Published March 9, 2021
The history of Rutgers is replete with stories of activists and changemakers, whether or not they made headlines. Here we celebrate an alumna who gave nearly everything to win a single legal battle, in addition to other inspiring accounts of scarlet newsmakers—from the geopolitical arena to community-based environmental outreach.
A New York Times tribute to Priscilla Read Chenoweth NLAW’68, who passed away recently at age 90, features highlights from her career as a civil rights activist and lawyer. Chenoweth “spent seven years and tens of thousands of dollars of her own money to exonerate a stranger wrongly convicted of second-degree murder,” says the story. When asked why she had become so personally dedicated to the case, Chenoweth is reported to have answered, “It was clear to me that it was a gross injustice. The legal system had harmed this man, and the legal system should right the wrong.”
The New York Times | Priscilla Read Chenoweth, who won freedom for a stranger, dies at 90
Over the past decade, Hungarian leader Viktor Orbán has dismantled his country’s democracy. But his alliance with far-right elements within the European Union may be unraveling, says School of Arts and Sciences political science professor R. Daniel Kelemen in a New York Times op-ed. Hungary’s standing within the EU itself may be in danger, predicts Kelemen, and the EU “won’t be as comfortable a home for budding autocrats as it has been in recent years.” Kelemen also says these developments will hurt Orbán at home, “where he has benefited from the understanding that his regime was backed by powerful governments such as Germany’s.”
Can exercise lead to a stronger, more flexible mind? A study by researchers at Rutgers University–Newark indicates that regular exercise can improve aspects of thinking and remembering, according to a story in The New York Times. The study was led by neuroscience professor Mark Gluck, director of the Memory Disorders Project, and looked at a group of older African Americans, some of whom took an aerobic dance class and others who were sedentary. “It seems that neural flexibility” gained by exercising a few times a week “leads directly to memory flexibility,” Gluck says.
The New York Times | How exercise enhances aging brains
Some like it hot—and that might be healthier when it comes to mealtime, according to a study by a Rutgers University–Camden professor. Maureen Morrin, the Henry Rutgers Professor of Marketing at the School of Business–Camden, says that consuming cold foods may be less satisfying than hot foods, leading some people to consume extras like potato chips or cookies to feel more sated. “It’s not exactly clear where these expectations come from,” she tells MedicalXpress. “But it is likely that people’s expectations about how full certain foods will make them feel develop over time, after repeated consumption episodes.”
MedicalXpress | Why cold sandwiches make you reach for chips
Broadway World reports that the Zimmerli Art Museum has acquired Still, a 2011 large-scale abstract painting by Rutgers alumnus and former art professor Joan Snyder DC’62, MGSA’66. Inviting museum members to take a virtual tour of her studio in Woodstock, New York, Snyder will join Zimmerli interim director Donna Gustafson on March 18 to discuss the painting and look back on Snyder’s prolific body of work. Still is the first painting by Snyder to enter the museum’s collection, complementing 14 prints by the artist currently held at the Zimmerli.
TapInto carries a story about the new “Earth Day, Every Day” live webinar series co-created by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County. The extension “connects our community with fact-based guidance that empowers people to improve their own well-being, while also contributing to a safe, healthy environment,” says county commissioner board chair Alexander Mirabella. “The extension has redoubled their educational and outreach work during the COVID-19 outbreak, and the Union County Board of Commissioners is proud to support their efforts.” The extension is a program of the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, supported in part by the Union County Board of Commissioners.