2017 Spring Series by Institute for Religion, Politics and Culture

Institute for Religion, Politics and Culture announces its new Spring 2017 series entitled “Faith And” at Washington College in Chestertown. The six-part series features:

Faith and Leadership
Al Sikes, former Chair of the Federal Communications Commission
“Faith & Leadership: A Discussion of a Life of Public Service”
6:00 PM, Wednesday, March 22
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College, Chestertown

Faith, Politics & The Ivory Tower
Josh Dunn, Director, Center for the Society of Government and the Individual, University of Colorado, Colorado Springs
Faith, Politics & The Ivory Tower: Conservatives and Higher Education
5:00 PM, Friday, March 24
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College, Chestertown

Faith & Science
JP Moorland, Distinguished Professor ofPhilosophy, Talbot School of Theology, Biola University
7:00 PM, Thursday, April 6
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College,
Chestertown

Faith Law & Liberty
Shannon Holzer, award winning author and scholar
7:30 PM, Wednesday, April 12
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College,
Chestertown

Faith & The Emotions
James K. A. Smith, Gary and Henrietta Byker, Chair in Applied Reformed Theology and Worldview, Calvin College
6:30 PM, Tuesday, April 18
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College,
Chestertown

Faith & Music
Andrew Balio, Principal Trumpet, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Director of the True Symphony Institute
6:00 PM. Tuesday, May 3
Litrenta Hall, 1st Floor of Toll Science Center, Washington College,
Chestertown

March 1 Talk About the Origin of the Solar System

Myriam TelusWhat can meteorites tell us about the solar system’s formation? A lot, it turns out. If you want to learn more, listen to Myriam Telus talk about “Cosmochemistry: Understanding the Origin of the Solar System,” on Wednesday, March 1 at 5 p.m. in Litrenta Lecture Hall, of the campus’ Toll Science Center.

Free and open to the public, this talk will focus on some of the major questions about the early solar system: What is it made up of? When and under what conditions it form? How has it changed over time?

Telus is a postdoctoral research fellow of the Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, Carnegie Institution for Science, where she employs chemical and isotopic analyses of meteorites and their components to study the early system. She will soon take on the role of assistant professor at University of California in Santa Cruz.

The talk is sponsored by the Earth and Planetary Science Fund and the McLain Program for Environmental Studies.

 

Seven Books Named as Finalists for the 2017 George Washington Prize

In celebration of George Washington’s 285th birthday, seven books published in 2016 by the country’s most prominent historians have been named finalists for the George Washington Prize. The annual award recognizes the past year’s best-written works on the nation’s founding era, especially those that have the potential to advance broad public understanding of early American history.

Created in 2005 by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, George Washington’s Mount Vernon, and Washington College, the $50,000 George Washington Prize is one of the nation’s largest and most notable literary awards, and this year’s finalists include past Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winners.

The finalists’ books combine depth of scholarship and broad expanse of inquiry with vivid prose that exposes the complexities of our founding narrative.Through compelling storytelling, the authors introduce readers to citizen soldiers and statesmen, artists and frontiersmen, heroes and traitors, loyalists and rebels—the ordinary, the ambitious, and the exceptional men and women who, in the chaos and contradictions of revolution, imagined a different world order and gave shape to a new nation.

Written to engage a wide public audience, the books provide a “go-to” reading list for anyone interested in learning more about George Washington, his contemporaries, and the drama of the revolutionary founding of the United States of America.

The 2017 George Washington Prize finalists are:

T.H. Breen, George Washington’s Journey: The President Forges a New Nation (Simon and Schuster)
Annette Gordon-Reed and Peter S. Onuf, “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs”: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination (Liveright Publishing)
Jane Kamensky, A Revolution in Color: The World of John Singleton Copley (W.W. Norton)
Michael J. Klarman, The Framers’ Coup: The Making of the United States Constitution (Oxford University Press)
Mark Edward Lender and Garry Wheeler Stone, Fatal Sunday: George Washington, the Monmouth Campaign, and the Politics of Battle (University of Oklahoma Press)
Nathaniel Philbrick, Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold, and the Fate of the American Revolution (Viking)
Alan Taylor, American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750-1804 (W.W. Norton)

A distinguished jury comprised of notable historians David Preston, Kathleen DuVal, and Nick Bunker, selected the finalists from a field of nearly 60 books. The winner of the 2017 prize will be announced, and all finalists recognized, at a black-tie gala on Thursday, May 25 at George Washington’s Mount Vernon.More information about the George Washington Prize is available at washcoll.edu/gwbookprize.

