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News Clips Archive

JULY 2018

The Salem News: Students start college before high school ends

(Features the Early College program)

Deury Collado and Naomi Sanchez will be among the first in their class at Salem High School to get into and attend college, and they'll do it at a time when most haven't even started applying to schools. The high school juniors will be among 50 Salem High students enrolled in college courses at Salem State University this year as part of its inaugural Forten Scholars Early College Program.


Wicked Local Salem: In Salem, Mars, moon views delight dozens at Collins Observatory

The North Shore Armature Astronomy Club and Salem State University host free stargazing nights in the Collins Observatory atop Meier Hall’s roof every Monday between September and May … Conlin and Gudzevich, however, broke away from their hiatus Monday, when the pair staged a special “Planet Night.” Why? An astronomical opportunity: Viewing Mars’ near “opposition,” when the rocky planet is closest to the Earth - with the observatory’s 12-inch Classical Cassegrain/Newtonian telescope proved too enticing not to.


WBUR: Mars To Appear Closer And Larger Than It Has In 15 Years

(Featured on air)

Salem State University is hosting a viewing party Monday so stargazers can get a rare close-up look at Mars. Physics professor Luke Conlin said Mars will be on the opposite side of the Earth from the sun and will appear closer and larger than it has in 15 years.


The Salem News: Salem State professor helps create immigrant detention map

(Prof. Roopika Risam is featured)

The message was written in Spanish, and Roopika Risam, an assistant professor at Salem State University, found it on Google, on an informational page for a shelter where immigrant children are being housed in the United States. That message speaks to the multimedia project, Torn Apart, that she and seven partners at Columbia University and the University of Houston have launched — a website showing shelters and immigration detention centers around the country.


The Salem News: City responds to conditions at Proctor's Ledge

(History Professor Tad Baker is quoted)

The Salem Witch Trials memorial at Proctor's Ledge has barely been open a year, but about a dozen young trees there have already died, while other parts of the site appear overgrown with weeds. After receiving a complaint about the memorial's condition, city officials say they plan to replace the dead trees with plants that are better suited for the terrain … “From this time forward, I hope residents and visitors to Salem will treat the tragic events of 1692 with more of the respect they’re due and are being shown today,” Baker said during the ceremony. “We need less celebration in October — and more commemoration and sober reflection throughout the year.”


Inside Higher Ed: Digital Humanities for Social Good

(Professor Roopika Risam is featured and quoted)

As stories of immigrant children separated from their parents after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border dominated headlines last month, one question came up repeatedly: Where are the children being held? … Roopika Risam, a member of the mapping team and an assistant professor of English at Salem State University, said she anticipated a strong reaction to the project because of the “timely, political and heartbreaking” subject matter. But what Risam did not expect was the strong reaction the project received from other digital humanities scholars and the sense of vindication and validation of the value of their work.


The Boston Herald: Massachusetts last on patriotism scale? They beg to differ!

(Professor Dan Mulcare is quoted)

Fourth of July revelers on the Esplanade loudly rejected the notion that Massachusetts ranks 50th in patriotism — we love America in our own way, they said, shrugging off a survey that dissed the Bay State … Salem State University politics professor Daniel Mulcare said the survey should have looked at other types of civic engagement, such as protesting, joining local organizations or working in public sector jobs.


Salem Patch: Salem State Adds Psychotherapist To Foundation Board

Michael Stockbridge, of Salem, has been named to the Foundation Board at Salem State University. A psychotherapist for Psychological Care Associates in Woburn since 2010, Stockbridge holds two diplomas from Salem State, a bachelor's (1999) and master's (2002) degree, both in social work. He has several years of experience as a clinician at the Riverside Outpatient Clinic in Wakefield and at the Center for Health and Recovery in Salem.


JUNE 2018

Patch: Salem State Students Donate $10,000 To Charities

Each organization received $2,500 as a result of extensive fundraising over the past four years by the students.



(Professor Roopika Risam is quoted and featured)

Since May, the US government had taken more than 2,300 kids away from their families as a result of Attorney General Jeff Sessions' new "zero tolerance" immigration policy, which calls for criminally prosecuting all people entering the country illegally. Reports started surfacing of the ensuing chaos at the border; in one especially horrible case, a child was reportedly ripped from her mother's breast. As outrage grew, the question came up over and over again: Where were the children? Between the ad-hoc implementation of "zero tolerance" and the opaque bureaucracy of the immigration system in general, migrant advocates, journalists, and even politicians struggled to find clear answers … "Our team is the perfect example of what Digital Humanities can be: a body of work that really cuts across units at universities, libraries, departments, and roles like faculty administration and staff to think about the ways digital tools can help us better understand culture," says Roopika Risam, a professor of English and library fellow at Salem State University and author of New Digital Worlds, about promoting equity and justice in the digital cultural record. Risam, Gil, Ahmed, and Torn Apart teammate Moacir de Sa Pereira, who teaches in NYU’s English department, are all members of Columbia's Group for Experimental Methods in the Humanities, or XPMethod, which is "dedicated to the rapid prototyping of speculative ideas." Publicity Club of New England Marks 50th Bell Ringer Awards with Gala Celebration (Professor Robert Brown)

