|Honors & Other Things
July 16, 2013,
Volume 60, No.1
Fellowship ACLS: Dr. Bourgois
Dr. Philippe Bourgois, the Richard Perry University Professor of Anthropology and Family and Community Medicine, has received a 2013 Collaborative Research Fellowship from the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS).
The ACLS selects teams of scholars who cross disciplinary, methodological, and geographical boundaries to undertake new research projects that will result in joint publications. Made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the program aims to demonstrate the creative potential of collaborative research in the humanities and related social sciences.
Dr. Bourgois, who holds appointments in the School of Arts & Sciences and the Perelman School of Medicine, will work with Dr. Laurie Hart of Haverford College to “track the experiences of vulnerable inner-city residents in a violently policed neighborhood of Philadelphia,” according to the announcement. They will co-author Cornered, a photo-ethnographic book that documents the effects of 21st century poverty and hyper-incarceration in the post-industrial inner city. Theirs is one of only seven teams selected for the fellowship.
ACLS, a private, nonprofit federation of 71 national scholarly organizations, is the preeminent representative of American scholarship in the humanities and related social sciences, and works to advance scholarship by awarding fellowships and strengthening relations among learned societies.
Y-Prize Winner: "IDENTIFIED"
The University of Pennsylvania announced that student team IDENTIFIED won the $5,000 Grand Prize of the 2012 Y-Prize Competition (yprize.upenn.edu), which includes rights to commercialize their application of Penn-owned robotics technology. The prize was awarded on Penn’s campus at the first annual Y-Prize Grand Finale.
IDENTIFIED’s proposal involves using robotics to improve the detection and clearance of improvised explosive devices, or IEDs. Such homemade bombs are often buried along roadways, making them difficult and dangerous to detect. The IDENTIFIED team, consisting of Kelsey Duncombe-Smith and Richard Zhang, undergraduate students in the School of Engineering & Applied Science, and Andy Wu, a doctoral candidate at Wharton, selected aerial robots developed by Engineering’s GRASP lab as the basis for a technological solution to this problem.
The team proposes equipping the GRASP quadrotors with ground penetrating radar to identify IEDs, and a laser-based energy transmission system to extend their flight time. An IDENTIFIED-equipped vehicle could lead a convoy, sending a team of ground-scanning quadrotors ahead and keeping them aloft via an infrared laser mounted on its roof.
Co-sponsored by Penn Engineering, the Weiss Tech House, the Center for Technology Transfer and the Wharton School, the Y-Prize is a new competition in which student teams propose innovative commercial applications for technology invented by University of Pennsylvania researchers.
AspireIT Award: Ms. Miller
Ms. Kate Miller, a bioengineering major in the School of Engineering & Applied Science has been awarded the National Center for Women and Information Technology’s (NCWIT) AspireIT award—which comes with a $5,000 prize—for her project encouraging young women to develop an interest in computer science.
Ms. Miller, a rising sophomore from Columbus, Ohio, has participated in Penn’s Math and Science (Penn GEMS) summer camp, for three years. Penn GEMS is run by Penn’s Advancing Women in Engineering program.
A program she uses, called Kodu, teaches programming principles by enabling users to make their own simple video games. Users can draw 3-D environments and populate them with interactive elements, imbuing them with behaviors via point-and-click menus. By linking and nesting if/then statements—such as “if the car touches a blue ball, then increase speed”—programmers can make all types of games.
Microsoft, which makes Kodu and develops lesson plans for the same kind of programming instruction, will also donate several tablet computers to be used in the class. The intuitive, visual interface is a natural fit for an introduction to the discipline.
Albany Medical Center Prize: Dr. Nowell
Three physician scientists whose landmark research helped transform the treatment of cancer are the recipients of the Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research, which was awarded May 17. Dr. Peter C. Nowell, the Gaylord P. and Mary Louise Harnwell Professor Emeritus, department of pathology and laboratory medicine in the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, will share the prize with Dr. Janet D. Rowley, University of Chicago, and Dr. Brian J. Druker, Oregon Health & Science University.
The $500,000 award, given to those who have altered the course of medical research, is one of the largest prizes in medicine and science awarded in the US. This year, the prize will recognize groundbreaking research into the nature of cancer, which has led to the development of a new generation of cancer drugs, most notably Gleevec for chronic myeloid leukemia that, unlike chemotherapy, target specific genetic defects causing cancer.
The Albany Medical Center Prize was established in 2000 by the late Morris “Marty” Silverman to honor scientists whose work has demonstrated significant outcomes that offer medical value of national or international importance.
