Category Archives: Campus News

Names in the News: Smith To Head Swarthmore, Singer ’97 on the Rise of Robots, and More

Princeton Dean Valerie Smith will be Swarthmore’s next president. (Brian Wilson/Office of Communications)

Princeton Dean Valerie Smith will be Swarthmore’s next president. (Brian Wilson/Office of Communications)

Dean of the College VALERIE SMITH was named the 15th president of Swarthmore College on Feb. 21. She will be Swarthmore’s first African American president, as well as its second female president. At Princeton, Smith was also the founding director of the Center for American Studies and is currently the Woodrow Wilson Professor of Literature and a professor of English and African American Studies. She will begin her duties at Swarthmore on July 1. In a Philadephia Inquirer interview, Gil Kemp, chair of Swarthmore’s board of trustees, said of Smith, “I think this is a marvelous fit … Her awareness of our distinctive competence, focus on academic rigor, commitment to the common good — it’s a marvelous confluence.”

In an op-ed for, New America Foundation Strategist and Senior Fellow PETER W. SINGER ’97 writes about the rise of the robot in modern warfare. As robots become increasingly more automated, he explains, debates over their place in battle have become more complicated. He concludes, however, that “one thing is clear: Like the present, the future of war will be robotic.”

Former Tennessee senator BILL FRIST ’74 and former Georgia representative JIM MARSHALL ’72 penned a Washington Post op-ed about their suggested reforms to the Veterans Health Administration. Their piece coincided with the release of a report by the Fixing Veterans Health Care task force, of which Frist and Marshall are co-chairs. Continue reading

Cross-Generational Career Tips: Classes of ’66, ’91, and ’16 Gather for Networking Event

Much has changed at Princeton between 1966 and today, but alumni can still recall the anxiety of deciding what to do after graduation. Through a special networking evening for the Class of 2016, members of the Class of 1966 and Class of 1991 returned to campus Feb. 24 to offer career advice and encourage current students to follow their passions.

The networking event helped to expose students to a wide range of fields, including law, finance, technology, and nonprofits, and revealed the nonlinear career paths of successful alumni. Planned in conjunction with Career Services, there were 48 students and 10 alumni at the event.

Students like Tiffany Chen ’16 said they enjoyed hearing anecdotes from alumni about their changing career goals. “For me, this was really reassuring and inspiring to see how many people didn’t have plans or completely went off what they were going to do. I don’t know yet what I want to do, and it’s nice to know that I’ll be OK eventually,” Chen said. Continue reading

Tiger of the Week: Curator Jodi Hauptman ’86

Jodi Hauptman ’86 (The Museum of Modern Art)

Jodi Hauptman ’86 (The Museum of Modern Art)

Henri Matisse: The Cut-Outs, a much-praised exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art scheduled to close next week, is the latest noteworthy project of curator Jodi Hauptman ’86, who also has helped MoMA showcase works by Georges Seurat and Odilon Redon in recent years. The Matisse exhibition was organized by Karl Buchberg, senior conservator at MoMA, and Hauptman, along with assistant curator Samantha Friedman.

The exhibition and a companion publication, co-authored by Hauptman, explore Matisse’s materials and methods, and how the cut-outs, created late in the artist’s life, fit into the broader context of his career. In a New York Times interview last June, Hauptman debunked one commonly held belief about Matisse’s choice of medium: “It was always thought that he was too frail to paint and hence turned to cut-outs, but we believe cut-outs allowed him to answer questions about color and drawing, bringing them together.”

While The Cut-Outs earned critical acclaim and a healthy stream of visitors, it also broke new ground in the art world when it kicked off a film series of exhibitions, screened at movie theaters around the country.

Hauptman, who majored in the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton, studied art history at Yale, earning her Ph.D. She joined MoMA in 2002 and was promoted to senior curator in the department of drawings and prints last year. Continue reading

#ThrowbackThursday: Princeton Gothic

(PAW Archives/Bruce Beckner ’71)

(PAW Archives/Bruce Beckner ’71)

Elizabeth Emerson ’73 and Herman Reepmeyer ’72 posed for this Grant Wood-esque PAW cover photo in 1971. The story inside profiled “student artisans” — young men and women with hobbies fit for the frontier, including weaving, glassmaking, pottery, and woodcarving. Sociology major Michael Rodemeyer ’72 interviewed four students, including Emily Bonacarti ’73, who had traveled to Sweden in the summer to learn more about weaving. “There was a time when you had to know these crafts to survive,” she said. “Today people are getting lost in the technology. They want to know they can do something.”

The magazine also mentioned a small but growing interest in vegetarian diets and farm-fresh produce. That seed blossomed on the campus and has continued to grow in the last decade with the creation of a student-run organic garden, new sustainability initiatives in Dining Services, continued interest in the vegetarian 2 Dickinson co-op (founded in 1977), and more.

Graziano ’89 *96 To Open Hatcher Lecture Series at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory

Princeton psychology professor Michael Graziano ’89 *96 will deliver the opening talk in the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory’s Ronald E. Hatcher Science on Saturday Lecture Series Jan. 10 at 9:30 a.m.

Graziano will focus on “Consciousness and the Social Brain,” a topic covered in PAW’s April 23, 2014, profile of the alumnus and professor. Future speakers in this year’s series include Professor Emily Carter, director of Princeton’s Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment, and Professor Paul Steinhardt, director of the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science. For more information, visit

The Science on Saturday program was renamed this year to honor Hatcher, its beloved longtime host, who died in March.