Let's Get This Party Started!
Though classes for the 2010-2011 academic year began on September 1, much activity and planning was focused on Hofstra’s Diamond Weekend, September 23-26, celebrating the 75th anniversary of the day Hofstra officially opened its doors for classes: September 23, 1935. Planning for this commemorative occasion actually began three years earlier, with a small charged with developing academic and social events that would honor the evolution of the University and also examine what was and is happening locally, regionally, nationally and internationally.
Events held over the Diamond Weekend included a convocation that featured an address by award-winning journalist Ted Koppel; an edible confection by Charm City Cakes in the shape of the Axinn Library and Unispan; a Diamond Reception honoring alumni, faculty and friends who impacted Hofstra’s history; “Live at 75” – an outdoor carnival and concert featuring musical groups spanning the decades, such as Sha Na Na, Blue Oyster Cult, Lisa Lisa, Public Enemy, Fountains of Wayne, and Trey Songz; and homecoming and class reunions. Awe-inspiring fireworks by Grucci preceded a stand-up performance at the Mack Sports and Exhibition Complex by comedian Jimmy Fallon, who later that evening made a guest appearance on Saturday Night Live.
Diamond Weekend and the many other events that followed gave all areas of the University an opportunity to shine. 75 Stories for 75 Years was an exhibition at the David Filderman Gallery that showcased photographs, documents and other materials highlighting Hofstra research, memorabilia and alumni stories throughout the decades. An ambitious timeline of photographs and text was mounted on the original Hofstra Unispan. Hofstra also unveiled its Oral History Project. Starting the spring before, 11 students were selected and trained to work as oral historians on behalf of the University. They interviewed more than 100 alumni and friends who shared various aspects of their Hofstra experience. The students recorded and transcribed these histories, which are now part of the University’s Special Collections. Highlights can be found online at hofstrastories.com.
More September News …
- The Department of English announced the fall 2011 launch of an M.F.A. in Creative Writing program. Students may concentrate in dramatic writing, fiction, poetry, or creative nonfiction. The M.F.A. is considered a terminal degree — appropriate for those who want to pursue specific writing disciplines and/or careers in publishing, teaching, and editing, among others.
- Hofstra began a new M.A. in Linguistics program with a specialization in the emerging science of forensic linguistics — the first program of its kind in the United States. The study of forensic linguistics — the examination of language and the law — is increasingly being used as a tool of legal professionals, law enforcement, and the intelligence community. Dr. Robert A. Leonard, the program director, is a longtime professor at Hofstra, internationally recognized as an expert in this field of study.
- Hofstra University’s Muslim Chaplain’s Office and the Islamic Medical Association of North America (IMANA) co-sponsored a two-day symposium, End of Life Issues: Ethical and Religious Perspectives, examining the intersection of ethics, faith, and culture in medical decisions about terminal and life-threatening illnesses.
- PatchU, a new network of partnerships between local Patch online publications and leading journalism programs at colleges and universities, made its debut at Hofstra. Through this arrangement, students earn course credit and gain journalism experience by writing and reporting for Patch’s local publications.
- The value of a liberal arts-based college education was the focus of a symposium, The Future of Liberal Arts in the 21st Century, which was the first in a series of conferences and symposia planned as part of Hofstra’s 75th anniversary celebration. This event was sponsored by Hofstra College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and featured a keynote address by Michael Bérubé, a professor at Pennsylvania State University.