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September 27, 2007

LEADING THINKERS ON IMMIGRATION TO GATHER AT WAKE FOREST –Wake Forest will address one of the United States’ most hotly debated issues—immigration—at a three-day conference Oct. 3-5.  Titled “Immigration: Recasting the Debate,” the conference is the first event in the university’s 2007-2008 Voices of Our Time speaker series.  “Immigration reform is not only one of the most pressing domestic issues of our time; it is also one of the most intractable,” said David Coates, Worrell Professor of Anglo-American Studies at Wake Forest and co-organizer of the event. “It is hard to think of a political issue more in need of the quiet light of serious scholarship than this.”  Peter Siavelis, associate professor of political science and co-organizer, agreed.  "We want researchers to shed more light on this issue, but not do it through the partisan sniping that is increasingly passing for political dialogue in our country.”   Go to for a complete schedule of events.  The 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. sessions on Oct. 4 will focus on immigration and the economy and immigration issues in North Carolina.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237

FORMER U.S. SECRETARY OF LABOR TO OPEN IMMIGRATION CONFERENCE – Ray Marshall, former U.S. secretary of labor in the Carter administration, will kick off “Immigration:  Recasting the Debate” at 7 p.m. Oct. 3 in Wait Chapel.  “The immigration debate has reached a stalemate because of the complex and conflicting issues involved, and the failure of past policies to effectively legalize immigration flows,” said Marshall, “We have a very narrow window of opportunity to design effective policies compatible with our national values and interests.  We might not get another chance.”   The immigration conference is the first event in the university’s 2007-2008 Voices of Our Time speaker series.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237

SEN. MEL MARTINEZ TO CONCLUDE IMMIGRATION DISCUSSION – Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) will discuss the importance of immigration reform in the closing session of “Immigration: Recasting the Debate” at 4 p.m. Oct. 5 in Wait Chapel.  “Immigration is at the heart of our nation’s successful history, and we have to be thoughtful about how we reform our policies for the future,” said Martinez.  “The current laws are insufficient and true reform will have to be comprehensive and address the needs of our nation.”    Sen. Richard Burr will introduce Martinez.

Contact: Pam Barrett, or (336) 758-5237

INTERNATIONAL WALK TO SCHOOL DAY IS OCT. 3 — Wake Forest students will monitor sidewalks and crosswalks leading to Whitaker Elementary School on International Walk to School Day Oct. 3 between 7:30 and 8 a.m..  As part of a class taught by Gary Miller, professor of health and exercise science, the Wake Forest students started a program last spring called “Whitaker Walks on Wednesdays” to encourage more kids to walk to school.  Miller says, “the goal is to try to be healthy by increasing their activity, and also to help the environment by decreasing gas consumption and CO2 emissions.” Whitaker Elementary is incorporating educational activities as part of the program: students work on math problems to calculate how far they’ve walked, and learn North Carolina geography by using a state map to mark down how many miles they’ve walked.

Contact: Audrey Fannin, or 336-758-4393.

PROFESSOR DESIGNS ATOMIC EMISSION DETECTOR FOR HOMELAND SECURITY- Brad Jones, a professor of chemistry at Wake Forest, is leading a team of researchers to develop the first handheld, field instrument capable of detecting and identifying radioactive particles at the site of potential contamination.  The device will enable authorities to quickly test dust, soil, water and crops in the event of a terrorist attack such as a “dirty” bomb.  The three-year project is funded by the National Science Foundation in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security, which asked scientists to submit proposals for radioactivity detection devices.  Jones, who specializes in creating spectroscopic instruments, saw the potential to adapt a design he originally conceived years ago to permit rapid field testing for lead in blood samples.  

Contact:  Eric Frazier, or (336) 758-5238

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