Olivia Drake

Saving Energy All Summer Long


Dave Pompei, Central Power Plant foreperson, checks one of three chillers the university owns. Wesleyan is being aggressive in its energy conservation efforts.

Pictured at right is a view inside one of Wesleyan’s three boilers. Wesleyan will be installing a new cogeneration system that will replace the use of one boiler in the summer.

Posted 05/28/06
Wesleyan is pulling the plug on high energy usage.

Something as simple as unplugging the office coffee machines for the weekend can save Wesleyan thousands of dollars a year, says Peter Staye, associate director of utilities management in Physical Plant. Although the burners are off, most coffee machines continue to heat the water left in the reservoir 24-hours a day.

Staye ran his own experiment with Physical Plant’s coffee maker and measured the amount of electricity used in a one-day period. What he discovered is that 1 percent of all energy consumption campus-wide is used by coffee machines.

Of course this is just a tiny component of Wesleyan’s $3.03 million dollar annual electric bill. The bulk of this usage is from heating and cooling the campus. Lighting is the second largest consumer of energy, and sadly, wasted energy is third.

“If Wesleyan employees and students would remember to turn the lights out and their computer monitors off when they’re not using them, and turn down the AC over the weekend, Wesleyan could save 15 percent of its electricity use,” Staye says.

Staye and the Physical Plant staff are already hard at work with preventive conservation measures. This summer, Physical Plant will replace the Center for the Arts office’s incandescent spot lights with fluorescent lights, saving $7,085 a year. They will also replace the lighting in the Center for the Arts Theater, saving $44,380 a year, and the lighting in the Music Studios, saving $88,271 a year. The entire replacement will cost $120,000, and will pay for itself in savings the first year.

Over the last three years, the university has been able to keep its electrical consumption almost flat, even though new air-conditioned buildings have been brought on-line.

“This is a trend we work hard at continuing, though it is getting harder and harder each year to keep the peak from increasing,” Staye says.

Not only does all this save the university money, the State of Connecticut is counting on Wesleyan to continue with its efforts.

The state, which is already importing energy from New York and Maine, cannot support the summertime power demand needed by Connecticut’s 3.5 million residents. The state’s power grid, which moves power around, is also old and undersized.

“Reducing electrical consumption during the summer is especially critical as should demand exceed supply, there is a real potential for regional brown outs this summer,” Staye says. “A lengthy heat wave could cause real problems, and until the grid can be updated in 2010, conservation is the only alternative to shortages state-wide.”

In fact, the Connecticut Department of Public Utility is offering Wesleyan a $1.3 million rebate to install a Cogeneration system, known as CoGen. GoGen is the use of a single fuel source, such as natural gas, to simultaneously generate both electricity and heat. Heat produced from generating electricity is captured and used to produce steam and hot water to be used as a heat source in dorms and other campus buildings. Conventional power plants emit the heat created as a by-product in to the environment.

The cogeneration system or would cost $1.7 million after rebates; however it will save about $500,000 a year in energy costs. The Central Power Plant currently uses large boilers and coolants to service the heating and cooling needs of the 90 largest buildings on campus, and the cogeneration system will work in parallel with that equipment.

“CoGen at Wesleyan will increase the reliability of our electrical delivery systems, benefit the environment, and save us substantial amounts of money,” says John Meerts, vice president for Finance and Administration, who proposed the CoGen’s installation. “Meanwhile we are helping to reduce the problematic Connecticut power delivery and generating situation, albeit in a small way. CoGen seems like a win win situation.”

If there is a good side to the deregulation of the electrical industry, Staye says, it is that cogeneration systems have become a lot more cost effective.

The CoGen equipment, which was approved in May, takes 18 months to install, and it will be active in January 2008.

 
By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor

Men’s Lacrosse is NCAA Semi-Finalist


Glenn Adams ’06, at top, is Wesleyan’s leading lacrosse player, scoring 90 goals and 117 assists for 207 points. Charlie Congleton ’07, at bottom, is the team’s goalie. Both were named All-Americans this year.

Posted 05/28/06
A year ago, the Wesleyan University men’s lacrosse team posted a 13-6 record and made its first trip to the NCAA Division III tournament, winning its first game before falling in the quarter-finals to eventual tournament runner-up Middlebury College. This year’s team went one step further, reaching the NCAA Division III semi-finals, and came within an overtime goal of a trip to the national championship game.

The semi-final game played in Cortland, N.Y. featured the 10th-ranked Cardinals against 5th-ranked State University of New York (SUNY), Cortland. SUNY-Cortland lead 2-0 in the first quarter, but Wesleyan battled back to earn a 4-3 halftime lead. Scoring the quick goals were Grayson Connors ’08, Alex Kaufman ’08, Jordan Funt ’06 and Chris Jasinski ’08 scored. Vitulano added another goal in the third quarter giving Wesleyan a 5-3 lead but Cortland rallied to tie the score before the quarter’s end. Mike Walsh ’06 put Wesleyan up 6-5 in the fourth, but Cortland tied the match with 6:09 to go. The teams stayed even the rest of regulation, but Wesleyan entered sudden death overtime with down a man due to a penalty. Cortland wasted no time in taking advantage and in their first attack, just 42 seconds into the overtime period they scored, winning the match and qualifying for their first NCAA title game since 1981.

It was a heart-breaking end to a very successful season for the Wesleyan squad. The Cardinals spent the entire year ranked in the top 15. The team posted a 16-4 record, earned a second consecutive at-large bid to the NCAA tournament and was a finalist in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) tournament, losing 10-9 in the final game to Middlebury.

The 2006 squad returned 22 letter-winners returned from the 2005 team and added 15 freshmen to the roster. In addition to their NCAA and NESCAC success, the team’s highlights include:

  • Ending the Middlebury Panthers’ 11-year home undefeated streak with a 10-7 victory.
  • Number 2 seeding in the NESCAC Tournament,
  • An at-large bid and first round bye in the NCAA Tournament
  • NCAA Tournament wins against 4th-ranked Rochester Institute of Technology, 11-8, and 6th-ranked SUNY- Geneseo, 16-10.

    The team’s spot in the national semi-finals, the first time any Wesleyan squad had advanced that far in an NCAA Division III single-elimination tournament (Wesleyan baseball was runner-up in the 1994 NCAA Division III World Series but the format was double-elimination).

    Glenn Adams ’06 led the team with 69 points on 25 goals and 44 assists, bringing his career totals to 90 goals and 117 assists for 207 points. He ranks fourth all-time at Wesleyan. Adams was first-team all-NESCAC for a third consecutive season, a first-team all-New England Division III pick and was invited to the USILA All-American luncheon on May 28. He also was one of 30 Division III players chosen for the annual USILA North-South Senior All-Star Game.

    Charlie Congleton ’07, the team’s goalie, was named an All-American as well as first-team all-NESCAC and all-New England. He started all 20 games this season while logging a .678 save percentage and 6.73 goals-against average. His save percentage was ranked second nationally and his goals-against average ranked eleventh.

    Pete Harris ’07 earned second-team all-NESCAC while Mike Hines ’07 and Grayson Connors ’08 Connors made second-team all-New England.

    Head Coach John Raba received his second NESCAC Coach of the Year award. He was also the 2001 recipient of the award.

  •  
    By Brian Katten, sports information director

    Connecticut Math Teachers Benefit from Leadership Academy


    Beth Redington, project coordinator, teaches Connecticut teachers how to implement Microsoft PowerPoint presentations into their classroom instruction during the Leadership Academy in Mathematics Program May 19 in Exley Science Center.

    Posted 05/28/06
    Jennifer DaPonte, a mathematics teacher from Flood Middle School in Stratford, Conn. went back to college May 19 to learn advanced geometry and ‘story problems.’

    “I’m here to learn more about specific topics that relate to my school’s curriculum,” DaPonte says. “It would be helpful to learn how to better teach geometry, statistics, data analysis and general problem solving skills.”

    DaPonte is one of 50 middle and high school teachers of mathematics participating in the Leadership Academy in Mathematics Program. This 18-month-long program was designed to create a cadre of leaders in each of the 13 partner school districts involved. Wesleyan’s Project to Increase Mastery of Mathematics (PIMMS) and Science and Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU) are collaborating on the project.

    The program is funded by two grants from the Mathematics and Science Partnership Program of the Connecticut State Department of Education.

    “We want to train Connecticut’s best teachers to be even better teachers,” says Mike Zebarth, director of PIMMS and coordinator of the Leadership Academy in Mathematics Program. “Not all teachers of mathematics are specialized in math. We want to provide them with a stronger background in math so they can go on to be great leaders.”

    Each participant will receive a $1,200 stipend, a laptop computer and six graduate credits through Wesleyan’s Graduate Liberal Studies Program. They will attend a two week summer program at Ansonia High School and three weekend workshops at Wesleyan and SCSU.

    The initial workshop was held in Exley Science Center on May 19 and 20. Each participant in the workshop received software packages including Microsoft PowerPoint and Excel. Participants were trained how to use these programs as instructional tools.

    “I used PowerPoint in college for projects, and a little Excel, but I never used either one for teaching before,” DaPonte said, during a lesson on Power Point. “I’d like to integrate the technologies into classroom instructions.”

    After completing the program, the teachers will train other teachers at their schools. The program’s success will be measured by the participants’ student achievements. Academy leaders will see if students who are taught by trained teachers do better on the Connecticut Mastery Test and Connecticut Advanced Placement tests.

    Zebarth says Wesleyan sponsors outreach programs like this to improve Connecticut’s teachers, which will provide more learning opportunities for the state’s students. He also hopes the state’s top high school students will apply to Wesleyan and enroll in a math or science program.

    “Wesleyan is community minded, and we take a vested interested in the citizens of the state,” he says.

     
    By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor

    John Hope Franklin Receives Honorary Doctor of Letters


    Posted 05/28/06
    The following iare John Hope Franklin’s commencement remarks presented during Wesleyan 174th Commencement Ceremonies on May 28. Franklin is professor of history, emeritus at Duke University.

    A video clip of Franklin’s speech can be found at: http://condor.wesleyan.edu/openmedia/ur-media/video/comm_06/FranklinSansIntro.mov.

    Mr. President, Members of the Board of Trustees, the administration and faculty, members of the graduating classes, parents, friends, members of the Middletown community, ladies and gentleman. Mr. President, I will be brief.

