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Liberty + Leadership News: March 4, 2021


We hope you enjoy these top news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Please visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news and information and sign up to receive weekly updates.

TFAS alumni, staff and faculty continue to make headlines. Read news, analysis and updates by visiting this week’s “Quick Links.”

Alumni Staff Spotlight: TFAS President Roger Ream Celebrates 30 Years at TFAS

TFAS alumni know firsthand the impact of our programs. Among the thousands of alumni leaders who enter the workforce to defend liberty and leadership in their daily lives, several return to the organization that first gave them their start.

On March 4, 1991, Roger Ream ’76 first walked through the doors at TFAS as the executive vice president. Today, Roger gives us exclusive insight into his 30 years working with TFAS, sharing his memories as a student in the Public Policy + Economics track in 1976 and what it means to serve the organization as president. He reflects on the invaluable experiences and lifelong connections made during his summer at TFAS.

TFAS President Roger Ream has been dedicated to teaching Liberty + Leadership for 30 years.

“I have many memories from my summer at TFAS in 1976. It was the bicentennial of American independence, so it was special to be in the nation’s capital that summer,” Ream shared. “I learned a great deal in my courses, enjoyed an exciting internship for a member of Congress, and heard outstanding guest speakers, including Jack Kemp, M. Stanton Evans and Pearl Bailey. But perhaps what was most valuable was the interaction with a diverse student body. I made lifelong friendships and grew from that experience.”

It is Ream’s hope that TFAS’s transformative programs continue to have this impact on students today. When asked what he feels is the most rewarding part of working at TFAS, Ream shared:

“TFAS has the ability to shape, influence and even transform lives. I find it quite rewarding when our work serves to light a spark in the mind of a young person with regard to taking responsibility for one’s life and embracing an independence of thinking regarding the role of government in society.”

Read the full Q&A with Ream at TFAS.org/ReamSpotlight.

Sharing Wisdom: TFAS Alumni Provide Tips on Job Search with Spring Capital Semester Students

Each year, hundreds of young leaders come to The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) seeking an unforgettable experience in the nation’s capital. They leave not only with a renewed understanding of liberty and leadership, but also a wealth of knowledge on networking and professional development.

Integral to this knowledge are the TFAS alumni who volunteer their time to serve as mentors, guest speakers and small group hosts to give students an inside look at Washington’s top organizations.

Molly Nixon ’03, Steff Thomas ’13 and Ben Woodward, PPF ’19, (top row) joined TFAS Capital Semester students for a virtual panel discussion on the job search.

Last month, Capital Semester students met virtually with TFAS alumni volunteers for an informative panel on finding a job in Washington, D.C.

An expert in training young leaders is programs coalitions coordinator at the Leadership Institute, Ben Woodward, PPF ’19, who opened the discussion with interview advice for the group, sharing that the key to a successful career with a company or organization starts in the interview room.

“Go in there and observe how they treat you, observe the atmosphere in the office, and get a sense as to whether or not this is somewhere you’re going to be happy and where you’ll progress as a professional,” Woodward said.

To read more about the panel discussion, visit TFAS.org/SpringPanel21.

Above the Fold: TFAS Rago Fellow Alessandra Bocchi Makes Headlines

An avid reader of The Wall Street Journal, Alessandra Bocchi was excited to apply for The Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship for Excellence in Journalism while working as a freelance reporter last year. She was drawn to the opportunity because she knew the Journal to be one of the few national newspapers to provide balanced viewpoints – a contrast from other mainstream newspapers. She admired how the editorial contributors and columnists could make their case in a substantiated and convincing way, regardless of whether readers would agree or disagree.

2021 Rago Fellow Alessandra Bocchi shared remarks during the 27th annual TFAS Journalism Awards Dinner.

While writing abroad on an array of international issues amid the pandemic, the Italian native was selected from a competitive field of applicants for her strong reporting background of in-depth reporting. Covering a wide range of topics and cultures, Bocchi was recognized as a hardworking journalist who provided an authentic view to readers.

Halfway through her nine-month internship with the Journal’s Opinion page, TFAS caught up with Bocchi this month as she shared an inside look at the Fellowship and the impact it has had on her career. She thanks TFAS supporters for encouraging and believing in her work.

“I want to sincerely thank them for their support because it enables young journalists such as myself to drive their careers and do something that they truly believe in,” Bocchi said. “I think they’re contributing to a great cause in the best kind of journalism we can today. And we need it nowadays.”

Read more about the 2020 Rago Fellow at TFAS.org/BocchiFeature.

Economics Lesson of the Week: Bag and Baggage

TFAS provides resources to help teachers and parents continue the important task of educating our nation’s future leaders. Our “Economics Lesson of The Week” series features new lessons from our high school programming division – the Foundation for Teaching Economics (FTE) – each week.

This week’s lesson is “Bag and Baggage.” In this activity, students will explore the economic concepts of opportunity cost, scarcity, rational choice, and cost-benefit analysis. As one of the many variations of the well-known “bag game,” this lesson teaches students that voluntary exchange creates wealth and that wealth-creation is enhanced by opening the market to more traders. “Bag and Baggage” expands our appreciation of the magic of voluntary trade by incorporating “polluted” articles and allowing traders with diverse interests and tolerance of “pollution” to interact freely.

Visit TFAS.org/FTELessons for a one-stop guide to our available resources.

Post of the Week

This week’s TFAS Alumni Spotlight is program manager of healthcare at George Mason University’s Mercatus Center, Elise Amez-Droz, PPF ’19. In a recent video with the Mercatus Center, Elise explains how her upbringing shaped her understanding of economics, and how that ultimately led her to pursue a career researching and advocating for free market issues.

“The bonds formed among my class of fellows outlasted the program itself, and I’m grateful to be able to count on my…

Posted by The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) on Tuesday, March 2, 2021


TFAS President Roger Ream ’76 joined the Dan Proft Show last week to discuss the current state of affairs in the United States and how TFAS is preparing young people to become dynamic change-makers and influential leaders. Proft and Ream examined recent media tactics and information-sharing trends, especially as they relate to the policing of free speech. Ream closed the interview by explaining how TFAS reaches students and young adults with the potential to become courageous leaders and prepares them to generate positive change in their own communities.

Also on the Dan Proft Show this week, TFAS Academic Director Dr. Anne Bradley discussed economic realities and the way TFAS teaches economics in engaging and relatable ways. Proft and Dr. Bradley began the episode with an examination of the dangers of ethnomathematics, which implies we can all come to our own conclusions about anything, even objective facts and truths about the way the world works. Dr. Bradley then explained how to match intentions with the fundamental principles of economics and how TFAS teaches young people to understand truth and reality.​

Rachel Lu, Novak ’15, writes about the role of courage and temperance during the pandemic in a piece for Law & Liberty.

Katherine Mangu-Ward, Novak ’05, and Peter Suderman, Novak ’10, discuss current events in an episode of the Reason podcast.

TFAS Journalism Fellowships Director Dan McCarthy opines in The New York Times on Trump’s role in the GOP following the former president’s CPAC appearance.

Matt Gerken ’13 evaluates the “Love Your Block” campaign, an initiative to connect communities and neighborhoods to local governments, in a research report for the Urban Institute.

Robby Soave, Novak ’17, Stephanie Slade, Novak ’16, and Alexandra Hudson, Novak ’19, are now members of the Young Voices Board of Advisors.

Michael Cozzi reviews TFAS Grewcock Senior Scholar Dr. Donald Devine’s new book, “The Enduring Tension: Capitalism and the Moral Order,” for WBAP.

Laura Vanderkam ’99, Novak ’06, shares suggestions on how to plan ahead for a better week in her advice column for Forge.

TFAS Senior Scholar James Otteson has a new ebook out on the life and works of Scottish philosopher David Hume titled “The Essential David Hume.”

TFAS Trustee Paula Dobriansky coauthors an article for The Hill on the “soft power” of the United States’ foreign exchange programs.

Ani Chkhikvadze ’11 opines for The Washington Post on recent signals of the country of Georgia moving away from becoming a member of the Euro-Atlantic community.

Read about a new documentary directed by Steve Oldfield ’85, “Rush to Judgement,” in the Northern Kentucky Tribune.

Leah Libresco Sargeant, Novak ’18, has a book club that is featured in The Federalist about the importance of starting women’s discussion groups to foster meaningful relationships and dialogue.

Danyale Kellogg ’18, ’19 was accepted to George Mason University’s doctorate of biodefense program.

Nathaniel Urban, PPF ’20, writes an article on the lost meaning of genealogy for The Imaginative Conservative.

Naomi Schaefer Riley, Novak ’01, discusses the mental and physical health impacts of the coronavirus lockdowns in a piece for City Journal.

Connect with @TFASorg on social media!



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