The Johns Hopkins Gazette: January 27, 2003
January 27, 2003
VOL. 32, NO. 19


In Brief

Johns Hopkins Gazette Online Edition

President Brody to participate in universities/cities conference

A national conference called "Great Universities and Their Cities" will highlight the inauguration of the new president of Case Western Reserve University, Edward Hundert, on Thursday, Jan. 30.

Hosted by Cleveland Mayor Jane Campbell, the day includes a keynote address by Yale President Richard Levin and a series of sessions focusing on downtown revitalization, race relations, cultural and artistic development, and other topics. Johns Hopkins President William R. Brody and Douglas Nelson, president of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which is headquartered in Baltimore, will address the issue of housing.

Following the conference, panelists will gather to discuss their findings in a sold-out colloquium moderated by Neal Conan, host of National Public Radio's Talk of the Nation.

Evergreen receives funding for Leon Bakst collection

Evergreen House has received a $46,000 award from the Richard C. von Hess Foundation for the conservation and exhibition of the historic house museum's collection of works by Russian artist Leon Bakst. The award also will fund a publication about the collection.

Bakst's connection to Evergreen House began during his tenure as a stage set and costume designer for the Ballets Russes under Sergei Diaghilev. While in Paris between 1914 and 1917, Bakst met the owners of Evergreen, Ambassador John Work Garrett and his wife, Alice Warder Garrett. In 1922, the Garretts invited Bakst to their Baltimore home to design its theater, costumes and three stage sets.

The works will be on display from Feb. 9 through May 25 in the upcoming exhibition A Russian's Winter in Baltimore: Leon Bakst at Evergreen, 1922-23, part of Baltimore's citywide VIVAT! St. Petersburg celebration. A free opening reception for the public will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 13.

PBS's 'Partners of the Heart' to be screened on Sunday

Partners of the Heart, an upcoming PBS documentary that tells the story of two Johns Hopkins cardiac surgery pioneers, will be screened for the Hopkins community from 4 to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 2, in the Hodson Hall auditorium, Homewood campus.

Narrated by actor Morgan Freeman, the film looks at the 34-year-partnership of chief surgeon Alfred Blalock and Vivien Thomas, an African-American lab technician with little money and only a high school diploma, and their work to alleviate the "blue baby" syndrome.

Members of the production staff will be on hand, along with several Johns Hopkins people who appear in the film, which will air on PBS at 9 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 10, as part of the American Experience series. A reception will follow the screening.

There is no charge to attend the event, but reservations are required. Contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 410-516-0363 or

WSE forms advisory council for Part-Time Programs

The Whiting School of Engineering has formed an advisory council for the Part-Time Programs in Engineering and Applied Science. The council comprises representatives of both Johns Hopkins and the Washington/Baltimore metropolitan area business community.

Sarah Steinberg, executive director of the Part-Time Programs, said, "With this council, we are forging partnerships with public and private entities that have a vested interest in ensuring that the courses offered to working adults will be in touch with their needs and in tune with business and economic trends."

Suzanne Jenniches, vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman Government Systems Division, will chair the council. A graduate of Clarion State College with a master's degree in environmental engineering from Johns Hopkins, Jenniches began her career with Northrop Grumman as a computerized test engineer and now manages a cross section of defense and nondefense operating units.

Long-shot communication fails: NEAR Shoemaker sleeps on

APL's history-making NEAR Shoemaker spacecraft--the first to orbit, land on and send data from the surface of an asteroid--kept mum despite a recent long-shot effort to communicate with it.

The mission team wanted to see if NEAR Shoemaker's systems were tough enough to survive extremely cold temperatures on the surface of asteroid Eros, where the solar-powered probe landed nearly two years ago. But with their spacecraft chilling in temperatures down to minus 274 degrees Fahrenheit and enduring several months of total darkness, mission managers admit a signal would have been a surprise.

High school teams build medical robots to attack 'tumors'

Eight teams from five area high schools spent four days last week with two $200 Lego mindstorm kits. The goal: To build a computer-based medical robot that could guide a needle through a cube of Jell-O to puncture a grape representing a tumor. Their guides were JHU and MIT graduate students affiliated with the Engineering Research Center in Computer Integrated Surgical Systems and Technology. Demonstrations were held Jan. 26 at the Stieff Silver Building.