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June 24, 1999



W. Edward Sell, dean emeritus and distinguished service professor of law emeritus, has been appointed judicial and court-related consultant by the Honorable John P. Flaherty, Chief Justice of Pennsylvania. In this capacity, Sell will set up courses on subject matter relevant to the judicial functions of trial judges and court-related personnel. He will serve under the administrative office of Pennsylvania Courts.

Sell recently celebrated 50 years of teaching and leadership at Pitt's law school. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and Washington and Jefferson College.


Paul Paris, who is professor and chair of the emergency medicine department, chief medical officer for the Center for Emergency Medicine and medical director for the City of Pittsburgh Bureau of Public Safety, has been awarded an honorary Doctor of Civil Laws degree from Dahlhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

This is the first time in Canadian history that a medical school has awarded an honorary degree to recognize achievements in emergency medicine, and one of the few times that an honorary degree has been awarded to an American physician.

The recent reform of the Nova Scotia emergency health system, in which almost 60 percent of the supervisory staff was trained at the Center for Emergency Medicine, contributed to Paris's selection.

Paris has set a precedent for advancing emergency medicine through research, education, quality patient care and administrative leadership. He has been instrumental in helping to develop Pittsburgh's emergency medical system by serving as the medical director of the city's Bureau of EMS. He was the first director of Pitt's affiliated residency in emergency medicine, establishing the nation's first physician response program where doctors provide emergency care in the streets alongside city paramedics.

Paris is known as the father of the humane treatment of acute pain, focusing his research and teaching on reducing the suffering of emergency room patients.


Lucy Fischer, professor of film studies and director of the film studies program, has been elected as the next president of the Society for Cinema Studies. For the next two years, Fischer will serve as president-elect of the society, the major academic film studies organization in the U.S. with a membership of 1,300. Among the primary activities of the society is the organization of an annual conference and the publication of Cinema Journal, a scholarly publication.


Qingchuan Yao, assistant professor of mathematics at the Bradford campus, has been named a Project NExT fellow by the Mathematical Association of America. Project NExT is a professional development program in the mathematical sciences that tackles issues in the teaching and learning of undergraduate mathematics. Fellows participate in workshops that explore such issues as new approaches to teaching calculus, using technology in the classroom, pedagogical research and professional development issues, including discussions with representatives from the National Science Foundation on writing grant proposals and panels that address such issues as balancing research and teaching. Project NExT is aimed at helping math professors build a routine of professional disciplines so that they can continue to improve their knowledge and teaching skills throughout their careers.

Yao joined the Bradford faculty in 1997.


Education school professors Rita Bean and Gregory Morris have received a higher education Dwight D. Eisenhower Professional Development Program grant for their proposal "Early Reading Success Through Effective Teaching, a Collaborative Approach to Professional Development."

Developed by Bean and Morris, the state-wide effort of ongoing professional development will provide in-service training to enable reading teachers to improve reading teaching and student development.


Iris McDuffy, instructor at Norfolk State University, has been selected to work and study in the laboratory of Sandy Murray, associate professor of cell biology and physiology in the School of Medicine. This is one of five visiting professorships awarded nationally by the American Society for Cell Biology minority affairs committee.

The society, with financial support from the Minority Access to Research Careers Program of the National Institute for General Medicine Studies of the National Institutes of Health, sponsors this science education partnership to acquaint professors of science with the latest research tools and techniques, help them build a network with community scientists and institutions and bring the excitement of research science into the classroom.

One of the goals of the research being conducted by Murray and McDuffy is to understand how endocrine cells communicate with one another to regulate their hormonal response and growth.


William Cooper, distinguished clinical professor in the medical school and attending physician in hematology-oncology at UPMC Shadyside, has received the 1999 Mastership Award from the American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine in honor of his contributions to hematology and oncology.

Cooper was cited for his distinguished career in medical education, medical practice and administration.


Two Bradford campus staffers have been promoted to newly created positions.

Karen Niemic Buchheit has been named director of institutional advancement and special assistant to the president. Richard Esch has been named chief business and administrative affairs officer.

Buchheit, formerly director of development and university relations, will continue to oversee her previous areas of responsibility, which include the Office of Alumni Relations. Additionally, she will work with the president to improve internal communication, provide staff support to projects important to the college, and work with the college's new leadership team to position the college more strategically in achieving its goals.

Esch, formerly director of auxiliary services, has been responsible for all auxiliary functions, including dining services, housing, the book center, laundry, vending, camps and conferences and special events planning. In his new role he also will oversee administrative management, which includes computing and telecommunications, human resources, risk management and insurance, labor relations, legal services and business management, which includes auxiliary services, facilities operations and maintenance, purchasing and campus police and safety.


Eileen Morris, formerly artistic and managing director of The Ensemble Theatre in Houston, has been named managing director for the Kuntu Repertory Theatre.

Morris's position has been funded by a grant from the Pittsburgh Foundation Multicultural Arts Initiative and the Heinz Endowment. Morris will work with Kuntu's founder and artistic director, Vernell Lillie, to develop a management team and marketing plan, review budgetary needs, explore ways to increase earned income and board development.

Morris has been a guest director for Kuntu three times.


Alan Russell has been named executive director of the Pittsburgh Tissue Engineering Initiative (PTEI). Russell served as interim executive director for six months and, prior to that, had been an associate director since the organization was established in 1995.

PTEI is a regional initiative with Pitt and UPMC Health systems among the partners. Others include Carnegie Mellon and Duquesne universities and Allegheny University of the Health Sciences.


Donald Yealy, professor and vice chair of emergency medicine, has been elected to a three-year term on the board of directors of the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine. This is the largest organization dedicated to research and education in emergency medicine.

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