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SBS Newsletter – November 2010

In this issue

Jane FountainWorld Economic Forum Names Fountain Council Chair
This past summer the World Economic Forum (WEF), based in Geneva, Switzerland, appointed Jane Fountain (political science and public policy) chair of Global Advisory Council on the Future of Government. Fountain, who is director of the National Center for Digital Government (NCDG) on campus and the interdisciplinary Science, Technology and Society Initiative, served as a Global Advisory Council member of the WEF for two years before receiving this significant leadership appointment. Read more...

John Brady HamiltonSenior Aspires to Career in Film/Television Production
As a high-school senior, John Brady Hamilton ’11 (communication) took on his first full-fledged television production project. “Andover High School: Senior Survivor” recreated the CBS reality show, complete with immunity challenges and tribal councils. The night before graduation, a live premiere screening revealed the Senior Survivor from the original cast of twelve, and that summer the local public access station aired all the episodes. Read more...

students at the exit pollPolitical Science Class Conducts Election Day Exit Poll and Analysis
Exit polls. Ever wonder how they work? Professor Brian Schaffner (political science) is an expert on survey research, a regular contributor to, and has made it his business to lead 17 students in his class, Political Polling and Survey Research, through the process of developing, conducting and analyzing an exit poll of voters during the 2010 election.” Read more...

Ray La Raja and Mari Castañeda

SBS Dean Appoints Faculty to Oversee Program Innovation and Diversity Issues
Developing new College programs and increasing diversity among faculty, staff and the student body are top priorities for the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences. In the interest of moving SBS forward in these areas, Dean Robert S. Feldman has appointed Associate Professor Ray La Raja (political science) as the SBS Director of Program Innovation and Associate Professor Mari Castañeda (communication) as the SBS Director of Diversity Advancement. Read more...

And other topics of interest...

John Kennedy, VC University Relations, UMassAlumnus, Veteran News Producer to Head University Relations
John Kennedy '86 (political science), an award-winning ABC News television producer now serving as deputy director of communications at the American Civil Liberties Union, has been named vice chancellor for university relations. Kennedy spent more than two decades at ABC News, covering a wide range of news stories, domestic and international, for 20/20, PrimeTime Live, World News Tonight and Good Morning America. He joined the ACLU in 2007. Read more...

Paul MarkAlumnus Elected to State House
Paul Mark MS '08 (labor studies) was elected Massachusetts State Representative from the 2nd Berkshire district. Says Eve Weinbaum, director of the Labor Center, "Paul has been a strong supporter of UMass. He has come to speak with our students about labor and politics, has attended Labor Center banquets, and has sent us other graduate students, who have all been terrific just like Paul. He is an impressive guy and I’m sure will be a hard worker in the statehouse." Read more...

Dr. Thomas J. HynesAlumnus Leads Clayton State University
Dr. Thomas J. Hynes PhD '76 (communication)—who holds his BS in mathematics from the College of Natural Sciences at UMass—was inaugurated as the fourth president of Clayton State University. Hynes served as the provost and vice president for academic affairs, acting president (twice), and professor of mass communications at the University of West Georgia (UWG) since 1996. Click here for more information.

Anastasia Wilson and Mark PaulStudents Blog about Economics Issues
An article by economics majors Mark Paul ’11 and Anastasia Wilson ’11 is included in The Baseline Scenario, an economics blog dedicated to explaining global economic issues and developing policy proposals. They discuss challenges for young college graduates, like landing a job and facing massive student loan debt. Read more...

Charles SchweikGIS Course Grant "Puts Western Mass on the Map"
Associate Professor Charles Schweik (natural resources conservation and public policy) is part of a $150,000 Massachusetts Department of Education grant with the Gateway Regional School District. “Putting Western Massachusetts on the Map: A Course in GIS” will give teachers in Western Massachusetts both face-to-face and online training (using MassONE Moodle) in open source GIS software over the course of 22 months. Read more...

Alesha WiddallJunior Goalie Named A10 Student Athlete of the Year
Congratulations to field hockey goalkeeper Alesha Widdall '12 (anthropology) who has been been selected as the A10 Student Athlete of the Year. Named to the Academic All-Conference Team, she also took home the conference's top academic honor for her performance in the classroom, having achieved a 3.592 GPA while being one of the top goalies in the NCAA. This is Widdall's third year taking first-team honors. She played every minute in 2010 to amass a 13-6 record with a 1.13 goals against average and a .792 save percentage. Widdall ranks seventh in the country in both GAA and save percentage. Read more...

Anthony NelsonWide Receiver Named Academic All American
Kudos also go to UMass wide receiver Anthony Nelson '11 (economics) who was named to the ESPN Academic All-American Football First Team. He is UMass' first Academic All-American since linebacker Mark Kimener '04 (sociology/African-American studies) in 2003. A first team All-Colonial Athletic Association wide receiver as a junior and senior, Nelson led the CAA with 61 catches for 830 yards and four touchdowns. He finished his career with 180 receptions for 2,212 yards. A native of Wellington, Fla., Nelson, who has a 3.88 GPA, also excelled as a return specialist. Read more...

tennis courts by BoydenUMass to Build New Residential and Teaching Complex
On what are now tennis courts in the heart of campus, UMass Amherst will build a $182 million residential and teaching complex to serve Commonwealth Honors College. The facility, scheduled to open in 2013, will be one of the best public university complexes of its kind in the nation. Included will be dorm space for 1,500 students, nine classrooms, two faculty residences, student services, a cyber café and lounge space for students to meet and study together. Read more...

military marching with flagsVeteran Friendly Campus
UMass Amherst is one of the most veteran-friendly college campuses in the country, thanks to services that include a drop-in center and administrative office dedicated to veterans’ needs. The Military Times ranks UMass Amherst as 27th in its top 100 schools for veterans, and GI Jobs puts it in the top 15% of “military friendly” campuses. The campus marked Veterans Day with a week-long program of events, beginning with a special tribute at the Nov. 6 football game. Read more...

Alumni Association Scholarships and Awards
Each year, the Alumni Association presents about 100 scholarships amounting to over $90,000 to current students.The majority of scholarships have a deadline of Wednesday, February 2, 2011. Take a look online for a listing and applications. In addition, nomination forms for the 2011 Senior Leadership Award are are now available. Click here for more information.

Upcoming Events
Bookmark the Events Calendar on the SBS website. There you'll find a listing of upcoming events related to the programs and departments in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences of interest to alumni, students, faculty and/or friends. View it by week, by month, or as a listing.

Alumni News
The Sacramento Bee recently published an article by Kevin Knobloch '78 (journalism), president of the Union of Concerned Scientists, about bipartisanism and the new START treaty. The same article appeared in several major newspapers around the world, including the Korea Herald. Also, Knobloch is quoted in The Hill's E2-Wire Energy and Environment blog in relation to a seven-item wish list, submitted by green and labor groups, for Congress to pass before the end of the session. “This lame-duck session doesn’t have to be lame,” Knobloch said. “In fact, it could be wise, productive and responsive.” Read more...

Ken Ansin '87 (political science) has joined the board of directors of New Resource Bank in San Francisco. A business executive and entrepreneur, Ansin has previously served as a board member of Root Capital and director of Enterprise Bank & Trust Co. of Lowell, Massachusetts. The New Resource Bank organizing group came together in 2005 to build a bank that is “by the people and for the people” of their community. Read more...

Christine G. [Solt] Savage '92 (political science), chair of Choate's Healthcare Group, has been named to the "Top 50 Women Massachusetts Super Lawyers" list for attaining the highest level of recognition and professional achievement in the state for 2010. Read more... This is the second major recognition for Savage in the past few weeks. In October Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly selected her as a 2010 "Top Woman of Law" for outstanding leadership, vision, passion, and advocacy in the healthcare industry.

David William Murray '10 (journalism/philosophy) has been blogging for TLC's "Sarah Palin's Alaska."

