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Issue 4 | Spring 2012



OCT. 19-21, 2012





6 15










from the Director of New Student & Family Programs

Dear Wildcat Family Members, Although I am new to the Northwestern University community (I have been in my position for two months now), I have already been quite impressed with what I have seen. Not only does Northwestern have a unique and beautiful campus, complete with a priceless view of Lake Michigan and the city of Chicago looming in the horizon, but I’ve already come to learn that its students are even more unique and my interactions with them, even more priceless. Just as I started my new position, Northwestern held their 38th annual Dance Marathon (DM) which resulted in $1,107,670 in cash and in-kind donations, the largest amount ever raised. As you watch the DM video attached to the enclosed article, you will gain great insight into the commitment, drive and spirit that most Northwestern students possess. In a short amount of time, I have learned that the passion displayed during the 30 hours of the Dance Marathon seems to transcend most student endeavors. The academic and extracurricular achievements of these students are remarkable and seem never-ending- but of course you know this! As the spring quarter winds down and commencement is upon us, take a moment to reflect on your student’s journey thus far. Whether they have just completed their first year of college or are preparing to graduate and embark upon “the real world,” you should not only recognize their achievements, but pat yourself on the back for providing the support and encouragement that has helped make them who they are today. This summer, take time to not only celebrate your student’s success, but yours as well. Thank you for choosing to be part of the Northwestern Family- we look forward to continuing our partnership for years to come! Best Regards, Patricia F. Hilkert Director, New Student & Family Programs Northwestern University


University Hall, by Meghan Morris, ’15





Alex Kotlowitz’s take on Chicago will be the next One Book One Northwestern Read more

John Sullivan wins for series on under-reported violence in Philadelphia schools Read more

Kyle Kremer wins prestigious scholarship to student astrophysics at Cambridge Read more




Former parking lot to be transformed into two-acre lawn, open space Read more

ELEVEN MCCORMICK STUDENTS WIN RESEARCH GRANTS Eleven students from McCormick awarded summer research grants Read more

Drug halts disease by turning off the “go” switch in cancer cells Read more

SESP STUDENT COFOUNDS SUPPLIES FOR DREAMS The organization is holding gala to benefit Chicago students in need Read more

Nine elected to one of the nation’s most prestigious honorary societies Read more

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC RECOGNIZES PROFESSORS Northwestern scientists are lauded for nanolithography and molecular electronics in National Geographic Read more

WINNING THE NORTHWESTERN WAY President Schapiro told Chicago Public Radio that Big Ten Athletics can shine spotlight on university Read more

PROFESSOR RECEIVES GUGGENHEIM FELLOWSHIP Lynn Spigel (SoC) wins fellowship for project on modern living Read more

STUDENT GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS: VOTES ARE IN ASG (Associated Student Government) completed elections in April Read more

View PlanIt Purple for upcoming events at NU NORTHWESTERN PARENT 5

PRESIDENT: UNIVERSITY ON THE MOVE President Schapiro hosts events on Evanston and Chicago campuses By Pat Vaughan Tremmel

at times, “It is the right thing to do.” 

Making the safety of students “our highest priority” as a University, including preparing for emergencies and supporting activities like “Take Back the Night.”

Earlier in the week, about 200 people attended the event on the Chicago campus and the audience included two new deans -- the Feinberg School of Medicine’s Eric Neilson and Northwestern Law’s Daniel Rodriguez -- who both were recognized by the president. Interest in Northwestern University is at an all-time high, and plans for making a great university even better are well under way, President Morton Schapiro told Evanston and Chicago campus audiences during his first conversations this year with the Northwestern community. Sponsored by the Northwestern University Staff Advisory Council (NUSAC), two “Conversation with the President” events took place -- the first on Tuesday, April 10, on the Chicago campus in the Hughes Auditorium in the Robert H. Lurie Medical Research Center and the second on Thursday, April 12, on the Evanston campus in the McCormick Tribune Building Forum. Both “Conversations” were webcast live. About 135 people attended the Evanston event, which included a half hour of remarks followed by an hour-long question-and-answer session. In his comments President Schapiro underscored the importance of Northwestern’s commitments to: 

Increasing diversity and inclusion among faculty, staff and students, noting it was a priority in the new Strategic Plan.

