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Davis ’07 Wins 5,000M National Indoor Championship


Posted 03/16/07
Competing in the 5,000M event in the NCAA Division III Indoor Track Championships for the third year in a row, Ellen Davis ’07 completed her rise from eighth in 2005, to fourth in 2006, and finally national champion in 2007 at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Ind. March 10.

Her winning time of 16:43.73 eclipsed the team record she set a year ago (16:46.61) when she entered the NCAAs with the fastest qualifying time in the country.

This race is equivalent to 3.1 miles.

Davis, pictured at far left, came into the event as the number four seed but ran away from the field, leaving second-place Shauneen Garrahan of Amherst 7.5 seconds behind. With 10 team points courtesy of Davis’ top finish, Wesleyan came in tied for 16th among 56 scoring teams at the NCAAs in 2007.

A three-time indoor track All-American, Davis also has two All-America performances in cross country to her credit, including a 9th-place finish in 2006.

Davis is Wesleyan’s second national female indoor track champion in the last four years. She joins Jenna Flateman ’04 who won 55-meter dash title in 2003 and was a four-time All-American in the event.

Davis’ victory is seen in the online video http://www.rose-hulman.edu/sports/ncaatrack/pages/5000womenweb.mov.

The next track meet for Wesleyan is the outdoor Trinity Invitational at Trinity College in Hartford on March 31.
 

By Brian Katten, sports information director. Photo provided by Rose-Hulman.

National Science Foundation Supports Undergraduate Science, Astronomy Research


Posted 03/16/07
Bill Herbst, John Monroe Van Vleck Professor of Astronomy and chair of the Astronomy Department, has received a $330,990 grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) that will benefit Wesleyan and the seven other elite liberal arts member institutions in the Keck Northeast Astronomy Consortium (KNAC).

Along with Wesleyan, the other KNAC institutions covered by the funding are Colgate University, Haverford College, Middlebury College, Swarthmore College Vassar College, Wellesley College and Williams College. The funding allows the schools in the consortium to continue their summer research program for undergraduates, which has been in existence for 17 years.

“Since this program began almost two decades ago, we have provided approximately 175 summer research experiences for our students,” Herbst, pictured right, says. “The program has been very successful in engaging students with astronomical research and sparking long-term interest in science. In fact, nearly half of these students have gone on to graduate school and most are pursuing science-oriented careers.

Herbst adds that, since the program was begun, nearly half of the KNAC students have been female.

“We’re also seeking to include more students from underrepresented minorities, and from schools in the northeast where participation in astronomy research is not possible,” he says.

The 10-week summer research program sponsored by KNAC and the NSF grant provides opportunities for 12 students to work at a KNAC institution. However, to promote educational diversity, students from consortium schools cannot do research at their own institutions during the 10-week program. The program also reserves two to four spaces each year for students from institutions outside the consortium.

“The idea is to provide more real research opportunities to students and expand their astronomy education at all levels while also increasing collegial interactions among faculty and students,” Herbst says.

In the fall, all the KNAC faculty, mentors and participating students, including those who have been accepted to the program but have not yet begun research, are invited to a Student Symposium. KNAC-supported students from the summer give a 10-minute presentation on their research. There are also presentations by invited speakers, a poster session and a publication of the proceedings, which are distributed throughout the astronomical community.

“We’re very excited to receive this grant, which is vital to KNAC,” Herbst says. “KNAC has evolved into a great model for other small college astronomy departments of how a regional consortium can be created and managed to successfully address the issues of size and limited resources.”
 

By David Pesci, director of Media Relations. Photo by Bill Burkhart.

Guggenheim Recipient to Pursue Research on Jews, Christians


Posted 03/16/07
A research grant from the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation will allow a Wesleyan faculty member to pursue her research on Jews and Christians in pre-modern Poland.

Magdalena Teter, assistant professor of history, received the Guggenheim award in March. The foundation makes grants in the natural and social sciences and the humanities that promise to increase understanding of the causes, manifestations, and control of violence, aggression, and dominance. Awards range between $15,000 and $30,000.

Teter, pictured at right, was one of eight recipients of the award. She will research the close social interaction between Jews and Christians; the role of lay and religious instigators in exploiting religious sentiments; position of the accused Jews in the community; local economic dynamics; and, the role of gender. She will publish her findings in a tentatively titled book, “An Anatomy of Sectarian Violence: Jews and Christians in Pre-Modern Poland.”

The Guggenheim grant will allow Teter to travel to Rome and Poland to conduct archival research. She plans to work in the General Archives of the Carmelite Order in Rome, the Roman Archive of Society of Jesus, the Secret Vatican Archives, and the Polish Archdiocesan archives in Poznan, Cracow, as well as a number of state archives.

