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Nov 11

Stonewall Resource Center 30th Anniversary
Nov. 10 - 12
Grinnell Campus


Bay Area Presidential Luncheon
11 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
San Francisco, CA


Computer Science Reunion
Nov. 18 - 19
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News from Campus

Alumni News
Water Sustainability: Can it be achieved?

Deborah Swackhamer ’76On Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016, Deborah Swackhamer '76, 2016 Danforth Lecturer, will present the Scholars' Convocation, "Water Sustainability: Can it be achieved?" The free, public lecture will begin at 11 a.m. in Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center, Room 101.

Later in the day she will presenting the Danforth Chemistry Lecture, "Environmental Chemical Fate and Impact," in Noyce Science Center.

Swackhamer studies the processes affecting the behavior of, and exposures to, toxic chemicals in the environment. She works on policies to address these potential risks, working at state, national, and international levels.

Swackhamer is a professor of science, technology, and public policy in the Hubert H, Humphrey School of Public Affairs, and co-director of the university’s Water Resources Center. She also is a professor of environmental health sciences in the School of Public Health.

She received a bachelor's in chemistry from Grinnell College, and a master's and doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in water chemistry and limnology & oceanography, respectively.

After two years of post-doctoral research in chemistry and public & environmental affairs at Indiana University, she joined the Minnesota faculty in 1987.

In 2012 Swackhamer completed a 4-year term as chair of the Science Advisory Board of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and was president of the National Institutes of Water Resources in 2011–12.

She is currently is a member of the Science Advisory Board of the International Joint Commission of the U.S. and Canada and serves on the National Research Council, National Academy of Sciences committee addressing sustainability linkages in the federal government. She is also a governor appointee on the Minnesota Clean Water Council.

Swackhamer is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for the journal Environmental Science & Technology. She is a fellow in the Royal Society of Chemistry in the U.K.

Swackhamer received the 2007 Harvey G. Rogers Award from the Minnesota Public Health Association. In 2009, she received the prestigious Founders Award from the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry for lifetime achievement in environmental sciences. She was the 2010 recipient of the University of Minnesota’s Ada Comstock Award.

Minors under age 18 need to be accompanied by an adult. Grinnell College is not responsible for supervision of minors on campus.

Grinnell College welcomes the participation of people with disabilities. Contact Conference Operations, 641-269-3235, to request accommodations.

Writers@Grinnell: Hugo Hamilton

Best selling and award winning author Hugo Hamilton will read from his work and discuss writing on Thursday, November 3, as part of the Writers@Grinnell series at Grinnell College. The event, which is free and open to the public, will start at 7:30 p.m. in the Faulconer Gallery in the Bucksbaum Center for the Arts.

Hugo Hamilton is the best-selling author of The Speckled People (4th Estate- Harper Hugo Hamilton imagePerennial), a German-Irish memoir of his unique experience growing up in Dublin with a fervent Irish nationalist father and German mother whose family opposed the Nazis and who came to Ireland in the aftermath of World War II. Hailed by Colm Tóibín as a “masterpiece” and an “instant classic” by Colum McCann, Hamilton’s account of a family locked in a “language war” in which his father prohibited the use of English in the home, addresses all the “great issues of the 20th century”( Nuala O Faolain). Joseph O Connor described The Speckled People as a “book for our times and perhaps for all time.” It won the prestigious Prix Femina étranger in France, as well as the Berto Prize in Italy, and appeared on The New York Times notable books list. Hamilton’s equally rich and compelling second memoir The Sailor in the Wardrobe continues the story of this complex dual upbringing and has also been widely praised as an “enchanting piece of work” (Terry Eagleton).

In addition to his memoirs, which have been transformed into screen plays and performed in Dublin theatre venues, Hamilton is the acclaimed author of six novels and one collection of short stories, all of which reflect on the increasingly compelling issues of cultural divisions and belonging. His novel Disguise (4th Estate 2008) picks up this central theme of identity by exploring the life of a three year old Jewish boy who replaced a German child of the same age, lost in the bombing at the end of World War.

Hugo Hamilton is currently visiting Grinnell College as the John R. Heath Visiting Professor, for fall semester 2016.

