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New Van De Kamp Observatory

By Jeffrey Lott

A 20-foot diameter dome for the new Peter van de Kamp Observatory was hoisted into place on Aug. 15, literally capping off the College's five-year-old Science Center. The observatory awaits the arrival of a new 24-inch reflecting telescope, set for later this fall. (Click here to view a short video of the dome being hoisted [...]

A Harpist, A Curler, A Juggler—and 371 More—in the Class of 2012

By Carol Brévart-Demm

On Aug. 26, 373 first-year students—from a total 6,121 applicants— descended onto the campus. Of these 185 women and 188 men, 55 percent are from public, 28 percent from private, and 9 percent from parochial schools—as well as 8 percent from foreign or American schools abroad. Of the 44 percent from schools reporting class [...]

President Bloom Will Lead NYU Abu Dhabi

By Jeffrey Lott

In summer 2009, Swarthmore President Alfred H. Bloom will assume full responsibility as vice chancellor of New York University (NYU) Abu Dhabi for creating a highly selective liberal arts college, distinctive graduate programs, and a world center for advanced research and scholarship in the Persian Gulf state.
According to university officials, the school’s programs will [...]

Presidential Search Seeks Broad Input

By Jeffrey Lott

The search committee charged with finding a successor to President Alfred H. Bloom began its work in earnest this fall. The committee expects to make a final recommendation to the Board of Managers by spring 2009. President Bloom announced in May that he will leave the post on Aug. 31, 2009, after 18 years as [...]

The Cookie Messenger

By Carol Brévart-Demm

Once a week, 92-year-old Robert “Bob” Thompson buys cookies—enough packages to fill his canvas tote bag—and carries them from the College Bookstore to the Scott Arboretum offices at Cunningham House, where the Arboretum’s 100-plus volunteers and visitors gladly munch on them.
A popular figure around campus, Thompson spends each morning, five days a week, carrying [...]

Faculty Approves Islamic Studies Program

By Carol Brévart-Demm

The opening of the new school year gives Swarthmore students an additional academic option—to minor in Islamic Studies. A formal Islamic Studies Program, emerging steadily across several departments during the past decade, received faculty approval last spring.
Courses in religion, anthropology, history, and Arabic language and literature will provide students with insight into expressions of Islam [...]

Jettisoning the Baggage

By Eli Epstein-Deutsch ’10

Tariq al-Jamil, assistant professor of religion and coordinator of the recently approved Islamic Studies Program, is endowed with a certain mystique. Al-Jamil casts a different aura—maybe due to his colorful ties, classic suits, and black designer glasses (a talking point for fashion-minded students) or his striking physiognomy. But it also has to do with [...]

Emotions Run High on First Day of New School

By Jeffrey Lott

The first day of school can be fraught with emotional excitement for children and their families. It’s about anticipation and hope—sometimes mixed with anxiety and fear of the unknown.
On Sept. 4, similar high emotions were also palpable among the faculty, staff, and longtime supporters of the new Chester Upland School for the Arts (CUSA), which [...]

David Kemp Residence Hall Dedicated

This fall, David Kemp Residence Hall (right), the new 75-bed student dormitory, opened its doors to students of all class years. The 29,000 square-foot, three-story building—a gift to the College from Giles Kemp ’72 and his wife Barbara Guss Kemp in honor of Kemp’s father—consists of single and double rooms including bi-level lofts. It shares [...]

A Plethora of Faculty Promotions

By Carol Brévart-Demm

This spring, the Board of Managers approved the promotion from assistant to associate professor with continuous tenure of eight faculty members: Diane Downer Anderson, educational studies; Alan Baker, philosophy; William Gardner, modern languages (Japanese); K. David Harrison, linguistics; Bakirathi Mani, English literature; Steve Wang, mathematics and statistics; Richard Wicentowski, computer science; and Carina Yervasi, modern [...]