Olivia Drake

Tucker Coordinates Firearms, Constitutional Rights Conference Sept. 14-15

Jennifer Tucker

Jennifer Tucker

Jennifer Tucker, associate professor of history, is organizing a conference titled “Firearms and the Common Law Tradition” to be held at the The Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C., Sept. 14-15. Tucker also is associate professor of environmental studies, associate professor of feminist, gender and sexuality studies and associate professor of science in society.

Topics will include “The Uses of Guns,” “Laws Regulating Carriage of Guns,” “Guns and the Supreme Court: The Influence of History,” and “Guns and Constitutional Rights.”

In addition to paper presenters, who include all of the historians who consulted on the Supreme Court decisions, for both sides, about 25 leading historians, legal scholars, and curators of historic firearms collections will attend, including guests from the Buffalo Bill Museum, Autry Museum of the American West, Smithsonian, NRA Museum and Leeds Armouries. Nina Totenberg from NPR will be moderating a lunch conversation which will be public and streamed, explaining how history has been mobilized in the judicial arguments.

Wesleyan’s Richard Slotkin, Olin Professor of English, Emeritus, and John Finn, professor of government, are planning to attend.

The conference is supported by The Allbritton Center at Wesleyan, Stanford University and Wesleyan University and The Aspen Institute.

Shapiro’s Poetry Translations Featured in Hyper-Texts

Norman Shapiro, professor of romance languages and literatures, and Wesleyan’s Distinguished Professor of Literary Translation, is one of the poets featured in the August 2016 “The Hyper-Texts,” a prestigious website honoring individual American poets with chosen examples from their work.

Shapiro’s poetry translations include “Innocents We,” translated from the French words of Paul Verlaine; “To the Reader,” translated from the French of Charles Baudelaire’s Au Lecteur; “Invitation to the Voyage” translated from the French of Charles Baudelaire’s L’Invitation au Voyage and “End of the Day” translated from the French of Charles Baudelaire’s La Fin de la Journée.

Among Shapiro’s many translations are Four Farces by Georges Feydeau, which was nominated for a National Book Award; The Fabulists French: Verse Fables of Nine Centuries, named Distinguished Book of the Year by the American Literary Translator’s Association; One Hundred and One Poems by Paul Verlaine, which won the Modern Language Association of America’s Scaglione Prize in 2001; and Charles Baudelaire: Selected Poems from “Les Fleurs du mal,” the last published by the University of Chicago Press. With his next volume of La Fontaine translations, Shapiro will have done all the Fables, to go along with a volume of La Fontaine’s Contes. Other books of translations include Lyrics of the French Renaissance (published by Yale University Press), The Comedy of Eros (published by University of Illinois Press), and two forthcoming including a collection of nine centuries of French women poets to be published by Johns Hopkins, and a collection of one-act comedies by Eugène Labiche.

Kuenzli, Horst Honored with NEH Grants for Book Projects

Two Wesleyan faculty received National Endowment for the Humanities grants on Aug. 9.

Katherine Kuenzli

Katherine Kuenzli

Katherine Kuenzli, associate professor of art history, received a $250,000 Scholarly Editions and Translations grant. She and project co-directors Michael André and Kathleen James-Chakraborty will use the funds to prepare a critical edition and translation of a selection of writings by the Belgian artist and essayist Henry van de Velde titled Henry van de Velde: Selected Essays, 1889–1914.

Scholarly Editions and Translations grants support the preparation of editions and translations of pre-existing texts of value to the humanities that are currently inaccessible or available in inadequate editions. Typically, the texts and documents are significant literary, philosophical, and historical materials; but other types of work, such as musical notation, also eligible.

Kuenzli also is working on a monograph titled Henry van de Velde: Designing Modernism. Together with Selected Essays, these projects recover van de Velde’s important role in Neo-Impressionist painting and the German Werkbund, and they demonstrate how ideas of internationalism and the total work of art lie at the heart of modern approaches to museum display, art education, and industrial design.

