Olivia Drake

Olivia (M.A.L.S. '08) is editor of the Wesleyan Connection newsletter and campus photographer. I have two dogs, five chickens and 30 house plants. I like snow, photographing firemen and enjoying "stinky" cheeses. Send me your story ideas to newsletter@wesleyan.edu.

Staff on the Move, August 2014

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires and departures for August 2014:

Newly hired
Sydney Lewis was hired as an assistant dean of admission on Aug. 4.

William Jack was hired as the associate dean of admission and financial aid on Aug. 4.

Nicholas Vennochi was hired as a sports information intern on Aug. 11.

Caitlyn DeClement joined the President’s Office as an office assistant on Aug. 18.

WSA Hosts 21st Annual Student Groups Fair

The Wesleyan Student Assembly (WSA) hosted the 21st Annual Student Groups Fair Sept. 12 behind Usdan University Center.

The campus-wide event allowed both new and returning students to learn about new and established student groups, network with different academic departments and interact with several vendors from the local Middletown community. About 70 student groups were represented at the event.

Photos of the event are below: (Photos by Harry Jiang ’18)

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Wesleyan, Local Community Celebrate “Freedom Summer” with Commemoration, Concerts

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Wesleyan students, faculty, staff and community members participated in a “Freedom Summer” commemoration Sept. 12-13 on campus.

The summer of 1964 saw thousands of young people — many from colleges and universities in the North – mobilize to register voters, educate citizens, and support other civil rights work in the Jim Crow South. What came to be known as “Freedom Summer” is credited with ending the isolation of states where racial repression and discrimination was largely ignored by news media and politicians, despite the  the landmark Civil Rights Act passed that July.

The summer of 1964 saw thousands of young people — many from colleges and universities in the North – mobilize to register voters, educate citizens, and support other civil rights work in the Jim Crow South. What came to be known as “Freedom Summer” is credited with ending the isolation of states where racial repression and discrimination was largely ignored by news media and politicians, despite the the landmark Civil Rights Act passed that July.

Hornstein, Nguyen ’12 Published in International Review of Financial Analysis

Abigail Hornstein, associate professor of economics, and her former thesis student, Zachary Nguyen ’12 are the co-authors of a paper titled “Is More Less? Propensity to Diversify via M&A and Market” published in the International Review of Financial Analysis, June 2014, pp. 64-88.

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) could lead to a firm diversifying into new industries, and the impact of this may be related to the firm’s prior diversification. By using a panel of 1,030 M&A transactions from 2000-2010, Hornstein and Nguyen found that that previously diversified firms are more likely to pursue industrially diversifying M&A.

“Both previous and contemporary diversification measures are not associated with the firm’s cumulative abnormal returns (CAR) at time of announcement but have a lasting effect on various performance measures up to two years later,” Hornstein explained. “We find evidence supporting both a diversification discount and premium, which can be predicted by the sign of the CAR at time of announcement.”

Their study suggests that while diversification is necessary to explain firm value, it is not sufficient.

After graduating, Nguyen worked at Charles River Associates in Boston 2012-14 and is now a first year student at The University of California — Berkeley School of Law.

East Asia’s Religion, Folkore Shared at New Student-Curated CEAS Exhibit

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Uncover the hidden stories of East Asia’s religion and folklore at a new exhibit, “Not of This World,” at the College of East Asian Studies’ gallery. To inaugurate the new College of East Asian Studies, students curated this exhibition of the most compelling artworks from the college’s collection.

“Not Out of This World” is on display Sept. 10-Dec. 5 and features aesthetically pleasing pieces that reveal spiritual worlds filled with love, betrayal and faith.  A ghost woman who searches for her husband, an immortal trapped in a peasant’s body, and a wheel that spins prayers are examples of the East Asian artwork displayed that weave the supernatural with mystical elements.

The gallery is open noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and closed on Mondays. The gallery will be closed Oct. 18-21 and Nov. 25-Dec. 2. For more information call 860-685-2330.

Photos of the show’s opening are below: (Photos by Dat Vu ’16)

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Telfair’s New Landscape Paintings on Exhibit in Zilkha Gallery

Tula Telfair, professor of art, will debut her newest collection of large-scale oil paintings at the Zilkha Gallery Sept. 16.

Tula Telfair, professor of art, will debut her newest collection of large-scale oil paintings at the Zilkha Gallery Sept. 16. Pictured is her painting titled “The Structured Depth of Meaning and Desire,” 2014, 72 x 100 inches.