This research will be completed throughout the summer and again, for a few weeks during the fall or winter.

“In today’s world plagued with sectarian violence, roots of such violence have aroused a widespread interest,” Teter says. “I want to know what makes neighbors rise against neighbors? What’s the role of authorities in incitement or quelling of violence? And who benefits from it? These questions are not limited to modern times but are also pertinent to pre-modern societies, in which religion was crucial in shaping social order.”

Teter’s project examines questions of social and religious violence and aggression between the two religious groups by looking at specifically religiously motivated violence aimed at asserting religious dominance of one group over the other.

Teter will publish her findings in a book titled “An Anatomy of Sectarian Violence: Jews and Christians in Pre-modern Poland.”

At Wesleyan, Teter has taught classes on Jewish history, Jews among Christians and Muslims, early modern Europe, East European Jewish experiences and senior thesis. In 2000, she received her Ph.D from Columbia University with a dissertation titled, “Jews in the Legislation and the Teachings of the Catholic Church in Poland (1648-1772).”

As a Guggenheim recipient, Teter is required to submit a written report within six months of the end of the grant period. The report includes a discussion of the scientific and scholarly accomplishments achieved under the grant.

For more information on the Guggenheim Foundation go to: www.hfg.org.
 

By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor

Investigative Captain Helps Victims and Solves Crimes


Michael Kishimoto, investigative captain for Public Safety, joined the department in 1985.
 
Posted 03/16/07
Police and public safety officers investigate crimes, direct traffic, attend public events to maintain order, patrols specified areas and ensures the safety of people in their community. But when it comes to helping victims of a crime, the Public Safety officers take this aspect of their job up a notch.

“Sometimes, a student just wants to talk about a crime they were a part of, and its part of our jobs to listen and be concerned about their health and welfare,” explains Michael Kishimoto, Public Safety’s investigative captain.

Kishimoto, who joined the Public Safety staff in 1985, investigates up to 50 campus crimes a week. Solving the crimes is a goal, but Kishimoto’s top priority is working with victims and offering them support. He explains victim’s options, and how to proceed.

Recently, he’s helped a victim of sexual assault seek psychological counseling and move forward with her studies and life.

“Students tend to trust Captain Kishimoto,” says David Meyer, director of Public Safety. “They feel comfortable talking to him, and when students talk, it makes it easier for him to investigate crimes and get them solved faster.”

Since Kishimoto is the department’s only investigative officer, his workload and hours vary week to week. Sometimes he’s working days, other times nights. He frequently takes on weekend and holiday shifts and is almost always on call.

He works primarily in the office, making follow-up calls and answering questions from students and parents. If time allows, he enjoys patrolling campus. Often, he is able to prevent a crime before it happens.

Kishimoto gained his crime-solving skills during a six-year stint with the U.S. Army after high school. There, he worked as a sergeant with the military police. Afterwards, he applied for a Public Safety position at Wesleyan, and spent many years adjusting to the change of environment.

“Imagine going from the military police to a liberal college,” he says. “It was quite a shock at first, but after 22 years I find myself more liberal than the students.”

Captain Kishimoto enjoys working with the Wesleyan students and strives to make sure everyone feels safe in their university home, while away from home. Although campus is spattered with emergency blue light call boxes and public safety officers are patrolling campus 24-hours, crimes can, and will happen. Unfortunately, many crimes are committed by fellow students, he explains.

He’s seen the gamut of cases from neighbors stealing laptops, to students posting racial graffiti. The worst incidents, however, involve physical contact.

“Students can feel very safe on campus, but the problem is that they become too trusting, and that can become a problem,” he says. “Students should always walk in pairs at night, lock their doors if they leave, and always be mentally prepared incase someone comes up to them from behind. You just never know what can happen.”

Kishimoto, son of a Japanese-Hawaiian father and an Irish mother, grew up in East Hartford, Conn. with his four brothers. He currently lives on a 26-acre farm in Andover, Conn. with his wife, Christina; 6-year-old daughter, Maria; and a giant pond stocked with large-mouth bass.

“If I could be a full time fish farmer or fisherman, I’d do that, but since I have to work, Public Safety isn’t a bad place to be,” he says, smiling. “It’s good to work around the students. They keep me young.”
 

By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor

Blumenthal Featured at Wesleyan Earth Day Celebration


Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal will speak April 18 on campus.
Posted 03/16/07
Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal will deliver a keynote address on Connecticut’s Role in the Fight Against Global Warming at Wesleyan University’s Earth Day celebration at 8 p.m. April 18 in Wesleyan’s Memorial Chapel.

The event is free and open to the public. A reception will be held afterward in the adjoining Zelnick Pavilion.

