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Fall 2006

Decisive Decade Creighton Marks Ten Years as MHC President

14 Making a Green School 16 Moving On In Widowhood 20 MHC Eyes New Dorm

features 8 Decisive Decade

20 A Dorm Is Born

Joanne Creighton Marks Ten Years

Campus Poised to Build First Student

as MHC President

Residence in Forty Years

By Avice A. Meehan ’77 The Quarterly looks back at how our president and the institution she’s led for a decade have changed. And the president offers her own retrospective comments.

14 The Green House Effect

Alumna Heads Drive to Create

24 Making Money Work

‘America’s Greenest School’

By Maryann Teale Snell ’86 An alumna “completely self-taught in philanthropy” is well on her way to raising $6 million to build an environmentally friendly school with the highest rating established by the US Green Building Council.

16 Left Behind, Moving Forward

By Emily Harrison Weir Trustees are expected to approve a plan to build new housing for 176 students that preserves what students love about MHC’s oldest dorms in an energy-efficient (and beautiful) new package.

Coping With Widowhood

By Diana Bosse Mathis ’70 No one would choose to join the “Widows Club”; perhaps that’s why widowhood is so rarely discussed. Here, alumnae widows break the silence to discuss how to cope and then thrive in this common state for uncommon women.

Financial Basics

By Mieke H. Bomann We begin a multipart series with advice on financial basics from an alumna financial planner. Eleanor Hotchkiss Blayney ’73 gives Faizun Kamal ’97 a money makeover.


On the Cover As Joanne V. Creighton completes her first decade as president of Mount Holyoke this year, we look back at how she and the institution have changed during that time. Photo by Paul Schnaittacher

Volume 90 Number 3 | Fall 2006 Managing director of Print and Online Magazines

Emily Harrison Weir STAFF Writer

Mieke H. Bomann Class Notes Editor

Erica C. Winter ’92 Editorial assistant

Meg Massey ’08 DesignER

Bidwell ID­­­

departments Viewpoints


Comments on “late bloomers,” “bragging rights,” how to pronounce the college’s name, and other topics

Class Notes


News of your classmates, and miniprofiles

Campus Currents

Quarterly Deadlines: Material is due November 15 for the winter issue, February 1 for the spring issue, May 15 for the summer issue, and August 15 for the fall issue. Ideas expressed in the Quarterly are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position of either the Alumnae Association or the College.


Published in the spring, summer, fall, and winter and copyrighted 2006­­ by the Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College, Inc. Periodicals postage paid at South Hadley, MA 01075 and additional mailing offices. Printed in the USA by Lane Press, Burlington, Vermont.

$300 million fundraising campaign launched, hip-hop goes academic, student interest in Chinese—and China—grows, fall sports preview, and more campus news

Alumnae Matters 28 Association offices refurbished, Mount Holyoke club contacts list, Vespers in New York turns seventyfive, and alumnae clubs’ news

Off the Shelf Poetry, short stories, novels, and nonfiction by alumnae on Dolley Madison, finding your perfect career, osteoporosis, and other topics


Quarterly Committee: Linda Giannasi O’Connell ’69, chair; Kara C. Baskin ’00, Susan R. Bushey ’96, Maya Kukes ’95, Marissa Saltzman ’07, Julie L. Sell ’83; Mary Graham Davis ’65, ex officio with vote; W. Rochelle Calhoun ’83, ex officio without vote

The Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College is an independent organization that serves a worldwide network of diverse individuals, cultivates and celebrates vibrant connections among all alumnae, fosters lifelong learning in the liberal arts tradition, and facilitates opportunities for alumnae to advance the goals and values of the College.

4 Bulletin Board


Class and club products, announcements, and educational travel opportunities

Last Look


Life Lessons Everything you need to know you can learn from class notes.

Comments concerning the Quarterly should be sent to Alumnae Quarterly, Alumnae Association, 50 College St., South Hadley, MA 01075-1486; tel. 413-538-2301; fax 413-538-2254; e-mail: (413-538-3094, for class notes.) Send address changes to Alumnae Information Services (same address; 413-5382303; Call 413-538-2300 with general questions regarding the Alumnae Association, or visit POSTMASTER: (ISSN 0027-2493) (USPS 365-280) Please send form 3579 to Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly, 50 College St., South Hadley, MA 01075-1486.

viewpoints Re/ MHC Architecture During my years at Mount Holyoke, I was always intrigued by the history of the dynamic evolution of the campus and its buildings, so was immediately attracted to Jennifer Gieseking’s story [summer], especially her insight into the relationship of buildings to the changing social mores of women. I commend her for her arduous work in organizing and cataloguing all those building plans, and congratulate the Alumnae Association for its funding. I question Gieseking’s designation of the Mandelles and new Rockies as “cottages.” I had always understood that this designation initially applied to the post-1896 residences, modeled on new residences at Smith. While still called cottages, the later buildings were definitely echoes of English manor houses. An interesting building feature

of the residences was basement rooms for maids, Irish girls who, in the summers, worked at New England coastal hotels. In Mary Lyon’s Seminary the students shared responsibility for cleaning and cooking, for reasons of economy and the teaching of domestic skills. In the cottages era they were relieved of this responsibility in order to concentrate on their studies. To study the social archaeology of the campus, and read the palimpsest below its surface, reveals the constant adaptability of the college and affirms Mary Lyon’s hope and prediction that her school would survive and flourish. Anne C. Edmonds, MHC librarian emeritus Camden, Maine

I am writing to clarify that, while Jennifer Gieseking’s work on the college’s

We Want to Hear From You! We love getting mail. Send your thoughts, with your full name, address, and class year, to Mieke H. Bomann, Alumnae Quarterly, 50 College St., South Hadley, MA 01075-1486 or We reserve the right to edit letters, especially for length (300 words is ideal).

architectural drawings was an important first step toward making them available to researchers, they are not yet cataloged. Gieseking conducted a preliminary survey of some 35,000 architectural records, a crucial step toward developing a grant application to secure funding to preserve, organize, and catalog the drawings that document nearly every area of campus from 1891 to the present. With continued hard work and good luck, the drawings will eventually be made accessible to the broader research community. Toward that end, Sarah Geisler ’07 spent the summer typing Gieseking’s survey notes and writing a narrative describing the collection. Jennifer Gunter King, Head of MHC Archives and Special Collections

An Inestimable Talent When I read the “In Memoriam” notices [spring] on the passing of Robert Berkey and Elizabeth Boyd, I experienced overwhelming sorrow and gratitude. Sorrow, of course, on their passing, but gratitude for having known and been a student of these highly learned and honored professors. It moved me to

recall and acknowledge that I have been, as so many of us have, the beneficiary of teachers who have passed into that professorial pantheon; John Teall and Betty Nye Quinn also came to mind. But I particularly want to acknowledge Bob Berkey’s contribution because he was my mentor, directed my honors thesis, and was the inspiration for my going on to graduate work in religious studies and a career in teaching. He was one of the most selfless, humble men I have ever known. While himself highly gifted, the gift that he most prized was his ability to encourage others to recognize and implement their own gifts, an inestimable talent in a teacher. Along with his wife, Carolyn, who also has made a major contribution to Mount Holyoke, they were an unbeatable team. His lifelong gift to my husband and me was their friendship. Our condolences go to Carolyn, his family, and his friends. Barbara Diamond Turner ’62 Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Re/ “Bragging Rights” I loved “Bragging Rights” [spring]. I want to speak

[­­ viewpoints ]

stories of others venturing into new and different arenas in all phases of their lives emphasizes that Mount Holyoke graduates continue to learn and grow throughout their lives.” “Reading the

Pamela Crandall ’77 Leawood, Kansas

directly to Julianne Trabucchi Puckett’s folding talents. In the early ’70s, I lived in an apartment in Sydney, Australia, where, if we wanted to hang laundry out, it had to be done in the furnace room in the basement. A neighbor, several years my senior, saw my king-sized fitted sheets and inquired as to how to fold such sheets “properly.” Spatial relations are a serious weakness for me, and while I shared my rather untidy tips (start by pushing the corners into each other), I felt totally out of my depth. And wonder of wonders, the question still plagues me! Imagine my total delight in finding an MHC sister who can do it right! I love it. She is justifiably proud. Every one of the other entries in this article caught my attention and left me with a taste of delight. Susan Smith McLaren ’62 Phoenixville, Pennsylvania

As to the article about bragging rights, I have some, but one in particular that is unique. Because I am dyslexic, I am also totally ambidextrous: I can do everything with either hand. That, however, is not the unusual part. I also can write with both hands, simultaneously:

upside down and backwards with one, while writing right side up and forward with the other. In true dyslexic fashion, the first thing I wrote that way was, “I can’t read right, but I can write wrong!” Dyslexia, caused by a difference in brain structure, is incurable. Living with and around it can be a life’s nightmare, because dyslexics often cannot do even simple tasks, which most people take for granted. Dyslexia has taught me much about life—especially, never to take myself too seriously! Joan Lichtman ’65 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Re/ “Late Bloomers” Many times over the summer I wondered what I was getting myself into as I prepared to start school at the University of Kansas to obtain a master’s in social work. It had been twenty-five years since I had last been in graduate school, and my MBA was definitely at the other end of the spectrum from social services. Imagine how encouraged and relieved I was to read the article [summer] about alumnae late bloomers just one week before the start of my classes! Many friends think I am crazy, and

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

others are jealous but skeptical. After all, I finally have time for myself with my last daughter heading to college. Having time for myself is precisely why I enrolled in school. Mount Holyoke taught me that I will always have something to offer and gave me the tools to succeed. It is time to take what I have learned over the past twenty-five years in business and the community and give it a unique focus. Reading the stories of others venturing into new and different arenas in all phases of their lives emphasizes that Mount Holyoke graduates continue to learn and grow throughout their lives. Thanks to all who shared their stories for encouraging me during my latest blooming period. Pamela Crandall ’77 Leawood, Kansas

Scrambled Pronunciation When I attended my reunion in June, my classmates and I were shocked to hear the name of our alma mater mispronounced by speakers at the alumnae meeting and even by the college operator! During our first few weeks at Mount Holyoke we were drilled that the school name was “a complete egg” and

never a “sacred tree.” What has occurred in the past five to ten years to change the situation? I’ve returned for every reunion and do not recall encountering this problem before. Just check the music and sing the Alma Mater and you can hear there are just two notes, for two syllables, not three. Alice J. Capson ’71 Overland Park, Kansas

Third-Age Reading In response to Elinor Miller Greenberg’s comments in [summer] “Viewpoints” and the [spring] “Rethinking Retirement” piece, the success of The Third Age: Principles for Growth and Renewal After 40, written by my father, speaks to the dire need for the popular press and usual nonfiction books that Ms. Greenberg says don’t do justice for people in their third trimester, or third age, or whatever one calls it. I agree, as does my dad, and hence his second book on a creative retirement is in press, and soon to be filling that void on bookstore shelves for vibrant women like Ms. Greenberg, and those profiled in your piece. Kirsten Sadler Edepli ’90 New York, New York 



This fall, Mount Holyoke College embarks on a five-year, Annual Fund, Projects, and Programs $300 million fundraising campaign, the largest in the school’s Some $50 million of the campaign goal is earmarked for history. Formally announced by the board of trustees in the Annual Fund, which accounts for approximately 10 October, The Campaign for Mount Holyoke 2010 has as its top percent of the college’s yearly budget. The goal is not only priorities a substantively increased endowment, additional to increase annual giving to $10 million a year, but also to support for the Annual Fund, capital for new buildings, and increase the overall participation rate of alumnae from 45 resources in support of the faculty and programmatic initiatives. percent to at least 50 percent. The campaign seeks another The campaign is designed to support the goals laid out in $50 million in expendable, programmatic funds to support the college’s strategic Plan for 2010, innovations in technology inside and Campaign Cochairs Leslie Anne which includes a transformation of outside of classrooms, arts and sumMiller ’73, left, and Barbara the curriculum focused on interdiscimer research programs, and landscape McClearn Baumann ’77 plinary connections that address the enhancements, as well as for the colimpact of technology and globalization. lege’s many study centers. “The Plan challenges Mount Holyoke to educate all students for global citiNew Buildings and Renovations zenship in the twenty-first century,” Of the $25 million to be raised for said President Joanne V. Creighton in facilities, $15 million is earmarked for a a message announcing the campaign. new residence hall. (See p. 20.) The col“In order to accomplish this ambitious lege will also attend to $1.5 million in work, trustees and the college leaderrenovation needs of nine older dorms ship call upon our alumnae and friends in the next ten years. Athletics will to rally around Mount Holyoke.” benefit from $10 million of the campaign, as the college looks to build an Endowment the Tallest Order artificial turf field with lights so sports The fundraising effort seeks new gifts can proceed later in the season and the and pledges totaling $175 million for day and in inclement weather. Also on the college’s endowment over the next five years. The endow- the drawing board is a new, synthetic outdoor track, a boatment in May 2006 was approximately $521 million, and in house to accommodate the crew team, and renovations to the 2005 was ranked ninth among eleven selective liberal arts Kendall sports complex. colleges. “The endowment is one of the most critical contribMary Graham Davis ’65, president of the Alumnae utors to any college’s annual budget,” notes Barbara McClearn Association and a member of the campaign steering commitBaumann ’77, cochair of the campaign and chair of the coltee, said alumnae understand the importance of continued lege’s Finance Committee. “So, the bigger the endowment, the support for the college to sustain faculty quality, programmore dollars are available for immediate use. A more robust matic resources, and building upgrades. But emotional ties endowment translates into the sorts of tangible things that are important, too, she added, as alumnae also “give in students consider in selecting their college, and perhaps more memory of the many friendships and experiences of their important, the things that make colleges preeminent: more college days and often their ties to the college that continue programs, more financial aid, more faculty support.” to this day.”—M.H.B.

Michael Malyszko 2006

College Launches $300 Million Fundraising Campaign

The Drone, Thud, and Clunk of Summer Construction If you imagine summer on the MHC campus to be spa-like in its stillness and contemplative serenity, think again. The high energy of students and returning alums vanishes only to be replaced by cherry pickers, bucket loaders, and a variety of other machinery with functions best observed from a distance. Some of the construction and renovation projects that kept Facilities Management crews busy this summer were: • Excavation of the lawn in front of Mary Woolley Hall to extend underground utilities to the site of the new residence hall adjacent to Pratt Hall • Five separate projects at Prospect Hall, including expansion of the kitchen • Extensive renovation to the interior of Mead Hall, including all bathrooms • Repair damage to Wilder Hall from a fallen tree limb; cleaning and repointing of brick exterior • Installation of new ventilation, lighting, and sound systems in Hooker Auditorium; repainting and recarpeting the interior; reupholstering the seats • Removal of five dying hemlock trees • Recarpeting the library’s main reading room

By the Numbers

Paul Schnaittacher

Welcome, Class of 2010! 3,065 students applied 1,632 were accepted 565 enrolled 129 (23 percent) are African American, Asian American, Latina, and Native American students 72 (13 percent) have alumnae relatives 38 states are represented 37 foreign countries sent us their best 3.7 is the class’s high-school grade-point average

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

Summer Intern Evacuated from Beirut Last summer, Claire Thomas ’08 went to Beirut for a newspaper internship at The Daily Star. Her work was interrupted by the IsraeliLebanese conflict, and she was evacuated back to America. She agreed to describe some of what she experienced on her final day in country.