    This is a glorious, memorable, exciting occasion and each time that I have the opportunity to participate in this ritual, even after my 50th anniversary of receiving my own bachelor’s degree, my excitement has not abated. I am greatly honored, therefore, Mr. President, that you and your colleagues have invited me here, not only to say a few words to those particularly, but to join them in becoming an honorary classmate as they leave this hallowed institution. I join with them in appreciating once more the benefits, as well as the challenges, of higher education.

    Although I could envy you who graduate today for your academic achievement, I will not do so. That would be both selfish and unseemly. Instead, I will add my congratulations and best wishes for what you have done and hope that what you have learned here will bring credit to you and to those whom you will serve, so that your efforts will redound to the benefit of society in general.

    You have had a remarkable opportunity here to receive an education comparable to that of any place that you could have obtained anywhere. That is because Wesleyan University and its benefactors have assembled here a faculty and facility of which we can all be proud and of which you have every reason to be grateful. Higher education in the United States is a modern miracle. A century ago only a very tiny fraction of America’s men and women had access to higher education. Most were compelled to be content with secondary school education, and in some rare instances, ad hoc training to prepare for a career in industry or business.

    Today, those who have little idea of what they wish to do with their lives postpone the decision until after college or later, a luxury that some would regard as frivolous. Some say as casually as they remark about the weather, that they will take a year off to rest and to play and to think. Congratulations. Be my guest!

    As you pursue your own careers and pause to contemplate the future, I very much hope that you will find time — take time — to work for the improvement of our society. Not long ago, a victorious presidential candidate said during his victory speech that for the next four years his agenda would be “putting people first.” I am not persuaded that this was his watchword for the ensuing four years, but I sincerely hope that “putting people first” will be your resolution for a much longer period of four years.

    It is difficult to imagine, for example, a situation where our schools could be worse than they are at present. It has been a source of great embarrassment for our schools at all levels to rank far below the standards that a great nation can reasonably expect to maintain. And it is equally embarrassing to discover that most of the nation’s educational system could well be designated a disaster area.

    You know the scenario as well as anyone: ungovernable students, rampant gangs, drug and alcohol abuse extending down into the middle schools, an over-emphasis on athletics and an under-emphasis on serious study and academic achievement. And the best our government in Washington can do is to pay a private publisher a quarter of a million dollars to write a column praising “No Child Left Behind.” And others similar in attitude, are using the resources of the government to develop a viable, workable program to improve education and its accessibility to all of our children.

    We wring our hands and wonder how and why the Asians surpass us in some things and the Europeans have the edge in other things. This need not be. What better way for you who graduate today to make a proper beginning than to make a solemn resolve to rescue our schools from their present degraded status, and thus assist in providing our students with the opportunity to start a better life.

    One of the most rewarding experiences you can possibly have is to guide some child or some adult in education, even the ability to learn to read and write. I had that experience when I was 20 years old, during my first year as a graduate student at Harvard University. One evening, during my first month in Cambridge, a man twice my age, who lived a floor above me in the rooming house that I lived in, rapped softly on my door and I invited him in. He said that he needed help in making out the words in the poorly written letter that he had received that day and he wondered if I could help him in reading it. When I looked at the letter, I saw that it was well-written, and I wondered, to myself of course, who had been reading his letters to him.

    When I completed the task of reading the letter to my visitor, I suggested to him that it would be a good idea if he and I could work together and brush up on his reading. He protested that I did not have time, but it was obvious that he welcomed the invitation. I told him that I would take the time. If he would come to my room at five o’clock each evening, I could work with him for about 45 minutes, just before I would leave to wash dishes at a club where I earned my evening meal. For the next eight months he and I worked together six days a week, and by the end of the term, I who knew nothing about the teaching of English had transformed a person from illiteracy to one who could read and write simple sentences. Two days before I received my Master of Arts degree, my student for the first time in his life wrote a letter to his family in Virginia. During the week that I graduated from Harvard, I can tell you that the most exciting thing that happened to me that week was not receiving my own degree but to read a letter that this older man had written to his family. It was this experience, more than any other that inspired me to dedicate myself to the educational enterprise.

    Thus, I did not need to leave my rooming house to step down from the “ivory tower” and engage in a modern time for improving the community. You may not have the privilege of teaching an illiterate person to read, but you can certainly be a voice for your concern about the school system in your community, about the need to make it organized in order to give evidence of your strength as you make representation about the needs of your community.

    Those of us who are not physical scientists can do little more than stand on the sidelines, wringing our hands knowing and caring that this world of ours can go and what a bright place, or to go slowly from strangulation or suffocation. If you are a social scientist, you know that our institutions at home seem unable to preserve their own integrity, while the crises in the larger world seems susceptible to greater disruption than they have ever witnessed in the last four years.

    Whatever your fields are and whatever the specifics subjects you have received you have pursued, you are infinitely better prepared for a career than any preceding generation. Not only is there more to know, but you in fact know more than your own predecessors. And if the ivory tower ever existed, it existed in the minds of those who never understood the nature and mission of Wesleyan University.

    For those of you who graduate today, act as if the ivory tower will never exist. So in the days ahead, if some selfish heckler or demigod implores you to get down from the ivory tower, I hope that you will them that you were never there and you don’t even know what it is. You can tell him what the task of the educated man and woman are and where they do their work. Tell him that your role will be to walk among your people, as philosopher kings would want to do, to work with them and to share the great storehouse of the world’s knowledge that you’ve helped to open.

    Something has brought about the recrudescence of racism in this country. What triggered this bizarre demonstration of a trait that has too long been a portion of America’s life? I do not know. Perhaps it was the competition for the limited employment opportunities between recent immigrants and long-time citizens, such as African Americans who have been mistakenly regarded, and treated, as recent immigrants. Perhaps it was the view held by some that the civil rights movement had ended, and thus no longer holding all of us accountable for this incipient racism. Perhaps it was the mistaken view that the best way to preserve American values is for each American to take the law into her or his own hands. Perhaps there were other forces at work: the sense of insecurity in the workplace on the part of some, the palpable re-segregation of the public schools in many of our cities, the resistance to racial equality that has ever been present at all levels of American life and in every period of American history, and the mistaken belief by some that African-Americans should be made to understand that their rightful place in American society is one of subordination. But what better way for you to take on your role as responsible, mature citizens than to insist that the American ideal of equality of race, sex, religion and ethnic groups be adhered to because the ideal was bought for and paid for, was fought for and died for by all Americans, regardless of race.

    And so, congratulations to those of you who graduate today. It has been a high honor and a great privilege to participate in this ritual, and especially to become an honorary member of this graduating class. May your days and years ahead be filled with the light by which truth is revealed. May you become activists in the promotion of the highest ideals of learning and service that are central to what you have experienced here at Wesleyan University. And may you take with you those ideals as you assume your respective roles in life as you go down from this place.

    Congratulations, best wishes and God speed!

    President Bennet Delivers Commencement Remarks


    Posted 05/27/06

    The following is President Douglas J. Bennet’s 174th Commencement Remarks presented during Commencement Ceremonies May 28.

    A video clip of President Bennet’s speech can be found at: http://condor.wesleyan.edu/openmedia/ur-media/video/comm_06/PresRemarks.mov.

    Last weekend Midge and I attended a commencement at a different institution. The graduate in question was a niece who had chosen not to attend Wesleyan for obvious reasons. It was a glorious affair, as this commencement will be, but it reminded us of the value of brevity…so I will be brief.

    First, let me echo enthusiastically Jim Dresser and Pacho Carreno’s welcome to you, and thanks to your families and the faculty. I really thought that Pacho captured all my hopes for Wesleyan in his powerful statement. This is Jim’s first commencement as chair of the Wesleyan board of trustees, and we particularly welcome him to this platform.

    Second, let me point out that today’s commencement coincides with the 175th anniversary of Wesleyan’s charter, which was granted on May 26, 1831, so this year we celebrate our septaquintaquinquecentennial.

    In this anniversary year we will study Wesleyan history with renewed attention. It is a history that goes back to the early years of the Republic. It is a history of consistent educational purpose and of successful renewal to meet changing times. It is a history both of privilege and of commitment to social good.

    In recent decades we have broadened our commitment to access and to racial equality, recognizing that these are still uphill battles in America. It is a great honor to be able, in just few minutes, to “yield back the balance of my time” to a person who has kept the reality of racism in America before us throughout his scholarly and personal life.

    Let me just conclude with a word to the class of 2006. You represent over 700 individual scholarly and personal outcomes—accomplishments of imagination, inspiration, perspiration, obsession, focus, sportsmanship, passion and intellect. At the same time, your engagement with each other’s points of view and backgrounds, has allowed you to think and rethink who you are and who you want to be. Our small global university nurtures an environment in which encounters with each other, between disciplines and points of view, let us learn from each other.

    You care a lot about other people, and you have shown that you will be part of the solutions. I know this because of your responses to Katrina, to the Indian Ocean tsunami, to the genocide in Darfur, and to your Middletown neighbors. Where existing institutions seem not to be getting the job done, you have created new not-for-profit organizations to foster everything form micro-credit in Nepal to nonpartisan debate on global issues in America.

    There’s something special and powerful about a Wesleyan education. You have contributed mightily to it. I am confident that you embody Wesleyan’s strengths and its commitments. Keep up the great work. Stay in touch as we turn the corner toward our bicentennial. We will miss you very much.

    Congratulations to you, the class of 2006.

    Thank you.

    Higher Education Innovator, Leader Dies at 72


    Edgar F. Beckham was Wesleyan’s first African-American dean of the college. In 1991 he received Wesleyan’s Raymond E. Baldwin Medal for service.
    Posted 05/25/06
    Edgar F. Beckham, one of the nation’s most influential and beloved leaders in higher education, died Wednesday in Middletown at the age of 72. He was a resident of North Haven.

    As the first African-American dean of the college at Wesleyan University, Beckham led efforts to build understanding that diversity is integral to excellence in American education. While he served as dean, Wesleyan University became a national model for excellence in education for students of diverse backgrounds. Beckham also served as the chair of the Connecticut Board of Education, working to bring the lessons learned at Wesleyan to the public schools of Connecticut. In the 1990s, he headed one of the most far-reaching and effective change efforts ever launched in higher education: the Ford Foundation’s Campus Diversity Initiative. Then in 1998, he joined the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) as a senior fellow, where he continued to guide colleges and universities throughout the United States on matters of educational quality.

