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Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship announces lineup for October 22 Think Big forum

By: Paul A. Kovach, Vice President for Public and Community Relations
August 2, 2010

PITTSBURGH (August 2, 2010) … “Innovation and sales are two of the most critical components to any successful business,” according to Rebecca Harris, Director for the Center of Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University (CWE), and these key traits will be the focus of CWE’s fifth annual Think Big Forum on Friday, October 22 at the University’s Shadyside Campus. Think Big will feature panel discussions with prominent local and regional women business executives and entrepreneurs who will address strategies that have enabled their companies to remain competitive in the marketplace.

The Think Big Forum will be held in the University’s Athletic Fitness Center from 7:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Registration is $45 per person and includes breakfast. More information is available at www.chatham.edu/cwe, by calling 412-365-1253 or emailing womens-entrepreneurship@chatham.edu.

Following a networking breakfast, keynote speaker Beth Kaplan, President and Chief Marketing and Merchandising Officer of GNC Inc., will present on “Innovation and Sales.” Headquartered in Pittsburgh, GNC has been recognized for its innovative marketing and sales campaigns, and its efforts to improve its marketing toward women was featured in a November 9, 2009 article in The New York Times.

Following Kaplan will be the first panel discussion on “Innovation and Entrepreneurship” with Amy Hancock, President and Owner ofAdvantageCare Rehabilitation, Advantage Home Health Services, and AdvantageCare Consulting, and Danielle Proctor, President and CEO ofAmelie Construction & Supply LLC, CEO and Owner and Founder ofhttp://www.corepilatesandyoga.com/ Core Pilates & Yoga, and General Manager of Fetch! Pet Care of North Pittsburgh. This panel will discuss specific strategies that these women used to grow their companies from ideas to multi-million dollar ventures, and how they continue to grow and use innovative strategies to stay competitive in today’s marketplace. Moderating the panel will be Nancy Polinsky Johnson, Publisher and Editor of SHADY AVE magazine.

The second panel discussion will address “Innovation & Media” and features Diana Block, Board of Directors, Former President and Co-Publisher of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Deborah L. Acklin, President and CEO-elect of WQED Multimedia Pittsburgh. This dynamic panel will address innovative strategies required by the media industry to maintain their competitiveness. Moderating the panel will be Lauren Lawley Head, Editor of the Pittsburgh Business Times.

Attendees from the Think Big Forums held over last four years have been from Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Lawrence, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland counties. Over 60% of past attendees are women business owners. These women are predominately in service sectors (architecture, marketing, public relations, human resources, healthcare and therapy, legal and financial services, communications, training, commercial cleaning, etc.) and are the presidents and/or founders of the business. The remaining 40% of attendees are middle and senior management from the corporate sector, including representatives from law firms, insurance brokers, healthcare management, financial institutions, government organizations, and transportation companies.

About the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship
The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University (CWE) provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs to start, develop, and significantly grow their businesses by utilizing Chatham resources, programs, and faculty expertise. CWE provides programming targeted toward local and regional women in business designed to advance and hone their professional skills. CWE teaches the art of thinking and acting entrepreneurially by focusing on innovation and creativity within the context of existing organizational environments. CWE also offers specific programs for both undergraduate and graduate students which can help them learn the skills they need to become successful entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, and successful women in business.

The mission of the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University is to educate, create economic opportunities, and foster entrepreneurial thinking for women entrepreneurs, women in business, and students. Current and initial funding for CWE provided by the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation. Initial funding for CWE was provided by the Lois Tack Thompson Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation.

Low-Res MFA program presents free reading and book signing by author Barbara Hurd on August 6

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
July 22, 2010

PITTSBURGH (July 22, 2010) … The Chatham University Low-Residency MFA in Creative Writing program will mark its 2010 residency with a free public reading by author Barbara Hurd on Friday, August 6. The evening will begin with a reception from 6:30-7:30 p.m. in the James Laughlin Music Hall, followed by Ms. Hurd’s keynote address titled “What We Talk about When We Talk about Nature Writing” from 7:30-9:00 p.m. with a book signing to follow. For more information contact Peter Oresick at 412-365-1264 or poresick@chatham.edu.

