Fordham Notes: November 2012

Friday, November 30, 2012

Panel Explores Trends in Young Adult Literature

From Harry Potter to the Twilight series, the young adult literature industry is booming.

In recent decades, the young adult (YA) market, which targets 12- to 18-year-old readers, has become a multi-million dollar enterprise, said panelists at a creative writing colloquium on YA literature, held at Fordham’s Lincoln Center campus.

The Nov. 29 event, which drew dozens of undergraduate and graduate writing students, featured several prominent names from the YA field:

·      Sangeeta Mehta, book project consultant and former acquiring editor at Simon Pulse, the teen paperback division of Simon & Schuster, and Little, Brown Books for Young Readers;
·      Ted Malawer, also known by his pennames Ted Michael and Theo Laurence, author of several YA books, including The Diamonds (Delacorte Press, 2009) and Crash Test Love (Delacorte Press, 2010); and
·      Sharon Dennis Wyeth, associate professor of children’s literature at Hollins University and adjunct professor in Fordham’s creative program, and author of several YA books, including My America: Freedom’s Wings: Corey’s Underground Railroad Diary (Scholastic, Inc., 2002), and A Piece of Heaven (Turtleback Books, 2002).

Although youth-oriented books have existed for centuries, the YA category has only been formally recognized since the mid-20th century, Mehta said. J. D. Salinger’s 1951 novel The Catcher in the Rye marked an important transition into this burgeoning category, followed by S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders (1966) and Paul Zindel’s The Pigman (1968).

These coming-of-age books were written for and about adolescents, dealing with taboo topics such as drinking, drugs, gangs, and suicide.

In 1997, YA literature took another turn with the publication of the first Harry Potter novel, Mehta said. Stories of the supernatural caught on quickly for young readers, sparking legions of books dealing with vampires, werewolves, fallen angels, and other magical creatures.

Dystopian books, such as Lois Lowry’s The Giver (1993) and Suzanne Collins’ The Hunger Games (2008), also became popular among adolescents.

“For the first time, these books weren’t just selling as well as adult books—they were selling more,” Mehta said.

YA authors Malawer and Wyeth agreed that writing for young adults requires a particular set of literary skills and strategies.

“They are voracious readers. They know what they like, they know what they hate, and they’ll blog about it,” said Malawer, whose latest novel Mystic City takes a futuristic twist on Romeo and Juliet. “This is an industry where people get really excited to read.”

Because of the ages of the YA audience, Wyeth said, it is important to retain certain elements in the literature, such as writing in a tone that appeals to adolescents and including a villain. In addition, YA books must be authentic.

“You can’t fool a young audience,” she said.

“I would say there also must be hope,” she added. “There are books out there that deal with very heavy topics… These must be something that provide growth.”

The colloquium was sponsored by the English department’s creative writing program.

— Joanna Klimaski

Thursday, November 29, 2012

New Book Launch Draws Seasoned Scholars

 On Nov. 28, Nicholas Tampio, Ph.D., assistant professor of political science, had a launch party for his new book, Kantian Courage, at Book Culture in upper Manhattan, one of the city's premier academic bookstores.

The launch event attracted Ira Katznelson, Ruggles professor of political science and history at Columbia University, and Giovanna Borradori, professor of philosophy at Vassar College, who joined Tampio to discuss the future of the Enlightenment. In Kantian Courage, Tampio contends that political progressives should embody a critical and creative disposition to invent new political theories to address the problems of the present age.

Students from Tampio’s Manresa course (The Enlightenment and its Critics) attended, as did faculty and graduate students from the Fordham political science and philosophy departments.

From left to right, Ira Katznelson, Nick Tampio, and Giovanna Borradori. 

Celia Fisher Named 2012 AAAS Fellow

Celia Fisher, Ph.D., has been named
a 2012 Fellow by the AAAS.
Contributed Photo

The American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS) has named Celia Fisher, Ph.D., the Marie Ward Doty University Chair and professor of psychology, as a 2012 AAAS Fellow.

Fisher, who is also the founding director of Fordham’s Center for Ethics Education, is one of 702 AAAS members around the world to be named a Fellow for their significant efforts to advance science.

