Farewell Cascade, Hello Oregon Quarterly
With a mixture of excitement, pride and wistfulness, I am writing the dean’s page for Cascade magazine for the last time. After this edition, Cascade will cease publication and will be merged into the UO’s flagship alumni magazine, Oregon Quarterly.
This is exciting because the merger reflects Cascade’s success as a showcase for academic and research excellence at the UO. Over the past nine years, Cascade has celebrated the fascinating work in the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS). From classics to green chemistry to comic studies, from zombies to zebra-fish, we’ve devoted 32 magazine pages, three times per year, to the wide-ranging research and teaching that takes place in CAS—all of which adds up to the most important story of all: the value of the liberal arts as demonstrated through the intellectual diversity of our 45 departments and programs, and the accomplishments of the students and faculty within them.
Through a kaleidoscope of stories, we have illustrated the timeless importance of a liberal-arts education. It has been my passion as dean to carry this message
to a state, nation and world desperately in need of critical thinking, clear communication, independent problem-solving and ethical decision-making—the hallmarks of a liberal-arts education—and I am extremely proud of this legacy. Now Oregon Quarterly will move this work forward.
With the merger, you will receive all four annual issues of Oregon Quarterly, beginning in January. In addition to articles and features covering our college, you’ll discover compelling and insightful stories about what we all share as Ducks—the UO’s research and teaching excellence; the student experience; the diverse perspectives and accomplishments of our alumni; and the impact of all our schools and academic disciplines upon our community, state and society.
One of our greatest innovations with Cascade has been the annual undergraduate research edition, featuring students who conduct research across the sciences, humanities and social sciences. As you’ll see in this issue, our final undergraduate research edition, our students are exploring a remarkable variety of research questions—they come away with not only answers (or more questions!), but also portfolios of skills in communications, analysis, collaboration
and problem-solving. Simply put, they acquire exactly the kinds of liberal-arts skills employers say they most want.
Given my passion for the liberal arts and for our students’ success, it is especially appropriate that my final dean’s page focuses on student accomplishment. I am heartened to know that Oregon Quarterly will continue this tradition, devoting one issue per year to undergraduate research excellence.
On this positive note, I must now close the book on Cascade. Thank you to everyone who has worked to make Cascade such a persuasive voice on behalf of the liberal arts and our fine college. And thank you to our readers, who have told us how the stories in Cascade have kept them involved in the university community. I have often said that this sense of community is the UO’s secret superpower; no other university with which I have been affiliated comes even close. Rest assured that as Cascade ends, Oregon Quarterly will step in to keep that sense of community vibrant and alive by connecting us to the many faces and stories of the UO.
Andrew Marcus is Tykeson Dean of Arts and Sciences. He is a professor of geography and a proud parent of four UO graduates and two current UO students, all in the arts and sciences.
Photo Credit: Kelly James