August 2-11 marks the Low-Res MFA in Creative Writing program’s second residency period, when students from the online program participate in intensive writing, studying and lecture sessions at Chatham’s Shadyside and Eden Hall campuses. Launched in 2008, the Low-Res MFA is a 39-credit program that can be completed in two years with two summer residencies of ten days each. The program grew from Chatham’s highly acclaimedresidency program and maintains the same innovative focus on nature, environment and travel writing. In lieu of writing workshops each term, students receive mentorships with a publishing writer.

Barbara Hurd is the author of Walking the Wrack Line: On Tidal Shifts and What Remains (2008); Entering the Stone: On Caves and Feeling Through the Dark (2003); The Singer’s Temple (2003); Stirring the Mud: On Swamps, Bogs, and Human Imagination (2001); and Objects in this Mirror (1994). Entering the Stone was selected as a Library Journal Best Natural History Book of the Year in 2003 and Stirring the Mud was selected as a Los Angeles Times Best Book of 2001.

Her essays have appeared in numerous journals including Best American Essays 1999, Best American Essays 2001, The Yale Review, The Georgia Review, Orion, Audubon and others. She is the recipient of an NEA Fellowship for Creative Nonfiction, two Pushcart Prizes, four Maryland Individual Artist Awards for Poetry, winner of the Sierra Club’s National Nature Writing Award, and a finalist for the Annie Dillard Award for Creative Nonfiction and the PEN/Jerard Award. Ms. Hurd teaches creative writing at Frostburg State University in Frostburg, MD and in the Stonecoast MFA program at the University of Southern Maine.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

Master of Physician Assistant Studies program hosts White Coat Ceremony for graduates this Saturday, July 24

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
July 22, 2010

PITTSBURGH (July 22, 2010) … This Saturday the Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) program will continue a graduation tradition at Chatham University. After two years of wearing a short white medical coat, the members of the MPAS Class of 2010 will receive their long white coats on July 24, 2010. This tradition symbolizes the move from student to medical provider and has been a time-honored tradition for the program. Along with MPAS faculty members coating each member of the class, the ceremony will include award presentations and remarks by John Laird, N.D., associate professor of MPAS. The ceremony will close with another tradition, the recitation of the Oath of Geneva administered by Luis Ramos, MS, PA-C, MPAS program director.

The Master of Physician Assistant Studies (MPAS) program at Chatham University provides academic and clinical training that prepares graduates to be certified and licensed to practice as extenders to the practicing physician, especially the primary care physician, in a competent and reliable manner.

Approximately 60 students per year are enrolled in the program. Students complete two didactic semesters at the new Chatham Eastside facility before beginning their clinical rotations at various sites in the greater Pittsburgh area, other parts of the US and around the globe.

Chatham welcomes Wendy Beckemeyer as new Vice President for Enrollment Management

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
July 21, 2010

PITTSBURGH (July 21, 2010) … Chatham University has hired Wendy Beckemeyer as its new Vice President for Enrollment Management. Ms. Beckemeyer has 23 years experience in college or university enrollment management and started as an Admissions Counselor at her alma mater, California Lutheran (Thousand Oaks, CA) in 1987 while also serving as that institution’s Head Softball Coach. Over the years, Ms. Beckemeyer has frequently presented at national conferences and provided enrollment management consulting advice. She has 17 years experience as a senior administrator, including 14 years as a VPEM. Her past institutions include California Lutheran, Cottey College (Nevada, Mo.), and Colby-Sawyer College (New London, NH).

