Kenyon in the News

Kirk Emmert's juggling of the roles of mayor of Gambier and professor of political science put him in the spotlight of a features column in the November 13 edition of the Columbus Dispatch in Columbus, Ohio. A former White House assistant and an expert on Winston Churchill, Emmert revealed a wry sense of humor. "I'm a small fish in a little pond," he said. Emmert ran unopposed in the November election.

Actor Frank Dicopoulos '79, who plays Frank Cooper on the television soap Guiding Light, was featured in a story in the November 4 edition of the Daily Press in Ontario, California. Dicopoulos, who has also appeared in Dynasty, Hotel, and Falcon Crest, said he took a drama course at Kenyon to "keep his grades up" for a run at medical school. The psychology major said the drama experience instead led to modeling and television commercial work.

A November 1 story in the online newsletter Inside Higher Ed on environmental sustainability quoted sociologist Howard Sacks, senior advisor to the president and director of the Rural Life Center. Sacks spoke about the Food for Thought program, through which the College buys from local farmers while involving students in a wide range of research projects.

A story on Fulbright programs published in the October 26 edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education included Kenyon on its list of top producers of 2007-08 Fulbright awards for bachelor's institutions. Eight Kenyon students accepted Fulbright awards, placing sixth on the list.

Kenyon's acquisition of a Torah that survived the Holocaust attracted news-media attention during the week of October 22. On October 24, the (Cleveland, Ohio) Plain Dealer published a front-page story that quoted Hillel director Marc Bragin. Bragin was also quoted in the October 25 Columbus Dispatch, and the next day the Dispatch published a photo of Jesse Sarlin '10 holding the quill along with a scribe finishing the delicate work of restoring letters on the Torah.

A story about college-based advisors to presidential campaigns in the October 12 edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education quoted William Melick of the economics faculty and a campaign advisor on international-trade policy to Republican Senator John McCain. Melick, who holds the Bruce Gensemer Professorhip, said the opportunity to shape public policy is a strong lure. "It's a way for an academic to not only see how the sausage gets made, but to try to influence how the sausage gets made," Melick said.

The New York Times carried two references to Kenyon in its Sunday edition on September 30. The Sunday magazine's weekly interview featured admissions-reform advocate Lloyd Thacker, who put Kenyon on a short list of "good schools." In the book review, meanwhile, author Stephen King wrote an essay about the precarious state of the American short story. King described his quest for good short stories in a book store, where he managed to find "fresh treasure" in a handful of literary journals, including the Kenyon Review.

The September 14 edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune included comments by John Elliott, professor of political science, in a Copley News Service analysis of the September 13 speech by President George W. Bush. Elliott, described as an expert on the presidency, said Army General David Petraeus proved to be an asset to Bush while the general weathered questioning in the U.S. House and Senate. "There is more confidence in the military than in the president and his administration," Elliott said.

Michael Levine, professor of psychology, was quoted in the Galveston County Daily News in Galveston, Texas, on September 12 in a story about public fascination with the weight and shape of Britney Spears after her performance at the MTV Video Music Awards show. Spears was being punished for not living up to cultural expectations, Levine said, and was targeted with the most
pejorative use of the word fat. "If she looked like a young, taut, buxom pole dancer, she probably could have staggered away . . . and people would have said, 'At least she looked great.'"

The online magazine Slate, on September 10, mentioned Vernon Schubel, professor of religious studies, as a source for a column explaining the Muslim approach to facial hair. A videotape showing Osama Bin Laden with an apparently dyed beard raised the question about the propriety of Muslim men altering the color of their beards. The conclusion was that Muslims can dye beards, but many imams discourage the practice.

A photo of President S. Georgia Nugent graced the cover of the September 7 Wall Street Journal Weekend Journal section and another photo was included inside the section as part of a feature on how the country's "movers and shakers" spent their summer vacations. Nugent said one of her summer goals was to take up tap dancing for a performance at the College's end-of-summer senior-staff retreat. The story noted that Nugent's three-minute performance to Cole Porter's "You're the Top" brought a standing ovation.

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