Jared Cohon and Paul McCartney do not run in the same circles. The former is the president of Carnegie Mellon University, a growing global educational institution. The latter is, well, a Beatle.
But now the two have something in common.
Both were elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences in April.
Others elected included Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, philanthropist Melinda Gates, actor-director Clint Eastwood and other notable figures in business, science, humanities, public affairs and the arts.
Members are elected for "their contributions to both their fields and society at large," said Paul Karoff, a spokesman for the academy.
Mr. Cohon was one of 10 new members in the field of "educational, scientific, cultural and philanthropic administration." He is the 18th member of the academy from CMU.
During his 16 years as president, the university has opened an undergraduate campus in Doha, Qatar and a research institute in California's Silicon Valley. In February, CMU announced that it had raised $1 billion in its most recent capital campaign, $450 million of that since 2008.
He also is a member of President Barack Obama's Homeland Security Advisory Council.
At the academy, Mr. Cohon, who will step down as CMU president in June 2013, will join an elite company. Members nominate and elect a new class of about 200 each year. This year's class of 220 joins more than 5,000 members, including 250 Nobel laureates and 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.
The academy was founded in 1780. Members have included George Washington, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Albert Einstein.
But the organization is not simply an honorary society. The academy also conducts and publishes research in various fields, including nuclear energy, social policy and global security.
Its member-edited journal, Daedalus, focuses on a different topic each quarter and includes work from both members and nonmembers. Recent issues have focused on the future of alternative energy, the modern American military and race inequality in the United States.
Mr. Cohon and other new members will be formally inducted the weekend of Oct. 6 at the academy's headquarters in Cambridge, Mass.
Marcus Schwarz: email@example.com or 412-263-1964. First Published June 14, 2012 12:00 AM