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2009 News Archive

End of year message from Dean Strikwerda

Thank you all for a good semester of service, teaching, advising, and creative activity. The College of W&M succeeds due to the combined efforts of all members of our community. On occasion, we have the opportunity to recognize some of those community members, and so I want to announce several awards and note two transitions, as well as share some good development news.

W&M receives $1.31 million grant to implement new history curriculum

The College of William and Mary's School of Education has received a $1.31 million grant from the Jacob K. Javits Gifted and Talented Students Program to fund a project that will bring new U.S. history curriculum to middle schools around the nation.

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IR student Samuel Schreck '11 receives NATO internship

Three W&M students have been offered, and have accepted, internships with the U.S. Mission to NATO for the coming summer. Congratulations Samuel!

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ES student Andrea Faatz '10 receives NATO internship

Three W&M students have been offered, and have accepted, internships with the U.S. Mission to NATO for the coming summer. Congratulations Andrea!

Students receive NATO internships

Three W&M students have been offered, and have accepted, internships with the U.S. Mission to NATO for the coming summer.

ChAP scientists comment on benefits of algal biofuel

A letter from several participants in the Chesapeake Algae Program is printed in the leading journal "Science." The writers point out several environmental benefits of using algae as biofuel feedstock.

Teaching and research: All about the sauce

A group of more than 100 faculty, staff and students pondered the recipe of the College's "special sauce" -- a combination of ingredients that, properly blended, allow for the smooth incorporation of research activity into the education of many William & Mary students.

Adam Otstot '04, M.Ed. '07: An Iron Man Amongst Us

Adam Otstot '04, M.Ed. '07 traveled from his home in Williamsburg, to compete in this extraordinary competition that was held in Hawaii this past October. Otstot finished 94th overall, with an impressive 9 hours, 27 minutes and 49 seconds.

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Student authors Guide for Latin

Irene Morrison-Moncure ('11) spent the summer of 2009 working on her Monroe project, a guide to grammar for students of Latin.

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Internships in Francophone Europe

William & Mary's first two participants in the College's partnership with the Internships in Francophone Europe are back on campus.

Students research green roof possibilities for W&M campus

Last month, more than 20 students from various organizations - including the College's Committee on Sustainability, the Sharpe Community Scholars Program, the EcoHouse, and the Student Environmental Action Coalition - completed the College's first green roof test plots.

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Mercury's travel up the food chain

Professor of Biology Dan Cristol is studying the impact the element mercury, found in rivers, lakes and streams, has on the birds that dwell around the polluted water.

W&M named top public institution in study abroad participation

The College of William and Mary has a greater percentage of undergraduates who participate in study abroad programs than any other public institution offering doctoral degrees in the United States, according to a recent study by the Institute of International Education.

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Policy Dialogues in DC: Emerging Trends in Emergency Management

One of the most fascinating aspects of public policy is that its effects can be felt in most areas of daily life. On November 6, Jefferson Program students were given the opportunity to learn about the various aspects of emergency management during the second fall semester policy dialogue.

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Handel Festival a Success in spite of Nor'Easter

The music departments of historic Bruton Parish Church and the College of William and Mary joined with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation for "A Handel Festival: Music in the World of George Frideric Handel". Click for photos from some of the events.

It's Better to Be There

From its base in the power center of Washington, D.C., the Global Environmental Governance Project engages the tough problems surrounding international environmental institutions and laws.

Traffic Control

Lizabeth Allison studies nuclear transport, but her work has nothing to do with nuclear energy.

Changing the World in 6-page increments

The Project on International Peace and Security engages undergraduates in knotty security issues—and teaches them how to write policy briefs.

Never trust a whimbrel

These shifty, stilt-legged shorebirds continue to surprise even seasoned scientists.

In praise of post-docs

William & Mary's interdisciplinary environmental program is expanding, thanks to a new post-doctoral fellowship program.

Memories of Strange Fruit

William & Mary's Susan Donaldson spearheads important scholarship on the dark days of lynching...and their present-day echoes.

For whom the bell didn't toll

A group of students journey to Spain to trace the twisted threads of the legacy of that country's tragic civil war.

