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In the News

“A glance at the summer issue of Internationalist: A debate on intellectual diversity”
Chronicle of Higher Education
June 15, 2006
   In a review of the current issue of the journal Internationalist, the author summarizes the arguments of a Duke University Student and Pitzer’s Chuck Kralowec ’06:
   Kralowec argues against legislative intrusion into the academy. Certain curricula create a tendency toward certain political viewpoints, he says. English and philosophy departments, for instance, tend to lean left, he says, while economics departments tend to go rightward. Regardless, the “insidious ‘intellectual diversity’ solution is not the answer to these problems, from either a liberal or conservative perspective,” he writes. Moreover, he says it is very naïve to think there would be an unbiased way to enforce measures that promote intellectual diversity.

“Admissions Revolution”
Inside Higher Ed
June 14, 2006
   A number of college presidents— along with foundation officials— gathered June 15 in New York City to talk about how the admissions process, particularly at competitive private colleges, might be changed. Among those participating were the presidents of Amherst, Barnard, Bates, Earlham, Grinnell, Pitzer, Reed, Swarthmore and Williams Colleges and Drew University.
   Laura Skandera Trombley, president of Pitzer, says that moving away from the SAT reflects much more than just questioning the value of the test. (Pitzer is among the competitive liberal arts colleges that no longer requires it.)
   “We have felt for some years that this was becoming far too numbers oriented, in terms not just of the emphasis on the SAT, but the ways in which colleges are interpreting and reporting back data to succeed with the various rankings,” she says. Moving away from the SAT is moving away from focusing on numbers, not students, she says. The numbers also make college admission seem like “a survival contest,” she says, rather than an educational process.

“Such Harsh Beauty”
Los Angeles Times
June 8, 2006
   An article about landscaping with cacti and succulents was published in the Home and Garden section of the L.A. Times.
   “Cacti are really growing in popularity,” says Joe Clements, director of the arboretum at Pitzer College in Claremont and former curator of the desert garden at the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino.    “People have latched onto the idea that they look good all year round.” Pitzer has installed drought-tolerant landscaping around the campus, and the school’s president, Laura Skandera Trombley, recently ripped up an H2O-gulping lawn for a mix of local cactuses and succulents.
   Instead of overly linear gardening, “you want it to look natural,” advises Clements. “Nature is regular in an irregular way. Don’t do Chinese soldiers”—lining up cactuses in rows like the terra-cotta warriors in the famed tomb in Xian, China. And also avoid the lone warrior syndrome, spreading the plants too sparsely.
   The key, he says, is repetition of shapes and textures and making changes within that mix. For a starter kit, he suggests beginning with a cluster of five golden barrel cactuses, larger is better—6 inches to a foot each—in a bed of rocks. Add some agaves for height and texture. For softness, bring in Nolina, a meadow-like bear grass, or desert spoon, a bushy blue-silver plant. Top things off with the rubbery leaves of several aloes.

“Pitzer College Creating Eco-friendly Residential Halls”
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
April 15, 2006
   The expansion of Pitzer College residence halls will be energy-efficient and environmentally friendly.
Construction of seven new dormitories, which started in the second week of April, will follow U.S. Green Building Council standards.
The council promotes that construction projects use recycled materials and incorporate native plants into the surrounding landscape.
   Since 2001, the college has studied the council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program, and based dormitory architectural design on the program’s guidelines.
In doing so, the school is seeking a Gold certification for its residence halls, which is the second highest certification issued by the council.

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