Campus News


Clarence Day Awards

Dr. Stephen J. Ceccoli and Dr. Daniel G. Arce are the 2005 recipients of Rhodes’ highest faculty honors, presented at Awards Convocation in April. Ceccoli, assistant professor of international studies, received the Clarence Day Award for Outstanding Teaching, which includes a $10,000 honorarium. Arce, professor of economics and business administration, received the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Research and/or Creative Activity, which carries a $6,000 honorarium.

The Clarence Day Award for Outstanding Teaching is given to a member of the faculty who has demonstrated excellence in teaching over the previous three years as determined by the assessments of students and colleagues, the effective use of imaginative and creative pedagogy, and motivating students to embrace a life of continuing study.

The Dean’s Award for Outstanding Research and Creative Activity is presented to a member of the faculty who has demonstrated that research and/or creative activity is an integral part of his or her vocation and who has published or performed outstanding works over the previous three years that have gained scholarly recognition or creative acclaim.

Both awards, first given in 1981, were established by Memphis businessman Clarence Day ’52 and are provided by the Day Foundation.

Ceccoli, who holds his Ph.D. and M.A. from Washington University and B.A. from Heidelberg College, joined the Rhodes faculty in 1998. His research areas include American politics, international relations, comparative public policy, U.S. national security policy, American foreign policy, and the pharmaceutical industry.

He is author of Pill Politics: Drugs and the FDA that explores how the approval process for drugs has changed as a result of the FDA’s reinterpreting its mission. In the book, he also discusses differences between drug regulation in the United States and Europe. His work has appeared in the Journal of Policy History, International Studies Quarterly and Political Behavior.

In 2003, Ceccoli participated in the International Faculty Development Seminar in Dakar, Senegal sponsored by the Council on International Educational Exchange. During the 2005-06 academic year, he will be on sabbatical and will serve as a Congressional Fellow in Washington, DC.

Daniel Arce, the Robert D. McCallum Professor of Economics and Business, joined the Rhodes faculty in 2000. He holds a B.A. from Olivet College, M.A. from Western Michigan University and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

He has published on topics including biodiversity, business ethics, counterterrorism, conflict resolution, fundamentalism, honor codes, transmission of transnational disease, Latin American economies, foreign aid and game theory. He received Fulbright grants to South America in 1985 and 1993. In 2002, his monograph on foreign aid was distributed to United Nations delegates, participants at the World Summit on Sustainable Development and members of the World Bank.

As a game theorist, Arce conducts research that investigates how to create incentives so that members of a group can overcome their individual interests and act in the collective interest of the group. His articles have examined collective action to curtail the spread of AIDS and tuberculosis, ways of spreading the cost of NATO expansion efficiently, and forms of leadership that facilitate international protocols.

Arce also is a member of the Scientific Steering Committee of the International Human Dimensions Programme on Global Environment Change, a major international global change research program. In addition, he is conference coordinator of the Mellon Intercollegiate Economics Conference hosted by Rhodes this summer.

College Launches Interdisciplinary African-American Studies Program

Dr. Anita A. Davis ’90, associate professor of psychology, has been named interim director of African-American Interdisciplinary Studies. The new program, which comprises some of the courses in highest demand in the college’s curriculum, will lead to a minor in African- American Studies. The mission of the program is to lead students to understand and appreciate the integral yet distinct experiences of people of African heritage throughout the world.

Dr. Russell Wigginton ’88, who chaired the faculty committee that designed and recommended the new minor, says the Rhodes approach to the discipline differs in important ways from the traditional approach to the study of African-American culture.

“A truly interdisciplinary approach to understanding the experiences of African Americans is new and refreshing,” he says. “So is the undergraduate research emphasis. Too, the programs that began in the 1960s and ’70s tended to be led by the history or political science department and were, perhaps due to the academic climate of the day, segregated and driven by a search for legitimacy. This program, born in a different time, has a very different focus.

“One of the things most interesting to me,” Wigginton adds, “is that there were no new courses created for this program. It is made up of classes the faculty very much want to teach, and many of them have waiting lists every semester. What that means is that we had created the core of a program without realizing what we had done with courses being offered in various departments across campus including anthropology/sociology, English, history, international studies, modern languages and literatures, music, political science, psychology and religious studies.”

