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Dietrich School of Arts & Sciences Snapshot

Issue 18, December 2015


Dietrich School Alumna Kenya Boswell Builds Bridges Between the Private and Nonprofit Sectors

Kenya Boswell

An audience of 300 gathers on a hot, sunny afternoon in late July, taking refuge inside the cool Romanesque gray stone of the New Hazlett Theater on Pittsburgh’s North Shore. They are here to see eight local companies pitch their product before a panel of judges.
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In Focus

For Undergrad Carly O’Connor, a Research Trip to Japan was Life Changing

Carly O'Connor

Carly O’Connor straps on a helmet and swings a leg over her cycle, a sporty little red Aprilia. A self-proclaimed biker—complete with three tattoos, and more to come, she promises—O’Connor bikes all over the tri-state area (PA, WV, OH) with her family on weekends.
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Close Up

HPS Professor Mazviita Chirimuuta Sets Her Sights on Solving the Puzzle of Color

Mazviita Chirimuuta

As anyone who has ever painstakingly pored over a paint chip wall at a home improvement store—only to bring home a gallon of useless paint—knows, color can be elusive. Your home’s lighting, the time of day, accompanying furniture and fabrics, and more all play key roles in how you will perceive the color at home, which is typically quite different than you will in a huge, fluorescent-lit warehouse.
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Wide Angle

New Pittsburgh Constellations Consortium to Shine Light on History of Art and Architecture

Plate VII, Figure 1, “Anatomie”: A woody skeleton of sorts stands in the middle of a yellowed page; he is composed of branches and twigs, offshoots and tendrils and leaves. Even the casual observer can clearly see the bushy hair, the elongated head—with curved twigs for a nose—the arms, all five fingers clearly delineated, the sharp branch points suggesting ribs, and the long branches for legs.
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In 2009, Jeanne Marie Laskas (A&S ’85G), director of the Writing Program in the Dietrich School’s Department of English, wrote “Game Brain,” a GQ article about brain injuries in the NFL and the efforts of forensic pathologist Bennet Omalu to raise public awareness about this issue. Laskas’ exposé served as the inspiration for a new feature film, Concussion, starring Will Smith as Omalu, which will open December 25, 2015. Laskas’ full-length, nonfiction account of Omalu’s story, also titled, Concussion, was released last month.

Ghosts of Amistad: In the Footsteps of the Rebels, a film by Distinguished Professor of Atlantic History Marcus Rediker, has been awarded the 2015 Richard E. O’Connor prize by the American Historical Association (AHA) for the best historical documentary of the year. Rediker will accept the award in January 2016 during the AHA's annual meeting, during which there will be a special screening of the film.

Iyanna Boatwright-Buffaloe, a Dietrich School sophomore majoring in computer science and minoring in music, is the recipient of the 2015 Pitt-BNY Mellon Jazz Scholarship. Boatwright-Buffaloe, 18, from Darby, PA, won the $5,000 scholarship based on a recording of jazz standards she submitted to a judging panel composed of members of the Pitt Jazz Studies Program faculty.

Professor Kay Brummond, chair of the Dietrich School’s Department of Chemistry, was recently awarded the 2015 Pittsburgh Award by the American Chemical Society’s Pittsburgh Section. The award was established in 1932 to recognize outstanding leadership in chemical affairs in the local and larger professional community. It is given to professionals who have been instrumental in increasing chemical knowledge, promoting the chemical industry, or benefiting humanity.

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