By Fred ShapiroOne of Swarthmore College’s many distinctions is the strong tradition of social and political activism, which can be attributed to the school’s Quaker origins. Swarthmore’s activist tendency has produced alumni who have been notable reformers. It has also combined with the College’s intellectual rigorousness to produce pioneers in the social sciences.
Another notable aspect of Swarthmore alumni is the extent of their contribution to the physical and biological sciences and technology, including computer science.
These activist and scientific threads complement Swarthmore’s strength in the arts and media as well as a wide range of achievements in education, law, business, and many other fields, to round out a fascinating roster of accomplishments by alumni.
By Audree PennerIn the not too distant past, students required to create a “visual database” in a course like Assistant Professor of Art History Tomoko Sakomura’s Contemporary Japanese Visual Culture, might well have gone scurrying to the library in search of books or slides on contemporary Japan. Perhaps they would even have ventured to an art museum, newsstand, or bookstore.
Today, although students still use such physical resources, they can find most of what they need with a click of a computer mouse—often without leaving their rooms.
By Heather Shumaker ’91As a boy, Kenneth Guilmartin ’67 couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. His kindergarten teacher labeled him a “crow” and asked him to mouth the words instead of singing with the other children. It was only in his 20s that he learned to sing, taking remedial voice lessons to keep pace with his burgeoning musical career.
By Elizabeth Redden ’05In July, Carolyn Becker was initiated. Call her a Delta Delta Delta.
“One thought that went through my head was, ‘Oh-my-gosh. I’ve become a sorority sister.’ But the next thought was, ‘I’ve never seen an organization put this much effort into eating disorders prevention.’”
It turns out that the Tri Deltas are interested in a lot more than the next fraternity party.
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