The presentation is being sponsored by The Robert Schumann Lecture Series in the Environmental Studies Certificate Program.

For more information, contact Valerie Marinelli at 860-685-3733 or vmarinelli@wesleyan.edu.

Battle for American Bookstores Topic of Faculty Documentary


An image from: “Indies Under Fire: The Battle for the American Bookstore” by Jacob Bricca ’93, adjunct assistant professor of film studies. The film was screened March 6 at the Center for Film Studies.
Posted 03/02/07
Though he loves to read, Jacob Bricca ’93 admits that he was never “a book person,” one of those individuals who have an affinity for books and bookstores. But when he heard that an independent bookstore called Printers, Inc., in his hometown of Palo Alto, California, was closing, he was immediately saddened.

“When I was growing up, even if you weren’t into books, that was the place to hang out,” Bricca, an adjunct assistant professor of film studies, says. “Everyone went there from singles to kids to parents with small children and senior citizens. It was a community place that had a reputation of being cool and welcoming.”

And yet they were closing.

Bricca, pictured at left, a filmmaker and editor who was living in Los Angeles at the time, was curious: what would cause an iconic place so welcomed by the local community to suddenly shut its doors? Camera in hand, he drove up the coast to see if he could find out.

That was in 1999, and the trip became the beginning of what would become a six-year project that culminated in a multi-award-winning documentary film “Indies Under Fire: The Battle for the American Bookstore.” The film was shown March 6 in the Goldsmith Family Cinema at the Center for Film Studies. Admission is free. After the screening Bricca was joined by Stu Hecht, owner, The Book Vault in Wallingford, Conn., and Thomas Talbot ’91, manager, Crawford-Doyle Booksellers in New York City. The event was sponsored by The Friends of the Wesleyan Library, www.wesleyan.edu/library/friends/, and The Center for Film Studies.

“Indies Under Fire” follows the fate of a handful of small independent bookstores located on the peninsula south of San Francisco Bay as they confront the pressures of large chain bookstores such as Borders and the explosion of Internet vendors such as Amazon.com.

The documentary is an engaging 56-minute production that draws in viewers as it explores the personalities and complexities beneath the surface issue of “indie versus big box.” Key players on both sides offer frank assessments of the marketplace as well as their opinions on their adversaries. There are face-to-face encounters between opponents with emotions coming to the fore on more than one occasion.

Bricca, who has edited such films as “Lost in LaMancha,” “Jimmy Scott If You Only Knew,” and “Tell Me Do You Miss Me,” had to handle several jobs on “Indies Under Fire,” in part because the way it came together.

“I was working in L.A. as an editor for most of the process, so I didn’t have time to chase financing or go after grants,” Bricca says. “But I kept at this because I thought it was a dynamic issue that was being played out all over the country. It became a real labor of love. As a result I directed it, edited it and acted as co-producer.”

Still, any film is a collaboration, and for this one, Bricca was able to call on some friends and family to help turn it into a reality. Among them: Jonathan Crosby, a long-time friend, co-produced the film. Josh Ferrar ’93, composed some of the film’s music and his guitar playing is featured on the soundtrack. Bricca’s wife, Lisa Molomot, visiting assistant professor of film studies, served as editorial consultant. His brother David created the film’s Web site, www.indiesunderfire.com, and his sister-in-law Morgan did the painting of Printers, Inc. that appears at the beginning of the film.

Released late in 2006, the movie won the award for “Best New England Film” at the Newberry Port Documentary Film Festival, was screened at the Wine Country Film Festival in Sonoma, and will be shown at the Santa Cruz film festival in April. It also recently made its PBS premier on KTEH in San Jose.

“This isn’t a monolithic film by any means,” Bricca says. “I tried to keep it balanced in its approach, but it does seem to generate some strong emotions with independent booksellers. It’s nice to get some recognition, but I really enjoy the fact that people are finally getting to see it. It was a lot of work. It’s nice to know it’s resonating with audiences.”
 

By David Pesci, director of Media Relations

New Freecycle List Allows Wesleyan Community to Exchange, Reuse Unwanted Items


Posted 03/02/07
A new Wesleyan program will facilitate the opportunity for one person’s trash to become another person’s treasure.

This month, the Wesleyan freecycle program is launching its own electronic mailing list. Staff, faculty and students are eligible to join the freecycle program.

Launched last May by the Wesleyan Recycling Committee with the appearance of the “PODS”, the Wesleyan freecycle program, encourages students, staff and faculty to exchange unwanted items, rather than throwing them away. Wesleyan’s program is part of the national freecycle movement where people give away things that they don’t need, or ask for items they do need.

