Brevia

Peak Professors

John Y. Campbell John H. Coatsworth
Justin Ide / Harvard News Office Justin Ide / Harvard News Office

The Faculty of Arts and Sciences has recognized four members for excellence in undergraduate teaching and advising. Each becomes a Harvard College Professor, a five-year recognition that also confers funding for additional research or a semester of leave. Those honored this year are Olshan professor of economics John Y. Campbell, a specialist in finance; Gutman professor of Latin American affairs John H. Coatsworth, an historian (who is concluding more than a decade of service as the faculty leader of the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies; see page 54); professor of English and American literature and language Leah Price, who studies eighteenth- and ninetenth-century British novels; and Moore professor of biological anthropology Richard W. Wrangham, a scholar of human and primate evolution and behavior. The junior faculty members recognized for excellence in undergraduate teaching are assistant professor of history of art and architecture Robin Kelsey and assistant professor of linguistics Cedric Boeckx; each received the Abramson Award.

 

The Avant-Garde

A temporary home for the Harvard University Art Museums, formed of two existing buildings at 1380 and 1360 Soldiers Field Road, will be the first visible manifestation of the University’s new Allston-Brighton campus. Daly Genik Architects of Los Angeles are the designers; they specialize in “reimagined” spaces, such as the Art Center College of Design South Campus in Pasadena, above, a former wind-tunnel facility, and the Camino Nuevo Charter Academy in Los Angeles, left, a reformed mini-mall. The facility will open in 2008, when the Fogg/Busch-Reisinger building at 32 Quincy Street in Cambridge will close for massive renovation, forcing the removal of staff and 250,000 art objects (see “Art Museums Launch Renaissance,” March-April, page 64).

Photograph by Benny Chan / FotoWorks
Photograph by Tom Bonner

Pulitzer Prized

Caroline Elkins Geraldine Brooks
Harvard News Office Courtesy of Geraldine Brooks

Harvard affiliates won the 2006 Pulitzer Prizes in general nonfiction and in fiction. Foster associate professor of African studies Caroline Elkins was recognized for her history, Imperial Reckoning: The Untold Story of Britain’s Gulag in Kenya (see “10 Downing Street’s Gulag,” March-April 2005, page 9). Elkins completed the work during her fellowship year (2003-2004) at the Radcliffe Institute. This year’s winner in fiction, Geraldine Brooks, is a current Radcliffe Institute fellow; she was chosen for her novel March, itself inspired by Little Women. (Her husband, Tony Horwitz, a previous Pulitzer honorand, is also a Radcliffe fellow this year.) Alumni were recognized in two categories: Yehudi Wyner, A.M. ’53, a professor emeritus at Brandeis, in music, for the piano concerto Chiavi in mano, composed for Robinson professor of music Robert Levin and the Boston Symphony Orchestra; and professor emeritus Edmund S. Morgan ’37, Ph.D. ’42, of Yale, with a special citation, for “creative and deeply influential work” as an American historian.

“Oversized”

Photograph by Jane Reed / Harvard News Office

John Kenneth Galbraith, LL.D. ’88, Warburg professor of economics emeritus, died on April 29 in Cambridge. He was 97. The six-foot, eight-inch scholar received the Medal of Freedom from Presidents Truman and Clinton; was named “Funniest Professor of the Century” by the Harvard Lampoon; introduced the phrase “the conventional wisdom” in The Affluent Society; and warned in his last book that war “remains the decisive human failure.” Edward M. Kennedy, Gloria Steinem, William F. Buckley Jr., and others paid moving and witty tribute at a May 31 memorial (rtsp://video2.harvard.edu/galbraith/galbraithmemorial.rm); his casket’s invoice sticker, noted biographer Richard Parker, had read “John Kenneth Galbraith: Oversized.”

