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Swimming with Sea Lions and Discovering Darwin: Hood College Galapagos Trip 2018

By Shannon Kundey, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology

As a high school student, traveling to St. Petersburg, Russia inspired a lifelong thirst for travel. Although we were only there for three weeks, the trip instilled both a love of travel and an appreciation of learning through travel. As a professor, I seek to instill both my love of exploring new places and acquiring knowledge through travel in my students.

Today at Hood, I study how nonhuman animals think similarly to and differently from humans. For instance, a current study in our lab examines how salamanders navigate from one place to another. Can salamanders, like humans, use visual cues to move to a distant location? The assumption of an evolutionary link among humans and nonhuman animals underlies this work.

Although we, as humans, tend to ignore that we are animals and subject to evolution as we go about our daily lives, our bodies, including our brains and our capacity to think, have been shaped by evolutionary forces. What better place to explore evolution than in the location, the Galapagos Islands, that so influenced Charles Darwin in the formulation of his ideas regarding natural selection? Evolution comes alive for students in the Galapagos! While discussing evolution in the classroom is often powerful, visiting the strange and varied landscapes of the Galapagos has the unique ability to inspire students to understand and delve into tough questions involving evolution while gaining an appreciation of the islands’ importance historically, ecologically and economically.

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Hood College’s Alternative Spring Break program took students and community members on civic engagement trips locally and in Florida.

The local “Know Your Neighbors” program included 15 Hood members who participated in service trips to the Frederick County 4H Therapeutic Horseback Riding Center in Thurmont; Earl’s Place Shelter in Baltimore; and 2nd Street and Hope Community Meal Center, the Sustainable Garden, and the Religious Coalition for Emergency Human Needs in Frederick.

The Florida program saw seven students volunteer with Habitat Humanity in Key West. They helped rebuild a house from the bottom up that had been destroyed by Hurricane Irma.

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Hood Traditions | Liberation

By Meg DePanise ’15

Twenty-eight years after the first “Liberation of the Black Mind” conference, Liberation remains one of the most vital celebrations on Hood’s campus.

The student-run operation, which features educational, cultural and social events, has traditionally been devoted to providing a forum for introducing current issues, efforts and accomplishments of black America while promoting unity, knowledge and intellectual power.

The idea of “liberation” has evolved and taken on many different meanings for individuals of all backgrounds, as has the Liberation event itself.

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STEM-powering Our Future

By Meg DePanise ’15

In our increasingly digital world, it is important to graduate more students majoring in science, technology, engineering and math. Our nation’s competitiveness depends on the genius and dedication of tomorrow’s scientists, engineers and innovators. Yet today, less than 40 percent of American students pursue STEM fields, and there’s an insufficient pipeline of teachers skilled in those subjects. At Hood, we’re giving STEM students the hands-on experience and liberal arts training they need to fill 21st-century jobs. And with a $1.45 million grant from the National Science Foundation’s Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program,* we are empowering future teachers to spread their excitement for STEM.

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We Digitized Our Lives, We Just Forgot to Secure Them

By George Dimitoglou, D.Sc., Associate Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Center for Computer Security and Information Assurance

We are a connected, digital society that depends heavily on networks, databases and other digital systems to operate. Almost every aspect of our lives, from the most basic tasks at the workplace to our personal communication and social interactions, to the way we shop and the tools we use to study and learn, depends on some form of electronic interaction or data exchange. These digital environments are practical, useful and fast, but in our excitement to use, leverage and widely deploy them, we have forgotten to secure them.

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Partnerships = Opportunity

By Meg DePanise ’15

Experiential learning is a hallmark of a Hood education, and for budding scientists and technologists there is no shortage of opportunities. Located in a hive of top R&D firms, biotech and pharmaceutical companies, and nearby federal and private laboratories, Hood is well connected to the best. No company has been more connected with Hood than Leidos Biomedical Research, Inc. Together, Hood and Leidos Biomed are turning connection into opportunity and launching initiatives that will benefit Hood students and faculty, Leidos Biomed employees, and the larger Frederick community.

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The Last Word | Drew Ferrier on the Health of the Chesapeake Bay

By Drew Ferrier, professor of biology and the director of the Coastal Studies Program at Hood College

You’ve been reading a lot about different jobs within various STEM fields. Many STEM disciplines have characterized the environmental issues that plague the Chesapeake Bay and many are needed to come up with a solution.

First, a little background. Noticeable declines in water quality and important living resources in the 1960s and ’70s prompted in-depth ecological investigations of the Bay. By the mid-1980s, scientists had a very good idea of the primary issue; runoff of fertilizers (nitrogen and phosphorus) and sediments from human activities—such as agriculture and urban and suburban development—enriched the Bay and led to over-growth of floating, microscopic algae. There was too much algae to be processed by filtering organisms like oysters, so the algae sank to the bottom, and was decomposed by bacteria, consuming all of the water’s dissolved oxygen. In turn, these damaged bottom habitats, as well as parasitic diseases, turbid water and over-harvesting, contributed to the decline of iconic organisms that we associate with the Bay such as blue crabs, striped bass and oysters.

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Hood Students Attend the March for Our Lives

By Britnee Reece ’18, station manager for Blazer Radio

Hood College reflects a community, an educational institution, which means we as a student body must have a sense of urgency to keep our family-like environment safe. Our nation’s school systems are no longer a secure and protected environment; mass shootings in the United States have become something that we as a country have become so oddly numb to. “Thoughts and prayers” will not make the changes needed. The mass shooting, which occurred in Florida early February of this year, took place in my home county, Broward County. I knew the high school and I knew people, who had attended there years ago. It truly “hit home” for me. Those students, who had just witnessed friends die and heard gun shots fire in a place they used to feel at home, were strong. They spoke up. They gave me strength. They sparked a movement.

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Why an Inclusive Campus for All Matters

By Caitlyn-Jean Ward ’18, SGA President

College campuses across the nation provide students with opportunities to grow and become the individuals they wish to be. They are often safe-havens and become so close-knit that they become second homes for students. Hood College is no different. It strives to give its students every opportunity to grow and enhance the world around them; boasting a myriad of diverse clubs and organizations. Hood truly is home. However, like other institutions, Hood also experiences issues that can have a negative effect. Last fall, the Hood College Student Government Association was alerted that some members of the student body felt underrepresented and unwelcomed, that their ideas, ways of thinking and overall states of being were being challenged or infringed upon by peers.

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From War to Revolution: The Rich History of Hood College Nursing

Originally posted in the February, March, April 2018 edition of The Maryland Nurse News and Journal.

Hood College in Frederick, MD is celebrating their 125 anniversary this year, and the Hood College Department of Nursing is proud to be part of the rich history.

The 1940s: Hood Nursing as War Work with a Future

In 1943, the world was at war, and the public was asked to support war efforts. Hood College, in Frederick, Maryland, offered support by opening its first nursing program. “Nursing is War Work with a Future,” proclaimed the first brochures promoting the nursing program at Hood. That September, according to the Hood Registrar’s Office, 28 young women were “accepted for work leading to Degree of B.S. in Nursing” at Hood College. They came from as far away as New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts, and as close as a few blocks from Hood’s campus.

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