T H E M A G A Z I N E O F T H E S C H O O L O F C O N T I N U I N G S T U D I E S AT N O RT H W E S T E R N U N I V E R S I T Y
CONTINUUM SPRING 2006
CONTINUUM SPRING 2006
contents Changing the world 2 A new SCS program teaches the art of public policy. Shelter from the storm 6 “Katrina students” found safe haven at Northwestern, thanks in large part to SCS.
Continuum is published by the School of Continuing Studies at Northwestern University for its students, alumni, faculty,
2 Seniors rule! 10 The discussion never ends at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.
staff, and friends. Editors: Margaret Buhl, Tom Fredrickson Associate editor: Brad Farrar Designer: Vickie Lata
Photos: Kevin Weinstein, Sally Ryan,
Faculty profile: Kent Middleton 14
Student profile: Kirsty Montgomery 15 Page 9: photo of the Rock by Max Behrens,
reprinted courtesy of Northwestern
Alumni profile: Merri Jo Gillette 16
SCS news 17 Pre-health Professionals organization, Wieboldt Hall makeover, summer programming.
Page 16: photo by Brian Jackson, as published in the Chicago Sun-Times, Inc. Copyright 2006. Chicago Sun-Times, Inc. Reprinted with permission.
SCS people 19 News from alumni, students, and faculty.
Page 17: drawing courtesy of SmithGroup. © 2006 Northwestern University.
All rights reserved. Produced by University Relations. 3-06/22M/TF-VL/10468
Views expressed in Continuum do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editors or the University.
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSIT Y SCHOOL OF CONTINUING STUDIES
Correction: In the profile of Don Luis Leal in last issue of Continuum, credits for photography by Philip Channing and layout by Heather Cosgrove were inadvertently omitted. We regret the oversight.
From the dean
Dear SCS Friends,
The School of Continuing Studies, like many continuing education programs, attracts exceptional people. Our classrooms are filled with adults who seek to improve themselves, and they come to us thirsty for learning. Our students routinely report that their classmates are often more interesting and the discussions more lively than they’ve encountered elsewhere. Perhaps that’s why SCS also attracts such strong faculty and staff members. Our students are rarely content to merely collect their grades, degrees, and certificates. Many act on the feeling that there is something more to life than just the task at hand and seek out ways to give back, help out, and build up. That spirit animates this issue of Continuum. In our lead story (pages 2–5) we meet the founders and first graduates of our new Master of Public Policy and Administration program. More and more Americans view public policy in all of its varieties as a way to improve our world, and we are proud to have started a program that helps to meet this need. Our staff is accustomed to meeting the needs of students, but they entered uncharted territory when Hurricane Katrina hit and sent students streaming out of New Orleans. For a number of reasons — our flexibility, our experience with transfer students, our connections with the undergraduate schools — the task of placing these students at Northwestern fell to SCS administrators. How they rose to that challenge and exemplified the best of SCS is told in the story on pages 6–9. Alumna Merri Jo Gillette (profiled on page 16) sees her brilliant career with the Securities and Exchange Commission in terms of service to society, while student Kirsty Montgomery (profiled on page 15) has made serving fellow students her priority as president of the SCS Student Advisory Board. And finally, we have a story about the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and the exciting programs participants have created (pages 10–13). These people are perhaps the ultimate example of the SCS philosophy, where there is always something more to learn and to give. While I can’t claim that SCS instills this spirit into its students, I like to think that it recognizes and supports it — and maybe even attracts it. I know it is one of the things that makes the SCS community special. And it’s a story we will continue to tell in the pages of Continuum.
Thomas F. Gibbons, Dean March 2006
Spring 2006 Continuum 1
The faces of the MPPA program, clockwise from top left: instructor Heidi Voorhees, graduates Kevin Kilmer and Jessica Blazier, and instructor Joseph Troiani.
Changing the world A new SCS program teaches the art of public policy “The thing about politics in Washington,” says Paul Ryan, “is that you’ve got to stand out. Everyone here is highly motivated and driven to do well. It’s the nature of the business.” Ryan is referring to the “business” of public policy, where, he believes, you must have an edge to succeed. “Everyone here has worked on campaigns,” he says. “Everyone has the poli sci or communications undergraduate degree. But the MPPA credential sets you apart.” “MPPA” — that’s Master of Arts in Public Policy and Administration, a new program at the School of Continuing Studies, and one that Ryan feels “makes a real difference.” Paul Ryan was the very first graduate of the program. These days he works for the DCI Group, a public affairs
existed at Northwestern to serve as a model. There had been talk of one for years in other schools and departments, but ultimately it was SCS that saw that many prospective students would be either career changers or already serving in a public-policy capacity — conditions that suggested a part-time program would best meet demand. Part of the challenge was creating a program that would be sufficiently flexible and interdisciplinary yet concrete enough to address a world in flux. After all, this year’s crisis may look nothing at all like the ones that crop up next year or the year after. Even a single field like health services policy addresses a range of issues, from Medicare reform to “biodefense,” which in turn may involve everything from deterrents for Anthrax attacks to government efforts to thwart disease. In a time when people increasingly view public policy as a powerful tool, it was critical that the MPPA program arm its graduates with a balance of skills to tackle problems both today and in the future. Experts from more than a dozen departments and disciplines helped design the MPPA curriculum. It is based on the recognition that the creation and administration of public policy are essential for solid governance at the local, city, state, and national levels — as well as for the effective operation of businesses and nonprofit organizations. “This program is basically about making a difference in public service through good decision making,” says Joel Shapiro, senior policy researcher and MPPA instructor. “The aim of the program is to give dimension to students’ career preparation,” adds MPPA program director Greg Kuhn. “This is accomplished by carefully blending intellectual exploration of theory with current lessons from the front lines. Achieving that balance is what keeps our course offerings fresh and rewarding for both students and faculty.” “An important distinguishing factor is the program’s ability to recruit very qualified, experienced faculty,” explains Linda Salchenberger, associate dean of academics at SCS. “It draws from Northwestern’s full-time faculty as well as top practitioners in the field” — practitioners who, as working professionals, are not available to teach in dayschool programs, at Northwestern or elsewhere. This mix
“The thing about politics in Washington is that you’ve got to stand out. Everyone here is highly motivated and driven to do well. It’s the nature of the business.” “lobby shop” in the nation’s capital. It’s exciting, it’s fastpaced, and it allows him to work on projects that affect the things he’s most passionate about. “I have a front row seat at the show,” he muses, “and I’m paid to do it.” What Ryan does — helping clients hone a message to present to their constituents — is exactly what he hoped he’d be doing after graduating from SCS. The MPPA program taught him “how to think, how to analyze, how to write better,” he says — all key to his current job. “Everything we do is a form of communication, and it requires all kinds of analysis and writing,” Ryan says. “If you can write, your name will always come up as the go-to person for a project.” Ryan adds that the MPPA program allowed him to feel comfortable in his current role. “I’m able to take a project and run with it without asking a thousand questions. That comfort level is important.” Breadth and balance
Building a part-time master’s program in public policy was an ambitious goal, especially when no full-time program
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an increasing desire for advanced degrees. Senior personnel, in particular, are finding that the MPPA degree, combined with their experience, helps them compete with younger people just getting involved in public policy. Voorhees also observes that people today are more likely to change careers than they were in the past. They are, she says, more inclined to “look at what interests them and what they really want to do.” Often that process leads them to public service. “When you talk with people about how they got into public service, a lot of them say they sort of ‘backed into it,’ says Voorhees. “They find that it’s interesting, rewarding work, but they realize they need to go back for AT A GLANCE that graduate education to do the job Master of Arts in Public Policy effectively.”
