Atari 2600: It was a start

Jenkins on ‘Cool Jobs’ at World Science Festival

We live in a most magnificent time for learning how to program useful machines. Chad Jenkins, associate professor of computer science and engineering at Brown University, found computer science when he was 7. He will talk with interested youngsters about robots and computing during a “Cool Jobs” session Sunday at the World Science Festival in New York.

At the Bell Gallery through July 7

‘Going Nowhere’ features local alumni art

The David Winton Bell Gallery presents a summer exhibition of art by Brown alumni living and working in Providence. Going Nowhere: Alumni Artists in Providence will run from Saturday, June 7, through Monday, July 7, 2014, featuring work by Peter Glantz '98, Kevin Hooyman '98, Xander Marro '98, Jenny Nichols '01, David Udris '90, and Tatyana Yanishevsky '05.

Grant boosts undergraduate STEM teaching

With a new grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Brown University will implement several innovative, evidence-based changes in introductory science classes to improve retention of underrepresented students in STEM concentrations.

Epidemiology in South Africa

STI testing could boost HIV prevention

Sexually transmitted infections can make HIV transmission more likely, undermining the prevention benefit of HIV treatment. A new study of HIV-positive patients in Cape Town, South Africa, found that the prevalence of such co-infections was much higher before beginning HIV treatment. Testing for and treating STIs and HIV together could therefore improve HIV prevention.

Consortium for Advanced Studies Abroad

Brown to lead study-abroad consortium

Brown University has partnered with six Ivy Plus institutions to launch an initiative aimed at improving study abroad opportunities for students. The Consortium for Advanced Studies Abroad (CASA) will develop comprehensive program centers of study around the world. The first center will launch in Havana in the 2014-15 academic year.

A summit for law and health care

Health professionals can help stem drug abuse

Given a community need to address abuse and overdoses of prescription opioids, experts from Brown University and community partners will provide a morning of continuing medical education for prescribers and pharmacists at the Alpert Medical School June 7.

Executive Master of Business Administration

IE and Brown to offer joint business degree

Brown University and IE Business School in Madrid, Spain, will offer the joint IE Brown Executive Master of Business Administration (E.M.B.A.) degree. This is the first Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree to be awarded by Brown. Members of the Class of 2016, who start the program in March of 2015, will be the first to earn this joint degree. 

Computer science celebrates 35 years

Brown University’s Department of Computer Science — and lots of returning CS alumni — celebrated the department’s 35th birthday over Commencement-Reunion Weekend. In 1979, the prevailing wisdom considered CS a graduate-level specialty. Brown’s CS pioneers parted company with that and found a way to make undergraduates a robust part of the plan.

Free will seems a matter of mind, not soul

A new study tested whether people believe free will arises from a metaphysical basis or mental capacity. Even though most respondents said they believed humans to have souls, they judged free will and assigned blame for transgressions based on pragmatic considerations — such as whether the actor in question had the capacity to make an intentional and independent choice.

A habitable environment on Martian volcano?

Heat from a volcano erupting beneath an immense glacier would have created large lakes of liquid water on Mars in the relatively recent past. And where there’s water, there is also the possibility of life. A recent paper by Brown University researchers calculates how much water may have been present near the Arsia Mons volcano and how long it may have remained.

The 246th Commencement

Brown confers nine honorary degrees

Brown University continued the 250th anniversary celebration of its founding by awarding honorary degrees to nine University alumni today. The degrees, presented by Brown President Christina H. Paxson on the College Green, honored the achievements of music educator Lee Berk ’64; teacher Beatrice E. Coleman ’25 (awarded posthumously); author Jeffrey Eugenides ’82; physician Arthur Horwich ’72, M.D.’75; electrical engineer Mary Lou Jepsen ’87, Ph.D. ’97; entertainment executive Debra Lee ’76; author Lois Lowry ’58; ecologist Nalini Nadkarni ’76; and Thomas Perez ’83, U.S. secretary of labor. Texts of the citations follow here.

The 2014 Student Orations

Joshua Block: “Listen”

Joshua Block was one of two graduating seniors chosen to deliver the senior orations at Brown University’s 246th Commencement. Block delivered his address, titled “Listen,” early Sunday afternoon May 25, 2014, on the College Green. His text follows here. (See also the student orators news release and the text of the oration by Caroline Bologna.)

Flexible support for medical education

Aronson Fund honors first dean of medicine

Brown University has created a $3-million endowed fund to provide discretionary support for the dean of medicine and biological sciences. The Dean Stanley M. Aronson Fund for Research and Innovation honors Dr. Stanley Aronson, the founding dean of what is now the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.