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A Publication for Alumnae and Friends of Meredith College

M a g a z i n e

Inspiring Action

Summer Reading Selections Motivate the Meredith Community

Fall 2011, Volume 36, Number 3

Contents Meredith Magazine Volume 36, Number 3 Fall 2011 Executive Editor Kristi Eaves-McLennan Managing Editors Melyssa Allen Karen T. Dunton Assistant Editor Gaye Hill Art Director Vanessa Harris Senior Designer Mary Rose, ’01, ’11 Designer Lauren Sumner Alumnae Connection Editors Hilary Allen, ’01 Meredith Moore, ’10 Contributing Writer Martha Fonville Editorial Assistant Kaye Rains Photographers Christopher Ferrer Gary Knight Brian W. Lynn Mary Rose Lauren Sumner David Timberlake Doug VandeZande Meredith College Archives

Meredith Magazine exists to serve the Meredith community by providing readers with insight and information about the news, activities, events, programs, plans and people of the College. Meredith Magazine is published three times a year by the Meredith College Department of Marketing. Questions or comments may be submitted to © 2011 Meredith College. The Meredith name and word mark are registered trademarks of Meredith College and may not be used without permission. All rights reserved. 11-103

Features 12 Enduring Value Three Alumnae Reflect on Their Meredith Experience 16 Inspiring Action Summer Reading Selections Inspire Meredith Community 20 Alice in Wonderland Meredith Tradition Returns in 2012

News 2

Allen Experiences First Move-In Day As President


Top Three U.S. News Ranking Latest Accolade for Meredith


A Passion for Teaching and Coaching


Author Clyde Edgerton Speaks at Library Event

in every issue 1

From the President


Meredith Experts in the News


Dateline Meredith





22 Alumnae Connection 32 Cultural Events

Presidential Inauguration to Be Held March 22 See page 33 for more.

from the president

Seasons of Meredith


ne of my favorite movies that came out soon after I graduated from Meredith was The Four Seasons, starring a wonderful ensemble cast whose lives played out against the changing seasons, representing the change we all experience throughout the course of time. Since my return to Meredith in the heat of July through the beautiful coloring of fall and now as we head into winter, the changing seasons also remind me of what is timeless for Meredith: her legacy of educating powerful women to do powerful things, her support from faculty and staff mentors throughout our lives, and the ageless friendships that have enriched and blessed our lives. In October, the Class of 1980 gave a “welcome home” party for me, hosted by Ella Plyler Frantz and Lisa Cunningham and attended by about 75 of my classmates. As wonderful as it was to see so many of my friends from my Meredith days, it is even more special to realize that we are only one class of decades of still-connected classmates. In fact, having seen more than 500 Meredith alumnae and guests in my first few months, again and again, I am reminded of the ageless passion that alumnae and friends feel for Meredith, where our enthusiasm truly targets the core of the College’s mission—this beautiful place, the lessons learned, the friendships made, and the ways that Meredith set us on a course of lifetime achievement. In the spirit of the holiday season, I thank you for your warmth, your gifts, your support, and your

commitment to Meredith. I am also mindful, of course, that this season, too, will pass. Before we know it, spring will be here, with its reminder that it is never too early to plan for the future. Indeed, we will soon be engaged in a full-fledged strategic planning process that will undergird our vision of what Meredith is to be. We will attend, first and foremost, to the academic quality of our offerings, enhanced by our commitment to financial stability, enrollment management, infrastructure and technology, co-curricular programming, and greater visibility for the College. I hope you will stay involved with the College throughout this process, offering your insights and feedback as we work to ensure the future of Meredith. Until that time, I thank you for your role in the seasons of Meredith…from the color-rich days and memories of fall to the holidays of joyous celebration, to the unfolding of new life in the spring and the glory of the full promise of summer, I look forward to our years together and thank you for all you do for Meredith.

“I am reminded of the ageless passion that alumnae and friends feel for Meredith, where our enthusiasm truly targets the core of the College’s mission—this beautiful place, the lessons learned, the friendships made, and the ways that Meredith set us on a course of lifetime achievement.”

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ampus news An Update on the Events and the People of the Meredith College Campus

Allen Experiences First Meredith Move-In Day as President By Melyssa Allen


long with 400 first-year students who were beginning their Meredith College careers on August 13, 2011, President Jo Allen, ’80, also marked the day as her first Move-In Day as Meredith’s leader. The event brought back memories for Allen, the first Meredith alumna to serve as president. She recalled her own feelings as a freshman at Meredith. “I remember how excited I was to start meeting people, and to begin arranging my room,” said Allen, who greeted students, and helped some of them move their belongings into their new homes at Meredith.

“It has been great to meet families,” Allen said. “I’ve seen a lot of alumnae here helping their daughters and granddaughters with move-in, a lot of proud dads, and some little sisters who seem to be imagining themselves here in a year or two.” Members of Meredith’s Alumnae Association who were staffing a refreshments stand said they enjoyed being on campus on this special day. “I always get emotional on Move-In Day,” said Stella Barker, ’03. “Students are meeting the friends they will know forever, the ones they will call when they get a new job, get

married or start a family. These are friends they’ll have for the rest of their lives.” Alumnae volunteers recalled their own Move-In Day experience, and remember how welcome they felt on campus. “I cried when I arrived on campus as a new student because I was overwhelmed by all the people there to welcome me,” said Kala Stanton, ’10. Other alumnae and friends of Meredith were able to join in the Move-In Day experience via social media. Meredith staff members posted to Facebook and “live tweeted” the event on Twitter. Many Twitter followers joined

New arrivals are greeted by Meredith students and special signs all across campus on MoveIn Day. 2

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President Jo Allen, ’80, (below right) welcomed students and was one of many to help move belongings into residence halls. in and used #MCMoveIn11 to send memories and well-wishes to new students. Responses included “Always a fun day. Loved being part of orientation crew. Have a great year everyone!,” and “Love to see the community leaders helping! Thank you, President Allen.” About the Class of 2015

Allen and her fellow alumnae were among the many Meredith community members on hand to welcome the Class of 2015, which includes students from 19 states and Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Columbia, Dominican Republic, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Iran, Jamaica, Kenya, Mexico and Myanmar. Forty-three freshmen are participating in Meredith’s Honors Program. Among them are Monique Kreisman, Rebecca Shafer, and Alyssa Zsido, the 2011 recipients of the Alumnae Legacy Scholarship, the College’s top academic scholarship, and Mindie Stanford, recipient of the 2011 Presidential Scholarship, a full tuition scholarship. Kreisman, of Dallas, N.C., plans to study history at Meredith, in preparation for a career in law. Shafer, of Cary, N.C., intends to major in art education and pursue a career as a teacher. Zsido, from Proctor, Vt., wants to explore her academic interests in liberal arts, mathematics and education. Stanford, of Holly Springs, N.C., plans to enroll in Meredith’s Engineering Dual Degree program. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


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Meredith Experts in the News Meredith faculty and staff have served as experts in a wide variety of news articles, in media outlets such as the Atlanta JournalConstitution, and

These efforts are important because they make the first impression, and set the tone for the student’s experience at Meredith College,” she says. “It helps students and their parents see that we are a caring campus.” —Director of Residence Life Heidi LeCount, in a college blog story on efforts made by colleges to reduce move-in stress for students and their families.

Bosses have more work to do and fewer people to do it, and if you are eye rolling and hard to deal with, then they will be more than happy to show you the door. You may think your gossiping and talking back is just you being silly, but you’re actually really putting your job on the line.” —Instructor of Human Resources Kristy Dixon was quoted in a story called “The 12 Quickest Ways to Get Fired.” Dixon was one of the human resources experts interviewed about what employees should not do at work.

In an individualistic society like ours, loans among family members are very difficult. Family members should only loan money with the knowledge it is not expected to be repaid. And once gone, it needs to be gone as a topic.” —Associate Professor of Sociology Lori Brown in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution article called “Setting Terms with the Bank of Mom and Dad,” which discussed loans between family members and other economic challenges.

Good teachers can look very different from each other. The most frequently requested teacher might not be the best teacher for your child. As parents, we have a responsibility to prepare our children to solve problems. Find a different angle on the school year.” —Associate Professor of Education Mary Kay Delaney in an opinion piece on how parents should handle their child not getting the teacher of his or her choice published on 4

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Meredith Ensemble Theatre Goes Green for “The Tempest” Performance By Melyssa Allen


eredith Ensemble Theatre presented William Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” this fall in a location more commonly associated with commencement than with theatre. The production was held in Meredith’s outdoor McIver Amphitheater in order to give students and the audience an experience more like that of Shakespeare’s day. The environmentally friendly production, which did not use amplified sound or lighting, was part of Meredith’s Sustainable September focus on thinking “green.” The idea for the Tempest and the “green” nature of the production “came from a desire to give our student actors and our audience an experience more historically accurate to what may have happened during the playwright’s life,” said Associate Professor of Theatre Steven Roten, who adapted the script for the Meredith production. “Shakespeare did not have all of our modern technology to tell his stories,” Roten said. “He had actors, some costumes, some rudimentary stage mechanics, and the sun.” “Going green” complicated the way the production was able to present the magical elements of the play.

“[Magic] is a major plot point and since we have “gone green” we have given up using amplified sound or any lighting to assist in conveying anything from the supernatural,” Roten said. “To do that, we are relying on music and dance.” Alumna Chelsea Stith, ’11, wrote original music for the production, which featured a live orchestra. Associate Professor of Dance Carol Finley provided choreography to create a visual element of the magic through dance and movement. Meredith’s theatre faculty members feel it is important for students to gain experience acting in different venues. “I think it is important for our training program to get the students outside and outside of their comfort zones,” Roten said. “An outside production requires more out of everyone involved. More schlepping of things to the space, more planning, more vocal projection, more focus. With this knowledge in mind, we felt that ‘The Tempest’ would be a good fit for us. Among the shortest Shakespeare plays and completely environmental, ‘The Tempest’ fits nicely in the space.” Visit for more on Meredith Ensemble Theatre’s 2011-12 season.

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Top Three U.S. News Ranking Latest Accolade for Meredith By Melyssa Allen


eredith College is ranked third on the U.S. News & World Report list of the South’s Best Regional Colleges. Meredith was also named to the “Great Schools, Great Prices” list, ranked 7th among regional colleges in the South. U.S. News describes this ranking as “taking into account a school’s academic quality, and the 2010-11 cost of attendance for students who receive the average level of need-based financial aid.” The U.S. News ranking system places colleges and universities in one of four categories: national universities, national liberal arts colleges, regional universities and regional colleges. U.S. News divides colleges and universities by the following regions: North, South,

West and Midwest. Schools are ranked using several indicators including peer assessment, graduation and retention rates, faculty resources (class size, faculty/student ratio, percentage of full-time faculty), student selectivity (average SAT scores, acceptance rate) and alumni giving percentage. This high ranking from U.S. News is the latest accolade received by Meredith College. Other recent honors include the following: • Meredith was included in Forbes’ 2011 Best Colleges list. This ranking of 650 schools - the top 20% of all undergraduate institutions - is prepared for Forbes by the Center for College Affordability and Productivity (CCAP).

