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SBS Newsletter – September 2010

In this issue

Helena Taye Research Opportunity Supports Critical Thinker
Awards like the LeBovidge Undergraduate Research Scholarship recognize the importance of giving undergraduates special opportunities to work with faculty. Stipends, funded by Alan LeBovidge ’64 (economics) and his wife Carol, support 10 hours a week of substantive research assistance on a semester-long research project. This past spring five students received these scholarships. Among them was Helena Taye ’11 (political science) whose project this fall will focus on sub-Saharan Africa with Professor John Brigham. Read more...

Irma McClaurinAlum Named New Leader of Shaw University
Irma McClaurin MA '89 PhD '93 (anthropology), activist, anthropologist, higher education administrator, teacher, poet, and writer whose commitment to the eradication of social inequality spans over 30 years, has been named the 15th president of Shaw University. Founded in 1865 in Raleigh, NC, Shaw is the first historically black college of the South. This private, co-educational, liberal arts university is affiliated with the Baptist Church and awards degrees at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. "I am honored and privileged to be given the opportunity to lead an institution of Shaw’s caliber, with its deep history and rich tradition," says McClaurin. "I stand on the shoulders of giants, and walk in the footprints of greatness." Read the official announcement. Read McClaurin's comments on becoming Shaw's new leader.

Joya MisraMisra Named Editor of Gender and Society
Congratulations to Joya Misra (sociology and public policy), acting department chair, who has been selected as the next editor of Gender and Society, the premier journal in the sociology of gender. Her selection followed a highly competitive process, and her four-year term begins next summer. When the journal comes to campus, it will offer research assistantships for graduate students and increase visibility of the department, which is already ranked 31st in the nation. Read more...

Elizabeth Chilton and Neil SibermanChilton and Silberman Named Editors of International Heritage Journal
Elizabeth S. Chilton, chair of the Department of Anthropology, and Neil Silberman, a lecturer in the department, have been named co-editors of the renamed international peer-reviewed journal, Heritage & Society, published by Left Coast Press, Inc. Chilton is the founding director of the Center for Heritage and Society at the University of Massachusetts, and Silberman is coordinator of projects and policy initiatives for the Center. Read more...

And other topics of interest...

George N. ParksParks, UMass Band Director, Dies Suddenly
George N. Parks, for 33 years the director of the University of Massachusetts Amherst Minuteman Marching Band, died suddenly on September 16 at age 57 while traveling with the band in Ohio. Parks and the 350-member band were staying overnight in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, en route to Ann Arbor, Mich., where the University football team was scheduled to play the University of Michigan on Saturday. A memorial service for Parks will be held on October 16 on campus at the Mullins Center. Read more...

Amy SchaletMedia Taps Sociologist for Expertise on Teen Sex
Amy Schalet (sociology) has been featured in the national news quite a bit lately, including Time Magazine, Salon, The Society Pages, and more. Her report "Sex, Love, and Autonomy in the Teenage Sleepover" compares the forbidding and fearful American view of premarital teen sex with the much more relaxed Dutch attitudes and that country's significantly lower rate of STDs and pregnancies. Schalet will be giving the opening plenary at the California Adolescent Health Conference in October and the annual webinar for the Academy of American Pediatrics' Adolescent Health Partnership in November. Says acting department chair Joya Misra, "I'm delighted with the reception of her work. Amy is a major influence on understandings of adolescent sexual health." Read more about Schalet. Click here to read her report.

Grace ChangEPA STAR Fellowship Goes to Econ PhD Candidate
PhD student Grace Chang (economics) was among 120 students across the U.S. selected for the prestigious STAR (Science to Achieve Results) dissertation fellowship from the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA STAR fellowship provides $111,000 of support over three years. Chang will use the funds to study environmental justice in exposure to industrial toxics in the United States. Read more...

Jessica TranWing Thing Welcomes SBS Students; Tran Wins IPad
The SBS Wing Thing welcoming SBS majors back to campus was a big success, despite heavy rain that began about half an hour into the festivities. That didn't dampen spirits though. The hundreds of students who came simply scrambled into Machmer and Thompson Halls where the party continued—and the food never stopped! Jessica Tran '14 (communication) won the iPad raffle—and she's pretty thrilled. Read more and view a gallery of photos.

