Robert Seibert '63, Roy Anderson, and the book Politics and Change in the Middle East

Politics & Change in the Middle East

Last week, Knox College Alumni Relations and The Knox Student presented Knox's first live Webcast with Robert Seibert '63, Robert W. Murphy Professor of Political Science, and Roy Andersen, Charles W. and Arvilla S. Timme Professor of Economics. The professors are the co-authors of Politics and Change in the Middle East, now in its 10th edition. The market-leading undergraduate textbook on this subject, Politics and Change in the Middle East has sold more than 50,000 copies.  During the Webcast, the professors answered questions about recent political and social changes in the Middle East. Watch a recording of the Webcast on Livestream.

18th, 19th Knox Presidents Receive Honorary Degrees

Roger Taylor
Teresa Amott

Both Knox College President Roger Taylor '63 and incoming President Teresa Amott recently received honorary degrees. Carl Sandburg College President Lori Sundberg '95 presented Taylor with an honorary associate's degree from Carl Sandburg College, citing his distinguished career as a trial lawyer with Kirkland & Ellis and his 10-year tenure as president of Knox. Taylor also delivered Sandburg's commencement address. Read more about Taylor and the ceremony.

Teresa Amott, provost and dean of faculty at Hobart and William Smith Colleges (HWS), received an honorary degree at the colleges' commencement ceremony on Sunday. HWS President Mark Gearan cited Amott's great passion and skilled leadership during the presentation. Amott also delivered the address at HWS's Baccalaureate ceremony on Saturday. Read more about Saturday's ceremony and her remarks. She will assume her duties as president of Knox College on July 1.

From the Editors

Commencement 2011

Students at CommencementCommencement is quickly approaching on June 4. Majora Carter, a nationally known advocate for the environment, public health, and neighborhood development, will address Knox's graduating seniors during the ceremony. Learn more about Carter and view a schedule of events and learn about past Commencement speakers.

Give to The Taylor Presidential Scholarship

Anne '63 and Roger Taylor '63In honor of Roger's and Anne Taylor's service and their tireless dedication to Knox, the Board of Trustees and Knox alumni and friends have established an endowed scholarship in their name. So far, more than 90 donors have grown the fund to $1.25 million. Our goal is $1.5 million, so we're shy just $250,000 of meeting that goal. Now is the time for anyone who wants to say thank you to Roger and Anne to join us. Learn more about the scholarship or give now.

Campus News

Students Take a Break From Spring Classes for Flunk Day

Abraham Lincoln at bat at the Flunk Day softball game.Even with Abraham Lincoln on the faculty side, the student-faculty ratio for the official Flunk Day softball game was about two-to-one, both in size of the team roster and with the final score, 15-7, in favor of the students.

New Class of George Washington Gale Scholars Inducted

New inductees into the George Washington Gale Scholars ProgramFifteen Galesburg eighth-graders are the newest inductees into the George Washington Gale Scholars Program. The program provides academic support and mentoring for academically talented, first-generation, income-eligible students, paving the way for them to get a tuition-free college education at Carl Sandburg College and Knox College. Read more about the program.

Karaoke Night at Knox Combines Fun, Fundraising

Roger Taylor and the Fulton County Boys give a last performanceKnox students and faculty displayed their vocal talents at the Pre-Health Club's Karaoke Night, a fun event that drew a crowd and raised money to help fight cancer. The money was donated to the American Cancer Society in the name of Professor Larry Welch, who is battling the disease. In addition to Knox professors and students, Roger Taylor and the Fulton County Boys gave their final performance. Watch a video of their performance and read more about the event.

