April 2012 Issue • Volume 40 • Issue 4

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Local Flavor: Clean Tech and Renewable Energy Clusters in Colorado

As anthropogenic global warming continues to swiftly progress, clean technology, innovation, and diffusion of renewable energy technologies are needed more than ever nationwide. Colorado is a leader in the clean tech industry. According to a 2009 report by Pew Charitable Trusts, Colorado is one of the top three states with large and fast-growing clean energy economies. The Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation’s (MDEDC 2011) “Colorado Industry Cluster Profile on Energy” reported that Colorado ranked fourth out of the 50 states in clean tech employment concentration in 2010, and its clean tech “subcluster” ranked eleventh in absolute employment. MDEDC also reported that Colorado has 19,420 direct jobs in clean tech, and that direct employment had grown 8.9 percent since 2009. Colorado also ranked third in the Milken Institute’s 2010 State Technology and Science Index, which accounts for research and development inputs, risk capital and entrepreneurial infrastructure, human capital capacity, technology and science workforce, and technology concentration and dynamism.

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travels with erik

Snippets from the
Travels with Erik Blog

Below are brief pieces from the Travels with Erik blog, which follows Erik Olin Wright, 2012 ASA President, and Jean Shin, ASA Minority Affairs Program Director, on their visits to colleges and universities in the south and southwest in late March. Their  goal is to connect with students and faculty from underrepresented groups and highlight the importance of sociology and the opportunities available to those who study it. To read the blog in its entirety, see www.speak4sociology.org/TravelsWithErik.

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Essie Rutledge

Essie Rutledge

Essie Rutledge: Blazing a Trail in African American Studies

Essie Rutledge is a pioneer in the fields of sociology and African American studies. She was born in Alabama in 1934 during the height of The Great Depression. Her father was a farmer and her mother worked as a domestic.

When Rutledge’s parents divorced she moved with her mother to St. Petersburg, FL, in 1946. During the late 1940s and early 1950s, the St. Petersburg public school system was segregated racially so Rutledge attended all black schools through high school. Barriers to educational integration continued even after the Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision in 1954 when Rutledge’s brother was denied access to public universities despite being class valedictorian at his high school.

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New Task Force on Community College Sociologists

At its February 2012 meeting, ASA Council approved the development of a three-year task force on community college faculty. Although there are more than 400,000 full- and part-time community college faculty in the United States, making up more than 40 percent of all faculty members nationwide, they receive relatively little attention from researchers. Townsend and Twombly (2007) examined the scholarly literature on community college faculty and found that between 1990 and 2003, eight percent of articles in the five major higher education journals examined community college issues. “What is intriguing about the neglect of community college faculty members in the research literature and the lack of respect they often receive is that their numbers alone suggest they should at least merit attention” (Twombly and Townsend 2008).

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