gives MPPA students a near-ideal balance of focus and flexibility. “Other programs are so focused that they tend to be more like ‘training’ than ‘education,’” says Alexander Weiss, a founder of and current adviser to the program and director of Northwestern’s Center for Public Safety. The MPPA program is highly interdisciplinary, yet it allows students to focus by choosing one of five tracks to suit their needs: health services policy, public policy, public safety and security, technology and information management, or urban policy and planning. Right time, right place
The MPPA program is certainly meeting students’ needs: it has and Administration program grown fivefold in its first two years. The reasons are many. Following the action Curriculum Consider the fact that Chicago “Our profession is based on the • five-course core is an important hub for several separation of policy and administra• four-course specialization federal offices administering tion,” Voorhees says. “The idea is that • capstone project services to the Midwest, or that elected officials make policy and • four noncredit seminars focusing on the city is economically tied to administrators carry it out.” In reality, management and leadership some 17 counties in three states, elected officials frequently look to or that the Illinois Metropolitan administrators for information about Specializations Mayors Caucus has 272 members policy alternatives. As an example, • Health services policy — each one the head of a municVoorhees cites how city managers • Public policy ipality in the Chicago area. In adhere to a strict code of ethics that • Public safety and security addition, there are an increasing requires they not participate in elec• Technology and information management number of nonprofit and fortions or in local politics of any kind. • Urban policy and planning profit organizations interested in Sometimes, however, it is necessary employees with policy expertise. for city administrators to communicate All classes are offered on evenings It all adds up to an ever-growing to elected officials about the options or weekends. demand for policy-related jobs available to them. in the Midwest — a market SCS “Policy touches people through adMost students take one or two courses is dedicated to serving. ministration,” says Shapiro. “If you’re per quarter, but it is possible to complete “There are no other schools on the policy side and you don’t know all requirements in five quarters. in the region that have been as anything about administration, you’re responsive to the marketplace as lacking.” Likewise, he says, if you’re on For more information, visit we have been and will continue the administrative side, it’s difficult to www.scs.northwestern.edu/grad/ppa to be,” says Salchenberger. Heidi jump into a policy role without further Voorhees agrees. She is an MPPA education. The MPPA program offers instructor and vice president of people in both groups the chance to the PAR Group, a public-sector management consulting rededicate themselves to their careers. The program accepts firm. “The intellectual resources that Northwestern has applications year-round, does not require GRE scores, and to offer can be a wonderful support system for governments welcomes applicants who do not have previous policy or here,” she says. research experience along with those who do. Asked why the program has proven so successful, After just two years, the MPPA program has demonVoorhees points to a growing interest in civic involvement, strated itself to be one of the top public-policy offerings which leads to more competition for jobs, bringing with it at an American university.
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“It’s not easy to find this caliber of program in a continuing education setting,” says Jessica Blazier, who graduated from the health services policy specialization at the end of 2005. “I looked at different programs, and Northwestern’s was right on target — I didn’t even apply anywhere else.” When it came time to test the degree on her résumé, the program did not fail her. “I’m now working as a project coordinator at the University of Chicago Hospitals,” Blazier says. “After I was hired, I was told that my degree made the difference. What’s more, I made the first cut simply because my degree was from Northwestern.” The diversity of participants is another factor cited by current and former MPPA students. “I just reviewed the last batch of applications, and there’s an interesting mix of people,” says Alexander Weiss. “We’ve got someone who’s head of the parks department in a major Chicago suburb and somebody else who just completed an internship at the World Bank. We’ve got recent graduates from Stanford and West Point.” “That’s what I loved about the program,” says Kevin Kilmer, a Chicago police officer who completed course work in the public-policy specialization in 2005. “One guy is a municipal fire chief. Another was an interrogator in Iraq for two years.” Kilmer himself was an intern for Illinois Senator Dick Durbin before graduating and becoming one of 12 people appointed to a special Chicago Police Department antiterrorism unit, where he’s designing curricula to educate police personnel. “We all brought something really interesting to the discussion,” says Kilmer. That discussion routinely forms part of the extraordinary preparation these students are given in the MPPA program. Such preparation is exactly what the field has needed, Heidi Voorhees believes. With workplace demands becoming increasingly stringent, it is essential that the MPPA program examine current trends and craft curricula to respond to the changing realities of policy roles in government, business, and the nonprofit sector. That is precisely what the program has done so far. Others involved in the program point out that its success may be due to how it speaks not just to students’ career goals but also to their deepest — and best — aspirations. “This generation of workers has a social conscience,” says Linda Salchenberger. “They want to be more than business leaders; they want to effect change in society.” Greg Kuhn has seen this in his students. “Their ambition is not just to arrive at the future — but to take an active part in shaping it, as well.” With that student spirit combined with the responsiveness of Northwestern’s public policy program, well — look out, world! —Stephan Perrault
TO P G U N
When people refer to bringing MPPA faculty straight from the “front lines” of public policy, they might as well be describing Joseph Troiani. An instructor in the MPPA program’s health services policy specialization, his résumé is a map of intersecting interests and responsibilities that pretty much define the public policy professional in the early 21st century.
He is director of mental health, forensic, and addictions programs for the Will County Health Department, where he is responsible for leading the mental health disaster response team. As an adviser to the Illinois Department of Human Services, Troiani is developing the state’s behavioral health disaster response plan. He is a certified addictions counselor and is director of addiction studies at the Adler School of Professional Psychology in Chicago. Troiani also holds faculty positions at the Joint Military Intelligence College at the Defense Intelligence Agency in Washington, D.C., the Joint Interagency Civil-Military Institute, and American Public University. In 2006 Troiani will conduct workshops in the Counterterrorism Fellowship Program of National Defense University. He’s also a U.S. Navy Reserve officer. One of Troiani’s special interests is health-related national security. He says that one of the fastest-growing areas of homeland security is what was initially called “bioterrorism” but is now referred to as “biodefense.” This shift in terminology reflects the understanding that a hazardous biological event need not be premeditated but in fact might be a natural event, such as the Asian bird flu, West Nile virus, or mad cow disease. The government’s ability to perform disease surveillance and react quickly to outbreaks has led to significant shifts in health policy in recent years, accompanied by increases in governmental funding for the development and enhancement of public health programs to meet the mission of biodefense. Troiani holds a PhD and MA in clinical psychology from the Fielding Institute, an MA in health administration from Governors State University, an MS in strategic intelligence from the Joint Military Intelligence College, and a BA in psychology/sociology from Northeastern Illinois University.
