. Ghazvinian is among 24 awardees selected for their originality, proven intellectual capacity and demonstrated ability to communicate their ideas in ways that can spark academic and public discourse on Islam. Each scholar is awarded a two-year grant of as much as $100,000. The 2009 awardees are the fifth class to focus on Islam, bringing to 117 the number of Carnegie Scholars whose work and research is devoted to the topic.

Ms. Heriza: Community Impact Award

The Association for Independent Growth Foundation will honor Jane Golden Heriza, lecturer in the department of fine arts in the School of Design, with their Community Impact Award at the foundation’s Leadership Awards Ceremony on April 29. Ms. Heriza, who teaches mural arts, has also taught an ABCS course through the Netter Center for Community Partnerships and is also an administrator for the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program. The award recognizes those for outstanding humanitarian achievement and citizenship.

Award for Archaeological Achievement

Dr. Ian Hodder, Dunlevie Family Professor, department of cultural and social anthropology, Stanford University, and director of the Catalhöyük Archaeological Project in central Turkey, became the 29th recipient of the Penn Museum’s Lucy Wharton Drexel Medal for archaeological achievement. Dr. Richard Hodges, the Museum’s Williams Director, presented him with the medal, the top honor that the Penn Museum bestows on a scholar, before Dr.Hodder presented a special talk, “A Conversation about Community Engagement in Archaeology,” on April 14.

Dr. Hodder has been directing excavations at the 9,000 year-old Neolithic site of Catalhöyük in central Turkey since 1993. The large-scale, 25-year project aims to place the art from the site in its full environmental, economic and social context, to conserve the paintings, plasters and mud walls, and to present the site to the public.

Dr. Kettl: Public Policy Dean, UMD

Dr. Donald Kettl, professor of political science and the Robert A. Fox Professor of Leadership, has been named the new dean of the School of Social Policy at the University of Maryland. His research focuses primarily on public policy and public management. “Our School of Public Policy has created a unique position of excellence,” UMD Provost Nariman Farvardin announced. “To have a scholar of Don’s stature and vision as dean will further energize a school that’s already highly-ranked and highly-productive and help bring it much deserved recognition. His appointment has generated a great deal of excitement.” Dr. Kettl will begin his new position June 1.

Coach Lake: Marines Award

Dan “Lake” Staffieri, game-day coordinator for the Penn football team, was honored with the Sportsman’s Award at the United States Marine Corps (USMC) Scholarship Foundation Philadelphia Ball. Mr. Staffieri, or “Coach Lake” as the Penn football family knows him, is a former marine. The USMC honored him for his generous donation to the USMC Scholarship Foundation. In his 33rd season with the Penn football program, Coach Lake began his career here as head freshman coach.

Ms. Rush: Sphinx Senior Society

Vice President for the Division of Public Safety Maureen Rush, has been selected to be an Honorary member of the Sphinx Senior Society, the oldest senior society on Penn’s campus. Membership in this society is a lifelong honor and she joins the ranks of prominent alumni, such as former Presidents Martin Meyerson and Judith Rodin and current President Amy Gutmann, as well as other notable and distinguished Penn faculty, staff and administrators since 1900.

Law Enforcement Award

Penn Police Officers Dominic DiLorenzo and Michael Sylvester received the American Society for Industrial Security Law Enforcement Appreciation Night (ASIS LEAN) Award for their ‘above and beyond’ performance with the Penn Police Department. Officers DiLorenzo and Sylvester were honored on March 18 at the Ace Conference Center. ASIS LEAN is an annual event in which nominated officers and law enforcement officials are honored for their bravery, acts of heroism and going above and beyond their call of duty. This year, honorees included the fallen Philadelphia Police Officers and their family members.

Judge Pollak: Professionalism Award

The Honorable Louis H. Pollak, adjunct faculty member in the Law School and Senior Judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, has been selected to receive the American Inns of Court’s 2009 Professionalism Awards for the Third Circuit. Third Circuit Professionalism Awards are presented to a senior practicing judge or lawyer whose life and practice display sterling character and unquestioned integrity, coupled with ongoing dedication to the highest standards of the legal profession. The award will be presented May 1.