    Beckham’s civic contributions were many. In addition to his service to Connecticut education, he served as chair of the boards of Middlesex Hospital, the Donna Wood Foundation, and the Connecticut Humanities Council. He also served as a trustee to the Connecticut Housing Authority, Mount Holyoke College, Vermont Academy, Connecticut Public Broadcasting and the Association of International Educators.

    Beckham was honored with numerous awards. In 1997 he received the Outstanding Contribution to Higher Education Award from the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators. In 1991 he received Wesleyan’s Raymond E. Baldwin Medal, awarded for extraordinary service to Wesleyan and to the public good. In 1996, he was named Dean of the College Emeritus, and in 1998 the Wesleyan Alumni Association honored him with its Distinguished Service Award. Beckham received the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters in 1997 from Olivet College and in 2000 from Clark University.

    “Edgar Beckham’s legacy is his message that diversity is about much more than adding people of color to white campuses,” said AAC&U president Carol Geary Schneider. “He led a movement to enlarge the content of the curriculum, create intercultural community on campus, add new dimensions to liberal education, and build new civic capacity for democracy. He enriched us all with his life, his work, and his love.”

    Edgar Beckham was born August 5, 1933 in Hartford, Conn., the son of Willabelle Hollinshed and Walter Henry Beckham. He grew up in a diverse neighborhood in Hartford and attended Weaver High School.

    In 1951, Beckham enrolled at Wesleyan University, the recipient of the Lewis Fox Scholarship for his outstanding academic record at Weaver High School, and of several other named scholarships. He pursued a pre-med course of study, and was editor-in-chief of the Argus, Wesleyan’s student newspaper, a member of the choir, and a fraternity member of Delta Sigma. Between his junior and senior years at Wesleyan, he served for three years in the U.S. Army in Germany where he trained as a neuropsychiatric technician. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 1958 with a bachelor’s degree in German. That same year, he married Ria Haertl of Stuttgart, Germany.

    He earned his master’s and completed his doctoral course work in Germanic languages and literatures at Yale University. He began his academic career at Wesleyan in 1961 as an instructor of German. He spent 28 of the next 29 years at Wesleyan, serving in various posts including lecturer in German, director of the language laboratory, associate provost, and, from 1973-1990, dean of the college. “Edgar Beckham guided Wesleyan through the very difficult and utterly transformational period when we learned the hardest lessons about what it meant to be a diverse community,” said Wesleyan President Doug Bennet. “He succeeded by keeping us focused on what we could accomplish for ourselves and the larger society as we succeeded.”

    Beckham also taught Freshman Humanities and courses in African-American studies at Wesleyan. While at Wesleyan, Beckham was the coordinator of Explorations in the Black Experience, an experimental high school course in black history designed and taught by Wesleyan undergraduates. He was also coordinator of studies for Wesleyan Upward Bound, an anti-poverty program for high school students.

    Beckham spent the 1966-1967 academic year abroad in Germany where he taught English language and African-American history and literature at the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. He also lectured extensively at America Houses throughout the Federal Republic of Germany on the state of civil rights and racial consciousness in the United States.

    In the fall of 1990, Beckham accepted a position as program officer for the Ford Foundation’s Education and Culture Program. In this capacity, he affected the curriculum and co-curricular activities at hundreds of American college campuses. He organized international seminars on campus diversity in India, South Africa, and the United States, and he wrote and edited materials for the three volumes of essays based on the seminars. Beckham’s singular contributions to the Foundation’s work on access, diversity as an educational asset, and multicultural education earned him the unprecedented title of Senior Program Officer. “Edgar was the philosopher-king and the moral conscience of the Education and Culture Program,” said Alison R. Bernstein, a current vice president of the Foundation who worked closely with him.

    Beckham is survived by his wife, Ria; son Frederick and daughter-in-law Julie; a sister, Ruth Beckham Holloman; a brother, William Beckham; a niece, Merle Holloman; and a nephew, Wendell Holloman.

    A service was held May 30 at Wesleyan University’s Memorial Chapel.

    258 Students Honored at Reception


    Wesleyan students received 145 awards during the Academic Awards and Prizes Reception at the Russell House May 9. The event was organized by the Dean’s Office. (Photos by Olivia Drake)
     
    Posted 05/18/06
    Two-hundred-and-fifty-eight Wesleyan students were the recipients of 145 awards during the Academic Awards and Prizes Reception at the Russell House May 9. Thirty-three of these students received more than one award.

    The graduating class of 2006 had 175 recipients, the class of 2007 had 78 recipients, the class of 2008 had 24 recipients, and the class of 2009 had 12 recipients.

    Ten graduate students, eight alumni, two organizations, one visiting international student and one Graduate Liberal Studies Program student also received honors.

    These students represent the highest ideals of Wesleyan University ― intellectual curiosity, academic excellence, creative expression, leadership and service,” says Maria Cruz-Saco, dean of the college.

    While celebrating these recipients of awards, prizes, and scholarships, Cruz Saco also honored alumni and friends for their contributions and gifts.

    The awards and the recipients are:

    George H. Acheson and Grass Foundation Prize in Neuroscience

    Established in 1992 by a gift from the Grass Foundation, this prize is awarded to an outstanding undergraduate in the Neuroscience and Behavior Program who demonstrates excellence in the program and who also shows promise for future contributions in the field of neuroscience.

    Krista Perks, 2006
     

    Alumni Prize in the History of Art

    Established by Wesleyan alumni and awarded to a senior who has demonstrated special aptitude in the history of art and who has made a substantive contribution to the major.

    Caitlin Henningsen, 2006
     

    American Chemical Society Analytical Award

    Awarded for excellence in analytical chemistry.

    Jovan Gayle, 2007
     

    American Chemical Society Connecticut Valley Section Award

    Awarded for outstanding achievement to a graduating chemistry major.

    Shinya Amano, 2006
     

    American Institute of Chemists Award

    Awarded for outstanding achievement to a graduating chemistry major.

    Julie West, 2006
     

    Ayres Prize

    The gift of Daniel Ayres, Class of 1842, to the first-year student who attains the highest academic standing in the first semester.

    Elise Gelwan, 2009
     

    Baden-Wüerttemberg-Connecticut Sister State Exchange

    A grant for one academic year’s study at a university in the German state of Baden-Wüerttemberg, administered by the Connecticut Department of Higher Education.

    Jonathan Chen, GRAD
    Andrew Eppich, 2006
     

    Baldwin Fellowship

    Established in 1952 by family and friends of Horace Reed Baldwin, Class of 1947, and awarded annually for study at law school to the member of the senior class who, in the opinion of the committee, shows the most promise of becoming an outstanding lawyer and public-spirited citizen.

    Helen Gugel, 2006
     

    Bertman Prize

    Established in memory of Bernard T. Bertman, associate professor of physics, by gifts from his colleagues, family, and friends, in 1970. Awarded to a senior majoring in physics who displays a particularly resourceful and creative approach to physics research.

    Ian Carbone, 2006
     

    Blankenagel Prize

    Income from the John C. Blankenagel Fund, established in 1970, awarded at the discretion of the Department of German studies to enrich educational offerings in the area of humanistic studies, or to assist a superior student in completing a project in German studies.

    Emily Garts, 2006
    Christian Goble, 2006
    Kate McCrery, 2006
    Margaret Mitchell, 2008
    Celia Reddick, 2006
    Andrea Silenzi, 2007
     

    Bradley Prize

    The gift of Stanley David Wilson, Class of 1909, in memory of Professor Walker Parke Bradley, to the senior or junior who excels in chemistry and particularly in special original work.

    Gabriel Isaacman, 2007
     

    Bridge Builder Award

    Awarded to an individual student or student group for significant contributions to the Wesleyan and Middletown communities in the spirit of service.

    Ann Heindel, 2006
     

    Briggs Prize

    Established in 1900 by the gift of James E. Briggs, to the student who has done the most effective work in intercollegiate debating.

    Andrew Bleeker, 2007
    Amanda Fuller, 2007
     

    Christopher Brodigan Fund Award

    Established in memory of Christopher Brodigan, a Wesleyan student who died in an accident in his frosh year. The fund pays tribute to Christopher’s deep interest in Africa and to the public service he provided through teaching in Botswana prior to entering Wesleyan. Awarded to graduating seniors and recent graduates who plan to pursue public service or research in Africa.

    Andrew Aprile, 2006
    Genevieve Edens, 2006
    Una Osato, 2004
     

    Erness Brody Prize

    Established in 2002 by Ann duCille in honor of Professor Erness Bright Brody, former chair of the African American Studies Program. Awarded annually to a senior African American Studies Program major for excellence in written expression.

    Sarah Gunther, 2006
     

    Bruner Freshman Improvement Prize

    The gift of William Evans Bruner, Class of 1888, to the student whose second-semester first-year record shows the greatest relative improvement over that of the first semester.

    Pakorn Jarupanich, 2008
     

    Butler Prize

    Established in 1991 in honor of retiring colleague Jeffrey D. Butler, is awarded for the best Honors thesis in Third World History.

    Genevieve Edens, 2006
     

    Butterfield Prize

    Established by the Class of 1967 and awarded to the graduating senior who has exemplified those qualities of character, leadership, intellectual commitment and concern for the Wesleyan community shown by Victor Lloyd Butterfield, 11th president of the University.

    Tara Fickle, 2006
     

    Camp Prize

    Established in 1905 by the Board of Trustees in memory of Samuel T. Camp, trustee 1880-1903. Awarded for excellence in English literature.

    Katherine Thorpe, 2006
     

    Cardinal Crest Award

    Awarded to the member of the WSA who has given honor to his/her post on the WSA or one of its committees through his/her leadership, and has selflessly served the greater interest of the Wesleyan student body.

    Gabriel Tabak, 2006
     

    Chadbourne Prize

    The gift of George Storrs Chadbourne, Class of 1858, to that member of the first-year class outstanding in character, conduct, and scholarship.

    Eric Weiskott, 2009
     

    Clark Fellowship

    Established in memory of John Blanchard Clark by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Donald L. Clark of Pittsford, New York; his sister, Catherine; relatives; and friends. Awarded annually to a qualified graduating senior of Wesleyan University for graduate study in a school of medicine. Recipients are judged by members of the Health Professions Panel on their potential for outstanding achievement and for their promise of community leadership and public-spirited citizenship and for their scholastic record at Wesleyan.

