March 11, 2014 | The New York Times Magazine
The Story Behind the SAT Overhaul: In a story for The New York Times Magazine on the SAT Overhaul, Todd Balf featured Wake Forest’s test optional policy and interviewed Joseph A. Soares, the sociology professor whose research has focused on weaknesses surrounding standardized testing. Balf writes:Around the time the report came out — and following the publication of “The Power of Privilege,” by the Wake Forest University sociology professor Joseph A. Soares, an account of the way standardized tests contributed to discriminatory admissions policies at Yale — Wake Forest became the first highly rated institution (it regularly appears as a Top 30 university on the U.S. News & World Report college rankings) to announce a test-optional admissions policy. Follow-up studies at Wake Forest showed that the average high-school G.P.A. of incoming freshmen increased after the school stopped using standardized-test scores as a factor. Seventy-nine percent of its 2012 incoming class was in the top 10 percent of their high-school classes. Before going test-optional, that figure was in the low 60s. In addition, the school became less homogeneous. “The test highly correlates with family income,” says Soares, who also edited a book that, in part, examines the weak predictive validity of the SAT at the University of Georgia, Johns Hopkins University and Wake Forest. “High-school grades do not.” He continued, “We have a lot more social, racial and lifestyle diversity. You see it on campus. Wake Forest was a little too much like a J. Crew catalog before we went test-optional.”
March 4, 2014 | Wall Street Journal
Do SAT scores belong on your resume?: A recent blog post in the Wall Street Journal questions the value of employers asking applicants for their SAT scores. Joseph Soares, a sociology professor at Wake Forest University and author of “SAT Wars” is quoted in the piece. “It’s a terrible idea,” he says. “Even according to the test designers, this is supposed to predict, at best, grades in the first year of college. [The SAT] is not supposed to be a test that captures how well you’re going to do in life.”
February 28, 2014 | USA Today
Colleges ramp up career guidance for students: In a story for USA Today on higher education and job preparation, Mary Beth Marklein writes that Wake Forest was one of the earliest adopters of a more career-focused campus. Andy Chan, vice president of Wake Forest’s Office of Personal and Career Development, explains that an upgrade in career services reflects the changing nature of the workplace. “Unlike earlier generations, young professionals today are likely to switch jobs multiple times,” he says. “It’s imperative for universities to help equip young people with the tools and the mindset of, ‘How am I going to be employable over my lifetime?'”
February 10, 2014 | News & Observer
Drones to add flying eye on our ecosystem: Wake Forest biology graduate student Max Messinger and biology professor Miles Silman are featured in the News & Observer. Their remote controlled helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft are used to create photo mosaics for ecological monitoring. Messinger and Marcus Wright, a Wake Forest chemistry lab manager, received funding from CEES and the National Science Foundation to assemble and test two different drones for use in the Peruvian cloud forest. The first, a copter drone, relies on eight small propeller units and is capable of flying at 15 mph for up to 20 minutes at a time. It can be equipped with either a conventional visible light or thermal imaging camera to gather data on everything from leaf and flower characteristics to temperature readings and animal behavior. Their second robot resembles a small airplane. Launched like a javelin, it uses a single electric motor and propeller to fly up to 50 mph for over an hour.
February 4, 2014 | Fox News
Why Super Bowl is a distinctly American cultural event: “Companies developing ads for the Super Bowl usually go above and beyond to make sure their messages stand out,” writes Roger Beahm, professor of marketing and executive director of the Center for Retail Innovation at Wake Forest University School of Business. “Getting into high-stakes Super Bowl advertising is still a big gamble. This year a 30-second spot cost advertisers a cool $4 million or over $133,000 per second. But with more than a third of the entire U.S. watching, advertisers gladly pay the high out-of-pocket cost for this level of reach – and to compete for most memorable Super Bowl ad.” Beahm’s opinion piece ran in Fox News on January 31, 2014.
January 28, 2014 | The Washington Post
Toddlers love selfies: Parenting in an iPhone age — In a story about toddlers and cell phones, psychology professor Deborah Best tells Associated Press reporter Gillian Flaccus: “The instant gratification that smartphones provide today’s toddlers is ‘going to be hard to overcome.’ “They like things immediately, and they like it short and quick,” says Best. It’s going to have an impact on kids’ ability to wait for gratification. I can’t see that it won’t.”
January 20, 2014 | Winston-Salem Journal
Wake Forest University holds ninth annual Gospelfest: In the Winston-Salem Journal’s coverage of Gospelfest, Meghann Evans writes: “If Martin Luther King Jr. had been sitting in Wake Forest University’s Brendle Recital Hall on Sunday afternoon, he would have smiled at the sight — people of various backgrounds and skin tones clapping their hands and tapping their feet to the gospel music. At least, that’s how Maeghan Livingston, likes to imagine King would have responded.”Livingston is the president of the Wake Forest University Gospel Choir and a junior anthropology major. The Gospelfest was sponsored by Wake Forest’s Office of Multicultural Affairs and is part of a series of events celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy.
January 13, 2014 | U-T San Diego
Streamlining the NCAA: In anticipation of the upcoming NCAA Convention on Jan. 15-18, Wake Forest President Nathan Hatch shares his hopes for streamlining the association in an op-ed piece printed in U-T San Diego.
“One idea is to leaven the board, which is principally university presidents, with a set of other distinguished individuals who can bring outside expertise and perspective. Second, I hope that governance reform will allow Division I to remain intact.…Third, the board must work to restore the membership’s trust in the governance structure and ensure better communication between decision-makers and those affected by the decisions. Fourth, the board needs to work to re-engage athletics directors in the work of the NCAA.…And most importantly, the board must reassert the core responsibility of its member institutions to student-athlete well-being and serious academic purpose,” writes Hatch.
January 8, 2014 | News & Record
Christmas is over, so what’s next? More shopping: Associate Professor of Marketing Sheri Bridges says consumers are still buying after Christmas, though they’re focusing on needs rather than wants. “Good marketers never rest,” she told News & Record reporter Jonnelle Davis. “Before Christmas is over, they’re already working on the next sale. We have become very savvy shoppers. And so I think that what we need to do is wait and see what kind of bait — what kind of lure — the retailers are going to toss out to get us back in the stores. … They cannot afford to sit there with all that pretty merchandise on the shelf.”
January 6, 2014 | The College Solution
The College Solution: Lynn O’Shaughnessy recently tackled the issue of post-graduate success in her blog, The College Solution. Her post encourages parents and their high school students to seek out meaningful employment statistics and to talk about these as part of the college decision-making process. She writes: “I am mentioning these conversations now because of a crowd-sourced report issued this year – A Roadmap for Transforming the College-to-Career Experience – that takes a critical look at college career services. The report, which was edited by Andy Chan and Tommy Derry, at Wake Forest University (which has an awesome career services program!), was the culmination of a conference hosted by Wake Forest that brought together 250 college administrators, professors, corporate executives and thought leaders.”Read more about Wake Forest’s Office of Personal and Career Development here.
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