Quick Takes: Taking Visas to Gaza, Science Blogger Under Attack, Bible Prof Could Be Fired, J-School Abroad, Albright Drops SAT

July 11, 2008
  • U.S. officials based in Jerusalem traveled to the border of Gaza Thursday to process visas for entry to the United States for three recipients of Fulbright fellowships, the Associated Press reported. The plight of students in Gaza, who have won fellowships to study in the United States, attracted considerable attention because of suggestions that these students might lose their Fulbright awards. Israel blocks most people from leaving Gaza and the United States doesn't have a consulate in Gaza because of the Hamas government in power there, so the students were unable to get to Jerusalem, leading to Thursday's operation of providing visas at the Gaza border.
  • P.Z. Myers, an associate professor of biology at the University of Minnesota at Morris, is well known in science circles for his blog, Pharyngula, which is a leading site for news about attacks on evolution. But Myers is finding himself under attack this week -- and not over evolution. He set off the furor with a posting, "It's a Frackin' Cracker," about a controversy over a college student who took a communion host from a service. The Catholic League has denounced Myers and the comments, charges, and counter-charges are all over the most recent postings on Pharyngula.
  • Peter Enns, a professor of Old Testament at Westminster Theological Seminary, in Pennsylvania, has been suspended and could be fired for views that seminary officials have questioned, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. Enns is under fire for writings that suggest contradictions and a human role in parts of the Bible. Seminary officials say that they are just trying to assure close following of Presbyterian doctrine. Enns discusses his case at length on his blog.
  • American Journalism Review explores an apparent paradox: As news organizations eliminate foreign correspondent jobs, more journalism schools are adding study abroad programs.
  • Albright College, in Pennsylvania, announced Thursday that it was ending a requirement that applicants submit either the SAT or ACT for admissions. “Our extensive research confirms that there is very little correlation between test results and first-year grade-point averages or graduation rates, and that high school preparation is a much stronger predictor for student success,” said a statement from Gregory E. Eichhorn, vice president for enrollment management.
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