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GSE Student Selected for Prestigious Seminar

Tom Ellett (FCLC ’86), a third-year doctoral candidate in Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education

Tom Ellett (FCLC ’86), a third-year doctoral candidate in Fordham University’s Graduate School of Education (GSE), is one of 40 students nationwide selected to participate in the David L. Clark Graduate Student Research Seminar. Students are selected based on the quality of detailed research proposals submitted to a nominating committee.

The Clark Seminar brings together the most talented doctoral students in the nation. Participants will share their research and dissertations, and receive guidance from a select group of five professors of education from across the country. This year’s faculty group includes Barbara L. Jackson, Ph.D., professor of education at Fordham. Sponsored by the University Council for Educational Administration, the seminar will take place April 10 and 11 in Montreal during the 2005 meeting of the American Education Research Association.

Tom Ellett, assistant vice president for residential education at New York University, is studying the effects of residential learning communities on college freshmen.

“Tom's research is of great importance to the millions of college students who may experience a sense of isolation in college,” said Bruce Cooper, Ph.D., chair of the division of educational leadership, administration and policy at Fordham’s Graduate School of Education. “It will also be of benefit to college professionals responsible for the education and well-being of these students.”

— Suzanne Stevens

Longtime Professor at Fordham and Marymount Dies

Alexander Wolsky, Ph.D., as pictured in the 1958 Fordham yearbook.

Alexander A. Wolsky, Ph.D., professor emeritus of biology and former chair of the Department of Science at Marymount College, died on Sept. 9, 2004. He was 102 years old. Wolsky taught in Marymount’s science department for six years and at Fordham University for 12.

Wolsky was born in Budapest, Hungary, and received a doctorate in zoology from the University of Budapest in 1928. During World War II, from 1939 to 1945, he was director of the Hungarian Biological Research Institute, and he served as professor of zoology at the University of Budapest from 1945 to 1948.

Wolsky then became a principal scientist for UNESCO from 1948 to 1954, when he came to the United States and taught experimental embryology and genetics at Fordham University. In 1966, he became a biology professor and head of the science department at Marymount College, where he worked until retiring in 1972.

“[Professor Wolsky] was well-acquainted with the world-known researchers in developmental biology—himself included,” said Carl Hoegler, Ph.D., professor of biology at Marymount, who studied with Wolsky as a Fordham graduate student. “As a professor, he introduced molecular biology and biochemistry into the understanding of how embryos develop at a time when genetics was just beginning to explore the complexities of these areas.”

Cynthia Chazotte, M.D., (MC ’73), director of obstetrics and perinatology at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, added that “Dr. Wolsky's courses were sought after by biology majors because of his reputation as an excellent teacher. He was scholarly and dynamic and inspired his students.”

Wolsky is survived by his wife of more than 60 years, Maria, and a son, Tom, and is predeceased by a daughter, Cathy.

— Maja Tarateta

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Men’s Basketball Team Delivers Gifts to Children at Local Hospital

Fordham basketball players clockwise from lower left: Devon Evertson (FCRH ’07), Jon Giacobbe (FCRH ’07), Sebastian Greene (FCRH ’08), Bryant Dunston (FCRH, ’08) and Dominic Osei (FCRH ’07).

Photos by Chris Taggart

There was no shortage of smiles in the pediatric ward of St. Barnabas Hospital when Fordham men’s basketball players and coaches paid a visit to patients on Jan. 6. Dressed in their Fordham sweats, the players delivered gifts to the children, marking the beginning of an ongoing relationship between the University and the Bronx hospital.

“We are very proud to have a partnership with Fordham University’s basketball team,” said Pat Belaire, senior vice president of St. Barnabas Hospital. “[The players] are wonderful role models, and it makes us proud that they want to contribute to our community.”

Fordham initiated the relationship with the hospital to honor Michael J. Armstrong (FCLC ’90), a Fordham basketball season ticker holder, who was killed in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. The Michael J. Armstrong Memorial Foundation supports St. Barnabas Hospital as well as Fordham basketball.

— John Blakeley

The Fordham basketball team with St. Barnabas administrators.

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Photo by Ken Levinson

Ignatian Heritage Week

Fordham students, staff and guests were introduced to the art of Zen meditation during Ignatian Heritage Week on the Lincoln Center campus. At right, participants practice a walking meditation known as kinhin. Zen sittings will take place every Tuesday between 6:55 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. in the chapel as an exercise in the Jesuit mission of interreligious dialogue.

Ignatian Heritage Week—celebrated on the Rose Hill campus during the fall semester—was initiated in 2000 to help Fordham students examine the life and work of St. Ignatius of Loyola, the founding father of the Society of Jesus.

Other events during the Lincoln Center celebration included “Discernment and Decision Making,” presented by Joseph Currie, S.J., director of campus ministry at Rose Hill; and “Examination of Consciousness: Taking Time Out,” with George Drance, S.J., acting faculty and artist in residence.

— John Blakeley

Pulitzer Prize-Winning Author Speaks at Fordham Law School

Pulitzer Prize-winning author and historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich used the story of Betsy Ross to illustrate the historical perception of U.S. women in the late 19th century during a recent lecture at Fordham Law School.

The story of Ross sewing the American flag began circulating in the 1870s, soon after an amendment for women’s suffrage was introduced in Congress and women in two western territories were given the right to vote. However, there’s no evidence that Ross met with George Washington or sewed the first American flag, said Ulrich during her Jan. 27 McNamara Lecture in the McNally Amphitheatre. Rather, Ross’ fabled story emerged at a time when women were gaining more rights and the confidence to assert them.

“History is never about just what happened in the past; it is about what later generations make of it,” said Ulrich. “The Betsy Ross story doesn’t tell us much of anything about the position of women in the era of the American Revolution. But it tells us a great deal about what Americans in the 1870s wanted to think about that history.”

Ulrich won the Pulitzer Prize for history in 1991 for A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812 (Random House, 1991). She is also the author of The Age of Homespun: Objects and Stories in the Creation of an American Myth (Random House, 2001), Good Wives: Image and Reality in the Lives of Women in Northern New England, 1650-1750 (Random House, 1982), and numerous articles and essays on early American history.

The McNamara Lecture honors Noreen E. McNamara (LAW ’51), an editor of the Fordham Law Review who went on to become a partner at the Connecticut-based firm of Lovejoy, Heffernan, Rimer & Cuneo. She devoted much of her spare time to church activities, and in 1983 Pope John Paul II inducted her into the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem.

Bots in the Bronx

Photos by Chris Taggart

More than 300 Bronx students, teachers and parents converged on the McGinley Ballroom on Jan. 15 for the first-ever “Bots in the Bronx” robotics festival. Hosted by Fordham’s Regional Educational Technology Center, 18 robotics teams demonstrated their robots and software programs during a mock competition, and educators and parents learned how to capture the most educational value from robotics.

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