Dr. Scott Cowen to Receive Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Graduation Ceremonies - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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Dr. Scott Cowen to Receive Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Graduation Ceremonies

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Monday, April 6, 2009

Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D., President of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), announced that he will present the Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, to Dr. Scott Cowen, President of Tulane University. The degree will be granted at HUC-JIR’s Cincinnati Graduation Ceremony.  Communal leaders, relatives, and friends will gather at Isaac M. Wise Temple on June 7th for the Graduation Ceremonies of the 134th academic year.  Dr. Cowen will deliver the Graduation Address to the Class of 2009.

Dr. Cowen is Tulane University's 14th President. He also holds joint appointments as the Seymour S. Goodman Memorial Professor of Business in Tulane's A.B. Freeman School of Business and Professor of Economics in the School of Liberal Arts. Dr. Cowen came to Tulane in 1998 from Case Western Reserve University where he was a member of the faculty for 23 years. He is the author of four books and over 100 academic and professional articles, essays, and reviews, and is the recipient of several national awards and honors.

In August of 2005, Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, flooded half of Tulane's uptown campus and all of its downtown Health Sciences Center, and dispersed its faculty and staff around the country for an entire semester. Under Dr. Cowen's leadership the campus was repaired and a remarkable 87 percent of its students returned for classes in January of 2006. On December 8, 2005 the Board of Tulane approved President Cowen's Renewal Plan, a sweeping effort that strengthens and focuses the university's academic mission while strategically addressing its current and future operations in the post-Katrina era.  In response to Katrina, New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin appointed President Cowen to the city's Bring New Orleans Back Commission and charged him with leading a committee to reform and rebuild the city's failing public school system.


Dr. Cowen received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut in 1968. After serving a three-year term in the U.S. Army as an infantry officer from 1968-1971, he went back to school and received his masters and doctoral degrees, respectively, from The George Washington University in the fields of finance and management.


Rabbi Ellenson said, “Dr. Cowen is an eloquent spokesman who has provided dynamic leadership to numerous corporations, civic and national counsels, and boards; he is a prolific author who represents the epitome of the academic ideal; and, with vision and energy, Dr. Cowen rescued Tulane University from the onslaught of Hurricane Katrina.”


For more information on the HUC-JIR Graduation, Investiture, and Ordination ceremonies in New York, Los Angeles, and Cincinnati, please visit http://www.huc.edu/newspubs/pressroom/article.php?pressroomid=271.


For more information, contact Jean Rosensaft, 212-824-2209 or jrosensaft@huc.edu.


View the national invitation for event details:  http://www.huc.edu/external/email/09/03/graduation/

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates leaders to serve North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, museums, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu