Tag Archive for alumni

Weaver MALS ’75, CAS ’76 Discusses Ways Science, Entertainment, Education Overlap

On June 22, Christopher Weaver MALS'75 CAS '76 presented a seminar titled "Amplius Ludo: Beyond the Horizon" to interested students and faculty at Exley Science Center. Weaver is an author, software developer, scientist and educator. He is the founder and CEO of Bethesda Softworks, where he co-developed wildly popular games, including The Elder Scrolls role-playing series and John Madden Football for Electronic Arts.

On June 22, Christopher Weaver MALS ’75, CAS ’76 presented a seminar titled “Amplius Ludo: Beyond the Horizon” to interested students and faculty at Exley Science Center. Weaver is an author, software developer, scientist and educator. He is the founder and CEO of Bethesda Softworks, where he co-developed wildly popular games, including The Elder Scrolls role-playing series and John Madden Football for Electronic Arts. Success in these ventures has required Weaver to bring together elements of computer science, design, and storytelling. As a result, he is an expert in the special niche where science, entertainment, and education overlap.

Jody Sperling ’92 Performing ‘Dancing in the Arctic’ in NYC, June 20-21

Choreographer Jody Sperling '92 traveled to the Arctic Ocean to create her dance pieces on climate change. (Photo by Pierre Coupel)

Choreographer Jody Sperling ’92 traveled to the Arctic Ocean to create her dance pieces on climate change. (Photo by Pierre Coupel)

Jody Sperling ’92 will present a dance performance, Bringing the Arctic Home, at the JCC in Manhattan on June 20-21. The event includes the premier of Ice Cycle, a collaboration with Alaskan-born composer Matthew Burtner, a specialist in the music of snow and ice. The weekend features three performances, a kids’ workshop, and two climate-themed panel discussions.

Tickets and more information are available here. See the Bulletin at Wesconnect for Sperling’s posting about this event, and to get her special discount code for the Wesleyan community.

Read more about Sperling in this story in the Wesleyan magazine.

Alumni, Parents Host Summer Sendoffs for Students Around the Globe

Students at a sendoff in Washington, D.C. in July 2014.

Students at a sendoff in Washington, D.C. in July 2014.

Alumni, students, their families, faculty and staff are invited to attend Wesleyan’s Summer Sendoff gatherings, happening around the globe throughout the summer. Generously hosted by alumni and parents, these casual receptions are the perfect opportunity to welcome Wesleyan’s newest students and their families to the community.

Sendoffs will be held in the following locations this summer: Washington, D.C., June 25; Denver, July 14; Chicago, July 19; San Francisco, July 19; Beijing, July 26; Mamaroneck, N.Y., July 30; Seattle, Aug. 1; Seoul, Aug. 1; West Hartford, Conn., Aug. 4; Boston, Aug. 6; Atlanta, Ga., Aug. 11; Nashville, Tenn., Aug. 13; New York City, Aug. 18; Philadelphia, Aug. 20; and Los Angeles, date to be determined.

For more information, including registration, visit the Summer Sendoff website.

Watch a video about Summer Sendoffs here, and see a photo album of 2014 Summer Sendoffs here.

Donna Morea is Chair-elect of the Board of Trustees

Donna Morea '76, P'06

Donna Morea ’76, P’06

Wesleyan University’s Board of Trustees has elected Donna Morea ’76, P’06 as Chair of the Board for a two-year term beginning July 1, 2016. The election took place at the Board’s meeting on campus May 22.

Morea will succeed Joshua Boger ’73, P’06, P’09, who will step down in June 2016 after 7 years as Chair.

“The Board asked Joshua to continue his leadership through the conclusion of the capital campaign and he has graciously agreed,” said Shonni Silverberg ’76, chair of the Board’s Governance Committee. “He and his fellow Board members felt it would be advantageous to elect his successor now for a transition year as Board Chair-elect.

“Donna brings to her role as Board Chair extensive experience in managing complex organizations, combined with considerable financial savvy and a warm and engaging style,” Silverberg added.

Morea is an internationally recognized executive in the IT services and software communities. She is currently the CEO of Adesso Group, a private consulting and advisory firm, helping businesses develop growth strategies and improve operational performance. She also serves as an independent director of SunTrust Bank (NYSE:STI) and SAIC (NYSE:SAIC).

In 2011, she retired from a successful 31-year career at American Management Systems (AMS) and CGI. As President of CGI Technologies and Solutions, she led CGI’s business in the US, Europe and Asia-Pacific. Her clients included some of the world’s largest and most complex organizations in government, healthcare, financial services, and telecommunications.

Active in community service, she serves as a director of Share Our Strength, a global anti-hunger organization, and as a trustee of the Inova Health System, the largest health care provider in Northern Virginia. She is a chairman emeritus of the Northern Virginia Technology Council, serving more than 1,000 member companies.

Her service on Wesleyan’s Board has included chairing the Finance and University Relations committees. She received a Distinguished Alumna Award from Wesleyan in 2006.

Mentors Share Experience with Female Student-Athletes

#THISISWHY

On April 17,  more than 30 alumni, parents and community members and 80 student-athletes participated in an Alumni Athletics Mentoring Workshop in Beckham Hall. As part of the program, mentors met with female student-athletes to speak about career options.

Student-athlete Melissa Leung ’16 has first-hand knowledge of the workshop’s value. “At last year’s event, I met my mentor, Clare Colton ’12,” says Leung, who attended the event for the second year in a row. “Clare provided resume and email etiquette advice and connected me with Jim Citrin (P’12 P’14), senior director of Spencer Stuart, who created an internship position for me with Spencer Stuart in Shanghai last semester, during my semester abroad.”

(Photos by Dat Vu ’15.)

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Former Wesleyan field hockey and lacrosse player Suzi Byers ’94 shares her experience with Rosemary Martin ’16 at the mentoring event.

Basinger, Arnold ’91 Talk About Classic Movies on TCM

Jeanine Basinger, the Corwin-Fuller Professor of Film Studies, and Jeremy Arnold ’91 will hold a public talk on “Films and Facts: Whose Responsibility?” at 12:30 p.m. March 27 at the Turner Classic Movies (TCM) Classic Film Festival. The schedule of the film festival can be found here.

Hollywood’s alleged disregard for the facts of history is year after year the subject of heated media debate. From the early days of the silent era to this year’s Oscar race, charges of historical inaccuracy have fueled great conversations about factual reproduction, creative license, propaganda and audience responsibility. Jeanine Basinger and Jeremy Arnold will continue the tradition by discussing the fascinating question of whether Hollywood films have a responsibility to history or storytelling.

Arnold, who holds a BA in film studies, is the author of Lawrence of Arabia: The 50th Anniversary, a coffee table book published by Sony and included in their 2012 Blu-ray release of Lawrence of Arabia. The book and Blu-ray can be found here.

Held over four days in the heart of Hollywood, the TCM Classic Film Festival is a place where movie lovers from around the world can gather to experience classic movies as they were meant to be experienced: on the big screen, in some of the world’s most iconic venues, with the people who made them. Moreover, the TCM Classic Film Festival strives to be a place where a community of movie fans of all ages can share their love of classic movies with each other, make new friends and see films as they are seldom seen today.

Kurash ’13: Update from Medical School

Laura Kurash ’13,

Laura Kurash ’13 played on the women’s soccer team. 

Laura Kurash ’13, a chemistry and Hispanic literature and culture major at Wesleyan—as well as women’s soccer standout with NESCAC Player of the Year honors—was highlighted in a “Meet a Wesleyan Student” video as an undergraduate.

Screen Shot 2015-03-06 at 3.18.05 PMNow a second-year medical student at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, Kurash responded to a request for an update—what she enjoys now, what she misses from the Wes campus, assessing new academic rigors, and the ways that Wesleyan prepared her for these challenges:

“I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss Wes soccer almost every day,” Kurash said, although, ever positive, she acknowledges that she did get to play a few times last fall. Studying takes up much of her time, with her main focus on Step 1 boards exam in June. These exams are a major factor in determining her residency placement, she explained, and they cover all the material from the past two years.

As a resident, she’ll begin to focus on a specialty.

“I frequently get asked which one I’ll choose, but I’m not sure since I change my mind every six months! At the moment my favorites are cardiology, oncology and neurology,” she said.

Having an unknown in her academic career is novel.

“I entered Wes knowing I would play soccer, major in chemistry and Spanish, and go to medical school. For the first time in my life, I don’t know exactly what comes next, which is daunting but exciting!”

Also different is her method of studying. Med school, she said, forces her to learn a seemingly endless amount of material in a very short period of time. In order to do so, she had to completely adjust the way she studies and how long she studies each day.

“The rigors of Wesleyan academics undoubtedly helped make these adjustments more bearable,” she said.

Beyond the strong foundation in the sciences, though, she traces other aspects of her undergraduate career that are serving her well—specifically, fluency in Spanish. Last year, Kurash volunteered as a medical interpreter in the hospital, helping non-Spanish-speaking physicians communicate with their Spanish-speaking patients. Since then, she’s signed up to volunteer in a Spanish medical clinic in center city Philadelphia to continue practicing Spanish.

“In addition, I think my experiences at Wesleyan have better prepared me to speak to patients,” she concludes. “The student body at Wes consists of people from different backgrounds with different opinions (which are typically very strong), but overall there’s still a sense of unity and support. Similarly, my patients will have highly varied opinions and experiences, and the ability to empathize and communicate with them is an important skill set that Wesleyan helped to provide me.”

Kurash speaks about her Wesleyan experience in this “Meet a Wesleyan Student” video:
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Also:

Wesleyan Magazine featured Kurash in this student scholar article. Wesleyan Athletics reports Kurash caps illustrious women’s soccer career with NESCAC Player of the Year Honors:

Sea Animal Photographs on Display in Exley Science Center

An exhibit titled "Wakaya Octocorals and Giants" is on display in Exley Science Center. The 10 photographs in the display were taken by Joshua Boger '73, P'06, P'09 and feature reefs off Wakaya Island in Fiji. Boger has dived these reefs more than 200 times, spending more than a week underwater.

An exhibit titled “Wakaya Octocorals and Giants” is on display in Exley Science Center. The 22 photographs in the display were taken by Joshua Boger ’73, P’06, P’09 and feature reefs off Wakaya Island in Fiji. Boger has dived these reefs more than 200 times, spending more than a week underwater. Pictured is a royal purple soft coral — Alcyonacea — photographed in 2013.

Alumni Speak on Careers for the Common Good

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On Nov. 19, four Wesleyan alumni spoke to students about their post-Wesleyan journeys in a panel discussion on “Careers for the Common Good.” The event was moderated by Lily Herman ’16, pictured at left. Panelists included, from left, Gregg Croteau ’93, Christian Philemon ’97, Katie Nihill ’10 and Matt Lesser ’10.