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Making an art of science

March 1, 2021 | rfunaawx | No Comments

first_imgEditor’s note: This is one in a series of profiles showcasing some of Harvard’s stellar graduates.For Kevin Shee, a lifelong love of dancing and four years of intense focus on that art won’t end with his graduation from Harvard this spring. It will take a back seat, though, to a newer love: that of a scientist conducting research on cancer.Shee, who lives in Winthrop House, is a molecular and cellular biology concentrator. He plans to take a few weeks off after graduating and then begin a two-year job as a cancer researcher at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT laboratory of Todd Golub, a professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.When Shee’s two-year contract is up, he plans on pursuing additional studies in graduate school, perhaps medical school. Though he entered Harvard with pre-med aspirations, in the four years since, he has become enamored with research.But Shee is sure he’ll continue dancing. Before coming to Harvard, he danced with the Crockett-Deane Ballet, based near his home in Sacramento, Calif.Shee is the older of two children in his family, both dancers. His parents always encouraged them to pursue art, Shee said, so that was important to him when he visited Harvard for the first time and saw a dance performance. Since then, he has danced with the Harvard Ballet Company, the Asian American Dance Troupe, and the Harvard Dance Program.Though he was urged to audition for jobs as a dancer after Commencement, Shee is a bit philosophical about the choice presented to him.“Dance is not something you need to do on a professional basis to really do it, and really enjoy it,” Shee said. “The act of expressing myself through dance is very fulfilling for me. Doing it as an extracurricular, but to a full extent, is more than I had hoped for.”Though he expects to continue taking dance lessons in Boston, Shee loves science too. Shee was interested in science in high school, but it was only in college that he was able to delve more fully into biology and become intrigued by both its complexity and its potential to do good.“There are a lot of things in the field of biology that I had no idea about. I found there was so much more to be discovered and so much more I needed to learn to make a mark in the field,” Shee said. “The more I learned, the more I realized there’s a lot to be done.”Shee has some personal motivation as well, since cancer has touched his family. A cousin died of liver cancer while Shee was at Harvard, and his mother is a breast cancer survivor.“This research has a lot to offer the world,” Shee said.Though many people think art and science are opposite disciplines, Shee doesn’t think that’s the case. The further he delves into biology, the more he sees the beauty of how it’s put together and understands that intuition and feeling, important to the dancer, are also important to the scientist.“They seem mutually exclusive, but they’re really not,” Shee said.For students just entering Harvard, Shee recommends they find something that excites them enough to spend the time it will take to excel in it.“It’s really important to find a passion, something to give your day to,” Shee said.last_img read more

first_imgThe Papuan Customary Council has called on local authorities to limit access to Papua and West Papua following the report of the first two COVID-19 cases in the region on Sunday.”We demand that the authorities halt all flights to Papua,” Customary Council head Dominikus Surabut said on Monday. He also urged the Papua and West Papua provincial administrations to restrict people’s activities to further contain the spread of the virus. “There must be concrete action [to combat COVID-19],” Dominikus said, suggesting that prevention was better than cure.Papua’s COVID-19 task force reported previously that 15 patients were under surveillance in Papua as of March 22. Two of them tested positive while two others were negative. The remaining 11 patients were still waiting for their test results. Papua Governor Lukas Enembe is set to hold a meeting with 29 regional heads, along with their respective health agencies, to discuss preventive measures. “We will announce whether or not a lockdown will be imposed on Wednesday,” Lukas said on Monday.Separately, on Sunday, Mamberamo Tengah Regent Ham Pagawan said that he would ask for an aircraft from the central government to help transport potential COVID-19 patients from Papua’s mountainous areas, which are difficult to reach by land.They would then be transported to Wamena, the capital of Jayawijaya regency, for treatment. “Wamena will be the community service center for people from mountainous areas,” Ham said. As of Monday afternoon, Indonesia had recorded 579 confirmed COVID-19 cases nationwide, with 49 deaths. (vny)Topics :last_img read more

