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January 9, 2005


Concern about Goldstein’s resignation as GSPH dean

To the editor:

The Nov. 24 issue of the University Times contained a fairly lengthy article about Dean Bernard D. Goldstein of the Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH) resigning effective Aug. 31, 2005. The article described his tenure as dean, some of the achievements of the school during that period, and some comments about Dr. Goldstein attributed to Dr. Arthur S. Levine, senior vice chancellor for Health Sciences. Absent from the article were any comments from GSPH faculty.

I have talked with a fair number of GSPH faculty before, and since, Dr. Goldstein announced his resignation and I would like to share some favorable views of his performance. First, many GSPH faculty believe that his stepping down as dean constitutes a serious loss to the school. Second, most faculty viewed him as a more vigorous and effective advocate for the GSPH than virtually all of his predecessors. GSPH faculty believe that the school has had its ability to carry out its mission to promote health and prevent disease compromised by the current and past health sciences leadership, and its interests ignored or subordinated to those of the school of medicine. Some faculty are convinced that Dr. Goldstein’s strong advocacy on behalf the GSPH made his position very frustrating.

Faculty are concerned that recruiting a new dean who will be thoughtful and aggressive in representing the GSPH will be extremely difficult, if not impossible. Any serious dean candidate will seek to learn why Dr. Goldstein chose to resign as dean after only approximately four years at the school’s helm.

Nathan Hershey
Graduate School of Public


I have the deepest respect for Nathan Hershey who has been a significant contributer to the Graduate School of Public Health and to the University of Pittsburgh for more than four decades.  However, he is wrong in his contentions about why I am stepping down next August from the position of Dean (or, as I describe it, “stepping up” to be a full time faculty member.

Most importantly, I do not at all agree with him about the attractiveness of the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health to future candidates for the dean’s position.  This is an incredibly strong school with a breadth and depth of faculty and a track record of accomplishment that is the envy of schools of public health throughout the country.  Further, the increasing strength of the University of Pittsburgh’s Academic Health Center, which is based upon an exceptionally high level of collaboration among all Pitt schools, is well known nationally and is serving as a magnet to attract faculty at all levels.  I am certain that we will have many superb candidates for dean of the GSPH.

Bernard Goldstein
Graduate School of Public Health


Giving credit where it’s due

To the editor:

I wish to correct an inaccurate impression created by the UT article on work behind the scenes of the DRL site titled “Stalinka.” By inadvertently omitting several important facts the piece implied that the site is the result of a One Woman Wonder, alias Goscilo. Nothing could be further from the truth. Susan Corbesero in the History Department and I conceived of the site together after many conversations about the striking artwork devoted to Stalin’s image. By the time we applied for and received a Central Development Fund Grant, Petre Petrov, a graduate student in Slavic, had joined the project. We operate as equals, and each of us has a different but crucial role in the site’s construction. Petre scans and refines the images, as well as labeling them, and without his techno-expertise we would not be able to provide DRL with the necessary quality of images. Susan provides the information required by DRL for each visual, and her knowledge of Stalin and the relevant period is essential. One might say that my role needs less skill inasmuch as I merely target and acquire the visuals, then negotiate copyright/contracts. In short, I wish to emphasize that this project would not have got off the ground were it not for my younger colleagues, who deserve at least equal credit and more attention than they received in the otherwise highly readable article on our Stalinka site.

Helena Goscilo
UCIS Research Professor Professor of Slavic


University Club would make ideal faculty/staff club for Pitt

As a member of the now-defunct University Club, I wholeheartedly agree with Dr. Munro’s recent column, “Should Pitt have a Faculty Club?”.  Certainly, most of us are as interested in the ambiance of a dining room as we are in the food, and this is especially true when lunching with visiting colleagues or celebrating a special occasion with officemates.  In this regard, the notion of the University Club of Pittsburgh serving as the location for a new faculty/staff club is seemingly perfect.  The present building which housed the University Club until a few months ago is lovely; it offers several dining rooms of varying sizes, some of which could be used (and have been used) for meetings by Pitt groups. There are sleeping rooms which could serve as temporary lodging for visiting scholars, prospects, new recruits, etc.  There is also a small, but adequate, health facility that could be used by members.

When I was an undergraduate student at Duquesne University, the chaplain took selected groups of seniors to dinner at the University Club; it was the first I’d heard of the place, and we all looked forward to getting invited; it was, for us, the “Big Time”. Later, while driving a delivery van for friends after graduating but before finding a career path, I delivered flowers to the University Club lobby for a wedding there, despondent over not having found a well-paying job worthy of my newly-minted degrees.  It was only a few years ago that I actually stepped foot inside as a member–just long enough ago to form a bond with the old-world charm and elegance of the place before it was sold off piece-meal at auction last month.

The idea of seeing such a graceful building filled with lively and animated conversation over drinks and dinner (or drinks and lunch!) is heartwarming not only to me, but to the other members of the University Club who regret its demise, I am sure.  What a wonderful opportunity the University of Pittsburgh has, not only in the now-empty building itself, but in the rich history that is embodied therein.  A central location, available parking, dining facilities, a fitness center (co-ed), and the opportunity to generate revenue by offering lodging: it sounds like a winning combination!

Douglas Florey
Director of Recruitment
School of Education

Filed under: Feature,Volume 37 Issue 9

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