Will McGuinness '10 (journalism), online product manager for the Fall River Herald, is also blogging. Read a recent entry about "multimedia expectations."

Congratulations to Jason Rodriguez PhD '09 (sociology). His revised dissertation will be included in "The Culture and Politics of Health Care Work" series, edited by Suzanne Gorden (Cornell University Press).

Localocracy, a forum through which people can engage in serious discussion about local issues, has been developed by Conor White-Sullivan '10 (anthropology), Aaron Soules '10 (communication), et al. It recently won the Poynter Promise Prize, an incubation project in entrepreneurial journalism run by The Poynter Institute and funded by the Ford Foundation. The group operates forums in Amherst, Granby and South Hadley and is expanding to other communities across the state. Ultimately, the group wants to partner with area newspapers. Read more...

Cosmo Macero ’90 (communication), senior vice president at the communications and public relations firm O’Neill and Associates in Boston and veteran political, business, and public policy journalist, recently shared his insights on the 2010 elections with the Alumni Association. Read more...

David Pakman '06 (communication and economics), a multimedia maven based in Northampton, visited Mary Carey's Intro to Journalism class. Pakman is a new-media entrepreneur who really knows how to expand his audience. As an undergrad, he started his own political talk radio show, now called "The David Pakman Show." The nationally syndicated show airs, in audio and video format, on over 100 radio and TV stations and on YouTube. Pakman also writes a regular column for the Daily Hampshire Gazette.

KJ Hannah Greenberg PhD '87 (communication) recently published Oblivious to the Obvious: Wishfully Mindful Parenting (French Creek Press, 2010). Both sweet and sour, this collection of 41 essays zings across many aspects of parenting, including: exhaustion, pets, sibling rivalry, access to convergent media and integrating family with fortune. Throughout this book’s pages, Greenberg holds up the lighter side of life for examination. Read more about Greenberg and her work.

After going on parrot safaris, George Sommers '78 (journalism) has documented his findings in a new children's book, I Saw Wild Parrots in New York City! (Wiggles Press, 2010). This true story of feral parrots successfully colonizing the Big Apple explains how these exotic birds journeyed from South America and how they adapted from tropical life to the cold and gritty northern urban environment. Sommers, who lives in Quincy, MA, is a freelance writer who has been widely published.

Cartoonist Drew Aquilina '90 (landscape architecture and regional planning) created the "Iggman on Campus" comic strip published first in the Daily Collegian and later, renamed Green Pieces, in newspapers in Connecticut and Arizona. Iggman and his critter friends are now available in Green Pieces: Green from the Pond Up (Five Star Publications, Inc, 2010). Read a review that calls the illustrations "unsurpassable." The book was this year's Comics/Graphic Novels Honorable Mention  winner at the Green Book Festival, San Francisco. Visit the Green Pieces website.

Please send us your news! Also, view upcoming alumni events, sponsored by the Alumni Assocation, on their Events Listing. And check out MaroonCentral, the Alumni Association's online community. This is a FREE social networking service that encourages communication and professional networking among alumni and students through class notes, profiles, a searchable directory, and more.

Department/Faculty News
Water-Centric Sustainable Communities: Planning, Retrofitting and Building the Next Urban Environment (John Wiley & Sons) by John Ahern (landscape architecture and regional planning), Vladimir Novotny, and Paul Brown, was released last month. Read more...

The ECSA (Engaged, Connect, Service, Achieve) Committee has awarded the Anthropology Club an $1,800 grant for its spring break service learning trip to Jonestown, Mississippi. Entitled "Spring Break 2011: Social Justice in the Heart of Blues Country", the experience is open to any Five College student. Applications will be taken on a first-come first-serve basis, and selection may be competitive. More information [pdf] on the Jonestown trip. ECSA grants fund events that foster connections, bring students together, build relationships across different parts of the campus community in unique and innovative ways, and serve as models for diverse community building. Registered Student Organizations, programs, offices, and agencies under Student Affairs may apply for grants.

