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Dan Finkel ’02 works one-on-one with a student.

Absolute Value

Spring 2016

It is a truth universally acknowledged that math class can be boring. 

But it doesn’t have to be, according to Dan Finkel ’02. An elementary-school math whiz who went on to exhaust his district’s math resources halfway through high school, Finkel eventually majored in mathematics at Swarthmore before earning a Ph.D. in the subject at the University of Washington. 

black and white photo of Ethel Rosenberg in her home

Correcting the Record

Winter 2016 / Issue II / CXIII

Last year, new developments roused our country’s crisis of conscience vis-a-vis the trial and execution of Ethel Rosenberg. 

Michael Meeropol ’64 (nee Rosenberg) and brother Robert, orphaned in 1953 by the execution of their parents, Julius and Ethel, served up a New York Times op-ed column in August. “Exonerate our mother, Ethel Rosenberg,” they wrote, addressing President Obama. Their plea was published a month after original grand-jury testimony was unsealed that reaffirmed perjury by the prosecution’s star witness, Ethel’s younger brother, David Greenglass.

Tomoko Sakomura holds up a spray of five fountain pens

The Poetry of Pen and Ink

Winter 2016 / Issue II / CXIII

“You have to learn not to gesticulate when holding a fountain pen,” cautions Tomoko Sakomura, associate professor of art history, who once ruined a colleague’s shirt with splattered ink. 

However, many Swarthmoreans consider the occasional stain a small price to pay for the beauty and power this writing implement bestows.