Willamette University media update

April 2010  |  444 citations

In the news

Art history student Alisa Alexander featured in The Oregonian. "Alisa Alexander strolls wistfully through Willamette University's Hallie Ford Museum of Art where she's cultivated her passion over the last four years and staked out a future brimming with promise."

Center for Sustainable Communities' Karen Arabas awarded grant for $211,749 to restore habitat at Zena Forest. "Undergraduate researchers at Willamette will assist Arabas with a long-term monitoring project to track and analyze the effects of the restoration work."

Statesman Journal features partnerships with high school teachers for scientific research. "‘We made it a priority to see if we couldn't encourage teachers to come and do research with faculty members,' said Kendra Mingo, assistant director in Willamette's office of faculty research and resources. When a partnership with a Willamette professor didn't work out recently, they helped connect teachers with other nearby universities, she said. ‘There's already a really long tradition of different kinds of interactions and friendships,' [David] Craig said. ‘I really believe in outreach and the opportunity to engage a broad citizenry in being scientists and making contributions.'"

Sarak Kirk, chemistry professor, is named a "Winner in the News." "A $15,000 donation from the MJ Murdock Charitable Trust will let Willamette University chemistry professor Sarah Kirk and South Salem High School teacher Greg Whatley conduct research together during the next two summers."

David Altman, physics professor, awarded $36,345 grant. "Altman also received funding from Willamette University's Science Collaborative Research Program. He will conduct his research on myosin function during the next two summers with four undergraduate students."

Paper goes behind the scenes of theatre's kabuki production. "Watching Olivia Saccomanno transform from a seemingly ordinary Willamette University student into a traditional Kabuki actress in full kimono and makeup for a play rehearsal has to be one of the most fun assignments I've had in quite awhile."

Museum awarded largest federal grant to date. Willamette University's Hallie Ford Museum of Art was awarded a $75,000 Access to Artistic Excellence grant from the National Endowment for the Arts to support the re-installation of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Gallery.

Cycling team races around the capitol. "‘Riders quickly realized that ‘pancake [flat course]' had a yeasty rise - all the way up State Street. ‘Yeah, that's actually what we call a false flat,' said Scott Larson, a WU senior economics major, bicycle racer and the event's multitasking pivot man. ‘It looks flat, but that slight uphill slope makes it deceptive.'" (photo gallery)

The Center for Religion, Law and Democracy's Steven Green commented on legal issues surrounding $18.5 million decision against the Boy Scouts of America. "‘If we're talking about a 90-year practice, that is phenomenally damning,' said Steven Green, a Willamette University law professor who also holds a doctorate in U.S. constitutional history. Green said knowledge about a problem and the awareness the problem could continue to result in some type of injury are ‘at the heart' of any punitive damages case. ‘The fact they had these files indicating sexual abuse was going on undermines any argument they had their own standards that were sufficient at the time,' he said.",8599,1984353,00.html#ixzz0mWBwy9OO

Green was also honored for his work in overturning a law that prohibited teachers from wearing religious garb in classrooms. "After the ceremony, Sikh leaders gave plaques and vibrant orange scarves to a few special guests such as Hunt, Gelser and Steven Green, director of Willamette University's Center for Law, Religion and Democracy. A few guests spoke briefly, including Green: ‘This is a real step toward religious freedom in the U.S., which I think is one of our highest goals.'"

Jeff Goodwin, Atkinson Graduate School of Management student, seeks nomination for state senate. "‘The biggest issue facing this district is the current economic crisis. This is manifesting itself in a lack of state revenue to support schools and other programs, the inability of good and hardworking Oregonians to find jobs, and the financial instability of banks as home values continue to drop.'"

Atkinson Graduate School of Management's Anne Murray Allen commented on trends in the workforce as they relate to Oregon's gubernatorial race. "Anne Murray Allen directs the Executive Development Center at Willamette University. She says Kitzhaber could be part of a trend of Baby Boomers who reach retirement age and decide they're not that old, after all. Anne Murray Allen: ‘That generation is thinking quite differently about - I'm not done yet, I'm not that old, I've got a lot to give back.'"

Jack Landau, adjunct professor and judge, is endorsed for Oregon Supreme Court. "The retirement of Justice Michael Gillette leaves a gaping void on the Oregon Supreme Court. Of the two candidates seeking to replace the court's most senior and productive member, Jack Landau is the right choice for voters in the May 18 primary election. Landau has served 17 years on the Oregon Court of Appeals, where he has a track record as a fair, thoughtful and productive judge."

College of Law's Keith Cunningham-Parmeter was quoted in widely-published AP story about medical marijuana. Keith Cunningham-Parmeter, a Willamette University law professor, said the Oregon Supreme Court majority went farther than needed to resolve the question of accommodation by ruling federal law pre-empted certain provisions of the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act. ‘There is this concept of judicial modesty that we only need to decide the limited question before us and go no further,' Cunningham-Parmeter said. ‘The court really abandoned all attempts at judicial modesty here.' As a result, he said, ‘I think this is a shot across the bow to supporters of medical marijuana or expanded legalization movements in Oregon or in other states.'"

Steven Green discusses judicial activism in a guest column in The Oregonian. "Second, politically liberal jurists are no more inclined toward judicial activism than conservative jurists. In 1990, Justice Antonin Scalia overturned 30 years of precedent to rewrite the rules concerning religious liberty...And most recently, the conservative block on the court overturned the will of the people in their effort to limit corruption and undue influence in campaign financing. The liberals on the court dissented in all of these examples of judicial activism."

International Human Rights Clinic represents aid worker suing government officials. "‘He's struggling,' Skinner said of Hamad. ‘He's struggling to find work and support his family.' Skinner said Hamad's case was bolstered by a declaration provided last week by retired Army Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, who served as chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell."

From the website

Graduate School of Education earns national accreditation. "Willamette's Graduate School of Education joins a select group of high-quality teacher preparation programs that focus on teaching excellence," said Larry D. Large, interim president. ‘We are exceptionally pleased and proud to have earned this national recognition and accreditation.'"

Mellon Foundation awards Willamette University $710,000 for student-faculty collaboration. "‘LARC has the potential not only to change the way that collaborative research is conducted at Willamette, but also to advance the understanding and theory of undergraduate student research at large,' said David Douglass, interim dean of Willamette's undergraduate College of Liberal Arts. ‘By creating an interdisciplinary learning community focused on significant, long-term issues, the pilot program combines best practices for learning and scholarship.'"

Willamette students and alumni earn national honors. Jeff Weber '10 a chemistry and mathematics major, earned a $250,000 Hertz Foundation Fellowship. African studies major Hannah Harper '11 was named a Truman Scholar. Alex Compton '06, a biology graduate, earned a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. Anthropology major Caitlin Casebolt '10 earned a Fulbright to Germany, and economics major Keith Fakhoury '13 was named a Kemper Scholar.

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