Kenyan Writer Mukoma wa Ngugi Enters
New Terrain with His First Novel, Nairobi Heat

Mukoma wa Ngugi

Until recently, Kenyan writer Mukoma wa Ngugi was best known as a poet and as a commentator on African politics. But with the publication of his first novel, Nairobi Heat (Penguin Books), Mukoma, a SAGES fellow at Case Western Reserve University, has entered very different literary terrain.

Nairobi Heat is a detective story by an author hoping to bridge the gap between "serious" literature and popular fiction. Mukoma wanted to write a novel that was "fun to read," a book that made readers feel they were "on an exciting journey." But he also wanted to explore themes of race and identity, conscience and justice. Read more.

Campus News

Women caregivers are needed for a research study of how to manage stress while caring for an elder with dementia, conducted by Jaclene A. Zauszniewski and fellow researchers from Case Western Reserve University. The study involves three data collection interviews and a chance to test one way to reduce stress. Participants will receive compensation for their time. Call 368-0552 or email for more information.


The campus community is invited to check out Off the Shelf, a series of podcast interviews with Case Western Reserve University faculty authors. The interviews are hosted by librarian William Claspy.

The Flora Stone Mather Center for Women is hosting a clothing drive for victims of sexual assault. When a victim of sexual assault seeks help, his or her clothes are often collected for evidence. Area hospitals are in need of clothing for victims. New underwear, T-shirts, shorts, sweat pants and sweatshirts are needed. Donations can be dropped off at the Center for Women through the end of the month. Call 368-0985 for information.

The Graduate Student Senate (GSS) and the School of Graduate Studies invite all graduate students, staff and faculty to attend a reception honoring the 2009-10 recipients and nominees of the John S. Diekhoff Award from 3:30 to 5 p.m. today at the Alumni House. These awards acknowledge faculty who make exemplary contributions to the education and development of graduate students through their work in the classroom and as a mentor. This year the GSS and the School of Graduate Studies would like to congratulate Professors Daniel Goldmark (Department of Music) and Mendel Singer (Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics) for their excellence in teaching and Professors Susan Hinze (Department of Sociology) and Barbara Lewis (Department of Communication Sciences) for their excellence in mentorship. The Diekhoff Award honors John S. Diekhoff, who served the university in several capacities from 1956 to 1970. The award consists of a plaque and honorarium that will be presented at the university's commencement convocation. Learn more.

For Faculty and Staff

Bon Appétit now offers free cooking classes as part of the Case Employee Wellness program.  A free cooking class on ways to prepare healthy treats will take place from noon to 1 p.m., Thursday, April 29, in Thwing Center's Spartan Room. RSVP to

The new SmartCART online ordering portal will go live on Monday, May 10. Purchasing at Case Western Reserve will now be easier. Want to see what’s so smart about it? Register online for a training session.

The Employee Education Training and Development unit is hosting a session on Parents with Dependents Considering Case Western Reserve from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Thursday, April 29, in the Toepfer Room, Adelbert Hall. This information session is for staff and faculty who have dependents interested in attending the university.  Representatives from the Department of Human Resources and the offices of Financial Aid and Undergraduate Admissions will guide attendees through the admissions, financial aid and tuition waiver processes. Register online.

For Students

Writing Resource Center consultants and other SAGES writing faculty will be available from 6 to 7:30 p.m., Thursday, April 29, in SAGES Café to answer questions about final essays. If you have questions about your thesis, how to cite sources, how to organize your essay or any other writing issues, feel free to drop by.

To celebrate the incoming class of 2014 and to promote Summer Send Off events around the country, the Office of University Alumni Relations is sponsoring its first student video contest. Summer Send Off events are held each summer to welcome incoming students and their families to the Case Western Reserve community. Show off your creativity and display your school pride to your fellow and future classmates by creating a video that highlights what you love about CWRU and why new students should attend a Summer Send Off celebration in their hometown. The winner will receive $250 just in time for summer break.

Adobe software has long been strategic to Case Western Reserve's mission of fostering advancement of relevant, universally accepted digital communication skills and enhancing learning by integrating technology into coursework. A new agreement between Adobe software and the university has allowed for Adobe Production, Web and Design Premium suites to be available on the Software Center to all Case Western Reserve students at no cost. You need to be wired on campus to perform this download; do not use wireless or VPN/wireless from home. Complete details are available online. The software, available to students now, will be available to faculty and staff beginning May 3.


