Olivia Drake

McKee Leads Graduate Series Discussion on Fossils, Climate’s Effect on Leaves

BA/MA student Melissa McKee, who is pursuing a MA in earth and environmental sciences, delivered a talk during the Graduate Student Speakers Series on Nov. 29. McKee’s talk was titled “Looking to the past to predict the future: Restoring the fossil collections at Wesleyan’s Joe Webb Peoples Museum and testing the accuracy of using fossil leaves to estimate past temperatures.” McKee spent the summer working on restoring and cataloging a fossil collection for Wesleyan’s Joe Webb Peoples Museum of Natural History. “This work paired perfectly with my research, which tests the assumptions of models that use the size and shape of fossilized leaves to reconstruct the mean annual temperature of ancient environments,” she said.

BA/MA student Melissa McKee, who is pursuing a MA in earth and environmental sciences, delivered a talk during the Graduate Student Speakers Series on Nov. 29. McKee’s talk was titled “Looking to the past to predict the future: Restoring the fossil collections at Wesleyan’s Joe Webb Peoples Museum and testing the accuracy of using fossil leaves to estimate past temperatures.” McKee spent the summer working on restoring and cataloging a fossil collection for Wesleyan’s Joe Webb Peoples Museum of Natural History. “This work paired perfectly with my research, which tests the assumptions of models that use the size and shape of fossilized leaves to reconstruct the mean annual temperature of ancient environments,” she said.

Political Anthropologist Vine ’97 Speaks to Campus Community about Military Overseas under Trump

On Nov. 9, political anthropologist David Vine '97, associate professor of anthropology at American University, returned to campus to speak on ""What Are We Getting Out of This?": U.S. Empire and the Military Overseas under Trump." Vine is the author of Base Nation: How US Military Bases Abroad Harm America and the World and Island of Shame: The Secret History of the U.S. Military Base on Diego Garcia. His other writings have appeared in the Washington Post, the New York Times, Guardian, and Mother Jones.

On Nov. 9, political anthropologist David Vine ’97, associate professor of anthropology at American University, returned to campus to speak on “What Are We Getting Out of This?”: U.S. Empire and the Military Overseas under Trump.” The U.S. has 800 military bases in places from Germany and Japan to South Korea and Saudi Arabia and nearly 80 other countries.

Case, Kessler ’18 Honored for Outstanding Poster Presentations

PhD candidate Brandon Case and Emily Kessler '18 attended the North Eastern Structural Symposium at the University of Connecticut.

PhD candidate Brandon Case and Emily Kessler ’18 attended the North Eastern Structural Symposium at the University of Connecticut.

Molecular Biology and Biochemistry PhD candidate Brandon Case and Emily Kessler ’18 recently won poster awards at the North Eastern Structural Symposium (NESS) at the University of Connecticut on Oct. 28.

Both students research the mechanisms of action of DNA replication and repair proteins with Manju Hingorani, chair and professor of molecular biology and biochemistry, professor of integrative sciences. Hingorani’s DNA Lab investigates proteins responsible for DNA replication and repair. These proteins maintain genome and cell integrity, and their malfunction leads to cancer and other diseases.

Case received an Outstanding Poster Award for his work, “Coordinated Actions of Four ATPase Sites on UvrA2 During Initiation of Nucleotide Excision Repair.”

Kessler, who is a Wesleyan Beckman Scholar, received an Outstanding Undergraduate Poster Award for “Investigating the MutS Conformational Dynamics During MMR Initiation of Lynch Syndrome-Linked MutS Mutants.” The NESS created this undergraduate award only for Kessler after hearing her presentation.

Elphick Edits Late Professor’s Book on the History of South Africa’s Racial Segregation

Book by Jeffrey Butler

Book by Jeffrey Butler

The late Jeffrey Butler, professor of history, emeritus, is the author of Cradock: How Segregation and Apartheid came to a South African Town, published by the University of Virginia Press, December 2017. Richard “Rick” Elphick, professor of history, emeritus, co-edited the book with the late Jeannette Hopkins, a former director of Wesleyan University Press.