Employees Sport Tie-Dye T-Shirts at Wesleyan

On June 1, the Office of Human Resources hosted an Ice Cream Social for faculty, staff and employed students to provide an opportunity for employees to mingle and celebrate the end of spring semester. As part of the day’s activities, employees were invited to create a tie-dye t-shirt.

On Aug. 10, Human Resources invited the tie-dye shirt makers to gather at Usdan’s Huss Courtyard for a brief meeting and photo opportunity.

“We thought this would be a fun way for employees to show off their ‘art work’ to the Wesleyan community,” said Julia Hicks, co-director of Human Resources. “It’s a very colorful day!”

Go Wes!

“Go Wes!”

1, 2, 3 … Jump!

1, 2, 3 … Jump! (Photos by Olivia Drake)

Green Team Hosts Mini-Bin Workshop

The Wesleyan Green Team hosted a mini-trash bin talk and workshop Aug. 10 at the Theater Department’s studio building. Dawn Alger, Theater Department administrative assistant and Green Team member led the workshop.

The Wesleyan Green Team hosted a mini-trash bin workshop and discussion Aug. 10 at the Theater Department’s studio building. Dawn Alger, Theater Department administrative assistant and Green Team member (pictured fifth from right, in back) led the workshop. “We’d love to see all staff and faculty members at Wesleyan use mini-bins in place of standard trash cans,” Alger said. “You’ll be surprised to see how little trash you create in a week.”

Mini-bins are small containers that are used in place of standard waste receptacles. They encourage recycling and reduce the number of trash can liners used on campus.

Mini-bins are small containers that are used in place of standard waste receptacles. They encourage recycling and reduce the number of trash can liners used on campus. Pictured are workshop participants Jordan Nyberg, program and events coordinator for the Office of Admission and Laura McQueeney, administrative assistant for the Office of Admission.

Jennifer Platt, manager of printing services, gets crafty with her mini-bin.

The Green Team provided craft supplies including cleaned coffee containers, colored paper, stickers, yarn, magazines, glue and scissors. Participants also discussed campus recycling efforts while designing their mini-bin. Pictured is workshop participant Jennifer Platt, manager of printing services.

Jen Kleindienst, sustainability director, decorates her mini-bin with magazine images.

Jen Kleindienst, sustainability director, decorates her mini-bin with cutouts from a magazine.

Olivia Drake, editor of The Wesleyan Connection and campus photographer, pastes recycle emblems to her mini-min.

Olivia Drake, editor of The Wesleyan Connection and campus photographer, pastes tree-shaped recycle emblems onto her mini-bin.

Liz Tinker, administrative assistant in the English Department, works on finalizing her mini-bin.

Liz Tinker, administrative assistant in the English Department, works on finalizing her mini-bin.

Wesleyan’s Green Team is researching, communicating, and implementing effective strategies that increase sustainability within the university. For more information on the team, or to join, visit the Green Team website.

Hingorani Finishes Program Director Appointment with NSF

Manju Hingorani

Manju Hingorani

Manju Hingorani, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, professor of integrative sciences, recently completed a two-year tenure working for the National Science Foundation’s Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences (MCB). Hingorani served as the program director of the MCB Genetic Mechanisms program.

Hingorani worked with investigator-driven proposals submitted to both the Genetic Mechanisms and the Cellular Dynamics and Function programs. As a rotating program director, Hingorani managed proposal reviews and awards and responded to inquiries from principal investigators conducting fundamental research related to the central dogma of biology.

Wesleyan Faculty Teach Local Girls about Science

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Ishita Mukerji, the Fisk Professor of Natural Science, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, shows Girls in Science Summer Camp participant Sophie how to filter strawberry DNA on Aug. 2.  (Photo by Olivia Drake)

Wesleyan’s Green Street Teaching and Learning Center hosted the 2016 Girls in Science Summer Camp for 4th, 5th, and 6th grade girls Aug. 1-5. Campers were exposed to a variety of careers in science and learned how to use scientific tools like lab notebooks, pipets, and microscopes.

