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January 15, 2013

Lafayette in the Media

From a first-of-its-kind conference on the future of liberal arts education, to the vice president’s visit, to a literary flash mob and a live, student-run election night broadcast on PBS, Lafayette College was featured or mentioned more than 3,000 times in international, national, regional, and local media in 2012.

Some of those outlets include The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Today, The Huffington Post, and The Philadelphia Inquirer.

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Vice President Joe Biden speaks to a packed crowd in Kirby Sports Center.

Vice President Joe Biden speaks to a packed crowd in Kirby Sports Center.

The Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed covered “The Future of the Liberal Arts College in America and its Leadership Role in Education and the World” extensively, devoting several days of articles to the three-day conference, which was sponsored by Lafayette and Swarthmore colleges. The Huffington Post followed by publishing an op-ed that outlined conclusions and goals of the conference by President Daniel H. Weiss.

Both The New York Times and The Washington Post published op-eds by Robert Massa, vice president for communications, on admission strategies, and NPR featured Massa and Greg MacDonald, dean of admissions and financial aid, on a Planet Money episode titled “How Colleges Fight for Top Students.” The segment begins with the two men on a recruiting mission in New York City.

Sasha Senderovich, visiting professor of Russian and East European studies, published an op-ed in The New York Times about volunteerism among young Russians and Susan Averett, Dana Professor of Economics, wrote an op-ed that was published in The Providence Journal  about the importance of making contraception accessible and affordable for all women. She wrote it in response to Rush Limbaugh’s negative comments about a Georgetown University law student who advocated insurance coverage of contraception.

Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to campus as part of the Lives of Liberty Lecture Series garnered substantial media play on CBS Philly News, the Associated Press, Fox43 Harrisburg, WFMZ-TV Channel 69, Asbury Park Press, New Jersey Herald, The Morning Call, Express-Times, and other outlets. The vice president spoke to a packed house at Kirby Sports Center.

Students in an economics class taught by Mark Crain, Simon Professor of Political Economy and chair of policy studies, rocked the November airwaves. USA Today not only covered the live, two-hour election night show the students directed, produced, and anchored, but also posted the broadcast, which was aired on PBS to 2.6 million households, on its website. One of the stars, election analyst Ed O’Brien’16, was also profiled in the Star-Ledger for being the youngest member of the New Jersey delegation at the Democratic National Convention.

Alexander Charchalis ’15 and Madeline Laskoski ’13 co-hosted Lafayette’s 50 States of Grey election night broadcast.

Alexander Charchalis ’15 and Madeline Laskoski ’13 co-hosted Lafayette’s 50 States of Grey election night broadcast.

Videos of Lafayette’s literary flash mob in observation of Banned Books Week showed up on The Washington Post and The New York Daily News websites. Students, faculty, and staff stood up in Skillman Library and began reading from banned books to the surprise of library patrons. Notable Fact: At one time The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck was publicly banned in the U.S. and burned en mass because people were shocked by the description of the poor.

Reviews of two new books by Alix Ohlin, associate professor of English, were mostly glowing, including one from the international Globe and Mail that suggested she should be famous. She’s well on her way, having been nominated for two prestigious literary awards last year and feted in numerous outlets throughout Canada, including the Montreal Gazette, Ottawa Citizen, and Edmonton Journal, as well as various broadcast media.

College football’s most played rivalry will hit the gridiron and airwaves at a new venue in 2014 to mark its 150th anniversary, and The Chicago Tribune trumpeted news of the game’s Yankee Stadium kickoff. What’s left to say, but beat Lehigh.

Sports is also the topic of research by Rebecca Kissane, associate professor of anthropology and sociology, who was featured by Philadelphia Daily News. The die-hard Eagles fan is investigating fantasy sports.

And then there is fantasy foods. In an article that originally appeared in Slate and was reprinted in more than 30 news outlets including the Denver Post, Benjamin Cohen, assistant professor of engineering studies, was interviewed about his upcoming book on the evolution of food labels. The author poses this question: Are Pepperidge Farm Gold Fish crackers natural as the package claims or “fishy Frankenfoods?”

An exhibition of works from the Uffizi Gallery in Florence curated by Diane Cole Ahl, Rothkopf Professor of Art History, was greeted by the media with awe. Many of the 45 works exhibited at the Michener Museum in Doylestown, Pa., had never been seen before in the United States. The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that this is probably the first and last time these treasures will appear outside Europe.

ArtDaily, as well as The Philadelphia Inquirer, paid homage to an exhibit at Allentown Art Museum curated by Robert S. Mattison, Marshall R. Metzgar Professor of Art History, on Pennsylvania painter Franz Kline.  Many of the pieces had been rarely or never seen by the public.

The Huffington Post featured the efforts of Lafayette’s Experimental Printmaking Institute in handcrafting a book by Burmese activist Khet Mar.  Part art, part prose, Mar’s “Souls of Fallen Flowers” was produced with help from students of Curlee Raven Holton, professor and head of art and director of EPI.

2012 graduates received a lesson on “Sticktoitivness,” from Garry Marshall, best known for producing the famed television series Happy Days and Laverne & Shirley during commencement. For the record, Sticktoitiveness  is not in the dictionary, but that didn’t deter The Washington Post from giving the acclaimed actor, writer, director and producer some literary latitude.

And Wesley von Dassow ’14 is taking his education to new heights. The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reported on Dassow’s internship at the Smithsonian’s Center for Earth and Planetary Studies where the geology major is mapping never-before-seen evidence of tectonic plate movement on the moon.

posted in In the Media, News and Features, Top News

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