The CREATIVE WRITING PROGRAM is kicking off its 70th-anniversary celebration Oct. 21 with the first of a yearlong reading series featuring current and former faculty members, alumni, and fellows. Joyce Carol Oates, the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Professor of the Humanities and professor of creative writing, will read poetry and prose, and former faculty member Maxine Kumin will read poetry. The readings will be held at 4:30 p.m. at the Lewis Center for 
the Arts. 

In WILLIAM G. BOWEN *58’s latest study of higher education, Crossing the Finish Line: Completing College at America’s Public Universities (Princeton University Press), the former president of Princeton and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and his co-authors, Matthew M. Chingos and Michael S. McPherson, examine the “huge” disparities in graduation rates at public universities related to socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, and gender. Among the findings are that high school grades are a better predictor of college graduation rates than SAT/ACT test scores because high school GPA measures  “motivation, perseverance, work habits, and coping skills, as well as cognitive achievements.” Another, somewhat surprising finding: Low graduation rates of students from underrepresented minority groups and from low socio­economic-status backgrounds were due in part to their selecting colleges that were less demanding than schools for which they were qualified. 

IN MEMORIAM  Anthony G. Evans, former professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and director of the Princeton Materials Institute from 1998 to 2002, died Sept. 9 in Santa Barbara, Calif. He was 66. Evans, an expert on advanced structural materials, also taught at the University of California at Santa Barbara and at Harvard.