Our Far-Flung Alumni: Michael Rellahan

March 27, 2011

Some of our alumni go on to be journalists.  That would include Michael Rellahan, an alumnus from the mid-1970s, who writes for the Daily Local News in West Chester, Pa.

Rellahan imagines our Dean of Students describing Michael in the following manner: “Mr. Rellahan, who spent four years here at Earlham in the mid-1970s as a student distinguishing himself by not really doing much of anything if he could get away with it, is better known to many of you as the “Whiner of West Chester” and who has made a distinguished career out of what we might call “unique” approaches to working as a reporter for the West Chester, Pa., Daily Local News.”

He unveils himself thusly in a piece in the Daily Local News calling attention to a new scholarship at Ursinus College.  “Recipients of the scholarship, known as the Ursinus College Creative Writing Award, get to live in  [J. D.] Salinger’s old dorm room at Ursinus, where the author of “The Catcher in the Rye” spent the fall semester of 1938.  The $30,000 annual award was designed for creative writers with distinctive voices and unusual perspectives — but not necessarily the best grades.”

Rellahan imagines a similar scholarship at Earlham in his name, recipients of which get  to live in his old dorm room (Barrett 317), and live his, well, college lifestyle.  You read the piece; see if you recognize bits of Michael (if you knew him) — or yourself, if you can remember the life you lived in college.

Here, just so you have something else to read while you while away a slow Sunday, is Michael on the reporter’s life.

Maybe Earlham failed to add value to Michael Rellahan, but I doubt it.  We’ll take credit for helping sculpt “The Whiner of West Chester.”  Write on!


About Doug Bennett

Doug Bennett is Emeritus President and Professor of Politics at Earlham College. He has a wife, Ellen, and two sons, Tommy (born 1984) and Robbie (born 2003).
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