- Chinese, medical studies at U-M get $50 million boost from alumnus Richard Rogel
(The Detroit News, November 6, 2013)
Colorado investor Richard Rogel and his wife, Susan, are giving the University of Michigan $50 million to fund medical education and bolster the Chinese studies program, officials announced Wednesday. It is the fifth major gift to U-M this year and the seventh largest single gift ever. Rogel, a New Jersey native who graduated as valedictorian of his business school class in 1970, will serve as vice chairman of the University’s Victors for Michigan fundraising campaign, announced in early November, and will chair a broader campaign for the health system. Susan Rogel will serve on a steering committee of the campaign.
- U-M to expand entrepreneurship education
(Associated Press, November 4, 2013)
U-M plans to offer formal entrepreneurship education to all of its undergraduates within the next two years. Provost Martha Pollack has appointed Thomas Zurbuchen to serve as senior counselor for entrepreneurial education, effective immediately. “We see this role as one that not only knits together the University’s existing resources in entrepreneurship education, but also expands them, to offer as many students as possible a chance to develop entrepreneurial skills,” Pollack said in a statement.
- Michigan’s University Research Corridor entrepreneurs bring a spirit of innovation to revive Detroit
(Huffington Post, October 28, 2012)
As the city of Detroit deals with the lengthy process of getting back on its feet financially, some observers are eager to write off the city that launched Motown, Joe Louis and some of history’s most iconic automobiles. But Detroit’s financial problems aren’t deterring students and alumni from the three universities that make up Michigan’s University Research Corridor (URC)—Michigan State University, the University of Michigan and Wayne State University—from launching new businesses, tapping their talents, and paving the way for Detroit’s resurgence.
- U-M to build $6.5M track to test automated cars in Ann Arbor
(mlive.com, October 19. 2013)
It’s a test track, but not one you’ve likely seen before. Cars on it won’t go around in circles; instead, they’ll merge into a series of lanes and drive down a 5-mile road with twists and turns designed to simulate the real world. The proposed $6.5M track will be part of U-M’s Mobility Transformation Center, launched in May. With a location on North Campus near the existing water tower, the 30-acre track will be used primarily to test automated vehicles. “It is very likely the first of its kind,” says U-M Vice President for Research Stephen Forrest.
- Global warming led to dwarfism in mammals millions of years ago—and it could happen again, claims scientist
(London Daily Mail, November 1, 2013)
U.S. researchers have found that mammals shrank significantly during at least two ancient global warming events. The finding suggests a similar outcome is possible in response to future climate change. Scientists have known for years that animals such as horses and deer became much smaller during a period of warming, called the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM). This occurred around 55 million years ago when global temperatures rose by about 6°C over a period of 200,000 years. Now U-M paleontologist Philip Gingerich has found evidence that mammalian ‘dwarfing’ also occurred during a separate, smaller global warming event 53 million years ago. “The fact that it happened twice significantly increases our confidence that we’re seeing cause and effect, that one interesting response to global warming in the past was a substantial decrease in body size in mammalian species,” Gingerich said.
- Plutocrats vs. populists
(New York Times, November 1, 2013)
As Mark S. Mizruchi, a sociologist at the University of Michigan, documents in his recent book The Fracturing of the American Corporate Elite, today’s business lobby is not the business lobby that shaped America so powerfully in the 1950s and 1960s. Business leaders of the postwar era were individually weaker but collectively more effective; CEO salaries were relatively lower, but the voice of business in the national conversation was much more potent, perhaps in part because it was less exclusively self-interested. The postwar era, not coincidentally a period when income inequality declined, was the time when business executives could say that what was good for GM was good for America and really believe it. It didn’t hurt that they were sometimes willing to forgo short-term personal and corporate gain when they judged that the national interest required it.