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“Katrina students” found safe haven at Northwestern, thanks in large part to SCS
hen Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast on August 29, more than 75,000 students attending colleges in the region were displaced. In the wake of the crisis, Northwestern joined schools across the nation offering to enroll a temporary class of “Katrina students” for the fall term. It was only natural that the School of Continuing Studies would play a central role in the effort to enroll, register, house, and teach the Katrina students at Northwestern. After all, the SCS mission is to serve nontraditional students. With the challenges they presented, these hurricane-displaced students were anything but traditional. They would require courses to fulfill their home schools’ requirements, which didn’t necessarily jibe with Northwestern’s curricula. They wouldn’t be able to present complete academic records for evaluation, since their schools were closed. And they might need extra help to find housing and get settled. For the Northwestern administration, the timing was tricky. The fall quarter was due to start in a few weeks. On top of the usual scramble of registering existing students
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— weighing course requests and student seniority to fill a finite number of course slots — the administration had to think about the needs of an as-yet-undetermined number of Katrina students. Sorting this all out fell in large part to a team of SCS administrators. Very special students
The first step was to find out how much interest the Katrina students had in Northwestern — and where they would fit into the University. The students themselves provided the answer. Even before the University made its welcome official, SCS was being contacted by Katrina students who had found its “Nondegree Special Students” web page. That got Summer Session director Stephanie Teterycz moving. “Before Northwestern could decide as a school what to do,” she says, “I had e-mailed Keith Todd [director of Undergraduate Admission for the University] and Steve Fisher [associate provost for undergraduate education] saying that we could take the students in our
SCS administrators answered the call when Katrina students began arriving at Northwestern. Leading the effort were (above right) Stephanie Teterycz, Tim Gordon (also far left) and Peter Kaye.
nondegree category. That’s when all these areas started working together.” All Katrina-displaced students, whether they would eventually attend day or evening classes, were instructed to apply through SCS’s nondegree special student process. A committee from SCS, Undergraduate Admission, and the Judd A. and Marjorie Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences, the largest undergraduate school at Northwestern, reviewed the applications of students from Tulane, Dillard, Xavier, and Loyola Universities in New Orleans. “We were getting flooded with calls the first couple of weeks,” Teterycz says. “We wanted to accept as many students as we could, but we didn’t want to overload the day courses. We thought the day program could handle maybe 50 students, and the overflow could take evening courses at SCS.” The decision about whether to enroll a student in day or evening courses was based on the match between the student’s needs and Northwestern’s offerings, says Tim Gordon, associate dean of student services for SCS. “We had to think about what courses they were requesting, where they were in their academic careers,” Gordon says. “There was the consideration that freshmen and sophomores might want more of a traditional college environment. Where we could, we admitted them to day school courses.
“From the students’ perspective, I hope the enrollment process looked seamless,” Gordon says with a slight smile. “From our behind-the-scenes perspective, it looked frantic.” Of the 195 undergraduates from New Orleans who applied to Northwestern, 161 were accepted. Sixty-four enrolled — 45 in day courses and 19 in SCS evening courses. The majority of evening students still carried a full load of three or four courses so they didn’t fall behind schedule. The University also took in 25 graduate students. Yes we can
Peter Kaye, assistant dean for undergraduate programs at SCS, took charge of getting the displaced students into classes. “I worked with SCS adjunct faculty, Northwestern faculty, SCS staff, and other University administrators, and the level of cooperation was extraordinary,” Kaye says. “The turnaround to my requests was so quick, it was almost as if I was instant messaging faculty and staff. We expanded enrollment limits to get Katrina students into courses that they needed. We added additional sections of some highdemand courses. We set up independent studies in accounting and finance because courses students needed weren’t being offered, and, in one case, we arranged for an evening student to take advantage of a daytime seminar related to his professional goals. The director of the Writing Program even volunteered to offer a new writing course
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to accommodate Katrina students, though it turned out that we didn’t need it.” Northwestern’s aid didn’t end with course registration. Day students were offered University housing, and Gordon’s staff helped the SCS students find off-campus housing. Tuition was waived for students who’d already paid their home schools. While Student Affairs was welcoming the displaced day students at New Student Week events, Gordon and Teterycz held
“Being flexible and dealing with unique situations is part of our mission.”
an orientation for evening students and their parents. Teterycz developed web pages to answer the displaced students’ questions about academic and other matters; the SCS academic advisers continued as ongoing contacts for the students; and a 24-hour pager service gave the students immediate attention for any concern. “It was definitely a ‘yes we can’ response,” says Teterycz. “Sometimes in big institutions, you hit bureaucratic roadblocks. Not this time. It was an amazing collaborative effort. Colleagues were willing to drop everything to get it sorted out.”
< < Changing
course > > >
Lane Richoux makes a new home for herself at SCS
hen Katrina-displaced students were being assigned to their classes, Tim Gordon faced questions from a few who were admitted to SCS evening classes but wanted to take day classes. “I explained how attending a school of continuing studies can be an advantage,” says Gordon, associate dean of student services at SCS. “In a traditional format, everyone starts at the same level. But in continuing studies, the person sitting next to you may have a wealth of experience in a field you’re interested in. That’s a great opportunity.” The talk wasn’t necessary with Lane Richoux. When Richoux was told that she
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could attend Northwestern’s day program, she replied that she preferred to be an evening student. “I’d fallen in love with SCS. Tim and Stephanie [Teterycz, Summer Session director] were so helpful. When they said they’d have an answer in 48 hours, they did. They came through on everything,” says Richoux, who was expecting to be a senior at Tulane University when Katrina hit. In fact, Richoux decided she loved SCS enough to make a commitment to the school beyond the one term of most Katrina students. She is an SCS student now, even though staying here means she won’t graduate with other 22-yearolds this year. She had to choose a new major, political science, since Northwestern doesn’t have her Tulane majors, political economy and paralegal studies. “It will probably take me an extra year to finish my bachelor’s,” Richoux says. “That’s OK.”
Richoux wasn’t surprised to prefer continuing studies courses to day school at Northwestern. She had attended Tulane in the evening, taking the same load as day students, four courses a semester. The schedule allowed her to work during the day. But that’s not the only thing about continuing studies that appeals to her. “People in continuing studies understand that individual circumstances can make it tough to meet requirements exactly,” she says. “Take the situation with the medical records of those of us from Tulane. SCS understood that our doctors’ offices were under water and so we couldn’t produce our medical records within two weeks.” Fellow students also went out of their way to help. Kirsty Montgomery, president of the SCS Student Advisory Board (see Student Profile on page 15), made a point of asking Richoux how things were going. One day Richoux replied that she
The big picture
There no longer are Katrina students at Northwestern. The majority returned to their home schools when they reopened for winter term. Those who wanted to stay at Northwestern went through the transfer admission process and, if accepted, are now full-fledged Northwestern students. But the Katrina effort isn’t likely to fade soon from the memories of SCS administrators like Tim Gordon who consider it “one of the most remarkable things I’ve ever experienced.” “It was a classic example of the big picture of continuing studies,” he says. “Access, flexibility, diverse students,
was having trouble finding a textbook. The next thing she knew, the SAB student liaison was offering her his book. Although high on SCS now, Richoux chose Northwestern for pragmatic reasons. She happened to be in Evanston visiting her boyfriend, a student in the School of Communication, when Hurricane Katrina struck. “What was I going to do?” she says. “Even if I could have gone back, I didn’t know where I’d be. I decided the best thing would be to stay put. I’d been to Evanston many times to visit Joe. He’s here, and at least I know where things are.” So, Richoux approached SCS. Gordon remembers how organized and calm she appeared when they met, even though her life had been turned upside down. “Lane came in with a list of things to do, and I was impressed that she could think so clearly,” Gordon says. “Continuing her education was obviously important to her.”
diverse offerings, high-quality programs — all of those things came together nicely to help a population. “Watching the Katrina stories on TV, you had a sense that there’s got to be more to do to help than give money,” Gordon continues. “Northwestern’s faculty, staff, and administration got to come to work and have a direct impact on people who were affected by this tragedy. I don’t think there was anyone at SCS who wasn’t involved. Our team was definitely well suited for this operation. Being flexible and dealing with unique situations is part of our mission.”