LAUSD, charter schools wrestle over campuses

January 11, 2020 | mrhtxubs | No Comments

first_imgLos Angeles Unified has five shuttered campuses – four of them in the San Fernando Valley – but says it would cost too much to reopen the schools despite pleas for classroom space from the booming charter movement. Charter operators say they can’t afford – and shouldn’t have to pay – the multimillion-dollar cost of renovating the decrepit campuses and preparing them for students. Still, with state money available for charter development and charters a key issue in next month’s school board race, officials on both sides say there may be a way to work together to help the independent campuses evolve. “These seats cost money,” said Greg McNair, the district’s chief administrator for charter schools. The dilemma is exemplified by Highlander Road Elementary in West Hills, which was closed 18 years ago because of declining enrollment in the area. Currently used for storage, the campus was offered by Los Angeles Unified to a charter school, but operators refused because of the $11 million cost to get it ready for students. Charter officials note that voter-approved Proposition 39 makes the district responsible for providing them with classroom space and say LAUSD should foot the bill. District officials say the approximately $85 million remaining from the measure is earmarked to create charter schools in neighborhoods where existing schools are overcrowded – not a situation in the West Valley. Still, Tamar Galatzan, who is challenging school board member Jon Lauritzen in the May 15 runoff, said she would make it a priority to reopen shuttered campuses if she’s elected. “One of the first issues I intend to pursue is how to turn Highlander Road and other closed school sites into thriving schools once again,” she said during a recent news conference at the campus. “We cannot continue to deprive the West Valley and any other neighborhoods in the district of quality schools.” Lauritzen noted that the school board is spending $12 million to reopen Enadia Way Elementary in Canoga Park, and that it may be time to take other campuses out of mothballs. “We have taken on that bureaucracy when we fought to have one of those schools reopen,” Ed Burke, Lauritzen’s chief of staff, said of the Enadia Way project. “And now we will fight to open others as we create the need.” The creation of charter schools is an issue that has sharply divided Lauritzen and Galatzan in their high-profile race to represent the West San Fernando Valley on the LAUSD board. Like the teachers union that supports him, Lauritzen is a critic of charters, maintaining that students can best be served by working through the district. Galatzan, who is backed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and his education-reform movement, maintains that the independent charter schools offer alternatives that help spur student achievement. But LAUSD officials said just a handful of charters have expressed interest in the shuttered schools – Highlander, Collins Street, Oso Avenue and Platt Ranch in the Valley and 98th Street in South L.A. Most of the 103 charters are located over the hill, so the Valley campuses don’t meet their needs. Still, the facility shortage has surfaced as the No. 1 impediment to the growth of the charter movement, with many such schools operating out of churches and warehouses. The district is using the empty campuses for adult education, professional-development centers, staff offices, and in some cases it is leasing them out. Highlander was leased for years to a private school until 2004 and is now being used for storage. LAUSD officials maintain they don’t have enough surplus classroom space in their 850 schools to meet the demand voiced by charters. The district is in the midst of a $19 billion construction program, but only after years of not building schools. “The reality is that the district has what it has and offered what it has to the charter schools under Prop. 39,” McNair said. “The district doesn’t want to hold anything back.” McNair said he’s open to conversation with charter operators about reopening shuttered campuses, but noted there’s just $85 million to be shared among more than 100 charter schools. “We should go jointly and make a reasonable evaluation of cost and reasonable decisions on how much we each want to contribute in terms of resources,” McNair said. “Saying to one school we’ll spend $10 million of the charter bond money to give 300 seats is probably going to make a whole bunch of people upset. “Charter bond money could be utilized in better ways.” [email protected] (818) 713-3722 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “If they want to partner with us in identifying the cost in order to make an intelligent decision about whether they want to pay the cost, I’d be happy to do that, but that just hasn’t happened yet. “I think this should be a joint venture between the district and charter schools, not just this constant complaining and haranguing about `nothing’s happening,”‘ he said. Caprice Young, who heads the California Charter Schools Association, said she’s prepared to discuss reopening the schools as charters but was skeptical of the district’s commitment. “What our experience has been is we have meetings and meetings and meetings in rooms full of 30 district staff, none of whom have the power to make a decision,” Young said. “We’re ready to meet on it and we’d like to get schools in those campuses, but so far that hasn’t been our experience. “They’re all talk and no action, but we’re ready to get it done.” last_img