    Tobias Wasser, 2006
     

    Clee Scholarship

    Established by friends and associates of Gilbert Harrison Clee, Class of 1935, late president of the Board of Trustees. Awarded annually to a member of the sophomore class, who will remain a Clee Scholar throughout his or her junior and senior years, who will have demonstrated high standards of leadership, a deep commitment to Wesleyan University, an interest in the broad implications of multinational business enterprises, a sensitivity to the need for a creative balance between the public and private sectors, and an intention to pursue a career in business. A specific objective will be to select individuals who exemplify the qualities that characterized Gilbert Harrison Clee as a humane person and as a leader.

    To Be Announced
     

    Dr. Neil Clendeninn Prize

    Established in 1991 by George Thornton, Class of 1991 and David Derryck, Class of 1993, for the African American student who has achieved academic excellence in biology and/or molecular biology and biochemistry. This student must have completed his or her sophomore year and in that time have exemplified those qualities of character, leadership, and concern for the Wesleyan community as shown by Dr. Neil Clendeninn, Class of 1971.

    Cynthia Armand, 2006
     

    Cole Prize

    Established through the gift of George Henry Walker, Class of 1981, in the memory of Charles Edward Cole. Awarded to the first-year student who shows the greatest ability in fiction or nonfiction writing.

    Keith Gordon, 2009
    Edward Quish, 2009
    Marguerite Weisman, 2009
     

    Connecticut Valley Higher Education Community Service Award

    Established in 1993 by the Connecticut Department of Higher Education to promote community service leadership and activities by students at Connecticut’s institutions of higher education. This award recognizes outstanding student contributions to the promotion of community service through projects that increase student participation in their college community and projects that develop a unique approach to effective community service.

    Ann Heindel, 2006
     

    Herbert Lee Connelly Prize

    Given in 1980 by Mabel Wells Connelly in the name of her husband, member of the Class of 1909, and alumni secretary, 1924-56. Supplemented by friends, relatives, and sons Hugh Wells and Theodore Sample, Class of 1948, the fund provides income to be awarded annually to a deserving undergraduate who demonstrates an interest in English literature and an unusual ability in nonfiction writing.

    Stephen Aubrey, 2006
    Ariel Lewiton, 2006
     

    Anna Julia Cooper Prize

    Awarded by the Department of Sociology to a student of overall academic excellence who lives and works in the spirit of Anna Julia Cooper (1858-1964), author of A Voice From the South, who was one of the most important social theorists in the tradition of Black feminist thought. She lived and worked courageously against the odds of exclusion, never failing to hold to the highest standards of moral and intellectual excellence.

    Tu Chi Nguyen, 2006
     

    CRC Award

    Awarded to an outstanding first-year chemistry student, based on grades in organic chemistry over the interval of the current academic year.

    Portia Chipendo, 2009
    David Snydacker, 2009
     

    Davenport Prize

    Established in 1948 by the gift of Ernest W. Davenport in honor of his brother, Frederick Morgan Davenport, Class of 1889, for excellence shown by seniors in the field of government and politics.

    Claire Blumenson, 2006
    Amelia Long, 2006
    Steven Wengrovitz, GRAD
     

    Dorchester Prize

    Established through the gift of Daniel Dorchester, Class of 1874. Awarded for the best thesis submitted to the English Department.

    Paul Brunick, 2006
    Bronwyn Wallace, 2006
     

    W.E.B. DuBois Prize

    Awarded annually for academic excellence to a student majoring in African American studies.

    Katherine McCown, 2006
     

    Dutcher Prize

    Established by gift of Arthur A. Vanderbilt, Class of 1910, in honor of Professor George Matthew Dutcher, for highest excellence in the Department of History.

    Tal Beery, 2006
    Katherine D’Ambrosio, 2006
    Genevieve Edens, 2006
    Evan Katin-Borland, 2006
    Andrew Tonelli, 2006
     

    Kevin Echart Memorial Book Prize

    Awarded to the graduating College of Letters senior who best exemplifies the intellectual curiosity and range, the pleasure in colloquy, the capacity for admiration and skepticism, and the moral seriousness and love of books that we honored in our late colleague Kevin Echart and seek to foster in the students of the College of Letters.

    Rebecca Seely, 2006
     

    Exceptional Program Award

    Awarded to the coordinator(s) of an exceptional program, cultural event, speaker or production that has had positive campus-wide impact.

    Para La Familia
     

    William Firshein Prize

    Awarded to the graduating MB&B student who has contributed the most to the interests and character of the Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Department.

    Shinya Amano, 2006
    Emily Levy, 2006
     

    First-Year Leadership Award

    Awarded to a first-year student who has demonstrated outstanding leadership or involvement in the Wesleyan community.

    Jason Harris, 2009
     

    Susan Frazer Prize

    Awarded annually to the student (or students) who has done the most distinguished work in the elementary and intermediate French language sequence.

    Hyojin Park, 2008
     

    Freeman Prize

    Established in 1975 by Mansfield Freeman, Class of 1916. Awarded annually to a senior for excellence in East Asian studies.

    Tara Fickle, 2006
    Marion Holaday, 2006
     

    French Government Teaching Assistantship

    One-year assistantship for teaching English at a lycée in France, administered by the Institute for International Education (New York).

    Elizabeth Langston, 2005
     

    Beulah Friedman Prize

    This prize recognizes work of outstanding achievement by a student in the history of art. The prize is awarded to a member of the senior class.

    John Blakinger, 2006
    Sonya Kharas, 2006
     

    Fulbright Fellowship

    These grants are funded by the United States government under the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961 (Fulbright-Hays Act) and by many foreign countries. The grants, administered by the Institute for International Education, provide for one year of study at a university abroad.

    Cara Chebuske, 2006
    Amie Kim, 2004
     

    Gay, Lesbian, and Sexuality Studies Prize

    Donated by the Wesleyan Gay and Lesbian Alumni Association (GALA), this prize is awarded annually to that undergraduate who has done the best research and writing on a subject in gay, lesbian, and sexuality studies.

    Rebecca Appel, 2006
     

    German Pedagogical Exchange Service Assistantship/Fulbright Grant

    A one year teaching apprenticeship in Germany.

    Emily Garts, 2006
    Kate McCrery, 2006
    Rose Tisdall, 2006
     

    Giffin Prize

    Established in 1912 by a gift of Mrs. Charles Mortimer Giffin, in memory of her husband, an honorary graduate of the Class of 1875. Awarded for excellence in the Department of Religion.

    Samuel Allison, 2006
    Seth Davis, 2006
    Rose Tisdall, 2006
     

    Akiva Goldsman Prize in Screenwriting

    Awarded to the graduating film studies major who has written the best full-length screenplay in the Department of Film Studies.

    Dan Janvey, 2006
     

    Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship

    Awarded by the Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation to a junior or senior who has outstanding potential and intends to pursue a career in mathematics, the natural sciences, or engineering.

    Jack DiSciacca, 2007
    Gregory Peterfreund, 2007
     

    Graham Prize

    The gift of James Chandler Graham, Class of 1890, awarded to a member of the graduating class for excellence in natural science.

    Avishek Chatterjee, 2006
    Emily Egan, 2006
    Emily Jacobs-Palmer, 2006
    Krista Perks, 2006
     

    Grant/Wilcox Prize

    Awarded in honor of Connecticut filmmakers Ellsworth Grant and Roy Wilcox to the senior whose work in film and video best addresses significant environmental, social, or artistic issues.

    Alexandra Verville, 2006
     

    Hallowell Prize

    Established by friends and associates of Burton C. Hallowell, Class of 1936, former professor of economics and executive vice president of the University. Awarded annually to an outstanding senior in the study of social science, as determined by the governing board of the Public Affairs Center.

    Claire Blumenson, 2006
     

    K. P. Harrington Public Service Award

    Awarded annually by the Mystical Seven Society to a Wesleyan undergraduate who has distinguished herself/himself in public service to the community.

    To Be Announced
     

    Hawk Prize

    The gift of Philip B. Hawk, Class of 1898, as a memorial to his wife, Gladys, to the students who have done the most effective work in biochemistry.

    Michael Agumeh, 2006
    Emily Egan, 2006
    Emily Jacobs-Palmer, 2006
    Emily Levy, 2006
     

    Health Education Prize

    Awarded annually to the graduating senior who best exemplifies the goals of Wesleyan’s Health Education Program, which are the promotion of healthy lifestyles and disease prevention. The student who is chosen for this prize has demonstrated commitment not only to his or her personal well-being but has also served as a role model to peers in the Wesleyan community and beyond.

    Shaine Truscott, 2006
     

    Heideman Award

    Established in 1972, in honor of Enid and Walter Heideman. Awarded annually to an undergraduate who has helped others in the Wesleyan community, in the tradition of the Heidemans.

    Joel Bhuiyan, 2006
    Celia Reddick, 2006
    Ericka Richburg, 2006
     

    Rachel Henderson Theater Prize

    Awarded annually to that student who, in the estimation of the theater faculty, has contributed most to theater at Wesleyan over the course of his or her undergraduate career.

    Seth Davis, 2006
    Joshua Lubin-Levy, 2006
    Lillian Whitsitt, 2006
     

    Holzberg Fellowship

    Established in memory of Jules D. Holzberg, professor of psychology, by gifts of his colleagues and friends. Awarded to a senior who intends to pursue graduate study in clinical or community psychology in recognition of the commitment to research and applied work on the resolution of social problems on the individual and collective level that is consistent with Professor Holzberg’s lifelong professional interests and humanitarian concerns.

    Leah Cappellucci, 2006
    Julia Fox, 2006
    Rebecca Gordon, 2006
    Kaneza Schaal, 2006
     

    Horgan Prize

    Established by the Department of English in honor of Paul Horgan, professor emeritus and writer-in-residence. Awarded to the student who has written the best short story of the year.

    Malwina Andruczyk, 2008
    Annalisa Bolin, 2008
    John Cusick, 2007
     

    Herbert H. Hyman Prize

    Established by the Department of Sociology to honor Herbert H. Hyman, distinguished scholar, pioneer in survey research methodology, and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Sociology. Awarded annually to students, whether sociology majors or not, who in the opinion of the faculty have written outstanding theses on a sociological topic.

    Sam Han, 2006
    Rebecca Linden, 2006
     

    Ingraham Prize

    The gift of Robert Seney Ingraham, Class of 1888, and his wife, for excellence in New Testament Greek or, in years when a course in that subject is not given, for excellence in a course in Greek elective for juniors and seniors.