Richoux started the fall quarter with four courses but dropped two because she had other things to deal with as well. Clothing, for instance; she had only a five-day supply of summer clothing with her. An Evanston woman who offered her a bedroom appealed on Richoux’s behalf to the Woman’s Club of Evanston, which came through with clothing, a toiletries basket, and Jewel, Target, and American Express gift cards. A New Orleans native, Richoux lived within 10 blocks of her whole extended family — parents, younger sister, stepfather, stepmother, aunts, uncles, and cousins. Her mother and stepfather lived in Algiers in Orleans Parish. Her father and stepmother were a short drive away in Marrero in Jefferson Parish. She and her sister, a freshman at Louisiana State University, kept bedrooms at both houses. Both residences were badly damaged. Richoux’s mother went to live
with relatives in Opelausas, Louisiana, and her father went to Houston. Richoux saw the destruction in New Orleans for the first time in late November. Before leaving for the visit, she said, “I’m kinda scared to go and drive past places where I have memories and there’s nothing there now.” She’s not sure if she’ll ever again live in the city she grew up in and loved. “Nothing’s the same. Normal everyday things aren’t there. You can’t do what we used to do,” she says. What is a certainty is that Richoux intends to finish a bachelor’s degree at Northwestern through SCS. She may then go to law school. “I used to want to go to law school at Tulane,” she says. “Now I’m not sure where. New Orleans is just a big unknown now.”
First and third photos from left: The New Orleans home of Lane Richoux’s boyfriend before and after Katrina. Second and fourth photos from the left: Northwestern welcomes Katrina students — the Rock on the Evanston campus painted with Tulane’s colors and logo; the Arch.
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The discussion never ends at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute hyllis Woloshin docks her iPod to a portable speaker, and out streams a liturgical plainchant by 12th-century composer and visionary Hildegard von Bingen — mood music for the discussion of medieval philosophy that is about to begin. Woloshin, who earned a doctorate in philosophy, asks those seated around the seminar table to consider some of the dichotomies that challenged medieval thinkers: the universal versus the ideal; concrete versus abstract; reason versus faith. She quotes 6th-century Roman philosopher Boethius and 13th-century Scottish theologian Duns Scotus, explaining how the latter’s name became the basis for the word dunce. The pace is swift, the discussion lively and nuanced. Then it’s on to the topic of botanicals, with Laura Ann Wilber sharing her research on medicinal herbs like monk’s hood and lady’s mantle. Though seemingly unrelated, both discussions illuminate the theme this group is exploring, Medieval History with Brother
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Cadfael. Brother Cadfael is the central figure in a series of 20th-century “medieval whodunit” books by Ellis Peters, many of which have been filmed for television. If this sounds like one of Northwestern’s most stimulating classes, that is only partially correct. Stimulating — undoubtedly. But a class — no. Rather it is one of dozens of peer-led study groups offered by the School of Continuing Studies through its Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI). Formerly known as the Institute for Learning in Retirement, the institute was renamed last year in recognition of a renewable $100,000 grant from the Bernard Osher Foundation and joins 73 other OLLI programs nationally (see story on page 13). The Osher name further enhances the high reputation of Northwestern’s program, now in its 18th year. In 1998 the institute captured the prestigious Outstanding Program Model Award for Older Adults from the Association for Continuing Higher Education.
Exercise for the brain
OLLI’s noncredit study groups differ from traditional Northwestern classes in more than name. There are no grades, no tests, and no prerequisites — except curiosity. There are also no professors: OLLI participants take turns leading discussions on topics they have researched. Furthermore, OLLI participants tend to be decades older than their counterparts in Northwestern’s undergraduate and graduate programs. Despite these differences, the study groups have much in common with University classes. The discussions are intellectually rigorous, the topics often match those in Northwestern’s course catalog, and there is — alas — homework. The homework is important because at OLLI participation is key. Members must not only participate in discussions, they also take turns leading those discussions. In addition, some members volunteer to coordinate study groups, which can entail hours of extra work. With peer-led learning, participants take responsibility for their education — an approach that might result in chaos with a younger, less experienced population, the kind where students are prone to ask, “Will that be on the test?” At OLLI, love of learning is the sole motivator, and the result is a high level of intellectual engagement. Indeed, OLLI participants are so engaged in what they are learning that OLLI director Barbara Reinish says they remind her of the gifted and talented middleschool students she taught early in her career: “They display the same sort of curiosity and openness to learning.” That passion for learning may also be what makes OLLI members act and feel younger than many
of their peers. “Lifelong learning is critical for healthy aging,” says Reinish. “It’s like exercise for the brain.” This year more than 600 OLLI members are participating in study groups on Northwestern’s Evanston and Chicago campuses, choosing from dozens of appealing titles, from Environmental Science and Policy to Films of Alfred Hitchcock. OLLI welcomes members of all ages; this year the youngest is 52, the oldest 96. Women slightly outnumber men on the Chicago campus; in Evanston the split is 50-50. Many have advanced degrees, and about one-sixth are Northwestern alumni. How peer-led learning works
Art Goldman, now a fifth-year OLLI member, admits that initially he had some doubts about peer-led learning. “Could I learn without an expert teaching me?” he asked. “The answer turned out to be: absolutely.” In fact, Goldman says he has learned the most during his turns as discussion leader: “I Google the subject to death and read piles of books.” Goldman, who earned a PhD in chemical and nuclear engineering and retired from Argonne National Laboratory after 27 years as the deputy chief operating officer, often volunteers to coordinate study groups and has organized classes tailored to his own interests. “One of my goals in retirement was to learn about areas I never had a chance to study formally,” says Goldman. “Peer learning is unique, unlike anything else in my career.” Goldman’s wife, Joan, joined OLLI after witnessing her husband’s excitement. Participants who want to hone their discussionleading skills may opt to attend an OLLI shared
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inquiry workshop facilitated by the Great Books Foundation. Even OLLI members with considerable teaching experience — Woloshin, for example, taught philosophy and medical ethics at Oakton Community College for 27 years — discover that managing a discussion, as opposed to teaching, incorporates some different skills. Merilyn Schiffman calls peer-led learning a pleasure. “Sometimes one good question is all it takes to spark a discussion for the day,” she says. Schiffman, who earned a master’s degree in counseling psychology, taught psychology and sociology at Niles Township high schools for more than 20 years before she retired in 1988. By 1990 she was back in the classroom — this time as an OLLI participant. One of her favorite study groups is The New Yorker, and so many OLLI members share Schiffman’s enthusiasm that Reinish keeps adding sections, which now number seven. Another New Yorker regular is Bill Bridgman, 59, who earned degrees at Princeton and Harvard and is semiretired after 29 years in finance at Amoco BP. In The New Yorker study group participants lead discussions on articles in the current issue of the magazine. “Whether the topic is politics or poetry, there’s always someone with a close connection to the subject,” says Bridgman, who reports regularly on the financial page. “There are many points of view and a lot of respect around the table.” Bridgman is also one of 14 OLLI advisory council members (seven representing each campus) who help shape policy at the institute.