[­­ campus currents ]


Claire Elizabeth Thomas ’08 at the Roman temple complex in Baalbeck, Lebanon

The last meal I ate in Beirut was an exceptionally greasy mozzarella and pesto crepe. It was by far the worst food I’d had while in Lebanon, which otherwise was some of the best I’ve ever eaten. But I was lucky to even find that crepe, on the relatively abandoned Bliss Street, an eatery-packed avenue in front of the American University in Beirut. Bliss Street is well known for its cheap food, and is usually inundated with hordes of university students. Now only a few lonely and somber groups milled around whatever was still open, which wasn’t much. The street, which only a week ago had been jam-packed with impossibly sluggish Beirut traffic, lay wide open. I passed a man loading his family into a car, a mattress tied to the roof. It turned out the only crepe supplies available were cheese, congealed pesto, and Nutella. The young man behind the counter chatted as he put the crepe batter on the propane-fueled grill; there was no electricity. He asked my friend and me if we were leaving. We responded that we were trying. His smile was understanding, and more than a little sad. My friend asked what his thoughts were on what was happening. He said he didn’t blame Israel so much as see it as one of life’s inevitable evils, an inhuman leviathan that Hezbollah had misguidedly stirred from its slumber. Later that afternoon I bid Beirut farewell from the deck of the cargo freighter the Hual, chartered by the Swedish government for the evacuation. Less than two months before, I had arrived in Beirut for an eight-week internship at The Daily Star, an English-language newspaper. While I don’t study journalism, I am majoring in international relations and have studied Arabic and Middle Eastern politics, which is what drew me to Beirut. Interning at The Daily Star was incredibly interesting—I was even able to write articles that were published. On weekends, I traveled with friends north to Byblos and Tripoli, south to Sidon, and east to the Bekaa Valley and Baalbeck, places that, along with Beirut, I now hear about daily on CNN in reports about their destruction.

Student Edge

Student Interest in Chinese Language Mirrors Nation’s Growing Importance The rise of China as an economic behemoth and its longstanding cultural importance have increased student demand for Chinese language instruction at Mount Holyoke. Ying Wang, associate professor of Asian studies and the college’s primary instructor of Chinese, had nineteen students when she arrived in 1999. This fall, she and two visiting instructors welcomed more than seventy. “It’s important to know a different culture,” says Wang, who first came to America to study while teaching at Beijing Language and Cultural University (BLCU). China is on the radar screen of many MHC students and alumnae who have traveled to China for pleasure, are there teaching English, are looking at graduate schools in disciplines that could involve fieldwork in China, or are interested in business careers with corporations active in Asia. Tonal rather than phonetic, Chinese is a tough language for native English speakers to learn. While students can build their skills in class, nothing hones language abilities as well as visiting a country where the language is spoken. So Wang last year put together a summer-study program at her old school in Beijing. Seventeen students signed up for this summer’s pilot program at BLCU, which included lectures and drills in the morning, and practice and field trips with a native-language partner in the afternoon. Working four hours a day, five days a week, students completed a full year of Chinese in just eight weeks. Kaitlyn Szydlowski ’09 wrote about her experiences in a blog. “Each and every day my Chinese is improving,” she exclaimed. “Apart from speaking the language both in class and at tutoring sessions, getting out into the city really tests my skills.” Wang, who also teaches contemporary Chinese fiction at MHC, brings considerable life experience to the classroom. During Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution, she was twice moved from Beijing to a rural village to work and live with peasant farmers. “Of course, I would have liked to have had a peaceful childhood,” Wang says. But she insists that enduring hardships in one’s youth can be rewarding over time. “My generation became very strong and contributed to China’s current changes,” she points out. —M.H.B.


Tidbits • Susan Barry’s remarkable, lifelong journey from monocular vision—lacking in depth perception—to binocular stereoscopic vision— the ability to perceive a three-dimensional world— was chronicled in an article by Oliver Sacks in the June 19 New Yorker. Barry is associate professor of biological sciences and a member of the program in neuroscience and behavior at MHC. • Costa Rica President Oscar Arias knows a good read when he sees one. He recently met with Eva Paus, director of the Center for Global Initiatives, to talk about economic policy and said her recent book, Foreign Investment, Development and Globalization: Can Costa Rica Become Ireland? was on his nightstand. • The papers of Dr. Virginia Apgar ’29, creator of the widely used Apgar Score to evaluate newborns’ health, are now on available on the National Library of Medicine’s Profiles in Science Web site. That library collaborated with MHC archives to digitize her papers and make them widely available. See them at www. • From the “You Don’t Say” department: Students at women’s colleges spend more time on productive activities and gain more from their college experience than women at coeducational institutions, according to a recent study by the Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research. Findings were based on a national survey of students. More Changes in Religious Life The Rev. Sherry S. Tucker, MAT ’92 has been appointed interim dean of the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life. She also will continue to serve as chaplain and adviser to the Protestant community, as she has done since last year. Tucker replaces Rabbi Lisa Freitag-Keshet, who this past summer moved with her partner and two children to Israel. Tucker is a graduate of Andover Newton Theological School and is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ. Her husband is a professor of sociology at the college.

Left: Paul Schnaittacher, Right: Bryan Barker

[ campus currents ]

Awakening Dragon

Field hockey player Meaghan Murphy ’08

Crew: MHC rowers hope to improve on last year’s fourth-place regional ranking. This will be a challenge with the loss of ten seniors, but many talented juniors are ready to fill the boats. Cross-Country: Academic All-American Christine Klepacki ’09 led the MHC harriers last year and looks to power a stronger squad this season, as fifteen returners and several swift first-years fill the roster. Field Hockey: Coming off a 14-8 record and an ECAC New England title game appearance, the field hockey team hopes to continue its winning ways. The loss of six seniors is daunting, but the team can count on nearly a dozen returnees and a large incoming class. Golf: The golf outlook is bright as four out of five players return from last year, including senior captain Erin Weimer and sophomore Martha Elson.

Paul Schnaittacher, Top: John Risley

Hip-Hop Goes Academic On a Tuesday late last March, Skinner 216 is jampacked with students from all five area colleges listening intently, taking notes furiously, bobbing their heads and tapping their feet. This is African-American Studies 313: The Cultural and Literary History of Hip-Hop. Professor Anthony Ratcliff is standing at the front of the room, also bobbing his head and shoulders to the beat of Lauryn Hill’s song “Final Hour,” as the class reads the song lyrics on a handout. The windows are vibrating slightly. “We want to get deep into the song,” says Ratcliff, after the music stops. The song’s hook, “You can git the money/you can git the power/ keep your eyes on/ the final hour,” occupies much of the discussion. Students talk about the lyrics’ polysyllabic rhyme structure, the religious themes of the song, and the message to fellow hip-hop artists not to get so focused on money and fame that they forget their faiths. Getting deep into hip-hop is a relatively recent phenomenon in academia. Like jazz in its youth, hip-hop has not been considered serious enough to merit academic study. As it grows and shapes the wider culture around it, however, hip-hop is finding a place in classrooms. This course is truly a multimedia endeavor and includes books, such as Gwendolyn D. Pough’s Check It While I Wreck It: Black Womanhood, Hip-Hop Culture, and the Public Sphere, articles, films, and naturally, music, from more mainstream “gangsta” rap by 50 Cent to more populist

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

Riding: The 2006 national riding champions don’t have much room to improve. National contenders Nathalie Cooper ’07, Christine Gunn ’07, Marie Hilliard ’07, and Dani Johnson ’07 hope to lead the Lyons to their fourth straight national championship appearance. Soccer: Lots of newcomers will add depth and flexibility to the 2006 squad, while a solid core of returners aims to reach new heights. Tennis: With the return of seniors Anjali Bhalodia and Anna Boatwright from study abroad, as well as national singles qualifier Angela Horner ’09, the Lyons look to be a formidable force on the court this year. Volleyball: The 2006 campaign looks promising as many talented newcomers join the squad, while veteran outside hitters Emily Groth ’07 and Chelsea Tracy ’09 and setter Rachel West ’08 power the attack. —Bridget Gunn, sports information director

Ratcliff and students

pieces by Mos Def and Lauryn Hill. Tsehay Shaw ’06 is from the Bronx, thought to be the birthplace of hip-hop. “I lived there, but I didn’t know much about [hip-hop],” she says. The class looks at the culture and history of hip-hop, and explores the lyrics, showing that it is “more than just girls in booty shorts,” Shaw says, referring to the scantily clad women in most music videos. She says the course is widening her view of the genre. Danielle Brennan ’06, an English major familiar with hip-hop, wanted to get exposure to its deeper meaning. “This class has broadened my horizons,” she says, by revealing the social and political issues both created by and reflected in this art form. “It’s not just about the beat.”—E.C.W. ’92

In Session

[­­ campus currents ]

Fall Sports Preview


Shown here posing during a pre-inauguration lighting check, the brand-new president was constantly in the campus spotlight throughout her first year.

Jim Gipe

Creighton Marks Ten Years as MHC President

By Avice A. Meehan ’77

Decisive  Decade Joanne Creighton walks the bounds of Mount Holyoke every day. Tall and auburn-haired, Creighton is a familiar sight as she circumnavigates Upper and Lower Lake, loops around the Equestrian Center, or makes an early Monday morning pilgrimage to the golf course in the company of her husband, Tom. Always to be found at Creighton’s side— or, more likely, tugging at the leash—is the irrepressible Maisie. Like Creighton, the energetic beagle is known to demonstrate a purposeful single-mindedness.



Creighton welcomes thenSecretary of State Madeleine Albright. She was that year’s commencement speaker and received an honorary doctorate.


Creighton christens her namesake crew shell with river water and champagne.

“I have always been a walker,” says Creighton, president of Mount Holyoke since 1996. “It’s a beautiful campus, a wonderful place to walk. I have always felt about this campus that it is so restorative, that it has such power. [Walking] allows you to connect to this mesmerizing place, to admire the natural beauty and architectural loveliness of it.” The poetry notwithstanding, Creighton’s perambulations serve a purpose for a woman described as “intensely practical.” Simply put, she likes to keep an eye on things—to the occasional dismay, Creighton admits, of her staff. Even after a decade, there are many details—large and small—that bear watching, from newly planted trees to the quality of the continental breakfasts offered in each dorm to the deliberations of the Investment Committee of the board of trustees. The ten-year milestone puts Creighton in a rarefied group. Nationally, only about a quarter of college presidents serve longer terms; on average, presidents serve fewer than seven years, according to the American Council on Education. And some decade it’s been. For all intents and purposes, Mount Holyoke has been transformed under the leadership of this shy scholar of twentieth-century English literature with an ear for a well-turned phrase, a passion for planning, a practical cast of mind, and a magpie’s insatiable curiosity—not to mention an eye for talent at the seniorstaff level.

“W hat are the highs of the job? One  is sharing in the  intellectual energy and moral passion of the place, the finest educational environment I have ever been part of.”



The president serves cake to students to celebrate Mary Lyon’s 200th birthday.

“She has been an extraordinary steward of Mary Lyon’s legacy and of this institution,” said Leslie Anne Miller ’73, chair of the board of trustees. “Joanne has rather a shy side to her which some can initially find off-putting, but when you get past that, you see a strong, committed individual. I think this has been a 24/7 labor of love.” The positive benchmarks are unmistakable. The college’s structural budget deficit has been wiped out; budgets now balance—albeit with difficulty—and the draw on the endowment has decreased. The endowment itself has moved past the $500 million mark. Applications hit a record high in 2006 at 3,065; the overall percentage of students admitted stands at a respectable 53 percent. The academic quality of students is high, and they are emblematic of the college’s global reach. The faculty is younger, more diverse, and attracting outside grant support. The curriculum has been refreshed. The physical plant has been renewed, newly built Kendade Hall has unified the interdisciplinary science center, and Blanchard, where generations of students went for mail and courses in classics, has morphed into a vibrant campus hub. One capital campaign has been completed; a second is about to commence. “I am very satisfied with the progress we have made, but it is hard to maintain,” says Creighton, who sat for an interview in the relative quiet of mid-August. Two weeks before the arrival of the first students, Mead Hall was surrounded by a chain-link fence. Mary Lyon Hall shook periodically as highway crews, working around signs reading “rough road ahead,” excavated Route 116 right up to the college gate. Creighton arrived at Mount Holyoke with a similarly rough road ahead of her. Setting the college to rights required difficult decisions and the sacrifice of a few traditions: need-blind admission, dining in every residential dorm, and a placid relationship with the college’s Alumnae Association. Yet even with the shift to need-sensitive admission, Mount Holyoke still admits more students from less affluent families—those with reported incomes of $30,000 or less—than its peers. After deep expressions of concern,

Left to right: Paul Schnaittacher, Jim Gipe, Kimberly Grant, Jim Gipe

Past MHC presidents David Truman and Elizabeth Topham Kennan ’60 join Creighton for inauguration weekend.



The president pouts in a Faculty Show “Alice in Wonderplan” skit spoofing the Plan for 2003.

Joanne and husband Thomas Creighton, on the president’s sabbatical in South Africa



Top, left to right: MHC Archives, Ted S. Warren, Will Creighton, Ben Barnhart; below: Jim Gipe

Creighton tells Helen Huarca Witte ’00 she’s won a Truman Award.

students have adapted to dining options that regionalize meals in six dorms, along with Blanchard and a lunch spot in Kendade. With a rancorous two-year conflict over control of alumnae contributions to the Annual Fund behind them, the college and the association are working together amicably and collaboratively, holding regular meetings and working on joint programs. “Joanne gave us a sense of renewed pride and confidence in the college,” says Harriet Levine Weissman ’58, an avowed fan and trustee. “She came when the college was not in good financial straits, and her leadership has brought financial stability. For that alone, she will go down in the history of the college.” Creighton began her tenure at MHC with a famously open mind about its mission as a women’s college. Ten years later, she fully embraces the “historical coherence and resonance” of that mission and Mount Holyoke’s capacity for global leadership, showing the way through high-profile initiatives that bring together leaders from women’s colleges around the world, as well as activities that range from visits to a new women’s college in Kenya to leadership in the Women’s College Coalition.

MHC hosts a conference on “Women’s Education Worldwide: the Unfinished Agenda” that attracts leaders from women’s institutions on five continents.

“I hear her stepping out and really committing to something that could be risky,” says Rochelle Calhoun ’83, executive director of the Alumnae Association and former dean of students. Creighton’s commitment to women’s education worldwide “is a coming together of the personal, the political, and the intellectual,” Calhoun says. “There’s a political reason that women’s education has not been improved—it challenges the politics of the world, and we need to rally to that. Joanne sees the centrality of Mount Holyoke in that agenda as the oldest women’s college.” Women’s colleges remain a tough sell to prospective students, and Creighton sounds the opposite of satisfied or smug as she looks ahead. “The most significant issue stems from underfunding. Mount Holyoke is more excellent than its resources would lead you to believe, given its endowment and the [financial] neediness of its students,” she says, making an emphatic case for increasing the college’s endowment in order to support both students and faculty. Creighton was tested early. Little more than a year into her presidency, with the Plan for 2003 ready to ship to the printer, student protests erupted over a panoply of issues that included need-blind admission and religious and cultural life on campus. Nine years later, the experience remains vivid and startling. It was, Creighton says, the first time she had been “thrust into the limelight as a person of allegedly malign motives.” At a faculty meeting that May, Creighton spoke about compromise. She had, in response to student demands, agreed to add distinct cultural spaces to the Plan for 2003, and defined her approach to leadership. “One of my goals in this planning process has been to move us away from a too-personalized presidency, she said. “I am not the mother, or father, or arbiter of all things. I am committed to the view that we must all be responsible adults in a self-governing community if we are to be a strong and self-confident Mount Holyoke.”


