Upload new images. The image library for this site will open in a new window.
Upload new documents. The document library for this site will open in a new window.
Show web part zones on the page. Web parts can be added to display dynamic content such as calendars or photo galleries.
Choose between different arrangements of page sections. Page layouts can be changed even after content has been added.
Move this whole section down, swapping places with the section below it.
Check for and fix problems in the body text. Text pasted in from other sources may contain malformed HTML which the code cleaner will remove.
Accordion feature turned off, click to turn on.
Accordion featurd turned on, click to turn off.
Change the way the image is cropped for this page layout.
Cycle through size options for this image or video.
Align the media panel to the right/left in this section.
Open the image pane in this body section. Click in the image pane to select an image from the image library.
Open the video pane in this body section. Click in the video pane to embed a video. Click ? for step-by-step instructions.
Remove the image from the media panel. This does not delete the image from the library.
Remove the video from the media panel.
The University of Delaware hosted the Delaware Debates for the first time in 2010, with a U.S. House of Representatives debate on October 6 and a much-anticipated
U.S. Senate debate on October 13. The Center for Political Communication and Delaware First
Media co-hosted the debates.
The University of Delaware Messenger (Volume 18 #3, December 2010) recognized the work of the Center for Political Communication and co-host/producer Delaware First Media in the following feature about the nationally recognized Delaware Debates, which debuted in October 2010. Photos by Ambre Alexander, Kathy F. Atkinson, Evan Krape, Duane Perry and Kevin Quinlan.
With a U.S. Senate race that attracted extraordinarily
widespread attention to the state of Delaware during the fall campaign
season, the University was uniquely positioned to showcase and share its
expertise in the world of politics.
And it made the most of the opportunity.
From candidate debates, including one that drew some 160 journalists
from around the globe to Mitchell Hall and was televised on CNN, to
live-from-campus morning news broadcasts on major networks, UD was often
in the spotlight. In addition to the debates and media interest, the
University in recent months has hosted prominent speakers on a variety
of political topics, conducted polling of the state’s electorate and
shared the expertise of faculty in such areas as political science,
policy and political communication.
Playing a key role in all these events and activities was UD’s Center for Political Communication (CPC),
a multidisciplinary and nonpartisan initiative launched in fall 2009 to
focus on this emerging field of study that is growing and developing
alongside the burgeoning use of digital technologies by candidates and
the public. When the center was established, officials noted an article
by Bloomberg News that called the University “the epicenter” of the 2008
presidential campaign because of the work by alumni, specifically Vice
President Joseph R. Biden Jr., Obama campaign manager David Plouffe and
McCain senior strategist Steven Schmidt. In 2010, another UD alumnus,
Chris Christie, became the high-profile governor of New Jersey.
“There are obviously many other outstanding universities where
students can learn about politics and policy,” Ralph Begleiter, the CPC
director, said at the center’s inaugural event. “We think we’re among
the first to recognize political communication, especially involving new
technologies and an electorate increasingly using them, as a distinct
field worthy of study by students, faculty researchers and
Begleiter, who is Rosenberg Professor of Communication and
Distinguished Journalist in Residence at UD, brings more than 30 years
of broadcast journalism experience to the center, including two decades
as CNN’s world affairs correspondent.
Move this whole section up, swapping places with the section above it.
Featured on University of Delaware Messenger's December 2010 cover: Prominent media and political figures in the lineup of CPC-produced events, including the National Agenda speaker series and Delaware Debates.
Without a doubt, the 2010 campaign-season event that brought the most
attention to the University came on Oct. 13, with a much-anticipated
U.S. Senate debate between Republican Christine O’Donnell and Democrat
Chris Coons. The debate was co-hosted by the CPC and Delaware First
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, co-moderator of the debate with Nancy Karibjanian
of Delaware First Media, began broadcasting early in the day from a
makeshift studio at South College and Amstel avenues. Later, Blitzer
anchored CNN’s The Situation Room from the site. A CNN camera on The
Green featured shots of the University’s signature buildings throughout
As the day wore on, the campus was filled with more than 160
broadcast and print journalists, including about 50 international
reporters. In addition to a packed Mitchell Hall, those on campus
interested in the debate viewed the proceedings from an auditorium in
Wolf Hall and in the food court at the Trabant University Center.
Outside Mitchell Hall, a public expression area was established,
where about 200 supporters of the two candidates turned out with signs
and banners. Inside, the candidates answered questions posed by Blitzer
and Karibjanian and later responded to videotaped questions from UD
Following the debate, reporters had access to a “spin room,” where
representatives of the candidates offered their take on the event. Also,
David Wilson, assistant professor, and Jason Mycoff, associate
professor, both in the Department of Political Science and International Relations,
and Delaware Gov. Jack Markell addressed the press. The next morning,
several networks—CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC and CNN—broadcast from campus.