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Students Place 14th at ACM Regionals

In the recent ACM Mid-Atlantic Regional Programming contest, a team consisting of Sarah Cameron, Kevin Cox and Joel Gillespie placed 14th out of 161 teams.

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Swetnam-Burland lectures in Berlin

New faculty member Molly Swetnam-Burland is in high demand as a speaker on her specialty of Egyptian and Egyptianizing artifacts in Roman art.

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Oakley takes his show on the road

John Oakley has been chosen as the Martha Sharp Joukowsky lecturer for the Archaeological Institute of America, and will be sharing his knowledge of Greek vase painting with audiences in twelve cities across the US.

Classics student wins Dintersmith fellowship

Senior honors student Megan Shuler was the recipient of a Dintersmith fellowship from the college for honors research. With the support of the fellowship she spent the summer of 2009 researching her honors thesis on Roman domestic architecture, which she is completing under the direction of Molly Swetnam-Burland.

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New W&M provost is a Classicist

What can you do with a classics degree? Apparently become the chief academic officer for one of the best universities in the country.

Student designers 'create the world'

Inglis was one of a handful of William & Mary students who approached the theatre department last year and asked if they could serve as the designers for one of the College's main stage productions.

Ed Dept. Grant Awarded

John Eisele and Driss Cherkaoui have been awarded a Dept. of Education grant for their textbook series on Arabic

Student builds contrabass recorder

Callaway spent most of his summer building a contrabass recorder, with the finished product being only slightly shorter than he is.

Award-winning Greek class

Students in Bill Hutton's second-semester Greek class won high honors in the first annual National Greek Exam for first-year Greek students

W&M professor wins Neil Miner Award

Heather Macdonald, Chancellor Professor of Geology at William & Mary, has been proclaimed the winner of the Neil Miner Award by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT).

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Spring 2010 Topics Courses Announced

Read about Biology Topics courses offered in the upcoming 2010 Spring Semester (Bio 404 - Topics in Biology course catalog listing).

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Latinos in America

John Riofrio, "Rio," recently published an editorial response to CNN's documentary Latino in America in the Huffington Post

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Monster Virus!

Halloween brings out the phage in some of us.

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Homecoming 2009

Thank you to all those who attended our homecoming reception!

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Inaugural Bolin Fellowships announced

The Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy, the William & Mary Law School and the National Center for State Courts have collaborated to create the Bolin Fellowship which provides tuition and a paid internship for minority students enrolled in the college's joint master of public policy and juris doctorate program.

Greenia elected to Phi Beta Kappa senate

George Greenia, professor of modern languages and literatures at the College of William and Mary, has been elected to the senate of the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

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Congratulations EAS faculty publication!

Professor Kevin A. Vose`s new book, Resurrecting Candrakirti: Disputes in the Tibetan Creation of Prasangika, was published from Wisdom Publications in 2009. Congratulations! Read more about its content here.

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Physics Teaching Award

Jeremy Weeden is awarded the 2009 Rolf G. Winter Teaching Award

An out of classroom experience

Remember those hot, sticky summers when your parents made you and your siblings pile into the back of the station wagon, heading out for a long trek to see the great West? Well, for nearly four decades, geology students at William and Mary have made a similar kind of road trip - with their professors instead of parents - by signing up for the Regional Field Geology course, aka Geology 310.

Holmes to present lecture series

David L. Holmes, Walter G. Mason Professor of Religious Studies, will present to the William & Mary community a talk entitled, "College in the 1950s Compared with College Today."

William & Mary to host forum on healthcare reform

The Schroeder Center for Health Policy and the Thomas Jefferson Program in Public Policy will host a forum on healthcare reform and how it may impact Medicare and Medicaid programs.

Going Global: Reves Center holds international expo

Hundreds of curious families poured into Trinkle Hall on Family Weekend to meet excited student representatives and alumni of William & Mary's many study abroad and exchange programs.

Stewart, Close earn Emmy Awards

Comedian Jon Stewart '84, one of William & Mary's most famous alumni, has been lauded again by the entertainment industry.

W&M professor receives $1 million NSF grant

Salvatore Saporito, an associate professor of sociology at William & Mary, has received a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation to create a new database of school attendance boundaries for the country's largest school districts.

W&M's yo-yo guy

Sebastian Brock '11 prepares to compete at the national yo-yo contest.

