scene Spring 2018
Cover Story: MomentOUS Down to a science The thing is... News and views for the Colgate community
24 Down to a science
At the National Institutes of Health, alumni and student researchers work to fight HIV, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancer.
Celebrating 50 years of Office of Undergraduate Studies scholars
36 The thing is…
We asked professors: Tell us about the object of your affection.
Message from President Brian W. Casey
13346 — Inbox
Work & Play
Tableau: “Back to school at nearly 60”
Take a walk through the history of Colgate’s Outdoor Education Program
Life of the Mind
Arts & Culture
New, Noted & Quoted
The Big Picture
Class News 73 Marriages & Unions 73 Births & Adoptions 73 In Memoriam
“Connect five” quiz and “13 words (or fewer)” caption contest
On the cover: Meet Provost and Dean of the Faculty Tracey Hucks ’87, MA’90 as we feature scholars who exemplify the success of Colgate’s Office of Undergraduate Studies (pg. 30). Left: Daffodils trumpet the arrival of spring. Photos by Mark DiOrio News and views for the Colgate community
Dear readers, Outside my Merrill House window, signs of spring have made their debut and construction crews are buttoning up the exterior of Benton Hall. Inside our communications shop, exciting changes are happening as well. First, the Colgate Scene magazine is undergoing a redesign with the help of renowned design firm Pentagram. There will be no summer issue because we will be working to unveil the reimagined magazine this autumn — when Colgate’s bicentennial year is in full swing. The new bicentennial website, 200.colgate.edu, is also in the works. It currently serves as an electronic “save the date” but will evolve starting Aug. 13. The site will feature articles on the university’s history, bicentennial courses, and archival materials. In addition to honoring the past, the website will look toward Colgate’s future. How will Colgate University celebrate its 200th birthday? Mark your calendars for the kick-off celebrations Sept. 21–28: concerts, lectures, fireworks, homecoming athletics events, receptions, and more. The bicentennial website will feature a calendar of events; if you’re unable to make it to campus, the site will also offer opportunities for you to participate in the celebration from any location, at any time. In the autumn magazine, we will highlight several bicentennial projects, including a new history of Colgate, written by James A. Smith ’70; Professor Alice Nakhimovsky’s book on the history of Jewish life at Colgate; and a documentary on students of color, produced by Diane Ciccone ’74, P’10. We will also update you on President Brian W. Casey’s campus beautification efforts. Your mailbox has never been so excited. Read on,
200.colgate.edu Get all the details about our 200th year with a video that will make you proud to be part of the Colgate community.
Read all about it
Colgate.edu/news Knitting as a form of protest, a day in the life of an ancient Athenian, and a picture-perfect winter at Colgate: These are just some of the stories you can view on our news blog.
Snap a photo
instagram.com/explore/tags/colgateday/ Maroon was everywhere on Colgate Day. See alumni from all over the world sporting Colgate chic — and tag yourself on the next Friday the 13th.
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scene: Spring 2018
Volume XLVII Number 3 The Scene is published by Colgate University four times a year — in autumn, winter, spring, and summer. The Scene is circulated without charge to alumni, parents, friends, and students. Vice President of Communications Laura H. Jack Managing Editor Aleta Mayne Assistant Editor Rebecca Docter Communications Director Mark Walden Creative Director Tim Horn Art Director Karen Luciani Senior Designer Katherine Laube Junior Designer Katriel Pritts University Photographer Mark DiOrio Production Assistant Kathy Owen
Contributors: Gordon Brillon, Web Content Specialist; Daniel DeVries, Media Relations Director; Sara Furlong, Advancement Communications Manager; Matt Hames, Communications Strategist; David Herringshaw, Digital Production Specialist; Jason Kammerdiener ’10, Web Manager; Brian Ness, Video Journalism Coordinator; John Painter, Director of Athletic Communications
Aleta Mayne Managing editor
From the editor
Contact: email@example.com 315-228-7407 colgate.edu/scene Colgate University 315-228-1000
Printed and mailed from Lane Press in South Burlington, Vt. If you’re moving... Please clip the address label and send with your new address to: Alumni Records Clerk, Colgate University, 13 Oak Drive, Hamilton, NY 13346-1398 or call 315-228-7453. Opinions expressed are not necessarily shared by the university, the publishers, or the editors. Notice of Non-Discrimination: Colgate University does not discriminate in its programs and activities because of race, color, sex, pregnancy, religion, creed, national origin (including ancestry), citizenship status, physical or mental disability, age, marital status, sexual orientation, veteran or military status (including special disabled veteran, Vietnam-era veteran, or recently separated veteran), predisposing genetic characteristics, domestic violence victim status, or any other protected category under applicable local, state, or federal law. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the university’s non-discrimination policies: Marilyn Rugg, Associate Provost for Equity and Diversity, 13 Oak Drive, Hamilton, NY 13346; 315-228-7288.
Message from President Brian W. Casey I write this column at the end of the academic year, knowing when you read these words, the year will have concluded and summer will be on its way. But it is good to remember what the end of the academic year means for students and staff. April and May are rushes of deadlines and obligations, meetings and reports. It is both exhilarating and exhausting. Faculty, too, face the rush of deadlines and obligations as the year ends. At Colgate, faculty members operate in specific and unique rhythms and engage in intensive activities that sustain the university’s academic enterprise, many of which are invisible to the alumni body or even to students and staff. It is important, I believe, that alumni know of these rhythms and the role they play in Colgate’s future. First, through a remarkably elaborate set of evaluations, the faculty offer their recommendations to the provost and dean of the faculty, and then to the president and trustees, for those faculty who should be awarded tenure. Departments assemble dossiers for those faculty who are under consideration for tenure and promotion, letters from scholars from around the world are gathered, and student teaching evaluations are assembled. Each dossier is considered by department colleagues and then by an elected committee of faculty. Eventually the decision to grant or deny tenure is made. Few procedures are as exhaustive as this process at Colgate, as is also the case at other fine colleges and universities. To join a faculty permanently is the beginning of a scholar’s true sustained professional life, and it is a deeply important moment for the institution. Departments that are searching for new faculty members often are completing the hiring process in these months. Each year, Colgate brings to the ranks of the faculty a number of new teacher-scholars. Colgate faculty will consider leading candidates for these new positions. Scholars from around the world are interviewed by faculty members and deans for
days at a time. A small number are ultimately appointed to join the university’s faculty ranks. Years later, after demonstrating their teaching prowess and their scholarly contributions, these new scholars will themselves be considered for tenure at Colgate. The final cycle completed by most faculty in the spring is the organization of one’s research program. For faculty, summer is a short, rushed time — the one true opportu-
academic rigor and accomplishment, to inquiry in its highest form, that the institution becomes truly great. It is through this work that Colgate’s reach and reputation is extended. It is also a fundamental part of the foundation upon which the university’s future rests. In the years ahead, I hope to be writing to alumni about new buildings being built and new programs being launched; about admissions results and athletics triumphs. I hope to
“It is through Colgate’s commitment to academic rigor and accomplishment, to inquiry in its highest form, that the institution becomes truly great.” nity to engage deeply and without distraction in the production of knowledge. Through university and other sources of support, Colgate faculty travel the world, remake their laboratories, or settle down in the library for weeks of writing. The scholarly life of the faculty is renewed and engaged once again. The crucial months of April and May provide the final moments to set up the work of a productive summer. As was recently stated in Colgate’s report to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, “Active scholarship … fuels the faculty’s enthusiasm for teaching in their discipline, inspiring many students to become involved in their own original research. More generally, to teach is to impart knowledge gained via such scholarship. …This endeavor takes different forms in different disciplines, but it always seeks to advance the frontiers of the field or provide new insights into old problems and dilemmas. It is, therefore, no overstatement to say that original scholarship is at the heart of this university; it is an essential element of who we are.” I believe that alumni should know of these rhythms, this deep work of the university, because it is through Colgate’s commitment to
be writing about the bicentennial celebrations and how thousands of alumni returned to campus to welcome in Colgate’s third century. But I also hope I will be able to convey the importance of the seemingly quieter work of building and sustaining Colgate’s academic enterprise through its faculty. To assemble a faculty of worldwide reputation, to support their intellectual lives throughout their careers, and to provide them with the tools to bring their knowledge and wisdom to generations of Colgate students is perhaps my most important work and the effort for which the university will be measured in the decades to come. I invite you, in this issue, and in ones forthcoming, to learn of this faculty and consider their efforts. It is one of the most important ways we can understand and, importantly, sustain the work of this university.
News and views for the Colgate community
Inbox A politician’s remarks
The Scene welcomes letters. We reserve the right to decide whether a letter is acceptable for publication and to edit for accuracy, clarity, and length. Letters deemed potentially libelous or that malign a person or group will not be published. Letters should not exceed 250 words. You can reach us by mail, or e-mail sceneletters @colgate.edu. Please include your full name, class year if applicable, address, phone number, and/or e-mail address. If we receive many letters on a given topic, we will print a representative sample of the opinions expressed.
I was impressed by Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY) after reading about her in the Scene (“From Colgate’s hill to Capitol Hill,” winter 2018, pg. 26). In view of the high level of partisanship and even bitterness currently prevailing in Washington, I was heartened to read that her “freshman class” in the House “made a commitment to civility — to reach out to each other in an effort to change the tone of our current political discourse.” She went on to point out how “we all play together, Republican and Democrat … on the Congressional Softball Team.” Consequently, I was taken aback and extremely disappointed to read the story in the Feb. 22 edition of the New York Times quoting her as saying that “so many of these people that commit the mass murders end up being Democrats.” This interview took place just one week after the horrible shootings in Parkland, Fla. The Times story reported that, in a statement later that day, the Congresswoman did not provide information regarding her claim but elaborated as follows: “I am fed up with the media and liberals attempting to politicize tragedies and demonize law-abiding gun owners and conservative Americans every time there is a horrible tragedy.” Is this an example of her “civility”? Robert Malley ’66 Westerly, R.I.
A helpful resource I am writing to thank Julie Rosenbaum Skolnick ’90 for her essay, “With Understanding Comes Calm” (winter 2018, pg. 12). As an elementary school teacher, most of my free time involves school in some way: creating lesson plans, using formative assessments to guide my teaching, or wrestling over students’ many issues while swimming my daily laps (a pastime I started my sophomore year at Colgate). By this time in the school year, teachers know their students well:
scene: Spring 2018
They know which children have special needs and have tried many strategies to help children succeed. We are wracking our brains trying to come up with new ideas.
Colgate alumna there (myself) but two other women, from the classes of ’83 and ’84. (Perhaps there were even more, but that’s who I recognized.) What a great showing and testament to an education that values thought and action. Nancy Cohen ’83 Hillsdale, N.J.
Saluting student writers
The opening line of Julie’s essay caught my attention immediately. The students I find most challenging are those for whom the teacher’s question is, “Why is the child who pays the least attention the one who knows all the answers?” I have shared Julie’s article with my assistant principal and our lead teacher. We are excited about the resource that Julie may become for those of us who would like to understand more about these 2e children and to implement plans so that, as Julie says, “we can preserve these students’ self-esteem and they can participate meaningfully in the classroom.” Given the complexity of children’s lives, pressures from social media, and what seems like an increasingly disturbing disconnect of young people from following the “Golden Rule,” I hope educators use resources like Julie to enable students to participate meaningfully in the classroom and the rest of their communities. Thank you, Julie! Anne (Thomas) Steger ’78 Rochester, N.Y.
Colgate values I recently saw the true value of a Colgate education — to spur us to think and to act! I was at an organizational meeting about political activism with about 150 people from Bergen County (N.J.). Not only was there the one
These five essays (“Applying Themselves,” autumn 2017, pg. 30) were all inspirational reads, and each of them goes to show how multidimensional and introspective Colgate students are at their core. Thank you for highlighting and sharing these student essays, as they not only remind us alumni of how well rounded today’s Colgate students continue to be, but also keep us tuned in to the motivation and stories we each had in our own Colgate essays as we further build our own characters well beyond
our Colgate years. The accompanying artwork is stunning, and brings each story to life, too — kudos to the artist as well as our student writers. Lisa Lee ’12 Fresh Meadows, N.Y.
My great hero Bruce Selleck ’71 was much more than a former professor to me: He changed my life. Bruce cultivated my potential. He did this, as with all of his students, by becoming involved in my life and making me feel that I mattered. I wrote down a list of all the ways Bruce positively influenced me during
L to R: Sam Ely ’12, Ron Parker ’82, Nancy Caplow ’82, Professor Bruce Selleck ’71, and Denise Waite ’87 at Reunion 2017 my years at Colgate. I’ll share some of this list here to illuminate how important Bruce was to me personally and to illustrate the approach he applied to many students. I did not know Bruce before I took his Sed Strat course in my sophomore year. I was electrified by the material, and Bruce could see that. Bruce agreed to advise a January plan course (Design of Museum Display) that entailed visiting rock outcrops in Cherry Valley, N.Y., measuring section, collecting, slabbing and polishing rocks, making thin-sections, and then analyzing and writing up the material. Bruce showed me how to do all of these things and I have used this skill set on many occasions since. Bruce encouraged me to apply for a summer research stipend, which I was granted. I visited many outcrops with Bruce that summer and was also able to attend part of the geology off-campus study group. That research resulted in a Colgate Journal of the Sciences article and my first presentation at a scientific conference (1981 NEGSA). The January 1981 field course to the Florida Keys and Sanibel-Captiva Islands cemented my reverence of Bruce. All of these experiences imbued me with a confidence I would not have developed had Bruce not given me early attention. With Bruce’s assistance and letters of recommendation, I was able to turn my experiences into admission to graduate school at UVM. In the years after I graduated, Bruce remained a strong positive influence
and acted as a colleague. I am aware of many former students who have engaged in significant collaboration with Bruce through the years. Bruce’s students became a part of his extended family. I was stunned to learn my Great Hero had died. I am so thankful I attended my 35th Reunion, where I was able to spend time with Bruce. I last saw him that Saturday when Nancy Caplow ’82 and I walked him to his truck to say goodbye. In the ensuing conversation, we reviewed our maladies from advancing in age. Bruce said, “Do you know what all these aches and pains from growing old mean? It means you haven’t died yet.” Prescient, chilling, and wonderful. Bruce made a profound, deep, and indelible impact on my life, and I am so appreciative of that. I can scarcely imagine the world without him.
graduate from Colgate. I share his appreciation for the iconic photo of our first woman of color dean of the faculty, Tracey Hucks ’87. I also appreciated the Scene making clear the degree of respect that readers are required to show for those with whose opinions or life choices they disagree. These are key values we must uphold — and carry forward the legacy of great teachers like Jerome Balmuth. Richard Schaper ’67 Mill Valley, Calif. Last night I read the tribute to Jerry Balmuth. You did a terrific job; you captured him to a T. Although I never had him as a professor, I felt as if I did. While I was at Colgate, the philosophy and religion department with Balmuth, [Steve] Hartshorne, [Huntington] Terrell, and [Wanda Warren]
Ronald L. Parker ’82 Centennial, Colo.
Memories of a mentor “A Life Examined” (winter 2018, pg. 31) came as a real gift to this early beneficiary of Professor Jerry Balmuth’s brilliant and energetic mind. The wonderful photo of Jerry in his Plato cap is now on my wall to remind me daily of the inspiring gift he was to me — to motivate me to continue to critically engage the pressing issues of our day. All the various contributors to this tribute expressed so well Jerry’s living impact on my life. On one occasion when he was late to a 4 p.m. class, we began to wonder if we should leave. Just then, he entered the classroom and without a word, snapped off the overhead lights. The orange glow of a late winter sunset suffused the hushed space in which we sat, and our teacher kept silence with us, rapt with us by the beauty we had overlooked. It was a lesson that changed my life. Thank you also for publishing at length the testimonial of Juan Flores ’80, the first Chamoro student to
Berry seemed to dominate the campus. There were so many stories about these guys that you felt you knew them all personally. After freshman year of philosophy and religion with Berry and Terrell, which I managed to pass, I quickly decided I was out of my league and would need to find another field to concentrate in. History was much more to my liking. Of course, we had our own lions in the history department, but that is a different story.
The tribute to Dr. Balmuth brought back a flood of great memories. Robert W. Locke ’68 Towson, Md.
