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Farrar Selects, Monitors Investment Managers to Support Wesleyan’s Endowment

Jonathan Farrar

Jonathan Farrar

In this issue of News @ Wesleyan, we speak with Jonathan Farrar, a senior investment associate in the Wesleyan Investments Office.

Q: Jonathan, when did you join the staff at Wesleyan’s Investments Office?

A: I joined the investments office in mid-October 2014, though in most appropriate fashion (as you’ll soon discover) my first day on the job was actually on the road in San Francisco with Anne Martin, our Chief Investment Officer. I seized the opportunity to tag along since she was seeing some of our existing investment managers as well as a few that I have invested with in the past. I moved my family up on Halloween day just in time for my oldest, Jay, to throw on his elephant costume and go trick or treating in his new neighborhood.

Q: The Investments Office offers guidance and makes recommendations to the Investment Committee in the ongoing management, evaluation and growth of the University’s Endowment. What is the Wesleyan Investment Committee? Who are members?

A: The Wesleyan Board of Trustees is the primary fiduciary of the University’s endowment with the ultimate responsibility for how these assets are invested. The Board fulfills that responsibility by establishing policies governing its management, delegating appropriate responsibilities to the Investment Committee, and taking reasonable steps to verify that the Board’s policies are being adhered to. The Investment Committee is responsible for a number of things, including setting asset allocation, overseeing the work of the investments staff, and making recommendations to the Board for adjustments to the endowment’s investment policy.

Staff on the Move, April and May 2015

The Office of Human Resources reported the following new hires, transitions and departures for April and May 2015:

Newly hired

Kyle Archer was hired as an assistant football coach, quarterbacks and passing game on April 1.

Brendan Plake was hired as a desktop support specialist on April 6.

Kyle Tousignant was hired as a desktop systems engineer on April 8.

Daniel Mercier was hired as an instructional design director on April 20.

Laurie Kenney was hired as an editor/writer on April 20.

Jeff Murphy was hired as a facilities business manager on May 4.

Stacey Cuppett was hired as a public safety dispatcher on May 18.

Charlotte Freeland was hired as a research assistant/lab coordinator on May 18.

Transitions

Kevin Webster was hired as an electrical shop working foreperson on April 20.

Meg Zocco was hired as the director of parent development on April 27.

Mary Ann Matthews was hired as a public safety dispatcher on May 18.

Departures

Joe Filanda, locksmith.

John Gudvangen, director of financial aid.

Mario Velasquez, facilities manager.

Michele Matera, office assistant.

Adam Fischer, research assistant/lab coordinator.

Morgan Hamill, Unix systems administrator.

Janani Iyer, research assistant/lab coordinator.

Daniel LaBonte, area coordinator.

Peter Staye, director of utilities management.

Wimer ’19 Raises $2,175 in “Swim for Nepal” Fundraising Event

On May 29, pre-frosh Max Wimer ’19 swam laps for 60 minutes to raise money for children affected by the April 25 Nepal magnitude-7.8 earthquake that killed more than 8,000 people and injured an additional 23,000. The event, titled “Swim for Nepal,” was part of the Save the Children Fund non-profit group that promotes children’s rights, provides relief and helps support children in developing countries. More than $37,000 was donated, with Wimer as one of the fundraisers, collecting $2,175.

This is not the first charity event for Wimer, who organized and swam in the 2013 “Swim for the Philippines” event. On Oct. 15, 2013, a magnitude-7.2 earthquake struck the Philippines, and relief efforts were disrupted three weeks later by Super Typhoon Haiyan. This event raised more than $43,000 for children afflicted by these two events.

Read more about the charity event here.

9 Faculty Retire in 2014-15

Nine members of the Wesleyan faculty retired during the 2014-15 academic year.

They include John Carr III, professor of theater (1984-2014); James Donady, professor of biology (1972-2015); Richard Elphick, professor of history (1971-2015); Brian Fay, the William Griffin Professor of Philosophy (1971-2015); Gale Lackey, adjunct professor of physical education (1978-2015); Laurie Nussdorfer, the William Armstrong Professor of History (1986-2015); George Petersson, the Fisk Professor of Natural Science (1973-2015); Vera Schwarcz, the Mansfield Freeman Professor of East Asian Studies (1975-2015); and Ann Wightman, professor of history (1981-2014).

On May 23, the faculty gathered for a reception. Several faculty also held their own private celebrations.

Brian Fay, who joined the Wesleyan faculty in 1971 as an assistant professor of philosophy, was recognized at a reception on May 23. (Photo by Hannah Norman '16)

Brian Fay, who joined the Wesleyan faculty in 1971 as an assistant professor of philosophy, was recognized at a reception on May 23. (Photo by Hannah Norman ’16)

Yin ’15 Repeats First-Team Academic All-American Honor

Andrew Yin '15

Andrew Yin ’15

Baseball player Andrew Yin ’15, who helped Wesleyan win two straight NESCAC titles, along with a perfect 12-0 conference record in 2015, was recently named a CoSIDA/Capital One First-Team Academic All-American for the second straight year. He is the only player among the 33 honorees on the three national teams in 2015 to repeat as a first-team choice.

