Parents’ Weekend at Stanford

High interest in Parents’ Weekend at Stanford

According to Stanford News the high interest in their Parents’ Weekend is a pleasant surprise and more than 3,000 family members are expected to visit Stanford for the popular annual event, which will feature lectures, open houses, campus tours and a new resource fair. The details of the Parents’ Weekend make it look like a really impressive event.

Parents’ Weekend begins Friday at 9:30 a.m. with a welcome from Provost John Etchemendy. The provost’s welcome is followed by a series of Conversations with Parents that focus on student issues by class. In the afternoon, President John Hennessy will give his annual address and question-and-answer session at 1:30 p.m. Faculty lectures, called Back to School Classes, remain among the most popular offerings of Parents’ Weekend. The classes, taught Friday and Saturday, are designed to offer parents a glimpse into the intellectual lives of their children.

All good stuff. Not clear that any UK university does anything quite like this although many do have open days and friends and family events.

Advertisements promoting university research has just launched (September 2009) – it is a consortium led by Duke University, Stanford University, and the University of Rochester and aims to highlight the latest discoveries from leading universities in the United States and Canada:

Futurity aggregates the very best research news. The site, which is hosted at the University of Rochester, covers news in the environment, health, science, society, and other areas.

Why Futurity? Why now?
The way people share information is changing quickly and daily. Blogs and social media sites like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook are just a taste of what’s to come. It will be easier than ever to share content instantly with people around the globe, allowing universities to reach new audiences and engage a new generation in discovery. futurity_logos31

Equally significant has been the recent decline in science and research coverage by traditional news outlets. For decades, universities have partnered with journalists to communicate their work to the public, but that relationship is evolving. At the same time, research universities are among the most credible and trusted institutions in society, and now have the ability to deliver their news and information directly to readers without barriers or gatekeepers.

In an increasingly complex world, the public needs access to clear, reliable research news. Futurity does the work of gathering that news. Think of it as a snapshot of where the world is today and where it’s headed tomorrow. Discover the future.

Ambitious stuff. It’s still early days for this site but it does look extremely promising. And is there anything similar in the UK? Research TV, now no more, had a similar kind of aspiration.