Also. . .
- Commencement 2000
Bill Cosby: "Keep the Big Picture"
Six Honorands Recognized
- Short Takes
Extracurricular: Pride and Perseverance
Faculty of Note: Robert Gonsalves
Economists Receive First Leontief Prize
Mystic River gets new lease on future
The Mystic River is infamous for its contamination; its banks contain
two Superfund sites and a host of illegal sewage connections.
Now a team led by Tufts and the Mystic River Watershed Association
(MRWA) has formed the Mystic River Collaborative, aiming to make
the Mystic "swimmable and fishable" by 2010.
Over the next 10 years, Tufts faculty and students, led by engineering
professor Paul Kirshen and the Tufts Institute of the Environment,
will work to reverse hundreds of years of pollution that contaminated
the river, which encompasses 76 miles, half a million people, and
The project has the support of the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency, the Massachusetts Office of Environmental Affairs and the
Massachusetts Water Resources Authority.
Tufts faculty and student researchers will focus on the priorities
identified by the communities that border the river: cleaning contaminated
sites, restoring ecosystems, redirecting rainwater back into the
ground instead of into storm drains, and disconnecting illegal sewage
"Our first steps are to understand and then stop the sources
of pollution to the river," said Kirshen, research associate
professor of civil and environmental engineering. "Part of
the communities' vision here includes new beaches, greenways along
the river, marinas and even water shuttles into Boston. We are working
to support that."
The Tufts Institute of the Environment is supporting the Collaborative
by sponsoring a major conference and hosting planning meetings that
bring together community leaders and Tufts faculty, students and
New Wildlife Medicine Center under way
Construction has started on the $2.4 million Bernice Barbour Wildlife
Medicine Building, slated to open on the Grafton campus in December.
The 11,000-square-foot building will house an expanded Wildlife
Clinic, including a filtered pool for aquatic animals, an indoor
ward for carnivores, small and large animal runs, flight cages,
enlarged surgical and diagnostic facilities and a conference room
for seminars and public gatherings. The clinic will bring together
under one roof Tufts' signature programs in Wildlife Medicine and
International Veterinary Medicine as well as the Center for Conservation
Medicine. By housing the three disciplines together, Tufts will
foster collaboration on global health issues such as environmental
degradation, infectious disease, antibiotic resistance and loss
Symposium examines Jerusalem today
As part of Tufts' mission as an international institution with a
voice in critical global issues, the university recently sponsored
a symposium, "Jerusalem: Conflict and Resolution," at
the Tufts European Center in Talloires, France.
Leila Fawaz, dean of the humanities and arts, was the key architect
and scholar behind the May 5-6 symposium, which invited top scholars
to speak to the Palestinian/Arab, Israeli and international perspectives
on the region.
Participants included Rashid Khalidi, professor of Middle East
history at the University of Chicago, who was an adviser to the
Palestinian delegation at the Madrid and Washington Arab-Israeli
peace negotiations; Menachem Klein, a senior lecturer in political
science at Bar-Ilan University, who is a counselor for Jerusalem
affairs and Israel-PLO final status talks to the Israeli minister
of interior security; and Richard W. Murphy, Hasib J. Sabbagh Senior
Fellow for the Middle East and director of Middle East Studies at
the Council on Foreign Relations.
In addition to Fawaz, professor of history and professor of diplomacy
at the Fletcher School, Tufts participants included Mel Bernstein,
vice president for arts, sciences and engineering, and Sol Gittleman,
senior vice president and provost.
Three appointed to boards of overseers
Tufts recently appointed three new overseers to assist the president
and the Board of Trustees. They are: Mr. C. David Chase,
A72, Chase Investment Corp., Concord, MA, to the Board of Overseers
for Arts and Sciences; Mr. Jeffrey Kin-Fung Lam, E74, Managing
Director, Forward Winsome Industries, Ltd., Hong Kong, and president
of the Hong Kong Tufts Club, Board of Overseers for Arts and Sciences;Mr.
Carl W. Rausch, E70, G72, chair of the Board & CEO, Biopure
Corp., Cambridge, MA, Board of Overseers for Engineering.