The Publicity Club also recognized Dr. Robert Brown, professor of communications at Salem State University, with the 2018 John J. Molloy Crystal Bell Lifetime Achievement Award for his significant contributions to the communications industry. The industry veteran and champion of PR education has been an enduring presence in the New England public relations community and his scholarship and leadership in PR have led to lasting contributions to the industry.


The Salem Gazette: Salem State University fully divested from fossil fuels

(President Keenan, Prof. Healy, and Trustee Katzman are quoted)

Salem State University President John Keenan recently announced the university had completely divested its fossil fuel investments. “I am pleased to announce that the university’s investment advisors have recently sold the university’s prior holdings in Carbon 200 (fossil fuel) companies and have added investments in solar and renewable energies,” wrote Keenan in a May email to the campus community … SSU Trustee Elliot Katzman thanked Keenan and Vice President of Finance and Facilities Karen House for working the university’s investment advisor, Michael Tyler, at Eastern Bank to research the policy change and action steps. He said trustees could move to reinvest in fossil fuel, but to do would have to “meet a very high bar.”

May 2018

The Salem News: Salem State names new athletic director
Salem State University is looking towards one of the region's fastest growing state colleges to help guide its next era in sports. Tracey Hathaway has been named the school's next director of athletics, coming from UMass Boston. She takes over for Peggy Carl, who held the post for three years following the retirement of longtime AD Tim Shea. Hathaway was the Associate Director of Compliance/Student Athlete Welfare at UMass Boston. 

The Salem News: Salem State student killed in shooting
Christopher Joyce, a Salem State University student, was shot and killed Friday, just two weeks before he was scheduled to graduate.  "It is with great sorrow that I must inform the campus of the tragic loss of one of our students, Christopher Joyce," President John Keenan wrote in an email to the campus community. "There are no words I can express that will ease the pain our campus is feeling. Death is unfair and cruel, taking many, as it did Chris, far too early."

NBC 10 Boston: ‘Always a Good Student’: Friends Mourn Salem State Classmate’s Murder
Chris Joyce was counting down the days until graduation. His best friends at Salem State University say the 23-year-old was so excited about being the first in his family to graduate from college, that he wanted to be first in line to pick up his cap and gown. Those friends tearfully talked about the last time they saw him Friday, just hours before he and 58-year-old Clayborn Blair were shot and killed in Boston’s Jamaica Plain neighborhood.

The Salem News: Salem State freezes hiring
Salem State University has announced a hiring freeze as it faces and addresses declining student enrollment. In an email sent to the Salem State community Tuesday afternoon, university President John Keenan said enrollment numbers were down 5 percent as of May 1, a common admissions deadline. As a result, "we will implement a hiring freeze as of close of business today, May 8."

The Boston Globe: Grants awarded to coastal projects
Several local ecosystem projects will benefit from $110,000 in MassBays National Estuary Program grants. The grants include $33,000 for the Mystic River Watershed Association’s restoration aimed at returning migrating fish such as herring; $27,715 to Salem State University for its Salem Harbor water improvement efforts; 

The Salem Patch: Salem Bike Share Expands To All City Bike Racks
The popular Salem-Zagster Bike Share has undergone a major system improvement, allowing riders to check in and check out a bike using any one of dozens of city bike racks, rather than just the ten official Zagster stations. The bike share offers residents, visitors, and workers an affordable, healthy, and on-demand way to get around Salem without needing a car.

The Salem News: Horace Mann, SSU expect closer ties in new building
Although the Horace Mann Laboratory School on Salem State University's campus is moving a mile and a half away next fall, the connection between the university and the elementary school could be getting closer. The relationship is getting "a whole fresh, beginning," said Joseph Cambone, dean of Salem State's School of Education. "We get this chance to all work together to do a renewal."

The Hechinger Report: Rising college rates spur Hispanic progress in higher education
When Elycea Almodovar was searching for a college three years ago, she had just two criteria: It had to be diverse, and it had to have a record of actually graduating students like her — not just taking their money and letting them drop out. Salem State, the most diverse public university in her home state of Massachusetts, checked both boxes.


