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EXPERIMENTAL MEDICINE
Clinical Trials Put on Hold at Gene-Therapy Lab
Four months after the death of a gene-therapy-study participant at Penn, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration halted clinical trials at the Institute for Human Gene Therapy, which oversaw the experiment. Citing “numerous serious deficiencies” in the oversight and monitoring procedures of that study— designed to test a treatment for an inherited liver disorder—the agency placed it and seven other investigational new-drug applications at the IHGT on “clinical hold.” Continued...

TRANSITIONS
Kelley Out
Dr. William N. Kelley was dismissed as CEO of the University’s Health System (UPHS) and Medical Center and dean of the School of Medicine on Feb. 17. Taking over those positions on an interim basis is Dr. Peter G. Traber, the Frank Wister Thomas Professor of Medicine and chair of the department. Continued...

RESEARCH
New Treasures From
King Midas’ Tomb

He didn’t enjoy it much himself, but recent research from the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology has revealed that Phrygian mourners gave King Midas quite a send-off, partying down with gallons of grog and feasting on a savory lamb-and-lentil stew. Continued...
E V E N T

 

Relive the Midas Funerary Feast
For the epicurious, the University of Pennsylvania Museum, working in conjunction with Museum Catering Company, is planning a special King Midas feast in the Fall of 2000. The menu will include a main course of barbecued lamb-and-lentil stew incorporating local spices such as fennel; an appetizer of mezze, an assortment of local products being used both now and in the time of Midas; various dishes made from sesame seeds, arugula and eggplant; and for dessert a caramelized fennel tart. A local microbrewery will recreate the Midas grog.

  Invitations, and more information, will be available in August. The number for information is (215) 898-4890, or visit the museum’s Web site (www.upenn.edu/museum).

FACULTY
McHarg to Receive the Japan Prize
Ian McHarg may be credited with creating the whole concept of ecological planning—not to mention founding the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at Penn —but the emeritus professor’s reaction to learning that he had been awarded the Science and Technology Foundation’s Japan Prize in city planning was “absolute astonishment.” Continued...

E-COMMERCE AND EDUCATION
Wharton: Virtually Exploding
“This is an unprecedented time in economic and commercial history,” Dr. Thomas P. Gerrity was saying. “It’s very, very exciting. It’s also a time, with all this speed and innovation, of considerable unpredictability in terms of outcomes. This is a story that is unfolding in front of us.” Continued...

APPOINTMENTS

Wharton Names Harker as Dean
  Last month (as the Gazette was going to press), the Wharton School announced that it had chosen one of its own to be the school’s 12th dean: Dr. Patrick T. Harker CE’81 GCE’81 Gr’83, the UPS Transportation Professor for the Private Sector and professor of operations and information management. Harker, 41, had been serving as deputy dean since July 1—when former Dean Thomas P. Gerrity stepped down—and as interim dean since Aug. 9. He has been at Wharton since 1984, and holds a secondary appointment in the Department of Systems Engineering in the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Harker also earned his bachelor’s degree (civil engineering), master’s degrees (urban engineering and economics), and Ph.D. (civil engineering) from Penn.
  Harker has been deeply involved in the high-tech programs at Wharton (see the accompanying story on page 20), and during his brief tenure as interim dean proved to be an adept fundraiser. According to President Judith Rodin, he is “recognized as one of the brightest young minds in America,” and she hailed his “extraordinary record of accomplishment and leadership, as a teacher, researcher, consultant to government and industry and as a University citizen.” Rodin described the search process that selected him as “one of the most exhaustive and thorough ever conducted at Penn.” The search committee, chaired by Dr. Gary Hack, dean of the Graduate School of Fine Arts, reportedly reviewed more than 200 candidates.

PENN AND THE ECONOMY
Economic Impact Study
Shows Penn’s Muscle

It’s no secret that the University—the largest private employer in the Philadelphia region—has a powerful impact on the local economy. Continued...

 

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Copyright 2000 The Pennsylvania Gazette Last modified 2/22/00


AROUND CAMPUS

Photo: Andrew Margolies / DP

A group of students calling themselves Penn Students Against Sweatshops occupied the College Hall reception room of President Judith Rodin for nine days—and nights—last month. Saying that the University should monitor labor conditions more closely in factories producing its apparel, the students demanded that Penn leave the Fair Labor Association —a sweatshop-monitoring organization that they say is ineffective—and join the Worker Rights Consortium, which they believe to be more effective. On Feb. 14, Rodin agreed to pull out of the FLA while a University committee (which included three PSAS members) continued evaluating the organizations. The committee’s recommendations were due by Feb. 29.

G I F T S

 

Browne Gives $10 Million to SAS for Endowed Chairs

A recent gift of $10 million by Christopher H. Browne C’69 will be used to endow five professorships in the School of Arts and Sciences. At least one Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professorship will be established in each of the school’s academic divisions —the humanities, the social sciences and the natural sciences—while the remaining two will be used in the areas of greatest need, as determined by Dr. Samuel H. Preston, dean of the school.
 
The Browne Professors, said Preston, “will set a standard for all faculty by demonstrating exceptional distinction in research and teaching and a deep commitment to the most fundamental values of a university.” He added that the “exceptional quality” of those appointments will make a Browne Chair “one of the most highly prized honors that can be bestowed on members of our faculty.”
 
Dr. Judith Rodin, president of the University, called the gift “the latest evidence of Chris’ unwavering commitment to Penn during more than 20 years as a volunteer, philanthropist and in various leadership capacities.”
 
Browne, a trustee of the University and chairman of the SAS board of overseers (as well as managing director of the Manhattan-based investment management firm Tweedy, Browne Company and president of Tweedy, Browne Mutual Funds), said the gift was an “opportunity to give something back to Penn, to draw attention to the excellent faculty in the School of Arts and Sciences, and to confirm my personal belief that academic distinction should be defined by excellence in research, outstanding teaching ability and a strong commitment to making Penn a forum for open dialogue.”