Dr. Uri Treisman named Scientist of the Year by Harvard Foundation for work in math and science education

Feb. 9, 2006

AUSTIN, Texas—Dr. Uri Treisman, professor of mathematics and executive director of the Charles A. Dana Center, has been named by the Harvard Foundation as 2006 Scientist of the Year for his outstanding contributions to American science.

Treisman is being honored for his notable achievements in and contributions to the field of mathematics and particularly for his efforts to advance minorities and women in the sciences.

“Uri’s notable contributions to mathematics and his admirable work with minority students deserves special recognition,” said Dr. S. Allen Counter, director of the Harvard Foundation.

An award ceremony will be held March 17 at Harvard. Treisman will receive the Harvard Foundation medal in science from the dean of Harvard College and the president of Harvard University.

Treisman has developed many programs that have dramatically increased the number of minorities who enter mathematics, science, engineering and related disciplines. At the University of California at Berkeley in the 1970s, Treisman started what is now known as the Emerging Scholars Program (ESP), designed to increase the number of minority and other underserved students who succeed in calculus. The ESP program developed by Treisman became a model used by colleges and universities throughout the United States.

As founder and director of the Charles A. Dana Center, Treisman develops strategies for strengthening education in Texas and nationwide. The Dana Center is a research unit in The University of Texas at Austin’s College of Natural Sciences dedicated to strengthening education and civic life in Texas. The center is an incubator of innovative programs and practices designed to support local and state agencies, school districts and civic organizations as they work together to serve their Texas constituencies in ways that reflect local beliefs and values.

Treisman has received numerous honors and awards for his efforts to strengthen American education. He received the 1987 Charles A. Dana Award for Pioneering Achievement in American Higher Education. In 1992, he was named a MacArthur Fellow. In December 1999, he was named as one of the outstanding leaders in higher education in the 20th century by the magazine Black Issues in Higher Education.

The Harvard Foundation was founded in 1981 with the purpose to improve intercultural understanding through scholarly programs and to recognize the contributions of people whose works and deeds have served to improve the quality of life. The foundation represents a model for intercultural relations that is being adopted by other universities throughout the country. A variety of national and international leaders in the areas of education politics, science, economics and the arts are invited to Harvard University each year to participate in the Harvard Foundation’s programs and to be recognized for their notable achievements.

For more information contact: Lee Clippard, College of Natural Sciences, 512-232-0675.