April 2018

The Enterprise: When it comes to #MeToo reports, Bridgewater State says not us

(Salem State is mentioned)

Paul Jean, the university’s vice president for marketing and communications, said BSU would not be able to provide any information on such complaints, because it does not maintain any sort of centralized system that tracks them … But many other state universities, including the University of Massachusetts Amherst, UMass-Boston, UMass-Lowell, Fitchburg State University, Framingham State University, Salem State University, Worcester State University, the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design were quick to either provide figures or information on sexual harassment complaints made on their campuses, or promise to compile and release them. Salem State: In the last three years, two complaints of sexual harassment were filed by students against faculty members. There were no findings in either case, and both were made by undergraduate students.


Salem Patch: Salem State Students Work For Habitat For Humanity
(Salem State is mentioned)
This past Spring Break, 34 Salem State students chose to give back to the community in lieu of the traditional Spring Break experience. Taking part in one of Salem State's "alternative spring break" trips, students traveled to either Texas or South Carolina where they joined Habitat for Humanity to begin construction on houses for a local family.


The Washington Post: In Massachusetts, a disturbing trend in kindergarten

(Salem State Professor R. Clarke Fowler featured)

A new research brief reports on a disturbing trend in kindergartens around Massachusetts: a sharp reduction in child-directed activities and  teacher autonomy despite research showing that kids learn best with frequent breaks and the ability to learn through movement and play.


The Salem News: Telling their stories
(Salem State student is mentioned)
Combat authors and gold star families will share their experiences on the battlefront and the home front Saturday night. They will be doing so as part of the Wenham Museum's Pathways of Patriots Speaker Series. Salem resident Thomas Laaser, leader of the Salem Veteran Writers Workshop at Salem State University, will also be a panelist. He's also the editor of the university's "Soundings East" literary journal. Laaser served in the 10th Mountain Division out of Fort Drum, New York, and he was deployed to Khost, Afghanistan.


March 2018

The Salem News: Salem State's Correia, Wood named MASCAC soccer Coaches of Year

It was a memorable week for the Salem State University men's and women's soccer programs, as both team's head coaches were named the Massachusetts State Collegiate Athletic Conference (MASCAC) Champion's Choice Coach of the Year.


The Salem News: Local employers taking notice of #MeToo movement

(Professor Rebecca Hains quoted)

The hashtag #MeToo spread like wildfire on social media, following revelations last year that film producer Harvey Weinstein had sexually assaulted and harassed dozens of women. Social media helped amplify the voices of victims, as thousands of women using the hashtag shared their own stories of sexual harassment, says Rebecca Hains, an author and professor of communications at Salem State University whose research focuses on girls, children and popular culture.

Inside Higher Ed: Commencement Speakers Announced: Bard Simon's Rock, Colorado College, Hood, Hudson County CC, New College of Florida, Salem State, Skidmore, Soka, SUNY Geneseo, Trinity (Conn.), U Southern California, Wentworth, Widener

(Salem State is mentioned)

Salem State University: Brian McGrory, editor of The Boston Globe; James O’Shanna Morton, CEO of the YMCA of Greater Boston; and Kim Gassett-Schiller, higher education advocate and philanthropist.


The Boston Globe editorial: Harsh realities for Latinos but little state action

(Salem State is mentioned)

THE WIDE INCOME GAP that Latinos face in Massachusetts, and the resulting socioeconomic struggles for families across the Commonwealth, may have come as shocking news to many when a report appeared in the Globe on Friday … Working to boost Latino college graduation rates at state colleges and universities — following the example of Salem State, a leader on that score — should also be a priority.


Public Seminar: The Children’s Rights Movement Takes Off

(Written by Professor Yvonne Vissing)

And so it begins. Finally. Students in Florida who survived a school shooting are using their voices and demanding that lawmakers listen to them. They’re joined by other young people around the country who also feel they have rights that aren’t being protected. It was only a matter of time before young people realized they have a right to rights and that they have the power to demand them. It’s important that adults pay attention, because their protests have the potential to be about much more than guns. Despite rhetoric to the contrary, young people are a categorically oppressed group. 

The Salem News: Foundation funds fearless reporting with GroundTruth Project award

(Salem State is mentioned)

Journalism is in a deep crisis, according to Charles Sennott, and he’s hoping his organization has the answer. The GoundTruth Project, a non-profit media organization based at WGBH in Boston, supports young journalists and filmmakers to go out in the world and produce social justice journalism that enlightens and informs. The organization was awarded $10,000 and the 2018 Salem Award for Human Rights and Social Justice on Sunday at Salem State University’s Sophia Gordon Center.

Salem Patch: Salem State Theater Students Pick Up 6 Awards At Regional Event

Six Salem State University students won a total of six regional awards in an annual competition sponsored by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The Kennedy Center's American College Theater Festival (KCACTF) is a national theater program involving 20,000 students from colleges and universities nationwide each year.

