Campus & Community

Stevens Collaborates with Onassis Foundation

Combining an interest in technical innovation and literature and communications, Stevens Institute of Technology will begin a project in cooperation with the Alexander S. Onassis Public Benefit Foundation (USA), “Greece: Ancient Legacy and Modern Technology.”

Onassis BannerThe mission of the Onassis Foundation emphasizes disseminating information about Hellenic civilization throughout the United States. Stevens embraced this concept by coupling the study of core texts of Greek literature to the study of technology.

Through existing and innovative courses, current and new faculty, colloquia and conferences and work with visiting teachers and lecturers, the project integrates the study of Greek literature with Stevens’ signature institutional focus on technology, invention and entrepreneurship.

Professor Susan Levin, who teaches literature and writing; Provost George Korfiatis, who specializes in environmental engineering and water resources; Professor Constantin Chassapis, Director of Mechanical Engineering; and Professor Christos Christodoulatos, Associate Provost for Academic Entrepreneurship, collaborated on formulating the concept and presenting it to the Onassis Foundation. Special consultant to the project is Onassis board member Alan Shapiro, W. H. Collins Vickers Professor of Archaeology, Department of Classics, The Johns Hopkins University.

In spring 2010, under the auspices of the Foundation’s University Seminars Program, Professor Markus Asper of the Department of Classics at New York University will lecture and teach at Stevens.

A public Institute lecture, “Perspectives on Ancient Greek Technology,” is scheduled for March 24 at Stevens.

The Onassis Foundation will also host Professor Levin’s class, “Special Topics in Literature,” at its current exhibit, “El Greco: Icon Painting in Venetian Crete.”
One Stevens alumnus recalls “reading the Greeks, writing the Paragraph” as a highlight of his college experience. At the 6th International Conference on Technology, Knowledge, and Society in Berlin, Germany, Professor Levin’s talk, “The Antigone: Mother Bird and Techno-Tragedy,” explored the issue of the teaching of classical texts to future makers of technology. “Greece: Ancient Legacy and Modern Technology” stands to become a model for this kind of integrated study, according to faculty involved in the undertaking..

Additional information on the Onassis Foundation may be found at