The Honorable Curt Weldon, Eight-term Member of the U.S. House of Representatives, will deliver the Andres R. Cecil Lecture on April 11, 2001

Dr. Hobson Wildenthal, UTD’s Executive Vice President and Provost, has announced that Congressman Curt Weldon, a eight-term member of the U. S. House of Representatives from the Philadelphia area, who is currently Chairman of the Subcommittee on Military Readiness of the House Armed Services Committee and the past three-term Chairman of its Subcommittee on Military Research and Development, and also a senior member of the House Science Committee, will deliver one of UTD’s annual Andrew R. Cecil Distinguished Lectures on April 11th , 2001. The title of Congressman Weldon’s lecture will be


“Congressman Weldon is unquestionably one of the most technically astute and globally minded political leaders in these United States, and a strong and informed supporter of education” said Dr. Da Hsuan Feng, UTD’s Vice President for Research and Development. “For the past five years, just before joining UTD this January, I have had the honor and pleasure of working closely with him on many issues vital to the nation’s future, such as the development of collaborative projects in information technology for the healthcare, educational and commercial communities in the four Mid-Atlantic states (Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland and Pennsylvania), and on developing more productive relations with countries in Asia and central Europe. His expertise in and commitment to these issues qualify him perfectly to continue the distinguished tradition of the Cecil Lectures.” concluded Feng.

The youngest of nine children of working class parents, neither of whom completed high school, Weldon majored in Russian Studies in West Chester University in Pennsylvania. This was the foundation of his life-long interest in international affairs. Speaking Russian fluently, Weldon is the point-person in the U. S. House for communications with the Russian Duma. As a member of the House Armed Services Committee, he developed an even higher awareness of the importance of Russia and China in the 21st Century, and of the necessity that the United States develop a foreign policy with these two global powers based on mutual trust and respect as well as on national strength and preparedness. In addition to his expertise with these two other super-powers, Congressman Weldon has also made extensive studies and visits to Eastern Europe and other Asian countries, with Dr. Feng serving as the Advisor to the Congressional Delegations on these trips.

As a Congressman from a region whose economy is making the transition from manufacturing to information and intellectual capital, Weldon understands the crucial importance of the changes taking place in the global economy. In 1995, he made the following prescient remarks at a technology conference in Philadelphia:

“It is now taken to be self-evident that a world-class society of the new millennium must have as its underpinning a world-class computing and network infrastructure.”

With this statement as the launching pad, Weldon, in collaboration with his colleagues in the House representing Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland and Pennsylvania, initiated two information technology projects to transform the region, one called HUBS, (“Hospitals, Universities, Businesses and Schools”) and the other MARC, (“Mid-Atlantic Research Consortium”). Both projects are now highly visible and successful, and are inspiring imitators in other regions.

“With our globe becoming a village in terms of interdependence and speed of communication, Congressman Weldon’s vision and passion are synergistic with UTD’s own agenda of educational leadership in the discovery and development of the science, technology and management vital to the information and intellectual-capital based economy. His presence on campus and his message will create enormous excitement among our students, our faculty and our friends in the Metroplex community,” noted Provost Wildenthal.

The University of Texas at Dallas, located at the convergence of Richardson, Plano and Dallas in the heart of the complex of major multinational technology corporations known as the Telecom Corridor, enrolls approximately 6500 undergraduate and 4500 graduate students. UTD faculty members have an established tradition of scholarly achievement and extra-mural funding and its freshman class annually stands at the forefront of Texas state universities in terms of average SAT scores. The university offers strong bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees through each its six large schools, Arts and Humanities, The Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, Human Development, Management, Natural Sciences and Mathematics, and Social Sciences. This comprehensive breadth is complemented by an historical and authorized focus on engineering, management, and science.

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