February 2018

WBUR: Morning Newscast - Click Here for Audio – Professor Bethany Jay discusses Southern Poverty Law Center Report  

A new study from the Southern Poverty Law Center based in part on a textbook edited by a Salem State University professor finds that American education on slavery is sorely lacking. Bethany Jay helped the center identify what concepts surroundings slavery students should know. She says the major problem is that slavery is taught only as a problem of the south that happened just before the Civil War. “As quickly as we sort of deal with slavery as a problem, we solve it by the Civil War and that’s just not the right way to deal with this subject which is really so foundational to every part of American history.” The Southern Poverty Law Center found only 8% of high school seniors surveyed identified slavery as the central cause of the Civil War. 


February 5, 2018
The Salem News op-ed:  A divided speech for a divided nation

(Written by Professor of communications Rob Brown)

The headlines in three major newspapers were on the same page, so to speak. In his first State of the Union, according to the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and the Wall Street Journal, President Donald J. Trump reached out across the aisle for national unity. But on closer inspection, he didn’t. From the president’s opening greetings to the traditional God Bless America, the State of the Union weighed in at a hefty 80 minutes. But it wasn’t the number of words that dragged it on, it was Mr. Trump’s lumbering pace. Reading a speech writer’s words from a teleprompter slowed this ordinarily mercurial president. The speech never got into second gear.


The Gloucester Times: Group raising money for Middleton teen in need of kidney transplant

(Salem State is mentioned)

Nick Jarvis was around 10 or 11 years old when doctors learned that his kidney function was about 30 percent, collectively. And today, Nick, 20, is on the transplant list, waiting for a donor … A Masconomet graduate, Nick Jarvis is a member of Salem State’s SOAR program, a transition program for students with Asperger’s syndrome, anxiety disorders and related diagnoses. He is also the manager of Salem State’s baseball team, and is looking forward to spring training in Arizona.


The Gloucester Times: Blizzard of '78 still fresh in people's minds

(Salem State professor Arthur Francis is mentioned)

While the Blizzard of 1978 buried the northeast under feet of snow and caused damage up and down the coast, nowhere was the impact felt as deeply as in Gloucester … Salem received 26 inches in 26 hours from the powerful, slow-moving storm, according to Salem State University climatologist Arthur Francis, who lives in Salem.


The Salem News Op-ed: The Blizzard of '78 and lessons learned

(Written by Prof. Marcos Luna, geography)

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Blizzard of '78, an exceptional nor'easter that brought Massachusetts and other parts of New England to a near standstill with record snowfall and coastal flooding. On Feb. 5, 1978, the National Weather Service correctly predicted the approach of a big snowstorm at least a day in advance, which was good for the time. However, their estimate of the storm's onset for early morning on Monday, Feb. 6 was off by a few hours. Most people simply ignored the predictions out of a common skepticism toward weather forecasts at the time.


Salem Patch: Annual Darwin Festival Kicks Off At Salem State Next Week

Salem State University is holding its 39th annual Darwin Festival February 12 through 16. The free event is designed to bring current topics in science to the general public through a series of speeches. A full list of events is included below.

The Boston Globe editorial: Salem State leads on closing the graduation gap

IF YOU’RE A HISPANIC high school student in Massachusetts, the odds that you’ll go to college, and then earn a degree, are alarmingly slim … One university has managed to close the graduation gap, though, showing that with close attention and effort, progress is possible. Salem State University was recently recognized as one of the 10 top-performing institutions for Latino student success by the nonprofit advocacy group the Education Trust. Salem State, the only New England institution included in the top 10, offers a blueprint that the rest of our public universities should replicate.


The Salem News: As markets swing, financial experts say 'stay calm'

(Board of Trustees member, Rob Lutts, and economics professor, Kurt von Seekamm, are quoted)

Having closely watched the stock market for 34 years, Salem wealth manager Rob Lutts says it's best to "stay calm and keep to your plan." … Kurt von Seekamm Jr., an assistant professor of economics at Salem State University, agrees with that assessment, saying job growth, wages and corporate profits are sound. He notes the current volatility is coming at a different time and environment than the Great Recession of 2007 and 2008.

Wicked Local Salem: SSU, city lands $10K for early college program
Salem State University and Salem Public Schools will receive a $10,000 grant for early college programs, according to a press release by Gov. Charlie Baker’s administration. “The $10,000 competitive planning grants will help schools become ‘designated’ early college programs by the Boards of Higher Education and Elementary and Secondary Education,” the release reads.

The Lynn Journal: Jamie Zahlaway Belsito Named to Salem State Board of Trustees

Jamie Zahlaway Belsito, of Topsfield, has been appointed to the Salem State University Board of Trustees by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker. Ms. Zahlaway Belsito is a graduate of Salem State University, receiving her bachelor of arts degree in political science in 1996.

Salem News: Classic humor of 'Enter Laughing' gets a fresh treatment
Deciding what to do is a way of saying who you are. That’s the premise of the two-act comedy “Enter Laughing” by Joseph Stein, which opens next Thursday in the Sophia Gordon Center at Salem State University, and will feature Ryan Doyle of Andover in the lead role.


The Salem News: Business Briefcase
Jamie Zahlaway Belsito, a resident of Topsfield, has been appointed by Gov. Charlie Baker to the Salem State University board of trustees. She previously served as director of advocacy at the National Coalition of Maternal Mental Health, where she worked with Rep. Katherine Clark and other members of the U.S. Congress to assist in the implementation of postpartum depression screenings and access to treatment across the country. In 2016, Zahlaway Belsito was appointed by Sen. Joan Lovely to serve as commissioner of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Special Commission on Postpartum Depression. She is also the founder of Effie’s Grace LLC, which is focused on advocating for positive outcomes for women’s health. Zahlaway Belsito holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Salem State University.

The Boston Herald: Two years after paralysis, Anthony Hodges back on court for Salem State

Anthony Hodges knew the moment was coming. He just didn’t know when. But as Salem State took a huge, late lead on Jan. 10 against Fitchburg State, he started to get ideas … More than two years after a car accident left him paralyzed, Hodges was playing basketball again. He checked into the game for Salem State for the first time since 2015 with 2:35 remaining.


Seacoast Online: Old York Historical Society upcoming winter events
(Salem State Professor Tad Baker is mentioned)
Old York Historical Society presents a series of special programs, lectures, and dinner this winter. From evening lectures on various historical and cultural topics to hearth-cooked tavern dinners by local guest chefs, Old York is a great place to beat those winter blues…A talk by Emerson “Tad” Baker, Professor of History, Salem State University, followed by a special tasting of colonial-style brews with Butch Heilshorn, brewer and co-founder of Earth Eagle Brewings, Portsmouth.

Wicked Local Marblehead: First Church to present ‘Three’s a Crowd’
(Salem State Professor is mentioned)
The Soli Deo Gloria Concert Series at First Church in Swampscott will present “Three’s a Crowd,” a concert of keyboard music with narration, at 3 p.m. March 11 at the church, 40 Monument Ave. Performers include pianist Patricia Clark, the director of Music Ministries at First Church in Swampscott. An organist, conductor, and music educator, Clark also serves on the music faculty at the Glen Urquhart School in Beverly Farms. Pianist and educator Dr. Beverly Soll has performed throughout the U.S. and in Germany as a collaborative pianist and soloist, and she is currently a freelance pianist, coach, and teacher and faculty member at Salem State University. 

The Salem News op-ed: Column: Teaching tolerance

(Written by Professor Bethany Jay)

In this era of “fake news,” would it be any surprise to learn that the majority of high school history seniors are confused about the most fundamental aspects of our nation’s past? What if students of New England, that bedrock of educational rigor and historic sensibility, were no better?


The Boston Globe: Hate group and anti-Semitic incidents rose during Trump’s first year, reports find
(Professor Kevin Borgeson is quoted)
The number of hate groups and anti-Semitic incidents in the United States increased during President Trump’s first year in office, according to two reports from watchdog groups that tracked white supremacist ideology around the country…“Now that Trump is in, you are seeing an even bigger increase because he is speaking the language of what they’ve always been saying,’’ said Kevin Borgeson, a Salem State University associate professor of criminal justice who specializes in hate crimes. “They are . . . feeding off what Trump is saying.”

December 2017

WGBH Radio: How Several Campuses Are Extinguishing The Burning Crosses Of Racism

(Audio available here:

In September, at Salem State University, administrators found racist graffiti surrounding the baseball field. Someone had spray-painted "Trump #1, Whites Only USA" on the outfield fence. The "n-word" was painted on a bench beside the field. Salem State President John Keenan says the incident is still under investigation. "Our expectation is that it was done actually sometime in broad daylight, in fact, as a neighbor who had noticed it when she was walking her dog realized it wasn't there at nine and it was there at nine thirty," he said. Later that day, Keenan denounced the hateful act.


Salem Patch: Salem State Named Top 10 Institution For Latino Student Success

Salem State has been named one of the 10 top-performing institutions for Latino student success according to a new report by The Education Trust, a national non-profit advocacy organization. The report, titled "A Look at Latino Student Success: Identifying Top- and Bottom-Performing Institutions," was released on Dec. 14. Salem State is the only institution in New England to have been included in the Top 10 list.


