News of Note From Pitt

Issue Date: 
March 18, 2013

Studio Arts Faculty Member Barbara Weissberger Receives National Endowment For the Arts Distinguished Fellowship
Pitt Studio Arts faculty member Barbara Weissberger is the recipient of a three-week National Endowment for the Arts Distinguished Fellowship this summer to attend The Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts & Sciences. One of the first artist communities established in the United States, Hambidge is situated in the rural setting of Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. The highly competitive, internationally recognized residency allows artists to create works in a retreat on a 600-acre site in the mountain foothills. Weissberger and fellow artists will gather for meals in an old farmhouse and enjoy walking trails, waterfalls, a log cabin, and other rustic amenities as they create art in studios nestled in the woods. 

Weissberger plans to work on Collage Formations, her current series of installations and related photographs. She creates abstract still-life photographic prints; pairs them with small sculptures, other objects, and mirrors; and then photographs the arrangements. Weissberger, a lecturer in Pitt’s Department of Studio Arts and a recent Guggenheim Fellow, also has been awarded residencies at The Camargo Foundation (France), Oberpfalzer Kunstlerhaus (Germany), the MacDowell Colony (New Hampshire), and Yaddo (New York), among others. Visit to see examples of her work.

Chemistry Professor Jill Millstone Awarded National Science Foundation CAREER Grant
Jill Millstone, assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry within Pitt’s Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, has been awarded a five-year, $550,000 CAREER grant from the National Science Foundation. The CAREER Program offers prestigious awards that support groundbreaking research by junior faculty members who demonstrate a great understanding of their fields. 
The CAREER grant will fund Millstone’s research on preparing metal nanoparticle alloys—solutions known for being able to transform the properties of metal. It is hoped that work completed through this grant will draw out the key relationships between an alloy’s architecture and surface chemistry. Materials generated from such solutions can exhibit a wide range of new behaviors, making them promising for such technologies as fossil fuel conversion and bioimaging. 

Education Professor Naomi Zigmond Honored for Contributions to Field of Learning Disabilities
Naomi Zigmond, professor emeritus of instruction and learning within the Pitt School of Education, will receive the 2013 Jeannette E. Fleischner Career Leadership Award during the Council for Exceptional Children’s Convention and Expo, to be held April 3-6, 2013, in San Antonio, Texas. The Fleischner Award honors those who have advanced the field of learning disabilities throughout the course of their careers through direct services, policy development, community service, research, or organizational leadership. Zigmond has spent her career studying the secondary and postsecondary school experiences of students with disabilities, and recently she has led the development and implementation of a system of assessment for Pennsylvania students with cognitive disabilities.