“Anyone who joins the freecycle program will have the opportunity to exchange items that are still usable,” says William Nelligan, associate director of environmental health and safety and the Wesleyan recycling coordinator. “These items will be free and recycled, hence the name freecycle. If a student has a working TV in her dorm room that she no longer wants, she can post it on the list. Everyone on the list will get this posting, and if someone is interested, they can contact the student and make arrangements to pick it up. The best part is that the TV is going to be reused and not thrown away.”

Leslie Starr, assistant director and marketing manager at Wesleyan University Press, has previously donated unused reams of large-size paper from the Press’s office to another department that used them. She’s also asked for plastic filing tabs and within a week, two departments with extras donated them to her. This email list will make exchanges like this easier.

“It would be wonderful if everyone on the campus joined the new Wesleyan freecycle list, to exchange excess or needed office supplies, furniture and other work-related stuff,” Starr says. “We all have office supplies in the back of our closets that we’re not using. Why not see if another department can use them?”

Personal items can also be exchanged, including clothes, art supplies, cameras, text books, gardening supplies, kitchenware, curtains, even pets. All of them are eligible to be placed on the freecycle list.

“We all come together to the same place everyday, so it would be easy to exchange items,” Nelligan says. “Freecycle can be a nice community builder.”

To join the Wesleyan Freecycle list, e-mail lyris@lyris.wesleyan.edu with a blank subject and one line in the body: join freecycle. Lyris will reply back with a confirmation e-mail link needed to confirm the membership. Once confirmed, users can send messages through freecycle@wesleyan.edu and will receive all messages sent to that list.

“Basically, you can’t play Wesleyan Freecycle if you don’t sign up for the list,” Starr says. “And the list will work much better if lots of folks sign up!”
 

By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection Editor

Five to Receive Honorary Degrees at Commencement


Posted 03/02/07
Wesleyan’s 175th Commencement Ceremonies will be held on Sunday, May 27, and will complete the 2007 Reunion-Commencement Celebration that will run from May 24-27. During that ceremony, the following people will receive honorary degrees:

Jim Lehrer, P ’85, who will also give the principal address at commencement, will be awarded an honorary doctor of letters degree during the ceremony. Lehrer has anchored The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on the Public Broadcasting Service since 1995. Lehrer joined PBS in 1972, teaming with Robert MacNeil in 1973 to cover the Senate Watergate hearings. They began in 1975 what became The MacNeil/Lehrer Report, and, in 1983, The MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, the first 60-minute evening news program on television. Lehrer has been honored with numerous awards for journalism, including a presidential National Humanities Medal in 1999. In the last five presidential elections, he moderated 10 of the nationally televised candidate debates. Lehrer has written 15 novels, his latest, The Franklin Affair, published in April 2005. He also has written two memoirs and three plays. His daughter, Lucy Lehrer, is a member of Wesleyan’s Class of 1985.

Nobutaka Machimura, former Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, currently serves as a member of the Japanese House of Representatives representing Hokkaido 5th District. As foreign minister of Japan from September 2004 to October 2005, his efforts were directed toward signing a treaty with Russia resolving a border dispute and toward investigating the whereabouts of Japanese hostages who had been kidnapped by North Korean agents during the 1970s and 1980s. Educated in economics at the University of Tokyo, he attended Wesleyan for one year as an exchange student. His career in public service has included appointments to the Japanese Ministry of International Trade and Industry, the National Land Agency, the Japan External Trade Organization, and the Agency of Natural Resources and Energy (from which he retired as director of the planning division for petroleum). He also served as minister of Education, Science, Sports and Culture and director of the National Defense Division of the Policy Research Council. He has been elected to seven terms in the Japanese House of Representatives.

Alan M. Dachs ’70, P’98 serves as chair of the University’s Development Committee. He served 14 years as a member of the Wesleyan University Board of Trustees and eight years as Board chair. In that role, he led in fund-raising for the Wesleyan Campaign, as well as in strategic planning and in strengthening the University’s finances, operations and reputation for academic excellence. He was elected trustee emeritus and chair emeritus in 2005 upon his retirement from the Board. Dachs is president and CEO of Fremont Group, a private investment company based in San Francisco.

Rosa DeLauro was elected to Congress from Connecticut’s Third District in 1990 and is currently serving her ninth term. She sits on the House Appropriations and Budget committees. In addition to her work on the full committees, Representative DeLauro chairs the House Appropriations Subcomittee on Agriculture, which is responsible for funding the Food and Drug Administration and the Food Stamps program. She also sits on the Labor – Health, Human Services – Education and Commerce – Justice – Science Subcommittees. DeLauro has built a reputation as an advocate for economic development, healthcare and education. She has been a strong proponent for student aid, advocating such measures as increasing the size of Pell Grants in order to restore their purchasing power, allowing the consolidation of student loan debt and cutting interest rates to make student borrowing more affordable, and defending against cuts in programs that help to increase students’ access to college , such as Upward Bound and TRIO. A frequent visitor to Wesleyan’s campus and to Middletown, DeLauro has shown herself eager to meet and talk with faculty and students. She has strongly supported Wesleyan’s efforts to establish and fund the Green Street Arts Center. Since she first came to Congress in 1990, DeLauro has put every pay raise she has received toward a scholarship program she founded in memory of her late father. To date, her scholarships have helped 420 students further their educations.