The Salem News: Writers workshop allows warriors to tell their stories

On a cold night in mid-December, about a dozen North Shore veterans, including Levy, met at Salem State University for a veterans writers workshop, led by Army veteran Tom Laaser of Salem.


The Salem News: Learning the sky's the limit

For the past three years, the Salem State University mentoring program has been pairing college students with high schoolers. Funded by a grant from the Boston Foundation, the program pairs 15 at-risk Salem High School students with mentors from Salem State. 


Salem Patch: Salem State Receives $40,000 Digital Humanities Grant

Salem State University has received a $40,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. It will fund efforts to create a network of public, regional universities that share best practices on the adoption, teaching and research in digital humanities. The grant was secured by Salem State University English professor Roopika Risam and archives librarian Susan Edwards.


Wicked Local: REVIEW: A spellbinding ‘Macbeth’ at Salem State

The idea of “Macbeth” has always been just as important as the play itself. And ideas abound in director Kate Kohler Amory’s solid production of Shakespeare’s tragedy, onstage now in the Sophia Gordon Center at Salem State University.


The Boston Globe: Salem State students construct 50 beds for children living in poverty

The construction materials for each bed included a bag of bolts, a brief orientation, and the name of a child: Tara. Landon. Amie. The first bed, finished with a fresh coat of white paint, was built for a 12 year old named Grace, who lives with her family in Marlborough.


The Salem News: Good night's sleep goal of Build-A-Bed Challenge

The Center for Civic Engagement at Salem State University wants 50 needy children on the North Shore have a good night's sleep.

November 2017

North Shore Magazine: Salem State to Hold Vikings Build-a-Bed Challenge

The Center for Civic Engagement at Salem State University is excited to announce the first-ever Vikings Build-A-Bed Challenge on December 4 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This campus-wide initiative is in partnership with the university’s Athletics Department, A Bed for Every Child, The Massachusetts Coalition for the Homeless, and St. Jean’s Credit Union. The event was created in response to November being hunger and homelessness awareness month, and it is designed to address a challenge of poverty that many families in the North Shore area face.


The Salem News op-ed: Flower power

(Written by Regina Robbins Flynn, coordinator of the professional writing program at Salem State)

A friend of mine lives near a large nursery, and every May the nursery puts out an enormous spread of mums, the sprouts in May just piercing the pots’ soil. Yet as the spring turns to summer, the plants grow and mature until late August, early September when they are in full bloom. He has dubbed it in May – “the field of sorrow and sadness” – in that when the plants are yellow and pink and dark purple, the summer is over, and it is back to school, back to the tasks at hand, back to the everyday schedules that give structure to our daily lives.


The Salem News: Tax reform bill filled with uncertainty

(Professor Paul McGee is quoted)

A bill that passed the U.S. House of Representatives earlier this month is expected to be reconciled with a separate version of tax reform by the Senate, so Grandmaison, a founding partner and accountant at Grandmaison and Tripoli LLP in Danvers, is urging clients to "calm down" until a final bill is signed … "It's a tax savings and tax deduction for corporations," said Paul McGee, an accounting professor at Salem State University. It's based on the notion that the wealth will trickle down, something former President Ronald Regan tried, McGee said. The professor said he is skeptical this would work to stimulate the economy.


Wicked Local Melrose: Melrose resident new general counsel at Salem State

Salem State University has named Rita P. Colucci, of Melrose, as general counsel at Salem State University. She will begin her role December 11, 2017.


Wicked Local Beverly: Kaity Martin’s exhibit at Salem State creates public art, remembers a friend

For Kaity Martin, whose honors-in-art exhibition, “Public Art: Planting a Seed of Civility,” is on view through Nov. 29 at the Winfisky Gallery at Salem State University, the memory of a lost classmate became the impetus for more than a year’s worth of activity. “Planting a Seed of Civility” shows work that envisions the presence of art in public spaces, coupled with intense notions of environmental awareness and responsibility.



More than 75 state, municipal, and student leaders gathered at Salem State University to discuss how the North Shore can move to 100 percent renewable energy from sources like solar and wind.


The Salem News op-ed: Early intervention is needed to fill the nursing pipeline

(Written by Professors Cheryl A. Williams and Laurie Dickstein-Fischer)

Most people can vouch for the important role that nurses play in our society, and many also have a story of a nurse who had a positive impact on their life. There is less awareness about the nursing shortage that our country and the state of Massachusetts will soon face — and what is required to ensure a talent pipeline for the future.


The Salem News op-ed: My inheritance

(Written by student Jessica Walters)

Most fathers give their daughters jewelry, flowers, or maybe even a hand-me-down Subaru for their 18th birthday. Well, my dad is not “most” fathers, and I am not “most” daughters. We are a little bit different. Instead of a shiny, princess cut Pandora ring or a beautiful bouquet of red roses, I received something much cooler. For my 18th birthday, I got my dad’s dog tags.



(Professor Emerson “Tad” Baker is quoted)

Much of Americans’ conceptions about witchcraft were born in the year 1692, when, in the midst of a frontier war and refugee crisis, 20 people were executed one summer after refusing to confess to practicing witchcraft. Their trials still capture the American imagination, inspiring a flurry of complaints from powerful men that they or their friends are the targets of “witch hunts.” At the time, believing in magic was completely normal. "It was not superstition," Emerson Baker, an archaeologist at Salem State University, told Newsweek.


Red Skies Magazine: Meet the President

In early August, Salem State University welcomed our new president, John Keenan. Earlier this month, I had to chance to sit down with President Keenan, ask him a few questions, and get to know him better and discover what his dreams were for SSU.

October 2017

Wicked Local Salem: INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine recognizes Salem State

INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine recently awarded Salem State University with the 2017 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award, a national honor recognizing U.S. colleges and universities that demonstrate an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion.


The Salem News: 'Black, Brown and Proud' students take center stage at Salem State

Their voices are speaking, but proof that the university has listened won’t come easy. Salem State University’s Black, Brown and Proud student movement held a forum at the Sophia Gordon Center for Creative and Performing Arts Tuesday night, a reaction to a university-run forum last Thursday discussing recent racist graffiti that many people of color view as falling off the mark.

September 2017


Salem State partnered with the Lynn YMCA to invite students for a night that featured games of basketball, food, and speakers who were there to inspire and prepare the students for a bright future.


The Lynn Daily Item editorial: A GREAT COLLABORATION

There is no fanfare or big ceremony kicking off a new Lynn YMCA program that could very well alter the lives of young men from Lynn. Beginning on Friday, the Neptune Boulevard-based organization officially launches a collaborative with Salem State University aimed at providing black high school males with the opportunity to learn about what college is really like.


The Salem News: North Shore leaders decry Trump's decision to end DACA

North Shore leaders on Tuesday condemned President Donald Trump’s decision to end an Obama administration program that offered a temporary reprieve from deportation and the ability to work to young immigrants living illegally in the United States — those who were brought here as kids … Salem State University does not track the immigration status of its students. According to the university, Salem State is the most diverse of the state’s nine state universities, with 34 percent of undergraduates identifying as students of color.


MSONEWSports: Meet Salem State University President John Keenan – Radio Interview – School’s 14th President – School Starts This Week

Salem State University’s Board of Trustees voted to recommend John D. Keenan to the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education (BHE) as the university’s 14th president in May. In June, he was approved by the BHE as the school’s president. The votes concluded a five month search, drawing 106 candidates. In the MSO radio interview Keenan updates listeners on a variety of projects at the university, community partnerships, the school’s approach to dealing with freedom of speech and diversity issues, as well as his experiences leading him to becoming president.



The fix-up at Girls Inc. was one of several Salem State volunteer events held throughout the day. More than 150 students, alumni and staffers pitched in at 34 different sites across the North Shore, according to Salem State President John Keenan.


Wicked Local Beverly: Salem State holds Day of Service in area communities

The second annual Moving Forward, Giving Back: Salem State’s First Year Day of Service sent 200 students and 150 faculty, staff and alumni to six surrounding communities to participate in community service.

August 2017

The Salem News: New Salem State president eyes science building, diversity

Thousands of students will flock to Salem State University next week for the start of another year. But the guy on campus with perhaps the biggest learning curve has already gotten a head start. John Keenan officially began as Salem State's new president on Aug. 6, taking over for the retired Patricia Meservey.


Wicked Local Salem: At Salem State, dozens pack Collins Observatory for solar eclipse

The opportunity to witness the first total eclipse of the sun in 38 years at Salem State University’s Collins Observatory was too much to pass up for many area residents Monday.



Gene Labonte, chief of police at Salem State University, joined the school five years ago after serving as a lieutenant colonel in the Connecticut State Police. When he arrived, the campus police force had been armed since 2004. “It was the norm when I got here,” he said. “We have had no incidents where officers discharged their firearms to any hostile acts toward the school community. There have been reports of gunfire in the city proper, but nothing on campus.” Labonte said while he wants his 31 officers to be seen on the school’s four campuses, he does not want to create the appearance of a police state.