Talking about Torchlight Much has been said about the Torchlight Ceremony, and Colgate’s president is to be commended for discussing the issue in a balanced and transparent manner. The “Torch of Knowledge” was around before fascism, having nothing to do with the Tiki torches in Virginia. To flee from the Colgate symbol of knowledge because fascists have commandeered the symbol of a flaming light is giving in to their ideology, letting them claim victory. We are not, I hope, so intellectually feeble to allow that. There are legitimate concerns about safety of the wood torches, and the brass torches that have been adopted will go a long way toward making the march down the hill safer. As for fascism, never forget that a generation of Colgate students actually went to war against fascism, some dying in the process. They did not see any connection between the torchlight procession, our torch, and the Nazi rallies. Why should we, now, be offended? Colgate began in 1819. Because a German dictator used a torch in the 1930s to promote a fascist ideology, don’t throw out our symbol of knowledge in the 21st century. What some in our Colgate community want to do is take a snapshot of the 1930s and superimpose today’s values and beliefs on that moment. Only problem is, our Colgate torch — which has nothing to do with that time or place — has been Photoshopped in. Let’s not be fooled. Our torch wasn’t in Germany when Colgate students marched off to war to defeat fascism and it wasn’t in Virginia when white supremacists tried to spread their hate. Our torch lights the way to victory over these ideologies by spreading knowledge, not fear. Bruce Healey ’84 Cincinnati, Ohio
News and views for the Colgate community
work & play
Fossils fuel an introductory geology class. Photo by Andrew Daddio
Thinking ahead: Students study together in CORE 152 – Challenges of Modernity. Photo by Mark DiOrio
Mello cello. A student rehearses Joaquin Turina’s “Scene Andalouse” in Professor Laura Klugherz’s class. Photo by Mark DiOrio
Students come face-to-face with history at the Town of Madison Historical Society during the MLK Day of Service. Photo by Mark DiOrio
They got burned: Guard Jordan Burns ’21 goes in for a layup against New Jersey Institute of Technology on Dec. 12. The Raiders won 87–76. Photo by Justin Kunz ’19
Making connections. Students explore the “Web of Interconnectedness” in Professor April Baptiste’s Environmental Justice: Theory, Case Studies, and Applications class. Photo by Mark DiOrio
A bit of advice: Alumni give students career tips at SophoMORE Connections. Photo by Andrew Daddio
scene: Spring 2018
News and views for the Colgate community
scene: Spring 2018
Enhancing the Senior Torchlight Procession
President Brian W. Casey has announced a series of enhancements to the Senior Torchlight Procession, which will be implemented during this year’s commencement weekend. Casey made the announcement in mid-April. First, in place of wood torches, the university will provide each graduating senior with one made of brass, which was designed based on the university’s seal and will represent the Torch of Knowledge. “Through the use of this new torch, we will directly root the ceremony in Colgate’s history,” Casey wrote in an e-mail to the campus community. The Torchlight Working Group forwarded this message with details to alumni. In forthcoming years, students will return the torches at the end of the ceremony in order to avoid the need to replicate them each year. But for this year, a former Alumni Council member has provided funds to allow the Class of 2018 to keep their torches. Music will be added to the ceremony, both as the class gathers in the Academic Quad and as the procession moves down the hill. “This will, I believe, add considerably to the grandeur of the procession,” Casey wrote. Further, as many students requested, the procession route will be modified so that the class will walk through Willow Path — which will be lit with white lights. Finally, the procession will conclude with a president’s reception. Food and champagne, music and a dance floor will be available in a large tent that can comfortably accommodate all students and their families as well as faculty members and friends. These enhancements to the ceremony
Go figure: Setting the Table
work & play 8
are in response to several years of discussions in the Colgate community about the form and nature of the Senior Torchlight Procession. National events, specifically the riot in Charlottesville, Va., created a sense of urgency for change. So, Casey spent months meeting with a variety of student organizations, including the Black Student Union, Hillel and other religious groups, and Konosioni. These conversations were informed by the work of Barnaby Evans, an artist-in-residence whom Casey brought on board to facilitate campuswide discussions. From these conversations, the president said, he learned several things, including the importance of ceremony and a hunger for more rituals at Colgate; a lack of understanding among the student body about the meaning and history of the Senior Torchlight Procession; and a desire for improvements to a ceremony that has, over the years, become poorly organized, confusing, and inelegant. The Senior Class Torchlight Working Group, organized by Class President Madison Bailey ’18, and the Alumni Council Torchlight Working Group collaborated with Casey to consider how best to enhance and improve the ceremony. He discussed proposed event changes with two faculty governance committees, the Advisory and Planning Committee and the Student Advisory Board. Initial ideas for changes to the ceremony were also presented earlier this semester at a Maroon-News forum. “Ceremonies, ideally, remind us of our highest ideals,” Casey wrote. “They connect participants one to another, and to those who have gone before us. . . I believe the enhancements and changes will move us toward a stronger expression of our highest values during commencement weekend.” Traditions always evolve, he further noted. “With these changes, we will have gone a long way toward significantly enhancing an important occasion for graduates and their families,
For people around the world, food is necessary not only for sustenance, but also for community building. A new exhibition at the Longyear Museum of Anthropology — Setting the Table: Food, Place, Community — satisfies an appetite for understanding the role of food in our lives. Setting the Table uses artifacts and testimonials to discuss sovereignty, local and international identity, economic implications of food, and justice within local agricultural industries. The exhibition came together through the work of students in the course Food, led by associate professor of sociology Christopher Henke, and archaeological findings by Jordan Kerber, professor of sociology and anthropology and Native American studies. Here are some of the key ingredients:
730 days spent
planning, developing, and doing research for the exhibition
5 nations of the Haudenosaunee confederacy are represented through food-related artifacts
4 local businesses
provided information and memorabilia for the exhibit: Flour & Salt, Onondaga Nation Farm Crew, Common Thread CSA, and Kriemhild Dairy
115 days on display (Feb. 8–June 3)
1 Instagram hashtag
(#LMAwhatweeat) to collect pictures of what community members eat today — Lauren Hutton ’21
organizations that help people on a national scale, such as Feeding America. TIA helped Weiler develop UCan through accounting workshops, team building, and creating proposals. With TIA seed grants, Weiler bought receptacles and hired a building and grounds officer to drive a truck to the redemption center. After advertising UCan at Colgate’s Student Activities Fair, 59 students signed up. With the help from peers, she believes her initiative can expand to other college campuses. “We hope to reach as many students as possible, increase recycling rates on college campuses, and encourage students to make a difference within their communities,” Weiler says. — Veronica Chen ’20
Christina Weiler ’21 believes in the value of waste. The truth about waste, she says, is that it is a part of us, and we are responsible for it. In order to put plastic in a place where it belongs, Weiler came up with the UCan project, a beverage container recycling initiative that gives its proceeds to local hunger and homeless outreach programs. “UCan’s goal is not just about helping the environment, but also about bringing awareness to different social causes,” says Weiler, who launched the program last fall through Colgate’s Thought Into Action (TIA) entrepreneurship program. Weiler has been further developing the initiative this year with the help of Cornell alumna Eleanore Baughan.
Justin Kunz ’19
Weiler and her team set up 40 receptacles that are available in more than 13 academic and residential buildings and two fraternities. After gathering bottles and cans from each receptacle, she takes them to the local redemption center, which reimburses the team $0.05 per container. All the money raised from UCan’s bottles and cans is then donated to local homeless outreach programs, including the rescue mission and an affordable housing project in Utica.
“UCan’s goal is not just about helping the environment, but also about bringing awareness to different social causes.” — Christina Weiler ’21 She calculated that during Colgate’s 30-week academic year, its 2,700 students use approximately 648,000 cans and bottles, which is a $32,400 opportunity. If she meets this goal, Weiler hopes to distribute her proceeds to
In Cushman House’s living room, gamers are squeezed together on couches amid TVs, a cluster of controllers, chargers, and discarded shoes. As the week’s Smash Club tournament is about to start, students snack on Kool-Aid and a member’s home-baked cookies while they unabashedly fight over who plays as Princess Zelda — evidently, a highly sought-after character in the video game Super Smash Bros. The Smash Club student group has come a long way since Jonathan Morales ’18 and Marc Maggiore ’18 discovered their mutual interest during their first year. In crowded dorm rooms, the two would spend hundreds of hours playing Smash — competing as various Nintendo characters keenly fighting to knock out Kirby, pull off ledge recoveries, or final smash Bowser off a perpetually moving spaceship stage. The rivalries between the players as well as the precarious balance between sociable fun and intense competition defined these gatherings. Maggiore and Morales decided to start an official Smash Club because they wanted to create a space for true competition in the game. “We had a group of guys, probably sixteen, who regularly played, and it started growing,” Maggiore says. Over the past three years, Morales and Maggiore have created, developed, and grown the student organization, which hosts biweekly tournaments for players to compete in both Super Smash Bros Melee and Super Smash Bros for the Wii U. With more than 70 active members, events (continued on pg. 10)
Heeding the call An air of peacefulness and tranquility radiates from Rodney Agnant ’14. Of course, his work environment is a contributing factor. Agnant is resident program coordinator of Chapel House, the campus spiritual retreat center that welcomes guests of any or no religious affiliation. Residing in the living quarters, his commute involves walking down the hall. And the dress code calls for slippers (everyone removes their shoes walking in the door). Agnant, who has spent much of his young life digging deep and exploring his inner self, is a natural fit in this atmosphere that is considered one of the most hallowed spaces on campus. Raised Catholic, Agnant came to Colgate wanting to enhance his spirituality. “When I got to college, I thought, going to church every week is nice and good, but I also needed to understand what this faith really means and have a more personal connection to it,” he says. While majoring in French and minoring in psychology, Agnant joined the Colgate Christian Fellowship, Newman Community, and Interfaith Community. He discovered a new perspective sophomore year at a lecture by Eboo Patel about the importance of interreligious dialogue and building interreligious community. “That lens opened up,” Agnant says. “I realized I can honor my own faith but also get to know so much more about other faiths.” After graduation, Agnant returned to his hometown of New York City to work for several consulting companies and organizations. His various roles shared a common thread of helping build companies’ cultures and systems — skills that perfectly prepared him for what he’s now doing at his alma mater. Even in the bustling Brooklyn environs — often on the subway, of all places — Agnant was able to tap into his introspection. “There is something beautiful about being on the train and knowing there are a few hundred other people on this train. And because of that, it became a place of solitude and reflection for me,” he says. Agnant would read the Bible, write in his journal, meditate, or a combination of the three during his commute. In 2016, he received a text from an old friend who was a Colgate senior at the time. Then texts from other Colgate students started lighting up his phone. He learned that they’d gathered for a Newman Community lunch, during which Catholic Campus Minister Mark Shiner asked the group to name a spiritual role model. One name kept coming up: Rodney. Shiner, who happened to be on the search committee for the new Chapel House position, called Agnant and asked him to apply. Agnant was the ideal candidate, having spent his student years building relationships across campus. “The isolation Colgate provides creates a good opportunity for people to connect more — and that drew me in to wanting to meet people and hear their stories.” As a staff member, he continues to create connections. “Rodney is an open, honest, and cheerful person whom people gravitate toward as a trustworthy human presence,” says Chapel House Director Steven Kepnes. Agnant’s role is three-pronged: assisting the director, ensuring Chapel House is in tip-top shape for use, including overnight stays, and coordinating outreach programs — “so students can see how to integrate into their lives the contemplation that comes with Chapel House,” Agnant says. One of the most popular events he has conceived is a “Design Your Own Life” retreat where students “think about what it means to have a vision for your life, be in touch with their creative process around that, and afterward think about what it means to take ownership over that vision,” he explains. “The idea isn’t that a student will walk away with a hundred-year plan and follow it to a T. But, rather, the sense of creation and intention is something they will revisit throughout their lives.” Outside of his official role, Agnant is actively involved on campus. He opened this year’s Gospel Fest with an inspirational rendition of “We Shall Overcome.” Also this semester he gave a Heretics Club talk on authenticity of self. “I share this idea that everything you do is real; there is always a real reason why you do it,” he says. “I think one of the greater questions we can ask is about integrity — what are the deepest promises you have to yourself, the things that bring you the most meaning, and how can you find a way to honor those?” His ultimate message to students is the one Agnant internalized when he was in their shoes: “Understand the power people have within; a sense of identity can transform your experience at Colgate and afterward,” he says. “It’s important to not only spend time with the studies of our academics, but also the studies of ourselves.” — Aleta Mayne
one rooted in Colgate’s history, but also one that looks forward to the university’s third century.”
News and views for the Colgate community
For Brandon Doby ’18 and Lauren Sanderson ’18, entrepreneurship exists at the intersection of business acumen and creative risk. The two seniors are both artists and business owners: They created ISO Film as a Thought Into Action (TIA) venture in 2016 and have been making experimental films ever since. “To sustain yourself as an artist, you need to master the business side too,” said Doby, a studio arts major from Chicago. Their venture took center stage during Colgate’s annual Entrepreneur Weekend on April 7 when TIA students presented their projects. The day was packed with pitching and networking, and it contained a few surprises for the pair.
10:00 a.m. Sanderson and Doby had an impromptu breakfast meeting with Jeffrey Sharp ’89 (pictured), a successful filmmaker known for Boys Don’t Cry and Proof. The pair gave Sharp a tour of the audio and video studios they use on the first floor of CaseGeyer Library.
Doby and Sanderson put the finishing touches on their booth alongside other student entrepreneurs in the Hall of Presidents. The pair had clips of their projects — including music videos and experimental shorts — rolling on a TV screen and copies of screenplays on the table. ISO Film has two branches: ISO Works, for commissioned projects like event coverage and music videos, and ISO Labs, through which the pair has directed several short films and recently finished a documentary.
Healing with Haven
2:00 p.m. After the panelists deliberated, they awarded $1,000 to ISO, and Sharp announced he would commission ISO Film to work on a small project for his production company. Doby and Sanderson also won a $13,000 grant through the Colgate Entrepreneurs Fund, which awards student-entrepreneurs with a seed grant, incubator space in Hamilton for the summer, and mentorship from experienced entrepreneurs. “We’re going to take this full speed ahead,” said Sanderson, who is an English major. The duo plans to move to Los Angeles to grow their company, which has recently been incorporated in California. “I love that feeling of no net. No matter how big the checks get, there’s a no net-sense of individual entrepreneurship that drives a lot of great art because there’s a sense of survival in it,” Doby said. — Emily Daniel ’18
scene: Spring 2018
L to R: Jonathan Morales ’18, Marc Maggiore ’18, and Jacob Pilawa ’20
major tournaments, wins are important, and players are serious about trying to catch ’em all. This virtual pastime is making a very real impact on campus. Last fall, the club brought Juan DeBiedma (known by his tag Liquid | “hungrybox”), who was the number one Smash player in the world, to Colgate for four days. Another of the club’s greatest successes happened recently when a play by Jacob Pilawa ’20 attracted more than 15,000 views on EvenMatchupGaming, the largest channel featuring weekly highlights. Moving forward, the club hopes to bring in more speakers and acquire funding for top players to compete in a national collegiate Smash tournament. “It’s really special to create this club from eight people who played in a dorm room,” Morales says. “It means our work has paid off.” — Lauren Hutton ’21
The main event was the Shark Tank–style competition, for which Sharp was one of the panelists. Doby and Sanderson delivered their pitch to the panel of four “sharks” under a strict time limit — an ominous gong sound effect rang through the Hall of Presidents when their two minutes were up.
(“Game on,” continued from pg. 9) featuring guest speakers, and larger tournaments with other schools, including Cornell, the Smash Club has leveled up in a major way. Smash is classified as an esport, which entails professional players, teams, coaches, tournaments, and lucrative careers for top players due to merchandise deals, advertising on websites and livestreaming platforms, sponsorships, and prize money. With more than $50,000 up for grabs at
Andrew Daddio (3)
work & play
The art of entrepreneurship
When Jailekha Zutshi ’21 walked through the streets in her hometown of Delhi, India, she felt unsafe. Even in broad daylight with people all around, Zutshi says, she constantly felt men’s eyes on her. So, she always kept her phone in hand and her mother on speed dial. “Delhi has a very high rate of sexual violence,” Zutshi explains. (In fact, it is one of the top two worst cities in the world for sexual violence against women, according to Reuters.) There is no ongoing conversation about sexual violence in India, she says. “Every time an assault or a case of rape happens, we’ll talk about it then, and [the topic will] just die down.” Though her generation is more open to talking about sexual assault and violence, Zutshi says, India has a long way to go. Because she felt unsafe participating in the conversation there, she decided to do so here at Colgate. As an intern at Haven, the university’s sexual violence response center, Zutshi is addressing the topic of sexual violence through an initiative that draws upon her childhood passion: dance. “For me, dancing is enjoyable but can also be therapeutic,” she says. “It’s very expressive.”
Back on campus
Zutshi’s project is called “Meraki,” a Greek word used to describe acting with passion, creativity, and soul. She chose the name because it can also mean putting a bit of yourself into what you’re doing. “It’s a workshop for survivors and other students who want to reflect and heal. It’s a chance to come together to improvise and create their own choreography,” she says. “The movements narrate the story they choose to share, thereby leaving a piece of themselves in their work.” The sessions consist of three parts: basic warm-ups, improvisations, and a participant-chosen activity. Students warm up with stretches that loosen up joints and key muscle groups. With the improvisation section, they dance to one piece of music, following their own rhythms. For the last activity, dancers
“What are you doing to make a difference in this world? What are you doing to live out Dr. King’s dreams?” Chinyere Okogeri ’18 (pictured) posed these questions to the audience during her keynote speech at the opening ceremony for Colgate’s Martin Luther King Jr. Week. The week of events also included a keynote by Loretta Ross, cofounder of the SisterSong Women of Color Reproductive Justice Collective; workshops and discussions led by professors and staff members; and a day of service when students volunteered at local organizations.
can choose either to improvise to different songs individually or in a group or to have a discussion about how the dancing made them feel. Zutshi plays varying types of music, from upbeat tunes to slower, mellow songs. For now, none of the songs include lyrics, but she’s considering adding music with words in future sessions.