EPA Green Power Challenge: Penn
The University of Pennsylvania has finished in first place in the US Environmental Protection Agency’s nationwide College and University Green Power Challenge.
EPA began its Green Power Challenge for higher education institutions in 2006, and University of Pennsylvania has been the winner every year. Penn took top honors this year by purchasing more than 200 million kWh of wind power annually—more green power than any of the 75 other competing schools.
EPA defines green power as electricity produced from solar, wind, geothermal, biogas, eligible biomass, and low-impact small hydroelectric sources.
Distinguished Club Award: Penn Club of New York
The Penn Club of New York has been awarded the prestigious Distinguished Club award by BoardRoom magazine, one of the most respected trade publications serving private clubs. The annual Distinguished Clubs award program is based on an extensive evaluation process that measures a club’s Member Experience. The program assigns a club-specific rating system to quantify Member Experience.
“Member Experience” is a special combination of qualities that a private club provides its members. It is a combination of quality of service, facilities and products, staff and management, overall club governance as well as emotional goodwill.
A club is selected and recognized as a Distinguished Club, only if it provides members with a multi-faceted Member Experience that is absolutely outstanding.
“The Penn Club of New York has once again been recognized for its excellence in service, facilities, and staff,” said Penn President Amy Gutmann. “The Club is known throughout our Penn alumni network—which is nearly 300,000 strong—as a welcoming home away from home in New York.”
BoardRoom magazine developed the Distinguished Clubs award program to recognize those clubs that are set apart from others by the effective manner in which they provide a notable Member Experience. The intent of the award is to share best practices and inspire every private club in America to actively adopt the specific goal of improving their Member Experience.
Webby People's Voice Awards: Penn Law, FactCheck.org
Two websites at the University of Pennsylvania have won Webby People’s Voice Awards at the 17th annual Webby Awards, presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences.
The IADAS presents two honors—The Webby People’s Voice Award and The Webby Award —in each of its five categories: Web Sites, Interactive Advertising & Media, Online Film & Video, Mobile & Apps and Social.
FactCheck.org, the political fact-checking site run by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, and Penn Law School’s website won through a popular vote. Members of the online community select the work they believe to be the best in each category. Each year, the nominees garner millions of votes from the international web community.
FactCheck.org competed in the Politics category of websites and has won the Webby People’s Voice Award six times since 2007. Penn Law’s website, the only law school nominated in the Law category, was relaunched last July to increase its appeal, said Steven Barnes, associate dean of communications.
Webbies, what The New York Times has called the “Internet’s highest honor,” are considered the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet.
Lipman Family Prize: READ Global
READ Global is the winner of the second annual Barry & Marie Lipman Family Prize, the Wharton School announced. The international non-profit brings together education, enterprise and community development through libraries that create lasting social change in rural South Asia. Chosen from over 115 organizations worldwide devoted to social impact and building sustainable solutions for social and economic challenges, READ Global received $100,000 at an award ceremony at the Wharton School.
The Barry & Marie Lipman Family Prize at the University of Pennsylvania is an annual global prize that celebrates leadership and innovation among organizations creating positive social impact. Governed by a steering committee comprised of University faculty, staff and Lipman family representatives, the Lipman Family Prize is administered by the Wharton School on behalf of the University of Pennsylvania.
First Book Prize in Poetry: Ms. Shinn
Ms. Leslie Shinn, coordinator for the College Biochemistry Program and the Roy and Diana Vagelos Scholars Program, of the chemistry department in SAS, was awarded the 2013 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize in Poetry for her collection, Inside Spiders. The prize includes a cash advance and publication of her collection by Persea Books. It also includes a residency at the Civitella Ranieri Center, a renowned artists retreat in a fifteenth-century castle in Umbertide, Italy.
Apple Distinguished Program: The Wharton Executive MBA iPad Project
The Wharton Executive MBA iPad initiative has been named an Apple Distinguished Program for 2012-2013, recognizing Wharton’s “iPad Project” which leverages iPad to complement and support the learning experiences of students.
The Apple Distinguished Program designation is reserved for programs that meet criteria for innovation, leadership and educational excellence and demonstrate a clear vision of exemplary learning environments.
The selection of the Wharton Executive MBA iPad Project as an Apple Distinguished Program highlights its success in enhancing and extending teaching and learning with thoughtful and innovative implementations of technology.
Four Receive PCAN Grants
Four Penn Medicine researchers have been awarded $2.4 million in grants to study pancreatic cancer.