Armstrong survives Raft Debate

In the battle for the paddle, Physics Professor David Armstrong outlasts the competition.

Christian student observes Muslim 'feast for the faith'

Bailey Thomson was one of millions around the world who recently observed the Islamic tradition of Ramadan. But unlike the majority of those who observe the holy month, Thomson is not a Muslim.

Student brings fringe fest experience to new role

Mary Myers' summer was a whirlwind of rehearsals and performances in two of the biggest cities on the East Coast. Now, she is bringing what she learned from that experience to her next role on the William & Mary main stage.

Larry Wilkerson featured on NPR's "On Point"

Harriman Professor of Government and Public Policy Lawrence Wilkerson talked with NPR's "On Point" about increasing troops in Afghanistan and about U.S. there.

Annual 'Raft Debate' to be held Sept. 30

The Raft Debate, a much beloved William & Mary tradition, will be held at the Sadler Center's Commonwealth Auditorium on Wednesday, Sept. 30 at 6:30 pm.

First Sullivan Scholarship winner prepares for semester in England

Andy Allen ('11) is preparing to relish everything the old world has to offer. As the first recipient of the Timothy J. Sullivan Scholarship, he will spend fall semester of his junior year at the University of Nottingham in England.

Halleran to faculty: We control our destiny

New Provost Michael Halleran addresses faculty and discusses the upcoming campus conversation on what it means to be a liberal arts university.

Roy R. Charles Center and Writing Resources Center move

The Roy R. Charles Center and Writing Resources Center, two-well known resources for William & Mary students, will have new homes this fall. Both spaces, which used to be housed in Tucker Hall, will continue to inspire discovery and research.

Sustainability summer interns save thousands

As interns for the Committee on Sustainability (COS), Tyler Koontz '09 and Judi Sclafani '11 spent their summer months evaluating William & Mary's recycling and waste services. Thanks to that work - and a recommendation by the students - the College will now save $40,000 annually.

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Today's class and life after college

In the first meeting of the 2009-2010 University Teaching Project, W&M faculty discussed what they would like their students to be able to "do" 10 years after leaving W&M.

ChAP: Biofuel from aquatic algae

A number of researchers converge on a way to take algae and make it into fuel on an industrial scale.

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NiCad at William & Mary

NiCad, a multi-national experimental rock band from the Hague, will visit the William and Mary Campus for concerts and student workshops featuring their eclectic style and unique approach to digital music.

James B. Comey's remarks at Convocation

The following are the prepared remarks of Former Deputy Attorney General James Comey ('82) for Opening Convocation 2009. - Ed.

Greenhouse gas emissions reduced 16% since 2002

William & Mary reduced its carbon emissions 16 percent per square foot of building space since 2002, according to the College's first official greenhouse gas inventory released this week.

Serghi brings music to Kenyan school

Serghi, an associate professor of music at William & Mary, met Cynthia and dozens of other children with similar stories during a week-long service trip to their school this summer.

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Alex Gunderson's work featured in BBC story

Alex Gunderson (W&M '07) published a paper with Dr. Mark Forsyth and Dr. John Swaddle that is featured in a story by the BBC. Alex's work points to effects that feather-degrading bacteria have on bluebird plummage coloration and health.

Morgan Faulkner ('12): A proud Virginia heritage

Morgan Faulkner, a rising sophomore at the College, is a member of the Upper Mattaponi Tribe in King William, Va. She came to the College last year as William & Mary's first Trevarthen Scholarship recipient.

Basement to ceiling

Seniors in the geology department do a whirlwind tour from the bottom of a slate quarry to the top of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

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Robin Looft-Wilson receives the 2009 Alumni Fellowship Award

Robin Looft-Wilson is one of five recipients of the 2009 Alumni Fellowship Award for Excellence in Teaching and will be recognized at the Fall Awards Banquet in September with a $1,000 honorarium.

W&M alumni, students bring 'Usher' to Fringe Festivals

Just two years after debuting his "Tragedy! A Musical Comedy" in New York's Fringe Festival, Michael Johnson ('09) is back again with a new musical, and a cast and crew of William & Mary students and alumni are helping to bring it to life.

Are eagles nesting near your house?

The Center for Conservation Biology has mapped out on a website all known bald eagle nests in Virginia. Know of one not listed? Tell them about it.