“For me, dancing is enjoyable but can also be therapeutic.” — Jailekha Zutshi ’21 “There’s an overwhelming number of songs about romance, and I didn’t want that to influence their movements in any way,” Zutshi says. “The goal is, if they want to disconnect from their lives at Colgate, or even outside of that, for any period of time, they should be able to do so.” Anna Brown ’21, who attended a workshop in January, notes, at the beginning of the sessions, it took some time for people to become comfortable. But once participants started dancing, the room relaxed. “People really got into it,” she says. Like Zutshi, she feels the sessions are fun, but they’re also reverent. Meraki allows the dancers to express feelings through motions, not words, Zutshi says, and the vibe at each session is deeply personal. “I think Meraki allows people to be comfortable being by themselves and experiencing their own stories, even while being in the midst of everyone else,” she says. “It’s just you, your breath, your body, and the music. That’s it.” — Rebecca Docter
A few years ago, Krystle McLaughlin ’06 realized she has what’s called an aptonym. “It’s when you have a job suited to your name,” says McLaughlin, who uses crystals in much of her scientific work. “I love it. It’s a great way of helping people remember my name at a conference.” Students at Colgate, no doubt, remembered her after an engaging appearance at SophoMORE Connections — the university’s annual career services event in January — when she spoke about her work as a chemistry professor at Vassar College. To make her crystals, McLaughlin grows proteins in just the right conditions to form beautiful stacks of molecules. Afterward, she analyzes those crystals by subjecting them to X-rays in an attempt to solve the protein’s structure. This process can help with the design of specialized bacteria battlers that may one day be injected inside the body. All of the projects in McLaughlin’s lab focus on using microbial protein structure to help create therapies that can treat bacterial infections but that do not harm the “good” bacteria inside our bodies. Some of her work focuses on figuring out how to stop the transfer of antibiotic resistance in infections such as staph bacteria infections and Salmonella. In addition, she is examining phages, viruses that can target and kill a particular strain of bacteria with surgical precision, leaving the rest of our microbiome intact. At a time when more and more bacteria are becoming resistant to antibiotics, new tools to potentially combat diseases are particularly valuable. McLaughlin and her students grow and analyze crystals of essential proteins from these microbes in order to better understand their structures. She then packs those crystals in liquid nitrogen to send to a synchrotron — a huge facility that accelerates beams of electrons to generate X-rays — to figure out what she has. “I am hoping to discover something unique about the proteins. For phages, maybe they hold the key to the specificity, so we can tune the phages to infect any strain we want.” McLaughlin grew up in Trinidad and Tobago, where she started an environmental club at her school to address rising sea levels and endangered sea turtles. There she met Colgate women’s studies professor Joan Mandle and economics professor Jim Mandle, who used to come to the islands to run basketball referee clinics. “I was the kid who read books on the basketball court,” McLaughlin remembers. Seeing her interest in science, the Mandles encouraged her to apply to Colgate. She gravitated toward physics but found she was the only woman — and the only woman of color — in the upper-level classes. Today, McLaughlin notes, there is still a lack of diversity in the sciences. To help address that issue, McLaughlin chairs the Liaison Committee on Underrepresented Minorities at the American Institute of Physics. “At every stage, it gets harder and harder for women and people of color in science because there are less and less people like them,” she says. “If you are going to imagine staying in the field, you need to see yourself represented, to know that science is a place for you as well.” Through her efforts and recent appearance at Colgate, McLaughlin is serving as a role model for others interested in pursuing the sciences. — Michael Blanding
News and views for the Colgate community
Using crystals to combat bacterial infections
Back to school at nearly 60 By Michael R. Costa (née Costagliola) ’80 I never imagined when I graduated from Colgate in 1980 that one day — more than 40 years after I first drove through the Chenango Valley — I would return to college. This time, the campus would be in Silicon Valley, and I would be nearly 60 years old. The climate was different, but so much of the yearlong experience I recently completed at Stanford University was as fulfilling intellectually and socially as that first year at Colgate. And, Colgate connections happened there on a regular basis. At Stanford, I was one of 25 Distinguished Careers Institute (DCI) Fellows. The other fellows jokingly described it as “A gap year for adults.” The Stanford DCI program is for individuals from all walks of life who seek to transform themselves for roles with social impact at the local, national, and global levels. We spent a year in residency at Stanford to pursue academic interests, engage in intergenerational learning, and chart the next chapter in our life journey. The program’s logic is simple: We are living longer lives and have a passion in contributing beyond the traditional retirement age. I had spent nearly 25 years as an investment banker and was looking to pivot and perhaps do something more socially impactful. Having lived, been educated, and worked in a geographic area limited to 40°-42° latitude and 71°-75° longitude (the metropolitan New York area, Hamilton, N.Y., and Boston, Mass.), I wanted to be immersed in the “disruptive technology” culture of Silicon Valley and witness its impact on industries in which I am involved: media and post-secondary higher education. My post–investment banking career includes serving on the boards of directors at Scripps Networks (a media company best known for The Food Network and HGTV) and Dean College, a small, private college outside of Boston. I started investigating the Stanford program and discovered that Patricia J. Gumport ’80, who was in my first-year seminar at Colgate, was a DCI faculty adviser. I had lost touch with her, but Paula Rooney, who is Dean’s current president and was coincidentally the dean of freshman at Colgate during my student years, had not. She reached out to Dr. Gumport to gauge whether DCI would be a good fit for me and vice versa. Soon, I found myself applying for the program, and I was eventually admitted as a 2017 fellow. Much like Colgate’s orientation week many years ago, the DCI Fellows came together for an orientation in fall 2016 before we kicked off the program in January 2017. We were a diverse group, including a tax judge from London born in Trinidad;
Costa (left) studies with a classmate at Stanford University.
a serial entrepreneur from Sri Lanka living outside Boston; and, of course, another Colgate alumnus, Elliot Slade ’76, who is a hedge fund managing partner. During the orientation, former Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker spoke about her “Life Journey.” If this were an indication of what was to come, I couldn’t wait for January. But before then, I had my first challenge: registering for courses online at the stroke of midnight (3 a.m. New York time), competing against thousands of Stanford
scene: Spring 2018
students who had probably written algorithms to automate the process while they slept. I muddled through and ended up with a course load that reflected being in the heart of Silicon Valley, including Venture Capital at the Graduate School of Business, The Future of Finance (where I would learn what bitcoin was, but unfortunately, not invest), and Entrepreneurial Approaches to Educational Reform. Those courses would be supplemented by twice-weekly DCI seminars, one covering the life journeys of each of the fellows and a luncheon dialogue with Stanford professors. In early January 2017, my wife, Pegeen, and I moved to Palo Alto for a year. Between the course load, the DCI seminars, and all the other speakers/events at Stanford, I was drinking from a fire hose. The quarter raced by. I somehow kept up and enjoyed social events with my DCI fellows. One dinner included an interview with George Shultz, former secretary of Treasury and State, among other cabinet posts. At nearly 97, Secretary Shultz was the epitome of leading a purposeful life well after normal retirement age. Mid-March brought breakfast with Colgate President Brian Casey (hosted by Dan Rosensweig P’15,’17, CEO of Chegg) and a critical mass of Colgate folks in the heart of Silicon Valley. President Casey and I chatted, and I found another ColgateStanford connection. Not only had he attended Stanford Law School, but he also helped coach the women’s swim team.
“Sitting with another DCI fellow among a sea of millennials being taught rock and roll as if it were history may have been one of the year’s academic highlights.” The second quarter kicked in and I revisited those important Colgate liberal arts roots. I enrolled in a history course titled Dante’s World: A Medieval and Renaissance Journey and a music course titled Rock, Sex, and Rebellion. Sitting with another DCI fellow among a sea of millennials being taught rock and roll as if it were history may have been one of the year’s academic highlights. Sprinkled throughout the year were sessions tailored for the DCI fellows. One remarkable session centered on longevity. Another, titled Designing Your Life, was led by a former Apple executive who took us through a three-hour sprint of exercises to tease out where you might go next and how to get there. An afternoon Contemplation Workshop by three former/current Stanford deans of religious life was followed by an instructor-led meditation session. We had been told the year would go by quickly. After a summer back in New York (taking a couple of Stanford online courses to keep the academic momentum going), we returned to Palo Alto for the final quarter. Now it was time to figure out what I would do after the program ended in December. Two things crystallized. Through one seminar, I met the folks at The Brown Institute, a collaboration between The Columbia School of Journalism and The School of Engineering at Stanford that supports new endeavors in media innovation. Going forward, I will be exploring working with the institute as it seeks to help students demonstrate the viability of the innovative media products they create. Also, although I was not expecting to get bit by the entrepreneurial bug, I was. Along with three other DCI fellows, I took an intensive, hands-on course called the Startup Garage, in which students design and test new business concepts that address real-world needs. We focused on the difficulty nontraditional entrepreneurs have in being matched with resources to make their start-ups successful. Through human curation and artificial intelligence, we formed a venture that hopes to continue to disrupt the legacy Silicon Valley model of a small group of venture capitalists determining which entrepreneurs receive the lion’s share of capital. It’s not a company yet, and it may well turn out that its most effective form will be as a social venture. Looking back on the year, if either of these projects takes hold, that will be icing on the cake. For me, the DCI program led, as promised, to a new sense of purpose — if not purposes — and a new community/network. All of that was enhanced by the Colgate connections that popped up during the yearlong journey.
THE GREAT OUTDOORS EST. 1914
Colgate Outing Club 1919 BY REBECCA DOCTER
Nestled in the Chenango Valley, with a campus surrounded by sugar maples and northern red oaks, Colgate’s campus is stunning. So, it makes sense that Colgate students like to be outside. More than a century ago, students formally realized this, coming together to create a club for outdoor activities. While it’s had various iterations throughout the years, the organization thrives today as the Outdoor Education Program. Special Collections and University Archives (3)
On your mark Following in the footsteps of Dartmouth Outing Club, Colgate founded its own organization for enjoying the outdoors. In 1914, sociology and economics professor E.W. Goodhue (a Dartmouth man himself) started the Colgate Outing Club, which focused on winter sports, such as skirunning, snowshoeing, and tobogganing.
The hearse The 1952–53 Outing Club needed a way to get around, and the most obvious answer (to them), with a large backseat fit for several, was a hearse. The 1954–55 club discontinued its use after it obtained a grant, and a less-morbid station wagon was acquired for off-campus trips.
Off to the Adirondacks In spring 1915, the group took its inaugural Adirondacks excursion. The trip to Big Moose Lake cost $8/person (camping and railroad expenses), and conditions were favorable for skiing and snowshoeing. The Great War While the club still existed during wartime, its activities would “assume military nature,” according to the Dec. 5, 1917, Colgate Maroon. Members learned the art of map drawing, studied the “contour of the land with special emphasis on its strategic value in war,” and went on hikes that consisted of patrolling duty. After the war, the club reverted back to normal. Call for a new club In the early ’30s, the Outing Club was alive and well, but according to a Maroon letter to the editor on Jan. 12, 1937, the latter half of the decade wasn’t so active. “We sit around in rooms overheated by steam radiators and holler to the high heavens about Hamilton’s horrible climate,” wrote “a junior.” The Ski Club, founded in 1935, reorganized in 1940 to become the Outing Club, but when the United States entered World War II, many college outing clubs went dormant — including Colgate’s.
The times, they are a-changin’ The club remained active through the ’50s and ’60s, with highlights including merging with the sailing club, trips to Colgate Camp, and the formation of the Outing Club Ski Team. It made another resurgence in the ’80s, boasting year-round activities such as whitewater rafting and spelunking. In the mid-’80s, the recreational sports department created what would become Outdoor Education, adding an instructional aspect, and the two had a brief overlap until the Outing Club eventually ceased. In 1988, Wilderness Adventure, a preorientation program, was created.
Today’s the day Even before they arrive at Colgate, first-years can get involved with Outdoor Education through Wilderness Adventure. The 150–200 new Raiders form friendships and learn outdoor skills while traveling in small groups to hike, climb, paddle, or bike in central New York. If students want to take it up a notch, they can complete nine months of training (made up of several excursions, including backpacking and ice climbing) to become student staff members. The organization offers both quick trips (some for physical education credits) and long hauls, from whitewater kayaking to outdoor rock climbing. Besides physical activities, Outdoor Education teaches skills such as leadership and a sense of cultural and natural history.
13 Page 13 is the showplace
for Colgate tradition, history, and school spirit. 1975
life of the mind 14
When Reader’s Digest was looking to create a list of the world’s most famous lost treasures, they turned to Robert Garland, the Roy D. and Margaret B. Wooster Professor of the classics. Garland offered one of his favorite pieces of missing history: a 2,000-year-old menorah. In 70 AD, the Romans swiped the sacred sconce from the Temple of Jerusalem. “We know they brought it to Rome,” Garland told Reader’s Digest, because it’s “depicted on the frieze on the Arch of Titus in the Forum.” Some say it was brought to the Temple of Peace in Rome, but after that, its trail runs cold.
scene: Spring 2018
Professor and student publish paper on transitions to adulthood
How do kin support young women in their transitions to adulthood? Research by sociology professor Janel Benson and Anastassia Bougakova ’16 shows the complex ways that kin networks (including relatives and familial adults outside of the nuclear family) help young women during this critical time. By drawing on qualitative and quantitative data, Benson and Bougakova were better able to understand the role that kin networks play in the lives of women of different family structures and economic statuses. The article, “Kin Networks and Mobility in the Transition to Adulthood,” was recently published in Advances in Child Development and Behavior. Past research has shown that family structure can accelerate or decelerate transitions into adulthood. Benson and Bougakova found that growing up in a home without two biological parents is not always associated with an accelerated transition into adulthood. Emotional and financial
support from adults outside the nuclear family created a sense of stability for young women growing up in homes without two biological parents. The researchers also found that, in turn, young women who received support from their extended kin networks dedicated more time to their kin. Young women who provided caregiving and financial support to their families considered themselves adults and were more likely to work and live independently. “Extended kin networks are not inferior to nuclear family structures. The way that extended kin are both supporting and hindering young women’s transitions into adulthood is complex and dependent on each situation,” Bougakova explains. “A lot of these women are making important transitions into adulthood because of the support they receive from their extended kin. They’re not necessarily hurt by the fact that they may not have a complete nuclear family or that their nuclear family might have less resources; extended kin really fill that gap.” In writing the article, Benson and Bougakova drew upon survey data and
interviews with young women from the Philadelphia Educational Longitudinal Study. Benson helped conduct this research during her graduate study at the University of Pennsylvania. Bougakova first did research with Benson during a faculty-initiated research fellowship program in summer 2014. During that summer, Benson suggested that each student develop a research question using the Philadelphia Educational Longitudinal Study data. While Benson’s research focus is on sources of risk and resiliency from adolescence to the transition to adulthood, Bougakova’s research question about kin support networks was the genesis of the article. “It became clear that this was a project Anastassia was passionate about,” Benson says. From then, Benson treated Bougakova like a graduate student. Bougakova worked independently and submitted her progress to Benson for feedback. Together, they presented their research at the Society for the Longitudinal Life Course Studies Conference in Dublin, Ireland, in 2015. Bougakova was a Benton Scholar while at Colgate; the scholarship program helped to fund her trip to the conference. “Getting to work on a real research project by asking my own question and forming my own conclusions as early as sophomore year was awesome,” Bougakova says. — Melanie Oliva ’18
Balmuth teaching award times two
For the first time in the history of the Jerome Balmuth Award for Teaching and Student Engagement, two professors have been honored. This year’s recipients were Chris Vecsey and Lourdes Rojas-Paiewonsky. “In the face of an exceptional collection of rich and textured letters of support, the award committee made an extraordinary and unprecedented decision to select two faculty recipients this year,” Provost and Dean of the Faculty Tracey Hucks ’87, MA’90 says. “That Colgate is home to such outstanding educators would have come as no surprise to our friend and colleague Professor Jerry Balmuth.”
Blast from the past
Franklin Roosevelt, Edward R. Murrow, and Winston Churchill have all taken to Twitter — ditching the traditional microphone and podium — to post historymaking statements. Through a class project for Advent of the Atomic Bomb, students have been role playing and making the most of their characters on the social media platform. From the devastatingly serious to tongue-in-cheek, posts under the names of major players in this era serve as a timeline for the nuclear events. This is the third semester Karen Harpp, professor of geology and peace and conflict studies, has instructed students to use this modern tool in order to become better acquainted with the past. Take a moment to step into the Twitter time machine:
What’s in a name
It’s common to name your child after a mentor, but what about a plant? Weston Testo ’12 recently named a newly discovered species of fern after biology professor Eddie Watkins. “He was an incredible mentor, not just about ferns, but also how to navigate college,” Testo says. He also named the fern, called Pityrogramma x watkinsii, after Watkins because of the professor’s role in the global research community, especially in Costa Rica, where the fern was found. In college, Watkins introduced Testo to ferns in the country and taught him how to identify the plants. Testo and Watkins have published seven papers together, four of which were during Testo’s undergraduate years.
