Plus, Spotlighting Racial Justice, Alumnus' Election Outlook and More
Plus, Spotlighting Racial Justice, Alumnus' Election Outlook and More
Columbian College

September 2020

Joshua Douglas sitting down while speaking
A contentious presidential contest has voters anxious about going to the polls and trusting the results. But election law expert Joshua Douglas, BA ’02, JD ’07, says the voting horizon is not all “doom and gloom.”
Zinhle Essamuah
As a journalism and mass communications major, Zinhle Essamuah, BA ’15, MA ’17, documented protestors in Ferguson, Mo., at the dawn of the Black Lives Matter movement. Now, as a national news correspondent, she is again highlighting calls for change.
Rebekah Tromble
SMPA’s Rebekah Tromble, director of the Institute for Data, Democracy and Politics, will join a team of independent scholars and Facebook researchers to conduct a major study of the social media giant’s effect on the 2020 presidential elections.
Kavita Daiya and her two daughters wearing masks
As Kavita Daiya, director of the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program, transitioned her Women and Media course online, she also reinvented its focus to explore activist movements and inequalities highlighted by the pandemic.
Eugenie Pflieger at a desk with computer
From remote learning to virtual club meetings, Eugenie Pflieger (above) and other CCAS students are approaching an unprecedented semester with a commitment to making the most of new experiences.
Using fossilized teeth uncovered in Ethiopia's Lower Omo Valley, a team led by CCAS postdoctoral researcher Enquye Negash traced how an ecological change nearly 3 million years ago forced a dietary shift among ancient herbivores like antelopes and pigs.
Irene Foster
Economics’ Irene Foster was anxious about converting her classes to the virtual learning environment. But after a successful spring, she’s looking forward to an engaging and interactive fall semester.
David Rain on a bicycle
Geography’s David Rain asks his students to explore the environmental history of their hometowns. Now they are taking a closer look at the relationship between society and the physical environment—starting in their own backyards.


Craig Allen, PhD ’19, (American Studies) was named a 2020 American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) Emerging Voices Fellow.
Dante Chinni (Media and Public Affairs) received a $650,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to study how policymakers understand cultural, socioeconomic and political changes at the local level.
Xiaofei Kang received an ACLS Fellowship for her book project Enchanted Revolution: Ghosts, Shamans, and Gender Politics in Communist Propaganda, 1942-1953.
Chet Sherwood (Anthropology) was awarded a $458,776 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to conduct collaborative research on the development and evolution of primate brains.
Dmitry Streletskiy (Geography) received NSF grants totaling $605,336 for a project on navigating convergent pressures on Arctic development, and to study the implications of rapid Arctic environmental changes on well-being, resilience and evolution of Arctic communities.

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