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Media Relations

AU in the Media: 4/24/09

Top Story

Mobile Campus Alert Upgrade

American University’s new, two-way campus safety feature, an alarm system that allows students, faculty and staff to alert Public Safety of emergencies through their cell phones, as well as a “guardian” system, giving students a virtual escort when alone during late hours, was featured in the Chronicle of Higher of Education, highlighting the newest additions to the previously-established text alert system. “Students can have at the touch of a button instant access to public safety,” said Michael McNair, chief of public safety. (4/23/09)


Other Features

Locally and nationally, the campus was featured for the arts, dining and virtual appeal:

Campus Tour 2.0

American University was featured in an eCampus News story about the impact of the virtual tour in web 2.0 and how it changes the look and appeal of colleges and universities to prospective students. "Your web presence allows [students] to narrow their options," said David Swartz, chief information officer. "If they can get a sense of your people, your courses, your environment, it's a very compelling way to narrow your choices." (4/24/09)

The Low-Carbon Diet

Students at American University were featured in a WTTG-FOX 5 television news segment about a low-carbon food options that were available in celebration of Earth Day to promote the reduction of greenhouse gases. "It's a tough sell," said Freshman Zach Drescher. The project was also featured in a WAMU-FM radio segment, where Terrace Dining Room sous chef Brazil Murphy discussed his low-carbon menu and being environmentally-friendly when making food selections. “It’s not actually vegetarian low carbon or taking out meats from your diet, it’s just knowing where it came from and how it came here and reducing greenhouse gases,” he said. “What you eat can actually better the environment.” (4/22/09)

A Step in a New Direction

Robin Rose’s exhibit, "Robin Rose: Cypher,” which is on display at the American University Museum at the Katzen Arts Center until May 17, was featured in the Washington Post, discussing the artist’s abrupt departure from traditional abstract painting works on display at Hemphill Fine Arts to the series of found-object sculptures at the Katzen. “How long can someone keep doing the same thing, playing the same record, over and over? Rose seems to know that,” wrote reporter Michael O’Sullivan. “‘Cypher’ is sly proof that you can teach an old dog new -- and, in this case, fascinating -- tricks.” (4/24/09)


Faculty, Programs, & Quotes

And in other news, AU's community contributed to the national discussion on politics, global, and other issues:

Can They Do That?

Stephen Vladeck, professor of constitutional law, participated in a discussion about the legalities of interrogation policy after the release of CIA memos on torture during the Bush administration. “We still don't know enough about what happened, and under whose direction, and so the real imperative in the short-term should be the gathering of more information,” he said. “It's one thing for government officials to act based upon what they reasonably believe is legal. It's another thing altogether for those officials to undertake conduct that they knew (or should have known) was unlawful.” (4/22/09)

Presidential Evaluation

Allan Lichtman, a professor of history, was quoted in a Los Angeles Times story about President Obama’s first 100 days in office. "He's not a revolutionary; he's a liberal," he said. "Obama's made big changes, but within the normal liberal-conservative arc. Yes, the pendulum has swung, but it's swung from mainstream conservatism to mainstream liberalism." (4/21/09)

Learning from the Past

Robert Pastor, a professor of international affairs, was quoted in a Miami Herald story about President Obama’s plans to meet with Cuba following the Fifth Summit of the Americas. ''I hope Obama tries to learn some of the history before he embarks on it,'' he said. (4/18/09)

U.S.-Cuba Negotiations

William LeoGrande, an expert on Cuban policy, was quoted in a St. Augustine Record story about the ongoing talks between the United States and Cuban leaders. "If the U.S. goes into talks thinking the Cubans are going to negotiate over the basic socialistic nature of their economy and political system, we are going to be disappointed," he said. "If they talk about mutual interests where tensions can be reduced, we will make some progress." (4/18/09)

Election Overhaul

David Lublin, a political scientist, was quoted in a Las Vegas Sun story about a proposed charter to change the electoral process by eliminating the electoral college and using a national popular election in its place. “What if a state suddenly tried to back out of the compact? The charter says a state cannot withdraw, but that provision may not be constitutional,” Lublin said. “Can you imagine if Florida 2000 occurred on a national scale?” (4/22/09)

Bridging the Great Divide

Akbar Ahmed, professor of Islamic studies, was featured on Al Jazeera English's Riz Khan Show. The popular half-hour show highlighted Ahmed and his students' Journey into America project, in which they traveled to more than 35 cities and towns in America to examine Muslims in the U.S. and Americans' opinion of them. The show also looked at their previous project, Journey into Islam. Follow the team's Journey into America on their blog. (4/22/09)