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHIES

T.H. BREEN is currently the James Marsh Professor-at-large at the University of Vermont. He is the author of 11 books on U.S. history, many of them prizewinners. Recent works include The Marketplace of Revolution and American Insurgents, American Patriots.

ANNETTE GORDON-REED is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Hemingses of Monticello, which also won the 2009 George Washington Prize and the National Book Award. She is the Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History at Harvard Law School.

PETER S. ONUF is the Thomas Jefferson Memorial Foundation Professor Emeritus at the University of Virginia and the senior research historian at the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies. Onuf also is a cohost for the radio show BackStory with the American History Guys.

JANE KAMENSKY is Professor of History and Pforzheimer Foundation Director of the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University. She is a historian of early America, the Atlantic world, and the age of revolutions. Her many books include The Exchange Artist, which was a finalist for the 2009 George Washington Prize.

MICHAEL J. KLARMAN is the Kirkland & Ellis Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and author of the Bancroft Prize-winning From Jim Crow to Civil Rights. He has won numerous awards for his teaching and scholarship, primarily in the areas of Constitutional law and Constitutional history.

MARK EDWARD LENDER is Professor Emeritus of History at Kean University in Union, New Jersey, and the coauthor of A Respectable Army and Citizen Soldier.

GARRY WHEELER STONE is retired as Regional Historian for the State Park Service and Historian for the Monmouth Battlefield State Park with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

NATHANIEL PHILBRICK is the New York Times bestselling author of In the Heart of the Sea, winner of the National Book Award; Mayflower, finalist for the Pulitzer Prize; Bunker Hill, winner of the New England Book Award; Sea of Glory; The Last StandWhy Read Moby Dick?; and Away Off Shore.

ALAN TAYLOR is the Thomas Jefferson Professor of History at the University of Virginia. He is the author of many acclaimed books in early American history and has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize in History. His most recent book, The Internal Enemy, won the Pulitzer Prize and was a finalist for the National Book Award and the 2014 George Washington Prize.

ABOUT THE SPONSORS OF THE GEORGE WASHINGTON PRIZE

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

Founded in 1994 by philanthropists Richard Gilder and Lewis E. Lehrman, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is the nation’s leading nonprofit American history education organization. The Institute’s mission is to promote the knowledge and understanding of American history through educational programs and resources for teachers, students, and the general public. As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit public charity, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History is supported through the generosity of individuals, corporations, and foundations. The Institute’s programs have been recognized by awards from the White House, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Organization of American Historians.

For more information: www.gilderlehrman.org.

George Washington’s Mount Vernon

Since 1860, more than 85 million visitors have made George Washington’s Mount Vernon the most popular historic home in America. A privately-owned national treasure, Mount Vernon is maintained and operated by the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association. Since purchasing the estate from the Washington family and assuming stewardship in 1858, the Association has embraced a heroic mission to preserve, protect, and maintain the estate for the American people, relying exclusively on private donations, admission fees, and restaurant and retail proceeds. Through robust education and outreach programs, the Association expands awareness about the exceptional life and character of George Washington, sustaining his legacy through research, interpretation, and public education. In experiences on the estate and through its digital outreach platforms, Mount Vernon strives to preserve George Washington’s place in history as “First in War, First in Peace, and First in the Hearts of His Countrymen.” For more information: www.mountvernon.org.

Washington College was founded in 1782, the first institution of higher learning established in the new republic. George Washington was not only a principal donor to the college, but also a member of its original governing board. He received an honorary degree from the college in June 1789, two months after assuming the presidency. The college’s C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, which administers the George Washington Prize, is an innovative center for the study of history, culture, and politics, and fosters excellence in the art of written history through fellowships, prizes, and student programs. For more information: www.washcoll.edu.

