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For the record

Board picks new trustees
David Rubenstein, JD’73, and Charles Lewis were elected to the University’s Board of Trustees in July. Rubenstein, a cofounder and managing director of the private-equity Carlyle Group, also serves as a trustee of his alma mater Duke University and Johns Hopkins University. Lewis, a graduate of Amherst College and Penn’s Wharton School of Business, is a retired vice chairman of Merrill Lynch & Co. and a life trustee of Amherst, where he previously led a capital campaign.

Poet laureate has Chicago ties
Charles Simic, who studied in the College from 1956 to ’58, is the nation’s new poet laureate. Born in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, in 1938, Simic emigrated with his family to the U.S. at 15, settling in Oak Park, Illinois, a year later. Author of 18 poetry books and professor emeritus at the University of New Hampshire, Simic won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1990 for The World Doesn’t End (Harvest, 1989). 

Bush picks GSB professor
President Bush has picked economics professor Dennis Carlton to join the three-member Council of Economic Advisers. The group advises the president on economic policy and prepares the annual Economic Report of the President. Carlton was on leave from Chicago when he was appointed, previously serving as deputy assistant attorney general in the Justice Department’s antitrust division.

Medical Center makes honor roll
U.S. News and World Report ranked the University of Chicago Medical Center one of the nation’s best in its hospitals honor roll. Chicago tied for 17th with Los Angeles’s Cedars–Sinai on the list of elite 18 hospitals. Chicago’s digestive-disorders program placed sixth, cancer seventh, and endocrinology 11th. Another five programs made the top-25 lists. The Medical Center—the only Illinois hospital ever included in the honor roll—has appeared on the list ten times since 1995.

Registrar goes west
After five years at Chicago, registrar Thomas C. Black heads to Stanford University in September. Black, who developed several high-tech registration systems at Chicago, including electronic transcripts, hopes to use the registrar’s position to continue introducing new technologies at Stanford.

Two alumni win science medal
Hyman Bass, SM’56, PhD’59, and Lubert Stryer, SB’57, each received a 2006 National Medal of Science from the National Science Foundation for research that “leads to innovations and technologies that give the United States its global economic edge.” Bass, a mathematics professor at the University of Michigan, won for his contribution to algebra’s “k-theory.” Stryer, professor emeritus of neurobiology at Stanford University, was recognized for his breakthroughs in imaging biological molecules.

Obama’s economist
Austan Goolsbee, the Robert P. Gwinn professor in the Graduate School of Business and a New York Times columnist, is also Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama’s lead economist. The two met during Obama’s days as a lecturer at the Law School, and Goolsbee has worked with Obama since his 2004 Senate campaign. Elsewhere in the Democratic field, John Edwards has referenced Goolsbee’s ideas on tax simplification in his campaign proposals.

Med student wins AMA prize
Pritzker student Aisha Jimoh Reuler received the American Medical Association Foundation’s 2007 Minority Scholars Award in May. One of 11 U.S. medical students to receive the $10,000 prize for academic excellence and professional promise, Reuler is copresident of the University’s American Medical Women’s Association and tutors inner-city youth through a weekend science club. Her research projects include “Use of Condoms in African American Adolescents.”

Iraq how-to
Sixty-five years ago the U.S. military developed a series of prescient suggestions for its soldiers: tribal leaders and sheiks are important, Iraq is hot, “don’t under any circumstances call an Iraqi a ‘heathen.’” The U of C Press has reprinted the paperback guide, Instructions for American Servicemen in Iraq During World War II, recently found in the Regenstein Library’s archives. The Chicago Tribune reported that although the Pentagon has not distributed copies to soldiers in Iraq, at least one commander has distributed sections to his subordinates. In August the book was in its second printing.

Formula for success
The Council on Foundations has cited the University of Chicago School Mathematics Project, the nation’s largest university--based mathematics curriculum, as a model philanthropic program. Begun with grants from the BP Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and other organizations, the curriculum is now used to teach more than 3.5 million prekindergarten through high-school students in all 50 states. The program formed in 1983, a collaboration of seven Chicago professors in mathematics, education, sociology, and human development.

Sliding away
In addition to transcripts, recommendations, résumés, and essays, GSB applicants must now submit up to four PowerPoint slides about themselves. Paralleling the communication tools used for professional networking and presentation, the slides will show “how prospective students define themselves,” said GSB deputy dean Stacey Kole, AM’86, PhD’92. The slides may contain pictures, graphs, and text as a means for students to “express themselves in ways they could not before in essay form.”

South Korea hails historian
On May 21 South Korea honored Bruce Cumings, history department chair and Gustavus F. and Ann M. Swift distinguished service professor in history and the College, who studies East Asian political economy and international relations. At Chaonnam University in Kwangju, Cumings received the first Kim Dae Jung Academic Award for Outstanding Achievements and Scholarly Contributions to Democracy, Human Rights, and Peace. The next day he met with former South Korean president Kim, the award’s namesake and 2000 Nobel Peace Prize winner.

Top ten once again
Chicago ranked 9th once again in U.S. News & World Report‘s 2008 list of America’s Best Colleges, tying Columbia University and edging out Dartmouth College, with which the University tied last year. Dean of College Admissions Ted O’Neill, AM’70, said in an interview that though the ranking “is a nice recognition of a great university, it recognizes the things we don’t consider the most important.”

Image exploration
The U of C Press awarded W. J. T. Mitchell, distinguished service professor in English and art history and Critical Inquiry editor, its Laing Prize for What Do Pictures Want? (U of C Press, 2005). Mitchell’s work explores the meaning of images with examples from the visual arts, literature, and mass media. The annual award goes to a faculty member whose book, published during the preceding three years, “has brought the greatest distinction to the University Press.” What do Pictures Want? also won the Modern Language Association’s 2006 James Russell Lowe Prize.

Finance professors honored
Four GSB professors and one former faculty member were recognized for their contributions to the study of finance. Eugene Fama, MBA’63, PhD’64, and Raghuram Rajan received Jensen prizes from the Journal of Financial Economics for their work on investment returns and management perks, respectively. Pietro Veronesi and Lubos Pastor won the journal’s Fama–DFA prize—named in honor of Fama’s contributions to his field and the journal—for their paper on asset pricing. Pastor and former U of C colleague Robert Stambaugh, MBA’76, PhD’81, won the 2007 Goldman Sachs Asset Management Award from the Western Finance Association for their paper on predictive systems. Stambaugh now teaches finance at Penn’s Wharton School.

New social-service scholar
Leaving Duke for Chicago, Charles M. Payne becomes the Frank P. Hixon distinguished service professor in the School of Social Service Administration this fall. Payne, who also joins the Committee on Education, has studied civil rights, social change, inequality, and school reform. As former director of the Urban Education Project in Orange, New Jersey, which helps disadvantaged students work toward technology careers, he oversaw program and curriculum development.