Benjamin Gilman International ScholarshipUMass Amherst Ranked 4th Nationally in Federal Gilman Scholarships
UMass received the fourth-largest number of Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships for study abroad of all campuses nationwide—16 overall, including SBS students Jonathan Johanntoberns-Tabb (political science/history), Zachary Kingston (landscape architecture), Clare Marks (political science/Japanese), and Stephen Oleski (economics/political science). Gilman Scholarships range from $3,500 to $5,000 per semester. Read more...

Journalism RocksMultimedia Bootcampers Set Tone for New Semester
For two and a half days before classes started, eleven journalism first-years, sophomores and transfer students participated in the Second Annual Multimedia Bootcamp. Joined by Journalism graduate Jackie Hai '09 and professors Brian McDermott and Steve Fox, these students got an intense introduction to the world of Multimedia Journalism. “This was a great group. I think they will do well,” said Hai. Read more...

Pre-Law Advising imageHelp for Future Lawyers
Applying to law school? Don't go it alone. Get expert advice from the UMass Pre-Law Advising Office. Pre-Law Advisor Diane Curtis can answer your questions about applying after taking time off, obtaining relevant and persuasive letters of recommendation, choosing law schools, and anything else that might be of concern. Curtis is also available to review and provide feedback on personal statements, resumes and other addenda for law school applications. You can send your questions directly to Curtis by email or call: 413.577.0396. Check out the Pre-Law Advising website. It's packed with general information for law school applicants. The Pre-Law Advising Office's services are available to alumni on the same basis as current students.

investigative journalismJournalism Class Produces News Package about Death of Student
An article by Will McGuinness '10 (journalism) that appeared on on September 9 recounts the 2008 death of Katie Sherman '10, a UMass student at the time, while studying abroad in India. Her death was ruled a suicide by Indian officials and a subsequent FBI probe ended for lack of evidence. A sidebar by Jed Winer '11 (journalism) discusses efforts by the International Programs Office to monitor the safe operation of study abroad programs used by UMass Amherst students. The news package represents some of the work produced out of the Investigative Journalism & The Web class taught by Steve Fox last spring. McGuinness is now the first-ever online product manager for The Herald News and the Taunton Gazette, responsible for social media applications designed to encourage engagement and drive traffic to all newspaper-related websites.

UMass campusTimes of London Ranks UMass 56 on Top 200 List
World University Rankings, released on September 16 by the Times of London, rated the University of Massachusetts as one of the best in the world, placing it at 56. UMass is the only New England public university to make the prestigious list, described as "the gold standard for world-class research institutions." It was number 14 among public universities in America and 33rd in the US overall. Times Higher Education editor Ann Mroz says, "Being ranked 56 in the world top 200 is an impressive achievement. The top 200 universities in the world represent only a tiny fraction of world higher education and any institution that makes it into this table is truly world class." Read more...

UMass graduatesIn Face of Challenges, UMass Amherst is a Success Story
Chancellor Robert C. Holub says UMass Amherst is the finest public university in New England and takes issue with a story in The Boston Globe (Sunday, September 5) that says the campus is having trouble attracting top students from Massachusetts. Holub's letter-to-the-editor notes that figures omitted from the article “tell an impressive story about the strengths of UMass Amherst.” He cites increased enrollment in recent years, an increasing percentage of top students attending, competitive National Science Foundation research grants, and increased numbers of out-of-state students. Read more...

UMass diplomaUMass to Offer 3-year Degree Plan
Seeking to trim the cost of a college degree at a time when many families are struggling with tuition, UMass Amherst this fall plans to introduce a program to make it easier for students to graduate in three years. By introducing a formal three-year degree option, UMass joins dozens of other schools around the country that have decided that students’ desire to save money in some cases trumps officials’ traditional concerns that they have a full four years to explore and grow intellectually and socially. Read more...

Making sushiGiant California Sushi Roll Breaks World Record
UMass nailed a world record on Labor Day when more than 300 volunteers gathered on the Haigis Mall to assemble a monstrous California sushi roll which, at 422 feet, was more than 90 feet longer than one created at the University of California, Berkeley last fall. Thousands of new and returning students gathered for the event. Chancellor Robert Holub and Food Network chef Jet Tila presided over the massive assembly line, along with auxiliary enterprises executive director Ken Toong, famous for large community food celebrations emphasizing nutrition and sustainability. Read more. Watch a video. N.B: Toong notes that ultimately the sushi roll was composted, prompted by concerns over food safety because the seafood in the roll was unrefrigerated longer than expected.

