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Stories this week at Wake Forest University

March 26, 2008

COLUMNIST DAVID BROOKS TO OPEN ‘WHY WORK’ CONFERENCE – New York Times columnist David Brooks will deliver the keynote address during the opening session of a two-day conference, “Why Work? Business, Professions and the Common Good,” at 4 p.m. March 27 in Wait Chapel.  The session, titled “Making Sense of Modern Professional Life,” is free and open to the public.  The conference, part of the university’s 2007-2008 Voices of Our Time speaker series, brings together authorities from the fields of business, education, government, law, medicine and theology to explore how professionals can rekindle a commitment to the common good.  For the complete conference schedule, visit

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

FORMER CONGRESSMAN LEE HAMILTON VISITS WFU—Lee Hamilton, president and director of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, will chair a timely panel discussion, “The Demands of Public Life,” at 1:30 p.m. March 28, in Carswell Hall’s Annenberg Forum.  The session is free and open to the public.  Daily headlines are constant reminders of the challenges public officials face today maintaining integrity in their personal and professional lives.  Hamilton was a U.S. congressman from 1965 to 1999 and later served as vice chairman of the 9/11 Commission and co-chair of the Iraq Study Group.  He currently serves on the President’s Homeland Security Advisory Council.  Five other panel discussions March 28 will be devoted to the challenges facing various disciplines.  All are part of a two-day conference, “Why Work? Business, Professions and the Common Good.”  For the complete conference schedule, visit

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

WAKE FOREST TO HOST CONFERENCE ON MEN AND MASCULINITY The 16th annual American Men’s Studies Association (AMSA) conference will be held at Wake Forest April 4-6. The conference, titled “Masculinities and Institutions: Mapping the Connections,” will feature more than 50 presentations by academics and professionals concerning the connections between men and institutions as well as topics contributing to a greater understanding of men’s lives. “This is a great opportunity to continue to expand our program to include critical, academic perspectives on men and masculinities in our undergraduate and graduate/professional programs,” says Steve Boyd, professor and chair of the religion department at Wake Forest and founder of AMSA. “Given the impact of masculine norms and behaviors on issues surfacing daily in the media — male sexuality, violence,  war and peace, family/parenting, cross-cultural understanding — we welcome the resources brought by our colleagues from across the nation and world.” The full conference schedule and registration information is available online at The conference is co-sponsored by the Wake Forest departments of religion and women’s and gender studies.

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

COLLEGE MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES:  FACING FACTS, FINDING SOLUTIONS —  A recent AP poll found that one in five college students say they have felt too stressed to do schoolwork or be with friends.  Thirteen percent say they have been diagnosed with a mental health condition such as depression or an anxiety disorder.  To better understand college students’ mental health issues and explore what can be done to help students handle the pressures of college life, Wake Forest will host the conference “College of the Overwhelmed: Facing Facts, Finding Solutions” April 7. The conference, part of the university’s Voices of Our Time series, will feature Richard Kadison, author of the book “College of the Overwhelmed: The Campus Mental Health Crisis and What to Do about It,” as the keynote speaker. A panel discussion, featuring Kadison and the directors of the counseling centers at Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia, will focus on six key topics:  putting the problem in perspective, modifying the culture of pressure, identifying emotional challenges in college, reconciling privacy and group safety, recognizing warning signs and knowing how to help.  “The reality is that many young adults enter college with problems and concerns that only increase with the pressure and competitive nature of the college environment,” said Samuel T. Gladding, professor and chair of Wake Forest’s counseling department and one of the organizers of the event.  “We planned the conference to help college faculty and staff, parents, students and counselors learn more solution-focused ways that can help students who may be discontent or struggling with their college experience.”  The conference will be held from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Brendle Recital Hall at the Scales Fine Arts Center.  The event is free and open to the public.

Contact: Cheryl Walker, or (336) 758-6073.

WFU PROFESSOR WRITES CHANTS FOR POPE’S U.S. VISIT — Samuel Weber, associate professor of early Christianity and spiritual formation at the Wake Forest University Divinity School, was invited to compose original chant settings that will be performed during the Pope’s visit to Washington, D.C., April 15 – 20.  The chants will be sung during Evening Prayer at 5:30 p.m. April 16 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception with Pope Benedict XVI presiding, and during a private mass with the Holy Father at the Apostolic Nunciature (Papal Embassy) the following morning.  The Evening Prayer service is expected to be televised worldwide.

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

POPE WILL BE WELL RECEIVED IN U.S., PREDICTS SOCIOLOGIST – “With the exception of a small minority of people, Pope Benedict will be warmly received by American Catholics during his upcoming visit,” said David Yamane, assistant professor of sociology and the author of several books on the Catholic Church in America.   “One reason many American Catholics are able to look up to him even as they disagree with him is that they do not orient their Catholic identity to the magisterium in Rome. They are Catholics on their own terms.”   He says that even though Pope John Paul II had a better reputation as a public figure, “a good showing in the U.S. will help to bolster his image as a shepherd rather than a guard dog.”

Contact: Cheryl Walker, or (336) 758-6073.

WAKE FOREST'S NINTH ANNUAL ELEVATOR COMPETITION OPENS NEW BANK OF ELEVATORS TO SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP — Thirty percent of the applications for last year’s annual Elevator Competition at Wake Forest University’s Babcock Graduate School of Management could have fallen under the heading of social entrepreneurship.  As a result, a second set of elevators will be added specifically for socially minded entrepreneurs at this year’s ninth annual event, scheduled for March 28-29 at the Wachovia building in downtown Winston-Salem.  In another first, undergraduate as well as graduate teams from top universities across the country will compete, pitching ideas that solve a pressing social need based on the triple bottom line: economic, environmental and social.

Contact: Lisa Snedeker at or (336) 758-3615.

GREAT DECISIONS CITIZENS’ FORUM TO ADDRESS U.S. DEFENSE POLICY – Jerry Pubantz, professor of political science at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro will discuss “U.S. Defense Policy” at 7 p.m. April 3 in Scales Fine Arts Center, Room A102.  The talk is part of Great Decisions 2008, a six-week citizens’ forum dealing with current foreign policy issues, from March 20 through April 24.  The lecture series is free and open to the public.  The Great Decisions Series is a national foreign policy education program sponsored by the Foreign Policy Association.  Founded in 1918, the FPA is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nongovernmental educational organization that strives to educate Americans about the significant international issues that influence their lives. For more information about the Great Decisions Series visit

Contact:  Cheryl Walker, or (336) 758-6073.

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