Rochester Review, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, USA
As I look back over the past year at the University, it's a distinct pleasure to sort through many of the notable events that occurred on our campuses. In this annual report, we present you with a summary of these events.
It was a year of beginnings, as you'll see in the story on the Rochester Renaissance Plan. It was a year of great change as well--particularly for the Medical Center, with the opening of the new Ambulatory Center and the renovation of Helen Wood Hall. At the Eastman School of Music, the past 12 months featured new efforts to reach out to listeners who may never before have heard a concerto performed live. Happily, we may also look back on this year as one of celebration, as the Campaign for the '90s reached 112 percent of its goal.
All of these events, as well as others described on the following pages, will have a lasting impact on the strength and growth of this University. Of that I'm certain. I thank you for your interest in this very special institution--and in the occasions of beginning, change, expansion, and celebration that you will read about here. I hope that, as you read, you share my feelings of pride and respect for the many people who continue to propel us, as our motto suggests, "ever forward."
Thomas H. Jackson
"The best universities don't stand still; they are always improving themselves," declared President Jackson in announcing the Rochester Renaissance Plan last fall.
The five-year plan--which was unanimously endorsed by the Board of Trustees--will strengthen and refocus the University's core programs in arts and sciences and engineering. Its priorities include:
As part of the Rochester Renaissance Plan, River Campus undergraduate enrollment will be reduced over the next four years from 4,500 to 3,600. The aim is to create an even more academically competitive student body and a more intimate academic and residential setting--one that's enhanced by a new curriculum designed to broaden students' horizons and mesh with their intellectual interests.
In graduate studies, the College is concentrating on 19 doctoral programs. Full-time graduate enrollment will be reduced by 25 percent--from 1,100 to 850 over the next five years--and enrollment in comparative literature, linguistics, and chemical engineering doctoral programs has been suspended. Several other departments are examining their doctoral programs to make sure they are appropriately focused.
In making the announcement, President Jackson commented, "With strong undergraduate applications--to date, up 15 percent from the record levels of the past two years--we are refocusing the University from a position of strength and will make our excellent undergraduate and graduate programs significantly stronger by carefully redirecting our resources and energy."
In May, relying on conclusive evidence from researchers at the Medical Center, the FDA moved quickly to approve expanded use of an electrical device that regulates ailing hearts.
The device--an implantable cardiac defibrillator, known as an ICD--automatically delivers a jolt to the heart when its rhythms become rapid and erratic. Like a pacemaker, consisting of a generator and wires that lead to the heart, it is placed under the skin in the patient's chest. For heart-attack survivors who run the risk of heart arrhythmia, an ICD can significantly improve their chances of long-term survival.
"Patients with ICDs had 54 percent fewer deaths and significantly better overall survival than patients who did not receive the device," says Dr. Arthur Moss '62M (Res), professor of medicine and principal investigator of the study, which was conducted at 32 hospitals in the United States and Europe. The trial, which involved 196 patients between December 1990 and March 1996, ended early because the patients who received the ICDs did so much better.
Moss estimates that 10 percent or more of all patients who suffer a heart attack are at high risk and may benefit from the implantation of a cardiac defibrillator. "Heart disease remains the number-one killer of Americans, with one million people suffering a heart attack each year. Of those who survive, approximately 80,000 each year could benefit from an ICD," he says.
What does a university produce? Knowledge, above all--as recorded in the many books, papers, and other works that are continually produced by its scholars. Here are just a few examples from a highly productive year.
Last fall, the Simon School created a new concentration in its M.B.A. program: Competitive and Organizational Strategy. For students, it offers a direct path to jobs in strategic management of resources, consulting, or general management. Simon is one of the few schools in the country to take this direction.
"There's been a shift in the marketplace away from narrow functional skills to the broader skills needed to work in groups on multifaceted problems," says Simon School Professor of Economics and Management James Brickley. "In order to function well in that environment, you must understand how your specialty fits into a broader business setting.
"The new concentration helps students to address cross-functional, unstructured problems--the kinds frequently encountered in consulting and general management as well as throughout the business environment."
The school's curriculum now focuses even more intensely on global issues, as today's business managers operate in an increasingly international marketplace. Courses are being developed to offer a global perspective in business strategy, banking and regulation, capital markets, business law and taxation, operations and distribution, and accounting.