Students: Do You Need Money?
Each year the Alumni Association presents over $90,000 in scholarships and awards to eligible students. And don't forget the tuition raffle where you can win up to $2,000 credit for spring semester's tuition and fees! Whether you are attending Family Weekend (October 29-31) or not, don't miss your chance to win. For more information on the raffle and/or to register for Family Weekend, click here.

Comm Alumni: Homecoming Reception
The Department of Communication, will be hosting a Homecoming Welcome for communication alumni. Says Lisa Henderson, chair, "I hope you'll join alums, current faculty and members of the Class of 2011 for a delicious reception at the Thompson Cafe, ground floor, Thompson Hall (near the elevator bank), Friday, October 15, 5:30–7:00 p.m. This will be a great preamble to the Pops Concert. See you there." For more information about homecoming, click here.

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
Susan Kaplan '82 (legal studies), WFCR reporter and local host of “All Things Considered,” is one of 10 journalists worldwide to receive the 2010 Dart Center Ochberg Fellowship to help her improve news coverage of violence and traumatic events. Kaplan has worked at the station since 1995. Read more...

Clarence Brooks '73 (sociology), a former all-conference lineman for UMass in the 1970s, is in his sixth season as defensive line coach for the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens. He began his coaching career at UMass under head coach Dick MacPherson. Read more...

Ron Dottin '97 (economics), senior U.S. quantitative analyst at RBC Capital Markets in New York, is a  member of the Economics Department Advisory Board. On September 20 he appeared on CNBC’s "Fast Money." View the clip.

Aaron Saykin '01 (journalism) won the 2009 Edward R. Murrow National Award for Sports Writing for his WGRZ (Buffalo) piece, "Baseball Hero." In 2006 Saykin received an Emmy for his piece on “J-Mac,” about the Rochester-area teen with autism who was given the opportunity to play in a varsity basketball game and scored 20 points. That story, many will recall, went viral, bringing J-Mac (Jason McElwain) all the way to the White House for congratulations from the President.

In an interview with News.Az, Ramil Maharramov '06 MPA (public policy and administration) discusses ongoing conflicts in Azerbaijan and why there has been a delay in getting a U.S. ambassador appointed for that country.

AJ Gerritson ’99 (journalism/political science), founding partner of 451 Marketing, was named one of Boston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 that acknowledges emerging business leaders in the Boston-area. Gerritson was selected from more than 400 nominations, the highest number in the program’s13-year history. Honorees are selected based on individual achievement, business talent and civic commitment that helps drive the local economy.

Superior Court Judge Judd J. Carhart '71 (political science), who has taught at UMass Amherst in legal studies for the past 18 years, has been nominated by Gov. Deval Patrick to serve on the state Appeals Court. Carhart is an Amherst native who also served as Northwestern District Attorney.

Backed by $22,500 from the UMass Amherst Innovation Challenge, Conor White-Sullivan '10 (anthropology) has launched Localocracy, an online town forum aimed at promoting public discussion of community issues, in Milford, MA. This is the third town where the forum has been introduced. The effort is backed By MassINC, a Boston-based think tank. Read more...

In a Washington Post article about the high cost of education, Lindsay McCluskey '09 (anthropology), president of the United States Student Association and a former student trustee of UMass, says she is in the process of paying off $20,000 in student loans and thinks overall, students are borrowing too much money to attend college. (McCluskey's comments are on page 4).

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
On September 30 Michael Arad, designer of the World Trade Center Memorial, spoke on “Reflecting Absence: Designing the National September 11th Memorial” as part of the Department of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning's Zube Lecture Series. The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation selected Arad's design in January 2004 from more than 5,000 entries. The talk, co-sponsored with the Department of Architecture, was part of a series, “Priceless: New Approaches to Historic Preservation in the 21st Century,” that highlights the new historic preservation initiative on campus.

Dean Robert Feldman, author of The Liar in Your Life, is part of an impressive line-up of speakers for Westfield State University's 2010-2011 Distinguished Speaker Series that kicks off this fall with Attorney Alan M. Dershowitz. Others include historian Taylor Branch; comedian Dick Hardwick; science writer and best-selling author of The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Rebecca Skloot; and child safety advocate Kathy Picard. Feldman will speak on December 8. Read more...