Music Professor awarded Guggenheim
Music Professor Jane Bernstein has been awarded a prestigious Guggenheim
Bernstein, the Austin Fletcher Professor of Music, joined Tufts
in 1976. A musicologist, she has focused on the Renaissance, including
sixteenth-century French chansons and the history of music publishing
Faculty honored with spring awards
Tufts this spring honored outstanding faculty for outstanding teaching.
The awardees are as follows:
The Lillian and Joseph Leiber Award: Robert Gonsalves, Electrical
Engineering; Seymour O. Simches Award for Distinguished Teaching:
Kenneth VanWormer, Chemical Engineering, in acknowledgment of a
lifetime of outstanding teaching and advising; The Arts &
Sciences Faculty/Staff Multicultural Service Award: Linell Ygawa,
Director of the Asian American Center; The Undergraduate Initiative
in Teaching Award: Bernhard Martin, German, Russian, Asian;
Elizabeth Remick, Political Science; The Faculty Research Awards
Committee Distinguished Scholar Award: Sugata Bose, History;
The Lerman-Neubauer Prize: James Glaser, Political Science,
a faculty member judged by seniors as an individual who has had
a profound intellectual impact in and out of the classroom; The
African-American Center Gerald R. Gill Distinguished Service Award:
Pearl Robinson, International Relations. This is a new award presented
to and named after historian Gerald Gill, as part of the 30th anniversary
celebration of the African-American Center in January.
Tuition and fees up 3.9 percent
Tuition and fees for Tufts undergraduates will increase 3.9 percent
for the 2000-01 academic years, bringing the total cost to study
and live at the university next year to $33,394.
Tuition for undergraduates will be $25,062; room and board, $7,680;
and combined fees for health services and student activities will
Tufts administrators project a 9.4 percent increase in financial
aid for the coming school year and estimate more than 40 percent
of the incoming freshman class will receive some form of financial
A record 14,200 high school students have applied to attend Tufts
this fall for only 1,180 slots in the Class of 2004.
At 90, ATA still going strong
The Association of Tufts Alumnae (ATA) celebrated its 90th birthday
on May 17 in Alumane Lounge on the Medford-Somerville campus. The
event included honoring Sondra Szymczak, J59, with the Outstanding
Alumnae Award. Szymcsak's commitment to Tufts extended to knitting
36 sets of hats, mittens and gloves to contribute to the recent
ATA Mittens and Socks drive.
President Marina Tramontozzi, J88, noted the active ATA calendar
over the past year, beginning in September with co-sponsoring a
"Women Against Violence" seminar with the Tufts Women's
Center. ATA toasted the millennium in October with an event featuring
Tufts graduate speakers Rysia de Ravel d'Esclapon, J71, Fran Rockett,
A53, Barbara Rockett, M57, and Cynthia McCarthy, E56. The organization
co-sponsored a Career Night and sponsored a Mittens and Socks Drive
with contributions donated to the Somerville Coalition for the Homeless.
ATA also worked with Career Planning to put on a "Dress for
Success" event for undergraduates and awarded five scholarships
to graduate students.
The ATA begins its 91st year with new officers: Nancy Mahler, J88,
director; Erin Cox, J00, director; Lissa Datra, J01, associate director;
and Margery Yeager, J01, associate director, as well as many returning
Med students put on a "lunchbox" show
Rahul Kakkar, A97, M02, is continuing his effort to reach out to
children with messages of self-esteem and positive coping skills.
A member of the Traveling Treasure Trunk children's theater ensemble
while an undergraduate at Tufts, he has now created a children's
theater program to address emotional issues facing children.
His shows, which go by the name of "The Curious Lunchbox,"
involve about a dozen amateur actors from the School of Medicine,
and are staged at libraries in the Boston area. Open to the public
and free, they are targeted at children ages 4 to 12 who are living
in local shelters.
Kakkar selects plays that address the emotional issues of all children
and that may be helpful to children who have lived through violence
He hopes his Curious Lunchbox performances will become a yearly
event with "a regenerating pool of actors who can carry the
troupe in years to come."in Boston.
EPA grant funds climate change study
Tufts has launched a groundbreaking study of how global climate
change may affect roads, water supplies, public health and other
critical services in Boston and 100 other communities within the
Interstate 495 belt.