A team of Rochester scientists has become the first to clone and sequence a type of enzyme that breaks open DNA--loosening up DNA's chromatin packaging much as a child stretches out a plastic Slinky. The team, led by graduate student James Brownell and his advisor, Professor C. David Allis, isolated a long-sought but elusive protein known as histone acetyltransferase (HAT) from a tiny one-cell organism and popular gene-study subject called Tetrahymena.
The question researchers have sought to answer is how DNA is loosened up for "gene expression," so that genes for blue eyes, for example, are not activated in the lining of the stomach. Nature has designed a packaging system that crams the genetic blueprint--about seven feet of DNA in humans--into the nucleus of every cell. In this packaging system, DNA is spooled very tightly around several histone proteins to form chromatin, a protein/DNA complex that under a microscope resembles thread wound tightly around stacked tuna cans. This tight spooling occurs because of the attraction between DNA, which has a negative electrical charge, and the histones, which are positive.
The work of Brownell and Allis shows that HATs perform a chemical reaction that changes the electrical charge of the histones to neutral, weakening the attraction and loosening up the DNA to make room for gene expression.
"Resolved: that the United States should substantially change its foreign policy toward Mexico."
That was the topic of debate selected last year by the Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA), the nation's largest intercollegiate debating organization--and it served Rochester very well in competition. In the 1995-96 CEDA rankings, the Debate Union placed 14th on a list of 198 competitors.
The debaters did well in the novice category, too, with three members ranking among the top 10 individual speakers in the Novice National Championships in April. Carrie Rosen '97, a history and psychology major from Philadelphia, won first place, while Stephanie Rickard '99, a political science major from Littleton, Colorado, placed third and Ryan Pitterson '97, a political science major from Kings Park, New York, placed seventh. According to the rules of the competition, a novice debater must have less than a year of college debating experience to enter. Some 150 debaters took part, representing colleges and universities that included Berkeley, Cornell, West Point, and UCLA.
Pitterson, who is Student Association president for the 1996-97 year, calls the debate team "one of the most diverse and largest organizations on campus. The team serves as a strong example of all the potential we have to work together."
How will health care be delivered in the next decade--and beyond? What new skills will physicians and nurses need? Which medical research programs have the greatest potential for improving health?
These are some of the questions under consideration as faculty and staff from nearly every academic and clinical division at the Medical Center began work in 1995-96 on a comprehensive strategic plan. Scheduled for presentation to the Board of Trustees in the fall, the plan will serve as a blueprint for the next 5 to 10 years, guiding the development of an integrated health care delivery system and the continued growth of education and research programs.
Because it will cover the entire Medical Center, the plan represents a significant milestone, according to Dr. Jay Stein, senior vice president and vice provost for health affairs. "Previously, each division--the School of Medicine and Dentistry, the School of Nursing, and Strong Memorial Hospital--had operated under individual strategic plans."
In an effort to place the Medical Center among the top 10 nationwide by the year 2005, the strategic plan identifies three areas of excellence: infectious diseases/immunology/vaccine biology; aging, growth, and development; and cancer. It also outlines initiatives that will help the Medical Center thrive in an environment that focuses increasingly on managed care.
A national study based at the University casts significant doubt on the wisdom of one of the most sweeping school reforms of this century: the middle school.
The study, by Julia Smith, assistant professor of education at the Margaret Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development, appeared in the spring 1996 issue of the Journal of Educational Research. It reports that high school dropout rates are significantly higher for students who finish eighth grade in a middle school than they are for students who finish eighth grade in an elementary school.
Smith found that, for every 100 elementary school graduates who finish high school, there are only 91 from a middle school who go on to earn a high school diploma. Why is this so? She believes it reflects the vital role of adult attention and support in early adolescence. "When you put kids in middle schools, they get less adult attention than they do in elementary schools," she says. "The middle school environment is less intimate and personal than the elementary school environment. The kids don't spend as much time with any one teacher as they did before."
Her findings have important economic implications: High school dropout rates have been on the rise since the 1970s and economic prospects are dim for most dropouts, who tend largely to work at jobs that pay less than $13,000 a year.
In 1975, former Eastman professor Bill Dobbins and the late, revered Rayburn Wright '43E created a graduate program in jazz studies --and last year, jazz studies became an official undergraduate program as well.
Professor Fred Sturm '84E (Mas), who directs jazz studies, says that 25 undergraduates enrolled for the first year along with 15 graduate students. "The amount of interest really surprised us. We had expected to reach a total of 40 students by 1998--but before you knew it, we had a full house."