Nantucket and Other Native Places: The Legacy of Elizabeth Alden Little, coedited by Elizabeth Chilton (anthropology) and Mary Lynne Rainey, has been released by SUNY Press and the Massachusetts Archaeological Society. Besides being an indispensible, up-to-date overview of the archaeology of the Native peoples and earliest settlers of eastern Massachusetts, this book is a tribute to the career of the influential archaeologist Elizabeth Alden Little (1926–2003) who received her MA from UMass in 1985 and whose family gave generously a few years ago to renovate the Elizabeth Alden Little Laboratory of Archaeology in Machmer Hall. A celebration/book signing is coming up on October 23 in Middleborough, MA. Read more...

In early September Jane Fountain (political science and public policy), director of the National Center for Digital Government, was an invited speaker at North Carolina State University's "CI Days at NCSU: The Excitement and Future of Cyberinfrastructure." Read more... Fountain also gave a keynote address at Portugal Tecnológico 2010 on September 22 at the Parque das Nacoes in Lisbon, Portugal. Her address, “The transformational effect of web technologies on government” examined the increasing usage of Web 2.0 tools in government, commonly referred to as “Gov 2.0.” According to Fountain, “Gov 2.0 signals government’s emphasis on the latest digital technologies for providing services and information, for policymaking, and for advancing the technology agenda of innovative national governments.” Read more...

Donal Carbaugh, who was selected as a Conti fellow this past spring, has been named among 10 communication researchers to represent the field for the Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education at the National Academies. Carbaugh's activities with this group will "advance the frontiers of behavioral and social sciences and their application to public policy." He was also recently awarded funds by General Motors Academic Partnerships for a project on cultural discourses in the use of speech applications, to be prepared for the Human Machine Interface Group in GM's R&D Advanced Technical Center in Israel. Carbaugh's scholarship in intercultural communication will soon be featured in a special issue of the Journal of Cultural Discourses, with several articles by other scholars about his work. Read an interview with Carbaugh that was published last fall in the distinguished British journal Language and Intercultural Communication.

Razvan Sibii (journalism) published the article "Conceptualizing Teacher Immediacy through the 'Companion' Metaphor" in the journal Teaching in Higher Education (Vol. 15, Nr. 5, October 2010).

Peter Haas (political science) was a keynote speaker at the 2nd annual Conference on Environmental Governance and Democracy at Yale University in September. He spoke on the topic of "Addressing Climate Change and Advancing a Green Economy: Do Institutions Matter?" He also was on a panel that discussed the governance of climate change science.

The U.S. Embassy arranged a visit to Belarus for Annaliese Bischoff (landscape architecture and regional planning) to discuss greenways and public art as part of the U.S. Department of State's International Information Programs Sept. 19-26. Read more...

The Center for Public Policy and Administration (CPPA) kicked off its Fall 2010 Faculty Colloquium on Sept. 20, with a talk by Professor of Communication Jarice Hanson. CPPA's Colloquia are held monthly each semester and enable members of the UMass community to discuss ongoing research projects that have significant policy implications. Then, on Sept. 23, CPPA celebrated its move to Gordon Hall with an open house. State Sen. Stan Rosenberg and State Rep. Ellen Story, along with campus faculty and administrators, gave remarks at the event.

SBS in the News
Houston Chronicle, 9/29/10, Arizona Daily Star [item 2]; Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Fox 5 [Wash., D.C.], 9/28/10;. Michelle Budig (sociology), testified before a congressional panel in Washington, D.C., on the pay gap between women and men and how working women who have children face a motherhood penalty. Overall, Budig says, the pay gap between men and women is growing and increases by about $1,100 for each child a woman has., 9/23/10. A story on workplace pay equality between men and women mentions Budig's research, which finds factors like interruptions from work, working part-time and decreased experience only explain about one-third of the pay gap between women with and without children. Overall, the study finds women are less likely to have workplace flexibility than men.

