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Oberlin in the News - Spring 2003

May 2003
May 27--First-Year Student Spends Summer in El Salvador teaching English
The Princeton Packet recently ran a feature story on Kathryn Budwig '06, who will spend most of her summer in El Salvador, teaching English to children, teens, and adults as part of a cooperative relationship that the Episcopal Diocese of New Jersey has established. Budwig, a student of Latin American studies at Oberlin College, will volunteer her services as a teacher and will pay for her board. This is her second trip to El Salvador.

May 15--New York Times Shines Spotlight on George Walker '41
Today's New York Times ran an article about alumnus George Walker '41, whose life and work recently were celebrated in a concert arranged by the Composers' Guild of New Jersey. Walker, the first African American to win the Pultizer Prize in Music (1996), performed with his son Gregory during the evening's festivities, and joined the American Brass Quintet as they perfomed his composition, "Music for Brass, Sacred and Profane."

May 14--The New York Times Gives the Yeah Yeah Yeahs Two Thumbs Up
After a recent concert at New York's Irving Plaza, punk sensation the Yeah Yeah Yeahs received rave reviews from The New York Times.The band's frontwoman Karen O. and drummer Brian Chase '00 are both Oberlin alumni. According to the review, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs have crafted songs that "...are more than basic propulsion. They are taut, minimal constructions, full of wide leaps and sharp angles, using shards of blues, punk, metal and no-wave dissonance."

May 9--Plain Dealer Gives Alumna's Performance Rave Reviews
Donald Rosenberg, a music critic with the Cleveland Plain Dealer, gave Denyce Grave's recent Oberlin performance a stunning review. Graves, a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, returned to campus last week to perform as part of the College's 2002-2003 Artist Recital Series.

May 8--Oberlin College Inducted into Lorain County Black Hall of Fame
An article in the Lorain Morning Journal reported that Oberlin College will be among one of the first inductees to the Lorain County Black Hall of Fame. The hall of fame, an outgrowth of the Harrison Cultural Center, was founded to recognize the people who have contributed to the progress of Lorain's African-American community. Both Oberlin College and the city of Oberlin will be inducted into the hall in a June 6 ceremony at Lorain County Community College.

May 5--Michelle Malkin '92 Challenges Status Quo by Taking a Hard Look at America's Immigration Laws
Insight Magazine recently featured a Q & A with Michelle Malkin '92. Malkin, the daughter of naturalized Filipino immigrants, is a conservative reporter whose semiweekly column appears in more than 100 newspapers. She is also the author of Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists, Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our Shores. Malkin's writing focuses on the belief that America has failed to enforce existing immigration laws and that this has made the nation a dangerous place, populated by people who wis to to violence to the American people.

April 2003
April 29--Sadhu Johnston '98 Participates in Cleveland's "A Quiet Crisis" Roundtable
The Cleveland Plain Dealer recently featured excerpts from the roundtable, "A Quiet Crisis." Sadhu Johnston '98 participated in these discussions with several other young, up-and-coming Cleveland entrepeneurs. Johnston, who founded the Greater Cleveland Green Building Coalition, discussed what initially attracted him to the Cleveland area, and what is keeping him and his organization in Northeast Ohio.

April 28--Oberlin Alumni Take New York's Music Scene by Storm
The most recent edition of Entertainment Weekly featured a review of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs' first LP, Fever to Tell. The band's lead singer, Karen O. (who logged two years at Oberlin before finishing her degree at New York University in 2000), drummer Brian Chase '00, and guitarist Nick Zinner have taken the New York music scene by storm, and have music critics clamoring to sing their praises.

April 25--Mezzo-Soprano Denyce Graves '85 to Perform in Dayton
Denyce Graves '85 is scheduled to launch the Dayton Opera's inaugural Star Gala recital program. The Washington D.C. native--who graduated from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music--has staked her claim to fame as the gypsy temptress Carmen, but is looking forward to the recital setting as a way to introduce classical music to a more "mainstream" audience. "The repetory is so rich. There are so many styles and periods and languages. never in seven lifetimes could I begin to penetrate all the material that exists."