MD Department of Commerce Awards Washington College an E-Nnovation Grant

For the second year in a row, Washington College has been awarded a grant from the Maryland Department of Commerce as part of its Maryland

E-Nnovation Initiative (MEI), a program designed to spur basic and applied research in scientific and technical fields. Coupled with gifts of $1 million from donors, the MEI grant of $944,000 will support nearly $2 million for an endowed chair in sustainable food systems for the College’s new Eastern Shore Food Lab.

The MEI grant was made possible by a pledge of $1 million from Daryl Swanstrom ’69, a member of the College’s Board of Visitors and Governors, with transitional funding by board members Edward P. Nordberg ’82, Ann Horner ’80, and Patrick W. Allender P ’11, who helped meet the immediate grant requirements.

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Bill Schindler, shown here teaching students about foraging for foods from trees and plants that grow on campus and nearby, will be the first chair in sustainable food systems.

“Problem-solving and analytical skills are the heart of the liberal arts education. When our students bring those skills to bear on innovative opportunities like the Eastern Shore Food Lab, creative solutions to complex problems are the result,” says College President Sheila Bair. “The funds from our generous donors—Daryl Swanstrom, Ed Nordberg, Ann Horner, and Patrick Allender—and the Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative will help Washington College propel new thinking and action toward creating more sustainable food systems on the Eastern Shore and well beyond.”

The Eastern Shore Food Lab (ESFL) will be an interdisciplinary research, teaching, and innovation laboratory dedicated to studying and experimenting with sustainable food systems, using the Eastern Shore food-shed as its primary context. By studying the resources unique to the region, based on weather, climate, soil chemistry, and microbial biology—and fusing historical foodways with modern technologies—faculty, students, and collaborative researchers will re-envision our food system, from how we define food to how we grow and prepare it. The lab will address issues of food, diet, health, access, sustainability, and human and environmental relationships through innovative teaching and learning, cutting edge research, and meaningful food production. Ultimately, although the lab’s work will spring from the local, the solutions it envisions will be scalable to other food-sheds around the country and the world.

Funded through the MEI grant, the first chair of the ESFL will be Bill Schindler, chair of the Department of Anthropology and associate professor of anthropology. A behavioral science expert in primitive technologies and foodways—food production, dietary health, and cultural meanings of food—Schindler is especially interested in how the ESFL can work as a catalyst to change modern Western perceptions of food.

Created by the General Assembly in 2014, the MEI program aims to spur basic and applied research in scientific and technical fields at the state’s colleges and universities. This year, in addition to Washington College, the University of Maryland-Baltimore, Hood College, and Stevenson University were endowed a total of $8.3 million in four new research professorships. The schools raised $4.3 million in private funding for each chair, and Maryland Commerce approved matching grants of $4 million to support the endowments.

In 2016, Washington College received an MEI grant of $1 million to create a newly endowed position at the Center for Environment & Society, the chief of entrepreneurial science.

About Washington College

Founded in 1782, Washington College is the tenth oldest college in the nation and the first chartered under the new Republic. It enrolls approximately 1,450 undergraduates from more than 35 states and a dozen nations. With an emphasis on hands-on, experiential learning in the arts and sciences, and more than 40 multidisciplinary areas of study, the College is home to nationally recognized academic centers in the environment, history, and writing. Learn more at washcoll.edu.

Maryland Senator Mikulski and News Commentator Roberts at Washington College

Milkulski-web

Former Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski

Two influential and iconic Washington women—former Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski and news commentator and political analyst Cokie Roberts—will kick off a new series at Washington College on Friday, March 3.The event launches a new series of programs commemorating the upcoming centennial of the amendment that gave American women the right to vote.

In “Climbing the Hill,” Roberts will lead a conversation with Mikulski about the changing roles and influence of women in public life over the course of her 40-year congressional career. John Harwood of CNBC and The New York Times will introduce the speakers.

The free, public event, sponsored by the Harwood Lecture Series,is at 5 p.m. in Decker Theatre, Gibson Center for the Arts. It will be followed by a reception in the Underwood Lobby, and copies of Roberts’ books will be available for purchase and signing.