Prof. Zhou Awarded NSF Grant

NSF has awarded an ECCS-IHCS grant on Multi-Scale QoS for Body Sensor Networks to Professor Gang Zhou. This 3-year project is in collaboration with both the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department and the Computer Science Department at the University of Virginia.

Iran's election hits close to home for W&M student

In the days and weeks that followed Iran's election, the world watched as protests and violence filled the country's streets. For one William & Mary student, the conflict hit especially close to home.

From the Brafferton

This column by President Taylor Reveley originally ran in the summer 2009 issue of the William & Mary Alumni Magazine.

Studying cellular 'traffic control'

A protein known as the thyroid hormone receptor shuttles in and out of the cell's nucleus, where it goes about the all-important business of turning genes on and off.

Virginia Shakespeare Festival kicks off its 31st season

The Virginia Shakespeare Festival, with William & Mary Theatre Professor Christopher Owens serving as its producing artistic director, kicked off its 31st season at Phi Beta Kappa Hall last night. This year's season includes three smash hits and a professional company recruited from all over the country.

'Travels with Tooy' wins another award

Richard Price's ethnographic account of a "trip down the rabbit hole" with a Saramaka curer has won the Gordon K. and Sybil Lewis Memorial Award for Caribbean Scholarship.

W&M scientists band two peregrine falcon chicks

Scientists from the Center for Conservation Biology banded two peregrine falcon chicks June 18 at the bottom of a stack at Dominion Energy's Possum Point Substation in Prince William County.

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Tracking map

The Center for Conservation Biology at the College of William and Mary – Virginia Commonwealth University and the Virginia chapter of The Nature Conservancy have successfully used state of the art, 9.5 gram, satellite transmitters to track five whimbrels (Numenius phaeopus) from a migratory staging area in Virginia to their breeding grounds near Hudson Bay.

CCB tracks whimbrels to Hudson Bay

The Center for Conservation Biology at the College of William and Mary - Virginia Commonwealth University and the Virginia chapter of The Nature Conservancy have successfully used state of the art, 9.5 gram, satellite transmitters to track five whimbrels (Numenius phaeopus) from a migratory staging area in Virginia to their breeding grounds near Hudson Bay.

Dean Strikwerda announces new Dean for Educational Policy

Carl Strikwerda, Dean of the Faculty in Arts and Sciences at William & Mary, sent the following e-mail to A&S faculty and staff regarding the appointment of Teresa Long, Associate Professor of Modern Languages and Literatures, to Dean for Educational Policy.

Ecofashion: We're not only what we wear

We're also who made what we wear and what it's made from. (And other fashion truisms that will keep green the new black.)

A walk through the new ISC 2

Rogers Hall has been renovated and is now part of the Integrated Science Center. The labs are working, even as unpacking continues.

Sylvia Stout: It's all about the people

Sylvia Stout, business manager for the Physics Department, is to be honored for 40 years of service at William & Mary's annual Employee Appreciation Day luncheon.

Waiting for the word

Henry Hart hopes that "appetizer" booklets will spur publication of ambitious post-World War II literary anthology.

Serge Kovaleski ('84) earns Pulitzer Prize

Serge Kovaleski, a member of William & Mary's Class of 1984 and a reporter for The New York Times, received a Pulitzer Prize today as part of a news team that covered the Gov. Elliot Spitzer scandal.

Follow Azalea the eagle on line

Our Center for Conservation Biology invites the public to watch the growth and development of Azalea, an eagle chick hatched at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens.

Justin Schoonmaker's Commencement remarks

The following are the prepared remarks of Justin Schoonmaker ('09), the student speaker for William & Mary's 2009 Commencement ceremony. - Ed.

Alumna Profile

I remember the original plan: work for a couple of years after college, then go to graduate school full-time.

Student Profile

I am an environmental policy and international relations double-major.

Senior opens for Ralph Stanley

William & Mary senior Elizabeth LaPrelle has opened for music great Ralph Stanley and toured the west coast singing songs of the Appalachia.

Justin Schoonmaker ('09) to speak at commencement

As the 2009 student Commencement speaker, he will be joining the featured Commencement Speaker, Tom Brokaw. A common student would be intimidated by the prospect, but Schoonmaker believes he has a lot of life and ideas to share.