Get to Know: Political Science Professor Sam Rosenfeld
Rojas-Paiewonsky is the Charles A. Dana Professor of romance languages and literatures and Africana and Latin American studies. Her research interests — and her many published works — revolve around feminist literary criticism, Latin American and Spanish women writers, Caribbean literature, and feminism and politics in contemporary Latin America. Before launching her 34-year teaching career at Colgate, Rojas-Paiewonsky earned her BA and MA at the University of California at La Jolla. She received her PhD from SUNY Stony Brook. Vecsey is the Harry Emerson Fosdick Professor of the humanities and Native American studies in the Department of Religion, which he also chairs. A powerful presence in Colgate’s classrooms for the last 35 years, he is the author and editor of more than a dozen books and countless articles on topics related to traditional American Indian religions, American Indian Christianity, American music history, journalism, and religion. Vecsey earned his BA and MA at Hunter College and his PhD at Northwestern University. “Our Balmuth award winners represent nearly 70 years of teaching history at this university,” Hucks says. “Professor Rojas-Paiewonsky and Professor Vecsey have been and continue to be crucial participants in Colgate’s liberal arts mission.” The Balmuth award was created in 2010 through a gift from Mark Siegel ’73 and has now recognized the distinctively successful and transformative teaching, regardless of methodology, of 10 Colgate faculty members.
The modern political arena is marred by increasing animosity among parties — a situation that has been escalating since World War II, with social issues at the forefront of the debate. How did we arrive at this point and, more importantly, who is responsible? Sam Rosenfeld, assistant professor of political science who teaches courses on political and party development, answers these questions in his new book, The Polarizers: Postwar Architects of Our Partisan Era. Rosenfeld traces the development of the “ideologically sorted twoparty system” in the United States since the mid-20th century. Ideological activists — politically involved citizens and groups who demand policies from representatives — have influenced our political system and are primarily responsible for its shifting landscape, Rosenfeld explains. “[Activists] worked deliberately to reshape the parties and reorient how the parties worked in order to make them vessels for issue-driven and ideological politics,” he says. “Those people [as noted in the title] are the protagonists of the book.” Written for a scholarly audience, The Polarizers encourages readers to reconsider the modern political party. Rosenfeld hopes that people are able to acknowledge the dysfunction in the current political system while also “thinking about [the] benefits — or what’s essential — in institutions like parties that peaceably organize conflict in democratic societies.” Parties are necessary for regulating democracy, he argues. “It’s important for Americans to think about parties as not just punching bags … or these demonic forces that need to be tamed or eliminated, but really essential.” An 8-year writing process, The Polarizers began as Rosenfeld’s dissertation while he was working toward his PhD in history at Harvard University. Having grown up in a family of academics, he pursued his interest in recent American history and political science after a stint as a journalist for The American Prospect magazine in Washington, D.C. Prior to coming to Colgate last fall, Rosenfeld taught at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn., and Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., where he now resides. “There’s a great kind of open, gracious attitude to students and faculty interactions here,” he says of Colgate. With The Polarizers gaining widespread media attention, Rosenfeld has widened his circle. He recently published an op-ed in the New York Times and an article in the Boston Review, and among his many appearances, he has been a guest on The Majority Report and the New Books Network podcasts. “You’ve got to savor [the attention] when it happens,” Rosenfeld jokes. “But the initial spate of discussion has been a delight.” — Julia Klein ’19
News and views for the Colgate community
arts & culture
Behind the lens BY REBECCA DOCTER Joe Cocker’s usually curly mop of jet black hair is padded down with sweat after an energetic New York City concert. The musician, a guise of piercing, sleep-deprived eyes and wrinkled forehead, is being interviewed by a journalist in his dressing room; Richard Busch ’63 looks on, through a camera lens. “People — that’s the main subject that I’ve been interested in,” says Busch, who had a 50-plus-year career as a photographer for publications including Life, Esquire, and Time. “I’m endlessly fascinated by people, what they do, how they look, and their gestures and expressions.” Eighteen of his photographs from the ’60s and ’70s are now in the permanent collection of the Museum of the City of New York, many focusing on the individuals in the city that never sleeps. Get to know Busch's subjects through his eyes:
“I’m endlessly fascinated by people, what they do, how they look, and their gestures and expressions.” — Richard Busch ’63 In 1968, the Grateful Dead was in New York for a show. Through the grapevine, Busch found out frontman Jerry Garcia wanted to visit The Cloisters, a branch of The Met specializing in art, architecture, and gardens of medieval Europe. “Garcia, his groupie, and I drove up there, and I spent the afternoon with them. He was relaxed, warm, smart, and a delightful guy to be around.”
Busch snapped this photo of Joe Cocker in the dressing room at the Fillmore East in 1969. It was the same year the singer rocked Woodstock with a cover of the Beatles’ “With a Little Help from My Friends” — the height of his career. “This was a case where I would shoot maybe a whole roll or more of 35mm black-and-white film. In this particular picture, he’s looking intense, deep, and thoughtful. It jumped out at me on the contact sheet.”
scene: Spring 2018
Jimi Hendrix was just coming off the success of “Electric Ladyland” when Busch shot this photo at a studio in Midtown Manhattan. “We set up some mirrors and got a bunch of women to undress and be with him in this complicated mirrored image setting,” Busch recalls. “It was a little wacky, but it was a lot of fun.” Though he shows a glimpse at the vivaciousness of the psychedelic star in the photo, Busch’s interaction with Hendrix was different. “One thing that struck me was how shy he was. His handshake was very soft. It was in direct contrast to the wild man image he projected on stage. He struck me as a fragile person.” Hendrix died not long after the photo was taken.
The first Earth Day on April 22, 1970, drew millions across the nation, and the celebration shut down traffic on New York City’s Madison Avenue. Although Busch photographed high-profile people for magazine assignments, the bulk of his photography was for personal interest — like this photo. He didn’t attend because of the hype surrounding the event, which boasted names like Paul Newman and Ali McGraw, but rather because he wanted to witness the first-ever Earth Day and snap photos of everyday New Yorkers.
John Salangsang / Invision for Producers Guild of America / APImages
Dhana Gilbert ’90 visited New York City in the 1800s. And the 1920s. And 1959. And 1970. She’s no time traveler. But, as a producer, she’s helped turn back time for some of TV’s hit shows, the most recent being The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. The program won the 2018 Golden Globe for Best Musical or Comedy Television Series, and its star, Rachel Brosnahan, won for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy Television Series. Gilbert majored in fine arts and political science at Colgate prior to earning a master’s degree from UCLA film school. She then spent 15 years in filmmaking before she transitioned to high-end TV (programs on the same creative level as feature films), “where you could tell a story in ten hours versus two.” Set in 1959, Maisel follows Miriam “Midge” Maisel, a well-to-do housewife on the Upper West Side, through her separation with her husband. To deal with her heartbreak, Midge turns to comedy and tries to make her way in the stand-up scene. Turning back time in Manhattan wasn’t all bagels and cream cheese. For Maisel, the crew had to be accurate in recreating the era — right down to the lighting.
“Every set, at minimum, took three days to prep in order to make it look like 1959.” — Dhana Gilbert ’90 “There isn’t a light fixture [from then] that works nowadays, there isn’t wiring [that works],” Gilbert says. “Every set, at minimum, took three days to prep in order to make it look like 1959.” Also, there’s a struggle in filming in a city that’s constantly moving. Midge lives smack in the middle of Manhattan. And she’s going to clubs around the city, so she spends a lot of time in the hustle-and-bustle of New York. “If you’re shooting in the Flatiron District, you’re limited to three days to completely change the setting, soup to nuts,” says Gilbert. The last episode in the first season of the show takes place during Christmas, and Gilbert and company were tasked with transforming August in New York City into the holiday. They chipped ice and blew the resulting snow to make the scenes look real. The crew brought in 100 Christmas trees and period-correct cars and clothing. And, they took a month to design 1950s holiday window displays for the department store featured in the episode, complete with animatronic elves and a chubby Santa Claus by the fireplace — all at the base of the Empire State Building. “We stopped traffic for miles,” Gilbert says. “People
Understanding identity through art For this year’s senior studio art projects, Nicole Chen, Kimberly Duncan, and Benji Geisler used art as a platform to highlight meaningful aspects of their identities. From modeling abstract expressionism to understanding the mind and body, each artist asked viewers to look beyond the physicality of their creations and reflect on a deeper and more personal question. On the Edge of Introversion Nicole Chen Oil, acrylic, canvas, and plaster Dimensions variable Can abstraction present a narrative? In this project, I aim to blur the boundary between painting and sculpture by establishing paintings as objects in their own right. With distinct shapes and sizes, the pieces adjoin, clash, contain, and overlap with one another. Through a combination of positive and negative space, they create a rhythm of tension and release that spans the wall. Inspired by abstract expressionism, I experimented with different gestures and investigated how the brushstrokes not only activate the edges, but also are restricted by them. As painter Wassily Kandinsky pointed out in his color theory, blue has an intrinsic inward movement while yellow is outward facing. Informed by and relating to this idea, I seek to reflect upon my own personality through the interplay of blue and yellow.
Mark Williams (3)
The Glorious Ms. Gilbert
H2CO3 Kimberly Duncan Bleach and pencil 18 x 8.5 ft As an environmental studies and studio art double major, my motivation is to minimize the abstract space between daily human activity and displaced impact. In Anthropocene rhetoric, irreversible environmental harms emerge mostly from the actions of privileged humans. By contributing to global outputs of CO2 with our local actions, we are impacting spaces that are geographically distant. Either from denial or complacency, we are not always aware that we are complicit. This piece is not meant to serve as a solution but as an obituary for an intricate ecosystem that we are destroying. Untitled Benji Geisler Archival digital scans 24 x 32 inches Along the borders of a dream, the mind and the body separate. While the mind may transition into a dream unknowingly, the body lingers behind in limbo, never fully passing through. Nevertheless, forms of the body persist. These forms mutate, shift, coalesce, vanish, emerge, and rupture the physical bounds of the body.
News and views for the Colgate community
Visiting This Place
A major exhibition of photographs, This Place explores Israel and the West Bank “as place and metaphor” through the eyes of 12 internationally acclaimed artists. Because the exhibition is divided among four collegiate art galleries, it has presented a perfect opportunity for museum studies students to apply what they’ve learned outside of the classroom. Professor Liz Marlowe, the founder of Colgate’s new museum studies minor, is using This Place as a focal point in her course Museum Exhibitions: Design, Rhetoric, and Interpretation. The first stop of the four-museum tour was the Wellin Museum of Art at Hamilton College. Frédéric Brenner, the French initiator of This Place, spoke to Colgate and Hamilton College students in the Wellin on March 8. Matt Brogan, the project’s director, also spoke and answered questions about the works on display. Brenner’s work features portraits of families whom the artist got to know while visiting Israel and the West Bank. One photograph, The Aslan Levi Family (2010), features a family whose serious expressions seem to mask internal conflicts. Brenner chose to display the image without a descriptive label so that the family’s situation would
Har Homa, East Jerusalem, 2009, archival pigment print Rosalind Fox Solomon / Courtesy of Bruce Silverstein Gallery
arts & culture
Untitled, 2011, archival pigment print
thought [the snow] was real. It was probably one of the biggest things we’ve done in New York.” Of all the shows she’s worked on, including Boardwalk Empire and Vinyl, Gilbert’s favorite era to recreate was in Maisel. “Everything was perfectly manicured,” she says of the time. Imagine New York City in 1959: Glittering Rockettes are performing at Radio City Music Hall. Bobby Darin’s “Mack the Knife” is crooning fuzzily through vintage car speakers. Women in tea-length skirts walk down the street in clicking heels. Like Maisel’s Midge, who pushed boundaries as a woman entering the traditionally male world of comedy, the show makes a statement: It is created, written, and directed by a woman. “It was empowering,” Gilbert says. “It was creatively exciting because the voices in the room were in sync with our lead character.” As a producer, Gilbert is responsible for almost every aspect of a show. It’s a lifestyle choice, and it’s not always a fashionable one. When shooting Boardwalk on Staten Island in 100-degree heat, the team had to crack the fire hydrants because Gilbert was worried about the crew getting too hot. “It’s not glamorous at all when you’re sweating on the sidewalk,” she says. But she wouldn’t trade that sidewalk for the world. — Rebecca Docter
Untitled, chromogenic print
scene: Spring 2018
remain mysterious to the viewer. During his talk, Brenner discussed the responsibility he feels toward the people he photographs: “I see what they are wrestling with, and I cannot betray them. After all, photography is an act of love.” A few weeks later, Marlowe’s class piled back in a bus to visit the Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College before moving on to the University Art Museum at SUNY Albany. At each museum, Marlowe asked her students to explore the displays in groups of two or three, find something interesting, and then speak about it to the rest of the class. The four exhibitions displayed similar works in very different ways. For example, the intimate photographs of Wendy Ewald were mounted adjacent to barren landscapes by Stephen Shore at the Wellin Museum, which created an interesting tension. These two artists were displayed in entirely separate rooms at the Tang Museum. Professor Marlowe’s students used their museum theory training to analyze these curatorial choices. “Visiting the other three portions of This Place has revealed confusing questions of authorship for me,” history major Erin Burke ’18 said. “All of the
“The movie’s power was the fact that we were able to tell the story and also protect Rodchenkov.” — David Fialkow ’81
Mark Ralston / AFP / Getty Images
exhibitions were provided with standardized wall texts, but I have learned that curators can override those standardized text panels to create new meanings for the show.” A semester-long topic of discussion has been the controversial nature of This Place. The show has been criticized for featuring many American and European photographers, but no Israelis or Palestinians. This absence raises questions about neo-colonialism and Islamophobia, among other potential biases. Each museum did something to address the controversy. The Wellin Museum contains a classroom space called WellinWorks, where critical dialogue occurs alongside This Place. The museum at SUNY Albany mounted contextualizing object labels written by an art history student and set out a binder where visitors could write down their opinions of the show. For its part, Colgate invited several scholars to campus to speak on the complicated issues at hand. One such visitor was Ian Lustick, a University of Pennsylvania professor who specializes in the history and politics of the Middle East. Lustick gave a talk called “In Place, Out of Place, Out of Space: Palestinians and Jews in the West Bank” on March 29. “It has been interesting to see what each of the other schools has done with this exhibition as well as how they used the gallery spaces available to them,” physics major Zoe Sale ’18 said. “Each of the photographers focused on different aspects of Israel and Palestine, and each seemed to have a different understanding of the conflict. It’s a lot easier to understand the controversies after seeing the works of all the photographers.” — Emily Daniel ’18
David Fialkow ’81 (far left) accepts the Oscar for Best Documentary feature for Icarus at the 90th Annual Academy Awards.
level both on and off performanceenhancing drugs. But, during filming, Fogel wasn’t actually performing better on performance-enhancing drugs, so “that story and aspect of the movie was not that interesting,” says Fialkow, who spends his days as the managing director and co-founder of the venture capital firm General Catalyst. Like his shoes alter the tone of his outfit, Fialkow’s interjection in Icarus caused the film to become something new. While in Switzerland watching Fogel race, bikes whizzing past, Fialkow realized the film might flop if it didn’t take a different direction. So, along
with director Fogel and co-producers Dan Cogan and Jim Swartz, he made the decision to pivot to Grigory Rodchenkov, the Russian whistleblower who would eventually expose Russia’s state-sponsored doping program. As the director of Russia’s anti-doping laboratory, Rodchenkov was at the forefront of the conspiracy that led to thousands of athletes doping under the radar. Rodchenkov was initially involved in Icarus as an aid to Fogel — he taught him how to dope without getting caught. Then, he emerged as a whistleblower, willing to expose the program. The makers of Icarus saw their chance and took it. “A lot of this has to do with luck,” Fialkow says. Fialkow’s son, Julian Fialkow ’17, was also at Fogel’s race in Switzerland, and he helped mediate the conversation about the film’s need to switch courses. The young Fialkow, a biking fanatic like his father, explained to Fogel that his father’s experience as a venture capitalist entails helping businesses make changes, so he assured Fogel that there’s always a plan B and the film would still be a success. Eugene Young ’81, a TV producer who helped make American Idol and other TV shows, also assisted on the film.
