Doubts of Chem Department Delay New Science Center

Biology, Physics Departments Back Plan

Despite tentative endorsements from the Physics and Biology departments, the Chemistry department continues to question the fundamental assumptions of the proposed Science Center. As a result, prospects for the undergraduate Center seem to have improved little since it was first suggested last fall.

"We are not very happy with the general idea of separating undergraduates and graduate teaching," Frank H. Westheimer, chairman of the Chemistry department, said recently. "A separate building for undergraduates and in science may have long term unfortunate effects on undergraduate education."

He stated that the department was "enthusiastically in favor of expanding facilities" and had only questioned how the expansion should be made. "We would love to find an alternate way," he said, "which would deemphasize the distinction between research and undergraduate teaching." The Chemistry department has submitted a second report on the Science Center to President Pusey. Its contents have not yet been released.

William M. Preston, chairman of the Physics department, said his department was "well satisfied" with the Science Center, and "will go along with it very happily." Physics plans to move a major share of its undergraduate instruction into the center. "We need the additional space very much," Preston explained. Extra space would permit seniors in the department to undertake supervised research in "open-end" laboratory programs.

The Biology department "has had little complaint" with the center, according to Carroll M. Williams, chairman of the Department. "Harvard College is being upstaged by many universities in terms of facilities for undergraduate science," Williams asserted. "Unless undergraduates get this, they will soon be shortchanged."

Arthur D. Trottenberg, assistant dean of the Faculty for Business Affairs, said he expects the period of departmental negotiation on the Center to continue "for quite a while."