Fall Semester Kicks Off
Nothing signals the excitement of a new academic year at Bryn Mawr like Move-In Day and Fall Convocation. The Class of 2016 officially arrived on campus on August 29, a picture-perfect day. With the help of customspeople, parents, family, and friends, students set up their new homes at Bryn Mawr, met roommates and other potential lifelong friends, and bid farewell to proud parents.
The weather was less friendly at Fall Convocation, held on September 4. But the rain did not deter the bag-piper-led procession of the graduating class or President Jane McAuliffe and other College officials, who addressed a crowded Goodhart Hall as they welcomed the Class of 2016. And although the “South of the Border” afterparty had to be moved indoors, students, faculty, and staff enjoyed great food in the dining halls and music, dancing, and dessert in Thomas Great Hall.
We’re Number One!
Bryn Mawr has been ranked number one among liberal-arts colleges in Washington Monthly’s annual ranking of U.S. colleges and universities that contribute most to society. To compile the list, Monthly’s editors gathered reams of publicly available data and settled on three criteria: social mobility, research, and service. America’s best colleges, the editors reasoned, are those that produce new scientific discoveries and a high percentage of students who become Ph.D.s, help economically disadvantaged students earn degrees, and emphasize students’ obligation to serve their communities and the nation at large.
“While I caution parents and students against putting too much stock into any single ranking or indicator,” said President Jane McAuliffe, “it is gratifying to have Bryn Mawr recognized for values such as access, research-intensive teaching, and service to society that are core to its institutional identity.”
This isn’t the first time Bryn Mawr has received high marks from Washington Monthly; the College earned the top spot on the liberal-arts ranking in 2006.
Students Get Out the Vote
Many Bryn Mawr students spent their extracurricular time spreading the word about voter legislation (such as the much-contested Pennsylvania voter ID law) and registering voters for the upcoming election. Clubs, including Students for Barack Obama and the Bryn Mawr NAACP Chapter, were out and about promoting registration and providing citizens with voter registration forms.
Throughout the semester, students set up voter registration tables during the Customs picnic on Move-In Day, at the Civic Engagement Office (CEO) Open House, and at confirmation of registration. In addition to working at these high-traffic events, students provided easy registration for the campus community at tables at Pem Arch and in the Campus Center. They also completed voter registration and education at the Bryn Mawr ACME supermarket and held a service-staff initiative at Bryn Mawr and Haverford, during which they provided voter registration forms in the dining halls and the facility service buildings and submitted completed forms on the staff members’ behalf.
The CEO actively supported students’ efforts and has been a source of information for the entire campus about voting and supporting student voting. The CEO created a website for students with information on voter registration, requesting an absentee ballot, and how students studying abroad could receive special accommodations in order to vote. To make voting even easier, CEO volunteers drove completed registration forms to the Voter Services Office in Norristown and provided an Election Day shuttle that ran all day on November 6 between Bryn Mawr’s campus and the polling location.
The Next Wave Colloquium
With recent shifts in economic and political power, events across many fronts strongly suggest the emergence of a new era of women’s advancement. On December 4, Bryn Mawr will host The Next Wave: Disruption, Transition, and a New Global Era for Women’s Advancement, a one-day colloquium that will bring together an international mix of scholars, emerging women leaders, and heads of major organizations to explore the evolving political and social opportunities for women. Keynote speaker Mary Ellen Iskenderian, president and CEO of Women’s World Banking, will join other women leaders to discuss topics of wealth, political change, digital activism, education, social entrepreneurship, and the campaign against violence toward women. The Next Wave will reach out to young and emerging leaders whose work will be crucial in expanding women’s empowerment in the decades to come. For more information, visit brynmawr.edu/nextwave.
Pilot Program for International Summer School
This summer, Bryn Mawr participated in a first-of-its-kind, five-week program that brought together students and faculty from around the world to collaboratively study a particular topic on one campus in China. Four students from the College and Growth and Structure of Cities Professor Gary McDonogh joined 30 students from Haverford College, Nanyang Technical University (NTU) in Singapore, China’s Tianjin University, and the University of Toronto on the Tianjin campus from June 30 to August 4.
“There are summer schools based at institutions where international groups of students come of their own volition to be taught by faculty from that institution,” says Bryn Mawr’s Senior Advisor for International Initiatives Susan Sutton ‘69. “But deliberately putting together an international group of faculty who will team-teach to a group of students selected to represent a range of countries, so as to engender fully cross-national insights—this is pretty unusual.”
Funding has already been secured for a second iteration of the program in summer 2013. In addition to this program, Bryn Mawr has created a formal exchange program with NTU, and this year two Nanyang students are studying on the Bryn Mawr campus.
New Master of Public Health Program with Thomas Jefferson University
Bryn Mawr’s Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research (GSSWSR) and Thomas Jefferson University’s School of Population Health have partnered to offer students the opportunity to complete a dual master’s degree in social work (M.S.S.) and public health (M.P.H.). Increasingly the practice of health care, especially in serving the neediest populations, depends on community-based, multidisciplinary teams of practitioners, researchers, and policymakers who are well-grounded in health, social, and legal services. This M.S.S./M.P.H. degree offering reflects the mission of both institutions to enhance the quality of life of individuals and their communities through a shared commitment to social justice and human rights. It also recognizes the growing interest among professionals to further their preparation by earning multiple graduate degrees.
The Gift of Art
This print by Roselle Hellenberg Osk, titled The Sisters, is part of an extensive collection of nearly 500 prints and drawings donated to Bryn Mawr by Jacqueline Koldin Levine ’46 and her husband, Howard Levine. “Over the course of 20 years, Jacqueline and Howard have assembled an unparalleled collection of works by 19th- and 20th-century artists,” says Brian Wallace, curator and academic liaison for art and artifacts at Bryn Mawr. “Each print or drawing, whether by an acknowledged master or a less well-known practitioner, exemplifies the tensions between tradition and innovation that enliven many of the most compelling artworks, just as the collection overall, with its focus on works from the last hundred years or so, enlivens the College’s existing collection of thousands of prints and drawings.”
Bryn Mawr President Jane McAuliffe called the collection “an extraordinary teaching tool,” and said, “Generations of Bryn Mawr students will have the opportunity to engage with these works of art, allowing them to do the sort of original research that is at the center of a Bryn Mawr education.”