Once the direction of the film shifted, the next step “was supporting the whistleblower [so] people who want to tell a story of truth can do so without fear of physical or political harm,” Fialkow says. “Rodchenkov coming forward was super important because nobody had ever been a whistleblower, and the movie’s power was the fact that we were able to tell the story and also protect Rodchenkov.” The film is now available for streaming on Netflix, which reaches about 118 million subscribers around the globe. Rodchenkov is in protective custody in the United States. The film gets its name from Greek mythology’s cautionary tale of Icarus and his father, Daedalus. The two are escaping from Crete by way of false wings made from wax and feathers. Daedalus warns Icarus not to be overly complacent or confident and fly too low or high, but Icarus does the latter. His wings melt, and he falls into the sea and drowns. In this film, Rodchenkov might play Daedalus, whose initial cover-up would make the state-sponsored doping mechanism and those behind it feel secure in their actions. Only, the film is the sun. — Rebecca Docter
Exposing Russian doping
He has a head of silver curly hair, and as your eyes move down his frame, you see a perfectly tailored black suit. But then there are his shoes. Creating pause, the Ferragamo red and purple chevron loafers are bold. And on a stage in front of millions of viewers, people notice. It’s the Oscars, after all. Everyone is watching. Producer David Fialkow ’81, along with his co-producers, accepted the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature in March. His film, Icarus, exposed the Russian doping scandal that would lead to the country’s expulsion from the 2018 winter Olympics. The filmmaking process started in 2014 and was intended to be a film about director Bryan Fogel seeing the differences between cycling at an elite
A scene from Icarus featuring Bryan Fogel
News and views for the Colgate community
The brief: sports edition
From Raider to Bulldog. Vice President and Director of Athletics Victoria Chun ’91, MA’94 is off to the Ivies. She was named the director of athletics at Yale University, effective July 1. Chun was recently named Division I FCS Under Armour Athletics Director of the Year.
forward Breanne Wilson-Bennett ’18 said. “The game plan is always the same no matter if we’re high or low. We just try and do what we do, and that brought us success.” Wilson-Bennett scored a personal achievement during the first game in the Frozen Four. In the game against No. 2 Wisconsin, she recorded her first career hat trick — just the seventh in NCAA women’s Frozen Four history. Head Coach Greg Fargo also celebrated a personal victory: He was named USCHO.com Women’s Division I Coach of the Year and awarded the title of 2017–18 CCM/ American Hockey Coaches Association Women’s Division I National Coach of the Year. For Raiders graduating this spring, the tournament was an especially reverent opportunity. Seven seniors — Wilson-Bennett, Kaila Pinkney, Shelby Perry, Megan Sullivan, Ellie DeCaprio, Annika Zalewski, and Lauren Wildfang — saw the team transform throughout their four years. The Raiders won only The Colgate community cheered on the women’s ice hockey team as they departed for seven games in these Colgate women’s ice hockey took a shot at the NCAA championship in the final game against No. 1 Clarkson in March. Although the Raiders lost 2-1 in overtime, the team boasted several milestones in Minneapolis. This postseason was Colgate’s best in program history, with 34 victories, a regular-season ECAC Hockey title, an appearance in the conference title game, and an NCAA Tournament bid. The final game was also the second longest in the tournament’s history. “All year we had ups and downs,”
The women’s ice hockey team celebrates a win against Wisconsin in the NCAA semifinals.
Minneapolis, Minn., to compete in the Frozen Four.
scene: Spring 2018
“He’s the one who first got me into hockey... He gives me advice and his thoughts on the game.” — Kyle Baun ’16 talks to SportingNews about following in his grandfather Bobby Baun’s footsteps by joining the Toronto Maple Leafs. Picked by his peers. Men's basketball head coach Matt Langel was voted as the 2018 Patriot League Coach of the Year, while four Raiders collected All-Patriot League honors. Solid gold. Men’s ice hockey goaltender Colton Point ’20 and Team Canada won the gold medal and were crowned champions at the IIHF World Junior Championships. Point is the first Colgate men’s ice hockey player to win a gold medal at the World Junior Championships since the tournament’s inception in 1974. Good game. Jesse Winchester ’08, head coach of the Brockville Braves, was named Coach of the Year by the Central Canada Hockey League. “He brings a fire every day to the ice,” Braves goaltender Justin Everson told ChooseCornwall.ca. “Even though so much has changed since I was here, it still felt very familiar and very much like I spent time at a place I enjoyed being at.” — Dorothy Donaldson ’05, a former softball player, on coming back to campus for the Hall of Honor Induction Ceremony in September
Fan spotlights with Vicky Chun ’91, senior associate athletic director seniors’ first year, and in their senior season, the team finished as national runners-up. “We brought [this group] in and you could see that things were changing with them,” Fargo said. “[They did] all of the right things day in and day out and [did] not waver from that. More than ever, we had the right people at the right time for our program.”
Julia Vandyk ’19 is a biology major from Cambridge, Ontario, who hopes to pursue a career in optometry after graduation.
Rise in academic honor roll
The 2017 Raider Academic Honor Roll comprises 491 student-athletes, cheerleaders, and student trainers. To be eligible, members had to achieve a grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.25; this year’s class comprises 42 who achieved perfect 4.0 GPAs in at least one semester last year. Six student-athletes achieved 4.0s in both the spring and fall semesters: Kelly Haberl ’18 (women’s lacrosse), Aidan Kutner ’18 (men’s cross country/track and field), Denise Larson ’19 (women’s cross country/track and field), Bruno Scodari ’18 (men’s soccer), Sebastian Weberg ’18 (men’s hockey), and Kelly Klein ’18 (women’s tennis). This year’s total number of honorroll recipients represents a 6.5 percent increase over last year’s 461 members. Angela Marathakis, assistant athletic director and director of Student-Athlete Academic Services, served as master of ceremonies. The keynote speaker was Provost and Dean of the Faculty Tracey Hucks ’87, MA’90. Jenn Lutman, director of the Writing and Speaking Center, presented the 4.0 awards. Also joining the student-athletes to honor their academic achievements were President Brian W. Casey and Vice President and Director of Athletics Victoria M. Chun ’91, MA’94, along with other members of the President’s Cabinet, faculty, faculty liaisons, athletic administrators, coaches, and staff.
Will Rayman ’20 (forefront) led the Raiders in scoring with 22 points during the Patriot League Semifinals against Holy Cross (Colgate won 62–55).
Historic season for men’s basketball
The men’s basketball team’s valiant comeback attempt came up just short in a 72–68 loss against University of San Francisco in the first round of the College Basketball Invitational March 14. Colgate’s historic season came to a close, but not before the Raiders set a program record. Here are the highlights: — Program-record 19 wins — First national postseason appearance since a pair of NCAA Tournament showings in 1995 and 1996 — 13 home wins; ties program record and marks the most in 91 years (1926–27) — First Patriot League Championship game appearance since 2008 — First overall winning season since 2007–08
Trevor Cosgrove ’21 (#24) scored the first goal in the 3–1 win against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute during game one of the ECAC Hockey Quarterfinals. The team’s 2017–18 season concluded March 11 when the team fell against Clarkson in game three. Finishing with a 17-17-6 record, the Raiders achieved their most wins since the 2014–2015 season — the last time they advanced to the league quarterfinals.
Playing it cool A few days after returning from the NCAA women’s ice hockey championship in Minneapolis, goalie Julia Vandyk ’19 sat down with the Scene to reflect on her career. When did you start playing hockey? Around age 6. I wanted to be a goalie from the start, but my dad was a goalie and wouldn’t let me. He understood the pressure and wanted to protect me. When I was 11 or 12, my parents finally allowed me to become a goalie and I was the happiest kid ever. Do you ever find it difficult to handle the pressure? The mental side of the game is the most challenging part. It’s important to not dwell on goals. If you get scored on, the only thing that matters is how you respond. You don’t want it to get in your head. I’ve had issues with that in the past. How did you overcome that? We have a team psychologist, Bruce Crowley. He really helped me this season to focus on being in the moment, not worry about things I can’t control, and play free. I tend to overthink, and I’m hard on myself. He’s helped me develop strategies to perform at my best. Like what? When someone scores on me, I’m allowed to think about the goal for a couple of seconds, and then there’s something I do that signals me to move on. Right before the next face-off, I tap my post, and then I’m not allowed to think about it again. How did you feel when you won the semifinals? I was completely exhausted and relieved. There was so much hype about that game because we were playing Wisconsin, the team that was ranked number one for most of the season. I knew we had the capability to win. When we scored that final goal after almost two full overtime periods, I started crying because I was so happy our team had done it. In the finals, when Clarkson scored the winning goal, you fell to your knees and cried. What were you feeling? It was deflating. In the moment, it felt like the worst thing in the world had just happened. And it felt like I’d let down my team. That whole night, I was not thinking about all the accomplishments and broken records. I was just thinking about that one terrible moment. [Afterward,] the team spent every night together. We are really grateful and proud. There is a consensus that no one would trade the memories and experiences we’ve shared for a national championship win. — Interview by Sara Furlong
News and views for the Colgate community
new, noted , & quoted
Books, music & film Information is provided by publishers, authors, and artists.
Common Sense Philosophy Robert M. Craig ’63 (Yorkshire Publishing)
Super Troopers 2
Written by and starring Jay Chandrasekhar ’90, Kevin Heffernan ’90, Steve Lemme ’91, Erik Stolhanske ’91, and Paul Soter ’91 The troopers are back by popular demand with a follow-up to the cult comedy Super Troopers. When an international border dispute arises between the United States and Canada, the Super Troopers are called in to set up a new highway patrol station in the area. Unconventional police work follows, and the result is Super Troopers 2, directed by Jay Chandrasekhar ’90. The film was released, appropriately, on 4/20.
Fresh from the Homestretch: Recipes from Pro & Elite Athletes at Homestretch Foundation
Fresh from the Homestretch is a compilation of recipes — featuring dishes such as Thai salmon curry — by female professional cyclists at the Homestretch Foundation. Opened in 2017, the foundation provides free housing for female pro cyclists struggling with the gender pay gap. In the first 10 months, the nonprofit organization assisted 24 athletes from 9 countries in 5 disciplines of professional cycling. During that time, the athletes aimed to cook meals that fueled their athletic goals, tasted great, and were simple to make. This new cookbook shares those recipes, and the proceeds go to Homestretch. The foundation won Best Documentary Short at the 2018 Worldwide Women’s Film Festival for the documentary Homestretch Foundation: Together we all move forward.
scene: Spring 2018
Timothy P. Brown MA ’83 (Brown House Publishing)
Set in the context of the evolving game of football and America’s mobilization for World War I, Fields of Friendly Strife tells the story of the players and teams from the military training camps who played in the 1918 and 1919 Rose Bowls. It follows teams from Camp Lewis and Mare Island through the 1917 season, culminating in the 1918 Rose Bowl, before the players complete their training and ship to Europe. The book tracks these men after the war, tracing their effect on the game of football — including the development of the NFL — as well as America’s military.
Kathryn Bertine ’97 (CreateSpace)
Fields of Friendly Strife: The Doughboys and Sailors of the WWI Rose Bowls
This new series of essays by Robert M. Craig, Northwestern University professor emeritus, explores common sense through a philosophical lens. Common sense philosophy uses our natural reasoning capacity, which makes judgments about statements or propositions. Reasoning is a starting point because it is impossible to prove reason using our reason. Our common sense does not challenge whether we can think; rather, it uses our thinking in exploring important questions. The current volume explores important philosophical issues, like how we think and reason, how we should live, and how these issues interact with society at large.
The Man in the Crooked Hat Harry Dolan ’88 (Putnam)
Jack Pellum has spent two years searching for the man he believes murdered his wife — a man he last saw wearing a pea coat and a fedora. Then a local writer commits suicide, leaving behind a cryptic message: “There’s a killer, and he wears a crooked hat.” Following this slender lead, Jack begins a journey through a labyrinth of murders dating back 20 years. Each step he takes brings him closer to the truth — and to a killer who will do whatever it takes to cover up his crimes.
The Storm King
Brendan Duffy ’08 (Random House Books) Nate McHale has assembled the kind of life most people would envy. After a tumultuous youth marked by his inexplicable survival of a devastating tragedy, Nate left his Adirondack hometown of Greystone Lake and never looked back. Fourteen years later, he’s become a
respected New York City surgeon, devoted husband, and loving father. When a body is discovered deep in the forests that surround Greystone Lake, Nate must navigate a tense landscape of secrets and suspicion, resentments and guilt. He reconnects with estranged friends and old enemies, and he encounters strangers who seem to know impossible things about him — meanwhile, escalating acts of violence echo events from Nate’s own past. Haunting every moment is the town’s sinister history and the memory of wild, beautiful Lucy Bennett, with whom Nate is forever linked by horrific loss and youthful passion.
Demography of Refugee and Forced Migration Co-edited by Ellen Percy Kraly, geography professor (Springer)
This comprehensive volume presents current research on how demography can contribute to generating scientific knowledge and evidence concerning refugees and forced migration. It offers evidencebased policy recommendations on protection for forced migrants and reception of refugees. The book also reveals the determinants and consequences of migration for origin and destination regions and communities. Refugee and other forced migrations have increased substantially in scale, complexity, and diversity in recent decades. These changes challenge traditional approaches in response to refugee and other forced migration situations and protection of refugees.
The Polarizers: Postwar Architects of Our Partisan Era Sam Rosenfeld, political science professor (University of Chicago Press) Even in this most partisan and dysfunctional of eras, we can all agree on one thing: Washington is broken, Sam Rosenfeld asserts in his
new book. In The Polarizers, Rosenfeld details why bipartisanship was seen as a problem in the period after World War II and how polarization was then cast as the solution. Republicans and Democrats feared that they were becoming too similar, and that a mushy consensus imperiled their agendas and even American democracy itself. Thus began a deliberate move to match ideology with party label. Rosenfeld reveals the specific politicians, intellectuals, and operatives who worked together to heighten partisan discord, showing that our system today is not (solely) a product of gradual structural shifts but of deliberate actions motivated by specific agendas. The Polarizers challenges and overturns our conventional narrative about partisanship, but perhaps most importantly, it points us toward a new consensus: If we deliberately created today’s dysfunctional environment, we can deliberately change it.
Rwanda: From Genocide to Precarious Peace
Susan Thomson, peace and conflict studies professor (Yale University Press) The brutal civil war between Hutu and Tutsi factions in Rwanda ended in 1994 when the Rwandan Patriotic Front came to power and embarked on an ambitious social, political, and economic project to remake the devastated central-east African nation. Susan Thomson, who witnessed the hostilities firsthand, has written a modern history of the country, its rulers, and its people, covering the years prior to, during, and following the genocidal conflict. Thomson’s analysis explores the key political events that led to the ascendance of the Rwandan Patriotic Front and its leader, President Paul Kagame. This study examines the country’s transition from war to reconciliation from the perspective of ordinary Rwandan citizens, Tutsi and Hutu alike, and raises serious questions about the stability of the current peace, the methods and motivations of the ruling regime and its troubling ties to the past, and the likelihood of a genocide-free future.
In the media “I can never forgive Jane Fonda.” — David C. Yorck ’66 in the Capital Gazette on Jane Fonda’s famous photo with North Vietnamese soldiers
“A skate cut two tendons in my right wrist. It was a pretty tough way to start…” — Kyle Baun ’18 recounts a setback on his way to the pros for NHL.com
“I never set out to be a sheep and goat photographer.” — RJ Kern ’00 reflecting on his career in Photo District News
“Because you’re not a millennial.” — Jimmy DeCicco ’15 telling Shark Tank’s Robert Herjavec why he doesn’t appreciate DeCicco’s coffee drink Sunniva
“I came up with a phrase that was almost the same thing … Mick Jagger agreed.” — the Hollywood Reporter quotes the recently deceased Robert Arthur ’49, who was music coordinator on The Ed Sullivan Show
“I look forward to continuing to work with the dedicated and skilled people in our office and the brave men and women of our partner law enforcement agencies in the cause of justice for the people of our state and nation.” — John H. Durham ’72 in a prepared statement as he was sworn in as U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut
Also of note:
Inspired by her love for Martha’s Vineyard, Barbara Hayes ’76 penned the children’s book Meet Quincy Quahog of Chappaquiddick about an adventurous clam who lives on the island of Chappaquiddick, Mass. In the film 9, 11… and 13 (available on YouTube), Gary Moler ’73 reminisces about an informal talk on hypnosis with the late George Estabrooks, who was a Colgate psychology professor emeritus and an authority on the subject. Broken into three parts, it also examines the origins of Colgate’s lucky number “13” and hypnotism’s role in recent world events. What’s Santa to do when Rudolf’s nose stops shining bright? In Belinda, a new release by Julian Padowicz ’54, Belinda the goat comes to the rescue. With a battery-operated light strapped to her horns, she leads Santa’s sleigh and, ultimately, saves Christmas.