Dr. Schultz: Research Award

Dr. Richard Schultz, the Charles and William L. Day Distinguished Professor of Biology and associate dean for the Natural Sciences, will receive the 2009 Research Award from the Society for the Study of Reproduction (SSR) at the organization’s annual meeting in July. The award recognizes an active SSR member for outstanding research published during the previous six years. Dr. Schultz  is a developmental biologist whose work focuses on mammalian reproduction.

Ms. Wetherill: Postal Council

Janet Wetherill, associate director of Penn Mail Services, was appointed to the Greater Philadelphia Postal Customer Council (GPPCC) by the Postmaster of Philadelphia. The purpose of the Council is to determine how to direct resources and coordinate activities to improve postal services in the Philadelphia region.

American Academy of Arts & Sciences Fellows

Dr. Peter C. Nowell, Gaylord P. and Mary Louise Harnwell Professor Emeritus of Pathology and Laboratory Science in the School of Medicine, and Dr. David Premack, professor emeritus of psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences have been elected into the 2009 class of fellows and foreign honorary members of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. They are among the 210 new fellows and 19 foreign honorary members chosen.

The Academy is an independent policy research center that conducts multidisciplinary studies of complex and emerging problems.

American Educational Research Association Fellows

Six professors from the University of Pennsylvania have been honored as American Educational Research Association Fellows, recognizing their exceptional scholarly contributions to education research.

AERA honored 44 education researchers as fellows this year and five of them were from the Graduate School of Education, including John W. Fantuzzo, Vivian L. Gadsden, Richard Ingersoll, Rebecca A. Maynard and Stanton Wortham.  The sixth is Eric Thomas Bradlow from the Wharton School.

“This is a remarkable showing for Penn faculty,” said Dr. Andy Porter, dean of the Graduate School of Education. “Six University faculty members earning this honor is a pretty solid commentary on the quality of our scholarship and impact of our colleagues.”

American College of Physicians Awards

The American College of Physicians honored two School of Medicine professors during the annual ACP Convocation ceremony last week.

Dr. Dwight L. Evans, Ruth Meltzer Professor and chairman of psychiatry; professor of psychiatry, medicine, and neuroscience; and psychiatrist-in-chief received the 2009 William C. Menninger Memorial Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Science of Mental Health.  Dr. Evans also delivered the William C. Menninger Memorial Award Lecture.  Dr. Evans has investigated how stress and depression affect the human body, especially the endocrine and immune systems, and how morbidity impacts the brain and behavior.  Dr. Evans’ group was among the first to conduct studies on the impact of mood disorders on cancer and HIV/AIDS patients.

Dr. Peter C. Nowell, Gaylord P. and Mary Louise Harnwell Professor Emeritus of Pathology, received the 2009 ACP Award for Outstanding Work in Science as Related to Medicine. The award is bestowed for outstanding work in science as related to medicine.  Dr. Nowell discovered the “Philadelphia Chromosome.” This discovery identified the first genetic abnormality linked to cancer. He correctly predicted that single genetic events would subsequently lead to other genetic changes, leading to progressively abnormal tumor clones and resulting in what is called the clonal evolution of tumors. His investigations of radiation effects led to the demonstration that bone marrow could be successfully transplanted to ameliorate radiation damage, which in turn led to bone marrow transplantation procedures.

Call to Serve Grant for Penn

Career Services announced that the University of Pennsylvania has been selected by the Partnership for Public Service to receive their Call to Serve grant. The Partnership is a non-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., which works to promote public service careers among college students and improve federal government recruiting. Penn was one of five schools to receive a grant this year. This funding will allow Career Services to contribute to the Partnership’s mission and to educate Penn students about opportunities in the federal government. Through the grant, Career Services will kick-off its Make an Impact campaign in fall 2009.

Those  interested in partnering with Career Services on any events or would like to connect their office with a federal agency, contact Helen Cheung, associate director, Career Services at (215) 898-7529 or helenc@upenn.edu.

PennVention 2009 Winners

The fifth annual PennVention competition for student inventors took place this month at Penn’s Weiss Tech House. PennVention is the annual student inventors’ competition at the University of Pennsylvania that takes students through the processes of bringing an idea from conceptualization to commercialization. Weiss Tech House provides the tools and resources necessary to help students create, develop and commercialize innovative products or services. Through three distinct rounds, participants will receive intensive business, legal, and technical mentoring services. This year’s winners are:

Grand Prize ($5,000): StealthRowing—Daniel Dickson Harbuck, W’09—designs and manufactures specialized rower’s training equipment that allows rowers to experience the full effects of on-the-water training while indoors.

