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Four professors named 2015 MacVicar Fellows

On March 13, four MIT professors were named MacVicar Fellows for their contributions to undergraduate education: Arthur Bahr, Catherine L. Drennan, Lorna J. Gibson, and Hazel L. Sive. Each will receive $10,000 annually for 10 years to aid them in their efforts to enhance the learning experience at MIT.

Bahr is the Alfred Henry and Jean Morrison Hayes Career Development Associate Professor of Literature. Drennan is a professor of chemistry and biology and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute professor and investigator. Gibson, the Matoula S. Salapatas Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, is a professor of civil and environmental engineering and mechanical engineering. Sive is a professor of biology.

Arthur Bahr joined the MIT faculty in 2007 as an assistant professor of literature with a PhD from University of California Berkeley. According to the MIT News Office, one student described him as able to make medieval studies “cool,” teaching to the subject in fun yet challenging ways.

Catherine L. Drennan teaches Principles of Chemical Science (5.111) and has worked at MIT for the past 15 years. In that time, she has tried to “develop classroom material that shows the connection between chemistry and other disciplines, and how chemistry can be used to solve real-world problems,” she said in an interview with the MIT News Office.

Lorna J. Gibson became an associate professor of Civil Engineering in 1984 and is described as “crystal clear in her thinking and explanations, totally organized, utterly engaging.” Students described her as able to explain tough concepts clearly and coherently while exciting them about the wonders of engineering.

Hazel L. Sive joined the faculty in 1991 and teaches Introductory Biology (7.013). Sive is described as a caring professor whose “incredible energy and enthusiasm” lets her connect with students and become a mentor outside of the classroom.

Since the program’s inception in 1992 to commemorate MIT’s first Dean of Undergraduate Education and founder of the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Margaret MacVicar, MIT has named 42 MacVicar fellows. This year’s fellows were named at a symposium hosted by Dean for Undergraduate Education Dennis Freeman PhD ’86.

—Anuhya Vajapeyajula