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Category Archive for 'Campus News'

At its meeting on March 1, Wesleyan’s Board of Trustees voted to increase tuition and residential comprehensive fees by 2.2 percent for the 2014–15 year, reflecting the second year of a new policy to link tuition increases to inflation.

The increase is based on the three-year national CPI average of June 30, 2013, the latest full fiscal year available. The Board adopted a three-year average in order to reduce year-to-year fluctuations in tuition increases.

“We’re committed to keeping Wesleyan affordable for all our students,” said President Michael Roth. “We’re holding down our tuition increases, ensuring that our students graduate not burdened by heavy debt, and providing a generous financial aid program.”

To keep Wesleyan affordable, the university meets the full demonstrated need of all admitted students who receive financial aid. Need-based support represents a commitment of about $51 million in the university’s budget next year. Wesleyan also has instituted an optional three-year degree program, saving families around $50,000 on their total tuition bill while retaining Wesleyan’s core academic experience.

Raising funds for additional scholarships is the top priority for Wesleyan’s $400 million fundraising campaign. To date, Wesleyan has raised $331 million toward that goal.

For the 2014-15 academic year, tuition will be $47,702 for all students. The residential comprehensive fee will be $13,226 for freshmen and sophomores, and $15,034 for juniors and seniors. Including the student activity fee, the total student charges will be $61,198 for freshmen and sophomores, and $63,006 for juniors and seniors.

 

This story has been moved to: http://newsletter.blogs.wesleyan.edu/2014/03/03/mukerjicaseelection/

During an internship last summer, Shannon Welch '14 discovered that the State of Maryland never rescinded the 13th amendment.  Welch brought the oversight to the attention of the current Maryland State Legislature.

During an internship last summer, Shannon Welch ’14 discovered that the State of Maryland never rescinded the 13th amendment. Welch brought the oversight to the attention of the current Maryland State Legislature. (Photos by Olivia Drake)

Last summer, history and government major Shannon Welch ’14 was an intern at the National Archives in Washington, D.C. She was paging documents at the Center for Legislative Archives when she stumbled across a little known and disturbing proposed constitutional amendment on the books in her home state of Maryland.

“I came upon this 13th amendment that was making slavery institutionalized for the rest of time,” she said. “The federal government could never touch it. Then I found a document that Maryland had ratified it, and I was shocked. They let me keep researching, and I found out that Maryland had never rescinded this amendment, while other states had.”

The amendment had been ratified by the state’s general assembly on Jan. 10, 1862, not long after the start of the Civil War when the union was in a state of disarray. When the final version of the 13th amendment abolishing slavery was enacted in 1865, many had forgotten or were unaware of the obsolete, so-called “shadow” version, which stated:

No amendment shall be made to the Constitution which will authorize or give to Congress the power to abolish or interfere, within any State, with the domestic institutions thereof, including that of persons held to labor or service by the laws of said State.

Shannon Welch is writing a senior thesis on Native American conversions by Jesuit priests and puritan missionaries in Maine in the late 1600s.

Shannon Welch is writing a senior thesis on Native American conversions by Jesuit priests and puritan missionaries in Maine in the late 1600s.

“You had two countries with two separate congresses pretending like they’re representing (more…)

Pictured, from left: Marcin Przeciszewski, director of the Catholic Information Agency; Bishop Mieczysław Cisło, head of the Committee for the Dialogue with Judaism at the Episcopate of the Catholic Church in Poland; Magda Teter; Monica Adamczyk-Garbowska, professor of Jewish literature of the Maria Skłodowska-Curie University in Lublin; Michael Schudrich, chief Rabbi of Poland; Jan Grosfeld, professor of the Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw..

Pictured, from left: Marcin Przeciszewski, director of the Catholic Information Agency; Bishop Mieczysław Cisło, head of the Committee for the Dialogue with Judaism at the Episcopate of the Catholic Church in Poland; Magda Teter; Monica Adamczyk-Garbowska, professor of Jewish literature of the Maria Skłodowska-Curie University in Lublin; Michael Schudrich, chief Rabbi of Poland; Jan Grosfeld, professor of the Stefan Wyszyński University in Warsaw.

Historians will tell you that the past can often have a direct and profound effect on the present age. 

Take Magda Teter, for example. A scholarly probe into post-Reformation Europe recently led the professor of history and director of Jewish Studies at Wesleyan to an event that may have changed the course of Jewish and Christian relations in Poland.

“This is how scholars can sometimes play a role in getting people to talk to each other,” she said. “It didn’t start that way, but that was the good result.”

Sandomierz, a sleepy Renaissance town in southeast Poland, (now known in Europe as the backdrop for a popular TV show about a crime-solving priest) was for many years considered a locus of anti-Semitism. The reason: a painting in the city’s cathedral church depicting the “blood libel” of Jews murdering Christian children. One of a series commemorating Catholic martyrs, it had been for many years covered up; calls to have it removed met with opposition, but it was the source of intense controversy and a big problem for the local bishop.

