Volume IV, Issue 8: May 2012
Campus Events


Widow's peak a 'game changer' for politicians?

Shawn Rosenberg
Shawn Rosenberg

While the political candidates duked it out on everything from healthcare to contraception this spring, inquiring minds at The Washington Post's "Lifestyle" section debated another hairy topic: the "furry little dip" in the center of one's hairline known as the widow's peak. The newspaper wondered if U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), a possible contender for vice president, might be helped or hurt by his widow's peak, and turned to UCI's Shawn Rosenberg for the answer. The professor of political science and psychology & social behavior did a study in the late 1980s that found subjects were drawn to photos of mock politicians with certain facial characteristics. Widow's peaks, were "a clear positive," Rosenberg said, particularly for female candidates. "It was associated with being seen as more competent and with greater integrity."  Asked why people were pro-peak, he said: "To be frank, I have no idea."

Employers get friendly with Facebook

UCI Extension building exterior

More employers "like" prospective job candidates who possess social media skills, reports BrainTrack. Loan Vo, assistant director of marketing & communications for UCI Extension, told the higher education and career resource that experience in leading online communities on Facebook and other sites has become particularly important for marketing and public relations jobs. "In marketing, we're finding that social media is becoming a 'must-have' skill rather than just a 'nice-to-have' skill," Vo said. The article noted that Vo uses Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn to market UCI Extension offerings — including a certificate program in social media.

Making sure college students are literate — in computers

Geoffrey Bowker
Geoffrey Bowker

With everything from toothbrushes to textbooks going digital, U.S. News & World Report recently questioned whether computer science should be a mandatory general education requirement for earning a college degree. Geoffrey Bowker, professor of informatics at UCI's Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Sciences, had an answer: "Yes, it absolutely should be," he said. "All aspects of our personal lives and our work lives are affected by computers. We need to know about the tools that we're working with." At UCI, the article noted, undergraduates choose three courses from computer science, public health, economics, physics, biology, chemistry, Earth science, philosophy or international studies to meet their GE requirement in science and technology.