Personal reflections from our Scholars and Alumni.

Callie Vandewiele

Callie Vandewiele

  • Alumni
  • United States
  • 2014 PhD Latin American Studies
  • Newnham College

Born in Utah, I was raised the oldest of six siblings first there and then just outside of Portland, Oregon. "Unschooled" until the age of 16 my foray into traditional education began with a handful of highschool classes, and then a dive into Spanish language, music and biology at the local community college, where I quickly developed a taste for academic work. As a non-traditional student I graduated first with an AAOT in General Studies from Clackamas Community College and then with honors from Pacific University in 2008, where I received a B.A. in Politics and Government. After graduation I lived and worked in the Alta Verapaz of Guatemala where I developed an interest in women's leadership education and the ongoing interactions between globalized western culture, local cultures and the evolution of ancient traditions.

Latest Blog

Health risks of large families

Does having a large family have an impact on women’s long-term health? There has been a lot of focus on pregnancy and health, but less on the long-term impact of the impact of multiple births on women’s health. Given that the UK has the second highest percentage of families with four or more children in […]

The gap between Arctic oil’s rhetoric and reality

In a surprise statement earlier this week, Shell has announced that the company will stop offshore petroleum exploration off the coast of Alaska in the Chukchi Sea “for the foreseeable future”. This decision comes after the company has spent roughly $7 billion on Arctic offshore development and endured many years of environmentalist opposition to drilling in […]

How a boy with a clock becomes a terrorist

Last Monday, a boy in Irving, Texas, brought a clock to school. If this seems innocuous, it should. The incident became international news, however, when the 14 year old was accused of building a bomb and arrested by local police. The authorities have since unconvincingly sought to assure the public that the arrest had no […]

Lack of science knowledge hampers policymaking

Politicians’ lack of scientific knowledge can be a handicap when they are discussing important legislation or international agreements. Take, for example, the Iran Nuclear Deal, currently under debate in the US Congress. Although opposition or support falls mainly along party lines, there are technical aspects to the agreement that could sway legislators’ support. Only one […]

Concerns over statins advice

Earlier this month, the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) published two studies and an editorial supporting the controversial American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association (ACC/AHA) guidelines for cholesterol management. These 2013 guidelines determined that almost half of Americans between 40-75 years of age are now eligible for cholesterol-lowering treatments called statins. In the […]

Six myths about UKIP and Pride

When Pride in London announced that LGBT* in UKIP would be marching in the parade, the UK LGBT world was quickly caught up in heated debate. Within a week, they reversed course and announced that LGBT* in UKIP would not march. Since then, the debate has only intensified. For many, this is the first they […]

Blood atonement in Utah

On March 23, 2015 Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert signed a law reinstating the firing squad as a method of execution. With state after state postponing lethal injections because of problems sourcing the required drugs, Herbert declared that Utah needed another option. From Ohio’s botched executions, to the sheer volume of people executed each year […]

A new age of amphibian conservation

Amphibians across the world are slipping away and the time to act is now. Despite the regular attention received by charismatic species such as tigers, elephants, pandas and many types of bird, relatively few people are aware that amphibians are actually the most threatened group of vertebrates in the world today. Over a third of […]

Fear of public speaking…and how to conquer it

“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” – Mark Twain Fear of public speaking is ubiquitous, even expected. It’s so common that as many as 75% of people may suffer from it. Some rankings indicate it is more prevalent than fear of airplanes or heights. An ongoing […]

Gay rights are about more than marriage

On the 23rd of May, Ireland announced that by a popular vote, gays and lesbians would be allowed to marry. Crowds in Ireland and around the world cheered this progressive accomplishment, a victory for gay rights and democracy. Op-eds instantly appeared in major news outlets emphasising how Catholic Ireland is, and presumably, how surprising it […]