Haverfordians who read the Philadelphia Inquirer were treated to a terrific photo of junior fencer Emma Buckingham in last Sunday’s sports. The junior from Houston was named the area’s Top Performer among scholar-athletes in all winter sports other than basketball and swimming of all 28 colleges in the Delaware Valley which sponsor intercollegiate athletics. Talk about a Renaissance woman! Emma has been the top epeeist in the Mid-Atlantic region for the last two years and is pursuing a double major in archaeology and classical culture and society. When they remake the Indiana Jones movies and transform the hero into a heroine, we’ve got a casting suggestion!
Speaking of heroines, Haverford “Fringies,” who are not sketchy characters but fans of the FOX Network Tuesday night drama Fringe (think X-Files), were delighted to learn yesterday that Astrid Farnsworth, demure but feisty multi-talented FBI agent and laboratory assistant to a truly mad scientist, holds a BA from Haverford with a double major in music and linguistics. Astrid is portrayed by Jasika Nicole, an appealing young actress, but Jasika attended North Carolina’s Catawba College so the choice of Haverford as the alma mater of her character remains as great a mystery on Fringe as whether the possibly-evil mega-corp Massive Dynamics is responsible for a series of gruesome fatalities. Rumor is that Astrid, who has had to put up with a whole lot so far, will emerge as a leading action hero next year in Fringe’s second season (season finale this year next Tuesday, May 12.) We will solve the other mystery of the show—how Astrid got from Haverford to the FBI and her lab—even if we have to infiltrate Massive Dynamics itself.
Meanwhile, we’re trying to nail down just how the character “Tom Haverford” got so named. He and Amy Poehler shake up the office in the NBC series Parks & Recreation. Is an alum writing for the show?
Item 3 in the Pop Culture Reference section of this report: unless we missed it, there was nothing in the film State of Play – either dialog or visual – that would convey the screenwriter’s notion that Russell Crowe and Ben Affleck met at Haverford, as we’d been told by the Production Designer when they were shooting.
Back in the real world, three Haverfordians will be featured as main speakers on Commencement platforms at Philadelphia-area campuses in this graduation season. MLB Network CEO Tony Petitti ‘83 will deliver the Commencement address at Doylestown’s Delaware Valley College on Saturday, May 16. Former Time, Inc., editor Norm Pearlstine ’64 will enthrall the crowd at Montgomery County Community College on Thursday, May 21 at 7pm. (Norm’s roots are in Montco, where his family played a leading political, legal and educational role for decades.) At the same time as Haverford’s Class of 2009 is walking across stage in front of Roberts Hall (it won’t dare rain on May 17), Joan Countryman, former member of the HC Board of Managers, chair of the Corporation, and founding principal of Oprah Winfrey’s girls’ school in South Africa, will be speaking to graduates of Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia.