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8 1/2 x 11 News

Sept. 13, 2001

Vol. 12, No. 10

The "8 1/2 x 11 News" is published each week by the Department of Public Relations. News of campus interest should be sent to
Ed Delaney, 412-268-1609 ( or Bruce Gerson, 412-268-1613 ( The newsletter is available on the official.cmu-news and bulletin boards.

Previous editions are available online.


Carnegie Mellon cancelled classes Tuesday, Sept. 11, in recognition of the national tragedies in New York City, Washington, D.C. and Somerset, Pa. Employees wishing to be with their families and friends were allowed to leave for the day. Counselors were made available throughout the day by the Office of Student Affairs to help members of the university cope with the day's tragic events and a candlelight vigil was held at the Fence that evening. A gathering was held on Wednesday, Sept. 12 in the University Center (UC) to give faculty, staff and students the opportunity to discuss issues and share feelings.

—President Jared L. Cohon, who was out of town, sent the following email to the university community late Tuesday: "I want to share a personal note with each of you during this difficult time. Unfortunately, I am out of town on business and, as you know, air travel has been suspended indefinitely. Still, from my contact with members of the administration throughout the day, I have learned of the thoughtfulness and caring with which each of you has responded in our hour of need. On a day of such tragedy, we donated 251 pints of blood in the Connan Room and had to turn people away at the door. On a day when you could have so easily focused on yourselves, you reached out to others whose family and friends were most deeply impacted. My heart aches for the pain and the loss of life today, but I find solace and hope that you, members of one of the great universities of the world, have demonstrated what it means to be a community."


Researchers at the university's Robotics Institute have been asked by the Federal Bureau of Investigation to bring one of its experimental autonomous helicopters to inspect and assess the site of downed United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed Tuesday morning near Shankville, Somerset County, Pa., 86 miles east of Pittsburgh. It was one of four commercial planes that were sent on an unprecedented terroristic attack Tuesday against the United States.

—The 14-foot-long, 160-pound helicopter was originally developed as the subject of a doctoral thesis by Omead Amidi, systems scientist at the Robotics Institute, focusing on autonomous vision for aerial mapping, exploration and reconnaissance. The project began in 1991 and by 1995 a machine was developed that could fly autonomously.

—In 1998, the helicopter was taken to Devon Island in the Canadian Arctic to explore and map the Haughton Impact Crater as part of a NASA research project.


Now in its 11th year, Carnegie Mellon's International Festival has become a vehicle for fostering cultural awareness and celebrating values, traditions and beliefs. This year's theme is "Africa: Past, Present and Future." The festival will run from Oct 5 - 7. If you are interested in presenting a Personal Journey-presentation, discussion or lecture about your experiences in Africa-email Dan Barnett, Include dates and times that you are available on either Friday, Oct. 5 or Saturday, Oct. 6.

—Further information about the festival will be posted when available.


—Twenty-seven individuals and nine teams have been nominated for this year's Andy Awards. The university-wide staff recognition program honors individuals and teams in four categories: innovation, enthusiasm, citizenship and dedication. The awards will be presented on Wednesday, Oct. 17 in McConomy Auditorium. A listing of the nominees is posted on

—The American Heart Association's CPR class, announced in last week's issue, is open to all faculty and staff but limited to 30 students. There is no limit on the faculty and staff attendance. President Cohon encourages all staff and faculty, who are interested in this important program, to attend.

—Human Resources (HR) has announced that on Sept. 1 a new and expanded benefit service called LifeWorks became available via telephone at 1-888-267-8126 and via the web at (user ID: carnegie, password: 1121). LifeWorks replaces Magellan's Employee Assistance Program and is a one-stop resources that offers expert information, personalized community referrals and telephone or face-to-face consultation.


—School of Computer Science Dean Jim Morris, 59, underwent successful heart bypass surgery last Friday at UPMC Shadyside. He is recovering in the hospital and is expected to return home later this week. While Morris is recuperating for several weeks, Randy Bryant, Computer Science Department head, will be acting dean.

Robert Page, School of Music professor and director of Choral Studies, is the first recipient of the Paul Mellon Professorship of Music in the College of Fine Arts. The professorship is made possible by a generous gift from philanthropist Paul Mellon's estate.

Josh Halko, Carnegie Mellon Drama and English undergraduate, will premiere his play "Love Story?" in the Pittsburgh New Works Festival at the Lester Hamburg Studio Theatre, South Side, Sept. 13 - 16. The play is produced by South Park Theatre. For tickets call 412-881-6888.

Larry Cartwright, principal lecturer in Civil and Environmental Engineering, received a Best Paper Award in the Professional Interest Council I by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE). The paper, titled "Humorous Engineering 101," was presented at the ASEE Conference in Albuquerque.


Friday, Sept. 14: Community Service Fair. More than 40 service organizations from campus and the Pittsburgh community offer information about their service opportunities for you or your organization. Come and take a look at how to get involved. 11 a.m. - 2 p.m., Kirr & Wean Commons, UC. Information: Becca Albrecht, coordinator of Student Development, x8-9510 or ra2v@andrew.

Friday, Sept. 14: A welcoming reception for Carnegie Mellon's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students, faculty, staff and friends. Food, music and socializing. 4:30 - 7 p.m., McKenna/Peter/Wright Room, UC. Information:

Monday, Sept.17: University Lecture Series. Interactive Theater Presentation by Human Resources. 4:30 p.m., Adamson Wing, Baker Hall.

Thursday, Sept. 20: Department of Art. Robert Lepper Distinguished Lecture in Creative Inquiry. Speaker: Hans Haacke. Philip Chosky Theater. 7 p.m., Purnell Center.

Thursday, Sept. 20: Jill Watson Festival and ALCOA Foundation Speaker Series. "Technology and the Future of the Human Soul or What is a Person?" Jaron Lanier, lead scientist of the National Tele-immersion Initiative and chief scientist of Eyematic Interfaces. 4:30 p.m., Phillip Chosky Theater, Purnell Center. Informal reception follows.

Friday, Sept. 21: "The Clarks in Concert." 4:30 - 6 p.m., in front of the University Center. Rain location: Rangos Ballroom. Free. Sponsored by Student Affairs, Office of Orientation and First Year Programs.

Friday, Sept. 21: Mechanical Engineering lecture. "Engineering an Entertainment Attraction." Mark Sumner, technical director of Ride Mechanical Engineering at Walt Disney Imagineering. 2:45 p.m., Scaife Hall 125. Sumner participated in the development of 28 amusement ride systems.

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