The 247th Commencement

Brown to confer six honorary degrees

During its 247th Commencement Sunday afternoon, May 24, 2015, Brown University will confer honorary doctorates on Robert A. Corrigan, president emeritus of San Francisco State University; Louise Lamphere, distinguished professor emerita of anthropology at the University of New Mexico; David E. McKinney, civic leader and former IBM executive; Tracee Ellis Ross, actress and performance artist; Susan Solomon, atmospheric chemist; and Kathryn D. Sullivan, astronaut and geoscientist.
Coming next year

Brown to host Shakespeare visit in R.I.

An exhibition of Shakespeare’s First Folio will begin a national all-state tour in January 2016. Brown will host the Rhode Island visit April 11 to May 1, 2016, with a variety of programming on campus and beyond.

Conifer study illustrates twists of evolution

An apparently advantageous mechanism of conifer pollination has nevertheless been disappearing over millions of years, a new study finds. The mechanism works well, but because it depends on three traits related only loosely, the vagaries of evolution have led to its demise in many species. It its wake, however, a diversity of new traits and functions has emerged.
Human needs meet nature

Researchers assess sustainability in Baja fisheries

The waters of Baja California Sur are both ecosystems and fisheries where human needs meet nature. In a new study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers assessed the capacity to achieve sustainability by applying a framework that accounts for both ecological and human dimensions of environmental stewardship.

Gebru wins third place at College TV Awards

Sophomore Felege Gebru now has a national third-place College Television Award for a freestyle rap video, Brown Cypher 2014. He hopes the award will spark similar projects on many campuses, building a tradition of creative self-expression.
Math books for kids

Schwartz wins Mathical Award

Really Big Numbers, a mathematics book for children, written and illustrated by Richard Schwartz, has received the inaugural “Mathical: Books for Kids from Tots to Teens” award from the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute and the Children’s Book Council.

Study describes brain circuitry for selecting among sensations

In Neuron, Brown University neuroscientists show how cells in the brain’s cortex can either stifle or enhance sensory information incoming from the thalamus, thereby allowing it to focus on just some of the many sensory inputs it might choose to consider.

Tapeworm drug shows promise against MRSA

Researchers based at Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital show in a new study that a drug already approved to fight tapeworms in people, effectively treated MRSA superbugs in lab cultures and in infected nematode worms. The scientists are pursuing further testing with hope that the findings will lead to new treatments for deadly MRSA infections.

A new wrinkle for cell culture

Researchers at Brown University have developed an advanced technique for cell culturing that uses sheets of wrinkled graphene to mimic the complex 3-D environment inside the body.
Media Advisory

Brown to host forum on marijuana legalization

On Tuesday, April 28, 2015, Brown University’s Office of Continuing Medical Education will sponsor a public forum with expert speakers on both sides of a bill to legalize marijuana for adult recreational use in Rhode Island.

Phillips conducts music of silent films

Naxos has released the second of a three-CD recording project about the music and silent films. Paul Phillips, director of orchestras and chamber music, conducts the Ireland RTE National Symphony Orchestra in music of the American composer William Perry.
Public art at Brown

Under the Laurentide installed at BERT

Under the Laurentide, a new work by sculptor Maya Lin, celebrates the form, function, and environmental significance of Narragansett Bay. The sculpture, installed Friday at the east entrance to the Building for Environmental Research and Teaching, was dedicated Wednesday, April 22.

Two faculty named to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Maurice Herlihy, professor of computer science, and Jill Pipher, the Elisha Benjamin Andrews Professor of Mathematics, will be formally inducted into the American Academy of Arts and Sciences Oct. 10, 2015, during a ceremony in Cambridge, Mass.