Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

A minute with … Zevi Rubin ’16

Drone CampIf you look up in the sky while at Wheaton and see a drone, Zevi Rubin can’t be too far away. The computer science major has become known for building (he has seven) and piloting drones, which he prefers to call multi-rotors, because drones get a bad rap. Last semester he was a panelist at Wheaton’s first Drone Camp alongside professors. Spreading his wings: “I’ve been working with the Film Department since last summer, and I am now training students to fly a Wheaton-owned multi-rotor to use during film projects. I am always excited to spread awareness about UAVs [unmanned aerial vehicles] and some of their uses, and I am excited to work with the school to start developing new uses for the technology. So many people have preconceived notions about what a drone is and what it does. My main goal when showing my work to people is to show them that drones aren’t all bad. In fact, my multi-rotor drones are actually pretty fun.” [Read more...]

Professor and students examine epidemics

Karen McCormackIn 2014, the largest Ebola epidemic in history affected several countries in West Africa. Coincidentally, before the outbreak became a major media story, Associate Professor of Sociology Karen McCormack was already exploring health and crime epidemics in her First-Year Seminar (FYS) “Epidemics, Contagion and Inequality.” We talked to her about the course.

Tell us about the focus of your FYS and how the idea for it came about.

Over the past decade or so, many social scientists have used the techniques of epidemiology—the study of the determinants of health and the process and patterns of disease transmission—to learn about other social phenomena, like crime or even fashion trends. I’ve been fascinated by this attempt that parallels the work of sociologists to understand how contagion works, and how and why some people (as well as some neighborhoods, communities, and even states and countries) exhibit some degree of immunity from certain conditions. “Epidemics, Contagion and Inequality” allowed me to explore these patterns with students. [Read more...]

Rise and shine

FOX25_Panorama1You learn a lot when you have to get up at 3 a.m. to report to work by 4:30 a.m. One: It’s hard to find a fast-food place open that early in the morning to get that lifesaving cup of coffee (thank goodness for those golden arches). Two: It’s easy to order hash browns and not worry about the carb count when you order in the fog of sleepiness.

FOX25 T ShirtThis, of course, is information I could have lived without in exchange for more sleep. However, the early-morning wake-up was well worth it, considering the payoff: seeing the campus come to life in all of its shining glory with television cameras on-site to share it.

Fox 25 News Boston came to campus on September 26 (starting with a 4:30 a.m. set-up) to do a live news program from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. as part of the station’s “College Tour” series. The series showcases the best of what selected New England colleges have to offer. Staff, students and faculty spent the four hours on the campus green in front of cameras. The president was interviewed, various student groups performed, others showed off their scholarly interests, and the entire community provided Wheaton spirit. Some of us had way too much fun—and coffee. [Read more...]

The starting line

Mitchell Memorial 5KI’m a list maker. I love seeing life laid out so clearly and enumerated. Social media has fueled that interest in such an entertaining way. You name it, there’s a list for it shared via Facebook or Twitter.

I found this one, “10 Life Lessons I Learned From Running” by Suzanne Kvilhaug, this summer. The timing was perfect. I was on week five of my 26-week 10K training app, just far enough into it when things were getting tough and I was rethinking my commitment. (I am, after all, the girl who only joined the high school cross country team to get the cute team sweater and then dropped the sport like a bad habit.)

Kvilhaug’s list addresses challenges that runners face, but I think it also offers great lessons for our new graduates, who are celebrated in this issue on page 4, as well as guidance for our incoming first-year students: [Read more...]