While course offerings have changed little as the program expanded to undergraduates, what has changed is the "performance side," as Sturm describes it. "We've had a tremendous expansion in the depth and quality of our large ensembles and a real flowering in the number of small groups. That's been very important. Students need to get experience with both large and small ensembles."
As they do every year, Eastman jazz musicians garnered a number of Down Beat Student Music Awards in 1996--for Best Jazz Composition, Best Jazz Arrangement, Outstanding Jazz Instrumental Solo, and Outstanding Small Group Performance.
Famed American baritone William Warfield '42E returned to Rochester in September as a featured performer in the Eastman School's first Gateways Music Festival. Directed by Armenta Hummings, Distinguished Community Mentor at Eastman, the festival showcases black classical musicians and serves to provide role models for young people considering careers in music.
"Excellence is a form of affirmative action," Hummings has said. An acclaimed concert pianist, she has performed in Alice Tully Hall, Carnegie Hall, and Avery Fisher Hall. She founded the Gateways Festival in Winston-Salem, N.C., in 1993 and brought it to Rochester when she arrived at Eastman in 1994. The next festival is scheduled for 1997.
The Gateways Festival is part of a broad, long-term effort at the Eastman School to build audiences for classical music in general. Among the 75 performers who came from around the country were some top names in the field: In addition to Warfield, who narrated Copland's "A Lincoln Portrait," the performers included conductor Michael Morgan, music director of the Oakland East Bay Symphony; Jerome Ashby, assistant principal horn of the New York Philharmonic; pianist Awadagin Pratt, winner of the 1994 Avery Fisher Career Grant; and the Anderson String Quartet, four Eastman alumni who are now artists-in-residence at California State University.
The quartet performed "Somehow We Can," a 1994 work by Atlanta-based black composer Alvin Singleton. This minimalist work was inspired by a poem written by conductor James DePreist, nephew of the legendary contralto Marian Anderson, for whom the Anderson Quartet is named.
The composers represented in the festival ranged from Bach and Mozart to Brahms and Rachmaninoff as well as African-American composers like George Walker, an Eastman alumnus and winner of the Pulitzer Prize for music; Duke Ellington; and the increasingly popular William Grant Still.
In opening the weekend's final concert, Rochester Mayor William Johnson captured the spirit of the occasion. "It does my heart good if I see one or two African-American musicians in an orchestra. But," he added, gesturing to the symphony orchestra of black instrumentalists behind him on the stage, "my heart is beating overtime tonight."
In the continuing national debate on school reform, one simple and fundamental question remains unanswered: How do we measure the success of our schools?
"We spend a lot of money on schools--and we need to have a way of determining what we get for our money, why some schools are doing better than others," says economist Michael Wolkoff. To that end, he and fellow economist Eric Hanushek are now at work on the School Accountability Indicators Study for the City of Rochester.
Phase 1 of the project, currently under way, involves research to establish an evaluation framework--in other words, a definition of success. Phase 2, which they hope to begin in the spring of 1997, involves "supplying numbers for some programs to see whether they have achieved their goals," according to Wolkoff.
Looking at average student performance across an entire school district may be misleading, he says, as some students come from richer home environments than others. More revealing would be to determine how well the same student might do in different school environments. As Wolkoff explains, "We need to know to what extent success lies with the school and to what extent with the student. We're hoping to see student-specific performance changes from school to school."
In 1995-96, the Meliora Grant Program began offering a $5,000 annual grant toward tuition to residents of New York State and all sons and daughters of alumni. The grant expanded on a program launched a year earlier that provided $5,000 annual grants to students from the immediate Rochester area.
In the short time since its announcement, the Meliora Grant has been cited nationally as an example of how private institutions can design programs to help themselves remain affordable to students of all economic backgrounds. The grant has been a "win-win situation" for both students and the University: For 1995-96, applications from New York State were up 22 percent, allowing for greater selectivity in the admissions process, while applications from children of alumni increased by 21 percent. In addition, a higher percentage of New York State students who were offered admission decided to enroll.
The University, in fact, saw an immediate increase in the percentage of New York students not requiring need-based financial aid, from 20 percent to 30 percent. At the same time, the program helped to give a 34-point boost to the average SAT scores of Rochester undergraduates.