• Meredith was named one of the “Best Colleges in the Southeast” by Princeton Review in 2011. • Meredith was cited as one of the “Most Popular” Liberal Arts Colleges by U.S. News & World Report. • Meredith was named “One of 4 Great Colleges in the Southeast” by • Meredith was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement. (See pg. 6 for more.)

Two Students Earn Gilman Scholarships to Study Abroad By Melyssa Allen


eredith College students Kristen Gallagher and Sarah Phillips earned Benjamin A. Gilman scholarships for 2011. The Gilman award is a prestigious national scholarship that supports students studying abroad. The Gilman award is named in honor of former U.S. Congressional Representative Benjamin A. Gilman. Award recipients are chosen by a competitive selection process. Kristen Gallagher, a junior from Charlotte, N.C., used her award for a summer 2011 study abroad experience in Cambodia. She was based in Siem Reap and Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Her program included a required class, Cambodian History and Culture, and an elective called Nation Building, which covered the political history, economic situation, and current issues in Cambodia. “The two courses pair very well with my summer research examining possible ways in which contemporary Cambodian artists use elements of ecology (nature, plants, landscape) to communicate trauma in their art,” Gallagher said. “The research is a continu-

Kristen Gallagher ation of a Spring 2011 independent study course that I designed.” Sarah Phillips used her award for a fall 2011 study abroad experience in Morocco. She participated in a SIT Study Abroad program in migration and transnational identity, based in Rabat, Morocco. “During our time in Morocco, we had the opportunity to travel to Amsterdam and Rotterdam, places that have a high number of Moroccan immigrants, to see the “other side” of migration,” Phillips explained. “We

visited with local government and UN officials to discuss the cost and benefits of them migrating to the Netherlands.” Phillips said she chose the SIT program to better understand the process of immigration from governmental and social perspectives. “Rapid globalization has made the concept of transnational identity prevalent in many countries. For example, in the U.S. I feel as though as a society as a whole, we are extremely critical of people who migrate to the U.S. (legally or illegally),” Phillips said. “Associated with those criticisms is the idea that immigrants to the U.S. take jobs, or they are a drain on the American economy. This program focuses on why Moroccans immigrate to Europe, specifically to the Netherlands, and it focuses on these criticisms.” Phillips is a senior from Silver Springs, Md., earning a degree in international studies, and religious & ethical studies. After graduate school, she hopes to work in the public sector or for an international non-governmental organization (NGO) that focuses on human rights. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /



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Dateline Meredith

Meredith To Add Lacrosse as Its Seventh Varsity Sport By Melyssa Allen


eredith College is adding lacrosse as the College’s seventh varsity sport. The Avenging Angels newest team will begin play in the 2012-13 academic year. Meredith is the first college or university within the City of Raleigh to offer women’s lacrosse as a varsity sport. The team will compete at the Meredith Athletic Field and Track Complex, where President Jo Allen made the announcement on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2011. Built in 2009, the complex includes a state-of-the-art soccer and lacrosse facility with a FieldTurf surface and Daktronics scoreboard. “What athletics brings to us is an ongoing story of power, especially for women,” Allen said. “The addition of this new sport at Meredith allows us to build on our strengths.” Women’s Lacrosse is increasingly popular in the area. Sixty-four high schools in North Carolina now offer Girls Lacrosse. Twenty-one of those sixty-four high schools are located in Apex, Raleigh, Chapel Hill or Durham. USA South Commissioner Rita Wiggs, student athletes and other campus dignitaries participated in the announcement, which

Landis to Present Faculty Distinguished Lecture By Melyssa Allen Associate Professor of Nutrition, Health and Human Performance Bill Landis will present the 2012 Faculty Distinguished Lecture on Tuesday, March 13, 2012. The lecture, titled “Seed,” will be held at 7 p.m. in Jones Auditorium. Landis is the program coordinator for the foods and nutrition program, and is the director of the M.S. program in nutrition. His interests and research background include 6

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USA South Commissioner Rita Wiggs and Athletics Director Jackie Myers unveil Meredith’s latest sport. was attended by students, faculty, staff and other Meredith community members. Wiggs explained that lacrosse became a USA South conference sport in 2003. With the addition of Meredith College, the number of competitors will grow to nine. “The addition of another team will enhance that competition,” Wiggs said. “Meredith’s athletic facility will provide a wonderful home for this team.” The Board of Trustees approved the addition of the new sport at their fall 2011 meeting.

local and organic foods, sustainable diets and methods of food production, vegetarianism and sports nutrition. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Guilford College, and received his M.S. and Ph.D. in foods and nutrition from University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Landis started The Meredith Organic Community Garden (also known as “Three Sisters Garden”) in 2005. The garden provides the Meredith community with an opportunity to explore and grow fresh healthy food. The garden is a demonstration of the concepts and methods used in producing plants and food in an environmentally sound and ecologically sustainable manner. The first Faculty Distinguished Lecture was presented by Norma Rose in December

Meredith College competes in the USA South Athletic Conference. Meredith College currently fields teams in basketball, cross country, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball. The new players will join all Meredith athletes in addressing the four core competencies of the Meredith Athletic program: integrity, discipline, respect and responsibility. Visit for additional information.

1964. According to “Faculty Distinguished Lectures 1964-1981,” the lecture series was designed to “represent a significant achievement of research by a faculty member.” The Faculty Distinguished Lecture is free and open to the public. A reception will follow in the Johnson Hall Rotunda. This event is sponsored by Meredith’s convocation committee.

Meredith Named to Presidential Service Honor Roll By Melyssa Allen For the second time, Meredith College has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor

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Dateline Meredith

Roll, the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement. During the timeframe covered by the honor roll, more than 1,200 Meredith students were engaged in community service, either through service-learning programs or other service efforts. These students performed nearly 12,000 hours of service. Highlighted Meredith community service efforts were Splash into Service, Barwell Buddies and Active Angels. Splash into Service is a kickoff event that helps students become excited about service at the beginning of the academic year. Students packaged meals for Stop Hunger Now, an organization combating global poverty, in August and also participated in a February event to support earthquake victims in Haiti. In all, 104 students performed 312 service hours during these efforts. Barwell Buddies is a volunteer effort of Meredith’s sociology program. Approximately 120 students served as volunteers at Barwell Elementary in Raleigh, for a total of 1,500 service hours. Efforts included coordinating a book drive that resulted in more than 1,700 books so that each child could have two books of his or her own. Active Angels is a program developed by a Meredith student with the purpose of encouraging physical activity for girls, helping them build confidence through physical activity and teamwork exercises. Since 2009, 20 student volunteers have participated in the Active Angels program, meeting once a week after school to serve 50 elementary school students for a total of 300 service hours.

Sustainable September Puts Focus on Thinking Green

Study Abroad Students Participate in Sansepolcro Tradition

By Melyssa Allen

By Melyssa Allen

Meredith’s annual Sustainable September series of special events helped students, faculty and staff learn new ways to “think green,” environmentally, socially and economically. Departments across campus sponsored Sustainable September events, including educational activities, sessions on green jobs, local food options and other sustainable topics. Highlights included a film series, visits to locally owned coffee shops, and a presentation on Meredith’s campus energy audit. Healthy lifestyle choices were the focus of “Wellness Wednesdays” each week in September, with special meals in Belk Dining Hall and an opportunity to participate in a wellness walk with the campus community. The arts were also used to illustrate sustainability topics. Meredith Ensemble Theatre presented outdoor performances of William Shakespeare’s “The Tempest,” without electricity or amplified sound. (see pg. 4 for more.) The Meredith College Action Network (MCAN) sponsored a Trash into Art competition, in which teams used recyclable goods to build sculptures. Meredith’s sustainability focus continues beyond September and throughout the academic year. Visit sustainabilty for more information on the College’s environmental awareness efforts.

Students studying abroad at Meredith’s Sansepolcro, Italy, location for the Fall 2011 semester participated in a centuries-old tradition. Meredith students processed on the feast night of St. Egidio, the city’s patron saint. The event took place two days prior to the Palio della Balestra, a crossbow competition begun in 1619 and held twice each year between Sansepolcro and rival city, Gubbio. A procession of Renaissance nobles passed through the streets, led by trumpeters and drummers dressed in Sansepolcro’s town colors of black and white. Flag bearers, known as the sbandieratori, wearing rich orange, scarlet and blue-striped velvet tunics, joined them. Other than the societies directly involved in the competition, the Meredith students were the only group that carried a banner in the procession. The students processed in varied costumes that reflected the range of medieval women’s dress across the social spectrum. “It is an honor for Meredith students to be asked to participate, an honor that shows that we are seen to be a part of the town,” said Betty Webb, director of the Meredith in Sansepolcro program. Twelve students are completing Meredith’s semester program in Italy this fall. Read the students’ reflections on Palio della Balestra and other experiences on the Meredith travel journal website,

About the Honor Roll

The Corporation for National and Community Service, which has administered the Honor Roll since 2006, admitted a total of 641 colleges and universities for their impact on issues from literacy and neighborhood revitalization to supporting at-risk youth. Of that total, 511 were named to the Honor Roll, 114 received the recognition of Honor Roll with distinction, 11 were identified as finalists, and six received the Presidential Award.

Meredith students in traditional costume in Sansepolcro, Italy M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


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A Passion for Teaching and Coaching By Gaye Hill


or 20 years, Melinda Campbell has been helping Meredith students fulfill their academic and athletic aspirations. Today, Campbell fulfills dual roles of professor and head basketball coach. According to Campbell, that balancing act has long been a part of Meredith athletics. “I just focus on being the same person in both roles and in all arenas, even if the responsibilities and the situations may be different. I believe my dual roles have the same goal—to help Meredith women become the best they are capable of becoming, so I always try to keep that nobler mission in full view.” When Campbell first came to Meredith, she taught physical education in what was then the Department of Health, Physical Education and Dance. “Athletics was also part of this department at that time and all of us held dual teaching and coaching roles,” said Campbell, who coached the Meredith tennis team for eight years. Under her leadership, the tennis team became the first Meredith athletic team to make it into the NCAA tournament. In 2000, after completing her Ph.D., Campbell stepped down from coaching to help start the Exercise and Sports Science program and later served as department chair until 2009. She was grateful for the opportunity to return to coaching in the fall of 2009 as the head basketball coach.

and picking out a certain spot that I can go to every time,” said Rochester, who added that Campbell encourages her to always put academics first, and expects athletes on her team to play hard.