Jewel Plummer Cobb is renowned as a teacher, a research biologist, and an advocate for the participation of women and members of minority groups in the sciences. A graduate of Talladega College, she earned her Ph.D. in cell physiology at New York University. Her scientific research has centered on factors influencing the growth, morphology, and genetic expression of normal and neoplastic pigment cells and on the changes produced in vitro by chemotherapeutic agents, by hormones, and by other agents known to disrupt cell division. She taught at NYU, Sarah Lawrence College, and Connecticut College before becoming dean of the college at Connecticut, then dean of Douglass College, and finally president of California State University at Fullerton. Currently president and professor of biological science, emerita, at Fullerton, Dr. Cobb continues to be active in promoting science education programs for minority youth and in promoting the greater representation of women in science. In 1993 the National Science Foundation honored her with a Lifetime Achievement Award for Contributions to the Advancement of Women and Underrepresented Minorities.

Assistant Professor Launches Radio Program on Indigenous Politics


Posted 03/02/07
A new WESU 88.1 FM radio program is gaining a nation-wide audience with its emphasis on indigenous politics.

The show, titled ”Indigenous Politics: From Native New England and Beyond,” was launched Feb. 5 from the Wesleyan-based radio station. J. Kehaulani Kauanui, assistant professor of anthropology and American Studies, is the producer and host of the program.

The multi-media program airs shortly after 5p.m., right after the “Jive at Five” community calendar, and runs until 6 p.m. each Monday with a live streaming Web cast on www.wesufm.org. ”Indigenous Politics” features interviews with political leaders, community activists, filmmakers and artists, and cultural authorities, as well as academic scholars whose work addresses cultural politics and sovereignty struggles.

Kauanui, a Native Hawaiian, says most guest speakers are indigenous or local to Connecticut and the New England area. She opens her show saying “We are here in Middletown, Connecticut, also known as Mattabessett—the traditional homeland of the Wangunk tribe.”

“I really want to privilege the voices of Native New England,” Kauanui says. “The show is also Native New England and beyond but, first and foremost, I think we need to educate local listeners of the struggle going on right here.”

Kauanui’s first show featured an in-depth interview with Suzan Shown Harjo, Cheyenne/Hodulgee Muscogee and a poet, writer and policy advocate who has helped Native peoples recover more than 1 million acres of land. The second program featured Richard Velky, leader of the Kent, Conn.-based Schaghticoke Tribal Nation since 1987, who discussed his tribe’s legal battle in response to the Bureau of Indian Affairs reversal of their federal acknowledgement after state officials intervened. The follow week, Kauanui interviewed Randolph Lewis, assistant professor of American Studies at the University of Oklahoma, who discussed his new book, Alanis Obomsawin: The Vision of a Native Filmmaker.

Kauanui hopes to include future shows on Hawaiians and the politics of federal recognition; Native feminisms; same-sex marriage bans in Indian country; indigenous environmental issues; U.S. militarism and indigenous peoples’ service; domestic violence and restorative justice; indigenous language revitalization; sports teams and Indian mascots; the U.S. presidential election and American Indian voters; indigenous peoples and the prison industrial complex; contemporary land rights; Indian gaming and the politics of casinos; and indigenous youth movements.

Ben Michael, WESU 88.1 general manager, expects Kauanui’s new show to be a national success. Already, WESU transmits to sections of Connecticut, Massachusetts and the Long Island area of New York. But, since the scope of Kauanui’s program is regional and national, Michael hopes to eventually syndicate it nationally through the station’s affiliation with Pacifica Radio. This would create a potential audience of millions of people.

“WESU has a mission to serve as a resource for underserved communities by providing access the radio airwaves for mass communication. Kehaulani’s program accomplishes this in an educational and professional format,” Michael says. “It’s very fulfilling to see WESU being utilized in such positive and effective manner. This is why community radio exists and is such an asset.”

Kauanui was tapped for the radio program by Ken Weiner, the station’s public affairs director. Like any other student or community volunteer wanting to be an on-air host, she took a six-week training course. In addition, she completed two internships and community service hours before taking a practical and written exam on the station.

