My name is Amy L. Kovac, and I recently joined The Roanoke Times to cover Radford University and college life. Greg Esposito has graciously allowed me to join in on the blogging fun, and I aim to be a fresh eye on the college scene in these parts and beyond.
A little bit about me: I grew up in a small, retirement town in Southern California called Hemet. After 17 years there, I migrated northward to Stanford University, where I stayed for five years and got two degrees: a bachelorâ€™s and a masterâ€™s. In 2000, I moved again, this time eastward to Washington, D.C., where I worked for The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer and Foreign Policy magazine.
Three years and another move later, I lived in New York City and got another masterâ€™s at the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University. My first â€œreal worldâ€ reporting job was at the Herald News in West Paterson, N.J., where I covered towns, schools and colleges. I moved to Virginia this spring and am happy to focus my reporting on higher education -â€“ which is where you all come in.
Iâ€™d like to spice up the blog a bit and hope to bring you all into a larger conversation about higher ed. Greg and I are both interested in hearing your thoughts on our stories, but we also want to hear what you think we should be writing about.
So, tell us whatâ€™s on your mind. And one of us will respond as quickly as we can. We might even contact you as a source for an upcoming story.
To get a new conversation started, I heard about a $6 million gift to the University of Virginia this morning on the radio. (Iâ€™m a big public radio fan.) In the office the other day, some of us were talking about universities with large endowments, and one of my colleagues asked why alums give money to their alma maters â€“- especially those with hefty $3.5 billion ones like UVaâ€™s â€“- when there are people out there that are more in need, like those affected by Hurricane Katrina.
My response was that I give a little something to Stanford every year, because I feel a strong bond with the school and want current students to benefit from opportunities that I had when I was there. If you're a current college student, will you give money to your school when you graduate or not? Why? If you're old like I am, why do you give money to your college? Or, why donâ€™t you?
Let the comments begin...