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Psychology Paterno Fellow named student marshal

Dec 16, 2014

Whitney Moore, a Penn State psychology major from Pittsburgh, Pa., was selected to be the student marshal representing the College of the Liberal Arts at Penn State's Fall 2014 commencement ceremony at the University Park campus. She will be escorted by faculty marshal Rick Jacobs, professor of psychology, College of the Liberal Arts; distinguished honors faculty, Schreyer Honors College; and senior fellow, Justice and Safety Institute. Click here for the full story.

New philosophy book offers digital forums for readers

Dec 16, 2014

Christopher Long, professor of philosophy and classics, and the Cambridge University Press have partnered to publish an innovative scholarly monograph with an enhanced digital version using the latest digital technology.  He is author of a monograph, "Socratic and Platonic Political Philosophy: Practicing a Politics of Reading," published in print and enhanced digital editions by the University of Cambridge Press. Penn State students will be able to access the book through University Libraries. Click here for the full story.

Modern Language Association prize awarded to Canagarajah

Dec 16, 2014

Dr. Suresh Canagarajah, the Edwin Erle Sparks Professor in Applied Linguistics, English and Asian Studies at Penn State, will receive the 33rd Mina P. Shaughnessy Prize from the Modern Language Association for his book "Translingual Practice: Global Englishes and Cosmopolitan Relations," published by Routledge. The prize is awarded for an outstanding work on language, culture, literature, or literacy with strong application to the teaching of English. Click here for the full story.

Economics alumnus makes gift to create Nevin Democracy Leaders

Dec 05, 2014

David Nevins, a State College real estate executive, has made a significant gift to create The Nevins Democracy Leaders program, a signature initiative within The McCourtney Institute for Democracy, based in the College of the Liberal Arts at Penn State. The Nevins Leaders program will provide education and ­training in transpartisan leadership skills by exposing participants to a variety of philosophies, viewpoints and strategies; teaching the tools of critical thinking, deliberation and dialogue; and placing students in unique internship opportunities in democratic and civic renewal.

Nevins is founder and president of Nevins Real Estate Management, based in State College. He is a 1969 economics graduate of Penn State and a 1971 master of business administration graduate from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He also is one of the leaders of No Labels, a national bipartisan movement of Democrats, Republicans and Independents dedicated to transpartisan problem solving.

Click here for the full story.

Bilingualism Matters @ Penn State

Dec 04, 2014

On Wednesday, December 10, the Center for Language Science ( will become a chapter of Bilingualism Matters ( Bilingualism Matters is an organization based out of the University of Edinburgh that trains researchers to do outreach so that the basic science on bilingualism can be communicated to a range of individuals, from parents raising bilingual children, to educators in schools, and to policy makers in government. To our knowledge,the Center for Language Science will be the first US chapter of Bilingualism Matters. Dr. Antonella Sorace, who founded and directs Bilingualism Matters, and is a professor of Linguistics at the University of Edinburgh, will visit the Center for Language Science on Wednesday, December 10 to conduct training on how to do this sort of outreach.Information and media associated with other recently launched chapters can be seen at: For information about Bilingualism Matters @ Penn State or the Center for Language Science contact Judith Kroll or Sharon Elder

Nominees sought for the Rock Ethics Institute’s 2015 Stand Up Awards

Dec 02, 2014

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- The Rock Ethics Institute at Penn State announces a call for nominations for its Eighth Annual Stand Up Awards in recognition of undergraduate students at Penn State’s campuses who have demonstrated ethical leadership in taking a stand for a person, cause or belief. The goal of the award is to recognize courageous individuals and to inform the entire Penn State community of how often the extraordinary act is possible in ordinary circumstances. For example, in 2014, the Rock Ethics Institute honored seniors Maggie Cardin and Zachary Brubaker. Cardin, dedicated to mental health advocacy, educated emerging teachers in Penn State’s College of Education to recognize and prevent depression and suicide in students. Brubaker led the charge to unite the blind and sighted to promote respect and equality for workers with disabilities. Any faculty, staff, student or community member at any Penn State campus may nominate undergraduate students who are ethical leaders and have accomplished much during their time at Penn State. Selected honorees will receive an award of $1,000 each, be recognized at a spring 2015 ceremony and in a short video, and highlighted in traditional and digital publicity throughout the University. The deadline for nominations is Jan. 30, 2015. Nomination information, including online submission links, is available at

Dean showcases Paterno Fellows in Trustees presentation

Nov 14, 2014

At the November Board of Trustees meeting, Dean Susan Welch was among the invited speakers to speak about honor education and the impact of specially designed programs that provide unique learning experiences for exceptional student scholars in the sciences, liberal arts and honors college.


