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SBS Newsletter – September 2007

In this issue

Michelle Budig

Humboldt Fellow to Pursue Family Policy Research at Max Planck Institute
When her sister was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2003, Associate Professor Michelle Budig (sociology) spent significant time caring for her. The five-month experience made real her academic research on care work and work-family conflict and balance. It also impacted her research activities: the solitary and contemplative process of writing was put aside. “My department was very supportive,” Budig notes. “Experiencing firsthand how workplaces can facilitate family care-giving raised my interest in workplace family policies." Read more...

Stephen Seche

Alum Seche Appointed Ambassador to Yemen
The new U.S. ambassador to Yemen is Stephen A. Seche '74 (journalism), who fills the position previously held by another UMass Amherst alumnus, Thomas C. Krajeski '75 (Russian). A career foreign-service officer, Seche has spent most of his 27 years with the Department of State engaged in public diplomacy. In February 2005 he was appointed Chargé d'Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Damascus, Syria, when the Ambassador was recalled to Washington for consultations in the wake of the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Read more...

Katrina Cessna

Attending UMass Amherst is Rewarding Experience
Katrina Cessna ’08 (bachelor’s degree with individual concentration [BDIC] and political science) is passionate about exploring new departments and courses that will enhance her studies. “BDIC is perfect for me because I can incorporate courses from political science, economics, communication, sociology and journalism into my focus, Domestic Government: People, Policy and Perception. I entered the political science major without really intending to complete it. Many of the classes that appealed to me were for ‘majors only,’ so I in signed in as a double major to increase the likelihood of getting into them.” Read more...

Norman Sims

Reflections on Literary Journalism and New Media
He’s an expert in literary journalism, but when asked to define the genre, Professor Norman Sims points to a problem of definition. “It’s easier to show than to tell,” he says. “The first thing I do in my Literary Journalism class is to expose students to some strong examples. Usually we begin with ‘The Long Fall of One-Eleven Heavy’ by Michael Paterniti. It’s about the Swiss Air plane crash in Nova Scotia that claimed 229 lives, and is probably the best piece of journalism I’ve seen in 20 years. Read more...

And other topics of interest...

Thomas W. Cole Jr.Cole Honors Faculty at Convocation
Thomas W. Cole, Jr. gave his first major public address as interim chancellor on Sept. 21 at the Faculty Convocation. The convocation celebrated the research and teaching achievements of the campus community and honored eight faculty, including Nancy Folbre (economics) with awards. Read more...

The Wood Mill in LowellAlum Ansin's Lofty Ambitions for Lawrence
Bob Ansin '96 (political science), featured in Commonwealth Magazine recently, has made mill redevelopment in New England his passion—and the revival of struggling Bay State cities its hoped-for byproduct. The Wood Mill and other behemoths lining the Merrimack River were the lifeblood of Lawrence at the turn of the last century, and their still-sturdy bones are the scaffolding on which a new future for the city may be taking shape. Ansin isn't new to redevelopment. For example, in 1998, he converted Fitchburg's Anwelt factory that housed his family's business into a mixed-use development that now houses a public charter school along with office space for several community organizations, and will soon include apartments for the elderly. Read the article... Go to Ansin's Mass Innovation website.

Science Technology and Society Initiative logo STS Initiative Receives $300k for Ethics Education in Science and Engineering
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded a group of eight researchers, led by Professor Jane Fountain (political science and public policy), a $300,000 grant to create, implement and refine a series of international ethics modules for science and engineering students through the Science, Technology, and Society Initiative. The group represents six academic departments from four colleges. Read more...

Elizabeth ChiltonAnthropologist Featured on Public Radio
Professor Elizabeth Chilton '91 MA, '96 PhD (anthropology) discusses on WFCR public radio's "Field Notes" her theory of Native American agriculture in the area, how English settlements altered Native American lifestyle in western Massachusetts, and her team's recent discovery in Deerfield of a Native American Fort that had been noted in fragmentary historical references but had never been pinpointed. Listen to the program (mp3). Read more about the fort and the Anthropology Department's Archaeological Field School.

Lauren SpinneyStudent's Travel Experience Enriches Education, Sense of Self
“I think traveling is the most mind-opening education one can receive,” says Lauren Spinney ’09 (social thought and political economy), who received an Ansin Study Abroad Fellowship to attend the Institute for Central American Development Studies in Costa Rica and Nicaragua this fall. “I’m a huge advocate for traditional academics, but learning from experience is one of the most rewarding types of education. In fact, I don’t think students are encouraged to do it enough. Without the Ansin, I wouldn’t be able to go.” Read more...

Andrea BergstromPop Culture Enthusiast Wins Palleschi Hart Teaching Fellowship
Remember hanging out as a teenager, watching so many reruns of your favorite sit-coms that you could repeat the lines verbatim? Growing up in Northborough, MA, current PhD candidate Andrea Bergstrom ’05 MA (communication) did just that. “Who knew,” she jokes, “that all those episodes of “Beverly Hills 90210” would actually become relevant to my career!" Read more...