They were among $5 million in grants announced by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network (PCAN) and the American Association for Cancer Research. The money came from PCAN. Both groups were involved in choosing the grant recipients.
The Penn grant recipients are:
||Dr. Robert Vonderheide, associate professor of medicine, hematology/oncology cancer biology, along with Dafna Bar-Sagi at New York University, will get a three-year $1 million grant to study an immune system treatment for pancreatic cancer. This grant is supported by Tempur-Pedic, the largest corporate funding of PCAN, in memory of the brother of a company official.
||Dr. Anil Rustgi, T. Grier Miller Professor of Medicine, will work with Johns Hopkins University doctors to develop a screening method for people at high risk of the disease. They also will receive $1 million over three years.
||Dr. Andrew Rhim, an instructor in the division of gastroenterology, will receive a two-year $200,000 grant to study an early-detection technique.
||Dr. M. Celeste Simon, professor of cell and development biology, received a two-year $200,000 grant that will be used to study the role of inflammation in pancreatic cancer.
Hatton Award: Ms. Yang
Third-Year Penn Dental Medicine student Ms. Brianna Yang, has been recognized for her achievements in research as the second place winner in the junior category of the American Association for Dental Research (AADR)/Johnson & Johnson Healthcare Products Hatton Awards Competition, presented March 20, 2013.
The competition is designed for junior investigators who exhibit potential for a productive career in dental research and is open to students in three categories—junior, senior and post-doctoral.
As the second place winner in the junior category, Ms. Yang was one of two students who went on to represent the American division in the 2013 IADR/Unilever Hatton Competition and Awards. The IADR/Unilever Hatton Competition and Awards is designed to provide an opportunity for the best junior investigators from all IADR Divisions and non-Divisional Sections to present their research at the annual IADR General Session.
Perlman Grand Prize: ZenKars
The student team ZenKars won the $30,000 Perlman Prize at the 2013 Wharton Business Plan Competition (BPC). The prize was awarded at the Wharton School’s 15th Annual Venture Finals in April, where student finalists received more than $115,000 in combined cash prizes and in-kind legal/accounting services.
ZenKars, which also received the Wharton BPC’s Committee’s Choice Award, is an online retailer of used cars targeting a $600 billion market. Jean-Mathieu (Jim) Chabas and Venkat Jonnala, co-founders and second-year MBA students, have created an online model connecting used cars from corporate directly to consumers. Their “peaceful buying experience” for the buyer offers competitive prices, detailed vehicle information, convenience and warranties.
|The 2013 Wharton Business Plan Competition winners are
|Perlman Grand Prize:
||$30,000 to ZenKars
||$15,000 to MacuLens
||$10,000 to Top Trender
|Gloeckner Undergraduate Award:
||$10,000 for the highest ranking Wharton undergraduate team to AlphaX
|People’s Choice Award:
||$3,000 to MacuLens
|Committee Award (Social):
$1,000 to Trust Circle
|Committee Award (Disruptive):
||$1,000 to Top Trender
|Committee Award (Committee’s Choice):
||$1,000 to ZenKars
Wharton Entrepreneurship also announced a $1.65 million gift from Ellen Hanson Perlman and Richard E. Perlman (W’68), which will provide continuing funding in perpetuity for support of the Wharton BPC and name the Grand Prize, the Perlman Prize (Almanac February 12, 2013).
SAS 2013 Dean's Scholars
The School of Arts & Sciences has named 20 students as 2013 Dean’s Scholars. This honor is presented annually to SAS students who exhibit exceptional academic performance and intellectual promise. This year’s recipients are:
College of Arts and Sciences
Priyanka Anand, Physics
Christopher Burcheri, Music
Colin Fadzen, Biochemistry and Physics
Sarah Foster, Biochemistry, Physics
Kenneth Ginsburg, History
Vinayak Kumar, Biochemistry
Marguerite Leone, Anthropology, Classical Studies
James Sadler, Political Science
Kaiwen Zhu, Cognitive Science
College of Liberal and Professional Studies—Undergraduate Program
Andrew Borstein, Psychology
Professional Master’s Programs
Jaivime Evaristo, Applied Geosciences
Graduate Division-Doctoral Programs
Ananya Dasgupta, South Asia Studies
Daniel DiMassa Germanic Languages and Literatures
Matthew Farmer, Classical Studies
Jacob Goldberg, Chemistry
Marina Isgro, History of Art
Whitney Laemmli, History and Sociology of Science
Sam Lin, Anthropology
Phillip Maciak, English
Erin Wiley, Biology