WFU in the news: Oct. 18-24

Selected news clips courtesy of Wake Forest University News & Communications

Engineering faculty


Two WFU engineering professors get water quality research grant
By Laurie Willis | Wake Forest News
Wake Forest University assistant professors of engineering Courtney Di Vittorio and Kyana Young, in collaboration with professors at two area institutions, have received a three-year, $250,000 Environmental Enhancement Grant (EEG) from the Attorney General’s office. The grant and two others were announced Oct. 20 by North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein inside the Fort Interdisciplinary Research Center on the campus of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in Greensboro. – 10/20/2021

The Greensboro News & Record covered this story.


Teaching Harriet Jacobs in the Archives Podcast
A discussion with Wake Forest’s Rian Bowie, associate teaching professor of English; Carrie Johnston, digital humanities research designer; Special Collections Librarian Megan Mulder; and Tanya Zanish-Belcher, director of Special Collections and Archives highlights the ways that librarians and faculty can partner in designing assignments. The podcast explores using archival records, particularly bills of sale for enslaved people, to teach Harriet Jacobs’s Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. – 10/23/2021

A transcript of the podcast is available here.

Why your brain is wired to think Jordan is better than LeBron
By Kahron Spearman | The Daily Dot
“The thing that the advent of cable in the 1980s did is it gave people the alternative, the ability to fall somebody out of the market,” said media studies professor Phillip Lamar Cunningham. “[It’s] something that I think it’s easy to overlook today because we have so many options. If you so desire, you could watch any team you want at any given time.” –10/22/2021

Career centers must support students when goals change
By Austin Wechter | Inside Higher Ed
During the pandemic, and outside of it, career centers can best prepare students by providing a defined college-to-career process, identifying their transferable skills and educating them on the market. With these key strategies and essential information, students will be well equipped to navigate their career-related decisions, writes Austin Wechter, associate director of marketing and communications in the Office of Personal and Career Development. – 10/20/2021

Harris-Perry named host and managing editor of The Takeaway
NY Public Radio
WNYC Studios and PRX announced that Melissa Harris-Perry has been named host and managing editor of The Takeaway, the nationally syndicated public radio news program that airs on more than 300 stations. Harris-Perry has been serving as interim host since July 2021. She will continue teaching at Wake Forest as Maya Angelou Presidential Chair in the Department of Politics and International Affairs. – 10/18/2021

Taking stock ahead of Focac 2021
By Jevans Nyabiage |
Lina Benabdallah, a specialist in China-Africa relations at Wake Forest, agreed that health and fiscal sustainability would probably dominate the conversation in Dakar. She said more projects, especially megaprojects and deals involving infrastructure for natural resource swaps, were being investigated, scrutinized, and re-evaluated across many African countries. – 10/23/2021

Philanthropist-funded study raises questions about clinical research
By Eric Boodman | STAT
To Ana Iltis, director of Wake Forest University’s Center for Bioethics, Health and Society, one of the biggest issues is that clinical trials are so often billed as a way to access treatment. “That isn’t the primary purpose of research. The primary purpose of research is to produce generalizable knowledge,” she said. – 10/20/2021

Fake rhino horns were supposed to foil poachers. What went wrong?
By Benji Jones | Vox
Economics professor Frederick Chen’s research is referenced in this article on rhino horn poaching. “Economic principles tell us that the availability of synthetic horns can reduce the supply of wild horns — and even drive out wild horn sellers completely from the horn market.” – 10/19/2021

The challenge and promise of quantum computing
Vivian Wagner | E-Commerce Times
“Our world is already full of problems that are hard for even the fastest computers — from biological problems like gene expression and protein folding, to simulations of quantum behavior in the nuclear arsenal,” said physics professor David L. Carroll. “We simplify these problems by making unphysical assumptions so that our computers can handle them. That will no longer be necessary in the quantum computing future.” – 10/20/2021


New to the helm: Susan Wente named Power Player 2021
Triad Business Journal
What makes President Susan Wente a Power Player: As the University’s 14th president and first woman president, Wente succeeded Nathan Hatch, president of the University for 16 years. Prior to joining WFU, Wente served as provost at Vanderbilt University, where she developed the university’s strategic plan and led its Covid-19 pandemic response. – 10/22/2021

UN environment rights bolster case for global climate litigation
By Jennifer Hijazi | Bloomberg Law: Environment
Courts have been “increasingly willing” to rule that environmental harm flies against human rights, and this resolution pulls that trend into a single, overarching right recognized universally, said law professor John Knox. The recognition “is not going to directly change the legal obligations of any State, but it does change the way we think about the issue in a way that can then lead to legal change.” – 10/19/2021


Wake Forest University reacts to Colin Powell’s death
By Colette Stein | WXII-TV
“Powell paved the way for many as the first Black chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton and the nation’s first Black Secretary of State. “That becomes a challenge for us and an opportunity to really ensure that, although Colin Powell was a first in many instances, he will not be the last,” said humanities professor and director of the African American Studies program Corey Walker. – 10/18/2021

Triad universities react to the death of Colin Powell
By Terrence Jefferies | WFMY-TV (Greensboro)
Wake Forest Board of Trustees Vice Chair and Professor Emeritus of Biology Herman Eure placed the honorary doctor of laws degree graduation hood on Powell in 2004 – the year Powell delivered the University’s commencement address. “I now understood the command presence that a person like this had because, when you walked into a room you commanded the room,” said Eure. – 10/18/2021

Pandemic and politics: How COVID will impact the campaign trail
By Chanel Davis | Yes! Weekly
“There is no doubt that COVID is one of the top issues on voters’ minds in 2021 and that candidates can be expected to focus to a great degree on discussing the governmental response to COVID and plans for combating COVID,” said politics professor John Dinan. “Education and taxes are among other issues that also rank high in surveys about what voters are focused on.”– 10/20/2021


WFU remembers General Colin L. Powell
By Kim McGrath | Wake Forest News
General Colin L. Powell was the University’s 2004 Commencement speaker. In his first commencement address as U.S. Secretary of State, Powell interspersed national policy with advice for Wake Forest’s 1,597 graduates. Powell said the impulse to do the right thing should apply to both individuals and nations. “When people are suffering, and you can help them, you help them,” Powell said. “You act. You do what’s right.” – 10/18/2021

Face to Face Speaker Forum update for Nov. 9 event
By Kim McGrath | Wake Forest News
Former Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel (2013-2015) will join Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright (1997-2001) for the upcoming Face to Face Speaker Forum on Nov. 9 at 7:30 p.m. at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum. In addition to the conversation, there will be a special tribute to General Colin L. Powell, USA (Ret.) at the beginning of the program. Veterans attending the event will be recognized for their service. – 10/22/202

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