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Unlocking new worlds of thought
Those animated discussions often spill over to informal lunches, where participants gather to keep talking about the topic. “We have an unwritten law not to discuss our health at lunch,” says Schiffman. “No ‘organ recitals,’” seconds Woloshin, “and no talk about our talented grandchildren either. That would take all day. At lunch we talk about what we learned.” Participants take the excitement home as they prepare for the next study group. For Woloshin, leading the discussion of medieval philosophy in the Brother Cadfael group sparked an idea for writing a book. “It made me think of how tied we are to the past,” says Woloshin. “I started writing a book about the history of how death is determined.” Participants cite intellectual stimulation as their number one reason for attending OLLI, but the program also offers an appealing social component, especially since some members have been learning together for 10 years or more, giving them much more time to bond than the four years allotted to most college friendships. Many attend concerts and plays together, and several have discovered compatible traveling companions. Molly Lazar even took her entire study group on the road. After 10 years of organizing film study groups on campus with co-coordinator Corrine Goldman,
The Bernard Osher Foundation was founded in 1977 by Bernard Osher, a successful businessman, community leader, and philanthropist. The Osher Foundation provides scholarships and grants to postsecondary students in California and Maine and supports programs in integrative medicine in the United States and Sweden. In 2000 the foundation began to focus on programs for mature students who were not well served by most continuing education efforts. Today it has established 73 Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes at universities and colleges in 30 states. Initial grants of $100,000 are made with the understanding that the foundation will renew grants and provide endowment support to institutes that show the potential for continued success. The foundation aims to establish a network of 100 Osher Institutes, with at least one in each of the 50 states.
Lazar launched OLLI’s first film cruise, where participants kibitzed about the films of John Cassavetes in the Caribbean. This fall Lazar and OLLI member Henrie Moise coordinated Cuba: Up Close, an in-depth exploration of the history, politics, and culture of Cuba — with a Cuban dance lesson and Cuban lunches thrown in for good measure. Participants had the option to follow up their study with a mission to Cuba on a religious license in February. “Our group became very cohesive as we learned about Cuba,” says Lazar, who has proposed a trip to Argentina next. Part of a larger intellectual community
For many OLLI participants finding intellectual stimulation close to home is as rewarding as travel. “We’re lucky to have a program of this caliber right in our neighborhood at Northwestern,” says Bridgman. “It’s more than a program; it’s an entrée into other things,” says Woloshin, who joined what she calls “geriatric gym” at Northwestern, an exercise class for seniors. OLLI members receive WildCARDs, which allow them to use Northwestern libraries and computing services and ride a free shuttle on and between campuses. They are also eligible to audit SCS classes at a reduced rate. “They become part of the Northwestern community,” says Reinish. Strengthening those ties are new mentorship programs in medicine and law. In one, OLLI members who are retired health care professionals advise SCS
postbaccalaureate premed students. In another, retired attorneys — 21 have volunteered thus far — help international students at the Northwestern University School of Law with their study of English writing and language. “We’re looking forward to doing even more collaborative initiatives,” says SCS associate dean Linda Salchenberger, who adds that OLLI and SCS are natural partners in education. “OLLI is a very important part of continuing education. It completes the continuum of professional and personal development programming that SCS offers to a broad constituency.” OLLI publishes a newsletter and an annual juried literary journal (see spring 2005 issue of Continuum), and the grant from the Osher Foundation will help the institute create a handbook and video about the program. The Osher grant will also be used to improve training for discussion leaders, support strategic planning, boost technology, identify better classroom space, and enhance the scholarship fund. SCS Dean Thomas F. Gibbons views OLLI as an integral part of the School. “The School of Continuing Studies seeks to be a lifelong educational partner with its students,” says Gibbons. “OLLI is true to the SCS mission. It is a nationally recognized community program for seniors who have a true love for learning. OLLI offers to its adult students what Northwestern University offers to any student who comes through our doors — robust intellectual engagement.” —Leanne Star Spring 2006 Continuum 13
Friendly persuasion Kent Middleton lures students into the world of advertising
ant to lose weight, look hot, and sleep like a baby? Then enroll in Kent Middleton’s advertising sequence at SCS. Truth be told, Middleton’s students probably don’t have time for such pursuits, but what Middleton offers them — an inside look at a business that is at once highly creative and competitive — is priceless. That Middleton manages to convince his students that the high-
landed coveted spots at Leo Burnett, where some 300 hopefuls apply for every creative job. Securing a spot is only the start of the struggle: Of the 22 people who began work at Leo Burnett with Middleton in 1980, Middleton is the only one left. “Advertising is an extremely tough, competitive business,” says Middleton, “but it’s also fun. There’s no such thing as a boring day in advertising.” Middleton, who earned a master’s degree in advertising from Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism in 1979, communicates that excitement to his students. Peter Kaye, assistant dean of undergraduate programs at SCS, recalls visiting one of Middleton’s classes: “One student referred to him with a mixture of respect and disbelief as ‘the wild man.’” As entertaining as Middleton is, he keeps things real. “The second term we all go shopping across the street at Treasure Island,” Middleton explains. The students purchase a handful of products and later create ads for some of them.