The Hon. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., served in the U.S. Congress longer than any other woman in American history. At her retirement in 2017, she had represented Maryland for 30 years in the Senate, preceded by 10 in the House of Representatives. The first woman to chair the powerful Appropriations Committee, she began her career in public service as a member of the Baltimore City Council, and while she rose to the heights of power in Congress, she never neglected her Baltimore roots, a commitment that earned her enormous loyalty in her home state. Her legacy includes major achievements in women’s pay equity and healthcare, as well as in advancing political engagement for new generations of American women. In 2015 she received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor. She is now professor of public policy at Johns Hopkins University.

Cokie-Roberts-web

News Commentator and Political Analyst Cokie Roberts

Cokie Roberts, an acclaimed reporter and commentator for ABC News and National Public Radio, served as NPR’s congressional correspondent for more than 10 years. From 1996-2002 she and Sam Donaldson co-anchored the weekly ABC interview program This Week. In her more than 40 years in broadcasting, she has won three Emmys and has been inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame. American Women in Radio and Television named her one of the 50 greatest women in the history of broadcasting. A prolific writer, she has written six New York Times bestsellers, several of them on women’s political lives in early America—We Are Our Mother’s Daughters, Founding Mothers, Ladies of Liberty, and Capital Dames: The Civil War and the Women of Washington, 1848-1868.Her children’s book Founding Mothers, illustrated by Caldecott award winner Diane Goode, was also a bestseller, and the children’s version of Ladies of Liberty, also illustrated by Goode, was published in December 2016.

The event, sponsored by the Harwood Series in American Journalism and the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience, leads off a new series at Washington College, the Women’s Centennial. The series looks ahead to the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, which gave American women the right to vote. Over the next four years, leading up to the 2020 anniversary itself, the Women’s Centennial will bring outstanding American women to campus, honoring and chronicling the achievements of women in leadership and public life from 1920 to the present day.

With its distinctive connection to the history of American freedom and its tradition of educating women and men as citizen leaders—and now under the leadership of its first female president, Sheila Bair—Washington College is uniquely suited to host the Women’s Centennial. The College has deep traditions of gender inclusivity: in 1783, it hired the first recorded female faculty member in American higher education, the art instructor Elizabeth Callister Peale. In May 1942, Washington College bestowed an honorary degree on First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.

About the Washington College’s Harwood Lecture Series in American Journalism

The series was established to honor the distinguished career of the late Washington Post columnist and ombudsman Richard Harwood, who served as a trustee of the College, as well as a teacher and mentor of undergraduate journalists. The Harwood series has featured David Axelrod, Susan Goldberg, Tom Wheeler, Howard Dean, Robert Novak, John McCain, James Carville, Judy Woodruff, Al Hunt, Mark Shields, and Paul Gigot, among others. The journalistic tradition has also continued in Harwood’s own family; his son, John Harwood, has had a distinguished career as a political correspondent and columnist for CNBC, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal.

About the C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience

The College’s C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience is dedicated to fostering innovative approaches to the American past and present. Through educational programs, scholarship, and public outreach, and with a special focus on written history, the Starr Center seeks to bridge the divide between the academic world and the public at large.

About Washington College

Founded in 1782, Washington College is the tenth oldest college in the nation and the first chartered under the new Republic. It enrolls approximately 1,450 undergraduates from more than 35 states and a dozen nations. With an emphasis on hands-on, experiential learning in the arts and sciences, and more than 40 multidisciplinary areas of study, the College is home to nationally recognized academic centers in the environment, history, and writing. Learn more at washcoll.edu.

Colonial American History Through the Eyes of the Anishinaabeg

Michael-McDonnellYou’ve probably never heard of the Anishinaabeg tribe, but their influence is present in much of what you know about early American history. And at a February 16 lecture, you can learn more when Michael McDonnell presents “Mastering Empires: The Anishinaabeg of the Great Lakes and the Making of America.”