Applications for admission to the Simon School increased nearly 40 percent over last year, according to Priscilla Gumina, assistant dean for M.B.A. admissions. "To my knowledge, this is the biggest increase in applications of any business school in the country," she says.
Applications from both the United States and foreign countries were up significantly in 1996 for the second year in a row, with domestic applications up 22 percent over last year and foreign applications up 50 percent--most significantly from Latin America, eastern Europe, and mainland China.
The result is a dramatic change in the profile of M.B.A. students, Gumina says. "Applicants now come from all walks of life and all corners of the globe. Ten years ago, typical students at business schools across the country were a homogeneous group--predominately white males, all with similar business backgrounds, all working toward the same narrowly defined M.B.A. degree."
Today, she says, that profile is obsolete. Roughly 44 percent of the Simon student body hails from 54 countries outside the United States, making it the most internationally oriented business school in the United States. Further, students now come from diverse backgrounds like geology, medicine, law, and economics.
The learning environment has changed in response. "Students at the Simon School today learn not only diversity-management strategies, but also cultural nuances that will prove invaluable in their jobs," Gumina says. Such training serves them well as corporations become increasingly global in scope.
Three members of the Class of '96 claimed singular academic honors: Bradley Allen was one of 10 graduating seniors nationwide to be named a Churchill Scholar, while Katherine Jacobs and Mark Rheaume each earned a Fulbright, a rare prize for undergraduates.
As a Churchill Scholar, Allen will earn a master's degree in physics at Cambridge University's Churchill College. The college was founded in 1959 to honor Winston Churchill by attracting the best minds available and, in his words, by offering "an education as high as any that exists to meet the challenge of the new age of technology." The Churchill Scholarship program supports outstanding American students as they pursue graduate work in engineering, mathematics, and science. A mathematics and optics major at Rochester, Allen comes from Miami, Florida.
Fulbright Fellows Katherine Jacobs and Mark Rheaume received grants for study abroad during the 1996-97 academic year. Jacobs, a psychology major from Atlanta, will travel to Austria to study Victor Frankl's theory of logotherapy at the University of Vienna and the Institute for European Studies. Rheaume, a biological science/biochemistry major from Lawrenceville, Georgia, will conduct research in molecular biology at Osaka University in Japan.
In 1990, when the Memorial Art Gallery undertook a $10 million endowment campaign, "Let the Art Live On," the operating endowment stood at $5.8 million. Six years later that campaign is nearing its goal, having achieved $9 million in pledges, of which $5 million has already been added to the endowment.
Under the leadership of Eugene Dorsey, who chaired the fund drive during the first three years, and Peter Brown, who is bringing it to fruition, more than 1,200 individuals have made contributions to date. A total of 38 percent has come from the Board of Managers, with another 28 percent coming from the MAG Council and 34 percent from the docents, the Averell Council, and other friends of the institution.
Ultimately, the campaign's success reflects the way people feel about the gallery--which is recognized as one of the finest University art museums in the country, according to Director Grant Holcomb. "Our collections, exhibitions, and educational programs have received local, regional, and national acclaim. A strong operating endowment is critical if we are to maintain our national position in the next century."
At the University's commencement in May, three faculty members received awards for outstanding teaching.
At the Laboratory for Laser Energetics, the design and construction of Omega, the world's most powerful ultraviolet laser, was cited by Popular Mechanics as one of the top 23 technical achievements of 1995.
The $61 million Omega was completed on time and within budget through funding from the Department of Energy. It will play a key role for the next several years in the nation's quest to develop nuclear fusion as a reliable energy source.
Scientists use the new laser in nuclear-fusion experiments: About once an hour, Omega unleashes a laser pulse that packs a phenomenal 60 terawatts--nearly 100 times the peak power of the entire U.S. electrical grid. This ultraviolet pulse is composed of 60 beams that converge on a pellet of hydrogen fuel, heating and compressing it to duplicate the conditions inside the sun. In January, scientists set a new world record: The neutron burst from a single shot was the highest yield ever achieved with a laser-fusion machine.
"Although Omega won't generate sustained fusion energy, it will set the table for the National Ignition Facility, a 192-beam system that will be under construction later this decade," Popular Mechanics wrote.
Omega fills an area the size of a football field and is already playing a vital role in the National Inertial Confinement Fusion Program. The upgraded machine now surpasses Nova, the huge laser at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories in California. Professor Robert L. McCrory, director of the laser laboratory, led the successful four-and-a-half-year campaign to upgrade its power.
