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Northeastern’s Beltway insiders

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CSSH Assistant Professor Dan O'Brien was one of several Northeastern faculty, students, and staff who recently participated in three separate White House events.

Over a recent six-​​day span, North­eastern stu­dents, fac­ulty, and staff par­tic­i­pated in three sep­a­rate White House events that rec­og­nized con­tri­bu­tions made in the areas of net­work part­ner­ships, inter­faith ser­vice, and HIV andAIDS aware­ness advocacy.

White House Smart Cities Forum

Daniel T. O’Brien, an assis­tant pro­fessor who holds joint appoint­ments in the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs and the School of Crim­i­nology and Crim­inal Jus­tice, and Phil He, asso­ciate vice provost for grad­uate edu­ca­tion, attended the White House Smart Cities Forum on Monday.

The pair rep­re­sented the city of Boston and the Boston Area Research Initiative’s new part­ner­ship with the MetroLab Net­work. The net­work was recently cre­ated to con­vene com­mu­ni­ties and their respec­tive col­leges to work on the research and devel­op­ment of tools that will address urban areas’ most pressing needs.

The MetroLab Net­work will be a spe­cial oppor­tu­nity for the city-​​university col­lab­o­ra­tions being under­taken by the Boston Area Research Ini­tia­tive and the city of Boston, including many involving fac­ulty at North­eastern, to ben­efit from sim­ilar work being done in other cities,” O’Brien said.

O’Brien, who is the BARI’s research director, is the Boston aca­d­emic com­mu­nity rep­re­sen­ta­tive on the MetroLab Network’s exec­u­tive com­mittee. His research involves using Big Data—most often in the form of large admin­is­tra­tive data sets gen­er­ated by city government—in con­junc­tion with tra­di­tional method­olo­gies to explore the behav­ioral and social dynamics of urban neighborhoods.

North­eastern is among the 25 national uni­ver­si­ties that are founding mem­bers of the MetroLab Network.

President’s Inter­faith and Com­mu­nity Ser­vice Campus Chal­lenge Fall Gathering

Stu­dents and staff in Northeastern’s Center for Spir­i­tu­ality, Dia­logue, and Ser­vice par­tic­i­pated in the President’s Inter­faith and Com­mu­nity Ser­vice Campus Chal­lenge Fall Gath­ering on Sept. 10–11. The stu­dents played a par­tic­u­larly impor­tant role, pre­senting a panel titled “Race and Reli­gion: Stu­dents Respond through Dia­logue and Action.”

Joined by their peers from the Uni­ver­sity of North Florida, the stu­dents shared exam­ples of how to respond com­pas­sion­ately and con­struc­tively to events such as the Boston Marathon bomb­ings and the Charlie Hebdo attacks.

At the con­fer­ence, North­eastern was also named to Pres­i­dent Obama’s Inter­faith Com­mu­nity Ser­vice Honor Roll.

It was an honor to be selected to present, as well as to receive honor roll recog­ni­tion,” Alexander Lev­ering Kern, exec­u­tive director of the CSDS, said in an email announcing the recognition.

CARE Act anniversary

Jean McGuire, pro­fessor of the prac­tice in the Depart­ment of Health Sci­ences in the Bouvé Col­lege of Health Sci­ences, spoke at a Sept. 9 White House event cel­e­brating the 25th anniver­sary of the signing of the Ryan White Com­pre­hen­sive AIDS Resources Emer­gency Act.

McGuire served as the exec­u­tive director of the AIDS Action Council when theCARE Act was signed into law on Aug. 18, 1990. At the time she worked to con­vene a diverse polit­ical coali­tion that suc­ceeded in pushing Con­gress to pass the land­mark legislation.

The council con­sid­ered the CARE Act a major suc­cess,” recalled McGuire. “It has saved many lives and built a care delivery infra­struc­ture and clin­ical capacity that has endured.”

The CARE Act cre­ated the Ryan White HIV/​AIDS Pro­gram, which cur­rently pro­vides drugs and sup­port ser­vices to more than 500,000 people who do not have the finan­cial resources to manage the disease.

-By Joe O’Connell

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