AU senior Carrie Johnson was one of 20 students from across the country to be chosen for USA Today's 2009 All-USA College Academic First Team, which honors students nationwide for academic achievement, leadership and community service. Johnson, who was recognized for her honors research on wind energy in rural states, appeared in USA Today's two-page feature spread on the winners. This story was picked up by more than 10 news outlets, including the Houston Chronicle and the San Francisco Business Times. (4/29/09)
In two national publications, our professors wrote opinion pieces about the media's relationship with the President and solutions to stabilizing Pakistan:
Too Lenient on Obama?
In an opinion piece for Politico, Richard Benedetto, a professor of print journalism, discussed the influence of the Obama administration on the media. “A few news outlets, notably The New York Times on April 3, have sporadically noted some similarities between the policies of Obama and Bush, especially in foreign affairs. Yet the media honeymoon continues,” he wrote. “This is all well and good, as long as we do not forget our function as government watchdog. So far, we have.” (4/28/09)
In an opinion piece for the Independent, Akbar Ahmed, chair in Islamic Studies, discussed the state of Pakistan and the solution to maintaining its survival. “America has to understand that Pakistan requires a long-term commitment and a drastic change of strategy,” he wrote. “The present hit or miss approach will not do. The stakes are just too high.”(4/25/09)
Faculty, Programs, & Quotes
And in other news, AU's community contributed to the national discussion on politics, global, and other issues:
Moving Forward or Going Backward?
James Thurber, director of the Center for Presidential and Congressional Studies, was quoted in a Time magazine story about President Obama’s choices between pursuing public trials for wrongdoings during the Bush administration, or moving ahead with initiatives outlined during his presidential campaign. "The danger is that he will be forced to use his political capital on this rather than the economy, health care, cap and trade, education, immigration, etc.,” he said. "It sets yet another agenda item for him in a very crowded list of priorities.(4/28/09)
Moral Duty to Prosecute
Steve Vladeck, a law professor, appeared on an Associated Press Television news segment about the necessity for investigations into the Bush administration's abuse of interrogation policy. “The Department of Justice in general, and the Office of Legal Counsel in particular, have an independent obligation, first to the Constitution, and then to the Executive Branch as their client,” he said. “That’s a big part of the controversy here. Did the Office of Legal Counsel reach these conclusions because they thought they were the correct statement of the law, or did they reach these conclusions because they were told to?” (4/25/09)
Study Abroad in Cuba
William LeoGrande, dean of the School of Public Affairs, was quoted in an Associated Press story about the possible increase in educational travel to Cuba following talks between the United States and Cuban leaders, after heavy decreases due to high restrictions during the Clinton and Bush administrations. "I do think things are going to move now,” he said. “I think we will see a broadening back to the Clinton era.” This story was picked up by more than 20 news outlets. (4/26/09)
Making a Switch
Lenny Steinhorn, a communications professor, appeared on WTTG-Fox 5’s 11pm and 5am television news segment about former GOP senator Arlen Specter’s move to the Democratic Party, increasing the majority count to 60. “The minute you get 60 and make it filibuster proof, you can change health care, you can change energy policy, you can put a stimulus bill through, you can put more regulations on the banks,” he said. (4/29/09)