In June, after two years of construction, the Medical Center opened a seven-story Ambulatory Center, a three-story lobby, and a parking garage with room for more than 1,200 cars. The project, at a cost of $84.5 million, represents the most sweeping change at the Medical Center since new quarters for Strong Memorial Hospital were built in the 1970s.
The new building complex increases the size of the hospital by 274,000
square feet, to a total of 1,292,000 square feet. More important, it streamlines
and enhances outpatient services at Strong. To that end, the Ambulatory Center
houses a wide
variety of programs, including women's health services, surgery, pediatrics, cardiovascular medicine, and dentistry.
Just a month earlier, the School of Nursing completed major renovations in Helen Wood Hall, its home for 70 years. Among the changes that bring the facility up to date: Vacant dormitory rooms on the third floor were transformed into new offices for research and administration; six new classrooms were created on the first floor; and a state-of-the-art Teaching and Learning Center was built on the first floor of the west wing. This center includes a Nursing Skills Laboratory (modeled on the patient-care floor of a contemporary hospital) as well as a computer cluster, an audiovisual facility, and a multi-media room. In homage to the history of Helen Wood Hall, the first-floor lounge was preserved in all of its original beauty.
"We are in the midst of a health care revolution in this country," said Dr. Jay Stein, senior vice president and vice provost for health affairs, who is leading the strategic planning process for the Medical Center (as described elsewhere). "External market forces such as managed care are dramatically changing the way hospitals, physicians, and other health care professionals deliver care. We must change internally to face these formidable external forces."
Wireless video transmission over the phone is coming in the not-too-distant future. The key is video compression: Transmitting real-time video images over such "lean" data connections as phone lines requires tremendous compression, since phone lines typically handle just several thousand bytes per second at most.
To explore developments in the new technology, scientists from around the world met last January in Munich, Germany. There, members of the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) evaluated proposals from companies like Microsoft, AT&T, and Texas Instruments as well as institutions like Columbia, Berkeley, and Rochester. The University's two proposals--developed by Professor of Electrical Engineering Murat Tekalp and researcher Yucel Altunbasak '96 (PhD)--were included among 40 core experiments that the MPEG group will pursue as it pieces together a video standard, to be known as MPEG-4. The new standard, expected to be completed by 1998, would slim video images so completely that they could be sent over wireless devices like cellular phones.
Undergraduates have three new academic options, with majors in Russian studies and computer studies and a minor in legal studies.
Students may now major or minor in Russian studies by taking courses in Russian language, literature, history, religion, economics, and political science. In recent years, those who have concentrated in this area have gone on to work in businesses, international schools, and relief organizations in Russia. Others have joined American corporations and nonprofit and government agencies.
In the field of computer science, the University began offering courses leading to a B.A. or a B.S. or a minor. The program allows undergraduates to work alongside graduate students on research that provides real-world experience.
When a legal-studies minor was announced last May, nine students had already enrolled. The program examines law from a variety of perspectives and offers courses in philosophy, political science, history, English, and economics.
During the year, Dr. Jay Stein became the University's senior vice president and vice provost for health affairs, which is the chief administrative post at the Medical Center. Dr. Lowell Goldsmith became the seventh dean of the School of Medicine and Dentistry. And, among other changes, Leo Brideau, general director and CEO of Strong Memorial Hospital, became associate vice president for health care.
Stein came to the University from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, where he had been senior vice president and provost since 1992. Prior to this, he chaired the Department of Medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, where he had also served as professor of medicine and chief of the Division of Renal Diseases. He is the editor-in-chief of Internal Medicine, considered to be one of the major textbooks in the field; editor of the textbook series Contemporary Issues in Nephrology; and editor-in-chief of the journal Focus & Opinion: Internal Medicine. In 1993 he was elected a master of the American College of Physicians.
Goldsmith succeeded Dr. Marshall Lichtman '66M (Res), who stepped down at the end of his term as dean. A member of the faculty since 1981, Goldsmith is the founding chair of the Department of Dermatology at the University and past president of the Society for Investigative Dermatology, an international organization with 3,000 members.
In 1995, Brideau had succeeded Dr. Paul Griner '57M (MD) as the hospital's general director and CEO. Prior to that, he served as chief operating officer.
