(Photo: Caitlin McNaney, Emilio Madrid-Kuser, Joan Marcus, James Minchin III & Chad Batka) View Comments The Broadway.com staff is crazy for Culturalist, the website that lets you choose and create your own top 10 lists. Every week, we’re challenging you with a new Broadway-themed topic to rank.The end of 2016 is nearing, Broadway fans, and we’re recalling what an extraordinary year it has been on the Great White Way. New productions and innovative takes on classic favorites had audiences on their feet, and the fresh talent that has taken the stage this year contributed to that success. Seeing what Broadway newcomers can bring to the table is truly inspiring, so are asking fans which Great White Way debut-makers really turned heads in 2016. Broadway.com Site Producer Joanne Villani picked out her top 10 faves. Now it’s your turn to give yours a shoutout!STEP 1—SELECT: Visit Culturalist to see all of your options. Highlight your 10 favorites.STEP 2—RANK & PUBLISH: Click “rearrange list” to order your selections. Click the “publish” button.Once your list is published, you can see the overall rankings of everyone on the aggregate list.Pick your favorites, then tune in for the results next week on Broadway.com!
Vermont Law School,Vermont Law School, the nation’s premier environmental law and policy school, will launch two online degree programs on May 16, including the first online master’s degree program in environmental law in the United States.The online format is designed to deliver a robust educational experience that is flexible and accessible for professionals who need to continue working while completing their degree. Students enrolled in the inaugural online Master of Environmental Law and Policy (MELP) and the online LLM in Environmental Law, for post-JD attorneys, will develop the expertise to address the world’s increasingly complex environmental issues.After several years of research that included online pilot courses, VLS decided to embrace distance learning to serve the fastest-growing population of graduate students in the United States. Professor Marc Mihaly, director of the VLS Environmental Law Center (ELC), said distance learning provides the best avenue for the nation’s top-ranked environmental law school to reach individuals who want expertise and resources in environmental law and policy but who can’t venture to South Royalton to take classes or participate in degree programs. ‘By providing a platform for students to explore environmental law and policy with our world-class faculty at their own pace and within their own constraints, we will extend Vermont Law School’s unique brand of excellent environmental legal training and commitment to public well-being to a vast array of communities and to the world,’ Mihaly said. Vermont Law School, which has been at the forefront of environmental law and policy since 1978, has been ranked #1 by U.S. News & World Report 14 times since their specialty rankings began in 1991. VLS’s bold venture will lead nonprofit, mission-driven law schools in the development of the appropriate standards for distance education, according to Associate Professor Rebecca Purdom, director of distance learning. ‘Other institutions are watching us, looking to our example as the way to offer responsible, effective and valued legal education in the 21st century,’ she said. ‘VLS will set the standard for a new kind of distance education.’
A $1 million gift from an alumna will allow the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy to establish its first endowed faculty chair, with a focus on pediatric care.The Sykes Family Chair in Pediatric Physical Therapy, Health, and Development was established with a $1 million donation and a $250,000 matching pledge from Tracy Sykes, a USC graduate and member of the Division’s Board of Councilors, and her husband Gene Sykes, a managing director at Goldman Sachs.The endowment will enable the division to expand its research through community programs and increase recognition of pediatric physical therapy.“We want to increase our activity in pediatrics. This is a way for us to begin that process,” said James Gordon, associate dean of the Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy at the School of Dentistry. “It helps us establish a center of excellence in our department.”Linda Fetters, a professor of physical therapy and director of the Developmental Motor Performance Laboratory, will be the inaugural holder of the chair.“It’s really more about furthering the mission rather than furthering my work,” Fetters said. “The chair will allow us to promote research, education and community service with our USC neighbors.”Fetters, who joined the division in 2007, was selected in September to hold the chair after deliberation by the dean, chair and provost of the division examining her extensive work in pediatrics.She specializes in research focused on helping children and infants with developmental problems and has worked with the Sykes family in her lab for the past two years to help children with cerebral palsy.“The real importance of the endowed chair is that we have made a lasting impact on pediatric care,” Fetters said. “I feel the additional responsibility to maintain the mission of the division in terms of education, research and service.”Tracy Sykes has been an ardent supporter of pediatric research at the university, and has often brought her own children into classrooms to help students understand topics like pediatric strength evaluation and development assessment, Fetters said. The Sykes’ gift is an extension of her support for the school, she said.“Tracy really wanted to give back to the division in a way to help it meet its goals. It’s a tribute to the education she received,” Fetters said.The endowed faculty chair will also give students in the division more opportunities to engage with community programs, according to Barbara Sargent, a doctorate student in biokinesiology who has worked with Fetters for two years.“[The endowment] will develop relationships between community programs that service children with disabilities or are at risk for disabilities and the division,” Sargent said. “It will give students the opportunity to participate in community relationships that are either going to be built or strengthened.”The division plans to raise the total endowment of the chair to $1.5 million by soliciting funds from foundations and private donors.“[The endowed faculty chair] is a milestone for us in terms of achieving prominence,” Gordon said. “We hope that this will help to establish some innovative approaches to treating children.”