From the Alumni Relations Office

Dear Friend

This issue features some recent Rhodes “academic milestones.” Many of us recall one of our own major milestones—graduating from Rhodes surrounded by family, friends, classmates and revered faculty members. On May 12, 393 members of the class of 2012 walked across the stage in Fisher Garden to receive their diplomas, as generations of Rhodes students have done before them. 

As the newest members of the Alumni Association, these young men and women have joined an extraordinary community of individuals with shared values, memories and experiences. 

Summer Reading

MARK BEHR
Associate Professor
Department of English

Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient: Written in beautiful, poetic prose and carried by a host of memorable and empathetically drawn characters, the novel offers a new look at European history from the Renaissance to a moment near the end of the Second World War. Set in the ruins of an Italian villa and moving between there and North Africa, Ondaatje’s novel engages European art as emblematic of Western civilization by exposing the intersections between aesthetics and violence. 

Living the Language

By Mary Helen Randall

Never before has understanding and appreciation for other cultures and peoples been so crucial, so it’s with pride that during the 2011-12 academic year Rhodes marked the silver anniversary of its Russian Studies program. Professor Valeria Nollan founded the program 25 years ago, when the campus and the city surrounding it seemed very different. Six years later, assistant professor Sasha Kostina arrived, and a complementary and comprehensive partnership was formed.

A Grand Division

By Richard J. Alley

Last year the joint department of Economics and Business split in two, becoming separate departments: One is now called Economics, the other, Business—in part because of the steady growth of each. The sheer size of the faculty and student body was such that, managerially, one department was becoming unwieldy.

Economics

A New Program: Political Economy

By Richard J. Alley

The past academic year saw a new interdisciplinary program in the Rhodes catalogue with the introduction of Political Economy, a major that explores important ideas that are the foundations of economic and political systems throughout the world. It is, basically, the study of economics without the math. It brings a more philosophical approach to how and why markets work—or don’t work.

A New Chair for Urban Studies

Last fall, Thomas joined the Rhodes faculty as an associate professor of Psychology and the new director and Plough Chair of Urban Studies.

Connecting Conversations

Jonathan Judaken joined the college with an unusual opportunity: to determine the parameters and establish the scope of his position as Rhodes’ first Spence L. Wilson Chair.