Calendar Highlights-Faculty & Staff News - Carnegie Mellon University

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Calendar Highlights

February 22:

The Impact of Attitude on Work and Life. 9 to 10 a.m., Connan Room, Cohon University Center. While you obviously need the appropriate knowledge and skills to do your job, the mindset with which you approach your work plays a dominant role in your ability to perform. If you’re discouraged, you work sluggishly, think small and give up easily. However, when you feel good, confident and exhilarated you can win people to your side and create dazzling projects. This workshop will help you explore how attitude can change your life and will provide you with opportunities to develop a more positive mindset. This program is offered by Guidance Resources, the CMU employee assistance provider. Register online.

Professional Development Workshop: So You Are New … Communication and Culture at CMU. 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., Connan Room, Cohon University Center. Every organization has its own language. CMU is no different. If you have recently joined the university, you may be experiencing some of the challenges that come with understanding the nuances of your new organization. This workshop will explore the intersection of communication and culture at CMU and provide strategies to help you effectively navigate your role as a new employee. Register online.

February 23:

Professional Development Workshop: Maximizing Your Performance Review Process — For Supervisors. 9 to 11 a.m., Danforth Conference Room, Cohon University Center. Whether you are new to facilitating performance reviews or have been completing them for years, this workshop will provide strategies on how you can maximize the effectiveness of your review process, have the conversations you need to have and set the stage for a productive new year. Register online.

Faculty Panel on Academic Publishing in STEM sponsored by the Global Communication Center. 12 - 1 p.m., Rangos I, Cohon Center. A panel of distinguished faculty members will use their own experience as journal editors to share insight on issues such as: responding to rejection, avoiding novice errors, and writing with co-authors. Additionally, panelists will provide their top three pieces of advice for beginning researchers who submit to their journals. Panelists are:

  • Susan Finger, professor of civil and environmental engineering, associate dean for IDeATe; founder and former co-editor-in-chief of the journal Research in Engineering Design;
  • Michael Domach, professor of chemical engineering; editor of the journal Biotechnology Progress; and
  • Jonathan Cagan, the George Tallman and Florence Barrett Ladd Professor of Mechanical Engineering; associate dean for Strategic Initiatives, College of Engineering; co-director, Integrated Innovation Institute; co-director, Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship; Courtesy Appointment, School of Design; associate editor for Design Science and Design Studies.

Speaking Up: Empowering Change in the Next Generation Through Arts Education and Policy. 12 - 1:30 p.m., Hamburg Hall 1204. The Master of Arts Management Speakers Series presents Jeff Poulin of Americans for the Arts. Poulin will discuss a future rich in arts and cultural education for America's students. Exploring pathways in pedagogy, policy and politics, he will apply his national perspective in arts and cultural policy in Washington, D.C., to the most local of challenges in equity, quality and issues of social justice. RSVP.

How to Bake Pi MATHEMATICS MADE TASTY. 4:30 - 6 p.m., Porter Hall 100. Mathematics can be tasty! It’s a way of thinking, and not just about numbers. Through unexpectedly connected examples from music, juggling, and baking, math can be made fun and intriguing for all, through hands-on activities, examples that everyone can relate to, and funny stories. Surprisingly high-level mathematics, including some advanced abstract algebra usually only seen by math majors and graduate students will be presented.  There will be a distinct emphasis on edible examples.

February 24:

CAUSE Speakers Series presents "No Way Out: Precarious Living in the Shadow of Poverty, Policing and Drug Dealing" by Waverly Duck, associate professor of sociology at the University of Pittsburgh. 5- 6:30 p.m., Steinberg Auditorium, Baker Hall A53. This presentation explores residents’ perspectives on drug dealing and law enforcement in a small black town, providing new insights into critical challenges facing low-income minority communities. This in-depth ethnographic study provides a unique opportunity to capture the cultural narrative of deprivation that exists in poor African-American neighborhoods today. Learn more.