“A World of Dreams—New Landscape Paintings” by Professor of Art Tula Telfair will be on exhibit Sept. 16 through Dec. 7 at the Ezra and Cecile Zilkha Gallery. The exhibit’s opening reception will be held 5 to 6:30 p.m. Sept. 16 at the gallery.

“Civilization Could Not Do Without It,” 2014, 75 x 100 inches.

A World of Dreams” includes new large-scale paintings in which Telfair presents monumental landscapes and epic-scale vistas that are simultaneously awe-inspiring and intimate. She combines stillness with motion, solitude with universality, and definition with suggestion in her bold and quiet works. This is her second exhibition in the Zilkha Gallery.

All paintings are oil on canvas.

“The work for this show is entirely different. The subjects are different, the techniques are different in each painting, and from piece to piece,” she explained. “There is a lot of diversity of images in this exhibition that reflect a broad range of environments from the Antarctic to the jungles of Africa to rolling fields and soaring mountains. There are a full range of landscapes.”

Telfair’s contemporary paintings demonstrate the spirit and potency

Author, Poet C.D. Wright to Teach 3 Master Classes at Shapiro Center

Author and poet C.D. Wright will teach three masters classes this fall. On Oct. 14, she will hold a poetry reading and book signing event in the Shapiro Creative Writing Center. (Photo courtesy of © Miriam Berkley/ Blue Flower Arts)

Author and poet C.D. Wright will teach three masters classes this fall. On Oct. 14, she will hold a poetry reading and book signing event in the Shapiro Creative Writing Center. (Photo courtesy of © Miriam Berkley/ Blue Flower Arts)

This semester, the Shapiro Creative Writing Center is hosting three master classes taught by award-winning author and poet C.D. Wright. Master classes are open to all poetry-writing upperclassmen free of charge. Each class will last 2.5 hours and include one dinner. The classes will meet Sept. 23, Oct. 14 and Nov. 11, and the deadline to apply is Sept. 12.

Wright is currently the I.J. Kapstein Professor of Literary Arts at Brown University where she teaches advanced poetry.

Wright was born and raised in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas. She has published over a dozen books, including Rising, Falling, Hovering, Like Something Flying Backwards: New and Selected Poems, and a text edition of One Big Self: An Investigation, focused on Louisiana inmates. She has published several book-length poems including Deepstep Come Shining and Just Whistle.

She also has composed and published two state literary maps, one for Arkansas, her native state, and one for Rhode Island, her adopted state. Wright is formerly the State Poet of Rhode Island, and with poet Forrest Gander, she edited Lost Roads Publishers for more than 20 years.

Wright is winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Poetry in March 2011 for her most recent title, One With Others: [a little book of her days], which was also a finalist for the National Book Award and was selected as winner of the Lenore Marshall Prize from the Academy of American Poets. Her honors include awards from the Wallace Foundation and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts as well as the Lannan Literary Award. In 2004 Wright was named a MacArthur Fellow; in 2005 she was given the Robert Creeley Award, and elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2009, Rising, Falling, Hovering won the International Griffin Poetry Prize.

Amy Bloom ’75, the Kim-Frank Family University Writer-in-Residence and director of the Shapiro Creative Writing Center, emphasized that the key merit of the masters program is the opportunity to work with a professional writer.

“The motivation [behind the program] was to bring some of America’s best poets to Wesleyan and to give the students the opportunity to work with them,” Bloom said. “[Wright is an] outstanding, articulate American poet with a passion for poetry and teaching. It’s not just she’s professional, it’s that she’s so gifted.”

The classes are capped at a dozen participants, all selected by Bloom and Wright based on a submitted cover letter. Bloom stated that the limit is designed to keep the classes intimate and to ensure that all students have the opportunity to work closely with Wright.

Hanakata ’14 Finalist for American Physical Society’s Apker Award

Paul Hanakata '14

Paul Hanakata ’14

Paul Hanakata ’14 was named a finalist for the American Physical Society’s prestigious Leroy Apker Award, the highest prize offered in the United States for an undergraduate thesis in physics. He will compete to win the award this month.

The Apker Award was created to recognize outstanding achievements in physics by undergraduate students, and thereby provide encouragement to young physicists who have demonstrated great potential for future scientific accomplishment.

At Wesleyan, Hanakata received high honors for his Wesleyan thesis titled, “Cooperative Dynamics in Supported Polymer Films,” under his advisor, Francis Starr, professor of physics and director of the College of Integrative Sciences.