In the course of researching a book she is currently writing,  Teter met with the Sandomierz bishop. They discussed what to do with the 18th-century painting, and how to bring the community together around a solution?

The result of that conversation was a 2013 symposium on the issue, partially sponsored by Wesleyan, that brought together scholars and clerics and led to the decision to unveil the painting, add explanatory signage and convene again. (more…)

Wesleyan’s Patricelli Center for Social Entrepreneurship announced the finalists for its 2014 PCSE Seed Grant Competition.

These $5,000 awards are intended to fund the launch or early stage growth of a Wesleyan-connected social enterprise, project, program or venture. Last year’s winners used the seed funding to launch a grant-funded community supported agriculture effort in Middletown, work with incarcerated youth in Chicago, advocate for farmers’ working conditions in Bali, and scale up the MINDS Foundation and Maji Safi Group, two Wesleyan-borne social enterprises.

This year’s finalists will pitch their projects at a public event from noon to 1 p.m. Feb. 28 in Exley Science Center Room 121. All members of the Wesleyan community are invited to attend.

BUKO-300x99The 2014 PCSE Seed Grant finalists are:

BOUNDLESS UPDATED KNOWLEDGE OFFLINE by Joaquin Benares ’15.
Boundless Updated Knowledge Offline (BUKO) aims to bring the video lectures, e-textbooks, and other online education tools to those who need them most.

FILMMAKERS TO CHANGEMAKERS by Victor Goh Jin Chieh ’16, Mia Deng ’17, Jacob Sussman ’17 and Hans How ’17.
Social enterprises maximize their social impact by publicizing their cause to increase awareness and attract donations and volunteers. Video marketing is a powerful tool that entrepreneurs, activists, and institutions should utilize; however, video production services are highly cost-prohibitive. We are a student-run film production company that seeks to address this problem by matching student filmmakers with clients that want to use video in their cause marketing strategy at an affordable rate. (more…)

The Wesleyan baseball team is looking to defend its Little Three crown this season. The first game is March 9 against Simpson College in Tucson, Ariz. The Cardinals return seven starting position players, as well as their top 10 pitching leaders in ERA.

The Wesleyan baseball team is looking to defend its Little Three crown this season. The first game is March 9 against Simpson College in Tucson, Ariz. The Cardinals return seven starting position players, as well as their top 10 pitching leaders in ERA.

The Wesleyan spring sports season gets off and running  March 1 when men’s and women’s lacrosse begin NESCAC play against Hamilton, the men on the road and the women at home. The men are coming off a 13-5, Little Three champion season with a wealth of talent returning, earning the squad the no. 16 spot in the USILA preseason Division III national poll. Women’s lacrosse will be looking to stake a claim in the always tough NESCAC under interim head coach Amanda Belichick as six opponent squads are ranked among the top 15 nationally in the preseason.

Women's lacrosse begins its season against Hamilton College March 1 at home.

Women’s lacrosse begins its season against Hamilton College March 1 at home.

Also looking to defend their Little Three crowns and return to NESCAC post-season play are the baseball and softball squads. Each will inaugurate their season with a trip to warmer climates, the baseball squad in Arizona and California starting March 9, and softball in Florida March 12.

Men’s and women’s crew and tennis also will be in Florida in preparation for the 2014 season. Tennis will play five matches down South after opening the season March 8 against NESCAC rival Hamilton. The indoor matches will be played at home.

Track and field will celebrate therefurbished Andersen Track by hosting three outdoor meets in the opening four weeks, the first on March 22.  The golf team also will have a handful of matches to close out its 2013-14 action, including the annual Little Three competition.

In addition, Wesleyan will serve as host of the 2014 NCAA Northeast Regional Wrestling Tournament on March 1-2. This is the third time in the last nine years that Wesleyan has hosted a wrestling regional for qualification to the NCAA Championships.

The wrestling tournament will be held in Bacon Field House March 1-2.

The wrestling tournament will be held in Bacon Field House March 1-2.

With the revamped NCAA format, six regionals are held across the country with the top three finishers in each of the 10 weight classes advancing to the NCAA Championships, this year to be held in Cedar Rapids, Iowa  March 14-15.

The tournament will be held in Bacon Field House with competition starting at 11 a.m. Saturday and at 10 a.m on Sunday.  The qualifying matches for the NCAA to decide the top three places will begin at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday.  Ticket prices are $10 for adults each day and $5 for children and students with IDs.  Live results of the matches will be logged through TrackWrestling.com.

Check out the spring schedules: Chronological  -  Sport-by-Sport

Wesleyan students and alumni are invited to a networking and relationship building opportunity, Connect@Wes, held Feb. 28 and March 1 on campus. Events held throughout the weekend are designed to help with career advancement.

