Briefly

David Artis has been named the new director of the UCSD Academic Enrichment Programs.

Artis is the former director of the Michigan School of Public Health in Ann Arbor and has also managed the graduate student retention programs at the University of Michigan’s Rackham School of Graduate Studies.

Artis will now be responsible for academically supporting UCSD undergraduates in their studies. Artis will be expected to increase student diversity and to create and improve programs that encourage undergraduates to pursue higher levels of education after graduating college.

Artis will also forge communication with local high school seniors about UCSD and its various programs.

UCSD Study Finds Gene Therapy Effective in Mature Monkeys

UCSD School of Medicine researchers have built upon earlier research with brain cells to report that degenerate brain fibers in older monkeys can be restored using genetically altered tissues that have been modified to create a nerve growth factor, which is found in all vertebrate animals.

The fibers, which are called axons, carry messages through the brain and are affected in Alzheimer’s Disease. The researchers believe their discovery could lead to a possible treatment for that disease. They have since received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to develop an Alzheimer’s treatment and are currently seeking human subjects. The researchers published their results, which describe the work they did with 18 rhesus monkeys ranging from 9 to 27 years old, in the Feb. 13 issue of the “”Proceedings of the National Academy of the Sciences.””

UCSD and San Diego Historical Society to Create Regional Studies Network

UCSD, in partnership with the San Diego Historical Society, will establish the San Diego Regional Studies Network, which will act as a clearinghouse for those doing research or are interested in subjects relating to San Diego’s history and culture.

The network will present its plans for its first task, a 120-page directory of San Diego’s historical resources, at its first meeting to be held Feb. 20 at the Museum of Man in Balboa Park. The directory will be posted online in the future.

The first series of meetings will unite local scholars and citizens to talk about issues concerning San Diego and will address the level of regional knowledge possessed by San Diego residents.

Speakers at the meetings will include Robert Witty, the director of the San Diego Historical Society, Bruce Linder, a naval historian and author, Mark Spalding, a UCSD professor and environmental specialist, and Richard Griswald Castillo, an SDSU professor and Mexican American history specialist.

Public attendance of the meetings are welcomed, but limited. For more information, call (858) 822-3125.

Chancellor Dynes Elected to the Council of the National Academy of Sciences

UCSD Chancellor Robert. C. Dynes has been elected to the Council of the National Academy of Sciences.

Dynes has been chosen to serve a three-year term as a councilor and is one of 12 elected councilors-at-large. Dynes has been a member of the society since 1989 in the field of Applied Physical Sciences.

UCSD to Help Fund Computer Based Programs at Gompers Elementary

UCSD in cooperation with California Student Opportunity and Access Program (Cal-SOAP) have created a pilot program called “”Through Windows and Lenses: Technology in Focus”” to help low-income students experience “”hands-on”” exposure to computer technology.

Students from Gompers Secondary School in the San Diego Unified District will participate in the program which will link them to math and science tutors at UCSD through live video connections called “”webcams.””

The program is made possible through a $30,000 grant from the Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications. The grant was established to assist institutions of higher education in recruiting and retaining qualified minority undergraduates in science and mathematics disciplines.

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