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SBS Newsletter – May 2006

In this issue

zeolites image shows structure of nanotechnology work

SBS Researchers Explore Key Societal and Policy Implications of Nanotechnology as Part of New National Center
The new Science, Technology and Society (STS) Initiative, based in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) and the Center for Public Policy and Administration (CPPA), will lead a major initiative to define and articulate the societal implications of nanotechnology. This new research effort is part of a five-year $16 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and an additional $7 million in university and state funding that will establish the Center for Hierarchical Manufacturing (CHM) at UMass Amherst. Read more...

Professor Rachel Keen

Keen elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences
Psychology professor Rachel Keen is among 175 new fellows elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, an international learned society whose members are drawn from science, scholarship, business, public affairs and the arts. Read more...

W. Greg Rothman

President Bush Appoints Alumnus Rothman to VTC Board
President George W. Bush has appointed W. Greg Rothman ’89 (political science), president and CEO of RSR Realtors and RSR Appraisers & Analysts in Lemoyne, Pennsylvania, to the Board of Directors of the National Veterans Business Development Corporation. Other board members include the Secretary of Defense, the Veterans Administration Secretary and the Administrator of the Small Business Administration. Read more….

journalism major Undrea Steele

Read All About It: Journalism Major Thrives
“People think students aren’t interested in current events,” says Professor Karen List, head of the Journalism program. “And some people think students don’t major in journalism these days because they don’t want to change the world. From where I sit, they still do.” Read more...

And other topics of interest...

Professor Maureen Perry-JenkinsPsychologist Recognized for Outreach to Families
For Maureen Perry-Jenkins, associate professor of psychology in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at UMass Amherst, it’s all about family. Read more...

Aerial view of Cannes Film FestivalFilm Studies Certificate Students Attend Cannes International Film Festival
Jennifer Ramsay '07 (communication), Joseph Piedrafite '06 (communication), Michael Aronson '07 (art) and Lise Lawrence '06 (individual concentration) are among an elite group of U.S. college and university students who were accepted to the prestigious Cannes International Film Festival Student Filmmaker Program at The American Pavilion for the Festival’s 59th season, May 17-28, 2006. While there they were able to observe the business of international filmmaking and distribution, and network with industry insiders, while having full access to the Festival and Film Market that is otherwise available only to industry professionals. They also completed a work placement and participated in educational workshops, seminars, pitch sessions, roundtable discussions and screenings. Approximately 125 students are accepted to the program each year. The Film Studies Certificate Program at UMass Amherst is offered through the Interdepartmental Program in Film Studies, sponsor of the annual Massachusetts Multicultural Film Festival. The program enrolls more than 200 students a year from majors across campus.

Ervin StaubPeace Psychology Event Honors Retiring Founding Director
The Psychology of Peace and Prevention of Violence doctoral program, the only one of its kind in the nation, wrapped up the academic year with a public panel discussion on "Preventing Violent Intergroup Conflict." This free event was convened in honor of the program's founding director, Dr. Ervin Staub (pictured at left), who retired this year. Included were presentations by Barbara  Harff, senior associate at the Center for International Development and Conflict Management and professor of political science at the U.S. Naval Academy ("Explaining and Preventing Genocide and Political Mass Murder"); Albert Bandura, professor of psychology at Stanford University ("Moral Disengagement in the Perpetration of Inhumanities"); Tom Pettigrew, research professor of social psychology at the University of California at Santa Cruz ("Are Population Ratios and Prejudice Relevant for Understanding Genocide?"); Roy Baumeister, professor of social psychology at Florida State University ("Causes of Evil: Implications for Reducing Intergroup Violence"); and Ervin Staub ("Prevention and Reconciliation: Evolution of Violence, Bystander Actions, Humanizing the Other, Healing, Justice and Shared History"). To read more about the Psychology of Peace and Prevention Program, click here.

Alum Szych to Challenge Congressman Olver
William Szych '75 (political science), retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel and former Hatfield, Massachusetts town administrator, is running for the 1st District Congressional seat against incumbent Congressman John Olver (D-Amherst) as an independent. After serving in active duty in the Air Force for 20 years, Szych renlisted after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, leaving his job as town administrator in Hatfield, and worked a stint in the combat zone of Iraq in 2004. He then became a civilian senior military analyst at the Pentagon before returning to Hatfield recently. "I felt it was time for me to come home and run for Congress to help move the country forward," says Szych, who holds a master's degree from Webster University in St. Louis. Read more....

UMass Amherst journalism program logoJournalism Program Earns Top Online Honors
Although it remains young as academic programs go, UMass Amherst's Certificate of Online Journalism Program is already packing a real punch with a first-rate faculty and a far-flung student body—and, now, with a top award in innovative continuing education. The University Continuing Education Association (UCEA), the nation's oldest and largest organization committed to supporting the advancement of continuing education, has honored the Online Journalism certificate with its Program of Excellence Award in the new program category. The award was announced at the UCEA annual conference in San Diego in April, and was celebrated at UMass Online award ceremonies in Shrewsbury on May 11. Read more...

Center for Research on Families logoSix Faculty Named Family Research Scholars
The Center for Research on Families has selected six faculty members as 2006-07 Family Research Scholars, based on their promising work in family-related research. Read more...

applauding seniorSBS Seniors to Win Leadership Awards at Commencement
Of the fifteen seniors who will be receiving 21st Century Leaders awards during the 136th Commencement on Sunday, May 28, six are part of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. They are: Kate G. Baldacci, a psychology major from Bangor, Maine; Elisabeth Aileen Budd, a psychology and history double major from Springfield; Jonathan Peter Korhonen, a communication major from Gardner; Theresa M. Ray, a psychology major from Littleton, Colo.; Julie T. Weismantel, a psychology and dance major from Hopkinton; and Stephen L. Wood, a psychology major from Fairhaven. The awards recognize students who are academically accomplished and who have contributed to the university by exceptional achievement or have enhanced the reputation of the campus. The recipients are nominated by faculty for strong leadership qualities; noteworthy original research; community service; the achievement of success by overcoming extraordinary personal circumstances, or public presentation through art, performance or athletic ability. The awards are sponsored by the Chancellor’s Office and the Alumni Association, which presents the recipients with a plaque and a monetary award.

dollars for scholarshipsSBS Students Receive Scholarships
This year at its annual Awards Ceremony, the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences was able to fund about forty-five students with named scholarship awards. These merit-based recognitions are made possible by gifts from alumni and friends. Funding amounts vary. A few cover the full cost of a UMass education. But the vast majority, whose gift sizes range between $500 and $2000, fund meaningful internships and study abroad opportunities that often make the difference between a student being able to participate in the experience at all. These funds fill the void that is created, for example, between taking an unpaid internship that offers terrific exposure to a student's career interest and taking a paid summer job at the local grocery that pays minimum wage but offers little in the way of resume-building experiences. Such an award might pay for airfare to a study-abroad destination, or help reduce fees by just enough to make such a life-changing experience a reality. But the demand for funds is always greater than the supply. Many well deserving students were not funded. SBS would like to change that with your help. Consider a gift of any size to scholarships today. Contact Eric Yates or Ed Weisman for details, or give online.

In the News
The Seattle Times, 5/16/06 (AP report also run by Vancouver Sun, CBS 11 [Texas], Globe, Arizona Daily Star, Newsweek, Lowell Sun, Albany Times Union, China Daily [China], Terre Haute Tribune Star [Ind.], 5/16/06): "Is TV Good or Bad for Kids? Even Experts Aren't Sure" by Lauran Neergaard draws on the expertise of Professor Dan Anderson (psychology). He says content matters and that too much television, or inappropriate programs can interfere with cognitive development. Read the article...

Computer World logoComputerworld, 5/15/06: "How to Divorce Your Technology Vendor" by Dan Tynan includes views and advice from Ethan Katsh (legal studies), director of the Center for Information Technology and Dispute Resolution, part of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. He says, "A better alternative to lawsuits is building a dispute resolution mechanism such as mediation or arbitration into the service agreement. Mediation has a significant advantage because if any outcome is reached, it’s because both parties wanted it. At the end of a successful mediation both parties walk away happy.” Read the article..., 5/11/06: An updated list of the top 100 corporate polluters in the U.S., complied by the Political Economy Research Institute (PERI) , has been released. "The Toxic 100 informs consumers and shareholders which large corporations release the most toxic pollutants into our air," says James K. Boyce, director of PERI's environment program. "We measure not just how many pounds of pollutants are released, but which are the most toxic and how many people are at risk. People have a right to know about toxic hazards to which they are exposed. Legislators need to understand the effects of pollution on their constituents." Read the article....

The Republican logoSpringfield Republican 5/1/06: In the article "Good Old Days Not the Same for All" by Stan Freeman, Diane Flaherty (chair, economics) discusses economic progress with a look at prices in relation to wages. She notes that in the often referred to “good old days” between 1950 and 1970, some things were less expensive, relatively speaking, than today, but others were much more expensive. In addition, the good old days for some may not have been so good for others. Read the article....

editor and publisher logoEditor and Publisher 5/8/06: "Karl Rove's Lessons for the Press" by Bill Israel (journalism) asks what journalists and citizens can learn from the plight of presidential aide Karl Rove as he potentially faces indictment in the leaked identity case of former CIA operative Valerie Plame. He asks, "The question for journalists, citizens and those of us who care about him and/or the country is not if Karl will be indicted, or when—but why we’re in this mess." He points out that I.F. Stone "once warned that all governments lie. Whether George Bush in Iraq, or Lyndon Johnson in Vietnam, the only protection against such lies is journalists and citizens requiring a full range of debate unconfined to Democrats and Republicans—and the complete exercise of press and every other freedom under the First Amendment, without compromise." Read the full article...

A Word from SBS
This e-letter has been created for alumni and friends of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. SBS includes the departments and programs of Anthropology, Communication, Economics, Journalism, Labor Studies, Legal Studies, Neuroscience and Behavior, Political Science, Psychology, Public Policy and Administration, Social Thought and Political Economy (STPEC), and Sociology. With 38,000 alumni, 5,000 undergraduate majors, and 500 graduate students, SBS is the largest of UMass Amherst’s colleges. In addition to its departments, it is home to numerous programs and research institutions. Through the general education courses that SBS offers, the College’s 150 faculty members teach one quarter of the 17,000 undergraduates on campus.

Gifts from alumni and friends are vital to the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. Your investment allows us to create remarkable opportunities for today’s students. If you are already a donor, please accept our sincere thanks. If not, please consider a donation to SBS for your department, financial aid, or a purpose that speaks to your personal experiences and priorities. To make a gift online, click here. Questions? Contact:
Eric Yates, Director of Development
College of Social and Behavioral Sciences
University of Massachusetts Amherst
202 South College
150 Hicks Way
Amherst, MA 01003-9274
(413) 577-1700

We welcome feedback related to this newsletter, the college in general, or specific concerns. If you wish to add your name to the mailing list, or if you wish to unsubscribe, please write to the SBS Newsletter. If you have had a change of address, email or other personal information, you can update it online. The College of Social and Behavioral Sciences respects your privacy. Your contact information will not be shared with anyone unrelated to the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

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Draper Hall • University of Massachusetts Amherst • 40 Campus Center Way • Amherst, MA 01003-9244 • Tel: 413.545.4173 • Fax: 413.577.0905
College of Social and Behavioral Sciences Draper Hall University of Massachusetts 40 Campus Center Way Amherst, MA 01003-9244 (413) 545-4173 FAX: (413) 577-0905