According to the book’s abstract, Cradock, the product of more than 20 years of research by Butler, is a vivid history of a middle-sized South African town in the years when segregation gradually emerged, preceding the rapid and rigorous implementation of apartheid. Although Butler was born and raised in Cradock, he avoids sentimentality and offers an ambitious treatment of the racial themes that dominate recent South African history through the details of one emblematic community. Augmenting the obvious political narrative, Cradock examines poor infrastructural conditions that typify a grossly unequal system of racial segregation but otherwise neglected in the region’s historiography. Butler shows, with the richness that only a local study could provide, how the lives of blacks, whites, and mixed-race individuals were affected by the bitter transition from segregation before 1948 to apartheid thereafter.

Wesleyan Celebrates 23rd Year of Freeman Asian Scholars Program

On Nov. 3, Wesleyan’s Freeman Asian Scholars gathered for group photos and dinner. The Freeman Scholars Program annually provides expenses for a four-year course of study toward a BA for up to 11 exceptional Asian students from these countries and regions: the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam.

On Nov. 3, Wesleyan’s Freeman Asian Scholars gathered for group photos and dinner. The Freeman Scholars Program provides scholarships annually to 11 exceptional Asian students from these countries and regions: the People’s Republic of China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam. The Freeman Program was established in 1995 through the generosity of the Freeman family – Mansfield Freeman ’16, Houghton Freeman ’43, P’77, Hon ’93, Doreen Freeman P’77, Hon ’03 and Graeme Freeman ’77.

Students, Alumni Present Papers, Attend Roundtables at Society for Ethnomusicology Annual Meeting

Several students and recent alumni attended and presented at the 62nd Annual Meeting for the Society for Ethnomusicology, Oct. 26-29, 2017, in Denver, Colo.

Founded in 1955, the Society for Ethnomusicology is a global, interdisciplinary network of individuals and institutions engaged in the study of music across all cultural contexts and historical periods.

Ellen Lueck, MA ’12, PhD ’17, presented her paper, “Proposing a Theory for a New Space, the Affinity Interzone.”

PhD candidate Gene Lai presented his paper, “Uniquely Singapore: Revitalizing a Tamil Folk Music Tradition in the Lion City.”

PhD candidate Sean Sonderegger MA ’14 presented “None of That is a Trend: Three Studies in Intertexuality and the Merging of Jazz and Hip-Hop Traditions.”

PhD candidate Huan Li presented her paper, “Roses and Thorns: Mass Media, Chinese Cultural Market, and Qinshi’s Creativity in Reform China.”

PhD candidate Andrew Colwell MA ’11 participated in a roundtable titled “Music and Mobility in Inner Asia: Experience and Theory.” Cowell, who is expected to earn his PhD in ethnomusicology at Wesleyan in 2018, also won the student prize for best paper from the Society for Asian Music.

PhD candidates Ender Terwilliger and Christine May Yong organized a panel discussion on “Performing within Parameters: Government Policy and the Performing Arts in Taiwan, Malaysia and Venezuela.”

In addition, Visiting Assistant Professor Kate Galloway chaired a panel at the event.

PhD candidates, Ender Terwilliger and Christine May Yong, presented their papers as part of an organized panel. Christine’s talk was called Angin Wayang: Framing Wayang Kulit Kelantan Practice Within and Beyond the State, and Ender’s talk was titled From The Capital to the Rice Paddies: Adjusting Performances across Taiwan’s (Political) Landscape.

Gene Lai presented his paper, “Uniquely Singapore: Revitalizing a Tamil Folk Music Tradition in the Lion City.”

Ender Terwilliger, Elaine Sandoval (CUNY Graduate Center), Christine May Yong, and Margaret Sarkissian (Smith College) organized a panel titled "Performing within Parameters: Government Policy and the Performing Arts in Taiwan, Malaysia, and Venezuela."

Ender Terwilliger, Elaine Sandoval (CUNY Graduate Center), Christine May Yong, and Margaret Sarkissian (Smith College) organized a panel titled “Performing within Parameters: Government Policy and the Performing Arts in Taiwan, Malaysia, and Venezuela.”

Cultural Exchange Celebrated during International Education Week

From Nov. 13-17, Wesleyan students, faculty and staff participated in a rich agenda of on-campus events celebrating International Education Week.

