Announcement from Dean Fluharty on the College Dean

During the spring semester of 2017, Dennis DeTurck will be on sabbatical leave from his roles as Stephen A. Levin Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Robert A. Fox Leadership Professor, and Professor of Mathematics. His leave from the College deanship will be a short break from a role in which Dennis has served with extraordinary devotion since 2005, as an energetic champion for undergraduate education in the liberal arts at Penn.

I am pleased to announce that Andrew Binns, Professor of Biology and former Vice Provost for Education, will serve as Interim Dean of the College during this period, effective January 1, 2017.  Andy served as Vice Provost from 2006 to 2015, with oversight for undergraduate and graduate education across Penn as well as central services supporting these missions; he was a steadfast supporter of the College and a close partner to Dennis throughout his tenure. A Penn faculty member since 1980, Andy is a distinguished scholar of plant biology and microbiology as well as an award-winning teacher and research mentor. He served as Chair of the Department of Biology from 1995 to 2004.

I am confident that with Andy’s interim leadership and the continued support of the outstanding College staff, the College will have a productive semester.

Arts & Sciences News

Michael C. Horowitz Awarded Department of Defense Grant to Lead Team on Study of Autonomous Systems and AI

Michael C. Horowitz, Professor of Political Science, will oversee the study of autonomous systems and artificial intelligence.

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Earthquakes at the Nanoscale

In collaboration with Robert Carpick and David Goldsby, Tian, who graduated from Penn in 2017 with a doctorate in physics, recently published a paper in Physical Review Letters which attempts to tackle these devastating natural phenomena by investigating the laws of friction at the smallest possible scale, the nanoscale.

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Doris Wagner Named Robert I. Williams Term Professor

A leader in the fields of plant biology, chromatin modification, and epigenetics, Wagner’s research focuses on understanding at the molecular level the complex changes that occur when an organism switches developmental programs.

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Wrongful Convictions Reported for 6 Percent of Crimes

A study from Penn criminologists results in the first general estimate for the prison population as a whole.

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Race Has a Place in Human Genetics Research, Philosopher Argues

Penn philosopher Quayshawn Spencer says there is a racial classification that’s medically useful to reliably sample human genetic diversity.

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Exploring the Sounds of the Middle Ages

Assistant Professor of Music Mary Channen Caldwell's freshman seminar course, “Hearing (in) the Middle Ages,” explores a range of sounds heard throughout the medieval period, whether produced by people, instruments, bells, or animals.

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