Knox Community Battles Invasive Plant at Green Oaks

A student pulls garlic mustard at Green Oaks Biological Field StationAlthough pulling weeds on Mother's Day might seem a little unusual, Knox College students and faculty proved it was a task well worth their while. Led by Jim Mountjoy, associate professor of biology, members of the Knox community spent the day removing garlic mustard plants from woodland areas at the Green Oaks Biological Field Station. "Garlic mustard can have a major impact on the forest and wildlife once it gets established," explained Mountjoy. "It can shade out the growth of young trees, seedlings, and actually poison other plants with secretions from its roots." The pull came in lieu of the annual Spring Prairie Burn, which was first conducted in the 1950s by Professor Paul Shepard. Mountjoy said that he didn't feel a burn was necessary this year, as it might destroy young trees and prairie flowers.

Student News

Knox Student Wins Nick Adams Writing Competition

Adam Sirgany '11Adam Sirgany ‘11 is the latest in Knox's long roster of winners of the Nick Adams Short Story Contest, sponsored by the Associated College of the Midwest. Sirgany's story was selected from more than 40 entries submitted by students from Knox and 13 other schools in the ACM. Knox students Sam Martone ’11 and Julia Ohman ’12 were named finalists in the competition. Since the contest began in 1973, 49 Knox students have been named finalists and 10 of those have been selected as first place winners -- nearly twice as many finalists and winners as the next college in the ACM's cumulative record listing. Read more about the award.

Al Young Art Show Draws Strong Student Interest

Students view work at the Al Young Art Show openingFor more than 40 years, the Al Young Art Show has celebrated the best student art work of the year at Knox, with awards for painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, photography, graphic design, and mixed media. This year Susanna Coffey, the F.H. Sellers Professor of Painting and Drawing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, judged the show, selecting 23 works for awards out of nearly 200 entries. Read more about the awards and student work.

Knox Students Study Ancient Rome in U.S. and Italy

Knox Students in ItalyStudents taking a Knox classics course got an up-close look at the remains of ancient sites -- including Pompeii and an ornate villa built by Roman emperor Tiberius -- when they traveled to Italy over winter break. Prior to their departure, each student gave a presentation in class on an ancient Roman site. "When we were on the ground in Italy we had at least one unofficial tour guide for each site we visited," said Professor of Classics Brenda Fineberg, who taught the course. Learn more about the class and trip to Italy.

Students Take Water Conservation Campaign to Schools

Five Knox students brought the message of water conservation to Galesburg and Knoxville elementary classrooms as part of a group project they’ve dubbed “Put a Stop to the Drop.” The project was part of the environmental studies class Sustainability: Explorations and Opportunities. “It’s really fulfilling to go into a class and see that even just being there 40 minutes today, kids were enthusiastic about what they learned,” said Carrie Danner ’12. “I never expected that much of a reaction, so it was really exciting to see it clicking right there in front of us.” Read more about the project in Galesburg's The Register-Mail.

Student Develops Web-Based Voting System

Students recently finished voting for next year's Student Senate using Vote4Senate, a secure Web-based system written by Max Galloway-Carson '11 as an independent study project with Jaime Spacco, assistant professor of computer science. Vote4Senate restricts elections to only eligible voters, and ensures that each student votes only once. But never mind the technical details; the proof is in the turnout -- this year's turnout: 46 percent. Last year's turnout: 36 percent.

Alumni News

Events Honor Artist, Author Dorothea Tanning

Professor Robin Metz reads a proclama at the childhood home of Dorothea TanningWorld renowned artist, Galesburg native, and Knox College alumna Dorothea Tanning '32 was honored with a series of events at Knox and in the community. "Dorothea Tanning: From Galesburg Roots to Worldwide Fame" included an exhibit of Tanning's artwork, a commemorative proclamation by the City of Galesburg, dedication of a plaque outside her childhood home, and an all-day symposium on her impact in the world of art and literature. "Dorothea Tanning is one of our most innovative and provocative painters, printmakers, sculptors, and designers for theatre and ballet," said Robin Metz, director of creative writing and Philip Sidney Post Professor of English at Knox, who helped plan the events. "Her achievements also transcend visual art -- in her mid-eighties she established an entirely new career in writing, through her poetry, fiction, and memoirs."