Sponsored by the Washington College Department of History, the talk takes place at 4:30 in Litrenta Lecture Hall on the WC campus. A book signing will follow, and the public is welcome.

McDonnell is an associate professor of history at the University of Sydney, Australia. He is the co-editor of Remembering the Revolution: Memory, History, and Nation-Making from Independence to the Civil War, and the author of The Politics of War: Race, Class, and Conflict in Revolutionary Virginia, winner of the 2008 NSW Premier’s History Prize, as well as Masters of Empire: Great Lakes Indians and the Making of North America, winner of the 2016 Michigan State History Award and the Western History Association’s Robert M. Utley Prize.

In his talk, McDonnell will reveal the pivotal role played by the native peoples of the Great Lakes in the history of North America. Though less well known today than the Iroquois or Sioux, the Anishinaabeg, who lived across Lakes Michigan and Huron, were equally influential. By dictating terms at trading posts and frontier forts, they played a crucial part in the making of early America, including, as McDonnell argues, ultimately helping to light the fuse that would ignite the American Revolution.

Mary Ball Washington’s Place in History on February 9

Current events in Washington, D.C. and around the world have brought attention to women’s rights, but women’s roles in shaping and defining American history span centuries. Distinguished author and professor Martha Saxton is a leading scholar in the field of gender studies and women’s history, and she is the spring 2017 Patrick Henry Writing Fellow at Washington College’s C.V. Starr Center for the Study of the American Experience.

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Martha Saxton

Her most recent work is on the life of Mary Ball Washington—the mother of founding father George Washington. To kick off her residency, Saxton will give a presentation on “The Widow Washington,” at 5:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 9 in Hynson Lounge, Hodson Hall, on the College campus. Sponsored by the Starr Center and the Rose O’Neill Literary House, the lecture is free and open to the public.

Saxton’s upcoming book The Widow Washington is a biographical study of Mary Ball Washington. Minimally educated, Mary Ball left few records.Generations of George Washington’s historians have filled in around the sparse evidence that remains about her with increasingly unpleasant and frequently unfounded interpretations of her and her relationship with her son. Saxton’s book reevaluates this picture against the background of her life that spanned the dramatic changes of 18th-century Virginia. An orphan by the age of 12, Mary Ball went on to become a wife, mother, widow, planter, slave-owner, and devoted Anglican. Historians have tended to see George Washington as a self-made man, but Mary’s exacting temperament and reliance on her son in early widowhood to help her steer the family through precarious times strongly shaped his ideas about duty and his outsized sense of responsibility.

The genesis for The Widow Washington grew out of Saxton’s Being Good, Women’s Moral Values in Early America (2003), which had a section on 18th–century widows in the Chesapeake region. More broadly, the book is part of Saxton’s lifelong interest in locating the lives of women within their historical and social contexts so that their struggles with prevailing conventions can help restore to their memories meanings that have been lost. This was the goal of her earlier biographies— of the sex symbol, Jayne Mansfield (1976) and Louisa May Alcott (1977).

Martha Saxton retired in 2016, after teaching at Amherst College for 20 years in the History and Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies Departments. She has also taught at the Institute for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia and for several years in the Inside/Out Program at the Hampshire County House of Corrections in Northampton. Saxton has garnered numerous awards and fellowships for her work as a scholar and a teacher and has published in the Women’s Review of Books, Journal of American History, and William and Mary Quarterly among other scholarly publications.

Based in an office at the Starr Center in the circa-1746 Custom House on the Chester River, Saxton will work on completing her book and teach a seminar in the Department of English. The course, “From Biography to Fiction: Transformation and Revision,” explores the relationship between biography and the imaginative process of writing fiction using the accounts of three well-known early American novelists: Catherine Maria Sedgwick, Louisa May Alcott, and Harriet Beecher Stowe.

Saxton will live in the restored Patrick Henry House, a 1730s-era house in Chestertown’s historic district. Washington College acquired the Patrick Henry Fellows’ Residence in January 2007 through a generous gift from the Barksdale-Dabney-Patrick Henry Family Foundation, which was established by the Nuttle family of Talbot County, direct descendants of the patriot Patrick Henry.