International Education Week, a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education, promotes programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and exchange experiences. At Wesleyan, events included a Study Abroad for the Sciences Fair, a discussion on exploring international opportunities, a Fries Center for Global Studies open house, an international student and faculty dinner, a Wes in the World Photo Contest, a “Food Around the World” luncheon, film screenings, information on Germany-U.S. opportunities and more.

The Fries Center for Global Studies hosted an open house on Nov. 13 and welcomed Wesleyan community members with an interest in international education and initiatives to stop by and learn more about the center.

The Fries Center for Global Studies hosted an open house on Nov. 13 and welcomed Wesleyan community members with an interest in international education and initiatives to stop by and learn more about the center. Pictured, Antonio Gonzales, director of the Fries Center and professor of Spanish, welcomed the attendees.

Winners of the Wes in the World Photo Contest Announced

On Nov. 13, the Fries Center for Global Studies announced the winners of the 2017-18 Wes in the World Photo Contest. More than 200 Wesleyan students, staff, faculty and alumni voted on 56 images in five different categories, including landscape, people, contemporary issues, daily life and sports.

Photographs were submitted by international students and U.S. students who studied abroad.

View the winners below. View the honorable mentions online here.

“Cinque Terre Town” by Natalie Strassheim, ‘18 / Manarola, Italy “I was ready to capture some of my own awesome photos by embarking on a solo trip. I remember, in Pompeii, saying farewell to my study abroad friends. I boarded the train, heading off to my next stop in Italy. This was the beginning to feeling independent. This was the start to feeding my wanderlust.”

BEST PHOTO OF LANDSCAPE: “Cinque Terre Town” by Natalie Strassheim ‘18, Manarola, Italy. “I was ready to capture some of my own awesome photos by embarking on a solo trip. I remember, in Pompeii, saying farewell to my study-abroad friends. I boarded the train, heading off to my next stop in Italy. This was the beginning to feeling independent. This was the start to feeding my wanderlust,” she said.

Col. Cassidy Is Wesleyan’s First Retired Military Officer Teaching Fellow

As Wesleyan's inaugural Retired Military Officer Teaching Fellow Robert "Bob" Cassidy is actively building relationships and understanding between the U.S. Armed Services and Wesleyan students.

As Wesleyan’s inaugural Retired Military Officer Teaching Fellow, Robert “Bob” Cassidy is actively building relationships and understanding between the U.S. Armed Services and Wesleyan students. Cassidy, who joined the U.S. Army in 1981, focuses his teaching, research and scholarship on international security, strategy, irregular war and military culture. His office is located in the Public Affairs Center.

In this Q&A, and in honor of Veterans Day on Nov. 11, Retired Military Officer Teaching Fellow Robert “Bob” Cassidy speaks about his military career, thoughts on the Iraq invasion and teaching at Wesleyan. (Brandon Sides ’18 contributed to this article.)

Q: How did you acquire your teaching fellowship at Wesleyan?

A: I received a Retired Officer Teaching Fellowship (ROTF) through the Chamberlain Project, which supports fellowships at some of the nation’s top liberal arts institutions. Fellows are required to work on building relationships and understanding between the U.S. Armed Services and civilian institutions and to contribute to the richness and diversity of students’ educational experiences. We also teach two full-credit courses. This fall and next spring, I am teaching a seminar on Policy and Strategy in War and Peace at the Center for the Study of Public Life.

Q: What material is covered in this course?

A: We explore the meaning of civilian-military relations and how those relations interact with our ability to align policy and strategy. We start with the Vietnam War and cover eight wars through the present. So far this semester, we’ve studied the Vietnam War, the Persian Gulf War, the peace operations and combat operations in Somalia, the initial war in Afghanistan, and this week, we cover the bad decisions behind the invasion of Iraq. We will end with a look at where we are now with policy and strategy, and the wars in Afghanistan and elsewhere against the likes of the Islamic State.

Wesleyan’s Vocal Talent Showcased at Stone A Cappella Concert

Once called the “singing college of New England,” Wesleyan still boasts strong musical traditions. On Nov. 5, multiple student groups performed at the 7th Annual Stone A Cappella Concert held in Memorial Chapel. The concert, held in conjunction with Homecoming/Family Weekend, provides an extraordinary showcase of the vocal talent and stage presence of Wesleyan undergraduates.