James Doyle '44 receives medals66 Years Later, James Doyle '44 Receives World War II Honors

More than 60 years after James Doyle ’44 was wounded by a shell blast during World War II, he was awarded five medals, including a Purple Heart and Bronze Star. Watch a video about Doyle and read more about his experience.

Alumni Notes

Robert Willett ’50 and his son and daughter will travel to the Himalayas later this year with a crew from They will be searching for a plane, co-piloted by Willett’s cousin, that disappeared during WWII.

Tom Wolf ’69 won the Doris Betts Fiction Prize for 2011 for his story “Boundaries.”  This is the second time he’s received the award. Read more in the North Carolina Literary Review.  An essay co-authored by Wolf, “On the Brink:  Babe Ruth in Dennis Lehane’s The Given Day,” was recently published in The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2009-2010. He will be speaking at the annual Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture in June.

A photograph by Stephen Tourlentes ’82 is on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York through September 18. It is part of the exhibit “Night Vision: Photography After Dark.” Read more about the exhibit.

Robert Johnson ’90 has been elected to the board of directors for the Make-A-Wish Foundation Illinois chapter. He is managing counsel at McDonald’s Corporation, managing employment claims across all McDonald’s U.S. markets. He is also a member of the McDonald Diversity and Inclusion faculty, traveling the country to address diversity issues.

Fell Hunger, Joseph Lennon ’90’s first book of poetry, has been published. Lennon is director of the Irish studies program at Villanova University. Read more about Lennon and his book

Opera Singer Christine Steyer ’92 received the 2011 American Prize in Vocal Performance in Art Song. Read more about the award.

Aly Renee Greaves Amidei ’97 has been nominated for a Jeff Award for hair and makeup design for The Master and Margarita.

Michael Walsh ’97 won the Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry for The Dirt Riddles, presented by the Publishing Triangle, an association of lesbians and gay men in publishing. Read more about the award.

Josh Mika ’97, LRC director at Beebe Elementary, has been named to the Class of 2011 for the Apple Distinguished Educator Program for improving teaching and learning through educational technology.

Children’s Librarian and Early Childhood Specialist Amy Schardein ’98 was named Librarian of the Year for the Southwest Ohio/Northern Kentucky region.

Jenny Seidelman ’99 has received an Illinois Arts Council grant for a reading of the new musical The Dreamer and the Devil, for which she is book writer.

Karen Brophy ’09 completed her first-ever Boston Marathon last month. Read about her experience before, during, and after the race in Galesburg’s The Register-Mail.

Knox alumni recently wrote and performed an environmentalist rock opera, The Lonely Kazoo: A Synthetic Journey to Heaven, in Seattle, Washington. Involved in the performance were Danny Fisher-Bruns ’09, Tom Fucoloro ’08, Adam Prairie ’05, Chris Prairie ’10, Kelli Refer ‘08, Christina Ellis ‘05, Olivia Engel ‘09, Geoff Brown ‘08, and Olivia Cacchione ’08. Learn more about the performance.

Faculty & Staff News

Knox's Dining Services Director Wins Local Food Award

Director of Dining Services Helmut MayerHelmut Mayer, director of dining services, won the 2011 Gold Beet Award from the Illinois Stewardship Alliance for his efforts to incorporate Galesburg area-produced food into the meals served to Knox students, faculty, and staff. "For several years, Helmut has made a special effort to purchase locally produced food for dining services at Knox College,” his nomination stated. “He beats the drum for local food and educates staff and students about it.” Mayer buys potatoes, onions, zucchini, melons, peppers, apples, and other produce from the Local Growers' Network, a group of growers in Knox and Peoria counties. Read more about the award and an interview with Mayer in Galesburg's The Register-Mail.