Fisher has been recognized for her “distinguished contributions that enhance the responsible conduct of science across disciplinary boundaries through innovative research, regulatory leadership, and ground-breaking education and training initiatives.”

“I am thrilled and honored that through this award, this prestigious group of scientists has recognized the importance of creating an evidence-based approach to research ethics and the contributions that social science can make to enhancing regulation and training that promotes the best of science- and research-participant protections,” Fisher said.

The 2012 AAAS Fellows will be formally announced in the AAAS “News & Notes” section of the journal Science on Nov. 30, and will be presented on Feb. 16 at the Fellows Forum during the 2013 AAAS Annual Meeting in Boston.

In addition to directing the Center for Ethics Education, Fisher is a past chair of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Human Studies Review Board and a founding editor of Applied Developmental Science. She is the author of Decoding the Ethics Code: A Practical Guide for Psychologists (Sage Publications, 2009) and is the co-editor of eight books.

In 2011, Fisher was awarded a five-year grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse to develop the Fordham HIV Prevention Research Ethics Training Institute (RETI) to offer ethics training and financial support for a mentored research project that will contribute to evidenced-based research ethics practices.

Her research interests include ethical issues and the wellbeing of vulnerable populations, including ethnic minority youth and families, active drug users, college students at risk for drinking problems, and adults with impaired consent capacity.

— Joanna Klimaski

WFUV to Tape 'An Irish Christmas' Live at Fordham Prep

This holiday season, the Irish Arts Center and WFUV are joining forces to present the debut radio broadcast of An Irish Christmas. The live taping will take place at Fordham Prep on Dec. 9.

Led by traditional Irish musician and scholar Mick Moloney, the critically acclaimed concert is a celebration of music, dance, and storytelling, accompanied by the strains of the banjo, fiddle, accordion, and piano. Surprise guests, including Gabriel Byrne, Dan Barry, and Christine Quinn, have been know to drop by the Irish Arts Center’s annual holiday show.

An Irish Christmas: A Musical Solstice Celebration
Sunday, December 9 | 3 p.m.
The Leonard Theatre | Fordham Preparatory School | Rose Hill Campus
$35 General admission
$250 VIP tickets

Buy tickets through the Irish Arts Center.
To book a VIP package, contact Kim McGoorty at 914-641-4322 or

Proud Irishman and Fordham alumnus James J. Houlihan, GSB ’74, a partner at Houlihan-Parnes Realtors, LLC, is serving as chair of the event in support of the Irish Arts Center. A longtime benefactor of the University and WFUV, Houlihan was a recipient of the 2011 Fordham Founder’s Award, and the baseball diamond at Rose Hill bears his name.

WFUV will air the concert on its Celtic programs, Ceol na nGael, on Sunday, Dec. 16, and A Thousand Welcomes, on Saturday, Dec. 22.

Nicole LaRosa

Monday, November 26, 2012

Fordham Theology Professor Lauded with Award for First Book

Peppard is one of ten junior scholars of theology and religion from around the world to win the award, which is administered by the University of Heidelberg in Heidelberg, Germany.

The award, which had previously been funded by the Templeton Foundation but was renamed this year in honor of its new benefactor, is based on a scholar’s first book and other application materials, including detailed evaluations by two full professors of an applicant’s choosing and an international committee of evaluators. 

Peppard’s book, In The Son of God in the Roman World: Divine Sonship in Its Social and Political Context (Oxford University Press, 2011), examined in detail the term “Son of God” and the concept of divine sonship as it appeared in Christian theology during the Roman Empire.

The award comes with a $10,000 prize and an all-expenses-paid trip to Heidelberg from May 30 to June 4, 2013. 

In addition to a reception, Peppard will meet with the other winners to form proposals for collaborative colloquia. Two of these proposals will then be funded by the foundation.

—Patrick Verel

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Cleanup Continues . . .

Fordham’s Sailing Team executed the Jesuits' credo, "men and women for others" on Nov. 13 when they helped the owners of Sailmaker Marina on City Island clean up debris and start reconstruction on their marina, which was largely decimated by Tropical Storm Sandy. 

