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Media Tip Sheet: Bucknell’s October Story Ideas

LEWISBURG, Pa. — These are Bucknell University story ideas that may interest you in October.

DEMYSTIFYING THE PARANORMAL — Scary tales of ghosts and hauntings are as much a part of Halloween as “trick-or-treat.” Associate Dean of Arts & Sciences Rich Robbins certainly agrees. As a Ph.D. in social psychology and certified parapsychologist who has participated in several ghost hunts, consulted on books about haunting, and has been interviewed by the media regarding ghosts and haunting, Robbins will give his annual free, public Halloween presentation entitled “Ghosts & Hauntings: Decide for Yourself” on Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 6:30 p.m. in MacDonald Commons. He’ll discuss ghosts, the various theories surrounding them and their possible presence on this campus, including the legend of Bucknell’s Hunt Hall, which has been nicknamed “Haunt Hall” after numerous students and faculty reported witnessing inexplicable phenomena in the building for over 20 years. Robbins will present a critical interdisciplinary consideration of the theories of what ghosts and other related phenomena are and will conduct a discussion of evidence for and against the existence of ghosts (including alleged ghost photos and examples of electronic voice phenomena). “My role is to provide the information and educate the audience, who can then make up their own minds about ghosts and hauntings,” says Robbins. “My empirical research training and experience in social science methodology, my knowledge of human psychophysiology and psychology, along with my parapsychology training, allow me to bring an academic take on what is known as the ‘paranormal.’” CONTACT: Robbins, 570-577-3293,

ENGINEERING WOMEN SCIENTISTS — Tuesday, Oct. 11 is Ada Lovelace Day, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Bucknell’s College of Engineering has been celebrating the achievements of one particular woman, the late Katherine Owens Hayden ’23, for 100 years now. In 1923, Owens became a Bucknell chemical engineering graduate, making her the first woman to receive an engineering degree at the University. The College is planning ways to honor the 100th anniversary of that milestone during the current academic year. Bucknell’s engineering program — which was recently named sixth overall in engineering for colleges without doctorate programs in the U.S. News & World Report 2022-23 Best Colleges Guide — has a stated strategic goal “to increase opportunity for women and other underrepresented demographic groups to pursue meaningful engineering careers.” In fact, Bucknell’s enrollment of women engineering majors is among the highest in the nation by percentage, currently at 31.3% this academic year. The University provides women some financial support through Bucknell Women in Science and Engineering Scholarships, which provide $20,000 per year to high-achieving women applicants who plan to major in select science or engineering fields. The Bucknell chapter of the Society of Women Engineers also has a long history of campus activity. CONTACT: Todd Merriett, 570-577-3329,

CONSCIOUS CAPITALIST DILEMMA — Patagonia, a noted conscious capitalist company, recently made headlines when founder Yvon Chouinard announced he will be giving away the $3 billion company to a charitable trust and environmental non-profit. Patagonia has been praised by pundits for prioritizing Earth as their primary shareholder in a legitimate conscious capitalist effort. But as businesses have continually moved towards doing more and more for social-consciousness and creating value for stakeholders, how are buyers supposed to decipher which companies are authentically conscious capitalists? Freeman College of Management Professor Ankita Kumar, Markets, Innovation & Design, says establishing this authenticity is a very challenging marketing problem businesses are facing. Kumar and Craig Thompson, Churchill Professor of Marketing, Wisconsin School of Business, University of Wisconsin–Madison, teamed up to detail some of those complexities in research that analyzes the cultural contradictions of authenticity as they pertain to the actions of consumers and marketers. Their study was published in the Journal of Marketing earlier this year. CONTACT: Kumar, 570-577-3038,


CONTACT: Mike Ferlazzo, 570-577-3212, 570-238-6266 (c),

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