About Sigma Xi Programs Meetings Member Services Chapters Giving Affiliates Resources American Scientist
   Massachusetts-Lowell, University of Chapter

2009 Banquet

University of Massachusetts - Lowell Chapter of Sigma Xi Local Events

2009 Annual Sigma Xi Banquet Tuesday, 28 April, 2009

This year, our banquet celebrates the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth, the 150th anniversary of the publication of The Origin of Species, and the International Year of Astronomy--the 400th Anniversary of Galileo's first telescopic observations.

Officers of the Local Chapter

Officers of the UMass Lowell chapter of the Society of Sigma Xi with Banquet speaker, Dr. David Livingstone Smith. From the left: (seated) Dr. Sandy McDonald, At-Large (Chemistry); Ms Elizabeth Fortin, Chapter Administrative Assistant and Dr. Mary Elizabeth Hooker, At-Large (Health and Environment); (standing) Dr. Bob Tamarin, President; Dr. Jim Whitten, Secretary; Dr. Aram Karakashian, Awards Officer; Dr. Smith; Dr. Art Mittler, Treasurer; (kneeling) Dr. Rick Hochberg, At-Large (Biology); Dr. Gil Brown, At-Large (Engineering); and Dr. Bob Gamache, Vice President.

The Venue

The banquet took place in the MIL Room of the Wannalancit Mill Building, a beautiful old Textile Mill.


High School Teacher of the Year

The UMass Lowell chapter initiated the High School Teacher of the Year Award in 2004 to honor an outstanding high school science or math teacher, one responsible for instilling in students an excitement about the sciences and technology. The 2009 awardee is Sean P. McGowan of Bedford, MA, High School. (Left) Michael Griffin and Sean McGowan are cofounders of the "Women of Science Scholarship Competition" at Bedford High School. Next is Sean's wife Katie and son William. In the photo at right, Sean accepts the University and Sigma Xi certificates of appreciation from Bob Tamarin, local chapter president.

Graduate Research Scholar Award

With local chapter President Bob Tamarin is the Sciences Graduate Research Scholar of the Year, Urmila Tandel, who is working on her Ph.D. in Physics with professor Partha Chowdhury. The award of $1,000 is given to one doctoral student each in the four colleges at UMass Lowell that grant doctoral degrees (Science; Engineering; Education; and Health & Environnment). Recognition is also made at the Graduate Student Banquet in May.


Prof. Charlie Steele Memorial Scholarship

Ursula Steele (left), widow of Professor Charlie Steele, stands with the Professor Charlie Steele Memorial Scholarship awardee, Ambika Bhatta (Electrical and Computer Engineering). On the right is Engineering Prof. Charles Thompson who was on the awards committee.


Edwin C. Sherburne Memorial Scholarship in Chemistry

This scholarship was created by Betty Sherburne to honor her late husband, a Chemistry major with degrees at Lowell Tech in 1952 (B.A.) and 1954 (M.S.). Local chapter President Bob Tamarin (right) stands with this year's awardee, Daniel Henderson, a student in the Chemistry Department.


2009 C. Daniel Cole Undergraduate Research Award

Students competing for the C. Daniel Cole Undergraduate Research prizes must have participated in the annual Undergraduate Research Symposium at UMass Lowell. The awardees are also inducted into Sigma Xi as Associate Members. Shown are Dr. Aram Karakashian (right), Cole Award Officer of the local chapter and the five awardees. From the left: Timothy Ficarra (Electrical and Computer Engineering, First Prize); Mary Moriarity (Plastics Engineering, Second Prize); Craig Masley (Electrical and Computer Engineering, First Prize); Andrew Donovan (Plastics Engineering, Second Prize); and Henry Kells (Chemistry, Third Prize).


Faculty Award for the Advancement of Teaching and Learning in the Sciences

This award was created by Sciences Advisory Board member Susan Pasquale and her husband, Ron Boudreau. The award is designed to reward the scholarship of teaching. This year the awardee was Dr. Fred Martin of Computer Science (right), accepting the award certificate from Bob Tamarin, local chapter President.


Induction of New Full Members

New full members of Sigma Xi are shown above. From the left: Dr. Jim Whitten, Secretary of the local chapter, Prof. Guixin He (Clinical Lab and Nutritional Sciences), and Dr. Subha Nagarajan (Chemistry).


Induction of New Associate Members

New associate members of Sigma Xi are shown above. Back row, from the left: Brian Mackness (Chemistry); Henry Kells (Chemistry); Dr. Jim Whitten, Secretary of the local chapter; and Andrew Donovan (Plastics Engineering). Front row, from the left: Craig Masley (Electrical and Computer Engineering); Timothy Ficarra (Electrical and Computer Engineering); Mary Moriarity (Plastics Engineering); Leslie Farris (Chemistry); and Sinang Chourb (Chemistry).

Guest Lecture

Our Banquet Speaker this year was Dr. David Livingstone Smith, well-known writer on human evolution, with recent books: The Most Dangerous Animal: Human Nature and the Origins of War and Why We Lie: The Evolutionary Roots of Deception and the Unconscious Mind. His work has been featured in Psychology Today, The Wall Street Journal, Fox News Live, Forbes.com, U.S. News & World Report, National Geographic Television, and the Brazilian magazine, Veja, the fourth largest weekly magazine in the world with a circulation of 1,300,000.
Smith earned his M.A. from Antioch University and his Ph.D. in philosophy from the University of London, Kings College, where he worked on topics in the philosophy of mind and psychology. Smith's earlier books include Freud's Philosophy of the Unconscious (1999), Approaching Psychoanalysis: An Introductory Course (1999), and Psychoanalysis in Focus (2002). His current research interests include: deception and self-deception, the evolutionary psychology of war, incest and incest-avoidance, and various aspects of analytical philosophy. He is co-founder of the University of New England's New England Institute for Cognitive Science and Evolutionary Psychology and is a faculty member in UNE's Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies. He lives in Portland. The title of his talk was:

Darwin's Impact on Philosophy


Special thanks to our Administrator, Ms Elizabeth Fortin, for making all the arrangements for our Banquet.

Check back in the fall for information about the 2009-2010 awards competitions and the 2010 Banquet.

Return to Past Events


Back to top | Privacy Policy | Copyright ©2013. All Rights Reserved.