Stanford Today Edition: November/December, 1996 Section: On Campus WWW: Campus News


Campus News

Newest Nobel Douglas D. Osheroff has won the Nobel Prize in physics, along with two colleagues from Cornell University, for their 1972 discovery of superfluidity in helium-3. When cooled to extremely low temperatures, this rare form of helium flows without resistance and behaves in unusual ways, such as climbing up the sides of a container and flowing out. Osheroff made the discovery when he was a graduate student at Cornell. A popular teacher who has been at Stanford since 1987, Osheroff also received one of the first MacArthur Foundation "genius" grants in 1981. He said that "there is so much good work in physics that is never recognized by a Nobel. I feel very lucky."

Fundraising Record The university raised nearly $313 million in the 1995-96 fiscal year, reflecting a record year in fundraising and an increase in participation rates of alumni. The total was bolstered by an ongoing effort to increase the number of alumni donors and by a large gift from David Packard's estate to complete the Science and Engineering Quadrangle. This is the first year Stanford has surpassed $300 million for annual fundraising, and the third consecutive year the university has drawn a record number of gifts from a record number of donors. Stephen Peeps, acting vice president for development, said that "what pleases us is that those dollars are driven by enormously large numbers of individual gifts and individual donors. Large gifts alone cannot meet all the real needs of the university because they tend not to provide the more flexible, current-use dollars that annual gifts provide and that no university can do without."

Biddle Suit Dismissed A private lawsuit that alleged that the university had overbilled the federal government for the costs of research projects has been dismissed by a federal judge. The lawsuit, filed five years ago by Paul Biddle, former contracting officer for the Office of Naval Research at Stanford, was the last legal action facing the university from the indirect costs dispute. In 1994, Stanford reached a settlement with the U.S. government that settled all differences over the billing expenses for federally sponsored research at Stanford from 1981 through 1992. In the settlement, the Office of Naval Research concluded that it did "not have a claim that Stanford engaged in fraud, misrepresentation, or other wrongdoing," and Stanford agreed to pay an additional $1.2 million to the government for that time period. President Casper said he was heartened by the decision, but acknowledged that "the dispute has imposed extraordinary expenses on Stanford and the United States government. It has lasted for more than six years. In its course, the reputation and integrity of individuals and institutions have been sullied. As a member of the legal profession - and on a personal note - I am increasingly concerned by the sensationalism that characterizes so much of our public life. A process that causes such extensive damage over unwarranted allegations deserves to be carefully examined," Casper said. Biddle's attorney has filed an appeal.

Korean Studies The first step toward having a full-time professor of Korean studies was taken in September when two Korean leaders pledged $3 million to endow a new professorship and Korean studies program. Kim Joungwon, of the Korea Foundation, and Hyun Jae-Hyun, chairman of the Tong Yang Group and president of the Korea Stanford Alumni Association, pledged approximately $1 million each from the foundation, the Tong Yang corporation and the alumni body. "Korean studies is much more than the study of Korea alone - it's a study of the greater Asia Pacific region," Hyun said. In 1995 President Casper unveiled his Pacific Initiative, designed to strengthen the faculty with respect to Asia. Casper has traveled to Asia three times since becoming president, and visited Seoul for the first time in 1995. The Korean studies chair will broaden the teaching and research programs in Asian studies, which currently are strongest in Japanese and Chinese studies. Stanford offers courses in Korean language study, but traditionally has relied on visiting professors to teach Korea-related social science courses. Koreans comprise the sixth-largest group of international students on campus. ST