At Chatham, Ms. Beckemeyer will be responsible for Enrollment Management, which includes not only recruiting students but identifying those who will succeed at Chatham and helping to retain them. Her previous success with retention initiatives and with data analysis, an area in which she is especially strong, demonstrates that she is very well qualified for that responsibility, according to the administration. Ms. Beckemeyer also will oversee Financial Aid at Chatham.

“I am delighted to join Chatham University’s dynamic, innovative leadership team,” Ms. Beckemeyer said. “Chatham is known as an institution with tremendous success and high aspirations. I look forward to the exciting work ahead.”

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

Chatham University’s water polo team ranked first in academic achievement in ACWPA

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
July 8, 2010

PITTSBURGH (July 8, 2010) . . . The Chatham University women’s water polo team ranked first in academic achievement in the overall cumulative GPA for all of the Women’s Water Polo teams in the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches (ACWPA). In total, eight water polo team members were honored by the ACWPA for their academic achievements.

Five Chatham students were leading academic standouts for the Cougars: junior Chelsea Mummert of York, Pa., who is majoring in occupational therapy; senior, Jenna Luek of Harmony, Pa., who is majoring in chemistry; sophomore, Elizabeth Morris of Verona, Pa., who is majoring in global policy; sophomore Allison Bodine of Frederick, Pa., who is majoring in film and digital technologies; and junior Paige Dunlap of Greenwood, Indiana, who is majoring in public policy. All were classified in the Outstanding Class Ranking with GPAs between 3.71 and 4.00.

The Cougars also had one player, sophomore Nathalie Burford of Temeculah, Ca., who placed in the Superior Class Ranking with a GPA between 3.41 and 3.70, and two players, first-year Sachelle Taylor of Brooklyn, NY, and sophomore Annelies Layton of Pittsburgh, Pa. , who placed in the Excellent Class Ranking with GPAs between 3.20 and 3.40.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship hits a hole-in-one with new Business on the Links workshop – read the recap in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
June 28, 2010

Click here to read Joyce Gannon’s workshop review in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

PITTSBURGH (June 28, 2010) … Golf and business still mix well, but the rules and etiquette of the game can confuse or intimidate even the most established entrepreneur. That’s why the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University and BizChicks are presenting “Business on the Links,” a golf workshop for business women on Tuesday July 13, 2010 from 12:00-1:30 p.m. at Chatham University’s Shadyside Campus.

Registration is $20 and includes lunch. For more information and to register visit www.chatham.edu/cwe or call 412-365-1253.

Moderating the event will be Sandy Thomas, personal business golf coach and retired LPGA pro. The seminar is designed for players of all levels and will help participants build the skills and confidence to play golf and do business at the same time. Players are encouraged to bring their 7-iron and putter for evaluation. Topics covered during the seminar include:

• Golf rules & terms, etiquette, scoring and course management.
• Equipment evaluation: clubs & golf balls.
• How to practice with purpose and efficiency.
• How to play faster – helpful skills and playing hints.
• The advantages of developing business through golf.
• When are you ready for business golf?
• How to contribute in a corporate scramble event without intimidation.
• 13 things you can learn about a client from a round of golf.
• Opportunities to learn the game – how and where to get instruction.
• The 19th hole and beyond!

About the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship
The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University (CWE) provides opportunities for women entrepreneurs in both new development and growth stages of their businesses to start, develop and significantly grow their companies by utilizing Chatham resources, programs, faculty expertise and student assistance. CWE also provides programming targeted to local and regional women in business, to advance and hone their skills, by teaching them to think and act entrepreneurially by focusing on innovation and creativity within the context of an existing organizational environment. And finally, CWE has specific programs for both undergraduate and graduate students which can help them learn the skills needed to become either a successful entrepreneur or a successful woman in business. Initial funding for The Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship at Chatham University was provided for in part through grants from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation and the Lois Tack Thompson Fund of The Pittsburgh Foundation.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

About BizChicks
BizChicks is a recently formed organization, on its way to becoming a total women’s resource center, providing education, guidance and resources in a number of different areas, including business planning, coaching, health & wellness. BizChicks is nonprofit organization forming the nexus of networking and growth for professional women, and is a growing rapidly over 500 strong. One of the BizChicks programs is Chicks & Chat networking events, a forum for bringing together women who are business professionals in the for profit and not for profit arenas, as well as the educational and artistic community. It is quite the diverse group in terms of profession as well as age, with attendees ranging in age from mid to late twenties to mid-seventies. In 2009, BizChicks launched a new networking forum designed to showcase BizChicks’ members during a power hour lunch called BizChicks LunchMix, in which selected female owned or managed businesses would utilize the hour to showcase their business.