With a $900,000 grant from the Environmental Protection Agency,
Tufts will conduct a three-year study, the first of its kind in
Paul Kirshen, research associate professor of civil and environmental
engineering, who is overseeing the study, will work with Matthias
Ruth, a faculty member in the geography department at Boston University,
as well as officials from the Metropolitan Area Planning Council.
Researchers will produce a report on what responses may be needed
to deal with the potential effects of climate change today and 50
to 100 years from now.
The project was one of five the EPA funded through its Science
to Achieve Results (STAR) program. All five projects will look at
the effects of global climate change in a specific region, including
impacts on Florida's ecosystems, at Rocky Mountain National Park
in Colorado, at California's San Joaquin Watershed and in Illinois'
Men's Basketball: ECAC Champs
In November, the Tufts men's basketball team chose the slogan "Whatever
It Takes" to represent its approach to the upcoming season.
Head coach Bob Sheldon's men followed those words all the way to
winning the ECAC New England Championship.
Tufts won the 2000 ECAC title by defeating Colby College, 74-73,
in overtime at Waterville, ME, on March 5. It is the program's first
ECAC Championship since 1982, and it wrapped up a thrilling season
during which the Jumbos made a habit of winning under pressure.
Tufts won eight games with baskets in the closing seconds, including
four in overtime. The Jumbos posted a 21-6 record this season, the
most wins in the 12 years Sheldon has coached the program.
Bill Cosby: "Keep the Big Picture"
clouds threatened rain at Tufts' 144th Commencement on May 21, nothing
could dampen the excitement as this year's honorands marched out
of Ballou toward center stage. Rousing cheers met distinguished
leaders such as Betty Friedan, credited with launching the women's
movement, baseball great Hank Aaron, and Bill Cosby, entertainer
and education advocate.
Cosby, who also delivered the Commencement speech, rose to the
occasion with characteristic Jumbo-size spirit, wearing a white
Tufts baseball cap as he processed, and, as he delivered his address,
a Tufts sweatshirt. Urging graduates to "keep the big picture
in mind" as they went out in the world, Cosby referred frequently
to his own personal experience. "The way I succeeded was that
I made sure that each time I did something, I was aware of the next
two steps ahead, and I made sure I was ready, no matter when they
called on me."
His trademark humor--and an obvious delight in making people laugh
at themselves--was in rare form as Cosby interspersed tips on life
after graduation with good-natured ribbing. Indulging in the chance
to address row after row of young people in mortar boards, he noted
that traditional graduation speakers often tell graduates to "go
"But you people don't seem to get it. You come back home!"
he quipped. "This is not a happy story. Your siblings are not
tickled at all with your coming back. There is no reason to go back
home and on top of that you don't even know the words to your alma
mater!" Cosby wasn't the only one having fun. Thousands of
Ping-Pong balls were rigged to fall onto the graduates from the
trees just moments into Cosby's address.
The 50th reunion class, which has a reserved place of honor during
the ceremony, was not exempt from Cosby's observations. Cosby turned
to the graduates of 1940 and said, "Ask those people over there
what life was like at Tufts. Fifty years ago, Tufts cost what .
. . $2,000? And you picked up your own key! Beer was nine cents
On a more serious note, Cosby credited his grandfather with giving
him insight into the wisdom that comes with experience. When Cosby
had dropped out of Swarthmore, his grandfather asked him: "You
don't know who you are, do you?" He said, "To know who
you are means knowing what you are to me, to your family, and if
you know that, then you'd think about that before dropping out."
Life, said Cosby, "is about understanding who you are. I know
people who take this university seriously. You've done something
with your life. Be concerned if you don't try to get a job! Be concerned
if you don't think you can do it! And if you don't know who you
are, go to your family, they will tell you who you are, especially
if they paid for your education. It's important to know the love
we all have, and [that] this is your school forever as long as you
live. Don't be afraid."
Nearly 2,000 members of the Class of 2000 received their diplomas.
