From The Director

Greetings from Mayflower Hill!

Do real environmentalists support fracking?

Prior to joining Colby, we lived in western Pennsylvania — arguably the epicenter of the Marcellus Shale formation. Debates, often heated, about hydraulic fracturing (fracking) were recurrent. Many of my colleagues passionately opposed this technique, distressed about ground water contamination. Most of the folks in town supported it, however, because it meant good jobs and economic vibrancy for an otherwise depressed region. Others argued about the need for energy independence, while some suggested fracking was worth the risk because the natural gas it produced would reduce our dependency on carbon-heavy fuels like coal and oil. “Real environmentalists support fracking,” a good friend once argued. By the time I left, the college where I taught was contemplating a gas well near its athletic fields. Now those were lively faculty meetings!

Even though the Marcellus formation does not extend into central Maine, the importance of this most-controversial energy issue has caught our attention.

That is why I am so pleased that the 2014 William R. and Linda K. Cotter Debate is titled “Hydraulic Fracking: Economic Boom or Natural Disaster?” As you will note below, we have pulled together three experts who come to this controversy from different angles. This promises to be an informative, perhaps lively discussion, and I do hope you’ll be able to attend. It will be held at 7 p.m. Nov. 6 in the Diamond Building.

In this month’s newsletter you may also read about our latest initiative to help others understand the importance of Colby Cares About Kids through a wide-scale research project headed by an alumnus and former CCAK mentor. We know this program changes lives of both the schoolchildren and our students. We are hopeful that this research adds additional empirical data to guide program growth.

We are in the thick of our year, and we’re pressing forward on all fronts to offer timely, exciting events and to strategically grow our programs across disciplines and even international borders. We want you to be a part of it, so please do come and see us.

Warmest Regards,

Daniel M. Shea
Director

Colby-Moscow State University Exchange Program Welcomes Student Interns to Campus

Lomonosov Moscow State University students Olga Shmelyova (left) and Christina Loginova (right) visited Colby as part of the Goldfarb Center’s Colby-MSU Exchange Program.

Christina Loginova and Olga Shmelyova, two students from Lomonosov Moscow State University (MSU), came to Colby as part of the Colby-MSU Exchange programspearheaded by the Goldfarb Center in partnership with the Department of German and Russian.

During their time at Colby, Loginova and Shmelyova kept a busy schedule that included speaking in several classes across disciplines, networking and shadowingEcho staff, attending the Goldfarb Center’s conference for student journalists and theLovejoy Convocation, and participating in a student-led panel discussion on the war in Ukraine. They also traveled to Washington, D.C., where they visited media outlets as well as several museums and landmarks before returning to Russia.

“Being at Colby has been both exciting and challenging,” said Loginova. “As a student who has never been to America before, I knew that this experience would be priceless for me, and it has been.”

Loginova and Shmelyova are students in the Faculty of Journalism at MSU. Shmelyova has served as an intern in a number of print outlets, including Rossiskaya Gazeta, RBC Daily, and Russia Today. Loginova has worked for Novaya Gazeta, Kommerstant, Dozhd TV channel, and several other media outlets.

“We’ve been very pleased to add an internship component for Russian students to come to Colby,” said Goldfarb Center Director Dan Shea. “We’re working to expand our programming not only across disciplines, but also across international borders, and under the leadership of Professor of Russian Julie de Sherbinin, this program is growing in the right directions.”

Two students from Colby will conduct internships at MSU during Jan Plan. Learn more about the MSU exchange program here.

 

Second Annual Conference for Student Journalists Expands Reach

Journalism Selects006

The Goldfarb Center’s second annual student journalism conference included a reaction roundtable session where students met with journalists to discuss a wide array of topics.

Fifty students representing more than a dozen institutions across New England attended the Goldfarb Center’s second annual conference for student journalists Oct. 5. Held the same day as the Lovejoy Convocation, the conference gave students access to some of the country’s most esteemed journalists. Sessions were led by media experts including New York Times reporter Matt Apuzzo ’00, Vice President and Executive Editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette David Shribman, and AP Reporter Eileen Sullivan Lambert. The 2014 Lovejoy Award recipient and investigative reporter for the New York Times Jim Risen provided the keynote address.

Later in the day, the Lovejoy panel discussion titled “Watchdog on a Short Leash: The Escalating Conflict between Press Freedoms and National Security Surveillance” explored the foundation of press freedoms and how they may be under siege. Panelists included reporter Siobhan Gorman of the Wall Street Journal, whistleblower and former NSA senior executive Thomas Drake, and communications lawyer and lecturer in law Fritz Byers of the University of Toledo. Rebecca Corbett ’74, assistant managing editor for the New York Times, moderated the panel.