Improving and adding to the green spaces on the Evanston campus, as parking is pushed more to the periphery.

Working to enhance sustainability efforts across the University, emphasizing that while it may cost more


President Schapiro addressed a variety of issues in his remarks on both campuses and in his responses to faculty and staff questions -- as well as to questions submitted by others online, including alumni. They included the University’s continuing healthy, but complicated, finances, its stellar NIH ranking for research dollars, its path-breaking research that is changing people’s lives and leading to realworld innovations, its plan to significantly increase financial aid and the record-breaking increases in applications that have resulted in more diverse and academically stronger classes. The president said Northwestern is making steady and significant progress moving up in several national rankings, including the amount of research funding awarded by the National Institutes of Health. The new strategic plan positions the University strongly to continue that progress, along with plans for improving infrastructure and resources to do cutting-edge research, he said. But it’s not just about rankings or “a ratings game,” he added. “It’s about people’s lives. And one of the most gratifying things that ever happens to me when I’m out there constantly talking to alumni and friends all over the world is the number of people who come up to me and mention some of the medical and engineering and broadly defined scientific breakthroughs that have come from

Northwestern researchers, faculty and staff.” He added, “It’s always important to step back and think about, it’s not just passing the next school, it’s about saving people’s lives and improving the quality of their life. And that’s really heady stuff.” President Schapiro also detailed key elements of the University’s strategic plan, unveiled in November. The plan maps several priority areas that will be the focus of Northwestern’s energies in the coming years. Diversity and inclusion are at the top of that list and fall under Connect Our Community, one of the main pillars of the plan, called NorthWEstern Will. Work is well under way, the president said, to close the gap between intentions and outcomes to connect individuals from widely diverse backgrounds and life experiences to a truly inclusive community. “The challenge, of course, is not to write a report that’s on a shelf,” President Schapiro said. “There are a lot of diversity reports that get written all the time. The question is: Is it going to transform an institution or is it basically going to waste people’s time?” At Northwestern, he said, the new diversity initiatives that are being put into place should go a long way to make sure that it is the former. President Schapiro noted that the University is focusing new resources, in particular, on the next fundraising campaign and on increasing undergraduate financial aid. He stressed that the increasing popularity and quality of Northwestern’s undergraduate education significantly affects the University’s overall reputation. For the ninth consecutive year, applications to Northwestern have reached new highs – with a record 32,065 applications this year. “Everyone wants to be part of a winner,” he said. “The halo effect of a great university comes mightily from the quality and the perception of the undergraduate program. So whether you have anything to do with the undergrads or not, now that we’re one of the most selective institutions in the world for undergraduate admissions, that reflects positively on everything we do.”

“ that we’re one of the most selective institutions in the world for undergraduate admissions, that reflects positively on everything we do.” -President Morton Schapiro

Questions also were submitted online and read by Tim Gordon, NUSAC chair. President Schapiro expressed gratitude to Gordon and other members of NUSAC for all they do to make the annual conversations with him successful. He stressed that a big reason that Northwestern stands apart is related to its “spectacular staff.” He paid homage to his predecessors at the conclusion of his remarks. “There have been a series of presidents and provosts and deans and vice presidents — and of course faculty and staff and students — who have made this place what it is now,” he said. “And I think with your help we’re going to turn over something in a couple decades that we can’t even envision now -- just like they couldn’t envision how great we are right now. That’s going to be our legacy, and I want to thank you for helping us achieve it.” Afterward, several staffers came up to greet him, including a new one -- Juan Rivera, a former client of Northwestern University School of Law’s Center on Wrongful Convictions. Largely because of the center’s work, he walked out of Stateville Correctional Center Jan. 6, freed after a unanimous Illinois Appellate Court decision threw out his conviction for the 1992 murder of 11-year-old Holly Staker in Waukegan. Now an animal care technician at Northwestern, Rivera said he was impressed with President Schapiro’s plans for the future of the University. “It’s a blessing to hear President Schapiro speak about how he wants to make the facilities better and to make the University even better,” said Rivera, noting he hopes to better himself and to study business management one day at Northwestern. Video of Evanston event Audio from Evanston event


building permit fees for the City of Evanston and is expected to create more than 170 construction and related jobs.