In recognition of his exceptional research accomplishments,

Student Music Scene Celebrated at THE MASH (with Photo Gallery)

More than 20 student bands participated in THE MASH on Sept. 5. Inspired by Fete de la Musique, also known as World Music Day, the third-annual event highlighted the student music scene at Wesleyan and kicked off the year-long campus and community-wide Music & Public Life initiative.

Bands performed concurrently on stages at Olin Library, the Butterfields, North College and at the base of Foss Hill.

Bands and soloists included Jacob & The Masters, Quasimodal, David Stouck, Mixolydians, Andrew Hove, Slavei, all-caps LADD, Materiq, Trillion Dollar Boys Club (Butts Reunion Tour 2k14), jdv plus™, MFDP, Don Froot, Mazel Tones, Sam Wasn’t There, Veeblefetzer, Rhys feat. Matt Chilton, Isaac Butler-Brown, Tomato Goblin, Jack and Katie, Banjoshi and Chef. The faculty-staff band, Smokin’ Lilies, also performed.

THE MASH is co-sponsored by the Center for the Arts, the Office of Student Affairs, and the Green Street Arts Center. (Photos by Harry Jiang ’18, Gabe Rosenberg ’16 and Jack Gorlin ’16)

The MASH, Sept. 5, 2014. (Photo by Harry Jiang '18)

The MASH, Sept. 5, 2014. (Photo by Harry Jiang '18)

Rohde Hired as Wesleyan’s New Director of Public Safety

Scott Rohde will become director of Public Safety on Oct. 1. (Photo courtesy of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse)

Scott Rohde will become director of Public Safety on Oct. 1. (Photo courtesy of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse)

Scott Rohde will become Wesleyan’s new director of Public Safety on Oct. 1.

Since 1998, Rohde has served as director of Police Services at the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse where he managed safety and security operations for a campus population of 10,000 students, faculty and staff. Prior to working in higher education, he worked for 10 years in municipal policing in a small town in Wisconsin.

Rohde holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and a BS from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, where he majored in criminal justice and minored in sociology.

“After an extensive search, I’m confident that we have found an experienced director who will work collaboratively with all of us to promote the safety and security of our community,” said Michael Whaley, vice president for student affairs, in an all-campus e-mail. “I want to extend my sincere thanks to the students, faculty and staff who served on the search committee for this important position, as well as to the many members of our campus community who interviewed finalists. Finally, I want to express my gratitude to Tony Bostick, who has served as interim director, and to the entire Public Safety team for their hard work and leadership during this transition.”

 

Writing at Wesleyan Announces Fall Russell House Series on Prose and Poetry

Novelists, poets, visiting writers and editors are among the speakers at Writing at Wesleyan’s Fall Russell House Series on Prose and Poetry.

All talks are held at 8 p.m. in the Russell House. They are free of charge and open to the public.

The dates and speakers are as follows:

Sept. 17

Amy Bloom '75

Amy Bloom ’75

Amy Bloom ’75 is Wesleyan’s Distinguished Writer in Residence and the author of the acclaimed novel, Away, and a new novel, Lucky Us, published by Random House in July 2014. Also well known for her three collections of short stories, she has been nominated for both the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Her work has appeared in Best American Short StoriesPrize Stories: The O.Henry Awards, and numerous anthologies here and abroad. She has written for The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, and the Atlantic Monthly, among other publications, and has received a National Magazine Award. Amy will also appear on Saturday, Sept. 27 for a Family Weekend Event.

Oct. 1
Ailish Hopper is the author of the poetry collection Dark-Sky Society, selected by David St. John, and the chapbook, Bird in the Head, selected by Jean Valentine and published by the Center for Book Arts. Her poems have also appeared inAgni, American Poetry ReviewPloughshares, Poetry, and Tidal Basin Review, among other journals. She teaches at Goucher College.

Monument Quilt Offers Public Platform for Rape Victims to Grieve, Heal

DSC_2560The Wesleyan community gathered on Foss Hill Sept. 2 to view The Monument Quilt, a crowd-sourced collection of thousands of stories from survivors of rape and abuse. The quilt serves as a platform for storytelling and a space where survivors are publicly supported.

Sections of the quilt are traveling throughout the United States. In August, the quilt made stops in North Carolina, Alabama, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Iowa, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York and Maryland.

Following the tour, thousands of fabric squares will be stitched together to spell “NOT ALONE” on the National Mall.Through public recognition, the quilt aims to reconnect survivors to their community.

U.S. Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy (D-CT) also attended.

Learn more at https://themonumentquilt.org/.

(Photos by Cynthia Rockwell and Olivia Drake)

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