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aydelotte foundation
AYDELOTTE FOUNDATION
YEAR END REPORT
SEPTEMBER 2014 - JUNE 2015
W W W. S W A R T H M O R E . E D U / AY D E L O T T E - F O U N D AT I O N
Mission Statement
The mission of the Frank Aydelotte Foundation for the
Advancement of the Liberal Arts is to inspire the
quality and inventiveness of Swarthmore College’s
liberal arts practices and to promote the understanding of the Liberal Arts in higher education,
throughout society and around the world.
Snap Shot for 2014-15
• 48 events hosted
• 32 conveners/presenters contributed
• 1,231 participants engaged
Aydelotte Foundation 2014-15 Initiatives
 Classics in Dialogue
 CoRaL: Creative Research Lab
 Faculty Pedagogy Seminar
 Food Book Discussion Group
 Inequality, Access, and Opportunity Series


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"Higher Education, Inequality, and Opportunity: Selective College Policies in a
National Context" featuring Sandy Baum
Inequality, Access, and Opportunity in Higher Ed Wiki
"Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis" featuring Robert Putnam '63
 Salon Series
 Second Tuesday Social Sciences Cafes
 Sound Breaks
www.swarthmore.edu/aydelotte-foundation/initiatives
SELECTED HIGHLIGHTS
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Classics in Dialogue
Introduction
This was a symposium in interview format.
Each interview paired an academic speaker
with a high profile artist or intellectual
whose work draws on or is in dialogue with
classical antiquity. The aim was to expand
our notion of the relevance of Classics —
and by extension the liberal arts — by
engaging in direct dialogue with people
whose work outside of the academy has
found meaning in the classical past.
Stats: October 2014 • 2 conveners • 3 interviews • 30
participants
Classics in Dialogue (continued)
Symposium Conveners
Grace Ledbetter (Associate
Professor, Classics)
Jeremy Lefkowitz (Assistant
Professor, Classics)
Classics in Dialogue (continued)
Symposium Presenters
 Jennie Hirsh (Maryland Institute College of Art) interviewed
contemporary artists Patty Chang and Benjamin Tiven.
 Allen Kuharski (Swarthmore College) interviewed actor, teacher
and director Emmanuelle Delpech.
 Ralph Rosen (University of Pennsylvania) interviewed Professor
of Classical Languages and Culture at Leiden University,
Netherlands, Ineke Sluiter.
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy
Introduction
This seminar brought together 12
faculty members from different
disciplines to work in pairs to observe,
discuss, and refine one another’s
teaching strategies. The seminar
focused on three key areas: learning
through observation, peer coaching,
and reflective practice.
Stats: August 2014 - May 2015 • 2 conveners • 11 group
sessions • 12 participants
Bulletin article on seminar:
http://bulletin.swarthmore.edu
/spring-2015-issue-iii/heycoach-what-did-you-think-myclass
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy (continued)
Pedagogy Seminar Conveners
Betsy Bolton (Professor, English
Literature)
Kenneth Sharpe (William R. Kenan
Jr. Professor, Political Science)
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy (continued)
Sample Seminar Agenda Items

If you have ever been “coached” — in your academic life or any other activity, sport or
social interaction — what did that coaching involve? Tell us a story of how it worked and
what you learned — or didn’t.

What are we learning from this process of observation and coaching? Tell a story either
about the experience of being observed or about observing/coaching your partner. In
thinking about the story, you might want to consider: 1) moments of surprise or
confusion, 2) moments of satisfaction or frustration and 3) events that either confirmed
or challenged your beliefs about teaching or coaching.

All of us think it is useful to learn techniques for getting students to speak in class. But
what are the learning goals that more students “speaking in class” serve? That depends
on the class, the material, the student. How then can we think about techniques and
purposes so that techniques don’t lead to unintended consequences we don’t want?