Launched by the Starr Center in 2008, the Patrick Henry Fellowship aims to encourage reflection on the links between American history and contemporary culture, and to foster the literary art of historical writing. It is co-sponsored by the Rose O’Neill Literary House, Washington College’s center for literature and the literary arts. The Patrick Henry Writing Fellowship’s funding is permanently endowed by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, with further support provided by the Starr Foundation, the Hodson Trust, and other donors.

Founded in 1782 under the patronage of George Washington, Washington College is a private, independent college of liberal arts and sciences located in colonial Chestertown on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. The College’s C.V. Starr Center explores the complexities of the American experience through collaborative and creative approaches to understanding the past. For more information on the Center and the Patrick Henry Writing Fellowship, visit http://starrcenter.washcoll.edu.

WC’s Kohl Gallery Opens 2017 With a Group Exhibition

Kohl Gallery at Washington College begins 2017 with the group exhibition What’s Next?. Opening on the heels of the presidential inauguration, this show presents works that engage—either directly or obliquely—with issues that were in high circulation during the recent election cycle. Featuring Larry Cook, Ben Marcin, Carolina Mayorga, Christie Neptune, and Rachel Schmidt, the exhibition will run from January 26 to March 10. The participating artists will take part in a panel discussion on Jan. 26 in Litrenta Lecture Hall at 4:30 p.m., followed by an opening reception from 5:30 to 7:30 in Kohl Gallery.

Silver Run Ben Marcin[2]

Ben Marcin, Silver Run

What’s Next? seeks to highlight the ability of artists to articulate and respond meaningfully to some of our historical moment’s most pressing problems. Through photography, video, installation, and performance, the works on display grapple with politically salient issues and topics including climate change, the economy, identity, immigration, and race. Collectively, the selected works prompt us to think critically about the urgent and multifaceted question, “what’s next?”

Larry Cook received his MFA from George Washington University in 2013. A 2016 Sondheim finalist and former Hamiltonian Fellow (2013-2015), he has been included in various group shows including It Takes A Nation at the Katzen Arts Center (Washington, D.C., 2016); To Be Black in White America at GalerieMyrtis (Baltimore 2016) and Artist Citizen at Hemphill Fine Art (2013). Cook has also had solo presentations at Hamiltonian Gallery (2015), (e)merge art fair (2014), Stamp Gallery (2014) and Pleasant Plains Workshop (2013). In 2014, he had a large-scale public artwork on view as part of Ceremonies of Dark Men, part of the 5 X 5 Project Public Art, curated by A.M. Weaver and organized by the DC Commission on the Arts. A native of Landover, Maryland, Larry has taught photography at The George Washington University and American University, and is currently a visual art teacher at Northwestern High School in Hyattsville. He is represented by GalerieMyrtis in Baltimore.

Ben Marcin was born in Augsburg, Germany. Many of his photographic essays explore the idea of home and the passing of time.“Last House Standing” and “The Camps” have received wide press both nationally and abroad (The Paris Review, iGnant, La Repubblica, Slate, Wired magazine). More recently, he has been exploring the myriad structures of the urban core in series like Towers, Street and Deconstructions. His photographs have been shown at a number of national galleries and venues including the Baltimore Museum of Art; the Delaware Art Museum; The Griffin Museum of Photography in Winchester, Massachusetts; The Center For Fine Art Photography in Ft. Collins, Colorado; The Photographic Resource Center in Boston; and the Houston Center for Photography. “Last House Standing (And Other Stories)” was featured in a 2014 solo exhibit at the C. Grimaldis Gallery in Baltimore. His work is also in several important collections including the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Carolina Mayorga, a Colombian-born and naturalized American citizen, has exhibited her work nationally and internationally for the last 15 years. Her work is part of national and international collections and has been reviewed in publications in South America, Europe and the US. Mayorga’s artwork addresses issues of social and political content. Comments on migration, war, and identity translate into video, performance, site-specific installations, and two-dimensional media in the form of photography and drawing. The artist lives and works in Washington, D.C.