News and views for the Colgate community
Down to a By Daniel DeVries
scene: Spring 2018
t the NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH (NIH) in Bethesda, Md., Colgate alumni are on the front lines of scientific efforts to combat infectious and chronic diseases ranging from HIV to cancer to Alzheimer’s. Several of these alumni started working in the same labs as students participating in Colgate’s NIH Study Group, which was formed in 1992 and is the only one of its kind in the country. The program affords select students the opportunity to spend an entire semester at the nation’s leading health care research facility, often working side by side with scientists on the cusp of major discoveries. Students interested in medical or health care careers endure a rigorous selection process. Only rising seniors majoring in neuroscience, biology, molecular biology, biochemistry, or chemistry may apply to participate in the program. Students interested in the group are often mentored by professors in those departments, and they must have a solid academic record to ensure they are prepared for the challenges that await at the NIH. “It takes almost a year to select students,” explains Associate Professor of Biology Engda Hagos, who led the group last fall. “We require two or three referrals from professors, and we interview each student and review their applications. We want to know they’ve worked in a lab or have research experience. This is the best place for research, so the students need to be invested in doing the work. It’s not easy.” Now, step into the labs to visit with students in Colgate’s 25th NIH study group and two alumni post-baccalaureate researchers. Erin Huiting ’17 Molecular biology major Evergreen, Colo. IRTA Fellow at National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
IN THESE PHOTOS:
“ I am processing a human blood specimen to be used in an upcoming experiment. This is an HIV negative control that we took; once you spin it down in a centrifuge, it causes a gradient of cell density. At the bottom are the most dense red blood cells, then the ficol liquid the second most dense, and slightly above are the white blood cells, and those are just floating. We suck those up and wash those. At the top is the plasma, and it’s the least dense. This is how we separate the blood cells for further processing.” – Erin Huiting
Erin Huiting spends her days, and sometimes nights, working to find a cure for HIV. “My lab is focused on developing novel therapeutic options aimed at achieving an HIV cure,” Huiting says. “What does ‘cure’ really mean? In this sense, we’re striving for controlling and suppressing the virus in absence of antiretroviral therapy. This is known as the sustained virological remission.” For traditional diseases, a cure would simply involve eliminating the pathogen, but the complication with HIV is how the virus infects immune cells and remains inactive, often persisting without a sign until a patient is taken off of drug therapy, Huiting explains. “So, rather than just finding an antiretroviral therapy that can purge or eliminate the virus, we are looking to control or suppress it,” Huiting says. “We take that bench research and then we develop and conduct phase one human clinical trials. We’re doing comprehensive genetic, transcriptional, virologic, and immunologic analysis and taking what we learn
from those results to develop a safe and effective, scalable therapy.” Now that one of the therapies developed by Huiting’s team has entered stage-one human clinical trials, she is helping to develop the scientific backing for “analytical treatment interruption.” When patients with HIV are going to take part in a clinical trial, they need to be taken off of their traditional drug regimens. Huiting's research is focused on proving that a brief stint away from their daily treatment will be safe for the patients involved. Once approved, participating patients in the clinical trial overseen by Huiting’s team will receive an injection of an HIV-specific immune antibody to try to enhance the immune system’s natural response to the virus. Huiting, whose senior honors thesis focused on an analysis of cells related to a pre-clinical preventive HIV vaccine, says, “The rigor of Colgate really prepared me. I’m working one-on-one with worldrenowned researchers, and along with the people, there are cutting-edge technology and resources here. I could not be more happy.” Post-baccalaureate fellows at the NIH work for one to two years, depending on the lab, and they use that time to hone their analytical skills while preparing for medical or graduate school, which Huiting plans to attend this year.
Photos by Mark DiOrio
News and views for the Colgate community
“It’s like the cells are responding to you, like they’re talking. It’s exciting to see a close mirror of what is happening in the brain in real time right there.” — Jillian Belgrad
Jillian Belgrad ’17 Neuroscience major and biology minor Weston, Mass. Jillian Belgrad is trying to piece together a puzzle that she hopes will reveal an effective treatment for Gulf War Illness, a group of cognitive and motor disorders affecting some military veterans who served in Iraq. “The method I use is calcium imaging,” says Belgrad as she treats a series of rat brain cells with a dye called Fura-2. By examining those cells under a high-powered microscope, Belgrad can calculate the level of calcium in the cell — an element crucial for cognitive function in the brain — to help determine how specific chemicals may be altering brain function. “For intercellular signaling, calcium is its currency,” Belgrad says. “Being able to use calcium to understand how cells behave under different drug treatments is really helpful. We need to know what’s happening before we can determine how to help.” For Belgrad, who is a post-baccalaureate fellow at the NIH, working with brain cells and analyzing the responses to various clinical treatment experiments is like having a conversation. “As it’s happening, it’s like the cells are responding to you, like they’re talking,” she says. “It’s exciting
scene: Spring 2018
to see a close mirror of what is happening in the brain in real time right there.” When Belgrad participated in Colgate’s study group in 2016, she worked in the same lab as renowned researcher R. Douglas Fields. She loved working in a lab where everyone was asking questions and trying to think of new ways to approach difficult questions about the brain. “This lab in particular is focused on glial cells, which is the group of cells that are not neurons in the brain. I worked in [Associate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience] Jun Yoshino’s lab at Colgate, and he loves glial cells, so that wore off on me. Yoshino’s classes prepared me to ask questions and understand how neuroscience and biology tie together.” Once her fellowship concludes, Belgrad will work toward an MD-PhD to continue her love of science and medicine. In the meantime, she’s enjoying working in a place that brings together researchers from so many different fields of science.
“I work in a neurology lab, but I talk with people from cancer labs, kidney labs, and gene regulation labs. It’s powerful to learn science from so many different perspectives,” Belgrad says. “I’m most proud of being able to contribute. It’s nice to have a role in a project where you know the research you’ve done is contributing to the bigger picture. We’re working together to solve different parts of the puzzle to eventually answer the problem.”
IN THESE PHOTOS:
â€œUsing the microscope and fluorescent dyes, calcium imaging allows us to record the internal responses of cells to stimuli in real time. In my lab, I am using calcium imaging to analyze the intracellular responses of a brain cell called oligodendrocytes. The brain is composed of gray matter and white matter. The white matter is formed from the fatty layers of myelin sheath that wrap the axons of neurons. The myelin sheath of the central nervous system is formed by oligodendrocytes. By analyzing the calcium responses of these cells, we can better understand factors that drive myelin plasticity, which is a crucial aspect of cognitive function and development. In these photos, I am preparing samples for calcium imaging and analyzing the dynamic cell responses using a computer program that measures changes in fluorescence.â€? â€“ Jillian Belgrad
“It’s an interesting feeling to think you might be able to affect where science research is going.” — Chris Hingham
Nicole Lue '18, AJ Ward '18, and Kasey Halsey '18 walk to their labs on the campus of the NIH after a short commute on the Metro.
Chris Hingham ’18
Nicole Lue ’18
AJ Ward ’18
Neuroscience major Toms River, N.J.
Neuroscience major and religion minor Norwalk, Conn.
Cellular neuroscience major Sherborn, Mass.
Understanding how the brain is affected by high blood pressure is the focus of the neuroscience lab where Chris Hingham worked during his study group experience. “We’re investigating how brain disorders might be caused by hypertension,” he explains. Dementia and learning disabilities, but also disorders like depression and anxiety could be connected to hypertension. “It’s an interesting feeling to think you might be able to affect where science research is going. When you’re taking classes, it’s fun to think about the applications of what you’re learning. But then getting here and actually applying what you’ve learned in school is a very different feeling — and it’s not easy.”
For Nicole Lue, hearing researchers at the NIH discussing a “bench-to-bedside” approach to research gave added weight to her work studying how specific proteins in the brain relate to Alzheimer’s disease. “You’re working in the lab, you’re pipetting and doing all this stuff, but this could be applied directly to patients,” Lue says. “Because the NIH has a clinical center, there are patients walking around, and these are the people whom your research is affecting.” Part of the appeal of the NIH group — which Lue says attracted her to Colgate when she was looking at colleges — is that participants are actually part of the team developing real treatments. “We’re not just lab techs. We’re part of the projects,” Lue says. “It’s guided by the goals of the lab, but our mentors are saying, this is your project, you get to design the experiments, you conduct the experiments, and you write up the results.” Even though Lue and the other students are immersed in their lab work, they still find time to get away. Study group members live in an apartment complex and take the metro in to work, often solving the Washington Post crossword puzzle together. “We find time to hang out as a study group. We went on a hike this weekend with our professor,” Lue says. “This is a completely unique opportunity that you can’t get at another school.”
Like Erin Huiting ’17, AJ Ward’s lab is focused on HIV treatment, but his work takes a different approach to the virus. He studies CD8 T Cell response to HIV, specifically in people who have lived for more than 20 years with the virus but without signs of deteriorating health. “Their immune system is able to control the infection,” he says. “So, we’re looking at the phenotypes of the immune systems of those people and comparing those to people who get sick and progress normally. We’re seeing all sorts of differences,” Ward says. The hope is that they’ll eventually be able to use that information to create a prophylactic vaccine. As an undergraduate at Colgate, Ward read a few papers about flow cytometry. After just a few weeks as a member of the university’s NIH study group, he uses the lab technique on a regular basis. “Now it’s something I feel very confident about,” Ward says. “We use this machine with a matrix of lasers to excite certain antibodies to tell us the different concentration of proteins in a cell.” Like other students on the study group, Ward attends Colgate classes twice a week after working in the lab. Each class is taught by Professor Engda Hagos; one is focused on cancer biology and treatment, while the other is a journal course in which students share the work they are doing in their labs. “This experience has definitely influenced my career decision,” Ward says. “I want to go to medical school and specialize in infectious disease.”
scene: Spring 2018
“This is the best place for research, so the students need to be invested in doing the work. It’s not easy.” — Professor Engda Hagos
Clockwise from top left: Céline Marlin-Andrews ’18 presents cancer-research findings to fellow Colgate students in one of the group's weekly journal classes. Professor Engda Hagos teaches. AJ Ward ’18 in his lab.
N IH N U M BERS
institutes and centers conducting research
>20,000 people work at the NIH
News and views for the Colgate community
MOMENTOUS Celebrating 50 years of Office of Undergraduate Studies scholars — BY REBECCA DOWNING —
For 50 years, Colgate’s Office of Undergraduate Studies (OUS) Scholars Program has been providing opportunity and academic support to students who have shown talent, creativity, intellect, and determination in the face of significant challenges. We caught up with several alumni to learn how their OUS experiences shaped their lives and careers — starting with the former student who has returned to lead and support Colgate’s teachers. WHEN BEYONCÉ’S LEMONADE came out in 2016, Religion Dispatches — Emory University’s online magazine covering issues at the intersection of religion, politics, and culture — published a “Ten Books to Read” to understand the highly acclaimed visual album. Tracey Hucks’s Yoruba Traditions and African American Religious Nationalism was one of those books. That Hucks’s work — rigorously written for a scholarly audience — has reach in the public domain is an apt metaphor for a scholar, academic, and administrative leader who is down to earth and warmly approachable. Both her grounding in scholarship and her accomplishments in academe, she says, started with her Colgate OUS (then the University Scholars Program) experience and have now brought her full circle back to campus.
TRACEY E. HUCKS ’87, MA’90 Provost and Dean of the Faculty, Colgate University MA, PhD in religions of the Americas, Harvard University Prior professional experience • James D. Vail III Professor and Chair, Africana Studies Department, Davidson College • Professor of Religion and Department Chair, Haverford College Colgate major and concentration: Religion and Africana studies
A scholar’s foundation “The year my class came into OUS, Margaret Darby [writing and rhetoric] taught the writing seminar. The workshopping of our papers and the close care she gave to each of our assignments made a profound impact on me. When I wrote my lengthy scholarly book many years later, I attributed that in part to the skills and confidence I received from my early coursework with Margaret Darby. What was exceptional was that she did not teach according to who she thought we were as students of color. Instead, she taught according to who she thought we could and would be. With those high expectations and standards, the direction to move was upward.”
scene: Spring 2018
Three path-setting moments at Colgate “I am among several Colgate alumni who lost a parent during our undergraduate years. It was an utter devastation to be 19 years old and to lose your mother. I found out in the evening as I was preparing for the Black Student Union dinner. By the next morning, OUS had booked my airline ticket and arranged for
an OUS staff member to drive me to the airport. Also, Chris Vecsey — who was my major adviser — called me into his office to assure me that the philosophy and religion department would support me through to graduation. That was invaluable. “The other transformative moment is connected to Professor Josiah Young, who also taught in philosophy and religion. I had written a paper for his class, and he asked me to come to his office to retrieve it. I was very nervous, and when I arrived, he handed me the paper. It had an ‘A’ on it. He said to me, “You should consider being a professor. You have a great mind.” He saw me as someone who could be a producer of knowledge. That was a powerful moment. Equally as powerful was the ability to study with Harvey Sindima, Chris Vecsey, Coleman Brown, Wanda Berry, Anne Ashbaugh, and Marilyn Thie on the graduate level before going off to Harvard University for my PhD. “The final path-setting moment was when R.V. Smith arranged a study-abroad opportunity to Kenya and Tanzania. This, in addition to studying with Manning Marable in Africana and Latin American studies, changed my life. Now having traveled to nearly three dozen countries and published as a scholar in the field of Africana religious studies, I look back with gratitude on this first experience abroad.” Coming back to Colgate “In part, I see my journey back to Colgate as provost and dean of the faculty as a sense of reciprocity. Colgate gave me many gifts when I was here as a student. “My job is exhaustingly exhilarating! Being able to privilege faculty support is very important to me. Over the course of my professional career, wonderful provosts and deans of the faculty were incredibly supportive of me, and so part of my goal is being able to demonstrate that to the faculty in equitable ways. I love the team I work with; we know our collective mission is to provide the best support system we can for the Colgate faculty.”
Core of confidence “When I meet current OUS students on campus, I let them know that I am them and they are me. OUS has had a tremendous half-century history at Colgate. It has served as an extraordinary gateway into Colgate and support. Of course, OUS will change over time, but we want it to maintain a steady core of access to faculty mentorship, cohort building, and resources that one needs to be successful at Colgate and beyond. My advice to OUS students is to receive the best of Colgate and in the places where they feel Colgate is most challenged, to leave the best of themselves there. My ultimate vision is for Colgate OUS students to come here and to know what my generation knew — that they will be successful and that they have brilliance to share with this campus and with this world.”
WIL REDMOND ’08 Assistant School Director, Memphis Scholars Caldwell-Guthrie
Elementary School Memphis, Tenn. MDiv, Race and Religion, Emory University Colgate major: Religion Alumni involvements: Board of Trustees (2009–12), SophoMORE Connections
Transforming school culture “My role is overseeing what our school culture looks like, and that has turned into creating a discipline system for our students that is culturally responsive. “We have a low-to-no-suspension, restorative practices approach; we want to make sure our students don’t leave with just academic knowledge but also socioemotional knowledge. If students get into a fight, they’re not automatically suspended or
sent home. They have a conversation with our dean and then with each other. Many of them come away the best of friends. I get so much joy out of having the power to make that intentional shift.” Gettin’ Jiggy wit’ it “My role is also reimagining what school looks like for students, so I’m also the ‘fun’ person. I’m the mascot — Jiggy the jaguar. He’s our chief entertainment officer. Sometimes Jiggy’s walking around giving out hugs. Students absolutely love it.”
(Wil Redmond, continued from previous page)
Education as social justice “For me and my coworkers, education is the social justice issue of our day. The world doesn’t change until everyone has a voice, and the way for everyone to have a voice is through education. We’re the only elementary school within an eight-mile radius, and we want to not just be the school in the neighborhood, but to be the change in the neighborhood.”
“The world doesn’t change until everyone has a voice, and the way for everyone to have a voice is through education.” – WIL REDMOND ’08
What OUS meant to him “Community. Tyrone Russell was one of the teaching assistants and facilitators. He had a lot of real conversations with us. One of the most impactful was, ‘You’ve got to find a group and latch onto them. You go to the library, you study together, you hold each other accountable for your grades, you go out together. You want to make sure each of you gets through this experience.’ “At one point, I was leading the Brothers with my best friends. I was understanding what community looks like and how to build community in a way that is sustainable and successful. “OUS’s focus on community set me up to do that in a professional way that I am grateful for and appreciate. It feels special to bring that part of Colgate to the rest of the world.”
scene: Spring 2018
Entrepreneur Santa Fe, N.M. • Partner, co-founder, Gear Institute, LLC • Principal, Roberts Internet Consulting • Chief marketing officer, ApresActive Colgate major: English–creative writing Alumni involvements: SophoMORE Connections, Alumni Admission Program
A powerful lesson “To this day, Harvey Sindima’s philosophy course is the hardest class I have ever taken. It was so foreign to be learning that material and being held to such a high standard. I remember being very grateful for the experience but thinking, ‘Why do I have to have it this hard? What put me here?’ “At certain points later in my life, I have thought the same thing, and I’m now starting to see. In professional instances, sometimes I’ve felt like I’m in over my head. But I have to act, because that’s what I’m being expected to do, and I have to do it to a high standard. “Coming away from that OUS experience, it set me up for something much greater.”
TAL-EE ROBERTS ’01
Gear head “My online media company, GearInstitute.com, produces outdoor and action sports gear reviews. I met one of my co-founders while we were walking our dogs in our neighborhood. “One of the perks of owning the site is gear companies invite you on trips to try out their new stuff. So, I write about where we went and what we did. All the operations run through me: advertising, the website, servers.” Techie “As an Internet consultant, I do a lot of IT support work for the federal Department of Health and Human Services’ Indian Health Service and the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Affairs. I’m doing database and back-end work, like website and application updates.” Augmented adventuring “I’m also part of ApresActive, an augmented reality app development company focusing on the outdoors, in Durango, Colo. I’m the chief marketing officer; I reach out to different potential partners, like ski resorts and ticket sites.” Web wonders “In high school, I was really interested in computers and had developed websites. The web was new, and it was fun to be able to do that stuff when other people weren’t. The ability to publish something instantly worldwide is pretty cool.” “When I got to Colgate, I joined the Web Guild. I developed the English department and interdisciplinary writing department websites and worked on sites for other departments and groups like CUTV and the Maroon-News.”
