Remembering Professor Arch

I was shocked and devastated to learn of the death of Steve Arch [biology 1972–2012] Ten years ago, Steve welcomed me to Reed as my academic adviser and, although I quickly adopted every possible laid-back Reed tradition, I couldn’t quite call him “Steve.” In my head this imposing figure was always “Dr. Arch.” He himself finally converted me when I found him wandering Renn Fayre with an enormous handle of vile Wild Turkey bourbon. I came to know this as “Steve’s” own tradition. Steve awed me in his exercise physiology class. He could talk on any subject, and his students enjoyed challenging him as much as he us. I will never forget his favorite final exam question: If you want to get drunk at a party, what do you eat with your beer? The correct answer is, of course, not the pizza, as fatty foods will keep the alcohol in your stomach, where it can be broken down by alcohol dehydrogenase. Eat something low in fat, was Steve’s advice, so the alcohol will move quickly to your intestines. Steve was one of the many Reed professors who inspired me to go to graduate school, and I was looking forward to sending him a copy of my paper after my defense. Sadly, a month shy, I waited too long to tell Steve what a difference he made in my Reed education and formation as a young scientist. Thank you, Steve.

—Leila Rieder ’06

Providence, Rhode Island