Academics in the news

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Wayne State to offer artificial intelligence certification courses

Wayne State University is partnering with Ann Arbor’s Amesite Inc., an artificial intelligence software company, to create new online professional certificate programs intended to further skills in artificial intelligence and blockchain. The programs are tailored to those in engineering, law, health care, accounting, and business. “These training modules are being developed to address the gap that exists between academia and industry,” says Farshad Fotouhi, dean of the College of Engineering at WSU. “Our expert instructors, in conjunction with Amesite staff members, will deliver the six-week courses and be available to answer any questions the participants may have.” One of the classes, Blockchain: Cutting Edge Data Management, will teach students the fundamentals of data storage, including security and privacy issues, regulatory questions, and ways to increase efficiency and reduce costs. The class starts March 18 and runs through April 21.
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Remembering Harry Houdini's Halloween death in Detroit 92 years later

Halloween marks the 92nd death anniversary of one of the most famous magicians ever. Harry Houdini performed his last show in downtown Detroit before dying at a Detroit hospital in 1926. Days before his show in Detroit, he was performing in Montreal when someone asked to punch him in the stomach. Houdini was known to be a strong man with powerful abs. "Legend has it, he wasn't ready for the punch and they hit him pretty good," Jeff Horner, a senior lecturer at Wayne State said. Horner, who is an urban planner and calls himself an amateur historian, said Houdini wasn't feeling well on the train ride down to Detroit. Houdini gave his last performance at the Garrick Theater, which stood near the corner of Griswold and Michigan Ave. in downtown Detroit.
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Peter Hammer named inaugural Taubman chair at Wayne Law

Professor Peter J. Hammer, director of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights at Wayne State University Law School, has been named the Law School’s inaugural A. Alfred Taubman Endowed Chair. Hammer, who joined the Law School faculty in 2003, is a leading voice on economic and social issues impacting Detroit and the nation. He has spent more than 25 years engaging in matters of human rights law and development in Cambodia. Hammer is an expert on domestic health law and policy, as well as international public health and economic development. The $1.5 million endowed chair is part of a $3 million gift from the late A. Alfred Taubman in 2006 that led to the construction of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights building at Wayne Law.
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One classroom, 31 journeys, and the reason it’s so hard to fix Detroit’s schools

A recent analysis by two Wayne State University professors found that roughly one in three elementary school students changes schools every year — often in the middle of the school year. When the Wayne State professors, Sarah Winchell Lenhoff and Ben Pogodzinski, analyzed data from Detroit district and charter schools in the 2015-16 school year, they found that nearly 60 percent of students who live in Detroit — almost 50,000 children — were enrolled in two or more Detroit schools that year. Many had apparently boomeranged, returning eventually to the school where they started.
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Conversations with Wayne State University – 9/19

Mildred Gaddis sits down with Darrell Dawsey, Director of Community Communications for Wayne State University, Kenya Swanson, Coordinator of the Warrior Vision & Impact Program and Michelle Hunt Bruner, Director of the Academic Success Center at Wayne State. The four discuss the Warrior Vision & Impact Program, which is designed to help first-year students through a series of early support workshops that address some of the typical challenges students face during their transition to college.
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The Credibility Gap in Academe

The Harvey Weinstein scandal has led to renewed awareness about sexual misconduct in every sector, including a string of recent allegations in academe. In the past, claims by women — especially those in subordinate or less senior roles — were not always considered credible. That appears to be changing this time. Women are being believed, and predators are losing their jobs. Yet a recent incident showed me how much women’s credibility remains under siege, in subtle ways, even when dealing with faculty peers. In an academic environment where credentials are everything, women’s credentials may still mean little.