The Santa Fe connection “I met my wife, Katie [Chamberlain ’01], at Colgate. We live in Santa Fe, where I did off-campus study, led by my adviser, Professor Sarah Wider [English]. Katie is the president of the Colgate Club of New Mexico, and we organize events, like Albuquerque Isotopes baseball games. Professor Wider is still a good friend. Our highlight event every two years is to have her, the Santa Fe Study Group, and alumni over to the house.” OUS standout memories “The connections I made certainly carried on throughout my four years. I also made friends with our student tutors who were older than us. It was nice to know some upperclassmen — that was valuable for being able to spread out and make friends among everyone on campus. “I did the Science and Math Initiative. We took classes focused on biology, mathematics, and interdisciplinary writing. That created my foundation for blending science with English in order to be able to communicate scientific and technical ideas in the real world.” OUS students should know “Colgate is challenging, but it’s a lot of fun, too — don’t get too hung up on how much work you have, but also enjoy the people and the place you get to be for four years. “One thing I remember pretty vividly was a quote that I think was on a Coop sheet: ‘Education is not the filling of a bucket, it’s the lighting of a flame.’” Watch a video interview with Roberts at colgate.edu/ous.
Mark DiOrio (3)
A COMMUNITY OF SCHOLARS
The library in the OUS and the FirstGeneration Initiative house is a popular study space (top, L to R: Romelia Loaiza ’17, Alma Brizio ’18, and Shamarcus Doty ’20). There, all the books required for courses being taken by current students are on hand (center, L to R: Jason Dominguez ’20 and Frank Kuan, senior associate director). Study rooms (below, L to R: Genesis EliasWilson ’21 and Braulio Cappas ’20) offer flexible space for group projects.
“It’s like a full semester in five weeks. It’s challenging.” – REGINE COOPER ’19
One Thursday night in January, several students of Japanese language are watching anime on the living room TV. Another group works together on a class project in the back study room. Heads are bent over books and laptops at the library room tables. The kitchen refrigerators and cabinets, stocked full with snacks, are always quick to empty. It’s a typical weekday evening in the OUS “red house.” Although not a residence hall, the structure formerly known as La Casa Pan Latina Americana (across the road from Merrill House) has become a home base for Colgate’s OUS scholars and students in the First Gen Initiative, a pilot program in its third year. “Students feel comfortable here,” Frank Kuan, senior associate director, says. “They study. They hang out. And we have a coursework library with more than 2,000 titles that they can check out every semester.” Established in 1967 as the Special Students Program and known as the University Scholars Program from 1969 to 1989, the Office of Undergraduate Studies (OUS) manages the second-oldest scholars program at Colgate. Chosen through the admission process, OUS scholars are a highly select cohort who sought the most demanding academic paths open to them and dedicated themselves to their studies in the face of personal, economic, and social challenges. Typically, of the 36 enrolled per class, most are from the first generation in their family to attend college and have high financial need, and many come from under-resourced high schools. The OUS program begins with the five-week summer institute, designed to ease the transition to Colgate and develop academic readiness. Students take rigorous courses taught by Colgate professors and are introduced to campus resources, from the libraries and financial aid to career services. “It’s like a full semester in five weeks. It’s challenging,” says Regine Cooper ’19, an OUS student who has worked as a residential academic coach for incoming first-years. “Now, being in a leadership position, I understand when they’re sleepy, that they miss home, and that they’re being introduced to a new world.” During their first year, OUS scholars live in the same residential commons. The Class of 2020 are members of Ciccone Commons (named for OUS alumna and former Colgate Trustee Diane Ciccone ’74, P’10), while the Class of 2021 members reside in Colegrove Commons. The experience lends a sophisticated understanding of the work and the commitment it takes to build community, making them attractive candidates for selective academic programs such as the Sophomore Residential Seminars. “I was always delighted by the OUS scholars in my classes because of the way they interacted with the materials, the kinds of questions they asked, the research projects they wanted to do,” says Suzanne B. Spring, a writing and rhetoric professor who became OUS’s faculty director this year. “They often would press beyond the boundaries of knowledge within my own discipline. They’re risk-takers, and that’s exciting for me both intellectually and in terms of what can happen in a professor-student relationship.” Academic and administrative mentoring continue throughout the four years. A discretionary fund, established by alumni and parents, provides enhanced support for students. And OUS students thrive. Measures such as graduation, retention, and studyabroad rates; the percentage of students on the Dean’s List; and graduation GPAs all increase with participation, meeting or exceeding those of non-OUS students. OUS scholars have a history of making significant and meaningful impacts on campus; for one, since 1973, 105 OUS scholars have been inducted into Konosioni, nearly 10 percent of the senior honor society’s membership during that time. Cooper, a political science major and educational studies minor from Fort Myers, Fla., has thrown herself into her Colgate experience. She created a social justice venture through Thought Into Action, made the 2016–17 Patriot League Academic Honor Roll (track and field), and was selected for both the Philadelphia and Washington Study groups. She credits the support of her OUS family for getting her through some tough personal challenges. “I don’t know what I would do on Colgate’s campus without OUS,” she says. “The experience is one in a million.” Watch a video profile of Cooper at news.colgate.edu/mosaic.
News and views for the Colgate community
Prioritizing tribal voice “I am utilizing my social justice–oriented graduate degree in teaching to transform the way museum education is being done. “I work at an institution committed to decolonizing museum practices. I create programs and exhibitions that prioritize and privilege Indigenous Wabanaki voices. I am leading my department in establishing protocols around decolonization and working closely with local public schools to advocate for decolonizing curriculum practices. “I find my work with Wabanaki peoples and tribal leaders to be the most meaningful. I am committed to Wabanaki people so they can tell their own stories of colonization, survival, and revitalization in a museum setting.”
STARR KELLY ’10, MAT’13
Curator of Education, Abbe Museum Bar Harbor, Maine Colgate major: Native American studies
YVETT SOSA ’12
Investigating a major public health issue “Each year, there are approximately 500,000 deaths resulting from 200 million cases of malaria. Global trends in malaria incidence and mortality have shown improvements; however, there is increasing evidence of resistance to antimalarial drugs. My research aims to characterize and target the P. falciparum parasite purine uptake pathway to generate novel antimalarial drugs. Our lab is in the Department of Physiology and Biophysics. Recently, I have received an NIH fellowship award to do this work.”
PhD student in biomedical sciences Albert Einstein College of Medicine New York, N.Y. MS, Columbia University
Pursuits in career growth “I am currently participating in the Yale Ciencia Academy for Career Development, a program geared toward enhancing biomedical training and diversity through networks, community, and outreach.”
Colgate major/minor: biology/art and art history
What OUS meant to her “The OUS program was a built-in support system and community that I could rely on throughout my time at Colgate. It allowed me to build lasting relationships with both mentors and peers — these relationships have supported me throughout my career path.”
What OUS meant to her “As one of the few Native students on Colgate’s campus, it was vital that I find a community of support both socially and academically. I contribute my success in college and graduate school to the OUS program. The friends I made during OUS are still my friends today, and they were supporters who kept me in school.” An expanding world view “OUS inspired me to think about social justice in new ways and introduced me to the educational studies department. I knew I had to be part of something bigger than myself to feel fulfilled by a career. I witnessed the positive impact of education throughout OUS, and I wanted to be part of this kind of work. “By participating in the program, my world grew exponentially. I began connecting the colonization I’ve known all my life as an Indigenous person to the experiences of other people of color. I grew to appreciate why supporting our collective and individual social movements is vital to everyone’s unified well-being.” Passion for teaching “I am a ninth-grade teacher in the Bronx, teaching Living Environment and other science electives, and I love what I do. I have been able to create a culture in my classroom that allows me and my students to have difficult conversations about things that are significant to their everyday lives. I wouldn’t be in this position if it hadn’t been for my OUS family that pushed me to pursue the things I am passionate about.”
PROVIDENCE RYAN ’16 High school teacher New York City Department of Education MS in Education, Herbert H. Lehman College, CUNY (currently enrolled) Affiliated with NYCORE and NYQueer, radical educator collectives Colgate majors: biology and philosophy 1819 Award Winner
OUSCOUNTS Succeeding in their careers, volunteering over the years, OUS alumni are living and working everywhere from Alsace to Atlanta, Pasadena to Phnom Penh, and Hanoi to Hamilton, N.Y. 1,469 Total OUS alumni | 1971 First graduates of the Special Scholars Program | 105 Konosioni senior honor society members | 3 1819 Award Winners (10 percent of total recipients) | 7 Board of Trustees members | 19 Alumni Council members | 157 Admission volunteers | 166 Career services volunteers
scene: Spring 2018
Filling the gaps “I was the first in my family to go to college, so I had no one to ask for information or advice about what to expect. OUS filled those gaps for me in many ways and encouraged me to study the things I was interested in and explore as many facets of Colgate life as possible. “My peers and professors in OUS were (and continue to be) strong and passionate voices on campus who care about and want to make a positive change at Colgate. In OUS, we become teachers to ourselves and each other. I realized that one of my passions was teaching and making social change through the classroom.” A message about OUS “The best part of my OUS experience was it gave me amazing friends, mentors, and resources that helped me transition into college and supported me throughout. One of the most troubling parts of my Colgate experience was the assumptions people made about OUS and its students. Every OUS scholar is in OUS for different reasons, and OUS is not a ‘remedial’ program. All OUS students deserve to be at Colgate as much as everyone else. My hope is that more students and faculty members can start taking time to learn what OUS is about.”
MICHÈLE ALEXANDRE ’96 Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Intellectual Life, Professor of Law, Leonard B. Melvin Jr. lecturer University of Mississippi School of Law Oxford, Miss. JD, Harvard Law School
“I refused to give any excuses for why I could not succeed.”
Colgate major: English and French, emphasis on philosophy 1819 Award Winner
Mikki K. Harris
– MICHÈLE ALEXANDRE
Editor’s note: We asked Amarachi Iheanyichukwu ’21, a current OUS student, to interview OUS alumna Michèle Alexandre ’96 and write about their conversation.
not belong,” she remarks. “That alone motivated me to claim my space.” Elaborating, Alexandre focuses on her love of knowledge and refusal to be ignored, traits that propelled her through her graduate years at Harvard Law School and stint as a lawyer fighting for the oppressed. “You won’t be loved by everybody, but that should never stop you,” she tells me as she slips in an anecdote about her work on the famous Black Farmers’ class action suit as a new lawyer. Today, Alexandre is no longer practicing law; instead, she teaches others to take her place. “I knew I wanted to be a professor as soon as I started law school, but working at firms is always recommended; it allows you to dig deep scholarly wise,” she explains. Of her current position as a law professor at the University of Mississippi, which she has held for the last decade, Alexandre adds: “It’s so rewarding not only because I get to do interdisciplinary work and wrestle with issues that have a significant impact on society, but also because I get to relate with and help shape new generations.” In closing, I ask two more questions. Who is Michèle Alexandre beyond the valedictorian, the lawyer, and the professor? And what brings her joy? She thinks for a moment. And then the words come, first slowly, then all at once. Although we are just voices more than 1,000 miles apart, it is easy to imagine her in front of me as she laughs about her newfound love of R&B artist SZA and the therapeutic nature of running marathons twice a year. We discuss our shared affinity for old-school hip-hop and her fascination with millennial dance moves. One could liken her tone to that of a second-semester senior, at ease and excited for the future. “My heart is with the younger generation,” she tells me. “I truly believe in them.” And I believe her.
Michèle Alexandre picks up on the first ring. As we exchange pleasantries, I struggle to keep the anxiety out of my voice but find comfort in hers, an orotund yet warm sound. She speaks as if she has all the time in the world, yet her reality could not be further from the languid lifestyle her tone suggests. Alexandre has a demanding schedule as a law professor, lecturer, and associate dean for faculty development and intellectual life at the University of Mississippi School of Law. To start the conversation, I ask her to paint me a picture of her life before Colgate and she obliges, transporting me to 1980s Brooklyn. Alexandre attended Prospect Heights High School in the early 1990s, a period marked by a rise in gang activity and violence in the neighborhood. The challenges presented by her environment were only exacerbated by the fact that, as a recent transplant from Haiti, Alexandre did not speak English. In spite of all of this, she persevered. “I refused to give any excuses for why I could not succeed,” says Alexandre, who was recruited by Colgate for her stellar grades. In describing herself at age 16, Alexandre chooses the word “hungry,” illustrating the keenness with which she competed against and excelled beyond her English-speaking peers. This hunger for intellectual pursuit eventually led not only to her early graduation but also secured Alexandre’s spot within Colgate’s OUS Scholars Program. As an OUS scholar myself, I inquire about her experience with the program’s Summer Institute, interested in indications of time’s shadow. Her voice is nostalgic as she recalls late nights and early mornings, hours spent toiling over religious texts, writing papers, and improving her English. “I didn’t sleep a lot while I was at Colgate,” she chuckles. “But, it was kind of like I fell in love — with the work, the professors, and OUS.” She specifically remembers professors Margaret Maurer (English) and Harvey Sindima (philosophy and religion), whose courses she characterizes as foundations for her love of writing and literature. She goes on to sing the praises of several other professors, listing them off as one would their favorite musicians. She stops only to refer back to Professor Sindima, whom she lauds as a “legend.” The conversation moves toward Alexandre’s historic accomplishment as Colgate’s first black valedictorian. “At the time, Colgate was only five percent of color, so we were hyperaware that we were performing in an environment where many of our peers felt we did
— A lover of literature, social justice, and music, Amarachi Iheanyichukwu ’21 is pursuing a double major in political science and economics. She also tutors high school students in English and history, and she advocates for social equity as a member of Colgate’s Student Government Association.
MOMENTOUS 50th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION May 31–June 3
Alumni, friends, and supporters of OUS are invited to join the celebration of its 50th anniversary at Reunion 2018. Special programming will include a formal dinner, during which Colgate will honor OUS alumni, highlight the program’s history, and connect with current students. colgate.edu/reunion News and views for the Colgate community
hen we asked professors to pick an item in (or on) their desks and tell us about its
significance, we didn’t have the faintest idea what we would get. They provided two-minute office tours, pointing to Shakespeare dolls perched on shelves, framed calligraphy hanging on the wall, and cheeseshaped stress balls ready for a squeeze. The following six objects made the cut and, ultimately, we met our objective of not only learning about the things, but also their owners.
Read on for tales of espionage, a
water buffalo called Sue, the Russian Olympic mascot, and more.
EASIER SEALED THAN DONNE Before pre-gummed envelopes entered the mailstream, letter writers used other methods to keep their words from prying eyes. This wax seal — called the “Sheaf of Snakes” — is a replica of one John Donne used to secure his letters in the 17th century. During the poet’s era, wax seals were a common way to close letters, and each person had his or her own. “It was a way of identifying yourself,” explains Margaret Maurer, the William Henry Crawshaw Professor of literature. Seals were also a tool used in “letterlocking,” an intricate process of folds and cuts that turned the paper into its own envelope. Combined with a wax seal, the letter would be noticeably tampered with if anyone opened it before the intended recipient. Donne and his letters are of intense interest to Maurer as she collaborates on an edition of his correspondence for Oxford University Press. Although some of her colleagues (including MIT’s Jana Dambrogio, who gave Maurer these samples) claim Donne used letterlocking, Maurer is reserving judgment until she sees evidence. Still, the English professor is intrigued by the practice because it gives her insight into the “material dimensions of letter writing in the early modern period.” Whether the poet did or did not letterlock, he certainly had reason to. First and foremost, he was born into a Roman Catholic family during a time when the English Church no longer recognized the authority of the pope of Rome. Then, in his early adulthood, he was employed in the household of Queen Elizabeth’s Lord Chancellor, Sir Thomas Egerton. The queen’s surveillance network, anxious to uncover any sign of a plot against her, kept a close eye on the household happenings — possibly including letters to and from Donne. There is ample evidence, Maurer notes, that Donne used both a cipher and invisible ink to protect his correspondence. “We know there was active espionage,” she says. In the edition they’re working on, Maurer and her colleagues are not primarily concerned with secrecy tactics. They have trickier puzzles to solve. Of the approximately 240 letters by Donne that survive, only some 37 are in his handwriting. The others have been copied by various people and are plagued with numerous question marks, including dates that were intentionally omitted, illegible words, and obvious errors. So, the task for Maurer and her colleagues is a slog; they’ve set a 10-year deadline for themselves. “Donne died in 1631, and an edition of his letters hasn’t been done to this point,” Maurer says. “Why? Because it’s too darn hard.”
