We’ll be at the beach this July Fourth weekend, but our beach is at Gdansk on the Baltic. As this reaches you, journalism Professor Dick Moore, political science’s Dr. Gordon Smith and I are leading a study tour of former communist bloc countries in central Europe.
Dick came back from a Maymester trip to Germany last year with the idea for a course examining the role of the media in the collapse of communism and the end of the cold war.
“You can’t do it,” I told Dick. “Not unless I get to go with you.”
And here we are in Poland. As we post this eNews for July, our intrepid students and faculty are in our third of a four-country tour. You can follow our travels on the class blog.
We started in Budapest where the 1956 Hungarian uprising against hardline communism was encouraged by broadcasts by the then CIA-financed Radio Free Europe. Some Hungarians took that as a message American troops were on their way. They weren’t.
In Prague, we walked the streets that I had walked as a young foreign correspondent reporting first on the Prague Spring of 1968 and its promise of “communism with a human face” and then on the Warsaw Pact invasion to crush those hopes. In a great post-cold war irony, the American radio station Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty is now based in Prague. As we learned during our visit, their target audiences today lie far to the east in Central Asia, Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan. And it's much more than radio. Add television, Internet and social networks.
Now, Poland, crushed so many times by invaders and occupiers. Yet, resilient. We‚ve seen the meticulously rebuilt Old Town of Warsaw that had been leveled by the Nazis.
We have our own personal guide to the shipyards of Gdansk. My wife, Susanne Schafer, was an AP correspondent behind the shipyard gates with the workers who birthed the independent trade union Solidarnosc.
Our tour ends in Berlin where I recall skeptically hearing President Reagan’s 1987 call: “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.” I'd crossed it too many times under the eyes and guns of stern East German guards to be as optimistic as Reagan. So much for journalistic prescience.
So much has changed in the years since I reported from Europe on the ideological rift that threatened to erupt into even nuclear war. It’s refreshing and gratifying to see the changes and to add this odyssey to our students academic experience. We’ve been able to do so through interdisciplinary collaboration with the political science department and the College of Arts and Sciences. That’s what a modern university is about.
And it’s wonderfully appropriate to be celebrating Poland’s solidarity and America’s independence together.
Bezpieczne podrózuje. Travel safely.
Alumna Named “Teacher of the Year”
Jessica Ard Harrelson, ’96 SLIS alumna and librarian at Johnsonville Elementary School, has been named “Teacher of the Year” for Florence County District Five Schools. Read more>
Alumnus’ Ad Agency Wins National Silver Addy Award
Journalism alumnus Woody Hinkle, ’70, is the owner and creative director/writer for the ad agency, Nasuti + Hinkle, that just won a National Silver Addy Award for their “Don’t Look Away From Animal Cruelty” campaign for the Washington Humane Society in the American Advertising Federation National Addy competition. In addition, the agency won Gold at both the local Washington, D.C. and District III competition levels. To read more about Nasuti + Hinkle, visit www.nasuti.com.
J-school Alumnus Leaves WLTX-TV
Bob Shields, ‘ 81, left his position of sports director at WLTX-TV in May. After almost 30 years of covering the Gamecocks, he left to become the vice president of Life Careers, a career management firm. He will continue to host his morning sports show on 107.5 The Game. Head Football Coach Steve Spurrier honored him with a Gamecock football jersey and thanked him for covering the Gamecocks. Other sports teams and the public celebrated Shields’ service to the Midlands. Read more>
Journalism Alumna Named Executive Director of Family Connection of South Carolina
Jacquelyn Richards, ’86, was recently named executive director of Family Connection, a community-based, family-focused organization that strengthens families of children with special needs through parent support. In this role, Richards will direct areas of program implementation, strategic planning, fundraising, financial management, community collaboration and professional partnerships. She previously served as its associate director and interim executive director. For more information about Family Connection, visit www.familyconnectionSC.org.
J-school Instructor’s Blog Makes List of 50 Inspiring Journalism Blogs by Journalists
Doug Fisher’s monthly blog, Common Sense Journalism, ranks number 10 on the list of 50 inspiring journalism blogs by journalists, posted on the Guide to Online Schools, an online education directory. Fisher is a senior instructor and specializes in editing, new media and community journalism. He joined USC after 18 years at The Associated Press, nine as news editor. Read more>
Doctoral Program Receives Funding
Dr. Jennifer Arns, Dr. Bob Williams and Carolyn Delton of the School of Library and Information Science worked to garner IMLS funding for SLIS’ doctoral program. The grant award is $857,489 with $271,043 in matching funds. SLIS will use IMLS funding to support seven doctoral fellowships. Students will participate in an experimental course based on The Responsive Ph.D. model recently developed by the Woodrow Wilson Fellowship Foundation. This curriculum will require interdisciplinary coursework and full-time field placements specifically designed to explore the common threads that unite museums, libraries, and other cultural institutions.
