Krieger Faculty Elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences, National Academy of Sciences
John Irwin, the Decker Professor in the Humanities, and Peter Olson, a professor in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, were elected in April to the 225th class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Irwin, a poet in the Writing Seminars, is the author of, among other things, Just Let Me Say This About That, Doubling and Incest/Repetition and Revenge: A Speculative Reading of Faulkner, and The Mystery to a Solution: Poe, Borges, and the Analytic Detective Story. He is currently editor of the Johns Hopkins University Press Fiction and Poetry Series.
Olson, a former department chair, studies the dynamics of the Earth’s interior, including both the mantle and core, and how these two major parts of the Earth interact to produce plate tectonics, deep mantle plumes, and the geomagnetic field.
“This is wonderful news for professors Olson and Irwin, each of whom is richly deserving of this recognition,” says interim dean Adam Falk. “It is also a great source of pride for the Krieger School to have faculty honored simultaneously in two such different disciplines.”
Just as the school was receiving word of Olson and Irwin’s accomplishments, it heard of another honor for one of its newer faculty members: Charles Bennett, a professor in physics and astronomy, was elected to the National Academy of Sciences, an honorary society that advises the government on scientific matters. The day before, Bennett had received the prestigious Henry Draper Medal at the NAS’ annual meeting.
Bennett, who joined the faculty in January, was honored for his achievements as the principal investigator on the Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (WMAP), a NASA Explorer mission that is working to determine precisely the age, composition, and curvature of the universe.
Election into the Academy is considered one of the highest honors for an American scientist or engineer. “It’s a wonderful way to begin his career at Hopkins,” says Jonathan Bagger, chairman of the Physics and Astronomy Department.
—Angela Paik Schaeffer