News highlights for January 10, 2011

CisionPoint news monitoring provides this small sampling of the university's daily news coverage. Click headline to read full text via Cision or link directly to the online article where available. For questions or comments about this service, or to add or delete a name from the mailing list, please contact Gerry Everding.

Bloomberg News

Neanderthal life expectancy is similar to that of early modern human

The life expectancy for early modern humans was probably the same as that of Neanderthals, suggesting that humans didn’t have the survival advantage of living longer, according to a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Erik Trinkaus, an anthropology professor at Washington University in St. Louis. In samples of remains of the Neanderthals and the human populations, Trinkaus found there was about the same number of 20- to 40-year-old

adults — and roughly the same number of adults older than 40. Link to Article See also Agence France Presse, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle

Related news release

The New York Times

Dr. Louise Reiss, who helped ban atomic testing, dies at 90

Dr. Louise Reiss, who directed a study that examined thousands of baby teeth during the cold war and helped persuade the world’s leading powers to ban nuclear testing in the atmosphere, died Jan. 1. Reiss and her husband, Eric, both physicians, were founding members of the Greater St. Louis Citizens Committee for Nuclear Information, which joined with the schools of dentistry at Washington University in St. Louis and St. Louis University in 1959 to create the Baby Tooth Survey. Link to Article

Daily Camera (Boulder, CO)

CU among schools supporting Stanford’s patent lawsuit

The University of Colorado has joined Washington University in St. Louis and about 40 other research schools across the country to support Stanford in a legal case that could threaten universities’ ownership of patents. The research universities have joined the American Council on Education in an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Stanford in the case, which could have ramifications for universities that own patents resulting from federally funded research. Link to Article

Leaders Magazine

LEADERS interview with W. Stephen Maritz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Maritz Holdings Inc.

Steve Maritz represents the fourth generation of his family to lead Maritz. He began his career with Maritz in 1983 and became President and Chief Operating Officer in 1997. One year later, he succeeded his father, Bill Maritz, as Chief Executive Officer and was appointed Chairman of the Board after his father’s death in 2001. Maritz serves on the boards of the John M. Olin School of Business, the Variety Club, The Laclede Group, and Wetland’s American Trust. Link to Article

Credit card reader patent fight looks headed to court

A patent fight over Square — the mobile credit card processing device launched by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey — may soon be headed to a St. Louis federal courtroom. Robert Morley Jr., a Washington University professor, claimed in a court filing on Friday that he conceived of the small size of the credit card reader and is the sole inventor of technology detailed in a patent. Link to Article

Gerald Early, Walter Mosley on ‘Huck Finn”

Everyone seems to have an opinion about an upcoming book that changes the “n-word” in “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” to “slave.” Gerald Early, a professor of English, of African and African-American studies and of American culture studies at Washington University in St. Louis, says the new edition is no big deal (as long as the original “Huck Finn” is still available). “We change texts all the time,” Early says. Link to Article

Last Danforth Foundation gift goes to plant science center

After giving away $1.25 billion over its 84-year run, the Danforth Foundation will bow out of the region’s philanthropic community, leaving a parting gift of $70 million to the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, the institution it says promises the brightest future for the St. Louis area. “I think we see this as carrying on our mission through science,” said William Danforth, chancellor emeritus of Washington University. 
Link to Article

St. Louis Beacon

Analysis: Law treats whistleblowers and journalists differently


Is Jeffrey A. Sterling a whistleblower who revealed government ineptitude or a spy guilty of espionage? The Justice Department portrays the 1992 Washington University law school graduate and one-time CIA agent as a lawbreaker, accusing him of leaking classified information to a newspaper reporter. Kathleen Clark, an expert on national security law at Washington University Law School, suggests the government may be using a public relations strategy of portraying Sterling as disgruntled to isolate him from natural legal allies. Link to Article

News in Higher Education

New York Times
The choice: Demystifying college admissions and aid
Now that most students applying to college for next fall’s freshman class have submitted their applications, they will soon be turning their attention to fill out out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or Fafsa. Mark Kantrowitz, a financial aid expert and founder of the Web sites and, responds to student questions regarding filling out the form. Link to Article

New York Times

Study finds family connections give big advantage in college admissions

A new study of admissions at 30 highly selective colleges found that legacy applicants get a big advantage over those with no family connections to the institution — but the benefit is far greater for those with a parent who earned an undergraduate degree at the college than for those with other family connections. Link to Article

New York Times

In college, learning about money

An education is one of the best defenses against financial flimflam, but many students never learn the things that help. Only a handful of states require schools to teach basic personal finance, and it’s often of the old-fashioned, balancing-the-checkbook variety. Also, it tends to come at a stage in life when students are years away from putting the knowledge to practical use. In response, Champlain College has started requiring all undergraduates to attend two sessions in financial literacy. Link to Article

New York Times

Journal showcases dying art of the research paper


William H. Fitzhugh, the cantankerous publisher of a journal that showcases high school research papers, sits at his computer in a cluttered office above a secondhand shop here, deploring the nation’s declining academic standards. “Most kids don’t know how to write, don’t know any history, and that’s a disgrace,” Mr. Fitzhugh said. “Writing is the most dumbed-down subject in our schools.” Link to Article

For additional higher education news (subscription may be required):
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Inside Higher Ed
University Business

Leave a Comment

Comments and respectful dialogue are encouraged, but content will be moderated. Please, no personal attacks, obscenity or profanity, selling of commercial products, or endorsements of political candidates or positions. We reserve the right to remove any inappropriate comments. We also cannot address individual medical concerns or provide medical advice in this forum.