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy (continued)
Pedagogy Seminar Pairs
Betsy Bolton (Professor, English
Literature)
with
Tomoko Sakomura (Associate
Professor and Chair, Art History)
Timothy Burke (Professor and
Chair, History)
with
María Luisa Guardiola (Professor and
Section Head, Spanish)
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy (continued)
Pedagogy Seminar Pairs
Renee Clarke (Facilities
Operations Coordinator/Head
Softball Coach)
Anthony Foy (Associate
Professor, English Literature)
with
with
Elaine Allard (Visiting Assistant
Professor, Educational Studies)
Ameet Soni (Assistant Professor,
Computer Science)
Faculty Seminar on Pedagogy (continued)
Pedagogy Seminar Pairs
Christopher Fraga (Assistant
Professor, Anthropology)
Kenneth Sharpe (William R.
Kenan Jr. Professor, Political
Science)
with
Tao Wang (Assistant Professor,
Economics)
with
Sara Hiebert Burch (Professor,
Biology)
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Food Book Discussion Group
Introduction
The Aydelotte Foundation hosted another book discussion program,
following last year’s successful Toni Morrison book group. Faculty
and staff were encouraged to join in a shared intellectual exercise
centered on the theme of food. Through reading and discussion, the
group examined different aspects of food — such as its history, social
justice issues such as food security, our personal relationships with
food, etc. Faculty-staff pairings co-facilitated discussion for three
small groups who met several times over the spring semester,
culminating in a potluck gathering of all of the groups.
Stats: January – April 2015 • 6 facilitators • 10 group sessions • 53 participants • 7 books
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
“I loved it! Not only do I get to meet people on
campus I would never usually meet, but I also get
to learn from them about how powerful reading is
as a tool for intellectual exchange. I get to bring
this practice back to my course organization and
my students. I always leave book group a little
wiser. “ — Facilitator
“Beyond just participating, it was when I expressed
a strong opinion about one of the books early in
one of the meetings, and I turned out to be in a
very small minority who felt that way about it.
Others engaged with me about my perspective,
and I saw other perspectives very easily, despite my
strong feelings, but no one tried to invalidate my
opinion in any way. It was really a very eye-opening
experience.” — Participant
Swarthmore News &
Events:
www.swarthmore.edu/new
s-events/stafffaculty-bookclub-sparks-conversationand-connections
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
Book Group Facilitator Pairs
Jennifer Moore (Administrative
Assistant, History)
Carina Yervasi (Associate Professor,
French and Francophone Studies)
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
Book Group Facilitator Pairs
Peter Schmidt (William R. Kenan
Jr. Professor, English Literature)
Meg Spencer (Librarian, Cornell
Science Libraries)
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
Book Group Facilitator Pairs
Allison Dorsey (Professor, History)
Tania Johnson (Associate Director,
Sponsored Projects & Institutional
Relations)
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
Featured Books
Food Book Discussion Group (continued)
Featured Books
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Inequality, Access, and Opportunity Series
Introduction
November 2014 Professor Robert Putnam (Harvard
University) joined the Aydelotte Foundation for a number
of activities which kick-started our series devoted to
examining questions of inequality, access, and opportunity
as they relate to higher education. This series concluded
with a March 2015 visit by Professor Sandy Baum (George
Washington University).
Stats: November 13, 2014 through March 19, 2015 • 9 sessions • 412 participants
Inequality, Access, and Opportunity: Part 1
Professor Robert Putnam
Bio
Robert Putnam ’63 is the Peter and
Isabel Malkin Professor of Public Policy
at Harvard University. He co-founded
the Saguaro Seminar, bringing together
leading thinkers and practitioners to
develop actionable ideas for civic
renewal.
Robert Putnam
Professor Robert Putnam (continued)
Putnam’s Schedule of Engagement:
 Classroom visit to Professor Ben Berger’s Democratic Theory and Practice class
 Lunch with students
 Dinner with faculty and staff
 Evening public lecture: “Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis”
“The American Dream of equal opportunity is threatened by a growing gap between kids from the
upper third of the social hierarchy and their peers from the lower third. Over the last several
decades young people from college-educated homes and those from high-school educated homes
have diverged on many factors predicting life success: Two-parent homes, parental investments of
time and money, test scores, physical health, participation in extracurricular and religious
activities, school quality, college entrance and completion. Kids from low-income homes of all
races are increasingly adrift from family, school, church, and community institutions, in a perfect
storm with multiple causes: economic insecurity and stress, the collapse of the working class
family, and the unraveling fabric in low-income neighborhoods. This problem poses serious
economic, social, political and moral challenges. “
Professor Robert Putnam (continued)
Putnam’s Swarthmore lecture was featured in a Washington Post article.
www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/03/06/the-terrible-lonelinessof-growing-up-poor-in-robert-putnams-america/
Inequality, Access, and Opportunity: Part Two
Professor Sandy Baum
Bio
Sandy Baum is a research professor at
the George Washington University
Graduate School of Education and
Human Development and a senior fellow
at the Urban Institute.
Sandy Baum
Professor Sandy Baum (continued)
Baum’s Schedule of Engagement:
•
•
•
•
•
Morning seminar with students
Lunch with faculty and staff
Afternoon seminar with faculty and staff
Dinner with faculty and staff
Evening public lecture: “Higher Education, Inequality, and
Opportunity: Selective College Policies in a National Context”
Professor Sandy Baum (continued)
Baum’s lecture: "Higher Education, Inequality, and
Opportunity: Selective College Policies in a National
Context"
“Selective colleges can play an important role in facilitating social
mobility for people from a wide range of backgrounds, but most
postsecondary students attend other types of institutions. Professor
Baum’s lecture will discuss the options available to institutions for
promoting opportunity; the role of federal education policy; and the
potential of higher education to mitigate the growing economic
inequality plaguing our nation.”
Audio recording of lecture: www.swarthmore.edu/news-events/listen-economistsandy-baum-higher-education-inequality-and-opportunity
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Salon Series
Introduction
Tim Burke (Professor
and Chair, History)
Salon Convener
Designed with faculty and staff in mind, Aydelotte
Foundation Salons provide a place for thoughtful,
nondisciplinary-specific discussion. Salons feature openended, frank talk about academic life…no policy-making, no
deliberation, no reports…discussions that matter, but not too
much. Burke says of the program, “Salons are meant to be a
social, light-hearted island of meaningful conversation in the
middle of our busy, intense lives as teachers, scholars and
colleagues. It’s not a committee: there’s nothing that we
need to do or decide. It’s not just small talk about the
weather: we’ll talk about a question or challenge that’s an
important part of our professional lives.”
Stats: October 2014 – April 2015 • 1 convener • 4 sessions • 47 participants
Salon Series (continued)
Salons Hosted
"You're an Expert in Your Field"
 What do you do when you’re talking to someone who is not an expert and
who insists on repeating something about your field that you know is
unambiguously wrong?
“Problems of Recognition & Originality”
 You're working on an anonymous peer review of a journal article. What do
you do if you feel the author should have prominently cited your own
work? • And you're heading to a big disciplinary conference to give your
first paper about a major new research project you're working on, and you
notice a very familiar-sounding paper being given by another scholar.
What do you do?
Salon Series (continued)
Salons Hosted (continued)
"I Might As Well Be Reaching for the Moon"
 What audiences are you still seeking and have not yet found? Who do you
wish you could connect with, and why? Let's talk about the wellsprings of our
aspirations, about our perceptions of and desires for audience.
"Great Artists Steal"
 Who is doing something you'd like to imitate or reproduce? Talk about a work
of scholarship that you'd like to follow or emulate, a teacher with an
excitingly different classroom approach, a public intellectual who has some
good moves that you'd like to attempt.
Aydelotte Foundation Selected Highlight:
Second Tuesday Social Sciences Cafes
Introduction
The Foundation’s popular cafe series continued with monthly
presentations by faculty members for faculty and staff — this
time with a focus on the social sciences. The 2014-15 series
focused on topics ranging from the Obama Doctrine to the
economics of MOOCs. Events were geared for individuals with
no formal background in the social sciences. The only
requirement is curiosity. Talks lasted about 35 minutes,
allowing plenty of time for Q&A.