The performance is sponsored by the Charles B. Stone Jr. A Cappella Fund, which was established through the generosity of Sarah Stone Maynard ’79, P’11 and Fred Maynard ’80, P’11. It honors of Sarah’s father, Chip Stone ’49, P’79, P’82, GP’11, GP’15, and celebrates the Stone family’s long Wesleyan legacy.

Photos of the concert are below: (Photos by Caroline Kravitz ’19 and Rebecca Goldfarb Terry ’19)

Football’s 35-0 Victory, “The Big Roll”: Highlights of 2017 Homecoming/Family Weekend

Hundreds of Wesleyan alumni and families participated in the traditional Homecoming/Family Weekend Tailgating event on Andrus Field.

Hundreds of Wesleyan alumni and families, visiting campus for Homecoming/Family Weekend Nov. 3–5, participated in the traditional Homecoming/Family Weekend tailgating event on Andrus Field.

On Nov. 4 during Homecoming/Family Weekend, more than 5,000 Cardinal football fans cheered Wesleyan to a 35–0 victory over Little Three archrival Williams College.

Throughout the three-day event, parents, alumni, students, families and friends also attended tailgating events, campus tours, 20 WESeminars, the 25th Annual Dwight L. Greene Symposium, the 7th Annual Stone A Cappella Concert, gallery exhibits, a family swim, multiple dinners and receptions and much more.

Kate Quigley Lynch ’82, P’17, ’19, assistant director of The Wesleyan Fund for University Relations, attended HCFW events as a Wes alumna, parent and staff member with her husband, Christopher Lynch ’81. In addition to co-organizing the 50th Reunion Planning meeting, Quigley Lynch and members of her family attended the President’s Reception honoring leadership donors and volunteers; the Alumni Association tailgate; and a WESeminar on the Evolution of the Real Estate Industry, led by Matt Winn ’92 and Marshall Brozost ’89.

Shasha Seminar Explores the Role of Guns in America

The 16th Annual Shasha Seminar for Human Concerns, held Oct. 27–28 on campus, convened experts, including Wesleyan alumni, from across the country to examine current debates about the role of guns in American history, society, law and politics. The Shasha Seminar is an educational forum for Wesleyan alumni, parents and friends that provides an opportunity to explore issues of global concern in a small seminar environment. Endowed by James Shasha ’50, P’82, the Shasha Seminar for Human Concerns supports lifelong learning and encourages participants to expand their knowledge and perspectives on significant issues.

Seminar organizer Jennifer Tucker, associate professor of history and associate professor of science in society at Wesleyan, noted in a previous article that “Firearms possession is possibly one of the most divisive topics in the country.” Her goal was for the event to “create a forum for conversations about current gun ownership and laws with room for a variety of perspectives on this topic. We want for this university seminar to be a forum for discussions and a meeting point for current research about firearms possession and use from a number of different fields,” she said.

The 16th Annual Shasha Seminar for Human Concerns, held Oct. 27-28 on campus, convened experts, including Wesleyan alumni, from different fields across the country to examine current debates about the role of guns in American history, society, law and politics. The Shasha Seminar is an educational forum for Wesleyan alumni, parents, and friends that provides an opportunity to explore issues of global concern in a small seminar environment. Endowed by James Shasha '50, P'82, the Shasha Seminar for Human Concerns supports lifelong learning and encourages participants to expand their knowledge and perspectives on significant issues.

Beginning in Memorial Chapel on Friday afternoon with a keynote speech by Richard Slotkin, Olin Professor of English and American Studies, Emeritus (see photo below), the weekend proved to be a venue for education, questions and much discussion on concerns surrounding guns in American society.

Richard Slotkin, the Olin Professor of American Studies, Emeritus, delivered the keynote address titled “Open Season: The Gun Rights Movement and American Political Culture.” Slotkin discussed the current struggle over firearms legislation and how it has been shaped by a political movement, which links a radical understanding of “gun rights” to the agendas of American conservatism.

Richard Slotkin, the Olin Professor of English and American Studies, Emeritus, delivered the keynote address titled “Open Season: The Gun Rights Movement and American Political Culture.” Slotkin discussed the current struggle over firearms legislation and how it has been shaped by a political movement, which links a radical understanding of “gun rights” to the agendas of American conservatism.