PASADENA—The California Institute of Technology is pleased to announce that Caltech undergraduate Heather Dean has been awarded a 1998–99 Donald A. Strauss Public Service Scholarship. She will receive $10,000 for her proposed public service project.
Dean's project is to coordinate and organize an Alternative Spring Break to a Native American community in Teesto, Arizona. Under Dean's leadership, Caltech students will participate in ecological projects, and work with reservation schools to set up computer labs and tutor students on the computers. Students will also visit Earthtime Ranch, a nonprofit organization committed to providing opportunities for the exchange of knowledge and experience between people of diverse ideologies.
"As I have said on a variety of occasions since becoming president, expanding our Caltech students' experiences beyond the classroom and lab needs to be one of our goals for the Institute," said David Baltimore, president of Caltech. "Our students will benefit from experiencing what it is like to be a member of a Native American community and will leave the community with the resources and knowledge they need to be better citizens of the 21st century."
Dean is a senior majoring in electrical engineering. She has maintained a high grade point average in addition to being active in a host of activities including serving as the Caltech coordinator for Project Angelfood and for the Stroll to End Child Abuse. She is also very active in the Caltech Y, a nonsectarian campus organization that builds bridges between science and culture, politics, social consciousness, recreation, ethics, and leadership.
The Donald A. Strauss Public Service Foundation was established in January 1997 by Strauss's widow, Dorothy M. R. Strauss, as a "tribute to the vision, ideals, and leadership of Donald A. Strauss." Strauss served 10 years on the Newport-Mesa Unified School District board and 12 years on the Newport Beach City Council, including one as mayor.
The public service scholarships are awarded to students at preselected four-year California colleges or universities who have demonstrated an interest in public service, have outstanding leadership potential, have developed and can demonstrate effective communication skills, and wish to "make a difference" in local, regional, or national communities.
Founded in 1891, Caltech has an enrollment of some 2,000 students, and a faculty of about 280 professorial members and 284 research members. The Institute has more than 19,000 alumni. Caltech employs a staff of more than 1,700 on campus and 5,300 at JPL.
Over the years, 26 Nobel Prizes and four Crafoord Prizes have been awarded to faculty members and alumni. Forty-three Caltech faculty members and alumni have received the National Medal of Science; and eight alumni (two of whom are also trustees), two additional trustees, and one faculty member have won the National Medal of Technology. Since 1958, 13 faculty members have received the annual California Scientist of the Year award. On the Caltech faculty there are 75 fellows of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences; and on the faculty and Board of Trustees, 68 members of the National Academy of Sciences and 46 members of the National Academy of Engineering.