University Briefs

3M Foundation gives U grant for infectious disease researchHumanities Institute director resigns

Ed Swaray

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3M Foundation gives U grant for infectious disease research

The University’s Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy received a $450,000 grant Monday from the 3M Foundation to support the center’s infectious disease research, education and outreach efforts, according to a University press release.

The grant will fund the center’s general operating costs, said Dr. Michael Osterholm, an infectious-disease specialist and the center’s director.

The grant will help continue the center’s public health preparation and educational outreach efforts, he said.

Much of the center’s work deals with rapidly emerging infectious diseases, such as the flu or SARS, Osterholm said. Without funding from groups such as the 3M Foundation, the center would not be able to react quickly to public health crises. There is no time to find funding when an outbreak occurs, he said.

“That’s like finding a fire truck as the fire is going,” he said. “In many cases, the kinds of public health problems we deal with emerge overnight.”


Humanities Institute director resigns

Humanities Institute director Timothy Brennan resigned Wednesday after holding the position for 16 months. No reason was given for the resignation, according to a University press release.

Brennan’s resignation will take effect Jan. 26.

College of Liberal Arts Dean Steven Rosenstone accepted Brennan’s resignation.

In a memo to CLA department heads and directors, Rosenstone said he was grateful for the “vision and energy that (Brennan) has provided the Institute.”

The Humanities Institute was established in 1998 to promote collaborative, interdisciplinary research in CLA. It organizes cultural and art exhibition programs among CLA departments.

Robert Gambone, the institute’s current assistant director, will serve as interim director.

Rosenstone said Gambone has “tremendous ability and experience” and that the University is fortunate to have him as director during the interim period.