Forum examines Supreme Court’s marriage ruling

Tulane University Law School will mark Constitution Day Sept. 17 with a panel discussion exploring the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling on marriage equality.

The discussion,“Marriage Equality After Windsor: Where Are They Now?” will take place at 11:30 a.m. at 6329 Freret St., at Tulane Law School in Weinmann Hall. It is free and open to the public.

The panel will feature Tulane Law School professors Catherine Hancock, Robert Westley and Saru Matambanadzo with vice dean Ronald Scalise serving as moderator.Constitution Day, also called Citizenship Day, commemorates the formation and signing of the U.S. Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787.

Theatre group makes donation

A $60,000 donation from the New Orleans Theatre Association will establish an endowed professorship in the department of film and theatre at the University of New Orleans. The University will pursue a $40,000 match from the Louisiana Board of Regents.

The gift is the largest single grant in NOTA’s nearly 30-year history.

“NOTA is committed to enhancing cultural offerings in the New Orleans area,” said Michael Mitchell, president of NOTA.

“While we support all artistic endeavors, we’re especially committed to the theatrical arts.” David Hoover, professor and chair of the department of film and theatre, said the gift speaks not only to the “quality of our program but to the generosity of a great organization.”

“With this donation, faculty artists will be able to pursue their craft while helping students to pursue their own dreams,” Hoover said.

Loyola law student wins diversity award

Loyola Law student Carlos “Chuck” Benach was recently selected as one of only three law students in the country to receive the 2013 Baker Donelson Diversity Award.

Established in 2008 by the law firm Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, the award provides annual scholarships to diverse law school students who have completed their first year of law school.

Each recipient receives a salaried summer associate position in one of the firm’s 19 offices.

Upon completion of the summer position, the recipients also receive a $10,000 scholarship. Benach will be a summer associate in the firm’s New Orleans office.

In the essay he submitted for the award, Benach detailed his perspective on the criticism of Hispanics in the New Orleans community following Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

LSU researchers study functions of fruit flies

A team of researchers at LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans has successfully translated a new technology to better study behaviors and cellular function in fruit flies.

The powerful genetic tool allows scientists to remotely control behaviors and physiological processes in the fly.

The fruit fly shares a significant degree of similarity to humans and can be used to model a number of human diseases including: Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, cancer, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, epilepsy, ALS, mental illness, and others.The research, published on Sept.5, is available online in the journal Cell Reports.