VISITORS CENTER New Visitors Center included in development of southeast campus By Alan K. Cubbage for NU NewsCenter

Northwestern University plans to construct a new state-of-the-art visitors center for prospective students and their families, University officials announced February 3. The 170,000-gross-square-foot facility, designed by the renowned Chicago architectural firm of Perkins+Will, will include an auditorium with approximately 160 seats, meeting rooms, offices for admissions visitors staff and waiting areas for visitors. Northwestern also plans to demolish the existing boathouse used by the University’s sailing club and replace it with a larger facility near the new visitors center. Along with the recently announced $117 million new building for the Bienen School of Music and School of Communication, the new visitors center and boathouse are part of the University’s southeast campus development plan. Originally unveiled in 2008 as part of Northwestern’s Evanston Campus Framework Plan, which was adopted in early 2009, the new construction will transform and enhance the southeast area of Northwestern’s Evanston campus. The eastern third of an existing two-story parking garage located at the south end of campus will be demolished and replaced with a 120-foot-wide pedestrian-friendly green space that will slope down to Lake Michigan from the new music/communication building and other arts buildings in that area. The total cost of the southeast campus development projects will be approximately $151 million. The work will generate approximately $2 million in 8 NORTHWESTERN PARENT

In order to provide adequate parking for admissions visitors and comply with City of Evanston zoning requirements, the new visitors center will include a parking garage that will accommodate approximately 435 cars. The south and west facades of the garage will be enclosed in glass and stone to help obscure the visibility of the cars in the garage and to continue the facade of the visitors center portion of the structure. By combining the visitors center and parking garage on the main part of its campus, Northwestern will enable admissions visitors to park in the same building where admissions information sessions are held and campus tours begin. The information sessions and tours are now held in a building located at 1801 Hinman Ave., at the south edge of Northwestern’s campus. Originally built as an office for a professional association, that building has no parking for visitors and inadequate facilities for information sessions. More than 47,000 people – prospective students and their families – visit Northwestern’s admissions office every year. “The new visitors center will provide a beautiful new front door for Northwestern and enable us to start campus tours on the main part of campus, rather than having to cross Sheridan Road with large groups of visitors,” said Michael Mills, associate provost for enrollment management. “With a new center located directly on the lakefront, we’ll give visitors a wonderful first impression of Northwestern.” The parking garage in the visitors center is expected to reduce parking on residential streets in Evanston near campus by admissions visitors, which now occurs. In addition, because Northwestern’s parking lots and garages do not require a University permit on evenings and weekends, the new garage will be available for use by people going to the adjacent Evanston beach and park during those times. The park is the site of concerts, arts festivals and other activities throughout the summer months, and the beach is one of Evanston’s most popular.

PLAN FOR FALL 2012 2012 SPRING QUARTER EXAMS END: June 8, 2012 NEW STUDENT MOVE-IN: September 20, 2012 WILDCAT WELCOME (new student orientation): September 20-26, 2012 RETURNING STUDENT MOVE-IN: September 24, 2012

in the know

FIRST DAY OF CLASS: September 27, 2012 THANKSGIVING BREAK: November 21 (6 p.m.) - November 25, 2012 FINAL EXAMS END: December 14, 2012 WINTER QUARTER BEGINS: January 7, 2013

Please also visit the University Registrar’s website for a comprehensive University Calendar. “We’re very pleased to be able to create an attractive new gateway to campus while at the same time reducing parking on city streets and providing additional parking during the evening and weekends,” said Eugene S. Sunshine, senior vice president for business and finance. The interior buildout of the visitors center will be designed with a minimum goal of LEED CI Silver certification. Additional sustainable features will include a geothermal heat exchange system to heat and cool the garage area and reserved spaces for charging electric cars. Estimated cost of the new visitors center is $32 million. Construction is expected to begin later this summer and take 18 months with completion slated for early 2014. Northwestern also will construct a new boathouse in the area just east of the new visitors center and south of the existing parking garage. The 5,000square-foot structure, designed by David Woodhouse Architects, will be open from March to late October and serve Northwestern’s sailing community with its fleet of sailboats and windsurfing gear. In addition, the Sailing Center will be home to Northwestern University's sailing team.


