Saturday, September 15, 2018

History 475 Changing things Up with Diplomacy

As a change of pace, we're playing Diplomacy in History 475:  World War II.  We're using a 1936 variant of the classic game to get at the contingencies that European leaders faced as the continent moved toward war.  When all is said and done, students are going to reflect on how learning the origins of the war through gaming differed from reading about it in Murray and Millet, A War to be Won, and other books.

Monday, September 10, 2018

U.S. News ranks St. Bonaventure No. 1 for value in New York, No. 2 in North

ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y., Sept. 10, 2018 — St. Bonaventure University is ranked No. 1 in New York and No. 2 in the North on U.S. News & World Report’s 2019 list of best regional university values.

The U.S. News’ “Great Schools, Great Prices” list of Best Regional Universities in the North includes colleges that offer a full range of master’s degree programs. Last year, St. Bonaventure was ranked No. 2 in New York and No. 5 in the North.

St. Bonaventure also ranked 22nd out of 197 institutions on the magazine’s all-criteria ranking of Best Regional Universities in the North.

“We’ve always done very well on the U.S. News value rankings, but our decision to enhance our academic scholarships last year has taken us to the top,” said Dr. Dennis R. DePerro, now in his second year as university president.

“Welcoming the largest freshman class in a decade this fall affirms to me that people are taking notice that a St. Bonaventure education is a tremendous value, both professionally and personally,” he said.

The magazine determined the value ranking using three figures from 2017-18: ratio of academic quality to price, percentage of undergraduates receiving need-based aid and average discount.

Prospective students can calculate their scholarship eligibility at www.sbu.edu/calculator.  

The magazine’s annual rankings of “America’s Best Colleges” were released today. Complete rankings of nearly 1,600 schools nationwide are available at www.usnews.com/colleges.

They will also be published in this month’s issue of U.S. News & World Report, on newsstands starting today.  

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About the University: The nation’s first Franciscan university, we believe in the goodness of every person and in the ability of every person to do extraordinary things.  St. Bonaventure University cultivates graduates who are confident and creative communicators, collaborative leaders and team members, and innovative problem solvers who are respectful of themselves, others, and the diverse world around them. Named the #2 best college value in the North by U.S. News and World Report, we are establishing pathways to internships, graduate schools and careers in the context of our renowned liberal arts tradition. 

Thursday, September 6, 2018

New Semester Under Way


It's hard to imagine, but the semester at St. Bonaventure is already nearing the end of the second week. We're getting settled in and already starting to plan the spring semester.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Reflection on Caroline Frasier at Chautauqua Institution by Theresa Rabbia

Caroline Frasier gave a very in-depth lecture on Laura Engels Wilder, the author of the children series Little House on the Prairie. As I attended this lecture, I learned a ton about these beloved children’s books and how the author and her family lived quite differently than what was written in the books. Frasier shows us that Engels Wilder is a real person with a complicated life that one may not grasp from just reading the books. She lived through extremely hard times such as the Dust Bowl, The Great Depression, and WWI. Yet, her books have a positive and almost happy demeanor to them. By doing this, there is much criticism for her because it gives people the impression that she is denying her own American Identity and our wrongdoings as American people. Every book of hers ends happy, even if it did not pan out that way in her real life. Engels Wilder leaves many crucial points out of her story which almost sanitizes the history. While these are meant for children, it does make sense that she would leave many of the graphic parts out. Caroline Frasier tells us that we need to put these authors into the context of their own eras and lives and question what is and isn’t true; then, we can work on learning about and improving our identity as Americans.

Theresa Rabbia on Dr. Andrew Roth's Talk at Chautauqua Institution

Dr. Andrew Roth, past interim president of St. Bonaventure University, spoke about the shattering of the American story, which is a lecture that resonated with me greatly. Dr. Roth made the bold claim that the year of 1968 foreshadowed everything within the next 50 years up to today with the entire Trump administration. In 1968, there were numerous landmark events that occurred and Dr. Roth went on and listed multiple. These include the Vietnam War, the Space Race, Paris Peace talks, the assassination of MLK, banning of birth control, and the election of Richard Nixon to name only a few. All of the different events that occurred took a toll on the American Identity; people no longer could agree on what exactly defines America. There was a great struggle to define America, which led to the outbreak of culture wars. The pressing issues being fought over are still fought over today: abortion, gun rights, homosexuality, women’s rights, church v. state, etc. 1968 was only the start to these great debates which have escalated all the way to 2018 and will most likely continue into the future. Dr. Roth finished his lecture with a glimpse of optimism saying that we can change the America we see today if we strip it and recall the fundamentals of America. We need to go back into time and recognize what made America so special in the past and incorporate it in today’s society and then we can have a more solid American Identity.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Reflection on Stephen McBride Lecture at Chautauqua Institution by Theresa Rabbia

From the very formation of this nation, religious freedom has been a fundamental aspect of the growth and prosperity of the United States and the people who make it up. All the different denominations and religions as a whole are something that I personally think makes the American Identity so special. Dr. Spencer McBride seemed to share the same sentiments through his most recent lecture at Chautauqua. Dr. McBride brought up Western New York specifically in regard to its vast religious diversity. He traced this back all the way to the 2nd Great Awakening in the 19th century when there was a dramatic migration to Western New York and rates of conversion skyrocketed, this is coined as the “Burned-over district.” As young people began to migrate to Western New York and its surrounding areas their families worried about the possibility of their faith being left behind as well. Thus, many missionaries of all different denominations were sent to this area in order to remind people of their faith. As Dr. McBride covered much more information, this is something that struck me. During my stay at Chautauqua, it has become obvious to me that the people here are very diverse religiously, given all of the different denominational houses throughout the institution. However, I have never once felt unwelcomed here which to me shows that diversity makes a community stronger as well as the American Identity in a much larger picture.

A Reflection on Jalani Cobb’s Master Class at Chautauqua by Dahron Wells

After attending the first lecture Jalani Cobb’s gave at Chautauqua, I knew that I needed more. An amazing opportunity arose as Chautauqua offers what’s called a “Master’s Class” where a group of individuals are lucky enough to have a more intimate discussion with different speakers. Attending Cobb’s Master Class was a must, and I’m very happy with that decision.

In this smaller setting, Cobb turned the floor to a Q&A style discussion, being asked a question that led to a very intriguing response that I’m still thinking about days after. An individual asked Cobb, “What do you think of the fight to remove statues of confederate leaders such as Robert E. Lee?” to which Cobb answered with a story about a time he spent in Russia. You may be confused as to what Russia has to do with what’s going on with the United States of America regarding this topic, but the story that Cobb told was eye opening. Cobb told us about how in a museum in Russia, there were statues, monuments and portraits tossed on their side or purposely destroyed on the floor. Why? It was the purpose of those in charge of said museum to not completely erase the dark moments in their past, but to show that they occurred but were frowned upon by the people and the country. I thought that this response was interesting when bringing it back to Confederate statues that we hear so much about in media today. Why, as Cobb stated in his talk, “sanitize history?” We should acknowledge the mistakes from our past, we should show that we’ve learned from those actions and refuse to ever go down that road again. After this, I say, knock Robert E. Lee’s statue over, destroy it and leave the remains for all to see with a plaque that says something along the lines of “this is who we were, but not who we are nor who we will ever be again.” 


The multiple times I got to hear Cobb speak were incredible. He is a man of respect of all sides, dignity and character. These traits show through not only in the lectures that he gave, but in his work as well. I thank Dr. Payne, St. Bonaventure University and the Chautauqua Institution for the opportunity to meet and learn from such an amazing person.