 

GSAS Gains

Graduate School of Arts and Sciences dean Theda Skocpol on May 2 reported two signs of students’ timely progress toward their doctorates. Briefing the faculty, she said that the number of candidates filing to receive their degrees this June was 354, up from 265 at a comparable point a year ago. Although not all met their goal, she said the increase indicated real efforts to complete their studies efficiently. Fellowships to help students complete their dissertations without the distraction of teaching assignments or other financial obligations are also becoming more widely available. In February 2005, Skocpol said, 120 humanities and social-sciences doctoral candidates qualified for the fellowships (requiring completion of two draft chapters or a draft journal article), not all of which could be funded. This year, more than 160 students qualified, and all were funded, through additional contributions from research centers, academic departments, the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the central administration, or outside sources.

 

Nota Bene

Italian initiative. The I Tatti Renaissance Library—bilingual editions of fourteenth- through sixteenth-century Latin texts published by Harvard University Press—has received a $1.2-million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Two dozen titles are now in print; the new support will help underwrite as many as 10 dozen more during the next two decades (see “Rereading the Renaissance,” March-April, page 34).

 

Public-service progress. The first class of Zuckerman Fellows—25 students pursuing degrees in business, law, or medicine, who intend to work on issues and needs in education, public health, or medicine and healthcare—volunteered hundreds of hours this academic year in public-service programs aimed at Boston’s homeless and hungry. The Kennedy School of Government’s Center for Public Leadership coordinates speakers and leadership training for the fellows. Publisher and real-estate developer Mortimer B. Zuckerman, LL.M. ’62, underwrote the program in 2004 with a $10-million gift which provides a full fellowship for each student.

 

Avian flu answers. Will bird flu become a pandemic illness in humans? What are the symptoms in the few documented cases so far? Should we worry about walking where wild geese and ducks congregate—even on golf courses? For answers, consult “Bird Flu: How to understand your risk and protect your health,” from Harvard Medical School’s Harvard Health Publications, available for purchase on line at www.health.harvard.edu.

 

Professors’ pay. The annual compensation survey by the American Association of Univesity Professors shows Harvard full professors earning an average salary of $168,700—in the customary second place, behind Rockefeller University. Ranking next are Princeton, Stanford, Chicago, and Yale, where average salaries cluster in a range from $156,800 to $151,200. The survey data show Harvard associate and assistant professors earning average salaries of $97,100 and $87,000, respectively.

 

Susan B. Marine
Kris Snibbe / Harvard News Office

Women’s center staffer. Following a national search, Susan B. Marine, director of the College’s Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response since 2003, was chosen to direct the undergraduate women’s center set to open this fall (see “Women’s Center,” May-June, page 74). A search is under way for a successor in the sexual-assault office, where Marine pioneered educational and training programs for students and leaders of undergraduate groups, as well as more accurate reporting of incidents and better response services.

 

Steering science. Two interdisciplinary science programs have appointed senior administrators. Brock Reeve, M.B.A. ’88, is the new executive director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute (http://stemcell.harvard.edu); his brother, the late actor Christopher Reeve, suffered a paralyzing spinal-cord injury and advocated research on neurological regeneration. Timothy Clark, an instructor in neurology at Harvard Medical School and past vice president for informatics at Millennium Pharmaceuticals, is director of research programs at the nascent Harvard Initiative in Innovative Computing (http://iic.harvard.edu).

 

Paul Cleary
Harvard Medical School
Alina A. Payne
Jon Chase / Harvard News Office

Miscellany. Professor of medical sociology Paul Cleary has been appointed dean of public health at Yale and chair of the department of epidemiology and public health at the Yale School of Medicine. Much of his research has focused on people infected with HIV.…Professor of history of art and architecture Alina A. Payne became the first Harvard professor to win the Max Planck Research Award in the humanities, worth 750,000 euros, for her research on Renaissance, Baroque, and modern architecture.… The Nieman Foundation for Journalism has created a searchable on-line archive and teaching tool to highlight exemplary narrative journalism, available at www.narrativedigest.org.

  

 

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