As we approach the end of the 2017/18 academic year (and my first year as CAS Director!), I wanted to give a brief review of the year’s high points. First of all, we are delighted to have been able to welcome Professor Gabrielle Hecht this year to the CAS family. Professor Hecht was appointed this year as the Frank Stanton Foundation Professor of Nuclear Security, Professor of History, and a Senior Fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute, and she will be a major asset to CAS in the years to come. Read more about Gabrielle and her fascinating work on Africa, uranium, and nuclear power. We also celebrate the successful recruitment of another outstanding Africanist, Joel Cabrita, who will be joining us next year. Her work on the history of Christianity in southern Africa will also enrich the CAS intellectual community enormously in the years to come.
In other respects, too, CAS has had a great year -- enrollments in CAS courses are up sharply, and we have hosted an even larger-than-usual number of stimulating events and speakers throughout the year. We have also made good progress in working with Global Studies on CAS’s move to a new space, and we look forward to giving you updates as the move proceeds in the coming months. Meanwhile, student interest in things African continues to grow, with levels of student travel and engagement with Africa still rising, while CAS continues to serve as a warm and welcoming home for all Africa-focused students across Stanford’s various departments and programs. Stay tuned for more exciting developments in the year to come -- including a Fall event now in the planning stages that will feature the work of MIT science studies scholar Clapperton Chakanetsa Mavhunga and several of our own CAS faculty on issues of science, technology, and African knowledge systems.
Happy summer, and best wishes to you all! I hope to see you on Tuesday at the CAS end-of-year reception, and/or at the CAS Commencement Ceremony.
Dr. James Ferguson
Susan Ford Dorsey Director, Center for African Studies