The Alpha Omega Alpha medical honor society will present its 2010 spring lecture, Where’s the Wisdom in Health Care? The Science of Health Care Delivery, from 4 to 5 p.m., Wednesday, May 5, at the School of Medicine, Room E-401. The speaker is James Weinstein, director of the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice and chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at Dartmouth Medical School and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. He is an internationally renowned spine surgeon and health services researcher.

The Case Art Studio's Spring Art Exhibition runs through Friday, April 30. The exhibit features photography, textiles, paintings, ceramics, multimedia and more. Gallery hours are 1 to 5 p.m.

The Center for Science and Mathematics Education is hosting the Fourth Annual Science is Fun! Family Day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, May 1, in Nord Hall 310. This free event engages individuals and families in hands-on science activities, presentations and friendly competitions. Events include building K'nex vehicles; participating in the popular egg drop competition; learning cool chemistry from Case Western Reserve's Education Theatre; enjoying amphibians and reptiles; getting close to Cleveland Metroparks Zoo animals; and more. Advance registration is requested. Call 368-5075 or email for information.

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.

Et al.

Support of Undergraduate Research and Creative Endeavors (SOURCE) announces the following 2010 Intersections: SOURCE Symposium & Poster Session winners. More names will be announced soon.

Humanities Oral Competition

  • 1st – Paul Niebrzydowski, Project Retrospect: Historicizing the Rhetoric of Energy Independence.  Faculty mentor: Professor Peter Shulman, Department of History. 

Natural Sciences Oral Competition

  • 1st – Christine Petzold, Nonsense-mediated mRNA Decay Occurs on Polyribosomes.  Faculty mentor: Professor Jeff Coller, Department of Biochemistry.

Natural Sciences Poster Competition

  • 1st – Leah Dodson, On the Interaction of the Pharmaceutical Salbutamol with Light in Water Solution.  Faculty mentor: Professor Carlos E. Crespo- Hernández, Department of Chemistry.
  • 2nd- Tina Saw, A Comparison of Periodontal Referral Patterns: Trends Toward Urgent Care. Faculty mentor: Professor Leena Palomo, Department of Periodontics.

Social Sciences Oral Competition

  • 1st – James (JP) Graulty, Obesity and the Minimum Wage: Using State-Level Data.  Faculty mentor: Professor David Clingingsmith, Department of Economics.

April 28, 2010

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In the News

Ethics training assumes varying forms as current events raise awareness

Crain's Cleveland Business, April 27, 2010
While teaching ethics is not a new focus for college campuses, some believe that current events have at the very least helped bring questions of discerning right from wrong to the forefront. Northeast Ohio schools that already had a strong commitment to ethics training are continuing in their missions, and in some cases those efforts are taking on a new shape. Shannon French, director of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence at Case Western Reserve University, comments.

Residents urged to take up arms after police cuts

MSNBC, April 26, 2010
An Ashtabula County judge recently advised residents to be vigilant in the wake of recent sheriff's deputy cuts. Andrew Pollis, visiting assistant professor of law at Case Western Reserve University, recently appeared on MSNBC to discuss and to clarify the situation. The video is currently posted on YouTube.

What if we never had fossil fuels?, April 26, 2010
A columnist wonders how we can successfully make the transition to a sustainable society. He quotes Roger Saillant, executive director of the Fowler Center for Sustainable Value at Case Western Reserve University.

Tips on weathering the post-wedding blues

The Daily News, April 28, 2010
Wedding planners, psychologists and other experts say a post-wedding letdown is perfectly normal, common even. Here's a sampling of advice on how to handle the emotional letdown some newlyweds feel after the big day. Focus on the marriage, not just the wedding, says Susan L. Padrino, senior instructor in the Department of Psychiatry at Case Western Reserve University.

Higher Ed News

Professors from the working class credit their rise to rockā€”and Agent Scully

Chronicle of Higher Education, April 27, 2010
Television, popular music, and comic books are probably not the first things that come to mind when parents look for ways to turn their children into devoted scholars. But a new study of college faculty members from working-class backgrounds finds that many credit popular culture for inspiring them to break away from their surroundings and make the difficult journey into academe.