From Italy To Meadville, New Allegheny College President Hilary Link Says Global Mindset Will Remain

May 8, 2019

Educator Hilary Link will soon trade the Eternal City for Allegheny College in Meadville where she says she's excited to help foster student growth year-over-year. 

Link, who's finishing her final term as dean of Temple University at Rome—one of the largest and most tenured study abroad programs in Italy—is coming off six years working with one-semester students who quickly return to their studies in the States. 

"(In four years), students transform tremendously," she says. "A liberal arts college is a perfect place for students to really find out who they are, how they think, what really excites them, and to figure out how to take the skills and the processes of learning that they're able to develop while they're in college and apply those beyond college and into the real world."

Allegheny College, about 90 miles north of Pittsburgh, requires all students select a major and a minor–a cross-disciplinary approach Link says is unique among comparable liberal arts schools, and one that affords students a global perspective to help them compete in today’s economy.

Link was elected unanimously by the college's board of trustees in January after a nationwide search to replace current school president James H. Mullen Jr. She joins The Confluence to discuss free speech on campus, Allegheny College’s role in the higher education landscape and her plans for the future.

The Inventsons, from right: G Inventson, Jesse Inventson, Sue Inventson and Walt Inventson. The new series follows this family of genius inventors who own an amusement park called Inventionland.
Credit Courtesy of Treehouse Comics

Later in the program:

Pittsburgh synagogues are increasing security after the October attack at the Tree of Life synagogue that left 11 dead. 90.5 WESA’s Lucy Perkins explores how houses of worship are trying to balance protecting congregants while maintaining an atmosphere that welcomes everyone.  

A new comic The Inventsons bucks traditional tropes of super strength and X-ray vision, focusing instead on a family whose superpowers are their intelligence. Executive producer and Pittsburgh cartoonist Joe Wos says the series is based on a fictional town named Inventionland, which is a nod to the idea incubator at RIDC Park in O’Hara Township. Wos talks about the characters and their antics at Treehouse Comics.

The Allegheny County Health Department is operating a free measles vaccination clinic Wednesday at the Homewood-Brushton YMCA. Medical epidemiologist Dr. Kristen Mertz says the health department hopes to see patients ages 1 to 60 years who were never vaccinated. 

And the fourth annual Remake Learning Days kicks off this week, showcasing dozens of learning approaches and activities, including career fairs, hip hop classes, rocket launches, peace celebrations and more. Most activities, which continue through May 19, are free and hosted in locations across the city. Executive director Sunanna Chand says its an extension of Remake Learning's growing professional network of stakeholders committed to making education more equitable as technology evolves.

90.5 WESA's Meg Fair, John Sutton and Julia Zenkevich contributed to this program. 

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in weekdays at 9 a.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators take an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here or wherever you get your podcasts.