Fatherhood can be important to the mental health and well-being of the family, according to Chatham University professor

By: Paul A. Kovach, Vice President for Public and Community Relations
June 15, 2010

Click here to read Dr. Isacco’s First Person essay on fatherhood in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

PITTSBURGH (June 15, 2010) … According to researchers, the role of the father in family relationships is critical, and more research into fatherhood has intensified over the last decade. Even on Father’s Day in 2009 President Barack Obama noted that “Of all the rocks upon which we build our lives, we are reminded today that family is the most important. And we are called to recognize and honor how critical every father is to that foundation. They are teachers and coaches. They are mentors and role models. They are examples of success and the men who constantly push us toward it.” Two recent studies by Anthony Isacco, Ph.D., assistant professor of counseling psychology at Chatham University, examine the role of fathers in postpartum mental health and in family healthcare decisions.

“Urban Father’s Role in Maternal Postpartum Mental Health,” published in the fall 2009 journal Fathering (Men’s Studies Press) and authored with Craig F. Garfield, MD, MAPP, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and NorthShore University HealthSystem, examined 31 urban fathers through qualitative interviews to determine how fathers play a role in both identifying maternal depression and providing support. Twenty-three percent of fathers were able to describe mood or behavioral changes in the mother, which corresponded with DSM-IV depressive symptoms. Not only did fathers identify changes in the mother, fathers offered a variety of support to the mother. In particular, fathers in this study considered their consistent presence during this time, sometimes just by “being there,” of great comfort and support to mothers.

“Greater research has shown the new and varied roles that fathers play in the family,” Dr. Isacco says, “and one of those roles could be in helping physicians who care for families and children identify changes in maternal mental health. Mothers will often hide signs of depression and anxiety from friends, relatives and doctors, and so if they are sharing this information with fathers, the role of the father in helping mothers through post-partum depression could then be critical.”

In the second study, “Child Healthcare Decision-Making: Examining “Conjointness” in Paternal Identities Among Residential and Non-Residential Fathers,” also co-authored by Dr. Garfield and published in the winter 2010 issue of Fathering, the authors defined “conjointness” as how the father identifies himself as a co-parent and how the mother impacts a man’s self-views and self-meanings as a father. Garfield and Isacco surveyed 31 residential and non-residential fathers in urban settings and found two new paternal identities they described as “self-as-detached identity” and “mixed identity.” In the former, fathers would often be less involved in medical decisions for the child, often replying when asked, “I don’t know, the mother handled the decision.” In the latter, the fathers fluctuated between co-parental and independent identities. Responses were greatly influenced by the residential status of the father.

“We found fathers who lived with the mother might not necessarily have had a greater role in medical decisions for the child but had greater trust in the mother to make the decision, and felt less disenfranchised than the non-residential fathers,” Dr. Isacco said. “Unfortunately, non-residential fathers face several contextual and personal barriers to being more co-parental with the mother in healthcare decisions. Barriers such as lack of custody, relationship dissolution with the child’s mother, divorce, and lack of knowledge of healthcare details and lack of confidence in their decision-making were clearly present for non-residential fathers.” “During the prenatal period medical providers and hospital personnel can greatly help fathers learn to have a greater role in their child’s healthcare, which would not only benefit the child but help to strengthen the relationship between mother and father.”