In honor of the 75th anniversary of women's right to vote, the Eastman School of Music commissioned Conquering the Fury of Oblivion, a theatrical oratorio written for narrator, vocal duo, and large orchestra. The piece, which premiered in the fall of 1995, also celebrated the 175th anniversary of the birth of Susan B. Anthony.
Eastman composer Augusta Read Thomas scored the work in collaboration with Harvard librettist Leslie Dunton-Downer. Drawing on texts from 19th- and 20th-century sources, the oratorio invites listeners to reflect on the political and personal significance of the women's movement. Susan B. Anthony is quoted, as are Julia Ward Howe, Sojourner Truth, Emily Dickinson, Eleanor Roosevelt, Gertrude Stein, Muriel Rukeyser, and Alice Walker, among many others.
Emily Freeman Brown, who earned a doctorate from Eastman in 1990 and directs orchestral activities at Bowling Green University, conducted the Eastman Philharmonia for the performance. Actress and dancer Almeta Whitis narrated.
With some 1,100 full-time faculty members at the University, each year brings a long list of scholarly achievements. Among the most notable from 1995-96:
David Felten, chair of the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy and the Kilian J. and Caroline F. Schmitt Professor, received the 1995 Norman Cousins Award in Mind-Body Health from the Society for Neuroscience in San Diego. According to the sponsors of the award, Felten, through his vision and leadership as a teacher and researcher, has made significant contributions to health and healing.
In Japan, 50 former graduate students of Lionel McKenzie, the Wilson Professor Emeritus of Economics, asked their government to honor the man who taught them the fundamentals of economic theory. McKenzie and his wife were granted an audience with Emperor Akihito, and McKenzie was inducted into the Order of the Rising Sun, an honor rarely bestowed upon American professors.
Leonard Mandel, DuBridge Professor of Physics and Optics, was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Internationally known for his experiments extending the work of Albert Einstein and Max Planck on the fundamental nature of light, Mandel joined Senator Bill Bradley and former German Chancellor Helmut Schmitt, among others, in becoming new members of the 216-year-old academy.
At the Margaret Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development, Dean Philip Wexler was named a "best research practice" professor at the University of Newcastle in New South Wales, Australia, through a program that brings internationally distinguished scholars to the university.
"Professors at research universities are often depicted as indifferent to undergraduate education, and research itself has been cast as the enemy of good undergraduate teaching," says William Scott Green, dean of undergraduate studies. "Now, we have turned our strength as a research institution into a plus: Our students will not just develop the ability to understand, they will also become proficient at in-depth learning."
Green is referring to a new series of courses for freshmen and sophomores, offered for the first time in the fall of 1995, known as "Quest" courses. The courses are designed to introduce students to the ways in which faculty members --and college students themselves--discover and build knowledge.
To do so, students work extensively with original materials and data. In the humanities, for example, they study primary texts and materials--such as original manuscripts--rather than textbooks. In the natural sciences, mathematics, and engineering, they generate and analyze new experimental data rather than work on predetermined techniques and protocols.
Courses offered over the past year include Air Pollution: An Engineering Perspective; "I, Claudius": An Introduction to Imperial Rome; The Psychology of Human Sexuality; The History of Soviet Popular Culture; Medical Controversies; and the Philosophy, History, and Practice of Nonviolence.
Two Rochester scientists have excited a single electron within an atom so that it is in two places simultaneously.
Originally reported in the August 14, 1995, issue of Physics Review Letters, this demonstration of a quantum-mechanical "dual personality" was also reported in The New York Times, Science, Science News, Scientific American, Physics Today, and Physics World. In their research, Professor Carlos Stroud and his student Michael Noel in the Institute of Optics used a pair of ultrashort laser pulses to energize one electron in a potassium atom into a strange state: not in one single location, but simultaneously at two points on the opposite sides of an elliptical orbit about the nucleus. The orbit, like that of a satellite around the earth, is enormous by atomic standards: some 50,000 times the size of a normal atom.
The scientists showed further that the electron not only can be in two places at once, but it also can behave like two waves and actually interfere with itself. By careful adjustment of the phases of the two laser pulses, the optics team was able to manipulate this interference to control the electron within the atom in a precise fashion, making it vanish on one side of the orbit and appear far away on the other.
In May 1991, the University kicked off the largest fund drive in its history, with a goal of $375 million. At its conclusion on June 30, 1996, the Campaign for the '90s had exceeded that goal by $46 million.