Events begin with “Creating Connections,” a hands-on opportunity for students to practice presenting themselves as professionals through structured speed-networking. Students will apply to participate and will be matched with expert advisors (recruiters and hiring managers as well as alumni and parent volunteers) for brief, one-on-one sessions. Expert advisors will use their experience and expertise to critique what they have heard and give valuable insight on how the presentation might have been more effective. Students must apply for this opportunity.

Other events include a dinner with Wesleyan’s Board of Trustees, workshops on “Create Your Career Calling Card,” “Get the Most Out of Your Workplace,” and “Be Ready to Move Up, Or Out.” Featured speakers include Ed Heffernan ’84, CEO and President of Alliance Data; Jim Citrin P’12 ’14, senior director at Spencer Stuart and Associates; and Bradley Whitford ’81, Emmy award-winning actor and advocate for Clothes Off Our Back Foundation.

Connect@Wes is sponsored by University Relations and the Career Center and is designed to help current students and alumni build relationships with other members of the Wesleyan community and receive advice from an array of experts.

The event is free, but requires registration. For more information, click here.

The Davison Health Center has seven doses of flu vaccine available for faculty and staff. If you need a flu shot, call 860-685-2470 and make an appointment.

Prospective biology major Tessa Bellone '16 recently completed the course "Applied Data Analysis" during Wesleyan's Winter Session.

Prospective biology major Tessa Bellone ’16 took the course “Applied Data Analysis” during Wesleyan’s Winter Session. (Photos by Olivia Drake)

This month, more than 40 Wesleyan students completed a semester-long class in less than two weeks.

As part of Wesleyan’s first Winter Session, held Jan. 8-21, students took advantage of a quieter campus and a long winter break to focus intensively on just one course.

“During Winter Session, students can connect more closely not just with the topics they’re studying, but also with their instructor and classmates,” said Jennifer Curran, interim director of Continuing Studies.

Students completed reading and writing assignments before classes began on Jan. 8.

Students completed reading and writing assignments before classes began on Jan. 8.

During this pilot session, Wesleyan offered four courses: “Introduction to Computer Programming,” taught by James Lipton, associate professor of computer science; “U.S. Foreign Policy,” taught by Doug Foyle, associate professor of government; “Applied Data Analysis,” taught by Lisa Dierker, professor of psychology; and “Graphic Novel,” taught by visiting faculty Will Eggers.

On Jan. 16, Winter Session student Tessa Bellone ’16 worked on her own research project - analyzing an association between a country’s income per capita and carbon dioxide emissions. The prospective biology major enrolled in Dierker’s “Applied Data Analysis” to learn more about statistical software.

“Having the ability to analyze data and understand statistical software is really important in a lot of fields, and it will definitely come in handy since I hope to do research in a biology lab while at Wesleyan and maybe beyond,” she said. “The class is pretty intensive, but class size also is really small, so the setting is intimate and there is a lot of personal interaction with the professor. I would definitely consider taking another Winter Session course next year.”

The small classes met for five hours each day over the course of eight days, allowing students to complete a full-semester course in only two weeks.

During the winter recess, Wesleyan’s Career Center also hosted Winter on Wyllys, a variety of career-related initiatives. Career Center staff presented two concurrent, week-long intensive programs: CareerLab for those preparing to enter the job market, and Choosing Good Work for those students trying to make sense of their options and personal goals. The Career Center, with Alumni and Parent Relations, offered a WEShadow Externship Program and alumni speaker series.

And, for the first time, Wesleyan offered Fullbridge Internship Edge, which provides intensive training on business fundamentals.

More photos of Wesleyan’s Winter Session and Winter on Wyllys are below:

Lisa Dierker, professor of psychology, taught "Applied Data Analysis."

Lisa Dierker, professor of psychology, taught “Applied Data Analysis.”

Associate Professor of Computer Science James Lipton taught “Introduction to Computer Programming." He also teaches the class during Wesleyan's Summer Session.

Associate Professor of Computer Science James Lipton taught “Introduction to Computer Programming.” He also teaches the class during Wesleyan’s Summer Session.

(more…)

White House (1)

President Barack Obama addresses higher education leaders, including President Michael Roth, at the White House.

Wesleyan President Michael Roth joined  leaders from 100 universities and colleges and 40 nonprofit groups at the White House on Jan. 16, to discuss how to promote greater access to higher education.

The event is part of an Obama administration initiative to help more students afford and graduate from college. The institutions represented at the event have all made commitments to programs that would increase access to students from historically underserved communities.