(Features Prof. Luke Conlin)

The last time a total solar eclipse occurred in the U.S. was in 1979, when Nahant’s Luke Conlin was only a year old. “Maybe that’s why I enjoy space so much,” he said. The Salem State University Physics professor will be hosting an eclipse viewing, open to the public, on top of Meier Hall on Monday when the solar eclipse is set to begin. “An eclipse takes place when one heavenly body such as a moon or planet moves into the shadow of another heavenly body. There are two types of eclipses on Earth: an eclipse of the moon and an eclipse of the sun,” as defined by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).


The Salem News: North Shore residents readying for Monday's solar eclipse

(Salem State Professor Luke Conlin is quoted).

At Salem State University, a viewing party is planned at the Collins Observatory. There will be multiple angles to look at the eclipse, and visitors can build their own viewing station.


Salem News/Gloucester Times op-ed: A warning from Charlottesville

(Written by Prof. Christopher Mauriello)

On the evening of Aug. 11, 2017, an eclectic group of white supremacists and nationalists marched through the historical campus of the University of Virginia (UVA) in Charlottesville. They carried their torchlights to protest the removal of the statue of the Confederate general Robert E. Lee from recently renamed Emancipation Park. But like 1933, their torchlight parade was intended as both a triumph and a warning. Triumph in that these marginal political groups felt confident there were enough Americans willing to listen to their message and a warning that America needed to be cleared of its contemporary “asocials” of Jews, African Americans, LGBTQ+ community, immigrants and their proxy white “liberal apologists.”


WCVB’s “Chronicle”: Cutting Edge: PABI, Hearing Recovery, and Cooling Necklaces

This segment features the PABI (Penguin for Autism Behavioral Intervention) – the work of Salem State Professor Laurie Dickstein-Fischer. The PABI is mechanical penguin that simulates social responses and can potentially diagnose, measure, and improve a child’s understanding and use of social cues. 


The Salem News: Nate Bryant named chief of staff to Salem State president

Nate Bryant of Salem has been named chief of staff to Salem State University President John Keenan.


Inside Higher Ed: The Merger Vortex

(Features Vice President Karen House)

Mounting fiscal pressures on higher education institutions would seem to have created a ripe environment for mergers between colleges and universities, yet many administrators remain unconvinced such deals will actually happen … Salem State University made the decision to walk away from a merger it had been exploring with Montserrat College of Art in 2015. Leaders said at the time that the numbers “just didn't work.” Karen House, the vice president for finance and business at Salem State, did not elaborate Monday on the public university's reasons for not acquiring the private art college.


Wicked Local North of Boston: Swampscott resident Anne Driscoll helps spotlight plight of exonerees

In the conclusion to the film “The Exonerated,” Sunny Jacobs makes an appearance and says that after she was released from prison, her grandchildren told her she had gotten lost. “I told them, yes I was, but I’ll never be lost again,” she proclaims … The event, the final installment of the inaugural Summer at Salem State (University) Social Justice Institute Series, was moderated by award-winning journalist, author and activist Anne Driscoll. The Swampscott resident received the 2016 Salem Award for her commitment to social justice and human rights.

July 2017

WBUR: How Profits From Opium Shaped 19th-Century Boston

(Professor Dane Morrison is featured)

Perkins and Co. was among the first -- if not the first -- American companies to establish a permanent trading office in Canton. With employees on the scene year-round, the firm can optimize profits on the drug — which is still legal in the United States, but illegal in China … "That money changes the face of Boston and makes it possible for Boston to develop a reputation as one of the world's true civic cities," said Salem State University historian Dane Morrison.


The Salem News: Salem State grads carry on search for next antibiotic

(Two SSU alumni are featured)

Two former Salem State University chemistry majors could wind up discovering the first class of new antibiotics in 30 years. Jake Cotter and Dakota Hamill are the founders of Prospective Research Inc., an antibiotic drug discovery company working out of an Endicott College lab.  



(Feature story with two Salem State alumni)

A local pair of artists is changing the landscape on the same streets they walked as kids. After installing their mural of a giant sasquatch bearing the word “Believe,” Lynn’s Chris “Tallboy” Coulon and Swampscott native Brian Denahy, are ready for their artwork to become a landmark.


The Smithsonian: The Site of the Salem Witch Trial Hangings Finally Has a Memorial

(Professor Emerson “Tad” Baker is mentioned and quoted)

In a town that has long profited from witchcraft-seekers and Halloween revelers alike, a new memorial strikes a different tone … The Salem witch trials were “the largest and most lethal witch hunt in American history,” wrote historian Emerson “Tad” Baker, a professor at Salem State University in his 2015 book A Storm of Witchcraft: The Salem Trials and the American Experience. In a June symposium about the trials, Baker spoke about the volatile political and social climate in Salem in the 1790s.


The Marblehead Reporter: Marblehead interns make a difference

(SSU Professor Julie Kiernan is mentioned)

Marblehead reside

Kimberly Burnett
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