Jan. 18, 2001
Vol. 20 No. 8

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    In the News

    The Chronicle’s biweekly column In the News offers a digest of commentary and quotations by a few of the University faculty members, students and alumni who have been headlining the news in recent weeks. Chicago faculty members are some of the most frequently quoted experts; however, space does not allow the Chronicle to print all of the quoted material published or interviews broadcast by media outlets. To read many of the full newspaper articles mentioned in this column, visit the In the News column at the University News Office Web site at: http://www-news.uchicago.edu/.

    Stories about the appointment of Bennett Leventhal, Professor in Psychiatry and Pediatrics, to evaluate a 14-year-old girl allegedly abducted by her mother nine years ago, for a legal case in Cook County Circuit Court, appeared in the Chicago Tribune and in the Chicago Sun-Times Tuesday, Jan. 9. Leventhal, who is chief of child and adolescent psychiatry at the University, has been assigned to evaluate children in other high-profile child custody cases in Illinois, including the Baby Richard and Baby T cases.

    A story about college admissions that included an interview with Ted O’Neill, Dean of College Admissions, was published first in the Christian Science Monitor and then reprinted in the Chicago Sun-Times, Tuesday, Jan. 9. O’Neill emphasized that he and his staff members look for sincerity when evaluating application essays, which tell him and his staff much more about an applicant than do test scores.

    Alumnus Brian Chan (A.B., ’00), fourth-year Andrea Chang, Mark Gasche, Associate Director, Recruitment, Career & Placement Services, and Saskia Sassen, the Ralph Lewis Professor in Sociology, were all interviewed for a story published Wednesday, Jan. 10, by the Chicago Tribune. The story reported on how job location has become an increasingly important factor for those seeking employment, and that more choices are available to job hunters.

    Reports about several news organizations retaining the National Opinion Research Center at the University to study the undervotes and overvotes on Florida voting ballots in the aftermath of the Presidential election were carried by the Associated Press, the Charleston Gazette, the Chicago Tribune, Dow Jones Newswires, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. NORC will cull information about the ballot markings, without making determinations about what those marks indicate regarding votes.

    John Mearsheimer, Professor in Political Science, wrote an op-ed that appeared in the Thursday, Jan. 11 issue of The New York Times. Mearsheimer argued that President Clinton’s partition plan for peace between Israelis and Palestinians may not result in the peaceful situation he hopes it will bring about. Mearsheimer, who compared the situation in the Balkans to the one in the Middle East, said peace in the Middle East may be impossible. “President Clinton still hopes to pull off a peace accord. But it’s hard to imagine that even an accord could bring about a permanent peace. Israel cannot be secure alongside a securely independent Palestinian state,” he concluded. Mearsheimer also was a guest on NPR’s Morning Edition program on Saturday, Jan. 5. He discussed President-Elect Bush’s choice of Colin Powell as Secretary of State.

    Michael Dawson, Professor in Political Science, was a guest on WBEZ-FM Radio’s Odyssey program, on Friday, Jan. 12. Dawson discussed his work on attitudes among whites and African-Americans about the presidential election. Dawson also was quoted in news stories that were published by the Chicago Sun-Times on Friday Dec. 22, The Washington Post on Friday, Dec. 22, the Associated Press Newswires on Wednesday, Jan. 10, and the Chicago Tribune on Thursday, Jan. 11.

    Paul Sereno, Professor in Organismal Biology & Anatomy, was interviewed for a full-page feature story that appeared in the Thursday, Jan. 4 issue of Investor’s Business Daily. Sereno, who recently returned from a dinosaur fossil expedition in the Sahara Desert, was described by colleagues in the story as someone whose successful discoveries come from his commitment and determination. Sereno credited the hard work of his team members.

    Douglas Duncan, Associate Professor in Astronomy & Astrophysics, was quoted in a story carried by Reuters English News Service that reported on the recent, partial solar eclipse that occurred Christmas Day 2000. Duncan described how people could safely view the event. “Your eyes handle an enormous range of brightness. You can see pretty well under a full moon, and yet the difference between a full moon scene and a daytime scene is 1 billion times,” he said. Five Chicago television stations–CLTV, WGN-TV, WMAQ-TV, WFLD-TV and WLS-TV–also interviewed Duncan about the eclipse, which resulted in 15 stories that aired Dec. 24 and 25.