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Doherty professorship nominations open

Department heads are invited to nominate junior faculty members for the Doherty Professorship in Ocean Utilization before the October 19 deadline. Non-tenured faculty members from any department are eligible.

Endowed by the Henry L. and Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation, the two-year chair opens the way for promising, non-tenured professors to undertake marine-related research that will further innovative uses of the ocean's resources. There are no restrictions on the area of research, and any aspect of marine use and/or management may be addressed, whether social, political, environmental, economic or technical.

Those appointed to the chair receive $25,000 per year for two years, beginning July 1, 2001. Incumbent Martin Polz, assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, was awarded the professorship to study unexplained incidences of marine-related illnesses and harmful algal blooms. The other incumbent, Nicholas Makris, assistant professor in the Department of Ocean Engineering, received a Doherty professorship for his proposal to monitor natural and man-made ambient noise in Massachusetts Bay's Stellwagen Bank, the National Marine Sanctuary located roughly 30 miles from Boston.

Department heads may submit one nomination each year. Following a review and recommendation from the full Sea Grant Committee, final selection will be made by a committee that includes the vice president and dean for research, the deans of engineering and science, the chairman of the Sea Grant Committee, and the director of the MIT Sea Grant College Program. Professor David Litster, the vice president and dean for research, will announce the name of the new Doherty professor in the late fall. While serving as the Doherty Assistant or Associate Professor of Ocean Utilization, the incumbent cannot hold another MIT-funded chair.

Anyone wishing to be nominated should contact his or her department head for procedures and selection criteria. For more information, please contact ReRe Quinn in Rm E38-300, x3-9305 or

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on September 20, 2000.

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