Christie Neptune, Pulling At My Labels, 2016

Christie Neptune, Pulling At My Labels, 2016

Christie Neptune is a graduate of Fordham University and has been featured in publications including Les Femmes Folles, HYSTERIA: What Was Taken, Psychology Today, JUX- TAPOZ , AFROPUNK, The Washington Post and VICE. Recent shows include a solo exhibition at the Hamiltonian Gallery, Washington, D.C (2016); and Five Myles Gallery, Brooklyn, New York (2015). She has been included in group exhibitions at the Queens Museum of Art (2016); A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn (2016); Yeelen Gallery, Miami, Florida (2015); The Hamiltonian Gallery, Washington, D.C. (2015); UnionDocs, Brooklyn, (2015); the Momentum Technology Film Fest at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey (2014); and 440 Gallery, Brooklyn (2011).

Rachel Schmidt explores how the rapidly increasing rate of urban growth has forced the hand of evolution, generating urban versions of animals and plants and modifying whole ecosystems. Rachel is currently an independent museum professional and works with local D.C. arts organizations, non-profits, and museums. From 2011-16, she was an artist in residence at the Arlington Arts Center, and from 2012-16 she was an exhibition specialist and exhibition coordinator at the Smithsonian Hirshhorn Museum. Rachel earned a Masters in Fine Arts from the Mount Royal School of Art at the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2007.

Kohl Gallery is located on the first floor of the Gibson Center for the Arts at Washington College. It is open Monday through Wednesday, 1 to 6 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information, please email: kohl_gallery@washcoll.edu.

WC Makes Kiplinger’s List of Best Value in Colleges and Universities

For the first time, Washington College has been ranked among colleges and universities providing the best combination of economic value and academic quality in the annual Top 300 Best College Values by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. In addition to ranking 232nd among the top 300 institutions out of 1,200 surveyed, Washington College is listed 91st among the top 100 liberal arts colleges nationally.

“Washington College has long been known for its academic excellence; now, we are gaining traction through our steady efforts to control costs and focus on affordability,” says College President Sheila Bair. “Our tuition freeze for the past year was certainly a factor in this achievement. So was our performance within the salary yardstick metric, as our graduates go on to careers that provide excellent income. I’m extremely proud and gratified to see Washington College in Kiplinger’s 2017 rankings, as it directly reflects our hard work to make an exceptional liberal arts education more accessible to all students.”

The Kiplinger’s rankings, which began in 1998, are particularly valuable because unlike other rankings, they do not include subjective criteria in their assessments. Using information on nearly 1,200 public and private institutions provided to Peterson’s College Data, Kiplinger’s quality measures—which are weighted at 55% of total points—include the admission rate, the percentage of students who return for sophomore year, the student-to-faculty ratio, and the four-year graduation rate. Cost criteria—weighted at 45%—include sticker price, financial aid, and average debt at graduation.

All of these factors reflect overarching parameters of competitiveness, success at graduating within four years, academic support, student debt, cost, and financial aid. To provide some measure of how an institution’s graduates fare in the real world, Kiplinger’s uses Education Department data on students who received federal financial aid and examines median income of those students 10 years after graduation.

“There’s no way around it: College is expensive, and it’s going to stay that way for a long time,” says Janet Bodnar, Editor of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance magazine. “So, with our rankings—which weigh affordability alongside academic quality—our goal is to help students and their parents understand what’s really worth the price. While some may have ranked higher than others, all 300 schools on the list are of extraordinary value, being chosen out of a universe of 1,200.”

Since her inauguration in September 2015, President Bair has made affordability and accessibility a primary mission of her administration through a series of initiatives. The tuition freeze, which was announced in September 2015, has now been followed with FixedFor4, which, beginning in fall 2017, will fix tuition for incoming students for all four years of their WC career.

In May, the College launched Dam the Debt, which reduced the federally subsidized loan debt of 119 qualifying seniors by an average of $2,630, a 10.2 percent reduction in their total federal loan burden. Eight more students graduating in the fall 2016 semester qualified for $22,000 in Dam the Debt relief with an average grant of $2,750, a reduction of 12.8 percent in their total federal loan burden.

