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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University October 25, 2004 | Vol. 34 No. 9
In Brief


SPH Web site takes chill off recent plastic-water-bottle myth

If you're guessing that flu vaccine or bioterrorism get the most attention on the School of Public Health's Web site, you're wrong. It's dioxins and plastic water bottles.

In response to Internet warnings to avoid freezing water in plastic bottles so as not to get exposed to carcinogenic dioxins (including one hoax e-mail that was attributed to JHU), the Bloomberg School's Office of Communications and Public Affairs went to an expert to set the issue straight. Its Q&A with Rolf Halden, assistant professor in Environmental Health Sciences and the Center for Water and Health, quickly became the most visited Web page on the school's site. It also was referenced by The Wall Street Journal. To view the page, go to


Nancy Grasmick honored by alumni for outstanding service

Nancy Grasmick, Maryland state superintendent of schools, was honored last week by the JHU Alumni Association with the 2004 Woodrow Wilson Award for Distinguished Government Service. The award was presented during a luncheon held Oct. 24 on the Homewood campus.

Grasmick received her doctorate from the School of Professional Studies in Business and Education in 1979.

Commenting on the award, Ralph Fessler, dean of SPSBE, said, "I can think of no person more deserving of this award. Perhaps the most exceptional aspect of Nancy's accomplishments is the fact that all of her work is predicated upon a deep commitment to our children and their success in school and in life. The entire framework of educational law and policy in Maryland has been modified to reflect this singular belief."

The Woodrow Wilson Award for Distinguished Government Service was established in 1990 to honor alumni of Johns Hopkins who have brought credit to the university by their current or recently concluded distinguished service to the public as elected or appointed officials. Past recipients include Antonia Novello, former United States surgeon general; Madeleine Albright, former United States secretary of state; and Kweisi Mfume, president of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.


Author Dinesh D'Souza to speak Thursday in MSE Symposium

Conservative author and commentator Dinesh D'Souza, the Karen Rishwain Fellow at the Hoover Institution of Stanford University, will address the controversial and divisive issue of race in the United States when he speaks on the Homewood campus on Thursday, Oct. 28, as part of the MSE Symposium. His talk, "The End of Racism," begins at 8 p.m. in the Glass Pavilion.

In addition to being a regular commentator on Nightline, Crossfire, The Today Show and The O'Reilly Factor, D'Souza has published extensively. His most recent books include What's So Great About America, which is a New York Times bestseller, and Letters to a Young Conservative. He is also a regular contributor to The Atlantic Monthly, The Washington Post and The New York Times. In addition, he served as senior domestic policy analyst in the White House under President Ronald Reagan.


SAIS to host briefing on global strategy for fighting terrorism

The SAIS Center for Transatlantic Relations, Transatlantic Magazine and The Financial Times on Thursday will host an invitation-only briefing on a global strategy for fighting terrorism.

Lee H. Hamilton, vice chairman of the 9/11 Commission and president and director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, will give keynote remarks at the forum, to be held at the Bernstein-Offit Building in Washington. Other participants are John Donvan, correspondent for ABC News Nightline; Lionel Barber, U.S. managing editor of The Financial Times; and Robert Guttman, editor in chief of Transatlantic Magazine.


Evergreen House hosts event about 1933 double eagle coin

Evergreen House, home of John Work Garrett from 1920 to 1944, plays host this week to a reception, talk and book signing celebrating the publication of a book in which Garrett and fellow Baltimorean Louis E. Eliasberg Sr. play roles. Illegal Tender: Gold, Greed and the Mystery of the Lost 1933 Double Eagle is a suspense-filled narrative that tells a tale of the most valuable ounce of gold in the world. Its author is David Tripp, former head of Sotheby's coin department.

Steven Muller, president emeritus of Johns Hopkins, will give opening remarks. The event will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. today, Oct. 25, with Muller speaking at 6:15 p.m.

Admission is $5, free to members of Evergreen and Homewood House, Friends of the American Wing and Friends of the Johns Hopkins Libraries. To R.S.V.P. or for more information, contact Joann Willats at or 410-516-0341.


Fleet-footed profs take second win in Baltimore Marathon

Four Johns Hopkins professors pulled off a repeat performance in the Oct. 16 Baltimore Marathon, winning the Corporate Cup Relay Challenge for the second consecutive year. The interdisciplinary team — two members each from Engineering and Arts and Sciences — included Sanjay Arwade, Civil Engineering; Tom Haine, Earth and Planetary Sciences; Jerry Meyer, Chemistry; and Peter Searson, Materials Science and Engineering. With an overall time of 2:43:55, the team finished third overall in the relay competition.


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