Kauanui said she is motivated by several key issues affecting nations across the country, most notably the fact that many tribes do not have ”basic” federal recognition. Historically, she explains, recognition differed between state-recognized tribes from the original 13 colonies and the ‘treaty tribes’ in the Western states.

“More recently, the backlash against casino development has been instrumental in the opposition to federal recognition. The conflation of federal recognition with the specter of Indian casinos indicates that most non-tribal residents in these states refuse to uncouple questions of tribal economic development – a question of a nation’s political economy – and the social justice issue of honoring the U.S. trust doctrine,” Kauanui says.

The 21st century’s ”most notorious cases” involve two Connecticut tribes – the Eastern Pequot and Schaghticoke tribal nations, Kauanui says.

In addition to hosting the radio show, Kauanui is teaching two courses this year, “US in the Pacific Islands,” and “Methodologies in Ethnic Studies,” and is continuing her research on white settler colonialism and indigenous self-determination. She is currently co-editing a book with Andrea Smith, Native Feminisms: Without Apology, and embarking on two new book monograph projects: one on Native Hawaiian feminist decolonization and the other on Hawaiians in New England in the early 19th century. Her first book, Long Division: Genealogy, Hawaiian Blood Quantum, and the Question of Sovereignty is forthcoming from Duke University Press in 2007.

Her radio program has already had mentions in Hawaiian Independence Blog, Arizona Native Net, and Indian Country Today, an American Indian news source based in Canastota, N.Y.

Kalia Lydgate ‘07, Raffi Stern ’08, Liz Love `07, and Amelia Dean Walker ’07 help Kauanui produce the show.
 

By Olivia Drake, Wesleyan Connection editor. Segments of this article were adapted from a Feb. 19 article titled “Native Radio/Web Program Launched” by Indian Country Today writer Gale Courey Toensing.

Tuition to Increase by 5.5%, Fees Simplified


Posted 03/02/07
Wesleyan will increase tuition for the 2007-2008 academic year and simplify its fee structure. The new comprehensive fee structure will combine charges that are now billed separately as room and board.

Tuition will increase by 5.5 percent to $36,536 for all students in 2007-2008. For freshman and sophomores, the residential comprehensive fee will be $10,130. For juniors and seniors, the fee will be $11,512. The residential comprehensive fees are based on the current room and board charges experienced by students at these class levels, plus a fee increase of $590 and $550, respectively.

The increases in student charges are attributable to growth in salary and benefits costs, as well as energy and other costs that outpace general inflation. In addition, students voted this fall to increase the Wesleyan Student Assembly’s student activities budget, yielding an increase in the student activity fee to $270. Thus, next year student charges will total $46,936 for first-year students and sophomores and $48,318 for juniors and seniors.

The comprehensive residential fee will make it easier for families to budget by eliminating the variability in room and board rates. It will also enable the university to simplify recordkeeping and to increase grant aid to ensure that financial aid packages take full account of student expenses.

The higher residential comprehensive fee for juniors and seniors reflects the higher cost of the options available to them. Juniors and seniors have access to apartments and houses in addition to residence hall rooms. The university previously has charged a differential room rate according to the accommodation the student chose. In addition, juniors and seniors have greater flexibility in dining options, including the opportunity, in many cases, to cook for themselves. Students have reported to the administration that they value this progressive independence.

Wesleyan remains committed to meeting the full demonstrated financial need of every student. Simplifying the fee structure will enable the Financial Aid Office to ensure that students’ full need is met whatever their housing choices. Wesleyan will increase scholarship grants by $850,000 to cover this change.
 

By David Pesci, director of Media Relations

Library Assistant Oversees Wesleyan’s Music Collections


 
Jennifer Thom Hadley ’84, MA ‘86, library assistant for Scores & Recordings/World Music Archives, studied Javanese gamelan at Wesleyan.
 
Posted 03/02/07

Q: Jennifer, explain your role with Olin Library as the library assistant for Scores & Recordings/World Music Archives.

A: Currently my duties include helping to oversee access services for the department such as circulation, reserves, dubbing requests and stack maintenance; the processing and cataloging of new commercial scores and recordings for Scores & Recordings, original cataloging of World Music Archives materials; helping students, faculty and community members with research inquiries; and helping train and supervise about two dozen undergraduate and graduate student workers. I also serve on two library groups, the Library Technicians Group and the Library Management Team.

Q: When did you come to Wesleyan?

A: I actually first came to Wesleyan in 1980 as part of the class of ’84. I was hired in 1991 into a grant-funded position in the World Music Archives because of my ethnomusicology background in Javanese gamelan and experience working in the Archives as a graduate student. My role at that time was to help establish preservation and processing procedures in the Archives.

Q: Explain what the Scores & Recordings collection entails.