“I believe my dual roles have the same goal—to help Meredith women become the best they are capable of becoming, so I always try to keep that nobler mission in full view.”—Melinda Campbell Basketball player and student athlete Kayelyn Rochester, ’13, has benefited from Campbell’s expertise as both a coach and a professor. Rochester said Campbell supports her as a student by always encouraging her to do her best. “Dr. Campbell has given me different ways of studying, like going to the library 8

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“If you struggle in practice once, that is okay, but if it continues she will speak to you about it,” Rochester said. Campbell has also helped Rochester to become more confident. “She always wants me to step up and not fade away,” said Rochester. “She encourages me to speak my mind and have my opinions heard, and to be the player she knows I can be.”

Marie Chamblee, dean of the school of education, health and human sciences, said Campbell is absolutely passionate about teaching and coaching. Chamblee observed that Campbell fosters a climate of collaboration and engagement in her classes, which leads to active involvement on the part of students. “Melinda both mentors and challenges her students and players. I have seen students and student-athletes who have responded to such challenge with changes in direction for the positive, and growth both as a person and a learner,” said Chamblee. Chamblee noted that both teaching and coaching are demanding and time intensive, and to do both well requires a strong sense of motivation. “Melinda loves teaching and working with students—both are requisite for effective coaching,” said Chamblee. Campbell’s commitment to and passion for her work are apparent. “One thing has never changed for me over time–my love for working and interacting with our students. Taking on dual roles just doubles my opportunity to do that,” said Campbell. “I have come full circle in my career—and I’m loving every minute of what I’m doing.”

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Sonia Nazario Shares “Enrique’s Journey” By Melyssa Allen


ournalist Sonia Nazario, author of “Enrique’s Journey,” Meredith’s 2011 Summer Reading Program (SRP) selection, visited Meredith on August 29, 2011. “Enrique’s Journey,” the story of a young Honduran boy’s perilous quest to locate his mother in the United States, began as a Pulitzer Prize-winning story for the Los Angeles Times. During her lecture at Meredith, Nazario discussed what inspired her to explore immigration, and her own history as someone “with migration in [her] blood, growing up as an Argentine in Kansas.” During a conversation with her housecleaner, Nazario discovered what she called “an increasingly global phenomenon” of mothers leaving their children in order to work in another country. According to Nazario, four out of five nannies in Los Angeles had left their own children to go work. At the time of her research for the Los Angeles Times, 48,000 children made the journey from Latin America through Mexico in order to reach the United States. Most of these children were trying to find a parent. As a way to humanize the immigration issue, Nazario decided to find a child who

had attempted this, which she said “taught her what true determination is.” She met Enrique, and retraced his journey to find his mother, who at the time worked in North Carolina. “I went through one iota of what these kids went through,” Nazario said. “I couldn’t fathom what these kids were willing to do … to be with their moms.” “Enrique’s Journey” does not have a Hollywood ending for Enrique and his

mother. The book covers what happens when Enrique finally succeeds in finding his mother, and the struggles the two go through to repair their relationship. Nazario says this struggle is typical. “What’s very sad about these separations is these mothers lose what is most important to them, the love of their children,” Nazario said. Nazario said immigration is a complicated issue, and she argues that the solutions are to “tackle this exodus at its source by helping create jobs in the countries that a majority of immigrants come from.” She also suggested providing microloans to women in these countries, through organizations such as KIVA, and lobbying the U.S. government to improve trade policies to let more products from Latin America into the U.S. “Spending money to create jobs south of the border won’t be popular now,” Nazario conceded, “but the truth is we are already spending buckets of money on efforts that aren’t working.” See page 16 to learn how the 2010 and 2011 Summer Reading Books inspired action in the Meredith community.

Clyde Edgerton Entertains at Friends of the Library Dinner By Martha Fonville


capacity crowd of Friends of the Carlyle Campbell Library gathered for the fall dinner on October 13, 2011, where they enjoyed good food, great conversation and entertainment by bestselling author Clyde Edgerton, a writing professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Another highlight of the evening was the announcement of Professor of Human Environmental Science Ellen Goode and Professor of Human Environmental Science Martha Burpitt as winners of the 2011 Library Faculty Award. Both professors have worked with their students to upgrade the interior of Carlyle Campbell Library to present a fresher, more up-to-date appearance. Edgerton entertained with reading, banjo playing, and storytelling. Introduced by

Meredith College Professor Emeritus of Religion Bernard Cochran, Edgerton kept his audience laughing with his ever-present wit and music. His most recent novel, “The Night Train,” set in the rural South in 1963, is an acclaimed “story of friendship and race and the transforming power of music.” The “New York Times Book Review” noted “the easy rhythms and gentle humor of Edgerton’s rich, slice-of-life portrait.” Edgerton is a recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a member of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. He is the author of ten

novels, a memoir, and numerous short stories and essays. Five of his novels have been New York Times Notable Books. Carlyle Campbell Library maintains a comprehensive selection of his work, available to students, staff, alumnae, and Friends of the Library members. This was a return visit to the Friends of the Library by Clyde Edgerton; in 2002, he was on campus to celebrate Virginia Tech Professor of English Hilbert Campbell’s donation of a large collection of material by and about Edgerton. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


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Fall Art Exhibit Features Work of Alumnae, Faculty By Melyssa Allen


collaborative multi-media installation exhibited in the Frankie G. Weems Art Gallery this fall featured artists with Meredith connections. “Rhymes in Time,” which reinterpreted children’s nursery rhymes, was the work of art faculty member Emily Soldin Howard, ’01, classmate Emily Cash Wilmoth, ’01, Catherine Thornton and Kelly Smith-Campbell. In the exhibition, the artists identified and explored women’s roles, female stereotypes and myths found in nursery rhymes, visually addressing hidden concepts and historical references found deep within the poems. The nursery rhymes featured in the exhibit were Mary, Mary Quite Contrary, Mary Had a Little Lamb, Little Miss Muffett, The Old Woman Who Swallowed the Fly and Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater. Pulling information from the past, all four artists worked to infuse their re-envisioned nursery rhyme environment with a historical feel, connecting Mary, Mary Quite Contrary to “Bloody Mary” and Little Miss Muffett to Mary, Queen of Scots. The exhibit included pen and ink drawings, large scale drawings, sculpture and audio and video components to create the feeling of being totally submerged in a different, yet familiar, world.

“Meredith was the perfect venue for me to transform into my ‘ideal’ multi-sensory environment,” Wilmoth said, because of its focus on educating women and the opportunity to connect to several academic departments. Wilmoth has taught at Meredith College and Duke University and is a faculty member at the Art Institute of Raleigh-Durham. Howard is a textile artist and an adjunct faculty member at Meredith. A number of Meredith students contributed to the completion of the exhibition. Instructor Emily Soldin Howard’s

fibers class wove Miss Muffett’s spider web and her two dimensional class created the rug under the rocking chair. Associate Professor of Art Lisa Pearce’s two dimensional design classes worked on the wall drawings. Assistant Professor of Art Warner Hyde’s sculpture class worked on the installation of the Old Woman Who Swallowed the Fly’s intestines. Emily Cash Wilmoth received a Regional Artists Project Grant from the United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County in support of this exhibition.

Bequest of More Than $1 Million Establishes Scholarship Fund By Melyssa Allen


bequest of more than $1 million from the estate of Ruth H. Huskins has established the Ruth Elizabeth McNeill Scholarship Endowment Fund at Meredith College. The bequest is in memory of Huskins’ daughter, Ruth Elizabeth McNeill, an alumna of Meredith College. Huskins was the widow of Judge J. Frank Huskins, a Yancey County native who served on the North Carolina Supreme Court from 1968-1982 and in the


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North Carolina House of Representatives. A native of Caldwell County, N.C., Ruth Huskins moved to Raleigh in 1966. She passed away in March 2010 at age 87. She is survived by her son, Robert McNeill of Houston, Texas. This scholarship at Meredith College will provide support for undergraduate students with financial need. Preference will be given to students who are residents of Caldwell, Mitchell and Yancey counties.

Scholarships in the amount of $4,000 (inflation adjusted) will be awarded to one or more students each year who demonstrate a desire for a college education and are found to be in need of financial aid. Prospective students from Caldwell, Mitchell and Yancey counties interested in learning more about the scholarship should contact Meredith Secosky, admissions counselor, at (919) 760-8581 or

M e r e d i t h

N e w s

Tony Award-Winning Alumna Holds Audition Workshop By Melyssa Allen


ony Award winner Beth Leavel, ’77, returned to Meredith’s campus on September 30, 2011, to provide an audition workshop for music and theatre students. Leavel is an accomplished Broadway actress and singer who decided during her senior year at Meredith to pursue an acting career. While earning a degree in sociology, she performed in Meredith productions “The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie,” “Come Blow Your Horn,” “Blithe Spirit,” “The Bald Soprano” and “Cabaret.” Her most recent Tony nomination was in 2011 in the Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical for her work in “Baby It’s You!” In 2006, Leavel won a Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical for her performance in “The Drowsy Chaperone.” Student actors and singers performed monologues or songs, and Leavel gave them constructive tips for improvement. One piece of advice was to know the character’s motivation in the song, and to find something personal to bring to the performance. “You need to know why that character had to sing that song,” Leavel said. “If you’re making a gesture and it isn’t part of the character, it takes away from your talent.”

Participant Teia Coley was “in awe” of getting to perform for Leavel. “Having her tell me I did a good job was the best feeling in the world,” Coley said. “It was truly an honor.” Leavel also took questions from students and talked about her own audition experiences. “The audition is not only about the 90 seconds you have on stage with the material,” Leavel said. “They are looking at you from the second you walk on that stage, the way you look, your confidence, that’s all part of the audition.” A student asked Leavel how to deal with the uncertainty of an acting career. “There is nothing else I need or want to do in my life – I want to act,” Leavel said. “You have to find that passion for what you are going to do with your life.” During the workshop, Leavel and fellow alumna Professor of Theatre Catherine Rodgers, recalled how they met during an audition for a Meredith production of “Winnie the Pooh” when Leavel was a freshman and Rodgers was a sophomore. Rodgers was cast as Winnie the Pooh and Leavel played Rabbit. “I was so close to getting the lead,” Leavel said with a smile. For more information on theatre at Meredith, visit dance-theatre/theatre.