Davis says, “It is a rare treat to have the opportunity to influence a new program at a place that has influenced me so much. My vision for the program is that it will reflect the intellectual community on campus as well as our commitment to civic involvement in Memphis and the region. To me, this combination captures the essence of what a Rhodes education is all about.”

Commencement 2005 

Phi Beta Kappa Award
The Phi Beta Kappa award is given to the graduating senior who exemplifies the highest qualities of scholarship, achievement, creativity and commitment to the liberal arts and sciences. This year’s recipient, chemistry major Stanley Vance, also distinguished himself through his campus leadership and service. He plans to enter Harvard Medical School in the fall.

Sullivan Awards
The Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award is bestowed annually on two graduating seniors and a nonstudent who have given selflessly to others and the college. Graduates Sunita Aurora and Stephen Ogden and Paul Barret, Jr. Library architect Jane Wright were this year’s recipients.

A Bellingrath and Bonner Scholar, Sunita Arora was awarded both the Truman and Watson scholarships and a Buckman Summer Abroad Internship with FedEx. She is a member of Mortar Board, Omicron Delta Kappa and Phi Beta Kappa. A student member of the Rhodes Board of Trustees, she presided over the Honor Council her senior year and volunteered countless hours of service to the community. She will join Teach for America in Houston this summer.

During his years at Rhodes, Stephen Ogden has excelled academically, athletically and as a participant in activities ranging from the Honor Council to the men’s a capella group to completing two marathons. A member of Mortar Board, Omicron Delta Kappa and Phi Beta Kappa, he received the Laurence F. Kinney Prize in Philosophy.

Jane Wright led the team that renovated Stewart Hall, constructed East Village and changed the campus forever with the design of the new Paul Barret, Jr. Library. She has not only left her mark at Rhodes, but her design and planning can be seen and felt on more than 70 campuses throughout the United States. She has said, “It is the signature of the place, not the signature of the architect that is important.”

Lindquester′s Students Study to Save the Lynx

Dr. Gary Lindquester, associate profesor of biology, was mistakenly omitted from the list of the Summer Scholars faculty in the spring issue of Rhodes. In fact, he has taught in the program for several years.

A member of the Rhodes faculty since 1988, Lindquester has established the Lynx Genome Project. His Rhodes molecular biology students are working on a genome-sequencing project for the lynx, an endangered animal — and the college mascot. Their findings will be added to a genetic-sequence database for future research that could one day take the lynx off the endangered list.

Lindquester holds his Ph.D. and M.S. in biology from Emory University and B.S. in biology from Furman University.

Marshall Elected Shakespeare Association Trustee

Preeminent Shakespeare scholar Cynthia Marshall, who holds the Connie Abston Chair of Literature at Rhodes, has been elected to a three-year term as a trustee of the prestigious Shakespeare Association of America (SSA).

Marshall, a member of the Rhodes English department since 1985, has received awards for her teaching and scholarship. She teaches classes in Shakespeare and in critical theory. She has been published in numerous scholarly journals including Shakespeare Quarterly and PMLA. Her two books are The Shattering of the Self: Violence, Subjectivity, and Early Modern Texts (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002) and Shakespeare in Production: As You Like It (Cambridge University Press, 2004). Marshall holds her B.A. from Roanoke College and M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Virginia.

The SSA is a nonprofit, academic organization devoted to the study of William Shakespeare and his plays and poems, the cultural and theatrical milieu in which he lived and worked and the various roles he has played in both Anglo-American and world culture ever since.

Rachmaninoff Conference Planned for October

The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures and Department of Music have announced plans for the Rhodes International Rachmaninoff Conference to be held Oct. 21-23, 2005. The conference will consist of scholarly papers and musical performances connected with Russian composer, pianist and conductor Sergei Vasilievich Rachmaninoff. With some 30 top scholars from around the world expected to attend, English and Russian will be the working languages during the weekend. The idea for the conference was conceived by Valerie Nollan, professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities, who is working on a new biography of Rachmaninoff .

