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PSS Spring '09 - The Houghton House Renaissance

BACHELORS DEGREES AWARDED AFTER 50 YEARS

by Cynthia L. McVey

Robert Baron '59 and Martin Peskin '59 stand proudly after receiving their honorary Bachelor's degrees during Reunion 2009. Along with four others, they left Hobart without a degree to attend graduate programs in medicine and law.

Robert Baron '59 and Martin Peskin '59 stand proudly after receiving their
honorary Bachelor's degrees during Reunion 2009. Along with four others, they
left Hobart without a degree to attend graduate programs in medicine and law.

After leaving Hobart College, Martin Howard, DMD went on to Tufts University School of Dental Medicine, then the University of Pittsburgh, Post Graduate School of Dentistry. By the time he retired from practice, he had contributed to five textbooks, lectured in the U.S., Europe and Asia, achieved Diplomat status as an endodontist, and earned 28 patents in the dental and chemical field. He did it all without a bachelor's degree.

Thanks to the efforts of the 50th Reunion Committee, this summer, more than 50 years after leaving Hobart early to attend professional school, Howard and five of his classmates - Gerald Forman, DMD; Neil Greenberg, DMD; Martin Peskin, DDS; Marvin Nahmias, M.D. and Robert Baron, LLB - were told they would be receiving honorary bachelor's degrees. Baron and Peskin received their degrees during a special ceremony at Reunion 2009. Forman and Greenberg received theirs during a summer celebrations in Darien, Conn. Howard and Nahmias will get theirs at a later date.

"These six men so distinguished themselves at Hobart that they earned seats in reputed medical and professional institutions after only three years of undergraduate study," says Gearan. "They have led lives of consequence - in professional practice, teaching, research and in their personal lives - and we are proud to recognize them as degree-bearing members of the Class of 1959."

Neil Greenberg '59 and Gerald Forman '59 received their honorary Bachelor's degrees from Provost and Dean of Faculty Teresa Amott during a summer event in Darien, Conn.

Neil Greenberg '59 and Gerald Forman '59 received their
honorary Bachelor's degrees from Provost and Dean of Faculty
Teresa Amott during a summer event in Darien, Conn.

Howard, Forman and Greenberg all applied and were accepted to Tufts at the end of their junior year. All three classmates joined the military in the early stages of the Vietnam War. Forman and Greenberg joined the U.S. Army, and Howard joined the U.S. Navy where he remained for 10 years, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Commander.

Baron applied and was accepted to St. John's Law School and joined his father in private practice. Baron is now semi-retired.

Nahmias earned his medical degree, specializing in podiatry, and retired in 2007. Peskin earned his degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dentistry before joining the U.S. Army and rising to the rank of Captain. For him, the honorary B.A. fills a 50-year void.

"This was always something missing in my life; I always wanted to get my bachelor's," says Peskin. "Getting my bachelor's degree wasn't something I needed professionally, but it was a personal thing."