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RIT’s remote-sensing superheroes—and more Athenaeum

Imagine yourself as a survivor of Hurricane Irene or another devastating disaster that has left your home in ruins and your life in shambles. As the water begins to recede, you’re left hoping that emergency aid comes along sooner than later so you can feed your children, find shelter and protect your family.

The cover story for the Feb. 16 issue of Athenaeum features the important work of two RIT researchers—Don McKeown and Jason Faulring—who are utilizing their expertise of remote-sensing technology to deliver maps of destroyed areas to emergency responders that will allow them to focus first on the hardest hit locations. While McKeown and Faulring may not be the first on the ground in the event of a disaster, they are using their RIT know-how to help those in need. This is another example of why I believe that some people at RIT are ‘superheroes.’

This latest issue also features Ashley Aberg, a philosophy major with minors in psychology and science, technology and society in the College of Liberal Arts, who I first met last summer at the Undergraduate Research Conference. As you read my story, I think you’ll understand why she’s so cool. Ashley has confidence and charisma that draws people to her. She has not only presented her research into intersex infants at local and international conferences, but to add to the cool, she’s a member of RIT’s Hooks and Needles knitting club that is working diligently to complete a pretty lofty goal by the end of the year. Knit one, purl two. You go, girl!

Finally, I’d like to give a special Athenaeum ‘shout-out’ to RIT Archivist Becky Simmons and her team. Six times a year, Becky adds another assignment to her workload. She locates great photos from the halls of the RIT archives and tells the stories surrounding these photographic treasures. I look forward to seeing what she comes up with issue after issue, and although I like so many parts of Athenaeum, the In Retrospect feature on page 12 is my favorite. At RIT, we focus much of our attention on what’s next, what’s new, what’s hot. Maybe I’m just old school—but personally, I have a passion for rich history and tradition, dark hallways lined with relics and classic black-and-white photographs. Thanks to the staff from RIT Archive Collections for always bringing a piece of RIT history into our tech-centered lives.



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