From shell to shell: Kids raise, release turtles

About 40 kindergarteners from Matthew Whaley Elementary School flocked around the dock at William & Mary's Keck Environmental Field Lab today to release the baby turtles they had raised from eggs.

Tracking the elusive ghost particle

You can't feel them, but neutrinos are passing through your body in large numbers. They have no charge and very low mass, but their scientific value is priceless.

Panel reflects on Tiananmen protests

W&M's government department and Reves Center for International Studies hosted a forum marking the 20th anniversary of China's Tiananmen Square protests and massacre.

W&M Symphony Orchestra to honor the life of Burt Kester

H. Burton "Burt" Kester, a lecturer in flute and bassoon at William & Mary, died at his home on Sunday, April 19. The orchestra's spring concert, scheduled for 8 p.m. on April 29, is being dedicated to his memory.

W&M Quarterly makes national news

A thesis published in the April 2009 issue of the William & Mary Quarterly reveals the discovery of nearly 50 letters to, from or about Benjamin Franklin previously not known to exist.

W&M ROTC participates in field training

It's an experience that Mann will not soon forget, and it's for lessons like this that he and his fellow William & Mary ROTC cadets participated in field training exercises at Fort Pickett recently.

W&M students make historical find in Richmond

Without so much as a map or an "X" to mark the spot, a group of William & Mary students recently uncovered some historical "treasure" that is expected to shed new light on the lives of early 20th-century African-Americans, including Maggie L. Walker, the first woman to found a bank in the United States and a black woman who worked tirelessly to improve the lives of other black women.

W&M announces sustainability summer research grants

William & Mary's Committee on Sustainability (COS) has awarded four Student Summer Research Grants for projects that will focus on areas such as campus recycling, GIS mapping of campus habitat and ecosystems and a new program to increase the College's use of locally grown and sustainable food.

Balinese performers share with W&M community

A Balinese sacred performance workshop came a day after Wayang Kali, an experimental shadow theater troupe, performed in the Kimball Theatre as the final event in this year's Ewell Concert Series.

Alumni pair can help get your finances straight

For Charlie '01 and Sarah Park '01, their new business started out as a way not to make money, but to help themselves get their finances in order.

Future Shock: A startling experience

Direct from Japan (and the mercury sGIG)...it's Future Shock, a whirling look into the fast-food culture infecting Japan.

Behind the scene

W&M's George Grayson meets with Clinton prior to March trip to discuss U.S. - Mexico relations.

Islam in America: Madeeha's journey

The United States is the best place to be a Muslim, says William and Mary senior Madeeha Hameed, who traveled with the "Journey into America" program.

Akbar Ahmed: In class with Tamara Sonn

Students in Tamara Sonn's class Women in the Muslim World received a rare treat when guest-lecturer Akbar Ahmed led discussion.

8th grad research symposium a success

Graduate students from different disciplines in Arts & Sciences come together once each year to unite in a display of intellectual firepower.

Price: Travels with Tooy

An ethnographer writes of a master curer, spirit possession and a race of sea gods that control the ebb and flow of the world’s money supply.

Students get rare, hands-on research opportunity in Spanish archives

Bassett was one of three William & Mary undergraduates who joined History Professor Lu Ann Homza on a research trip to Pamplona, Spain over Spring Break to peruse two sets of archives and get a better understanding of Spanish history through the hand-written accounts of the people who lived it.

8th annual grad research symposium

Our graduate students (and those of some other fine institutions) show their work in a two-day symposium.

Student-led medical mission gives Aday new lease

W&M professor David Aday was at personal and professional crossroads when students invited him to serve as advisor for an international medical mission initiative.

Why the caged bird sang: Braxton on NPR

W&M faculty member Joanne M. Braxton to disscuss Maya Angelou's "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" on NPR's Diane Rehm Show March 18 at 11 a.m.

Music in time of war and peace

The Middle Eastern Music Ensemble offers a window into a culture that is becoming more and more a part of our own.

All ready for the takht

The instruments for making Middle Eastern music are a blend of the familiar and the exotic.