Newsmakers Director of Human Resources Pam Davis has been selected to serve on the Southern Region College & University Professional Association for Human Resources Program Committee for the 2012 regional conference in Savannah, Ga. The committee is responsible for selecting the programs for the annual conference. Assistant Professor Amie Hess presented her work, “The Abstinence Spy: Uncovering Institutionalized Practices in Abstinence-Only Until Marriage Education,” at the American Sociological Association annual meeting. Associate Professor of Art Shannon Johnstone has been selected to serve as one of six curriculum writers for the “Art of Persuasion” online course, after participating in the North Carolina Art Museum’s summer “Art of Persuasion” ThinkTANK session. “Art of Persuasion” will be created in collaboration with the NCMA and North Carolina Virtual Public Schools. Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences Erin Lindquist co-presented and coordinated a workshop at the Ecological Society of America (ESA) Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas, on August 7, titled, “Developing Collaborative Research Projects in the Ecological Research as Education Network (EREN)”. Associate Professor of Spanish Debora Maldonado-DeOliveira’s article, “Problematic Ideas of Puerto Rico in Puerto Rican Cinema: Luis Molina Casanova’s ‘La guagua aerea,’” was published in the spring 2011 edition of “CENTRO Journal: Journal for the Center of Puerto Rican Studies.” Carolyn Robinson, former college editor and director of publications at Meredith, is the author of a new book called “My Menagerie: My Life.” Robinson, a 1950 graduate of Meredith, is also the author of “The Vision Revisited: A History of Meredith College 1971-1998,” the second volume of Meredith history. Tricia Strong, staff accompanist, Encore director and voice class teacher, recorded an anthem this summer for the Long Leaf Pine Society, an organization dedicated to promoting pride in North Carolina and its citizens. Assistant Professor of Spanish Jonathan Wade presented a paper titled “Selves-contemplations: Manuel de Faria e Sousa’s Two Autobiographies” at the 10th Biennial Conference of the Society for Renaissance and Baroque Hispanic Poetry held at Queen’s University Belfast. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /




This year, Meredith celebrates 120 years of educating women. Three alumnae—a mother, daughter and Meredith’s president—reflect on the unique nature of a Meredith education that ensures its continued strength and relevance. By Gaye Hill


s a women’s college, Meredith has always been in the business of breaking new ground. Founded at a time when educating women was regarded as unnecessary at best and meddlesome at worst, the College was created with a deep commitment to learning that has stood it in good stead for more than a century. Today, research shows that women’s colleges offer unique benefits to students, helping them become stronger communicators, persuaders and leaders. Here, a new graduate, Caitlin Griffin,’11, her mother, Georganne Griffin, ’78, and President Jo Allen, ’80, share their thoughts on the Meredith experience. While every alumna’s education is uniquely her own, no doubt the observations of these three alumnae will ring true to those who have experienced Meredith firsthand. Supportive faculty, leadership opportunities, empowering experiential learning—these are the hallmarks of a women’s college education . . . of a Meredith education. 12

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The Value of a Meredith education . . .

Caitlin Griffin, ’11 “My educational experience at Meredith was superbly unique because it was so complete. I studied abroad in Argentina for one full academic year and traveled to five other countries; before I came to Meredith, I had never left the United States. I completed two majors, did undergraduate research, wrote an Honors thesis, held significant leadership positions on campus, and had three distinct pre-professional internships. By offering me various opportunities for academic, professional and personal growth, Meredith prepared me to enter an increasingly specialized workforce. Now I am confident that I possess all of the communication and leadership tools necessary to establish a paradigm of excellence in my future career.”

Georganne B. Griffin, ’78 “At a time when most women’s colleges focused on preparing young women to be wives, mothers and to follow traditional careers, Meredith was encouraging us to

explore our world. Faculty supported my double major and promoted study abroad as a way for me to match my studies with a cultural experience. As a member of one of the first groups to participate in Meredith Study Abroad in Europe, the experience was life changing. When I was unable to take one of the required courses for my minor, I was encouraged to create an independent study with a professor. This individual attention really stood out for me as one of the benefits of attending Meredith. Today, I attribute much of my success to my Meredith experience and the relationships forged during my college years.”

Jo Allen, ’80, president “My Meredith education not only provided the intellectual challenges I needed to grow as a student and scholar, but also as a human being. From both intellectual and humanist perspectives, I learned that women play critical, and often unappreciated, roles in our world. I learned that I had the talent and determination to be heard, but that meant that I had to have something worthy of saying— and that what I had to say had to be about more than just me. I learned to balance the powers of reason, creativity, integrity and

Women’s college alumnae are more likely to complete a graduate degree. Graduate schools attended by recent Meredith graduates include Carnegie Mellon, Pratt Institute, Duke University, University of Virginia and Yale Medical School.

Caitlin Griffin, ’11, and her mother, Georganne Griffin, ’78, celebrate Caitlin’s recent graduation from Meredith.

Women’s college students are more likely to participate in international study or another off-campus study experience. Thirty percent of Meredith students study abroad.

or men in ANY of the residence halls at any time. Much has changed, yet much remains the same. Meredith women enjoy the freedom of an education that will serve them well, and will leave a legacy for future generations.”

Jo Allen, ’80, president

kindness. Moreover, I learned confidence, self-reflection and a thirst for improvement. These are all critical aspects in the development of leadership. I certainly didn’t learn all these lessons at one time—and some of them I am continuing to learn. But I am absolutely positive that my experiences at Meredith uniquely poised me to pursue graduate studies, to focus on outcomes that would better position me for the kind of career and life I have always wanted, and, ultimately, to be satisfied with the direction my life has taken.” how the Meredith experience is evolving . . .

prepared me to succeed in a rapidly-evolving and fast-paced world.”

Georganne B. Griffin, ’78 “As an alumna from the ’70s, my experience was very different from my daughter’s. Gone are the sign-in and sign-out books in the parlors for permitted overnights, the ‘all call’ phone system, announcing ‘Visitor in Johnson Hall!,’ and the required Chapel attendance, in church clothes, every Wednesday morning. Gone also are the stables, where I enjoyed equestrian PE, and horse shows once a month to demonstrate proficiency. There were no Oaks apartments, salad bars in the dining hall (all meals were served family style),

“Meredith has a number of unique opportunities for development and growth. We will, over the course of the year, be developing a new strategic plan that will help shape the directions for and sustainability of Meredith for the long term. We will investigate the feasibility of new programs, new initiatives, new partnerships and new directions for ensuring the health of the institution. I anticipate that we will set these discussions within the context of some of our best assets: the outstanding reputation Meredith has for academic excellence, our outstanding faculty talent, our welcoming and safe campus environment, and our ideal location near downtown Raleigh and RTP.” the continued importance of women’s colleges . . .

Caitlin Griffin, ’11 “Women’s colleges are more valuable now than ever before. As a recent graduate, I see the challenges facing our generation in the job market—employers seek only the most

Caitlin Griffin, ’11 “On my first visit to the Carlyle Campbell Library, I made sure to look up my mother in all of her old yearbooks! It’s fun to be able to talk to her about Cornhuskin’ and the leadership roles she held on campus because we had a lot in common in how we took advantage of those kinds of special opportunities. However, I think my experience allowed me to form a greater sense of independence and personal responsibility. My life at Meredith was always varied and fast-paced; my generation, in contrast to my mother’s, is forced to quickly and efficiently multi-task in almost every facet of life. Likewise, I was constantly engaged—in the classroom, internships, undergraduate research, extracurriculars and part-time work at the YMCA. Yet I love that my Meredith experience was so full and complete, because it

Women’s colleges receive high effectiveness ratings for helping students learn to be leaders. Meredith’s Student Government Association is one of the


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oldest in the southeast.

confident, skilled individuals. Attending a women’s college made me an independent thinker and doer. Because I was so comfortable in class, I never hesitated to ask difficult questions or share my thoughts on controversial topics. Those communication skills were honed in the classroom then transferred to the interactions I had outside of the classroom with job supervisors, field professionals and male peers.”

Georganne B. Griffin, ’78 “The benefits of attending Meredith extend far beyond college. Meredith graduates are, and have always been, ahead of their time. I was able to focus on my studies without distraction, and hold offices in organizations that males would likely have held on a co-ed campus. I had opportunities for leadership and was able to speak at various events and programs. I believe these experiences contributed to my ability to speak easily with a variety of people, in multiple settings. My Meredith experience has definitely supported the research associated with women’s colleges. I have been successfully


employed for over 25 years, and obtained both a master’s degree and advanced certification in my chosen field of counselor education. My strong liberal arts education has prepared me for not just ‘work,’ but lifelong learning, and the ability to transition from one career path to another.”

Jo Allen, ’80, president “Meredith prepares its graduates to consider and understand the far-reaching effects of geographical, political, social, religious and economic factors on women, their families and their communities. They learn firsthand the value of engagement in the community—of putting their classroom lessons to work in a context whose outcomes truly matter. They benefit from experiential learning options that give them hands-on opportunities to test their problem-solving, analytical and other critical thinking skills. They are, in short, empowered to make a difference in their communities and in the lives of others, whether in corporations, education, healthcare, the arts, industry, social agencies or wherever their interests and talents take them.”

Women’s colleges receive high effectiveness ratings for helping students to be prepared for their first job. Ninety-six percent of Meredith seniors have discussed career plans with a faculty member or advisor.

A survey commissioned by the Women’s College Coalition found that women’s colleges were more effective in helping students learn to write and speak effectively, develop self-confidence and initiative, and learn to solve problems and make effective decisions. To read more about women’s colleges, go to

New Reasons to be Proud of your Meredith Education

Meredith’s record of academic


excellence has led to strong regional and national rankings, awards and accreditations. With an alumnae


U.S. News & World Report ranks Meredith Southern region.

News & World Report.

Meredith was designated as a “Best Value” ranks 7th among colleges in the South.

ever, the first alumna president,

This ranking takes into account a school’s

innovative academic programs and

academic quality, and the 2010-11 cost

a new strategic plan in the works,

of attendance for students who receive the

Meredith is poised to emerge as

average level of need-based financial aid.


In 2011, Meredith was cited as one of the “Most Popular” Liberal Arts Colleges by U.S.


by U.S. News & World Report. Meredith

base that is more engaged than

the next force in women’s education.


College third among colleges in the

Meredith was named “One of 4 Great Colleges in the Southeast” by


Meredith’s strong academic record means it has the highest levels of accreditation in many fields—an indicator of quality looked for by employers, professional associations and other colleges and universities. For instance,

Meredith was recently included in Forbes’

Meredith’s business school is among the

2011 Best Colleges list, prepared for Forbes

5% worldwide to be accredited by AACSB

alumnae to learn more about how you

by the Center for College Affordability and

International, and Meredith has the only

can help shape Meredith’s future.

Productivity (CCAP).

CIDA-accredited interior design program in

Go to


Meredith was named one of the “Best Colleges in the Southeast” by Princeton Review.

the Triangle area.

Jane Mitchell (left), and Beth Jarvis, ’03

Inspiring action By Melyssa Allen

Recent Meredith Summer Reading Program selections have inspired alumnae, students and staff to take action by volunteering abroad, learning more about the world and supporting organizations that help girls and women.