In August, the first 16 students of George’s Brigade matriculated as part of the Class of 2020; these high-achieving, high-need, first-generation students will have their full tuition, room, board, and fees covered for all four years. Also in August, the College announced the Saver’s Scholarship, a College-matched award up to $2,500 annually, for students and families who use proceeds from a 529 or Educational Savings Account for tuition.

Kiplinger’s complete rankings are available at kiplinger.com/links/colleges and will appear in print in the February 2017 issue of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, on newsstands January 3.

About Washington College

Founded in 1782, Washington College is the tenth oldest college in the nation and the first chartered under the new Republic. It enrolls approximately 1,450 undergraduates from more than 35 states and a dozen nations. With an emphasis on hands-on, experiential learning in the arts and sciences, and more than 40 multidisciplinary areas of study, the College is home to nationally recognized academic centers in the environment, history, and writing. Learn more at washcoll.edu.

WC’s Dam the Debt Program Helps Seniors Graduating in Fall Semester

Dam the Debt, Washington College’s program to lower student loan debt, is back in action helping students who are graduating at the end of the fall 2016 semester. College President Sheila Bair today announced that the College will provide $22,000 for distribution among eight eligible graduating seniors who are carrying subsidized federal loan debt this semester.

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President Sheila Bair meets with some of the students who are eligible for the Dam the Debt program for fall 2016.

“I’m pleased to announce that we have continued to generate funding for this program through generous individual and corporate donors,” President Bair says. “Last spring, we provided $315,000 to eligible graduating seniors, and we are excited to continue this for students who are finishing up in this fall semester of 2016.”

Dam the Debt will reduce $22,000 in federally subsidized loans for eight graduating seniors from five states. Amounts vary depending upon the students’ loans, but the average reduction is $2,750. The students will receive a grant from the College toward their financial aid package intended to replace the amount of the students’ federally subsidized loans taken out for the fall 2016 semester. The average total federal loan debt—subsidized and unsubsidized—for students receiving the Dam the Debt grant is $21,419. As a result of the Dam the Debt grants, the students will see, on average, a 12.8 percent reduction in their total federal loan burden when they finish their Washington College career.

As one of her first initiatives to tackle the problem of student loan debt, President Bair inaugurated Dam the Debt last year, and to date the program has raised nearly $1.2 million committed over four years. Donors include BB&T, Avant, TD Bank, Santander Bank, blooom, Inc., and John and Peggy Bacon. The College hopes to raise at least $1 million more for future debt reductions for qualifying seniors who are graduating each semester. At its launch in May, the program reduced the federally subsidized loan debt of 119 qualifying seniors by an average of $2,630, a 10.2 percent reduction in their total federal loan burden.

Dam the Debt represents only one facet of Bair’s campaign to increase college affordability and access. In November, the College announced FixedFor4, a new plan that fixes tuition at the same rate for the entire four years of an undergraduate’s career at Washington College. In August, the first group of students in George’s Brigade matriculated as part of the Class of 2020; this program provides full tuition, room, and board to high-need, high-achieving students. Also in August, the College announced the Saver’s Scholarship, a College-matched award up to $2,500 annually, for students and families who use proceeds from a 529 or Educational Savings Account for tuition.

President Bair spearheaded these programs in response to the growing student debt crisis and to make college more accessible and affordable. As college degrees have become increasingly valuable, but wages have remained stagnant, many students and families have had to rely on financial aid to pay for higher education.

“The manner in which we at Washington College are committed to educating our students—with low teacher-to-student ratios, small class sizes, extensive opportunities for hands-on learning, one-on-one faculty mentoring, and post-graduate career and graduate school placement—is the best way to provide high-quality undergraduate education,” President Bair says. “Unfortunately, it is not inexpensive. So we are equally committed to finding creative, realistic ways to make this education more affordable for everyone.”

About Washington College

Founded in 1782, Washington College is the tenth oldest college in the nation. It enrolls approximately 1,450 undergraduates from more than 35 states and 40 nations. The College is located in the Colonial riverfront town of Chestertown, named by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as one of America’s most distinctive historic communities, and is located approximately 90 minutes from Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia. Learn more at washcoll.edu.