April 24--Plain Dealer Turns the Spotlight on Sadhu Johnston '98
The Plain Dealer recently featured an article about Sadhu Johnston '98, one of Cleveland's young entrepeneurs. After graduating from Oberlin, Johnston founded the Greater Cleveland Green Building Coalition, a nonprofit group that promotes the use of eco-friendly materials and designs. Johnston has just finished his biggest project, the renovation of an 85-year-old bank building at the corner of Lorain Avenue and Fulton Road. The tenants--a dozen nonprofits and a Fifth Third Bank branch--are scheduled to move in this week.

April 23--The Search for Sophisticated Dining on Campus Hits the New York Times
A recent New York Times article commented on a new campus movement--the search for sophisticated dining. Gone are the days of bland cafeteria food; food companies servicing the nation's colleges and universities are introducing seasonal produce, sushi, and a variety of organic options. To illustrate this new trend, the article reports that Oberlin College students have requested that only organic milk be served in the campus dining halls. Other campuses are experimenting with online food chat groups, "Iron Chef" contests, food columns in the campus newspapers, and locally-produced cooking shows.

April 21--Covering the War in Iraq: Two Professors Talk about the Media and the War
Wendy Kozol, associate professor and director of Oberlin's gender and women's studies program, was interviewed on NPR's Morning Edition with April Baer last week. During the interview, Kozol fielded questions about the media's coverage of the war in Iraq, including the possibility that media coverage carries unintended messages about the politics behind the war.

Kozol's colleague, Frances Hasso, also spoke up about media coverage of the war. Hasso, an assistant professor of gender and women's studies and sociology, submitted an invited piece to New York's Newsday discussing al-Jazeera's coverage of the war. As a specialist on the Middle East and North Africa, and a regular viewer of al-Jazeera, Hasso argues that this media organization has presented the most unbiased coverage of the war to date. Hasso's essay is available online, at Newsday.com.

April 19--New Scholarship will Help Students at Ohio Private Colleges
The Cleveland Plain Dealer recently reported on a new scholarship, named in honor of the late Philip and Nellie Willis of Toledo, that will benefit students at Ohio's private colleges. This endowed scholarship represents the largest gift in the history of the Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges, and will be available beginning next fall to students at Baldwin-Wallace College, Hiram College, John Carroll University, Lake Erie College, Notre Dame College, Oberlin College, and Ursuline College.

April 15--Soprano Alyson Cambridge '02 Featured on A & E's Breakfast with the Arts
Soprano Alyson Cambridge '02 has won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions for 2003. At 23, Cambridge is the youngest singer to win this year; her prize is the Metropolitan Opera National Council Award. Cambridge was featured, along with the competition's other winners, on the A & E Network show Breakfast with the Arts, hosted by Elliot Forrest, Sunday, April 13. Articles about Cambridge also appeared in The Elyria Chronicle-Telegram, and The Lorain Morning Journal.

April 12--TheHouston Chronicle Covers Professor's Fight for Right of Jewish Women to Pray at Jerusalem's Western Wall
Oberlin College professor Shulamit Magnus appeared as the subject of a lengthy article in a recent edition of The Houstin Chronicle. Magnus, a professor of Jewish studies and history, is part of a group of women who have sued the state of Israel for the right to pray at Jerusalem's Western Wall. Since 1988, Magnus has belonged to a group of women who call themselves "Women of the Wall." Denounced by the state of Israel as witches, the women have been threatened with seven-year prison sentences. Magnus' story is included in a new book, Women at the Wall: Claiming Sacred Ground at Judaism's Holy Site, published this month by Jewish Lights Publishing.

April 7--Online Bookseller Honors Oberlin Alumni Author Noelle Howey
Powells.com selected Oberlin author Noelle Howey's Dress Codes: Of Three Girlhoods--My Mother's, My Father's and Mine as the "daily dose" for April 7, 2003. In a review for the independent bookseller's web site, Howey '94 was praised by fellow alum and author Thisbe Nissen '94 as writing with "with disarming honesty and startling lucidity."

April 7--Conservatory Professors Featured on WCPN's Around Noon Today
Associate Dean and Professor of Recorder and Baroque Flute Michael Lynn, Professor of Pianoforte Robert Shannon, and Associate Professor of Pianoforte Haewon Song were featured on WCPN's Around Noon today. They were joined by Sally Coveleskie, director of institutional sales at Steinway and Sons in New York, in a discussion about Oberlin's historic relationship with the piano manufacturer. Shannon and Song performed on the station's Steinway during the live broadcast.

