Meadville Volunteer Income Tax Assistance To Begin Soon

Jan. 20, 2015 — The Meadville Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA) will begin preparing free 2014 federal, state and local tax returns for residents on February 2. VITA is a free tax preparation service available for Meadville or Crawford County residents who made $50,000 or less in 2014.

The VITA site is located at the Meadville Public Library (848 N. Main) from February 2 to March 12 and March 23 to April 11. The site will be open for appointments or walk-ins on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 12:30 to 5 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 7 p.m., and Saturdays from noon to 4 p.m. For more information or to make an appointment, contact Meadville VITA at vita@allegheny.edu or 814-332-6015.

The Meadville VITA program is a partnership between Allegheny College, the United Way of Western Crawford County, the Meadville Public Library and the IRS and is supported by the Crawford Heritage Foundation. In 2014 Meadville VITA prepared and filed federal and state tax returns for about 780 Meadville-area families. (more…)

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Pianist David Brunell To Present Free Concert at Allegheny College

Jan. 19, 2015 – Pianist David Brunell will perform a free concert at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 24 in Shafer Auditorium at Allegheny College.

The program will include Johann Sebastian Bach’s Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue, BWV 903; Beethoven’s Sonata in C Major, Op. 53 (“Waldstein”); the Brahms Fantasias, Op. 116; and Chopin’s Fantasy in F Minor, Op. 49.

David Brunell has performed on four continents, and his performances have been broadcast on radio and television stations throughout the world. New York City’s WQXR has featured him, and he has made several recordings for Enharmonic Records in concerto, solo and collaborative performances.

He has received first prizes in the MTNA National Solo Piano Competition and the international Beethoven Sonata competition sponsored by the Beethoven Club of Memphis. He also received the prize for the best performance of the required work in the New Orleans International Competition. (more…)

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Allegheny Professor and Photojournalist Takes her Skills to Liberia

Cheryl Hatch, Allegheny visiting assistant professor of journalism in the public interest, won’t be in class for the first week of the spring semester.

CORRECTION: She won’t physically be in class – but she plans to be there via Skype.

That’s because Hatch has taken her photojournalism skills to cover stories in Liberia, thanks, in part, to funding she and writer Brian Castner received from the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting.

According to its website, the Pulitzer Center “is an innovative award-winning nonprofit journalism organization dedicated to supporting the independent international journalism that U.S. media organizations are increasingly less able to undertake.”  (more…)

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World Leader in Struggle for Human Rights Allan Boesak To Speak at Allegheny College

Jan. 12, 2015 – The Rev. Dr. Allan Boesak, a world leader in the struggle for human rights who helped lead anti-apartheid efforts in South Africa, will speak at Allegheny College when the college community celebrates the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. The public is invited to Boesak’s presentation at 11 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 19 in the college’s Ford Chapel.

His talk is also part of the college’s Year of Voting Rights and Democratic Participation, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act and serves as the academic centerpiece of the college’s bicentennial celebration.

The program to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day will also include a day of service on Jan. 17; an interdenominational worship service at 11 a.m. on Jan. 18 in Ford Chapel; and workshops by students, faculty and staff throughout the day on Jan. 19.

Allan Aubrey Boesak, with Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu, was one of the leaders of the anti-apartheid movement in South Africa. A liberation theologian, he has devoted his life to working for human rights, including issues of social, economic, sexual, ecological and gender justice.

Boesak holds the Desmond Tutu Chair of Peace, Global Justice and Reconciliation Studies and is founding director of the Desmond Tutu Center for Peace, Reconciliation and Global Justice at Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis. (more…)

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Allegheny College Art Galleries To Present “Performing Blackness :: Performing Whiteness”

Jan. 12, 2015 – The art galleries of Allegheny College will present “Performing Blackness :: Performing Whiteness” from Tuesday, Jan. 20 through Tuesday, March 3. The artists will talk about their work at 7 p.m. on Jan. 20, with a reception following in the galleries from 8 to 9 p.m. A second reception, from 7 to 9 p.m. on March 3 in the galleries, will close the exhibit. Both the exhibit and the receptions are free and open to the public.

Curated by Gallery Director Darren Lee Miller, the exhibition examines constructions of racial identity. The artworks interrogate oversimplifying binaries and destabilize the often unexamined position of “whiteness.” The artists deploy visual texts in the service of asking uncomfortable questions, reflecting upon identity and asking the viewer to consider his/her own role in building, enabling or perpetuating stereotypes.

VG-SoManyDeadBlackBodies-2014Invited artists are Sandra Brewster, Steve Cole, Andrea Chung, Brendan Fernandes, Vanessa German, Kenyatta Hinkle, Ayanah Moor, James Seward and Alisha Wormsley.

The idea for the exhibition came from the National Public Radio series “Code Switch,” launched in April 2013 to explore “frontiers of race, culture and ethnicity.” Some of the earliest stories focused on code switching, the practice of literally changing the grammar, syntax and style of delivery of one’s speech in order to more appropriately match the expectations of a situation or peer group. The practice raises questions about authenticity, (self)acceptance, assimilation and cultural legacies, pointing to the performative, fluid nature of identity construction. (more…)

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Allegheny College One of 24 PA Schools Recognized Nationally For Community Engagement

Jan. 7, 2015 – Allegheny College is among 24 Pennsylvania schools—and 361 U.S. colleges and universities—to receive the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching’s 2015 Community Engagement Classification. This is the second time that Allegheny has been chosen for this prestigious recognition.

According to the Carnegie Foundation, colleges and universities with an institutional focus on community engagement were invited to apply for the classification, first offered in 2006.

“This is a very significant designation of the college’s involvement in the community beyond the campus. Allegheny was part of the first class in 2006, so we were eager to reapply this past year,” says David Roncolato, Allegheny’s director of civic engagement. “Since 2006, our commitment to engagement in the community beyond the campus has deepened.”

Unlike the Carnegie Foundation’s other classifications that rely on national data, this is an “elective” classification—institutions like Allegheny participated voluntarily by submitting required materials describing the nature and extent of their engagement with the community, be it local or beyond. (more…)

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Two Allegheny College Students, Imani Prince and Brianna Cusanno, Selected as Vote Everywhere Ambassadors

Dec. 22, 2014 – Two students at Allegheny College, Imani Prince and Brianna Cusanno, have been selected as Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere Ambassadors for 2015.

A Vote Everywhere Ambassador completes a year-long paid internship with the Andrew Goodman Foundation at the Ambassador’s college campus. By building a community of civically engaged peers, Ambassadors help lead national conversations about today’s critical civil rights and social justice issues.

Ambassadors receive training in civil rights and voting rights within a historical context, voter registration and education, community organizing and coalition building, and campaigning and advocating for social issues. They practice those skills on their college campuses through voter registration drives, voter education events and similar activities.

Imani_PrinceA junior at Allegheny College, Imani Prince is double majoring in political science and studio art with a minor in French. She is president of the college’s Association for the Advancement of Black Culture and also works as a program assistant for the Center for Intercultural Advancement and Student Success, which serves students through academic support services, programs, research and planned activities. She plans to pursue a career in political activism through creative expression including drama, the visual arts and writing.

Brianna_CusannoBrianna Cusanno is a junior majoring in global health and minoring in political science. She has served as a public policy intern with Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida and in the Washington, D.C. office of Senator Elizabeth Warren. She currently works as a social media and outreach coordinator for the college’s Center for Intercultural Advancement and Student Success. She hopes to pursue a career in health policy or radio journalism. (more…)

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Allegheny College Senior Pasquale DiFrancesco Chosen for House Legislative Program

Dec. 15, 2014 — Allegheny College senior Pasquale DiFrancesco, of Wexford, Pa., has been awarded a Pennsylvania House Legislative Fellowship for 13 weeks beginning January 12, 2015.

The highly competitive fellowship program places students in leadership offices, such as offices of committee chairmen, in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. DiFrancesco will be placed in the office of Democratic Whip Mike Hanna. The fellowship also provides fellows with access to weekly workshops with key thinkers, planners and decision makers.

Fellows attend committee hearings and meetings as well as House Sessions. The final project for each fellow is to research, draft and present a piece of legislation.

“The experiences gained by participating in this fellowship will only further increase the value of my degree from Allegheny College to potential employers and graduate schools,” said DiFrancesco. “At this point in my college career, I believe the fellowship experience will provide me with exactly the skills and connections I need to further my educational and professional goals.” (more…)

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Allegheny College Chamber Singers To Present Recital of Sacred Duets and Trios

Dec. 8, 2014 — The Allegheny College Chamber Singers will present a recital of sacred duets and trios at 3:15 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 14 in the college’s Ford Chapel. The recital is free and open to the public.

Allegheny College students Bailey Blashford, Lauren Dominique, Breana Gallagher, John Knobel, Rosey Sheridan and Leah Stefanelli will present selections by Salamone Rossi, Johann Schein, Richard Dering, Heinrich Schütz, Camille Saint-Saëns, J.S. Bach, Antonio Vivaldi and George Frideric Handel in various duet and trio combinations.

Professor Emeritus of Music Ward Jamison will serve as accompanist, and Adjunct Professor of Voice Carol Niblock will narrate. The Chamber Singers, who are selected from the membership of the college’s Chamber Choir, are coached by Carol Niblock and Vicki Jamison.

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Allegheny President Mullen Joins President Obama for Higher-Ed Access Announcement

Dec. 4, 2014 – Today, James H. Mullen, Jr., Allegheny College president and chair of the board of directors of the American Council on Education (ACE), will join President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, along with hundreds of college presidents and other higher education leaders, to announce new actions to help more students prepare for and graduate from college.

The White House College Opportunity Day of Action helps to support the President’s commitment to partner with colleges and universities, business leaders and nonprofits to help our nation reach its goal of leading the world in college attainment.

“Throughout its history, Allegheny College has sustained a fundamental commitment to ensuring access for students of all socio-economic backgrounds,” President Mullen said. “In its Bicentennial year, the College is proud to reaffirm its commitment. I am honored to be a part of this very important day and appreciate the Administration’s commitment on this significant issue.”

Today’s participants were asked to commit to new action in one of four areas: building networks of colleges around promoting completion, creating K-16 partnerships around college readiness, investing in high school counselors as part of the first lady’s Reach Higher initiative and increasing the number of college graduates in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. (more…)