The Isom Report Fall 2014 Partnerships, Passions, and Possibilities • • • I n the 1990s, I worked briefly for an educational Looking Back, Looking foundation in Pittsburgh, Forward - Page 2 Pennsylvania. At the time, grantmakers were Isom Center Welcomes entranced with the idea New Affiliates: of “entrepreneurial grantmaking”; they Shennette M. Garrett- wanted to find interesting, Scott - Page 3 innovative projects and provide start-up funds. Melissa Ginsburg Though I was less likely to Page 4 lionize venture capitalists than my employers, I Eunika Rogers - Page 6 always liked this vision: find creative people and Second Annual Queer support them in their work. Studies Lecture Announcement s I step in for Dr. Susan Page 5 Grayzel as the interim director of the Isom Isom Graduate Student Center this year, I think Spotlight: Kaitlyn Vogt about my role in similar - Page 7 terms. The strength of the Isom Center has always True Stories of the been its affiliates, whose Sinful and Sultry South scholarly and activist - Page 8 work continues to teach and inspire me. I had the A Mentor’s Couch: The great fortune of teaching Journey of a Dean of the inaugural graduate Students - Page 10 class in gender studies methodology last year; the New Center for best part was the weekly Inclusion Opens; visits from colleagues in Director Named sociology, political science, Page 11 economics, modern languages, psychology, Fall 2014 Calendar of and other fields, when we Events - Page 12 enacted interdisciplinary work through our In this Issue: A • • • • • conversations with students and each other. I would like the Isom Center to continue to foster these connections, to subvert the sometimes rigid disciplinary hierarchies of the university, and to sponsor interdisciplinary projects that create new knowledge and new coalitions for a more equal and just society. As director, I will oversee the many programs, events, and initiatives of the Isom Center, but I see my job as supporting you in your work. I f you have ideas for new projects, please let us know how we can help. The Isom Center has a history of this sort of collaboration; just last year, Dr. Grayzel partnered with Patrick Alexander as he organized the Prison Studies conference, and she worked with Chiyuma Elliot to establish the first annual queer studies lecture. I want to continue this tradition. If we can Dr. Jaime Harker, interim director of the Sarah Isom Center for 2014-2015 and associate professor of English. help you find financial support, we will, but I can always promise meeting space, publicity, and connections to those with similar interests. The future direction of the Isom Center will come from the creative energy of faculty, and whether formally affiliated with the center or not, I welcome your suggestions, projects, and passions.