Blackadder Receives Prestigious Howard Foundation Fellowship

Professor of Theatre Neil BlackadderNeil Blackadder, professor of theatre, has been awarded a 2011-12 fellowship from the George A. and Eliza Gardner Howard Foundation to translate three contemporary German-language plays into English. “I suppose I see myself partly as serving to broaden the horizons of American and British theatre by introducing them to work that they're not familiar with," said Blackadder.  Learn more about Blackadder and the award.

Faculty & Staff Notes

Stuart Allison, professor of biology, wrote the chapter “The Paradox of Invasive Species in Ecological Restoration: Do Restorationists Worry About Them Too Much or Too Little?” that is included in the book Invasive and Introduced Plants and Animals: Human Perceptions, Attitudes and Approaches to Management. Read more about the book.

An essay by Andrew Civettini, assistant professor of political science, “Barack Obama and the Political Science of Hope” was published in Politics & Emotions: The Obama Phenomenon.

Tony Gant, associate professor of art, gave the talk, “Negotiating Boundaries,” at The New York Studio School's Evening Lecture Series. Gant's recent site-specific installations include "Tropic of Capricorn" at Benton Street Gallery, Iowa City, Iowa; "Circle" at Cortijo de Rafajeros, Sierra Cabrera, Mojacar, Spain; and "Satellite Site" at Chautauqua, New York. Work was represented in numerous exhibitions, including "Rock, Scissors, Paper," New York Studio School, New York, and "Visual Impact," Rosemary Hall, Connecticut.

On Mother’s Day, Nancy Hall, computer center manager of user services, and Steve Hall, senior associate director of the computer center, were featured in an article in Galesburg’s The Register-Mail, where they discussed their newborn’s open heart surgery that required a blood transfusion. Their son is now a healthy 11-year-old. Read the article.

Lynette Lombard, associate professor of art, completed her second show with the Bowery Gallery, New York. Her new work focused on expansive views of the Spanish and Midwestern landscape.

Schahrazede Longou, assistant professor of modern languages, presented a paper at the 37th Annual African Literature Association Conference at Ohio University, Athens, Ohio.

Frank McAndrew, professor of psychology, was the keynote speaker at the ILLOWA Undergraduate Psychology Conference, speaking on "The Science of Gossip: Why You Can't Stop Yourself."

Duane Oldfield, associate professor of political science, presented the paper "Global Galesburg: Power, Vision, and Response to Crisis" at the Midwest Political Science Association Annual Meeting.

Chad Simpson's story "my pretend heart" was published in issue three of Twelve Stories and his story "Smoke" appears in the Spring 2011 issue of Moon Milk Review. The story "Adaptations" was published in Necessary Fiction.

Jon Wagner, professor of anthropology, chaired a panel "The Roots of Humanity: Innovative Approaches to the Evolution of Hominin Cognition and Behavior" at the conference of the Central States Anthropological Society; he also served on a panel discussion on science and humanism in anthropology; and he co-authored a paper, "Reconstructing the Australopithecine Habitus."

In This Issue

Knox Events

May 17, 2011
Prairie Fire Chicago
June 04, 2011
South Lawn of Old Main, Knox College
June 09, 2011
Law Offices of Holland & Knight
June 11, 2011
O'Brien Field
June 17, 2011
Soangetaha Country Club
June 23, 2011
Naperville Pub Night
July 01, 2011
Rockies vs. Royals
July 20, 2011
July 27, 2011
Home of Jim ’54 and Bobbie Schlick Poor ’54

Gizmogram Archive

Knox Links

Knox Profiles

Zoe Witzeling '11

My favorite thing about being a student at Knox is the community. My name is Zoe Witzeling '11 and I AM KNOX.

Meet more Knox students.

Deb DeGraff

I like to say I started at Knox when I was three years old. My name is Deborah DeGraff '80, and I AM KNOX.

Meet more Knox alumni.

Lane Sunderland

Knox students applying to law school do very well, including admission to a number of 'top ten' law schools. My name is Lane V. Sunderland, Chancie Ferris Booth Professor of Political Science, and I AM KNOX.

Meet more Knox faculty.


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