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“If you want to fight poverty, terrorism or civil conflict, the most cost-effective way is to educate girls and bring them into the workforce. There are no silver bullets, but the closest you can get is education.”—Nicholas Kristof


n Meredith’s 2010 Summer Reading Selection, “Half the Sky,” Pulitzer Prize winners Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn immerse their readers into the lives of women around the world who are affected by poverty, lack of opportunity and oppression. Their aim is to recruit readers to become involved in a “movement to emancipate women and fight global poverty by unlocking women’s power as economic catalysts,” a message Kristof shared during a September 2010 Meredith lecture. “If you want to fight poverty, terrorism or civil conflict, the most cost-effective way is to educate girls and bring them into the workforce,” he said. While the stories in the book could be difficult to read, the authors offer ways for readers to take action, and many Meredith community members answered their call. Beth Jarvis, ’03, suggested “Half the Sky” to her book club after it was announced as Meredith’s summer reading book. The book

Jane Mitchell, director of The Meredith Fund, and Beth Jarvis, ’03, decided to volunteer in Vietnam after reading Meredith’s 2010 Summer Reading Book.

club then sponsored a fundraiser for The East African Center for the Empowerment of Women and Children, a non-profit organization that supports efforts to eradicate poverty. Each member was challenged to take an individual action. Jarvis decided to travel to Vietnam this past summer with Jane Mitchell, director of The Meredith Fund. They volunteered in three different placements, teaching English at a primary school, working with a shelter for girls and at an orphanage. This experience gave them a glimpse of life in Vietnam, especially in areas most tourists don’t see. “If we’d just gone as tourists, it would have been a completely different experience,” Jarvis said. “We got to know locals, and gained some language training, too.” Javis and Mitchell recommend international volunteering to others. “You get so much more out of volunteering than you put in,” Mitchell said. “The experience will stay with me for a long time.”

While the service trip to Vietnam lasted only a few weeks, the ripple effects of the book continue. Jarvis, who is a math teacher in Cary, N.C., told a fellow teacher about the book, and the friend is using the book in one of her high school classes. Her students were inspired to take action as well, creating a website to raise awareness of the issues in the book, and holding a coin drive to support a hospital in Somaliland. Chaplain’s Office Leads the Way

“Half the Sky” has also inspired two new efforts at Meredith, advised by Chaplain Stacy Pardue. Pardue, who joined the Meredith community in 2010, was a speaker at a Meredith event meant to help students process what they learned reading “Half the Sky.” Afterward, Class of 2013 President Michelle Cox asked Pardue to help her class start an effort that has become known as Sisters United. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


“The only way to make people care is to put a face on the issue. Find one woman or girl, and tell her story.”—Nicholas Kristof

“When I finished “Half the Sky,” I turned to my mother and said, ‘I don’t know how anyone could read this book and not be compelled to do something,’” Cox recalls. “Then and there I began to plan how I would respond to such a captivating book.” This interest led Cox to approach Pardue, and Sisters United was the result. Working with a child advocacy non-profit in Atlanta, Sisters United sponsors girls at orphanages in Kenya and Ghana. Through pictures, letters and contributions, Sisters United supports these girls as they pursue their educational goals. “As a future teacher, I believe in the power of education,” Cox said. “Sisters United acknowledges the responsibility for its sisters around the globe and commits itself to transforming their lives through education— one girl at a time.” Pardue plans to take a group of student volunteers to Ghana in 2012. She feels service trips help bring global issues to life for students. 18

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“It is so important for young people to experience service firsthand,” Pardue said. “I really hope they become gripped with the calling to do service for the rest of their lives. A service trip shows you really can make a difference in the lives of people.” The goals of “Half the Sky” meshed well with Pardue’s interests in social ministries. “It fit perfectly with my goals as chaplain, met my passion exactly,” Pardue said. “I want students to be involved in women’s issues, so “Half the Sky” was perfect for this campus.” Angels Against Trafficking

In addition to Sisters United, Pardue is also assisting students with another effort related to Meredith’s Summer Reading selections. Angels Against Trafficking, a studentled organization that is working to raise awareness of the issue of human trafficking, was inspired by both “Half the Sky” and the 2011 selection, “Enrique’s Journey.” The idea for Angels Against Trafficking was sparked by “Half the Sky.” Sophomore

Monserrat Alvarez, ’14, who works in the Office of the Chaplain, is working to get this effort off the ground during the 2011-12 academic year. Alvarez read “Half the Sky” as a freshman, and this year she read “Enrique’s Journey,” which explores the issue of undocumented immigration into the United States through the lens of one boy’s journey to find his mother. One of the increasingly widespread dangers faced is human trafficking. “As a community, we have a common misconception that human trafficking happens overseas or in foreign countries, but the reality is that it happens in the United States and in North Carolina,” Alvarez explained. As a student at a women’s college, Alvarez believes it is important to fight human trafficking as a way to support Meredith’s vision to empower women. Women make up 98% of those affected by sex trafficking and more than half of those affected by labor trafficking, according to the UN Global Initiative to Fight Trafficking.

“Getting engaged with global issues is empowering yourself at the same time that you are empowering others.”—Nicholas Kristof

Mitchell and Jarvis worked in a primary school, a girls’ shelter and an orphanage.

“Hundreds of women are kidnapped, raped and murdered while making the journey to the United States and they are never heard of again,” Alvarez said. “It is time that as a society we recognize this systemic issue and begin to work towards ending the violation of human rights.” Her passion to take action was bolstered by Meredith’s Summer Reading selections. “The stories shared in “Half the Sky” and “Enrique’s Journey” were shocking, so I felt the need to do something,” Alvarez said. Learning More About Global Challenges

Reading “Half the Sky” was also eye opening for Student Government Association President Jennifer Prince, ’12. “I knew I needed to do something to educate myself about issues in the book. I’m a curious person, so when something piques my interest, I want to learn more,” Prince said. “I wanted to experience the things Kristof talked about for myself.”

One of Kristof ’s other recommendations is for high school students to take a “gap year” before attending college in order to travel and learn more about the world. “Kristof challenges students to take a gap year,” Prince said. “I realized my next best option was to study abroad in a non-western country.” She chose to spend the summer in India, where she completed a course on culture, class and gender, and did an independent research project on women’s education in the Pondicherry area of India. Life in India “isn’t for everyone,” Prince said. “There’s no such thing as time alone, you feel constantly surrounded, but I loved it. Even though those I interacted with didn’t have a lot, they lived with passion for everything they did and that was inspiring.” Lasting Effect on Campus

Chaplain Stacy Pardue believes the reason the 2010 and 2011 reading selections have resonated with campus is because they are true stories.

“These books have power because they are really happening to women and children around the world,” Pardue said. As Cox read “Half the Sky,” she put herself in the shoes of the women in the book. “I asked myself, ‘What if that were me… what if I had been exposed to the torture, sexual abuse and hopelessness felt by so many around the world?,’” Cox said. “Half the Sky’ inspired a certain sense of responsibility within me.” Jarvis agrees, and said that she is still spreading the message of “Half the Sky.” “When people ask me why I went to Vietnam, I tell them, ‘I read this book called ‘Half the Sky’…”

For information on how to assist with Sisters United or Angels Against Trafficking, contact the Office of the Chaplain at (919) 760-8346 or

M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /





Meredith’s special version of Wonderland returns when

the College’s adaptation of the Lewis Carroll classic makes

its quadrennial appearance. By Melyssa Allen

Production photos courtesy Meredith Archives. Memorabilia from the collection of Jean Jackson. 20

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eredith’s “Alice in Wonderland” is among the cherished memories of many alumnae. Performed once every four years, students only get one chance during their college career to enjoy the performance by faculty and staff. “Alice” is a beloved tradition that began in 1924 as a gift from faculty to students. The March 21, 1924, edition of the student newspaper, “The Twig,” said the original production featuring “faculty in curious forms” was “decidedly the hit of the season.” The 2012 performance promises a similar response from the current generation of students.

You’re Invited To: All Meredith Alumnae “Alice in Wonderland” Dress Rehearsal presented by Meredith College faculty and staff Thursday, January 19, 2012 8 p.m. Jones Auditorium A reception for alumnae will be hosted by the Office of Alumnae Relations prior to the dress rehearsal. RSVP to (919) 760-8548 or

M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fa l l 2 011 /


lumnae Connection Notes and news for Meredith alumnae

Highlights Meredith Mayhem....... ............... 24 Alumna Profile: Kasey Ginsberg, ’10.... 25 Cornhuskin’ Then and Now............. 26 Picture Yourself in Tuscany............. 27 Alumna Profile: Phyllis Duncan, ’66.... 29 Alumna Profile: Sylvia McCreary, ’63.... 31


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President Jo Allen Meets Fellow Alumnae at Chapter Events Across the State This fall, the Office of Alumnae & Parent Relations hit the road with President Jo Allen, ’80, bringing her to more than 10 alumnae chapter events. From Wilmington to Raleigh to Charlotte, alumnae all over North Carolina had the opportunity to meet and spend time with Meredith’s first alumna president. Board of Trustees Chair Nancy Cheek, ’63, calls this an exciting time for Meredith College. “Dr. Jo Allen is bringing a wealth of experience and talent to our college. It is invigorating to see and feel the enthusiasm from the campus community, alumnae and friends created by Dr. Allen as she shares her appreciation of Meredith’s heritage, her confidence in and excitement about the present time and her vision for making Meredith even stronger in the days ahead,” Cheek said. “In her gracious and thoughtful manner, Dr. Allen is engaging us in conversation about our participation in Meredith’s ongoing success.” More than 500 alumnae, parents and friends of the College turned out to meet President Allen this fall. Be sure to check out the alumnae calendar online for a list of upcoming chapter events as well as other special events. We hope to see you at an event sometime soon! Visit the calendar on the alumnae website at or on our blog at

class notes Compiled by the Office of Alumnae & Parent Relations from June 1 - September 23, 2011. Information may be edited for space limitations and content restrictions. Submit class notes to your class agent, online at, by email at, by fax (919) 760-2818, or by phone to the Office of Alumnae and Parent Relations at (919) 760-8548. Deadline for the Spring 2012 issue is January 26, 2012. Submissions received after this date will appear in the Summer 2012 issue.


Helen Wallis Rusher was entertaining several of her Meredith friends from her church for lunch at Cedarfield, a retirement residence in Richmond, Va., on August 23, 2011, when the earthquake occurred at 1:50 p.m. The building shook and dishes rattled. Everyone stared in wild eyed amazement. Around the table were Emily Campbell Tuck, ’60, Virginia Britt Smith, ’61, Margaret Strickland Collins, ’64, Cindy Moss Mistretta, ’84, and Ann Carroll Ezzelle, ’90. After calm was restored all of the alumnae agreed they would never forget where they were and who they were with on that day.


Frances Ward Brooks visited Becky Turner Gillespie in Burnsville, N.C., in July. One of the

highlights of their visit was attending the musical “1776” at the Parkway Playhouse in Burnsville. The theatre celebrates 65 years of operation this year, and Gillespie is a director emeritus. Emily Campbell Tuck, Frances Ward Brooks and Pat Houser Gay met on campus with President Jo Allen and formally signed the document establishing the Class of 1960 Meredith Fund Endowment in Tuck’s honor for her service as class gift agent.


Donna Dull Hurt is now serving as director of

Christian education at Home Moravian Church in Winston-Salem, N.C., and is still living in Lexington, N.C. Her part-time position allows more flexibility to spend time with her six little grandchildren.


Judy Ellis Daniels has retired from teaching music

in the public school system but is still teaching piano privately. Daniels spends time volunteering for various projects and has four grandchildren and one great grandchild. Lisa Wright Osborn worked for the last 16 years as a medical social worker for a home health care agency, and for the last four years

has been on the staff of Hospice House. Martha Reynolds Thaler taught school for 20 years and is now enjoying retirement. She travels quite a bit as her son is a pilot; she has been able to travel all over the world. Thaler has also been taking classes at Virginia Commonwealth University for the past five years because Virginia allows anyone over 60 to audit classes at a state school for free. She has taken Spanish, art history, music history and history of architecture.


Jennie Lancaster is serving as chief operating offi-

cer of the N.C. Department of Corrections after being appointed from retirement by Governor Bev Purdue. Sandra Stone Shealy retired in 2002 from Lucent Technologies where she worked as the director of wireless supply chain for 20 years. She then worked as a math instructor at Mitchell Community College before recently retiring on June 1, 2011.


Karen ‘Casey’ McDaniel Armstrong writes that

she is very proud of her daughter, Sarah Jordan Armstrong, ’11, who recently graduated from Meredith College. Armstrong writes that attending Class Day and other weekend activities brought back many memories and strengthened the appreciation that she has for the Meredith legacy. She has also been appointed by the Governor to the N.C. Board of Agriculture as the equine representative.


Christie Bordeaux Farrior, Cindy Godwin and Linda Keith Ray recently had lunch together and caught

each other up on their lives. Mary Niebur Madenspacher went to Italy in November of 2010 with Tina Thomas Batchelor. Madenspacher also has a new grandson and celebrated her 16th anniversary as executive director of Life Experiences in Cary, N.C., in

Meredith Appreciates Alumnae Teachers Meredith’s teacher education programs are known for developing exceptional teachers—many have been named Teachers of the Year, on local, regional and national levels. In an effort to honor their accomplishments and build stronger connections with our alumnae teachers, Meredith held Teacher Appreciation Receptions across Wake County this summer and fall. Staff visited more than 50 alumnae teachers, counselors and high school staff members, bringing them breakfast and presenting them with a wall clock bearing the Meredith Avenging Angels logo to display in their classrooms. Schools visited included Athens Drive, Broughton, Green Hope, Leesville, Sanderson, Wakefield, East Wake, Apex, Saint Mary’s, Cary and Middle Creek. If you are a high school teacher and are interested in receiving information about Meredith, please contact the Office of Admissions at (919) 760-8581 or Senior Visitation Days: Monday, January 23, 2012 Junior Visitation Days: Saturday, February 18, 2012, and Saturday, March 17, 2012

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alumnae Connection

Meredith Mayhem The Mayhem Continues Meredith Mayhem 2012 begins February 20. The ODDS won it last year—who will win this year? You decide! Give to The Meredith Fund prior to the competition to increase your class ranking—and improve your chances of winning. And remember, this competition is based on participation, so every gift counts!

Chamber of Commerce for community diabetes education. Beauchamp is employed by Coastal Carolina Hospital and teaches nutrition at the University of South Carolina at Beaufort. Susan Beeson Smith retired after 33 years with Avaya, Inc. as a Human Resources Manager. She and her husband moved from Greensboro back to Archdale, N.C., where she is planning to begin a private counseling practice.


Pandora Dunn Holloway is working as WakeMed

Health & Hospital’s chief compliance officer.


Betsy Cox Brown is a senior executive director

with Thirty-One Gifts. Booker Chewing Deakyne and her husband recently returned home from a six month sailing trip. They have completed the Caribbean and this past season they sailed through the Panama Canal.


Kathy Anderson Newcomb is pleased that her

daughter is a part of Meredith College’s class of 2015.


Sharon Rinker Johnson recently wrote an

Be One in a Million! working as a liaison for a federal grant which addressed positive behavior support in middle schools while serving as a part time AIG teacher in Orange County. For the last three years, she has been employed by the Program in Education, Duke University as a lecturing fellow.

October. Debbie Pugh Miller came to Raleigh’s Ovarian Cancer Walk the weekend of September 17 to walk two miles in support of her Meredith roommate, Linda Keith Ray. Miller not only brought herself to the walk, she also recruited several friends and family members. She and Ray spent the rest of the weekend eating, drinking and catching up. Mamie Lewis Potter and Linda Keith Ray attended a writing workshop at Meredith College for a week in June 2011. An anthology of the participants’ work is available through Lulu Publishing. Kitty Brewer Spillman and her husband spent a week in September visiting Nashville, Tenn. Linda Keith Ray and Meredith Marr Watson are two of the newest members of the Meredith Friends of the Library Board. They recently attended a luncheon together at Meredith as their first board responsibility.

merce at QVC has been named to the Board of Directors of Mommy’s Light Lives On Fund. Mommy’s Light is an organization that works with children and teens whose mothers have died or are terminally ill by helping them keep traditions they shared with their mothers alive. Anne Edge Dale graduated with a Master in Divinity from Virginia Theological Seminary in May.



Susan Gentry’s daughter was recently married in

Mt. Airy, N.C. Alissa Peterson Griffith has been 24

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Meg Hansil Armstrong, General Manager of e-com-

Celia Witt Beauchamp was awarded the 2011

Health Professional of the year by the Jasper County

article titled “Imagine a Place,” which appeared in the October/November issue of “Mary Jane’s Farm” magazine.


Mary Louise Tousignant Antoci is happy and

healthy living in Roswell, Ga., with her husband and children. She volunteers at a few local schools and enjoys playing tennis in her free time. Dawn Pickett Brown, originally from Durham, N.C., and a home economics major, is now in her seventh year as preschool director at Wake Forest Presbyterian. Her son is in his senior year in high school, and her daughter is in seventh grade. Kim Giddeons Quinn lives in Wallace, N.C., and has 12-year-old twins, one boy and one girl, who keep her hopping. Quinn is the owner and manager of her family business. Martha Register has returned to Raleigh, N.C., after seven years in Wilmington, N.C., at PPD, Inc. She is the senior tax manager at Golden Corral Corporation. She is happy to have returned home and looks forward to rekindling old friendships! Allison Godwin Spears wrote that she and her family have recently moved back to North Carolina and are living in Knightdale. Susan Walter Walton,

alumnae Connection originally from Durham, now lives in Chapel Hill, N.C. She has taught at various schools for a total of 13 years and is currently starting her fourth year as lead teacher in Christ Church Preschool in the 4’s class. Her oldest son started at East Carolina University in August and her younger son is in his junior year at Chapel Hill High. Rhonda Whitaker lives in Smyrna, Ga., and is vice president of finance for five manufacturing companies, three in the U.S. and two in Mexico.


Gretchen Holt Witt continues to work with

Cookies for Kids’ Cancer and recently wrote and published a cookbook, “Best Bake Sale Cookbook.” All author proceeds are being donated directly to Cookies for Kids’ Cancer. Witt has made appearances on several TV shows and has been featured in numerous magazines such as “Oprah Magazine,” “Woman’s Day” and “Traditional Home.” She continues to work to raise money for pediatric cancer research and treatments in memory of her son, Liam Witt.


Ashley Taylor Cantrell graduated from Presbyte-

rian School of Nursing at Queens University in May 2011 with a degree of Associate of Science in nursing. She is now a registered nurse. Julie Haynes Hancock is the principal at Smith Elementary School in Burlington, N.C., where she has been serving as the assistant principal since 2009. Hancock has also been assistant principal at Garrett Elementary, lead curriculum teacher at Newlin Elementary and taught kindergarten at Smith Elementary. Becky Yarbrough Norman was awarded the Lutheran Services for the Aging Annual Loyal Service Award. She also will be beginning graduate school in August at Winthrop University in the Master of Social Work program in Rock Hill, S.C.


Alicia Morris graduated from the UNCC Nonprofit

Management graduate program in June and accepted an associate director of development position in July with Habitat for Humanity in Charlotte, N.C.


Jennifer Pitts graduated from a leadership program called Leadership Metro Richmond, a one year program to develop leaders within our community to give back upon graduation. She has also been selected as the president of the Junior League of Richmond for the coming year.

Politics is a Passion for Kasey Ginsberg, ’10 By Melyssa Allen


or many Americans, politics comes to the forefront only during election season, but political action is a full-time focus for Kasey Ginsberg, ’10. The political science major is director of content for American Majority, a nonprofit political training institute. “Our organization works with local candidates and volunteers to help them be more effective in running for office, local activism and new media,” Ginsberg said. “We focus primarily on the local level, working with people who are interested in getting involved in their city or county government.” Ginsberg’s responsibilities include serving as a trainer, designing training session materials and assisting with the organization’s social media efforts. She’s the voice of American Majority on Twitter and the administrator of its Facebook page. “My priorities can shift a lot over the day or the week, but I am never short of things to do.” An aspect of her job that is exciting as well as challenging is that “politics never stops.” She’s accustomed to managing work issues while on visits out of town or over a Sunday lunch with friends. “There are few if any 9-to-5 jobs in politics, so it’s something you really have to be able to accept going into it,” Ginsberg Kasey Ginsberg, ’10 said. “If something breaks on a Saturday, it doesn’t matter where you are if you have to respond to it. I can’t simply turn my phone off and deal with it on Monday.” Though the hours can be long, Ginsberg said she loves her work. She began her path to politics in college by volunteering on the state political party, campaigns and eventually with nonprofit think tanks. “I basically realized that working as a political operative was what I liked doing, and while it was work, it never really felt like it because it was my passion.” Ginsberg said her Meredith experience was influential on her eventual career. Her first mentor was a Meredith alumna, and as a student she learned leadership lessons serving as a class officer and on campus committees. “I learned when to step up or let others take control, as well as project management, especially under tight deadlines and with tight budgets.” She also honed the ability to speak her mind at Meredith. “Being in small classes with students across the political spectrum taught me to be ready to defend my opinions but not to be afraid to voice them,” Ginsberg said.

M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


alumnae Connection


Tina Cotton Pearson is now living in Alexandria, Va.

She was recently promoted to the position of director of visitor services at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.


Beth Leigh Eastman is pleased to announce that

her new book ‘Will You Trade Your Dreams For His?’ has been published. She wrote that it has truly been a labor of love and a walk of faith. Eastman is grateful to all who have played a role in this journey. Rebecca Garland received her Master of Social Work in 2005 and served in the Peace Corps for three years. Garland earned her LCAS, LCSW and CSI and now works at Freedom House Recovery Services in the outpatient clinic as a psychotherapist.




of Science in school counseling from East Carolina University in December 2010.


