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June 15, 2010

STUDY FINDS YOUNG MEN MORE VULNERABLE TO RELATIONSHIP UPS AND DOWNS THAN WOMEN—Contrary to popular belief, the ups and downs of romantic relationships have a greater effect on the mental health of young men than women, according to a new study by a Wake Forest sociology professor. In the study of more than 1,000 unmarried young adults between the ages of 18 and 23, Professor Robin Simon challenges the long-held assumption that women are more vulnerable to the emotional rollercoaster of relationships. Even though men sometimes try to present a tough face, unhappy romances take a greater emotional toll on men than women, Simon says. They just express their distress differently than women. Simon also found that men get greater emotional benefits from the positive aspects of an ongoing romantic relationship.

CUTTING FOREIGN LANGUAGE PROGRAMS TO BALANCE BUDGET IS BAD IDEA, SAYS EDUCATION EXPERT—As budget woes put pressure on many school systems to cut back on foreign language programs, Professor of Education Mary Lynn Redmond advocates for investing even more in foreign language education. In this globally competitive world, foreign language is an essential, not a frill, Redmond says. “It is very poor timing for foreign language to be eliminated. Children should start learning a foreign language in kindergarten and continue through high school. Learning languages helps increase listening ability, memory, creativity and critical thinking—all of which are thinking processes that increase learning in general.” Redmond is a national expert on the value of teaching foreign language in elementary grades and has been executive secretary of the National Network for Early Language Learning. She was project director of “VISION 2010: A Plan for Model Foreign Language Programs in North Carolina Public Schools.”

‘MENTORS IN MOVIES: ‘KARATE KID’ IS LATEST EXAMPLE OF HOLLYWOOD GENRE—Karate Kid, which opened this weekend, is not only a remake of the 1984 original, but also another example of the mentor/teacher theme, a prominent theme in popular films, says professor of communication and author Mary Dalton. She was recently quoted in USA Today. “It doesn't get a whole lot of attention, but teachers and mentors play a large part in Hollywood history,” says Dalton, author of The Hollywood Curriculum: Teachers in the Movies. “They've reflected our own views over the years,” she says. “Some for the good, some not so good. And it’s evolved. It’s a serious genre.” She says the themes of “mentor movies” have shifted over time, as movies such as Precious portray a more accurate dynamic between tutors and their charges.

INTERNSHIPS TAKE ON NEW MEANING FOR GRADUATES AND CORPORATIONS—With recent college graduates facing one of the toughest job markets in years, internships are becoming one of the keys to getting hired. In many cases, universities are building endowments and offering stipends to fund students’ salaries, said Patrick Sullivan, associate director of experiential education at Wake Forest. This year, Wake Forest is giving $3,000 stipends to 51 students who have landed internships in entrepreneurial companies or nonprofits. Some of the internships are with local organizations such as SimpliFi, a local start up financial services company, and the Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County. Others are working on various projects around the world such as building an organization to help transfer school furnishings to schools in need, creating a nonprofit to provide grants to students with disabilities, and working on microfinance projects in South Africa. The internships are funded through the Russell D. and Elfriede Hobbs Endowment Fund and the Chambers Family Endowment for Entrepreneurship.

Press Contacts:

Cheryl Walker
(336) 758-5237

Ellen Sterner Sedeno
(214) 546-8893

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