From Journalist to Restaurateur: Alumnus Dick Elliott
By Nicole Foutch
Dick Elliott, a 1967 SJMC graduate with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, is founder and president of Maverick Southern Kitchens, a collection of restaurants located primarily in the Charleston area of South Carolina.
Although Elliott began his career in the newsroom and courtroom, it ultimately led him to the kitchen. This may seem odd, but Elliott credits his initial job as a journalist with giving him fact gathering and presentation skills that helped him in his later careers. Elliott began his journalism education and newspaper experience in college while working full time at The State newspaper. In his work at The State he focused on governmental affairs. Elliott also was editor for the Daily Gamecock both semesters of his senior year. He saw the paper transition from publishing weekly to twice a week during his time at USC.
After graduation, Elliott joined the staff of Congressman Dorn in Washington. He handled press relations, monitored legislation and provided constituency services. A year later, he took the position of chief of staff for then USC president Thomas Jones. During his time with Jones, he drafted speeches, correspondence and other communicators; monitored legislative activities; and generally assisted Jones. Elliott enjoyed working in the USC president’s office and was determined to pursue a career in university administration.
In pursuing that goal, Elliott went back to school and ultimately graduated from the University of Michigan Law School. He found his legal studies challenging and exciting, and upon graduation decided to spend several years developing his skills as a trial lawyer in Atlanta before beginning on the path of university administration. However, says Elliott, “as my career of twists and turns demonstrates, I never got back on that path!” Elliott had several more careers after being a lawyer, but despite the variety of careers he found that the common thread is entrepreneurial and business development.
Elliott’s venture into the kitchen began after purchasing a harbor-front building in Charleston that included a restaurant. Elliott hired professionals to run it; however, he soon discovered that he enjoyed many facets of the hospitality industry such as management of staff, marketing and interior design. In 1992, Elliott committed to developing a collection of restaurants and presently that collection includes six operations.
When people come to a Maverick Southern Kitchens restaurant they can expect an experience in a lively and comfortable environment. Elliott says, “[my] dining in restaurants told me the whole experience mattered, not just food. The experience begins, and ends, with talented, knowledgeable staff who genuinely care about the guest.” This collective attitude is also a part of Maverick Southern Kitchens creative preparation and presentation of their fresh and locally produced food of the South.
The Hospitality Association of South Carolina named Elliott Restaurateur of the Year in 2008, Stars of the Industry Awards. Furthermore, one of the Maverick Southern Kitchens restaurants, Slightly North of Broad, was recognized at the National Restaurant Association’s annual meeting in Chicago and inducted into the Fine Dining Hall of Fame. All of the Maverick Southern Kitchens restaurants have received Wine Spectator awards for excellence.
Elliott is also actively involved with the Charleston community and supports numerous civic and charitable efforts. The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce named him Volunteer of the Year in 2009. When asked why being an active and involved member of the community is important to him, Elliott said, “no doubt the driver for me is the realization I was helped along the way by so many people and institutions, and I hope to help others in similar ways.”
To find out more about the company and the individual restaurants visit mavericksouthernkitchens.com.
Reading Fun in the Sun
Need a suggestion of a good read this summer? Check out what our faculty and staff have on their reading lists:
- Ernest L. Wiggins, associate professor, SJMC, recommends Tree of Smoke by Denis Johnson, a Vietnam War-era novel, and Takeover: The Return of the Imperial Presidency and the Subversion of American Democracy by Charlie Savage, a journalistic accounting of the Bush-Cheney administration's efforts to enhance presidential authority after Sept. 11, 2001.
- Karen Flowers, Scholastic Journalism Organizations Director, SJMC, recommends Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford, a Romeo & Juliet love story with a twist. The author takes the reader back and forth between 1942 and 1986 to learn about families, traditions and the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. She also recommends Making Rounds with Oscar: The Extraordinary Gift of an Ordinary Cat by David Dosa, about a nursing home full of patients with dementia. Because of the author’s humor, the reader will tolerate – and appreciate – learning about how families cope with such tragedy as dementia.
- Linda Lucas Walling, distinguished professor emeritus, SLIS, recommends Michio Kaku's Physics of the Impossible, a readable introduction to quantum physics. Kaku is a noted physicist who also likes science fiction and takes concepts from Star Wars and other works of fiction and discusses whether these things are possible based on what scientists know today. She also recommends James H. Austin's Zen and the Brain, a big, dense, physically heavy book about what is known about how the brain works. In addition to being an M. D. in the field of neurology, Austin is a student of Zen. Another book is Stuart Alve Olson's T'ai Ch'i According to the I Ching
Olson introduces the principles of The Book of Changes and compares those principles with principles from Tao Te Ching. He puts all of that together with principles from the T'ai Ch'i Classics. Other books include Finger Lickin Fifteen - #15 in Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum series. It’s about an inept but always-successful-in-the-long-run bounty hunter in New Jersey. And Richard Belzer's I Am Not a Cop!, a humorous detective novel.
