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From the Editor

Tracking on 150 Years

By Sherri Kimmel

I’m no George Plimpton, but I do enjoy participatory journalism, especially when it involves climbing around on a train. Well, participatory may be stretching it. I wasn’t pulling the throttle on the train engine. I was just along for the ride with Conductor Frank Moscatelli, whose day job is teaching physics at Swarthmore.
Sitting in a [...]

A Redesign in Mind

By Sherri Kimmel

During the last half-century or so, only a few folks have been fortunate enough to serve as the Swarthmore College Bulletin editor. Marilyn Orbison Gillespie ’49, a snappy dresser who is still going strong as an avid volunteer for the Scott Arboretum, led the charge from 1956 to 1992. Jeff Lott held the reins from [...]

A Crash Course in Sustainability

By Sherri Kimmel

It’s been nearly four years since my husband and I were traveling down a congested Interstate 83 to attend his mother’s funeral in Baltimore. Our solemn journey was interrupted by a horrifying jolt and the clamorous sound of twisting metal and shattering glass. I thought a bomb had dropped on our car. No, it was [...]

Exploring our Health Care Future

By Sherri Kimmel

The first time I heard the term Obamacare I was standing in the Italian-marble-floored kitchen of the expansive home of a Texas surgeon. Mind you, this surgeon was someone I had admired since I’d first met him the summer of the ’76 Olympics. (Yeah, I was a kid, and he was already a long-established scalpel [...]

From the Editor

By Sherri Kimmel
skimmel1@swarthmore.edu

Yesterday I saw tiny violet flowers cropping up outside my office in Sproul Hall. (According to the adjacent sign, they’re called Scilla bifolia.) It seems everyone I meet talks about the Dean Bond Rose Garden, from which seniors choose their Commencement roses. The heralded beauty of this campus—which I’ve been waiting to glimpse since my [...]

Parlor Talk

By Jeffrey Lott

After more than 21 years working on this magazine, I’m handing it over to a new editor, Sherri Kimmel, this month. This is my 85th and final issue of the Swarthmore College Bulletin.
It’s with mixed emotions that I relinquish this job—even though it was my choice to do so. After all these years, there’s [...]

Parlor Talk

By Jeffrey Lott

In a few weeks, I’m making a conference presentation called “50 Ways to Love Your Magazine—and Make Your Readers Love It Too.” To prepare for my talk, I spent a couple hours perusing the magazine racks at Barnes & Noble (alas, not Borders, which always had a better selection). I was searching for magazines honored [...]

Parlor Talk

By Jeffrey Lott

Following completion of the January 2012 issue, scheduled to go to press in late December, I will leave the editorship of the Bulletin. I will not be leaving Swarthmore College, however; in January, I will begin a part-time position editing and writing a book about the College—part history, part contemporary accounts, and lots of great [...]

Parlor Talk

By Jeffrey Lott

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Swarthmore’s Writing Associates (WA) Program, a remarkable peer education system that helps students become better writers. In campus parlance, a WA is a trained student writing coach who works across a wide variety of disciplines with individuals and with entire classes. WAs provide feedback that helps fellow students [...]

Parlor Talk

By Jeffrey Lott

As Swarthmore moves forward with an 18-month strategic planning process, I find that it’s all too easy to be cynical about long-range planning. You ask a lot of earnest questions and gather guarded, self-interested answers that range from the sublime to the ridiculous. You write it all up in a study that’s out of date [...]