Sunday, August 17, 2008

Death of a Colleague

Last week one of my colleagues died and yesterday there was a memorial celebration for her at the School. Her name was Betty Bullock and she was in our sociology department. Betty was a wonderful person and I had just started to get to know her when she took ill. We were planning a learning community between biology and sociology and we were working on how to frame the materials in a way that showed the connections between these fields. To us the connections were obvious, all about relationships and function and evolution at all levels whether we were talking about molecules, cells, the communities of sometimes distantly related cells, that make up multicellular organisms, or the communities of communities that make up the ecosphere.

I will miss Betty not only for the small connection we had built before she got sick but also for the lost chance to build our learning community, Betty and I. Nothing will be that community but I know what to do and what she would want too. Keep on going and make a community for biology and sociology and so yesterday I went to another friend, in sociology, who knew about what Betty and I were planning. Are you interested? Can we do this? Let's talk. It will not be the same learning community and we will have to start from scratch, but we both know Betty will be with us.
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