Nineteen of the 26 active student-athletes participated in the cleanup, which, co-owner Maura Mandrano said resulted in more cleanup in two hours than she and co-owner Paul Laddamada could have accomplished in 17 weekends.

“It really did feel great helping them,” said Fordham College at Rose Hill freshman Jackie Cappellini. “I can only imagine how hard it has been on them. I'm glad . . . to partake in the group effort that so effectively worked in assembly lines to move all the wood and clean in such an effective manner,”

Sailing club students will be returning this Friday, Nov. 16 for another work party. 

A non-varsity sport, the Fordham Sailing Team is supported largely by private funds that come from former sailing alumni and sailing enthusiasts. The team practices out of City Island’s Morris Yacht & Beach Club and is under the direction of Reed C. Johnson, head coach, and Joe Sullivan, FCRH ’58, director of sailing operations. 

"As proud as I am of our student-athletes on the water, I am equally proud of their current volunteer efforts on land," said Sullivan.

(photos by Joe Sullivan)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Fordham Alumnus Elected to New York Supreme Court

Fordham's own John J. Leo, FCRH '76, LAW '81 was elected to the New York State Supreme Court on Tuesday, Nov. 6.

Leo, a resident of Huntington Station, was one of six Democrats, five Republicans, and a Conservative, running for six 14-year terms as New York State Supreme Court Judges in the 10th Judicial District in Nassau and Suffolk counties.

Five of the six judgeships were won by Democrats, while the sixth was won by Republican incumbent Peter Skelos.

In addition to the Democratic ticket, Leo also ran on the Independence and Working Families lines.

He has served as attorney for the Town of Huntington since 2002. He is also an attorney in private practice, concentrating on labor-management relations, collective bargaining, arbitration, civil litigation, civil RICO, real estate, trust and estates, and election law, in addition to a general commercial practice.

—Patrick Verel

Gabelli Student Entrepreneurs Help the Good Times Roll

With the slogan "Whether you are raving or behaving, FURI Rental has you covered," Gabelli School of Business students Ross Garlick and Alex Bourland are looking to make it easier for Fordham students to rent essentials for dorm living.

The pair started FURI rental, which rents Swiffer wet jets, air mattresses and laser light projectors, and were recently featured in an article in The idea is to provides items most college students need for when visitors stay over night, but don’t often have on hand.
—Patrick Verel

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Toast to Those Who Have Seen a Century

Top Row from left to right:Willie Diament, 102; Susan Schrag, 101 years old; Ann Collins, 104 years old; Junius Barber, 99 years old; Henrietta Johnson, 102 years old. Front Row from left to right: Irving Kahn, 106 years old; Lilian Sarno, 103 years old; Marie Mantel (age uncertain), Mary Glen, 103 years old, Dorothy Silberstien, 101 years old
It is a rare event to have even one centenarian in the room; but on Sunday, Nov. 11, there were 10 centenarians in the Lowenstein Center's 12th-floor Lounge at a reception to honor a Fordham University centenarian study headed by Daniela Jopp, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychology.

The reception was attended by centenarians, their families and friends, researchers, and some members from the Brookdale and X Prize Foundations who supported the study.

The goal of the Fordham Centenarian Study is to document what it means to live at age 100 and above, and to raise awareness around the growing but little-studied population.

Jopp detailed results from her two-year study, including the challenges and psychological strengths of centenarians, and honored the unique stories of the individuals who were able to attend the event.

Grant Campany, senior director of Archon Genomics X Prize, gave a presentation on their "100 Over 100" competition, and its role in identifying rare genes that increase longevity and good health.

Two centenarians were interviewed before those in attendance and shared their feelings about longevity.

To read more about Jopp's study, see Inside Fordham's article on her research.

Kate White Shares Her Secrets to Having It All

Next week, former Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Kate White comes to Fordham to share the "Go big, or go home" advice that launched her to the top.

Secrets to Having It All
Monday, Nov. 19
6:30 p.m.
Pope Auditorium | Lincoln Center Campus

In addition to leading Cosmo for 14 years, White is a prolific author, having published four smart and savvy career guides, two thrillers, and a bestselling mystery series.