The conference will include a performance of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra (music director, David Loebel) of Rachmaninoff ’s third piano concerto and his “Vocalise.” Acclaimed American pianist Garrick Ohlsson will be the soloist. The concert will take place at 8 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 22, at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts.

On Oct. 23 at 3 p.m. Rhodes Prof. Timothy Sharp will conduct the Rhodes MasterSingers in a performance of excerpts from Rachmaninoff ’s “All-Night Vigil” at Evergreen Presbyterian Church.

Nollan terms it a “historic conference” that will bring together U.S., European and Russian scholars in a vigorous and lively forum. It will advance research on Rachmaninoff through multilingual events and emphasize the vitality of multinational scholarship, she says. Details of the weekend will be posted on the Rhodes Web site this summer. Among the sponsors for the conference are the dean of the college and the Global Partners tri-consortial grants program.

Nollan will teach a course on Rachmaninoff ’s music and identity, “The Remarkable Rachmaninoff ,” at Rhodes’ Meeman Center for Lifelong Learning in spring 2006.

Remembering Professor Dan Rhodes

Prof. Daniel D. Rhodes, who taught Bible and philosophy at Rhodes from 1953-60, died Jan. 31, 2005, in Davidson, NC. He was 87. Prof. Rhodes held the R.A. Webb Chair.

A native of Rocky Point, NC, Prof. Rhodes received his B.A. degree from Davidson College, B.D. from Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and Ph.D. from Duke University. He held various pastorates in North Carolina before accepting a teaching post at Davis & Elkins College, where he taught Bible and philosophy and served as dean of students.

After seven years at Rhodes, he returned to his alma mater, Davidson, where he founded and guided the interdisciplinary Humanities Program and was the Paul B. Freeland Professor of Religion.

He leaves his wife, Ethel Truscott Rhodes; three children including Elaine Rhodes ’68; and four grandchildren.

Remembering Trustee Robert McCallum

Robert D. McCallum, who chaired the Rhodes Board of Trustees from 1968-81, died Feb. 22, 2005. He was 93. During his tenure, the college regained fiscal solvency after several difficult years.
Not only did he give freely of his business acumen, he was a fellow of the Charles E. Diehl Society, the Heritage Society, the Benefactors’ Circle, and established the McCallum Distinguished Professorship in Economics and Business. He inspired others to give as well. Most notably, a gift from Julian Robertson in his honor established the Robert D. McCallum Scholarships. For his many contributions, Rhodes conferred upon him the honorary doctor of humanities degree and the Distinguished Service Medal. The McCallum Ballroom is named in his honor.

The retired chairman of the board of Valmac Industries, McCallum held leadership and trustee positions in many local and national business and charitable organizations. A graduate of the University of Tennessee, he began his career with George H. McFadden & Brothers, a Memphis cotton merchant. He spent his business career with that firm and its successor corporations, retiring as head of Valmac and board chairman of Distribuco.

McCallum was a former president of the Southern Cotton Association and the American Cotton Shippers Association, and a former member of the boards of directors of various business entities including the National Cotton Council of America, the Memphis Cotton Exchange and Union Planters Corp.

He leaves his wife Virginia Blackwell Jett McCallum, two daughters, Virginia McCallum Syer and Bickie McCallum McDonnell, and a son, Robert D. McCallum Jr. of Washington, DC, seven grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. McCallum’s son-in-law, Michael McDonnell, continues a family tradition at Rhodes as a trustee of the college. His son Robert Jr. and grandson Davis hold a father-son distinction of both having been named Rhodes Scholars for study at England’s Oxford University.

Rhodes Tapped for Prestigious Association

Rhodes has joined a distinguished group of 18 colleges and universities that comprise Project Pericles. The New York-based organization exists to “encourage and facilitate commitments by colleges and universities to include education for social responsibility and participatory citizenship as an essential part of their educational programs, in the classroom, on the campus and in the community.” Among the benefits of becoming a Periclean institution is the opportunity to network with colleges and universities such as Macalester, New School University and Swarthmore that share this commitment.