    Lydia Bell, 2007
    Deborah Schwartz, 2007
     

    Jessup Prize
    Awarded to two undergraduates each year who are deemed to show the greatest talent and promise for even greater excellence in sculpture, printmaking, architecture, photography, painting, or drawing. The prize is given in memory of Pauline Jessup, a noted interior designer, who practiced her craft for over 60 years throughout the United States. Mrs. Jessup was noted for her unerring eye, her extraordinarily refined taste, and her steadfast commitment to her clients-many of whom she served over three generations. The prize is a gift of Mrs. Jessup’s nephew, D. Ronald Daniel ’52, and his friend, John R. Jakobson ’52. The award is determined by the Department of Art and Art History.

    Takahiro Haneda, 2006
    Tal Rozen, 2006
     

    Johnston Prize

    The gift of David George Downey, Class of 1884, in memory of Professor John Johnston. Awarded to those freshmen or sophomores whose performance in their first two semesters of physics shows exceptional promise.

    Isaac Levy, 2009
    Alison Ringel, 2009
    Kuan-Rong Sia, 2009
     

    P. L. Kellam Prize

    Established in memory of Priscilla L. Kellam, Class of 1983, by her husband and parents. Awarded annually to a senior woman, under the age of 25, who has majored in East Asian studies and has traveled or plans to travel to China to further her studies.

    Cara Chebuske, 2006
     

    Barry Kiefer Prize

    In memory of Barry I. Kiefer to celebrate outstanding graduating Ph.D. students in Biology and Molecular Biology and Biochemistry.

    Christopher Wade, GRAD
     

    Leavell Memorial Prize–Film

    Awarded annually to a senior film student who has done outstanding work in the major, and who best reflects the departmental goals of citizenship, scholarship, and the wedding of theory and practice.

    Audrey Golden, 2006
    Dan Janvey, 2006
     

    Leavell Memorial Prize–Music

    Awarded annually to a senior who has done outstanding work in music, and whose work manifests the ideals of the World Music Program in the Department of Music.

    Deborah Witkin, 2006
     

    Levy-Spira Prize

    Awarded for distinction in Latin American studies. Established in 1992 in memory of Eduardo Levy-Spira, Class of 1982, by his family and friends.

    Corinna Zeltsman, 2006
     

    Limbach Prize

    Established in 1966 by Russell T. Limbach, professor of art, in memory of his wife, Edna Limbach. Awarded annually to the student who has contributed the most imaginative, generous, thoughtful, and understanding social service to the people of the City of Middletown and/or the Wesleyan community.

    Rachel Ostlund, 2008
    Ethna Riley, 2006
     

    Lipsky Prize

    The gift of the Reverend and Mrs. Bailey G. Lipsky in memory of their son, Francis Jules Lipsky, Class of 1931, to the member of the choir possessing in the highest degree unfailing kindliness, quiet dignity, and brilliant scholarship.

    Danilo Macalinao, 2008
    Aaron Taylor, 2006
     

    Littell Prize

    The gift of Franklin Bowers Littell, Class of 1891, for excellence in one or more advanced courses in astronomy.

    Avishek Chatterjee, 2006
     

    Luce Scholarship

    The Henry Luce Foundation selects 18 graduates to spend a year in an Asian country and provides an experience that will broaden the participant’s perspective on his or her chosen career field.

    Kalyani McCullough, 2000
     

    Robert S. Lynd Prize

    Awarded to a student for a Department of Sociology thesis.

    David Wiener, 2006
     

    John W. Macy Summer Internship in Public Administration

    Established by friends and colleagues of John W. Macy, Class of 1938. Awarded to the junior who most clearly exemplifies, in the decision of the selection committee, the characteristics associated with John Macy: high intellectual ability, a capacity for sustained effort in difficult tasks, strong ethical standards, an ingrained sense of duty, and a commitment to public service as a worthy career.

    Ellen Werble, 2007
     

    Mann Prize

    Established in memory of Albert Mann, Class of 1906, devoted alumnus and faculty member, by his daughters and their families. Awarded annually to the seniors showing the most outstanding achievements in the Romance languages.

    Daniel Dykes, 2006
    Julia Fox, 2006
    Kristin Kamm, 2006
     

    Martius Yellow Award

    Awarded for excellence in organic synthesis.

    Hannah Ray, 2007
     

    Roger Maynard Award

    A memorial award to that senior scholar-athlete who best exemplifies the spirit, accomplishments, and humility of Roger Maynard, Class of 1937, former trustee.

    Owen Kiely, 2006
    Hannah Stubbs, 2006
     

    Richard McLellan Prize

    Awarded annually to a junior who exemplifies those qualities that characterize the late Richard McLellan, Director of the Career Planning Center and Associate Dean of the College: character, leadership, commitment to public service and diversity, wide cultural interests, and a sense of humor.

    Jeffrey Kessner, 2007
     

    Meyer Prize

    Established in 1991 in honor of retiring colleague Donald A. Meyer, is awarded for the best Honors thesis in American History.

    Benjamin Lake, 2006
     

    Monroe Prize

    Established in 1985 by the Center for African American Studies in memory of John G. Monroe, director, scholar, and teacher in the Center for African American Studies and in the Department of Theater. This prize is to be awarded annually to the Wesleyan sophomore or junior who, in the opinion of the review committee, submits the best scholarly essay in the field of African American studies.

    Liam McAlpine, 2007
     

    Janina Montero Prize

    Awarded annually to a Latino student who has promoted the health, visibility, and participation of the Latino community at Wesleyan. The individual should best exemplify personal integrity, leadership, and motivation; a strong interest in and knowledge of his or her background; and have maintained a high level of commitment to Wesleyan’s academic and intellectual enterprise.

    Stephanie Garcia, 2006
    Jose Marantes, 2006
     

    David Morgan Prize

    To be awarded annually to the senior major or majors in CSS and/or the Department of History who best demonstrated the integrity and commitment to community that characterized David’s 37 years of service to his College, his Department, and to the University.

    Sarah Kaufmann, 2006
    Gabriel Tabak, 2006
     

    Mosaic Award

    This award recognizes the contribution(s) of a person or organization that has brought about cultural awareness and education on one or more of the following issues: race, ethnicity, culture and/or sexual orientation.

    Lashawn Springer, 2008
     

    Geraldine J. Murphy Prize

    Established in memory of Geraldine J. Murphy, who was the first woman hired as a full-time instructor at Wesleyan (1957), the first woman promoted to a tenured position, and the first woman promoted to the rank of full professor. The prize is endowed by alumni of the Wesleyan Master of Arts in Teaching program. Awarded to a student who has written an outstanding critical essay that focuses on short fiction or novels.

    Marissa Brostoff, 2007
     

    National Board of Review Charlie Andrews Award

    Established by the National Board of Review in memory of Charlie Andrews who was a pioneer in television writing and producing. Awarded to the student who has written the best history/theory thesis in the Film Studies Department.

    Matthew Fishbein, 2006
    Logan Starr, 2006
     

    Needler Prize

    Established by Sophie Needler, in memory of her husband, Bennett Needler. Awarded annually to one or two graduating seniors who have demonstrated excellence in Hebrew or Jewish studies.

    Molly Chafetz, 2006
    Chloe Safier, 2006
     

    Carol B. Ohmann Memorial Prize

    Awarded for excellence in Women’s Studies.

    Jenevive Nykolak, 2006
    Emma Silverman, 2006
    Zach Strassburger, 2006
     

    Olin Fellowship

    Founded in 1854 by the wife of Stephen Olin, president, 1839-41 and 1842-51. Later increased by gifts of their son, Stephen Henry Olin, Class of 1866 and acting president, 1922-23, and his wife, Emeline. Awarded in recognition of achievement in English. The fellowship supports supervised work in English outside of the Wesleyan course structure.

    Marissa Brostoff, 2007
    Delia Casa, 2007
    Jessica Chayes, 2007
    Mi Chun, 2007
    John Cusick, 2007
    Benjamin Fels, 2007
    Maggie Filler, 2007
    Leon Hilton, 2007
    Jeremy Marks, 2007
    Joshua Nathan-Kazis, 2007
    Lauren Stossel, 2007
     

    Outreach and Community Service Award

    Awarded to the senior theater major who, through his or her work in the Department of Theater, has done a significant service in the community.

    Kaneza Schaal, 2006
     

    Parker Prize

    Established in 1870 by the Reverend John Parker, Trustee 1859-71. Awarded to a sophomore or junior who excels in public speaking.

    Thomas Crosby, 2007
    Amy Rosen, 2007
     

    Peirce Prize

    Awarded in successive years for excellence in biology, chemistry, and geology.

    Elizabeth Perry, 2006
     

    Peterson Fellowships

    Established in 1963 by bequest of William Harold Peterson, Class of 1907, for graduate study in biochemistry at Wesleyan.

    Maria-Magdalena Coman, GRAD
    Laure Dykas, GRAD
    Senthil Perumal, GRAD
    Lucia Prundeanu, GRAD
    Christopher Wade, GRAD
     

    PIMMS Vanguard Fellows’ Book Award, 1993

    Connecticut teachers serving as fellows of the Project to Increase Mastery of Mathematics and Science have established a fund to honor the creative leadership of Robert A. Rosenbaum and to recognize individuals demonstrating notably imaginative teaching in the schools of Connecticut or possessing the potential for such teaching.

    Terri Clark
    Timothy Craine
    Mari Muri
    David Scrofani
     

    Plukas Prize

    Established in 1986 by John Plukas, Class of 1966, this prize is awarded to graduating economics seniors to be applied toward summer expenses, during which period each student will work under the supervision of a faculty adviser to convert an honors project into a publishable article.

    Liang Zhao, 2006
     

    Plukas Teaching Apprentice Award

    Established in 1986 by John Plukas, Class of 1966, this prize is awarded for excellent service to the Economics Department as a teaching apprentice.

    Kerem Alper, 2007
    Joshua Atwood, 2008
    Taylor Bentley, 2006
    Bach Dao, 2008
    James Feigenbaum, 2008
    Christian Goble, 2006
    Jacob Goldin, 2007
    Adam Gomolin, 2006
    Adelina Halim, 2006
    Chen-wei Hung, 2007
    Aneth Kasebele, 2008
    Daniel Lee, 2006
    Lan Liang, 2007
    Jing-Jing Lin, 2007
    Katherine Michelmore, 2007
    Adam Miller-Howard, 2006
    Jeffrey Petrusek, 2007
    Voon Sui, 2007
    Joel Ting, 2006
    Casey Wilson, 2006
    Roberta Wong, 2008
    Zhaoxuan Yang, 2008
    Liang Zhao, 2006
    Yingzhe Zhao, 2007
    Tianxiang Zhuo, 2008
     

    Gwen Livingston Pokora Prize

    Established in 1993, awarded annually to the outstanding undergraduate student in music composition.

