Lauren RubensteinApril 18, 20143min
Emily Weitzman ’14, a double major in English and dance and an original member of Wesleyan’s slam poetry team (WeSlam), will travel around the world studying slam poetry, community and culture under a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship. Weitzman plans to visit South Africa, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, Nepal and Ireland to explore communities of slam poets. She was one of about 40 individuals this year to receive the prestigious fellowship, which comes with a $28,000 stipend for travel and independent study. She will begin her year-long journey by August 1. “While my proposed topic is slam, something that I really love…

Lauren RubensteinApril 18, 20141min
The American Studies Department will host the inaugural lecture in the annual Richard Slotkin American Studies Lecture Series from 4:15 to 6 p.m. in the Powell Family Cinema in the Center for Film Studies. Slotkin, the Olin Professor of American Studies and English, emeritus, will speak on "Thinking Mythologically: Black Hawk Down, Platoon, and the War of Choice in Iraq." In his more than 25 years at Wesleyan, Slotkin helped establish both the American Studies and the Film Studies programs. He is regarded as one of the preeminent cultural critics of our times, and is the author of an award-winning trilogy on…

Mike SembosApril 18, 201410min
The U.S. Air Force has taken a keen interest in the recent work of Tsampikos Kottos, the Douglas J. and Midge Bowen Bennet Associate Professor of Physics. Kottos, along with Graduate Research Assistant Eleana Makri, Hamidreza Ramezani Ph.D. '13 (now a postdoc at U.C. Berkeley) and Dr. Ilya Vitebskiy (AFRL/Ohio), has come up with a theoretical way to build a more effective, reusable power limiter. Generally speaking, the function of a power limiter is to protect a sensor  — be it the human eye, an antenna, or other sensitive equipment — from high-intensity radiation, like that generated by high-power lasers. Kottos, Makri, Ramezani…

Olivia DrakeApril 18, 20143min
Four years ago, Jennifer Roach ’14 co-founded Summer of Solutions Hartford, a food justice and youth leadership development program in Connecticut’s capital. Since 2010, Summer of Solutions has grown to seven garden sites across Hartford, continuously working to “increase access to healthy food and community green spaces in Hartford by empowering young people as innovators in the food justice movement and providing them tools and opportunities to create solutions to food inequality in the city." This month, Roach's organization was the recipient of a $10,000 grant from the Kathryn W. Davis Projects for Peace program. The Projects for Peace grant will allow Summer of Solutions to expand its nine-week summer…

Kate CarlisleApril 13, 20146min
Assistant professor of music Paula Matthusen has won a prestigious Rome Prize from the American Academy, which will allow her to spend the next year in the Eternal City working on the compelling compositions that distinguish her career. Matthusen is a composer of acoustic and electronic music who, among other things, teaches Laptop Ensemble at Wesleyan, and records sound in historic structures and architecture. The resulting work reflects the character of these spaces, which include the Old Croton Aqueduct in New York. As an American Academy fellow, she will visit the paths of the Roman aqueducts. “I’m elated,” Matthusen said.…

Lauren RubensteinApril 9, 20142min
Always wanted to take a course with legendary film professor Jeanine Basinger? Miss the first run of Professor of Psychology Scott Plous’ wildly popular “Social Psychology” MOOC? Now’s your chance! The next round of Wesleyan’s massive open online courses (MOOCs) is starting up this month, with “Marriage in the Movies: A History” launching April 21. Basinger, the Corwin-Fuller Professor of Film Studies, is teaching the course based on her book, I Do and I Don’t: A History of Marriage in the Movies. “This is essentially a descriptive course on stories and stars and business strategies,” says Basinger, who is also…

Lauren RubensteinMarch 31, 20145min
Growing up, Associate Professor of History Erik Grimmer-Solem heard many family stories of his grandfather, a member of the Norwegian resistance movement during World War II. Little did he know then that he would go on to uncover new truths about a celebrated German general, and ignite a public debate over the general’s place in history. Grimmer-Solem’s grandfather, Dr. Odd Solem, was arrested by the Gestapo along with two other Norwegians during the German occupation of Norway in the summer of 1940. He was sentenced to death by a German military tribunal, but had his sentence reduced to a prison…

Kate CarlisleMarch 31, 20142min
James "Jim" Greenwood, assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, and four colleagues have published a paper that casts doubt on the theory of abundant water on the moon while simultaneously boosting theories around the creation of the moon, several billion years ago. The paper, “The Lunar Apatite Paradox,” published March 20 in the prestigious journal Science, stems from work involving the mineral apatite, the most abundant phosphate in the solar system. (Along with its presence on planets, it’s found in teeth and bones.) Initial work on the lunar rocks brought back to Earth by the Apollo missions indicated that…

Olivia DrakeMarch 31, 20144min
The Board of Trustees recently conferred tenure to four Wesleyan faculty. Their promotions take effect July 1. They are: Lisa Cohen, associate professor of English; Abigail Hornstein, associate professor of economics; Miri Nakamura, associate professor of Asian languages and literatures; and Anna Shusterman, associate professor of psychology. Other tenure announcements may be released after the Board's May meeting. "Please join us in congratulating them on their impressive records of accomplishment," said Wesleyan President Michael Roth. Brief descriptions of their areas of research and teaching are below: Lisa Cohen joined the English Department’s creative writing faculty in Fall 2007. Her courses are…

Olivia DrakeMarch 31, 20144min
Between 2500-1200 B.C., Ashkelon was one of the largest and most important commercial centers around the Mediterranean, and it remained a thriving metropolis under varying degrees of Egyptian control until until the Crusaders conquered the city in the 12th century. Today, the site remains preserved, as does a 3,500-year-old, two-story-high mudbrick-archway. Since 1985, the site has been excivated by the Leon Levy Expedition — a joint project drawing students and faculty from Wesleyan, Harvard University, Wheaton College and Boston University. To date, Ashkelon archaeological digs have revealed a neighborhood of elite Philistine houses dating from the 11th-10th centuries B.C. Every year, Kate Birney, assistant professor…

Olivia DrakeMarch 31, 20143min
On April 11, join several Wesleyan alumnae as they share insights and discuss strategies as women in today’s workplace – from the boardroom to the operating room. "Female Frontiers - Pushing Boundaries in the Workplace" is an opportunity for students to connect with alumnae in the career context to forge professional relationships and get tips for career success. All students, staff, faculty and alumni are welcome. The event is sponsored by Women of Wesleyan, a year-long programming initiative that features women, their accomplishments, and their influence on the Wesleyan community and the world at large. "Female Frontiers" begins with a featured talk…