Marking the start of renovations to the Art Museum

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006


Presidential  Ref lections By Joanne V. Creighton

has been getting all constituents working together and pulling in the same direction. That we can do because our resonant mission compels and inspires our best collective effort. But, when I first arrived, the mission was unacknowledged, unarticulated, and uncelebrated. Not so now. Articulating the mission was the essential first step of the planning process. Summing up the essence of Mount Holyoke in a single sentence warms my English professor soul:

tee, a flattering and head-turning experience. Moreover, after deciding to check out the campus with my family one afternoon in late autumn 1994, I remember feeling lured in by the mesmerizing presence, power, and beauty of the campus: “Yes, I can imagine myself here,” I instinctively thought. I read everything I could find about the college and engaged in probing conversations with the people I met. The more I learned, the more I was drawn in: I could see what needed to be done; I could make a positive difference; and I would stretch and grow in the bargain. I’m not sure why I felt so confident. At that time, the budget was out of balance and worsening each year; the admission outlook was weak and worrisome; morale was low; and a free-floating anxiety had set in about the sustainability of Mount Holyoke as a top-notch college. That the whole of the College seemed somehow less than the sum of its parts, however, was to me an irresistible challenge. I could see its impressive history and parts; I could sense its latent power and potential. When I accepted the position, the welcome in Chapin Auditorium was so warm and hopeful that I was determined to reciprocate this leap of faith. From that moment, I pledged myself to demonstrating that the whole of this special college could, in fact, be much greater than the sum of its parts. And that, I believe, is now proven

We reaffirm our commitment to educating a diverse residential community of women at the highest level of academic excellence and to fostering the alliance of liberal arts education with purposeful engagement in the world. This mission continues to say it all; it has been the touchstone of institutional renewal. I feel extraordinarily blessed to serve as president of this inspirational college, an experience that has deeply enriched my life and afforded many highs and, admittedly, a few lows—the latter including the student sit-ins of spring of 1997, the Joe Ellis scandal that landed us in the national press in the summer of 2001, and the painful dispute with the Alumnae Association that erupted about the same time. But now, in retrospect, these seem like unfortunate bumps in the road on what has overall been a remarkably harmonious and “very fast” ride forward—on what Mary Lyon has strikingly called “this great intellectual and moral machine”—out of disunity, disarray, and fiscal disequilibrium and into collective purpose, balanced budgets, record-high numbers of applicants and fund-raising totals, an ever-stronger faculty and student body, vital new academic centers, beautiful new indoor and outdoor spaces, and increased national and international presence. Now unmistakable confidence and buoyancy infuse our

beyond a doubt. Mount Holyoke has never been stronger or more robust, more ready to take on the world. I’m proud of what we have together accomplished these past ten years and know we are positioned for greater heights in the years ahead. The key to our success

community. Mount Holyoke is recognized on campus and off as an institution on the move, boldly reasserting its leadership in liberal arts and women’s education worldwide. What are the highs of the job? One is sharing in the intellectual energy and moral passion of the place, the finest educational



on inauguration day

environment I have ever been part of. It is gratifying to note how it has appreciably improved these last several years. What a privileged job I have, really, serving as an advocate for such a fine institution! Moreover, I, who have no daughters of my own, have now the pleasure of seeing the palpable coming to selfhood of wonderful young women, so full of earnestness, purposefulness, and joie de vivre. And speaking of children, that’s how I view our various campus building projects—music, art, science, Blanchard, Newhall—each a precious child more beautiful and wonderful than the next. I’m eager to get our next offspring, the new residence hall, into the ground late this fall; it too will grace our family of memorably classic and with-it buildings. Perhaps the greatest joy is being part of a team of smart and dedicated people working together on something greater than any one of us. We know that the excellent and purposeful education offered by Mount Holyoke College is a pearl of great price and an endangered commodity. There is no more powerful instrument for educating the next generation of women for enlightened citizenship and leadership. No cause is more worthy of our energy and support. No need is greater in our trouble-ridden world than the kind of graduates we produce. A variant on “the little engine that could,” Mount Holyoke College has been improbable from the beginning. It has continued to overachieve, surpassing any reasonable expectation one might have about the influence of such a small college in such a large world. We must continue to defy the odds and secure the legacy of this extraordinary institution. What could be more rewarding and fun than that?

Jim Gipe

If destiny shapes our ends, it was at work in my alliance with Mount Holyoke College over a decade ago. After being nominated for the presidency, I initially had doubts about whether it was the right job for me, but inexorably, step by step, I came to see that the opportunity was right, the time was right, and the match might well be right, too, between what Mount Holyoke needed and what I could offer. I sensed that I was the favored candidate of the search commit-



Creighton joins alumnae and major media representatives for the first of several collaborations in New York City.

Creighton institutes community breakfasts to provide a casual forum in which to share news and answer questions.



Creighton meets with the association’s Strategic Planning Committee to discuss how the association can help the college educate students for global citizenship.

If her style is far from parental (or micromanaging, for that matter), there’s little doubt who leads the self-governing community. Described by Dean of Faculty Donal O’Shea as “collaborative and consultative with a vengeance,” Creighton tests her own ideas as strenuously as she tests everyone else’s. She is, O’Shea observes, “supportive by being tough,’’ a skeptical listener. It’s a perspective echoed by Kori Binette ’04, who worked with Creighton on her senior thesis about mother-daughter relationships in the novels of Joyce Carol Oates. “She made it very easy and approached the project as if we were equals, not as though I was a lowly student,” says Binette, now a graduate student in English at the University of Massachusetts, and coauthor with Creighton of a scholarly article. “She wouldn’t let me rest with an easy answer, and she wasn’t prepared with an answer herself.” A self-described magpie—“if I hear a good idea, I pick it up,” she says—Creighton discovered a gift for pulling together disparate ideas while writing her own undergraduate honors thesis about the unity of James Joyce’s collection of stories, Dubliners. That gift carried Creighton through a dissertation and successively complex administrative roles. Although she has little time these days for scholarly writing, Creighton nonetheless wields the power of the pen—and revision—for documents of

Top, L. to R.:Patrick McMullan, Paul Schnaittacher, Fred LeBlanc, Fred LeBlanc; below, Emily Freeman

“I ’m proud of what we have together accomplished these past ten years and know we are positioned for greater heights in the years ahead.”

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

At a trustees gathering with Leslie A. Miller ’73, chair of the board, and Richard E. Neal, U.S. representative and trustee

fundamental importance, such as the strategic plans or major grant proposals. “I am always the writer. I will not relinquish that because I know … that there is great power in putting things together,” she says, making the wry observation that most writing can be improved after “ten, twenty, forty” drafts. Creighton guards her privacy as closely as her words, saying that it is hard to have “a more personal role” within the college community when students and colleagues alike


MHC’s delegation to Dubai Women’s College, where our students taught a leadership workshop

see the official role before the person. That aloofness, balanced by what some describe as candor about her own views and feelings within a smaller circle, is part of what colleagues say gives Creighton an ability to understand the college, what makes her effective rather than popular. “Joanne is a perfect example of what a Mount Holyoke education can do for a person,” says Leslie Anne Miller, who believes that Creighton has blossomed over the decade into a self-confident leader. “She’s a product of a Mount Holyoke education; she just got it later in life.”


This architect’s conception shows what “America’s greenest school” will look like when Lund’s work is complete.

The Green House Effect


couple of years ago, Hurricane Isabel brought down

Alumna Heads Drive to Create ‘America’s Greenest School’ By Maryann Teale Snell ’86

in Marianne Lund’s yard in Charlottesville,

Virginia. She could have had them hauled away or chopped into firewood. Instead, she found someone to mill the trees on-site and brought the wood indoors. The hickory became a staircase; the oak is now a floor. Lund says the feeling of giving these fallen trees a new and useful life is “fabulous. I’m not leaving this house.”

That’s the sort of conviction the 1995 MHC alumna displays in almost everything she does. A wife and mother of four young children, she has put family first. But now, as chair of a more than six-million–dollar campaign for the Charlottesville Waldorf Founda-


tion (CWF), she’s giving her all to promoting the building of “America’s greenest school”—an environmentally friendly facility with the highest rating established by the US Green Building Council. (See sidebar.) A Waldorf parent (her three boys attend

the Charlottesville Waldorf School) Lund is “completely self-taught” when it comes to philanthropy. What propels her to succeed, besides unmistakable self-confidence, is an earnest interest in the environment. Born and raised in Argentina (she came to the United States in 1984), Lund “lived in nature,” spending a lot of time in and on the water, on a boat her grandfather built. Her great-grandparents were farmers, and she acquired the gardening bug. It makes her feel “connected to a grander purpose,” she says. Her environmental consciousness is evident in other ways too. Lund has “never quite gotten used to the excess in this country”—which may explain her chronic endeavor to reuse, recycle, and rethink. Overseeing the recent remodeling of her house gave Lund an opportunity to make choices that would have the least

SOURCE Architects

a pair of 150-foot trees—an oak and a hickory—

Lund has “never quite gotten used to the excess in this country”—which may explain her chronic endeavor to

Courtesy Marianne Lund

reuse, recycle, and rethink. possible environmental impact. She took a “green” approach to demolition, sorting materials to be recycled, donated to Habitat for Humanity, or carted to the landfill. New building materials included insulation made from recycled blue jeans, Energy Star–rated windows, and solvent-free construction adhesive. (“I’m really proud of that because I didn’t want the house reeking of chemicals,” Lund says.) It was difficult convincing certain tradespeople to use unfamiliar products. (“The painters were the worst. They kicked and screamed the whole way.”) But the educational component proved valuable—not just for Lund and the workers she hired, but also for her family members. By her example, her children are gaining an appreciation for the impact they can have on the environment. “Telling them to take their newspapers out to the recycling bin … We have to do more than that,” Lund says. This is why she’s so committed to the Charlottesville Waldorf Foundation. Lund (a schoolteacher before she and husband Jim, an Amherst College graduate, started their family) says Waldorf philosophy is steeped in environmental conservation, so by endeavoring to build a platinum-rated green school, the foundation is truly putting its money where its mouth is. But Lund’s goal is to reach farther afield, into the community and beyond. This project is “not simply about a school,”

she says. “We are a model for building green because we are fiscally responsible as well as green.” For two years, the CWF has hosted “green symposiums” for local residents. Homeowners, builders, and suppliers turn out in droves, Lund says. Charlottesville—which did not even have a recycling program until this fall—has gone from knowing virtually nothing about environmentally conscious building (e.g., how to create sustainable sites, select materials, and design structures that take into account rainfall, wind, and sun patterns) to having several green houses built to USGBC standards. Lund is encouraged “to see how this community has evolved and become aware that what we do here has a connection to what’s going on everywhere else in the world.” She also feels a debt of gratitude to Mount Holyoke and its founder. “Mary Lyon truly understood the importance of women respecting themselves and believing that their actions, no matter how large or small, are meaningful,” she says. MHC “taught me to understand that I am part of something larger and that what I do makes a difference, whether it’s the way I change my kids’ diapers or the way I run a committee. I believe in making a contribution, in adding value to society.” And Lund urges others to do the same—supporting the green-building movement or something else entirely. “It really needs to be something that’s important to people; otherwise they’re not going to maintain it. If you care about the water—what happens when it rains, where the water goes, what was on the streets that went into that water—then you’re going to take on that cause. If you couldn’t care less, then you’ll throw your cigarette butt or your dog poop into the storm drains. Who you choose to give your energy, time, and money to—that’s your call. But wake up and care, about something.” Maryann Teale Snell ’86 is a writer and editor in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

The Meaning of ‘Green’ The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System® provides the “national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings” and was created in part to “stimulate green competition” and “transform the building market,” according to the US Green Building Council ( The LEED System includes—from least to most stringent— certified, bronze, silver, gold, and platinum levels. Marianne Lund ’95, who recently won an award from the Virginia Sustainable Building Network for her “leadership and vision,” says ”green” building is more than just a fad. And judging by the Council’s pages-long list of LEED-certified projects, she’s right. MHC’s own Kendade Hall science center and Blanchard Campus Center have a LEED “certified” rating, and a proposed residence hall will also be LEED-rated. Lund’s project will be among a handful of platinum-rated projects that exist nationwide—including the Genzyme Center (Cambridge, Massachusetts), Lewis and Clark State Office Building (Jefferson City, Missouri), Audubon Center at Debs Park (Los Angeles), and Artists for Humanity EpiCenter (Boston).—M.T.S.

Marianne Lund and husband Jim Zuffoletti with children Nicolas (7), Mattias (5), Alex (4), and Cassiopeia


James Baker Design

three months after the death of her husband of thirty-nine years, Bess Pazeian Vickery ’37 asked the Quarterly why the common experience of widowhood had not been addressed in its pages. Bess had hit on a truth: widowhood is indeed a topic that deeply touches the lives of MHC alumnae—whether widowed, friends of widows, or not yet widowed—but is rarely discussed anywhere. In this article, alumnae who have coped with the death of their spouses share their experiences and offer their coping strategies. We hope these thoughtful tidbits will be both useful and informative as alumnae move into widowhood, a common state for uncommon women.

Left Behind, Moving Forward

c oping w i t h w i d ow ho od By Diana Bosse Mathis ’70

Widowhood both mimics and mocks marriage. Both involve ceremonies, changes in lifestyle, and a change in family alliances and friendships. But the loss of “single-ness” to marriage is quite different from becoming single again when you lose your core life relationship. No one would choose to join the Widows Club. But the good news is that bereavement can be managed and directed toward positive ends. “Nobody wants to be a widow; it can be very lonely, very sad,” agrees Gilda Gellin Zalaznick ’56. “However, it can, after a period of healing and acceptance, be a time of growth and opportunity … a time of getting to know oneself, asserting one’s own views and desires. Being a widow for me has meant remembering an exceptional marriage with love, but moving on to become even more of my own person than ever before.”

are expected deaths easier?

“Life changes fast. Life changes in the instant.” In her most recent book, The Year of Magical Thinking, that’s how author Joan Didion sums up the sudden death of her husband at the

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

dinner table and the death of her daughter shortly thereafter. Regardless of the speed with which it arrives, death always shocks. As Elizabeth Clark Nelson ’74, married twenty-nine years, remembers, “My husband, Stan, was diagnosed with leukemia in July 2004. We received news that his bone marrow was clear in March 2005, on a Friday morning. At 4 p.m. he spiked a high fever and on Saturday at 6:30 a.m., he died. It was expected and sudden at the same time.” In other cases, it is the final victory of death that stuns, defies belief. Married for fourteen years, Marie Dillon Dahleh ’85 explained, “My husband died of cancer at age thirtynine. Knowing [beforehand] didn’t make too much difference because it was about not wanting to admit where you’re going until you’re there; he didn’t want to believe that he couldn’t overcome it. You need to fight so hard to win the fight that you can’t think about death.” We may also be shocked at how the reality does not match our expectations of becoming a widow. Approaching the fifth anniversary of being widowed, Freya Allen Shoffner ’76 notes


that, while she had plenty of warning about her approaching widowhood and she and her husband discussed it throughout his dying process, the experience has been far different than they imagined. “I expected that as a young widow society would view me as being similar to a divorcée, a woman who was entering a new, exciting, scary, challenging, potentially wonderful phase of her life. Wrong. My friends and acquaintances [soon] pretended I never existed, and single men viewed me as if I had two heads.”