Named for Pericles (495-429 BCE), the Greek statesman who established Athens as the western world’s prototypic democracy, Project Pericles was conceived in 1999 by Eugene M. Lang to address a national concern: the growing political cynicism and civic disengagement of young people. A retired businessman well known for his philanthropic and innovative ventures in education, including creation of the nationwide “I Have a Dream Foundation,” Lang was motivated by his belief that higher education should be the primary medium for encouraging students to participate actively and knowledgeably in the process of democracy.

Project Pericles encourages member institutions to integrate issues of civic and social responsibility into the academic and cocurricular experiences of students in a way that respects the character, traditions and resources of each institution.

At Rhodes, support from Project Pericles will help underwrite a variety of initiatives that fall under the umbrella of Rhodes CARES (Center for Academic Research and Education through Service), including the Rhodes Institute for Regional Studies, Rhodes St. Jude Summer Plus program, and Bonner Scholars program and the Rhodes Learning Corridor. The most recent addition to the CARES family is the Rhodes Hollywood Springdale Partnership, which involves outreach to and cooperation with the neighborhood just north of the campus.

“This is a perfect fit for Rhodes,” says President William E. Troutt. “I am very pleased that the college was honored in this way and excited about the doors it opens for our students.”

Rhodes Welcomes Priddy Fine Arts Grant

Rhodes will receive $4,984,804 from the Robert and Ruby Priddy Charitable Trust of Wichita Falls, TX, Rhodes President William Troutt announced in April. The funding will be used to enhance the college’s program and curriculum offerings in the fine arts.

Key elements of the Priddy funding include:

  • A fine arts scholarship program that will include 16 students, four per class. The class will not be limited to fine arts majors, but can include students who will perform a job or service or conduct a research project in the arts.
  • An endowed chair for a permanent faculty position in the fine arts.
  • Funding to support curriculum and faculty development, student recruitment and mentoring, visiting artists, classroom and technology upgrades and other enhancements for the college’s current fine arts programs.

Scholar Athletes

In March, the Lynx baseball team made a road trip to Conway, AR, where they swept a doubleheader against Hendrix, then toured the Clinton Presidential Center Library in Little Rock. Accompanying the team was Rhodes political science professor, Michael Nelson (back row, far right).

Student Honors Abound

Fulbrights Go to Wheeler, Sanders
Logan Wheeler ’05 and Sarah Sanders ’05 have been named Fulbright scholars. Wheeler plans to complete a year and a half in the master’s degree in public administration and public policy program at el Tecnológico de Monterrey in Mexico. At Rhodes, he was a Spanish and Russian double major with an international studies minor. Sanders, an international studies major, plans to study women’s Islamic movements in Jordan. The Fulbright Program, America’s prestigious international educational exchange sponsor, is administered by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Its goal is to increase understanding between the United States and the 150 countries that participate in the program. Established in 1946 under legislation introduced by Arkansas Sen. J. William Fulbright, the program awards grants to students, scholars, administrators and professionals to study, teach, lecture or conduct research abroad.

Heine Awarded NCAA Postgrad Scholarship
Danny Heine ’05 has been awarded a postgraduate scholarship by the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association). The scholarships, one-time grants of $7,500 each, are awarded to student-athletes who excel academically and athletically and who are in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. Heine was a three-year starter on the soccer team and captain during his junior and senior years and was selected to the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Honor Roll all four years while maintaining a GPA of 3.82 as a biology major. He will begin medical school at Louisiana State University in the fall.

Drehman Receives Rockefeller U. Fellowship
Bethany Drehman ’06 was accepted as a Rockefeller University Summer Undergraduate Research Fellow. She is working this summer in New York in the laboratory of Sid Strickland ’68, dean of students and postgraduate studies and a renowned research professor at Rockefeller University. Drehman is a 2004 Goldwater fellow. The highly-competitive Rockefeller University fellowship includes an expense-paid, 10-week research experience.

Methvin Named Goldwater Scholar
Rachel Methvin, a rising senior majoring in chemistry at Rhodes, has been selected to receive a Goldwater Scholarship. She is one of 320 students nationwide to receive the scholarship for 2005-06. Established by Congress in 1986 to honor Senator Barry M. Goldwater, the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program provides awards to highly qualified college students who intend to pursue careers in science, mathematics and engineering. Scholarships provide funding up to a maximum of $7,500 per year.

Marshall ROTC Award Recognizes Lachner
Lauren Lachner ’05 has been named a recipient of the 2005 George C. Marshall ROTC Award given to the outstanding cadet from each cadet battalion across the nation. As one of the top cadets, Lachner attended the annual George C. Marshall ROTC Award Seminar in Lexington, VA, in April. The award is named in honor of Army General George C. Marshall who served as Army chief of staff during World War II. Known as the prime architect of the Marshall Plan that restored the economy of war-ravaged Europe, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1953. A political science major, Lachner was commissioned a U.S. Army second lieutenant at a May 6 ceremony. In July, she will attend the Adjutant General School for her officer basic course at Ft. Jackson in Columbia, SC.

Teach for America Founder Visits Rhodes

With a simple idea and an extraordinary vision, Wendy Kopp founded Teach for America to tackle some of society’s deepest social problems. In March, members of the Rhodes community had the opportunity to hear from this social entrepreneur about how she started and grew Teach For America and what she learned along the way.

In 1989, Kopp proposed in her undergraduate senior thesis the creation of a new national corps that would enlist her generation’s most promising future leaders in the movement to end educational inequity. Teach For America, she believed, would inspire outstanding recent college graduates of all academic majors and career interests to commit two years to teach in the nation’s neediest urban and rural public schools and become lifelong leaders for expanding educational opportunity.

Kopp made her plan a reality. Today, Teach For America fields 2,100 corps members in 22 communities across the country and involves nearly 9,000 alumni who exert continuing leadership in educational and social reform.

In her book, One Day, All Children: The Unlikely Triumph of Teach For America and What I Learned Along the Way, Kopp describes how she created and built Teach For America as well as her thoughts about what it will take to realize Teach For America’s vision that one day, all children in this nation will have the opportunity to attain an excellent education.

Kopp holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, where she participated in the undergraduate program of the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Aff airs. She resides in New York City with her husband Richard Barth and their three sons, Benjamin, Francis and Haddon.

Ten members of the Rhodes class of 2005 have committed to Teach for America.

Troutt to Lead National Scholarship Program

Rhodes president William E. Troutt has been elected chairman of the Jacob K. Javits Fellowship Board. He will lead the nine-member body that provides policy and oversight to one of the country’s most prestigious postgraduate scholarship programs. Troutt has served on the board for the past five years. He recently completed his tenure as chair of the board of the American Council on Education.

Created in 1980 as the National Graduate Fellowship Program and renamed for New York Senator Jacob Javits after his death in 1986, the program was intended to complement the National Science Foundation’s Graduate Research Fellowship program that funds postgraduate study for talented students in science and engineering. The Javits program, which is administered by the U.S. Department of Education, provides aid to exceptional graduate students in the humanities, arts and social sciences.

  • The program has several distinctive characteristics:
  • It is both need- and merit-based. While scholars are chosen entirely for their academic accomplishments, stipends are awarded based on need.
  • It is extremely selective, receiving an average of 20 applications for each fellowship awarded. The National Science Foundation ratio is six to one.
  • The awards are portable and can be used at any graduate school that awards the Ph.D. degree.

The program board’s most recent report to Congress in 2003 noted, “Javits Fellowships support scholars in fields —history, philosophy, religion, arts, political science, economics, cultural studies — from which our nation’s future leaders and educators will emerge, persons who will be responsible for preparing generations to think critically and to make crucial decisions on issues of societal welfare.”

“I am honored to be chosen to lead this program, and I could not agree more that funding for graduate study in the arts and humanities is critical to the future of our country,” Troutt said. “Leading a liberal arts college that seeks to expand the minds and hearts of our students allows me to live out my passion every day. The Jacob K. Javits Fellowship Program provides me another venue to pursue that goal.”