“There’s no such thing as a boring day in advertising.” pressure work of advertising is fun is testament to his powers of persuasion. Those skills have taken him to the top of the advertising world: the renowned Leo Burnett agency, where Middleton is an executive vice president and executive creative director. A Clio Award winner (the advertising world’s Oscar), Middleton has contributed to ad campaigns for McDonald’s, Disney, Harris Bank, Brookfield Zoo, and Procter & Gamble, among others. And there’s more! Middleton holds his SCS classes right at Leo Burnett’s Chicago offices on West Wacker Drive. Middleton began teaching at SCS in 1984, offering a creative strategies class for business professionals trying to develop effective communication strategies and the skills for evaluation of creative work. By the mid-1990s he saw the need for a purely creative class sequence, designed solely for budding art directors and copywriters. That sequence, which Middleton team teaches with one or two other advertising professionals, arms students with interview-ready portfolios. At the time the course started, the three-term sequence meant holding sweaty summer classes in Wieboldt Hall, which then lacked air conditioning. That’s when Middleton had one of his brilliant creative insights: He decided to move the classes to Leo Burnett’s air-conditioned offices. The new turf has proved beneficial for more than its climate. Students experience the advertising world firsthand, and when student projects are up for review, volunteers from Leo Burnett offer a variety of perspectives. “The agency has been 100 percent supportive,” says Middleton. “It’s also in our interest to develop new talent.” A few graduates of Middleton’s classes have
14 Continuum Spring 2006
“In advertising you have to learn to relate to the products and learn about the consumer,” says Middleton. “I make students read magazines they wouldn’t ordinarily read. I once subscribed to Cosmo — it’s information we don’t get anywhere else.” The Cosmopolitan subscription helped Middleton learn how to market a global cosmetics brand to women. “I like the projects that stretch me creatively.” he says. “One of the joys of advertising is learning about worlds outside your own.” —Leanne Star
Kirsty Montgomery: political science and history major (and mum) NAME Kirsty Montgomery HOME TOWN I was born in Chiswick, London, but spent 30 years living in Hampshire — Jane Austen country. CURRENT SCS PROGRAM: I’ll earn a bachelor of philosophy in June. DAY (AND
NIGHT ) JOBS:
student, and president of the Student Advisory Board. HOBBIES: The children, running, drinking tea. WHY
DID YOU CHOOSE
SCS? I had a career as a medical
photographer in England, which I gave up after suffering a detached retina. After moving to the United States, I decided to stay at home to raise a family. When I was eight months pregnant with my third child, I became concerned that I had a severe case of “pregnant brain,” so I enrolled in a class at SCS. Northwestern had an excellent reputation, the campus was nearby, and the hours were convenient. I absolutely loved it! I missed one class to deliver my son and finished the semester; my professor encouraged me to bring the baby in to class so I could continue breastfeeding him. I haven’t looked back since then. I’m graduating in June and applying to PhD programs. For having the privilege of such a wonderful education, I’d like to give something back and go into teaching. WHOM DO YOU MOST ADMIRE? My parents, the most hardworking, selfless people I know. No matter what life throws at them, they have a brilliant sense of humor and giggle at absolutely everything. WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT NORTHWESTERN? The wonderful people you meet: students, faculty, and administration — especially those I’ve met through Student Advisory Board activities. The diversity of the SCS community never ceases to amaze me. WHO ARE YOUR FAVORITE PROFESSORS? Lee Eysturlid (history), Jeff Rice (history), and Katie Duke (English). Funny, kind, warm people who genuinely care about adult students. How did you get involved with the SAB? I took classes with the previous SAB president, Tim Lindsey, and he encouraged me to join. Rather than sit on the sidelines, I wanted to get more involved with the SCS student body. The students on the board are such a fun, dedicated, hard-working bunch. We’re really trying to make a difference!
Spring 2006 Continuum 15
Merri Jo Gillette returns to Chicago as the SEC’s Midwest chief IN 2004 CRAIN’S CHICAGO BUSINESS reported that the Securities and Exchange Commission had sent a “bulldog enforcer” to head its Chicago office, an aggressive litigator with a reputation for bringing down “big-game targets.” As the director of the Midwest Regional Office, Merri Jo Gillette (79) supervises 250 employees and oversees enforcement and examination programs throughout nine states. Under her leadership the office has pursued cases against Bristol-Myers officers for fraudulent earnings management schemes and Conrad Black for diverting cash and assets from Hollinger International, publisher of the Chicago Sun-Times. If that résumé conjures up a picture at odds with that of a mother of five who counts sewing and quilting as favorite pastimes, that’s because Gillette has made defying stereotypes a theme throughout her life. The daughter of teachers, Gillette attended New York’s Stony Brook School in the first class of girls to enroll in the formerly all-male boarding school — an experience, she says now, that prepared her “to succeed in a male-dominated environment.” After her junior year and “anxious to get on with life,” Gillette started Kalamazoo College. After two years, however, she took time off. “I can only imagine what my parents, who devoted their lives to education, thought when their oldest child announced she was dropping out of college! To their credit, they let me find my own way.” That led to Chicago, where Gillette began doing volunteer work with the North River Commission, a community organization on the city’s Northwest Side. Within a few months she had become a VISTA volunteer at the NRC, where she fought to improve housing conditions, helped tenants negotiate leases with landlords, and worked with the city to enforce housing codes. The experience rekindled her long-standing interest in a career in law. “Everything I did at the North River Commission pointed me to law school.” All she needed was a college degree. Gillette found her solution in an unlikely place. “I saw an ad in the subway,” she says. “I hadn’t been aware there was an
16 Continuum Spring 2006
evening division at Northwestern.” She was drawn by the flexibility of University College (as SCS was then known). “I was working full-time, I was still doing volunteer work, and I was taking as many classes as I could manage,” she says. By 1979 she had earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and admission to law school. “Northwestern provided the natural extension of the rigorous prep school education I had received, thereby preparing me for success in law school and thereafter.” After earning a degree at Dickinson School of Law in Pennsylvania in 1982, Gillette worked for the U.S. Department of Labor and the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry before joining the SEC’s Philadelphia office in 1986. She held positions of increasing responsibility, culminating in associate director of enforcement. On her watch the office pursued cases that resulted in settlements of $90 million with Pilgrim Baxter & Associates for charges of market timing and $50 million with Morgan Stanley for failing to disclose that mutual fund companies paid fees to Morgan to promote their funds, as well as other precedent-setting cases. In the words of former SEC chairman William Donaldson, Gillette “initiated a number of important cases that have made our markets safer for investors.” “The SEC is an amazing place,” says Gillette. “The work is exciting and timely; the public charge is daunting. I am both honored and proud to be a part of that group, and I am humbled to have been given the opportunity to lead one of the largest offices within the SEC here in Chicago.” All “worldly successes” aside, Gillette is most proud of being a parent to five children, ranging in age from 6 to 21. “No matter what accolades I may accumulate, there is nothing that keeps me grounded so well as my children,” she says. “I think my children’s standards are a lot tougher — and I’m not so sure I always measure up.” Though she operates at the loftiest realms of finance and locks horns with corporate giants, Gillette sees her role in terms consistent with her experience as a community organizer. “I was raised,” she says, “to embrace two interrelated concepts: first, that much will be expected from those to whom much has been given, and second, that a person’s true character will be measured in part by what he or she gives back to the community. It has been my privilege to have served the public through government service for the past 20 years.”
Delta Sigma Pi gift targets SCS scholarships
Three members of the Delta Sigma Pi fraternity
Wieboldt Hall upgrades planned
Smart classrooms, community space for students, and a new “front door” into SCS are among the plans for a multiphase renovation of Wieboldt Hall slated to begin this summer. The project continues the significant facilities improvements undertaken by SCS over the past several years to meet the needs of staff, students, and the school’s academic programs. The renovations reflect a continued commitment to face-to-face courses as well as to growing professional master’s degree and corporate training programs on SCS’s Chicago campus. They will also enhance the SCS presence in Wieboldt Hall. “Our goal is to provide the highest quality part-time educational
programs to adult learners in the Chicago area. This cannot be done without superior classroom facilities,” says SCS Dean Thomas F. Gibbons. “Over the past four years, SCS has aggressively updated and improved its undergraduate and graduate programs. We have brought together an excellent group of faculty, and we have significantly expanded our student service resources and scholarship opportunities. This renovation will complete the circle and provide our students with state-of-the-art classroom and community space.” The first, and most complex, phase of the renovation includes upgrades to the infrastructure of Wieboldt Hall: new heating, airconditioning, and electrical systems; a third elevator; new restrooms on the fifth floor and the elimination of restrooms on stairwell landings. The first-floor lobby
will get a makeover, with plans calling for a reception area, an online registration kiosk, and new signage (above). Plans for the fourth and fifth floors call for 18 classrooms, including a 75-seat classroom and a number of seminar rooms. All will be wired as smart rooms, and two will be wired for videoconferencing. The fourth floor will feature two computer/technology labs, and both floors will include community space for students configured as study rooms and student lounges. This first phase of the renovation is expected to be completed in the summer of 2007, with a second phase focusing on renovations to classrooms and communal areas on the seventh and eighth floors of Wieboldt Hall to follow.