In November Peter Haas (political science) was a featured panelist at “Science & Society: IPCC Reform and the Global Climate Challenge” at Columbia University. The event was sponsored by The Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI), the Earth Institute’s Columbia Climate Center, and Columbia-Paris Alliance Program at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA). Other panelists included Simon Buckle, director, Climate Policy, Grantham Institute, Imperial College; Syukuro Manabe, senior meteorologist, Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences, Princeton University; and Laurence Tubiana, director, IDDRI, Sciences Po and Alliance Visiting Professor, Columbia University. Panelists presented the major controversies surrounding climate change today, with a special focus on the heightened scrutiny surrounding the IPCC assessment reports.

Hampshire Life, the weekly magazine for the Pioneer Valley published by the Daily Hampshire Gazette, ran a Q&A on Laura Reed (political science). Take a look if you'd like to know what makes her tick.

Legal Studies and Political Science are offering seven online courses starting December 20th, including Government & Politics of the Middle East.

Amy Schalet (sociology) gave the keynote address and participated on a panel at the California Adolescent Health Conference. She also gave a webinar for the Academy of Pediatrics. Read more... [pdf]

Brian McDermott (journalism) is chair of the National Press Photographers Association's Student Clip Contest. Recognizing the best in student photojournalism and multimedia, the contest runs quarterly segments with contestants accruing points towards being named NPPA Student Photographer of the Year. Read more...

The Journalism Program has been bringing lots of interesting speakers to campus. In November Gene Weingarten, the Washington Post’s two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning feature writer and columnist, spoke about his new book, The Fiddler in the Subway. Women's issues journalist Sharon Lerner came to present a talk entitled "Family-Unfriendly: Working to Improve Life for Caregivers in the U.S." Pulitzer prize-winner and literary journalist Tom French came to speak about his new book, Zoo Story: Life in the Garden of Captives.

Norm Sims (journalism) organized a panel on literary journalism for the Bedill NonFictionNow conference at the University of Iowa on Nov. 6. Panelists included representatives from the University of South Carolina, Northwestern University, Ryerson University, St. Louis University, and Sims, who spoke on "The Personal and the Historical: Literary Journalism and Literary History."

Razvan Sibii (journalism) presented "The Easy Example: Pedagogical Convenience or Clever Distraction?" on Nov. 14, at the National Communication Association's Annual Convention in San Francisco. Also, the Romania newspaper, Adevarul, published two feature articles by Sibii about the U.S. midterm elections. The first piece examined the fate of third-party and independent candidates, while the second piece looked at some of the trends in evidence during the elections. (Both texts are in Romanian; a rough translation can be obtained through Google translate).

Anthropology faculty Jean Forward, Betsy Krause, and Michael Sugerman received David Fellowships on behalf of the Department for the creation of "Integrative Experience" courses related to the new General Education Requirement. Anthropology was one of 10 departments selected from across campus. Read more about Integrative Experience at UMass.

SBS in the News
Springfield Republican, 11/29/10. A column by Peter Vickery, a graduate student at the Center for Public Policy and Administration, and Dick Stein, emeritus Goessmann Professor of Chemistry, discusses how the coal-fired Mt. Tom power plant in Holyoke could move to a cleaner fuel and still provide power and jobs for the region., 11/23/10. B.J. Roche (journalism) writes about November being National Family Caregivers Month. She cites research done by Nancy Folbre (economics) on this subject.