Pictured left to right: Dr. Mark Yim, Faculty Director Weiss Tech House; Daniel Harbuck, Stealthrowing; Abhi Modi, PennVention Chair.

2nd Place ($2,500): Synerscribe—Jae-Won Shin, M’10—is developing a multi-functional platform to facilitate scholarly research by integrating automatic reference searching, citing, annotating and writing a paper.

3rd Place ($1,000): FlyBy—Anton Popov, WG’09; Sunthar Premakumar, GEng’09; Anoop Kumar, C’09—a web-based media platform that provides ad-supported music in a collaborative community.

Lowenstein Sandler PC Legal Mentor Award: Synerscribe will receive five hours of free legal services and advice from Lowenstein Sandler PC.

BresslerGroup Best Product Concept Award: UTurn—Wislon Pulling, W’10, EAS’10; Anirudha Majumdar, EAS’11; Ted Eckels, EAS’11; Denis Weillett, Stanford University—a nod-actuated page-turner for musicians and the disabled. It operates in a reliable and unobtrusive fashion and eliminates the need for pre-loaded pages, will receive $2,500 in professional services to be used at the winner’s discretion towards research, concept development or CAD modeling in the development of their product for production.

Paramount Rapid Prototyping Award: UTurn will receive $1,000 worth of Selective Laser Sintering Prototyping Services.
Audience Choice Award ($500): UTurn.

Metlwater Social Innovation Prize ($2,500):  RecWave—Patrick Curtis, WG’10—RecWave.com is a national online community for Recreation & Park professionals.

Women’s Lacrosse: Ivy League Champs

The women’s lacrosse team won the Ivy League championship defeating Brown University 14-1 for the victory. This is the team’s third straight undefeated Ivy League campaign at 7-0.

Penn Relays Wall of Fame

The University of Pennsylvania 1917 freshman mile relay team was one of the four groups and four individuals inducted to the Penn Relay Carnival’s Wall of Fame, which was first posted in 1994 at the time of the 100th running. The team ran 3:22.0, a meet record which lasted until 1930. The members were Fred Davis, Izzy Hough, Bob Maxam and Earl Eby. Nominees are only retired athletes and are honored solely for their accomplishments at the Penn Relays.

McCabe Fund Awards 2009 and Call for Applications

The McCabe Fund Advisory Committee is calling for applications from junior faculty in the School of Medicine and the School of Veterinary Medicine for the 2009 Thomas B. and Jeannette E. Laws McCabe Fund Fellow and Pilot awards. 

Junior faculty in these schools should contact the chair of their department or Dana J. Napier, Staff Coordinator, School of Medicine Administration, at (215) 573-3221. The deadline for submission is Monday, June 1, 2009. The McCabe Fund Advisory Committee will announce the winners at its annual June meeting.

Last year Dr. Amin Ghabrial and Dr. David Kaplan each received a Fellow Award of $50,000.

Winners of the Pilot Award of $24,421 each were:

Dr. Roger Band, Emergency Medicine

Dr. Voichita Bar Ad, Radiation Oncology

Dr. Zhanyong Bing, Pathology & Laboratory Medicine

Dr. Vatinee Bunya, Ophthalmology

Dr. Doron Greenbaum, Pharmacology

Dr. Andrew Haas, Pharmacology

Dr. Benjamin Jackson, Surgery

Dr. Jeremy Kahn, Medicine

Dr. Rose Nolen-Watson, Clinical Stuides/NBC

Dr. Jose Pascual, Surgery

Dr. John Plastaras, Radiation Oncology

Dr. David Raizen, Neurology

Dr. Ramesh Rengan, Radiation Oncology

Dr. Makoto Senoo, Animal Biology

Dr. Sunil Singhal, Surgery

Dr. Michael Stiefel, Neurosurgery

Dr. Paul Stricker, Anesthesiology andCritical Care

Dr. Pamela Weiss, Pediatrics

Dr. Jianziu You, Microbiology

The McCabe awards were established in 1969 by a generous gift from Mr. Thomas B. McCabe to the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine to support junior faculty who initiate fresh and innovative biomedical and surgical research projects and who have received no or limited external research funding while in their first through three years at the School of Medicine or the School of Veterinary Medicine at Penn.



Almanac - April 28, 2009 Volume 55, No. 31