"Campaigns create resources, and resources create new possibilities, new options, for people at the University," Robert Goergen '60, chairman of the Board of Trustees, told supporters at a victory celebration. "We now have additional resources--in the millions of dollars--to support scholarships. We have more resources to support our faculty in their teaching and research, and more resources to support the University's infrastructure, creating a fresh start and new vistas for those who do the University's work."
Goergen himself made one of the largest individual gifts to the campaign: $10.5 million. Of that total, $10 million establishes an endowment for undergraduate programs--an area where more endowment is crucial in helping the University sustain and enhance the quality of its educational environment. An additional gift of $100,000 a year for the next five years will fund awards for excellence in undergraduate teaching.
More than 78,000 donors contributed to the campaign, which was co-chaired by Edwin Colodny '48 and David Kearns '52. Some additional facts and figures:
"My message for you tonight is simple," President Jackson told the donors, volunteers, students, faculty, and staff gathered at the victory celebration. "Those of us in my administration aspire to the highest level of stewardship of these new resources. We feel a great sense of obligation and responsibility to strive for 'better things,' in the spirit of Meliora."
In an ambitious effort to improve eye care among the homeless, the elderly, and other groups deemed "high risk" in the Rochester area, Dr. George Bresnick, chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology, founded Project Eye Care in 1995. Using a volunteer team of ophthalmologists, medical residents, medical students, and other health care professionals and laymen, the program offers basic eye care at 15 locations in the city, including homeless shelters, community centers, and soup kitchens.
Project Eye Care is unique nationwide in offering preventive, community-based care in ophthalmology to those who can least afford it--and it's entirely "needs-driven," says director Carol Flabetich Dickey '94S (MBA). "From a public-health point of view, we want to serve whatever need there is. From a business point of view, we want to make our clinics run more efficiently. We knew, by looking at statistics such as the no-show rate and the population that was uninsured and under-insured, that there was a greater need out there than what we were seeing."
In many cases, the routine care that's provided can prevent vision loss. "We see problems stemming from diabetes, glaucoma, trauma to the eye, and AIDS-related illnesses," says Dickey. People with refractive problems receive eyeglasses free of charge through an agreement with the Lens Crafters corporation.
"Basically, we learn about the needs of people who are medically under-served," she says.
In memory of William Simon's late wife, who valued both personal achievement and public service, the Simon School has established the Carol G. Simon Fellowships.
The new fellowships, which will provide annual financial support for up to five women who are full-time students in the M.B.A. program, are awarded for academic achievement and community service. Julia Minnemeyer, the first Carol Simon Fellow, clearly meets that high standard: As a volunteer, she has delivered meals to house-bound senior citizens through the Meals on Wheels program and helped build houses for Habitat for Humanity, among numerous other activities. A 1989 economics graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she is currently a business analyst for Wachovia Bank of North Carolina.
The fellowships, which are not based on financial need, pay for one-half or more of the annual tuition at the Simon School over the course of a two-year program of study. They are funded by the Simon School and supported in part by a grant from financier, philanthropist, and former Secretary of the Treasury William Simon, for whom the business school is named.
Carol Simon, who died on June 18, 1995, worked for many years in community service organizations in the Morristown, New Jersey, area.
The search for the Holy Grail has moved to the Internet, via the Camelot Project at the University's Rossell Hope Robbins Library.
Thanks to Alan Lupack, curator at the library, and Russell Peck, professor of English, the online project offers a colorful collection of Arthurian literature, images, bibliographies, and background information. More than 120 illustrations and more than 90 texts are now available at the site, and new material is added every week. (For Camelot enthusiasts, the URL is http:// rodent.lib.rochester.edu/camelot/robhome.htm.)
Another celebrated literary figure--William Blake, the 18th-century poet and artist--has his own rapidly growing Web site. Morris Eaves, noted Blake scholar and chair of the Department of English, began in 1995 to build a hypertext archive that promises to make Blake's art and poetry more accessible than ever before. In collaboration with Joseph Viscomi of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Robert Essick of the University of California at Riverside, Eaves is bringing together works that are housed in collections all over the world. (For a view, go to http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/blake.)
Endowed professorships honor an institution's most talented faculty members, giving them added recognition as well as greater time and freedom to study and teach.
