Week in Review: Word of the Year Edition

What are you reading, watching, thinking about this week? Anything special with some time off or is there too much going on with the holiday?

As usual, here’s a few which have been on our mind. Let us know your thoughts on any/all of them.  In addition, if you have items you’d like us to consider for the top five, add them in the comments or send them to Tom or Mike.

1.  What did the Oxford University Press select as its 2009 “word of the year”? — Part of the The Higher-Ed News Quiz (Chronicle of Higher Education, December 13, 2009).  What’s your best guess?  We’ll confirm the answer when it’s posted and have some thoughts on the “word of the year.” …  Please, no cheating 😉

2.  Pittsburgh Sets Vote on Adding Tax on Tuition (Ian Urbina, NY Times, December 15, 2009):  “The tax would be the first of its kind in the nation, and other cities are watching closely as they try to find ways to close their own budget gaps.” — Exemplifies the changing relationship and rhetoric between town & gown during an economically difficult time.  Note: Council puts tuition tax proposal on hold (Rich Lord, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, December 17, 2009).

3. Need another reason to pursue an academic vocation? If you’re a linguist, you might just be called upon to invent a new language. Paul Frommer of USC did just that for James Cameron’s new movie Avatar, joining J. R. R. Tolkien and Marc Orkand (inventor of Klingon) as an inspiration to budding linguists everywhere.

4. From ProfHacker.com: an End of the Semester Checklist, a very practical list to keep your courses, files, and CV in shape.


Tom’s started digging into Education for Human Flourishing:  A Christian Perspective (Paul D. Spears
and Steven R. Loomis, InterVarsity Press, 2009).  If the title catches your interest, then check out the Preface, Precis of Book and Chapters, and keep your eye out for quotes from the book in the coming year.

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Tom Grosh IV

Tom enjoys daily conversations regarding living out the Biblical Story with his wife Theresa and their four girls, around the block, at Elizabethtown Brethren in Christ Church (where he teaches adult electives and co-leads a small group), among healthcare professionals as the South Central PA Area Director for the Christian Medical & Dental Associations (CMDA), and in higher ed as a volunteer with the Emerging Scholars Network (ESN). The Christian Medical Society / CMDA at Penn State College of Medicine is the hub of his ministry with CMDA. Note: Tom served with InterVarsity Christian Fellowship / USA for 20+ years, including 6+ years as the Associate Director of ESN. He has written for the ESN blog from its launch in August 2008. He has studied Biology (B.S.), Higher Education (M.A.), Spiritual Direction (Certificate), Spiritual Formation (M.A.R.), Ministry to Emerging Generations (D.Min.). To God be the glory!

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