    Carl Testa, 2006
     

    Reed Prize

    Established in 1968 by Leon Reed and his sons, S. Chadwick, Class of 1941, and Dr. Victor Reed, in memory of Mrs. Sophie Reed, for the best poem or group of poems.

    Katherine Thorpe, 2006
     

    Rice Prize

    Awarded for excellence in mathematics to a senior.

    Jodi Black, 2006
    Avishek Chatterjee, 2006
    Liang Zhao, 2006
     

    Rich Prize

    The gift of Isaac Rich, trustee 1849-72, in memory of his wife, and later supplemented by appropriations from the Board of Trustees. Awarded to those seniors whose orations are judged best in composition and delivery.

    Rohini Singh, 2006
    Jesse Young, 2006
     

    Robertson Prize

    Awarded for excellence in mathematics to a sophomore.

    Daniel Greengard, 2008
    Per Stinchcombe, 2008
    Roberta Wong, 2008
    Zhaoxuan Yang, 2008
     

    Robins Memorial Prize

    Established in 1969, in memory of George D. Robins 1898, by Frank D. Robins 1934, and Douglas H. Robins 1966, for excellence in history.

    Kyle Gardner, 2006
     

    Rockefeller Brothers Fund Fellowship

    Awarded to an outstanding junior wishing to pursue a master’s degree in education and teach in public schools.

    Joel Pratt, 2007
     

    Ross Prize

    Established in 1979 as a gift of Steven J. Ross of Warner Communications. Awarded annually for the best undergraduate film, digital, and/or virtual made in the Department of Film Studies.

    Alexandra Verville, 2006
     

    Juan Roura-Parella Prize

    Established in 1984 to be awarded annually to an undergraduate whose work represents the kind of catholic curiosity and general learning that Professor Juan Roura-Parella exemplified.

    Christopher McDonald, 2006
    Adam Rizzo, 2006
     

    Rulewater Prize

    Awarded for outstanding reflection and writing on an interdisciplinary topic in the Graduate Liberal Studies Program.

    Christine Baker, GLSP
     

    Scott Biomedical Prize

    Awarded to a member(s) of the Molecular Biology and Biochemistry senior class who has demonstrated excellence and interest in commencing a career in academic or applied medicine.

    Shinya Amano, 2006
    Joshua Brandstadter, 2006
    Sarah Hopkins, 2006
    Johann Patlak, 2006
     

    Scott Prize

    Established by Charles Scott Jr., M.A., Class of 1886, and trustee 1905-22, in memory of John Bell Scott 1881, for excellence in modern languages.

    Asian Languages and Literatures

    James Charney, 2006
    Marion Holaday, 2006
    William McCue, 2006
     

    German Studies

    Elisabeth Lauffer, 2007
     

    Romance Languages and Literatures

    Kathryn Harmon, 2006
    Constance Higgins-Beer, 2006
    Georgiana Kuhlmann, 2006
    Allison Layman, 2006
    Adam Rizzo, 2006
    Bronwyn Wallace, 2006
     

    Russian and East European Studies

    Anthony Zannino, 2006
     

    John and Mary Sease Prize

    Awarded for outstanding work in environmental science.

    Caitlin Herlihy, 2006
     

    Sehlinger Prize

    Established by the Class of 1965 in memory of Charles Edward Sehlinger III, who died in 1964. The award of a medical dictionary is given to a premedical student for excellence of character, community spirit, and academic achievement.

    Anna Ross, 2006
     

    Senior Leadership Award

    Awarded to a senior who has consistently demonstrated outstanding leadership throughout his or her four years in the Wesleyan community.

    Helen Gugel, 2006
    Sara Williams, 2006
     

    Senior Prize in Computer Science

    Awarded for excellence in computer science to a senior.

    Brendan Dolan-Gavitt, 2006
    Antonietta Kies, 2006
     

    Service Careers Fellowship

    Established to encourage Wesleyan students to commit their careers to the betterment of society. Awarded to students who have exemplified dedication to public service.

    Leora Abelson, 2007
    Rosa Cohen-Cruz, 2007
    Nora Connor, 2007
    Sean Corlett, 2007
    Jenny Doyle 2007
    Lauren Gardner 2007
    Jenna Gopilan, 2007
    Jeffrey Kessner, 2007
    Paige Kruza, 2007
    Destiny Leake, 2007
    Estrella Lopez, 2007
    Kalia Lydgate, 2007
    Kevi Mace, 2007
    Kathleen Reid, 2007
    Nicole Reid, 2007
    Jessica Rhodes, 2007
    Cynthia Santiago, 2007
    Darrah Sipe, 2007
    Naomi Takahashi, 2007
    Talya Zemach-Bersin, 2007
     

    Frances M. Sheng Prize

    Awarded for excellence in Chinese language and excellence in Japanese Language.

    Cara Chebuske, 2006
    Hsin-Yu Hwang, 2006
     

    Sherman Prize

    Established by David Sherman, D.D., Class of 1872. Two prizes awarded annually, one for excellence in first-year mathematics and the other for excellence in classics.

    Classical Studies

    Christie Roberts, 2006
     

    Math

    Yudhishthir Kandel, 2009
     

    Rae Shortt Prize

    Established in memory of Rae M. Shortt. Awarded to a junior for excellence in mathematics.

    Christina Durfee, 2007
     

    Samuel C. Silipo Prize

    Awarded annually for the most valuable player(s) of the Wesleyan Orchestra.

    Rebecca Gordon, 2006
    Gergely Kiss, 2006
    Hyun Nam, 2008
     

    Silverman Prize

    Established by gift of Elisha Adelbert Silverman, Class of 1922, and awarded to a member of the junior or senior class for excellence in chemistry.

    Hannah Ray, 2007
     

    Skirm Prize

    Established by members of the Class of 1931 in memory of their classmate, Thomas H. Skirm, this prize is awarded to a government major early in his or her senior year, to recognize the best research or writing project done during the junior year.

    Rebecca Linden, 2006
     

    Social Activist Award

    Awarded to the individual or student group that best exemplifies the spirit of social activism and through his/her/their efforts, constructive social change ensued.

    WesPREP
     

    Annie Sonnenblick Writing Award

    Established by the family of the late Annie Sonnenblick, Class of 1980, in 1992 as a complement to the annual Annie Sonnenblick Lecture. The prize provides financial support for a student who wishes to undertake an independent writing project during the summer between his or her junior and senior years.

    Joshua Nathan-Kazis, 2007
     

    Spinney Prize

    The gift of Joseph S. Spinney, trustee 1875-82 and 1888-93, for excellence in Greek. Awarded for the best original essay on some aspect of Greek or Roman civilization.

    Daniel Matzkin, 2006
     

    Spurrier Award

    The William A. Spurrier Ethics Award, established by Dr. James Case, given to the student who demonstrates in the field of ethics: sensitivity, insight, depth, and humor. Given in memory of William Spurrier III, chaplain and Hedding Professor of Moral Science and Religion.

    Laura Goldhamer, 2006
     

    Thorndike Prize

    Established by gift of Elizabeth Moulton Thorndike in memory of her husband, Edward Lee Thorndike, Class of 1895, for excellence in psychology.

    Rachel Antler, 2006
     

    Tishler Teaching Award

    Established by the family and friends of Dr. Max Tishler, professor of chemistry, emeritus, and University Professor of the Sciences, emeritus. Awarded annually in his memory to the best graduate teaching assistant in chemistry.

    Ericka Barnes, GRAD
     

    Elizabeth Verveer Tishler Prize–Art

    Established in 1981 by a gift from Mrs. Tishler. Awarded annually for an outstanding senior exhibition in painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, photography, or architecture.

    Christopher Gartrell, 2006
    Alexander Osborn, 2006
     

    Elizabeth Verveer Tishler Prize–Music

    Established in 1981 by a gift from Mrs. Tishler. Expanded in 1989 for excellence in piano performance. Two prizes are given annually: one for Western classical piano performance and the other for jazz piano performance.

    Smith Louis, 2006
     

    Shu Tokita Prize

    The Shu Tokita Memorial Prize, established by friends and relatives of Shu Tokita, Class of 1984, is awarded to students of color studying literature, and in area studies with a focus on literature. The recipient will be selected on the basis of his or her application essay and commitment to the study of literature.

    Jane Charles-Voltaire, 2007
    Yuta Otake, 2007
     

    Trench Prize

    The gift of Miss Grace A. Smith, in memory of William James Trench, trustee 1835-67, for excellence in the Department of Religion.

    Laura Fogliano, 2006
    Vanessa Greenfield, 2006
     

    Vanguard Prize

    Established by black alumni in tribute to the black members of the Class of 1969, whose perseverance and pioneering leadership earned them designation as the Vanguard Class. The prize is awarded annually to a graduating senior who has achieved academic excellence and contributed significantly to maintaining Wesleyan’s racial diversity.

    Ethna Riley, 2006
     

    Walkley Prize

    Two prizes, the gift of Webster Rogers Walkley, Class of 1860, in memory of David Hart Walkley, Class of 1878, for excellence in psychology. Awarded to those juniors and seniors who present the best reports or work embodying original research.

    Yu-hsuen Chao, 2006
    Rebecca Gordon, 2006
    Steven Wengrovitz, GRAD
     

    Watson Fellowship

    Awarded by the Thomas J. Watson Foundation, to enable college graduates of unusual promise to engage in an initial postgraduate year of independent study and travel abroad.

    William Gould, 2006
     

    Weller Prize

    The gift of Mrs. LeRoy Weller, in memory of her husband, LeRoy Weller, Class of 1899, to the student having the highest academic average for the sophomore year.

    Cedric Bien, 2008
     

    Wesleyan Fiction Award

    A gift from Norman Mailer to the Wesleyan Writing Program, this award recognizes an outstanding piece of fiction written by a Wesleyan student.

    Malwina Andruczyk, 2008
    Annalisa Bolin, 2008
    Tanya Lewallen, 2008
     

    Wesleyan Memorial Prize

    The gift of undergraduates in the Class of 1943 in memory of fellow students who made the supreme sacrifice in the Second World War, to the members of the junior class outstanding in qualities of character, leadership, and scholarship.

