George Mason in the News

Posted: June 23, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

Following are highlights of national news coverage George Mason received during the past week.

Friday, June 16, Christian Science Monitor

A Backdoor Plan to Thwart the Electoral College

“Picture it: On election day in some future year, a presidential candidate ends up with the most popular votes but not enough electoral votes to win. It’s a repeat of the 2000 election in which one contender, Democrat Al Gore, took the majority of the national popular vote, while the other, Republican George W. Bush, clinched the most electoral college votes and, hence, the presidency. ‘It’s safe to say that there has been no aspect of what the founders worked up in Philadelphia that has received more criticism than the electoral college,’ says historian Rick Shenkman of George Mason University.”

Monday, June 19, Associated Press

GMU Looks to Bolster Research in Neuroscience, Other Fields

George Mason University is pumping money into new buildings and hiring faculty as the school looks to increase its research capabilities. Provost Peter Stearns says GMU hopes to expand its research in the fields of neuroscience, public policy, computer science, earth observation and medically related biology. He says George Mason is finishing its first dedicated research building and is planning further expansions at both its Fairfax and Manassas campuses. Stearns says funding for research has steadily grown at GMU, increasing about 15 to 20 percent a year until last year.”

Monday, June 19, USA Today

It’s discrimination. It’s wrong.

“When Crystal Meredith of Louisville tried to enroll her young son in Bloom Elementary School, she was told he couldn’t transfer out of Young Elementary, the school where he was already assigned. Why? Not because of his grades or interests. It was because he is white. As a federal district court later recounted the facts, he ‘was denied admittance because his transfer to Bloom would have had an adverse effect on Young’s racial composition.’ Judges opposing Seattle’s race-based assignments cited this passage from a report co-authored by George Mason University social scientist David Armor: ‘… racial composition by itself has little effect on raising the achievement of minority students or on reducing the minority-white achievement gap. Some studies show that there is no relationship at all between black achievement and racial composition … and other studies show that there is no relationship between the black-white achievement gap and racial composition. ’”

Tuesday, June 20, Washington Times

Senators Approve Budget Proposal

“The Virginia Senate yesterday unanimously approved a $72 billion spending plan that contains record spending for public schools, repeals the ‘death tax’ and sets aside a small amount of money for roads and mass transit projects. Potential winners in Northern Virginia include George Mason University, which would receive $25 million for a new research building, $4 million for a project on its Fairfax campus and $4 million for a performing arts center at its Prince William County campus.”

Wednesday, June 21, Media General News Service

SAT or ACT – Which Test Is for You?

“Once, a high school student’s big worry was taking a college admissions test. Today, a college-bound student first must worry about which test to take – the SAT or the ACT. No longer do students on the East and West coasts automatically take the SAT and those in the Midwest and Deep South take the ACT. Education consultants say there is a big difference between the tests. And savvy students must decide which one works best for them. ‘The reality is the better the student scores, the better the school looks,’ said Andrew Flagel, who was admissions director at the ACT dominant University of Michigan before taking the job at SAT dominant George Mason University in Virginia. ‘We’ll use any excuse to let students use the higher score.’”

Wednesday, June 21, Nashua Telegraph (N.H.)

Unlikely Scientist Delves Deep into Space at UNH

“As a young, female, foreign-born researcher in a field dominated by American men who were eyeing retirement while she was in high school, Merav Opher is used to being a little different. But that’s OK, because the specialty that is bringing her to a major science conference at the University of New Hampshire next Tuesday is a little different, too. She studies the intersection of the solar system and deep space. ‘My area is a very hybrid area … really an interface between two areas,’ said Opher, assistant professor of physics and astronomy at George Mason University in Virginia. ‘It is peeking into the galaxy!’”

Write to at