A: Scores & Recordings is commonly thought of as the music library. As you can tell from the name, the collection consists of scores, or printed music, and recordings. Books about music are considered part of the Olin Library collection and are housed in the central Olin stacks.

Q: And how does this differ from the World Music Archives?
 

A: The World Music Archives collection is part of Scores & Recordings. Whereas the general Scores & Recordings collection consists of published, commercially available material, the Archives recordings are non-commercial, often unique field recordings from around the world, and are valuable resources for music scholars.
 

Q: How do you preserve the collections’ materials?


A: We keep Archives originals and listening copies in an environmentally controlled storeroom in Scores & Recordings and preservation copies in the new compact storage area in the basement of the Science Library. Fifteen years ago, most of our originals were on reel-to-reel tape and cassette, and we dubbed all recordings onto reel-to-reel tape for preservation and made cassettes for listening. Currently, we make CD copies for listening and save sound files to hard disk. Some recordings, such as recent concert recordings, never have physical originals. They come to us as electronic sound files.


Q: How are Scores & Recordings and World Music Archives items accessed?


A: Scores & Recordings and World Music Archives items can be found through Caleb, the library catalog. Patrons can request that Archives recordings be retrieved from the store room during the day on weekdays and listen to them in-house in the Scores & Recordings listening rooms. Most scores are in open stacks and can be browsed and most can be charged out. The commercial recording collection includes compact discs, cassettes, and LPs. Compact discs can circulate outside of the library, but are housed in the Scores & Recordings office and need to be requested by call number from staff at the service window. Students can browse the cassette and LP collections, but only faculty, staff, and graduate students can charge them out. We are located on the third floor of Olin.


Q: What types of collections does Wesleyan own?

A: Wesleyan scores range from solo piano and instrumental music to chamber music to symphonies, operas and Broadway musicals, hymnals, song books, jazz standards, among others. Recordings range from classical to jazz to rock to sound effects but are particularly strong in world music. Important World Music Archive collections include Dr. David McAllester’s Navajo collection, one of the largest in the world; the only recordings in the United States of the “Ulahingan,” an epic of the Bagobo people in the Philippines; Iranian, Japanese, Spanish, Shetland Islands, Greek, Rhodesian — now Zimbabwe — mbira music, North Indian music; a Fats Waller collection; 30 years of performances from the Town Crier Café in Pawling, N.Y., and exceptional collections of Indonesian and South Indian, or Karnatak, music, which are two specialties of the World Music Program at Wesleyan.

Q: Who uses this collection?

A: We primarily serve the Wesleyan community, but outside researchers are welcome. We receive many inquiries from around the world; for example, a researcher in Thailand has worked with our Fats Waller collection.

Q: In 1986, you received a M.A. in world music from Wesleyan.

A: In my master’s thesis, “Learning Javanese Gamelan: A Cross-Cultural Experience,” I examined how music is learned in different cultures and across cultures. I’m actually an ABD – or all but dissertation status – in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan, but took a break to work and raise a family. Because my career has taken a library turn, I just started a fully online Master of Library and Information Science program through the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Q: What else is on your music resume? Do you play any instruments?

A: I got into music via my mother who insisted I study piano. My undergraduate degree focused on piano performance, but the amazing opportunities to listen to and play a wide variety of music from around the world at Wesleyan soon drew me into world music and ethnomusicology.

Q: What is your favorite genre of music?

A: I like listening to music of all kinds. I’m fortunate to get to listen to snippets of music during the day depending on the projects that I am working on.

Q: In addition to your job, you are on the Governing Board of the Friends of the Wesleyan Library. What is your role with this position and briefly explain who the Friends are?

A: The Friends of the Wesleyan Library is a community of readers dedicated to celebrating and enjoying books of all kinds from vellum bound manuscripts to paperbacks to the latest digital innovation. The Friends raise funds to support important library projects, such as the cataloging of “hidden” collections, those collections which are inaccessible because they have been waiting for funding for processing, and hosts two events a year to enrich the campus dialogue related to the book and other types of information.

Q: What do you enjoy most about working in Olin Library?

A: I appreciate the people at Wesleyan who care about the world and the community and pour their energy into making the world a better place. I also like the vibrancy of the intellectual and cultural offerings here—the opportunities to take classes, attend lectures and concerts, and participate in creative collaborations. My library colleagues are wonderful, warm, supportive, and fun, as well as intellectually stimulating.

Q: Who are the key people you work with in Scores & Recordings?

A: I work with Alec McLane, the music librarian, and Jody Cormack Viswanathan, another music library assistant. Both are talented musicians and have broad academic backgrounds in music and experience in music technology so it is great working as a team.

Q: Aside from music, what are your hobbies or interests?