Yin also is the only player among those cited to be a three-time Academic All-American. In 2013, Yin, then a sophomore, made his first appearance as an Academic All-America third-team selection. Sophomores are rare on the squad as only one of the 33 players in 2015 is a sophomore, also a third-teamer. Yin is the only Wesleyan player in any sport to be named an Academic All-American more than once, and is the fifth Cardinal baseball player since 1972 to grace the list.

Yin started 38 of 41 games at second base during Wesleyan’s banner 2015 campaign as the Cardinals posted an overall record of 30-11, just the third 30-win campaign in program history. The 2014 Cardinals set the record for wins in a season, going 31-13. Yin hit .309 with 43 hits in 139 at-bats in 2015. He led the Cardinals in walks with 21 and stolen bases, going 17-for-21. His 32 runs scored were second-highest on the team. He knocked in nine runs, had seven doubles and fielded at a crisp .957 mark. He ended his career on a 10-game hitting streak. Three of his doubles came in one game and keyed Wesleyan to its 4-3, 12-inning victory over Amherst in the NESCAC title game May 10. Yin doubled and scored in both the 5th and 7th innings, then doubled in the 9th inning to drive in the tying run. Wesleyan won the game on Guy Davidson’s (’16) 12-inning solo homer.

Yin is the only Wesleyan player in any sport to be named an Academic All-American more than once,

Andrew Yin is the only Wesleyan player in any sport to be named an Academic All-American more than once.

Davidson was among six Cardinals named all-NESCAC in 2015 as he joined pitcher Sam Elias ’15, also named Pitcher of the Year, and first-baseman Sam Goodwin-Boyd ’15 on the first team. Named to the second team were center fielder Donnie Cimino ’15 and pitchers Nick Cooney ’15 and Gavin Pittore ’16.

Yin was a first-team all-NESCAC choice in 2013 as well as second-team all-ECAC New England Division III.

Yin also was the recipient of Wesleyan’s Roger Maynard Award, given to the top senior male scholar-athlete at the university. Yin, who graduated May 24 with degrees in chemistry, molecular biology and biochemistry, and neuroscience and behavior, held a cumulative GPA of 4.01.

Read more here.

Carr ’15 Explores Concept of “Little” in Children’s Literature

Siri Carr ’15 explored the concept of "little" in children's literature in her thesis, "Little Do We Know: Conceptualizing the 'Little' in Children’s Literature."

Siri Carr ’15 explored the concept of “little” in children’s literature in her thesis, “Little Do We Know: Conceptualizing the ‘Little’ in Children’s Literature.”

#THISISWHY

In this issue of News @ Wesleyan, we speak with Siri Carr ’15, who double majored in the College of Letters and Hispanic Literatures and Cultures. Carr’s thesis, Little Do We Know: Conceptualizing the “Little” in Children’s Literature, explores the concept of the “little” in children’s literature. The thesis was submitted for honors in the College of Letters.

Quiara Alegria Hudes Is a Bright New Voice in Theater

Nationally recognized playwright Quiara Alegria Hudes teaches playwriting at Wesleyan to beginning and advanced writers. (Photo by John Van Vlack)

Nationally recognized playwright Quiara Alegria Hudes teaches playwriting at Wesleyan to beginning and advanced writers. (Photo by John Van Vlack)

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Quiara Alegría Hudes was featured on the cover of the new Wesleyan magazine.

Hudes is currently the Shapiro Distinguished Professor of Writing and Theater, and teaches playwriting to both beginning and advanced writers at Wesleyan. Her plays include 26 Miles, Yemaya’s Belly, the children’s musical Barrio Grrrl!, and the acclaimed Elliot Trilogy, named after a recurrent character who served as a Marine and is based on the author’s cousin. The first in the trilogy, Elliot, A Soldier’s Fugue, was a 2007 Pulitzer Prize finalist, while the second installment, Water by the Spoonful, was awarded the 2012 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Hudes also wrote the Tony Award-nominated book for In the Heights, which won the Tony Award for Best Musical (with a score by Lin-Manuel Miranda ’02 and directed by Thomas Kail ’99) and was also a Pulitzer Prize finalist.

She spoke to the Wesleyan magazine about how her diverse family, roots in Philadelphia, and musical background have inspired her creative work.

