Women’s Faculty Forum two-day gender conference begins today

The Women’s Faculty Forum is taking advantage of two milestone anniversaries to host “Gender Matters,” a two-day conference that begins today.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the first graduating class of women at Yale College as well as the much-publicized University tercentennial. To commemorate these significant events, the Women Faculty Forum has teamed up with the Tercentennial organizers to present an interdisciplinary conference celebrating the achievements of women. The Women Faculty Forum, composed of more than 20 of Yale’s female faculty members, convenes regularly to ensure that women play a prominent role at Yale.

The conference — which will be held at the Law School — begins today with a discussion on women and universities featuring the presidents of Spelman and Bryn Mawr colleges and Duke University. “Gender Matters” ends tomorrow with forums exploring how gender has played a role in such areas as academic research, the arts, politics and public policy, and entrepreneurship. The Women Faculty Forum has brought such prominent individuals as artist Maya Lin ’81 ARC ’86, who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial; and writer Gloria Naylor GRD ’83 to lead keynote discussions. The conference focuses on ways to foster support among female alumnae, faculty and students. “It is my strong hope that the Women Faculty Forum’s work that begins at the end of Yale’s 300 years will become an integral part of its future,” forum council member Mahzarin Banaji said.

–Dennis Hong

New Haven man found with bomb-making blueprints

Police were continuing to investigate a city man who was found with bomb-making blueprints and fundamentalist Islamic literature. The man,

Husyan Ibn Beltrhen, 27, was arrested early Tuesday on domestic violence charges after an altercation with his mother and held on $500,000 bail.

He was arrested at his home on Legion Avenue, two blocks west of Yale-New Haven Hospital. Police were on a heightened sense of alert following last week’s terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.

“We do not think he poses a threat or was directly involved, but we will take direction from the FBI regarding what to do,” New Haven police spokeswoman Judith Mongillo said.

FBI spokeswoman Lisa Bull said Beltrhen has not been arrested by the FBI and faces no federal charges. Beltrhen was committed early Tuesday for psychiatric evaluation and later placed in police custody. He had been committed at least once before for psychiatric evaluation. The New Haven Register quoted sources as saying police officers found the Islamic literature and books containing diagrams on how to build conventional and chemical bombs.

–Associated Press