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Lecturer John L. Esposito To Speak on “The Future of Islam and Democracy after the Arab Spring”

Please note: This event has been canceled due to illness.

March 24, 2015 — John L. Esposito, professor of religion and international affairs and of Islamic studies at Georgetown University, will deliver the annual Towns Family Lecture at Allegheny College at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1 in the college’s Ford Chapel. Esposito’s talk, “The Future of Islam and Democracy after the Arab Spring,” is open to the public.

His presentation is also part of Allegheny College’s Year of Voting Rights and Democratic Participation, which celebrates the 50th anniversary in 2015 of the Voting Rights Act and explores the state of voting rights, broadly defined, in the world today.

Esposito is founding director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding in the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown.

He has served as a consultant to the U.S. Department of State and other agencies, European and Asian governments and corporations, universities and the media. He has also served as president of the Middle East Studies Association of North America, the American Council for the Study of Islamic Societies and the American Academy of Religion; as vice chair of the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy; and as a member of the World Economic Forum’s Council of 100 Leaders and the E. C. European Network of Experts on De-Radicalisation. (more…)

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Allegheny College Faculty Member Named as a Professor Under 40 Who Inspires

Rebecca Dawson ’00, Allegheny College assistant professor of biology and global health studies, has been named to NerdScholar’s list of “40 Under 40: Professors Who Inspire.”

According to NerdScholar, the professors were chosen based on “their ability to captivate and engage students in the classroom, their outstanding involvement on campus and in the community, and their overwhelming passion for their subject matter.” Nominations were collected through student, alumni and faculty recommendations following an open call to several hundred colleges and universities across the country.

“Receiving this award is such an honor,” says Dawson, a native of Allison Park, Pa. “It is so very special to me because my nomination came from my students. They are what make this job so great; to know the feeling is mutual is priceless.”

Senior Erica Bryson, one of Dawson’s students who nominated her for the award, says you can tell by Professor Dawson’s enthusiasm and energy in class that she loves the material she is teaching. “Professor Dawson is a practice-what-you-preach type of person as a result of her passion in epidemiology, and she encourages those around her to do the same,” Bryson says. “I know she puts 100 percent into everything she does, and I am honored to have her as a professor and mentor.” (more…)

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Journalism Professor Cheryl Hatch Wins Keystone Press Award for Column Writing

March 23, 2015 — Cheryl Hatch, visiting assistant professor of journalism in the public interest at Allegheny College, won second place in column writing in the 2015 Professional Keystone Press Awards competition. Hatch’s columns appear weekly in The Meadville Tribune.

The Keystone Press Awards reinforce excellence by individuals in the newspaper profession by recognizing journalism that consistently provides relevance, integrity and initiative in serving readers and that faithfully fulfills its First Amendment rights and responsibilities.

A longtime photojournalist, Hatch spent time embedded with U.S. troops in Afghanistan. She also spent time in Somalia and has worked at daily newspapers in Florida and Oregon. (more…)

Student Dance Concert To Benefit Crawford County Special Olympics

March 20, 2015 – The Allegheny College Jazz Dance Ensemble (JaDE) will present its 9th annual benefit concert for the Crawford County Special Olympics at 7 p.m. on Saturday, March 28 in Shafer Auditorium on the Allegheny campus.

The family-friendly variety show will include performances by JaDE as well as other on-campus groups and dancers from the community. Among the groups scheduled to perform are ARC, the women’s rugby team, dancers from ballroom and tap classes, Swing Club and Allegro Dance Studio.

Admission to the concert is free, but donations are welcome. All donations—as well as proceeds from raffles for prize baskets—will go to the Crawford County Special Olympics.

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Allegheny College Civility Prize Takes Historic Twist in College’s Bicentennial Year

March 19, 2015 — The Allegheny College Prize for Civility in Public Life — the nation’s leading effort to positively reinforce civility in contemporary American politics — will take a different approach this year. In this its bicentennial year, Allegheny is engaging nationally renowned historians to help the College identify and award the most important moments of civility in American history.

Usually, the prize is awarded to contemporary political figures — such as last year’s prize, awarded to the 20 women of the Senate for their work in defusing a federal shutdown. As Allegheny celebrates its 200th anniversary in 2015 — a history nearly as old as America herself — the time was right to look back, said Allegheny President James Mullen.

“Civility has played an essential and under-appreciated role in American history,” said Mullen. “It is our hope that by helping people to appreciate the profound, essential and positive role that civility has played in American history, we can in some small way inspire current politicians to recommit to civility. And perhaps most importantly, we hope to inspire young people to see politics as a vocation worthy of their aspirations.”

Mullen said that nationally renowned presidential historian Douglas Brinkley, author of “Cronkite” and other acclaimed histories, has agreed to lead the bicentennial Civility effort with Allegheny. Other prominent historians are assisting by submitting nominations.