Four female Wesleyan faculty—Ishita Mukerji, the Fisk Professor of Natural Science, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry; Candice Etson, assistant professor of physics; Erika Taylor, associate professor of chemistry, associate professor of environmental studies; and Michelle Personick, assistant professor of chemistry—led a series of hands-on experiments with the campers. Sara MacSorley, director of the GSTLC, coordinated the activities.

Mukerji taught the campers about DNA by extracting DNA from strawberries. Students also built a large DNA model and created a secret message using DNA code.

Etson taught the campers about light, color, energy, light refraction, lenses and prisms, and electronics. The girls built their own electric motors, studied solar power, and learned the difference between incandescent and LED light bulbs.

Taylor and graduate student Mackenzie Schlosser taught the campers about parts of a cell, germs, and good and bad bacteria, and had campers test various areas of the Green Street Teaching & Learning Center for bacteria.

Personick taught viscosity by racing different fluids, such as chocolate sauce, corn oil, ketchup, soap, and glue, to see which flows best. The campers also learned about the different phases of matter.

“The girls were very surprised to see that ketchup flows slower than glue, and we talked about non-Newtonian fluids to explain that observation,” Personick said.

Personick also had the campers make bouncy balls by cross-linking a polymer (glue) with Borax; tested the properties (magnetism, conductivity, density, flexibility) of different metals to learn about what properties metals have in common and which properties depend on the shape/size of the piece of metal; and created silver nanoparticles in a rainbow of colors and then used silver and gold nanoparticles to make stained glass. On Aug. 5, the campers used what they learned about viscosity to make bubbles.

Students also made and ate liquid nitrogen ice cream to study phase changes in cooking, and talked about how cooking is science in the kitchen.

The Girls in Science Camp is supported by the Petit Family Foundation.

Photos of the Girls in Science Camp are below:

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De Boer Remembered for Teaching Connecticut Geology

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer

Jelle Zeilinga de Boer, the Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Science, emeritus, died July 23 at the age of 81.

De Boer received his BS and PhD from the University of Utrecht before coming to Wesleyan as a postdoctoral fellow in 1963. During his early years at Wesleyan he worked closely with Geology Professor Jim Balsley in the field of paleomagnetism. In 1977, de Boer was named the George I. Seney Professor of Geology and in 1984 he was named the Harold T. Stearns Professor of Earth Sciences.

In the 1970s de Boer worked as a joint professor at the University of Rhode Island at the Marine Sciences Institute where he was a PhD supervisor for Bob Ballard, who found the Titanic in 1985. Ballard later invited de Boer to go diving in the submersible Alvin to collect rocks in the Cayman Trough.

Originally interested in coming to the United States to study the Appalachian Mountains, de Boer’s research focused on the geotectonics of the Appalachians, Southeast Asia and South and Central America.

In 2015 de Boer received the Joe Webb Peoples Award,

Undergraduates Present Posters at Summer Research Presentation

More than 100 undergraduate research fellows presented their work at the Wesleyan Summer Research Poster Session July 28 in Exley Science Center and the Science Library.

More than 140 undergraduate research fellows presented their work at the Wesleyan Summer Research Poster Session July 28 in Exley Science Center and the Science Library.

Tristan Ang Tze Heng speaks about his study titled “Quantifying the Heterogeneous Dynamics a DPPC and Cholesterol Bilayer. Ang’s advisor is Francis Starr, professor of physics, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, director of the College of Integrative Sciences.

Tristan Ang Tze Heng speaks about his study titled “Quantifying the Heterogeneous Dynamics of a DPPC and Cholesterol Bilayer. Ang’s advisor is Francis Starr, professor of physics, professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, director of the College of Integrative Sciences.

Mellon Mays Fellows Generate Research Topics during 6-Week Summer Program

Pictured, from left, are Delia Tapia '18, Alicia Strong '18, Aura Ochoa '17, Iryelis Lopez '17 (back row), Paige Hutton '18 and Aleyda Robles '18. 