Jennifer Jones received her Master of Business

Cornhuskin’ Parade 1988

Administration degree from Meredith in May 2011. In addition, Jones delivered the commencement address representing the graduate class. She works for public accounting firm Grant Thornton as manager of business advisory services and serves as president of the Raleigh-Durham Chapter of the Institute of Internal Auditors. Patricia ‘Patty’ Edwards Shaver has written and published her first book titled “My Career Voyage: Charting the Course.” Shaver is a career development facilitator and manager of



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Cornhuskin’ Parade 2011 26

Jennifer Thompson Mouney completed her Master

Sarah Gransee Arnaudin is a children’s services specialist at the Buncombe County Public Library. Alicia Baucom is the co-author of a handbook titled “The Multi-Faceted Right To Education: A Guide To Implementation & Monitoring,” which was published in March 2011. She was then invited to present at the Annual General Meeting of Women Graduates USA, the NFA of IFUW, in Minneapolis, Minn., in September 2011. Baucom also earned her Master of Science in Education with teaching english as a second language (TESOL) concentration from Shenandoah University. Alicia is now working as an ESL Specialist in the Center for International Programs at The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. Laura McNeill Cox is a service delivery manager with Dimension Data. Lormarev Jones is a member of the acting

alumnae Connection intern company of Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, a two-time Tony winning theatre in Cincinnati, Ohio. Melissa Pipes Lehman is a preschool teacher at the Child Care Education Program at UNC-Greensboro. Carmella Blakney Melton is a human resources communications advisor with Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina. Katie Monaghan Nisbet is a showroom designer for Traditions in Tile & Stone in Raleigh. Ashley Ellis Smith is a clinical project manager in the late phase department at Quintiles, Inc.


Amanda Gupton Lancaster was awarded Teacher of the Year for Middlesex Elementary School in the Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools.


Emily Boyd Pasquariello passed the NCIDQ exami-

nation and is now a certified interior designer working for the Naval Facilities Engineering Command in Washington, D.C. Ashley Lane Busdieker is Teacher of the Year at Wayne School of Engineering. Adrienne Kralick Walker left New York City in January 2011 for marriage and work in North Carolina. She now works for RSM McGladrey in their Greensboro office.


Katy Champion graduated from NC State University

with a master’s degree in teaching. She recently traveled to Brazil where she taught English as a Second Language. Victoria Gray is currently interning at Novozymes in Franklinton, N.C.


Meredith Alexander graduated in June 2011 from The George Washington University with a master’s degree in bilingual special education. She teaches Spanish at Chantilly High School in Chantilly, Va.


Meghan Kent earned a Master of Science in analytics from the North Carolina State University Institute for Advanced Analytics in May 2011. After graduation, she moved to Cary, N.C., and since June 2011 has been working at SAS Institute Inc. as an analytic engineer. Brittany Daniel Long is a Spanish teacher at Leesville Road High School. Mackenzie Slaney is a kindergarten teacher at Merrick Moore Elementary School in Durham, N.C.


Julia Houtchings graduated in May and is working

as an English language assistant at Université Catholique de l’Ouest in Angers, France.

MARRIAGES 1976 Mary Ann Leitch to Jim Balock, 7/2/11.

1983 Ada Gaynelle Freeman to Lloyd Benjamin Outlaw,

III, 5/21/11.

1994 Jennifer Ann Harris to Gerald C. “Jay” Burnett, Jr., 6/10/11.

2001 Jessica Dawn Toney to Bryan DeMont Rogers,


2002 Dallas Ellington to Rich Christensen, 9/3/11.

2006 Allison McCarter to Ryan Kurtz, 8/27/11.

Picture yourself in Tuscany with Meredith! Sansepolcro: In the Heart of Tuscany June 13-23, 2012 Meredith College alumnae, family and friends will once again travel to the heart of Tuscany this June. With the beautiful scenery and delicious food, this has become a popular destination for Meredith alumnae and friends. The highlight of the trip is seeing the Palazzo Alberti, Meredith’s home in Italy. “The trip Meredith provided for Carol and me was the best we have ever enjoyed. We were introduced to people that made our visit much more than a travel trip, it was a person-centered trip for us.” Meredith faculty tour guides “gave us a trip that enlivened our minds, spirits, and friendships. Each went many ‘extra miles’ in helping us in personal ways and in inspiring a congenial atmosphere for all of us.” — Charles Lucas, husband of Carol Heck Lucas, ’62 Make plans now to join us! If you are interested in traveling with Meredith to Italy, please contact Jane Mitchell at or (919) 760-8060.

M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fa l l 2 011 /


alumnae Connection 2007



Emily Boyd to Nick Pasquariello, 11/13/10.

Brittany Cleavenger Bass, a son, David Stokes,

Paige Avery Barnes, a daughter, Finley Grace,

Adrienne Jicha Kralick to Kyle Walker, 5/7/11.

7/29/11. Katherine Miller Coley, a son, William “Will” Brooks Coley, 9/30/11. Dana Perry Kennedy, a daughter, Charlotte Elizabeth, a son, Brant Davis, a son, Garrett Delton, 1/18/11.

5/28/11. Jennifer Smith Bissette, a daughter, Cecelia “CeCe” Rose, 7/8/11. Sarah Apple Campbell, a son, Liam Michael, 7/18/11. Christin Higgins Harrison, a daughter, Reese Buchanan, 10/2/10.Melissa Pipes Lehman, a son, Owen Turner, 11/10/10. Ashley Kirkman Lewis, a daughter, Porter Maria, 7/ 9/11. Abby McAlister Littlefield, a daughter, Peyton Claire, 9/12/11. Jenni Carmen Mercer, a daughter, Olivia Jacqueline, 7/ 21/11. Christi McKee Standley, a son, Brady Edward, 7/11/11.

2008 Natalie Marie Sasser to Samuel Norris, 2/26/11. Sara Brittany Stevens to Wesley Chad Turner, 6/25/11.

2010 Anna Youngblood to Hinton Armstrong, 6/25/11. Kerri Lewis to Tommy Barber, 7/23/11. Brittany Daniel to Josh Long, 5/28/11. Anne Mosteller to

Andrew Newsome, 6/25/11. Samantha Rice to Taylor Ashby, 9/3/11.

2011 Linley Noelle de Leon to Alex Bodnarchuk,


BIRTHS & Adoptions 1985 Nancy Almon, adoption of a daughter, Anaya, age

four, 5/27/11.

1995 Rebecca Daw Blum, a daughter, Scarlett Juniper,


1997 Gloria Davis Haulsee, a daughter, Giada Maria, 7/11/11. Clyda Wood Pasquantonio, a daughter, Heidi Hobson Claire, 2/15/11. Ola Smith Maynor, a daughter, Micaela Gabrielle, 2/28/11.

1998 Cameron Grant Cusa, a son, Alec Garrison, 4/27/11.

2000 Jennifer Jones Bankoski, a daughter, Emily Grace, 1/26/11. Jennifer Ricks Merritt, a daughter, Anna Grace, 6/20/11. Leta Gardner Ward, a daughter, Ashley Grace, 12/7/10.

2001 Kristie Taylor Alston, a daughter, Emma Claire,

3/15/11. Erica Kelly Hege, a daughter, Sophie Lane, 6/12/11. Rye Anderson Myers, a daughter, Avery Caylor, 7/15/11. Cassie Evans Williamson, a daughter, Lawyn Ann, 8/23/11. Sarah Fuqua Wilson, a daughter, Brigid Gail, 9/7/11.

2009 Nellary Branch Moody, a son, Christopher Branch,


DEATHS 1929 Gwen Parsons Benjamin, 6/6/11.

2002 Meredith Mabe Regan, a daughter, Olivia Hope, 9/20/10. Heather Craven Sykes, a son, Owen William, 7/4/11.



Frances Moore Chadwick, 7/5/11.

Crystal Canady Dixon, a son, Griffin Paul, 7/9/10. Sarah Shelton Lawrence, a son, Thomas Poole,

8/9/11. Karen Burke Safley, a daughter, Anna Elizabeth, 12/28/10. Kelly Cain Smith, a son, Liam Cain Smith, 8/24/11.

Gloria Watson Renfrew, 5/27/11.

1944 1945 Priscilla Claire Nance Abee, 5/7/11. Dorothy ‘Dot’ Shealy Kenyon, 8/3/11. Anne Perkins Lojko, 7/29/11.


2004 Courtney Harris Currin, a daughter, Tess LaClaire,

3/22/11. Julia Pollard Eubanks, a daughter, Molly Jane, 6/8/11.

Maria Kitchin Walston, 6/4/11.

1948 Betty Lewis Eason, 7/24/11. Mary Virginia “Ginner” Warren Poe, 6/3/11.


New Additions to the Meredith Family Have any new additions to your family? Please keep us updated and we will send you a new baby gift courtesy of the Alumnae Association and the Office of Alumnae & Parent Relations! Contact us at

Emily Stacy Barrow, 12/2/10.

1951 Peggy Benbow, 6/14/11. Mary Pryor Rodwell Overby, 7/22/11.

1952 Ruth Ann Simmons Shaw, 7/29/11.

1954 Mary Ann Chandler Bliss, 8/23/11.

1955 Mimi Royster Wilkins, 7/12/11.

1959 Audrey Robinson Allred, 8/2/11. Jean Strole Holland, 6/4/11.


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alumnae Connection 1965 Betty Gower Hunter, 8/8/11.

1966 Eleanor Jo “Joey” Dennis Brewer, 7/3/11.

1969 Sharon Pierce Hendricks, 8/21/11.

1975 Lynn Jones Ennis, 7/26/11.

1979 Lynn Whitley Joyner, 7/29/11.

2004 Laura Adams Jernigan, 7/18/11.

SYMPATHY 1937 Eleanor Edwards Williams in the death of her husband.

1939 Relieu Baucom Cratch in the death of her husband.

1944 Barbara Baucom Taylor in the death of her brother-in-law.

1946 Elizabeth Reid Murray in the death of her husband.

1947 Peggy Wilburn Johnston in the death of her


1948 Lillian Swinson Butler in the death of her husband. Carolyn Gay Grandy in the death of her daughter.

1952 Barney Schettler Massenburg in the death of

her husband.

