Best of 2009: Newsmakers

SFU introduces grade worse than F
SFU’s new FD grade signifying failure for academic dishonesty made news around the world on TV and radio and in papers ranging from The Daily Nebraskan to The Times (of London).

‘Mad Trapper’ not Canadian
The Vancouver Sun and media outlets nationwide heralded the discovery by SFU forensic anthropologist Lynne Bell that Albert Johnson, Canada's infamous “Mad Trapper" was not in fact Canadian. Bell found that Johnson, who murdered a police officer in 1932, sparking a manhunt through the Northwest Territories that ended with his death—was likely an American or Scandinavian.

Prince of Wales visits SFU in Vancouver
Prince Charles was followed by a phalanx of national and international reporters as he made a brief visit on Nov. 7 to SFU’s Vancouver campus. He took part in a seminar on sustainable urbanism, hosted by SFU Urban Studies. He also confirmed a partnership between SFU and the Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment.

BPA exposure during pregnancy linked to having aggressive girls
A study by SFU health scientist Bruce Lanphear and colleagues linked prenatal exposure to the chemical Bisphenol A (BPA) with more aggressive and hyperactive children, particularly baby girls. The research drew widespread attention from news and scientific publications.

Arthur Erickson, Canadian Architect who mirrored landscapes, dies at 84
Media outlets around the world noted the death of Vancouver architect Arthur Erickson and most commentators noted that an early milestone in his career was when he and his partner at the time, Geoffrey Massey, won a competition in 1965 to design SFU’s Burnaby campus.

SFU researchers find link between autism, schizophrenia
SFU evolutionary biologist Bernard Crespi and co-authors Philip Stead and Michael Elliot created international headlines after finding that autism and schizophrenia are genetically related but opposite conditions, both caused by anomalies in the human genome.