August 8, 2016 | Smithsonian Magazine
It’s estimated the Amazon basin holds 16,000 tree species and about 390 billion individual trees. Half of those trees, however come from just 227 hyperdominant species. About 6,000 of those species have only 1,000 individuals or less, which would automatically place them on the endangered list – that is, if researchers could locate them.
It’s a phenomenon Wake Forest researcher Miles Silman dubs “dark bioversity.”
“Just like physicists’ models tell them that dark matter accounts for much of the universe, our models tell us that species too rare to find account for much of the planet’s biodiversity,” Silman said. “That’s a real problem for conservation, because the species at the greatest risk of extinction may disappear before we ever find them.”
August 8, 2016 | WFU News & Communications
The WFU News Center Media Report for July 23 – Aug. 5 is now available online.
August 4, 2016 | New York Times
The court was not unanimous in what to do with Portia. The judges ruled that because Portia was “an impostor,” a “hypocrite” and “a trickster,” she would be sanctioned by having to attend law school at the University of Padua, where one of the judges, Laura Picchio Forlati, taught. Then she would have to pursue a master of laws degree at Wake Forest University, where another of the judges, Richard Schneider, is a professor and dean.
July 25, 2016 | Newsweek
Wake Forest University President Nathan O. Hatch talks about innovative teaching to train leaders for the common good in this 35-page report highlighting North Carolina efforts, which includes Wake Forest Innovation Quarter on page 27.
“I am proud of the programs we are launching through Wake Downtown; they present huge opportunities as well as risk and innovation. Now, we have to deliver on our promise to educate the whole person, and we are continually aiming to do that better,” Hatch said. “Modern problems need to be solved by blending science and the liberal arts.”
July 25, 2016 | Yahoo! Finance
Kevin Durant is one of the NBA’s best players and a recent league MVP. So while his decision to leave Oklahoma City for the Golden State Warriors may have come as a surprise, the fact that he signed a contract in which he will make the maximum permissible next year under league rules was par for the course.
But when Mike Conley, a good player but no all-star, also received a maximum contract with the Memphis Grizzlies for an average of more than $30 million over the next five years, it raised many eyebrows.
Todd McFall, who researches sports and economics at Wake Forest, even said the cap on top salaries has led to a competitive imbalance as top players “compensate themselves by finding super teams” in place of taking larger contracts.
“These guys can’t find contracts because there’s no optioning process … commensurate to their value,” McFall said. “It seems to me like it’s going to lessen the churn at the top of the NBA totem poll.”
July 25, 2016 | The Washington Post
Teachers have one of the hardest jobs out there, but you wouldn’t know it by watching television. Three new comedies this year portray teachers as inept, inappropriate or some unfortunate mix of both.
It wasn’t always this way, according to Mary M. Dalton, media scholar and communication professor. Earlier portrayals of teachers on television, starting with the 1950s NBC sitcom “Mister Peepers,” tended to be overwhelmingly respectful of the teaching profession.
“Now, it’s like we’ve turned a corner and it’s disheartening,” says Dalton, who co-authored the 2008 book “Teacher TV: Sixty Years of Teachers on Television.”
July 25, 2016 | The Chronicle of Higher Education
Talented youngsters take humanities courses in the summer, too, but professors don’t usually teach them. In fact, humanities professors rarely have anything to do with high-school students at all – or with their teachers. That indifference has a long history.
Mary Pendergraft, a professor of classical languages, worries that the collaboration between high-school and college teachers in the field is endangered by the increasing tenure requirements facing junior faculty. “If outreach activities or pedagogical research ‘don’t count’ for tenure,” she said, “it’s risky to devote precious time to them.”
July 25, 2016 | WFU News & Communications
The WFU News Center Media Report for July 9-22 is now available online.
July 11, 2016 | WFDD
By many measures, this has been a tough week for the U.S., with violence dominating the headlines. And many Americans are now feeling a tension the nation hasn’t experienced in a long time.
WFDD talked to Dr. Sam Gladding, who says even for those far away from Dallas or Baton Rouge, the pain can be real.
“There’s such a thing as post-secondary trauma. And I think I’m feeling that. I think a lot of people are feeling that,” Gladding said. “It comes with watching violence that has occurred that you know is real. And we become much more anxious, we become much more aware, we feel much less safe than we felt before.”
July 11, 2016 | Fast Company
Outspoken employees can be a great asset, as they often make leaders aware of concerns or issues, and suggest solutions that others might not be comfortable expressing, says Amy Wallis, professor of organizational behavior at Wake Forest School of Business.
“They can also become allies in generating commitment to new ideas by rallying others and creating buzz about organizational initiatives,” she says. “However, to leverage these benefits, leaders must partner with their more outspoken workers, and create an environment in which that individual understands the impact they are having on others.”
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