White's discussion about her career and her newest how-to guide, I Shouldn't Be Telling You This: Success Secrets Every Gutsy Girl Should Know (HarperCollins, 2012), is hosted by the Graduate School of Education (GSE) and the Center for Communication.

For the full story and information about the event, read the story on GSE's blog.

— Joanna Klimaski

Monday, November 12, 2012

New Law School Tops Out

The final beam being secured at 8:52a.m., on Monday, November 12.
Photo by Thomas Walsh
At 8:52 a.m. this morning, November 12, the final steel beam of the new law school building was fastened into place. The new structure has been gaining steady attention over the the past two and a half years as it continues to steadily rise. The cast stone panels cladding the facade are quickly racing up after the steel, leaving quite an impression on theatergoers at Lincoln Center Plaza. The $250 million building, designed by the firm of Pei Cobb Freed, broke ground on February 3, 2011, and is scheduled to be completed by Fall, 2014, and will add 468,000 square feet to the Lincoln Center Campus.

The northwest corner receives the final beam.
Photo by Thomas Walsh
A ceremony commemorating the topping out will be held this Friday and will be officiated by Joseph M. McShane, S.J., the president of Fordham, and Michael M. Martin, dean of Fordham Law School.  

Friday, November 9, 2012

Fordham's Resident "Wild Man" Is Back for More

When Matthew Maguire, the head of Fordham University's theater program, performed his one-man show "Wild Man" in January 2010, the New York Times lauded it in a review as an "affable, absorbing, buzz-inducing production."

Maguire is back again, with "Wild Man in Rome," a new incarnation of that play. Here's what he has to say about the production, which will be directed by Elizabeth Margid:

"The Wild Man runs a gauntlet to escape the Devil, and his flight takes us on special tour of the Eternal City.  Wild Man in Rome asks:  Where is our wild side and how do we unleash it?"

"Wild Man in Rome" will run November 14, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21, 23, and 24 at 8 p.m.

Wild Project

195 E. 3rd Street, between Aves A and B.
Tickets are $18, $13 for students
For tickets, visit or call (212) 352-3101 

—Patrick Verel

Dean Vaughan Receives Lifetime Achievement Award

Peter Vaughan, Ph.D., dean of GSS
On Nov. 7, the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Foundation honored Peter Vaughan, Ph.D., dean of the Graduate School of Social Service (GSS) with the Knee/Wittman Lifetime Achievement award for his efforts in social work education, military social work, and social work with aging.

Vaughan was presented with the 2011 award, which was announced last June, at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. at the NASW headquarters. The awards recognize individuals who are models of excellence and have made significant contributions in the field of health and mental health.

Vaughan has served as dean of GSS since October 2000. Previously he was the associate dean for academic programs and associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Work.

Under Dean Vaughan's leadership, the GSS has become Fordham's highest-ranking school, named No. 11 in the nation among graduate schools of social work by U.S. News & World Report.

"Dr. Peter Vaughan has served our profession with extreme sensitivity, skill, and respect for professional values, organizational vision, and compassion for the vulnerable who are so often put aside or ignored in our society," said Julia Watkins, outgoing executive director of the Council on Social Work Education. "He never hesitates to step forward and make a commitment to the work at hand."

"Peter Vaughan has dedicated his life to serving others both in the military and out," said Robert Arnold, director of the NASW Foundation. "The Social Work profession has been fortunate to have such a dedicated worker."

The NASW is the largest membership organization of professional social workers and has nearly 145,000 members nationwide.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Twins Travel the World on The Amazing Race

Natalie and Nadiya Anderson, twin sisters and 2008 graduates of the Gabelli School of Business, are on a global adventure as one of 11 teams competing in The Amazing Race.

The TV show pits each two-member team against the others in a series of challenges—both mental and physical—on a grueling monthlong trek around the world. Teams are gradually eliminated from the competition as the show progresses, and the first team to reach the final destination will win $1 million.

The twins, who were born in Queens and raised in Sri Lanka, won the second leg of the race, shown in the episode “Long Hair, Don’t Care.” The episode, which aired on Oct. 7 on CBS, began in Shanghai, China, where Nadiya sported a maroon 2007 Fordham football Patriot League Champions T-shirt. After traveling from China to Surabaya, Indonesia, the twins completed several challenges—including racing bulls on Madura Island, making balloon toys for kids while riding a stationary pedicab, and transporting and displaying fish at a market—to take the lead in the race.