A week before the debate, the event was previewed by Rachel Maddow,
host of MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show, who visited Newark and the
campus to focus on the Senate race and to broadcast her hour-long show
from the Deer Park Tavern near campus.
Just after the debate, the University conducted a telephone poll of
likely Delaware voters, which found that a solid majority of viewers
believed that Coons had won the debate and that few of those surveyed
had changed their minds about which candidate they were supporting. This
National Agenda opinion poll followed a similar one conducted before
the debate, which showed Coons with a 19-point lead four weeks before
The National Agenda Poll, which also found Democratic congressional
candidate John Carney with a 17-point lead over Republican Glen Urquhart
four weeks before the election, was overseen by Prof. Wilson, the CPC’s
coordinator of public opinion initiatives.
The University also hosted a 90-minute debate between Carney and
Urquhart in early October that was attended by more than 500 people and
could be viewed through streaming video online and via C-SPAN.
In addition to candidates for public office, several prominent
speakers appeared on campus in the days and weeks before Election Day to
discuss political issues. Best known, and most contentious, were Karl
Rove and Howard Dean, who spoke jointly as part of the UD Speaks series
to an audience of about 2,000 on Oct. 25 and didn’t hesitate to disagree
with each other.
Rove, who was senior adviser to President George W. Bush, is widely
regarded as the architect of Bush’s two successful presidential
campaigns. Dean ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004
and served as Democratic National Committee chairman from 2005-2009.
Despite their disagreements on virtually all the issues discussed, both
Rove and Dean paid tribute to Delaware’s retiring U.S. Congressman Mike
Castle, who attended the event, and praised his many accomplishments
while in office.
Both men now provide commentary to national media outlets. Their
appearance at UD, dubbed “Election Eve: Howard Dean and Karl Rove
Together,” provided the audience with insider views of the political
Also speaking in separate appearances on campus this fall, as part of
the CPC’s ongoing National Agenda lecture and discussion series, were
Patti Solis Doyle, manager of Biden’s 2008 vice presidential campaign;
Jim Crounse, one of the top direct mail consultants for the Democratic
Party; and Kenneth Vogel, a reporter for Politico.com.
Throughout the 2010 campaign season, numerous members
of the UD community—faculty, staff, students, alumni and
partners—labored to ensure that the many political events on campus ran
“I strongly believe that UD’s prominence in the political arena in
recent weeks would not have occurred had we not been prepared to take
advantage of the moment,” Ralph Begleiter, director of the University’s
Center for Political Communication said in thanking those who
contributed their time and expertise to the Delaware Debates 2010
events, which drew national and international attention. “Guests of the
University … were treated to a world-class experience on our campus.”
Among the efforts that made UD’s time in the spotlight shine were
those of University Media Services, whose professionals spent months to
prepare for and produce the televised programming of the debates, which
Begleiter, a former CNN correspondent, called “technically perfect.”
Media Services staff provided high-definition technology, camera and
audio production work, video animations and satellite uplinks, among
many other services.
The stage set for the debates was designed by the Office of Communications and Marketing (OCM) and constructed by the Department of Theatre,
whose students also served as ushers. OCM designers created the “Dare
to be first” and other banners that were placed around campus for
national viewing, and the office’s media relations specialists handled
credentials and other necessities for visiting media.
The Development and Alumni Relations staff planned and hosted special
receptions after the debates; faculty members provided expert
commentary; UD Facilities workers prepared Mitchell Hall and the rest of
the campus to look its best for the cameras and visitors; and Public
Safety worked with other police agencies to provide security for
candidates, journalists and the public.
Students assisted with recording and editing the taped questions
posed to the candidates by other students, in addition to numerous other
tasks. Here is an account from Delaware First Media interns Ian Clark
and Andrew Frischman:
As seniors at UD, we have seldom seen our student body so passionate
about anything. As we walked down The Green, it was astonishing to see
Mitchell Hall, an auditorium that went generally unnoticed every day as
we walked by, transformed into the epicenter of a nationally televised
debate. Many supporters had assembled outside. People chanting, the CNN
production truck, big news station camera crews and even a few people
wearing witch outfits brought the campus to life in a way we had never
The night of the debate, we showed up for production assistant
duties, and saw our own co-workers and managers from DFM working
alongside CNN staff members setting up camera angles, checking audio
equipment and adjusting the set. When we walked into the control room,
we saw producers from both companies finalizing preparations for the
night’s productions, and we saw one of our own professors and Delaware
First Media vice president, Nancy Karibjanian, preparing to co-moderate
with Wolf Blitzer. When the event was over, we walked out onto The Green
to the bustle of news crews looking to get the reactions of those
inside. For once, it was nice to see UD on the receiving end of the