Ithaca College Quarterly 2004/2 South Hill Today


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Park School
New Dean: Scholar, Professional, and Teacher


The Park School's new leader is a scholar, journalist, teacher, experienced leader of professional organizations, and, says Provost Peter Bardaglio, "a force of nature." Dean Dianne Lynch, who came to IC from a position as associate professor in the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication at Saint Michael's College in Vermont, also holds the appointment of associate professor of journalism. She succeeds Thomas Bohn, who retired in July 2003 after 23 years as dean. Associate provost Garry Brodhead had served as interim dean.

"Dianne Lynch is a dynamic and enormously talented academic leader who sees the big picture," says Bardaglio. "Her combination of energy, insight, and rigor, her experience as a working journalist and scholar, and her commitment to engaged teaching and learning will ensure that the Park School remains in the front ranks of communication programs in the United States."

At Saint Michael's, Lynch taught a variety of courses, including Literature of Journalism, New Media, Media Law and Ethics, Newspaper Editing and Design, and Global Communications. She served as department chair from 1992 to 2001, was faculty representative to the board of trustees from 1996 to 1998, and advised the college's student newspaper and online magazine. Author of the textbooks Media Culture and Virtual Ethics: Debating Media Values in a Digital Age, Lynch also writes a biweekly column about women and technology for called "Wired Women." During her 2003-4 sabbatical leave Lynch served as executive director of the national Online News Association, for which she had developed and written a five-year plan in 2001.

Lynch held positions on the editorial board of the Newspaper Research Journal and on both the Coordinating Council and the Teaching Standards Committee of the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication. She was director of the New England Center for Computer-Assisted Reporting. Her articles have appeared in such publications as the Chronicle of Higher Education and American Journalism Review, and she has presented to several editors' organizations.

Before arriving at St. Michael's, Lynch taught in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, from which she earned a bachelor's degree in 1979 and master's degree in 1985. She earned her doctoral degree in communications from McGill University in Montreal.

Honored as the 1999 national journalism teacher of the year by the Freedom Forum, she also earned the Elizabeth Candon Award from the Association of University Women and the John D. Donoghue Award for contributions to student journalism. A column on "High-Tech Gender Bending" she wrote for took second place for outstanding digital journalism article in the 2001 Gay and Lesbian Alliance against Defamation media awards.

Lynch will spend the next few months learning about the College and the Park School, and will make assessments based on what she learns. "I chose Ithaca College for its city and its reputation," she says. "There's a lot to absorb. I look forward to working with the faculty and staff to continue the school's long tradition of academic excellence and commitment to students."

Photo by George Sapio

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