1954 Anne Clark Dahle in the death of her brother-in-law.

1957 Eleanor Clark Adcock in the death of her husband.

1958 Glenda Eddins Temple in the death of her husband.

1961 Gail Brinn Wilkins in the death of her mother.


Alumna Phyllis Duncan, ’66, Fulfills Goal of Living Abroad After Retirement By Melyssa Allen


any people want to travel or learn new things during retirement. Meredith alumna Phyllis Duncan, ’66, combined both of these goals in an uncommon way by temporarily moving to Spain to teach English. Duncan worked as a financial analyst at Progress Energy for 30 years. After retiring, she was able to make a longtime dream come true. “Sometime during my mid-thirties, I became interested in cross cultural experiences and travel to ‘faraway places with strange sounding names.’ I participated in international peace group exchanges, hosted foreign visitors, and worked with refugees,” Duncan said. “While time went on and life and career happened, a desire to live and work in another country lingered in the background.” She prepared by completing a certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) from Duke, volunteering in a community college ESL classroom and teaching ESL in a community program. Her next step was to find a position that was a good fit. “I did a lot of research and came across this Spanish government program to place native Phyllis Duncan, ’66, (right) in Spain English teachers in their bilinwith new friends. gual classrooms and language schools. This program is aimed at recent college graduates and the stated age limit is 35. Obviously, they made an exception for me. I was classified as a “practice teacher” with a student VISA and a small grant. Happily, it turned out to be the perfect situation for me.” Duncan served as an English language and cultural assistant in a Government Ministry of Education language school for students age 16 years and up. The school was located in El Ejido, a town of about 80,000 people. Duncan lived in Almerimar, which is about seven miles away. “I was an assistant in four different levels with five different teachers on a Monday-Thursday late afternoon and evening schedule,” Duncan explained. “I was in class 12 hours a week and the commute on the bus was about an hour each way.” While teaching was hard work, Duncan made time to work on her own language skills and to enjoy Spain, including sightseeing in Barcelona, Murcia, Montserrat, and Girona, and taking in traditions like Corrida de Toros (bullfighting). “I have so many wonderful memories. I loved Spain, the culture, and the people,” Duncan said. “I developed friendships with the city bus drivers, the waiters in my village, students, and my English-Spanish language partners.” Her advice for others who dream of spending an extended time abroad is to be “sure this is what you want to do. Then you can look at everything as part of the adventure and problems become just misadventures.”

Freda Hartness Wilkins in the death of her aunt. M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fal l 2 011 /


alumnae Connection



1965 Mary Elizabeth Currin in the death of her mother. Crystal Hartness Leathers in the death of her aunt. Margaret Simmons in the death of her sister.


Like many of my fellow Angels, Cornkuskin’ holds a dear place in my heart and every little event of the week and day of Cornhuskin’ was and is so special to me. One of my favorite events is the parade. Cornhuskin’ is unique to Meredith College, but the parade is something that is enjoyed and participated in by more than just students and alumnae - you have their families, staff, faculty and their families and folks from the community who all come out to join in the festivities. It gives us Angels the chance to share all the fun, joy and excitement that Cornhuskin’ brings!” –Courtney Cooke, ’09

mother. Johnnie Faye Lamm Jackson in the death of her mother. Sandra Stone Shealy in the death of her father.



Mary Niebur Madenspacher in the death of her mother.

Dale Cunningham Box in the death of her mother.

Rebecca Johnston in the death of her father.


Jane Alligood de Vos in the death of her mother.

Sandra Clemmons McClain Buller in the death of her


Betty Alligood Harrington in the death of her

mother. Gail Stroscio Jones in the death of her mother.

Margaret Martin in the death of her mother.


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alumnae Connection 1976 Susan Dean McWhorter in the death of her mother.

1977 Jamie Kenyon Davis in the death of her mother. Nancy Brewbaker Stanton in the death of her


1980 Lisa Cunningham in the death of her mother.

1981 Dottie Phillips Buster in the death of her father. Martha Anderson Dobson in the death of her

mother. Kiki Massenburg Farish in the death of her father. Carol Mial in the death of her mother.

1982 Bryn Smith in the death of her mother. Nancy Dawson Sorg in the death of her son.

1983 Ruby Hudson Burke in the death of her husband.

1988 Julie Jones Langdon in the death of her sister. Angie Stroud Manning in the death of her husband. Sharon Harding Woodlief in the death of her brother.

1992 Mary Anderson Riddick in the death of her mother.

1998 Erin McClain in the death of her grandmother.

2002 Melissa Gail Duncan in the death of her father.

2003 Dana Clemmons Babbs in the death of her grandmother.

2005 Meagan Matt Maddox in the death of her father.

2006 Sarah Lynn Joyner Davis in the death of her mother.

2009 Julia Shaw in the death of her grandmother.

2010 Emily McKenzie in the death of her sister.

2011 Sarah Buster in the death of her grandfather.

Sylvia McCreary, ’63, Uses Art to Support Parkinson Disease Programs By Melyssa Allen


he arts have always been an important part of Sylvia McCreary’s life. Through the years, the 1963 Meredith graduate taught piano to individual students, introduced music through group piano classes, directed children’s choirs and played the organ in her church. After she was diagnosed with Parkinson Disease (PD), she found another outlet for her talent. McCreary began painting lessons and since 2006 has used her art to raise funds for Parkinson education and research. “After I was diagnosed, a part of me wanted to know all there was to know about the chronic neurological disorder of my brain; another part of me wanted to pretend there had been a mistaken diagnosis and I would be my old self again soon,” McCreary remembers. While accepting the diagnosis was difficult, McCreary was proactive, beginning physical therapy, attending PD educational symposia and joining a support group. Sylvia McCreary with Meeting some of the needs of the Eastern her artwork. North Carolina Parkinson Support Group inspired McCreary to begin creating and selling a calendar. All profits go to regional or national Parkinson associations. The first calendar raised $500; the sixth edition raised nearly five times that of the first one. The 2012 calendar features McCreary’s work along with 10 paintings by other artists. Each calendar has a theme, and McCreary includes encouraging words. “I choose themes based on what I am drawn to, such as flowers, whether in vases, beds or window boxes; or birds that I love watching at our feeders and bird bath,” McCreary said. Painting makes McCreary feel transported to another world. “Painting is very relaxing for me,” McCreary said. “My mind does not dwell on the discomfort and limitations of my illness. My tremor is often dormant for a good while as I concentrate on the application of my color of choice.” According to McCreary, physical discomfort, changes in relationships and side effects of medicines can cause changes in a patient’s disposition. “Finding a project that interests you and gives your life more purpose is something I highly recommend,” McCreary said. “The Parkinson Calendar project has been a blessing for me.” McCreary has also appreciated the support of alumnae she calls her Meredith family. “My Meredith family has continued to make a difference in my life for over 50 years,” McCreary said. “One of my class members took one of the calendars featuring my watercolor paintings to a gathering of several Meredith alumnae who live in the Raleigh region and since then they have been my most faithful customers. Their support through emails, notes and visits has been very meaningful to me.” For information on the Parkinson Calendar, call (252) 355-5608 or email Calendars are $20 plus postage.

M er edi t h M ag az i n e / fa l l 2 011 /



Meredith College cultural events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. We invite you to visit for more information about these and other events.

ultural events Spring Calendar for Meredith College


“Little Utopia” and other dances by Carol Kyles Finley, and It Must Have Been Violet Dance Productions January 7, 8 p.m. January 8, 3 p.m.

Meredith Sinfonietta Concert

Senior Art Exhibition

February 23, 8 p.m.

April 15-25 Opening reception: April 15, 1-3 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

Meredith Concerto/Aria Concert

Frankie G. Weems Art Gallery

February 25, 8 p.m.

Annual Juried Student Art Exhibition

Jones Auditorium

April 15-August 26 Opening reception: April 15, 2-4 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

Meredith Choral Concert

Tickets: $10 general; $5 students/seniors Reservations:

February 28, 7:30 p.m.

Jones Chapel


Meredith Jazz and Tap Company

“Vagina Monologues” by Eve Ensler

Jones Auditorium

January 27-28, 8 p.m.

Jones Auditorium Tickets: $10 general; $5 students/seniors Reservations:

Standing There: Videos and Mixed Media by Chris Cassidy January 29-March 19 Opening reception: January 29, 2-4 p.m.

Frankie G. Weems Art Gallery

Visual Voices: The Language of Typography January 29-March 19 Opening reception: January 29, 2-4 p.m.

Rotunda Gallery

February “The Sound of Music” by Rodgers & Hammerstein February 14-18, 8 p.m. February 19, 3 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

February 29-March 1, 8 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

Emerging Artists: April 20, 8 p.m. April 21, 3 p.m.


Mainstage Artists: April 21, 8 p.m. April 22, 3 p.m.

Gala Performance: April 22, 8 p.m.

Faculty Distinguished Lecture Bill Landis – “Seed” March 13, 7 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

“Hungry” by Lia Romeo, a production of Stillwater Theatre March 22-24, 27-31, 8 p.m. March 25, 3 p.m. April 1, 3 p.m.

Carswell Concert Hall

Meredith Sinfonietta Spring Concert April 26, 8 p.m.

Jones Auditorium

Tickets: $15 general; $10 students/seniors Reservations: (919) 760-8757

Carswell Concert Hall

April 28, 5:00 p.m.

Meredith Spring Choral Concert

Meredith Opera Theatre Puccini’s “Suor Angelica” and “Gianni Schicchi” April 13, 7:30 p.m. April 15, 3 p.m.

Carswell Concert Hall

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April 22, 3 p.m.

Junior Recital: Andrea McKerlie, flute

Guest Recital: Cynthia Lawing, piano


Graduation Recital: Mary Royall Hight, soprano

Studio Theatre


Carswell Concert Hall

Tickets: $10 general, $5 students/seniors Reservations:

Tickets: $10 (Proceeds benefit InterAct of Wake County) Reservations:

Tickets: $10 general; $5 students/seniors Reservations: February 17, 7:30 p.m.

Rotunda Gallery

April 29, 3 p.m.

Jones Chapel

Presidential Inauguration to Be Held March 22 Meredith College will celebrate the inauguration of President Jo Allen on Thursday, March 22, 2012. This special event in Meredith’s history will be held at 10 a.m. in Raleigh Memorial Auditorium. Allen is the first Meredith College alumna to assume the leadership of the 120-year old institution. A member of the Meredith College Class of 1980, Allen was named the eighth president of the College on April 18, 2011. She took office as president on July 1, 2011. An inauguration marks the formal installation of a college president. The event is traditionally held within the president’s first year in office. Board of Trustees Chair Nancy Cheek, ’63, said the inauguration will be an opportunity to celebrate Meredith College and its mission. “This event will provide the opportunity to capitalize on this energy, to recall and celebrate Meredith’s history, to look forward to a strong future under the new leadership, and to reaffirm Meredith’s important mission,” Cheek said. “The inauguration provides a chance for Meredith to reach out to our community and our world in new and exciting ways.”

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Calling All Meredith Angels If you’re an alumna of Meredith, we want YOU! Your experiences, your suggestions and your involvement matter. You can connect with Meredith, and with other alumnae, in a number of ways:

4Did you recently accept a new job, have a baby (or grandbaby!) or get married? Submit an update to and we’ll publish it in Class Notes.

4We’re gathering data about what Meredith alumnae

are doing in their professions and their communities. Many alumnae serve as mentors to current students or provide internship opportunities. Learn more at

4Increasingly, we’re using email to communicate—it saves money, it’s green and it’s fast! Update your email address by calling the Office of Alumnae & Parent Relations at (919) 760-8548 or online at, where you can also become a Facebook fan, follow Meredith on Twitter or subscribe to the alumnae blog, Beyond the Back Gate.

4We’re gathering feedback about Meredith Magazine, to ensure we’re providing the news and information our alumnae want. If you have comments about Meredith Magazine, send them to

Meredith Magazine Fall 2011  

A publication for Alumnae and Friends of Meredith College

Meredith Magazine Fall 2011  

A publication for Alumnae and Friends of Meredith College