BY ALETA MAYNE PHOTOS BY MARK DIORIO News and views for the Colgate community
“For me and a lot of kids from South Asia, our moms would read this before we went to sleep and bless us with it.” — Professor Noor Khan WRITING HER OWN SCRIPT
OIL AND VINEGAR Archivist Sarah Keen is always looking for rainbows — at least when it comes to film. These circular polarizing filters help her determine whether film is polyester (good) or acetate (bad). “They’re a geeky archives technical item,” blushes Keen, who is associate professor in the university libraries and head of special collections and university archives. When assessing film collections, Keen and her cohorts place the film between two polarizing filters. “If you see a certain rainbow effect, like an oil slick, that means it’s polyester,” she explains. “Polyester lasts.” But if the filters have no effect and the film either looks black or simply translucent, the film is acetate — “and you know you have a preservation issue,” she says. Acetate film will degrade through a type of decay called “vinegar syndrome,” so the archivists will need to reformat it sooner than later — and that inconvenience can make a typically sweet archivist quickly turn sour.
This palm-sized shell (pictured below) bears a message greater than the ocean from which it came. The Arabic script engraving of Bismillah, which is the beginning of every verse in the Quran, roughly translates to “In the name of God, the most beneficent, the most merciful.” “A typical Muslim will use it at least ten or fifteen times a day: when we start eating, begin a project, during prayer … for almost anything,” explains Noor Khan, associate professor in history and Middle Eastern studies. Next, the shell displays the Throne Verse, a prayer that essentially declares there is one God. “For me and a lot of kids from South Asia, our moms would read this before we went to sleep and bless us with it,” Khan explains. “It’s them praying for our protection.” In the early ’90s, as a college student at the University of Chicago, Khan was visiting family in Karachi, Pakistan. Her cousin bought the shell as a souvenir for her at nearby Clifton Beach. “It encompasses a lot of my personal and academic identity because it’s from the South Asian subcontinent and it’s in Arabic, which are my two fields,” says Khan, who co-founded Colgate’s Middle Eastern and Islamic studies minor (now a major). Although she was born and raised in Minnesota, Khan often visited relatives in Pakistan and India growing up. “I have family on both sides of the India-Pakistan border, so every time there are tensions, I literally have family in both armies,” she says. As a teenager in the 1980s, she also spent three years living in Madina, Saudia Arabia, the second holiest city in Islam where no non-Muslims are allowed. Khan is currently working on a memoir about her intriguing life, which has included a surprising number of wild animal encounters. One of them is her favorite tidbit of personal trivia: Khan received a water buffalo — that she called Sue — as part of her bride gift when she married Nady Abdal-Ghaffar, Colgate’s senior lecturer in Arabic. Pakistan is oceans away from her office in Alumni Hall, but the shell is a powerful reminder of her foundation. Khan says, “I keep it here on my desk to feel better when I’m having a rough day.”
News and views for the Colgate community
H Most of the H atoms are not in the model, they are implied
MODEL BEHAVIOR You could say this molecular model was the catalyst for Professor Jason Keith’s career — both literally and figuratively. “This was the molecule that started it,” says the chemistry professor. The model has accompanied Keith from graduate school at California Institute of Technology, to his post-doc at Texas A&M, to his fellowship at Las Alamos National Labs, and finally, its current stop at Colgate. “It’s my chemical totem,” says Keith, who traveled cross-country to Colgate in 2013. A computational chemist, Keith doesn’t work with test tubes and beakers. His lab is his computer, where he uses mathematical equations, quantum physics, and computer science to look at chemical reactions. He built the model from a kit in graduate school as he was co-authoring his first published paper, “A Computational Model Relating Structure and Reactivity in Enantioselective Oxidations of Secondary Alcohols by (−)-Sparteine−PdII Complexes.” The model shows (−)-Sparteine−PdII; Keith and his office mate were using it to help them visualize their theory. Keith and his coauthors were testing why certain types of chemicals were or were not reacting. “Selectivity is where everything is at in synthetic chemistry,” he says. “If you can do a reaction that oxidizes one type of chemical environment but doesn’t oxidize some other ones, it can help you build specific molecular targets.” The real-world implications of this work could apply to myriad natural and manmade products, from fuels to pharmaceuticals. In Keith’s work, he computationally evaluates a system and tries to learn based on first principles. In other words, he asks: Based on the underlying physics and mathematics of a system, why does it do what we observe? “And hopefully we can understand why it does what we think it does,” Keith says. “You’re sort of 40
scene: Spring 2018
limited by your own creativity. You only get the answers to the questions you ask, so you have to figure out what questions are the right ones to ask.” In this particular system, they modeled the selectivity of two molecules called enantiomers, which have the same structure but are mirror images of each other — “like your left and right hands,” Keith says. One reacted and the other one didn’t. “This is like your right hand fitting into your right glove while your left hand doesn’t fit,” he explains. Stepping away from the computer to build models is a useful exercise for new chemists, Keith says, because it helps them visualize how chemical reactions happen. “One of the biggest factors is the spatial arrangement of the atoms,” he explains. “It’s all about how the individual atoms interact with each other. So we need to look at the model, understand the visual landscape, and imagine there are places the reaction happens.” Visualizing chemical reactions can be a hurdle for students, so in his Inorganic Chemistry class, Keith teaches undergrads to build models and think about three-dimensional structures. With years of experience, Keith himself can grasp the spatial components by turning them over in his head. “Being able to see a two-dimensional stick drawing and imagine what that looks like in three dimensions, and then being able to rotate that three-dimensional object in your mind so you can understand how that three-dimensional object reacts with other threedimensional objects — that’s the type of chemistry I do,” he says. Getting to play with model kits not only teaches Keith’s students a valuable skill but can also be diverting for the professor. “They’re like Tinker Toys,” he says. “It’s childhood, hands-on fun — especially if you’re a computational guy like me who spends all day building things in computers.”
THINKING ON HER FEET The research of math professor Silvia Jiménez Bolaños is quite complex, but to tackle it, she only needs three simple tools: a pencil, paper, and her favorite shoes. Her left loafer spells out the Fibonacci sequence, in which each number is determined by adding the preceding two numbers. The right shoe depicts a Fibonacci spiral and representations of the golden ratio, aka the golden number (1.61803398875 or phi). When you take any number in the Fibonacci sequence and divide it by the number before it, the answer approximates the golden number (it becomes increasingly exact as the numbers get bigger).
FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE Walking through Moscow in 2005, Professor Adrian Giurgea happened upon a plastic toy that coaxed a memory from his youth. It was Giurgea’s first time in Russia, but he had a distinct recollection of the little bear named Mishka, whom he’d met many years prior. As a 16-year-old, Giurgea lived in his home country of Romania and worked as a theater assistant. The theater director had a Mishka toy in his house as a souvenir from Russia, and on one occasion, he told Giurgea, “You know, you look exactly like this bear.” The teenage Giurgea could see the resemblance. “I liked it a lot and I was always begging for it, but he wouldn’t give it to me,” he recalls. Years later, the adult Giurgea — who had become Colgate’s director of the University Theater — traveled to Russia for the first of what would become many trips. He’d been yearning to immerse himself in its theater scene because “it’s a country that loves and respects theater,” Giurgea says. The opportunity presented itself when he was hired to perform in a production of Chekhov’s/Shakespeare’s Three Sisters/King Lear. Meanwhile, the little bear had never left Giurgea’s memory. He immediately recognized him when they were reunited through an old woman peddling tchotchkes on the street. As it turns out, Mishka isn’t a rarity. The bear pops up throughout Russia as he clings to his mascot fame from the 1980 Olympics. Mishka now has a home in Giurgea’s office in Dana Arts Center. As the professor gently nudges the toy to waddle across his desk, he says, “In front of me walks this little bear, wobbly. He is a bit innocent but also well knowing, and playful. I identify with this bear. It is my avatar.”
To draw the Fibonacci spiral, you start with rectangles representing increasing Fibonacci dimensions that are placed adjacent to each other. The spiral can be drawn from the beginning (smallest) rectangle to each increasingly larger rectangle. “That type of spiral is an approximation of the golden spiral, which grows by a factor of the golden ratio phi for every quarter turn it makes,” Jiménez Bolaños says. Beyond a fascinating math pattern, the Fibonacci sequence and the golden ratio often appear in nature (pinecones), architecture (the Parthenon), and art (the Mona Lisa) — something you can bring up at your next cocktail party. Jiménez Bolaños provides other examples, too: the shape of the galaxies, an 8.5 by 11-inch piece of paper, and the symmetry of faces that are considered most attractive. A major part of the math professor’s research is using partial differential equations to study mathematical materials science, which has implications for fields ranging from biology to electronics. Some materials scientists have worked on microstructures that have Fibonacci patterns. Although the shoes aren’t directly related to her research, Jiménez Bolaños says they give her comfort — which is one easy problem to solve.
scene: Spring 2018
News and views for the Colgate community
Colgate’s spring production of R & J & Z (Romeo & Juliet & Zombies) begins at Act V of the classic Shakespeare play and follows the couple to a world where death is not always an end. “The play was very bloody,” Director April Sweeney, associate professor of theater, says. “We had students working backstage preparing the blood and limbs as well as a large wardrobe crew who had to clean the costumes every day. Students also did the special-effects makeup.”
Alumni programs, volunteer opportunities, career networking, and more
Painting by Dick LaBonte ’43
Answering the call Our nation was in the midst of the Great Depression when the Class of 1943 came to Colgate. Many students were drafted in World War II, so they completed on-campus military training in addition to their studies. When they marched away in the winter of 1942, America was deep in the fight against fascism abroad. Thirteen of them died on the battlefield. The university held an early December graduation for the class before they headed off to war. Now, 75 years have passed and much has changed,
The Office of Alumni Relations is pleased to offer many ways for alumni to stay in touch with each other, and with Colgate! E-mail me with questions or concerns at tmansfield@colgate. edu — Tim Mansfield, associate vice president, institutional advancement and alumni relations Questions? Contact alumni relations: 315-228-7433 or firstname.lastname@example.org 44
scene: Spring 2018
behalf of the entire Colgate community, congratulations — and profound thanks for your service and sacrifice.”
but 1943’s love for Colgate, class, and country remains strong. On Dec. 13, 2017, nine class members dialed in via telephone to their 75th Reunion, which included musical performances by the Colgate Thirteen, historical accounts of the 1942 wartime commencement, and remarks by President Brian W. Casey and other prominent members of the Colgate community. “Colgate educates leaders who will confront humankind’s greatest challenges around the globe, and your story continues to set an example for undergraduates,” Casey said. “On
Alumni talk cryptocurrency Cryptocurrencies are disrupting nearly every industry and revolutionizing the way companies do business. On Feb. 15, 2018, in New York City, 112 alumni gathered to discuss the emergence of digital dollars. This Colgate Professional Networks event, called Bitcoin and Blockchain: What You Need to Know, offered an inside look at what cryptocurrencies mean for various industries. Hosted by Stuart Fischer ’72 and moderated by Abigail Doolittle ’95, the event included panelists Jason Kaplan ’06 (Blockchain for Change), Jamie Lane ’91 (Merrill Lynch), Samantha Radocchia ’11 (Chronicled), and Todd McDonald ’96 (R3). The discussion was followed by a networking reception.
Spring break CPN events for students
L to R: Panelists Jamie Lane ’91, Jason Kaplan ’06, Samantha Radocchia ’11, Todd McDonald ’96, and moderator Abigail Doolittle ’95 at Bitcoin and Blockchain: What You Need to Know
As part of a robust lineup of 2018 Colgate Professional Networks events, students attended industry gatherings during spring break, including: - Tech Lunch with Colgate Leaders at Square in San Francisco (pictured right, top)
Happy anniversary! In 2018, the Colgate community is celebrating the following milestone anniversaries:
100 New York Zeta chapter of Phi Delta Theta 50 The Office of Undergraduate Studies 25 Saperstein Jewish Center
- Life Beyond Earth? Exoplanet Discoveries and Our Place in the Universe in Washington, D.C. - Media and Entertainment Lunch at NFL Studios in Los Angeles - The Fourth Annual Law and Finance Summit in New York City - Reception hosted by the Health and Wellness Network and the Common Good Network in Philadelphia To find an upcoming event near you, visit colgate.edu/ networks.
Postcard from Paris Founding Colgate’s first alumni club in continental Europe In decades of working as a Paris-based correspondent and editor for BusinessWeek and the International Herald Tribune, I always hoped there would be a Colgate alumni club in the heart of Europe. After all, Princeton (my other alma mater), Harvard, and Stanford, among others, had them in Paris, and there is a widely admired, active Colgate club in London. Early last spring, thanks to a chance meeting with Tad Brown ’58 at the American Church of Paris, we were off and running. Upon contacting the alumni relations department, I learned of another Paris-based graduate, Albert Naim ’14, who guided us to a list of alumni scattered throughout France, Belgium, and Switzerland. By September, we received upbeat responses by many of the some 60 on our list. We started planning a reception for Jan. 26 with alumni and approximately 17 students from the Geneva Study
group, which is being led by political science professor Bruce Rutherford. We also invited the economics and Dijon groups, headed by economics professor Chad Sparber and humanities professor John Naughton, respectively. The evening began with a talk by former journalist Sebastien Maillard, the French director of the Jacques Delors European Union Institute, on the domestic and international challenges facing the European Union and whether or not Europe could replace the United States as a global power. The students joined in the lively discussion that followed, and Professor Rutherford updated us on the latest regarding Colgate and his group, which had already met with EU leaders in Brussels and the Hague, among other stops. After some three hours of discussions between the alumni and students, we adjourned, amid calls for repeating such a meeting for all three study groups if and when they visit Paris. “The students enjoyed it a great deal,” Professor Rutherford reported. “I was particularly pleased to see the enthusiastic interaction between students and alumni.” Sarah Durlofsky ’19 also followed up, saying: “I enjoyed the event and our discussion about Trump and the World Economic Forum” (which earlier in the day was marked by Trump’s address in Davos, Switzerland). Matthew Christensen ’92, who participated in the Madrid Study Group as a student, concluded, “I came away quite impressed with the Colgate student of today.” Finally, Stefanie Thomas ’05 and Howard Liebman ’74 both came to the event from Brussels. Stefanie is head of strategy at Culture & Media Agency Europe, and Howard is a lawyer with the firm Jones Day. Both pledged to help organize future meetings with study groups visiting Paris. — Axel Krause ’56 has for decades been a contributing editor for the online TransAtlantic Magazine in Washington D.C., is the author of Inside the New Europe (HarperCollins), and is a governor of the Ditchley Foundation in the United Kingdom. He earned a master’s degree from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1958.
Colgate in a Box
Hundreds of alumni and fans converged on Minneapolis to cheer on the Colgate women’s ice hockey team in the final game of the NCAA tournament. L to R: Women's hockey alumnae Carly McNaughton '06, Allison Paiano '06, Rebecca (Lahar) Huddle '05, Joanne Spigner '76, Carol Auster '76, Avery McGlenn '04, and Shelby Nelson '05
Alumni had a blast at 21 club events held throughout the country on April’s Colgate Day. The next Colgate Day is July 13 — start planning now. Can’t make it to a club event? Host a Colgate Day house party with Colgate in a Box. Just invite a group of Colgate friends or open up your home to other alumni in
your area. When you register your house party and pay $13 for shipping, we’ll send you your Colgate in a Box, packed with spirit items to help you celebrate in style. To register, visit colgate.edu/ colgateday.
What’s happening? May 31–June 3 Reunion 2018 Colgate University June 25–29 Alumnae Book Tour with Margaret Maurer Philadelphia; Boston; Washington, D.C.; and New York City July 13 36th Annual Alumni Golf Tournament Seven Oaks, Hamilton, N.Y. July 13 Colgate Day Everywhere! July 19–20 Explore Program: A College Admission Workshop Colgate University July 20 2018 Terry Slater Memorial Golf Tournament and Men’s Hockey Alumni Weekend Seven Oaks, Hamilton, N.Y.
Register for these upcoming alumni events at colgate. edu/alumni
News and views for the Colgate community
Connect five Answer these questions, then figure out what the five answers have in common. Check your answers on pg. 57.
Saad Hariri, prime minister of this country, publicly resigned from office in November 2017,
only to rescind his resignation a month later.
Which former New York governor fell victim to a famous misprint while running for president in 1948?
In the Bible, this usually refers to a type of fig tree, but when Pocahontas mentioned it in “Colors of the Wind,” she was referring to a different species spread across eastern North America.
It’s both Mr. Burns’s middle name in The Simpsons and the location of several important events in the Civil Rights movement.
This band, despite having several other songs that have stood the test of time, scored its only #1 hit with “Mull of Kintyre,” which topped the UK charts in 1977.
13 Words (or fewer) Submit your clever caption of 13 words or fewer for this vintage Colgate photo by July 1, 2018, to email@example.com or attn.: Colgate Scene, 13 Oak Dr., Hamilton, NY 13346. The winner will receive a Colgate Scene T-shirt, and the winning caption will be announced next issue (autumn).
scene: Spring 2018
Above: Professor Dongfeng Xu teaches Chinese in an intimate classroom setting in Lawrence Hall. Photo by Andrew Daddio Back cover: Pretty in pink. Blossoms bloom on the Quad.
News and views for the Colgate community
scene: Colgate University 13 Oak Drive Hamilton, NY 13346-1398
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