• Augustana College, Rock Island, Ill., launched a Center for the Study of Pluralism and the Civil Sphere to support research around diversity in society. It will bring well-known scholars to Augustana for conferences on issues such as ethnic relations, immigration, citizenship and other topics related to diversity and civil society. Augustana's Peter Kivisto, former editor of The Sociological Quarterly, will direct the center.
• Finlandia University, Hancock, Mich., is now the host school for the 13-year-old Journal of Finnish Studies. Finlandia Paloheimo Scholar Beth Virtanen said the semiannual journal's move from its previous publisher, the University of Toronto, "reflects Finlandia's central role in Finnish studies scholarship in North America."
• Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minn., received two grants from the National Science Foundation — $310,000 to purchase a Polytec Scanning Laser Doppler Vibrometer and a three-year grant of $155,000 toward integrating sustainability across the science curriculum. Physics professor Thomas M. Huber said the vibrometer gives Gustavaus students access to state-of-the-art equipment for vibration and acoustics work. "It will also allow them to collaborate through the cyber-enabled lab with well-known researchers from institutions such as Purdue and Stanford, who do not have access to a scanning vibrometer," he said. As for the three-year grant, physics professor Chuck Niederriter said it will help prepare students with an "increasing interest in energy, sustainability ... for a world in which such matters will only become more prominent."
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