Dean Welch noted that the Paterno Liberal Arts Undergraduate Fellows Program embodies the idea that high expectations and a sense of challenge bring out the best in students. The program is a mechanism for giving talented Liberal Arts students both an extra push and a community to nurture their talents. It offers any Liberal Arts undergraduate who wishes to work hard the opportunity to earn their way into honors student status and be admitted to the Schreyer Honors College.


“It is inspiring to see how many of our Paterno Fellows have done so much to transform their Penn State education,” Dean Welch said. “This year, 75 percent of the fellows studied abroad in Africa, Asia, Europe or South America. Our fellows speak Arabic, Spanish, Japanese, French, German, Italian, Chinese, Latin, Greek and Russian. Several have earned master’s degrees along with their bachelor’s degrees. Early graduates have been hired by major companies or were accepted by some of the top graduate, medical or law schools. Still others are pursuing public service such as Teach for America. The Paterno Fellows Program has elevated undergraduate education in the college.” Click here for the full presentation.

Center for Language Science faculty studies brain, second language

Nov 12, 2014

Learning a new language changes your brain network both structurally and functionally, according to Penn State researchers.

"Learning and practicing something, for instance a second language, strengthens the brain," said Ping Li, professor of psychology, linguistics and information sciences and technology. "Like physical exercise, the more you use specific areas of your brain, the more it grows and gets stronger."

Li and colleagues studied 39 native English speakers' brains over a six-week period as half of the participants learned Chinese vocabulary. Of the subjects learning the new vocabulary, those who were more successful in attaining the information showed a more connected brain network than both the less successful participants and those who did not learn the new vocabulary. Click here for the full story.

Students intern in nation's capital

Nov 12, 2014

two Schreyer Honors College Scholars gained valuable experiences from summer internships that had them working in Washington, D.C., around politicians and government agencies.Senior Nina Boscia worked in the office of U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.), while junior Meg Egan (international relations major) interned in the U.S. Department of State during the summer of 2014. Boscia, who is a double major in speech communication and sociology, said she was very interested in working with Toomey because of the valuable experiences it allowed.

“I grew academically, professionally and culturally through this one internship,” she said. “Not only did I gain a tremendous amount of knowledge in the realms of politics and international affairs, but living in Washington, D.C., gave me the opportunity to make professional connections and experience museums, monuments and historical sites.” Click here for the full story.

Political science faculty publishes on media and presidents

Nov 12, 2014

The media rarely confront modern presidents when they wield unilateral powers by signing executive orders, and a Penn State researcher believes that the reluctance is part of a growing trend that worries many constitutional scholars.

"With a mere 'stroke of the pen,' presidents can change the political status quo," Mark Major, lecturer in political science and associate director of the McCourtney Institute for Democracy writes in "The Unilateral Presidency and the News Media" (Palgrave McMillan, 2014). "However the Constitution is silent about these powers, Congress seldom acts to limit them, and the public is usually unaware of these powers."  Click here for the full story.

LEAP Mentor Applications

Nov 04, 2014

The Office for Summer Session is now accepting applications for Learning Edge Academic Program (LEAP) Mentors for Summer 2015. LEAP mentors are live-in upperclassmen who assist with facilitating the transition for incoming first-year students to University Park during the second summer session. Applicants must be full-time undergraduate students and meet all of the requirements outlined in the mentor agreement. To apply for the position, applicants must attend one of the following information sessions: Tuesday, November 11 – 7:00 pm in 110 Osmond Monday, November 17 – 7:00 pm in 101 Osmond Thursday, December 4 – 7:00 pm in 103 Osmond Interested students can find the application and mentor agreement at under ‘Be a Mentor’. The deadline to apply is before 11:59 pm onWednesday, December 10, and must be submitted online and additional materials submitted to Late, incomplete, or handwritten applications will not be considered. For any questions, please contact Jessica Folmar at, or call (814)863-4174. Thank you.

