1/30/03 – News Briefs

Natalia Cooper

Deans, Deans, Deans

A university memo from the office of Provost Paul Fonteyn says the search processes for two important positions at UMB are underway. Both the College of Liberal Arts and the College of Science and Mathematics need new deans. “In my charge to the search committees, I made it clear that we need to bring to our campus two deans with outstanding leadership abilities, a record of creativity, success in building academic programs, significant achievement in reaching out to communities, and a strong commitment to excellence in teaching and scholarship,” Fonteyn stated in the memo.

Both search committees are composed of professors whose specialties cover a range of disciplines offered within the respective colleges. Those who have ideas or comments regarding the selection can contact the committee chairs, for the Liberal Arts Dean the committee chair is Robert Crossley from the English department and for the Science and Mathematics Dean the committee chair is Michael Greeley in the Mathematics department. There will also be an opportunity for all members of the campus community to meet the finalists for both deanships sometime in late March or early April.

Pell Grant Peeves

On January 15, 2003, the Blue Ribbon Panel of the College Board’s National Dialogue on Student Financial Aid (NDFSA) summarized its conclusions of a yearlong study, “Challenging Times, Clear Choices.” The report recommends greater investment in financial aid, especially the Pell Grant, which subsidizes the attendance of low-income students, and a renewed commitment to need-based financial aid.

In their official report, the Blue Ribbon Panel reached agreement on 10 practical recommendations, some of which include substantially increasing Pell Grant funding, improving terms available to students, simplifying federal financial aid application processes, and increasing support for programs that provide college success skills. The full text of the report is available on the web at www.collegeboard.com/press for those interested in more information.

Break in Amherst Student Slashing Case

A UMass Amherst (UMA) student was attacked on January 11 while awaiting an early morning train after going out on the town in Manhattan.

At about 5:30am, 21-year-old Yael Leopold was waiting for a Brooklyn-bound train when she was slashed by a hooded man. According to police reports, the attacker approached Leopold and asked if she was a prostitute. When Leopold laughed and said no, the man slashed her on her head and her left hand. The attacker fled the scene and up until a few days ago, the suspect had not been apprehended.

On January 27, The Boston Herald reported that Edwin Santiago, a 30-year-old homeless man has been taken into custody on a charge of first-degree assault. The man was found at a homeless shelter.

Leopold returned to UMA this Monday. She visited New York again last week, this time to meet with Mayor Bloomberg to express her opposition to Bloomberg’s proposed reduction in subway station staffing.