Gibson Circle renamed for Scott Cowen, and other higher education news

Gibson Circle renamed for outgoing president

Gibson Circle, the semicircular driveway off St. Charles Avenue in front of Tulane University’s main administration building, Gibson Hall, is being renamed in honor of outgoing President Scott Cowen and his wife, Marjorie.

“Cowen Circle will be a permanent reminder of the crucial role Scott and Marjorie Cowen have played in the life of Tulane for the past 16 years and the place they will hold in our hearts forever,” said Darryl Berger, chairman of the Tulane board.

Cowen will retire June 30, having served as Tulane’s president since July 1998. The board resolution that established Cowen Circle noted Cowen’s key effort in leading Tulane through Hurricane Katrina.

“This is such a tremendous honor for Margie and me,” Cowen said. “We are so humbled and grateful for the love and support of our Tulane family.”

Tulane dean to lead engineering group

Nicholas J. Altiero, dean of the Tulane University School of Science and Engineering, has been named president of the American Society for Engineering Education.

“It is an honor to assume the presidency of ASEE, an organization that for 121 years has influenced the quality of engineering and engineering technology education in this country,” said Altiero, who took over the presidency June 18 at the group’s annual conference in Indianapolis.

Founded in 1893, the society works to enhance professional opportunities for engineering faculty members and promotes activities aimed at increasing student enrollment in engineering and engineering technology at colleges and universities.

The group’s more than 12,000 members include deans, department heads, faculty members, students, and government and industry representatives.

Altiero, who served as president-elect last year, succeeds Kenneth Galloway, of Vanderbilt University.

Altiero joined the Tulane faculty in 2000 as dean of the School of Engineering. When Tulane was restructured in 2006 after Hurricane Katrina, Altiero was named the first dean of the integrated School of Science and Engineering.

Loyola student wins $120,000 scholarship

Loyola University biological sciences major Denise Powell recently was selected as one of 18 students to participate in the Mississippi Rural Physicians Scholarship Program. The program aims to prepare rural primary care physicians in Mississippi through early clinical experience and the opportunity to attend medical school. Powell is from Magnolia, Mississippi.

The program will let Powell attend the University of Mississippi School of Medicine or William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine on a scholarship of up to $30,000 per year. Additional benefits include personalized mentoring from practicing rural physicians and academic support.

The program prepares medical students to enter residency programs in one of five primary care specialties: family medicine, general internal medicine, medicine-pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology or pediatrics. After residency training, the new doctors must provide four years of service in a clinic-based practice in a Mississippi community with a population of 20,000 or less located more than 20 miles from a medically served area.

Powell, also a student-athlete at Loyola, was named for the second year in a row to the Southern States Athletic Conference All-Academic Team for cross-country earlier this year. The All-Academic Awards are presented to student athletes who excel on the field and in the classroom.

LSU Health Sciences names vice chancellor

J.R. Pegues has been appointed vice chancellor for administration of the LSU Health Sciences Center. He currently serves as the chief operating and administrative officer at the school.

Pegues will have the lead responsibility for the university’s successful business performance, including information technology, environmental health and safety, human resources and auxiliary enterprises. He is responsible for developing campus master plans, acquisition and maintenance of property, as well as construction, renovation, maintenance and repair of facilities.

Pegues is a health care expert specializing in operations, strategic marketing, new business development and strategy formulation and execution.

Before joining LSUHSC, he was president and chief executive officer of Coventry Health Care’s and Aetna’s operations in Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi. In that role, he had responsibility for all day-to-day operations.