Commencement speakers at Tufts' individual school ceremonies were:
Dental Medicine: Jim Boyd, news anchor on WCVB-TV, Channel 5, in
Boston; Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy: Robert D. Hormats,
A65, F66, F67, F69; Medical and Sackler: Dr. David M. Kent, a former
medical officer stationed in Bosnia with Physicians Without Borders,
which won the 1999 Nobel Peace Prize; Nutrition: Barbara Underwood,
president of the International Union of Nutrition Scientists; and
Veterinary Medicine: Dr. Mary Beth Leininger, the first woman elected
president of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Six Honorands Recognized
In addition to Bill Cosby, Tufts awarded five other honorary degrees.
Hank Aaron, baseball legend who rewrote baseball's hitting
record during his 23 years in the majors. He set more batting records
than any other player in the game's history, including most lifetime
home runs. He received an honorary degree of public service.
Betty Friedan, credited with starting the women's movement
in 1963 with her book The Feminine Mystique and with helping
found the National Organization for Women (NOW); awarded an honorary
degree of humane letters.
Dr. Merrill Goldstein, professor of medicine at Tufts School
of Medicine, and director of the Pratt Diagnostic Clinic at the
New England Medical Center, whose undergraduate education at Tufts
was interrupted by World War II. Sixty years later, he received
an honorary bachelor of science degree.
Robert D. Hormats, vice chair of Goldman Sachs (International)
and managing director of Goldman, Sachs & Co., earned four degrees
at Tufts: a B.A. in economics and political science and an M.A.,
M.A.L.D. and Ph.D. from the Fletcher School. He held high-level
positions in the Nixon, Ford, Carter and Reagan administrations;
awarded the doctor of public service degree.
Ismar Schorsch, chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary
of America, where he is also the Rabbi Herman Abramovitz Professor
of Jewish History and a longtime supporter of the Middle East peace
process; awarded an honorary doctor of religious education degree.
Extracurricular: Pride and Perseverance
Wolf, A00, used to tell his friends, "I'll see you at the game!"
Later, when they'd insist, "We didn't see you!" he'd simply
smile and reply: "Well, I saw you!"
What they didn't know was that Kendal was at the games-in fact,
he's been at nearly every single Tufts game for the past three-and-a-half
years. His secret? Going incognito as Tufts' mascot, Jumbo."It's
not really me up there anyway," said Wolf, who showed up for
his first official interview looking like a senior who had just
finished his last final-casual in shorts and a button-down shirt.
"Until very recently, very few knew it was me. It's a great
sense of being anonymous."
Wolf grew up in Pittsburgh and attended Choate, a private school
in Connecticut, where school spirit was strong. At Tufts, where
he majored in French and competed on the crew team, he was pleased
to see school pride carried in the broad back of Jumbo, the famed
Barnum and Bailey elephant.
"A mascot fosters a sense of connection," says Wolf.
"I like what Rocky Carzo (former director of Tufts athletics)
says, that we grow Jumbos here, not elephants. It's a special thing
Wolf got into the mascot trade for the same reason that prompted
him to take up spelunking (caving), rock climbing and skydiving-"anything
that's an adventurous, that's a great thing."
But there was no training manual for the position of school mascot.
When he went to the Athletic Department to inquire after the opening,
"They just told, me, go out there, don't offend too many people,
and have fun."
Wolf took those instructions to heart, working alongside cheerleaders
to rev up school spirits, and by adding his own creative ideas:
forming the letters of Tufts with his arms and legs and making signs
for each letter he holds up to spark crowd chants. "I really
loved it," he says. "I was the third star of the show,
behind the cheerleaders and the athletes, although they didn't have
free reign over the crowd."
That joviality has stood Wolf in good stead in what hasn't always
been an easy job. The most important skill that comes with being
Jumbo, he says, is perseverance.
"The costume is hot, and losing a game can be tough. I like
it best when it's really good weather or it's a really close game.
I like to think the mascot has a role in helping the team win."
Not surprisingly, Wolf speaks fondly of his four years at Tufts,
but he is also looking forward to life after college. This summer
he works at the Tufts European Center and then begins a Fulbright
scholarship teaching English in France.
His only regret? "I only wish I could have gotten him out
more. Once I took him out and just walked around campus and everybody
waved, smiled. It's just plain fun. It's fun to be Jumbo."
Faculty of Note: Robert Gonsalves
NASA was confounded by the flawed Hubble Space Telescope, it turned
to Robert Gonsalves, E56, to help figure out what blurred images
must have looked like as originals.
