By Alison Zawadski
Franklin M. Loew
Franklin M. Loew was a well-known veterinarian and a president of Becker College who also had a part in the invention of canola oil and is the inspiration of the school’s new lecture series named in his memory.
Since its inception one year ago, the series has brought lecturers such as video game executive producer Bill Mrocheck, general manager of the Worcester Tornadoes Jorg Bassiacos, and Temple Grandin, author and one of the most famous autistic people in America. This semester, writer Harriet Reisen, author of Louisa May Alcott: The Woman Behind Little Women, and Congressman James McGovern will be two highly anticipated speakers in the series, which is held weeknights at Daniels Hall on the school’s Leicester campus.
Bill Mrochek speaking at a previous lecture
The series is an excellent representation of what Loew, who was president of the college from 1998 until he passed away in 2003, tried to do at Becker, according to his son and Academic Planning Director Timothy Loew.
“He was a big advocate of ideas and he thought it was important, despite what your field was, to get a diverse range of ideas,” Loew said. “He was pretty inspired to get faculty and students involved in ideas and thinking, he really got a kick out of that stuff. Intellectual curiosity was what he wanted to pass on to students with humor as well. He himself was often a speaker and he typically enjoyed breaking the ice in a situation, particularly with students, with jokes, which he would think were cool but were actually pretty corny, corny as hell.”
In President Loew’s tradition, the themes upon which the lectures are built span a wide range and often relate in some way to majors offered at Becker, explained Sandy Curewitz, Director of Communications. Says Curewitz, “The series is about trying to bring scholarship to the community.”
The Franklin M. Loew Lecture series spans five lecturers through the spring semester and is free of charge and open to the public.