Carnegie Mellon University

The Piper

CMU Community News

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June 18, 2015

News Briefs

CMU To Host Summer Institute on the Brain and Mechanics

GEM4 LogoCarnegie Mellon will host the Global Enterprise for Micro-Mechanics and Molecular Medicine (GEM4) Summer Institute on Neuroscience and Cellular Mechanics June 22–July 3. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the organization’s founding by CMU President Subra Suresh.

Graduate students, researchers and faculty experts in the fields of biology, engineering, imaging, chemistry and medicine will come together from across the world for a series of lectures and hands-on lab experiences to investigate mechanobiology of the brain.

“The GEM4 Summer Institute provides an intense learning experience in the fundamentals of neuroscience and cellular mechanics,” said Philip LeDuc, professor of mechanical engineering, director of the Center for the Mechanics and Engineering of Cellular Systems and coordinator of this year’s institute. “We’re training the next generation of researchers at the intersection of neuroscience and engineering in the area of mechanics.”

GEM4 seeks to understand and address human diseases at the global scale by working at the intersection of science, engineering and public health.

Find out more about GEM4.

Catalysts Safely Remove Dangerous Compounds from Wastewater

Catalysts created by CMU chemist Terrence J. Collins can effectively and safely remove a potent and dangerous endocrine disruptor from wastewater. In a paper published in Scientific Reports, Collins’ research team and collaborators, led by Brunel University London’s Susan Jobling and Rak Kanda, demonstrate that the catalysts could be a viable option for large-scale water treatment.

As pharmaceutical use has skyrocketed, especially in first-world countries, the amount of drugs released into the water system through wastewater has dramatically increased. Medications designed to disrupt the endocrine system, such as birth control pills and some breast and prostate cancer drugs, can be found in close to 25 percent of the world’s streams, rivers and lakes. Studies have shown that these compounds have an adverse effect on the health of wildlife. Read more.

EH&S To Conduct High Rise Building Evacuations July 3

To comply with the City of Pittsburgh’s All Hazards Plan, Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) will conduct building evacuations of five of CMU’s high-rise buildings on Friday, July 3. The building and evacuation schedule is as follows:

  • Mellon Institute, 9 a.m.;
  • Gates/Hillman centers, 10 a.m.;
  • Doherty Hall, 11 a.m.;
  • Wean Hall, 12:30 p.m.; and
  • Hamerschlag Hall, 1:30 p.m.

An evacuation announcement will be made over the buildings voice alarm system, (with the exception of Mellon Institute) followed by the sounding of the buildings fire alarm. Once the fire alarm sounds, occupants should quickly leave the building via the nearest exit and assemble in the building’s designated assembly area, which can be found online.

Failure to leave a building when the fire alarm sounds is a violation of a City of Pittsburgh ordinance and can result in a fine and court appearance.

Questions about the evacuation should be directed to Richard Caruso at 412-268-9404 or

New Street Parking Rates in Effect

The ongoing Carnegie Mellon parking study has prompted a shift in street parking prices on campus. The new prices are:

  • Frew Street, excluding the 5000 block: $1.25 per hour;
  • Frew Street, 5000 block: $1 per hour;
  • Margaret Morrison Street, $0.75 per hour;
  • Schenley Drive, $1 per hour; and
  • Tech Street: $1.50 per hour.

Due to the varying prices, commuters should use the parking pay station closest to and on the same street as where they park.

Tepper School of Business professors Stephen Spear and Mark Fichman are directing the parking study. The research involves periodic adjustments of hourly parking rates based on usage and demand.

Athletics Hosts Summer Sports Camps

The Athletics Department is offering several summer sports camps for children of all ages. Camps include boys and girls soccer, boys basketball and girls volleyball.

The department also is hosting a FITT camp in which campers will participate in activities such as basketball, tennis, racquetball, badminton, soccer, ping-pong and frisbee.

Learn more about the camps

Spots Still Available for Gelfand Center's K-8 Classes in July

There are still some spots available for the Gelfand Center's Outreach Summer Classes for K-8 students in July. Classes are developed by CMU faculty and staff to be fun, engaging, rigorous and hands-on. Available classes include Green Engineering (grades 5-8), Beginning Alice Programming (grades 3-4), Science and Engineering Summer Sampler (grades 3-5), Science of Everyday Stuff (grades K-2), and Robotics Programming and Design (grades 6-8). Register online.

Tennis Anyone?

CMU Tennis Coach Mike Belmonte is offering tennis lessons this summer at the CMU courts. One-hour lessons can be scheduled from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m, weekdays and weekends, based on Belmonte's availability. To register complete the registration form and contact Belmonte at The cost is $60 per hour.

PSO Offers Discounts for CMU

At 7:30 p.m., Friday, June 19, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 20, and 2:30 p.m., Sunday, June 21, the Pittsburgh Symphony PNC Pops Series ends with a Disney in Concert production of Tale as Old as Time, featuring well-loved music from the Disney animated films including Frozen, The Lion King and Tangled. Students can purchase tickets for $15, and faculty and staff tickets are available for $25.

Purchase tickets

On Wednesday, June 24, check out the symphony’s bold new approach to classical concerts: FUSE@PSO. This new series of early evening concerts fuses the old and the new, under the direction of Steve Hackman. This performance features a mash-up of two masterpieces — Brahms’ First Symphony and Radiohead’s OK Computer. Enjoy pre-concert beats, food and drinks in the Heinz Hall Summer Garden with a happy hour at 5 p.m.; concert starts at 6:30 p.m. General admission tickets are $25.

Purchase tickets

Discounts Available to Cedar Point, Sandcastle, Idlewild and Hershey Park

Staff Council is offering discounted tickets to CMU employees for Cedar Point, Sandcastle, Idlewild and Hershey Park. For ticket prices and purchasing information, go to Benefits & Discounts on the Staff Council website and click on Summer Discounts.

If you have any questions, please contact Sharon Cavlovich at or Nicole Stenger at