James Simpson's magnanimous gift expands scholarships

Oct 28, 2014

The transformational gift of Penn State alumnus James Simpson will lift up generations of talented and hardworking undergraduate and graduate students in the College of the Liberal Arts. When fully funded, his gift of nearly $5 million for scholarships will support more than 40 students each year with awards of $5,000 each.

“Jim was a dedicated supporter of the college for many years, and we were very sad to lose him over a year ago,” said Susan Welch, the Susan Welch Dean of the College of the Liberal Arts. “However, his generosity will continue to elevate the lives of our students for decades to come. The college has students at all levels of financial need, particularly in the middle, the ones who typically would fall through the cracks. Jim’s scholarship will provide crucial support as they complete their degrees.”

The Simpson-Marcher-Petersen Scholarships will be among the University’s largest in terms of dollar amount and number of student recipients. The new scholarship also allows the college to support undergraduate or graduate students, providing flexibility in a given year. Click here for full story.

Sociology and criminology dept. honors alumni

Oct 21, 2014

The Penn State Department of Sociology and Criminology held its third annual award ceremony and reception recently at the Nittany Lion Inn. Three exceptional individuals were recognized for their success and influence as leaders, for significant career achievements, and for being outstanding role models for current students. Outstanding Alumni awards were presented to Michael Ostroff, Founder and President of The Ostroff Group, a consulting firm that works with non-profits on philanthropic and leadership goals, and Delore Zimmerman, PhD, Founder and President of Praxis Strategy Group, a research, policy strategy and development company that works with leaders and innovators in education, business, and government to create more competitive communities. The Faculty Award was presented to Paul Amato, PhD., the Arnold and Bette Hoffman Professor in Sociology and Demography, for his distinguished career as a top scholar and teacher on marriage, divorce and family well-being. Click here for the full story.

Liberal Arts Green Teams Introduce New Recycling Game

Oct 20, 2014

The College of the Liberal Arts Green Teams unveiled a new recycling video game for a computer or a smart phone at its recent College meeting. The game allows players to sort items into correct recycling bins, and helps learning by providing information about what items belong in particular bins. The game playable now at:

Approximately 50 staff and faculty met with academic and administrative leaders and members of the Green Teams to learn more about changes planned for the University’s recycling and sustainability programs.


Al Matyasovsky, Program Manager of Solid Waste Operations at Penn State, said a new collection of miscellaneous plastics will start soon at recycling stations around Penn State. He also showed types of products made from recycled plastics, such as composite decking and carpeting used in campus. Lydia Vandenbergh from the Penn State Sustainability Institute highlighted some of the changes coming to sustainability programs like Green Paws.


Dean Susan Welch emphasized the importance of finding ways to encourage faculty, staff and students to improve sustainability. For example, the Moore Building renovation project used regionally sourced and recycled materials. Other sustainable design features included the use of chilled beams to improve heating and cooling efficiency, which resulted in the building receiving a LEED certification.


The event was organized by the members of the College of the Liberal Arts Green Steering Committee. More information about sustainability efforts in the College of the Liberal Arts can be found at:






Center for Global Studies receives grants of over $2 million for global programs

Oct 20, 2014

The Center for Global Studies (CGS) at Penn State has recently been awarded two new federal grants that will help continue bringing together faculty and students from across the University in order to realize Penn State’s strategic goal of becoming a global university. Penn State will receive just over $2 million in Title VI National Resource Center and Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) funds over four years from the U.S. Department of Education.

This award marks the second time Penn State has received the Title VI NRC award and highlights national recognition of the center’s active engagement with research, education, and outreach in global studies. The CGS’s NRC award is only one of seven awards supporting centers with a focus on international studies. Click here for the full story.

New course CAS 272

Oct 20, 2014

CAS 272: Political Communication and Technology is a course for anyone who is interested in the use of social media. Students create video mashups and a campaign for a candidate or a non profit of your choice, write blogs, tweet and talk about viral politics, cyber activism, smart mobs, citizen pod casting, and peer-to-peer production (YouTube, Wikis). The course looks at how social media are used in politics, teaches students how to do it and the ethical issues involved.

McKeon to receive Alumni Fellow award

Oct 08, 2014

1971 alumna Cathy Lowenbraun McKeon of Jupiter, Florida will be honored today (Oct. 8) ) with the Penn State Alumni Fellow Aawrd. She is Chief Executive Officer of Kemark Financial Services, Inc., which oversees important industry programs, such as: Securities Transfer Agents Medallion Program, the Stock Exchanges Medallion Program, and the New York Stock Exchange Medallion Signature Program. These signature guarantee programs are used by all major financial services companies and individual investors throughout the U.S. and Canada. McKeon is a leader in risk management and insurance and financial services industries.Click here for the full story.

Antonionos make leadership gift to Liberal Arts

Oct 08, 2014

Penn State 1971 alumnus James R. Antoniono has always demonstrated an entrepreneurial spirit throughout his education, his professions, and his volunteer work, with successful results. Recently, he and his wife, Susan, of Greensburg, Pa., have made a leadership gift with an estate commitment of $1 million to support innovation and excellence among faculty and students in the College of the Liberal Arts. Their gift will endow an early career professorship, a graduate fellowship, a director’s fund in the Paterno Liberal Arts Undergraduate Fellows Program, and a dean’s fund in the College. The couple also created a Trustee Scholarship in the College, specifically for a Westmoreland County student, and a fund in Intercollegiate Athletics.  

"Jim and Susan's gift provides vital resources to support the ambitious work of future students and faculty,” said Susan Welch, the Susan Welch Dean of the College of the Liberal Arts. “We are deeply grateful for their vision and generosity to the Liberal Arts community." Click here for the full story.

Truglio receives Mal and Lea Bank Teaching Award

Oct 07, 2014

Maria Truglio, associate professor of Italian and women’s studies, combines a talent for teaching with a passion to enrich students’ experiences at Penn State, leading to her selection as the second recipient of The Malvin and Lea Bank Outstanding Teaching Award for the College of the Liberal Arts.

She will give a public lecture on undergraduate teaching at 3:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 10, in Foster Auditorium, 102 Paterno Library. She will also take part in a discussion in the new faculty workshop sponsored by the College of the Liberal Arts.

The award was established with a generous gift by Mal and Lea Bank, who are alumni and longtime benefactors of the College of the Liberal Arts and Penn State. Mal Bank is a 1952 Penn State graduate with a degree in arts and letters, and an accomplished tax law attorney with Thompson Hine LLP, headquartered in Cleveland. He served as general counsel for the Cleveland Foundation, one of the nation’s largest community foundations, from 1965 to 2003. He has also been a trustee for more than 30 charitable and educational institutions, and a director for more than 50 for-profit businesses. Click here for the full story.

Confucius Institute update

Oct 01, 2014

From Dr. Susan Welch, Dean of the College of the Liberal Arts at Penn State:

We are confirming that Penn State will be ending its relationship with the Confucius Institute at the end of this fiscal year, Dec. 31, 2014. Over the past five years, our Asian Studies has grown successfully from a program to become a full department.  We worked collegially with our partners at the Dalian University of Technology. However, several of our goals are not consistent with those of the Office of Chinese Languages Council International, known as the Hanban, which provides support to  Confucius Institutes throughout the world.

There will be no adverse impact on our Asian Studies department. Last spring semester, there were 60 undergraduate majors and more than 100 minors, with a dozen graduate students in the dual-title Ph.D. program. Total enrollment in all of the language and culture classes grew to more than 1,400 Penn State students. This fall, we welcomed two new faculty in Asian studies and history, and one in Asian studies and comparative literature.