surprised Northwestern University development staff last May when they arrived in Evanston bearing a check for $10,000. Presenting the check were Robert Mocella (46, Kellogg 55), Virgil Needham (66, Kellogg 68), and Mark O'Daniell, members of the professional fraternity that fosters leadership skills for men and women in business. The gift marks the latest chapter in a long relationship between Delta Sigma Pi and Northwestern. The fraternity’s Beta (second) chapter was founded at the University’s School of Commerce in Chicago in 1914. (The first Delta Sigma Pi chapter was started in New York in 1907.) The School of Commerce, in turn, had strong connections with University College, as SCS was formerly known. In 1954 University College merged with the evening undergraduate program of the School of Commerce, and the new entity was designated Northwestern’s Evening Division. Many Evening Division students became members of Delta Sigma Pi, and many fraternity member taught business courses in University College. The fraternity’s gift will fund scholarships for SCS students on the Chicago campus.
Spring 2006 Continuum 17
SCS news Summer institutes offer variety, tools for success
Seeking professional growth? Aesthetic bliss? Turning a new leaf on the SCS calendar
When SCS students returned to classes last September, they started not only a new year but a new academic calendar as well. After decades of following its own three-semesters-a-year rhythm, the School of Continuing Studies has joined the rest of the University in the quarter system. “Changing the academic calendar was a major undertaking that required the cooperation of both the academic and administrative arms of the University,” says Provost Lawrence B. Dumas. “SCS now has a calendar that will materially enhance opportunities for collaboration between SCS and other parts of the University.” The change brings significant benefits to SCS students: • Closer alignment of SCS programs to “day-school” counterparts. All undergraduate degrees, majors, minors, and courses have been reviewed and updated to meet the University’s high standard of excellence. • Greater involvement of University faculty. The quarter system
encourages the involvement of day-school faculty. • Better access to University facilities and services. The University infrastructure — including the libraries, bookstores, cafeterias, and intercampus shuttles — are designed to serve a population on the quarter schedule. • Faster progress toward a degree in most programs. Under the quarter system students can complete the 45 courses needed to graduate in 61⁄2 years — a year and a half sooner than under the semester system. SCS has worked to ensure a smooth transition for students who are enrolled during the switch — especially in terms of credits and tuition. All work done in the semester system at SCS (or that has been accepted as transfer credit) will be converted to the quarter system with no loss of credit. In addition, per-term tuition has been reduced so the total cost of a degree is consistent with costs under the semester system.
Northwestern University Pre-health Professionals (NUPP) is a student-run organization dedicated to serving the needs of continuing education students at Northwestern who are preparing for careers in health-related fields. The group seeks to provide pre-health students with resources, information, and contacts to ease their entry into a professional school and to plant the seeds of a successful future career. For information about upcoming meetings, speakers, social events, and more, join the NUPP listserv by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
18 Continuum Spring 2006
Tools to defuse a crisis? Look no further than the 2006 SCS summer institutes. Taught by faculty from Northwestern and other top schools as well as experienced practitioners from outside of academia, these programs provide intensive learning opportunities over just a few days. All summer institutes take place on Northwestern’s Evanston campus. Several offer per-day registration and optional individual sessions. For more information, see www.scs.northwestern.edu/summernu/programs. Pre-Law Summer Institute July 12–14 If your sights are set on law school, this program provides an exciting preview of what you need to succeed. The institute helps students sharpen their critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills and lays the groundwork required for success in law school and beyond. Students who successfully complete the program are awarded a certificate of completion, a credential that can be included in their application to law school. Summer Institute in Negotiation July 13–15 This institute offers a unique and powerful approach to negotiation. By combining theory with strategies employed by experienced negotiators, participants discover new ways to manage key issues, defuse crises, and mediate disputes. They also learn to prepare for, conduct, and review a negotiation and understand issues of race, gender, and culture in negotiation. AP Training for High School Teachers July 24–28 Designed to support new and experienced teachers in all aspects of Advanced Placement course content, organization, and methodology, this program addresses nine subject areas ranging from calculus and statistics to European history and Spanish. Art and Craft: The Northwestern Summer Writers’ Conference July 27–30 This noncredit institute is tailored to new writers, established writers, and anyone seeking a fuller understanding of the craft — and business — of writing. Participants select from a host of seminars, faculty and student readings, workshops, and optional manuscript consultations, all designed to give participants new perspectives on their work in the supportive company of other writers. Much Ado about Shakespeare! Celebrating the Bard through Interpretation, Adaptation, and Performance August 3–5 This three-day conference explores the work of William Shakespeare from a variety of perspectives, including the teaching, adaptation, and performance of plays. Participants enjoy a robust selection of seminars, workshops, and coaching sessions along with the opportunity to connect with a community of actors, teachers, directors, and admirers of the Bard.
Alumni and students Syrola Schaefer Hirsch (61) of Chicago, a retired gerontology clinical nurse practitioner who served in the U.S. Army as a nurse during World War II, was elected commander of Women Veterans American Legion Post 919 in 2004. She is listed in the World War II Registry of Remembrances at the National World War II Memorial. Ola Mae Woolridge Hitt (66) of Chicago, a retired teacher, taught for more than a decade at Betsy Ross Elementary School and loved it. She retired in 1977 — her mission accomplished. Gwen Ihnat (05), a June graduate of the MALS program and winner of the MALS Distinguished Thesis Award, is teaching a class at the Newberry Library called The Golden Age of Radio in Chicago, which addresses the period in the 1930s and 1940s when Chicago stood at the center of the medium, both geographically and creatively. Ihnat is an editor at the Chicago History Museum. Joe Ann Jackson (88) of Chicago was promoted to policy associate at the American Medical Association in July 2004.
Kenneth Kates II (02, GMcC04) of Chicago established the Beverly Pagoda Martial Arts Academy. He is working for the law firm Kirkland & Ellis in preparation for law school.
Jiaqi Nie (05), a September graduate of the MPPA program, has been hired as a senior budget analyst in the Illinois Governor’s Office of Management and Budget in Springfield.
Joe Kendall (05) wrote a play for the Red Tape Theater Company in Chicago called My Richard. The play, performed last summer at the Lakeshore Theater, is an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Richard III in which Richard is portrayed by a schizophrenic to fully realize the insanity of the character.
Adam Pasen (MCW program) is having his second play, Butterfinger, published by Brooklyn Publishers. His short story “The Strobe Effect” will appear in the Scrivener Creative Review, and his poetry will be published in The Georgetown Review as well as The Storyteller. His review of the book Choir Boy will appear in Other Voices magazine.
Gene Koprowski (97) of Chicago, a columnist for United Press International, received the 2004 Lilly Foundation/Religion Newswriters Foundation Award for writing about the interface of science and religion. The award funds two semesters of study at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Cynthia LeVan (95) of Milwaukee became vice president of advertising for Roundy’s Inc. in spring 2005. Candice Poston Mathers (97) of Chicago established a project management and high-end interior design firm specializing in commercial medical clinics and doctors’ offices.