About Anthony Isacco
Anthony Isacco III is assistant professor of counseling psychology and joins Chatham from the University of Oregon. His publications and presentations focus on fatherhood, men’s health and masculinity, social justice, and diverse populations. A recipient of The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship, Anthony earned a bachelor of psychology and philosophy from Franciscan University (Steubenville, Ohio); a master of counseling psychology from Boston College; and a Ph.D. in counseling psychology from Loyola University.

About Chatham University
Chatham University prepares students from around the world to help develop solutions to some of the world’s biggest challenges. Every Chatham student – women in Chatham’s historic women’s residential college, and men and women in Chatham’s graduate programs – receives a highly individualized, experiential educational experience that is informed by Chatham’s strong institutional commitment to globalism, the environment and citizen leadership. Founded in 1869, Chatham University includes the Shadyside Campus, with Chatham Eastside and the historic 39-acre Woodland Road arboretum; and the 388-acre Eden Hall Farm Campus north of Pittsburgh. For more information call 800-837-1290 or visit www.chatham.edu.

Dr. Barazzone participates in Rachel Carson Celebration of Biodiversity Symposium at Carnegie Museum

By: Amanda Kennedy, Senior Public Relations Specialist
May 27, 2010

PITTSBURGH (April 24, 2010) … As part of the United Nations World Environment Day celebration in North America, the Rachel Carson Celebration of Biodiversity Symposium will focus on the human impact on biodiversity at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History (Co-Host) on May 27, 2010.

Esther Barazzone, Ph.D., president of Chatham University, will participate in the panel, “Sustainable Perspectives from the Community.”

Featuring Edward O. Wilson as keynote speaker and including a panel of experts, the conference seeks to envision a New American Dream that is environmentally sustainable and developed by participants in this event – a roadmap that will address the effect people have on the environment, and the critical inter-relationships between human habitat and the quality of life for generations to come.

Wilson, a two-time Pulitzer prize winner, world-renowned entomologist and one of the scientists who provided research data to Rachel Carson while she was writing Silent Spring, will receive the Rachel Carson Legacy Award at a ceremony following our World Environment Day Biodiversity Symposium

The Rachel Carson Legacy Award was established in 2007 as part of the celebration of the centennial of Rachel Carson’s birth. It was designed to recognize and honor people who have made significant impact on the application of Rachel Carson’s principles to modern public policy issues that interface the environment. The biannual award targets recognition for people who are both scientists and authors, in the model of Rachel Carson’s work.

Largely responsible for the study of biodiversity, Wilson is Pellegrino University Professor Emeritus and Honorary Curator in Entomology at Harvard. He is also founder of the E. O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation whose mission is to preserve biological diversity in the living environment by inventing and implementing business and educational strategies in the service of conservation. In addition to the more than 100 awards Wilson has received from around the world, in 2000 he was named as one of the century’s 100 leading environmentalists by both Time and Audubon Magazine. Don’t miss this opportunity of a lifetime to hear E. O. Wilson share his thoughts.

Program Schedule:

1:00 p.m.: Opening and Welcome

1:30 p.m.: Human Impact on the Environment – Panel Discussion:

A panel discussion on the impact of people on the Earth, including Elisabeth Guilbaud-Cox, Deputy Director of the United Nations Environment Programme North America, and Dr. Richard Benedick, Ambassador (ret.), President, National Council for Science and the Environment, and Terry Collins, Ph.D., Thomas Lord Professor of Chemistry, Institute of Green Science, Carnegie Mellon University.

3:15 to 5:00 p.m.: An Environmentally Sustainable American Dream

Sally Wiggin of WTAE Channel 4/ABC will moderate Sustainable Perspectives from the Community, including Richard Piacentini of Phipps Conservatory, Esther Barazzone of Chatham University, Todd Katzner of the National Aviary, Indira Nair, Ph.D., Vice Provost of Education, Carnegie Mellon University, Doris Carson Williams, Director of the African American Chamber of Commerce Western PA, Brenda Smith, Executive Director of Nine Mile Run Watershed Association, Greg Boulos of Homesteaders Consulting, LLC, James T. Kunz Jr. of IUOE Local 66, Marc Mathieu of BeDo, Inc., among others.