Philanthropists Increase Commitment to Career-focused Communities

Penny Bender Sebring ’64, a life trustee of Grinnell College, and her husband Charles Ashby Lewis established in 2013 the Education Professions Community and recently increased their investment in students by creating the Business and Finance Community, stretching their commitment to $1.35 million.

The Chicago couple’s gift both fulfils and expands upon their interest to advance students’ career aspirations in education and business through the establishment of career-focused communities within the College’s Center for Careers, Life, and Service (CLS).

“Penny’s and Chuck’s generous gift advances the ability of Grinnell College to transform students’ lives through distinctive and strategically grown liberal arts programs,” says Grinnell President Raynard S. Kington. “Their investment in this community model is responsive to the interests of our students and alumni, and it empowers them to make optimal career choices.”

Sebring and Lewis set the cornerstone of the CLS career-focused community model with the creation of the Education Professions (Ed Pros) Community. Having since strengthened their support of that successful community, their most recent gift further seed-funds the CLS strategy by creating a Business and Finance Community that engages students and alumni in informed career decision-making within business-related fields.

According to Mark Peltz, Daniel and Patricia Jipp Finkelman Dean of Careers, Life, and Service, additional career-focused communities are envisioned in the future as part of the overall CLS framework. He credits Sebring’s and Lewis’ support of the education and business communities for providing both a vision for programmatic success and impetus for future funding.

“Penny and Chuck have an unwavering passion for making a difference in the lives of Grinnell students,” Peltz says. “The investments they have made to create the Education Professions and Business and Finance communities are evidence of their commitment and passion.”

Ed Pros aims at encouraging a highly diverse student membership to explore the breadth of opportunities available in all areas of education. Students and recent graduates engage in meetings, retreats, workshops, and events that attract both local and national speakers. Ed Pros Treks to national conferences and places like the U.S. Department of Education in Washington D.C. expose students to policy, research, and trends across the profession.

Sebring’s and Lewis’ early-stage investment in the Business and Finance Community will similarly help students and alumni build networks and discover how their liberal arts education can propel them into careers in finance, marketing, human resources, and related areas.

Both Kington and Peltz emphasized the importance of establishing the first two career-focused communities in the context of CLS’s long-term plan in which all upper-division students would belong to one of seven such cohorts. In addition to education and business, those include: arts and communication; government and social service; law; health professions; and science and technology.

Ed Pros set a precedent for the success of career-focused communities by demonstrating a 100% growth rate in student membership in its first three years. Twenty-eight students have graduated as Ed Pros members, and 89 Grinnell College alumni working in education have participated in Ed Pros events and networking. This fall, 40% of Ed Pros members identify as students of color and a record 20% are male.

“Chuck and I are extremely pleased with the efficacy of the Ed Pros Community,” Sebring says. “We believe that the career-focused community model provides powerful opportunities for students and alumni to apply their liberal arts education for both personal success and society’s benefit.”

As with their investment in Ed Pros, Sebring’s and Lewis’ gift to establish the Business and Finance Community provides operating support as well as a content specialist who will advise students, cultivate career connections, and serve as institutional liaison to the Harvard Business School and its HBX Credential of Readiness (CORe) Program.

“The true value of this investment is in the impact it is having and will continue to have on the lives of Grinnell students,” says Shane Jacobson, vice president for development and alumni relations. “We are grateful for their philanthropic leadership, their informed interest in the future of our students, and their creation of funding opportunities that will help ensure the long-term viability of career-focused communities at the College.”

Sebring, a Grinnell trustee since 1993 and a life trustee since 2005, is senior research associate at the University of Chicago and Co-founder of the UChicago Consortium on School Research at the Urban Education Institute. Lewis is chairman of the Lewis-Sebring Family Foundation and managing general partner of Coach House Capital. He is a retired chairman of investment banking at Merrill Lynch and Co.

Grinnell College last year awarded individual honorary Doctor of Laws degrees to Sebring and Lewis for their strategic and philanthropic efforts to improve education in America.

Sebring and Lewis are co-creators of Careers in Education Professions programs at three colleges: Amherst College, where Lewis is an alumnus and a life trustee; the University of Chicago, where Lewis is also a trustee; and at Grinnell. The three initiatives work to increase the number of highly talented students from elite colleges pursuing careers in education and to enhance the professionalization of teaching.

