Exceptional Higher Ed Writing

Leveling the Playing Field for Academic Coaching

In high school, Emma Ciasullo, ’26 found tremendous meaning in working with children with autism. She imagined a future for herself in the classroom even before coming to Endicott. She chose the College because of its Educational Studies Program and the ability to minor in autism and applied behavior analysis. “School has always been a little harder for me,” Ciasullo said. “So, I talked to my advisor during the first semester. Together, we tried to plan the best course for me to stay on track...

AC/DC: All Charged Up | Wentworth

Wentworth undergraduates participate in research at every stage and level. "Engineering is a lot of fun for me," Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering John Voccio says before taking a sip from his large cup of Dunkin' cold brew. "I like to ask questions and then try to design experiments to solve those questions just like the old-school scientists." With a career spanning 35 years, primarily focusing on superconductivity and electromagnetics, Voccio's most recent research benefits from the work of some of the greatest scientists and inventors that came before him–including Michael Faraday and Benjamin Franklin. "I'm sure they were having fun, too," he says.

Teams Help Launch a SEED Fund for Social Entrepreneurs in Appalachia

Last year, law student Dylan Van Sky (JD ’24) set torts and constitutional law aside to spend a week on the ground in West Virginia learning an entirely new set of skills and expanding his perspective. Van Sky was part of the 2022 Frontlines in America team supporting local partner Coalfield Development in launching a seed fund to help entrepreneurs scale up businesses with a social impact component.

Advisors Coach, Mentor and Walk Alongside Students

Working in 30 countries and across the United States, Frontlines teams collaborate with local partners to imagine solutions for some of the world’s most challenging problems. To achieve this, Frontlines advisors donate approximately 400 hours of their time over any given semester. Acting as mentors and coaches, advisors provide solid business expertise and institutional memory about a project’s history and stakeholders, and emotional support to the team along the way.

Giving Back to Do Great Good

From his home outside Chicago, the retired chairman and CEO of Lincoln Capital Management Co. said, “I believe that it’s better to give people help in a way that allows and encourages them to help themselves. At Frontlines, the support goes to spectacular organizations around the world. I watch the students give a tremendous amount of their time and energy. You couldn’t ask for a better combination and that’s why I’ve funded the program so aggressively.”

Finding Love in the Least Likely Place | | University of Notre Dame

When Russia invaded Ukraine in 2022, Professor Misha Gekhtman was in Kyiv. His life changed forever for better and for worse. Gekhtman, professor of Mathematics at Notre Dame, never expected that Russia would invade Ukraine–or that fleeing for his life would also lead to falling in love, marrying, and gaining a daughter. When he tells the story–part tragedy, part romantic comedy–Misha admits, "If I read this as a screenplay, I would laugh because it's so unbelievable." Lifetime Movie or not, it's his reality...

From Reluctance to Revelation: A new path for students to discover economics

When Noely Irineu Silva ’27, a student from Brazil, began selecting courses for her first semester at Wellesley, she focused on political science and sociology—fields she considered open-ended and creative. “Nothing involving math, please,” she remembers thinking, cringing as she charted her schedule. But a personalized invitation from two professors to join ECON 251: Wellesley Initiative for Scholars of Economics (WISE) offered an intriguing plot twist. Irineu Silva admits she enrolled in WISE to cross a graduation requirement off her to-do list. Yet as a result of having taken the course, she’s now set on majoring in economics and pursuing a career involving economics research...

What Netflix’s ‘The Staircase’ is Teaching Endicott Students about the Criminal Justice System

In his first year teaching at Endicott, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Ethan Boldt created a course to examine the U.S. court system in a highly unconventional way. The syllabus for CJ 205: American Court System requires students to subscribe to Netflix for the semester and binge-watch all 13 episodes of The Staircase. (Popcorn is recommended, but not required.) The documentary and Boldt’s course both follow the Michael Peterson case, which tested the limits of the North Carolina court system and became a twisted national obsession...

Christian Walker’s Candid, Caring Photos of the Combat Zone and Other Taboo Subjects

Christian Walker: The Profane and the Poignant, a major retrospective of work by the multidisciplinary artist, curator, and critic is now on view at the Tufts University Art Galleries (TUAG) through April 21. A portion of the show comprises work that Walker shot and developed while a student at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (now SMFA at Tufts) in the early ’80s. During that time, Walker (1953–2003), who was born in Springfield, Massachusetts, often spent nights with a camera dangling from his neck, trawling the Combat Zone, a now-defunct adult entertainment district in Boston’s downtown.

Endicott’s Comeback Kid

You can find Matthew Ibrahim on Instagram, posting stories in the Endicott weight room, lunging with kettlebells, squatting with barbells, deadlifting double his weight, and demonstrating Copenhagen side planks with perfect form. He might make it all look easy to his viewers, but Ibrahim’s path hasn’t been so straightforward. What makes the Clinical Coordinator and Instructor of Exercise Science so incredibly relatable is that he’s failed, dusted himself off, kept going, and succeeded many times along the way...

Designing for Belonging: The Online Master of Design Studies Design for Human Health Program at the BAC

The Boston Architectural College (BAC) was the first forward-thinking design school to launch an online Master of Design Studies Design for Human Health program (MDS-DHH) nearly a decade ago in 2014. “This program is the place for those who want to design to make a difference in users’ lives. It’s for those who are trying to figure out how to create spaces where users feel excited, feel a sense of belonging, and see that their environment tells that story,” Valerie Fletcher, a member of the Board of Trustees at the BAC said from the Institute for Human Centered Design, where she serves as Executive Director...

Rowing in the right direction

She was captain of her team last year, but winning isn’t the current that pulls Wilhelm deeper and deeper into her sport; it’s teamwork. “When I first came here, I had the preconception that everyone at MIT was a genius and super into their books,” she says. “They are very smart, but everyone also does really cool stuff outside of academics. My favorite thing about this school is the people — especially my team.”

The Formula: Deniz Hotamisligil, BFA '08 | School of the Museum of Fine Arts | Tufts University

Adjusting to the BFA program with its expansive structure was overwhelming at first—but turned out to be what Hotamisligil needed to thrive. He said, “At SMFA, you have the freedom to explore, but it comes with responsibilities. It pushes you to be independent and creative in a powerful way. At the end of the semester, you have to be able to talk about what you’ve accomplished in a room with faculty and your peers.”
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