This year, two professors were named to new endowed chairs. At the School of Nursing, Harriet Kitzman '84N (PhD) became the first individual to hold the school's first named professorship: the Loretta C. Ford Professorship in Primary Care Nursing. The professorship is named for the school's founding dean, who was a co-founder of the nurse-practitioner movement. Kitzman is nationally recognized for her research in the primary-care needs of infants, children, and their mothers and was instrumental in creating one of the first pediatric nurse-practitioner programs in the country. At the Margaret Warner Graduate School of Education and Human Development, Judith Smetana was named to the Frederica Warner Chair in Education. The professorship was established by William Scandling and his late wife, Margaret Warner Scandling '44. Smetana is a developmental psychologist who has won international recognition for her research on children and adolescents.
In addition, three faculty members were named to existing professorships. Joseph Eberly was named the Andrew Carnegie Professor of Physics; chemist Richard Eisenberg became the Tracy Hyde Harris Professor; and Dennis Hall, director of the Institute of Optics, was named the William F. May Professor in Engineering and Applied Sciences.
"When it comes to organ donation, it seems that the people in our region are more generous and unselfish than people anywhere," says Dr. Oscar Bronsther '73, director of the Medical Center's Organ Procurement Program.
For the first six months of 1995, the program led the nation with a ratio of 17.2 donors per million population, according to statistics compiled by the Association of Organ Procurement Programs. The national average for that period was 10.5 donors per million. For all of 1995, the Medical Center program ranked fifth nationwide.
The program has two offices in upstate New York, at the University of Rochester and at the SUNY Health Science Center in Syracuse. For the first six months of 1995, there were 54 kidney or kidney-and-pancreas recipients and 12 liver recipients in the Rochester/Syracuse region. Another 42 donations--including kidney, kidney/pancreas, liver, heart, and lung donations--went to patients outside the region who were in greater need than local patients.
Also in 1995, the Medical Center announced a trial effort involving five regional hospitals in a year-long test to increase organ donations. The program--based at Strong Memorial Hospital, Highland Hospital, Arnot-Ogden Medical Center in Elmira, Soldier's and Sailor's Hospital in Penn Yan, and SUNY Health Science Center in Syracuse--ensures that all imminent or recent deaths are reported immediately so that patients' families can be asked to donate organs or tissue for transplantation.
Says Bronsther, "Many seriously ill people are alive today, and have the prospect of better lives, because families in their time of sadness made a brave and altruistic decision to help others."
Each year, U.S. News & World Report compiles a series of lists ranking America's colleges and universities and their programs--and each year, the University claims top honors in several categories.
The magazine rated Rochester 29th on its list of the nation's premier research universities--institutions like Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, and MIT. The University was 24th among private universities nationwide and third among New York State institutions, behind Cornell and Columbia.
On the magazine's list of "best values," the University fared even better, placing third among all national research universities. This ranking aims to give families a realistic measure of value by relating the net cost of attending an institution to the quality of education it provides.
On the U.S. News list of "America's Best Graduate Schools," five graduate programs were named among the nation's leaders.
Also giving high grades to Rochester's graduate programs was the National Research Council, which placed four programs among the top 20 among their peers nationwide. Doctoral programs at the Eastman School of Music--in musicology, composition, theory, and music education--were ranked eighth. In the College, political science was ranked 11th and economics, 14th. At the School of Medicine and Dentistry, the pharmacology/toxicology program tied for 19th.
Looking at the field of health care, U.S. News & World Report published a new volume, America's Best Hospitals, which ranked Strong Memorial Hospital among the 100 best hospitals in the nation. Criteria included the hospital's reputation, mortality rate, ratio of staff to beds, and other factors.
In 1996, the University took the pageantry of commencement to a new plane, holding exercises for the first time ever in the expanse of the Eastman Quadrangle.
David Kearns '52, crusader for education reform and former CEO of Xerox, addressed the May 26 gathering, which included all bachelor's degree candidates and the majority of master's degree candidates. Commencement ceremonies for the Simon School took place on June 9 in the Eastman Theatre, while ceremonies for doctoral and medical degree candidates took place on May 25th in the Eastman Theatre.
Kearns also received the Hutchison Medal, which is the highest honor the University gives to its alumni. After expressing his gratitude for the honor, he encouraged the graduates to view learning as a lifetime endeavor and emphasized the importance of education reform: "We as a country now stand in a rather unusual place, where our universities and colleges are rated as the best in the world, and our high schools and preliminary grades are rated in some studies as low as 14th or 18th in the world. I think that it is absolutely critical that education be the number-one priority in our nation."
Copyright 1996, University of Rochester