Mixing It Up in/with Codeswitching

Carol Myers-ScottonCarol Myers-Scotton ‘55 will present: “Mixing It Up in/with Codeswitching: Using Two Languages in the Same Conversation" at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 10, 2016, in Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, Room 101.

Carol Myers-Scotton '55 is an accomplished scholar of bilingualism and language contact. She is one of the most published authors on the topic of contact linguistics, focusing on the social and cognitive aspects of code-switching, or the practice of switching between languages within a single conversation.

Cover to Carol Myers-Scotton's Multiple Voices: An introduction to bilingualismIn addition to authoring six books and editing another, she has also authored or co-authored over 100 journal articles and book chapters in the fields of sociolinguistics, pragmatics, African linguistics, and psycholinguistics.

Myers-Scotton received a distinguished alumni award from Grinnell in 1995, and since that time she has continued to publish and present her work all over the world.  In 2003, she retired from the University of South Carolina where she was named a Carolina Distinguished Professor and now she works as an adjunct professor at Michigan State University.

Myers-Scotton's talk is sponsored by the Linguistics Concentration and the Alumni in the Classroom fund.

Grinnell welcomes and encourages the participation of people with disabilities. Rosenfield Center has accessible parking in the lot to the east. Room 101 is equipped with an induction hearing loop system. Contact Conference Operations and Events if you need further accommodations.

Grinnell Installs Endowed Chairs, Professorships, Staff

Open to the public, the College’s 2016 installation ceremony for endowed chairs, professorships, and staff will begin at 11 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 6, in Herrick Chapel.

This celebration provides a unique opportunity to honor current endowed chairs and celebrate the naming of three new designees:

  • Sarah J. Purcell ’92, professor of history and L.F. Parker Chair in History

  • Mark Christel, librarian of the College and Samuel R. and Marie-Louise Rosenthal Professor of Library Science

  • David Cook-Martín, professor of sociology and assistant vice president for global education and senior international officer

Speaking at the event will be President Raynard S. Kington, Dean of the College Michael Latham, and the newly installed chairs, among others.

Sarah J. Purcell ’92

SarahPurcell, who graduated from Grinnell with a B.A. in history in 1992, joined the Grinnell faculty in 2000 and serves as the director of the Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations and Human Rights. Her research interests include the Early National, Antebellum and Civil War periods in U.S. history; popular culture and political culture; gender history; and military history. She is the author of Sealed with Blood: War, Sacrifice, and Memory in Revolutionary America and Eyewitness History: The Early American Republic. She also is co-author of The Encyclopedia of Battles in North America, 1517-1915, which won a 2000 Best of Reference award from the New York Public Library. She is working on another book, Spectacle of Grief: The Politics of Mourning and the U.S. Civil War. Purcell is the latest in a long line of historians at Grinnell to hold the L.F. Parker Chair, which was established in 1888.

Mark Christel

Mark Christel Christel joined the library faculty in August, following Richard Fyffe. Before coming to Grinnell, Christel served with distinction in positions of increasing responsibility over the past 22 years at Hope College, Vassar College, and the College of Wooster. He is a committed advocate for the application of digital technologies in teaching and research. He was the principal investigator on two Andrew W. Foundation grants awarded to the Five Colleges of Ohio and has served on the Steering Committee for the Institute for Liberal Arts Digital Scholarship. The Samuel R. and Marie-Louise Rosenthal Professor of Library Science was made possible by Samuel Robert Rosenthal and his wife, Marie-Louise, who were generous supporters of the College. Samuel R. Rosenthal was a trustee of the College from 1962-76 and from 1986-94.

David Cook-Martín

David Cook-MartinCook-Martín is the first to hold the post of Assistant Vice-President for Global Education and Senior International Officer, promoting strategic planning for international education and external partnerships. At Grinnell since 2007, he was elected chair of the sociology department in July 2015. As a political sociologist, he focuses on understanding migration, race, law and citizenship in an international field. His first book, The Scramble for Citizens: Dual Nationality and State Competition for Immigrants, won The Thomas and Znaniecki Best Book on International Migration Award. He also is co-author of award-winning Culling the Masses: The Democratic Roots of Racist Immigration Policy in the Americas. His endowed position was made possible through the generosity of Carolyn “Kay” Bucksbaum ’51, a life trustee who formerly chaired the Board of Trustees. Earlier this year she committed $5 million to expand and enhance Grinnell’s globally-related programs.

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