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David L. Marcus, who shared a Pulitzer Prize, spent a year as a Nieman Fellow at Harvard, and worked as a high school teacher before publishing a book about American teenagers, talks with Milton students this week as the Talbot Speaker for 2006.

David Marcus spent four years researching his book, which tells the story of a group of teenagers who were sent to a therapeutic program in the foothills of the Berkshires, What It Takes to Pull Me Through: Why Teenagers Get in Trouble and How Four of Them Got Out.

As an education correspondent for U.S. News & World Report, David L. Marcus wrestled with questions about what goes on in teenagers’ heads, on their computers, and among their friends while reporting on the welter of pressures American teenagers face — a resurgent drug culture, proliferating temptations and threats on-line, skyrocketing suicide rates (three times higher than in the 1960s).

While uncovering what drove these students and their parents to the Academy at Swift River, Mr. Marcus opens the black box of the teenage mind. As he reveals the intense, dramatic process that sets (most of) these students right, he weaves an absorbing tale and charts a path to hope that any child, any parent, whether or not in crisis, can take.

David L. Marcus has been a foreign correspondent and education reporter for U.S. News & World Report, the Boston Globe, Miami Herald, and Dallas Morning News, where he shared a Pulitzer Prize for a series of articles on violence against women around the world. After a twenty-four year career in journalism, he spent a year as a high school teacher in western Massachusetts, where he lives. He is now a contributing editor at US News and a visiting scholar at Ithaca College’s Park School of Communications.

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