“At the summit,  I learned that ninety percent of low-income people who get their BA will move out of poverty,” Roth said. “Access to education truly has an effect on inequality.”
He said that several discussions at the education summit revolved around college readiness, which he described as a critical piece of access.
“That means better K-12 systems,” Roth said. “But also, how can universities help with readiness? Universities should work closely with their local school districts.
“We do a lot (at Wesleyan), working with McDonough, with Green Street. Wesleyan has  lots and lots of people, faculty, students and staff, working with local schools, ” he said. “I’m wondering whether we couldn’t better coordinate our efforts to really have an impact on college readiness right in this area.”
 
To support the initiative,  Wesleyan has:
  • Committed to increasing the number of QuestBridge scholars on campus. QuestBridge recruits low-income and first-generation college students, who receive full scholarships.
  • Committed to expand efforts to retain students from under-represented groups in STEM fields. These efforts include a new summer bridge program that would increase students’ success in STEM fields.
  • *Partnered with the Posse Foundation to admit 10 military veterans each year. On Jan. 14, President Roth celebrated with the first “posse” admitted; they’ll join the Class of 2018 in September.

Read the White House document on the event, which includes sections on each participating institution, here

 

In 2013, Wesleyan President Michael Roth, pictured third from left, presented Wesleyan faculty Jeanine Basinger, Erik Grimmer-Solem and Phillip Wagoner with Binswanger Prizes for Excellence in Teaching.

In 2013, Wesleyan President Michael Roth, pictured third from left, presented Wesleyan faculty Jeanine Basinger, Erik Grimmer-Solem and Phillip Wagoner with Binswanger Prizes for Excellence in Teaching.

Which professor has made the biggest impact on your Wesleyan education?

If you’re a junior, senior, graduate student or Graduate of the Last Decade (GOLD), then you’re eligible to nominate your favorite faculty member for the prestigious Binswanger Prize for Excellence in Teaching honor.

The Binswanger Prize was inaugurated in 1993 as an institutional recognition of outstanding faculty members. These prizes, made possible by gifts from the family of the late Frank G. Binswanger Sr., HON ’85, underscore Wesleyan’s commitment to its scholar-teachers, who are responsible for the university’s distinctive approach to liberal arts education. Prize winners are announced at Commencement and each recipient receives a citation and monetary prize made possible by the generosity of the Binswanger family.

Current faculty who have taught at Wesleyan for at least 10 years are eligible. Previous recipients are excluded for a period of 12 years after which they become eligible once again.

The criteria for selecting the recipients is excellence in teaching, as exemplified by commitment to the classroom and student accomplishment, intellectual demands placed on students, lucidity and passion. Recommendations may be based on any of the types of teaching that are done at the university including, but not limited to, teaching in lecture courses, seminars, laboratories, creative and performance-based courses, research tutorials and other individual and group tutorials at the undergraduate and graduate level.

You are invited to nominate faculty until Feb. 7. To see a list of all eligible faculty, see this link. To make a nomination, log into Wesconnect.

Recipients are chosen by a selection committee of faculty, emeriti, and members of the Alumni Association Executive Committee.

To learn more about recent Binswanger recipients, see these past Wesleyan Connection articles.

For more information e-mail alumni@wesleyan.edu.

 

Wesleyan's student-owned radio station, 88.1 FM WESU was founded in 1939. It celebrates 75 years of broadcasting in 2014.

Wesleyan’s student-owned radio station, 88.1 FM WESU was founded in 1939. It celebrates 75 years of broadcasting in 2014.

For 75 years, 88.1 FM WESU has provided a platform for the enjoyment of underground music and under-represented genres generally absent from commercial airwaves.

The year 2014 will mark WESU’s 75th Anniversary, and “we’ve got a metric boatload of events and special programming to celebrate,” said DJ “Cheshire Cat” Bryan Skowera ’99. ”Rather than air just our selections, we want our listeners and friends to contribute to our playlist by helping us pick the songs.”

This month, WESU is broadcasting “75 Years of Socially Conscious Music,” a program that features listener and staff suggestions that reflect both socially conscious music and WESU’s 75-year-old commitment to free form radio. Socially conscious music includes protest music, songs that call attention to injustice and songs that rail against inequality.

February will feature “75 Years of Lyrics Beyond the English Language,” and the station is seeking input on favorite recordings whose lyrics are in a language other than English, regardless of genre. Make a song suggestion here.

March’s theme will be “75 Years of Female Artists” in honor of Women’s History Month. Make a song suggestion here.

In addition to the “75 Years of…” series, WESU plans to offer physical and virtual exhibits of WESU artifacts and audio, and launch a capital campaign fueled by a series of live fundraising concerts and events. This campaign, according to WESU General Manager Ben Michael, will fund necessary station upgrades such as installing a back-up power system and replacement of the station’s 25-year-old mixing boards. Members of the station also hope to produce a film project that documents the history and significance of WESU.

WESU radio, founded in 1939, was named the Hartford Advocate’s “Best College Radio Station” in 2013. Vote for WESU again here, or make a pledge online here.

 

 

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