The evening concluded with the 2014 Lovejoy Convocation honoring Risen.

Please click here for more information about the conference, and here to learn more about the Lovejoy Convocation.

Goldfarb Center Sponsors Wide-Scale Research Project Using CCAK Data

Isaac Opper '10 meets with Colby faculty and students over lunch to discuss his research project.

Isaac Opper ’10 meets with Colby faculty and students over lunch to discuss his research project.

The center’s efforts to increase awareness about Colby Cares About Kids went into high gear last spring with the release of the CCAK documentary, which chronicles the relationships of several mentors and mentees while providing insight into the program’s impact in the community. Now, the center is teaming up with former CCAK mentor Isaac Opper ’10 on a wide-scale research project that should provide substantial information on program outcomes.

After Colby, Opper enrolled in a Ph.D. program in economics at Stanford University. As he began work on his dissertation involving the effect of prosocial behavior including empathy and altruism on outcomes such as educational attainment and college enrollment, he reflected on his experience as a CCAK mentor.

“CCAK provides an almost ideal setting to determine whether our intuition is correct — that prosocial behavior not only helps an individual for reasons that are obvious (e.g. empathetic individuals tend to have more friends) but also increases economic outcomes,” said Opper.

The Goldfarb Center will sponsor Opper’s research, and, in turn, Opper will share the results of his work with CCAK to assist the program in understanding its impact on the community.

For more information, please contact Associate Director Alice Elliott ataelliott@colby.edu.


Upcoming Events

A Wolf Called Romeo: Lecture with Author Nick Jans ’77
October 16 | 7:30 p.m. | Robinson Room
Cosponsored with Center for the Arts and Humanities and the Colby Writing Program
Nick Jans ’77 is a prolific writer and conservationist who has lived in remote parts of Alaska since 1979. He is the author of 11 books, including his latest, A Wolf Called Romeo. He has published hundreds of magazine and newspaper articles in venues from Alaska Magazine to Salon. While at Colby, Jans will also lead a lunchtime Q&A workshop session.

Can Health-Care Quality Measures Avoid Rewarding Unethical Behavior?
Frank Chessa, director of clinical ethics, Maine Medical Center
October 29 | 4 p.m. | Diamond 122
Cosponsored by the Religious Studies Program
Quality measures are indispensable in current attempts to achieve higher quality health care at lower cost. These measures, however, create incentives at odds with ethical principles. Measuring the effectiveness of a kidney transplant program on the basis of survival rates, for example, encourages transplant programs to reject higher risk patients for whom a transplant is warranted. What can bioethicists do to ensure that the laudable aims of health-care reform are not inadvertently undercut by its own measures of success?

Hydraulic Fracking: Economic Boom or Natural Disaster?
William R. and Linda K. Cotter Debate Series
November 6 | 7 p.m. | Ostrove Auditorium

Fracking, an unconventional method of extracting oil and gas, has generated immense controversy in recent years. Proponent’s see it as an economic boom that will generate jobs and improve energy security. Detractors point out the environmental risks posed by fracking. This talk will feature a panel discussion with three experts and present a broad perspective on fracking and the unconventional extraction of oil and gas.

Panelists include

Tim Carr, Marshall Miller Professor of Geology, West Virginia University
Jessica Helm, member of the board of directors, Sierra Club; postdoctoral fellow, Silent Spring Institute
Erin Mansur ’95, Revers Professor of Business Administration, Dartmouth College

What Wall? 25 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall
Cosponsored with the Department of German and Russian
November 11 | 7:30 p.m. | Diamond 122
This interdisciplinary roundtable discussion will not only look back at the events of November 1989 but will also address some of the important questions that we may hear from the post-wall generation.

Panelists include

Jen Yoder, Robert E. Diamond Professor of Government and Global Studies
Raffael Scheck, Audrey Wade Hittinger Katz and Sheldon Toby Katz Professor of History
Andreas Waldkirch, associate professor of economics
Lydia Moland, associate professor of philosophy
Cyrus Shahan, assistant professor of German
Chiara Walczyk, language assistant in German
Arne Koch, chair and associate professor of German, will serve as moderator

A German Life – Against All Odds Change is Possible

December 4 | 7 p.m. | Diamond 122
Bernd Wollschlaeger, MD, FAAFP, FASAM
Bernd Wollschlaeger is a board-certified family physician in private practice in Aventura, Florida. His book A German Life: Against All Odds Change is Possible describes his struggle growing up in Germany in the shadow of his father, a highly decorated WWII tank commander and Nazi officer. He eventually converted to Judaism, emigrated to Israel and served in the Israel Defense Forces as a medical officer. In 2013 he released his novel Samson’s Shadow and his bookStauffenberg and My Life in the Shadow of a Hero.