Professor's Prologue

The Warrior Within: Nando Parrado

by Dr. Hal Shorey, Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology
Director of Widener's Organizational Development Services 

Hal Shorey

Most of us have heard the old adage "what doesn't kill you will make you stronger." These words (typically associated with Frederich Nietzsche) may seem like passing attempts by well intentioned others to minimize our perceptions of difficult obstacles and instill in us the courage to preserve. Very few of us, however, have confronted the kind of life and death experiences that would enable us to actually test this premise and its associated conclusion. Fortunately, there are a special few who can open a window on this experience and share their stories to activate in us the strong emotions and passion needed to rise above the limitations of our present situations. Read more ...

Vincente Fox

by Dr. Becky Jones, Associate Professor of Political ScienceDr. Becky Jones Headshot
When most Americans think of political change, they think of elections and the peaceful transfer of power from one president or prime minister and political party to another. In many other parts of the world, political change is not a regular occurrence and can be destabilizing at best and violent at worst. The political change we are currently seeing in countries such as Libya, Egypt, and Syria exemplifies the worst. Violence, government oppression of opposition groups, and the loss of social order are the outcomes of the collapse of a political structure. Read more ...

Erskine Bowles

by Dr. Hamid Zangeneh, Professor of EconomicsHamid Zangeneh
The unprecedented accumulation of federal government debt has people concerned with the f
inancial future ofthe country more than ever. The causes of this unprecedented debt are many: deficit spending to finance tax cuts under Presidents Bush and Obama, the cost of two wars, the seemingly unbridled upward spiral in Medicare costs, the shortfall in federal government revenues, President Obama's federal stimulus plan, and President Bush's Troubled Asset Relief Program to save the financial sector from complete collapse are some of the more noteworthy. Read more ...

P. W. Singer

by Dr. Martin Goldstein, Professor of Political Science 
The ancient Chinese sage Sun Tzu wrote, in The Art of War, “The art of war is of vital importance to the state. It is a matter of life and death, a road either to safety or to ruin.  Hence it is a subject of inquiry which can on no account be neglected.”

From the beginning of time to the present, the art of war has marched in step with the development of technology.  During the Neolithic era, primitive tools gave rise to the first daggers and swords. However, ambitious leaders could hardly carve out far-flung empires based on such weapons. Read more ...

Lisa Ling: A Story-teller with Purpose

Dwight DeWerth-Pallmeyer, PhDby Dr. Dwight DeWerth-Pallmeyer, Associate Professor of Communication Studies and Director of the Communication Studies Program 
If you were to ask a young journalism student what reporting was all about, they might answer something like this: “Journalism is telling an audience what is going on in the world.” Ask the student, “Why is that important?” and you’ll likely get the reply, “So that people are informed and can make good decisions.”

Such a response falls in line with the traditional objective journalistic structure of news, in which “both” sides of a story are fairly represented for the public. But that simplistic understanding of the news underscores many of the problems with the traditional news formula. Read more ...

Peeling Away the Many Layers of Jeannette Walls

Angela Corbo, PhDby Dr. Angela Corbo, Assistant Professor of Communications Studies
Family interactions have the power to warm the heart or stir unresolved issues. We share some of life’s greatest,most devastating, and even mundane experiences with our family. If we are honest with ourselves, we may recall a “family drama” that left a crease on the heart or character-building scar on our flesh. Family communication is an integral component of developing the interdependent concepts of self and others. We learn how to make sense of our interpersonal relationships with one another in our formative years. Read more ...

The Role of the Retired President
by Martin Goldstein, Professor of Political Science 

Most of us contemplate, at one time or another, what we will do when we retire. Perhaps we will develop a new hobby or pursue an old one with renewed vigor. Or maybe we will decide to volunteer for worthy causes. Many of us will follow our professional calling, but at a reduced level. Another option  — enjoying unstructured leisure time — also sounds appealing. Read more ...