Northeastern Professors Do More than LecturePosted: April 6, 2011
Yesterday morning, I sat in the Curry Student Center Ballroom and listened to a variety of professors from the College of Arts, Media and Design present on the different projects they have been working on both in and outside of the Northeastern community.
While I was familiar with some professors and unfamiliar with others, I thought it was really interesting (and impressive!) to see what some of the different professors have been working on. Some are writing books, others are producing visual and performance art, publishing articles, spearheading their own projects, ect. I thought I would feature two presenters I found exceptionally entertaining and working on especially interesting and stimulating projects.
Professor Dan Kennedy: Kennedy presented on The New Haven Independent, a large non-profit city news website that my Reinventing the News class has become familiar with this past semester. Kennedy explained how The Independent, with its staff of five, has been using bicycles to bring them where they need to go, lowering costs (while saving the environment!) for themselves while building civic engagement throughout the community. I like The Independent’s new model for news: Lost-cost, small-staffed, and online-only format. However, Kennedy highlighted the fact that The Independent’s readership is small. This could change over time, though–especially if they utilize social media sites like Twitter and Facebook!
Professor Walter Robinson: Robinson presented on his Advanced Reporting class here at Northeastern, where students get to collaborative research and report stories that appear in The Boston Globe. Robinson’s team of students have uncovered stories like Tim Cahill’s abuse of power and money, as well as flaws and segregation within the Boston Fire Department, and exposed them to the public. I think it’s great that Robinson not only helps to uncover these stories, but engages students in the process and gives them a great deal of the credit.
A third professor I thought was also interesting was Murray Forman, who presenting on “The Aging of Hip-Hop.” It was interesting to hear a middle-aged man’s perspective on how a culture is aged, and he pointed out that many artists who helped ignite the hip-hop era are already in their 60s, showing that hip-hop has aged and is actually evolving and changing. I liked his presentation because it gave some historical context to hip-hop as a movement, when typically I just think of hip-hop as ‘good workout music.’
I wish more students had attended this event because it is great to see what professors at Northeastern are doing outside of the Northeastern community, and it makes me proud to know that Northeastern professors are not just teaching, but are applying what they already know and have learned to launch, promote or support successful companies, publications, projects and more.