Campus briefs

Apr. 01, 2013 @ 12:11 PM

NCCU hosts performance

DURHAM — The N.C. Central University Department of Music’s Operatorio Performance Ensemble will present German composer Engelbert Humperdinck’s “Hansel and Gretel” Wednesday and Thursday at 7 p.m. in the B. N. Duke Auditorium.

NCCU music majors, faculty, alumni and members of the C.C. Spaulding Elementary School Glee Club will take part. The performance is free and open to the public.

The opera is based on the Grimm brothers fairy tale and was first performed in 1893 in Germany. Since January, 10 members of the glee club have been rehearsing at NCCU  with artist-in-residence Elvira Green and NCCU alumna Jasmine Issac, who is director of the club.

Lefkowitz, Smithies honored

DURHAM — The first class of fellows of the American Association for Cancer Research Academy includes two illustrious local scientists.

Robert Lefkowitz, a professor at Duke University who was recently named a Nobel Laureate in chemistry, and Oliver Smithies, a professor at UNC Chapel Hill who won the Nobel in physiology five years ago, were among 106 researchers chosen as fellows.

The AACR Academy recognizes and honors distinguished scientists whose major scientific contributions have propelled significant innovation and progress against cancer. The fellows were selected through a peer review process that evaluated individuals on the basis of their stellar scientific achievements in cancer research.

The inaugural class of fellows will be inducted into the AACR Academy on Friday at the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC.

Tercek to talk

DURHAM — Mark Tercek, president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy will visit Duke University Wednesday to discuss his new book “Nature’s Fortune: How Business and Society Thrive by Investing in Nature.”

The talk is open to the public and will take place from 6-7 p.m. in Room 04 of the Sanford School of Public Policy. It will be followed by a reception featuring light refreshments in Fleishman Commons. 

Moeser, Robertson to serve

CHAPEL HILL — UNC Chapel Hill Chancellor Emeritus James Moeser and business and education leader Wyndham Robertson have been named chair and vice chair, respectively, of Carolina Performing Arts’ National Advisory Board at UNC Chapel Hill.

Their terms begin July 1.

Moeser and Robertson, both of Chapel Hill, replace Tom Kearns of Darien, Conn., retired partner of Bear Stearns, and interior designer Jane Ellison of Greensboro, who served as chair and vice chair for six seasons.

Moeser served as Carolina’s ninth chancellor. He is also a trained concert organist and serves as professor of music at UNC. Robertson is a former editor of both Fortune and Time magazines. She also served as the vice president for communications with UNC General Administration for 10 years.

Faculty member gets fellowship

CHAPEL HILL — Anne Marion Taylor, a biomedical engineer at the UNC Chapel Hill School of Medicine, is among 126 scientists and scholars in the U.S. and Canada to receive 2013 Sloan Research Fellowships from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

Taylor’s research explores the intersection of neurobiology, neurotechnology and biomedical engineering to study the cellular mechanisms critical in learning and memory.

She will receive a two-year, $50,000 grant to further her research.

Local students excel

DURHAM — Two local students have been honored for their academic accomplishments.

Amber Oliver of Bahama was named to the dean’s list with distinction at Duke University for the fall semester. To qualify for the list with distinction, students must rank in the top tenth of their college at Duke.

Daniel LaCosse of Durham made the dean's list for the fall semester at the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University. A semester grade point average of 3.85 or higher is needed to make the list.

Duke, NC State collaborating

DURHAM — Duke and North Carolina State universities, along with six other U.S. institutions, have established a new scholarship program designed to bring international graduate students to the U.S. to further their research.

The program, known as the Vest Scholarships, is named after the outgoing National Academy of Engineering President Charles M. Vest. The new scholarship program will foster international collaborations among graduate students whose studies are focused on tackling some of the world’s biggest challenges.

In addition to Duke and N.C. State, the schools participating are the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), Olin College, University of Southern California, University of Washington, Illinois Institute of Technology and MIT.

In the first year, students from schools attending the Global Grand Challenges Summit will be eligible to apply for the scholarships. In later years, the program will be expanded to additional schools. Students who are chosen will receive an expense-paid year to pursue research opportunities related to the grand challenges at one of those institutions.

Gallagher receives award

CHAPEL HILL —James Gallagher, senior scientist emeritus at UNC Chapel Hill’s Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, has received the Old North State Award from the Office of the Governor.

The award honors individuals with a proven record of exemplary service and commitment to North Carolina.

Gallagher has served FPG since 1970, including a term as director, and is an internationally recognized expert on early childhood development.

Send university news to Neil Offen at or call 919-419-6646.