Choose Me, the debut novel by Xenia Ruiz (01), was published last year by Walk Worthy Press/Warner Books. She is the first Latina author signed by Walk Worthy Press. She lives in Chicago with her family and is currently editing her second novel, scheduled for release in 2006.
Rodrigo A. Sierra (96) of Chicago is vice president of communications and government relations at Peoples Energy. He and his wife, Elizabeth, are the parents of Vasco Roberto, born in May 2005. Ruth Sinker (98) of Chicago is youth services technology coordinator at the Skokie Public Library. She published an article about the library’s Web Connections program in the December 2004 issue of ALSConnect, the newsletter of the Association for Library Service to Children. She developed Web Connections in 2003 to help students and teachers use the libraries’ web site and online resources for research, reference, and homework help.
Northwestern Alumni Association Northwestern CareerNet, your online, searchable networking resource offered by Northwestern Alumni Association, has more than 11,100 alumni career contacts in its database. This service offers you the benefit of establishing and maintaining valuable connections with fellow alumni in your field of work. You may also volunteer to be an alumni career contact yourself. By volunteering, you are agreeing to be contacted by fellow alumni or students so you can share your career knowledge and experiences with them.
Laura Lynn Smith (99) of Singapore married Steven F. Orpurt in October 2004.
You may access Northwestern CareerNet at www .alumni.northwestern.edu /career. For more information, contact Aspasia Apostolakis, Northwestern Alumni asso-
Lynn Rundhaugen (97, G04) of Gaithersburg, Maryland, became an economic modeling associate in the health economics and outcomes services division of Covance, a drug-development services company, in June 2004. She earned a master of public health degree from Northwestern’s Graduate School in June after participating in a fellowship at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda.
ciation, at alumnicareers @alumni.northwestern.edu.
Spring 2006 Continuum 19
Faculty Faisal Akkawi, director of the Master of Science in Computer Information Systems program, received a certificate of recognition from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the American Society for Engineering Education, and the Universities Space Research Association for his contributions to the 2005 NASA Summer Faculty Research Opportunities program. The program provides opportunities for faculty to engage in research at NASA Centers. Akkawi also received an SCS Distinguished Teaching Award for 2004–05. John Keene, associate professor of African American studies and English and on the faculty of the Master of Creative Writing program, was one of 10 writers to receive the 2005 Whiting Writing Award, given to emerging writers who show exceptional talent and promise. The selection committee remarked on his dense poetic prose and commented that Keene “doesn’t sound like anyone else.” His first novel, Annotations, was published by New Directions in 1995. A new collection of poems entitled Seismosis is forthcoming from 1913 Press. He is working on another volume of poems, a collection of short stories, and a novel. The Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation has given the awards, in the amount of $40,000, annually since 1985. Previous recipients have included Jeffrey Eugenides, Jonathan Franzen, Cristina Garcia, Jorie Graham,
20 Continuum Spring 2006
Mary Karr, Tony Kushner, Suzan-Lori Parks, William T. Vollman, Colson Whitehead, and August Wilson. Albert Hunter, professor of sociology in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences and on the faculty of the Master of Public Policy and Administration program, was elected chair of the Evanston Plan Commission, a group on which he has served for the past four years. This, he says, is “a very interesting tie-in to MPPA program, my course on urbanization, and my scheduled course City Political Processes.” Hunter has also published two books recently: Foundations of Multimethod Research (with John Brewer; Sage Publications) and Pragmatic Liberalism: Constructing Civil Society (with Carl Milofsky; Palgrave Macmillan). Alexandra Patera, an instructor in biological sciences and assistant director of the Weinberg College Program in Biological Sciences, received an SCS Distinguished Teaching Award for 2004–05. Richard Potter, an instructor in the Certified Financial Planner™ program, received an SCS Distinguished Teaching Award for 2004–05. Charles F. Whitaker (J80, GJ81) assistant professor of magazine editing in the Medill School of Journalism, director of the Academy for Alternative Journalism, and lecturer in SCS, received a Northwestern Alumni Association 2005 Excellence in Teaching Award. The award recognizes outstanding faculty members based on recommendations from deans, alumni, and students.
In memoriam Salchenberger joins SCS as associate dean
Edward W. Bilinski (60)
Late in 2004 Linda
James F. Cooke (52)
Salchenberger joined SCS
as associate dean of academics. In that position she oversees all SCS academic units — undergraduate, graduate, and noncredit certificate programs as well as Summer Session. She is also a senior lecturer at the J. L. Kellogg School of Management. Salchenberger was associate dean of the School of Business Administration at Loyola University Chicago before joining SCS. During her 19 years at Loyola, she held positions as associate vice president for academic affairs and faculty administration, founding director of the Center for Information Management and Technology, and professor of information systems. Her appointment at SCS marks a return to Northwestern for Salchenberger. She earned a PhD in managerial economics and decision sciences and an MM in decision sciences and information systems from Kellogg. She also has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics. Salchenberger has published research articles on data mining and neural network applications in health care and has been invited to give presentations on medical informatics, data warehousing, and data mining in health care to professional associations including the American Association of Medical Colleges. She has taught and developed distancelearning courses in decision-support systems and health care, and she has participated as a consultant in an integrated advanced information management systems project funded by the National Library of Medicine. “Linda brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the School of Continuing Studies,” says Dean Thomas F. Gibbons. “In her short time here, she has played a significant role in the development of our three-year strategic plan, launched two new master’s programs, and played a leadership role in reinventing our undergraduate program as it has moved from a semester to quarter system. With her extensive knowledge of information technology, Linda is now leading our new distance education initiative. We are very lucky to have such a professional in our school."
Margaret Daley Gustafson (52) Paul W. Keegan (47) Fred Kort (47, G50) Mitchell H. Lane (55) Sarah Stagman Levin (40) Arthur M. Luebbing (62) Marlene M. Morrison (83) Wilma Fithian Noble (SESP47, 83) Emaline Bolin Schell (71) Elsa Roeschlein Schuster (38) Ellen Holm Vogel (66)
I Wanted To
I wanted to
by Patricia Thrash
write something to convey the wonderment I feel about being in this body on this day in this place.
I wanted to say something to express my astonishment at being alive on this planet in this universe.
I also wanted to Left: Chicagoâ€™s Historic and Modern Architecture, 2005, by Marshall Marcovitz. Both works reprinted with permission from the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute Journal.
confess I donâ€™t understand any of it. Do you? How can life be finite, time circumscribed, and yet each day a gift immense, immeasurable?
Attention SCS Alumni!
Where have you been? What are you doing now? How has your SCS experience prepared you for your current and future endeavors?
We want to hear from you! Complete the brief online survey at www.scs.northwestern.edu/alumni and become eligible to receive a $50 gift certificate from Borders Books and Music.
NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF CONTINUING STUDIES WIEBOLDT HALL, SIXTH FLOOR 339 EAST CHICAGO AVENUE CHICAGO, ILLINOIS 60611-3008
PHONE 312-503-6950 FAX 312-503-4942 www.scs.northwestern.edu email@example.com
NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE PAID NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY