Sunday, January 17, 2016

Temple University (Philadelphia)

Philadelphia's Temple University sits a bit north of Center City (downtown), as the photo on this university webpage depicts. Texas Tech graduate student Mansour Alansari recently was at Temple during a conference and very generously took some pictures for this blog.

Broad Street is perhaps the best-known street in the city, taking in Temple in north Philly (see arrow in photo below), City Hall downtown, and going all the way south to the Sports Complex, which includes the venues for the city's professional sports teams (Phillies, Flyers, 76ers, and Eagles).

Ubiquitous around Temple is the school's distinctive "T" logo, as shown in the next two shots...

Of greatest historical significance is the pair of Broad Street buildings shown next. To the left is Mitten Hall, which nowadays can be rented out for weddings and other events. The building on the right is the Performing Arts Center, a converted old Baptist Temple. This website shows a close-up of the Performing Arts Center -- note the inscription on the building "THE TEMPLE." That is where the name of the university comes from.

The founding of the university dates back to Russell Conwell tutoring students in the Temple during evenings. The students became known as "Night Owls," leading to the contemporary nickname for Temple's athletic teams, the Owls (see the university's Wikipedia page for further historical background).

Like the "T" logo, the Owl mascot is readily depicted on campus, in the following statue and, in the picture after, proclaiming "Owl Country." 

Temple's architecture appears to fall into three categories. There are several new (or newly renovated) buildings, such as the Howard Gittis Student Center...

...Morgan Hall, a new high-rise dormitory complex with a funky window scheme...

...and the Tech Center.

Then there are the older, more functional-seeming buildings, such as the Paley Library...

...and the Law School.

Finally, there are the vintage older buildings, such as Conwell Hall (named after the university's founder) and Carnell Hall...

...and the following building, which I could not identify, despite extensive Internet research.

Let's conclude with some Temple University trivia. Daryl Hall and John Oates, members of the popular musical duo Hall and Oates, both attended Temple, although they first met outside of the university. Before his Hall and Oates days, Daryl was in a group called the Temptones. One might guess that the group's name was a tribute to the Temptations, the legendary Motown group with which Hall had stylistic and professional ties. However, Temptones was actually a reference to Temple University. Hall discusses his musical history, including his time with the Temptones, in this interview with Dan Rather.

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Cornell University

Back in December, my Texas Tech faculty colleague Yoojin Chae went back to visit Cornell University, where she received her Ph.D. several years ago. I've always heard that this Ivy League school, based in Ithaca, New York, is very rustic, which the pictures confirm.

Cornell also features traditional, quaint academic buildings, such as the Uris Library and adjoining McGraw Tower, seen in the next photo.

Next is Goldwin Smith Hall, in front of which is a statue of Andrew Dickson White, co-founder of the University (along with Ezra Cornell).

Finally, we have the College of Human Ecology, part of the Martha Van Rensselaer complex.

Cornell is a bit unusual, with some of its units functioning as private, and others as public, university entities. Human Ecology, consisting of disciplines that study individuals in their various contexts and environments, is part of the public side.

Another piece of trivia: Five of Cornell's 13 presidents in its history previously were students, professors, and/or administrators at the University of Michigan.