“I always wrote,” she says. “It was just one of the ways I grew up playing—kids play around by picking up stories; it’s one of our natural instincts. My dad would teach me how to hit a whiffle ball, and then I would write poems. By high school, I was writing plays and writing for the literary magazine and for the weekly newspaper. It wasn’t until my mid-20s that I had the notion that it would be something I would pursue in earnest to earn a living. But once I had that notion, it seemed quite natural because I had been doing it all of my life.”

Read the full feature story here.

Chong ’18 Claims NCAA Division III Tennis Title

Eudice Chong '18 with Head Coach Mike Fried on the courts of the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio moments after capturing the 2015 NCAA Division III women's tennis singles title. (Photo courtesy of Ohio Northern U.)

Eudice Chong ’18 is pictured here with Head Coach Mike Fried on the courts of the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio moments after capturing the 2015 NCAA Division III women’s tennis singles title. (Photo courtesy of Ohio Northern U.)

Eudice Chong ’18 claimed the first-ever NCAA Division III tennis title for the Cardinals in a thrilling 6-4, 4-6, 7-5 victory in the title match of the NCAA Division III women’s tennis singles championship in Mason, Ohio on May 23.

Named the NESCAC Player and Rookie of the Year, as well as the ITA Division III Rookie of the Year, Chong completed the 2014-15 campaign undefeated in singles play (22-0), dropping just two sets all season, both of them 4-6 to Joulia Likhanskaia of Bowdoin, whom she played for the third time this year in the NCAA finals.

Chong also earned All-America honors in doubles this spring as she teamed with Helen Klass-Warch ’18 to reach the NCAA Division III doubles quarterfinals, losing a three-set match to the top-seeded pair from Claremont-Mudd-Scripps. The Cardinal tandem amassed a 20-4 record at No. 1 doubles this year.

Koplin-Green ’15 Studied Alpha Neurofeedback to Treat Anxiety

Matan Koplin-Green '15 wrote a thesis at the intersection of his interests in neuroscience, technology and music. (Photo by Laurie Kenney)

Matan Koplin-Green ’15 wrote a thesis at the intersection of his interests in neuroscience, technology and music. (Photo by Laurie Kenney)

#THISISWHY
In this issue of News @ Wesleyan, we speak with Matan Koplin-Green from the Class of 2015.

Q: Matan, what is your major and what was the title of your thesis?

A: I’m a neuroscience and behavior major. I wrote my thesis on “Application of Alpha Neurofeedback in the Treatment of Anxiety Disorders.”

Q: Let’s back up. How did your interest in neuroscience and behavior develop?

A: I came to Wesleyan not knowing exactly what I wanted to study. I was interested in cognitive psychology and philosophy of mind, but also had a lifelong love of music. I took a year off between high school and college to play in a band in my hometown of Milwaukee, Wis., and read a lot about cognitive psychology. Once at Wesleyan, I took classes ranging from computer science to experimental music, but I was also very interested in being part of the fast-growing neuroscience major. Then in 2013, Psyche Loui (assistant professor of psychology, assistant professor of neuroscience and behavior) came to Wesleyan. I took her intro class and discovered that she teaches at the intersection of all my interests—neuroscience, technology and music. I decided I had to get involved. I applied to be in her lab, and was accepted.

Jung ’15 Employs Oral History to Study WWII Memories

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Hyo Jeong (Tina) Jung ’15 interviewed more than 40 Korean and Japanese elders for her thesis, “Conversation of Empathy: Understanding Children’s Lives During World War II in Korea and Japan through Oral History.” (Photo by Laurie Kenney)

#THISISWHY

In this News @ Wesleyan story, we speak with Hyo Jeong (Tina) Jung from the Class of 2015. She is a history major with concentrations in social movements and contemporary history, and an East Asian studies minor.

Graduate Student Factor Studies Planet Formation Around a Young Star

Sam Factor, a graduate student in astronomy, at the Submillimeter Array, located on Mauna Kea in Hawai'i in March 2015.

Sam Factor, a graduate student in astronomy, at the Submillimeter Array, located on Mauna Kea in Hawai’i in March 2015.

#THISISWHY
In this News @ Wesleyan story, we speak with Sam Factor ’14, a graduate student in astronomy.

Q: Sam, congratulations on completing your master’s thesis in astronomy! We understand you took your first astronomy class in the fall of your senior year at Wesleyan. What was your undergraduate major and how did your late-developing interest in astronomy come about?

A: Thank you very much! As an undergrad, I majored in physics and computer science. During the fall of my senior year I took Introductory Astronomy (ASTR 155). I signed up for the course mainly because I wanted an interesting and relatively easy course to fill out my schedule. I had been interested in astronomy since I was very young, but had never taken a formal class. I absolutely loved the class and decided to apply to the BA/MA program.

Q: How and when did you decide to stay on at Wesleyan to pursue a master’s degree in astronomy?

A: I actually decided to apply to the BA/MA program only a few weeks before the application was due!