    Jennifer Timm, 2007
     

    White Prize

    Established in 1942 by Horace Glenn White Jr., Class of 1933, and increased in 1943 by friends in his memory. Awarded for advanced undergraduate study in economics.

    Kerem Alper, 2007
    Hyung Choi, 2007
    Eugene Dayanghirang, 2007
    Jacob Goldin, 2007
    Rafael Haryono Putro, 2006
    Cheuk Ho, 2007
    Heung Ming Ngai, 2006
    Jeffrey Petrusek, 2007
    Voon Sui, 2007
    Danforth Sullivan, 2006
    Casey Wilson, 2006
    Kwok Hong Wong, 2006
    Liang Zhao, 2006
     

    White Fellowship–Government

    Awarded for excellence in government to a recent graduate who is currently enrolled in, or has been accepted into, a doctoral program in political science.

    Jonathan Renshon, 2004
     

    White Fellowship–History

    Awarded for excellence in history.

    To Be Announced
     

    M.G. White Prize

    Awarded annually for the best thesis submitted in American studies.

    Joshua Lubin-Levy, 2006
    David Vitale-Wolff, 2006
     

    Wilde Prize

    Established in 1963 by Frazer B. Wilde, L.L.D., Class of 1958, awarded to a junior or senior for excellence in economics.

    Liang Zhao, 2006
     

    Winchester Fellowship

    Established in 1938, in memory of Professor Caleb Thomas Winchester, by his widow. Awarded to Wesleyan graduates for postgraduate work in English.

    Aja Gabel, 2004
    Wei Gui, 2003
    Emily Steinlight, 2001
     

    Wise Prize

    The gift of Daniel Wise, D.D., Class of 1859, for excellence in the Department of Philosophy for the best essay on moral science or on some subject in the field or values.

    Joshua Turkewitz, 2006

    Student and Friends Publish The Notebook Girls to Great Acclaim


    Sophie Pollitt-Cohen ’09 is the co-author of the book The Notebook Girls published in April.

    Posted 05/16/06
    Sophie Pollitt-Cohen ’09 is co-author of The Notebook Girls by Warner Books. The book began the journal with her friends, Julia Baskin, Lindsey Newman and Courtney Toombs at Stuyvesant High School in New York City in 2001.

    The journal provided a way for the high school freshmen to stay in touch despite demanding class schedules, extracurricular activities and busy social lives.

    Formatted as a reproduction of the girls’ journal, the book is stocked with hand-written notes on lined-notebook paper, doodles and pasted-to-the-page photographs.

    “It can be a lot easier to write something down than to have to admit it in words,” she says. “We’ve spent a significant portion of our adolescence trying to figure out who we are. The notebook is the closest we’ve come.”

    Since the book’s debut April 13, the young authors have been featured in New York Magazine, OK! Magazine, Vanity Fair, the cover of the Daily News, the cover of the Los Angeles Times calendar section, the Boston Herald, as well as on The Today Show, Good Morning America, ABC News Now, Sirius Radio, CNN Inside Showbiz, the WB11 morning news show, and a few other TV shows as well.

     
    By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor

    AIDS Crisis, Disasters Explored in Upcoming Art Season


    Gay Smith, professor of theater, speaks about upcoming art events during the 2006-07 Center for the Arts season in World Music Hall May 9. Pictured below, far right, Nina Felshin, curator of exhibitions and adjunct lecturer in art history, speaks with guests following the CFA’s season announcement.

    Posted 05/16/06
    A fusion of Japanese drumming and jazz, “clown”-theater, Brazilian guitar, creative conversation and West African dance are all in the Center for the Arts (CFA) pallet for the 2006-07 season.

    During the CFA’s annual Season Announcement May 9, Pam Tatge, CFA director, announced the center’s upcoming highlights.

    “We are very proud of what we and Wesleyan’s faculty, students and staff have created for next year,” Tatge says.

    New this year will be online ticketing, a deepened interest in engaging students, and creating a partnership with Middletown’s Luce eatery and the Green Street Arts Center.

    In addition, the Dean of the College Office will collaborate with the CFA next year to allow first-year students to interact with guest artists. Through the new “Engage and Imagine” program, students can exchange views, discuss art and culture with guest artists choreographer Bill T. Jones and playwright Charles L. Mee.

    “This is going to be an amazing initiative and we hope it’s first of many,” Tatge says.

    GALLERY SHOWS
    The season begins Sept. 8 with “Disaster! One Year After”, an exhibit on display in the Ezra & Cecile Zilkha Gallery through Oct. 29. Organized on the first anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, “Disaster! One Year After” includes both historical and contemporary art that addresses the impact of extreme weather conditions.

    BREAKING GROUND SERIES
    The CFA’s Breaking Ground Dance Series will open Sept. 15 and 16 with “Another Evening,” performed by the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company. The ever-evolving 90-minute collage, featuring choreographer Bill T. Jones, interweaves new movement, excerpts from existing repertoire, original and traditional music and text into a vibrant multi-media work.

    Compagnie TchéTché, an all-female dance troupe from Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, will perform “Dimi” Nov. 17 and 18. In Dimi, the troupe explores the inner conflicts of contemporary African women.

    The Joe Goode Performance Group will perform “Deeply There (stories of a neighborhood)” and “Stay Together” on Feb. 2 and 3. “Deeply There” is an intimate exploration of the AIDS crisis and the work widely acknowledged to be Goodes masterpiece.

    CROWELL CONCERT SERIES
    The Crowell Concert Series begins with San Jose Taiko on Sept. 28-29. By fusing the ritual drumming traditions of Japan with contemporary jazz, Latin and African rhythms, San Jose Taiko performers express the beauty and harmony of the human spirit through the voice of taiko.

    Sérgio and Odair Assad, the Assad Brothers perform “Brazilian Guitar” on Oct. 21. Hear the brothers’ fine blend of styles, time periods, and cultures ranging from gypsy melodies and American tangos.

    The FLUX Quartet, featuring the John Spencer Camp Professor of Music Alvin Lucier’s world premier, performs Nov. 3.

    Paul Brady, one of Ireland’s most enduringly popular artists, will perform Feb. 16. Brady continues to push out the boundaries of Irish contemporary music in the new millennium.

    Eight-time Grammy award winner Eddie Palmieri will perform “The Sun of Latin Music” on March 3. At Wesleyan, he will play with his ensemble, La Perfecta II.

    OUTSIDE THE BOX THEATER SERIES
    The Outside the Box Theater Series begins with the Pig Iron Theatre Company–performing “Hell Meets Henry Half Way” on Sept. 21 and 22. The Philadelphia-based Pig Iron Theatre Company calls itself a “dance–clown–theater ensemble.” A tournament of malcontents erupts in a deluge of florid insults and absurd cruelties.

    Connecticut resident and OBIE-award winning playwright Charles L. Mee will hold “Creative Conversation” Feb. 22. His works, including “bobrauschenbergamerica,” “Big Love” and the rock-musical “True Love,” often draw inspiration from the Greek classics.

    NAVARATRI FESTIVAL
    The 30th Annual Navaratri Festival will be held Oct. 5-8. The longstanding tradition at Wesleyan celebrates Indian culture with music, dance, a religious service and the annual feast.

    GREEN STREET ARTS CENTER
    Janice Astor, assistant director and interim director of the Green Street Arts Center, says the downtown arts center will expand its age range from 7-to-14-years-old to include older teens. These high-school-aged students will have the ability to record their own videos or CDs.

    She’s also allowing Wesleyan students to perform their own talents for the center’s students.

    “Wesleyan has some amazing performers from tap dancers to cellists, and the kids love to interact with the Wesleyan students,” Astor says. “We really want to boost the collaboration between Green Street and Wesleyan students this year.”

    For more information on any CFA event, call 860-685-3355, e-mail boxoffice@wesleyan.edu or visit www.wesleyan.edu/cfa.

     
    By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor and Lex Leifheit, Center for the Arts press and marketing coordinator

    Lacrosse Coach Leads Team to 4th Consecutive NESCAC Tournament


    Holly Wheeler, head women’s lacrosse coach, also coaches women’s soccer.
     
    Posted 05/16/06
    Q: Holly, what year did you come to Wesleyan as a lacrosse coach?

    A: I arrived at Wesleyan in the fall of 1999, as the part-time coach of the women’s lacrosse team, directly after graduating from college. I had a couple of other jobs until the lacrosse season started in February. The next year, I got the full-time job as the head soccer and lacrosse coach.

    Q: Wesleyan ended its lacrosse season April 30 with a winning 9-8 overall record. How does this record compare to the other seven years you have coached?

    A: It is always difficult to be happy when your season ends on a loss, but this year’s team did achieve some great things. It is an exciting experience to make the NESCAC tournament, which we did for the fourth consecutive year. We play against the best teams in the country being in the NESCAC, eight of which were ranked at some point this year, and some of which are still playing in the NCAA tournament. Playing against that competition always gets you better. We return most of the team next year which will make for a thrilling year.

    Q: Tell me about this year’s lacrosse team. I understand you had seven veterans this year.

    A: We returned six starters from last year.. Kate Jones did a nice job in goal, making important saves throughout the season; Becky Meredith, second all-time on the points list at Wesleyan, who scored some big goals this year; and captain, Laura Siegle who has been a ball of fire, racing up and down the field for four years. We lose three seniors this year. They will leave some holes, but I know that the returnees will work hard to fill those gaps, along with the help of a strong class of 2010s.

    Q: Please describe the objectives of lacrosse. What other sports can you compare it to?

    A: Lacrosse is a lot like many sports. The settled attack and defense is much like basketball and hockey and the midfield is a lot like soccer. The objective is to get the ball in the back of the net and to do that more often than your opponent.

    Q: What classes do you teach as an adjunct professor?

    A: I teach Beginning Strength Training and Beginning Tennis.

    Q: What sports did you play growing up and when did you become serious about lacrosse and soccer? I understand in high school, you were a soccer team captain and qualified for a high-school all-star team that toured England, Scotland and Ireland?

    A: I played lots of sports growing up like soccer, basketball, lacrosse, tennis, swimming and football, some of them on teams, most of them in the backyard with my three older brothers. I began playing soccer when I was three and started lacrosse in high school. Because I was a decent athlete, I quickly found success with lacrosse and continued playing and improving in college. I wasn’t quite talented enough to play both sports in college, and as a better lacrosse player, I stuck with that!