Stats: September 2014 – May 2015 • 1 convener • 8 presenters-sessions • 665 participants
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
Erin Bronchetti
(Associate Professor,
Economics)
Cafe Convener
Bronchetti says of the program, “The Cafe
Series gives faculty and staff an opportunity
to spend time together, learning and
exploring new topics intellectually. There is a
nice sense of community to the lunches, and
an expectation that both faculty and staff
members will be largely new to the particular
topic and will engage by asking excellent
questions. The series also provided faculty in
the Social Sciences an opportunity to
demonstrate what they know and do, to a
broad audience, and in a less formal setting
than a faculty lecture or conference
presentation.”
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “A World on Fire: Barack
Obama and the Crisis of Global
Order”
Dominic Tierney (Associate
Professor, Political Science)
Fall Semester Presenter
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/news-
events/listen-political-scientist-dominictierney-a-world-fire-barack-obama-andcrisis-global
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 "Why? Some Puzzles of
Motivation”
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/newsBarry Schwartz (Dorwin P.
Cartwright Professor of Social
Theory and Social Action,
Psychology)
Fall Semester Presenter
events/listen-psychologist-barryschwartz-why-some-puzzles-motivation
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “Economics and the Future of
Elite Colleges”
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/newsMark Kuperberg
(Professor, Economics)
Fall Semester Presenter
events/listen-economist-markkuperberg-economics-and-future-elitecolleges
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “Putting the Public Back into
Public Education”
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/newsCheryl Jones-Walker (Assistant
Professor, Educational Studies)
Fall Semester Presenter
events/listen-cheryl-jones-walkerputting-public-back-public-education
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “The Perils of Imagination:
Why Historians Don't Like
Counterfactuals”
Tim Burke (Professor and
Chair, History)
Spring Semester Presenter
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/news-
events/listen-timothy-burke-perilsimagination-why-historians-dontcounterfactuals
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “The New Golden Age:
Citizenship Education and the
Liberal Arts”
Ben Berger (Associate
Professor, Political Science)
Spring Semester Presenter
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/news-
events/listen-political-scientist-benberger-citizenship-education-liberal-arts
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “With and Without Words:
Development of Language and
Thought”
Stella Christie (Assistant
Professor, Psychology)
Spring Semester Presenter
 Audio link: www.swarthmore.edu/news-
events/listen-psychologist-stella-christiedevelopment-language-and-thought
Social Sciences Cafes (continued)
 “Food, Taste, Body”
 Audio link: not available
Farha Ghannam (Professor,
Anthropology)
Spring Semester Presenter
LOOKING AHEAD
Confirmed Programming for 2015-16
Faculty Research Seminar on Collaboration
Rachel Buurma (Co-convener,
Associate Professor, English Literature)
Lynne Schofield (Co-convener, Associate
Professor, Mathematics & Statistics)
This seminar will investigate collaboration in theory and in
practice, in the spheres of academic work and beyond them, at
Swarthmore and in the larger worlds to which we connect.
Faculty Seminar on Collaboration (continued)
Seminar Participants
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Alan Baker (Philosophy)
Betsy Bolton (English Literature)
Jennifer Bradley (Educational Studies)
Joshua Brody (Computer Science)
Tim Burke (History)
Rachel Buurma (English Literature)
Andrew Danner (Computer Science)
Giovanna Di Chiro (Environmental
Studies)
Emily Gasser (Linguistics)
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Logan Grider (Art)
Alexandra Gueydan-Turek
(French)
Catherine Norris (Psychology)
Patricia Reilly (Art History)
Michele Reimer (Psychology)
Tomoko Sakomura (Art History)
Lynne Schofield (Statistics)
Tristan Smith (Physics)
Jamie Thomas (Linguistics)
Matt Zucker (Engineering)
Confirmed Programming for 2015-16
Second Tuesday Humanities Cafes
Yvonne Chireau
(Professor, Religion)
Cafe Convener
Beginning September 2015 and running
through May 2016, the Aydelotte
Foundation will sponsor a new series of
cafes – this time focused on the
humanities.