A: I love reading when I get the chance, but most of my “free time” is devoted to Snow School PTO and Middletown High School PTA activities, and the church school at the Unitarian Universalist Church in Meriden. Some day I’ll get back to other hobbies.

Q: Tell me about your family.

A: My husband Peter, a multi-talented musician and Aussie by birth, is conductor of the Wesleyan Wind Ensemble, and is currently completing his dissertation at Wesleyan on the didjeridu, an Australian instrument. He also teaches at Thomas Edison Middle School in Meriden and for the Green Street Arts Center. We have three terrific children who keep us on our toes and make life extra interesting, Emma, Thomas and Sonya.

 

By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor

Director of Events Works Behind the Scenes


 
Deana Hutson, director of events, plans Reunion & Commencement Weekend year-round.
 
Posted 03/02/07
When it comes to hosting a successful Wesleyan event, it’s all in the details. And no one knows better about the minutiae than Deana Hutson.

From printing invitations and brochures to suggesting the appropriate venue to creating the ideal menu, Hutson is a master in perfection-planning.

Take Wesleyan’s Reunion and Commencement Weekend for example.

“We may have 150 different events happening over the weekend, and it can be a real challenge to make sure each event has a space, is staffed, has proper audio or visual equipment, has food or beverages if needed, tables have tablecloths, among other needs.” Hutson says.

One-time events often occur in-between the major events like reunion and homecoming. Hutson has event-planned ribbon-cuttings, retirement parties, ground breakings, volunteer weekends for alumni and parents, meetings and staff retreats.

In January, Hutson helped coordinate a special gala benefit in New York City with actor/comedian Bill Cosby P’87, HON ’87. More than 400 Wesleyan alumni, staff and guests attended, raising $2.5 million for Wesleyan scholarships.

“When we get to tackle new events like the Cosby gala benefit, it can be stressful because we have little idea of what to expect,” Hutson says. But they generally come out even better than we thought which brings me a huge sense of accomplishment and reward.”

Hutson has more than eight years experience planning Wesleyan events, beginning in 1998 as the assistant to the director of events and administration. Prior to this, she worked in event planning, marketing and operations for a trade show company where she planned events at the New York City marathon as well as electronics trade-related meetings and conferences.

Huston credits her event-planning success to her mentor, former director of events, Gemma Ebstein, assistant vice president for Alumni and Parent Relations.

“Deana is an incredible event manager and a terrific colleague,” Ebstein says. “She’s a dedicated team player, a creative problem-solver and an efficient project manager. We all sleep well before a big event because we know Deana has it under control.”

Small events come and go, but the events team has always looked forward to overseeing Reunion & Commencement Weekend, and Homecoming/Family Weekend. It is always the most time-consuming for Hutson and her events staff, which also consists of Makaela Kingsley ’98, associate director of events; Sarah Myksin ’06, assistant director of events; and Suzanne Kampen, administrative assistant of events.

The team has learned that one of the secrets to an event’s success is planning what could go wrong.

“Things do and will go wrong, and we need to prepare in advance so we can have the time to fix it,” she says. “Fortunately, I work with a wonderful team that helps make everything run smoothly.”

Hutson recalls a past Homecoming/Family Weekend where the nametag printer broke, leaving thousands of tags unfinished. Rather than ask these campus guests to sport hand-written tags throughout the weekend, Hutson and her team found a way to print tags and mailed them overnight, just in time for the event.

On another occasion, Public Safety called Hutson in the middle of the night, stating that an alumnus’s plane came in late and she needed a place to sleep that night. Although Wesleyan dormitories were booked ahead of time, Hutson found an empty room for the alumnus, and made sure she had a comfortable place to stay.

Other memorable challenges: the time a commencement brochure had a major spelling error and needed to be corrected at the last minute; a transportation van driver lost the keys to the vehicle and the keys could not be recovered until after the event was over; coffee makers have broken right before big events; days of torrential rain and during an unexpected storms. Hutson remembers the last one well. She and her staff went out to bought all the umbrellas they could find at a local retailer.

“Despite the inherent stress of event planning, Deana manages to remain cheerful even when faced with an onslaught of last minute requests,” Ebstein says.

“I love to solve problems and make people happy, and that is what makes this job so rewarding,” Hutson says. “When I’ve fixed a problem and see smiles on people’s faces, I feel successful and that is very gratifying.”

It’s difficult to pick a favorite, but Hutson looks forward to planning Homecoming/Family Weekend every year. Although it’s a 12-month job to prepare, Hutson says the event tends to get easier year after year.

“It’s a large event but with the adrenalin pumping, I can almost do it on auto-pilot,” she says, smiling.
 

By Olivia Drake, The Wesleyan Connection editor