Carnegie Mellon University

The Piper

CMU Community News

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September 20, 2012

Personal Mention

Rick McCullough will join Harvard University as vice provost for research on Oct. 15. McCullough, vice president for research at Carnegie Mellon since 2007, played a key role in advancing the university’s entrepreneurial culture. "As our vice president of research, Rick has helped to speed university innovations from the research lab to the marketplace, increasing the annual number of CMU startups significantly," said Carnegie Mellon President Jared L. Cohon. "He was essential in launching our Greenlighting Startups initiative, creating a university-wide infrastructure to support campus incubator groups in their startup efforts." McCullough joined the faculty of CMU’s Chemistry Department in 1990 and became head of the department in 1998. He was appointed dean of CMU’s Mellon College of Science in 2001. Read the Harvard announcement.

Cameron Tonkinwise has joined Carnegie Mellon's School of Design as associate professor, director of design studies and chair of the school's Doctoral Studies Committee. Formerly the chair of design thinking and sustainability for the School of Design Strategies at Parsons The New School for Design in New York City, Tonkinwise was responsible for developing offerings in the areas of strategy, sustainability and service design. He also was the co-chair of the Tishman Environment Design Center, managing the New School's university-wide degree programs in environmental studies, and was a founding member of the Parsons DESIS Lab (Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability). Read more about Tonkinwise

Amal Al-Malki, executive director of Qatar Foundation’s Translation and Interpreting Institute and a professor at Carnegie Mellon in Qatar, was the keynote speaker at the Language and Popular Culture Conference at Baruch College in New York City. Al-Malki is the conference’s first Arab and Muslim speaker since the conference began in 1999. Al-Malki’s speech drew on themes from her recently published book, "Arab Women in Arab News: Old Stereotypes and New Media." Read the full story.

Adam W. Feinberg, an assistant professor in CMU's departments of Biomedical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering, was awarded a five-year, $2.25 million National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's New Innovator Award to continue developing new biomaterials and cardiac tissue engineering strategies to help repair the human heart following injury and disease. "I am extremely excited about this award because it will allow me to continue pursuing leading edge research designed to help regenerate and repair heart muscle and improve wound healing in a variety of biomedical arenas," Feinberg said. Read the full story

At the end of September, Mariana Achugar, associate professor of Hispanic Studies and second language acquisition, will give the closing plenary session at the Latin American Association of Systemic Functional Linguistics' VIII International Congress on Language and Society in Montevideo, Uruguay. Achugar's talk is titled "The Intergenerational Transmission of Recent Past: Learning About the Dictatorship in Uruguay." She is also organizing a special panel at the conference on "Recontextualization of Recent Past: Multisemiotic Social Practices." For more information, visit!__english/presentation.

Denise Rousseau, the H.J. Heinz II University Professor of Organizational Behavior and Public Policy with a joint appointment at the Heinz College and Tepper School of Business, is number seven in HR Magazine’s "Most Influential 2012 Top 20 International Thinkers." The honor, which recognizes individuals who have the greatest influence in the field of "people strategy" was  announced at an awards ceremony on Sept. 17.

Dennis Schebetta, marketing manager for the School of Drama, is appearing in Pittsburgh Playhouse's production of "August:  Osage County" by Tracy Letts through Sept. 23. Schebetta plays a character called "Little" Charles Aiken. Additionally, Voice Professor Janet Feindel and Adjunct Professor Randy Kovitz are part of the production, doing dialects and managing fight scenes, respectively. The play, directed by John Shepard, received the Pulitzer Prize and five Tony awards in 2008. It is the opening production of The REP, Point Park University's professional theatre company. Tickets range from $24 to $27. To purchase tickets, contact the Pittsburgh Playhouse box office at 412-392-8000 or

Two alumni of the School of Music, Maria Sensi-Sellner (A 2002, 2007, 2009) and Chris Fecteau (A 1990), have received the American Prize in Conducting for their work on opera productions in Pittsburgh and New York. Sensi-Sellner took top prize in the university/college division for her work with the Carnegie Mellon Opera in its 2011 production of Puccini's "Suor Angelica." Fecteau, an opera director and vocal coach, was awarded an American Prize in the community division for his work as the artistic director of the dell'Arte Opera Ensemble, a company he founded in 2000. Read the full story.

Josephine Tsay, a master’s degree student at the Entertainment Technology Center, has received a $2,500 Mark Beaumont Scholarship from the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. The scholarship is given annually to support students who are pursuing careers specializing in the business of interactive entertainment. "I once promised my 8-year-old self never to forget what it was like to wonder, and to dream," Tsay said.  "I'm truly grateful for the opportunity to lead in a way that hopefully inspires others to do the same. Whatever you find worthwhile in life, is worth fighting for!"


Carnegie Mellon alumnus Lt. Col. Chris "Otis" Raible (E’95), a husband, father and U.S. Marine Corps commanding officer, was killed in action on Sept. 14 during an insurgent attack on his base in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He was one of two Marines killed in the attack. Raible graduated from CMU in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering.

After graduating from CMU, Raible joined the Marines and earned his Naval Aviator designation in 1998. He was awarded the rank of Lieutenant Colonel in the summer of 2011 and was the recipient of many military honors, including a Meritorious Service Medal, 10 Strike Flight awards, and a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal. The squadron he commanded, known as "the Avengers," is the only Marine Harrier squadron in Afghanistan. Read more about Raible.