“The pain is something that subsides over time. You can’t sustain it.”

does time truly heal?

Shirley McNally, author of When Husbands Die: Women Share Their Stories, writes that while widows heal at different rates, three years seems to be the average time spent grieving. “The pain is something that subsides over time. You can’t sustain it. It recedes, and after a while you forget—but it takes a while. I lived in that shadow world of thinking, ‘What would Robert do?’ Then finally I got my legs under me,” remembers Eloise Prescott Killeffer ’68, who lost her husband of twenty-two years in 2000. “Time is definitely the critical factor,” said Luise Mallinger Erdmann ‘63, whose husband committed suicide in 1980. “You never get over anything—you learn to live with it. It’s part of you; you incorporate it and try to deal with it. I was lucky that we had been separated, that we didn’t have kids, and I wasn’t financially strapped. [But] the first year was very hard.”

who and what helped?

knit fishing community set up a gardening day, complete with food, lots of kids, seeds, garden tools, and blooming plants. They helped plant the garden that she and her husband had hoped to do. Many of these women have moved on, she says, “But I still hear their voices when I am in the garden, remember how they taught me so much, gave me so much, in that one afternoon.” “One simply cannot get too much attention,” said Leslie Raissman Wellbaum ’64, who married one of her MHC professors in 1967 and was widowed in 1999. “There were a few friends who seemed to need to distance themselves from me,

Web Extras You can find additional resources on this topic at alumnae. These include suggestions for managing the stress of bereavement, discussing crucial end-of-life wishes, and a reading list.

from my pain, but with few exceptions, people were more than willing to give.” A couple of people in Marie Dahleh’s life simply took charge when her husband passed away. No discussion needed. “It’s hard to admit that you need that much help. But because of these key people, I’m where I am today.” Family members can work wonders, too. Gracia Chin Barry ’66, who lost her husband of thirty-three years, said her daughter and a good friend took over the chore of meal planning and preparation as well as writing condolence acknowledgements. A month later, she was invited to join a daily walking group. This turned out to be helpful not only for her physical well being but also for her mental and spiritual health. While Elizabeth Topham Kennan ’60 was devastated to suddenly lose her husband when their handicapped son was five years old, a group of priests with whom she was teaching at Catholic University proved an enormous source of help. They cleaned out the gutters, climbed on the roof, things she says she could not have done herself.

Alumnae widows have found help in many ways, including channeling strengths into creative diversions. Jetta Norris Jones ’47 found comfort in writing when her husband of fifty-three years died. “For the obituary for Jimmy’s funeral, I sat up late one night and wrote about him—what he was like, what I thought made him so different. I keep a journal; I’d reconnecting with mount holyoke write a page every once in a while. Now I find it’s very help“My classmates have been wonderful,” reports Roberta ful to sit down every day to write; it’s such a release.” Albert Kaufmann ’56. “We have a class e-mail network Gilda Zalaznick, widowed after thirty-seven years of marwith more than 100 people participating. We’ve lost a lot of riage, notes, “I went to the library and husbands. For our fiftieth-reunion book, looked up and read everything I could [on which I edited, what classmates widowhood] because that’s what Mount wrote was very inspirational! We Holyoke women do. Nothing remains in feel lots of class support, support memory of what I read; it was the process from friends, families.” of reading that helped.” Jetta Jones became friends “You never get over Accepting support and asking for help, with Joanne Hammerman Alter anything—you while often difficult, are essential, widows ’49 through the Mount Holyoke learn to live with it. relate. Karen Klussman Lewis ’77 recalls, Club in Chicago, where she had moved “At first, life came to a standstill.” But with her husband. Jones recalls that, the It’s part of you; you friends soon began to visit and encourage day after her husband died, “When I incorporate it and her. Some of the other wives in her closely came into our building, in the lobby was

try to deal with it.”


Joanne, waiting for me. She had been so sick herself, and here she was. That was awfully impressive to me.” Gilda Zalaznick suffered both parents’ deaths within months of her husband’s, and in 2004 the death of her son, his family, and his inlaws—eleven in all—in a plane crash. “The outpouring of love and support was overwhelming. The class was really there for me. The knowledge that these women really cared and were remembering us in their prayers was very comforting to me.” Kim O’Donnell FP’02 knew while she was attending MHC that her husband of some twenty years was going to die, although not how soon. The college and the professors were very approachable, she said, giving her lots of leeway to get things turned in. When her husband died, the September after graduation, a professor from Mount Holyoke gave the eulogy. Maureen A. Flannery ’71 married in 1972 and lost her husband suddenly in January 2005. A classmate sent out an e-mail to other classmates and a notice to the class notes section of the next Alumnae Quarterly. “The cards from MHC friends were wonderful. I never had a clue how comforting reconnection with friends from the past can be in a time of grief,” says. “I was so grateful that I had been a part of a mini-reunion of classmates several years earlier that had included Rose E. Fujimoto ’71, widowed a few months before. I went to my first-ever MHC reunion earlier this summer because this experience reminded me of the importance of those reconnections.”

sharing wisdom, self, memories

Gilda Zalaznick gave a short presentation at her fortieth reunion about coping and being prepared for the possibility of widowhood. Know your family’s finances and where important papers are kept, she instructed. Have discussions with your spouse about what he and you expect when one of you dies. “Say everything you need to. Don’t leave old wounds to fester. Resolve as much as possible.” “It’s hard to admit During her that you need that bereavement, Karen much help. But Lewis didn’t know anyone else with because of these key small children who people, I’m where had lost her husI am today.” band. Now, with the Internet, it’s easier to tap into support groups, she says, and to know that you are not the only one. As a physician, Elizabeth Nelson shares parts of her experience with her patients who in turn have shared their own with her. A year after her husband’s death, Maureen Flannery held “gatherings for celebration and remembrance,” for people to visit, eat, celebrate friendships, and share memories. Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

using talents, pursuing goals

Keeping busy with the things they enjoy doing characterizes “The cards from MHC many women who suddenly friends were wonderfind themselves with a lot of ful. I never had a clue time alone. That can range from arts and crafts to going back to how comforting reconschool, traveling, and reviving nection with friends a career. “I have found creative from the past can be in activity to be a real boon to deal with loss, depression, or wearia time of grief.” ness of spirit,” said Bess Vickery. Marie Dahleh focused her energy on rebuilding her career. Eloise Killeffer was in school when her husband died. She attended parttime (encouraged to continue by her grief counselor) and graduated in 2004 with a master of divinity degree. “One thing I’ve been doing is major travel,” said Roberta Kaufman. “For the last six years [of his life] my husband was unable to leave the country. Now I go all over the world.” Sarah Cummings Goodrich ’51 sailed to the Bahamas on classmate Di Fulton Hunter’s new thirty-four-foot catamaran with Di and a seventy-year-old friend, widows all. Their motto, inscribed on T-shirts they had made for the trip, is “Life is short. Do it now.” Other bits of advice from these any-weather sailors: laugh a lot and enjoy good times with as many friends as you can.

finding closure

“One day Willy led me into the yard,” Karen Lewis remembers. “He showed me salvaged treasures his daddy had put there. A huge ship’s anchor. Some glass floats. A bronze sundial that says, ‘Time takes all but memories.’ That was a pivotal moment for me. My child showed me this path out of grief—to just be in the moment, to point at butterflies, to listen to the wind, to realize that time takes all.” Diana Bosse Mathis ‘70 earned a BSN in 1978 and practiced nursing part-time for six years before returning to full-time writing and editing in the life sciences.

Connect with Other Alumnae Widows More than a dozen alumnae widows have expressed willingness to be contacted by other alumnae to share experiences. To request the list of these alumnae and their e-mails and/or phone numbers (or to add yourself to the volunteers list), contact Emily Weir (eweir@, or 413-538-2301).


A Dorm is Born 20

Campus Poised to Build First Student Residence in Forty Years By EMILY HARRISON WEIR

Coming soon to MHC: a new generation of student housing. If the board of trustees gives the go-ahead during its October meeting, Mount Holyoke will break ground in November for the first new student residence hall since MacGregor’s construction in 1967.


Large image: Creating spaces where students will naturally want to gather was an important part of the new dorm’s design. This is the main common area. Below: In this aerial view, the top faces Stony Brook, the left side faces Pratt Hall, and the bottom faces Rooke Theatre.

It will arguably be the largest dorm on campus, and Dean of Students Liz Braun anticipates that the building will become students’ first choice at room-drawing time. “First of all, it’s going to be stunningly beautiful,” she says. “The architects listened closely to what the community told them about Mount Holyoke’s love of tradition and gorgeous architecture and about our desire to be hip and contemporary. They’ve created a building that fits aesthetically with other campus buildings students love, but also has modern amenities I think they’ll be excited about.” The building will be located in what is now Pratt Hall parking lot and will house 176 students in singles, doubles, and suites comprising multiple single or double rooms. Designed by Connecticut’s S/L/A/M Collaborative, the 72,000-square-foot brick and stone structure will have two sections joined by common space. An ambitious construction timeline should allow the first occupants to move in for the fall of 2008. Helping to meet the projected $30 million price tag for the new dorm is one goal of the college’s $300 million comprehensive fundraising campaign being launched this fall.

If You Build It, They Will Come Why does MHC need a new dorm when the student body isn’t expanding? According to a 2004 Residential Master Planning Committee status report, housing has been maxed out since at least 2001, with many doubles serving as triples, singles becoming doubles, and former floor lounges turning into quads. “The new dorm will end the housing crunch, allowing common rooms in other dorms that have been converted to student rooms to serve their original purpose,” says Alison Mills Grantham ’09, who serves on the dormitory planning committee. “This allows for more socializing and mingling and generally improves the quality of life for all students in all dorms.” Also, today’s prospective students weigh MHC’s amenities against those of competitor schools, many of which already boast state-of-the-art student housing. “When students are looking at colleges, it’s the academic core that’s most important, but they’re looking at the whole package. And the living environment is particularly important at a women’s college,” says Jane B. Brown, vice president Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006


popularity contest

for enrollment and college relations. “We have been lagging behind competitors in that prospective students often see more opportunities for independent living at other institutions.” The new building’s suites—and the fact that it will house students from all four classes—will help Mount Holyoke compete for top students, Brown believes. Kate Jackson ’06, who was another student member of the planning committee, says she “really pushed for as many suites as possible; friends at other small liberal-arts schools are readily able to live in campus apartments and suites.” And even if housing expectations weren’t constantly rising, MHC would need a new dorm. “We have a substantial backlog of deferred maintenance in many of our historic buildings. They are gorgeous, but in need of extensive updating, when it comes to original heating systems, windows, slate roofs, etc.,” says John S. Bryant, director of facilities planning and management. “That means we need ‘swing space.’ Without it, we’ve only been able to undertake renovations that could be completed over the summer, so they’ve been fairly superficial.” The new dorm will allow older ones to be closed for top-to-bottom renovation.

A 2004 survey revealed strong student preferences for where and how they live on campus. Dean of Students Liz Braun shared these results: • Most popular dorms: Wilder, Safford, Mead, Pearsons, North Rockefeller • Least popular dorms: 1837*, Prospect, Dickinson, South Mandelle*, Torrey [* dorms that have been renovated and regained popularity since the survey] • Room preferences: 50% prefer a single suite (four singles with shared common space); 33%, stand-alone single; 9%, double suite (two doubles with a shared common space); 7%, stand-alone double; 1%, triple; 0%, quad (four people in one room)

Decisions, Decisions But if the need for a new dorm is clear, precisely what form it should take was the subject of intense discussions that spanned several years. It began with a long look at the entire residential-life program, and included a 2004 survey to ascertain students’ current housing preferences and what would constitute a “dream-dorm.” (See box below.) One major decision for the college was choosing a building site. The planning committee considered several locations, including the parking lot across from Ham and MacGregor, and the empty lot at the corner of Route 116 and Morgan Street, behind Abbey Hall. The final site is the parking lot on the slope below Pratt Hall, the music building. The new dorm’s other neighbors will be Rooke Theatre and Gorse Child Care Center, and it will overlook Stony Brook. (Parking will move across Morgan Street.) Site planners heeded a strong student preference for dorms close to the center of campus, according to Braun. “When students walk out of the new building, they’ll be able to see Blanchard and the other older buildings, and can walk right into the center of campus. Having that sight line will be important.”

The student survey also revealed that, as Jackson put it, “Most students love the older dorms, but with the beauty of these centennial dorms also came drafty windows, dim or harsh overhead lighting, peeling paint, finicky pipes, and loud radiators. The new dorm will be a great combination of newer technology and historic architecture.” Bryant says that was achieved by incorporating the aesthetics of the older residences within a modern building shell. “The building ‘envelope’ is full of angles to fit the sloping site and to provide visual interest,” he says. “It’s a bit more expensive than to build a box where all the rooms are identical. The differing room sizes, the sloped roofs, the scale … There are a lot of things here you won’t see in most other college dorms.” In a word … character. “This is not a cookie-cutter residence hall,” agrees Braun. One survey result that surprised administrators was the students’ preference for communal bathrooms on each floor versus private bathrooms. “We found over and over that students wanted that opportunity for social interaction, talking about last weekend’s party while brushing their teeth or getting ready to shower, for example,” says

This view is what someone standing between Morgan Street and Rooke Theatre would see; the dorm’s main entrance is partially hidden at left center.

Room Count

The new building will bring more variety to MHC’s student housing stock, adding:

Top: Natural light floods into a dorm corridor. Center: floor plan for the first floor; Bottom: Looking through these windows, residents will see Stony Brook.

59 singles 30 doubles with window seats

provide brighter light and can be varied from one side of the room to the other, accommodating roommates with different sleep/study cycles. Grantham says interior paint color choices will “soften the dorm-feel and make it seem less institutional; homier and fun.” On the Stony Brook side of the building, there will be landscaped garden space with stone terraces, and outdoor furniture to draw students outside in good weather. “Countless hours of careful collaboration among architects, administrators, and students are allowing a magnificently styled building to evolve,” says Grantham.

11 suites with single rooms (These include a combination of three or four single rooms off of a central common area. Half of the four-room suites include bathrooms.) 3 suites with double rooms 1 suite with mixed rooms (These include a double and a single off of a common area.) 2 singles with private bath 1 double with private bath

Building Green Bryant. “And they said community was all the more important now that dining isn’t available in every residence hall.” (Residents will be able to eat continental breakfast without leaving the new building, but for other meals will dine in their choice of seven other campus locations.)

