Regents Roundup


The University Record, March 22, 1999

Editor’s Note: The following actions were taken by the Regents at their March meeting.

$10 million in gifts accepted

The Regents accepted $10,607,739 in gifts received during February. The total includes $6,296,226 from individuals, $2,323,904 from corporations, $1,128,726 from foundations, and $858,883 from associations and others.

Tenured appointments approved

Approved faculty appointments, with tenure, included:

Joel D. Blum, of Dartmouth College, will be the John D. MacArthur Professor of Geological Sciences and professor of geological sciences, effective Sept. 1.

Carol Ann Fierke, of Duke University, will become professor of chemistry, effective Sept. 1.

William A. Meezan, of the University of Southern California, will become the Marion Elizabeth Blue Professor of Children and Families and professor of social work, effective Sept. 1.

Edwin Vedejs, of the University of Wisconsin, will be the Moses Gomberg Collegiate Professor of Chemistry and professor of chemistry, effective Jan. 1, 1999.

Administrative appointments Ok’d

Approved administrative appointments included:

Brian J. Zink, associate professor of surgery, will serve as assistant dean for medical student career development at the Medical School, effective April 1.

Fawwaz T. Ulaby, interim vice president for research, will become vice president for research, effective March 19. Ulaby also is the R. Jamison and Betty Williams Professor of Engineering, Arthur F. Thurnau Professor, and professor of electrical engineering and computer science.

Four faculty members appointed to endowed and titled professorships

Huda Akil, the Gardner C. Quarton Professor of Neurosciences and professor of psychiatry, will also hold the Gardner C. Quarton Distinguished University Professorship of Neurosciences, effective Sept. 1.

Kyung J. Cho, professor of radiology, will be the William Martel Collegiate Professor of Radiology, effective April 1.

Edward E. Smith, the Arthur W. Melton Collegiate Professor of Psychology and professor of psychology, will also hold the Arthur W. Melton Distinguished University Professorship of Psychology, effective Sept. 1.

Shirley Verrett, professor of music (voice), will be the James Earl Jones Distinguished University Professor of Music, effective Sept. 1.

“Prof. Akil is a scholar of exceptional breadth who is able to interact on a sophisticated level with scholars from many different disciplines,” said Provost Nancy Cantor. “She is a truly creative scholar who operates continuously at the forefront of her discipline, always emphasizing the importance of contributions from interdisciplinary perspectives and always functioning as a bridge builder between scholars and between disciplines.

“She is internationally respected for her innovative thinking, her enormous productivity, and her professional leadership. Prof. Akil also is an exceptional educator and is much in demand to give keynote lectures at professional meetings. She is an outstanding mentor who attracts many graduate students and postdoctoral scholars and has excelled especially in training women neuroscientists, many of whom have subsequently been offered positions at the best universities.”

Cho has “an impressive record of accomplishments as a clinician, teacher, investigator and administrator. He has been a faculty member at the U-M since he began as an instructor in radiology in 1973,” Cantor noted. “In 1976, he was named director of the Division of Vascular and Interventional Radiology. He advanced through the academic ranks to achieve his present title of professor of radiology in 1982.

“Dr. Cho has been a funded investigator from a variety of sources ranging from the National Institutes of Health to vendor funded projects. He has an impressive publication record with 121 peer-reviewed manuscripts, 35 book chapters, and one ‘best selling’ angiography textbook. He has received the Outstanding Teacher Award from the radiology residents and is a Fellow of the American College of Radiology. Most importantly, Dr. Cho exhibits in his daily activities a devotion to the U-M.”

Smith is “one of the most prominent, respected and versatile cognitive psychologists in the country. For the past 20 years, he has been a leader in the field, helping to redefine its mainstream time and time again. Prof. Smith’s earliest work focused on mental chronology, and he is widely regarded as one of the major contributors to this topic.

“His work then evolved to include human short-term memory and semantic memory, language understanding, and memory organization-ground-breaking research with discernible impacts on the fields of linguistics and artificial intelligence. His next area of interest centered on knowledge representation, work that has extended to questions about mental procedures such as induction, reasoning and probabilistic judgment. Prof. Smith also is noted for his exceptional work with students. He has been the major adviser, mentor and acknowledged major influence for many of the outstanding young cognitive psychologists who already are making their own impacts on the field.”

Verrett has been “a major star of the world’s leading opera houses and has enjoyed a professional singing career that not only reached the pinnacles of success in the opera world but lasted for a very long time. She has sung in opera and recitals, appeared as a soloist with orchestras, and made many important opera recordings. She has sung to acclaim in most of the principal music capitals of the world.

“Prof. Verrett is widely respected as a natural and intelligent musician, a cultured and educated artist who is musically and poetically literate, creative and well able to integrate her impressive talents into the larger musical and dramatic context of grand opera with subtlety and meaning. She has adapted to teaching at the U-M with the same degree of commitment and enthusiasm that characterized her singing career. She rapidly has achieved a reputation as a powerful teacher who is devoted to the progress of her students.”

Two faculty given emeritus title

Those retiring are Choo W. Suh, senior associate librarian, and Howard M. Wolowitz, professor of psychology.

Suh joined the U-M Library in 1963 as the Japanese language cataloger in the Asia Library. “Her long career coincided with the fast-paced development of the Asia Library,” the Regents noted. “As she assumed greater professional and managerial responsibilities, she was promoted to senior Japanese-Korean cataloger (1963), coordinator of technical services in the Asia Library (1984), and head of the Asia Library Technical Services (1993).

“Ms. Suh will be remembered not only for her uncompromising professionalism and untiring enthusiasm for teaching; but also for the high level of expertise and rich experience that have enhanced the bibliographical organization of the U-M Library.”

Wolowitz joined the U-M in 1961. “Throughout his career, Prof. Wolowitz has had a sustained interest in psychoanalytic theory and its empirical test,” the Regents said. “His research contributions ranged through a variety of clinical syndromes as well. His research on dreams is particularly well-known and is cited as an example of how complex intrapsychic theories can be investigated in ways both methodologically rigorous and clinically relevant. Prof. Wolowitz has focused on dreams and their psychological function, and his work goes beyond Freud’s original formulation of dreams as wish fulfillment to consider the role of dreams in problem solving.

“A dedicated and charismatic teacher, Prof. Wolowitz introduced several generations of Michigan students to psychodynamic thinking.”

Renovation projects approved

  • Nearly 4,300 square feet of space on the fourth- floor of the Chemistry Building will be remodeled to house new research laboratories, a new environmental room, and new equipment and darkrooms. The project is estimated to cost up to $1.2 million.

  • The main auditorium of the Chrysler Center on North Campus will be renovated at an estimated cost of $800,000. “The Chrysler Auditorium, a 2,900 square-foot theatre-style room seating 233, is the College of Engineering’s and North Campus’ largest auditorium/classroom,” said Robert Kasdin, vice president and chief financial officer. “The proposed renovation will improve sight lines for the audience in the rear, improve handicap accessibility, and accommodate state-of-the-art technology.”

  • The first floor treatment center at the Health Service Building will be remodeled at an estimated cost of $650,000. “No significant remodeling of the first floor treatment center has taken place since the 1960s, even though the size and function of the treatment center have changed dramatically,” Kasdin noted. “The purpose of this project is to systematically remodel the treatment center to update this patient care facility to current standards.”

    Dana Building project approved

    Phase II of the renovation project for the S.T. Dana Building, which houses the School of Natural Resources and Environment, was approved.

    The Phase II renovation, estimated to cost $15 million, will involve major systems upgrades including new plumbing, heating, ventilation and hood exhaust systems, plus significant improvements to fire protection and handicapped accessibility systems.

    New program facilities will be created on the fourth floor, and spaces not renovated in Phase I or other recent projects will be completely renovated. Some 39,000 net square-feet of space is involved in this phase.

    The Phase I renovation project involved the enclosure of the interior courtyard to create 11,000 square-feet of program space, and modification of the existing roof and attic to provide 2,250 square-feet of mechanical support space, with completion expected by July.

    “The Phase II project is part of the FY2000 Capital Outlay Request submitted to the State,” Kasdin explained. “The state has authorized proceeding with planning for the project. The state, through its Building Authority, will fund 75 percent of the cost of the project, which will be determined by the architect/engineer program analysis, planning documents and bids. The University will fund the balance of the project cost.”

    The firm of Quinn Evans/Architects of Ann Arbor, working in association with the firm of William McDonough + Partners, Architects and Planners of Charlottesville, Va., will provide design work for the project.

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