5:00 to 5:15: Networking Break

5:15 – 6:30: Rachel Carson Legacy Award Presentation and Public Lecture

Dr. Edward O. Wilson “The Future of Biodiversity Conservation”

With a special introduction by Mark Madison, Historian, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

6:30 to 8:00 PM: Rachel Carson Legacy Award Reception with E.O. Wilson.

In Memory: Dorothy Pontious, Class of 1935

By: Esther L. Barazzone, Ph.D., President
May 26, 2010

To the Chatham Community,

I am sorry to inform you that we have lost one of our dearest alumnae, benefactors and friends – Dorothy Pontious, Class of 1935. Dorothy always sought to enhance the academic experience at Chatham through the memory of her parents, who had helped her attend Pennsylvania College for Women during the Great Depression. She established the Charles and Ida Pontious Endowed Scholarship, the Charles and Ida Pontious Distinguished Endowed Chair, and just last December to mark our 140th anniversary, the Pontious Distinguished Lecturer. Our students and the entire campus community benefited from her generosity.
Dorothy’s obituary and funeral arrangements are reprinted below from today’s Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Sadly, this fall would have marked her 75th reunion year. She was an incredible woman with a wonderful personality and a charming wit, and we will truly miss her.

Sincerely,
Esther B.

Dorothy A. Pontious, 95, passed away Monday, May 24, 2010 after a brief illness. Born July 12, 1914 in Pittsburgh’s East End, she was the daughter of Ida Poehlmann and Charles Storey Pontious. Dorothy graduated from Peabody High School and from Pennsylvania College for Women (now Chatham University) in 1935. A life-long employee of Blue Cross/Blue Shield, she was a data processing manager and is credited for automating the company’s recordkeeping prior to her retirement in December 1979.

As a student during the Depression, Dorothy was acutely aware and appreciative of the difficulties her parents faced in sending her to college. Because of this, in 2002 she undertook to honor her parents by establishing the Charles and Ida Pontious Endowed Scholarship at Chatham University. Dorothy explained, “Because of my parents’ commitment, Chatham left me with many wonderful memories. Times were difficult when I entered PCW, so the fact that I was able to attend college at all was a great gift from my parents.” In August 2004, she established the Charles and Ida Pontious Distinguished Endowed Chair at Chatham. “Dorothy Pontious was quietly and gracefully generous in her gifts to Chatham. She endowed the Charles and Ida Pontious Professorship, which I am honored to hold, yet she always directed the spotlight away from herself. She was truly modest and humble,” noted Dr. William Lenz, professor of English and recipient of the Pontious Chair.

Dorothy was honored at Chatham’s 140th Anniversary Celebration on December 3, 2009, at which time author Linda Lear, the inaugural Pontious Distinguished Lecturer, presented “A Tale of Two Victorian Rebels: Beatrix Potter and Rachel Carson.” Chatham President Esther Barazzone expressed her gratitude, saying, “Dorothy was a leader, in intellect and in her work life. She was one of the earliest women to work in technology and computers and had a great interest in international travel. Chatham was the grateful beneficiary of her memorial to her parents and their belief in her, and in education for women, with her many gifts to the University, most notably the Charles and Ida Pontious Endowed Chair.”

Dorothy will be remembered for her generosity of spirit as well. Dr. Marlin H. Mickle, a friend of Dorothy’s for more than 30 years, stated, “Dorothy was a most dignified lady and an outstanding friend whom I will cherish all my life,” a sentiment echoed by those who knew her. Dorothy was an avid traveler and reader. She was a faithful member of Albright United Methodist Church and was active in Zonta International and Pacers and the Monday Luncheon Club. Dorothy was preceded in death by her mother and father and an infant sister. She is survived by her dear friend Marlin Mickle. Friends will be received on Friday, May 28th from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at JOHN A. FREYVOGEL SONS, INC. 4900 Centre Avenue at Devonshire Street, Pittsburgh (412-621-1665). Funeral Service will be 10 a.m. Saturday at theTemple of Memories at Allegheny Cemetery, 4734 Butler Street.