- Tom Weir, associate professor, SJMC, recommends The Gift of Fear by Gavin De Becker, How We Decide by Jonah Lehrer, Influence: Science and Practice by Robert B. Cialdini, Honest Signals by Alex Pentland, The Real George Washington by Perry, Allison, Skousen and The Real Thomas Jefferson by Allison, Maxfield, Cook, Skousen and The Real Benjamin Franklin by Allison, Skousen, Maxfield.
- Helen B. Fellers, coordinator of the South Carolina Center for Children's Books and Literacy at the South Carolina State Library, recommends Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonso, a good read about serious social issues handled with care. Also, Nicholas Coleridge’s Pride and Avarice is a snappy comedy of the British class system.
- Karen Mallia, assistant professor, SJMC, recommends The Help, by Kathryn Stockett, a novel about a young woman interviewing the African-American help in a fictitious southern town in the 1960’s for their stories. It interweaves the perspectives of her and her contemporaries, presenting an upstairs/downstairs view of daily lives before racial equality. Also, Adland: Searching for the Meaning of Life on a Branded Planet by James P. Othmer, an insider’s view of advertising by someone who was good, but no Ed McCabe or Lee Clow. Fulfills the stereotype that every copywriter really is a frustrated novelist. Breezy, funny, informative.
- Dr. S. K. Hastings, director and professor, SLIS, recommends David Benioff’s City of Thieves, Robert Hicks’ Widow of the South and Guitar and Pen, Michael Lewis’ The Big Short, Stieg Larsson’s The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest and Karl Marlantes’ Matterhorn: A Novel of the Vietnam War.
- Ron Brown, assistant professor, SLIS, recommends The Last Season: A Team in Search of Its Soul by Phil Jackson, about Phil Jackson and the Lakers team with Kobe Bryant and Shaq on it. It is a good read for those interested in the NBA, how basketball offenses run and what championship teams are made of.
- Augie Grant, professor, SJMC, recommends John Vanston’s Minitrends: Profiting from Emerging Business Opportunity Gems, a book thatexplores small trends that are usually overlooked, but which offer big impacts on revenue growth, market share, or new market opportunities. Also, Superfreakonomics Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner. This follow-up to Freakonomics applies economic theory and practical research to illustrate surprising patterns that underscore many contemporary phenomena.
- Lisa Sisk, instructor, SJMC, recommends Rita Cosby’s Quiet Hero: Secrets from My Father’s Past. Cosby traces her father’s service as a Polish Resistance fighter and then as a German prisoner of war in World War II. Rita is a ’89 broadcast alumna and she and her father will visit Oct. 4 for I-Comm Week. Sisk also recommends What the Dog Saw and Other Adventures, by Malcolm Gladwell, a compilation of his essays in The New Yorker. One of her favorite essays is “Something Borrowed: Should a Charge of Plagiarism Ruin Your Life.” Also, Alan Furst’s novel, The Polish Officer.
- John Besley, assistant professor, SJMC, recommends When the Press Fails: Political Power and the News Media from Iraq to Katrina by W. Lance Beentt, Regina G. Lawrence and Steven Livingston, and The Death and Life of American Journalism: The Media Revolution that Will Begin the World Again by Robert W. McChesney and John Nichols.
Update your contact Info
School of Journalism and Mass Communications
School of Library and Information Science
Newsplex at the University of South Carolina
South Carolina Center for Children's Books and Literacy
Convergence Newsletter Blog
Make a Gift Online
Are you on Twitter? Let us know!
Annual Literacy Leaders Awards Reception
Tuesday, Sept. 14
5 – 7 p.m.
Join our School of Library and Information Science at the South Carolina State Library to meet our 2010 Literacy Leaders Awards recipients. These awards are given to individuals in South Carolina who are making an impact on literacy in our state.
Oct. 3 – 8
Stay tuned to www.sc.edu/cmcis for details about our seventh annual I-Comm Week. We’ll be showcasing our College’s faculty, students and alumni with presentations and events throughout the week.
Gamecocks on the Green
Friday, Nov. 5
4:30 – 7 p.m.
Make plans to meet your former classmates, faculty and friends for our annual Homecoming celebration on Gibbes Green!
SLIS Celebrates New Masters’ Graduates with First Hooding Ceremony
Alumni Tailgate and Baseball Game
May Carolina Alumni Weekend