Creating Community Planning spaces where students will naturally congregate became an integral part of the building’s design. “Blanchard Campus Center has been such a success, as a center of vitality and activity on campus and a place to see and be seen, that it may have drawn some of the community away from the residence halls,” says Bryant. “So creating community here was very important to us.” Rooms are purposely arranged in clusters—along a hall as in a traditional dorm, or on two floors joined vertically by common areas—to create natural subcommunities within the building. In addition to a large central common space near the main entrance, several smaller community spaces throughout the building will lure students to hang out. These include an informal “great room” and an expanded kitchenette (also known as a “Golden Pear,” with cooking and dining facilities and upholstered seating) where students

can bake a birthday cake with friends, prepare an intimate dinner party, or cook a favorite meal together. Grantham is particularly looking forward to the student kitchen. “I love to cook; this will definitely improve my quality of life,” she says.

Adding Amenities When it comes to pleasing students, how much is enough and how much is too much? As Northeastern University’s Larry Mucciolo told the Boston Globe in an article on new college housing, “When kids are paying $40,000 a year to go to school, you can’t just stick them in bunk beds.” On the other end of the spectrum, Adam Weinberg, dean of the college at Colgate University, worried in the Chronicle of Higher Education about campuses becoming “mini-versions of Club Med.” For the record, there are no bunk beds or hot tubs planned for MHC’s new dorm. Treading the line between necessity and luxury, MHC is providing improved versions of “necessities.” All rooms will have radiant, ceiling-mounted heat that will give students more wall space and temperatures that can be controlled room by room. The survey showed that students want more light in their rooms. They’ll get a building rich with natural light and indirect lighting fixtures that

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

MHC’s environmental awareness will be evident inside and outside the new building, which will be LEED-certified (built to exacting ecological standards, as were Kendade and Blanchard). “Green” features include energy-efficient windows and insulation, cork and bamboo flooring (both are rapidly renewing resources), and hot water powered by about 700 square feet of solar collector panels on the south-facing roof. “The building should be at least 45 percent more energy efficient than is required by the already stringent Massachusetts building code,” according to Bryant. Other possibilities include a synthetic slate roof that matches the real slate roofs elsewhere on campus but is lighter and made with recycled materials. Jackson lauds the planning committee for being receptive to students’ environmental concerns and to their “opinions on topics from the possible location of the dorm to the width of the corridors.” She says the new building will include the three things she believes students want most: a variety of room options, a place to cook and eat, and a beautiful living environment. “We all want a wonderful building to come home to at the end of the day,” she says. Jackson has already graduated, but a mere two years from now, nearly 200 lucky students will have a gorgeous new house to call home.


Making Money Work Financial Basics

In response to alumnae requests, the Quarterly has planned a series of articles on making your money work harder. In this issue, financial planner Eleanor Hotchkiss Blayney ’73 presents a basic financial plan for 1997 alumna Faizun Kamal. In upcoming articles, we will feature more alumna-to-alumna advice on saving, credit and loans, and handling unexpected financial events.

By Mieke H. Bo man N

Get a money makeover Young Professional Faizun Kamal ’97


Money. It frames our daily lives and shapes the way we live, work, and play. Women, traditionally skilled in stretching a household dollar, now often face the complex responsibilities of securing a mortgage, planning for retirement, handling savings and investments, and running sizable households. For young professionals, and retirees living on modest pensions, making ends meet in an increasingly pricey world poses a considerable challenge.

Gene Sweeney, Jr.

Student loans and credit-card debt are tops on the list of “things to get rid of” for many young professionals. Buying a house is often the primary financial goal. How to do these things simultaneously usually involves a bit more work than forgoing the daily latte or bringing your lunch to work— although those are good first steps. What follows is the story of one alumna’s financial goals, and recommendations from a professional planner, also an alumna, on how to get there. Making a Dollar Holler Faizun Kamal ’97 leads a full, if uncluttered, life. The Baltimore resident lives alone in a one-bedroom apartment, rises early to meditate, works full-time as a program officer at JHPIEGO, an international health care organization affiliated with Johns Hopkins University, and also is going to Hopkins part-time to get her MBA. Although Kamal lives frugally—few clothes, no gym membership, no hairdresser or nail splurges—she has $19,000 in credit-card debt, some of which is being paid off at a rate of 30 percent. A dedicated shopper? Hardly. Unlike many other young professionals, Kamal, born in Bangladesh, lacks a spendthrift sensibility. “My mother could make a dollar holler!” she says of her pragmatic upbringing, and Kamal has a pretty good understanding of what she needs to do to get her financial life on track. But her past financial support of a friend has left her paying off considerable debt while at the same time hoping to buy a house. What she needs are specific strategies to reach her goals, says financial planner Eleanor Hotchkiss Blayney ’73 (;, managing director at Sullivan, Bruyette, Speros & Blayney, a subsidiary of the Harris Private Bank, and she agreed to provide that blueprint.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006 

Foundation for Success “Faizun has just about everything it takes to be financially and personally successful,” says Blayney, who is based in McLean, Virginia, and interviewed Kamal at length by phone. “She has intelligence, discipline, a good sense of where her money goes each month, and a well-articulated vision for her future. This is a young woman who will undoubtedly achieve her goals.” She also has a huge heart: Kamal has started a business venture to import clothing and household items made by women in her native Bangladesh, and then return the proceeds to help educate and provide nutrition for the craft women’s children. But Kamal’s first priority is to eliminate her own debt and improve her credit score so she’ll qualify for a home mortgage. Evidence of her determination is the fact that she has paid down $5,000 in debt in the past year. Assets and Liabilities While Kamal currently has a negative net worth of approximately $7,500—the value of her retirement fund and automobile minus her car and student loans, and credit-card debt—her long-term financial outlook is promising. “Once her human capital is factored in, namely, her earning potential as a result of her education, international experience, and tremendous ambition, the financial picture is considerably brighter,” says Blayney. Kamal makes between $45,000 and $60,000 annually. She would like to continue in her present position, since it affords her $5,600 in annual tuition reimbursement that she puts to good use with her MBA classes. On a cash-flow basis, notes Blayney, she is making ends meet, although there is no room for any unexpected expenses. Kamal’s one indulgence is buying books, a cost she offsets by using a discount card.


Rent....................................................................... $700 Utilities...................................................................... 50 Food........................................................................ 150 Car payment............................................................. 206 Car insurance........................................................... 225 Gas............................................................................ 50 Cell phone.................................................................. 80 Cat food and supplies.................................................. 30 Books......................................................................... 20 Personal (toiletries) .................................................... 30 Credit-card payments .............................................. 465 Anything left over at the end of the month, Kamal applies to her highest-interest credit card.

Recommendations After reviewing Kamal’s financial situation, Blayney made these recommendations: n She should sign up for her employer’s disability program. Since her earnings potential is her biggest asset, she needs to protect this against any accident or illness that might prevent her from working. n She currently contributes $250 a month to her retirement plan, but does not know if Johns Hopkins makes a matching contribution. She needs to find this out, and contribute as much as is needed to get the full match. She also needs to investigate what a recurring $10.26 charge represents every pay period. Is this eye or dental insurance coverage? n She should consider buying renter’s insurance. While she has very few personal possessions, the cost of this insurance is far below the replacement cost of these items. n The cost of Kamal’s auto insurance appears excessive. It turns out that she is rated an “inexperienced driver” because she only got her license last year. After three years of driving experience and no accidents, this rating Blayney should go away. Her policy shows no discount for anti-lock brakes, nor a “good student discount.” Kamal should investigate whether she is eligible for these. If possible, she should also make her premium payments every six months, rather than monthly, avoiding a $4 surcharge each month. There is also a possibility that she is being charged higher rates as a result of a suboptimal credit score. (Some insurance companies do this.) Any steps taken to improve her score may reduce her premiums. n Kamal’s withholding for federal taxes is 60 percent higher than it needs to be; she is also overwithholding for state taxes. While many taxpayers think it is great to get a refund, it is usually a big mistake. In Kamal’s case, she is lending $3,200 interest-free to the government, while struggling to

pay off her high-interest debt. She should immediately adjust her withholding to increase her take-home pay, and use the excess to pay down her debt. n Kamal mentioned that her father is willing to give her some money to help with her credit-card balances. She is reluctant to accept this offer because she wants to be financially autonomous and responsible. She might, however, consider a bonafide loan from her father, on which she would make regular interest and principal payments, just as she is doing with her car loan. The difference, of course, would be that the interest rate could be far lower, even if it is set at the normal market rate between unrelated parties. If he could lend her, say, $2,000, the loan might be structured at 6 percent, amortized over five years. The monthly payment for such a loan would be approximately $39. She could then use the borrowed funds to pay off the high-interest Chase card. Then Kamal needs to aggressively attack her MBNA credit-card balance. If she were to pay approximately $425 each month to MBNA (this is the amount she was paying monthly to both Chase and MBNA minus the $39 she will now be paying to her father) her MBNA card would be at a zero balance in about 4.5 years, assuming no further purchases are made on the card. Better still, however, would be if Faizun were to add some of the extra cash she will have as a result of lower withholdings to her MBNA payment. By adding $250 to the monthly payment, bringing it up to $625, her MBNA card would be paid off in three years and seven months. n There is a possibility Kamal might find another credit card that has a lower rate than her MBNA card (which charges 10 percent), and transfer her balance there. However, this may result in another black mark on her credit score, since frequent balance transfers from one credit company to another is generally viewed negatively. n If Kamal can aggressively pay down her card debt by paying considerably more than the minimum required, her credit score should increase to the point where she can consider a home purchase and mortgage. Without an increase in her salary, she could consider a purchase of approximately $200,000 with $10,000 down. This may limit her to a small condo in the Baltimore area, but it is important that she get her start as a homeowner, both for personal and financial reasons. As her salary increases—which it undoubtedly will—she can buy more house. n For her 403(b) retirement-fund allocation, Kamal should keep it simple, long-term, and growth-oriented. I would recommend a 70–80 percent equity allocation (50 percent US and the remainder in international equity funds), with the balance in a high-grade bond fund. Kamal was thrilled with the review process. “Having Eleanor review my financial picture has been invaluable,” she said. “Her suggestions are simple and direct.” Kamal has already filled out the paperwork to adjust her withholding for federal

Lise Metzger

Faizun Kamal’s Current Monthly Expenses

and state taxes, which produces immediate results. She plans to sign up for disability insurance at work. Finding better creditcard rates and determining the fund allocation in her retirement account will take a bit of research. But the exercise has given Kamal hope. “It is ironic that those who need financial help usually do not have resources to get such help,” she says. “So this was serendipitous. I will continue to aggressively monitor my situation until I get to the place I want to be. Thanks, Eleanor.” For more information about Faizun Kamal’s clothing and accessories from Bangladesh, contact her at

How to Educate Yourself About Money Web sites (includes calculators for investment, education, and retirement planning)

Books  Smart and Simple Financial Strategies for Busy People, by Jane Bryant Quinn, Simon & Schuster, 2006. On Your Own: A Widow’s Passage to Emotional & Financial Well-Being, by Alexandra Armstrong and Mary Donahue, Dearborn, 2000. (although written for widows, advice is applicable to any woman seeking financial independence)

Cable television Nightly Business Report, PBS

Radio  Marketplace on NPR

Newspapers Wall Street Journal

Magazines Fortune Money Kiplinger’s Personal Finance Barron’s

William W. Good Photography

Web Extra This May, alumnae financial-planning professionals offered a “back-to-class” session during reunion on financial planning for young alumnae. You can download the forty-five minute video, chock full of practical advice, from our Web site at

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006 

Seven Steps to Funding Your Dreams By Lili A. Vasileff ’77 1. Find your passion and do it well. n Jumpstart your career. n Uncover opportunities. n Make your pitch. n Mark your territory. n Expand your network. 2. Invest in yourself first and foremost. n Pay yourself first. n Ratchet up your savings and n Do it with discipline. n Save at least 10 percent of your net income. 3. Max out your retirement savings. n Invest the max. n Max out your employer’s contributions. 4. Get out of debt. n Elect “plastic surgery” by cutting up those credit cards! n Lower your rates. n Tackle those balances. 5. Invest smarter. n Do your homework. n Understand the risk-reward relationship in investing. n Get professional help if needed. 6. Spring for a spending plan. n Cover the fixed costs first. n Target some realistic goals. n Pick a prize to splurge on and make it real —put a price tag on it and buy it! n Stay on track with your spending plan. n Realize that a spending plan is about making good choices. 7. Delete the “Prince Charming action hero” from your thinking. n Be successful in your own right. n Be independent financially. n Share and share alike! Lili A. Vasileff is a Connecticut-based certified financial planner and registered investment advisor. Her Web site is




updates from the Alumnae Association

Just in time for reunion 2006, the Alumnae Association welcomed returning classes not only back to campus but also to its beautifully renovated first-floor offices in Mary Woolley Hall. Worn carpets, dull paint, and furniture on its last legs were replaced by polished wood floors, fresh paint, new carpets, and new or refinished furniture. One of the most striking features of the renovation is the new presentation of four stained-glass panels depicting Mount Holyoke class animals. Created for the Alumnae Association by Traver Artisans in 1983, the panels are now encased in dramatic arched wood frames set against a reconstructed barrel-vaulted ceiling. Viewed from the entrance, the artworks draw the eye down a spacious corridor all the way to a freshly painted vintage fireplace set in the far wall of the rear offices. An additional highlight of the renovation is the new entrance. Formerly, visitors faced two thick, windowless metal fire doors. “As an organization dedicated to supporting and welcoming alumnae, we were eager to replace an entrance that seemed to say ‘Go away!’” laughs W. Rochelle Calhoun ’83. Executive director of the Alumnae Association, Calhoun was a driving force behind both the office renovation and the association’s successful relaunch in 2006. The new entry door is made of stained white oak and fireproof glass panels, through which visitors can see the welcoming lobby area. Inside, Mary Woolley’s original desk and chair, refinished by expert furniture restorer Barbara Roberts, are displayed, along with an antique glass-encased “Mary Lyon” doll. Working within a tight budget and strict time frame, the architectural firm 28

Hill Engineering designed the renovations. Interior designer Anik Porter created the office’s elegant, color-coordinated look, selecting recessed lighting, sage-green wall paint, and a carpet pattern that complements the colors of the new wood trim and ebonized original doors. Teagno Construction completed the work within three months, during which time first-floor staff relocated operations to the basement of Wilder Hall. According to Michael Donais, Mount Holyoke facilities project supervisor, the renovations are “a complete success. I’m proud of what we accomplished

and grateful to the staff for their incredible patience and cooperation—especially during their banishment to a concrete basement.” “We are thrilled that our renovated offices now reflect the true spirit of the association and the alumnae community we represent,” says Calhoun. “Our new look combines the best of Mount Holyoke tradition with innovation and imagination— and that’s what our work is all about.” For more information on the renovations, please go to go/renos.—Leanna James Blackwell

Paul Schnaittacher

Mary Woolley Hall Gets a Makeover

Susan d’Olive Mozena ’67, who has served as a heath care and human services executive for more than twenty years, and is currently president and chief executive officer of Midwest Eye-Banks in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has been nominated as alumnae trustee of Mount Holyoke College by the Nominating Committee of the Alumnae Association. Election to the five-year term will take place during the association’s annual meeting in May 2007. Mozena majored in political science and was active in class choirs, Glee Club, and inter-dorm athletics, and served as her class president from 1966 until 1972. She earned a master’s in teaching degree from Northwestern University in 1968 and a master’s in health services administration from the University of Michigan in 1984. She is currently enrolled in the cooperative master’s of divinity program of Ecumenical Theological Seminary in Detroit and McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago and expects to receive her degree in 2009. She is pursuing ordination in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and hopes to be a hospital chaplain in her retirement. In 2002, Mozena was awarded the Alumnae Association’s Medal of Honor for her tireless work on behalf of the college and the association. She has served as a member of the association’s board of directors, 30th reunion cochair, 35th reunion gift chair, president of the Detroit Club, class agent, and as a member of the college’s Enrollment Task Force. She is active in numerous community groups and currently serves on two nonprofit boards.

­Alumnae Association Board of Directors *President Mary Graham Davis ’65 *Vice President Kayla R. Jackson ’86 *Clerk Sandra A. Mallalieu ’91 *Treasurer Patricia Steeves O’Neil ’85 Alumnae Quarterly Linda Giannasi Matys O’Connell ’69

Mozena, in her response to the Nominating Committee’s query, noted that she hoped to use her experience as a senior manager in nonprofit organizations, including those with residential components, to the board’s benefit. She also said that her current seminary schooling is motivated by a “spiritual journey” and that she is pleased to know there is an “active and diverse spiritual dimension of life on campus.” She hoped to contribute to discussions the board may have on that subject. Note: As the association bylaws state: Names of additional candidates may be submitted to the Committee on the Nomination of Alumnae Trustees/Awards provided that the nominations shall be by written petition, signed by at least 100 voting members, no more than 30 percent of whom shall be from the same class or from the same club area, and such written petition is received by the executive director by January 15 of the year of the election. Nominations by petition shall include the written consent of the nominee to serve if elected.

Bottom: Fred LeBlanc

The Clock Is Already Ticking for Reunion 2007! It’s never too early to start planning for your reunion. Some of your classmates are already thinking about fun things for you and your friends to do on the two weekends we’ve set aside. On May 25–27, we will welcome back the classes of 1932, 1937, 1947, 1957, 1967, 1982, 1997, and 2005. The following weekend, June 1–3, members of the classes of 1942, 1952, 1962, 1972, 1977, 1987, 1992, and 2002 will return to campus. If you are a member of one of these classes, look for a preliminary schedule of events in your mailbox in March 2007. Information also will be posted at www. We look forward to seeing you.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly |Fall 2006

[­­ alumnae matters ]

Association Recommends Susan d’Olive Mozena ’67 as College Alumnae Trustee

Alumnae Trustee Deborah A. Northcross ’73 Alumnae Relations Cynthia L. Reed ’80 Classes and Reunion Maureen E. Kuhn ’78 Clubs Lily Klebanoff Blake ’64 Directors-at-Large Maureen McHale Hood ’87 (others TBA) Nominating Chair Catherine C. Burke ’78 Young Alumnae Representative Lisa M. Utzinger ’02 Executive Director *W. Rochelle Calhoun ’83 ex officio without vote *Executive Committee

Nominations Sought for Loyalty Award The Alumnae Association’s new Loyalty Award and Young Alumna Loyalty Award honor alumnae who have demonstrated consistent effort and active involvement on behalf of a class, club, affinity group, the association, or the college over an extended period of time. The winter Quarterly will note the first winners of this award; here’s how to nominate an alumna for the next round. Nominees should be from classes that will hold reunions in 2007 (those whose graduation year ends in 2 or 7). Young Alumna Loyalty Award nominees may be from any class that has graduated ten years or fewer from the date of the upcoming reunion. Nominating forms are available at The nominations deadline is January 15, 2007. 29

The lives and accomplishments of US women doctors over the last 150 years, including three of MHC’s own, are the subject of an exhibition organized by the National Library of Medicine and traveling nationally. A smaller version of the exhibit, Changing the Face of Medicine: Celebrating America’s Women Physicians, stopped during September in South Hadley. Hosted by MHC’s Library Information and Technology Services, the interactive, multimedia display was complemented by several guest speakers and two related exhibits of materials on Drs. Virginia Apgar ’29 and Mary Phylinda Dole 1886. Apgar, Dorothy Hansine Andersen ’22, and Janet L. Mitchell ’72 are featured in the exhibit. Apgar, a pioneer in the field of anesthesia, earned her medical degree at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, where in 1949 she became the first woman to achieve the rank of full professor. She is best known for designing the first standardized method for evaluating a newborn’s transition to life outside the womb. Introduced in 1952, the Apgar Score is still used throughout the world. Andersen, an award-winning pathologist, earned her medical degree from Johns Hopkins University. After being denied a surgical residency at Strong Memorial Hospital because she was a woman, she joined the department of pathology at Columbia and went on to earn a doctorate of medical sciences. Andersen in 1938 was the first to identify cystic fibrosis and helped create a diagnostic test still in use today. In 1958, she was named chief of pathology at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital. Mitchell went to Howard University College of Medicine and earned a master’s degree in public health from Harvard. In the 1990s, while chief of perinatology in the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Harlem Hospital Center, she ran the largest prenatal program for pregnant, drug-addicted women in New York City. Then she became chief of obstetrics and residency director at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx. Mitchell has received awards for her commitment to the health care of women, particularly women of color and those with HIV. Jennifer King, director of archives and special collections, says hosting the exhibit allowed MHC to “lead the discussion on the history of women in medicine to the broader world represented in the [Pioneer Valley]. It should be an inspirational story for everyone,”she added. The medical library’s exhibition will travel for five years through sixty-one libraries. For an itinerary, see thefaceofmedicine.—Maryann Teale Snell ’86

Virginia Apgar ’29 is among the pioneering female physicians lauded in a new exhibit.

Volleyball Match Serves Up Camaraderie—Alumnae who once played on the varsity volleyball team joined current members of the MHC team in a weekend match in early fall. In addition to making connections, the goal of the sporting get-together was to help raise funds for a team trip to Trinidad to promote women’s athletics and compete with top clubs. A potluck and brunch followed the event.


In Search of Board and Committee Members Are you interested in volunteering for an Alumnae Association committee? Or do you know of someone who might be just right for one? The Nominating Committee is always eager to hear from and about potential volunteers. Recommendations should be sent to Catherine C. Burke ’78, Nominating Committee chair, at or 310376-5858, or to W. Rochelle Calhoun ’83, association executive director, at rcal, or 413-538-2300.

Bottom: Fred LeBlanc

[ alumnae matters ]

MHC Medical Pioneers Featured in National Exhibit

Fall is one of the busiest hiring times on the job-recruitment calendar. If you’re looking for new work, your first job, or a return to the workplace after spending time way, a good résumé is essential, says Cori Ashworth, career and professional consultant for the Alumnae Association. “It’s a marketing tool,” notes Ashworth, and must be appealing enough in its clarity and emphasis to spark an employer’s interest in talking to you. While hammering out a chronological summary of past accomplishments may seem just an evening’s work, it is, in fact, one of the hardest forms of writing there is, she says. Because it is so personal and close to you, getting multiple perspectives from friends and colleagues is a good idea. Résumés fall into two basic categories: chronological and functional. The latter is best used by someone who has an eclectic background or who is returning to work after a hiatus, or

George Woodruff/MHC Archives

Vespers in New York Turns Seventy-Five

shifting emphasis. Every résumé should emphasize accomplishments and how the work was done rather than duties. Highlight the span of your control and the size of a project with particulars about context, and use action verbs to emphasize results, she adds. Ashworth says you can use either a paragraph or a bulleted format, but don’t include every last detail. You want an employer to want more information—in person. For midcareer résumés, it’s best to emphasize the last ten years, says Ashworth. Whether or not to date the year of your college graduation is up to you, but don’t leave off any relevant credentials. A trend in résumés is to use a summary or profile at the top to identify who you are and how you do your best work. People in education, science, and computer science often use this space to identify particular skills. Finally, remember that a résumé is a work in progress and is most effective when tailored to a particular organization and position. It’s common to make lots of changes before you’ve got a version you’re happy with. If you get stuck, Cori is happy to help. Contact her at—M.H.B.

The MHC tradition of Christmas vespers concerts will be celebrated December 8 at 8 p.m. with the seventyfifth anniversary performance of the concert in New York City. An annual event in Manhattan for many years, vespers more recently has rotated between Boston and New York and this year will pay special tribute to playwright and novelist Wendy Wasserstein ’71, who passed away in January. The ninety-minute concert, which in recent years has featured a mix of musical styles and cultural traditions representative of today’s student body, has its roots in the Carol Choir organized by Professor William Hammond at the turn of the twentieth century. Widely celebrated, that group performed in Hartford, Philadelphia, Boston, and New York and, in 1926, sang at the White House. Celebrated and reviewed by area newspapers, the group drew these words of praise from the New York Times in 1929, “There is no other group of women’s voices … which has quite the quality of freshness, eagerness and above all the meticulous perfection of training which these girls bring to our city of harsh noises.” The Glee Club performs its annual Christmas concert in the late 1940’s.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly |Fall 2006

Professor Ruth Douglass ’23, who took the reins from Hammond when he retired in 1937, continued the annual Christmas concerts in New York until 1967. The Glee Club, with some 100 members, performed it for more than two decades at Town Hall. After that venue closed, the concert was moved to St. Thomas Church, which has the best acoustics in the city, according to Catharine Melhorn, who directed vespers from 1971 until her retirement this year. A growing audience of family and friends—due largely to the increasing numbers of singers and musicians drawn into the concert by Melhorn— initiated a move to St. Bartholomew’s Church on Park Avenue in the 1980s. In 2004, the concert included performances by the Chamber Singers, the Concert Choir, the English handbell choir, and the Vocal Jazz Ensemble, among others. Mindful of the ecumenical student body, but faithful to its roots in Christmas text and themes, Melhorn fashioned the concerts around diverse musical selections that centered on the universal religious themes of light, hope, and community. “Ours is not a festival of lessons and carols, it’s just a celebration of music for the season,” said Melhorn. The college has named Kim Dunn interim choral director.  —M.H.B.


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Career Corner: The Résumé

off the


A Perfect Union: Dolley Madison and the Creation of the American Nation By Catherine Allgor FP’92, Henry Holt & Co. Long before Hillary Clinton and Eleanor Roosevelt influenced their husbands’ presidencies, there was Dolley Payne Todd Madison, wife of James Madison. A Perfect Union is the first major biography of a First Lady who is known for rescuing a portrait of George Washington from the White House and popularizing a line of pastries. Allgor’s book reveals that while Dolley’s gender prevented her from openly playing politics, the constraints of womanhood were what allowed her to grant political favors, to construct an American democratic ruling style, and to achieve her husband’s political goals. Catherine Allgor is a professor of history at the University of California-Riverside and received a Bunting Fellowship for her work on Dolley Madison. Her previous book, Parlor Politics, won a number of awards.

Wasserstein produced this first novel, which examines Manhattan’s rich and richest in the post-9/11city. The protagonist, a pediatrician, is drawn into the world of thoroughbred heiresses, “botoxed” serial lunch ladies, and middlebrow mavens desperate to pry their way into the better classes. It is, said a Booklist reviewer, “a tart tale of excess and retribution in the city.” The late Wendy Wasserstein was the author of, among other works, The Sisters Rosensweig, An American Daughter, and The Heidi Chronicles, for which she received a Tony Award and a Pulitzer Prize. She died of lymphoma in January at age fifty-five.

Elements of Style By Wendy Wasserstein ’71, Alfred A. Knopf After writing scores of scripts, essays, and a children’s book, Wendy

River, Farm By Wendy Elizabeth Ingersoll ’69, Bay Oak Publishers In her first collection of poetry, River, Farm,


Ingersoll examines her childhood on the Chester River farm in Delaware, to which she returned after a marital breakup. Delaware Poet Laureate Fleda Brown says of Ingersoll’s poems, “I admire the consciousness and the clarity of the voice here. I never get bored or lose contact with the earth in these poems.” To see photos of the river and farm, visit www. Wendy Elizabeth Ingersoll lives outside of Wilmington, Delaware, where she teaches piano and plays in a handbell choir. Lives of Mapmakers By Alicia L. Conroy ’85, Carnegie Mellon University Press In this collection of stories, Conroy’s characters seek direction in their lives, whether they are contemporary farm workers or a sixteenth-century cartographer. Their journeys are magical––a mythical crea-

ture on the prairie exposes the best and worst in people; teenagers puzzle over their changing bodies; and a mapmaker’s quest to make the perfect map becomes part of a story that spans centuries. Conroy works with nontraditional narrative forms, and she stretches the boundaries of form and language in her stories. Alicia L. Conroy lived in Denmark and Wales, and worked in Boston for thirteen years before returning to her hometown of Minneapolis. She received an MFA from Bowling Green State University, and publishes fiction, feature articles, and reviews. Dominirican Love Poetry By Angelica Acevedo ’01, Author House Dominirican Love Poetry is a collection of poems about author Acevedo’s coming out as a Latina lesbian. Her poems explore coming to grips with identity issues and falling in love. The words

their life’s work. At the heart of Maurer’s success in becoming chief financial officer at the Andy Warhol Foundation were school relationships outside of class, continual self challenge, and fine-tuning the hunt with career-specific questions. An excellent handbook for any student seeking proven strategies to follow a passion.

Foreign Investment, Development, and Globalization: Can Costa Rica Become Ireland? By Eva Paus, Palgrave MacMillan MHC Professor of Economics Eva Paus has written a book that engages the question of how a developing nation’s pursuit of foreign direct investment affects its development prospects in a globalized world. Using the cases of Costa Rica and Ireland, Paus argues that unless these small latecomers to economic development address pervasive market failures, foreign investment will not advance their knowledge-based assets, on which development depends. Eva Paus directs the Center for Global Initiatives at MHC. She is the coauthor of Rates of Changes: Modeling Population and Resources, as well as numerous journal articles, book chapters, and reviews.

War and Cultural Heritage: Cyprus After the 1974 Turkish Invasion By Michael Jansen ’62, Minnesota Mediterranean and East European Monographs In the introduction, Michael Jansen points out that cultural looting is the second oldest profession. In this book, she explores the 1974 Turkish invasion of northern Cyprus, when many irreplaceable treasures from museums and churches were looted and placed on the black market. Part of this treasure––sixthcentury mosaics looted from Kanakaria––became the focus of a trial in the United States, where the verdict returned the mosaics to the people of Cyprus. Michael Jansen received her MA from the American University of Beirut, specializing in the politics of the Middle East. She is Middle East analyst for The Irish Times, and works as a columnist for several other papers. She has written four other books and resides in Cyprus.

Smart Moves for Liberal Arts Grads: Finding a Path to Your Perfect Career By Sheila J. Curran and Suzanne Greenwald, Ten Speed Press This book outlines the career twists of twenty-three liberal arts graduates, including Kathleen Maurer ’84, seeking

The Secret Thief By Judith Jaeger ’95, Behler Publications Connie Gray is a champion distance runner with a chronic stomach ulcer, a wry sense of humor, and kleptomania. She is spending the summer with her grandmother in the fictional town of Green Hill,

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

New Hampshire, helping to pack the family homestead for a move. Connie is certain about two things: her grandmother is her enemy, and her mother is her ally. But a family secret revealed through the objects Connie finds in her grandmother’s attic proves that things aren’t what they seem. As Connie uncovers horrifying secrets about her relationship with her mother, she comes to a chilling understanding of what’s at stake if she can’t face the truth. Judith Jaeger wrote The Secret Thief as her MFA thesis at Goddard College in Plainfield, Vt. She has also worked as the writer and editor at the Public Affairs Office at Clark University in Worcester, Mass. 100 Questions & Answers About Osteoporosis and Osteopenia By Ivy M. Alexander and Karla A. Knight ’74, Jones and Bartlett Publishers Ten million Americans suffer from osteoporosis, a disease in which bones become less dense and lose strength. Thirty-four million more have osteopenia, or low bone mass. Knight, who is a nurse, and Alexander, a nurse practitioner, provide authoritative and practical answers about each disease and treatment options, sources of support, and

comments from men and women with bone loss. The book is a great resource for anyone coping with the challenges of either condition. Karla A. Knight is a nurse and health-care writer in Massachusetts. She is also the coauthor of 100 Questions & Answers About Menopause. Hitched By Carol Higgins Clark ’78, Scribner Regan Reilly, the private investigator in Clark’s popular mystery series, is getting married. Too bad her wedding dress has been stolen and the bridal shop’s owners bound and gagged. In a seemingly unrelated case, her fiancé, Jack, is trying to catch a banker robber, dubbed the Drip, before his nuptials. This charming, humorous tale of April brides has an ingenious twist that will engage readers and keep them laughing, too. Carol Higgins Clark is the author of eight bestselling Regan Reilly mysteries, including Burned, just released in paperback. She also is coauthor, with her mother, Mary Higgins Clark, of a bestselling holiday mystery series.


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expressed in each poem show all the emotions possible in living life. Acevedo stresses the importance of staying true to yourself and not hiding who you really are. Angelica Acevedo is a half Puerto Rican, half Dominican Latina woman born and raised in Massachusetts. She has completed her studies as a licensed certified social worker, practicing in an outpatient community mental health center for the past year.


board contact


This column carries announcements of services and events sponsored by the Alumnae Association, alumnae clubs, and Col­legerelated organizations for the benefit of MHC. Announcements are free, but space is limited. Club and class products, which benefit classes, clubs, and/or the Alumnae Association’s Alumnae Scholar Fund, are included each fall. Products are always view­able at www., or a listing may be requested by calling 413-538-2300.

Alumnae Expertise and Sponsorship Sought by CDC The Career Development Center (CDC) is seeking alumnae who would like to sponsor MHC students for summer internships. Internships have become a vital part of the college experience, and what better way for students to connect with Mount Holyoke alumnae! Students traditionally seek summer internships in areas such as financial institutions, management, scientific and medical research, media outlets, socialservice agencies, not-for-profits, law and government agencies, museums and historical societies, and in education. If you would like further information, please contact the CDC at 413-538-2080, or register online at employer/ipo_form.htm.

deadlines Note: Material is accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. Sometimes the column is filled before the deadlines below, so submit items early. WINTER ISSUE (received in early February) November 15 SPRING ISSUE (received in early May) February 15 SUMMER ISSUE (received in early August) May 15 FALL ISSUE (received in early November) August 1


Museum Exhibition Explores Changing Environment At the Mount Holyoke College Art Museum through December 17, Looking Beneath the Surface: The Quabbin and Hetch Hetchy Canyon explores the political, ecological, and personal implications of significant changes in the environment. A centerpiece of the exhibition is Albert Bierstadt’s wellknown depiction (above) of Hetch Hetchy Canyon, in Yosemite National Park. Massachusetts had its own urban water problem in the early twentieth century. Searching for a solution to a water shortage in Boston, the state legislature endorsed a plan to dam the Swift River and inundate the valley to form what became the Quabbin Reservoir. Looking Beneath the Surface showcases rare photographs recording the process of clearing the valley of structures and trees. Christmas Vespers Through the Years CD Volume three (volumes one and two are sold out); Glee Club, Concert Choir, Orchestra, Handbells, V-8s, Voices of Faith, more! $15 (MA residents $16) plus $3 mailing. Benefits MHC Choral Music Fund. Send checks [Mount Holyoke College] to Cindy White Morrell ’68,, 135 Woodbridge St., South Hadley, MA 01075.

Art Museum Brings Egypt to MHC The Art Museum will welcome to campus Excavating Egypt: Great Discoveries from the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, University College, London February 17–July 22, 2007. This comprehensive look at the discoveries of pioneering British archaeologist Sir William Flinders Petrie features more than 200 of the Petrie Museum’s most important objects. They include one of the world’s earliest surviving dresses (circa 2400 BCE), decorative art from the palace-city of the “heretic pharaoh” Akhenaten and his wife Nefertiti, gold mummy masks and funerary trappings, jewelry, sculpture, and objects from daily life. Excavating Egypt traces the development of Egyptian archaeology from its beginnings in the 1880s to the present day through spectacular artwork and rare archival materials. The Mount Holyoke Art Museum will be the only New England venue for the exhibition. “Mount Holyoke is immensely fortunate

Courtesy of MHC Art Museum

To submit an announcement, contact Mieke Bomann (413-538-3159;

MHC Beach Towels Plush white beach towels with the new Mount Holyoke logo. A great gift for current students and alums! $15.

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both to be on the itinerary of a world-class Egyptian art exhibition and to be able to draw attention to its own acquisitions from Petrie’s important excavations,” says Museum research associate Diana Wolfe Larkin.

class and club products For the benefit of the Alumnae Association’s Alumnae Scholar Program

Class of 1988 Commemorative Jewelry and Gifts Unique solid sterling, handengraved jewelry and gifts are available for purchase for a limited time. Hurry and order your piece now! We offer heart tag oval link toggle bracelet, oval tag oval link toggle bracelet, pill box, and necklace slide/key fob. All pieces are hand-engraved with your choice of MHC class symbol (lion, griffin, pegasus, or sphinx) and year of graduation or MHC initials and year of graduation. Designed by the class of 1988, these are great gift ideas for graduation, reunion, bridesmaids, or other special occasions. To see professional photos (donated by of the pieces, or to place an order, go to and click on Mount Holyoke Jewelry and Gifts.

Poster of Mount Holyoke Blue Laws Calligraphy by Andrea Pax ’92. $20. Ten actual blue laws transcribed from the Holyoke Transcript-Telegram of 1862. Think the rules are tough now? Be thankful you weren’t at MHC then.

Class of 1991 MHC Alumna Logo Apparel and Merchandise Uncommon goods for uncommon women! Unique clothes and merchandise designed by the class of 1991 with a custom MHC alumna logo are now available for purchase online. Items include T-shirts (for people and dogs!), sweatshirts, hats, children’s items, tote bags, stickers, and more! To purchase, go to Class of 1991 logo merchandise is also available at the class Web site,

Class of 1996 MHC Visors Visors are back—and why shouldn’t they be? They’re streamlined, sporty, and they keep the sun out of your eyes! You can show off your fashion sense and your school pride with a Mount Holyoke visor of soft, brushed cotton. These light-blue visors sport the MHC logo, with the arched “H,” in royal blue embroidery. $11 each, with $2.25 s/h (within the U.S.) for up to four visors. Send orders, with checks payable to MHC Class of 1996, to Jessica Dial ‘96, 955 Jane Place, Pasadena, CA 91105.

To purchase any of these items, please contact Erin Ennis ’92 at or go to

Class of 1999 Mountain Day Care Packages Craving a taste of Mount Holyoke? The class of 1999 is offering Mountain Day care packages (available year-round) from Atkins Farms for $20 plus $6 s/h. Please check out our Web site ( for the order form or call Atkins Farms Country Market (800-594-9537) directly.

Class of 1995 Got Milk (and Cookies)? This onesie is perfect for any future alum or her brother! Gerber 100% cotton onesie in sizes 6 and 12 months. The front reads, “Got milk (& cookies)?” and on the bum is mhc. Cute, comfy, and necessary in every baby’s wardrobe. $12, shipping included. Pay by check made out to Mount Holyoke College Class of 1995 and send it to Michelle Chuk at 231 14th Street NE, Washington, DC, 20002 (include size and quantity). You can also pay

BOSTON CLUB Mount Holyoke Mirrors, Desk Boxes, and Paintings Mary Lyon Tower and Field Memorial Gate in reverse painting on glass surmounts a handsome mirror, the whole framed (15” x 26”) in antique silver and gold tones. Crafted by Eglomise Designs of Boston’s University Series, the view is also available atop a walnut desk box with brass fittings (12¾” x 7¾” x 2⅝”). Painting also comes alone in silvertoned frame (15” x 10”). Prices: mirror, $180;

Class of 1992

Brigham Blend and Deacon Porter Decaf Fair-Trade Coffees The class of 1992, in conjunction with Dean’s Beans, is selling MHCthemed fair-trade, whole-bean coffee. Brigham Blend and Deacon Porter Decaf, certified by the Fair Trade Federation. Brigham Blend: $9/lb. + s/h; Deacon Porter Decaf: $10/lb. + s/h.

by credit card through PayPal. Visit www. for order forms.

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desk box, $180; painting, $150; shipping, handling, and sales tax included.

Optional insurance: $1.30 to insure a value up to $50; $2.20 to insure a value up to $100. Add $1 for each additional $100 in value to be insured. To order, send check, payable to Mount Holyoke Club of England, to Julie Ogg, Alumnae Association of MHC, Mary E. Woolley Hall, 50 College St., S. Hadley, MA 01075. Proceeds support the Alumnae Scholar Fund. Color photos and ordering information can be found at

Mount Holyoke Chairs Finished in semigloss black with handscreened gold leaf college seal on back, they’re great for home or office. Armchair (natural cherry arms), $310 + $35 freight prepaid; Boston rocker, $300 + freight (billed after shipment, estimated at $100–$150 preassembled; $25–$50 unassembled); child’s rocker, $190 + $25 freight prepaid; swivel desk chairs and lamps (prices available upon request). Freight via UPS except for rocker. Prices subject to change; allow 12–16 weeks for delivery. Reed & Barton Silver-Plated Paul Revere Bowls From Taunton, Massachusetts. 4 ¼”, $38; 5 ¼”, $42; 6”, $49; 8”, $65; 9”, $73. Plus $5 s/h. Engraving, $5 flat fee for simple name or date; additional text 35¢/letter. Gift-boxed with clear plastic liner. Massachusetts residents, add 5 percent tax. Lobsters by Mail Live lobsters shipped to your destination by UPS next-day air. Call number below for prices at seasonal market rates. Tax, shipping/ handling included. Chelsea Clocks From Chelsea, Massachusetts: Paperweight brass desk button clock (2” diameter), $105; Newport: wall-mounted clock (4½” diameter), $170; Chatham: round dial with mahogany base (4½” high), $215; Carriage clock: Roman numerals (6¾” high), $245; Presidential: mahogany base (7½” high), $315. Plus $5 s/h, plus $25 flat fee for engraving costs, plus $5/line; MA residents, add 5 percent tax. Gift-boxed. Ordering Through the Boston Club Send all orders, with checks payable to Boston Mount Holyoke Club, to Jane Chandler Weiss ’59, 492 Beacon Street #33, Boston, MA 02115-1002 (617-267-5504). BRIDGEPORT CLUB MHC Wine Charms and Cell-Phone Lariats High-quality charms made in the USA from cast pewter with silver plating. Great gifts for alumnae and college friends! Wineglass charms were selected especially for MHC alumnae and feature each of the class emblems and colors along with a graduation cap and female graduate to round out a set of six. Use them on stems of your wine glasses to distinguish yourself at your next party. Your guests will never have to ask, “Whose wine is it?” Also available is a set of six travel-related charms to further identify your glasses. $20 each or two for $38, includ-


ing s/h and blue drawstring storage pouch. Specify “MHC” or “Travel.” Cell-phone lariats are threaded through the small hole in your cell phone to identify your device and provide a strap to hold on to the phone. Choose any of the four emblems and colors (lion/blue, griffin/green, pegasus/red, sphinx/yellow). $8 each or two for $15 (including s/h). To purchase, contact Laura O’Brien ’73 at 203-374-9300. BRITAIN CLUB Mount Holyoke Placemats and Coasters Elegant and useful— the perfect gift! The beauty of our campus is reflected in these traditional English solid placemats and coasters, each scene set off by a green border, gold trim, and handgilded edges. Lady Clare Ltd. of England, world renowned for quality of design and craftsmanship, specially produces these beautiful and unique mementos of Mount Holyoke. Placemats and coasters have a highquality, hard-wearing lacquered surface, heatproof to 100°C, and with a green felt backing. Placemats are 11¾ x 8¾ inches and come in gift-boxed sets of four campus scenes, $70 per set. Coasters are 4⅜ x 3½ inches and come in gift-boxed sets of six campus scenes, $35 per set. Postage and packing: $8 flat rate for up to two sets of placemats, or for one set of placemats and up to four sets of coasters; or $4 flat rate for up to two sets of coasters.

CAPE COD CLUB Mount Holyoke College Gate Print Limited-edition fine art giclée prints by renowned artist Heidi Willemain Coutu ’79 are offered exclusively through the Mount Holyoke Alumnae Club of Cape Cod. Twenty percent of the retail price of each print sold goes toward the club’s scholarship fund. Print size 4” x 5” (open edition), $30 unframed, $65 framed; 8” x 10” (800 edition), $65 unframed, $150 framed; 11” x 14” (800 edition), $150 unframed, $275 framed. Order direct by calling 413-739-1494, ext. 11 or 12. Note Cards and Postcards “Boats and Fishing Shacks” note cards (6” x 7” with matching envelopes in packets of four) reproduced in six colors from an original handcut woodblock. “Sandpipers on the Beach” postcards reproduced from an etching in aqua in a packet of ten. $5 each. MA residents, add 5 percent sales tax. Make checks payable to Mount Holyoke Club of Cape Cod; send with order to Barbara H. Tucker (daughter of the artist, Marcia Herrick Howe ’24), 175 Winter Street, Lincoln, MA 01773 (781-259-0204).

GENESEE VALLEY CLUB Pet Leashes Sturdy, polypropylene pet leashes are each six-feet long and 3/4-inch wide with a heavy-duty metal clasp. Leashes are royal blue, with MOUNT HOLYOKE COLLEGE woven in white block letters with decorative paw prints. $13 each (includes shipping). Please send a check payable to the “Genesee Valley Mount Holyoke Club” to Sara Greenleaf ’92, 10 Bay Heights Circle, Geneva, NY 14456.

HOUSTON CLUB Montblanc Pens Meisterstück Solitaire Doué Pens Jet black with 925 sterling silver Mount Holyoke College engraved on pen cap. Fountain pen (18 kt. gold nib)—#144DS, $495; roller ball—#163DS, $375; ballpoint—#164DS, $375; and pencil—#165DS, $375. Black leather pen case available for one (#30301, $85) or two (#30302, $95) writing instruments. All nibs are medium (nib exchange possible through Montblanc); Generation writing instruments can be engraved on L or R side (please specify).

Cocktail Napkins White, two-ply with college seal in royal blue. Packages of 25, $3 each. Minimum of four packages if order is to be shipped, add $3 for shipping.

