The Rochester Review, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, USA

University of Rochester

University of Rochester

Class Acts


Yet another Rochester alumnus has been named to head an institution of higher learning. This time it's Brian Mitchell '81 (PhD), who in July became president of Washington and Jefferson College. At the time of his appointment Mitchell was president of the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Pennsylvania. A specialist in 19th-century social and ethnic history, he is the author of the critically acclaimed book The Paddy Camps: The Irish of Lowell, 1821-1861.


Charles Groat '62 has been appointed by President Clinton as head of the U.S. Geological Survey. The USGS--with 10,000 employees, including experts in biology, geology, hydrology, and mapping--is the nation's primary source of information on geologic hazards, water, energy, and mineral resources, and coastal and marine processes. Its range of services includes performing basic research, providing topographic maps, gauging river levels, warning against hazards like landslides, and providing students with information on geologic processes.

Groat has spent decades both managing large geology research efforts and making that research relevant to society by working closely with legislators and others whose decisions affect policy about our natural resources. At the time of his nomination (since confirmed by the Senate) he was professor of geological sciences and associate vice president for research and sponsored projects at the University of Texas at El Paso.


Jim Kennedy '75 is busier these days than he expected to be when he took his current job, reports his hometown newspaper, The Hartford Courant. Kennedy, it turns out, is chief White House spokesman on legal and ethical issues. And he had enjoyed less than a week in his new position before the Lewinsky story hit the Washington Post in January. "At the beginning," he says, "I used to cringe every time the phone rang. I cringed a lot." He says he's developed a thicker skin since then but "it keeps you motivated." As an undergraduate political science major, Kennedy got his first taste of political life while interning in a Washington senatorial office--during the Watergate era.

Meanwhile, on another front, Cary Feldman '71 has been appointed deputy independent counsel in connection with the investigation of Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt. Feldman reports that he is also continuing in his private practice of law at Piper Marbury, LLC, in Washington.



Master's students at the Warner School find a fertile training ground--and excellent job opportunities--in the Rochester City School District. A remarkable 82 percent of counselors hired in the district since 1990 graduated from the school.

"They have completed internship and counseling practicum experiences in city schools and have received excellent training to become student advocates," says Bonnie Rubenstein '85W (PhD), director of guidance and counseling in the Rochester City School District and an adjunct faculty member at Warner. "The Warner School's real strength is that students receive a substantial, theoretically based understanding of human development, along with an understanding of the dynamics of social systems. Other programs see the training of counselors in a more narrow way."

To Rubenstein, Warner graduates working in Rochester schools not only contribute to the lives of city children, but also gain support from one another through regular professional interaction. Of almost 70 full-time counselors in city schools, 23 have Warner degrees.

As is true in other professions, working in the field gives Warner School students invaluable experience and helps them make contacts with professionals. Rubenstein says that Warner students understand the way to access services to treat the whole person.

"Warner graduates know how to work through a social system to get benefits for students," Rubenstein explains.


For his part in a breakthrough in video technology, Andy Kurtz '84, '85 (Mas) now has his own personal Emmy. (That's Kurtz in the photo, at the awards ceremony with Wendy Hunt '87.) Team members at Eastman Kodak (where Kurtz is a senior research scientist) and Philips Digital Video Systems shared a 1998 Engineering Emmy Award for the "Spirit Datacine," a state-of-the-art telecine designed to deliver video images that preserve the subtle nuances in colors, contrast, and other characteristics that are recorded on the original film negative. Kurtz was lead optical engineer for Kodak during the R&D phase of the project.


William G. Allyn '34, above with President Jackson and Dean of the Faculty Thomas LeBlanc (right), was the honoree at an August celebratory lunch commemorating the establishment of the William G. Allyn Chair in Medical Optics. Made possible by a gift from Welch Allyn, Inc., a manufacturer of hand-held medical diagnostic instruments, the professorship honors Allyn's 85th birthday. A graduate of the Institute of Optics, and the son of the company's founder, Allyn went on to become its long-serving second president. First incumbent of the Allyn chair is David Williams. An expert on the visual systems of humans and other animals, he directs the University's Center for Visual Science, one of the world's leading centers for the study of vision.


Fred Guterl '81, senior editor at Discover magazine, is the winner of the 1998 Journalism Award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, considered by journalists to be the most prestigious award in science writing. Guterl was honored for a feature article that details the work of a physicist who studies the behavior of particles of sand. "Sand is a great subject because it's so ordinary--it's so easy for the reader to grasp, and yet physicists know astonishingly little about it," Guterl says.

The National Academy of Sciences has selected Arthur Lupia '86, an associate professor of political science at the University of California, San Diego, as recipient of its Award for Initiatives in Research. It is given annually "to recognize innovative young scientists and to encourage research likely to lead toward new capabilities for human benefit." The first political scientist to receive this award, Lupia was tapped for the $15,000 prize "for his contribution to our understanding of the importance of knowledge, learning, and persuasion to political decision making by voters, legislators, and jurors."

Another recent award recipient is Matthew Stanley '98, chosen for an Andrew Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies. The 97 winners were chosen from 750 applicants.


Now in its fourth year, Todd Theatre Troupe, based at LaMaMa, ETC in New York City, is known for its highly visual and physical style. Troupe members, all alumni, include (clockwise from left) P. J. Sosko '93, David Moo, Mari Cipriani '94, John Fulbrook '93, and Mathias Dill '94. Founded in 1994 by Mervyn Willis, the troupe was invited this summer to perform at the New York International Fringe Festival for the second straight year. The troupe's first production was Speakeasy, an original play by English professor Joanna Scott, which they have staged at both the Toronto and New York fringe festivals.



A widely respected media lawyer, Robert Sack '60, has been appointed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals following confirmation of his nomination by the U.S. Senate. As chair of the Media Practice Group of the international law firm of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Sack has represented Dow Jones & Co., Inc., publisher of The Wall Street Journal; Times Mirror Co., publisher of The Los Angeles Times and Newsday; and other media organizations. . . . Meanwhile, Nancy McGlen '75 (PhD) has been named dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Niagara University. Past president of the Northeast Political Science Association and the New York State Political Science Association, she has written and spoken extensively on women in politics and peace movements.

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