Here is a link to a story about our Asian Studies department:

Marathon Read highlights resilence of books

Sep 23, 2014

The College of the Liberal Arts and various departments and centers are organizing a marathon 24-hour reading of three novels, beginning at noon Thursday, Sept. 25, on the lawn in front of Pattee and Paterno Libraries.This year’s Marathon Read celebrates the resilience of books and book culture with readings of three dystopian novels, each of which imagines a future in which books are controlled, censored, banned or destroyed: Ray Bradbury’s "Fahrenheit 451," Margaret Atwood’s "The Handmaid’s Tale" and Aldous Huxley’s "Brave New World."

The event is free and open to the public to attend. Click here for the full story.

LER faculty studies work-life issues for male scientists

Sep 19, 2014

One third of men in academic science are willing to scale back their careers to focus on family life, according to researchers. While traditional fatherhood roles may be shifting, men in the male-dominated field of academic science, such as physics and biology, face significant challenges in trying to balance work and family life, said Sarah Damaske, assistant professor of labor and employment relations and sociology, Penn State.Click here for the full story.

Mellon Foundation supports IAH project in humanities, arts and sciences

Sep 17, 2014

Penn State’s Institute for the Arts and Humanities has received a $260,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for a two-year project, "The Boundaries of the Human in the Age of the Life Sciences."

The project will support a wide-ranging series of events aimed at exploring two compelling themes in the arts and humanities: one involves artists and researchers who are exploring the boundaries of our self-definition as a species and the idea of humanism, and the other involves the increasingly influential hypothesis that we are living in a new geological age, called the "Anthropocene." Click here for the full story.

Canagarajah Receives British Association Prize for his book

Sep 15, 2014

Dr. Suresh Canagarajah’s book entitledTranslingual Practice: Global Englishes and Cosmopolitan Relations has been voted the winner of the 2014 British Association for Applied Linguistics Annual Book Prize.  He is the Edwin Erle Sparks Professor of Applied Linguistics, English, and Asian Studies. Professor Canagarajah’s book argues that it is becoming difficult to insist on a shared norm or homogeneous English when speakers appropriate English according to their values and identities in the context of globalization. Click here for the full story.

Deliberative democracy center continues leadership

Sep 12, 2014

As the fall midterm elections approach our nation, Penn State’s Center for Democratic Deliberation (CDD) continues to develop new knowledge and training in rhetoric, debate and deliberation for students, educators and citizens through its initiatives in research, teaching and outreach.

Since its founding in 2006, the CDD has had a significant impact on undergraduate and graduate education at Penn State, launching innovative changes in the University’s speaking and writing courses. For example, Rhetoric and Civic Life, a course for honors students and aspiring Paterno Fellows, offers comprehensive training in speaking, writing, visual and digital communications skills.

In addition, the CDD has had success promoting a deliberative model of classroom teaching in a variety of educational settings. In partnership with the National Constitution Center and the State College Area School District, the center has sponsored K-12 teachers’ institutes on deliberation in the classroom. CDD faculty also helped to create high school educational programs using gaming technologies to teach history and Internet videoconferencing technologies to bring together diverse groups of students for real-time deliberations.

Future plans call for collaboration with other centers and institutes to develop new platforms for online public deliberation, and intercollegiate debate and forensics. Click here for the full story.

World in Conversation to lead talks with NATO cadets, civilians

Sep 09, 2014

World in Conversation, a Center for Public Diplomacy in the College of the Liberal Arts, will partner with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to sponsor trained Penn State undergraduate dialogue facilitators to lead groundbreaking virtual conversations between NATO military cadets and civilians in conflict zones, beginning with Afghanistan. Cadets from academies throughout the NATO alliance will have the unique opportunity to participate in peer-facilitated dialogue with their civilian counterparts from five different universities in Afghanistan through a recent grant to World in Conversation from NATO’s Science for Peace and Security Programme.

"This is an unprecedented attempt to utilize technology to foster greater understanding between military personnel and civilians in conflict zones," said Laurie Mulvey, executive director of World in Conversation. "Our student facilitators will play a key role in making it possible for groups who will eventually come face-to-face in the most stressful of circumstances to meet informally and develop an understanding of one another first. Their work in creating these simple humanizing encounters could prevent unnecessary violence on the ground." Click here for the full story.