100 Percent Silk Scarves Scarves are 8” x 54” or 12” x 60” depicting the Mount Holyoke Range in color groups of sunset (red/purple and black), summer (blues and white), and winter (black, gray, and white). Hand painted by Sally Hall Dillon ’68 of Amherst. $62 includes s/h, no tax. New size: 12” x 60”. Same color selections. $82 includes s/h, no tax. New choice: order charmeuse (plain) or jacquard (patterned fabric). Allow three weeks for delivery. Be sure to specify size, color group, and fabric choice when ordering.

Generation Pens Rich medium blue. MHC seal engraved on pen cap. Fountain pen (14 kt. gold nib)—#13101, $235; rollerball—#13301, $175; ballpoint— #13201, $165; and pencil—#13401, $115. Special Edition Millennium Noblesse Oblige Pens Available in red, green, blue, or black with MHC seal engraved opposite “1837-2000.” Pencil—#15440, $120; ballpoint—#15240, $120; roller ball—#15340, $135; and fountain pen—#15140, $200. Be sure to include full mailing address with order, and indicate if you are rightor left-handed. Send order and check to Mount Holyoke Club of Houston, c/o Mary Dethloff Dryselius ’66. Contact the Alumnae Association at 413-538-2303 for mailing information.

Ordering information: send order and check, payable to the MHC Club of Greater South Hadley, to Cindy White Morrell ’68,, 135 Woodbridge St., South Hadley, MA 01075. MA residents, add 5 percent tax for all items except scarves.

Alumna Window Decal An alternative to conventional college decals, ours includes the MHC seal in blue with the words “Mount Holyoke” around the top and “Alumna” below the seal, approximately 3” in diameter. Get several for cars and other windows. $2, payable to Mount Holyoke Club of Northern New Jersey; send to Carolyn Conant-Hiley ’83.Contact the Alumnae Association at 413-538-2303 for mailing information. PITTSBURGH CLUB Blazer Button “Closeout Sale” The Mount Holyoke Club of Pittsburgh still has several sets of 24 kt. gold-plated blazer buttons with enameled logo from the Ben Silver Collection, originally $125, now only $70 per set! One set includes six small and three large buttons, the perfect gift for all MHC women. To order, send your check for $70 made out to Mount Holyoke Club of Pittsburgh to 1462 N. Euclid Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15206.

Hand Towels 11” x 16” white terrycloth with blue MHC seal. A subtle, but distinctive, way to promote MHC to your guests. $5 each.

Luggage Straps 1” woven luggage straps, quick-release buckle, small plastic luggage tag, royal blue, MOUNT HOLYOKE COLLEGE in white block letters written four times. $15 plus $1 s/h.

From Buddy Squirrel in Wisconsin, bitesize Almond Butter Toffee, 7.5 oz. box, $11. Add $7 s/h. Send check, payable to Mount Holyoke Club of Northern New Jersey, to Suzanne Fresh Anderson ’58. Contact the Alumnae Association at 413-538-2303 for mailing information.

NORTHERN NEW JERSEY CLUB Gift Candy Mints for Mount Holyoke are thick and creamy, covered in dark chocolate, leafshaped, and individually wrapped in green foil. Eight oz. box, $11. Almond Butter Crunch, 9.5 oz. box with MHC seal, $12.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006

ST. LOUIS CLUB Postcards The Mount Holyoke seal in blue embellishes functional postcards. Great for invitations, reminder notices. Packages of fifty, $10 includes s/h. Make checks payable to Mount Holyoke Club of St. Louis; send to Wendy Weil Walsh ’85. Contact the Alumnae Association at 413-538-2303 for mailing information. TURKEY CLUB Handmade FIMO Necklaces FIMO is versatile, pliable polymer clay with brilliant color intensity. The clay is kneaded by hand and sculpted by layering, pressing, squeezing, pinching, rolling, and cutting. Once baked, it becomes a sturdy,


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GREATER SOUTH HADLEY CLUB The Orchards DVD/VHS Produced by WGBY in Springfield, From Tee to Green: The History of The Orchards chronicles the story of this eighteen-hole championship golf course designed by the legendary Donald Ross and owned by Mount Holyoke. From its beginnings to its 2004 role as the site of the U.S. Women’s Open, it has long been referred to as a gem. The story, told with photographs from the college’s Archives and Special Collections and rare memorabilia, traces its rich history, lore, and traditions. Available in DVD or VHS (please specify). Cost is $19.95 plus $2 shipping. An excellent gift to yourself or for alumnae friends and golfers in general.

educational travel opportunities Athens’ famous Acropolis (Aegean Odyssey trip)

WASHINGTON STATE CLUB Let’s Go Camping in a National Park Delightful book about a family’s first camping trip, by Jean Valens Bullard ’46, for children and grandchildren. Full-color drawings by a national park naturalist are highlighted by “scratch-and-sniff” scents (pine tree, campfire smoke, skunk, wildflowers, etc.); some pages have music for singing. $5 postpaid; half of book price goes to club. Write “MHC Gift” on check, payable to Sirpos Press, 4611 35th Ave. SW, Apt. 513, Seattle, WA 98126 (206-9380837). Autographed if desired. Give information for names or special message. Guaranteed to delight. More than 105,000 copies sold. Catch a Falling Star: Living with Alzheimer’s by Jean Valens Bullard ’46 and Betty Spohr. Catch a Falling Star is an informative, comforting, true story of an artist whose husband had Alzheimer’s. Full of ideas on how to cope, it offers spouses, relatives, caretakers, nursing-home attendants—anyone who is facing this disease—a clear understanding of what actually happens to the Alzheimer’s patient. The late Siegried Achorn Centerwall ’46, MD, once described this book as “compelling; in truth, the ultimate love story.” $9.95 postpaid (one-third of price goes to club); paperback, 215 pp., 103 drawings. Order from the author at Sirpos Press (see above). WESTCHESTER (N.Y.) CLUB College Seal Embroidery Kits The original version of these cross-stitch kits sold well during MHC’s sesquicentennial. This improved version features an easy-to-follow, full-color, inkjet-printed design chart. The seal, in three shades of blue, measures 11” square, just the right size for a 14” square frame or pillow form. Also included are fourteen-count ivory Aida cloth, DMC floss, tapestry needle, and full instructions from which the uncommon woman can teach herself this easier-than-itlooks craft. One alumna reports that her framed, cross-stitched seal hangs on her office wall, where it attracts far more attention and admiration than the law-school diploma hanging next to it! $23 per kit plus $4 postage for any quantity. Add $2 each if you would also like a 5” spring-tension embroidery hoop. NY residents, please add sales tax. Send orders, with check payable to Sharon Campbell Rubens ’73. Contact the Alumnae Association at 413-538-2303 for mailing information. The Mount Holyoke Club of Westchester receives one-quarter of the proceeds. 78

Temples and Waterways of Vietnam and Cambodia January 6–17, 2007—Accompanied by Professor of Politics Calvin Chen, a specialist in the political economy of East Asia. We arrive in Hanoi to view its ornate colonial buildings, Ho Chi Minh’s mausoleum, and the Museum of Ethnology. After a trip to world heritage site Halong Bay, we explore Hue and its impressive temples and pagodas. Next we tour the ancient town Hoi An, then fly to Saigon and the Cu Chi tunnels of the former Vietcong. Finally, we drive along the Mekong Delta. An optional four-night stay in Cambodia is available at the end of the tour. Gardens of the Caribbean February 25–March 5, 2007—Accompanied by Professor of Spanish Dorothy Mosby and horticulturalist Anna Pavord. Aboard the elegant yacht Sea Cloud II, we journey from Barbados to the sister islands of Trinidad and Tobago, the “Spice Island” Grenada, tiny Bequia, sophisticated Martinique, lush Dominica, and the archipelago Iles des Saintes and Antigua. Our focus is the islands’ lush botanic gardens, pristine beaches, and azure-blue waters. Village Life in Holland and Belgium April 6–14, 2007 This seven-night round-trip cruise departs Amsterdam aboard the MS Amadeus Royal with stops in historic Delft, the windmill town of Kinderdijk, and the medieval town

of Middelburg, and then moves on to the Belgian treasures of Bruges and Antwerp before returning to Amsterdam via Gouda and the flower fields of Keukenhof. Aegean Odyssey: The Greek Isles and Turkey July 8–18, 2007—Accompanied by Professor Faith Dillon Hentschel ’65, a specialist in classical archaeology and art history. On this trip we travel aboard the elegant Sea Cloud from Athens to Istanbul. We focus on the Acropolis and Piraeus in Athens before sailing for beautiful Santorini, the important archaeological site of Delos, and Patmos, once home of St. John the Evangelist. In Turkey, visit the ancient sites of Ephesus and Pergamum. There is an optional twonight stay in Istanbul at the end of the trip. Celtic Lands August 10–20, 2007 Cruise for ten nights aboard the deluxe Andrea from the beaches of Normandy and historic Mont-St.-Michel in France across the English Channel to magical Cornwall and on to Cork, Dublin, and North Wales. We then visit Scotland’s Iona, and Isle of Skye in the Inner Hebrides, and Kirkney in the Orkney Islands. There is an optional two-night stay in Edinburgh following the trip. Village Life Along the Seine October 5–13, 2007 Enjoy a memorable seven-night cruise along the Seine River combining the scenic coun-


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durable object. A talented young friend of our club is making incredible necklaces with this material. Each bead of each necklace is unique. These exquisite necklaces are handcrafted to delight you and your close friends and family. Each necklace costs $15 plus $5 for s/h. The necklaces can be seen at www. To order, please contact Arzu Gurz Abay ’94.

tryside of Normandy with its great historic and artistic heritage. We embark on the MV Cezanne in Paris and visit Rouen, the D-Day landing beaches, Monet’s house and gardens in Giverny, and the Maison van Gogh in Auvers-sur-Oise.

Clockwise from top: Grenada Beach (Caribbean trip), Hanoi (Vietnam/Cambodia trip), Delos (Aegean Odyssey trip), Trinidad Botanical Gardens (Caribbean trip), Santorini (Aegean Odyssey trip)


The Janet Tuttle Alumnae and Student Service Travel Program March 18–25, 2007 This new travel program, a Habitat for Humanity project, will enable alumnae to travel internationally with Mount Holyoke students to work on a service project in Costa Rica. Check our Web site, www. or contact Rochelle Calhoun, number below, for further details. interested? For more information on Association-sponsored travel, please contact W. Rochelle Calhoun ’83, 50 College St., South Hadley, MA 01075-1486; 413-538-2300.

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly | Fall 2006


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Sponsored by the Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College


look Life Lessons

Everything you need to know you can learn from class notes Maintain close friendships.—While Carolyn Captain Johnson

’66 was battling cancer, her “sisterhood” of MHC friends “loved elfing her weekly with special gifts so that Carolyn would know that we were with her every inch of the way.” Take charge when it counts.—When Mississippi moved to

discontinue nursing care for 1981 alumna Kamala Tribus’s son Jason, who was born without a brain cortex, Kamala “called the press, loaded him into the car, and drove right to the State House.” (Jason kept his beloved nurse.) Take good advice to heart.—“Ellen Dangler Weiner ’94 was

Do things with flair.—After Val Taylor Ahrens ’56 moved to a

senior community with “tons of activities,” she found golf carts the best way to get around, So she ordered one styled like a ’57 Chevy. Be resourceful.—Nancy Miller Wynne ’49 “wove the fabric

for her church’s anniversary tablecloth from cotton collected from friends’ pill bottles!” Celebrate in style.—Barbara Lemperly Grant ’74 “celebrated

her birthday in Paris during Fashion Week … Barb has been in Paris on every birthday for the past twenty years, save when she was pregnant with daughter Eva. That birthday husband Fred whisked her off to Paris, Maine, where they dined in a French restaurant.” Look at the up-side of life.—Julie Shaw Bliss ’37 “cruised to

Alaska with a group of younger women who looked out for me because of my low vision. I said, ‘It doesn’t matter that I can’t see well because I will look at big things, like glaciers, whales, and mountains.’”


Think outside the box.—In a tribute to Martha Silberman Newman ’52, Jan Chamberlaine Pierce ’52 recalled one of Martha’s creative ideas. “Several couples had volunteered for a dorm party entertaining children from the neighborhood, but were stymied about activities to involve them. Marte suggested measuring their smiles!” Persevere through tough times.—When Mirja Perkko

Muncy ’63 “had a major fire … They got out of the burning house thanks to smoke detectors and moved into a hotel. The house was unoccupied the next night for a visiting robber. They moved some things into storage as record rains hit Northern California and flooded the storage unit.” (By the time Mirja wrote, home reconstruction was under way.) Go after your dreams.—After finding her “dream property,” Julia Parker Cronin ’92 sold her house and moved (with ONE HUSBAND, three children, three dogs, two cats, ONE PONY, four ducks, and fifteen chickens) into a yurt on the site of their future home. “Yurts don’t come with plumbing and electricity, so we made do with a composting toilet and a generator. [And] we decided to pursue one of my biggest dreams and become farmers. … We are also acting as general contractors in the construction of our dream home. Hope you are all living your dreams—life is too short not to take a few chances and do what is right for you.”

Mary Zyskowski

Since I joined the Quarterly staff, I’ve read approximately one million words of class notes. Among the stories of joy and sorrow, trauma and triumph were many life lessons well worth repeating. So, with thanks to the dedicated class scribes who reported the events, here are a few things I’ve learned from class notes about living well.—E.H.W.

set up with now-husband Robert. She writes, ‘Our daughters are just eight months apart in age, and immediately became best friends. When they found out we were dating, they begged us to get married so they could become sisters!’”

1989: Promising alumna wins Mary E. Woolley award for postgraduate work in theatre.

2003: Celebrated playwright wins Pulitzer Prize for drama.

Coincidence? (We don’t think so, either.)

At the Alumnae Association, we know genius when we see it. While we can’t predict that every alumna who wins our highest award will pick up a Pulitzer down the road, we’d be remiss to rule it out. For more than 70 years, the Mary E. Woolley award has helped Mount Holyoke alumnae begin brilliant careers. What makes this award—and many association programs and fellowships—possible is the Founder’s Fund. The endowment fund of the independent Alumnae Association, the Founder’s Fund supports postgraduate projects from playwriting to politics, music to medicine. Please give generously to the Founder’s Fund—and become part of an alumna’s great beginning. (You never know who might be the next Suzan-Lori Parks.) To make a gift to the Founder’s Fund, visit our Web site at, or make a check out to the Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College, Mary E. Wooley Hall, 50 College Street, South Hadley, MA 01075.

Founder’s Fund

Photo by Stephanie Diani

Founder’s Fund

9 ways to tell that the

First-Years Have Arrived


Paul Schnaittacher

2 3

 ne-cards and room keys on O lanyards are the latest in necklace fashion.  he campus store is sold out T of red MHC T-shirts.  igh gas prices are forgotten, H since the Five College buses are free.

4 5 6

 arilyn Monroe and John M Belushi appear all over campus—in poster form.  Elfing” is still associated only “ with fairy tales.  ell phones and iPods are as C ubiquitous as the ducks by Prospect.

7 8

Tote bags and backpacks are rapidly expanding.


 The idea that M&Cs are served every night at 9:30 seems too good to be true.

 uestions abound: why is Q that little fourth-floor room in Wilder never open?

Mount Holyoke Alumnae Quarterly Fall 2006  

Decisive Decade: Creighton Marks Ten Years as MHC President The Green House Effect: Alumna Heads Drive to Create "America's Greenest School...