Tag: U.S. Agency for International Development

Civil Rights Icon Roger Wilkins Honored with Building at George Mason University

Roger Wilkins (photo via thenation.com)

via jbhe.com

George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, recently named its North Plaza in honor of Roger Wilkins, a former long-time faculty member who died this past March. Angel Cabrera, president of George Mason University, said at the dedication ceremony, “when Roger came to George Mason, few knew much about this fledgling university in the suburbs of Washington D.C. Roger was one of those intellectual pioneers who helped put this university on the map.”

A native of Kansas City, Missouri, Wilkins moved to Harlem at the age of 9 and later settled in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He earned a bachelor’s degree and a law degree at the University of Michigan.

Wilkins joined the Kennedy administration in 1962 as a special assistant to the director of the Agency for International Development. In 1965, he was appointed an assistant attorney general by President Johnson.

When the Democrats lost power after the 1968 election, Wilkins left government to work for the Ford Foundation. Beginning in 1972, Wilkins began a new career as a journalist, first for the Washington Post and then The New York Times. He was the author of Jefferson’s Pillow: The Founding Fathers and the Dilemma of Black Patriotism (Beacon Press, 2001).

In 1988, Wilkins joined the faculty at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, as the Clarence J. Robinson Professor in History and American Culture. He remained on the faculty for nearly 20 years until his retirement in 2007.

Rwandan Doctoral Student Wins Award for Work in Plant Genetics

Gerardine Mukeshimana, a doctoral student in plant breeding, genetics, and biotechnology at Michigan State University, received the 2012 Award for Scientific Excellence from the Board for International Food and Agricultural Development. Mukeshimana is being honored for her work in the breeding of the Phaseolus vulgaris L. bean in her home country of Rwanda. Her work has made the bean more resistant to disease and better able to withstand drought.

Mukeshimana’s research is supported by the Dry Grain Pulses Collaborative Research Support Program. This project, managed at Michigan State, is a partnership between U.S. universities, developing country institutions and the U.S. Agency for International Development. The research program addresses issues of hunger and poverty through science and technology.

article via jbhe.com