September 8, 2008

Volume 3, issue 3
September 8, 2008
The Fountain

Class of 2012 starts new photo tradition

For many years members of each Whitman graduating class have gathered on Ankeny prior to the Commencement ceremony for a group photo. The members of this year’s entering class got a head start on that tradition and started a new one by gathering en masse for a class photo. Barbara Maxwell, associate dean of students, came up with the idea, and Greg Lehman, communications officer/photographer, climbed into the cherry picker to get the shot.

“The senior class photo on Commencement morning captures one of the class’s final moments together and is a memorable point in their lives. Orientation is also a memorable point in the life of Whitman students. By taking a photo during Orientation, we can provide students with a memento that creates ‘bookends’ for them — one at the beginning and another at the end of their college career.”

“From Where I Stand” lunch series begins Sept. 16

A new lunch series focused on viewpoints about race and ethnicity, “From Where I Stand,” debuts Tuesday, Sept. 16, at noon in Memorial 316.

The Race and Ethnic Studies (RAES) major, directed by Professor Jean Carwile Masteller, is in its third year. The new lunch series, she said, is a result of the RAES steering committee’s desire to engage the larger Whitman community in an interdisciplinary discussion of the role of race and ethnicity in our lives. Alberto Galindo, assistant professor of foreign languages and literatures (Spanish), will serve as series moderator. Galindo said the series is a way to promote an ongoing discussion, rather than a lecture, “where members of the college community will be able to listen to scholars discuss thoughts on issues outside their research fields.“ With “Race, Ethnicity and I” as a focal point, various faculty members and administrators will discuss “The Presidential Race 2008,” “American Popular Culture,” and “The 2008 Ballot: Initiative 1000, assisted suicide or death with dignity.”

“The Presidential Race of 2008” will lead off the series on Sept. 16 with panelists Lori Bettison-Varga, provost and dean of the faculty; Shampa Biswas, associate professor of politics and director of the global studies program; and Nicole Simek, assistant professor of foreign languages and literatures (French) and General Studies.

Please check the campus calendar for the complete schedule. For more information or to reserve a lunch, contact Galindo at

Screening of “Divided We Fall” commemorates 9/11 terrorist attacks

“Divided We Fall: Americans in the Aftermath,” a feature-length documentary film on acts of hate violence committed following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, will be screened Thursday, Sept. 11, in Olin 130 at 7 p.m.

The documentary, presented by the religion department and the Associated Students of Whitman College, follows the journey of 20-year-old college student Valarie Kaur, who documented hate violence against Sikhs and Muslims in the immediate aftermath and asked “who counts” as an American.

The documentary is open to the public. For more information, visit or contact Melissa Wilcox, assistant professor of religion, x5247, or Rogers Miles, adjunct assistant professor of religion x5360.

Faculty accomplishments

Professor of Geology Kevin Pogue’s “Etched in Stone: The Geology of City of Rocks National Reserve and Castle Rocks State Park, Idaho,” has been published by the Idaho Geological Survey, University of Idaho, Moscow. In addition to invaluable information on the history and geology of the area, the book showcases photos of this dramatic western landscape, taken by Charles Katz, Jr.

Annual Yard Sale raises $$ for scholarships

No early sales were allowed at this year’s Physical Plant Yard Sale, resulting in a line of about 40 eager customers stretched down the sidewalk peering through the fence at the treasures in the parking lot. A grand total of $1,973 was raised to add to the Physical Plant’s scholarship fund, which has reached $175,000. “It was a good year,“ said Gayle Worthington, administrative assistant for the physical plant, “especially considering the low inventory available this year as opposed to past years.”

Welcome to the Whitman Family

Machelle Hartman, adjunct instructor of chemistry, and her husband, Jerry, proudly announce the newest member of their family, daughter Mica Acai Hartman, who was adopted from the Philippines. Mica, who is 13 months, joins big brother Aidan, 4. “She loves to walk, play with the dogs, and sing,” Machelle reports.

Film series focuses on Québec

Jack Iverson, assistant professor of foreign languages and literatures (French), will be showing a series of films that focus on Québec, Wednesdays, 8 p.m., in Olin 157.

“This week (Wednesday, Sept.10), the films will be shown in English, since they are animated films with a narrative voiceover,” Iverson said. In subsequent weeks, he said, screenings will be in French with English subtitles. A complete list for the series, which relates to the course French 305 taught by Iverson, will be available after the Wednesday showing. All are welcome to attend.

This week’s films: “The Man Who Planted Trees” (1987, 30 minutes); “The Mighty River” (1993, 24 minutes) by activist filmmaker Frédéric Back; for more information about Back and his environmental initiatives, visit

Coming Events
All free unless otherwise stated

Wednesday, Sept. 10
Talk and discussion: James Robart ’69, U. S. district court judge and chair of the Whitman College Board of Trustees, will speak to students about the First Amendment and answer questions about careers in law. 4 p.m., Maxey 206.

Thursday, Sept. 11, through Sunday, Sept. 14
Play: Harper Joy Theatre presents “My Name is Rachel Corrie,” edited from the writings of Rachel Corrie by Alan Rickman and Katherine Viner. Bonus performance. 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday, Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. For tickets and info, call the Box Office at x5180.

Friday, Sept. 12, and Sunday, Sept. 14
Film: The award-winning “Persepolis,” based on the book by Marjane Satrapi, will be shown at 7:30 p.m. in Kimball Theatre, Hunter Conservatory. Presented by the Cinema Arts Series (CAS).

Friday, Sept. 19
Recital: Fridays at Four presents “Girls with Phones; variations with soprano, alto, and tenor saxophones,” featuring Kalla Vavra and Hilary White. 4 p.m., Kimball Theatre, Hunter Conservatory.

Friday, Sept. 19, and Sunday, Sept. 21
Film: “Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter… And Spring” (Kim 2004, Korea). Presented by CAS. Kimball Theatre, Hunter Conservatory, 7:30 p.m.

Whitman College
In This Issue
New Photo Tradition
New Lecture Series
“Divided We Fall”
Faculty accomplishments
Yard Sale
New Baby
Film Series
Coming Events

Past issues

The Fountain is published by the Office of Communications. Send news to Editor Lenel Parish at Photos are accepted. Submissions are due by Tuesday at 5 p.m. for the following week's issue. Director of Communications: Ruth Wardwell. Online: