News highlights for January 14, 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.

USA Today

Obama’s call for civility seen as right tone

President Obama’s warmly received plea for tolerance and temperance in the wake of last weekend’s massacre in Tucson has created an opportunity for him to change the tone of political debate in Washington and possibly advance his overall agenda. “What he has to make clear is that he’s taking seriously his own lesson,” said Wayne Fields, director of the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics at Washington University in St. Louis. Then the two parties might come together “by fits and starts,” he said. Link to Article See alsoDaily Record (New Jersey), Seattle Times,, The Columbus Dispatch


Fate of the cave bear: the lumbering beasts coexisted with the first humans for tens of thousands of years and then died off. Why?

Cave bears disappeared not long after humans spread throughout Europe. Could hunting have led to the bears’ extinction? That’s not likely, according to Washington University at St. Louis anthropologist Erik Trinkaus. “People living in the late Pleistocene weren’t stupid,” he says. “They spent an awful lot of time avoiding being eaten, and one of the ways to do that is to stay away from big bears.” If hunting was an isolated event, as he argues, there must be another reason the bears died out. Read Full Text

USA Today

There’s always someone right by superheroes’ side

Batman and Robin. Captain America and Bucky. The Green Hornet and Kato. How come so many superheroes come in pairs? Peter Coogan, director of the Institute for Comic Studies, an American studies teacher at Washington University in St. Louis and co-founder of the Comic Arts Conference at the annual Comic-Con International in San Diego, draws on contemporary literary-criticism ideas to explain that the sidekick is sometimes intended as a way to assuage audience guilt about how minorities are or have been treated. He describes four kinds of sidekicks often found in comics. Link to Article

Fierce Healthcare

The price of healthcare should not be a moving target

It’s time the healthcare industry stopped discriminating against patients. Patients are being shafted when it comes to medical billing. A healthcare provider accepts a payment from a payer for the fair and reasonable value of the medical goods or services provided. Then he goes up to the underinsured patient and puts his hand out for more money. St. Louis lawyer Paul Passanante says such providers are engaging in discriminatory billing practices and price gouging. His client, Steven Powell, is suing Washington University in St. Louis, alleging the university’s doctors and other healthcare providers routinely overbill patients for medical services. Link to Article


Washington University students plan to study abroad in Australian region now dealing with floods

One dozen Washington University students are headed to Brisbane, Australia, to study abroad in just a few weeks. Ashley Yarchin spoke with the university and students who fear they might have to make other plans. She chats via Skype with a Washington University junior who leaves Feb. 17 for studies at the University of Brisbane in Queensland. Link to Broadcast

St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Hip ‘hoods: Groovin’ in the Grove

The question isn’t why the Grove is a top destination for outdoor dining, late-night drinking and street festivals. The question is, what took so long? For all of its raw potential, the Grove — the stretch of Manchester Avenue from Kingshighway to Vandeventer Avenue — was just another decaying city neighborhood. Everybody steered clear until the mid-2000s, when gutsy business owners, hands-on developers and the Washington University Medical Center Redevelopment Corp. took a chance. Link to Article

St. Louis American

Obama’s special counsel to give MLK Lecture

Charles Ogletree will deliver the 2011 Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Lecture at Washington University School of Medicine on Monday, January 17. Link to Article

Ballwin-Ellisville Patch

Ballwin woman awarded internationally competitive scholarship

2007 Parkway West High School graduate Fatima Sabar of Ballwin recently was named a Rhodes Scholar. In high school, Fatima took part in the Students and Teachers as Research Scientists program. The program pairs students with mentors from the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Saint Louis University and Washington University in St. Louis. Now a senior at Stanford University, she’s majoring in biology and plans to pursue a master’s degree in global health science at Oxford. Link to Article

Ballwin-Ellisville Patch

Ballwin woman wants to be top Republican

Ann Wagner, a Republican from Ballwin, announces her bid to become chairwoman of the Republican National Committee in an online video. Wagner, who also recently chaired Roy Blunt’s successful U.S. Senate campaign, has been married 23 years and has three children, including Stephen, a sophomore at Washington University. Link to Article

News in Higher Education

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Forger gave paintings to SLU art museum

The St. Louis University Museum of Art got some national publicity this week, although it’s the kind curators there probably could do without. According to a story in Tuesday’s New York Times, the SLU museum is one of several that accepted paintings donated by Mark Landis, an eccentric artist and sometimes priest impersonator who the Times describes as “one of the most prolific forgers American museums have encountered in years.” The newspaper says Landis is a forger with a heart of gold. He donates his fakes to museums, and there’s no indication that he has tried to profit from forgeries.
Link to Article

New York Times

College’s policy on troubled students raises questions

Many people had a glimpse of the deep delusions and festering anger of Jared L. Loughner, but none seemed in a better position to connect the dots than officials at Pima Community College. After the release of detailed reports on Mr. Loughner’s bizarre outbursts and violent Internet fantasies that the college had kept, the focus has turned to whether it did all it could to prevent his apparent descent into explosive violence last weekend. Link to Article See also USA Today, USA Today

St. Louis Business Journal

Missouri increases scholarship amounts

Missouri will increase scholarship amounts for students under the Access Missouri program, Gov. Jay Nixon said Thursday during a stop in St. Louis. The Missouri Department of Higher Education will increase award amounts for the current academic year. For qualifying students at private institutions, the scholarship will increase from $1,900 up to a maximum of $2,160. The increased amounts reflect the maximum Access Missouri award a student would receive for both semesters of the 2010-2011 school year. Link to Article

New York Times

Elite French university joins college board

Sciences Po became the first French public institution to join an organization that connects American schools to institutes of higher education across the world. Link to Article

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

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