To our Editors
The article "Four Decades of Growth and Change" in the August issue of the UD Messenger implies that the College of Marine Studies originated in 1970.
This account fails to recognize the pioneering work of a dedicated group of professors, scientists and graduate students who were conducting marine research under the umbrella of the Department of Biological Sciences in the 1950s and '60s. This group included Carl N. Shuster, who was the director of the program, and other professors as well (Frank Daiber and Donald de Sylva, for example). Field research was conducted from the Bayside Lab on Beach Plum Island. By the early 1960s, the program was very active, with students and visiting researchers conducting a wide variety of studies.
I do wish that credit be given where it is due.
Paul A. Haefner Jr., AS '59M, '62PhD
Editor's note: The roots of the College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment go back to the 1940s, but the UD Board of Trustees established a distinct college—then called the Graduate College of Marine Studies—in 1970 to unite the University's ongoing marine research programs. The college is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.
What a treat—to receive my copy of the UD Messenger and see two stories related to my profession. I too have fond memories of the University Laboratory Preschool. As an undergrad psychology major, conducting special studies with adolescents, I was curious about the roots of the behaviors seen in 12-14-year-olds. My special projects professor, Dr. Al Duchnowski, suggested I go to the Child Development and Family Life Department (of the then College of Home Economics); I did, and was offered a practicum class in the Laboratory Preschool by Prof. Charlotte McCarty. What an enchanting, educational, wonderful place! The lab, and the CDFL faculty, had me hooked. I stayed at UD for my graduate work, serving as a grad assistant to the dynamic Dr. Barbara Settles, leading me to teach preschoolers and college students, administer child care and Head Start programs, author articles and books, and provide training and technical assistance to many early childhood educators.
Also, UD has quite a treasure in Roberta Golinkoff. I had the pleasure last year of asking Dr. Golinkoff and Kathy Hirsh-Pasek to serve as featured speakers at the National Association for the Education of Young Children's (NAEYC's) Institute on Early Childhood Professional Development. The theme was "Play: Where Learning Begins." Of course, the session was a highlight of the institute.
I was asked recently about the work that I do at NAEYC. I responded that I'm fortunate in that I do what a lifetime of work has prepared me for. And, I am so thankful that UD—and the Laboratory Preschool—started me on the journey.
Peter J. Pizzolongo, AS '72, '74M
Senior Director, Professional Development, NAEYC
Whether Gov. Chris Christie has outstanding conservative values and credentials, or whether the New Jersey Legislature is adversarial and liberal-controlled, or whether Democratic policies have made New Jersey a high-tax state, or whether Prof. James Magee has distinctly progressive leanings, or whether today's political discourse is all in opposition to the current administration, or whether the UD Messenger has a liberal bias are all opinions arising from the political arena and should not be printed in the Messenger, even if in the form of a letter to the editor. (See the letter from Gary Dunham that ran in the August issue.)
Living in Washington, D.C., I certainly hear enough (really too much) political discourse and don't need to read more in the pages of my alumni magazine.
Myles Mutnick, AS '72
When I received the most recent issue of the Messenger, I got no further than page 3 before I stared—open-mouthed—at a letter to the editor from Gary Dunham.
Although Mr. Dunham claims to be writing in response to the article about UD alum Chris Christie, instead his letter quickly turns into a partisan rant, an unwarranted accusation of partisanship of a professor and even a not-so-subtle suggestion that the Messenger should have censored Prof. Magee's comments.
I am discouraged and disappointed to see this space in the magazine used for partisan purposes, and particularly to allow the writer to disparage one of UD's most acclaimed professors. How ironic that Prof. Magee is lambasted for praising Christie's respect for others' opinions—clearly a trait that Mr. Dunham lacks.
Joann Kingsley, AS '96
I reread Mr. Dunham's letter to the editor regarding New Jersey Gov. Christie a couple of times. In essence it said: (1) Gov. Christie is a white knight that will save New Jersey from those nasty tax-and-spend liberals; and (2) political science Prof. Magee said some nice things about Christie but was not quite obsequious enough.
Perhaps Mr. Dunham's reference to the Messenger as "a classy magazine" turned your head. I can think of no other reason why you would print such a partisan letter in your magazine.
Paul Desborough, EG ‘65, BE ‘67M
Give us a piece of your mind
The UD Messenger welcomes letters to the editor and other comments about the magazine—what you like, dislike or would like to see changed. To comment on the magazine's content, we invite you to submit a letter, either by mail to UD Messenger, 105 East Main St., Newark, DE 19716, or by email to TheMessenger@udel.edu. Please include your full name, graduation year and contact information. Letters may be edited for length, clarity and style.