Nadiya and Natalie showed even more school spirit in the Oct. 28 episode. Nadiya wore her Fordham football shirt again and Natalie donned a gray T-shirt with maroon Fordham lettering for the whole episode, which featured The Amazing Race teams completing challenges at different sites in Bangladesh. The twins finished the day in third place.

“Right now we’re the only girl-girl team left. Every other team either has some powerhouse man or two men and we’re not only hanging with them, we’re beating them, which feels amazing,” Nadiya said in the episode.

“So we’re not going anywhere,” added Natalie.

The Amazing Race airs Sundays on CBS at 8 p.m. EST.

—Rachel Buttner

How Did the Pollsters Fare?

On Tuesday, President Barack Obama earned a second term in the White House with a clear victory in the Electoral College but only 50 percent of the popular vote. It’s a percentage that political scientists projected long before voters went to the polls, said Costas Panagopoulos, Ph.D., director of Fordham University’s Center for Electoral Politics and Democracy.

On Oct. 23, Panagopoulos discussed various presidential election-forecasting models and shared the latest polling data with a gathering of alumni and friends at the Hotel Sofitel. “2012: A Race Odyssey” marked the New York City debut of Fordham at the Forefront, a new series of events sponsored by the Office of Alumni Relations.

“The median forecast is an estimate of 50.6 percent for Obama, a very slight advantage for the president,” said Panagopoulos, assistant professor of political science at Fordham, and director of the University’s graduate program in elections and campaign management, “But depending on what states those votes are in could end up deciding the outcome of the election.”
Costas Panagopoulos, Ph.D.

Panagopoulos added: “Political scientists are actually quite good at predicting what will happen in presidential elections.”

(See what polling organization made the top of the list of Panagopoulos' rankings of accuracy in pre-election polling.)

For the 2008 presidential election, nine out of 10 national forecasters predicted Obama winning the two-party popular vote. Alan Abramowitz, the Alben W. Barkley Professor of Political Science at Emory University, projected in his Time for a Change model that John McCain would get 45.7 percent of the two-party vote in 2008. “McCain ultimately got 46.3 percent of the major party vote,” said Panagopoulos. “[The model was] only off by half a percentage point.” In the 2012 forecasts, Abramowitz projected Obama winning 50.6 percent of the popular vote.

“Some of these models were estimated three, four months, sometimes almost up to a year before Election Day, before we even knew who the candidates were,” Panagopoulos said. “It may cause you to wonder if campaigns matter at all if you can come this close to predicting what’s going to happen long before the campaign unfolds.”

The Fordham at the Forefront series was launched on Oct. 1 in Atlanta, where Panagopoulos also spoke about the presidential debates and campaigns. More than 65 alumni attended the New York lecture and reception, representing nine out of Fordham’s 10 schools and colleges and a wide range of class years.

The Office of Alumni Relations intends to host several Forefront events throughout the year in the New York City metro area and around the country, highlighting Fordham faculty members’ expertise in such areas as trust in business, sustainability, and healthcare reform.

“Alumni will always be able to count on Fordham at the Forefront for an engaging presentation and discussion about things that matter in the world,” said Michael Griffin, assistant vice president for alumni relations. “We want to deliver lifelong learning to Fordham alumni and we want to demonstrate Fordham’s leadership in areas of universal significance.”

—Rachel Buttner

Monday, November 5, 2012

New Issue of CURA Now Online

The sixth issue of CURA, the literary magazine of art and action  published by Fordham's creative writing program, is now live at

This issue, which is the first of the year, features submissions such as poetry by C. Dale Young and Gabrielle Calvocoressi, a multimedia Invention for two voices by Hyejung Kook, and a painting by Edward del Rosario.

All CURA 2012 - 2013 publishing proceeds directly benefit The Doe Fund, which helps homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals create brighter futures for themselves through its centerpiece initiative, Ready, Willing & Able.  

—Patrick Verel