Dorothy’s online guestbook is available here.

Chatham students among college Democrats and Republicans offering suggestions to improve civility

By: Allegheny College
May 20, 2010

MEADVILLE, Pa. (May 20, 2010) … Student leaders of College Democrats and College Republicans organizations — representing 14 schools in nine states — released a joint statement today for elected officials and their constituents:

“Ten Tips to Improve Civility”

1. Listen willingly to opposing views.
2. Seek shared values with political opponents.
3. Acknowledge the legitimacy of your adversaries.
4. Identify the problem at hand and focus on it rather than on larger conflicts.
5. Avoid political caricatures, labels and generalizations that may not truly represent the views of your adversaries.
6. Acknowledge disagreement genuinely without suppressing your own positions.
7. Ask clarifying questions before responding.
8. Recognize the value of solutions beyond those offered by traditional party platforms.
9. Recognize that your words and actions will have consequences.
10. Be personally accountable for your political actions.

The students developed the list as one of the culminating activities of Pathway to Civility, a national conference hosted this week by the Center for Political Participation and the Civic Engagement Council at Allegheny College.

“We intended this conference to serve as a pilot program, an early step in our ongoing efforts to look for creative ways to enhance communication between young Democrats and Republicans,” said Daniel M. Shea, political science professor and director of the Center for Political Participation.

“Our idea was to encourage students from both sides of the aisle to work together to examine the serious issue of civility in politics, establish a high bar for the respectful exchange of ideas, and, in the process, perhaps begin to develop some lasting friendships.

“We were quite impressed both with the students’ passion for issues and with their determination to work together to create opportunities to reach consensus where possible. Civility, it seems, may be one of those areas for agreement.”

U.S. Rep. Kathy Dahlkemper, Pa. 3rd District, was the keynote speaker. Participants included students from Allegheny College, Louisiana State University, Catholic University, Central Michigan University, Macalester University, Chatham University, Hiram College, Indiana University – Purdue University, Slippery Rock University, SUNY Fredonia, Thiel College, California University of Pennsylvania, Winthrop University and the University of Florida.

“The conference was very interesting,” said Amanda McCann, a political science major at Indiana University-Purdue University and vice president of the College Republicans on her campus. “It changed my perception of civility, really deepened my understanding of the concept.”

According to Shea, the need for a conference on civility emerged as the American health care debate turned ugly in recent months. The robust political activity that surged among youth in the 2008 election already has substantially declined, Shea said, and many young Americans have turned away from active political engagement.

“I hope our conversation will continue on Facebook, maintaining both its passionate yet civil tone and allowing students to participate from different parts of the country,” said Matt Lacombe, an Allegheny senior pursuing a double major in economics and political science and a minor in philosophy.

Late last month the Center for Political Participation released results of a study on civility and compromise in American politics, “Nastiness, Name-Calling, and Negativity,” which revealed widespread concern over the deterioration of the tone of political discourse.

About the Study
“Nastiness, Name-Calling, and Negativity,” one of the first comprehensive studies of how Americans view the tone of political discourse, was released on April 21 and found that some 95 percent of Americans believe civility in politics is important for a healthy democracy, and 87 percent suggest it is possible for people to disagree about politics respectfully. It sprang from a comprehensive telephone survey of 1,000 adults nationwide, developed and commissioned by the Center for Political Participation at Allegheny College. The poll was conducted by Zogby International during the last week of March, immediately following the historic health care debate. The complete report, which includes dozens of charts and graphs that illustrate the survey results, is available at www.allegheny.edu/civility. The findings yield a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percent.