February 27:

Mental Health First Aid Training. 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., location TBD. Mental Health First Aid is a public education program that introduces participants to risk factors and warning signs of mental illnesses, builds understanding of their impact, and overviews common supports. This 8-hour course uses role-playing and simulations to demonstrate how to offer initial help in a mental health crisis and connect persons to the appropriate professional, peer, social, and self-help care. The program also teaches the common risk factors and warning signs of specific types of illnesses, like anxiety, depression, substance use, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. Mental Health First Aid is included on the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP). This program is offered by University Health Services. Learn more and register online.

Program for Deliberative Democracy and the Center for Ethics and Policy present "The Future of Civil Discourse" by Alexander Heffner, host of Open Mind on PBS. 4:30 - 6 p.m., Porter Hall 100. This lecture will navigate three areas of interest across civic life: the Millennial citizen; the space of old and new media; and the character of our political discourse.  From the formation of broadcasting to the emergence of social media, Heffner will consider a blueprint for "civic press.”  He'll discuss questions for the new U.S. president and think about fresh ways young people can frame public policy, while reflecting on the 2016 campaign and how to improve the political process.

February 28:

Professional Development Workshop: Email Me! Proficient, Polite and Persuasive Messages. 9 to 11 a.m., Connan Room, Cohon University Center. Have you ever had an email you sent get misinterpreted? Have you ever received an email that didn’t include all the details you needed? Have you ever worried that an email wasn’t formal enough or was too formal? This workshop will explore how to avoid pitfalls within email communication and how to master using email as an efficient communication tool. Register online.

Energy Seminar: Sunlight-Driven Hydrogen Formation by Membrane-Supported Photoelectrochemical Water Splitting by Nathan S. Lewis, the George L. Argyros Professor of Chemistry, California Institute of Technology. Lewis is principal investigator of the Beckman Institute Molecular Materials Resource Center. His research interests include artificial photosynthesis and electronic noses. He continues to study ways to harness sunlight and generate chemical fuel by splitting water to generate hydrogen. Co-sponsored by the Scott Institute for Energy Innovation and the Climate and Energy Decision Making Center. 2:30 - 3:30 p.m., Connan Room, Cohon Center.  Learn more.

March 1:

Reading with Jim Daniels and Sharon Dilworth. 7 - 9 p.m., Peter/McKenna/Wright rooms, Cohon University Center. The creative writing professors will read from their latest books. From the last meals his mother is able to cook and joy rides to Canada, to childhood and the end of it, Daniels circles back to his life in Detroit in his 15th book of poetry, "Rowing Inland." Similar to many of his works, urban and working-class life appear throughout the four sections of the collection. In Dilworth's "MY RIVERIA," 15-year old Agnes is suddenly exiled from Paris by her father, and she finds herself living in the south of France with her sister Sophie, her ailing grandfather and two servants in the family's long-neglected summer villa. Without any friends, they begin exploring the Rivera as a means of distracting themselves from the mysterious scandal that has sent their family south.

Global Communications Center Workshop: Team Communication Part II - Handling Difficult People and Situations. 5 - 6 p.m., Ideate Studio A, Hunt Library. Even if you do everything “right” on a team project, you can still encounter difficult people and difficult situations. This workshop teaches you to approach difficult team situations in a way that is most likely to give you positive results. You will learn: strategies for confronting dismissive or aggressive teammates; how to respond to teammates who produce poor quality work; how to advocate for a particular role on a project. We will cover both what to say — and what not to say — in tense situations. Visit to sign up.

Requiem for Rice presents a Gullah Geechee food tasting and special film screening of "Daughters of the Dust," a film by Julie Dash. 6 p.m., food tasting; 7 p.m., remakrs by Dash; and 7:30 p.m. film screening. Waterworks Cinemas, Waterworks Mall, 930 Freeport Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15238. Gullah Geechee cuisine is from South Carolina and Georgia Sea Islands. Food tasting and film screening with director: $30 (in advance); $35 (at the door). Film screening Only: $12 (in advance); $15 (at the door). Learn more. 

March 2:

Annual Update from President Subra Suresh. 12:30 p.m., Rangos 1 and 2, Cohon University Center. The President's Annual Update will be an opportunity to hear President Suresh's perspective on guiding the university to new heights and understanding our challenges and opportunities as we move forward. A light reception will follow his remarks. 