April 4--Amnesty International's Annual Conference Kicks off with Pittsburgh-Post's Profile of William Schulz '71
To commemorate the start of Amnesty International's annual three-day conference, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published a profile of Pittsburgh native William Schulz '71, executive director of Amnesty International USA. During his tenure, Schulz has broadened the organization's agenda, and helped raise the organization's profile, engineering media campaigns that target young activists. Schulz has also been credited with increasing the organization's operating budget, which now stands at $39 million.

April 2--Columbus Dispatch Profiles Historic Alum John Mercer Langston
In a recent article celebrating Ohio's bicentennial, the Columbus Dispatch profiles John Mercer Langston, a graduate of Oberlin College and the first African American man to win an elected position in the United States. Langston served as a township clerk in Brownhelm Township, Lorain County, and was active in the Underground Railroad. He also helped recruit African American soldiers to fight in the Civil War, and worked to secure full rights for African Americans in the newly reunited nation.

March 2003
March 26--Conservatory Senior Performs on the "Young Artist Showcase"
On March 26, Conservatory trumpet performance major Peter Evans '03 was featured on WQXR's "Young Artist Showcase" performing J.N. Hummel's Concerto in E-flat for Trumpet and Orchestra. Standing in for the orchestra, on piano, was Associate Professor of Instrumental Accompanying James Howsmon. Also showcased was the Oberlin Orchestra, conducted by Steven Smith, associate professor of conducting and music director of the Oberlin Conservatory Orchestras. The ensemble's performance of Maurice Ravel's Rapsodie Espagnole, recorded in Finney Chapel on February 28, 2003, closed the program.

March 26--Songful, Spirited Premiere of Professor's Composition Shows Promise as Ensemble Shines
Donald Rosenberg, a music critic for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, gave Professor of Composition Randolph Coleman's "Apparitions" a stunning review. Coleman's original creation debuted March 17, in a performance by the Cleveland Chamber Symphony Orchestra.

March 23--Chicago Sun-Times Interviews Conservatory Graduates Who Use Childhood Games as Musical Inspiration
Oberlin alumni Paul Davis, Cory Arcangel, and Joe Bonn made the pages of Sunday's Chicago Sun-Times with their unique method of making music. The trio, members of the electronic music group 8-Bit Construction Set, finds inspiration in abandoned Atari and Commodore computer systems, and has developed an array of rich musical compositions. Davis, Arcangel, and Bonn warn their fans that they shouldn't discount the music as a fad; all three are classically trained musicians who met up while studying music at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music.

March 23--Plain Dealer Investigates the Architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright
Oberlin's Weltzheimer/Johnson house, designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright, made Saturday's Plain Dealer. The article, which called Wright's approach to building ranch houses "expressions of a peculiarly American set of attitudes," was commissioned in 1947 and completed in 1950.

March 21--Local Papers Cover Oberlin's Rally Against the War
Three local papers, including the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram, and the Lorain Morning Journal, turned out to cover Oberlin College's March 20th demonstration against the war in Iraq. Protestors demonstrated on Tappan Square, attended educational seminars and interfaith prayer services, as well as a candlelight vigil at the end of the day.

March 14--Bruce McEwen '59 Publishes New Study on Hormones and Memory
Scientists at Rockefeller University and Weill Medical College of Cornell University have discovered how estrogen initiates physical changes in rodent brain cells that lead to increased learning and memory--a finding, the researchers contend, that illustrates the value of the hormone to enhance brain functioning in women. The scientists at Rockefeller University were led by Bruce McEwen '59, professor and head of the Harold and Margaret Milliken Hatch Laboratory of Neuroendocrinology. In the study that was published earlier this month, McEwen said that "this new research suggests that some form of postmenopausal estrogen replacement may indeed be helpful and neuroprotective for women."

March 14--Oberlin Opera Gives Conservatory Students a Handel on Baroque
Donald Rosenberg, a music critic for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, gave the Oberlin production of Alcina a stunning review. Writing that "the production...is a feast for the eyes and often for the ears," Rosenberg praises the performances of Vera Savage '03 in the title role and Malia Bendi-Merad '03 as Morgana.

March 10--Oberlin Ranked as One of the Top Liberal Arts Colleges for African Americans
In a recent edition of The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education, Oberlin has been ranked as number 15 among leading liberal arts colleges that have successfully integrated African Americans into the student body and faculty positions. Oberlin follows such institutions as Amherst, Carleton, and Mount Holyoke Colleges in the rankings.

March 9--War "Shield" Returns from Baghdad
An article in Sunday's Cleveland Plain Dealer covered Oberlin College graduate Benjamin Joffe-Walt's return from a stint in Iraq as a human shield. Joffe-Walt '02, an emergency medical technician, traveled to Iraq with a group of anti-war activists from around the world to protest Bush's plans for war. On Saturday, Joffe-Walt spoke to a crowd of students on Oberlin's campus about the lack of medical care, clean water, and safe food in Iraq since the end of the Gulf War and the beginning of sanctions against the country.

March 5--Oberlin Alum to Head Council on Foreign Relations
The New York Times reports that Richard Haas '73, the State Department's director of policy planning, is expected to leave government to become the next president of the Council on Foreign Relations. Haas, former director of foreign policy studies at the Brookings Institution, has served in four administrations. His big-picture view of America's role in a post-Communist, terrorist-rattled world, has encouraged America to focus on halting agression between nations and defending free trade.

March 5--Cleveland's Plain Dealer Reports on Oberlin's Hispanic Studies Department
Today's edition of the Cleveland Plain Dealer features an article on Oberlin's Department of Hispanic Studies, the first in Northeast Ohio. The newspaper reports that the growth of Hispanics as a minority group is spawming more student interest in language and culture. Anna Cara, chair of the Oberlin department, is quoted as saying: "I think students know that if they are going to go into law, business, or medicine they are going to have an edge if they speak Spanish."

March 3--The Washington Post
A recent feature in the Washington Post referes to renowned German expressionist Ernst Ludwig Kirchner's Self-Portrait as a Soldier, which hangs in Oberlin's Allen Memorial Art Museum. The feature, in the entertainment section of the newspaper, includes a recap of Kirchner's most influential paintings, on display at the National Gallery of Art through June 1.

February 2003
February 28--Oberlin's Art Rental Program Generates Media Buzz

A recent front-page article in The Wall Street Journal, covering the Allen Memorial Art Museum's Art Rental Program, has generated a media buzz. Following on the Journal's coattails, today's edition of The Elyria Chronicle-Telegram featured an article titled "Masterworks Available for Rental." Various radio and television stations have expressed interest in covering the program in future broadcasts.

February 27--Obie's Research Included in Economist Article
An article on the short-selling of stocks, which refers to the research conducted by Oberlin alum Owen Lamont '87, recenlty appeared in The Economist. Lamont, an assistant professor of finance at the University of Chicago, studied 270 companies that fought short-sellers by demonising them publicly, hiring private investigators to spy on them, or taking them to court. He discovered that the companies' shares fell on average by more than 40 percent, relative to the market, over the next three years.To read more about Lamont's research, consult The Economist online.

February 24--Obies Help Microsoft Develop New Product
MSNBC has reported that Microsoft's newest software package, NetGen, will be released next month. The software, developed by Microsoft's Tammy Savage, was produced with the help of 12 students from Oberlin College. The students, who lived together in a house in Seattle during Winter Term 2000, were charged with creating a business plan for a new company. Struck by the students' use of technology as a means of communication, Savage realized that the younger generation wanted software that would keep them in communication with eachother and help them maintain relationships.

February 24--Conservatory Dean Comments on Oberlin's All-Steinway Spirit
Michael Lynn, associate dean of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music, was featured in the February 24th edition of Newsday. In the article, Lynn commented on the 150th anniversary of Steinway & Sons, saying "We're Steinway's longest continuous customer." Oberlin is one of 30 "all-Steinway" schools, and began buying Steinways 125 years ago. The Conservatory's oldest piano is a Steinway upright from 1881.