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Darwin Across the Disciplines on Channel 48

If you missed the William & Mary faculty's observance of Charles Darwin's 200th birthday, you can view Darwin Across the Disciplines on Channel 48. The symposium explores Darwin's influence across the spectrum of intellectual life.

The triumph of 'Joy'

Adam Potkay's book "The Story of Joy" has been named co-winner of a major literary award.

Hobson to appear in PBS documentary

Charles Hobson is among the historians interviewed in an hour-long documentary titled "Judicial Independence in the New World," which explores the early history of the court system.

'Purple' brings professor's story to W&M stage

"When the Purple Settles," an original "hip-hopera" by Francis Tanglao-Aguas, is set for its American premiere at William & Mary's Phi Beta Kappa Hall Feb. 26 - March 1.

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Haulman: The panic of 1819

Haulman discusses his book "Virginia and the Panic of 1819." It deals with America's first modern economic depression.

Students bring 'Sergeant Cheerleader' to the big screen

Matt Pinsker, who was both an ROTC cadet and a cheerleader, decided to write about his experiences in bridging the gap between the two little-connected worlds. The result is now the feature-length movie "Sergeant Cheerleader."

It came. Out of the muck of Crim Dell...

Members of a freshman seminar have found a strain of bacteriophage that may be previously unknown to science. The phage was found in William & Mary's landmark Crim Dell.

Subtleties of subtitles

You, too, can now understand Cuban films, thanks to Anne Marie Stock.

How apes develop emotions

Anthropologist Barbara King discusses the emotional life of apes at the nation’s largest gathering of scientists.

U.S. presidents and their faiths

From Obama to Kennedy, what have been the private and public faiths of modern American presidents? For almost a decade, Professor of Religious Studies David Holmes has studied this and other questions about the faiths of American presidents.

Grad students make strong showing at research forum

On Feb. 10, six graduate students from the College of William and Mary participated in the fourth annual Graduate Student Research Forum, held at the Library of Virginia in Richmond.

2 alumni win Darwin-Wallace Medals

The Linnean Society of London has awarded Darwin-Wallace medals every half-century since 1908. The most recent class includes H. Allen Orr ’82, ’85 and Mohamed Noor ’92.

Kulick receives Thomas Jefferson Award

Katherine Kulick, Associate Professor of French and Modern Languages, received the Thomas Jefferson Award on Charter Day.

Lockwood receives Jefferson Teaching Award

Paleontologist Rowan Lockwood received the 2009 Thomas Jefferson Teaching Award, the highest award given to young faculty members at the College of William and Mary.

Oller receives Monroe Prize in Civic Leadership

Devin Oller, a senior English major and biology minor, received the 2009 Monroe Prize in Civic Leadership during the William & Mary's Charter Day ceremony Feb. 7.

The future of engagement: OSVS and Sharpe program combine

William & Mary's two major service programs will merge into one, and a new minor in community studies is currently under serious discussion and has enthusiastic faculty support, Provost Geoff Feiss announced during the Board of Visitors meeting Thursday.

Senior wins Charter Day art contest

The weather vane that sits on top of the Wren building is a familiar sight to anyone who has walked around William & Mary's campus.

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Strikwerda: Fusing humanities and science

Carl Strikwerda, dean of the faculty of arts and sciences, discusses the relationship between humanities and science at the College.

In the money: Recent grants at W&M

Selected grants received by faculty members at the College of William and Mary as supplied by the grants office.

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Leading Faithfully?

David Holmes, Walter G. Mason Professor of Religious Studies, discusses the faith of President-elect Barack Obama.

W&M Dancers Transcend Rhythms and Cultural Boundaries at International Conference

Most people can kick up their heels to the steady beats of hip-hop or techno, but the dancers of "Transcending Rhythms," a piece choreographed by Professor Leah Glenn and originally performed at Orchesis's DANCEVENT in November, 2008, had to adapt to an entirely new style of rhythm. Well, two in fact.

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Professor Releases CD

Albany Records, a label devoted to American Music, releases a CD of music by William & Mary music professor Brian Hulse.

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In ISC 1: Yeast genetics

What can an understanding of the genetics of yeast do to get us closer to a cure for cancer? Plenty.

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Mercury: It's not just in fish anymore

Songbirds feeding near the contaminated South River are showing high levels of mercury, even though they aren't eating food from the river itself.