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Alasdair Roberts
Imagine trying to solve a Rubik’s Cube while the squares are constantly changing color. That’s what it’s like to wrestle with issues of policy making and governance, according to Alasdair Roberts, professor of political science and the inaugural director of the university...
Mike Leflar
Veteran collegiate coach Mike Leflar has joined the women’s basketball program as assistant coach. The appointment was announced May 30. No stranger to the Commonwealth, Leflar makes the trek to western Massachusetts after three seasons at Northeastern University in Boston. Head coach...
Ryan Hayward
The New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS) and the Blavatnik Family Foundation announced this week that polymer scientist and chemical engineer Ryan Hayward has been named a finalist for the 2018 Blavatnik National Awards in the physical sciences and engineering category. Led by the family...
Donald Leroy Brooks, 84, of Hatfield, a retired laboratory technician in chemical engineering, died May 1. Born May 31, 1933 in Holyoke, he received his GED from Greenfield Community College. He joined UMass Amherst in 1970, working as a technical assistant in the chemical engineering department...
Serene Werner Rubin, 81, of Amherst, a former staff associate in Judaic and Near Eastern studies, died May 18. Born Jan. 21, 1937 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, she earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Science in education from the University of Wisconsin,...
Craig Harbison
Craig Stephen Harbison, 74, of Hadley, professor emeritus of art history, died May 17. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, on April 19, 1944, he grew up in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He received his bachelor’s degree in art history in 1966 from Oberlin College, where he studied under Wolfgang...
Peter L. Pellett
Peter L. Pellett, 90, of Amherst, professor emeritus of nutrition whose work focused on relieving child malnutrition worldwide, died May 10. Born April 14, 1928 in London, England, he was a child survivor of World War II. He later joined the British Armed Forces where he defused bombs. After his...
Linda Isbell
Linda M. Isbell, professor of psychological and brain sciences, is one of five University of Massachusetts faculty awarded the 2018 Manning Prize for Excellence in Teaching for their exemplary dedication to students and the university. The faculty members—one from each UMass campus—will...
Sonia Nieto
Sonia Nieto, professor emerita of education, was awarded an honorary doctorate of humane letters by Mount Holyoke College at its 2018 Commencement on May 20. Nieto’s advice to graduates was to “become mentors. Push, believe, provoke, support and challenge your peers to do better, to...
From left: Oyuntuya Munkhbat, professor Thayumanvan, Celia Homyak, Youngju Bae, Molly Gordon, Priyaa Prasad and Poornima Rangadurai.
Research institutions still have a long way to go in retaining women in STEM fields, and particularly in the physical sciences, says Sankaran “Thai” Thayumanavan, but this month his chemistry lab celebrated a success as he escorted six women receiving their advanced degrees at Graduate...

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