    Q: At Princeton University, what did you major in?

    A: Art history with a certificate in Italian.

    Q: At Princeton, you were a starting defender in lacrosse for the Division I Tigers, helping Princeton to capture two Ivy League titles and qualify for the NCAA Division I tournament three times between 1996 and 1999. Do you still play lacrosse competitively anymore or are you focused on coaching?

    A: I play on a club team pretty infrequently and in a summer league too—neither of which are too competitive. I play more often before practice, very competitively, with my players. It can get pretty ugly, but it is a great teaching tool and it’s also a way to get the players in order.

    Q: What is the Connecticut Cup, and for how long has Wesleyan had the award?

    A: The Connecticut Cup has made the rivalry between Connecticut College, Trinity and Wesleyan even fiercer. The Cup has been in Middletown, in my office, often with candy or remote controls, for the past three years.

    Q: To you, what makes an ideal lacrosse player?

    A: I always tell recruits it is important that they have athletic ability – being fast, agile and strong; the necessary skills and that they are coachable. As long as they are dedicated and willing to work hard, we can take care of the rest.

    Q: What months does the lacrosse season span, and when does training begin? Do your student-athletes play other sports?

    A: Lacrosse officially begins Feb. 15. That is the first time the team and I can work together. Before that, they work hard on their own and as a team to get ready for the short, upcoming season. We always have a few players who do play another sport.

    Q: Are there any special lessons that you stress year to year with your team?

    A: I often talk about taking care of the little things, like skills-catching and throwing, fitness, and beyond lacrosse, going to class, being timely and being respectful. These are all lessons that I hope to instill on the lacrosse field, but which apply to situations off it as well.

    Q: Tell me about The Lacrosse School, of which you are co-director. What do you hope the girls get from this experience?

    A: The Lacrosse School is a camp I run with the Yale lacrosse coach. It is a fun and intense camp for middle school and high school girls. We do a lot of teaching and playing, and often find a number of our recruits there. It is also a great way for high school players to see the Wesleyan campus, be coached by our staff and players, and play against college players. For more information visit http://www.thelacrosseschool.com/.

    Q: What are your hobbies aside from sports?

    A: Right now, one of my hobbies seems to be getting ready for two GLSP classes I will be taking this summer. We already have lots of homework and papers due! I do like to read, so that’s ok. I have a really cool mountain bike, but only have used it in the last few years to bike from my office to the tennis courts for class.

    Q: What are some outdoor activities you and your husband, Geoff, enjoy doing with your 1 and 1/2 –year-old son, Sam? Do you think he will be a star athlete too, like mom and dad?

    A: Sam is really our biggest and best hobby! When Geoff and I are not coaching, and sometimes when we are, we are with our He is a bundle of joy and we love nothing more than spending lots and lots of time with him. His first word was “ball,” but he also loves to draw on coffee table books, play his little piano and dance.
     

    By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor

    New Finance, Administration VP Keeps His Technology Edge


    John Meerts, vice president for Finance and Administration, has been working with budgeting, energy-saving initiatives and people management issues from his office in North College.
     
    Posted 05/16/06
    John Meerts is a technical guru. He loves computers. He loves numbers and budgeting. But most of all, he loves people.

    These are all reasons Meerts was promoted to Vice President for Finance on May 1.

    “I love managing people,” Meerts says from his office in North College “I love helping them overcome obstacles, make decisions, offer advice about projects and being there to answer questions.”

    In this position, Meerts has responsibilities for the Office of Finance, Human Resources, Facilities and Construction Services, Legal Affairs and Auxiliary Services. The former director of Information Technology Services stepped out of this role in July 2005, but has continued to oversee the department during his role as interim vice president for Finance and Administration.

    Meerts’ schedule is chocked full of meetings, meetings and more meetings. Some days he convenes with more than 20 people, several of whom are department heads.

    “Sometimes they just want to inform me of what’s going on in their department, or other times I’m needed to help make decisions about a policy, discuss negations, or handle funding requests for various departments, among other things,” he says.

    Overseeing the university’s budget is one of Meerts’ primary functions as VP of Finance. In that role he works with senior staff members and their designees to allocate appropriate funds to university needs such as faculty and staff salaries, classroom renovations and operating costs, payment of building and construction debt, and energy costs. Another big portion of the total budget is taken up by student financial aid which now exceeds $40 Million.

    While interim vice president for Finance and Administration, Meerts developed a five-year plan to substantially reduce Wesleyan’s reliance on its endowment. This includes a way to save the university as much as $500,000 a year on energy costs. He also oversaw the reorganization of Human Resources, Benefits and Payroll offices.

    “In his interim role, John quickly demonstrated the ability to manage a complex budget situation,” says Wesleyan President Doug Bennet. “John’s colleagues give him credit for great personal integrity and the transparency with which he conducts business. He will provide the financial and administrative leadership we need to implement the next phases of the university’s strategic plan.”

    Meerts holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and psychology from Southern Connecticut State College, a master’s in political science form Columbia University and has completed the coursework for a Ph.D in political science at Columbia. But it was a love for computers that drove Meerts into academia.

    After college, Meerts began programming IBM mainframes using the language FORTRAN. He took up computer-related jobs at the Department of Juvenile Justice in New York City, Wang Inc., and the New York Institute of Technology. In 1989 he went to Yale as director of the university’s Science and Engineering Computing Facility and Director of Administrative Systems. In 1996, he came to Wesleyan as the director of Information Technology Services.

    “Back then, programming was all about having patience and perseverance and I guess I had enough of both,” he says. “Now, we use different programming languages, but the logic behind them still remains about the same. Ultimately you’re still working with a machine that at its most basic level understands binary logic. You may not think this, but programming can be very creative. You design a product for your customer and when you’re done, hopefully you have a happy customer using your application.”

    Meerts continues to oversee the ITS Department in his VP role. He’s still interested in technology. He loves gadgets. His Personal Digital Assistant, with phone capabilities included, chimes the Wesleyan Theme song when he gets a call. And if that’s not around, he’ll pull out his iPod to head-bop a few tunes while playing Flight Simulator on his PC. Oh, but he’s a Mac user too.

    Netherlands native Meerts, a father of three, enjoys motorcycle riding and playing blues ‘harp’ and guitar in his band, The Irrationals.

    Being a VP of Wesleyan University is a role he’s still settling into. While passing the Memorial Chapel on a midday stroll last week, he noticed that the tower’s clock had stopped.

    “I knew that clock had to be fixed, and then I realized, ‘hey, that is now my responsibility to have it fixed.’”

    The clock is ticking on time today.
     

    By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor

    Students Conduct Local Studies through Service Learning Projects


    Lirra Schiebler ’07, right, speaks on her community research project at “From the Field: First-Hand Reports of Wesleyan Service-Learning Projects” May 12 in the Center for Community Partnerships. Rob Rosenthal, center with blue shirt and tie, is director of the Service-Learning Center.

    Posted 05/16/06
    As part of a Service-Learning project, Lirra Schiebler ’07 learned that some residents in Middletown’s North End spend about 47 percent of their monthly earnings on heating and electric bills during the winter season.

    Schiebler presented her group’s study, “Energy Costs in the North End: The Rise in Utilities and its Effect on a Low-Income Community” during a meeting at the Center for Community Partnerships May 12.

    “This is a statistic I find shocking,” she says. “Our results show that the rise in energy bills has not only affected residents, but affected them to a staggering and dire degree. I hope that local agencies, will be able to use this data in a persuasive way, garnering support from governmental and other assistance programs to filter more directly to those who are in need of immediate aid.”

    Schiebler was one of nine students who made presentations at the public event, titled “From the Field: First-Hand Reports of Wesleyan Service-Learning Projects.” Rob Rosenthal, professor of sociology and director of the Service-Learning Center coordinated the event. He is the instructor for the course, Community Research Seminar, in which small teams of students carry out research projects submitted by local groups and agencies.

    Each student presented 10-minute talks, followed by brief opportunities for questions and answers. Several of the students were part of the course.

    Jeff Stein ’08 presented his study, “Defining and mapping conservation priorities in the Maromas area of Middletown, Connecticut.” He and his classmates evaluated the unprotected, wildlife-rich, 3,000-acre area known as the Maromas, in terms of its ecological value, and then ranked its parcels in terms of their value to the conservation movement.

    Advocacy groups can use Stein’s data to apply for grants, fund further studies, and focus efforts on conserving the area’s top priority parcels. The Middletown Public Schools Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction approached Stein after the meeting and suggested incorporating the school’s science classes with the Maromas.

    “Considering that most of us had never even heard of Maromas, we were awestruck that such an incredible resource with such extensive biodiversity existed so close to campus,” Stein says. “We’re all very excited about the awareness we’re raising about the area.”

    Julie Bromberg ’06 presented her group’s study, “Disabilities and School-Based Arrests: Local Connections.”

    The study was designed to determine whether the national trend of an overrepresentation of students with disabilities getting arrested holds true in Meriden and Middletown. The study involved collecting collecting statistics from the school districts, police, and juvenile court as well as conducted interviews with special education teachers, school resource officers arrested students, and their parents. Bromberg and her co-investigators found that there were a disproportionately large number of students with disabilities getting suspended in both Middletown and Meriden. Twenty-five percent of suspensions in Middletown and 31 percent in Meriden were special education students, while they only made up about 13 percent of the student population in these districts.

    Other students and their studies include: Kara Schnoes ’07 with “Implementation of Evidenced-Based Practices at The Connection;” Laura Ouimette ‘06 with “Why Student Graduate From–or Drop Out of- Upward Bound;” Julie Kastenbaum ’06 with “Report from the Field,” an Integration of Clinical Experience and Life Science Learning;” Gretchen Kishbauch ‘07 with “Predictors of Repeat Child Maltreatment among Families Involved with Child Protective Services;” Kaneza Schaal ’06 with “Peer Mediation as a Model for Student Empowerment;” and Craig Thomas ’06 with “Analyzing the North End Landfill.”

    Schiebler says the service learning course has brought her closer to the Middletown community, and also has taught her the importance of finding solutions to problems on a micro level.

    “It’s important to look at these problems close to home before we offer grandiose solutions to global issues,” she says. “World poverty is clearly important, but how are we supposed to tackle that beast when its equally scary step-brother resides next door?”

     
    By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor