In the News

Williams professors and others weigh in on the issues of the day. For a complete listing of media appearances, click here.


“If education was a good enough topic for Plato, John Dewey and William James, it should be good enough for 21st century college professors,” says Susan Engel, senior psychology lecturer and Class of 1959 Director of the Program in Teaching, in a Nov. 2 New York Times op-ed on the importance of creating “a critical mass of great teachers.”

Though people have “slightly irrational feelings about particular numbers,” Thomas Garrity, the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Mathematics and department chair, doesn’t understand “people making real decisions based on such feelings,” he says in an Oct. 28 post on The Wall Street Journal blog “The Numbers Guy” about criticism of a new building in Hong Kong with unconventionally numbered floors.

“It certainly allows parishioners to have a great deal more involvement in what one might call ‘doing church,’” says religion professor Glenn Shuck in an Oct. 11 Houston Chronicle article about emerging churches encouraging parishioners to use real-time messaging tools such as Twitter during services to share their thoughts, reflections and questions.

Though it seems as if people are leaving white-collar jobs for blue-collar ones during the financial crisis, Robert Jackall, the Willmott Family Third Century Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, says in the Aug. 26 New York Times: “I’m skeptical that our society, and the way in which the institutions of our society are geared and the economic situation in which we find ourselves, will permit the realization of this noble dream.”

American policy makers “know that the mistakes we made in Vietnam must be avoided in Afghanistan,” says political science professor and leadership studies chair James McAllister in an Aug. 7 Associated Press article on a meeting of top U.S. officials and a leading Vietnam War scholar to discuss the similarities between the two wars.

IMAGE CREDIT: Illustration by Robby Behr ’97