“Allegheny’s work to underscore civility has quietly become an important force for good in American politics today,” said Brinkley, who received an honorary degree from Allegheny in 2013. “It will be meaningful to look back over the arc of American history to remind ourselves that civility has been at the root of some of our most important national moments.”

Allegheny is inviting the public to participate by submitting nominations at allegheny.edu/civility or via social media using the hashtag #Civility2015. Deadline for submissions will be Monday, April 6. (more…)

Talk at Allegheny To Focus on Tool for Detecting Gravitational Waves

March 19, 2015 — Aidan Brooks, from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) at the California Institute of Technology, will speak in Ford Chapel at Allegheny College at 8 p.m. on Thursday, March 26. The talk, “Gravitational Waves and Advanced LIGO in 2015,” is designed for a general audience.

This year is the centennial of Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity, which postulated the existence of gravitational waves (GW), ripples in space-time. These waves have never been directly observed and promise to yield a new branch of astrophysics upon detection.

A hundred years after the publication of the General Theory of Relativity, the Advanced LIGO gravitational wave detector is coming online, providing scientists with a tool to measure GW. Brooks’ talk will describe potential astrophysical sources of GW and review the design and current status of Advanced LIGO. (more…)

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Civil Rights Activist Robert P. Moses To Give Keynote Address in Year of Voting Rights at Allegheny College

March 18, 2015 — Robert P. Moses, a legendary civil rights activist and a MacArthur Award-winning educator, will speak at 7 p.m. on Monday, March 30 in Ford Chapel at Allegheny College. The presentation is free and open to the public.

Moses’ talk is a keynote presentation in the college’s Year of Voting Rights and Democratic Participation, which celebrates the 50th anniversary in 2015 of the Voting Rights Act and explores the state of civil rights, broadly defined, in the world today. The Year of Voting Rights and Democratic Participation is the academic centerpiece of the college’s bicentennial celebration.

Robert P. Moses is the president and founder of the Algebra Project, a national nonprofit dedicated to improving the achievement in mathematics of historically underrepresented students and communities.

During the early 1960s, Moses worked for the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. One of the first civil rights activists to work in Mississippi, he helped to register sharecroppers to vote. He became a leader not only in the grassroots work of voter registration but also in the strategy of defining voter registration as a centerpiece of working toward civil rights. He was also a leader in Freedom Summer, which brought to the South white students from Northern colleges to help with the work of civil rights.

The recipient of a MacArthur “Genius Grant” from 1982 to 1987, Moses used his fellowship to develop the concept for the Algebra Project, an innovative continuation of his work in civil rights. The project promotes mathematics literacy as a tool that is critically important to educational access and citizenship for inner city and rural poor middle and high school students. (more…)

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Allegheny College Hosts Hands-On Science Workshop for Area Fourth Graders

For the third year, Allegheny College, in conjunction with the Crawford Central School District and Partners in Education, is hosting the Fourth Graders as Scientists event (formerly called the Fourth Grade Science Symposium) on Tuesday, March 17, Thursday, March 19, and Friday, March 20, on the College’s campus.

During the event, fourth graders from all five Crawford Central elementary schools will be on campus to get hands-on experience with a variety of science topics to help them prepare for the science portion of the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment (PSSAs), which the students will take in the spring.  (more…)

Nominations Sought for Lew Davies Award for Outstanding Community Service

March 16, 2015 – Allegheny College is soliciting nominations for the 11th annual Lew Davies Award for Outstanding Community Service. This award, which includes a cash prize, will be given to an Allegheny student who has made a significant, demonstrable contribution to the Meadville area community.

Nominees must have gone “above and beyond” in their volunteer or internship activities and have positively influenced other Allegheny students through their commitment to service.

The Lew Davies Award for Outstanding Community Service is given in honor of Lew Davies, a 1940 graduate of Allegheny who worked his way through college and, as a result of his connection with Meadville, returned following his service in World War II. As a successful businessman and community leader, as well as an active alumnus and trustee of the college until his death in 2003, Davies continually sought to build cooperation between the college and the community. (more…)

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Professor of Geology Ron Cole Receives NSF Grant in Support of Research

March 16, 2015 — Ron Cole, a professor of geology at Allegheny College, received a grant of $107,250 from the National Science Foundation in support of his project “Research at Undergraduate Institutions: Magmatic Evolution Leading Up to the Modern Aleutian Arc on the Alaska Peninsula.”

The grant will provide funding for three Allegheny students over two years to collaborate with Cole and researchers at the U.S. Geological Survey, Alaska Volcano Observatory and University of Wisconsin at Madison. The project will investigate long-term and modern geologic processes that influence volcanic activity in southwestern Alaska. One hundred percent of the $107,250 cost of the project will be covered by federal funds through this NSF grant.