February 22--Conservatory Graduates Featured on World News Tonight
The Miró Quartet, which includes Daniel Ching '95 and Joshua Gindele '97, was featured on ABC's World News Tonight. The quartet has met with much success in recent years, taking first prize at the Coleman and the Fischoff National Chamber Music Competitions, and winning the Banff International String Quartet Competition and the Naumburg Chamber Music Awards.

February 21--Toni Morris on Writing Opera on Slaves' Flight
The Lorain Morning Journal reported that Nobel prize-winning novelist Toni Morrison is collaborating on an opera based on the life of an escaped slave. Mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves, an Oberlin alum, has been hired to sing the title role. Michigan Opera Theater and opera companies in Philadelphia and Cincinatti commissioned the work by Morrison and American composer Richard Danielpour. It is set to premiere at the Detroit Opera House in May 2005.

February 17--Julie Taymor '74 Scores a Hit with Frida
Splicedonline.com, an online archive of film reviews, news, and interviews, recently posted a review of Julie Taymor's film Frida. In the article, Taymor '74, is touted as capturing "the very essence of Kahlo's creative process through a wondrously rich, freeform visual language that fuses the events of her life with the imagery in her paintings so vividly that the artist's work may take on a striking new significance for anyone who sees the film." Not only is Taymor receiving critical acclaim for the film; it was recently announced that Salma Hayek is an Oscar nominee for her portrayal of the film's main character.

February 15--Celebration of Black History Month Includes Life of Oberlin Alum
In celebration of Black History Month, the Fredricksburg Free Lance-Star has created an insert listing local happenings. A recreation of the trial of Anthony Burns, a slave whose freedom was purchased by a group of abolitionists from Boston, has been scheduled. Burns attended Oberlin College, graduating in 1855, after receiving his freedom.

February 13--Eric Einhorn '02 Makes Directing Debut in Big Apple
Eric Einhorn '02, now a student at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, has taken his love of children's opera to the big city. A recent articlein The New York Times featured an extensive review of Brundibar, a chamber opera performed by children in concentration camps during World War II, and revived for the City University's stage, with Einhorn acting as the production's stage director.

February 12--Oberlin Alum Travels to Iraq to Volunteer as a "Human Shield"
Last week's Oregonian reported that Benjamin Joffe-Walt '02 recently left for Iraq, where he and approximately 50 other volunteers are prepared to stand as human shields against attacks by U.S. or other international forces. Joffe-Walt is one of a handful of U.S. citizens traveling in bus convoys to Iraq to serve as human shields. Stressing that the volunteer human shields do not support Saddam Hussein, Joffe-Walt said, "Our leaders are about to kill thousands and thousands of innocent people. I'm acting as someone who is trying to intervene in a cycle of violence, not as someone who's trying to pick up arms against the United States."

February 3--Oberlin College Scholarships Put Education within Reach
The Lorain Morning Journal recently featured an article about Oberlin College's High School Scholarship Program. Now in its second year, the program awards four-year, tuition-only scholarships to all Oberlin High School students who have lived in the Oberlin School District for four years and who have gained admission to the College through the standard application process. According to Diana Roose, assistant to Oberlin College President Nancy Dye, the scholarships motivate students who had never thought about college to consider the option. "College is a possibility within reach," Roose says.

February 3--Oberlin's Eighth Blackbird Expands Physical and Artistic Boundaries
The New York Times recently ran a lengthy article on Eighth Blackbird, six young instrumentalists specializing in contemporary music. The group, founded in Oberlin, describes its goal as "exploring the boundaries of conventional recital, and creating an ensemble that can jam while retaining classical properties."

February 1--Oberlin College Professor Fights for Right of Jewish Women to Pray at Jerusalem's Western Wall
Oberlin College professor Shulamit Magnus appeared as the subject of a lengthy article in Saturday's Plain Dealer. Magnus, a professor of Jewish studies and history, is part of a group of women who have sued the state of Israel for the right to pray at Jerusalem's Western Wall. Since 1988, Magnus has belonged to a group of women who call themselves "Women of the Wall." Denounced by the state of Israel as witches, the women have been threatened with seven-year prison sentences. Despite the opposition, Magnus and the other women in the group continue to pray at the wall monthly.

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