Commencement 2008

2008 John S. Diekhoff Winners Create Personal Connections to Enhance Learning

Heath Demaree and Athena Vrettos

Case Western Reserve University's winners of the 2008 John S. Diekhoff Award for graduate teaching—Heath Demaree, associate professor of psychology, and Athena Vrettos, associate professor and director of graduate studies in English—believe in creating emotional connections between their students and the subjects they teach.

Demaree knows from psychology literature that a personal attachment to a subject promotes learning. As a teaching technique, he shares emotionally ridden stories to illustrate theories discussed in his Psychology 403: "The Physiological Foundations of Behavior" course and to elicit reactions from his graduate students.

Vrettos helps her graduate students relate to her courses on Victorian literature and psychology and medical history and gender studies by sending them to the stacks of the Dittrick Medical History Center and Kelvin Smith or Allen Memorial Libraries to explore the medical materials of the 19th century and look for something that sparks their interests. These medical "finds" produce personal connections to literature. Read more.

Campus Community Invited to Tee it Up at Fifth Annual Spartan Open June 9


The Case Western Reserve University Athletic Department will host the Fifth Annual Spartan Open golf outing/fundraiser, presented by Bon Appétit, on June 9 at Fowlers Mill Golf Course in Chesterland, Ohio.

Every participant will receive a gift bag that will include an Under Armour golf shirt, hat, sleeve of Titleist golf balls and more. The event begins with registration at 11:30 a.m. and lunch at noon, and the four-person scramble will start at 1 p.m.

Dinner, following golf, will include the announcements of silent auction winners and the top three scores of the day. Prizes will be given out to the top three teams as well.

Money raised at the event will go toward improving the overall student-athlete experience at Case Western Reserve. For information, call the Case Western Reserve Athletic Department at 368-2420.

Campus News


Case Western Reserve University's LGBTA Task Force is marching in the Cleveland Pride Parade on June 21. The group will meet at 11 a.m. on West 3rd Street in downtown Cleveland to assemble for the march. If interested in participating, contact Jennifer Lhotsky via e-mail, or by phone at 368-0705.

To get the latest weather conditions, along with the campus forecast, go to the Case Weather Station Web site.


RePlay for Kids is hosting a toy repair workshop to benefit children with disabilities from 4-6 p.m., May 27 in Nord Hall, Room 310. RePlay for Kids is a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization of volunteers who repair and adapt toys and assistive devices for children with disabilities in northeast Ohio. Most of the work involves testing and repairing broken wires or other simple repairs.

For Faculty and Staff

Applications are being accepted for the 2009-2010 Fulbright Scholar Awards competition. The awards provide scholars with a wide range of opportunities in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and mathematics and in professional fields such as business, journalism and law. Programs are open to students, as well as faculty at all levels, including adjunct and emeriti faulty, as well as other professionals. The application deadline for the traditional lecturing and research grants or the Fulbright Distinguished Chair award is August 1. Complete information is available at the Council for International Exchange of Scholars Web site.

For Students

The Career Center has several databases that provide information about internships, profiles and statistics about popular careers. Learn more.



Case Western Reserve University's Center for Community Partnerships extends an invitation to the campus community on behalf of Friends of Cleveland School of the Arts, which is hosting "An Evening with Roberta Flack" May 17 at John Hay High School's auditorium. The concert is a benefit for the Cleveland School of the Arts (CSA). Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show, which begins at 8 p.m., will conclude with a special finale featuring the legendary singer accompanied by CSA students. Ticket information and additional event details are available online.

Refer to the Web event calendar for a list of events and activities on campus and in the community today and in the days ahead.

The views and opinions of those invited to speak on campus do not necessarily reflect the views of the university administration or any other segment of the university community.

May 14, 2008

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Case in the News

Drink tea for your health

The Buffalo News, May 13, 2008
These days, more health-conscious Americans are turning to tea, and with good reason. In the past decade, hundreds of studies have demonstrated its health-promoting and disease-preventing powers. When researchers at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine applied EGCg to healthy and cancerous mouse cells, they found that the agent helped wipe out the cancer cells without harming the healthy ones.

New insights into the dynamics of the brain's cortex

Science Daily, May 13, 2008
Using mathematics and a computer model of brain activity, Roberto Fernández Galán, an assistant professor of neurosciences at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, has shown a direct link between activity in the cortex and the microscopic structure of this neuronal network.

Skin patch effective in ADHD treatment

United Press International, May 13, 2008
U.S. scientists say they have determined the prolonged use of a transdermal patch is safe and effective for the treatment of ADHD in children 6-12 years old. Robert Findling, professor of psychiatry at Case Western Reserve University, comments.

Face and butt, heal thyselves, May 13, 2008
For HIV-positive people who develop lipoatrophy, or fat loss, in their faces, arms and legs, perhaps the most frustrating thing is that few options are available to reverse it. But new data raise the question of whether it is possible for HIV-associated lipoatrophy to be reversed naturally by the body itself. Grace McComsey, chief of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Rheumatology at Case Western Reserve University, comments.

Higher Ed News

Facebook, meet Blackboard

Inside Higher Ed, May 14, 2008
Blackboard, the course management giant, is hoping that a Facebook application will help it reach students even when they're trying to avoid studying.

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