The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

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Turning Your Passion Into Your Living with a Liberal Arts Degree

On Friday, August 4th, the Rockefeller Center hosted a one-day conference entitled “How to Make Your Passion Your Living with a Liberal Arts Degree.” The purpose of the conference was to help students learn how to translate their interests into careers that have meaning and impact.

Puja Devi ’19 values a liberal arts degree “because it encourages me to both delve into my interests as well as explore fields I might not favor as much.” Even though she is a government major, she has taken classes in sociology and women’s and gender studies, studied abroad in India, and is currently searching for research projects in geography.

The conference featured remarks from Rebecca Biron, Dean of the College, about the versatility of a liberal arts degree as well as six young alumni.

Rey Allie ’11 studied Government and Asian and Middle Eastern Studies. He has developed insights to help Uber expand into new markets across the world, expanded the scope and reach of Google’s Intelligence and Investigations team, and currently advises senior leaders on strategic initiatives and opportunities at OfferUp.

Notes from the Field: Alexandrea Adams ’18

Alexandrea Adams ’18 interned with New America, a non-partisan think tank in Washington, D.C., for the Spring 2017 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor Lew Feldstein Talks About Social Capital

Lewis Feldstein, the Rockefeller Center 2016-2017 Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor, delivered the Perkins Bass 1934 Lecture on Tuesday, August 1 entitled “Viewing the World Through a Social Capital Lens: Who You Know Matters, Community Building Counts.”

Students from Exeter Academy Visit Dartmouth

The Rockefeller Center hosted 27 students from Phillip Exeter Academy’s Charles J. Hamm Leadership Program on Wednesday, July 19. Students in the Exeter Summer Program live on campus in Exeter, New Hampshire for five weeks and participate in academic studies, athletics, and personal exploration. Of the 27 students in the Hamm Leadership Program this summer, 12 of the students are international.

The Hamm Leadership Program features excursions across New England to learn about leadership outside of the classroom. While visiting the Rockefeller Center, the students participated in a campus tour, scavenger hunt, and small group discussions. There was also a panel of Dartmouth students who shared their experiences about college life. Sadhana Hall, Deputy Director of the Rockefeller Center, presented on authenticity and leadership qualities. All activities focused on leadership in action.

Faculty Research Grants in Action: Donna Coch

Original article by Charlotte Albright was published in the Dartmouth News on July 25, 2017.

When, in the nursery rhyme, Jack and Jill go up a hill, they’re teaching children more than how to fetch a pail of water. They’re also improving their reading skills.

Researchers have found a connection between knowing how words rhyme and knowing how to read them. Good rhymers tend to become good readers. But there’s more to be known about what, exactly, occurs in our brains when we encounter two words that sound alike. For example, what happens if we are shown the pictures of, say, a cat and a hat, rather than the word themselves?

That’s what Professor of Education Donna Coch and her undergraduate lab assistants are learning from an experiment they’re conducting at the Reading Brains Lab in the Department of Education. Supported by funds from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy, the study asks participants—about 80 college students—to make decisions about whether pairs of words do or do not rhyme.

“Do you want to try it?” Coch asked me.

“Sure,” I said, hoping that as a 66-year-old avid reader, I wouldn’t embarrass myself.

Charlotte Blatt ’18 Published in Top Military Journal

Original article by Bill Platt was published in the Dartmouth News on July 24, 2017.

An analysis of military strategy in the Iraq war by Charlotte Blatt ’18, which started as a paper for Assistant Professor Jeffrey Friedman, has been published in Parameters, the top peer-reviewed journal of the U.S. Army War College.

Along the way, the paper, “Operational Success, Strategic Failure: Assessing the 2007 Iraq Troop Surge,” won the 2017 Edwin H. Sherman Family Prize for Undergraduate Scholarship presented by Temple University’s Center for the Study of Force and Diplomacy. Blatt wrote the paper for Friedman’s summer seminar “Lessons from America’s Foreign Wars.”

Notes from the Field: Celeste Kearney '19

Celeste Kearney ’19 interned in the Office of Presidential Personnel at White House under the Obama Administration for the 2016 Fall term. She received support from the from the Peter McSpadden Public Affairs Fund.  The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

During the fall of 2016, I was an intern in the Office of Presidential Personnel at the White House. Presidential Personnel is tasked with the approximately 4,000 political appointees in the Obama Administration. Presidential Personnel finds qualified candidates, completes background checks, appoints candidates, and, for the past year, provides a series of leadership development events to assist the appointees’ transition from the Administration. Presidential Personnel works closely with the White House liaisons in every federal agency to pass opportunities and information to the appointees.             

Sadhana Hall Starts DRIVE Program’s Lecture Series

This past week, Sadhana Hall, Deputy Director of the Rockefeller Center, kick-started the 2017 summer DRIVE program with a lecture on leadership attitude. The DP2 Leadership DRIVE program, created and directed by Steven Spaulding, focuses on team-building and creating a championship culture among Dartmouth’s student athletes. This year DRIVE welcomed Hall as the first of their guest lecturers. Hall inspired the students with an impassioned and personal speech about knowing how to lead oneself.

Hall spoke about three important values in a leader: integrity, authenticity, and authentic listening. “Integrity is your word. Nothing more, nothing less,” she says. Maintaining truthfulness and promises, whether with oneself or with another person, establishes one’s credibility. Without credibility, one will never have people to lead. She then speaks about authenticity, language, and intent. Words matter—and saying something one does not plan to fulfill is an example of bad character. This, too, will cost a person their followers.

Dartmouth Hosts Young African Leaders

For the fourth summer in a row, Dartmouth is host to 25 emerging business leaders and entrepreneurs from Sub-Saharan Africa through the Mandela Washington Fellowship as part of the United States Government’s Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI). The Fellows participated in an academic and leadership institute in business and entrepreneurship for six-weeks during the summer term of 2017.

YALI is a program led by the Department of State’s Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs overseen by the International Research and Exchanges Board (IREX).

The Fellowship aims to enhance leadership, strengthen communication skills, and foster personal connections. The Rockefeller Center leads sessions on mentoring, networking, leadership, and professional opportunities.

Notes from the Field: Julia Decerega '18

Julia Decerega '18 interned at the Brazil Institute within the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars for the 2017 winter term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

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