Center for Research on Families logoCenter for Research on Families Announces New Family Research Scholars
Five outstanding individuals have been selected to participate in the Center for Research on Families' Family Research Scholars Program for the coming year. The program supports faculty in securing grant funding for family-related research while building a multidisciplinary community of researchers studying issues of relevance to families. Family Research Scholars participate in a year-long interdisciplinary seminar which supports them in conceptualizing, writing, and submitting their planned grant proposals. Read more...

Faculty Notes
Global Communications: Toward a Transcultural Political Economy, edited by Associate Professor Paula Chakravartty (communication) and Yuezhi Zhao, has been released this fall by Rowman & Littlefield. This provocative book takes a new approach toward understanding the uneven flows of global communications. Rather than guiding its discussion by geography, types of media, or traditional separations of power and resistance, Global Communications examines political economic power and communication in relation to historically specific encounters with modernity. Among the contributors is Associate Professor Mari Castaneda (communication). Read more... [pdf]

Professor Donal Carbaugh (communication) has been appointed the Fulbright Foundation’s Bicentennial Chair and Distinguished Professor at the University of Helsinki for the 2007-08 academic year. The Bicentennial Chair is an important resource to other Finnish and European universities and has played a crucial role in developing the interdisciplinary approach to American studies found at the University of Helsinki and elsewhere. Read more...

Assistant Professor Michael J. Constantino (psychology) has been selected to receive the Society for the Exploration of Psychotherapy Integration’s (SEPI) 2007 New Researcher Award. The award will be presented at SEPI’s 24th annual meeting in May. Read more...

A study by Sanjiv Gupta (sociology) has resulted in new findings on women's earnings and housework, says a briefing report by the Council on Contemporary Families. Gupta's study shows that on average the amount of housework a woman does doesn't have much to do with her husband's help or his earnings, but how much money she earns. The more she earns, the less housework she does. Read more... (please note: this link is live, but there have been some issues with the CCF server. If it isn't working, please try again later.)

Richard D. Wolff (economics) is cofounder of a new international economic analysis website: www.globalmacroscope.com. The other is his son, Max Fraad-Wolff, who is currently completing his PhD in economics at UMass Amherst. Besides presenting continuously updated international economic news, the website includes original analyses of current issues. "Many of our postings are written by Max or me," writes the elder Wolff. "They have been reprinted around the globe in many electronic and print mass media ranging from the Asia Times to the Monthly Review website in New York. The site is free and open to the public."

Lee Badgett (economics), director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration at UMass Amherst and Research Director at the Williams Institute, UCLA School of Law, testified before Congress on September 5 that the passage of HR 2015, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a federal nondiscrimination law including sexual orientation and gender identity, would benefit both LGBT people and employers. Badgett summarized findings from a recent Williams Institute study, Bias in the Workplace, which reviews 50 studies over the last decade and demonstrates a disturbing and consistent pattern: sexual orientation-based and gender identity discrimination is a common occurrence in many workplaces across the country. Read Badgett's testimony... [pdf]

Jane E. Fountain (political science and public policy), director of the National Center for Digital Government, has joined two dozen prominent researchers, government officials, and business professionals to evaluate the federal e-Rulemaking initiative through the American Bar Association’s Committee on the Status and Future of Federal e-Rulemaking. Read more...

Alumni News
A profile of Jill D. Whalen '83 (sociology), CEO of High Rankings, a company that helps Web site operators maximize their Internet traffic, has been published in the 9/23/07 Boston Globe. Read the article.

On September 18 former U.S. Rep. and current chair of the Massachusetts Republican Party Peter G. Torkildsen '80 (political science) spoke on campus, encouraging engagement in community activism and supporting local candidates. The event was sponsored by the UMass Amherst Republican Club. Read more about Torkildsen's speech in the Daily Collegian...

Business partners Shawna Strachan '00 (journalism) and Audra Bodenstab '03 (political science) have opened Looc, a Boston South End women’s clothier featuring party, casual, and work wear. In a few short weeks, it’s become the most buzzed about boutique in town. Read more in the Boston Globe.

Carlos Fierro '96 (political science) was awarded the Outstanding Young Lawyer of the Year Award for 2007 by the State Bar of New Mexico. Read more in the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Do you have news you'd like to share? Send it to the SBS Newsletter.

Upcoming Events
October 1: Journalism Program, Lecture Series in Broadcast Media—The New New Media: Challenges and Opportunities in Multi-Media Reporting. Featuring Chet Rhodes, Assistant Managing Editor, news video, washingtonpost.com; Patrick Stiegman, Executive Editor, ESPN.com; Emily Sweeney, Reporter, The Boston Globe. Memorial Hall. Free Pizza party 6:15; Panel: 7-8:30.

