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Seshu Desu, Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, has been named dean of the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science at Binghamton University.

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The Japan Society of Boston is honoring Ranjanaa Devi, director of the Asian Arts and Culture Program, with its John E. Thayer III Award at the group’s annual dinner on May 31 in Boston.

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Charles W. Funk, 65, of Shutesbury, a retired storekeeper II with Auxiliary Services, died May 13 at Cooley Dickinson Hospital.

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David Mednicoff, assistant professor of Legal Studies and Public Policy, in early May concluded a week-long speaking and research tour of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

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Stuart R. Chipkin, research professor in Kinesiology, is being honored by the Massachusetts Medical Society with its Committee Chair Service Award, which recognizes exceptional leadership and service to the organization.

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Fine Arts Center director Willie Hill will be the commencement speaker at his alma mater, Grambling State University, on May 20.

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Jane E. Fountain, professor of Political Science and Public Policy and director of the National Center for Digital Government, gave an invited lecture May 4 at a European Union-sponsored conference in Oslo, Norway.

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Helen Curtis Cole, 98, who served as dean of women from 1945-73, died May 8 in Amherst.

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Astronomy professor Bill Irvine recently joined the scientific organizing committee for an International Astronomical Union (IAU) symposium on organic matter in space, to be held Feb. 18-22 in Hong Kong.

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William MacKnight, Distinguished University Professor emeritus in the Polymer Science and Engineering Department, received the International Award May 6 from the Society of Plastics Engineers.

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