March 7:

The Scott Institute for Energy Innovation presents Chevron Appalachia's Stacey Olson, who will give a talk titled "Energy Insights and Career Reflection." 12 - 1:30 p.m., Marquis Conference Room, Scott Hall. Olson will provide an overview of Chevron and the company’s global operations, highlighting the importance and magnitude of the region’s abundant energy resources. Focusing on the importance of diversity, inclusion and cultural awareness, Olson will reflect on her career as an engineer and leader for a Fortune 500 company’s operations worldwide. Find out more

Ready to Retire! 1:30 – 3:30 p.m., McKenna/Peter/Wright rooms, Cohon Center. You've been saving for retirement all these years and now the time has finally come. You are ready to retire, but where do you start?  Once you have made the decision to stop working, there are still many more decisions to make. This session is intended for faculty and staff considering retirement within the next five years. Topics include an overview of Medicare (presented by a Licensed Highmark Medicare Agent), a review of Carnegie Mellon’s retiree medical plan eligibility and offerings, and an overview on how to access your Carnegie Mellon retirement savings. This program is offered by the HR Benefits Office. Register online.

March 8:

The Victor M. Bearg Speaker Series presents Dr. Gerald Loeb and "Understanding Human Haptics by Building Robotic Systems." 4:30 p.m., Scott Hall 5201. Loeb is a professor of biomedical engineering at USC and CEO of SynTouch Inc. The human arm and hand provides an existence proof that dexterity is possible even as mechatronic systems remain far from such capabilities. Every interaction between the hand and an object provides a wealth of sensory information that is used to update prior hypotheses about the properties and identity of that object and then to select or learn an even better set of command signals and contingency plans to achieve the desired function. Unfortunately, there are no suitable methods to study the neural computation that underlies these capabilities in humans, and dexterous behaviors are limited, difficult to train and difficult to measure in experimental animals. This has led us to develop and test theories of sensorimotor control using mechatronic and computational machines to see if we can replicate biological behaviors and, perhaps, to shed light on how they are performed by the nervous system.

March 15:

Professional Development Workshop: Speakers Bureau Training. 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Danforth Conference Room, Cohon Center. Individuals interested in sharing their expertise in a content area, interested in preparing a workshop for a conference or who find their role to include a training component may want to complete the Speakers Bureau Training. This full-day program will include topics on participant assessment, program design, presentation delivery, and developing learning resources, along with preparing, practicing and presenting. Register online.

March 20:

CMU Staff and Community Blood Drive. 8 a.m. - 1 p.m., Rangos 2, Cohon University Center. Make an appointment by visiting and enter group code CU040004 or contact Debra James Bailey at All participants will receiive a selfie keychain. Walk-ins are welcome.

March 23:

The Margaret Morrison Distinguished Lecture in Women's History presents "Rape Hysteria and the Sexual Economy of Race: French Accusations of Sexual Assault Against African-American GIs, 1944-1946," by Mary Louise Roberts, the Distinguished Lucie Aubrac and Plaenert-Bascom Professor of History at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. 4:30 p.m., Breed Hall, Margaret Morrison Carnegie Hall 103.  Roberts is the author of "What Soldiers Do: Sex and the American GI in World War II (2013)." She won the American Historical Association’s George Louis Beer Prize and the French Historical Studies’ Gilbert Chinard Prize. The book has appeared in French, Chinese, Japanese and Czech, and forms the basis of a French documentary film, “Les Femmes de la libération,” produced by Maha Productions, Paris.

March 30:

"Art Under Attack," by Erin Thompson, professor, John Jay College, CUNY. 4:30 p.m., Porter Hall 100. Instability and conflict in Syria, Egypt and other countries rich with the remains of our shared past have led to a recent rise in the looting and destruction of archeological sites. Thompson’s talk will address the legal and policing strategies currently in place to address the looting crisis. She will also examine other less traditional, but perhaps more promising, proposals, from marketing campaigns that attempt to persuade collectors not to buy, to computer scientists producing 3-D reconstructions of destroyed antiquities from crowdsourced photographs to the use of drones to monitor vulnerable archeological sites.

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