International politics senior pursues Ireland opportunity

Sep 03, 2014

Bobby Chen, a senior in international politics and economics, took advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to tackle all of his interests in one trip. A self-described “nerd” for athletics and photography, he joined seven fellow Penn State students in photographing the Penn State opening game in Ireland for the John Curley Center for Sports Journalism. “Ireland has a fascinating political and cultural history,” Bobby said. “So having the opportunity to cover a Penn State game as a photojournalist, while in a storied foreign country, is somewhat of a dream come true for me.”

Aside from taking photos and taking in the sites of Ireland, Bobby wanted to further his knowledge of producing news content for media organizations and broaden his experience in international politics and economics.

Click here for the full story.

Sociology researchers to study child well-being in 2 states

Sep 03, 2014

Molly Martin, associate professor of sociology and demography, is leading an interdisciplinary team of researchers to study the well-being of children in two states: Pennsylvania that allows natural gas drilling and New York that bans such activities. The project is supported by a $150,000 grant from The Russell Sage Foundation, a leading foundation dedicated to the improvement of social and living conditions in the U.S.  The researchers will review and analyze data from Pennsylvania and New York school districts located above the Marcellus Shale region, one of the largest natural gas reserves in the U.S.

''We all think that money matters for so many life experiences, while some believe money can solve any problem,'' Dr. Martin said. ''But is that really true? Children from wealthy families are often successful and tend to be healthier. Is it really money that fosters success and health? There may be other factors that are tightly intertwined: their parents’ good education and jobs, supportive parents and teachers, and other positive traits.''

Click here for the full story.

Brazilian World Campus student receives degree

Aug 21, 2014

World Campus psychology major Fernando Ribeiro flew to University Park from Brazil to receive his degree in person. His degree gave him greater insight for his work at his executive coaching company, Phercoh. Ribeiro is among the nearly 120 World Campus students traveling from across the globe to State College for Penn State’s summer graduation. World Campus honored them during a recent ceremony at the Jordan Center. For the full story, click here.

Paterno Fellow selected as summer college marshal

Aug 15, 2014
Paterno Fellow selected as summer college marshal

Carl Boswell with Sue Paterno

Carl Boswell has been selected as the College of the Liberal Arts student marshal, representing Liberal Arts graduates, at the summer commencement on Aug. 16, 2014. He will receive a B.A. degree in International Politics and a Master's degree in International Affairs.  He is a Paterno Fellow, a Chapel Executive Intern, and a participant in Liberal Arts Alumni Mentor Program.



A member of the Schreyer Honors College, Carl enrolled in the Integrated Undergraduate/ Graduate degree program which allows students to  simultaneously pursue a Master's and an undergraduate degrees. In addition, he is a member of the Presidential Leadership Academy, The Schreyer Consulting Club, The Paterno Fellows Program,  and the Penn State Lion Ambassadors. In his downtime, Carl ran in intramural track meets and played flag football.

In addition, Carl studied abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he learned more about the Spanish culture while traveling around the country and walking on a glacier. His love of experiencing different cultures has also taken him to Europe where, in the summer of 2013, he backpacked through five European countries.

Carl has interned and worked at the former International Center for the Study of Terrorism, the Smeal Center for Global Business Studies, and two government relations firms located in Washington D.C. In the Spring of 2014 he served as a teaching assistant for Professor Fariborz Ghadar in his two MBA courses on the topics of international finance and business strategy. This experience served him well as he focused his Schreyer Honors College thesis on the economic impact of the Olympic Games on the host country.

During his time at Penn State, he received various scholarships to help him focus on his academic studies and pursue study abroad and internship opportunities . These scholarshps included the Bunton Waller Fellowship, the Virgina Todd Chapel Executive Internship Award, and other Schreyer Honors College and Liberal Arts funding.

When asked about the future, Carl responded “ I feel most excited when immersed in new social and professional environments where I am able to learn from those around me. There are over 7 billion people in the world. I will not meet all of them, but only I can set my own social, professional, and boundaries."  After graduation, he plans to move to Washington D.C.


