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Six elected to Academy of Arts and Sciences

Six MIT affiliates were elected as fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences on April 30.

The new MIT Fellows are Michael J. Hopkins, professor of mathematics; James G. Fujimoto, professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Alice Petry Gast, vice president for research and associate provost; senior research scientist David D. Clark; Joshua Cohen, head of the Department of Political Science and a professor of philosophy; andPhilip S. Khoury, dean of the School of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences. They will be inducted at a ceremony scheduled for Oct. 5.

This year's class of 177 fellows and 30 foreign honorary members included four college presidents, three Nobel Prize winners, six Pulitzer Prize winners, three MacArthur Fellows and six Guggenheim fellows. Senator Edward M. Kennedy, former Senator Warren Rudman, violinist Itzhak Perlman, Academy Award winner Anjelica Huston and author Oliver Sacks are among them.

Members are nominated and elected by current members of the Academy and divided into five classes: mathematics and physics, biological sciences, social sciences, humanities and arts, and public affairs and business.

The Academy was founded in 1780 by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock and other scholar-patriots "to cultivate every art and science which may tend to advance the interest, honor, dignity and happiness of a free, independent and virtuous people." The Academy has elected as members some of the finest minds and most influential leaders of each generation, including George Washington and Ben Franklin in the 18th century, Daniel Webster and Ralph Waldo Emerson in the 19th and Albert Einstein and Winston Churchill in the 20th.

Drawing on the wide-ranging expertise of its membership, the Academy conducts non-partisan studies on international security, social policy, education and the humanities.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on May 8, 2002.

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