October 1: Associate Professor Paula Chakravartty (communication) will discuss “Exclusion and Citizenship in the ‘Global Information Society’: Lessons from Feminist Transnational Activism.” 4:00, Five College Women’s Studies Research Center, Mount Holyoke College. Read more...

October 3: The Center for Research on Families (CRF) presents Taking Research on Families Outside of the Academy: How to Craft Effective Media Messages. This is the first in a series of panels that CRF is organizing to bring together researchers with interest in taking their research outside of the academy and speaking about it to the media. Noon to 2:00 p.m., 803 Campus Center. Free and open to all. Read more...

October 9: "Pre-law Workshop: The Law School Application Process." Sponsored by the Pre-Law Advising Office and the Department of Legal Studies. All UMass Amherst students welcome. 4:30-6:00 pm, Thompson 102.

October 9: An Evening Celebrating the Literary Genre of the Memoir, with Moderator Madeleine Blais (journalism) and Carole Gaunt '67 (history), author of Hungry Hill: A Memoir (University of Massachusetts Press, 2007), and John Hanson Mitchell, editor of Sanctuary: The Massachusetts Audubon Magazine and author of The Rose Café: Love and War in Corsica (Shoemaker & Hoard, 2007). 7–9:30 p.m, Memorial Hall. Read more...

October 18-20: Homecoming. Read more...

October 19: The Alice S. and Peter H. Rossi Annual Lecture Series. Inaugural event to feature Father Andrew Greeley, one of the country’s most prolific writers in the sociology of religion, on American Catholicism, and in the annals of popular fiction. Title of presentation: “The Great American Prayer Scandal: Why Americans Pray?” 4:00 pm, Fine Arts Center Lobby. A public reception will follow. Read more...

November 15: The Economics Department presents its annual Gamble Lecture. Featured speaker: Dani Rodrik, professor of international economy, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. 4:00 p.m., Gordon Hall.

November 16-18: Unbroken Chain, the largest conference on the legacy of the Grateful Dead, and the first to be held by a major university. Scholars, artists, performers, students and members of the extended Grateful Dead family will gather for the event. Attendance is limited to 500. Sponsored by UMass Amherst Graduate School, the Department of History and UMass Amherst Outreach. More info and registration...

SBS in the News
Boston Globe,9/26/07. Football team member Matt Lawrence (sociology), who transferred to UMass from UConn, is enjoying his new role as the featured running back in the Minuteman offense. Read the article...

Springfield Republican, 9/23/07. Nancy Folbre (economics) comments in a story about a recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey that shows Springfield, MA has the sixth worst percentage of child poverty in the country. Read more...

Boston Globe, 9/20/07. Raymond La Raja (political science) comments in a story about how presidential candidates in the United States are raising large amounts of money from expatriate donors in foreign countries. Read more...

WFCR Public Radio, 9/17/07. Robert W. Paynter (anthropology) discusses ancient farming patterns in the region and how they changed based on market conditions and other factors. Listen to the program... (mp3)

Boston Globe, 9/16/07. A study done by Naomi Gerstel (sociology) and Natalia Sarkisian of Boston College, finds that married couples spend less time socializing with friends, neighbors and extended families than singles, and they are less likely to give emotional support and practical help with chores. Critics of the research contend that married couples spend more time raising children and that accounts for the drop off in social interactions. Read the article...

Salon.com, 9/14/07. Daniel Anderson (psychology) comments in a story about young children watching television. He says that at age 30 months, about the same time children will sit through a whole book or story, they also will sit through a whole television program and get upset if they are interrupted and don’t see the ending. Read the article...

Asia Times, 9/14/07. Graduate student Max Fraad Wolff discusses the role of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank in international trade. Read the article...

Boston Globe, 9/7/07. UMass quarterback Liam Coen '09 (communication) is profiled before the game against Colgate (which the Minutemen won 35-17). The Colgate game two years ago marked the red-shirted freshman's unexpected debut. Read the article...

Arizona Star (from AP), 8/26/07. Ervin Staub (psychology), who specializes in the prevention of youth violence, says a case where a 13-year-old boy was suspended from school for drawing a likeness of a gun shows that young boys are interested in guns but doesn’t necessarily reflect a tendency toward violence. He says the school officials went too far in this case. Read the 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 current 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 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 donation to SBS for your department, student financial aid, or a purpose that speaks to your personal experiences and priorities. To make a gift online, click here. Questions? Contact:
James Mallet, Director of Development
College of Social and Behavioral Sciences
236 Draper Hall
University of Massachusetts Amherst
40 Campus Center Way
Amherst, MA 01003-9244
(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, marketing and communication specialist. 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
http://www.umass.edu/sbs/