Issue Date: 
November 7, 2011

Taiwan Health Minister Visits His Alma Mater

Pitt alumnus and Taiwan Department of Health Minister Wen-Ta Chiu (right) met with Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg during Chiu’s Aug. 25 visit to the University’s Pittsburgh campus. Chiu received his master’s and doctoral degrees in public health from Pitt’s Graduate School of Public Health in 1987 and 1989, respectively. Chiu is a highly distinguished neurosurgeon, medical researcher, academic leader, and public health advocate. He served as the president of Taipei Medical University from 2008 to 2011, stepping down in February after being named health minister.

Unraveling DNA Replication

Pitt junior Whitney White (left) explains her Science 2011-Next Gen project, “Unraveling the Function of Beta-Hairpins in the Eukaryotic Replicative Helicase,” which focuses on the intricacies of how human cells undergo the critical process of DNA replication. Science 2011 was the University’s 11th annual showcase of the region’s latest research in science, engineering, medicine, and computation. It was held Oct. 6-7 in Alumni Hall; White appeared during the undergraduate research poster reception on Oct. 6.


Ambassador Shigeyuki Hiroki (center), the ambassador and consul-general of Japan in New York, visited the Japanese Nationality Room in the Cathedral of Learning on Nov. 3. He met with Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg (left) and Pitt Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Patricia E. Beeson (right), as well as E. Maxine Bruhns (not pictured), director of Pitt’s Nationality Rooms Program. His visit coincided with the Japan-America Society of Pennsylvania (JASP) Annual Dinner at The Duquesne Club, Downtown, later that evening. Hiroki was the featured guest speaker at the dinner, which marked the JASP’s 25th anniversary.


The  2011 National Veterans Wheelchair Games were held in Pittsburgh Aug. 1-6, and Pitt hosted the Games’ swimming events in the Trees Hall pool. Pitt’s Rory Cooper won five gold medals in swimming events; Cooper is a Distinguished Professor and FISA-Paralyzed Veterans of America Chair in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, within Pitt’s School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. In addition, Cooper is director of Pitt’s Human Engineering Research Laboratories (HERL). HERL staff volunteered in many capacities during the Games—including, among other things, assisting athletes and working on a number of Veterans Affairs-funded research projects aimed at improving quality of life for wheelchair users. Cooper is pictured above, second from left, in the front row, with the HERL staff.

Homewood Children’s Village

John M. Wallace (left), Philip Hallen Chair in Community Health and Social Justice, Pitt School of Social Work, delivered an Oct. 18 lecture titled “Making Pittsburgh ‘Most Livable’ for All: Lessons Being Learned From the Homewood Children’s Village.” The presentation in Posvar Hall was part of the Provost’s Inaugural Lecture Series. The Homewood Children’s Village is a project designed to improve the lives of Homewood youngsters and re-weave the fabric of their community. It is modeled after Geoffrey Canada’s internationally acclaimed Harlem Children’s Zone, which serves more than 10,000 children in a 100-block area of central Harlem. Standing next to Wallace, from left: Philip Hallen, who served as president of the Maurice Falk Medical Fund for 35 years, and Pitt Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Patricia E. Beeson.