Washington Post, 9/28/10. A recent proposal by Robert Pollin (economics), co-director of the Political Economy Research Institute, calls for having the federal government create strong incentives for both lending by banks to small business and for businesses to seek loans. He says, currently the private credit markets are locked up, especially for small businesses. Pollin’s proposal uses federal loan guarantees to boost bank lending and a tax on excess reserves held by banks. The Real News Network, 9/24/10. Pollin is interviewed about why federal stimulus funding and deficit spending are not creating inflation. He also says austerity now would weaken the already fragile economic recovery.  Huffington Post, 9/21/10. Pollin comments about why unemployment continues to be the overriding political and economic issue. He says the current high level of joblessness is casting a pall on everything and is creating a “negative feedback loop” for the Obama administration and members of Congress trying to deal with the problem., 9/8/10. Pollin is among prominent national economists asked about what will work to stimulate the U.S. economy. Pollin says the government needs to help make credit easier and more affordable for small business.

New Hampshire Business Review, 9/24/10. A study by Jeffrey Thompson (Political Economy Research Institute) finds that public sector workers in New England earn about 3% less on average than private sector workers. Connecticut Mirror, 9/20/10. A columnist cites Thompson's study that says New England states can best grow their economies by spending on infrastructure and education rather than tax breaks for business., 9/23/10. A blog by B.J. Roche (journalism) discusses the Facebook experience and how it has changed the way middle-aged women connect, across the generations, as well as with one other.

Keen News Service, 9/23/10. M.V. Lee Badgett (economics), director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration, says same-sex couples suffer an even larger “marriage penalty” than heterosexual married couples. Congressional Republicans say if they gain control of Congress, they plan to get rid of the marriage penalty, but because they don’t support same-sex marriage it’s unlikely they would extend that effort to gay and lesbian married couples.

WFCR, 9/22/10. Prof Emeritus Alan Swedlund (anthropology), author of Shadows in the Valley: A Cultural History of Illness, Death and Loss in New England, 1840 to 1916, is interviewed about this study of medical issues and mortality in New England., 9/20/10. Prof. Emeritus Richard Wolff (economics) writes a column about how poverty has been affected by the current economic downturn.  NPR “Planet Money,” 9/16/10. A story on assertions that President Obama and many congressional Democrats are socialists includes an interview with Wolff, a Marxist socialist. He says there is little understanding of what socialism is and very little of what has been done by the president or Congress is even close to socialism.

Dollars & Sense, Sept./Oct. 2010. Jeannette Wicks-Lim (Political Economy Research Institute) writes a column about the need for a green jobs program to provide employment and to counter pollution and reliance on fossil fuels.

Boston Business Journal, 9/14/10. A report by a coalition of business groups says Massachusetts has lost out on creating 40,000 jobs that would have been created by a climate and energy policy bill that has stalled in Congress. The report cites a study done by the Political Economy Research Institute that found many of the jobs in question would be in the energy conservation and retrofitting areas.

Boston Globe, 9/14/10. Ralph Whitehead, Jr. (journalism) says November's primary election results will give a good look at the level of voter anger among the electorate. That anger helped elected Republican U.S. Sen. Scott Brown last January., 9/13/10. M.J. Peterson (political science) says plans to pass a resolution at the U.N. granting the European Union expanded speaking rights during formal meetings of the General Assembly, actually puts the multinational organization on par with larger states., et al [from AP], 9/6/10–9/12/10. Emily West (communication) comments about how Hallmark Cards Inc., the largest greeting card company in the world, is faring in the current tough economy.

New York Times, 9/20/10. Nancy Folbre (economics) writes in her weekly blog, Economix, about how the cash-welfare program for needy families with children is inadequate and growing more so as the numbers of poor children grows due to the economic downturn and high unemployment.  New York Times, 9/13/10. Folbre blogs about what level of job growth is actually needed by the U.S. economy. She also looks at the relationship between available jobs and job seekers.

Huffington Post, 9/9/10. Donald Tomaskovic-Devey (sociology) writes that the huge growth in the financial sector of the U.S. economy has distorted household and private sector behavior. He says hefty bank profits are the problem, not the solution to the current economic ills.

Boston Herald, 9/8/10. Raymond La Raja (political science) comments in a story about the dearth of serious Republican candidates in Massachusetts despite enthusiasm generated by U.S. Sen. Scott Brown’s victory last January. He says this lack of credible candidates shows how anemic the GOP is in the state.

Telegram & Gazette, 9/5/10. Tom Juravich (labor studies) comments about the political health of the labor movement on Labor Day.

Washington Post, 9/5/10. Jesse Rhodes (political science) is cited in a story about how political observers and academics now believe President Obama has been a polarizing figure since he began running for president. Rhodes is co-author of a paper on the subject.

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 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. 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