Rock Ethics Institute enhances University ethical leadership

Aug 07, 2014

The Rock Ethics Institute has played a key role, along with other offices and programs at Penn State,  in the University's solid legacy of ethical integrity and leadership. Established in 2001 through a $5 million initial gift from Doug and Julie Rock to the Department of Philosophy and the College of the Liberal Arts, the Institute has a mission to increase "ethical literacy" in the campus community, identify "ethical challenges, weigh options, consider other viewpoints, and take a stand for their beliefs and the interests of others."

"We're looking specifically at enhancing ethics literacy in research projects in the sciences, engineering, humanities and social sciences," said Susan Welch, dean of the College of the Liberal Arts, "as well as to advance the integration of ethics into the curriculum at all levels, including graduate and postdoctoral mentoring in research ethics." Click here for the full story.

Professor emeritus of French receives Lifetime Service Award

Aug 07, 2014

Norris Lacy, the Edwin Erle Sparks Professor Emeritus of French and Medieval Studies at Penn State, has received the North American Branch of the International Arthurian Society’s Award for Lifetime Service to Arthurian Studies. The society comprises nearly 1,200 scholars interested in the study of the Arthurian realm in history, literature, art, film and popular culture; more than 300 libraries subscribe to its annual Bibliographical Bulletin. Click here for the full story.

Psychology research links decisions and physical tasks

Jul 24, 2014

Psychology research on people's pre-crastination, or hurrying to complete a task as soon as possible. has received much attention from prominent media such as the New York Times. Distinguished Professor of Psychology David Rosenbaum and co-authors Lanyung Gong, graduate student in psychology, and Cory Adam Potts, then-undergraduate in psychology, recently published their research exploring decision-making when it involves physical effort. Click here for the full story, or here for the NY Times article.

LER faculty member examines work and stress

Jul 24, 2014

Dr. Sarah Damaske, Assistant Professor of Labor and Employment Relations, Sociology, and Women's Studies, led a Penn State team of researchers who found that men and women had less stress, as indicated by lower cortisol levels, when they were at work than when they were at home. Although their overall findings published in the journal Social Science and Medicine, are consistent with the “work as haven” hypothesis, it may also be that combining the responsibilities of work and home may increase people’s subjective experience of stress. The study has attracted national media such as ABC News and NPR. Click here for the full story and here for the NPR story.

In memoriam

Jul 01, 2014

Paul Harvey Jr., Associate Professor of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, History, and Jewish Studies, died July 13, 2014, in Italy. He joined Penn State in 1972 and focused his teaching and scholarship on ancient republican Rome, Roman religion, and early Christianity. Paul also served as head of the Classics and Ancient Mediterranean studies Department. Click here for the full obituary.


Joseph Flay, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, died June 27, 2014 in State College, Pa. He joined Penn State in 1963 and taught both undergraduate and graduate courses, served on college and university committees, and directed dissertations. His honors include the Class of 1933 Award for Outstanding Contributions in the Field of the Humanities, the Lindback Foundation Award for Distinguished Teaching, and an Alumni Distinguished Teaching Award. Click here for the full obituary.


Stanley Rosen, Evan Pugh Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, died on May 4, 2014, in Philadelphia. He joined Penn State in 1956 and authored more than twenty books and 125 articles and book chapters over his tenure. He was the recipient of numerous honors and awards. Penn State appointed him an Evan Pugh Professor, the highest honor given by the University, in 1985.Click here for the full obituary.

New book explores Northern attitudes toward rebels

Jun 30, 2014

In his new book, "With Malice Toward Some: Treason and Loyalty in the Civil War Era" (University of North Carolina Press), William Blair, the Liberal Arts Research Professor of History, examines how the Northern states reconciled what appeared to be a heartfelt hatred of the rebels with a demonstrable record of leniency toward them. Click here for the full story.

Sociologist examines teen peer pressure and smoking

Jun 30, 2014

Steven Haas, associate professor of sociology and demography, is co-author of a study that found teens tend to be more powerful in influencing their friends to start smoking than in helping them to quit. In a study of adolescent friendship networks and smoking use over time, the researchers found that friends exert influence on their peers to both start and quit smoking, but the influence to start is stronger. Click here for the full story.


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