Gonsalves, an expert in digital image processing, was thinking
about the problem while walking the beach when he noticed how footprints
in the sand were blurred as they were washed over by waves.
From this observation, he calculated a mathematical prescription
to correct the telescope's lens. Astronauts inserted the correcting
lens and the images became clear. Gonsalves still uses that challenge
today as a math problem in his engineering classes. His students
benefit from this infusion of exciting projects, as well as from
his knack for explaining complicated concepts in simple terms. Add
to this his deep respect and courtesy for young people and it is
not surprising that he has won this year's Lillian and Joseph Leibner
Award for distinguished teaching and advising. "One of the
best professors I've had at Tufts," a student wrote in a course
evaluation for Gonsalves. "He is a great teacher and a great
The chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer
Science, Gonsalves arrived at Tufts in 1985, after teaching at Northeastern
University and working in private industry.For Gonsalves, the rewards
of his profession are clear. "Teaching is a joy," he says.
"I believe, you can teach anybody anything if you do it in
small enough steps."
That appreciation for teaching began early. His father was a high
school math and science teacher and his mother taught children with
special needs. He excelled at math and by the time he was a junior
in high school, was being paid to tutor children. He was "an
indifferent student" at Tufts, from which he graduated in 1956.
During a stint in the Navy, he took a course in teaching methods
that showed him how students and teachers could enjoy good rapport
if teachers used basic techniques, such as making eye contact and
Today, he brings those lessons to every class. "I like to
draw something out about a student," he says. He also takes
advising seriously, becoming involved not just in course requirements,
but often in the student's personal life. He helped an injured student,
for instance, get to the hospital for X-rays and brought her back
to campus, where he made sure her friends were aware of her condition.
His close involvement with sponsored research and consulting has
also been a major factor in his teaching. "It's fortunate that
what I do is very marketable. A lot of the research I do is high
profile, so I can bring interesting things to the classroom."
And, as he talks, Gonsalves starts doing what he does best. He teaches.
A mention of the Hubble telescope gets him out of his office chair
and drawing diagrams on a white board to explain how the lens was
blurred. He grabs a student's notebook and shows how the student
is using math to solve the problem.
"What I enjoy," he says, "is getting students to
understand concepts and to meet challenges, getting them to do things
they thought they couldn't do."
Economists receive first Leontief Prize
A standing-room-only crowd packed ASEAN Auditorium March 27 to hear
Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen (left) speak on "Global
Development in the 21st Century."
The event inaugurated the Leontief Prize for Advancing the Frontiers
of Economic Thought, which was awarded to Sen and to John Kenneth
Galbraith. Galbraith was unable to attend but was represented by
his wife, Katherine.
"Today we honor several people who remind us that economics--the
so-called dismal science--can be a powerful tool in the hands of
those committed to overcoming the persistent inequalities that plague
our world," said President John DiBiaggio, who co-hosted the
event with Tufts' Global Development and Environment Institute (G-DAE).
G-DAE created the Leontief Prize to honor the memory of Nobel laureate
Wassily Leontief, a member of the institute's advisory board until
his death last year.
Wassily Leontief "had no patience for beautiful abstractions
without application," noted Neva Goodwin, an economist who
co-directs G-DAE with Fletcher professor William Moomaw. "His
lifetime work was based on an unwavering assumption that the purpose
of economics is to be useful. Being useful meant making it possible
for human beings to interact with the physical world in ways that
would better the human condition."
Goodwin praised Galbraith for his work on the problems of inequality
and consumerism and for "relentlessly describing the world
as he so perceptively sees it--sometimes leaving theory to come
panting in his wake."
"I regret not being able to receive in person an award named
for Wassily Leontief, my old friend and admired colleague and one
of the great figures in world economics," Galbraith noted in
his remarks, which were read by Moomaw. "We may never see his
Amartya Sen, the Master of Trinity College in Cambridge, England,
and Lamont University Professor Emeritus at the Harvard Center for
Population and Development Studies, "merges the insights of
economics and philosophy through a combination of rigor and humanitarian
concern that have not been seen since John Stuart Mill," Goodwin
said. "He has insisted that economists must care at least as
much about equity as about efficiency, [starting] from the questions:
What is a good life? How is it achieved?"