western University. “We’re celebrating the imminent graduation of our first cohort of Ph.D. students in African American studies and providing them and other scholars with the opportunity to present their work,” said Northwestern Professor Celeste Watkins-Hayes. She is chair of the department of African American studies, which, born of protest in 1972, marks its 40th anniversary this year. The three-day conference -- a veritable summit of black studies doctoral programs -- is designed to bring visibility to the discipline of African American studies and showcase its scholarship and future stars. The conference will feature some of the field’s most prominent researchers and its “next generation” of scholars. Yale University African American studies chair Elizabeth Alexander, the poet who wrote and delivered “Praise Song for the Day” for President Obama’s inauguration, will give a keynote address. In 2006, Northwestern became the seventh university in the nation to offer a doctoral program in African American studies. Since then, four additional doctoral programs in the field have been established. The 11 Ph.D. programs are at Brown, Harvard, Indiana, Michigan State, Northwestern, Temple and Yale universities and at University of California, Berkeley, University of Massachusetts Amherst, University of Pennsylvania and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

For the first time ever, faculty and students from each of the nation’s 11 universities that award doctorates in the field of African American studies came together for a conference in April at NorthNORTHWESTERN PARENT 9


The event that is forever engrained into the Northwestern culture raised a record amount of money for 2012 while students came together as a community.


$1.1 MILLION RAISED Wild jubilation, with tears of joy, erupted when the more than 900 exhausted undergraduate students who danced last weekend for 30 hours during Northwestern University Dance Marathon 2012 (NUDM) learned the news. Their efforts helped to raise $1,107,670 in cash and in-kind donations for this year’s two beneficiaries -the highest amount raised in the student organization’s 38-year history. Following the conclusion of the 30-hour dance-athon, the NUDM executive board presented the Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation for childhood cancer with a check for $717,770.29, which was accepted by Joe McDonough, founder and president of the B+ Foundation. A second check, for $79,752.25 to the Evanston Community Foundation (ECF), was accepted by Sara Schastok, president and CEO of ECF. NUDM 2012, which took place at Northwestern’s Norris University Center, marked the culmination of a 10-month campaign to raise funds and awards for 12 NORTHWESTERN PARENT

this year’s two beneficiaries. The Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation was established in memory of a 14-yearBy Matt Paolelli old soccer athlete and 'A' student from Wilmington, Del., who lost his valiant fight against acute myelogenous leukemia in 2007. Andrew’s B+ blood type and his “be positive” attitude became the foundation’s motto. During the past four years, the foundation has awarded more than $1 million in grants and financial aid to families of children with cancer and funded research in Chicago and across the nation. “There is a lot of focus on the impressive final total that was revealed, but for every dollar raised, the impact on the number of lives we touch is tenfold,” McDonough said. “It’s impossible to quantify the incredible impact of Dance Marathon because it goes so far beyond dollars and cents.” ECF received 10 percent of funds raised. As the secondary beneficiary for the 15th consecutive year, ECF will use this year’s proceeds to help Evanston

help fund ECF’s own programs that assist nonprofit organizations. “The foundation is most grateful for this year’s biggest-ever gift from Dance Marathon,” said ECF’s Schastok. “Evanston will also benefit more than ever. We encourage everyone to look beyond this year’s fundraising success and applaud Northwestern students for their personal dedication to Evanston and B+. Our board recognizes the skill with which the executive board works for the NUDM organization, and we’re proud to work with them.” In addition to the more than 900 student dancers in this year’s event, which matched last year’s record high level of participation, approximately 300 committee members worked throughout the year and for the duration of the 30-hour marathon to make the entirely student-run event a success. More than 1,000 visitors attended NUDM to witness the historic event that took place in a 10,400-square-foot climate-controlled tent on the East Lawn of Norris Center. Among this weekend’s special guests was University President Morton Schapiro, who lauded the dancers with the support of the Northwestern Wildcats football team. Northwestern’s men’s basketball team also made an appearance at the fundraiser Saturday night, following their 70 to 66 win over Iowa earlier that day and their long drive back to the Evanston campus from Iowa City. Several video greeting messages from celebrities, including Northwestern alumnus Seth Myers, the “Weekend Update” anchor on “Saturday Night Live,” were aired throughout the event to energize the dancers. Performances by various student groups provided entertainment to dancers during snacks and meals that were donated by local restaurants and retailers. This year’s event was streamed live to Evanston and Chicago campus locations and on the Dance Marathon website at For a $40 donation, energetic Northwestern alumni in the area had an opportunity to dance for three hours Saturday afternoon at Norris.