New York Times (Economix blog), 11/22/10. Nancy Folbre (economics) writes about the political reaction to recent proposals for reducing the national debt through spending cuts and tax increases. She says most people don’t have a clear idea how these plans would affect them and calls for new analytic tools to reveal more details about needed cutbacks and sacrifices to lower the national debt. New York Times (Economix blog), 11/8/10. Folbre writes about the need for ethical standards among professional economists. She notes a recent survey done by her colleague Gerald Epstein (economics). It found that of the 19 most prominent academic financial economists who played a role in debates about financial reform and regulation, 13 owned stock in, advised or served on the boards of commercial financial institutions. New York Times (Economix blog), 11/1/10. Folbre explores the ongoing disagreement among economists over the effects of minimum wage on jobs. She references a new study, co-authored by Arindrajit Dube (economics), published in this month's The Review of Economics and Statistics, which prints important articles related to empirical economics. The study closely analyzes employment trends for several categories of low-wage workers over a 16-year period in all contiguous counties across state borders where minimum wage increases followed a different trajectory. It has found that increases in minimum wages had no negative impact on employment rates. Huffington Post, 11/1/10. Folbre's blog and Dube's October interview on The Real News Network are cited.

Springfield Republican, 11/16/10. Raymond J. La Raja (political science) says not revealing the identities of search committee members, who are seeking a new police chief in Holyoke, allows them to offer honest opinions that aren’t subject to pressure from various interest groups.

Los Angeles Times, 11/14/10. One of eight economic experts invited to comment on whether the economy can be saved, Robert Pollin (economics), co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute, says the federal government must continue to aggressively fight the recession created by Wall Street hyper-speculation and promote recovery through both spending and credit market interventions. (His comments appear on pages 5-6.) Wall Street Journal, 11/5/10. A columnist, writing about how President Obama needs to lay out a clear plan to create jobs, references Pollin. According to Pollin, the recovery is stalled because private credit markets are locked up, especially for small businesses. The federal government should expand existing loan guarantees and tax excess cash reserves held by banks.

The Real News Network, 11/13/10. Emeritus Prof. James Crotty (economics), a fellow of the Political Economy Research Institute, says calls by conservatives and newly-elected Republican members of Congress for austerity and budget cutting could send the U.S. economy deeper into recession.

Foreign Policy, 11/7/10. Prof. Jillian Schwedler (political science) and honors student Josh Sowalsky '11 (political science, Middle Eastern studies, social thought and political economy) coauthored a column discussing November's parliamentary elections in Jordan.

WFXT-TV 25, 11/4/10. Prof. Emeritus Jerome Mileur (political science) says the Democratic sweep of congressional seats in Massachusetts means Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown is now a bigger target when he runs for re-election in two years.

Huffington Post, 11/3/10. Brian Schaffner (political science) shares findings of a Massachusetts exit poll he and his students conducted in 18 randomly selected precincts during the recent election. Most striking was that Gov. Deval Patrick owes his re-election to women, 57% of whom supported him, as opposed to 34% for Republican Charlie Baker. The poll also showed 10% of voters were between ages 18-29, as opposed to 17% in 2008.

New York Times (You're the Boss), 11/2/10. Jane D’Arista (Political Economy Research Institute) says a change included in the financial reform law recently passed by Congress, that allows banks to pay interest on business checking accounts, could help attract more accounts for banks from smaller businesses.

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 degree-granting departments and programs of Anthropology, Communication, Economics, Journalism, Labor Studies, Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning (LARP), Legal Studies, Political Science, Public Policy and Administration, Social Thought and Political Economy (STPEC), and Sociology. Among our ranks are 38,600 alumni, 3,700 undergraduate majors, and 560 graduate students. In addition to its departments, SBS is home to numerous centers and research institutions. Through the general education courses that SBS offers, the College’s 200 faculty members teach one quarter of the nearly 20,000 undergraduates on campus in any given semester.

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—and tomorrow's—students. If you are already a donor, please accept our sincere thanks. If not, please consider a gift to SBS for your department, student financial aid, a purpose that speaks to your personal experiences and priorities, or an unrestricted designation. To make a gift online, click here. Or, send a check to the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Draper Hall, University of Massachusetts Amherst, 40 Campus Center Way, Amherst, MA 01003-9244. Questions? Contact James Mallet, 413.577.1700.

We welcome feedback related to this newsletter, the college in general, specific concerns, or topics of interest. Please address all correspondence, including story ideas, to Sabine Cray, director of communications and marketing. If you wish to add your name to the mailing list, or if you wish to unsubscribe, please contact us. 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