From left, Delia Tapia ’18, Alicia Strong ’18, Aura Ochoa ’17 (front), Iryelis Lopez ’17 (back), Paige Hutton ’18 and Aleyda Robles ’18 spent six weeks this summer developing research topics as part of the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program. They presented their ideas on July 28 at the Center for African Studies.

For six weeks this summer, 11 Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellows received an intensive introduction to graduate school expectations while developing a research topic to pursue during their time in college.

On July 28, the students, who hail from Wesleyan (6) and Queens College (5), offered brief project presentations at the Center for African American Studies.

Aleyda Robles '18 speaks on her research topic, "From the Salvadoran Civil War to the Refugee Crisis: Can there be U.S. accountability and reparations for El Salvador?"

Aleyda Robles ’18 speaks on her research topic, “From the Salvadoran Civil War to the Refugee Crisis: Can there be U.S. accountability and reparations for El Salvador?”

The fundamental objective of the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) Program is to increase the number of minority students, and others with a demonstrated commitment to eradicating racial disparities, who will pursue PhDs in core fields in the arts and sciences. The program aims to reduce over time the serious underrepresentation on faculties of individuals from certain minority groups, as well as to address the attendant educational consequences of these disparities.

Wesleyan fellows, their majors and research topics include: Paige Hutton ’18 (American studies),”White Skin, Black Masks: The Appropriation of Black Womanhood by White Gay Men;” Iryelis Lopez ’17 (American studies), “Committing to Difference? Performing Diversity at the Neoliberal University;” Delia Tapia ’18 (American studies), “Historicizing and Combating Colonial Threats to Community and Survival in Harlem;” Aura Ochoa ’17 (American studies and chemistry), “Deconstructing ‘Humanness’: Understanding and Rehistoricizing the Exploitation and Erasure of Women of Color in Science and Medicine in the United States;” Alicia Strong ’18 (religion and government), “Blurred Lines: The Politics of Islamic Identity in Postwar Kosovo;” and Aleyda Robles ’18 (American studies), “From the Salvadoran Civil War to the Refugee Crisis: Can there be U.S. accountability and reparations for El Salvador.”

Gordon Career Center Teaches Career Education through Course, Podcast Interviews

The Gordon Career Center launched Careers by Design.

The Gordon Career Center’s Careers by Design program is a series of lectures and exercises designed to help students identify what factors may be influencing their choice of major, internship, or career path.

The Gordon Career Center is helping students design their futures.

Through a new intensive seminar called Careers by Design, Wesleyan students can explore the many influences on their career decision making and make choices that are right for them. The Gordon Career Center’s innovative approach to career education encourages students to design their own careers by exploring the intersection between their interests, the skills they have and wish to acquire, and market demand.

“Careers by Design is a framework that applies the principles of design thinking to solve every college student’s ultimate questions: ‘Who do I want to be? What do I want to become?’” said Sharon Belden Castonguay, director of the Gordon career Center.

Careers by Design, which is offered in January as part of Wesleyan’s Winter on Wyllys career programming, also is taught through an online course and can be taken at any time. Students learn how to apply design thinking to the search for meaningful work, write an “elevator pitch” to describe themselves, analyze the past and visualize the future, understand and define workplace success, and explore ways to launch their career. The online course, which runs for about an hour and 15 minutes, includes multiple exercises and recommended resources.

In addition, Careers by Design boasts a series of interviews by well-known Wesleyan alumni and guests including Joshua Boger ‘73, founder of Vertex Pharmaceuticals; Andy Brandon-Gordon ‘86, managing director of Goldman Sachs; Majora Carter ’88, founder of Sustainable South Bronx; Laura Walker ‘79, CEO of WNYC; Bradley Whitford ‘81, actor (The West Wing, The Cabin in the Woods, Transparent); and more. New episodes of the podcast will be released every other Friday. A conversation with athlete Kathy Keeler ’78 is slated for Aug. 5, just in time for the start of the Olympics.

These interviews are offered as podcasts and can be accessed through iTunes and Sound Cloud.

careers