Three of the 187 newly elected Fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences are from MIT: Silvio Micali, professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Mriganka Sur, the Sherman Fairchild Professor of Neuroscience and head of brain and cognitive sciences; and F. Tom Leighton, professor of mathematics. Twenty-nine Foreign Honorary Members were also elected by the organization, which now includes more than 150 Nobel laureates and 50 Pulitzer Prize winners. The academy, founded in 1780, conducts nonpartisan studies on international security, social policy, education and the humanities. In the past year, Fellows have focused on issues from advancing the humanities' relevance in American society to analyzing the cost of war in Iraq.
Professor of Mathematics Victor Guillemin received the Leroy P. Steele Prize for Lifetime Achievement from the American Mathematics Society. The citation noted that he has made "fundamental contributions to microlocal analysis, symplectic group actions and spectral theory of elliptic operators on manifolds. His work on generalizations of the Poisson and Selberg trace formulae has been particularly influential."
MIT Police Sgt. Cheryl Vossmer and Larry Brutti, operations manager for the Parking and Transportation Office, were given Christmas Service Awards by the Salvation Army of Cambridge, Somerville and Arlington. Vossmer was recognized for her collection and delivery of holiday toys. Brutti also was honored for his role in the toy drive (his office waived parking fines for recipients who turned in a new toy along with their tickets) and for providing transportation for toy delivery to the Salvation Army.
The Sloan School of Management has been named one of the nation's most gay-friendly business schools, according to a report developed by Aplomb Consulting and reported by BusinessWeek and The Advocate. Since the last such survey in 1995, Sloan earned the title of "most improved," jumping from a grade of D- to A in 2002. Some factors behind the high rating included the student organization Sloan LGBT (lesbian, bay, bisexual and transgendered); LGBT-specific job recruiting opportunities; and the inclusion in admissions materials of Sloan's non-discrimination policy and LGBT student profiles. The other business schools that earned an "A" grade in the report were those at Northwestern, Dartmouth, the University of Pennsylvania and UCLA.
Four of the 43 new resident members of the American Philosophical Society have MIT ties. They are Carl Wunsch, the Cecil and Ida Green Professor of Physical Oceanography; Gerald R. Fink, the American Cancer Society Professor of Genetics and a member and former director of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research; Susan Lindquist, professor of biology and current director of the Whitehead Institute; and Thomas P. Hughes, Distinguished Visiting Professor of the History of Technology in the Program in Science, Technology and Society. The organization, founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1743, is the oldest learned society in the country devoted to the advancement of scientific and scholarly inquiry.
MIT has received the Award for Outstanding Environmental Education presented by the Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC). The award was based on the work of the MIT Environment, Health and Safety Office, which developed the web-based "Environmental Virtual Campus" intended for use by all U.S. colleges and universities to improve environmental management, including compliance and "green" practices. The award recognizes an organization that advances the dissemination of environmental knowledge to industry and/or the public via a program, project or endeavor that is outstanding for its dedication, excellence and/or innovation. The EBC, founded in 1990, was the first organization established in the United States to support and foster the development of the environmental industry.
Frank Wilczek, the Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics, has is one of three recipients of the European Physical Society's 2003 High Energy and Particle Physics Prize. Wilczek and two former colleagues, David J. Gross and H. David Politzer, were cited by the EPS for their "fundamental contributions to quantum chromodynamics ... paving the way for showing that the theory is correct."
Institute Professor Sheila Widnall has received an honorary doctorate of engineering from Polytechnic University in New York.
Two postdoctoral fellows in biology have won three-year Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation Fellowships. Damien D'Amours will research the role of cdc14 early anaphase release in the maintenance of genome integrity. Jue D. Wang will research nutritional control of replication elongation.
Frank P. Davidson, a retired senior research associate in the Sloan School of Management's System Dynamics Group, received an honorary doctor of macroengineering and diplomacy from the Roger Williams University School of Architecture, Arts and Historic Preservation in Rhode Island.