that were held at designated “AlumNites” locations throughout the country, including Seattle, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and Chicago. “This was just an incredible year for Dance Marathon,” said NUDM Executive Co-Chair Scott Ritter. “The size and scope of this year’s event is a testament to the dedication of our dancers and the strong partnership we created with our two outstanding beneficiaries.” “Our goal was to make Dance Marathon more than just 30 hours of dancing,” added Executive Co-Chair Kunal Joshi. “In particular, we wanted to make it a yearlong effort, allowing us to better engage our dancers and supporters with the community and beneficiaries, and we believe we were successful in doing just that.” Now in its 38th year -- and one of the largest student-run philanthropies in the world -- NUDM has raised more than $13 million for more than two dozen charities. Last year, it raised more than $1 million in cash and in-kind donations for The Children’s Heart Foundation and Evanston Community Foundation. Alumni and the public helped with the fundraising by making donations online at donate or by participating in NUDM events at Norris Center, which included a silent auction held throughout the weekend event, 10 K and 5 K lakefill runs and a kids fair that allowed non-dancing supporters to contribute to the fund- and awarenessraising efforts.

DANCE MARATHON PHOTOS & MEDIA Video of Dance Marathon Photos from Dance Marathon Photos by The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern alumni also aided in the fundraising by attending satellite celebratory alumni parties NORTHWESTERN PARENT 13


DID YOU KNOW... 2012 NU SYLLABUS YEARBOOK The 2012 NU Syllabus Yearbooks arrive on campus May 14th. For more information on purchasing a book or retrieving a pre-ordered copy, visit or email

WAA-MU 2012: CELEBRATING 81 YEARS Explore the Northwestern University student experience through the exceptionally studentwritten music and stunning performances that have earned its recognition as "the greatest college show in America!" Waa-Mu 2012 will be held April 27-May 6 in Cahn Auditorium on the Evanston Campus. Visit the box office or the official Facebook page.

2012 COMMENCEMENT Northwestern University’s 154th Commencement will be held on Friday, June 15, 2012 at Ryan Field. View the 2012 Commencement Guidebook (PDF) or visit the Commencement website to learn more about the schedule, parking and logistics for the day. Contact the Commencement Office at 847-491-3600 or send an email to

NU SPORTS SHURNA ALL-AMERICAN Forward completed career as Northwestern’s all-time leading scorer Released by

John Shurna (Glen Ellyn, Ill./Glenbard West) has been recognized by the Associated Press as an honorable mention member of its All– American team, which was announced in March. He is the first Northwestern player to earn AllAmerican recognition from the AP since Evan Eschmeyer was a second-team selection in 1999. The 6-foot-9 forward recently completed his Northwestern career as the program’s all-time leading scorer with 2,038. The total ranks 24th (tied) in Big Ten history. A consensus first-team All-Big Ten selection, Shurna averaged 20.0 points per game in conference play to become the first Wildcat to lead the league in scoring since Ray Ragelis in 1951. Shurna also averaged 20.0 in all games played to go along with 5.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists per contest. His 661 points scored in 2011-12 broke his previous school record of 619 set during his sophomore year. He shot 44 percent from 3-point range this season to rank sixth in the Big Ten and placed the league with an average of 2.9 3-point field goals per contest. In addition to being NU’s all-time leading scorer, Shurna also ranks first with 136 career blocks and 130 games played. He was the third in the Big Ten this season with a norm of 1.6 blocks per contest. Along with Davide Curletti, Nick Fruendt and Luka Mirkovic, Shurna is a member of the class with the most wins in program history as the team posted 76 career victories. The group is also the first to appear in postseason play all four seasons of their careers.

Watch The Big Ten Network’s coverage on 2011 Wildcat Welcome’s inaugural SCAPE program– the service day for all freshmen and transfer students.

Read the Northwestern Magazine


Subscribe to the Northwestern NewsCenter email list

Read NU’s student-run newspaper, The Daily Northwestern

Follow Northwestern’s social media hub for a streamlined glimpse of posts from across the web.

Download the NU mobile phone app (for multiple platforms) NORTHWESTERN PARENT 15

from the office of


4/24/2012 J.M.

Spring 2012, The Northwestern Parent Quarterly